Dejà vu

Somebody very nice offered to enhance Henry's picture for me. I have to admit it was very dark before but I didn't trust myself to do more than click the "auto enhance" button and, quite honestly, I don't have the patience for manual enhancement. So, thank you very much, Laurie. This is much better.


Finally something I made

I've been talking about chain maille in a couple of previous posts but have never gotten around to scanning and posting. Finally, I did.

Just 2 bracelets for starters. The top is European 4-in-1, a class I took yesterday. I had tried that particular weave before and struggled with it - there's a front and back - but this time it clicked and I really enjoyed this one (and there are weaves I do not like).

The bottom one is called "bike chain" by the instructor (Colin Mahler. Great teacher, if you ever have a chance to take a class with her, do so. She really knows what she's doing.). It also goes by "Olivia" and is a byzantine variation. This one is two-tone and will stay as is. Everything else I've made and will post eventually will be oxidized and tumbled. I just like the darker look better.

For right now, that's it. More to follow - eventually.


Nasty day

It's cold, wet and very windy, the perfect day to stay inside and just play around. I overslept because I was listening to the wind during the night - and it was pretty scary. There's a tree in the neighbor's yard that's missing its top. I'd say that means it is pretty windy.

Anyways, playing around meant taking the memory stick out of Henry's camera to see what was on there. Lots of nature pictures from a science project and a few pictures he obviously took of himself. I am absolutely thrilled about those. We have so few recent pictures of him (and, yes, we'd much rather have him than any old picture but that's not an option). So, I cleaned up one of them and posted it everywhere I can think of (I have a memorial site for him on myspace and somebody made one for him on facebook). Here it is - late summer 2006. A bit dark but who cares.

For somebody who was so reluctant to start a blog because she thought she wouldn't have anything to say, I certainly seem to post an awful lot.

Watch for some chain maille to go up next. Finished a bracelet yesterday and need to oxidize and tumble about half a dozen others. That will take a while, though.


The new table

Here's a close-up of the new table I mentioned in an earlier post. Yes, Marilee, I did it all myself - no safety net and no help from the resident expert.

The table is part of the "marbleous and tacky" collection because there are marbles and tacks embedded in the wood.

Whole Foods Market

Last week, a brand-new Whole Foods Market opened in Napa. I wasn't part of the opening day crowd - I heard traffic was so bad that people had to park several blocks away in the residential area surrounding the little shopping center and that traffic backed up into the rather busy street the center is located on.
It's a very nice store (they all are) and it's big - you can do your shopping and your walking for exercise all at the same time. There's fresh bread (really good bread), a gelato bar, (almost) fresh pizza, a wine tasting area, a salad bar, steam tables for all kinds of interesting foods (although I don't trust that it's that safe. How do I know somebody hasn't sneezed into it?) and all the usual stuff one finds there.
I wonder at the wisdom of the location, though. It's in a small shopping center (with limited parking which was a problem before this store opened) 3 doors down from a Trader Joe's. Obviously, it's nice for us consumers. We can walk from one to the other (if we've managed to find a parking space). But won't this affect sales for one or the other retailer? Are the customers who used to shop at Trader Joe's now going to shop at Whole Foods? Surely, they are not going to buy twice as much now. I'll be watching that and the big discussion about traffic and parking that's been ongoing ever since Target opened in the old Montgomery Ward store in the same center.


If it isn't one thing ................

So, yesterday we had a very panicky e-mail from my sister-in-law: her stepfather had had a mild stroke, was in the hospital for an MRI and my mother-in-law who can hardly see any more drove the car into a curb. Thankfully, by evening everything had been sorted out, it really is just a mild stroke and my mother-in-law has promised not to drive again and to make arrangements for some help. Oh, I guess I should mention that they live in Florida and we all live in California.
This morning, I had e-mail from my sister telling me that our mother died yesterday. Not unexpected.
I wonder when the other shoe will drop -- or was this the other shoe?

On the good side, though: we bought the coolest kitchen table on Saturday. I'll post a picture as soon as I figure out how to :-) Of course, it's still sitting in the entrance hall because we cannot figure out where to put the old kitchen table. And, of course we may well need new chairs to go with the new table. And, the nice and colorful new table requires a neater house. So, I am trying very hard to overcome my packrat mentality and clean out all the accumulated books, magazines and assorted papers. Not a fast and/or easy task.
I am also almost finished with another chain maille bracelet, a two tone bike chain, a variation of Olivia. Picture to follow. I signed up for many, many chain maille classes this semester and am really looking forward to all of them.


Henry's birthday

Today would have been Henry's 19th birthday - if he hadn't decided to take his own life on May 8, 2007 by jumping from the Golden Gate Bridge. I will write more in time and include links to everything that is important to me nowadays - things I never even thought about or thought I needed to think about before.

But for today, I just want to say that it's been a better than expected day. I expected to spend it with a box of Kleenexes. Instead I "did something that mattered" which this time was adding a comment to an article in a newspaper, an article that was important to me and my family. And whenever I do something that matters (to me, anyway), I feel better.