Sick dogs

Little Jerry ended up at the vet's on Wednesday because, for the second time in a week, he's had a strange wad of something in his fur on one cheek. Turns out he's been scratching badly enough to cause his skin to bleed and the wad was a scab. A cortisone shot, antibiotics and ointment are all that's necessary to take care of this - except it's rather difficult to get him to swallow his pills and he still wants to scratch and, obviously, I cannot watch him 24/7.

Last night, the vet called with the results of Maggie's (she's the blonde in the second picture - and, no, neither one of them is squinty eyed, that was the sun) bloodwork: there's something wrong with her liver values (I know that's the wrong term but it'll have to do for now), indicating that she either has an infection or worse (meaning possibly cancer). So, antibiotics for her, too, plus another med - all of which I have to pick up later this morning. Another blood test in 4 weeks and then we'll find out a week after that if the meds helped or not and go from there.


A good day for balloons

This morning was a good morning for balloons - and a bad one for a leisurely breakfast. Of course, I have to take pictures if there are more than one or two balloons landing. This morning, there were three with a fourth one still deciding if he should or shouldn't land in what used to be a vineyard behind our house. I gave up on trying to keep track of that one after a while. He went from N to S and back again and disappeared in the mist in the process.



I finished this bracelet a couple of days ago. It is made from a kit by Charlene Abrams (http://www.buythekit.com/). I wanted to make the version that alternates between single and double rings but found out that, unfortunately, the single ring version looks better on my smallish wrist. This bracelet worked up pretty fast, the instructions were very good and I hope to make at least one more in different colors - I have some ideas but need to narrow down my color choices.


Gem and Mineral Show

On Saturday, we went to a Gem and Mineral Show at Fort Mason in San Francisco. This is a fairly small show (which is held only once a year in this location) compared to the Gem and Jewelry Show in San Mateo which is held 4 times a year. Very different and often very interesting vendors. I didn't buy much this year, a few tools for wirework, some kumihimo supplies (I've been wanting to learn for years and haven't made it yet, even though I have supplies and books) and, best of all, six beautiful clasps from Jess Imports which I got at half-price or less. I know the picture only shows 5 - that's because the sixth is domed (old Venetian glass) and absolutely refuses to lie flat on the scanner. I need to play with the new camera a lot before I feel confident enough to take good close-ups.

We drove over the Golden Gate to get to Fort Mason and I was very apprehensive about that. It's the first time we've gone this way since last May and we did slow down when we approached lamp post 47. But it worked, we can do it.


Phishing season?

Yesterday, I got one of those phishing e-mails through paypal (and forwarded it on).
This morning, I got two. The first was run-of-the-mill - I supposedly sold somebody something, they paid me, never got whatever they bought and were now going to report me. I sent it on the ebay to deal with.
The second one was clever - it came from the Royal Bank of Canada and assured me that they were looking forward to taking care of my investments just as soon as I updated my account info because, apparently, somebody has fraudulently asked for customers' personal details. I thought that was pretty inspired - pretending to follow up on a phishing e-mail and hoping to get my account info that way. Gotta give them points for ingenuity!



So much for getting out early this morning - and so much for having a quiet breakfast. Jerry (the little dog) alerted me to balloons and since they were close enough for good pictures this time, I just had to go for it.

Ballooning is a big thing for tourists here, almost as popular as wine tasting. The valley is narrow, so we can see them no matter where they go but the most interesting times, of course, are when they fly over or land on the East side of the valley. My big dogs go totally bonkers and even the little dog who couldn't possibly harm anyone no matter how hard he tried has started growling and barking at them.
These pictures were taken between spoonfuls of cereal and sips of tea :-) It didn't take long for both ballons to land, the people to climb out of the baskets and for the crew to deflate and fold up the balloons and drive everything away.


A Bridge Too Deadly?

This was a "Must Read" on the ABC morning news today. They actually ran it twice:

The Golden Gate: A Bridge Too Deadly? - washingtonpost.com


More chain maille

It's what Pooh Bear would call a "blustery day" - good for doing chain maille and playing on the computer. So, I finally scanned most of my other chain maille.

Picture one is of chains made in classes: the top is open round chain maille, my very first class; next is byzantine diamond (an original design by Colin Mahler), my second class, not difficult per so, but a bit awkward (tight spaces) and the last one is butterfly chain, a pretty fast weave. This one is done with 3 different ring sizes which shows the design better than a single size would.

In the second image are bracelets I made from kits: Mobius chain; Romanov, a byzantine variation; and double spiral - a design a really like.

The third image is a mix: the top is parallel or helm chain (made from a kit), the middle is double helm, another class; and the bottom is flower chain, a kit from Urbain Maille (http://www.urbanmaille.com/), one of my favorite suppliers.

I'm still debating whether to oxidize any or all of these but there's time.