ice cream for supper

Bonne fête, Annie & Dad! I hope you have a fabulous day and nothing but excitement for the future.

Adam stumbled across something très cool today - how to create your own miniature-looking pictures! Have a look at the ones he posted on his blog today. Very neat. Everyone (more or less) likes miniature things.



I laughed when I saw how this turned out - Virgil looks so abashed. I'm sure his mental state was somewhere else in the far-off regions of kitty land, dreaming of strings to chase and real mice rather than the lame-o wind-up one we provide for his entertainment.

On another note entirely, I think I had a bit of a remarkable thought on my other blog, which doesn't really have a focus other than it's more of my thoughtful bits rather than the pictures and daily fun around here on this one. I've been thinking about art and what makes it different from anything else in life, and I think it has to do with how art connects people across space and time. I still have more thinking to do about it, but I think that's a good start. I just started reading a book called Socrates Cafe, which is very interesting so far and is spawning all kinds of other things in my mind. More to come, I'm sure.



Since I seem to be into taking plant pictures this week, I thought I'd throw this one out there. I have a love / hate relationship with Christmas cacti... I think they are beautiful and I love their blooms, but I seem to be unable to sustain one long enough to get to the blooming bit. Actually, I seem to be unable to even get the buds on a cactus to not fall off when I bring it home. At least there are some new leaves on this one, so that's promising.

quince update


Fool's gold

When I was a kid, I spent countless hours on the beach, playing with seaweed, looking for "washglass" as my sister and I called it, and skipping the best flat rocks I could find (shale works great if you don't cut your hand). Adam and I had a great time at the beach yesterday, mostly taking pictures. His are much better than mine. Anyway, he spotted this rock almost as soon as we stepped onto the beach - the hugest piece of fool's gold I have ever seen. I guess you really can't tell from the picture, but it's a good inch and a half in diameter. When I was a kid, I thought that someone went around to all of the beaches in the world and cut out little squares in rocks and filled them with fake gold, just for a joke. I guess I was wrong, but it would make a good joke.



The quince buds have started to open! I had never tried forcing branches in the winter before, but I think it's one of my new favourite things. That and these squares that I made up yesterday with chocolate chips, oatmeal, dried cranberries, walnuts, and everything else that I had leftovers of in the cupboard. I just melted a bit of margarine and some marshmallows, mixed in the stuff, and voila! Instant squares. No sugar, and very tasty.

Every morning when I wake up...

... there's a cat licking condensation off of the window.


Tiptoeing through the...

My thoughtful and hopelessly romantic husband bought me un-Valentine's tulips (my absolute favourite flowers!) the other day. This one is the only one that has opened so far; the others are waiting until they don't have so much competition, methinks.
Other flora-related news in this house - I'm forcing some quince branches, and a few of the leaves have opened, and it looks like some of the flowers are quite ready to burst. I planted some basil and rosemary, and they have both sprouted. An amaryllis is also on the go; just leaves so far, but they're definitely making progress. I can't wait for Spring!

braille blazing

After a bit of frowning, brow furrowing and lip chewing, I finally got the Braille Blazer successfully working in my little 'work' room at our house.
"At home?" you say. "Why not at the office?"
"Because," I reply. "It's too noisy for anyone in my building to work when it's embossing, since I have a wide open cubicle where nine other people can hear everything I do or say. People 'on the other side' thought I was popping corn in an air popper."
So now the process is as follows:
1. Scan document into office computer.
2. Proof and format in Duxbury at office.
3. Save to disk I hope desperately not to lose (memory stick as soon as they get some in)
4. Make sure disk arrives home safely.
5. Open document on laptop prone to freezing.
6. Emboss away and hope that no one phones, since the ringing would probably go unheard.

At least Virgil likes it being at home.


What every teacher lives for. Not because I dislike my job, but in what other profession do you get surprise days off? All winter long it's like a weather lottery, and on days like today, my number is finally picked!

The only trouble with snow days (I'm not complaining) is that I get so excited when I hear the announcement that I can't go back to sleep. That's why it's 6:46am and here I am at the computer. I thought that schools might be closed, so I had been waking up on and off since 5:00, probably driving Adam crazy. I thought it would be best for everyone if I just got up.

Now to figure out how to best spend my day...


Winter wonderland

We're in the middle of a lovely blizzard-y day in NS, and I have some pumpkin chocolate chip cookies in the oven. I got the recipe from allrecipes.com, my favourite recipe site. It's a cookie with perfect texture, and they are SO good cold.

Things that people generally don't know exist (meaning I didn't) but that make things easier when you do:

1. When using Mozilla Firefox, if you press Ctrl+F, a cute little 'find' bar appears at the bottom of the screen. Type in what you're looking for on the page, and it takes you there.

2. In WordPerfect, when making invitations or other fun paper things, click on format, paragrah, drop cap, and you can get a giant first letter for your paragraph, a la first paragraph of a chapter.

3. When using the braille blazer to emboss documents, press F4 at the top of the document and it widens the margin so you can easily hole punch or bind the pages. (I learned this one today!)


Freshly groomed

A freshly groomed Virgil What a face! He's certainly not a talking beast, but he is entertaining.