Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Owl Hats

These are fast and easy! The hardest part for me is finding the 3/4" black buttons for the eyes! I mean it. What do people do when they need a button? For crying out loud, it's next to impossible to find them.
The pink hat, for my sweet grandbaby, Lexi, I managed to find those buttons at Walmart.
Once I got finished with Brycie's hat, the second one because the first was too small, we had moved the motorhome, and this Walmart had almost NO BUTTONS!

I'm pretty sure this is not the first post I've done on the subject of the world's lack of buttons. But it's weird to me. Remember when we used to be able to find GOBS of buttons anywhere? Me too.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

New Adventure

Some of you know that Hubby and I have an advertising agency, making radio and television commercials. We can do it all; the voice work, the production, the editing, then placing buys on radio and tv, from the motorhome. The exception of course, is actually recording video in person. But we see our clients face-to-face once a year and can do everything else over the phone. We can also make commercials from still photos that come out great.

With the cost of travel and diesel, we've been trying to come up with new ways to make money. We started learning how to create websites which is the latest popular way to advertise. For internet in the motorhome, we use a MiFi by Verizon, and we're only allowed so many gigs per month. As much as I was enjoying the learning process with Adobe tutorials, we soon discovered that we would run out of gigs fairly soon. Humph!

Our next big idea was given to us by one of Hubby's old radio buddies...Audiobooks! You send in auditions through ACX.com and if a publisher, or rights-owner likes your voice, you agree on terms, and you have the time and equipment to narrate a book, you're in!

Just last week I started narrating a book that is right up my alley. I finished reading it already and thought to myself that it's a book I would have chosen for myself to read anyway. I'm so pleased that they picked me for this, my very first audiobook.

Once finished and the book is released, I'll invite you to let me read you a story!

Friday, August 9, 2013

Coeurs et Fleurs Hat

It's hard to tell in the picture, but the design is of leaves, or diamonds. I can't imagine being able to write a pattern. Math was never my strong suit, and I'm pretty sure designing requires it. My mind doesn't work that way, lol. Although, I guess if you have been knitting forever, and know what kind of stitch will turn into what you want your design to be, then maybe it's a natural progression on the knitting highway. This pattern, by Linda Irving-Bell can be found on ravelry.com.

The bright tomato color of the yarn is fitting in nicely with my decision to move away from all of the blacks and blues of my closet. I'm breaking out of that mindset. Wheeeeeee!

Friday, July 26, 2013

Whaass Been Up?

Well, I haven't been here in a while. I think I'm trying to decide what it is I'm going to do. Not on the grander scale of things...Life changing... but what it is that will bring me satisfaction on an everyday level.
We have had so many ups and downs over the last few months, for so many reasons. Things that have left me wondering where my energy should be focused from here forward were at the uppermost of my thoughts. I haven't quite figured that out yet, but here's what has been occupying my time lately.
I loved working on this Sand & Sea Shawlette that was awesome to knit, and even more of a pleasure to wrap around my neck! It's a bit smaller than most shawls, and also works as a scarf! This one I may keep for myself. :)After 400 plus stitches on the needles, I'm back to working on a lovely lace hat. I'll post a pic of that work in progress tomorrow.
Sweet Dreams, people!

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Hello Spring!

Have only seen three baby ducks so far. However, there is a whole lot of twitterpation goin' on! Mama Goose is still sitting. She only gets up and down off the little island to stretch and bathe once, maybe twice a day. We leave here on Monday, so I'm not sure if we'll get to see the goslings or not.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Menifee

We're in Menifee, CA right now. Yes, we were here around Christmas time and enjoyed our stay very much. Enough to come back (never mind that it's an hour and a half from Brycie). This is like a fantasy land. Like a Disney movie. Mostly because of all the ducks, geese, herons, and other birds flying around all the time. Here's a few pics from our stay this time.

Mama Canada goose nesting.
What a perfect spot to sit on eggs, in the middle of the water canal. Looks comfy, right? Papa goose is trolling around keeping guard. I was feeding some other fowl by the motorhome a couple of days ago and wondered why the two geese in front of me were hightailing it away from me. When I turned around, I saw Pops swooping down on those two with his beak open, ready to bite. Unnerved me too.

I posted on facebook the other day the photo of the Night Heron. I just love these guys!
I had mentioned then that anytime you feed any bird outside, these birds will come runnin'. I ended up with 10 of them around me. They are NOT afraid AT ALL. Last evening we had one just sitting next to our chairs, and actually was so comfortable that he fell asleep.

Here's another photo. The brown one in the background is a juvenile. They are also unafraid.

Today is the first day since we've been here that the weather has been almost perfect. Close to 80*. Love it!

Friday, April 12, 2013

Be Here Now

I'm freaked out tonight. I am. I admit it. We've had snakes around before when we lived in AZ. I even had to catch one in the house because Hubby Just. Could. Not. Do. It. I hiked up my big girl panties, threw a towel over him, picked him up and threw him outside. Yes, I threw him.

But last night when a BABY RATTLESNAKE (12 inches) slithered underneath my camping chair, everything changed. Luckily, I had my feet up on the bar below my seat, and I just happened to catch a glimps of his tail disappear underneath me. I won't post a picture of him (you're welcome), although I did grab the phone and snap away.

Gone today is the bravado I felt around the bullsnakes and gartersnakes in Arizona. I'm sure I'll stop high-stepping and cursing settle down eventually when I go outside. We're leaving the area on Sunday, but going to a similar type park.

Be Here Now takes on a whole new meaning for us now.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Promotion People

Yes, you know Hubby wrote a book. It's out there on Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble, Smashwords, Black Opal Books, and who knows where else. But, for me, it's all about how to promote it. He has friends that are authors, and radio people, but he also has friends from back in the day who are Promotion People! 

We are worried about over-hyping on facebook and twitter, but as one of our friends, who is a big-time promotion guy (then and now), says, go big or go home.

Okay. We'll do it. We are going for it! Morning shows, interviews, book signings. We are doing it! It's a full-time job. The more we do, the more we realize we need to do.

And then there is everyday reality. A strange combination.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Wow!

Imagine our surpise when we noticed that Kickin' Out The Jams was released five days early on amazon! The e-book and audio book are not up yet, and neither is Barnes and Noble, but they are coming.
Wow. What a ride!

Sunday, March 17, 2013

A Little Catch Up

Our old house, we're sitting next door
So, here we are back down in Sierra Vista, AZ. We're nextdoor to our house that we sold. I have to say that things work out as they're supposed to. The people that we sold the house to are Perfect for this wonderful little neighborhood. And we're so fortunate to be able to stay here in this yard with full hook-ups.

On our way to Sierra Vista, we came through Tucson during the "blizzard." Yes, that is a blizzard for Tucson. I love when it snows heavily, but not for too long. Snow without shoveling is fun.

We came down here for yearly doctor and dentist appointments, and also to get footage to make commercials for clients. Nice to catch up with friends as well.

The first sweater photo is a project that sat around for, I swear, thirty years. I got the front, back, and one sleeve done, then I guess life happened. Fast forward thirty years and I can hardly believe that I brought it with us when we packed up the motorhome. I finished the second sleeve, sewed it together, then realized that I didn't have enough yarn to finish the neck. #&#@*! I managed to find something close and got the thing done.

The second sweater is a really cute pattern from ravelry, Girls Bolero Shrug. I really love the border on the bottom. Not much in the way of yarn choice here in Sierra Vista, so I used stash yarn. I'm nervously wondering if I'm going to have enough to finish this one too. Bummer.

Lexi's painting is finished. I added some sparkley beads just to fill in a little. A vintage paper bird or two would have been cute glued on, but I'm happy with it. Hopefully, I'll get it mailed off to CO tomorrow.

Heading out on the road in the morning to Casa Grande for a night, Blythe for a night, then into Palm Springs for a couple of weeks. Supposed to be in the 90s there. A little warm but I'm not complaining.

Saturday, February 16, 2013

As Promised

The sneak peek of Hubby's book. Hehehehe...
For even more fun, go to his website, sean-conrad.com, and watch the book trailer! Yes, he was a wild man back then.

Friday, February 15, 2013

Jumping Coot

At Wilderness Lakes Thousand Trails in Menafee, CA there was waterfowl in abundance. Hundreds of ducks, thousands of American Coots, and some geese and Canada Geese.

Out of all of those birds, there were only TWO Coots that knew how to do this.
 

video
This one was pretty protective of it, too. The Einsteins of Wilderness Lakes!

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Newport, OR

The RV park we stayed at in Newport, OR was right along the ocean by the harbor, and this bridge stood guard over the boats.
Also docked at the harbor were two huge NOAA ships. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is a federal agency focused on the condition of the oceans and atmosphere.
McArthur II departed on her maiden NOAA cruise on 1 June 2003 from Seattle. She conducts oceanographic research and assessments, throughout the eastern Pacific Ocean, including along the United States West Coast -- where is involved in studies in several National Marine Sanctuaries-- and the Pacific coast of Central and South America. She engages in measurements of chemical, meteorological, and biological sampling for several large scale programs within NOAA, and the scientists who carry out research aboard her come from many divisions of NOAA, as well as other United States Government agencies, and academia.

Also along the harbor was a very large brewery, Rogue Nation.
 
We entered the building around 11 a.m., toured the grounds and actual brewery, and by the time we left at 8 p.m., we had sampled a great deal of their wares, ate in the restaurant, met the owners, and quite possibly every one of their employees. Just kidding. Sounds like fun though, right?
 
Lots of fishing happens along the Oregon Coast.
Unfortunately, there will be no more fishing for this guy!
 
 



Saturday, February 2, 2013

Discovery

We had some errands to run today to a totally different section of Indio, CA today. This is desert out here. Real desert. Every so often there are areas filled with palm trees and housing developments. Palm Springs proper, in my opinion, is older, as is Indio, but Palm Desert, La Quinta, Indian Wells look newer. La Quinta and Indian Wells are closer to the mountains (why haven't I taken pictures?) and by the looks of it, the areas, have $$.

On the more warehouse-ish side of Indio, driving between to RV stores (looking for outside light covers), we noticed a couple standing just outside of some water reeds in some sort of riparian area with binoculars. Hmm, what's that all about? Moments later, we passed a sign for Coachella Valley Wild Bird Center, which is a wild bird rescue center. What? Out here in the desert?

A quarter of a mile, a Uturn, and we pulled into the parking lot. From the front of the building, it didn't look like much. As we approached the door, it was opened by a very nice woman that said, "Come on in. I have to let you in because we have a bird out and I need to close the door."

Once inside, we noticed Big cages against the walls of the trailer. I immediately fell in love. Screech Owls, who knew they were so Beautiful??? Why do I not carry a camera with me EVERYWHERE? Yes, there were dead mice in the cages for lunch, but, hey, I just couldn't focus on that.

Well, we are going back, with binoculars for the open water area, and a camera for the outside cages which hold recovering Great Horned Owls, Barn Owls, Perigrin Falcons, Red-Tailed Hawks, and more.

We had planned on going back in this morning, camera in hand, but I woke up with a nasty cold. Boo! We'll make it back in there, but maybe not until we make our way back from AZ.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Lexi's Painting

This painting was so fun for me. It hit every creative hot button, from my graph paper and colored pencils, to trying different designs, to the fear of actually starting, to the light bulb moment of discovering what it needed.
 

I'll probably add a few more leaves, but I wanted to keep it simple. Oh, if I only knew how to paint a little bird! I'd perch him on top of the X! Can't you just picture that! Then maybe one more flying towards the x, under the L. Maybe someday.

But for now,

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Decisions, decisions...

I've been messing around off and on for the last couple of days with my graph paper and colored pencils. I want Lexi's painting to be feminine and girly (yes, there is a difference), but not so sweet that it becomes obnoxious. Know what I mean?

I started with a background of pink and yellow plaid, but decided it even made my teeth hurt. I guess the bookshelf and magazine table I did in those colors several years ago used up any sugary leanings I had at the time. Next I tried green and yellow plaid with a darker green skinny line and black and white checks on the outside. Definitely no.

Have I ever mentioned how much I love graph paper and colored pencils? When I dream of designing something, which I have never followed through on by-the-way, out come the pencils. I am no artist, but if I draw suggestions of how I want something, I'm happy. I even bought water color pencils at one point, but don't really understand how to use them. I'm such a dork.

Anyway, today I decided on the colors I'm going to use and the pattern of the background, and actually put the first coat on the canvas.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Knitless

Since finishing Shannon's scarf, I've made two cowls (neck warmers), one out of the softest furry yarn ever, Carabou, and the second out of a yarn I didn't really care for but had started knitting with it anyway. Eh. Maybe it will soften up after being washed and blocked.

What to do now? Hubby is working on his audio book, adding snippets of music and station identification jingles to his words. And frankly, I need something to occupy my mind to block out listening over, and over, and over to his book. After 18 years of listening to production edits of radio commercials, TV commercials, and on-hold messages, I've become quite adept at tuning it out. He he.

So I thought I'd buy a blank canvas at Michael's Arts & Crafts store today and make little granddaughter Lexi a painting of her name to hang in her room. Hopefully it will come out well enough that her dad won't be too embarrassed to hang it. :) I'll post a picture, maybe, if I'm not too embarrassed.

Friday, January 11, 2013

Daughter Gets Her Present!

WooHoo! Finally finished, albeit after Christmas. Better late than never, right Shannon? 

First time using a chart, and that was a wee bit confusing for me, but as usual I learned so much. And guess what? I love charts! Its just seems so much easier to follow where I am on the many repeats of the pattern.  This is far from perfect, but wrapped around her neck, nobody will notice. If I decide to make another for myself, I'll know better.
This was before being blocked (washed, stretched and opened the lacework).
This is after blocking. I swear it's like wrapping yourself in a warm cloud! 

The pattern is #151 Samantha Featherweight Lace Shawl on ravelry.  The yarn is Elann Silken Kydd which is a laceweight yarn, 70% mohair, 30% silk. Yummy. It's pretty slippery yarn and I was always scared that I would drop stitches because of it. After a while, I learned how to hold the needles in a way that wouldn't let that happen. 

BTW, I did change my browser to be able to post pictures. I don't know, maybe I just needed updating, or perhaps it's the fact that I use Picassa to process photos. I don't know enough about technology to answer that.

My header doesn't fit anymore, but I'll get around to that. :)

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Posting Pictures, or Not!

All of a sudden, I can't post pictures. I just can't figure it out. I click on the little picture icon and the window comes up for posting a pic, but there's no browse button.
Any ideas out there?



Thursday, January 3, 2013

Getting Close!

The first days of 2013 have been exciting ones for us. We have a release date for Hubby's book...April 6th!

As we get closer, we've gone through 2 edit phases, and now have an actual formatted copy. THAT'S EXCITING! It has the finished bookcover, the copyright information, pictures, chapter titles, page numbers, everything. He has also started on the audio book. Since that is what he does for a living (uses his voice), it's a natural.

We really had no idea when we started how to work with a publisher, or the many phases of getting it from his written beginning, to a hold-in-your-hand book, an e-book, and an audio book. As we get closer to that magic date, I'll start posting teasers from the book, and maybe even his book trailer!

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Thank You!

 
Lovely Hesper over at Little House on the Prairie had a giveaway! And I won!
 
Such a generous giveaway, and I love it all! I've been looking for something "seasonal looking" to hang in the front window of the motorhome, and this wonderful metal snowflake will be perfect! And who wouldn't love tea and cookies? And candy?? And lavendar soap and body butter??? And then I can wash and dry my tea cup with this adorable dish towel! :) Thank you, Hesper!