Sunday, February 28, 2010

A Tale of Metal and Medals

It's hard to believe the 2010 Olympics are drawing to a close today. It has been an exciting two weeks, capped off by the gold medal match-up between the Canadian and American hockey teams taking place this afternoon, followed by the closing ceremonies tonight.

I spent some time in the armour exhibit at the Royal Ontario Museum on Friday night. If you're into metalwork, you will really enjoy this collection. They have some beautiful pieces on display, from intricately carved decorated breast plates worn on parade (rather than in battle) to chain mail to the intricately formed handles of various swords and rapiers.

One of the 15 "must see" iconic items in the museum is this piece of armour worn by the first Earl of Pembroke. It's said to be an extremely rare example of this type of "garniture" - you can see from the small posts on the shoulders that other pieces, such as the sleeves, are meant to be layered on top.

What does armour have to do with the Olympics, you might be asking yourself? I was amused to come across this exhibit describing the similarities between today's hockey players and knights of the Middle Ages taking part in something called "Baston Course" or "Club Course", which was a mock battle "in which knights on horseback tried to smash the parchment or leather crests on their opponents' helmets with wooden swords and clubs". It compared the iron grills on the knights' helmets to the face guards worn today and the steel gauntlets worn on their hands back then to the special gloves players wear today for protection. Both sports require(d) special skills to wield either a wooden sword or a hockey stick.

Whether the Canadian men's hockey team goes home with a silver or gold medal today doesn't really make a difference. I am extremely proud of all the athletes and their various accomplishments. Win or lose, it is an incredible feat to represent your country in an Olympic competition, one that most of us can only imagine and admire from the comfort of our living rooms.

For Canada, it has been a record-breaking performance, with the winning of more medals than ever before - to have done this on home soil makes it extra special. We Canadians are also proud to have hosted these games in the city of Vancouver and I think the organizers and volunteers should be commended for having done an amazing job. With glowing hearts, we bring down the curtain on these Games and look ahead to London in 2012.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

February ROM Visit

I went to the Royal Ontario Museum for my monthly visit last night. One of the temporary exhibits currently showing features the work of Dan Perjovschi. He is a Romanian artist who draws political cartoons directly onto the walls of the museum. It's called "Late News" and features his take on current world events.

I liked this handwritten addition to his biography, about how he lives in Bucharest and in his notebook. It makes me think he must spend a lot of time doodling!

I'm not entirely sure how this exhibit works, since it opened February 22and is scheduled to run until August 15th. As you can see from these photos, his drawings cover the walls in the 4th floor gallery but they are rather topical to what's happening in the news this week. For example, several of his drawings had to do with the Olympics. Given Canada's multiple gold medal performances today, I thought this one would be most appropriate to share with you:

I'm guessing that the artist will need to make frequent visits to either add to or replace the current drawings. I don't know if they will paint the walls over and over or if he will just add things in to the blank spaces. I shall have to check out this gallery again next time I visit and see if anything has changed.

And in case you were wondering, I did not go to see the new bat cave! I'm not sure I'll ever be brave enough to walk through that exhibit. But I did like the way this photo turned out, of the almost full moon peeking out beside the giant sign on the front of the building advertising the arrival of the bats and how spooky it looks with the museum's architecture.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Proud to be a Canadian

I love how the Olympics brings people from all around the world together and how it makes sharing in the many triumphs and tragedies that unfold over this two week period that much more special.
I'm a proud Canadian and as such, I'm proud to call the United States my neighbour and friend. Thank you, Tom Brokaw, for putting this piece of journalism together to share that message.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

175 Days and Counting

I am thinking of France today. It's never far from my mind, as the days count down, but Kate mentioned in her blog today that the Paris and Durfort sections of the trip are fully booked, which means I've got to get busy cruising the Internet to find us a place to stay in Paris. (If anyone reading this has any suggestions for a charming place for 6 women to stay for a week in the City of Light, please do let me know).

It was snowing as I drove to the grocery store tonight and there is snow in the forecast for the next three days, perhaps as much as 15 cm in total by Sunday if they are right. I bought myself a bagette along with my other bits and pieces, came home and ate a bit of it with some cheese and a nice, warm bowl of chili and thought about summer.

Then I sat down to look at some of my photos from July of 2008, where I could have bought a fresh loaf of bread from this stall at the vide grenier (one of the weekend flea markets that are held in different villages each week).

I am also remembering this beautiful church that is just around the corner from La Cascade, where we will be staying in the village of Durfort. It has beautiful stained glass windows and a painted ceiling that is mesmerizing.

Two years ago, we were there for a week taking a precious metal clay class that Kate taught. It was a full week and while we did have time to do a bit of exploring both on foot and in the car, it just never seemed to be enough time to see and do everything. At the time, I was glad to have arrived a day ahead of everyone else so I could get my bearings and tour around a bit on my own because the rest of the week seemed to go by too quickly.

This summer, I am looking forward to spending two whole weeks in this small village without an agenda. We can do what we want, when we want. I expect that means there will be plenty of time to sit in this church and admire the surroundings, perhaps with a sketchbook in hand. And it will be warm, so very warm. I can't wait!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Picking a Password

Every couple of months at work, the computer tells me my current password will be expiring in 14 days and asks me if I want to change it now. I always say no until I only have one or two days left, because it always seems difficult to pick a new password and I'm so familiar with the current one, I'd rather not change it until I absolutely have to.

The longer I work there (just a month short of five years!), the more I'm getting to the point where I've used all the obvious choices and I need to pick something a little more fresh and less obvious. According to the experts on the Internet, a good password is one that is hard for someone else to guess and easy for you to remember. Which means you shouldn't use your kids' names or those of your pets. They also say you should use a minimum of 8 characters, with a combination of upper case and lower case letters as well as numbers.

One article I read said the ten most common passwords are:

- god
- lust
- money
- private
- qwerty
- secret
- sex
- snoopy
and (it's a wonder we have survived this long)
- password.

I can honestly say I have never used any of the above as my login password, although I will admit that I have used the word "private" to secure an individual file here and there. Nor have I ever written my password on a sticky note and kept it under my keyboard, but apparently there are those that do.

I found this webpage from MIT to be a good guide for picking a new password: The scariest advise on that list is not to use any word in any dictionary in any language. Well, that kind of narrows it down, doesn't it??? Apparently, there are computer programs that can crack your password this way.

Now I'm guessing that the chances of anyone trying to break into my computer at work are pretty slim to none, although there might be a hacker out there somewhere that randomly picks my workstation for fun. So I'll have to figure out that new password pretty soon, as I've only got about 11 days left. The people at MIT say misspelled words are good to use, so maybe I'll use some sort of LOL cat message. What do you think - I can haz passwerd??

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Safety First

I just got home from the dentist, after having an old filling replaced. My jaw is just a little bit achy now that the freezing is wearing off but the good news is, I don't have as much silver in my mouth any more and I'm glad about that because no matter what they say about the safety of old style amalgam fillings, I have to believe that the less metal you have in your body, the better. Plus, I like the way my smile looks now with white stuff where the silver used to be.

Speaking of metal and safety (great segue, eh?), if you've ever worked with precious metal clay or thought about working with it, you need to watch this video that the very talented and incredibly informed PMC guru Kate McKinnon has just posted on YouTube. Not only is it easy to understand and very informative, you can play "spot the Godzilla" while you watch and for those of us in the frozen North, enjoy the background chorus of singing birds.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Isn't It Ironic?

It's a great song by Alannis Morrisette (who did not perform at the Opening Ceremonies for the Vancouver 2010 Olympics but perhaps they are saving her for the Closing Ceremonies this weekend?)

It's also an amusing website, as we now know if you read yesterday's Beadfx blog entry - thanks to dragonjools for sharing this gem:

I had my own ironic encounter yesterday. First, a little background - I bought myself a shredder a couple of years ago. I thought if I was going to be throwing away papers with my name and personal information inscribed on them, I should at least shred them up into small pieces first.

Since it was a lovely, sunny winter afternoon yesterday, I took myself out for a walk about the neighbourhood. As I was coming home, within less than 50 yards of the door to my apartment, I happened to look down at a tiny scrap of paper on the brown, frozen grass beside the sidewalk and saw this:

A little tiny scrap of paper with my name on it! I thought I had given due consideration to the fact that you can't just slide a piece of paper into the shredder any which way, you have to be sure to orient the paper in such a way as to avoid cutting something in such an angle that it accentuates, rather than obscures, the very information you are trying to hide.

As for the fact that I was the one to find this piece of paper beside the sidewalk? Ironic, don't you think?

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Olympic Fever

We Canadians are certainly enjoying hosting the Olympics and we've had lots of special guests from the U.S. visit Vancouver to take part in all the festivities, like Stephen Colbert and Arnold himself. But tonight we go head to head with our American neighbours at the hockey arena and the country is simply buzzing with excitement. During that game, we'll be hard pressed to play the polite host. Hockey is our game and the fever is running high, anything less than a win is simply not acceptable.
By the way, if you didn't get your red mitts before Friday when Oprah wore them on her show, chances are you are now completely out of luck. But don't worry, you can still get the official Team Canada donut at Tim Horton's, complete with maple leaf sprinkles - yum!

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Stamping 101 Continued

As promised, here are a few more photos from the stamping class I took at the Bizzy B stamp and scrapbooking store the other night (

This darling girl is a full length stamp but I just inked half of it (i.e. to her waist) and stamped it onto a striped paper background.

This next photo is an example of the embossing technique. I used the Versamark clear stamp to add the image to the paper and then sprinkled on the embossing powder and heated the image with a heat gun to melt the powder.

Last but not least is a tag I made that at first, I thought I had ruined. I started out with yellow ink and then added a few more colours. I didn't like the look, so I added a bit more ink until suddenly, don't ask me how, all of a sudden it seemed to work. I added the word "imagine" because I thought the rainbow colour effect was a good example of the possibilities that are available to a healthy imagination. Daniza, the instructor, suggested I stamp the word a few more times in a random fashion and said it was okay to only have part of the word showing. I'm not sure why but everyone in the class loved this tag the best of all the ones I made.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Stamping 101

I took the Stamping 101 course at the Bizzy B store last night, as taught by Daniza Benic.

First we stamped a few tags like the one in the top left photo, after learning about the different types of stamps. For example, they can be mounted on wood or foam or they can be clear and unmounted and you peel them off and place them on a block of acrylic (which can be quite handy if you want to see where you are placing your stamp).

The stamp images themselves are also quite varied - they can be bold faced (i.e. if you had a picture of an apple and the body of the apple was solid) or reasonably detailed (perhaps a picture of a sliced apple slice showing the seeds inside) or just a few simple lines (only the outline of the apple). They can also be incredibly detailed so that they look almost like a photograph, which you can see in this example below. I did two very similar tags as I was copying the striking colour effect one of my classmates achieved with a combination of purple and fuchsia inks and a black permanent ink. The one with the turquoise ink was my first attempt and I used a stone gray ink. It turned out okay but I didn't put on enough ink or press hard enough and you can't see the word "Bella" in the image, so I added the word "dream" instead, as I thought that suited the mood of the softer image. In the second example, the colour is more purple and I used black ink so the image is much bolder.

We also learned about different types of ink- there are dye-based, pigment inks and permanent. The type of ink you choose depends on what type of effect you want to create and what type of material you will be stamping. Most ink pads are one solid colour but you can also get pads that has two or more stripes of various colours.

This next example of what is known as a watermark ink pad, the brand name we used was called Versamark. The ink is colourless and as it dries on your paper, it gives a tone on tone effect.

Then I made this card by stamping an image, tearing the edges around it, adding ink to the edges, gluing the image to a folded piece of cardstock and then adding the text with a second piece of paper treated the same way and mounted on little pieces of foam with glue on each side to raise it slightly above the card beneath. I even coloured in the fairy wings by hand, using markers and watercolour pencils.

Tomorrow I will show you a few more examples of what I made, including the tag that the teacher and all my classmates thought was the very best, which resulted from what I initially thought was a colour combination gone horribly wrong.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Another Thursday Night Class

Tonight I'm off taking a "stamping 101" class at Bizzy B. While I'm there, Max is in charge of the keyboard.

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Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Speaking of Tigers...

here are a couple from the Royal Ontario Museum. Last time I was there, they were acting as models for three art students. Unfortunately, I didn't get close enough to the sketchpads to see how the portraits were turning out. I think these are bengal tigers, but don't quote me on that - I didn't get close enough to check that out either!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

2010 - The Year of the Tiger

I'm a couple of days late for the beginning of the Chinese New Year on Feb 14th but since it is a 15 day celebration, I'm not too late.

On the first day, it is traditional for Chinese families to visit the eldest members of their families. On the second day, married daughters visit their birth parents (as traditionally, they may not have had many opportunities to do so previously). On the third day, "it is generally accepted that it is not a good day to socialize or visit your relatives and friends."

2010 is the year of the tiger. As far as the elements are concerned, it is the year of the metal tiger and is represented by the colour white, so it can also be said it is the year of the white tiger.

“He who rides a tiger is afraid to dismount.” – Chinese proverb

P.S. Don't you just love Google? It's like having the world's largest encyclopedia right at your fingertips!

Monday, February 15, 2010

Encaustic Art

One of the pictures Maggie showed the other night in her presentation at Bead Junction was this painting which adorns a mummy's casket from the days of Ancient Rome. It is said to date back to approx. 100 to 100 CE. Photo courtesy of the VRoma Project, which advises that "the woman's name, Isidora ("gifts of Isis"), is inscribed on the side of the wrappings, and the gold hair ornament and quantity of expensive jewelry indicate her high social standing." Maggie was inspired by the emerald and gold necklace in this image.

I was slightly shocked to see this picture in Maggie's slide show on Friday night, because I had just seen it for the first time the night before, at C1 Art Space, where I was taking a class in encaustic painting. This mummy painting is one of the earliest examples of this technique of layering paint and wax.

I really enjoyed learning the encaustic technique. We painted liquid beeswax onto a wooden board and then started adding colour (using wax mixed with oil paint), tissue paper and images cut form old magazines (the less glossy, the better for this technique, to allow the wax to saturate the paper more easily). The wax dries quickly and if you don't like what you've put on, you can either scrape it off or melt it off with a heat gun or propane torch.

Lighting up a propane torch with a flint is always a bit intimidating the first time. Luckily, I'd had some experience last year in Susan Lenart Kazmer's class at the Bead and Button Show in Milwaukee. As I was waving it across my wax creation, I kept thinking, I know I've got something at home that would generate this kind of heat in a smaller and more controllable fashion, but what is it? However, I was much too focused on the wax painting for my brain to process this request for information at the time, so it wasn't until the next day that I remembered my Blazer torch, which I use to fuse metal as taught by Kate McKinnon. Ah yes, that would work too!

Here are the two paintings I made the other night:

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Happy Valentine's Day

Sometimes, being single on February 14th can feel a little bit like this:

but that's okay. I may not be in a romantic relationship at this moment in time but I've got lots of people who love me and whom I love, not to mention my beloved furry companion Max to keep me warm at night. Best of all, the possibility always exists that my romantic status could change for the better at any time without notice and that would be worth more than any box of chocolates or bunch of flowers. But for those of you spending the day with your significant other today, give him an extra kiss on my behalf. :)

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Inspiration from the Ancients

Last night, Maggie Meister (far right in photo, check out that fabulous necklace!) gave a talk to about fifteen members of the Toronto Bead Society at Bead Junction. She is in town to teach classes for three days there this weekend and had been scheduled to give this talk at the TBS meeting Wednesday night but couldn't get a flight out of the snow zone in the States until late Thursday. I'm sure all of us there last night would agree, it was worth the wait for her talk.

The title of her presentation was, "Ancient Voices - Beadwork Inspired By Antiquity". Maggie spent five years living in Naples, Italy, which she describes as a filthy dirty city, "like someone moved the Bronx to San Diego" (because of the palm trees). It is one of the most densely populated cities in Europe, even older than Rome, as evidenced by the remains of the Greeks who first settled there. However, she found the artwork there to be incredibly inspiring.

She showed us several slides of pieces found in the National Museum in Naples, many of which have inspired her beadwork - objects such as jewellery, mosaic floors, paintings, statues all served to tweak her imagination and made her wonder how to translate what she saw into works of art with beads. Words can't begin to describe the result - you can see some of the finished designs here, in her gallery:

Maggie also had some great words of inspiration for seed beaders:

1 - interpret your passion

2 - have a working knowledge of 5 stitches (peyote, square, brick, herringbone and right angle weave) in all their forms (circular, flat,

3 - combine stitches

4 - do not be married to one stitch

5 - know when to let go of the point of inspiration.

Sounds like good advice to me. Makes me want to get busy beading!

Friday, February 12, 2010

Olympic Fever

Seven sports, 86 events, 258 medals, 15 venues, 5,500 athletes representing 80 nations, 25,000 volunteers, 1.8 million tickets, 10,000 media representatives, and one flaming torch.

The eyes of the world turn to Vancouver, British Columbia this evening as the 2010 Olympics finally get underway. I say "finally" because the Canadian TV station providing coverage has been advertising the event for the past two years. Last week, during the Superbowl, every commercial break (and there were wayyy too many of them) involved yet another commercial for the Olympics and several viewings of the theme song "Believe", which I like but not over and over and over again in the same two hour period. Then again, they had to show something since we don't get to see all the big Superbowl commercials that are shown on the U.S. stations.

No matter, that is all behind us now. The big day has finally arrived and even though the hype will continue, now the fun starts. You can feel the fever everywhere you go, locally and nationally. Lots of people are wearing the Olympic clothing being sold by one of our major department stores - the red and white mitts are a big hit - and everyone is talking about who will be the last torch bearer lighting the flame in the stadium tonight (it's still a deeply guarded secret - will it be Wayne Gretsky or a hologram of Terry Fox or Terry's mom? And why is Arnold Schwarzenegger carrying it today??? What is his Canadian connection???), whether there will be enough snow (they've been trucking it in from higher up in the mountains) and what our medal possibilities might be (what, we're not going to win them all!?) Even Google has a fabulous banner picture today to commemorative the event:

You can check out the official website here: You should also check out Lelania's blog - she is an online classmate of mine who is working as a volunteer and posting entries regularly. It's fascinating to read the details and see photos taken by someone who is right there in the midst of it all:

Let the Games begin!!

Thursday, February 11, 2010


Contrary to yesterday's post, Maggie isn't actually in town just yet. Turns out she was delayed since she is stuck in the snow in Virginia!! I'm told she is booked on a flight for today that is due to arrive in Toronto at 5 p.m. and everyone at Bead Junction has their fingers and toes crossed that she will arrive safely, in time to teach the class scheduled for Friday.

Now, we Canadians are wondering (with tongue in cheek) why a little bit of snow is causing all this trouble for our neighbours south of the border. Then again, my friend Heather sent me this picture of her husband Andy out in the snow and as you can see, it is almost up to his waist! That picture was taken on Sunday, before the next layer of snow arrived. Apparently they got another six inches overnight into today and the wind kicked up today, making it all blow around in a very dangerous fashion. Plus you have to remember, they're not used to getting snow down there and they don't have the snow removal equipment that we have up here, so the roads don't get cleared as quickly or as well as they might here in the frozen north. So really, it's not hard to understand how it is that Maggie's plane didn't get off the ground today.

Due to Maggie's absence, we were treated to a short talk by Naomi Smith of Black Tulip Designs (, one of our Society members, who has been chosen to attend the Olympics as a demonstrator in the Aboriginal Artisan Village. It was quite interesting to hear how she had been invited to submit a proposal to attend and her excitement at being chosen, and what items she has chosen to take with her to show and sell. She's very excited at the prospect of sharing the beading traditions of her ancestors with visitors from around the world. She has been keeping a journal about the experience and will continue to do so while she is out in Vancouver and has offered to share excerpts with us when she gets back.

Here's another picture of Andy in the snow with their dog Jelly. You have to admit, that's a lotta snow!!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Maggie's In Town

Tonight's meeting of the Toronto Bead Society will no doubt be a treat, as the great speaker is none other than beadist extraordinaire, Maggie Meister of Amphora Designs ( Her topic is "Ancient Voices - Beadwork Inspired by Antiquity". She will also be teaching classes at Bead Junction this coming Friday, Saturday and Sunday, one of which is for this fabulous bracelet called Solomon's Knot.

Alas, I have to work on Friday when this particular class is going on but I understand space is still available, so if you are interested in this piece or either of the other two amazing designs she will be teaching, you can read all about it here on the Bead Junction website: and/or call them to sign up.

Of course, if you can't make it to see Maggie this week in Toronto, you can always sign up for the beading retreat called Beading by the Bay and enjoy the added pleasure of first hand exposure to the talents and teachings of Marcia DeCoster and Jean Campbell in beautiful San Francisco.

Honestly, the opportunities for travel and brushing elbows with the beading gods available to those of us in the beading community are awesome, aren't they???

Tuesday, February 9, 2010


Well, I can't say I'm crazy about the name but I am super excited about my new cell phone, which I treated myself to today. I've been due for a new phone for a while, my little pink Samsung flip phone which I picked up in 2004 is quite out of date - I was talking to a Bell rep this morning and the tone of her voice when she said, "Your phone doesn't have a camera????" was quite funny. It was as if I'd said I was still tying tin cans together with string to have a conversation.
My new phone is called the Samsung Reclaim, because 80% of its parts are made of recyclable materials, so I can feel good about doing a little bit for the environment. It comes in a lovely forest green colour which looked good online but I decided when I saw it in person that I really needed to have the turquoise one - mostly because of the funky circle patterns, which the green didn't have. I know, I know, it was a difficult decision and I'm still not completely convinced but in the end, I've always had a thing for turquoise and the green wasn't the same colour as my glasses, so enough said.

It measures about 3.5 inches x 2.25 inches when closed, so fits quite comfortably in my hand, and extends to about 5 inches when opened. It has a full QWERTY keyboard, which I decided was a must after a long texting session on the weekend on my numerical keypad that was incredibly slow and frustrating, not to mention tiring for my hands!

The main reason for getting a new phone was the Bluetooth technology. Here in Ontario, if you want to use a phone while you're driving, it now has to be hands free. I had been putting off the trip to the phone store for several months now because let's face it, those places in the mall always seem to be staffed with 17 year olds who could care less what kind of phone the old lady wants (one of my friends said the person he had to deal with cracked her gum for 2 hours while he picked out a new phone - the horror!) and I just didn't have the mental wherewithal to go through all that before now.

But for some reason, today was the day. I started with a phone call to Bell Canada this morning to discuss how to lower my monthly phone bill, and although the call took up a good chunk of time (don't tell my boss), it worked out very well, to the tune of about $30 a month in savings going forward. That gave me the confidence to head to the mall at lunch where I'd noticed last week that the Bell kiosk was staffed with individuals who actually looked like they might be 30ish. I dealt with a lovely guy named Peter and he was fabulous, very helpful, very informative, gave me good advise and a 15% discount on the accessories - the ear piece for the car and the memory stick for the camera in the phone, which comes with a card reader to download my photos to the computer, which I'm delighted to report also fits the memory card for my camera - what can I say? It's all good!!

Now if you'll excuse me, I've got to go start reading the manual so I can pick my new ringtone!! :)

Monday, February 8, 2010

Page Swap

In addition to swapping paper goods and ephemera with my fellow Remains of the Day classmates, some of us are also swapping finished pages. Here are some pictures of the pages I made to send.

I wanted to be sure to include some Canadian content, so I attached a picture of a bottle of maple syrup to one page, together with some descriptive text. I stuck it on the outside of a City of Toronto security envelope, with the city logo covering the inside, and added a little bit of decoration to frame the clear window with a butterfly in it.

On the back side of that page, I used this very old advertisement for a Canadian vacation from a National Geographic magazine circa 1939, if I remember correctly (the text talks about an upcoming visit of the King and Queen, so it's definitely prior to 1952 when Queen Elizabeth inherited the throne). The headline reads, "Canada Calls You to a Cool, Uncrowded Holiday" - we still have those qualities to offer our visitors, especially this time of year! :)

For the second page (my swap partner suggested we exchange two), I used turquoise cardstock paper, which is a little thicker than regular paper. I attached some funky polka dots and stripes and a picture of a model in an orange dress and sneakers. I really like the orange and turquoise colour combo and the way they contrast with the black and white graphics.

On the reverse side, I used a stamped page that I had made in a class a few weeks ago, which included a couple of quotes. One says, "No journey is too great if you find what you seek", another "Sometimes on the way to our dreams, we get lost and find a better one." On the flip side, I attached another stamped piece I had made, which reads, "Take a chance. Then take another one. Then another one..."

As you can see, I left areas of bare space on the pages for the recipient to add her own words and images. I hope she will enjoy including these pages in her journal.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Is There Snow Where You Are?

Here's the view out my window yesterday morning about 11 a.m. As you can see, the ground is pretty much bare, the roads certainly are, just the odd bit of snowbank residue to remind us that we some snow a while ago. What you can't tell from the photo is that there was a bit of a windchill going on, it was probably about minus fifteen Celsius at the time.
By contrast, you may have heard that a few areas in the U.S. Northeast got some snow over the past two days. "Snowmageddon", President Obama jokingly called it. My friend Heather in Virginia sent me these photos. This first one is what her backyard looked like yesterday morning around the time I took the above photo, after they'd had the first day of snow on Friday:

Here's the same swing after the second day of snow:

Wow, that's a lot of snow, isn't it??!!! It sure is pretty though.