Tag Archives: Molly

Past Projects: Cards and Little Foil Tape Houses

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Just after Christmas, Rem and I went up to Sea Ranch with my mom. Although I planned a marathon of crafting and bought a bunch of supplies, the actual crafting that took place was more modest in scope. Sitting and gazing out the window interrupted by the occasional nap seemed to be the best use of my time.

I did manage to create a batch of cards, making sets of similar cards with variations in the paper and stamps.

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I make cards for my mom that she can use whenever the occasion calls for it. I try to give her some cards that will work for guys – with a color scheme or designs that aren’t too frilly or feminine.

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Several of the cards had illustrations from a vintage style alphabet poster, printed on scrapbook paper. The picture below was for “W – wave.”

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This “Wish” card is one of my favorites.

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I made these cards before the end of last year and it has taken me a month to post them! Since I’m catching up, here’s another project from last year.

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These little houses were primarily made as Christmas ornaments, but with a pin-back glued on the back, they were also very cute on a lapel. Made from thin cardboard recycled from cereal and cookie boxes, they’re covered with aluminum foil duct tape and copper tape (used to repel snails in the garden) – two great craft supplies from the hardware store.

These ones were made at a holiday party on the campus where I work, that included a few craft tables. I brought the supplies and gave a hand if needed.  A little something layered under the foil tape, or covered with the copper tape and glued to the front of the houses adds interest.  I also like to press tape over corrugated cardboard for the roof.  The tip of your finger is a great tool to start, but for getting all the details, I used a bone folder.

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You can find directions here at Mich L. in L.A.

They are also quite similar to these projects: Pumpkins, Charms, and Leaves.

Thank you for your visit.

 

 

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Autumn Walk: San Anselmo & Ross

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I love this time of year! I took a walk in San Anselmo and a bit of Ross on Saturday, and it was so beautiful. This is on Crescent Road looking towards Mt. Tamalpais.

At the corner of Sunnyside and Austin Avenues – tiny white flowers on a huge green hedge. It made me think of a friend who lived there.

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From Glenwood looking toward Mt. Baldy.

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I turned on Fernwood and walked past Branson School, than passed St. Anselm Church on Shady Lane.

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Susan’s Store Room on San Anselmo Avenue is ready for Thanksgiving. This little window display includes pilgrim candles just like the one’s on our Thanksgiving Table when we were growing up (and mom still has them).

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An old eagle icon high on the wall outside Comforts Cafe, the former site of the post office.

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There are several signs downtown that show the high water line from flooding. They are situated so you can see the same buildings shown on the sign. this one is just before Pine Street, across from the Wells Fargo Bank.

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Sugarfoot, the cast iron deer on the lawn by the City Hall/Police Department and the Library buildings.

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Another flood sign near City Hall.

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Barton’s Bagels – although these looked delicious, I picked up Asiago bagels for the egg-bagels sandwiches my mom and I enjoyed for breakfast.

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The elegant Siren Salon was once the home of Toy Circus, THE place for birthday gift shopping. You knew if one of the packages had been wrapped in the store because they had their one big roll of wrapping paper.

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I saw another flood sign by the fire station. Molly waits patiently when I drop her leash to take photos. The beautiful mosaic obelisk in the background shows scenes from the history of the community.

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Beautiful walkway of yellow leaves on San Rafael Avenue.

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Cutting through Robson-Harrington Park I noticed this decorative plaque on a wall. Maybe it was a fountain years ago.

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I’m getting close to the end of the walk – more beautiful foliage on Crescent Road.

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You can just make out part of the San Francisco Theological Seminary (SFTS) through the leaves.

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I let Molly off the leash at the bottom of the driveway to my mom’s house.  She trots right up and I trudge behind her. She’s waiting on the front porch when I make it up the hill.

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Even though I veered off her familiar route, she was happy to come along (or to let me join her).

“Thanks for the walk, now let’s have breakfast!” (I imagine she might be saying)

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Thanks for the visit!

After breakfast, a final picture from the front yard: the seminary and Mt. Tam.

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Vacation Album: Ft. Bragg to Sea Ranch

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Looking at the mouth of the Noyo River just south of Ft. Bragg on my morning walk. State Route 1 crosses over above the river.

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Businesses along the wharf have beautiful (and often humorous) signs.

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“No phone, no TV, No WIFI. No problem. You are on vacation.”

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I thought of you, Ariel.

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Hiking up the hill to our motel I looked down at the wharf and harbor it was very peaceful.

After a bit of sunny weather in the Ft. Bragg area, going south to Sea Ranch we found it grey and foggy.

Nearly every day for the rest of our vacation was cool and grey.  Here are some pictures from Sea Ranch where we were joined by first my mom and Molly, and then my sister Kathleen.

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Abalone divers getting ready to go into the water.

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Low Tide on Walk On Beach.

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Gooseneck barnacles and mussels on the rocks.

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Rem and I made a cake to continue his birthday celebration: Double Chocolate Layer Cake from Smitten Kitchen.

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The cake pans were a little smaller than called for, so we made a few cupcakes too.

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I decorated the cake with nasturtiums.

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The sun came out on the day we were leaving.  My mom, Kathleen, Molly and I walked at Gualala Point and down on the beach.

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There was still a little finger of fog over Gualala.

It was time to pack up and get ready for our drive home after a wonderful vacation.

Thanks for your visit.

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Thinking About My Dad

Daddy Red Turtleneck

Saturday, May 24 will be two years from the day my dad died.  I’ve  been thinking about him.  The other day I saw something that made me smile and I immediately thought of telling  him about it.  A vendor at the Farmer’s Market was munching contentedly; a carrot in one hand, a bottle of hot sauce in the other. I imagined telling my dad the story and knew he’d think it was funny but in less time then it takes to read this sentence, I remembered he was gone.  With an ache in my chest, I knew I couldn’t tell him about it.

I haven’t been going to his grave as often as I did the first year after he died.  It’s been a few months at least, and it’s been on my mind to get down there.

This weekend I had the opportunity.  Rem and I were house-sitting for my mom and on Sunday morning, he needed an early-morning ride to the ferry.  He was heading into San Francisco to take photos at the annual Bay to Breakers footrace.  After dropping him off at 5:40 a.m., Molly and I went down to Fernwood.

The sky was just growing light.  A thin, grey comforter of fog was draped along the upper slopes of Mt. Tam.  Molly was delighted to be out of the car and went up the path ahead of me.

The hillside is covered with rattlesnake grass, wildflowers and eucalyptus trees.  Oh, and some poison oak too.

Hillside Fernwod

It is only as I got closer that the stone marker was visible.

Papa's Tree

Papa's Stone

Roses for Papa

I laid some flowers and cried some tears.  I told him that Caitlin was graduating at Chico and that was where Mom was.  I talked about how sick Beau has been but that we’re so relieved he’s improving.  I sang two songs and watched some hawks circling up high above the trees.

As I walked carefully back across the hillside to the path, I searched for feathers but didn’t see any.

Molly was full of energy and I had plenty of time to wander around the cemetery, something I kept thinking about doing and never taking the time in my many visits down there.  Molly romped ahead, sniffing around and happy as could be.  I was thinking about my dad and how much I miss him.  I thought about how many lives were represented by the stones around me.

One message caught my eye and made me smile.

It all comes out in the wash and a little chocolate never hurts

Comes Out in the Wash

I think I would have liked this woman!

The positive attitude that came up with those words lifted my spirits and made me try to re-frame my sadness. I focused on all the wonderful years I lived with my dad in my life instead of the last three; the year of struggling with cancer and the two years since he died.

It made me think that although these gravestones represented loss and grief they also represented peoples lives.  Many stones have a name and two dates and little else, yet whole lives are lived in the space between those two dates.

As I followed a trail, I found a section of older graves and stones that were cracked and broken.  Some gravestones only show one date or a very short span of days.  Others list the age of the deceased and many lived short lives.  The oldest year I noted was 1907.

1907

On their website, Fernwood states the cemetery has existed since the late 1800’s.  Again, instead of thinking of all of those people dying, I walked around and thought of all those people living.

I saw this fragment of stone that just showed a single date.  I don’t know if Valentine’s Day was remembered as the birthday of a loved one, or the date someone lost a loved one.

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Walking around, exploring the cemetery, was very peaceful.  I looked through the trees at the view of Richardson Bay.

View from Fernwood hillside

Looking down the hill I see the pyramid skylight on the Fernwood Funeral Home, reminding me of the Louvre Museum in Paris.

Pyramid Skylight

Some things I had glimpsed while driving past and now I had I time for a closer look.

Like the Buddha statue in a tree.

Buddha in a Tree

A rustic gate open to a path curving around the hillside.

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A beautifully carved wooden Buddha sits atop a rough base created from a tree stump. In spite of missing a finger, he was very serene.

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Little talismans have been left in his hands: a bit of shell, a rhinestone rabbit  with a wreath of rhinestone flowers, and a sweet little green clay cat. with a pink neck scarf.

Rabbit & Cat

Dia de los Muertos figures dangle on a cord around his neck, holding a dried orchid in place.

Face of Buddha

Day of the Dead figures

Molly and I have had a nice hike and I was in much better emotional shape than when we’d arrived.

Time has softened the blow of losing my dad.  The grief and sadness aren’t gone but they aren’t here all the time either.

Our family will be gathering to celebrate my brother Beau’s birthday on Sunday.  I imagine there will be lots of good food and laughter. We’ll probably share stories about Papa, and catch up with each others lives.  If we think of something that he would have found funny, I believe it will honor his memory if we share it and enjoy a good laugh.

Dad 50th Anniversary

Here is a link to the post I wrote last year at this time.  That post includes links to other posts written about my dad.

Thank you for your visit.

 

 

 

 

 

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Weekly Walk

Rodeo Beach

As I’ve mentioned in previous posts, my sister Kathleen and I take a walk together every Saturday.  I bring my mom’s dog Molly along and Kathleen has her dog, Ruby.  Since Ruby is almost 15 years old we have been going more slowly and Kathleen has a “pup pack” to carry Ruby when she tires out.

The weather was clear and fairly warm, and Kathleen suggested a beach walk.  This is actually a hike that starts by Rodeo Beach in the Golden Gate National Recreation Area and loops up into the hills overlooking the beach.

Overlooking Rodeo Beach

With our brother so ill, the last month has been very stressful.  I’m spending a lot of time at the hospital and this was a lovely respite.

Poppies

I’ve always found salt air to be very restorative.  The views and the wildflowers were beautiful.

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California Golden Poppies and what I always knew as sour grass, but I think is more properly called Yellow Woodsorrel, cover the hillside.

As we walked up the trail, we saw a group of people taking part in a Search and Rescue exercise.

Search and Rescue Exercise

The woman in the blue hard hat on the lower left was rapeling down a cliff.  We learned she was to playing the part of the victim who would be “rescued.”

This is the view looking down from the rocks she was climbing.

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I don’t think I would be a very good volunteer for this exercise!  This team was going to climb down after her and carry her back up in the basket.

Search and Resuce training

We continued up the trail towards Battery Townsley, a World War II concrete gun emplacement, overlooking the San Francisco Bay.  You can see the edge of the battery just above this rocky hillside.

Rocky hillside and Battery

I thought of Beau because he is a real WWII geek.  He would say he is a “military historian” but it’s all the same to me.  In fact, I wrote part of this post while at the hospital and asked Beau about Battery Townsley.  He started rattling off facts and figures about the size of the guns, the fact that they were only shot in practice, that it was a casemate (I had to look it up: a fortified gun emplacement or armored structure from which guns are fired), that volunteers were working to restore the battery to it’s 1940’s condition, etc.

Here’s the view looking towards the beach.  The hills in the background are in San Francisco.

View down towards beach

You can see the Search and Rescue exercise was still going on.

View of Search and Rescue truck

We saw Morning Glories, Blue Eyed Grass and Silver Bush Lupine.

Morning Glory

Blue Eyed Grass

Silver Bush Lupine

Ruby got slower and slower as we went up the hill, so Kathleen let her ride until we headed back downhill.  Molly was full of energy and enjoyed every minute of the walk.

Ruby and Molly

As we followed the loop around, we caught a glimpse of one of the towers of the Golden Gate Bridge.

GG Bridge Tower

Lacy white Cow Parsnip was surrounded by Horsetail Ferns.

Cow Parsnip and Horsetail Fern

The combination of exercise, conversation, salt air, beautiful views and wildflowers all worked together to nourish me and help me feel in better shape to face the days and weeks ahead.  I know I need to take care of myself and this was one way to do that.

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Thank you for your visit.

 

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Canine Closeups

I thought it was tricky getting pictures of hummingbirds last weekend until I tried to get a picture of four dogs today.

But first…

This is Wedge, tightrope walking on the railing of the desk at my mom’s house.  I don’t know if anyone has told him that most dogs don’t walk on deck railings.

Wedge on a Railing

My sisters, one sister-in-law and mom were having lunch. Mom has Molly and we were at their house.  Sarah brought Wedge, the new dog in their family.  Victoria came with 9 month old Patsy, who was playing shy.

Patsy under the table

Kathleen had 14-year-old Ruby along.

Ruby Duby

I brought my camera.

I think Kathleen wondered if we could get all the dogs in one picture and Sarah was the one that decided to try.

Three Dogs

Three dogs, Wedge  looking the other way.  Fail.

Snacks are offered.

Treats

Still only three dogs.  No Patsy.  Fail.

Well…there ARE four dogs in the photo.

First of the Four

But with Ruby searching for biscuits and Patsy keeping her distance…Fail.

All the dogs are interested in the snacks my mom is offering, just off camera.  Patsy gets a little closer, but she’s still playing it safe.

Patsy Gets Closer

Come on over, Patsy!

Patsy Keeping Her Distance

Four dogs in motion.

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Here’s a nice shot with Wedge and Ruby.

Wedge and Ruby

And one of Wedge who was wonderful on his own.  No distractions, just sit and look handsome

Wedge

I never really did get one perfect shot of all four dogs together.  But I had fun trying.

Thank you for the visit.

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Long Sea Ranch Weekend

Beach through the Trees

Although we had a few days of really gorgeous weather when we went to Sea Ranch for the long Fourth of July weekend, I kept forgetting my camera when we went on walks.  I only remembered once the weather turned grey.

This mosaic is on a low wall by a gas station in the town of Gualala, just north of Sea Ranch.

Fish Mosaic

Here are some pictures from our weekend… with seals, Molly and Ariel.

Seals at Sea Ranch

Molly & Ariel at driftwood chapel

Shell Beach

Through the Trees

Molly starts a hole

Molly Digging

Whassat?

Silly Doggie

Ariel on the Beach

Ariel on the Rock

Running on the Beach

Thanks for stopping by.

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