Monday, August 10, 2009

The Land of the Lost

It's been raining in Stillwater. Great big GUSHING afternoons of rain with wind and lightening and a drop in temperature that I'm craving more than sugar or caffeine. I'll stand outside watching until small limbs begin to snap or the the tornado sirens go off. They do. Frequently. It's raw, primitive weather than seems oddly misplaced in this benign and quiet town. And it's wonderful.

I leave to go back to Nevada in a week or two. I'll be driving part of the way with friend Anna who's leaving for art school and then either train or bus the remainder of the trip. There are oddly merits to both. The train is easier to sleep on. The bus is cheaper and oddly quicker. Both offer opportunities for reading and zoning. Playing silly games on the laptop and tenacity. It takes a special patience to deal with the bus and I'm glad I have it. I don't fly. I will avoid it unless it's simply impossible to do otherwise.

The cats are circling. The storm has made them restless. They've hunted fiercely lately and while I don't like living mice...dead ones aren't so much fun either. You can't be mad at a cat for being a cat. Shudder. Shudder.

I'll be sad to give up playing with glass for a while. Melting glass has given me a fresh awareness of color and new found patience. To make and sell what I make is infinitely more rewarding than to buy and resell and I'm grateful I've had this opportunity. Here's to summer. I hope you've all been as blessed as I have.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Top Ten Reasons I Like the Post Office

1) Free boxes, envelopes, address labels, and tape.

2) They turn down their air conditioning to sub arctic levels.

3) The single most charming man in Stillwater, OK works there.

4) The horrid lady doesn't seem to work there anymore.

5) It's cheaper than UPS.

6) I have no social life.

7) First class cheap!

8) After mailing 9 million packages, I am a regular.

9) Cash back with my debit card--as my banks nearest atm is 40 miles away.

10) In 10 years only three packages missing.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Lampworking 101

I'm once again trying to challenge myself to DO something with all of these beads I'm making. So here's project #1--Easy Ivory and Copper Earrings. The lampwork I made. The findings including the copper rings I bought at Hobby Lobby. (Please please please only purchase when half off which is about every other week.) The filigree balls at the bottom I'll post on ebay along with a set of silvered ivory lampworked rounds. (If you don't have a Hobby Lobby near, holler and I'll help you obtain some.)

Friday, July 31, 2009

Sons and Daughters.

I have a great capacity towards self indulgence. The center of the universe is about two inches left of my couch. Occasionally I'm hurled into awareness. A friend's adult daughter is missing. A woman in her late thirties with over a decade's history of schizophrenia. She left Oklahoma and has puts thousands of miles on the family car driving in and out of New Mexico, Texas, Colorado, Arizona, and Kansas. Her gas card has well over a thousand dollars in charges from the last two weeks. Somewhere along the line she shaved her head. Last seen in Burlington Colorado, the sheriff's department put her up in a motel after she was evaluated as neither a danger to herself or society. On foot, now, she was gone the next morning.

Tomorrow family will leave Oklahoma and head for Burlington. Her father and her ex husband will travel together, pick up the vehicle she'd been driving and hopefully find and coerce her into coming home. Her sixteen year old daughter and mother are cleaning her house and waiting.

I don't know the lesson in this. I suspect it's that the connections between people must be present through marriage and through divorce. That the people you see mumbling and looking a little crazy, they're our daughters, mothers, sisters, wives, neighbors. That something as simple as taking your meds...isn't simple. Toss in a big pile of grateful. (There but for the grace of .....) Kindness to strangers. etc. etc. etc.

For me---I'll be making beads tonight. Riding my bike. And hugging the ex husband before he goes off looking for his daughter's mother. The woman he loved through a difficult marriage and still loves. Thankful for his big heart. And hoping she will be found.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Ohhhhhh MOM

It's true. We do turn into our mothers. And while this information doesn't force me into the spasms of hysterics it would have a decade ago, I still admit a little uncertainty with this process. For example: My mother as a child seemed to me VERY bold. Sure, the express lane at the grocery store stated a limit of 12 items. But my mother assured me that if you had 7 of the same item, it only counted as 1. If the commissary (army brat) was crowded, she'd have me wait in one lane and she in another, to see which moved faster. OR WORSE--she'd leave me waiting in line with the cart while she waltzed off to find a few more items. Now before you call security on me, I want to clarify--I do NONE of these. Well, ok...maybe just one of these. But today--when I answered the phone the caller said, "Who is this?" And instantly my mother's voice responded, "To whom do you wish to speak?" I lost every trace of the Southern accent I've cultivated for the last two decades...and no mother's clipped ohhhhh so proper voice waltzed out of my mouth. I'm 43. Only one or two gray hairs. Have probably raised children who are just a tad less psychotic than I am. But I'm now channeling my mother.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Life's Calling

There is nothing that forces me into a panic faster than a plumbing issue. I can handle phone calls at 3am, letters from the IRS, and "We need to talk," moments--but the minute water dribbles from where it shouldn't or ceases to pour from where it should--I turn into a babbling mess.

Tuesday I took a shower. (Whoa, fascinating, you did???) Upon completion I reached down to turn off the water and the tub spout fell off in my hand. The resulting arc of jetting water and rusted spout spelled certain disaster.

In North Carolina I had a plumber. He knew me. Well. He was aware of my sensitivities and paranoia about anything plumbing related. He spoke to me in a soothing voice. He was a GOD. In Oklahoma I was lost.

I trekked off to Lowes and pretended I was stupid. A roll of teflon tape and a new spout later I returned to the crime scene. I ascertained quickly (7 hours, and 4 breakdowns later) that the pipe was too rusted to screw on a new spout. (In a clockwise or counterclockwise direction.) I trekked back to Lowes. The returns lady took one look at me and practically threw money back at me. (Bless her.)

At the ungodly hour of 6 45 am the next morning--and $210.00 later, the problem was solved. Now here's the thing. Maybe I should have called a plumber first and avoided the hysteria. Plumbers are far superior to therapists in resolving a sense of personal well being. But I think if they came immediately and not after 7 hours of "Try," and 24-48 hours of sobbing, they'd be undervalued.

I once thought about going into the ministry...I was certain I had a calling. Now, I know I was clearly wrong. If so much joy can be spread by a man with a wrench--imagine what a woman who knew how to weld one could do.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009


I went blackberry picking tonight.

A really brambly mess it was. And 2 hours later I have precisely enough to make a cobbler...which is always the best way to serve blackberries.
My beads are coming out crisper lately. More focused. Less wobbly.
I'm hoping as much for this cobbler!