Tag Archives: funspiration

inspirational animals and grim-faced people

19 Feb

I am trying to be more disciplined about writing something every day, even if it’s just a few sentences in my paper journal. It’s far too easy for me to do nothing rather than something– or more accurately, to spend a few hours watching television or reading rather than attempt something creative– and I want to get out of that rut.

To that end, I thought I’d share a few things that made me smile recently. This isn’t a hefty, thoughtfully-crafted post, but it is something. And something is often better than nothing.

I share the following random collection of things I’ve stumbled upon lately in the hope that others will enjoy them too:

This bittersweet and beautiful story about an elephant in Tennessee who was best friends with a dog. Despite the fact that death parted them in October 2011, watching video footage of an unlikely friendship helped fill up my hope-tank. Chalk this one up to “there’s someone out there for everyone,” and “sometimes the best friends aren’t the ones you’d expect.”

This story about a Great Horned Owl getting hit by a truck and then stuck in the truck grille. The owl is going to be okay or I wouldn’t be so amused. Some days I am glad that non-news is news in this Internet age, because, for real:

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This inadvertently hilarious illustration featured in an early January Wall Street Journal article about changes to the tax code. The WSJ clearly has a lot of empathy for the common man (and woman)! Just look how sad all these impoverished people look! Just look at them!

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This GIF of infinite Ron Swansons.

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Lastly, this alpaca farm is only about forty minutes away, has a great name and a fun, educational website. I really, really want to visit it sometime this spring. Alpacas! They’re awesome! People I know IRL, who wants to go with me?

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go ahead. rain on my parade.

18 Jun

It’s been a stormy, rain-logged summer here in Ohio so far. I am a person who enjoys both rain and thunderstorms (as long as I have the good fortune of a solid roof above my head). Still, it can be easy to let inclement weather spoil a summer day if you were hoping to enjoy a hike or a picnic or a walk to the grocery store.

A couple weeks ago, my roommate K and I were just about to set out on a stroll to the library when the heavens unleashed a mighty downpour. Since there was no lightning, we decided to roll up our jeans, pull out our raincoats and umbrellas, and go on a walk anyway. The last time I was out in such heavy rain was about fifteen years ago, when I was living in Pakistan and monsoon season was a force to be reckoned with.

we knew it was a doozy of a storm when we saw that the gutters were overflowing

our umbrellas offered some protection

but the water was really rushing down our street

and eventually I folded up my umbrella and decided to just walk in the stream! maybe when it's hot and humid later this summer, I can remember how cool and refreshing this moment was. Memories are cheaper than a trip to a waterpark.

The forecast for this week is stormy, too. Anyone want to join me for a walk?

an egg of a different color

14 Jun

I first came upon the idea of using silk neckties to color easter eggs on a crafting blog several years ago. When I Googled this time around, I found several tutorials with instructions. They all said essentially the same thing: you have to use 100% silk (whether it’s a necktie, handkerchief, or some other garment), and wrap the egg as tightly as possible because the transfer will only happen where the egg touches the silk fabric. Martha Stewart’s tutorial also says that you have to use an enamel or glass pot to boil the eggs. I used a metal pot (mostly because of a lack of reading comprehension) and my eggs turned out just fine.

I didn’t take many of pictures of this process, but some of the links above have beautiful step-by-step photos. Here’s what I have to share:

eggs waiting to be dyed

I used 100% silk neckties, cut into squares just large enough to wrap around the eggs. I wrapped the raw eggs as tightly as possible in the silk, and then wrapped them in pieces of scrap cotton. I boiled them for about 20 minutes in water with 3 tablespoons of white vinegar. Then I removed the pot from the heat, drained away the boiling water, and allowed the eggs to cool.

I unwrapped the cooled eggs and rubbed them with a tiny amount of olive oil, which put a slight sheen to the egg’s surface.

dyed, cooled, and rubbed with oil

And then I showed them off to anyone who would look. I think I’ll definitely be using this method in the future– it’s so easy and fun to do. Not to mention relatively inexpensive.

total cost of this project:

8 eggs: $1.45

pieces from 7 neckties: already owned, and all purchased at thrift stores. If I had to guess at what I originally paid for them, I’d say $.25-.50 each. Let’s go with the high estimate: $3.50

scrap cotton: from an ancient t-shirt (free)

total: $4.95