Monday, June 30, 2008


The beer Mark's making went funny last night! I had noticed earlier in the evening that it was hissing, booming and banging and gurgling up a storm in the closet. Apparently something within the container was "over stimulated" and caused a lot of pressure build-up and lots of oozing. Mark had to eventually move it from our closet to the bath tub just in case of explosion. It spent the rest of the night there gurgling and hissing away. It did'nt blow-up, but it sure sounded like it would.

Ciaran also had a gurgling, booming, banging, and hissing belly last night. He woke up at about 2 am crying and I spent my night on the couch listening to Ciaran's tummy and the beer in the bathroom conversing with each other. It was pretty comical actually. Ciaran's belly would make a statement and then the big tub o' beer would respond with a hiss and a gurgle. I don't really like being up all night but it was too hard to sleep. I am still dealing with my allergy/sinus-y head all night, every night and all the dripping and pressure that go with it. So up I stayed, listening to every little noise made inside/outside/next door, in this tiny apartment it is hard not to hear every noise ever made by us and our neighbors.

Today all is calm, Ciaran's tummy has mellowed out with some cheerios and milk for breakfast. The beer seems to napping the morning away and the cats and tortoises are snoozing peacefully at their various posts throughout the apartment. I hope tonight is more peaceful and all of us get some sleep.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

New Hairdos!

We finally got around to getting our hair cut yesterday. We made it a family event. Mark took Ciaran while I got my long,stringy hair chopped and then we both held on to Ciaran as he screamed and cried through his haircut. I am so glad we left the length of his hair, he still has his curls. My main concern was getting his bangs cut so he could see. He has been wandering around far too long with his hair in his eyes, tripping over his own feet because he cant see them.

Other than haircuts, we spent the day downtown getting the last of the ingredients for Mark's beer, getting more snaps for my wallets, and touring around town. Then we stopped for a lunch of burgers and fries from our local burger place. On our way home we stopped at the park to let Ciaran get some excercise. He ended up sitting in a dirt pile, where he decided to dig through it with Cookie Monster.

Once we got home we got Ciaran get settled for the evening and I helped Mark make his second batch of beer. The first one turned out pretty darn good. I am anxious to try this one. Now we have a huge bucket of applewine and a huge bucket of beer fermenting in our closet. Should be fun to try it all out.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Ciaran Made a Friend!

My son Ciaran made a friend yesterday. He made two friends actually. One person and one dog. We decided to go out for a walk yesterday afternoon just to get out of the house and have some play time. On our way back from downtown we usually walk through a large sports field and elementary school so Ciaran can practice walking and get a little exercise. As we were walking yesterday, we saw a yellow haired boy, his mom, and a huge yellow dog playing in the field. I did'nt think anything of it until Ciaran started bolting across the field to the little boy. The little boy also ran towards him. They both stopped short of running into each other and stared at one another's feet. Then the big and happy yellow dog came running over and gave Ciaran a big ol' sloppy doggy kiss across his face. It was really cute. I am glad to see that my son is a bit more socially outgoing than his mom. I am so weirded out by meeting new people, I often miss out on opportunities to get know other people. It made my day to see Ciaran so curious and happy, I hope he makes many good friends throughout his life.

Friday, June 27, 2008

What the Heck Man!

The title of my post is definitely more exciting than my actual post today. That is my disclaimer.

So if I haven't complained enough, my allergies are driving me crazy these days. I thought I beat them years ago. Now they are back and worse than ever. I was working last night and my face started to burn and itch, when I went to check it out in the mirror, My face was covered in hives. Crazy! I don't really mind the allergies so much as the way they interrupt my work. I was so excited to get a few things done last night, including a custom order and I ended up too drippy and itchy to work. Part of the problem seems to be that Northern California is on fire, and the air is full of smoke. That is a bummer all in itself, I feel really awful for anyone in the immediate area of those fires. I can't imagine how scary that must be for them. Yucky stuff all around. Around here, we get the smoke and ash from the fires. The light has this orange tint to it and the air feels really heavy. It makes it hard to breath. Smokey and yucky, blahhhh!!!!

In other news, my new wallets are turning out lovely. I finished three and sold one yesterday. I have three more cut out and ready to put together. I was in a panic yesterday because my machine seemed to be skipping stitches with the last one I put together so I did all sorts of little tests to see what was going on. It turns out that the way the wallet is put together makes it hard for the machine to sew the last hem around the outside of the wallet. So I messed around with a few ideas and decided to try using the zipper foot to sew the outside seam, and it worked!!! Yay! I love my machine. What a trooper! I tell it thank you and give it a hug and a kiss each time I use it.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

A New Wallet for My Sister

I finally finished a wallet for my sister. She had wanted something crazy, so I picked my favorite color combinations and had a blast. I really like how it turned out. I still have to finish the edges but the sewing is done! I used hemp cord this time to do the hand sewing and I love it. It is really strong! I hope she gets good use out of it. I am in the process of making her a ring out of copper, sterling silver, and opal. I think I have finally come up with a decent and functional design so I am pretty excited to get it done.

The only part that sucks is cleaning up my space to work. UUUUGGGGHHHHHH!!!!! I can never stay organized and that drives me nuts! I have everything so organized and accessible when I start working and it just gets messier and messier as I go. Pretty soon, instead of a work space, I have a pile of junk that I have to sift through every week just to see the table surface. I can't wait to have an actual studio, one where I can have a table space for each portions of my work. One for the designing, one for cutting out, one for sewing, one for jewelry making, and then lots of containers and areas to store materials and finished projects. Hopefully some day, I will dream of it until then.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Day Trip!

Today I am going on a day trip with my parents and my uncle. I really love that Ciaran gets to spend time with his grandparents and his great uncle. I think we are just going up to the beach but it seems like it's hundreds of miles away. That is why I love this area, it is beautiful everywhere you go and little car trips are always an adventure. What makes it even more special is that I don't own a car so going in a car is like a special event in itself. I just love kicking back in the back seat next to my son with a huge latte to sip on. Yay! I am too excited for words. I know it's silly but not having a car means I get to where I am going on foot or on the bus and that is about it. I love it actually but every once in a while a car ride is the best thing ever.

When I get home tonight I have many projects to keep me busy. I got a good night's sleep last night so it should be no problem to stay awake tonight. I will post some photos when everything is done. That is all for now, short and sweet:)

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

My Snappy Project and Other Things

It's all done! My first item for sale with a snap. I sat down yesterday with a brutal headache and decided to design a new wallet one that would specifically use a snap and there it is. I really like how it turned out. I am getting ready to put a couple more together. I am thinking a purple one, a green one, and an orange one. It should be a colorful week.

I have been having lots of problems with my allergies this last couple of weeks and I think they have finally zapped my sinus cavities pretty well. I have had a constant headache for the last few days and my sense of smell and taste is pretty much gone. I hate when that happens. I guess it is good in a way when you can't smell awful smells, and can't taste terrible things. It always came in handy when I was working with children because when I was like this, I never smelled all the weird kid smells.....and there is always a weird kid smell somewhere! I am trying all sorts of things to clear out my head but so far all that works well is the zombifying anti-snozzle medication. I hate it. Poor Ciaran who is having some intestinal issues this morning is reaping the benefits of having a zombie for a mom. He is fussy every two seconds but I am on a fifteen to twenty second delay. So now he is extra frustrated. I feel bad but since I am a zombie all I can do is point and groan. We are both pretty tired from being up all night so we may just stay in and relax today. Maybe I will bake something yummy for Mark and Ciaran. Oh wait, if it burns I won't be able to smell it....bummmer!

Monday, June 23, 2008

I'm Feeling Snappy!

I finally got myself a snap making kit this weekend to expand on my leather working capabilities. I started thinking about snaps as a different way to close my cuffs which I usually use a slide or button closure for. I thought it would be nice to have a snap closure to add to the mix, especially since I am working on some more manly and unisex cuffs that just don't look right with button closures. I had invested in a heavy duty rotary punch a couple of weeks ago to help make the edge sewing on a few of my wallets a bit easier on my hands. I thought getting a rotary punch and some leather needles was exciting, but the snap kit takes the cake. It involves hammering and that is one of my favorite things to do. I guess I just like to make noise. Hammers tend to be noisy while in use. Our neighbors are gonna love me! I made my first snap when I got home on Saturday and it turned out perfect! I think I will practice a bit more before I actually put a snap on one of my wallets....just to be safe. Now if I could just perfect my zipper installation, life would be just perfect.

Other than that, Mark and I celebrated our eleven year anniversary on Saturday. We completely forgot about it until we were on our way home from our walk downtown Saturday evening. We were talking about making cornish pastries and chocolate cake for dinner and somehow the subject of our anniversary came up. It was a nice night, we celebrated by eating our lovely dinner of cornish pastries and chocolate cake. Maybe next year we will remember and actually plan a celebration in advance.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

I Miss Making Masks

That's Leopold, my favorite mask creation. I was looking through my portfolio pictures and really started itching to make a couple of masks. I really miss the whole process from puzzling the put together to the anguish and frustration of actually fitting pieces together correctly and symmetrically. I also miss the different state of mind it brings me in to. The story the mask makes up as it comes together. The story about where it's from and what it means. The whole mystery behind the mask. Time to drag out the big box of scraps and start playing around. I have'nt made a mask since I was pregnant with Ciaran and both of those turned out a little goofy because I was too big to fit at the work table properly and Ciaran bounced around in my tummy every time I made a noise with the hammer. I can't wait to get started again. I have some drawing to do!

Friday, June 20, 2008

My Favortie Poem

"Don't worry if your job is small
And your rewards are few.
Remember that the mighty oak
was once a nut like you."

-A. Nonny Mouse

This is my favorite poem. It makes me giggle. It always has. When I was working I would look at this little poem everyday and it would make the day seem just a little bit brighter. I don't know why I love it so much........... but I do. I still look at it but the meaning is a little different now that I am working for myself and trying to meet my own goals instead of someone else's. When I was that grumpy Center Director, this poem just helped me make it through the day. It made being screamed at by children and their parents, being pulled fifteen different directions by co-workers, and wading through mindless paperwork, just a little more tolerable. Now it just helps me get things done, a little at a time. It means enjoying all the little things and that one day with enough hard work, I can keep working at doing what I love and be successful at it. I feel so lucky to be where I am these days. It is where I never would have imagined myself. It has always been my dream and now thanks to the squirt and the Papa(Ciaran and Mark) it has become reality. I wonder if they will ever truly know how much I appreciate the both of them. Blah! enough with the mush, I am going for a second cup of coffee, that should cure me:)

Thursday, June 19, 2008

This is How We Feel Today

Yes, this is how Ciaran and I both feel. He had his well baby check-up with four shots in his little legs and I feel awful for him. He was quite a trooper during his check-up, even with the shots, he cried but calmed down right away. We decided to take the rest of the morning off and go get a cookie and a cup of coffee with Grammy. He picked out a frosted crab cookie and I got my usual latte with a double shot. He has recovered from the trauma and now sits underneath his bouncy circle playing with Cookie Monster, a gear board, and a spoon. He is having a blast! I am however, tired and missing my large dose of afternoon caffeine to keep me going. So I just set myself down to write. It is so lovely outside but I have no energy to go out and enjoy it at the moment. I could get working on one of my various projects, but I don't really feel like doing that either. It is a shame to feel so yucky on such a lovely day. Hopefully, the weather will hold up so we can get out and get some fresh air tomorrow.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008


I finally finished this messenger and listed it in my icraft shop. I love how it turned out! Yay! I am so excited to get it done. My first real upcycled project too! I turned an old coat into a really cool new messenger bag. I used everything from the coat pockets, to the belt tie, to the buttons to make this one. It is so soft and yummy! I hope someone will find it and love it. I love it so much that I cut out another one in a blue striped canvas that will be lined in a batik star print of the same color combination. Now I can start on a couple jewelry projects I need to get done. I must first clean-up my jewelry space!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

A Little Bit of Down Time

So my goal yesterday was to finish my darn messenger bag to list on icraft yesterday. I tried with the best of intentions to do this but ended up in a zombie-like state half way through the day. I was already pretty tired from being up with Ciaran two nights in a row and then I remembered that I needed to go out and weed our back garden. My goal with the garden is to get out to weed and prune a couple days a week. So I went out to weed and ended up having a huge allergy attack. I could'nt stop sneezing, my whole face was dripping, my ears itched, my tongue and throat itched, I got hives all over my legs, and I was miserable! I ended up taking my crazy allergy medication that not just stops the reaction but also makes me a super, unsneezy zombie. So there went my plans for the day. I spent it on the couch trying to keep one eye on Ciaran while he played with a cardboard tube, a book, and his stuffed puppy. I was sooooo bummed out. I hate when I don't meet my goals. So today it is! This bag gets made and listed or else!!!!

Monday, June 16, 2008

Apple Pie For Breakfast?

Yep! That is what Ciaran and I had for breakfast today. Mark has been wanting apple pie for the last month so I made him a huge caramel apple pie for Father's Day. We shared it last night with my parents at our lovely Father's Day Dinner. I could'nt get Ciaran to try it since the only foods that exist to him right now are cheerios, bananas, carrots, apples, oranges, peanut butter sandwiches, cheese sandwiches, milk, and water. No matter what we try and how we try it he refuses any food that is not on his list above. Somehow, I managed to get his attention while putting a scoop of yogurt in a bowl and putting little bits of apple pie over the top of it. He came over and stared at me while I was eating. Then I held out a small bite for him and he tried it.....Then he pulled it out of his mouth and looked at it. But, I gave him another bite and he ate it. So we shared, it was fun, and now he is eating his own breakfast of a graham cracker smeared with applesauce, banana, and a sippy cup full of milk. For me, the yogurt and apple pie was my breakfast. I now wait for my coffee so I can wake up enough to get my butt in gear and finish up my messenger bag to list today.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

I Don't Know Why I Love The Oyster Festival

I don't eat oysters.....I can't eat shellfish. I don't care all that much for seafood of any kind anyways, and all of Arcata downtown smells funny on Oyster Fest day. But I still love going to the Oyster Festival. I love wandering around, people watching and looking at all the different ways the local restaurants come up with to prepare oysters. I would love to head downtown early, grab a spot on the plaza and plant myself for the day, but Mark has other plans. He has to get in his daily bike ride and some down time first. Mark is not one for spending the whole day there. It ends at 5pm and the last two years we've ended up there at about 4:30pm. It is just so much fun to wander around see all the drunken and otherwise standing in huge lines for gourmet oysters. I usually go and get myself a donut and a coffee and just hang back and watch the crowds, listen to the live music, and the oyster calling contest.

I guess the Oyster Festival is like the official start of summer up here. Everyone in town seems to come to the plaza to celebrate. Now since I like summer again, I can enjoy it too! So that is the plan for today along with getting some small paintings done for grampy and Mark and making a caramel apple pie. I wonder if I will actually have any time left for sewing?.....Oh, and the raccoon did'nt eat the peas by the way, they are still firmly planted in the garden and thriving,Yay!

Friday, June 13, 2008

A Bump in The Night

So last night I was all alone putting the finishing stitching on my latest wallet. Mark had gone out for a short walk and Ciaran was snoozing away toddler style(on his face with his little bottom stuck up in the air) I was pretty comfortable, watching the end of "The Thing" and sewing away with the cats all curled up around me.

Then I hear this huge CRASH!!! on the deck which made me jump about 10 feet off the couch. I looked out of the window onto our deck but I could'nt see anything. I was kind of scared to turn on the light to the deck but I eventually did only to discover the biggest raccoon I have ever seen staring back at me. At first I thought "Oh, how cute!" Then I started to look around the deck. It was trashed! All of my planters were face down on the ground, our outside tortoise cage was turned upside down and my six pack of snap pea starts were lying on their faces on the ground too. I was'nt really mad because I figure he could smell the tortoise cage and was just looking around for them. Luckily, we keep them inside at night.

I patiently waited for him to leave and eventually he did. So then I went out to save my peas from dying a slow painful death on their faces in the middle of the night. I was a little bit scared to go outside after spending the afternoon reading about Rabies. I did'nt want to be attacked by some crazy rabid raccoon that had staked the peas out for himself and did'nt want to share. I went out quickly and picked up the peas only to hear more rustling in the berry brambles, when I turned toward the noise, I saw the little masked bandit staring out at me. I called him a jerk for knocking my peas over and got my butt back inside. My peas are safe and sound on the counter this morning. They will be planted today and probably massacred by our little friend tonight. Little stinker!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

I Used To Hate Summer

I guess it's because I never really looked at it as relaxing and recreational. Summer to me has at least for the 18 years has meant full time work, extra long days, not enough rest, and no time to relax and sit around, always having something to take care of, or someone to entertain. Summer was always the dumps. I resented each and every person that got to have a real vacation let alone a couple of minutes to themselves during the day. My vacations consisted of worrying about having to work anyways because there was no one available to cover for me at work. Then, worrying because the person to cover might make more work for my co-workers. Then the huge amount of preparing for my time off at the center which was usually more work than anything. I also got to field parent complaints and collect for various center to-do lists during my time off. So basically my vacations were just time off from the center, not real vacations. After awhile, it felt like taking any time off at all was just not worth the stress.

Now that Summer is here again, I still get those feelings of dread, they are just there. It all comes back to me: having to get up at 5 am to prepare for a day where I won't get a break or see my home again until 7 pm. Then I laugh to myself..... I don't have to go anywhere or do anything I don't want to do. The most stressful things I have to do concern housecleaning and taking Ciaran to out to play. Not that those things are'nt troublesome at times but not as much as being responsible for so many and so much. I love my life now. I miss the challenges I faced when I was that grumpy Center Director, but I like that I am getting to know and love summer for the reasons so many other people rejoice over. That makes me feel a little more human. I guess I can thank my little son for that.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

I Guess I Should Explain Myself

So, when I was my crazy 15 year old punk rocker self. My best friend (also a punk rocker) and I decided that when we grew up we wanted to start a department store that catered to all of the people in the world who appreciated strangeness. Everything from clothing to music to food on down would be sold in our store. A store that specializes in everything strange, deserves a strange name. Somehow, the name "Gurgly Things" appeared to us. A perfectly strange name for our perfectly strange store! I don't know how we came up with the Gurgly part other than my bottomless pit of a stomach that always gurgled, no matter how much I ate. We planned out all sorts of things our store would carry. One of a kind clothing and accessories by me, make-up and music specially picked by ourselves, even baked goods if I remember it all correctly. It would be the perfect place to shop for all the weird and strange in the world. Now my idea of Gurgly Things is kind of a reality with my shops and my new venture into handmade accessories so I use this space as a place to celebrate it all. That is my story and I am sticking to it!

Monday, June 9, 2008

This Blogging Stuff is Pretty Darn Weird

So I am trying to figure this all out. I have been checking out many other blogs to see what they are like and getting kind of discouraged because I have not a clue how to go about doing some of these fancy things that you can do with your blog. I did figure out how to add my Etsy and Icraft shop links. Now I just need to list more stuff. I will keep trying to keep up. I do enjoy blogging, it's just that so far not much is going on in my life except my new and beloved business venture, my beloved son and his toddler adventures, and my love of coffee and pastries. I guess someone out there might want to read about that. We will see.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Beautiful but Blustery

That is what it is like outside. Beautiful and sunny but super windy. I would'nt mind normally but I have to go out in it. I forgot to get thread for my messenger bags and zippers for a couple of the bigger wallets that I am working on. I normally love my walks downtown but not when the wind is blowing all the dust from the street into my eyes, nose, and mouth and ripping my hair out strand by strand. I guess I must be dedicated to getting these bags and wallets done or I would be sitting on my butt today watching my son play spaceship instead. Oh well, it is an excuse to get coffee and baked goods on the way. I could make it a family outing and get my guy to go with us so we can get the remaining ingredients for the apple wine he is making. That would be fun. Mark hate the wind even more than I do though, so something tells me that Ciaran and I will be going it alone. Back to the cookie and coffee idea. At least Ciaran will be protected by his little stroller bubble thingy that we got him. I wish I had a little bubble thingy that would protect me too.

Friday, June 6, 2008

I am Trying Something new

So this bag is the one I will be making for myself out of bright aqua suede when I finish up my two messenger bags and a couple more wallets. I can't wait! I love the color of the suede and I get to do my own colorful designy applique for it. I just have so many other projects to get done. Luckily most don't take a large amount of time to do and I work on them a little at a time. The one thing I struggle with is having enough to stock up my etsy shop and icraft shop and being able to experiment with new designs and ideas.

The messenger bags are turning out to be a breeze despite the number of pockets I have on them. I decided to only add an interior slide pocket on both bags but I have added a few extra on the front of the bag. I think they will work out great. I was so miserable because one of my leather finds, a huge creamy-biege coat that appeared to be suede, turned out to be faux suede. Then as I was cutting out my other messenger bag I had the great idea of making the coat into a messenger as well. It is nice and durable fabric and it will eventually make a great bag for someone. I will post pics when they are both finished. As long as they turn out half way decent!

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Bored, Restless Me!

I am waiting very patiently for that small child of mine to wake up so we can walk downtown and run our errands. He takes a looooonnnnnggggg nap usually and it's great on most days but today I just want to be outside. I do have tons to do around here, like clean, cut out wallets, work on a ring, clean, do dishes, and clean but I do not want to do any of it. I just want to get some fresh air and a donut. So instead of being productive, I sit here typing away and browsing. Neither of which is doing anything for me. Bummer! Maybe I will just go sit on the porch for a while and see if that helps.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Well Hey There!

There is Tripetta! She has now become the face of all of my creative endeavors. I like her look o.k. She will have to do for now. This is a whole new adventure for me so bear with me while I get my act together. Your patience and understanding is much appreciated!