Whew, this week has been a roller coaster. The book is finally – FINALLY! – done. I quite happily spent a large amount of time making new proposals for the cover (I am soooo much happier with the new version to come! – I’ll share it next week once it is final). Despite being put in a boot cast for a 2 week old ankle sprain (that just kept getting worse), I spent an inordinate amount of time in the garden — that cast cloth toe thing is disgusting – quite damp and muddy – but its a gardening badge I am wearing with pride. I’ve also started taking on clients now that I have a little time; I had a couple kick-off meetings this week and finally, last night I spent the evening touring the new Michaels store in Boston. My arms are quaking from a morning of chopping down raspberry bushes and now I am quite ready to have a relaxing Friday night. Here is what is on my desktop as I shut down for a couple days…
Top Photo: This is a shot from #getcraftyboston at Michaels craft store. I am happy to report that they are unveiling a makeover of all 27 Boston area stores this weekend. There are lots of giveaways going on this weekend so if you are in Boston – you might want to stop in this weekend – you might win a gift certificate. My local store is a shadow of its claustrophobic chaotic former self — and it is now a place I can shop for supplies in a more organized relaxed way. Glad for that!!
Til Monday – x – Rochelle
I’m filling this vacation week with activities that I can simultaneously call productive (for me) and entertaining for my little people (it is spring break, we are home, and I’m doing the working mom juggle). A visit to H-mart on a Wednesday afternoon with the specific purpose buying dog bones is a stretch, I know — but I was optimistic that Wednesday at H-mart, might be like Saturday at H-mart – a wonderland of exotic asian grocery store samples of things we would never dream of trying – mostly because the labels on the package are in utterly foreign logograms and we have nowhere to begin on the journey of preparing this stuff or the foggiest idea what is inside. But the samples, they let you know what is not only good, but you can also watch how they make it. If you have an H-Mart nearby, go there on a Saturday if you can – it will be crowded and insane – but it is an excellent adventure.
I wish they had some sort of sample demo thing going on for the bag of Sesame Dregs that I bought on impulse (yes, I am the type of person that will buy something foreign because it combines the words ‘dregs’ and ‘fertilizer’ together and I just can’t ignore my curiousity. – plus it was something like $2.50 for a 5 lb bag). There aren’t a lot of words in English on this bag – ‘Sesame Dregs Fertilizer’, and ‘Nitrogen Rich’ round out the selection. I thought for sure google would hold a wealth of answers when I returned home with my prize. But no.
I have found precisely two references to this product –
There is apparently a place called Winterdoon in Tasmania who uses it to organically build up their Tasmainian soil for vegetable growing. They list some impressive NPK #’s (by comparison to other organic materials).
And then there is this post about Korean Natural Farming Methods which uses them in a version of Compost Tea.
So there it is — the sum total of information about my treasure. It is exotic and remote and I am a little unsure what to do with this bag here in Massachusetts. I see experiments in my future….
But surely there must be more — who knows anything about Sesame Dregs?
Yes! – I’d frame that. I find the ‘G’ particularly nice and it reminds me of Colorado history and some of my favorite Laura Ingalls Wilder stories. I’m also partial to the H – (I love a good bridge) and the W (maybe my parents would like that — it is the first letter of my maiden name) seems so pleasingly garden-y.
The full set can be seen at the British Museums website. This illustrated alphabet was create between 1818 and 1860 by Charles Joseph Hullmandel and includes a full set of 26 contoured landscapes.
These are my favorites — which do you love?
I hope you’ve had a great weekend. Mine was nice, even if it was completely taken over by an elementary school production of Mulan. We’ve had 4 shows since Friday night and I am just tired. I’ve done a lot of makeup, handed out programs, stack and un-stacked chairs, and pushed around a ton of large school furniture. I think I only have the mental capacity to park myself on the sofa in front of an episode of Parks and Rec and wait for my the roast chicken (in the oven) to be ready for dinner. Ahh…. and it is spring, I’ve got the fever and I am ready to get things done. These are things that have been hanging around on my desk this week. I hope you enjoy them!
image by Chris Waits (CC 2.0)
Spring has sprung and thought quite a bit snow remains here in Massachusetts, I got some pruning in yesterday. Are you in the garden yet? There is so much to do – I even have some green things – albeit weeds – but it is encouraging. I managed to scratch my cornea with the tip of a hydrangea stem (which is making things quite blurry still — though at this point I am unsure which is worse – the scratches or the antibiotic ointment). Makes me think I need to wear safety glasses – but I really don’t want to – unless I can find some that are really cute (and by cute I do not mean patronizingly pink and purple versions of lumberjack glasses – I mean cute – like I could forget to take them off when I run to the store and not look like I just stepped out of the bio lab or like someone who is inclined to have a chainsaw lying about in the car). I’ve found nothing….if you know of any – send them my way. Until then – I hope you enjoy the rest of your weekend with some of these lovely links.
In other news — this quote got cut from my book this week due to copyright details – “Rule number one: Always stick around for one more drink. That’s when things happen. That’s when you find out everything you want to know.” ― John Berendt, Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil (Damn, I love this quote – too bad it couldn’t stay in the section where we talk about outdoor bar carts…)
Coming off last week’s intense book editing jag, I am finding it really hard to get back into my rhythm – plus I always feel profoundly exhausted after throwing myself wholeheartedly into something….the end of an intense period of work never feels as good as it seems it should and always comes with a little bit of a let down feeling – bottom line is that I need a good kick in the pants and some inspiration!
What do you do when you need a creative jolt?
I’ve got various strategies – I checked out a few interesting books from the library. The Ecology of Eden by Evan Eisenberg (have you read it?) promises to be an interesting discussion of humankind’s role in nature. I also grabbed Phenology: An Integrative Environmental Science and Let’s Pretend This Never Happened: (A Mostly True Memoir) by Jenny Lawson (aka The Bloggess) (because you have to counter the heavy with the light). And there is nothing like a little variety to get your creative juices flowing right?
Between pondering if humans were ever in harmony with nature and being totally shocked that I was not the only kid who briefly had a pet raccoon (yes this is true not just of Jenny Lawson, but me too) I’m hopeful to find my mojo.
I’m also stalking people on instagram. These images by DarkCompany (top), sarahsiroky (middle) and mckenzie_powell (below) are so appealing but I think my slightly dark mood is showing up in my preferences.
If that doesn’t work, Zippy and I will extend the frequency and duration of our walks. Maybe some (still bitingly cold) fresh air with help me stir things up?
Do you ever hit a creative walls? How do you peel yourself away from them and start running in a new direction?