Curiosity killed the cat,
Satisfaction brought him back!
Children ask what do I do at home, how do I get ideas, where do I learn things, do I like being an art teacher...this blog is for them (and for their parents and my friends who have asked the same things!)
I have been creating blogs recently. Actually only one seriously, focused in a cross-eyed way on the history of seed companies and the general gardener's use of purchased seeds. But while I am crawling through the internet attics that tell the stories I keep stumbling over wonderful photos from the past! To amuse friends, I started two that are cat and dog blogs, Good Dog! , Snapshots from the 20th Century and Cat Smiles. I am not sure why I started the main blog, only I was looking up stuff for myself and I wanted to share it; it seemed a waste to find cool bits and pieces then leave them in the attic!
That all said, what do I do when I find something I like so much I want to share it but it isn't in any of my categories? As you have already guessed, the answer is to stick them here!
I love these two photos. For no reason I can pin point, I think it is the the 1940s or early1950s...probably England.
If you have never read Gerald Durrell's My Family and Other Animals, give it a try. An enchanting memoir from a world renowned naturalist, focusing on his childhood on Corfu where his English family went to escape the grey and sneezes of England.
This 1870 home-made weather glass (shown below) looks like fun to try...but could I do it by shopping on Amazon for all the chemicals and the bottle? And, not having taken chemistry, can I do it without poisoning myself?
The answer looks to be YES to both concerns. The chemicals are used in cooking...and blowing up stuff. That is kind of cool by itself!
As a licorice lover, the fact that one of the chemicals, sal ammoniac, is used in the Nordic countries in a salty licorice candy opened a new world of treats to me. (And, yes, Amazon has that, too :-) You could kill yourself with the chemicals if you were really dumb or determined, but it seems highly unlikely. I found a 12 inch glass hydrometer test tube for sale that was the right shape to substitute for the fascinating bottle illustrated below. I wonder what that shape bottle was made for in 1870. The only problem is the cost gets to about $50...so I am out. Sheesh...I wanted to see the star shaped precipitate rising and falling with the weather changes!!!! Time to start looking around for friends with a bit of this and that laying around...maybe someone cures meat with saltpetre. I have a tube already from aborted wine making...that gets it down to 40ish. I think I need to retire to have the time to pursue all this. The last question is - does it work? No clue.
Meet my needle felted mouse....and my real live cat.
I started a new hobby called Needle Felting. It is very easy to do if you can think in 3-D. You treat the wool like clay (sort of) and just mesh the fibers together with a special needle that has barbs on it. The mouse eyes are tiny beads sewn in. His hands, which are going to hold a tiny book, are made from unraveled wool embroidery yarn.
Look it up on Google...there are millions of pages of instruction and pictures.
A fun place to see a wide variety of styles of felt artist work isEtsy.
Etsy is an online sales venue for craftspeople. It is fun to just look through.
It is sort of funny I should post that title since tomorrow afternoon I start the spring semester Bug Club for the after school enrichment program the PTA organizes! But I do dislike ticks because I once had Lyme Disease...a sneaky disease from tick bites. You can find more on ticks on our Waddell web site.
Here is a picture of me in my ANTI-TICK suit!! I treated it with a pesticide that kills ticks on contact. You do not put the spray on you, just on clothes. When I garden or go in the woods I wear it. I look like a crazy lady but I feel safer.
(This post is really from last August...those of you who know wildflowers would have picked up on the discrepancy :-)
I don’t spend all summer at school, you know! This year I am trying something new…nature photography from my little boat.
AND, before you can get mad at me for not wearing a life vest, I want you to know I have one now and I do wear it. This boat is made for fishermen. It is easy to get right up to the shore when I spot a flower, then I step out, and click away.
I am in love with my new pontoon boat. I was saving money for a new laptop but then we stopped in at Cabella’s (a sport supply store like Disneyland in Michigan!) and I left with this boat:-)
This is a Cardinal Flower. Hummingbirds are said to love it (they investigate anything that is red, including bottle tops!). It grows right along the edge of ponds and streams.
Did you know there are clams in fresh water? I really never thought about it and always associated clams with ocean clam flats. This big one was just floating in the water so I think it was dead….but I put it back in case it was just going “walkabout”.