fledge capable of flying, from Middle English flegge, from Old English -flycge; akin to Old High German flucki capable of flying,
Old English flEogan to fly -- more at FLY
intransitive verb, of a young bird : to acquire the feathers necessary for flight or independent activity

Monday, December 26, 2011

Let's play!

I'll get back to work tomorrow...

...today, let's play!

Snow-- I mean, Sandball fight!

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas, Everyone!

For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders.  - Isaiah 9:6

Peace be with you!

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Vaclav Havel, 1936-2011

Artist, humanist, revolutionary, peacemaker, president.

Hope is a state of mind, not of the world. Hope, in this deep and powerful sense, is not the same as joy that things are going well, or willingness to invest in enterprises that are obviously heading for success, but rather an ability to work for something because it is good...
...Work for something because it is good, not just because it stands a chance to succeed.

Friday, December 23, 2011

Apple 3.141592...

Pie! So easy and so easy to get wrong! I ventured from my tried and true "Joy of Cooking" recipe, thinking the Internet knows better... I tried a highly touted recipe on Allrecipe.com... And instead of Mom's crust, I tried--on the insistence of the lady in the grocery store who insisted she knew these things--the Betty Crocker crust mix in the package... Pasty, gummy and no wear near enough for two nine-inch pie crusts...

So, what do we learn?

Pi = 4/1 -- 4/3 + 4/5 -- 4/7 + 4/9 + 4/11 + ...

Pie = Joy of Cooking's apple pie filling recipe + Mom's crust

Thursday, December 22, 2011

All the candles lit!

All the candles lit. All the cookies baked. All the presents are wrapped.

Alle Kerzen brennen. Alle Plätzchen sind gebacken. Alle Geschenke verpackt.

Just need to finish the dress and write the Christmas letter. Ugh.

Es bleiben nur noch das Weihnachtskleidchen nähen und Weihnachtspost schreiben. Uff.

I'm obsessing a little over my Christmas decorations this year: I picked up three old watercolor paintings of nisse or Tomte. Supposedly, these were used as the backdrop to a school play some fifty years or more ago somewhere in Sweden. One image depicts furnaces dancing around a Christmas tree, another shows nisse mocking a poor juicey goose and then this one...a nisse on a globe collecting cookies (?) or chocolates (?) from a cookie/chocolate spewing volcano? These backdrops are quirky and weird in equal measure and that is why I like 'em!

Diese Gemälde haben bei uns und heimgesucht und suchen mich entsprechend heim. Diese sind aus den 50ern aus einer schwedischen Grundschlue und sollen angeblich die Kulissen aus einem Theaterstück gewesen sein. Die Motiven sind Nissen bzw. Tomte, die jeweils die armen Weihnachtsgänse anlachen, kekseausspeienden und tanzenden Heizöfen feuern (?) und dies oben, wo ein Nisse auf der Weltkugel steht und Kekse (?) Schokolade (?) aus einem Volkan sammelt. Die Motive sind gleichermassen sowohl sonderbar als auch charmant und sie gefallen mir deswegen. Wenn jemand die Geschichte kennt, würde ich mich sehr freuen diese zu wissen!

Okay...wieder an die Arbeit!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011


So, it rained the other day. One benefit of Southern California sunshine, is that with rain, we usually get a rainbow in the deal. I run outside--avec camera--toward late afternoon to see if the miracle of refraction has happened yet again. And look what rolls by! A "make love, not war" hippie car! Nutty. 

Also geregnet hatte es. Ein zusätzlicher Zuschuß aus der südkalifornischen Sonnenschein ist das Refraktionsnebenprodukt aus dem Regen. Ergo laufe ich samt Photo zum Vorgarten  auf Regenbogenjagt. Jawohl: entsprechende Refraktion. Aber dennoch fährt ein happy Hippie "make love, not war" Benz mir entgegen? Na, sowas!

And speaking of nutty. It is 3rd Advent already! And I have a present for you: Squirrelly! "Squirrelly" is defined as "eccentric and restless". If you are one or the other or both, perhaps you would like to make one of these!

Na sowas zum 2.: Schon 3. Advent. Und ich habe ein Geschenk für Dich... Squirrelly! "Squirrelly" bedeutet "ekzentrisch und rastlos". Solltest Du entweder eins oder beides sein, vielleicht möchtest Du auch ein Squirrelly nähen.

Squirrelly is a little plush pattern that is my gift to you!

Squirrelly ist ein Kuscheleichhörnchenschnittmuster und mein Geschenk an Dich,

Squirrelly can be stitched together using a few scraps. Wool or Eco felt works nicely, too.

Squirrelly kann aus Stoffresten genäht werden. Woll- bzw. Eco-Filz geht auch.

(Frech habe ich das Bild oben mit Nics Photoprojekt verlinkt. Mache doch mit!).

Squirrelly stands on his own: If you fill him partially with lead weight or pebbles, Squirrelly makes a dandy fine bookend.  

Squirrelly steht von alleine. Wenn dieses doch mit Steinchen bzw. Blei gewichtet ist, dient Squirrelly auch als Bücherstütze

Yes, this is my gift to you! You may download the pattern and instructions below. Pattern sheets are uploaded individually. I'm not that PDF-savvy to get them all onto one file without changing the size.

Pattern page/Schnittmusterbogen 1
Pattern page/Schnittmusterbogen 2
Pattern page/Schnittmusterbogen 3

Step-by-step photo tutorial ENGLISH

(Wait for it...wait...big file...)

Ja, mein Geschenk an Dich! Hier darfst Du herunterladen. Das Schnittmuster besteht aus drei Seiten, die ich nicht zusammen in einer Datei zusammenkriege...

Photoanleitung DEUTSCH

(Warte...warte...kommt's...große Datei...)

Und sollte ich etwas ganz krummes ("Deutsch für Fortgeschrittene/German for Runaways") übersetzt habe, sage bitte bescheid: Ich korregiere's unverzüglich :)

What, you didn't get me anything? That's okay, you'll just have to pay for your Squirrelly pattern.

Yes, you'll have to pay for it.

But you decide how much and when.

Just pay it forward. Any bit of goodwill anywhere will do, for example...

  • Help someone carry their packages into the post office. 
  • Let another car in ahead of you in traffic. 
  • Let your spouse think he won the argument.
  • Apologize.
  • Forgive.
  • Run an errand for an elderly neighbor.
  • Treat the kids in the carpool to ice cream.
  • Scrape off the snow and ice from your neighbor's car windows, too.
  • Remember, there but for the grace of God go you.
  • Donate your time.
  • Refrain from leaving a snarky comment (no matter how very witty) somewhere on the Internet.
  • Shop your local independent retailers.
  • Plant a tree.
  • Consider the amount of forced labor that went into making a new piece of electronics or clothing, then reconsider your purchase.
  • Take public transportation or walk instead.
  • Ask for donations to your favorite charity instead of Christmas gifts.
  • Offer to babysit for the new mom on the street, if only for an hour of "me time."
  • Donate the books you've already read to a shelter or prison.
  • Give someone the benefit of the doubt.
  • If you buy something on sale you were planning on buying anyway, donate the difference in price to charity.
  • Share everything--waste nothing.
  • Offer help to a returning veteran.
  • Do the next right thing.
  • Love.

I'm sure there's something you can think of. I'd love to hear what it might be! And if you'd like to share your Squirrelly on the "Sewing Clothes Kids Love" flickr group page, well that would be just grand, too!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Winter white (SoCal style)

Go 'head! Join in the photo project fun at Luziapimpinella!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Playing tag

Warning: These images contain happy words and thoughts. Do not be encouraged or think happy thoughts upon reading these messages. These messages do not have the approval of the City of Hermosa Beach.

The City of Hermosa Beach has recently taken a strong stand against chalk tagging. As well they should. The Hermosa Beach police department is conducting an investigation into the perpetrators of such chalk tagging, conducting interviews with possible witnesses and so on. It appears that the culprit(s) randomly chalk happy words and pictures without prior approval. Never mind that the messages are of happiness and encouragement and joy, we simply cannot allow people to continue to spread happiness in public. Happy words and thoughts require prior approval. Furthermore, chalk is a gateway to more damaging forms of graffiti, like spray paint. Never mind that chalk disappears on its own in about three days and perhaps one would choose chalk over spray paint for exactly that reason. Chalk is gateway. Period. Like drinking water is a gateway to swilling vodka. Water balloons?  Gateway to molotov cocktails. And research has proven conclusively, that every smoker of crack cocaine started with breathing air. So best to close up these graffiti gateways before things get entirely out of hand.

Chalk, furtherfurthermore, is dusty. The chalk dust could get on someone's clothes or shoes, even their hair (if they really tried).

The miles of very fine sand on the other side of this wall could also make its way into someone's clothes or shoes or hair...but that is entirely beside the point. There is a world of difference between chalk dust and beach sand. There is. I mean it.

This must be stopped.

The Hermosa Beach police thus far have no suspects. The similarity between this random person's tattoo and the happy hugging heart is entirely coincidental.

Please remain vigilant against happy thoughts or any desires to randomly express happy thoughts in Hermosa Beach. Especially you, Random Person.


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