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      Friday, May 01, 2015

mrs. crankypants
08:27 AM - 05/01/2015

The topic: I wouldn’t ever wish anyone dead, but

I can sure as hell wish them into the cornfield.


      Sunday, May 03, 2015

12:31 PM - 05/03/2015

The topic: Back in the grasshopper days

When we had dreams of building a home and moving up to our property, we bought a telescope at CostCo. Took it to the property, where there are few city lights and lots of stars. 

Well, that was ten or fifteen years ago, at least. And the telescope has been up there, still in the box. I've been after Brian to bring it home and yesterday he did.

It's a Meade 4504. Looking at reviews, it didn't get the best, but it was proclaimed a nice starter telescope. I opened up the box. The first thing I see is an instructional video. VHS.

Hahahahahaha! No matter, we have two televisions here with built in VHS capabilities. I just thought it was funny. Something new to play with! Too bad it's cloudy. But there will be plenty of time to see the night sky.



      Monday, May 04, 2015

06:32 AM - 05/04/2015

The topic: Woke up after midnight last night

The thunder woke me up. It was raining! What a surprise, nothing in the local weather reports about it. My weather station says it rained .04 inches. I checked out back, the patio was wet, no sign of Rocky (lots of places to keep dry).

I went back to bed, it thundered and lightninged some more and I was asleep in no time.

That was pretty neat.

10:33 AM - 05/04/2015

The topic: NotPancho was in the yard

I watched him get in to the yard, watched him cruise the fenceline in the back (and watched the other cats following him), then watched him leave.

When he started to climb the fence to get out, I called Brian over. He watched NP climbing the fencing over the pool pump and stepped outside to get a better view as NP monkey climbed to get out.

He said "this isn't good".  After NotPanch was out of the yard, Brian went down to check out the fencing. And he came up with another place to add to. And there, NP will be able to get in, but most likely not out.

We'd really like him to stay in the yard. The other cats didn't seem to bother with him and it's way safer here than out there.

06:34 PM - 05/04/2015

The topic: Last month

Over on http://www.meh.com I got an IP camera, a Foscam. It took three weeks to get here (it showed up the day after I released Boyd) and I was put off because it took so long to get here (they ran out). 

Anyway, I set it up last week and it's awesome! Totally awesome! But how to get the streaming to the interwebs? I want to send it to Ustream because they have a free service and, unlike my current cameras, UStream will have one pull from my computer, not more than that. UStream gets the traffic, so it's their bandwidth being used. And seeing how my regular cameras don't get much traffic anymore, this is more of a vanity thing. And a geek thing, just because I can.

I tried a couple of free programs that encode the stream into something usable for UStream, but I wasn't successful. Then I used Google to search for something and I found one that works. But I'm too cheap to buy it at full price.

I spent forty-five minutes trying different coupon codes with no luck.

Just damn it.


      Wednesday, May 06, 2015

08:24 AM - 05/06/2015

The topic: Back in the 80s

When I had a real job, where I actually got paid for what I did, I used to take orders on the phone. I worked at a trash company and my job was commercial containers (dumpsters), in the city of El Cajon and  in the unincorporated areas of San Diego and construction containers (the big rolloffs) all over San Diego. I was a busy girl, but it was fun.

I didn't like talking to residential customers, they could be jerks, but some of the construction guys made me laugh. One conversation that stuck with me was a guy who hadn't ordered his rolloff in a timely manner and was now trying to sweet talk me into getting it out sooner than the normal period. He told me "my boss is going to hang me". When I took his order and he gave me his name, I laughed.

His name was Tom Longnecker.


08:48 AM - 05/06/2015

The topic: Well, it looks like our lawn will be brown

Because of the horrible drought we're in, have been in for what seems like the last decade. 

I remember rainy winters and springs where the backyard was flooded, where the water in the pool came almost to the top. It's been years since I've seen that. We've been cutting back for some time now. It gets to the point that you ask yourself where do we cut back next? We haven't watered the front lawn in months, Brian covered it in pine needles earlier this year. We don't flush every time we use the toilet unless there's solid waste,  Brian goes all day without flushing, I flush every two or three times (because toilet paper). 

I do full loads of laundry and we have a high efficiency machine. The dishwasher runs with a full load. Unless I do something to get really sweaty and dirty, I don't take a shower every day. 

Sometime this month Brian will be planting a garden at the side of the house. So, we'll quit watering the lawn so we can water the garden. It will be nice to have fresh vegetables. And I'll be growing a bunch of catnip, both in the garden and down by the pool, where all of the grass was pulled up last week. And there will be Allysum down by the pool, it doesn't seem to need much water. Brian will be hand watering the avocado trees (which are bursting with fruit this year!).

I've been cringing for years now when the lawns get watered, but this morning, after watching a news segment on cutting back, he finally said "the law will be brown". I'll be okay with that as long as he doesn't put pine needles on the dirt in the backyard. I'd never be able to go barefoot again. I just told him I didn't want pine needles down and he just looks at me. "You'd rather have dirt" he said matter-of-factly. I replied "I'd rather not have to put shoes on everytime I walk outside."

One thing that's annoyed be about this whole thing is our water company. They say "cut back! cut back! cut back!" and everyone cuts back (has been for years now) and then the water company says "oh, noes! We have to raise your rates because our overhead is still the same and since we're selling less volume of water and making less money, we need to compensate and we're going to stick it to you!" As we used to say "F*** you very much for your consideration".

And then there's the great Metropolitan Water District, based in Los Angeles. They owe San Diego millions in overcharges. I wonder if we'll ever see any of that as rebates on our bills? 

We'll survive. Things have sure changed since I got married.

      Thursday, May 07, 2015

mrs. crankypants
03:19 PM - 05/07/2015

The topic: It wasn’t delivered here….

So, last month I ordered some blades for my Silhouette via eBay from a Chinese seller. I'm cheap, I don't use the official Silhouette blades, I have a couple of blade holders (housing) and buy replacement blades for the holders. You know how I go through these and how much paper I ruin and time I waste by not changing out the blades in a timely manner; well, I figure if I have a fair amount of them, I won't drag my feet when it needs to be done. They come in three different angles, 30°, 45° and 60°, each having a specific purpose. The 60° are good for thin material, like vinyl. The goto angle for regular cardstock is 45°. I bought two packages of ten each, it came to just under $34.00. I shouldn't need to get any more for a while, these should last (unless I get really busy).

Anyway, they were supposed to have been delivered last Saturday. The post office shows them delivered on Friday. Last Friday. They were placed in the mailbox at the street. But guess what? They were not delivered to the mailbox at the street. As a matter of fact, Brian had a package delivered that needed to be signed for and the mailman brought all of the mail to the front door. And the little envelope from China was not there. I asked the mailman about it and he said "this is all I've got". 

Saturday, I printed out the tracking information from the post office website. And I showed it to the mailman. I said "this shows this was delivered to the mailbox yesterday, but you brought all of the mail in and this wasn't there". He shrugs, doesn't remember where he may have delivered it. I'm thinking WTF?

I consider this and figure maybe whoever got it will put it back into the mail to be redelivered. Nope, not yet. Yesterday I sent a message to the post office. Today, I tried contacting Paypal, but they have a thing to contact the seller. So, I just sent a message to the seller and I know I'll end up having to contact eBay and maybe Paypal.  

I'm just glad I have proof that another package was delivered to our door and signed for on that day. Should help bolster my case.

Damn it.


      Friday, May 08, 2015

07:01 AM - 05/08/2015
The current weather is It's raining!

The topic: For Mother’s Day

Mother's Day

Okay, there's the vase and flowers, all done. I'm pretty happy with how it turned out. And it was really fun to make. 

If you want more photos, click below. I'll provide links to the files and tools used, so you have an idea if you ever want to do something like this. And if you buy anything via the links, I make a little money. Not much, but a little.



But wait! I'm not done yet!
I've got more to say!

      Monday, May 11, 2015

the morning walk
08:23 AM - 05/11/2015

The topic: I stared at the sun and did not turn blind

When I woke up this morning, it was a sunny, cloudless day. But then the marine layer came in (we're about twenty miles inland from the coast, so the layer was pretty thick.) The fog (which the marine layer became) helped as a filter. I took these on our walk this morning. Yeah, my little head voice is screaming "Look Ma! I'm lookin' directly at the sun! I'm lookin' at the sun! And I can still see!"



Clicking on a picture will take you to a bigger photo in my family album; clicking on that picture will open a larger photo.

Right now, over an hour later, the fog is still coming in and it's pretty thick. And it's cooled off a lot. On our walk, I wore a teeshirt. Now, the windows and doors are all closed and I have a heavy sweatshirt on and my fingers feel like ice cubes.

Yeah, I wouldn't have made it in a colder climate. 

      Tuesday, May 12, 2015

01:53 PM - 05/12/2015

The topic: Another day with the tree trimmers

They just left.  A couple of weeks ago the jackass neighbor saw Brian outside and started  in on him about the sap from the trees. "It's everywhere, it's on my van, it's on my house, it's on my screens, I track it into the house..."  bigcry

So, Brian contacted the trimmers again. And explained that they hadn't trimmed them back (on the tree hating neighbor's side) to his specifications. And now the sap was a problem (even though everyone who knows ANYTHING about trees, knows that the sap does quit flowing, but then, it's obvious not everyone knows much at all about trees, remember, "they never stop growing" and that's why so many are hitting the moon during the moon's rotation around the earth, that's not the man in the moon, that's where the trees are scraping it). biggrin The trimmers were supposed to have come last week, but it was raining, so they made it here this morning.

The supervisor was listening when Brian said something to the neighbor and he overheard more whining about the sap. He was incredulous. Really? The sap? You're having us back out here because he doesn't like the sap? Doesn't he know the sap will quit running in a couple of weeks?  Brian explained that the only way those people would be happy is if the trees are completely cut down. 

Anyway, I was thinking about that cornfield again....



mrs. crankypants
04:46 PM - 05/12/2015

The topic: There is a car in front of our house

A car that's been there for a week now. It hasn't moved. We thought it was someone our whiny neighbors  14110202know, but it wasn't moved when the tree trimmers showed up today, so chances are, it's no one they know.

The registration is current, the car looks clean, but it's just parked there. We're giving it another couple of weeks, then calling it in as abandoned.  It's possible someone moved it over here from a side street to get it out of the way of the work crews. They've been replacing water lines for the past month, digging up the street, replacing the asphalt for that whole time, so maybe it's just a convenience thing. Well, make it convenient in front of someone else's house. And while I'm at it...



      Friday, May 15, 2015

04:43 PM - 05/15/2015

The topic: The end of an era

Because it was raining today, we decided to go to Disneyland for a little while. We left the house at seven, stopped at a Denny's on the way up, had the value slam for four bucks each (after our AARP discount the total was $7.34), got up to Anaheim, paid $17.00 for parking and took the tram to Disneyland. We rode Pirates, walked around some, quite a few rides were down, we got water at a stand on the way out of the park, then went over to DCA and just sat down. We were home by two this afternoon.

It wasn't really crowded, but I thought it would do Brian good to get away from the house. This morning, I was light-headed, I don't know from what, but it was a concern. I was better after breakfast and that feeling hasn't returned. So, when Brian told me this morning he just laid in bed thinking that he'd rather not go and I was having those same thoughts, well...

We're pretty sure we won't be renewing our passes come October. It's just to hard on us to do the drive, walk around, then come home. We're just beat. 

And now that his company is going full tilt, it's pretty hard to take the time off and not feel guilty. If he's going to take time off, I'm sure he'd rather go to Ranchita and do some work out there. He loves it up there. 

And it will save us a fair amount of money, not going to Disneyland. Today was probably the cheapest day ever. The parking was the most expensive part (well, not counting the gas to get there). 

Yeah, we could pick a different day of the week (our passes are blocked out on Saturdays) and spend the night in a hotel,  but that costs money and right now, the cats are aging out, we've got two on thyroid meds, one with cancer, another with bad kidneys. And they're a constant concern when we're not home.

I'm sad, but I'm not. And if we don't have the passes, I won't feel guilty about not going. It was different in the grasshopper days, the money didn't matter. But it does now. And we're not enjoying it like we once did. It's time.


      Tuesday, May 19, 2015

mrs. crankypants
07:20 AM - 05/19/2015

The topic: So, about that car

Yesterday I made some phone calls. First I called the Santee Sheriff's station and was told to call the California Highway Patrol. I gave all of the information about the car and dispatch told me someone would be right out. (I wasn't expecting this, really, the car isn't in the way of traffic, it's not an emergency.) 

Eight hours later, at the same time we were leaving to go shopping, a CHP car was behind the abandoned car. We went over and spoke with the officer. He told us the car wasn't registered to anyone in this neighborhood or area. So, he tagged it and if and when it's still there in seventy-hours it will be towed.

Brian mentioned to me on our way to Walmart (needed more baby food for Katie - she's eating less and less and sleeping more, her time is nearing, her chin is huge) that he thinks they're back to selling drugs around the corner again. And he wouldn't doubt if it was one of their customers who can't remember where they left their car. I had to laugh, I can imagine calling the tow yard every couple of days "Yeah, do you have a white Ford Mustang, plate number.....?"

mrs. crankypants
07:28 AM - 05/19/2015

The topic: And on the walk this morning

Speaking with another neighbor, all of this work they've been doing on the roads isn't done yet. Well, they're not working on the road, but the water lines and to get to the water lines, they have to dig up the road. The two cul-de-sacs water isn't passing inspection for bacteria. Our water is fine, our street's water is fine. It's those offshoot lines. And before the work can be deemed finished, the bacteria has to be out of the lines.

And, in this drought ridden area, gallons and gallons of water is being flushed out of the pipes (and down the road and into the ocean). I guess someone from another street, who sees all this water actually stopped and threatened the workers. They were ready to call the sheriff's to come out and take care of this guy. Hey, no one likes to see the water wasted, but threatening guys who are just doing their jobs isn't a productive way to handle the situation.


06:46 PM - 05/19/2015

The topic: Well, the sticker on the back of the car worked

Someone came, got into it and drove off less than an hour ago. Yay! 

Why on earth would you leave your car parked on a street where you did not live for over two weeks? Until there was the threat of towing?  


      Friday, May 22, 2015

09:01 AM - 05/22/2015

The topic: What a internet nightmare yesterday was

My webhost migrated all the websites on one server to another. Not just for me, but for everyone who had a website on that particular server. And I found all sorts of problems. On lisaviolet.com (the weblog wasn't working, the counters weren't counting...), on lisaviolet.net, where my photos are (many PHP errors) and over at catler.org, the forums didn't work and the chat didn't work (most of that was a matter of permission settings, but during that fix, I found some other problems not related to the migration)

The problems here had to be taken care of by the webhost. Over on the gallery the fix was simple (after support pointed me in the right direction). The problems on catler took the most time to work out, lots of searching my computer for old installation texts. 

Some of the stuff that didn't work isn't really all that important, so it's not a big deal, it's just kind of frustating that I can't get it to work. I was in here until almost eight last night and had decided everything was okay to go.

Then I start up the computer this morning, my mouse wasn't working. I found the connection, some kitty had peed on it during the night. I cleaned it off and rebooted my machine. Twice. Finally everything was up and running. Had breakfast, came back here, checked email, posted stuff on Facebook then came over here to make this entry. There was a fatal error message, a PHP thing. Then Katie came in and wanted to eat. I contacted the webhost, then went into my control panel and changed the PHP version back to what it should be (the PHP error messages of yesterday were on the gallery website, but jumping between control panels of three websites, I inadvertantly changed the wrong one and didn't change it back). 

And, voila! The diary is back up.

And I took a Xanax.

      Saturday, May 23, 2015

mrs. crankypants
08:50 AM - 05/23/2015

The topic: Remember my problems with the post office?

Earlier this month? Well, what I've found out so far from talking with my mailman is that it was delivered to a different street with the same address numbers. 

The relief driver told the regular driver that the people admitted having gotten it. The problem? The people who live there have been evicted.

So, we know it was delivered. We know who got it. We DON'T know where they are and what they've done with my package. I sent an email to the local post office on Monday, asking about the status of this and I also sent a copy of the invoice for the blades ($33.98).  So far, I've not heard back (this was the same supervisor who told our mailman not to deliver a box to us that was priority mail because there was other mail that was more important that needed delivery - this was a huge fight with Brian and the post office; he went down there to pick up the package, there was stuff in there he had promised a customer that we'd have it out in the mail that day).

I'll give her until June 1 to respond. If she hasn't, I'll send another mail to the file a claim contact form on USPS and explain the whole thing. I want my blades or I want my money. This wasn't a seller error, this wasn't my error, it was a post office error (and it's been admitted it was a post office error) and I want it rectified.

10:20 AM - 05/23/2015

The topic: Katie woke up

Wanting to eat. I got her food ready, she lapped a small amount off of a spoon. Fortunately, the spoon had the metacam in it, so she got her pain meds.

The thing is, she didn't eat very much at all. The enlarging tumor is making it harder and harder for her to eat. Maybe it's the pain, but the size doesn't help. I'll feed her again in an hour or so, hoping she eats more. 

It's very hard to do this, because she's in good spirits when she's awake, she loves being petted. She's alert and interested in what's going on around her. But she can't eat. Brian said something about syringe feeding, but that would mean putting something in her mouth. Even if she was the kind of cat who would allow something like that, I think it would be pretty painful.

It's looking like her time is getting near. The tumor doesn't bleed hardly at all, but one of these days she won't be able to swallow. And that would be horrific. 

I hate this. I hate death watch.


02:55 PM - 05/23/2015

The topic: So Katie says

"It's not that I'm not hungry, mom, I just don't like what you gave me. It was pretty yummy yesterday, but not so great today. So, thank you for the jar of chicken baby food that you warmed up. That was tasty. Now, I'll try to do a little grooming, then go back to  my napping."

      Tuesday, May 26, 2015

08:30 AM - 05/26/2015

The topic: Well, don’t that blow your dress up?

(A guy I used to work with said that all the time.)

Yesterday, Katie was crying for food. Instead of mixing the A/D or Fancy Feast with water and using the hand held blender to blend it, I just opened a can of A/D and let her eat. Right out of the can. All I did was stir it with a fork.

Within an hour, she'd eaten three quarters of the can. I was amazed. She ate more last night (we were gone for a few hours). 

She slept on the bed last night and was asking for food first thing this morning. The past couple of weeks she's been sleeping until nine in the morning, but this morning, she was up when we were, wanting to be fed.

Okay. Here's your brand new can of A/D. Oh, here's a little bit of chicken baby food on a spoon, would you like that? (That's where her pain meds hide.) She ate it.

I can live with this routine.



mrs. crankypants
01:22 PM - 05/26/2015

The topic: I’m not loving this weather

The marine layer (the cloud layer above the ocean) has been really thick the past couple of weeks. So thick at times that we get drizzle out of it. I don't mind it when it drizzles, but I don't like the constant grey of the clouds. No sun, no blue sky, just grey skies as far as the eye can see.

I want to clean the house, which includes windows and floors, but nothing dries. 

It's getting depressing. This weather blows.


      Wednesday, May 27, 2015

06:50 AM - 05/27/2015

The topic: I’m getting a new crafting tool today

And I'm really excited about it. 

Brian uses rubber stamps in his business. He has these tags he stamps directions on that he attaches to what he sends out, so the customers know what goes where. The first stamps I got were about twenty or thirty dollars each. As the business evolved, he's changed what the stamps need to say. We never got more stamps, though, he's been hand writing on the tags. 

Then I started doing this craft stuff.  At the end of last year was when I realized how much fun stamping can be. (I used stamps on my Christmas cards). I had stamps from ages ago, before we were married, but never did anything with them. And the acrylic stamps interested me. And I started buying them, because I really do want to sell stuff I make and my handwriting is awful. I have enough stamps now to fill probably any occasion.

Well, earlier this month I'd ordered some Disney acrylic stamps, just to have on hand. And I didn't get the Disney stamps, I got some other stamps for babies. I contacted the manufacturer and she was surprised to see what I'd gotten. They hadn't even been released yet. But she told me she designed her own stamps and had a company make them and you can buy her brand through Amazon, Walmart and eBay. Well, this got me to thinking. Maybe I could have someone make my acrylic stamps.

I found a place to make them and ordered some. The baby lisa graphic, "created by lisaviolet", "lisaviolet designs", "lvdesigns.com" and one other one. The cost was about seventy dollars for all of them. And I did more research.

Now, earlier this year I'd purchased Silhouette's branded stampmaking kit and was nothing but frustrated with it. I got it to make new stamps for Brian. What a mistake. And, doing some after purchase research, I read that the Silhouette media was particular in the inks used. And so it sat in the box in the storage cabinet since. So, I wasn't really sure about finding anything workable for stampmaking. But I did. And this thing has got great reviews.

The Photocentric Imagepac Stampmaker (this link is to the cheapest place I've found for the kit). Right now, that site has a sale, as well as free shipping, on orders over $99.00.  So, I ordered extra consumables (I read that there is a learning curve with this machine, so I want to be prepared) and it's supposed to be here today! Yay! Brian has given me a list of ten stamps he wants. And since I will be making my own negatives and the film used to make the negs is bigger than each stamp, I need to come up with enough different stamps to fill a page. I haven't gotten much sleep, I'm so excited about this.

I've tested out my printer (when they're printed, the black needs to be solid black, no light should get through) and it's good to go.  How this works is this kit comes with gel packs. The negative is placed over the gel pack and put into a light machine that hardens the gel under the clear areas of the negative. It doesn't do squat to the gel under the black part of the negative and this gets washed off with brushing and dish soap and water. Then it gets put in the light machine again where it hardens all the way.

This gel isn't the kind that comes out sticky on the back, you know, to put it on acrylic blocks for use, so I ordered some Graphix cling paper over on Amazon. Hopefully, that will allow the stamp to stick to a block.

And the blocks...I really don't want to spend a lot on acrylic blocks, since the purpose of this is making my own stamps as cheaply as possible, after the initial outlay. I've done research and I think I'll contact some local plastics places to see if I can get a good deal on acrylic sheets. Brian can cut them to size and I'll glue pieces together to get the thickness I want. As for handles, I ordered some empty wooden thread spools over on eBay. I can paint them and make them pretty and glue them to the acrylic.

If you want to research this, this machine is the same one that is sold under the Teresa Collins brand. Check out the YouTube videos. 

Yeah, I've put a lot of thought into this. I'm really stoked about it.


And then there's all that paperwork I need to do.....


      Thursday, May 28, 2015

06:28 AM - 05/28/2015

The topic: I made stamps last night!

From the sample negative. There's a "happy birthday", the numbers 1,2 and 3, "handmade by", a little Christmas ornament and a heart with the words "home sweet home" in the center. So, I used the negative and one of the gel packs, followed the directions and made all of those stamps! 

I cut them apart and used some cling vinyl and printed out a little Home Sweet Home" sentiment. It was adorable! And the cling vinyl is washable; as I said yesterday, these gel packs don't make stamps that are sticky on the front so you either have to glue them to the acrylic or use some sort of binder. The cling vinyl worked nicely for me and it's washable which makes it reusable.

The only downside of this is the smell of the gel. After the stamp is made, you have to cut the pack apart and get rid of all of the gel that didn't harden and do a thorough wash of the stamp itself to remove all of the excess gel (if you don't do this, during the final step, the hardening, this remaining gel will affect the finished stamp). It's awful! Brian mentioned it when he walked into the kitchen as I was rinsing off the gel. The finished stamps have a residual odor to them, which I sure hope goes away with airing out. 


So, now that I have something I really, really want to do, that will be my carrot. (Looks over at the growing pile of paperwork.) Next on the list is to make my own negatives so then I can make truly custom stamps.

02:25 PM - 05/28/2015

The topic: “Paperwork be damned”

Is what will be on my headstone...

So, instead of doing the paperwork with the Imagepac Stampmaker kit being the reward, I started with the stampmaking machine. I justified it like this "if I don't test it out, I won't be able to concentrate on the paperwork". And I did one stamp from start to finish. I did the artwork for all of the stamps Brian wants, had him proof read what I'd done, then printed them out. Then I cut one out and realized that there was going to be a problem. I kinda sorta used the A7 sizing, but it wasn't quite right. The problem would be that there would be clear space around the artwork and the lighting. And the mats that came with the kit weren't quite right for blocking the light. 

I got a piece of black cardstock (with a black core) and cut it to size. I cut out the center area so that it would work around the text on the negative (I'm going to make more of these with different size opening; I'm sure there will be a need for them). I placed the negative, the mat, the gel in the clamp, did the timer (six seconds with the clamp one way, then flipped it over and used the timer for a hundred seconds the other way). 

I then took the gel pack over to the kitchen trash, cut around the outside, peeled the one layer off, wiped a lot of the excess gel off with papertowels, then started the cleaning. I spent a good amount of time with this because I wanted to make sure all of the excess gel was removed. Then I put it in the tray for hardening, and instead of two minutes, went for about five and a half minutes. I really don't like how sticky my sample stamp turned out last night. Once hardened, I cut around the design and tested my very first custom stamp. (Clicking on a picture will take you to a bigger photo in my online album; clicking on that picture will open a larger photo.)

This is pink because when I made the test stamp, I used the first color I grabbed out of my ink box. Wild Orchid by Ranger. 

The back of the stamp.

Look at the definition on the lettering. I was really surprised at how nicely it turned out.

The cling vinyl, ready for application.

The acrylic block. This was in the Silhouette Stampmaking kit, the one that gave me fits. No complaint about the blocks that came with it.

Stamp assembled.


And the result.

Like I said, I'm really happy with this. After all the research I did and all of the instructions and disaster stories I read beforehand, I was thrilled it worked on the first try. This just doesn't happen for me. I always make some mistake along the way. 

Brian said he'll go to San Diego to a local plastics place and check out their remnants so we can make our own acrylic blocks. He figures that will be the cheapest way to go, since he's not going to want to assemble these things each time he needs one.

And now that I know it will work and work nicely...

Eyes the stack of paperwork....


      Friday, May 29, 2015

mrs. crankypants
12:06 PM - 05/29/2015

The topic: I thought I’d updated this

When we got home from our first trip to Phil's Barbeque in San Diego, with some friends who were in San Diego to see the Rolling Stones, there was a package and a note between the screen door and the front door.

It was from the place where my package had been mistakenly delivered back on the first of the month. It said his kids must have brought the mail in and just set it down. Okay. When I set the mail down, it's usually someplace that I don't overlook. At least until it hits the official "paperwork pile". smilie_lol

So, they still live there, they weren't evicted and even though the mailman says he spoke to them, I'm having serious doubts. 

But all is good, I have my blades now. As a matter of fact, I have a LOT of blades now, since I re-ordered them when I realized the first order wasn't going to quickly appear at my door. Bring on the cardstock!

(I have absolutely no ambition today, I think this comes from having way too much to do; "to do list overload" is what I'd call it - I told Brian I think going outside and watching the grass grow is about as ambitious as I feel right now.)



      Saturday, May 30, 2015

mrs. crankypants
03:23 PM - 05/30/2015

The topic: I’ve been at it for over four hours

And I'm just not feeling the love.

Man, I hate paperwork.


Yeah, I know, if I did it in a timely manner it wouldn't be so much fun, right?

mrs. crankypants
06:08 PM - 05/30/2015

The topic: Annoying commercials

All of the Buick commercials. Every. Single. One.

      Sunday, May 31, 2015

06:46 AM - 05/31/2015

The topic: Sometimes I can figure out where the stuff comes from

Other times I'm just lost. I'm talking about dreams. This one was a mix.

We woke up to a small earthquake this morning, it wasn't much, but I was thinking about the quake and didn't remember very many details of the dream.

But I think the main problem my inner self (hahaha) was dealing with was my lack of organization and getting things done. In the dream, I even considered asking my doctor if there was something wrong with me that could be taken care of with medication. Something that would help me do all of the things I really need to do, like clean out closets and drawers (I have blouses in the closet from twenty-five years ago; I keep telling myself I'll never fit in them again, but my little voice of reason (hahaha) says "but they're so CUTE, maybe you WILL fit in them again someday" and they just keep hanging there - in all honesty the drawers and closets (all closets, even in the office where I have boxes of old USB and peripheral cables) are the worst of it, reminds me of when my mom died and I went through her stuff).

So, in the dream, one of my friends was collecting stuff for a sale to help out an organization close to her heart (I believe this is because Allyson posted about her church having a summer camp for kids and they were asking for help with supplies and bicycles - someone broke into their storage shed and ripped off a lot of what they already had and they're trying to rebuild). In the dream I had three other friends who were donating and helping (I don't remember who, it was a dream) and I felt really guilty because I wasn't helping out, although I had every intention of it. Which is why I wanted to speak to my doctor. 

Anyway, it was morning and we were out of bed and I was walking across the bedroom (which wasn't our bedroom, but it was a backwards L shaped room, our bed at the top of the L and as I found out, the bottom part of the L was a little alcove with a bed in it. And above the bed was a window. The whole setup was reminiscent of the rooms at the Anabella Hotel in Anaheim. On the window above the bed was an LED clock with red numbers. And in the bed were our friends Liz and Eric. I remember trying to process this information as Brian and I walked down the hallway and I asked him in a very low voice "do they live here now?" and he responded in an equally low voice "I think so..." and I remember being a little hurt that Liz wasn't helping me with my organizational issues if she was living in my house. I mean, it's the least she could do, right?

And then I woke up just before the little earth moving thing.

02:02 PM - 05/31/2015

The topic: The camera computer is dying

I have to keep rebooting every few days. The weather station software keeps freezing the computer and if I don't check it, the cameras don't work when I start them up in the morning and the weather info online isn't updating. I noticed today it quit working after 2:15 am. 

I did a check on eBay this morning, there are some better Win XP computers than what I have available for under two hundred bucks. I don't need anything big, but I would like more RAM than the the camera computer has (which I think is the problem). I've already maxed out what it is capable of. So, Brian said a few more sales and I can get one. It's not for surfing or anything other than the cameras and weather station, so a huge hard drive isn't necessary. And I have to be able to add more cards to it (I need a serial port for the remote control on the backyard camera). 

Yeah, that sounds like way more fun than paperwork. Which has gotten easier since I turned on Pandora on the Roku. That's involving the part of my mind that kept telling me how much it finds paperwork boring, so I can stay more focused.



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lisaviolet is seventy something, married with no kids, takes care of lots of cats, likes taking photographs, loves Southern California weather and spends altogether too much time avoiding her responsibilities.

In her spare time, she makes pretty things to sell in her store.

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