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Nov. 4th, 2011

Quilt Festival Day 1

So today Mom and Aunt Marlene and I spent the day seeing approximately 85% of the Exhibition floor and about 10% of the vendors at the Festival. Very exciting.
Mom and I return tomorrow for the Vendor Extravaganza!

I am so tired.
Here, have an exceptional and amazing Yin Yang quilt. SO BEAUTIFUL.
IMG_6221

IMG_6222IMG_6223

More photos in the set.
And more to come tomorrow! :)

This entry was originally posted at http://zephre.dreamwidth.org/496148.html. comment count unavailable comments posted to original post.

Oct. 20th, 2011

Awesome Ladies of Science Progress!

Last night's productivity party was awesome. I took my graphite lines for the Awesome Ladies of Science Series #1: Astrid Farnsworth, and did this:

Awesome Ladies of Science #1, in progress part 2At work on Awesome Ladies of Science #1

Obviously the background needs more work, but I'm pretty pleased. The lettering will hopefully look like embossed brass, so it'll be a nice goldenrod contrast to the purple-black room and pink lightning. If you can't see, the text quotes XKCD: "Stand back, I'm going to try science."

I'd like this to be only the first of a series that includes both fictional and nonfictional awesome ladies of science. I've got quite a line-up now thanks to helpful fans and friends.

The other one is me, working in a coffeehouse with wonky lighting, thus the awkward posture.

This entry was originally posted at http://zephre.dreamwidth.org/495229.html. comment count unavailable comments posted to original post.

Sep. 29th, 2011

split personality weather and other incidentals

This is what the sky looked like this morning: in the east, blue, clear, fluffy clouds and blue skies, bright sun; in the west, GIANT THREATENING THUNDERHEAD OF DOOM.
Thursday morning sunshineThursday morning thunderhead
I really hope it actually rains. A gentle daily drizzle for about 60 days. That would be awesome.
UPDATE because this post has been sitting on my desktop since 9am: IT DIDN'T RAIN. BOO.

For those who care about these things, these are my alternative IDs: I have a Twitter account, a Pinboard account, and a Tumblr, plus I'm on Pinterest if anybody does that (or wants an invite!).

Also, I cut my hair.
Me in my messy office
This is very short for me, as the lovely lady at the salon looked at the reference photo I brought and cut my hair that short while it was wet, not thinking about the fact that my hair curls. So now it's a lot shorter than I'm used to. Whee! I've been told it makes me look "like a grownup". But I've also been asked if I was a freshman, so I guess it evens out?

Today we went out to lunch and almost missed a turn, the driver took it quite fast in a tiny, tiny car and as we all exclaimed and reached for handles, she says, "Don't worry, I've got airbags all the way around!" LOL. I love my office.

FenCon was awesome, but I didn't actually do much at the con itself, since I was helping with parties and tables. I got to see two panels, and they were both GoH features. Excellent stuff. Really like meeting Gail Carriger at the parties, she's awesome in person and told great stories on the panels.

Had some great conversations, as well, including one wherein I completely blanked on the title of every Iain M. Banks Culture novel ever. Whee! I haven't read them all, but I do love the series. (In case it ever comes up again, here they are.)

Also, it's Banned Books Week! Go read something!
Also also, Merlin is on Saturday! Eeeee! And Doctor Who! It's like a Saturday made of awesome! I can't wait. :D

I'm just going to post this before I crash my computer again. Whee.

This entry was originally posted at http://zephre.dreamwidth.org/494422.html. comment count unavailable comments posted to original post.

Jun. 19th, 2011

Back from exhausting trip

A brief recap:
Last Sunday, at Mom's birthday dinner, we received the phone call telling us that Dad's Aunt Irma, age 94, had died. We had been told she was doing poorly, but expected some more time. So we had to fly up at the last minute. Making the flight and hotel and car reservations was exciting (whee!), but we got it done.
This is the first time in ages that the four of us (Mom, Dad, Peter and me) had traveled together as a family. We took advantage of that while we could. We had hoped to get some time in with our Connecticut family, but the surviving sister, Dad's Aunt Aida, was feeling poorly herself (at 91? 92? I wasn't clear on how old she was.) so we had a smaller window of opportunity for visiting. Still, it was a lovely chance to see her, and the cousins we had never met.
We ended up with Saturday free, and headed into Manhattan for a few hours, most of which we spent at the American Museum of Natural History with Jaye.
On Thursday, we were also able to go into Brooklyn after the family dinner had broken up, and attended the Pub Quiz at Rocky Sullivan's. Both occasions were quite fun. I'm glad we managed them.

Peter and Me with Dinosaurs
Peter and me with dinosaurs.

Dad and his Aunt Aida
Dad and his Aunt Aida

Calverton National Cemetery
Calverton National Cemetery

Click the photos to see more at my Flickr set.
Now I'm back at the ancestral homestead, and have all sorts of work to catch up on. Work for my regular job, work for ApolloCon (this weekend! Come on down!), work for my apartment, work for the family.
Good grief I'm tired.
Sleep sounds really, really good right now. Once my laundry is done, I am totally going home to get some.

This entry was originally posted at http://zephre.dreamwidth.org/490582.html. comments posted to original post.

Jun. 8th, 2011

Hey, it's Nashville!

Check out the orb on this one!
Interesting Orb, Parthenon

I'm at the Parthenon!
Me outside the Parthenon

And at the Grand Old Opry House!
Self-Portrait at the Grand Old Opry

In general, fun was had. The conference wasn't half bad, either.

This entry was originally posted at http://zephre.dreamwidth.org/489479.html. comments posted to original post.

Apr. 25th, 2011

long time, no post

I have really dropped the ball here - not even a Card of the Day for a while!
I've been enjoying life, though - family gatherings, game playing, eating and drinking out, bar trivia, meeting the new cat ) (possible name: Greebo), taking care of my car, and not doing any art or writing. I am trying to get the writing done now, but it's hard going. Rar.
I saw the first episode of Game of Thrones, and will probably catch up on the rest with On Demand or something next month. Saw the premiere of Doctor Who on BBC America and was amazed, bewildered, and enchanted once again. Ogled spoileriffic photos from the set of Merlin as well. Yay!
I really have to focus, though, because things are happening that are on a schedule. First there's the wedding next weekend (you all know how much I love marrying people!), for which I must finish up the script. Then there's ApolloCon coming up very soon, and making sure I have all the materials ready for that. (If you're in Houston for the last weekend in June, come on by! We're awesome!)
Also coming up: Art Car Parade! w00t!

angsting about art )

Today I am concentrating on the writing, hopefully sometime this week I can go back and look at the art WIPs with a slightly more optimistic attitude.

This entry was originally posted at http://zephre.dreamwidth.org/486302.html. comment count unavailable comments posted to original post.

Apr. 3rd, 2011

Dorks in Manhattan: Thurs-Sat

Team Line Party at the Game of Thrones Food Truck (except Lisa who took the photo):


Read more... )

When not going out to stalk the food truck (first come, first served, 300 portions per evening of two entrees), I have been wandering around the city having fun.

Read more... )

Friday I'm in love )

Saturday full of fun )

And now we are at Sunday, and I hope to have dinner later with Seminary classmates. E and I are preparing to leave for the Brooklyn Flea. Yay!

This entry was originally posted at http://zephre.dreamwidth.org/485763.html. comment count unavailable comments posted to original post.

Mar. 22nd, 2011

adorable little sister and other news

Baby sister Gabi:
Gabi in the grassGabi at rest
How cute is she? SO CUTE!
I had to take my car to get the headlight replaced, and since the dealership is close to the ancestral homestead, I spent the afternoon doing a bit of light "work from home", listening to the wind chimes on the patio, and photographing the puppy.
She was very excited to see me - family claim this is because of the Full Moon, but Gabi is just like that. She was very sad when Dad left for a work trip, though. She must hate that luggage, it means her best buddy is going to be gone for a while.

So, yeah, my car. Poor darling filthy Lila is really in need of a bath and some paint touch-up, but the thing I visited for was the headlight. It took two hours to get the news that yes, it was a headlight bulb and not a computer glitch, and another two hours to get the thing replaced. (What kind of vehicle is constructed such that you have to remove the front bumper to put in a light bulb? Geez, Toyota.) Although the process took forever, I do like the guys at the Service Dept of the dealership, so that's nice.
I will have to take her back for her full check-up and inspection next month after the expenses settle.

I am planning to enter the Art Show at ApolloCon 2011, and need to get my slate of stuff together. I'm not sure of the audience there for my stuff, but I don't enter to sell things, really, just to do it and say that I did. I think that if I finish the gnomes, and the Star Wars art, and maybe do something else Star Wars related, I could furnish a pretty good variety on the panel. (I am definitely including my portrait of Sir Leon, even if nobody knows who he is. He's too awesome not to showcase.)

This entry was originally posted at http://zephre.dreamwidth.org/483896.html. comment count unavailable comments posted to original post.

Mar. 2nd, 2011

Life, the universe, and the rest of it

So mostly over the last little while I've been posting photos of food.
I should take more photos of the food I cook at home - I made a really excellent dinner tonight that hasn't made me sick, so hooray!
Today I went to a Brown Bag Lunch Presentation at the university, by the Executive Chefs from a couple of the residential colleges here. These students eat so well! They prepared some great stuff in the kitchen theater and then we all got to eat it for lunch. (On the menu: Seafood medley, Beef Wellington (with portabella mushrooms instead of foie gras), and mascarpone crepes with berry flambe drizzled with strawberry jam, a balsamic reduction, and fresh basil.
HOLY COW.
I did not eat like this in college... (photos) )
I LOVE FOOD. HERE I TALK ABOUT IT. )

Ok, that was more than I thought I'd type about food and eating.

On a different subject: reading.
I read The Eagle of the Ninth and really enjoyed the heck out of it. I borrowed a nonfiction title from the office Liberal Studies Library, Slaves and Masters in the Roman Empire: A Study in Social Control that should be an interesting follow-up to that. I don't know if I will be able to bring myself to see the film while it's in theaters. I might find that very fun, actually, but I have terrible motivation about going to films alone, and I don't have a movie-going geek tribe here. At least not movies in the theater. ;)
I also have on the back burner some Northern European primary source mythology - The Eddas and the Mabinogion and some others, as many as I can find in Public Domain libraries for download. (Have I mentioned that I love Nefertem the Magical Purple Smartphone/eBook Reader?)
And yesterday I spent the entire evening devouring in basically one sitting Anne Bishop's latest Black Jewels offering, Twilight's Dawn: A Black Jewels Book. I have read much criticism of the series and even agree with some of it, but damn, they are addictive and I love them. I couldn't bear to put it down. And I thought it would be easier to pause since it was a series of connected novellas rather than one story! Ahahahaha, so wrong. I was very surprised, but not in an unpleasant way, by the turn of those novellas, so that's good. Kept me engaged.


Today's card: The Four of Air, Gaian Tarot
Four of Air, Gaian Tarot )
Oh, dear, it's the nesting card. I just put in some inquiries with my property management company and some warehouses in the First Ward about larger apartments and art studios for rent. I am taking active steps to pursue changes in my living and creative working situation. I am actually a bit amazed to be in a position to consider such, but again, that's part of why I moved back here. Options. Relatively low cost of living. Thriving arts community. I have to do some buckling down here, too, and make decisions.
It's a good card for today, I think.

Plus I did my taxes. Always a nice feeling.

This entry was originally posted at http://zephre.dreamwidth.org/481624.html. comment count unavailable comments posted to original post.

Jan. 15th, 2011

Blast from the Past: Helena Polka

I'm beginning the process of uploading some older photos to Flickr (which also means scanning them.) Here's one from 1995, my senior year of high school.
Helena Polka
We're performing at the Slavic Heritage Festival at St. Thomas University - you can tell because of the hazardous tarp on the floor.
I LOVE this dance. It was my favorite of the fast circle dances, and the one that always got the best audience reaction. Plus it was hilarious to perform with Santa (my partner in this photo with a pillow stuck inside his Santa costume) at the annual Christmas show.

There are a few other new old photos up on Flickr, too.

This entry was originally posted at http://zephre.dreamwidth.org/472225.html. comment count unavailable comments posted to original post.

Oct. 22nd, 2010

Returning to the Top Fives

From Emily: Top Five Things I've Made (with pictures!) All images are clickable.

1. Victorianna (aka My First Doll). I bought the pattern at the Houston Quilt Festival when I was 13 or 14, and made the thing by myself. I taught myself how to use a curved quilting needle, Mom helped me learn how to tea-dye muslin, and I had a lot of adventures with sewing yarn, stuffing, and finishing. The doll pattern comes as a "boudoir" doll, with sewn-on undies, and you can buy several dress patterns from her. Some are fancy Victorian-style things, some are clever transformations of traditional quilt patterns. I did make her a "Grandmother's Flower Garden" dress and apron, but I don't know where they are off the top of my head.
Victorianna Doll

2. Wedding Quilt: Michelle and Andy. This was a collaboration between me and Shelley, and it took four years to finish because we were horrible procrastinators and then we had to shuttle it back and forth between us. Once the top was done, I took it home and eventually did all the finishing, quilted it and put little crystals all over. This was my first time working with: printer fabric sheets; wedge-cut circular piecing (which was hard and involved a hell of a lot of precise math and careful measurement); heat-bonding crystals; free-motion quilting. The writing you can see is from the day of their wedding - we did have the top finished just enough to get it there and have the guests sign it. It all had to be taken apart and redone eventually, but it got done!
<Full quilt before finishing edges
(I can't believe I don't have a photo of the finished version! Here's one of it in situ at Chez Michelle and Andy in Ithaca.)

3. Girl in a Headscarf, prismacolor on paper. This was my first project using Prismacolor Pencils. I took a course at Rice Continuing Studies with a very awesome teacher, and chose a gorgeous photo released under Creative Commons licensing to render. I used a grid method to get the image onto the paper, and then colored very carefully. :) This one currently hangs in my office.
Finished and Framed

4. Canterbury in Colors, watercolor on paper. I did this in my watercolor class at the Art League of Houston. I loved that class, and it's kind of a toss-up between this piece and the one of the girl in a chair. I find the Canterbury painting so appealing, though, plus it's based on one of my own photographs. I plan to make an art quilt out of it. This one is framed and hanging next to my door at home.
A Street in Canterbury

5. Wedding Quilt: Lisa and Tim. (Do you see a pattern in my quilt-making? LOL.) This is my first really finished pieced art quilt. I had done one earlier than this of Professor Snape for a fellow Harry Potter fan, but that was based around a print on fabric of one of my illustrations, so it doesn't count in the same way. For Godzilla, I pieced and appliqued the whole thing together and then did shaped quilting to emphasize form and line. And Godzilla's back spikes are actually 3-D. Mom found a great skyline fabric to use on the back so it could be linked to New York, as well. I really enjoyed the shopping for this - Lisa and Tim got some really exciting novelty fabrics. (And they were really enthusiastic when they opened the package, too!)
finished quilt

This entry was originally posted at http://zephre.dreamwidth.org/462261.html. comment count unavailable comments posted to original post.

Oct. 15th, 2010

delicious green tea + photos

Mom and Dad came by for Sushi Happy Hour again, which may become a tradition. They serve a really great green tea.
After, we came home and I put the Youtube video of the Prague Astronomical Clock Anniversary projection show on my TV. It was awesome.

Then we sat around looking through my old photos of Prague and points East, and now I am scanning the photos into my computer for future Flickr posting.

You know what?
I seriously couldn't use a camera when I was 16 or 18. I have tons of photos that are one quarter fancy rooftops and three quarters sky. Sometimes there are people's heads in them. Oh, well.

Some of them are really quite excellent, and I had the presence of mind to label them (hopefully mostly correctly) shortly after I got home, so at least I'm not sitting around thinking, "Where the heck is this?"
(I take a lot of random photos of architecture or artistic touches on city streets. Hard to say what city unless you had the negatives or remembered.)

This entry was originally posted at http://zephre.dreamwidth.org/460042.html. comment count unavailable comments posted to original post.

Jul. 23rd, 2010

Lois the Corpse Flower

She's gorgeous, she ginormous, she stinks!  It's Lois! The Houston Museum of Natural Science's corpse flower is blooming now and the museum is open extended hours (24 hours sometimes) for the event. Apparently, they get slightly listing drunk clubbers at 3am and then at 5am it rolls over into upright business people on their way to work. 
They've started issuing filtration masks to employees now that she's opening, and one lady wondered if they'd start offering barf bags to visitors as they came through. 
Did I mention she's seriously HUGE?  It's wacky.
Also, apparently Mom was watching the webcam when I visited and saw us taking photos. Hilarious - living in the future is fun! 
Also also, the Butterfly Center has an adorable giant iguana that I just want to hug and squeeze and cuddle all day long!  OMG, he is SO CUTE! (Except he would probably not want to be cuddled, and would take a chunk out of my arm for trying or something. Oh, well. It is my fate to love large, dangerous animals. Oh, hippos, you have ruined me for pets forever. LOL.)

Lois

Life goes on otherwise - I haven't been blogging much, mostly because I think of something to say but then life intervenes and by the time I'm at a computer I've forgotten what it was.
I have art to post and my master list to update, plus I'm going on a trip next month which will be lovely. Hopefully I will sleep!  Work is starting to settle down, too, thank goodness.

This entry was originally posted at http://zephre.dreamwidth.org/448710.html. comment count unavailable comments posted to original post.

May. 10th, 2010

Art Car Parade photos up at last

It's time for my Art Car Parade 2010 Photos of Dooooooom!  The set is at Flickr! 

IMG_4337
There were a few Beatles moments this year...

IMG_4214
Dan Aykroyd was the Grand Marshal, which brought out two different Ecto1's and the Blues Brothers. 

IMG_4382
And some vehicles are actually human-powered. (There were also some alternative-fuel cars and quite a lot of bicycles and other pedal-powered things.)

This entry was originally posted at http://zephre.dreamwidth.org/445369.html. comment count unavailable comments posted to original post.

Caterpillar Friend

This little guy fell onto my sleeve while we were having lunch on an outdoor patio.  After my initial shriek (there's something alive on me!) I retrieved him to a napkin and then put him back on the tree, from which point he booked it at an impressive pace up the trunk until he was way up into the leaves again when we left.

Doesn't he have the cutest little face?  ;) 

Caterpillar Friend

Anybody recognize him?  He's probably some big brown moth, but you never know, right?
ETA: He looks like a Heterocampa obliqua. (Warning for BIG photos of bugs. BIG BUGS!)

This entry was originally posted at http://zephre.dreamwidth.org/445006.html. comment count unavailable comments posted to original post.

May. 4th, 2010

weekend, fun stuff, Carl Kasell

So yesterday I went to a luncheon for corporate and non-profit supporters of a local public radio station (the office lotto for tickets fell to me this time), and the result was that I got to hear a great speech, see a funny magic show, and meet Carl Kasell.  He is a lovely man. No, I didn't ask him to record a message for me on my phone.  Hahaha.

me and Amy with Carl Kasell

I did some fun art stuff this weekend, and started organizing my books (including the new acquisitions from the Library Sale). To that end I ended up at IKEA twice getting shelves and bookcases. Construction is ongoing. I also caught up on Doctor Who, and now desperately await the catching-up of my known Doctor fans. I really want to discuss, dissect, rant, and speculate about the Weeping Angels two-parter! 

I have been expanding my Reading List on DW and enjoying a catch-up at times on IJ for various fests.

I finished Storm Glass by Maria V. Snyder, which was excellent, but made me realize that I don't think I've actually read Fire Study yet.  I thought I had, but I may be wrong.  Oops! More to read, oh, woe!
I also reread Prince Caspian (Vol. 2, dangit! 2!) because I watched the movie and it was so weird. Nice, and fun, and full of great music, but it seemed unbalanced to me and rereading the book showed why. Oh, well. Rumor has it that Dawn Treader will be truer to the source material with fewer romantic shenanigans.
Now I'm well into The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms by N. K. Jemisin, which I am enjoying very much. It's unfolding into something epic, but I'm still just in the very beginnings of it, so nobody spoil me, please. I'm already avoiding squee about it.

And just to keep everybody enthusiastic, today is Star Wars Day, tomorrow is Cinco de Mayo, and Saturday is the Art Car Parade! Celebrate something!

This entry was originally posted at http://zephre.dreamwidth.org/444300.html. comment count unavailable comments posted to original post.

Jan. 22nd, 2010

Godzilla Quilt Photos

My Godzilla Wedding Quilt photos are up on Flickr at last! I made this for Tim and Lisa and gave it to them in November 2009.

Click the photos to get to the whole shebang on Flickr.
From this:
after washing, before ironing

To This:
finished quilt

Oct. 25th, 2009

At the Faire


Keri and Donna
Originally uploaded by zephrene.
I ran away to the circus.. er, Renaissance Festival today!
It was pirate weekend, so I got into a pseudo-costume (I wore jeans), and met Donna, Jon, Lando and some friends.
It was a long drive, by the way. Geez. It seems so much shorter when there is another person in the car.
This is us in front of the waterwheel by the carousel, which was the designated "let's all meet here" location.

Oct. 18th, 2009

Quilt Show Day 2 + politics

More from the Quilt Show:
Mom and Me at the GRB

photos )

Jan. 6th, 2009

Teeny Tiny Snape


Teeny Tiny Snape for Keri
Originally uploaded by relentlesstoil.
Look what my friend Keet made for me!
He's keeping Luna company on my office desk now.

:D

She has an Etsy store full of these (not Snape, but cute little dolls) over here.

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