Friday, February 27, 2009

Vintage Photo Friday

This is my great-grandmother, Ruth Wright. Wasn't she beautiful? I think this photo was probably taken in the mid-1930s.

In the right hand corner, very faintly, the photo is inscribed "To Jack, With Love, Ruth A. Wright." Jack was known to my mom as Mr. Miller, my great-grandmother's "lodger." My great-grandmother had run away from an unhappy/abusive marriage in the late-1920s, and changed her and my grandmother's names. My mom remembers my great-grandmother and Mr. Miller being obviously in love, but they never married. I wish I knew more of the story. My great-grandmother, known to me as "Big Grandma" when I was a little girl, had a difficult life, but it makes me happy to know that she had love.

More Vintage Photos here and here.

Thursday, February 26, 2009


1. favorite food - Sushi
2. hometown - San Jose, CA
3. favorite color - Orange
4. celebrity crush - Johnny Depp (it's ok, Richard knows that Johnny is totally my celeb free pass)
5. favorite drink - Red wine
6. dream vacation - Barcelona
7. favorite dessert - Brownies
8. what I want to be when I grow up - Traveler (not the gypsy kind, just a person who travels)
9. name - Sara
10. what I love most in the world - Family
11. one word that describes me - Crafty
12. username - Handy C

Want to do this yourself?
a. Type your answer to each of the questions below into Flickr Search. (An addition from Annika: please, please go to Advanced Search and choose Creative Commons images only. Otherwise you are stealing.)
b. Pick an image.
c. Copy and paste each of the URLs for the images into this mosaic maker.

Photo credits:
1. sushi roll, 2. "Historic El Camino Real" display, below I-280, San Jose, July 10, 2005, 3. Orange Explosion, 4. Depp at the oscars, 5. red wine... mmm. (day 164), 6. gaudí pedrera barcelona, 7. brownies (higher), 8. 1977 Scout Traveler with Terry Camper in the Mountains, 9. E il Futuro sarà tanto Grande, 10. The Löbmann Family, 11. Crafty beaver, 12. Handy Package Dyes c. 1890

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Drive-by photo post

I actually have a bunch of stuff to write about here, but I'm so behind on posting, I thought I'd throw out some fun photos from Valentine's Day. How can you resist? I know you are powerless in the face of Vivian in her adorable heart dress...

Vivian at her Music Together class. Apparently, Viv thinks that the red sticks are tasty. I'm sure glad that all the playthings get washed after class.

This is what happens when you try to take a photo of a toddler who doesn't understand that she should stop walking towards the camera.

Having fun during the dance party!

After music class, we headed out to the zoo. I love this photo of a mommy gorilla and her baby. That's love.

I think this zebra looks so majestic. Of course, two minutes later, one of the zebras tried to hump another,, and everyone starting running, jumping and bleating around the enclosure. Pretty cool stuff.

The flamingos are still a favorite ("Mingos!")

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Sweater girl

Ok, enough with the depressing news. Thank you to everyone who commented and emailed your support—I appreciate it more than you can know. But let's have some cuteness to occupy our attention right now!

As a dual crafter (ie, someone who both knits and crochets—I'm not including sewing and quilting in this post), I like to vary my projects between them. But this Christmas, my crafting seemed heavily slanted towards knitting (probably because both of my sisters also crochet, but I'm the only knitter, so it makes my gifts different). And I just got a hankering for some crochet—something fast, but not mindless.

Crochet just makes sense to me. For whatever reason, I find it to be incredibly visual and structural. For this reason, I'm more comfortable monkeying around with crochet patterns than I am with knit one. Because I wanted something fast, I decided to crochet a sweater for Vivian.

I decided to resize Robyn Chachula's Ashlar sweater for Viv (and add sleeves). Here is the photo of the original design:

And here is Vivian in my version:I wish I had been able to add three buttons, as it would have been more balanced, but the buttons are vintage, so I can't just run to JoAnns. If I were to do it again, I wouldn't do as many increases in the bottom colored row, but I didn't realize that there were too many until the body was already done.

She looks adorable in it, of course. And seeing Viv run around in her new swinging sweater is just the pick me up that I need!

Monday, February 02, 2009


I'm going to admit something that I am not very comfortable admitting: I am scared, and anxious and I feel like I just want to climb into bed and pull the covers over my head.

I know I'm not the only one feeling this way, and I know that others probably have far more reason to feel this way, and so I almost feel like I don't have a right to feel this way. I'm employed, even if my husband is not (not at the level he used to be, at least). My family is relatively healthy, and even with a drastically reduced income, we are making ends meet for now. We aren't losing our home, and while we have cut many of the extras of life, we still have enough to indulge in a few luxuries.

But I would be lying if I said that there wasn't an uncomfortable amount of pressure involved in being the only wage-earner in my house. My job feels steady at the moment, but I've only been here 7 months. I'm trying to battle the "what-ifs" because what's the point of worrying about a hypothetical? For now, I'm bringing home a steady paycheck. So why do I feel like I'm walking right on the edge of a cliff?

I've been through much worse times than this, and I know that, overall, I have a great life, but I can't seem to get rid of the lump of anxiety in my chest. I don't even have my own office anymore, so I can't just sit here and cry at my desk to relieve some of the pressure.

I hate being tense most of the time. I hate when one little thing can just set me off. And most of all, I feel guilty about feeling mad about the situation we're in. I can't be mad at Richard for losing his job. It's not like he asked to be laid off, along with 1/3 of his company. He has way more right to be angry and depressed about the situation at hand. So I feel guilty any time I get frustrated.

I should probably try directing my anger and frustration upwards, at the government and corporate interests who got the whole country in this mess. But ultimately, that is unsatisfying, too. There is too much blame to go around and it is spread all over the political spectrum. Even if I could blame the whole financial meltdown of the world economy on Dick Cheney, someone for whom I have absolutely no positive feelings, what good would that do me?

In my head, I know that I have a right to feel pissed off that my financial situation has changed so drastically through no fault of my own. I know that it is perfectly reasonable to feel frustration and anxiety. But that knowledge doesn't really change how I feel, or impact that lump in my chest.