Sunday, October 25, 2009

Jack-O-Lantern Day!!

We carved while the dogs played. It was a beautiful Fall day. What's more to say? Thanks Aaron & Lauren!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

"The Jet" Turned 25!!

Last week was the big bash at Chapin St.
WooHoo!! Lots of friends, cotton candy, Ben's hard cider, lots of great food, campfire, pumpkins and yellow mums. The yard and house were all gussied up for the event. The pups all had a blast too!

Trading Post YAY!

Yesterday I managed to squeeze in my first trip to the trading post in weeks. Lots of fun seeing Louise and Gina and plenty of treasures found. May have to stop back in today.... don't seem to have come home with the maps I had in my pile.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Open House New York

Note: click on pictures for larger image!

For the third year in a row I was at Open House New York this weekend. It was a great time, visiting 8 "Open House" sites in 2 days.... and countless others sites along the way like the dog park in Washington Square Park where we socialized for a bit. Some of the OHNY sites were places not generally open to the public like an amazing private residence and other sites are places open but where someone gave a special talk about the design of the place, such as the lighting design for the new High Line, for example. We also had fun with Athena and Trevor, including some great arugula pasta and a meal at the wonderful Oscar's in Brooklyn.

Here's the list: Spice sales at 5th Ave street fair, fountain at Lincoln Center, the Warner/CNN bldgs at Columbus Circle, B & C at High Line, T & A at High Line, street musicians at Washington Square Park, one of our large furry friends at the dog park, roasting corn at Washington Square Park's street fair, Washington Sq. Park arch and pool, B in Edward Hopper's studio, view of Hopper's studio, 2 views of Illy Push Button House (aka a shipping crate that "pops" into a 5 room "house"), 2 views of the kitchen in private residence in Greenwich Village.

Friday, October 2, 2009

New job devours the rest of life..but it's GOOOOD!

I have a new job... in addition to teaching (3 courses at UMass this Fall) I am also the Director of Community Service Learning at UMass. I started the new job the first week of August, on 3 days' notice. So, there went my summer. It's great though..... a wonderful opportunity for me and a chance to spread the news about CSL and to hopefully expand on what we have already built at UMass Amherst. I have been setting up the new office (literally) moving furniture in, acquiring computers, getting phone installed, working with a tech person to set up a new web site, setting up social networking, designing brochures name it. I've also been meeting with many people about ways to expand the number of courses and students in CSL and working to expand out community partnerships as well. We held the annual Community Service Fair last week and had an interview with the NYT's the week before Just today the NY Times sent a photographer to one of our Holyoke meetings to get pics to go with the upcoming article in Education Life (out in late Oct). So, life is incredibly the brim and overflowing.... but... it is all good.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

London Here We Come!

I'm sitting here in the Halifax airport on a layover, using Lauren's little Acer Aspire. By morning we'll be navigating London's Tube and by evening we'll be at Shakespeare's Globe theater seeing "As You Like It." The itinerary is: London, Bath, Bristol, Oxford and return to London. Lots to see and do. I brought both my video camera and my regular Canon and hope to have some great things to post when we return!

Friday, April 24, 2009

Fast forward to summer??

My camera died about a month ago but I have a new one now - yay!
Today it is in the 70's and over the weekend it will be in the mid 80's! I guess it is "fast forward" to summer, for a few days anyway.

Here are a few shots of the Sweetside Garden at present.

The magnolia has been in full bloom for over a week now. It fills the neighborhood with it's delicious scent.

Mia is enjoying being outside in the garden with me.

The patio awaits it's brick surface. Sooooon?

Last Friday I cleaned out the stream and pond and we re-installed the pump so it is before May 1 and the stream is running again. The birds love it.

The pitcher plants are waking up in their little bog area.

The fence made it through it's first winter just fine.

The tulips and lilacs are budded and both should be in full bloom soon with all this warm weather.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Mia Arrived!

Our new puppy arrived from A Place to Bark today and we are smitten! What a sweet girl she is. She was born in September to one of the hundreds of dogs they rescued last year, Gidget. Gidget looked mostly like a Boston Terrier as I recall but this cutie looks like she has Sheltie in her... maybe? She's already made herself right at home, prancing around from room to room, window to window....tossing the toys up in the air and chasing after them. The 3 cats and our beagle, Chloe all seem fine with her arrival. She's going to be a lot of fun, that's for sure.It is difficult work day in and day out, that Bernie and Jeff do at their rescue but this is the third dog our family has brought north from their place and each one is just amazing. Thnak you, Bernie & Jeff and all your helpers.

Monday, March 2, 2009

POP! of Orange

I love the color orange! I find it overpowering in large amounts but there are little sparks of it in my dining and living room. So after scanning eBay on and off for months watching for a swag light to hang in my bay window when I spotted this orange glass one I placed my highest bid" and held my breath. At the end of the auction, it was mine! It arrived about a week ago and though I loved the orange globe immediately, the wiring needed to be replaced.

So last Friday, when my work week had ended, I scurried over the bridge to Northampton and paid a visit to Sabin's buying 14' of old-school brown fabric covered wire and a new replacement socket.

It wasn't until after I arrived back home that I decided the chain that came with the light was too rusty to use in my living room (it will likely be re-utilized in my garden).

So I had to run out to the nearby big box store for 14' of lamp chain. The silver lining to that trip was that the store had glass pull chain fobs with an amber colored swirl twining around clear glass. It looks as if it was made just for my light so it went into the cart as well.

Then, over the weekend I spent about an hour re-wiring the light. First, I had to get all the little parts that support the large hanging globe onto the wire in the correct order. I'm to embarrassed to tell you how many times I had to re-d o this step. I knew how it went but each time there was one piece or another out of place.

Anyway, finally it was all in line and I wired up the new socket.

The expert at Sabin's had showed & told me, "The plain encased wire is 'power' & goes to the brass screw." I kept repeating that in my head lest I hook up the wires incorrectly. After that was done, I threaded the wire through the chain links and wired up the plug.

Once I mounted a sturdy hook firmly in the ceiling and.... Wa La!

Before & After -

I love the effect both day and night! In the filtered sunlight it adds a some pop to the large expanse of glass and at night it gives that entire end of the living room a warm glow.

Saturday, February 28, 2009

A Spot of Purple

I've been painting most items white or very light green, blue or yellow this winter but recently I had the urge to do a couple of small pieces for my living room in dark purple.

So, "Nairobi Dusk" now adds some pop.

A small table -- a Craig's List find.... had been in sad, sad shape is now embellished with swirls and holds a silver plated tray.

Across the room, a detailed little shelf done up in purple holds a well tarnished silver plated tea pot. These two items "followed me home" from my favorite local shop for special finds, The Trading Post.