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Inspiration time!

Here is a round-up of some amazing websites I have stumbled onto recently…

Interested in art, architecture, Michelangelo or Italy?

Check out the Sistine Chapel in 360 degree graphical display

High resolution shots of the artwork in the Mediterranean collection at SAM

How about animals?

Some great wildlife pix from the NYTimes.com 

Baby animals  born this Spring at zoos around the world

The preciousest baby tapir

Maybe astronomy is more your thing?

NASA: ultra-high definition view of 2012 Venus transit.

Or History?

Researchers discover that Stonehenge was monument marking the unification of Britain

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Calling all Kepler College Students, past and present

If you were ever a Kepler student, you probably remember me from Symposium. I was part of the Leo group, the sealions. I am currently an MA student at U. Wales, Trinity St. David and working on my research project for the term. I am interested in the responses of any Kepler College students, whether you completed a degree, or took only one class.

Graduation!

Query: Why would students entering a degree program choose astrology as a major, and why would those same students choose to study astrology within an academic degree program rather than to study practical astrology in a group with a single teacher or in a non-degree-granting program?
 

Your participation is confidential, responses will be stored and tabulated without any contact information attached. If you have any questions or would like to participate in an interview, email or call me at 206-459-6963. If you know any other Kepler students, please pass this along to them. >^..^< Thanks!


The convolutions of memory…

I am amazed at the way memory works, or doesn’t as the case may be. I had a demonstration of how mine works today while I was driving to Weaving Works to pick up a part for my loom. A tune started up on the radio and I quickly recognized the Sorcerer’s Apprentice  but then couldn’t remember who the composer was. I was pretty annoyed with myself since this is a pretty distinctive piece of music and an image of a Cardassian from Deep Space 9 kind of appeared in my head. Well, the first thing I thought was ‘no, it isn’t Alaimo‘, the actors name, but then thought, ‘Ah, the character is Gul Ducat and the composer, Paul Dukas.’

I gave thanks to Hermes and just sat amazed at how this stuff all just floats around on the old internal hard drive and surfaces when there is a connection to be made to some other piece of information, like the way I got an image that was actually a representation of sound, whew. I’ve spent the evening watching this clip from Fantasia and chuckling to myself about a Cardassian composing it. >^..^<


The AFA Conference

I just attended the AFA’s conference on Traditional Astrology in the 21st Century. It was held In honor of James H. Holden, FAFA with Ben Dykes, Demetra George and Chris Brennan. Holden is the author of many books including his new translation of Firmicus Maternus’ Mathesis, but I was there to have him sign my copy of A History of Horoscopic Astrology. In my first year at Kepler College, I had my copy cut at the binding and comb-bound and I thought any author would appreciate seeing their book dog-eared, and bristling with bookmarks… he did. At breakfast, we talked about his impressions of turning 85 and our favorite books by H. Rider Haggard. The weather was perfect for sitting outside in the morning and my usual breakfast entertainment was watching the grackles steal people’s toast and fruit off their plates when they went inside to refill their coffee cups. Read the rest of this entry »


The news!

My morning commute has doubled but that is ok because I am almost completely moved into my new studio. Instead of down the hall, I am now downstairs. I’ve taken over the MIL apartment at ground level in our house.  The move gives me a quiet client space and craft space at the same time. I can’t wait to show it off!

This is the first piece of jewelry made in my new studio! Sorry about the camera-phone shot. I didn’t have my lightbox and real camera set up yet. This one is a variation of the one I made for Karen. It has large tumbled citrine beads, a hematite ring, silver, onyx and a few antique glass beads.


Camping!

We had a great camping trip. Rob was feeling better but wasn’t supposed to be walking so we couldn’t go for our regular campground walks. I had a commissioned wedding necklace to make so I brought the jewelry tool box along. The bride wanted citrine and pearls. I love that combination started 3 different necklaces with that combination. Then I found a You Tube video on crocheting wire and bead necklaces and while I was watching Robert to make sure he wasn’t chomping on his bandage, I made one that way, too. She chose two and the others will be in my Etsy store soon. I love the textures in the pearl and citrine braided necklace below. The technique looks impressive but is really quite simple. Our campsite-neighbor and I made a fieldtrip to Shipwreck Beads for supplies and then I taught her how to make one. She made a beautiful braided necklace in multiple shades of green stones with gunmetal colored wire. It was finished in a couple of hours and she had never even crocheted before. So, what do you do when you are camping?

Here is the video I watched: Karla Shafer

Shipwreck Beads

I promise I will post a full report on Rob’s injury and recovery when we get the bandage off and know more.


Single White Feline…

I have emailed this video, shared it on facebook and now I just have to have it here so I can find it more easily. I love this!


Greetings from Vancouver!

Another installment of The Tales of Camper-Bob, Adventure-Dog!

We just spent a perfect weekend in Vancouver BC and we are so ready to become Canadian! Scott used the Dogfriendly website to locate a hotel that would accommodate Robert and got us a room with kitchenette, complete with a dog bed and bowls at the Vancouver Best Western Downtown.  We had been keeping track of weather reports and were expecting snow but the weather was perfect, sunny and bright. We walked all over downtown Vancouver and through beautiful Stanley Park where we saw the totem poles, coastline, and teahouse. We were each able to indulge our tastes — Scott found a dog friendly cigar store where he and Rob spent an afternoon and he will soon have a  blogpost up about that while I found the treadmill and jacuzzi at the hotel’s fitness center and spent my “leisure time” there. Rob had a blast just being a hotel-dog meeting new fans, riding the elevators, climbing stairs and going for lots of urban walks.

Dogfriendly had a large list of off-leash dogparks around Vancouver and the hotel gave us one as well so we explored several of those with Rob. He met a lovely Bernese Mt Dog with the perfect name — Turtle, a French bulldog pup with more energy than I have ever seen before and then this morning, a tiny Norfolk terrier puppy named Murphy. to the amazement of his new parents who said he never interacts with big dogs, Murphy followed Rob all over Charleson Park and Rob showed him how to lick mud, chase birds and pee on tufts of frost-bitten grass, you know, all the important dog-things.


Happy New Year!

I’ve been out of touch a long time and I have a lot to catch you up on. I am listing events in order of chronology rather than importance, and as always, not using anyone else’s names in case they don’t want to be google-able.

October: I started a Masters Program at the University of Wales, Trinity Saint David. The degree is Cultural Astronomy and Astrology. Cultural Astronomy is a newish term for the fields of Archaeoastronomy and Ethnoastronomy. In plain English, the exploration of all the ways mankind relates to the sky. The program site says, “We define Cultural Astronomy as the ‘study of the application of beliefs about the stars to all aspects of human culture, from religion and science to the arts and literature. It includes the new discipline of archaeoastronomy – the study of astronomical alignments, orientation and symbolism in architecture, ancient and modern”.

My study buddy from Kepler started with me and I met lots of new people through our meetings online. Then, my dad had a medical procedure and I was able to use it as an excuse to see him for his birthday. He came through the ordeal in fantastic shape and it was great to see the St Louis contingent, especially while the weather was nice. We went to one of my favorite sites, Daniel Boone’s home. The house and land are just beautiful and the tour is always good.

November: By the time I came home from St Louis, Mom was feeling really poorly so I flew down to Orlando. She decided not to undertake more invasive chemotherapy and had been referred to hospice. We had a really good week and thanks to our great petsitter, Scott was able to spend some quality time with her as well. Her condition declined rapidly after that. The hospice nurse came by every few days and mom’s friends stopped by to sit with her, bring me coffee and give me breaks. She passed comfortably the evening before Thanksgiving. Many friends came by that evening and we ended up having an impromptu memorial for her and with her. She had an extensive network of friends and it was great hearing all of their stories. Scott collected some great pictures of her and put them on Facebook. I can’t link to them here so I’ll make a separate page for them later on.

Scott flew down again to help me with her affairs and two of her friends insisted we take some time off. One gave us a pass to Disney and we had a wonderful time at Epcot. Mom always enjoyed Disney. She was a serious a roller coaster fan. In fact, the first time she and I went, we rode every roller coaster in the park and the runaway mine car twice.  Another of her friends knew that she had wanted to see Harry Potter at Universal with us, so he made sure we were able to see The Wizarding World of Harry Potter. It was fantastic! We both agreed that the Hogwarts castle ride was the best either of us had ever been on! Mom would have loved it.

December: Scott and I flew home to Seattle and spent some time trying to adjust to life at home and without mom, and of course, work on my paper for the semester. I think Robby thought I was never coming home because he would not leave my side for days. My professor gave me an extension until the day after Christmas. Ironically, he was also my professor at Kepler College in ’07 when Mom was first diagnosed as terminal. There were six topics to choose from and I chose “Is Myth a Primitive Superstition?” Somehow, Word and Endnote, my citation software,  disagreed over who had more control of my document. Word won and actually disabled the link between them. This resulted in Word deleting my current paper and “recovering” a previous version of it. It took Scott a day and a half to get the problem tracked down and software reinstalled and a more correct version of the paper recovered, proving, once again, that in-home IT is essential. I checked in with my Kepler study buddy to find out how her paper was going and found out she had dropped out! ACK! Shock, betrayal, all that stuff… I didn’t even call her back for 2 weeks! Sorry, babe, I’ve recovered now. I am happy with how the paper turned out and although I am not posting it here, if you’d like to read it, just email me!

Well, that is my report for the last quarter of 2010. I am looking forward to 2011 and to the start of next term in February, Research Methods: Ethnography and Fieldwork, and I have found a new study buddy who actually lives nearby. I just hope Research methods doesn’t overlap too much with BA level statistics because I barely survived all that math.


Dosewallips State Park – 2010

We spent the weekend at the Dosewallips State Park. We had glorious Summer weather during the 3 days with rain every night, hard rain, but we were comfortable, warm and dry in the BnB: bungalow-in-a-box Coleman camper. Rob was outside all day and could only be enticed inside and out of the rain with cheese added to his dinner.  Then he’d mope around and sigh a lot. We found a great short hike along a trail that went along the river where we saw salmon, elk and eagles.  Rob was wading and Scott was looking at all of the rocks in the water when he realized they were not rocks at all but salmon moving in the shallows. They were hard to see at first because they had taken on rock tones and mottled coloration as camouflage but they were spawning and the park ranger told us they were Summer chum salmon.   Joe rode out one day on his BMW motorcycle for a brief visit and coffee. We traveled to the park by crossing the Tacoma Narrows Bridge, heading North up the Kitsap Peninsula, crossing the Hood Canal bridge and then heading South a few miles on Highway 101 on the Olympic Peninsula. The park is situated in the Olympic Mountain foothills along the Hood Canal and a lovely place to spend some time. We are looking forward to a return visit.


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