Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Raising Sensitive Plants: Take 2, Day 26

I think we've been over-watering Plucky. When we went to check up on him a couple days ago, we realized he'd dropped a set of leaves, and after two days of not looking so well and the soil taking too long to dry up, we decided to transplant him into fresh soil. He ended up losing his whole stem with all his ferny leaves in the process, but I think it was for the best, because it would have taken a lot of energy to repair it. Growing a new stem is probably best.

Now we're gonna water him only when the soil starts looking more dry than moist. Apparently it's not supposed to be soggy, and it's been pretty soggy, so--oops. But never fear; he's still vibrantly green, so it looks like he's survived the flood!

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

April 15th's Full Moon

April 15th is chock full of events on our calendar. Not only was it a full moon early this morning, but it was a total lunar eclipse (my first one with Silkworm), our anniversary of meeting each other, and the cherry to top it all off: it's Silkworm's 15th birthday. We decided we might as well start celebrating late at night on the 14th, since I figured I'd be staying up anyway to corral Silkworm while the moon had him under its control, but hours went past without even the slightest happening to worry about.

By 3:00 AM, Silkworm was still in control of his own consciousness, so he came outside with me to catch the lunar eclipse--only there was no moon around for us to feast our eyes on. Our backyard had been fogged up so thick we could barely see the trees across the yard. Disappointing, yes, but I must say, stepping outside into a dense warm fog accompained by the fainest misty drizzle at 3' o clock in the night-morning to search for the moon while everybody else is asleep gave me one of the strangest, most beautiful feelings. Silkworm felt it too, and we stood there and enjoyed it for a while with the kitties, Scooter and Rainey, who came outside to visit in their fenced cat enclosure fixed onto the house.

Anyway, before we knew it, it was 3:44 AM, one minute past the peak of the moon, and it appeared we'd caught a break. Everything was still as calm indoors as it was outside where it felt like we were the last living things on Earth. Silkworm fell asleep, but I stayed up anyway to observe him, just in case, though a few hours later when the sun rose and the birds started chirping away, we were sure.

In hindsight, I suppose it was silly to think the lunar eclipse would cause the moon to have a stronger affect on Silkworm, since the whole concept means the moon is shadowed by the Earth. Yet, in some respects, I also suppose you could say we were right to be extra cautious, because with Silkworm's magic, you can't possibly forecast the outcomes, no matter how much experience or evidence you've got.

Since I have work in the morning until 6:30 PM today and I'm thoroughly exhausted from staying up, we've decided to dedicate the weekend to further celebrations for our anniversary and Silkworm's birthday, and it'll be perfect anyway because we'll be going camping and we'll be able to have ten times the fun we'd have at home. Look forward to seeing our wild adventures!

Read about how full moons affect Silkworm here, and read more full moon stories here!

Monday, April 14, 2014

Felt Flower Crown

Silkworm and I recycled an egg carton into a flower crown back in January when there was a lack of pretty flowers to work with, but now that it's spring and there's about to be an abundance of flowers everywhere we turn, we can't help feeling a little guilty for picking them only to steal their beauty from the Earth. Thus, we decided to leave the flowers be and fashion another alternative flower crown.

The inspiration for this felt flower crown comes from a tutorial done by Beautifully Rooted. Theirs is absolutely gorgeous, but we're happy with our rendition, too. It actually turned out to be an easy project! We just had to get the flower-making techniques down, but that's as tough as it gets. Try it for yourself!

Ribbon (1 inch wide or wider)
Pom poms (optional)
Sewing needle
Sewing thread
Hot glue gun

Step One: Cut a length of ribbon big enough to fit around your head, plus five or six inches extra. This will act as the base of your flower crown to which you'll be sewing your flowers.

Step Two: Make a bunch of felt flowers and leaves. See Beautifully Rooted's tutorial for making several different kinds of flowers.

Step Three: Glue your felt flowers one by one onto your length of ribbon. Really squish them together for a fuller crown.

Step Four (optional): Add flower centers by cutting out felt circles and gluing them down, or use pom poms.

Please oh please with a cherry on top, send us photos of your crown if you make one! There's definitely a ton of creative freedom to be had with this project, and we'd love to see how you make it work.

Note: I'm in the process of making one for Silkworm! Look forward to seeing a photo posted on our Instagram someday!

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Zauberbear's Liebster Award Nomination

So there's an award project thingy going around, and until a couple days ago, Silkworm and I had only vaguely heard of it in the blogging community, but when RaChil of The Cwafty Blog nominated Zauberbear for a Liebster Award, we found out just how great the awards truly are!

The Liebster Awards are designed to get new blogs or blogs with tiny followings recognized by giving the nominees the opportunity to introduce themselves as well as nominate several more blogs for the awards. The nominee answers the 11 questions provided by the person who nominated them, tells 11 facts about themselves, nominates up to 11 other blogs and informs those blogs, and then provides 11 questions for the new nominees to answer. You can read more about the whole thing here!

With all that said, Silkworm and I proudly accept our nomination, and we'll get on with our nominee chores straight away.

11 Facts About Silkworm and I

1. I think about how short life can be cut so often that it's the foundational reason for all of my decisions.
2. I use a British accent when I talk to myself.
3. I work on an organic farm, as of March 2014. My younger self would be so proud.
4. I cry when I'm overwhelmed with any emotion, be it sadness, happiness, anger, et cetera.
5. Cliches make me cringe and I try my best to avoid them at all costs.
6. I find it easy to change my mind, which works out great for me because it makes me open-minded and relentlessly optimistic.
7. I play guitar and I know an itty bit of chords and strumming patterns on the ukelele--but I haven't seen my uke in ages and I don't know where it disappeared to!
8. I suffer from separation anxiety in regards to my camera. It's hard for me to enjoy a moment without him there to enjoy it with me.
9. I'm absolutely terrified of driving, no matter who's holding the steering wheel, for the following reasons: other drivers' carelessness, the fact that a human is in control of a 2-ton block of metal and flammable liquids, and the chance of accidentally injuring or killing another living thing.
10. I don't eat wheat, dairy, or eggs, and I try to eat as natural and organic as possible.
11. Being a photographer, I prefer cloudy days over sunny ones.

1. He's a master cloud-watcher (meaning he's very imaginative about what clouds look like).
2. His birthday is coming up on April 15th, which is a full moon and a lunar eclipse this year!
3. He sprouts wings every once in a while.
4. He came from an AC Moore craft store.
5. He loves to draw, and everything he draws is always animated when his magic enchants it (one of the very few times we can accurately predict how his magic will affect something).
6. He is a TY beanie baby, and his ear tag originally assigned him a female gender and the name "Pecan"--which his tush tag still insists.
7. There's no reason behind his name. I figured I'd name him something meaningless so he could fill it with meaning.
8. His favorite vegetable is acorn squash.
9. A lot of words make him giggle (fickle, shenanigans...).
10. He's afraid of things like anyone else, but he doesn't let his fears hold him back. I feed off of his bravery when I need extra.
11. He likes to write poetry.
12. He thinks very deeply and will suddenly blurt out very wise things.

11 Questions from The Cwafty Blog

1. Whats your favorite color combination?

Every sunset I've ever witnessed.

2. If you could have any animal in the world for a pet what would it be?
Gosh, man, I love my ratties. I mean, can I say a rat with a longer lifespan? That's the only sad thing about having rats as pets and getting so attached to something that lives 2 or 3 years, on average.

3. Coffee or tea? How do you take it?
I'm pretty sure I'll go my whole life without tasting coffee. I love the smell, but I'm gluten intolerant and supposedly coffee gets cross-contaminated often, so I don't think I'll ever try it. As for tea, I mostly drink green Rooibos tea in the summer when I have peaches to make honey peach lemon Rooibos tea! Mmmm!

4. Can you do a really good fake accent?
I freak my mom out with my British accent, and I think I do it pretty well, but no one British has ever been able to vouch for me and say it sounds good.

5. What's the first thing you ever remember making?
I am so bad at childhood memories. They seem to have been balled up in a great big mess and stuffed into a corner, so they're not so chronological anymore. My mom always tells me, though, that she let me pick up paintbrushes when I could barely talk, which is when I developed the weird way I hold my pencil (in my right hand in a fist, between my middle and ring finger, behind the second knuckle).

6. What made you want to start blogging?
I felt like an alien on Earth, but I knew there were other aliens out there, and I wanted to communicate with them somehow. A lot of those aliens seemed to have blogs, so I thought starting my own would be a great first step to meeting the other aliens--and it's been working great so far! Plus, personally, I wanted to be able to document my life with Silkworm, because it's pretty cool.

7. Favorite artistic/crafty medium to work with?
I love scrap-booking and journaling, but I haven't been doing much of that, lately. I don't know, I'm not sure I have a favorite medium. I tend to get infatuated with certain crafts and mediums for a while and then I lose interest and move onto the next thing.

8. A movie you know word for word? (If you're not as obsessive as I am, just your favorite will work!)
I am so bad at picking a favorite movie! I don't like to "waste my time" watching movies I don't absolutely love, so really every movie I see holds a special place in my heart. How about I list a few? How to Train Your Dragon, Shutter Island, Wreck It Ralph,

9. What do you like to do when you're not dazzling the internet with your creative genius?
We like to go sailing in our walnut boat, especially when there's a puddle waiting for us (otherwise we have to make one). I also love having conceptual photo shoots, which I post photos from on my Flickr along with other daily life photos. If I had my driver's license and could get myself to a nearby park, I'd also say I love taking hikes there, but that's a spare-time-filler for the future.

10. Whats the last show you marathoned?
Supernatural. From the end of September to the beginning of October, watching a new episode (or three) was all Silkworm and I did when we had free time and nothing else on our to-do list. When we finished, the flame of passion was quickly snuffed out for some reason, but the marathon itself was incredible. We always remember it whenever we have Way Better sweet potato chips, because that was usually our viewing snack.

Nominated Blogs

1. Uncustomary Art
2. Busy Weekends
3. The Halfway Point
4. Magical Daydream

11 Questions for the Nominees

1. Sandcastles or mud pies?
2. What's your six-word story?
3. What's the best joke you've ever heard?
4. Do you believe in ghosts?
5. What are you made of?
6. What's your motto?
7. What was the last thing you cried about?
8. What would you do if you could do anything right now, regardless of money, obligations, etc.?
9. What are you afraid of?
10. What can you always count on to make you smile?
11. What's your favorite kind of sky (i.e. starry, sunset, etc.)?

If any nominees happen to want an artsy watercolor badge instead of the other badges floating around, Silkworm and I took the liberty of making our own that you can use without crediting us or notifying us or anything. Just right click and save the one you want to your computer to "download" it! Feel free to resize them, edit them--anything you want! You can even make your own, if you'd rather.

An extra thank you and shout out to RaChil of The Cwafty Blog for the nomination! It was such a surprise and Silkworm and I are so happy to be able to nominate our own favorite blogs and bloggers whom we think deserve to be recognized.

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Cultivate Your Weirdness

I will never understand what humans have against weirdness. They think it's embarrassing, they try to cover it up, they want to cure it--but who said it was a disease?

You ought to embrace your personal brand of weirdness, and flaunt it. Being different and standing out are things you should be proud you have the power to do. Naturally, people are going to shoot you funny looks and maybe even laugh, but it's nothing against you. They're not used to such unabashed behavior, and honestly, they're probably jealous because they'd love to have the courage to wear pom pom tights and sing to the birds in public.

Take off your medical mask and sneeze out your weirdness. It deserves to be witnessed, and you have every right to love it and use it out loud.