Random thoughts: Summer, summer, summ-errrrrr time….

Remember this old Will Smith song? 

The video was a slow-rolling, old school rap about all the fun activities that make summers a blast: bbqs, music, hanging out with friends and family, enjoying the weather, roadtrips, etc. 

I had a pretty fantastic summer this year and now with the coolness back in the air (yes, already – it’s Ottawa), i’m slowly winding down (or catching up on) all my summer projects and preparing for the long, cold, hard winter that’s just around the corner…

Concerts:  saw a TON of those: Gladys Knight (fantastic entertainer), Naturally7 (unbelievable a capella!), Jully Black (awesome Canadian singer but PLEASE someone get her a new stylist!), Fergie (can’t sing but fun to watch), Boyz II Men (yes, they’re still touring and still good), Snoop Dogg (don’t ask), Akon (not bad), Joan Armatrading (still awesome), Celine Dion (all her french songs in a 250k strong crowd) and many, many more…

Road Trips: A packed car and a long highway with good times and friends waiting for you at either end.  Is there anything better?

Summer Projects:  yeaaaaahhhhh.  those didn’t get done – waaaay too much other fun stuff to do.  Some serious catchup planned this month…

Torch time:  didn’t have much of that.  I was either too tired or completely unmotivated.  My mojo left me sometime around the end of June and I’d find myself sitting in front of the torch rolling rods of glass in my hands but with no fresh ideas.  I’m hoping it gets back soon.

Glass, glass and more GLASS!!!:  I stocked up.  twice.  and LOTS!  (there’s more since these pics) I keep fondling all of it cuz i still can’t believe it’s all mine.  When i first started torching, with only a small bin of single rods to my name (you can see it in the centre pic), i dreamed about one day having a fully stocked studio filled with all the lampwork glass, tools, toys and books that peaked my interest.  I’m there now.  Yeaaaaaah baby.

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Random thoughts: Christmas memories

Christmas tree 2007

1. I admit it, I have HUGE Christmas tree issues.  I love Christmas.  And once i have my tree up, decorated and the house smelling like fresh pine, i just never want to take it down…

I’m embarassed to admit how long i’ve actually kept my trees up over the past several years – let’s just say they’re usually extra crispy by the time i finally drag ’em out to the curb… I’ve decided this year, it’s coming down early (at least for me, probably normal for other people) so tomorrow i’m dragging out all the boxes and packing all the ornaments away.  Siiiigggh, the process always makes me kinda sad and so reflective….

girls xmas morning

2. Santa, babies & the kitten:  We had a 2year old and 4year old with us for Christmas morning.  I’d almost forgotten the sweet innocence and simple excitement of that tender age…

teenage ninja mutant rudolph

3. Teenage mutant ninja… Rudolph?  The Teenager hamming it up for the camera.  Not so sweet, not so innocent but pretty darned funny.

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4. Yummy, yummy, yummy:  Boxing Day dinner was salmon in filo with a scallop and shrimp cream sauce, made from scratch, by li’l old me.  Decadent and delicious.  Sorry, i only remembered to take the picture after dinner. 

crazy kitten

5. Silk & kittens don’t mix:  My sister asked me why i hadn’t put up the nice curtains in the living room for the holiday season.  I think this pic pretty much answers her question…

Random thoughts: birthdays and the joy of cool

birthday gift 

1.  Glassy gifts: Just had my birthday and my friends funded my latest glass purchase: a new bead press and some frit.  How cool is that?

2.  Late bloomer? This b-day was special for some reason – i actually felt it, when usually birthdays pass just like any other day despite the celebrations.  must be the beginning of a new stage in my life.  and that’s pretty cool.

3.  I love handmade stuff:  for my b-day the Teenager made me a beautiful new digital wallpaper image for my desktop in all my fave colours (hot orange, bright pink and deep purple).  It was created in  Photoshop and took him “foreverrrrrrrr” something to do with blending custom brushes, colours, fonts, vectors, fractals, blah, blah, blah… etc., etc.  whatever.  it’s installed both at home and at work, and looks way cool.  i love it.  especially since it comes from my kid who thinks everything should be black, white, gray or navy blue.

4.  Essence of adolescence:  On the bus ride home a couple days ago, this kid sat down in front of me done up from head to toe in what i can only assume was his definition of the latest in 13yr old, bad-ass, hip-hop cool: poofy down bomber, angled baseball cap, artfully dishevelled ‘fro, oversized layered Ts, huge jeans strategically belted mid-buttcheek with the crotch dangling somewhere at the knee and large name brand sneakers.  overall colour combo? black, dark green and white.  yo.  tiiiiiiight.

He kept shifting in his seat and adjusting the various garments using his reflection in the facing window seemingly to determine just the right degree of anti-establishment slouch.  It was all i could do to keep a straight face through these antics.  cuz you know six months ago, his mom was probably still laying out his clothes for him but now?  baby, he’s in junior high.  ccccoooool.

5.  Cool mom?  The Teenager attended his first real grownup (i.e. no gaming, pizza, sleepover or parental involvement) party last weekend.  and yes, with my permission.  He calmly asked.  then waited for me to finish hyperventilating about sending my baby off to some booze and drug filled hellhole, in some stranger’s house, with a bunch of older friends i hadn’t met, and did he really know who these people were and trust them to not be crazy? and, and… well uhhh, you get the picture.  He was fine, got home within curfew limits, admitted to everyone drinking except him (yay!) and had one word about the experience: “AWESOME”.

I’ve had a few people mention that this act officially makes me a “cool” mom.  I disagree.  i was simply being practical: First, I trust him – he’s mature, smart and responsible.  Second, at his age, i (technically) wasn’t permitted to go to these types of parties but my friends and i still attended many under the guise of the now infamous, intricately planned, arranged and parental approved “sleepover”.  

Random thoughts

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Photo:  The Teenager enjoying a boat cruise at a luxury resort (c. 2004)

1. Child-free days off:  Gotta love ’em.  I’m off work today but The Teenager had to go to school.  Significance? I am totally and completely free! I can guiltlessly do whatever i want for the next 8+ hours!!! Plus! no demands, whining, backtalk or moodiness will interfere with my good mood until approx. 430pm today.  Could a dedicated mommy ask for more? 

 2. I often think in glass rod colours: Doesn’t matter where I am, if anything (usually some passerby’s colourful outfit) catches my eye, i’ll start to calculate how i can recreate that design and which colour rods i should use: oooooo… that lovely abstract blouse? Hmmm…i think a clear base, with a Moretti white and Lauscha blue latticino and an assortment of Gaffer pastel frits, perhaps as a focal, in a barrel shape – or should i use a press…?

3. Bad piercings:  On friday’s bus ride home, there was a young woman standing directly in front of me with a lip piercing.  Now normally i don’t have an issue with piercings (some are quite attractive) but this one just looked painful.  It was in the corner of her bottom lip, with the metal weaving three times in and out through her skin.  I kept trying not to stare but really?  i wanted to lean over and ask her:  “Sweetie, would you like me to help you take that out?” 

4. Karaoke madness:  Saturday night I found myself in a cheesy piano bar with some friends enthusiastically belting out Barry Manilow’s Copacabana to a room full of dancing strangers.  Once the adrenalin wore off it occurred to me that a piano player, a mike, a binder full of lyrics and a cheering audience can delude you into thinking (just for  a moment) that you can actually sing.