Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Farmers Market

Today I went to the farmer's market for the first time this season (I have been too busy to get there for weeks!!) and ooooh it was glorious! Look at these flowers! I could go on and on with pictures and photos - in fact I did in my flickr account! Enjoy!

Monday, May 12, 2008

Up-side-down Tomatoes

Today I gardened. Okay, so I don't have a garden, that would require a more focused attention and a green thumb. I do not have a green thumb. But I LOVE orange cherry tomatoes ("Sungold Cherry Tomatoes") and I grow them up-side-down. And today I went out and got my hands dirty doing this gardening.

Heres how I did it: I bought a 2 really healthy organic tomato starters from my local nursery. The hanging pots were pre-prepared with enlarged holes in the bottem that I cut with one of those drill bits that cuts a hold 1 1/2" in diameter. I took the plant and wrapped a piece of stiff paper around it like a tube and then akwardly shoved the plant thru the hole (dropping the up-side-down pot over the wrapped up pot works best) and then remove the paper and pull any remaining branches of the plant thru the hole. I then filled the pot with good dirt and I put some flowers on top to look pretty. Oh and I watered it a bunch.

The plants really end up flourishing - they seem to be able to soak up so much more moisture and nutrients by being below the roots. Last year I did this and I was so impressed by the results. This year I am going to chronicle the process and post my pictures.

The first plant got pretty mangled (by me) trying to get it thru the hole (pictured above to the left) - however the second plant I had my act together and it survived the transfer much healthier. (pictured below) Although I'll bet they both will do really well.

Also the flowers on top of the pots is a new experiment. Tim thinks its a bad idea. Me personally, I am going for it. Last year it seemed that the roots stayed low in the pot (even when the plant got huge!) so I planted little plants that the roots will stay high in the soil and I don't think the two will compete for nutrients. And it looks so cute!

I want to get one of those composter worm bins for my kitchen to feed my tomatoes with now!

Video Goodness

Corning Museum of Glass has some great videos on YouTube

Heres a great one titled
"The difference between Metal and Glass"

Spring seems to have had a sense of humor this year. I made these flowers down at the market doing demonstrations on a day that it was hailing. I was pretending that it was a beautiful sunny day.

I think spring might be here. Finally. Sorta. It was soooo cold last weekend, but its supposed to get up to 90 by the end of the week. My birthday and Tim's birthday's are both coming up in the next couple weeks, so I am counting on good weather to help us celebrate getting old.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Part II: Making Frit

if you missed Part I of making frit using a coffee grinder - click here

Part II continues with a sample for your viewing pleasure. This plate is a test fire using the frit that I created. I wrote "Rod Scrap" on one side of the glass with Elmers glue and made a smear in the middle of the plate as well, then I applied the frit made from scraps of rod. Then I turned the plate around and repeated this process with the frit made from scrap flat glass writing "broken" with the glue and applying as much as the frit as would stick.

Honestly I was most curious how crappy the multi-colored frit would look after firing due to the sheer amount of plastic that the glass chunks absorbed from the coffee grinder... in the end I think it looks pretty good.
Not rocket science or nuthin... I should have timed how long I pulsed the coffee grinder... you can tell from the pictures that the rod scrap was ground up much longer... regardless it was interesting and pretty darned successful and there ya go - frit from scrap using an old coffee grinder - it works!

Perfect Cup

Stumptown coffee. Its been getting me thru this rainy cold spring here in Portland. Mostly I maintain life drinking simply tea. But lately I've been indulging in a lot of Stumpy. And oh its soooo good.
Yesterday I took the day off to drive out to the beach and go on a long (vertical) hike. The Oregon coast is so amazing!! Yes its grey and rainy, but regardless, we drank some Stumptown coffee and headed out to Ecola State Park in Cannon Beach. The hike to Indian Beach goes up a cliff in old ever-changing forests to an old camp site. There were enchanting wooden cabins and a picnic area about 1 1/4 mile hike in and then as you approach the cliff overlooking the ocean there were the old relics of gun bunkers from WWII. All overgrown with mud, trees and ferns - these concrete tunnels were very strange indeed! The whole hike was amazing (although did I mention it was vertical and we kept up a quick pace the whole time - so it was good exercise!) the trees and ferns are so huge. Look at this Sitka tree with the ferns growing up on the branches!

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Setting Up for Shows

I went to Portland Store Fixtures last week before doing the OHSU Handmade NW show and picked up some new displays for my work. I wanted to get something that made my new necklaces really pop. The work that I have been colaborating with Judi to make is very bright and springy - so the black necklace displays were doing nothing for them. I found these pale leather/wood necks and matching earring displays. They are great, I got 10 earring displays and the two necks for $15!!! Portland Store Fixtures is having a big sale, that was really fun!
I even found the red letters that spell LEAH (check out the picture above)... and I am so proud of myself that I made the H out of a R and a D. :)
Danielle gave me her broken computer monitor for displaying my computer mobiles and I think I looked pretty darned good.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Portland Air Tram

I rode the Portland Air Tram today (I am down at OHSU doing a show with Handmade NW) and I got the best views of PDX!
I think the airtram looks like a pill - its so very retro and cool - I love it in every way. And the ride is sweet! It kinda sways around as you pass over the big support arms and the views are spectacular in every direction.