Sunday, April 26, 2009

Oshkosh Journey: Three Faces of Eve

I'll be heading up to Oshkosh next weekend for the "Three Faces of Eve" show and I just can't wait. The plan is to leave Friday morning so I have enough time to have coffee with friends, hang the show and hopefully drop by the new St. Vinny's Thrift Store.

Photo by Jeannette Merten for The Northwestern.

Both the thrift store and food pantry moved into the old Copp's grocery store on Jackson Street. It promises to be a great new start, and the photos make the place look so bright and welcoming, I think I might actually miss the kinda dingy poorly lit old location. The last place had so many nooks and crannies just waiting with treasures to be discovered, but I'm sure the new location will be great, with a lot less sneezing and plenty of parking. You should see this thrift store on the 1st and 3rd Mondays of each month when they have their storewide 1/2 off sale - I've had to park a block down the street before there are so many people taking advantage of reused goods, but it always makes me happy to see previously loved furniture and things going to new homes to be loved.

So next weekend will be spent in Oshkosh. Friday night we'll be hanging the show and the opening occurs Saturday from 6-9pm, and I plan on some birthday celebrations afterwards. Really, I just can't wait to see all my friends, I miss them desperately.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Homegrown Revolution

I don't really watch Oprah all that much, but occasionally she comes by with something that just puts a spark in my day. But I wouldn't have even caught this story if I hadn't been reading Oh Happy Day! this morning.

Oprah's spot on Living Green in Pasadena features the Dervaes family and their wonderful green lifestyle, and the story continues at their website is Path to Freedom.

There are even more videos if you just mosey on over to youtube. Taking a look at the video below shows all sorts of interesting tidbits and history. Like the fact that the front yard is 95% edible.

If I didn't already want to move into the house we looked at last week (it was a really great decorating job in the seventies, I swear) I really want to now. With its wood shed and fenced garden plots its just begging for a tiny farm in the city. I also really want to look into zoning, see how plausible farm fowl are in the city.

Also, Richard and I enjoyed a night out going to see the new Disney feature "Earth" and it was just wonderful.... except having to leave early because the fire alarm went off, but at least there wasn't actually a fire.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Things To Do & Gallery Show

Always so many things to do...
- finish painting the bathroom
- get photos ready for gallery show, reframe and print new title cards
- mail Save The Date cards
- print extra Save The Date cards
- finalize wedding invitation design
- find a justice of the peace! (this needs to be done sooner than later)

This May Maggie, April and I will be showing our work at Art Off Main. The opening coincides with Gallery Walk on Saturday, May 2nd. The show is called "Three Faces of Eve" and features beadwork by Maggie, paintings by April, and photographs by me! Here is Art Off Main's write up on the show: "The artwork and creative expressions of three local women make up this months exhibition at the Art Off Main Gallery. Multigenerational perceptions and experiences, responses to troubled times, and inspirations of magical moments are all themes that underlay the artwork of the Three Faces of Eve. Come witness a variety of artistic creations utilizing numerous mediums by local artists Maggie Beese, Natalie Jean Andracchi, and April Beese, this month at the Art Off Main Gallery. Open Monday-Friday, 9:00 AM-4:00 PM or by appointment. Contact (920) 236-9230 for more information."

ps. Happy Earth Day!
Go look at something beautiful outside.

Monday, April 20, 2009

101 in 1001

I realized I haven't looked at or updated my 101 list in quite some time. This is a list of 101 things to do in 1001 days, and for complete info as well as other people's list go to Day Zero Project.

My list started on 10 April 2008, a year ago already, and will conclude on 6 January 2011. This is my final list, items with a strike have been completed and any extra information is included after it while italicized items are in process.

Housing (5/10 completed)
1) move out of apartment by the end of July 2008 - actually moved out mid-August, but I moved.
2) find a house/apartment to rent in Milwaukee by end of November 2008 - found, signed a lease, moved in October 31
3) organize my life in said new place right away! - I'd say this is done, but there are at least three boxes yet to be unpacked...and it's been six months.
4) find a location to have our wedding in Wisconsin - In Delafield, WI at Hawks Inn, an old stagecoach inn
5) do as much for the wedding handmade as possible (or buy handmade)
6) start looking for a permanent residence in Milwaukee to move to after the apartment, we really need a house and a yard.
7) grow and use all my own herbs after moving into new house with Richard
8) find/buy an actual bed frame for the new place - Ikea, I love you.
9) find a new home for the pink couch or sell it - still at the consignment shop... we'll see.
10) clean out everything from under the bed, get rid of it or pack it away - accomplished while packing the apartment, woot!

Organization (0/10 Completed)
11) make a calendar with the birthdays of all the important people in my life so I do not forget
12) sit down at the beginning of each month to write all important/due dates on my calendar for five straight months (3/5)
13) clean my car once every two months for a year (June, August, November, January)

Crafty (4/16 Completed)
14) build my 9 drawer craft organizer (4/12), cover it in old map pages (7/3), and use it to stay organized - now houses most of my desk supplies
15) sort ALL my craft stamps by color I'm certain this one will never end.
16) buy a real stamp album
17) put my "collecting" stamps in said actual album
18) finish the patchwork stamp suitcase - in February 2009, project details will eventually be shared
19) create wonderful train case for Anna
20) sell orange suitcases at Beth's yard sale (5/2) - didn't so much sell as they were given away
21) take one film picture every day for a month
22) organize all my negatives - on my way!
23) digitally scan all negatives as I develop them
24) write a memoir I can love "A List of Things I Found Along the Way"
25) write four new pieces (1/4)
26) make 10 ATCs to have at future shows (0/10)
27) schedule two shows somewhere I haven't yet shown
28) make that bingo chip jewelry that's been on my mind forever
29) do the typewriter tree photo shoot

Etsy (0/4 Completed)
30) post one forum post every day for a month
31) list one new item each week for two months
32) sell at least four photographs by the end of 2008 (4/19/08- Ninja Stories II)
33) do not buy more than one item on etsy for every five I sell (Sold=1, Bought=0)

Money (4/4 Completed)
34) save $500 by September 1st 2008 - woot! it happened!
35) collect an average of 50 cans per day when I'm home (Can Experiment) for now the can experiment is over, it worked, but now I that I no longer live in a college town, I don't get to pick up after the keggers in our neighborhood
36) sell at least $100 of stuff I can do without at rummage sale/Plato's closet/ (June 23: $17.10) - This was more than accomplished as of September 20, 2008 I had sold $208
37) set aside enough money to buy a new mac laptop, and actually buy it before Richard quits Apple

Me (1/15 Completed)
38) get married
39) stop biting my nails
40) lose twenty pounds (4/20 - goal weight:190)
41) have Brad do my chart
42) get rid of my clothes that look like rags
43) wash all my dishes right away for one month without letting them pile up (0/31) - I'm not sure this will ever happen
44) hang/put away all my clothes right after finishing laundry for one month
45) put all my dirty clothes straight into the hamper every day for two months (0/62)
46) organize all my cds/music on itunes onto external hard drive
47) rip all my vinyl albums and store on external hard drive
48) buy one original piece of art
49) graduate from college
50) make my trip to England a valuable experience
51) reconnect with old Milwaukee friends that I actually want in my life
52) take the dog for a daily walk when in Brookfield (use the walks on Sunday/Monday to collect cans from the neighbors' recycling)

Other (2/8 Completed)
53) put 25 cents into a jar every day for entire 1001 days. Do not spend or use to do laundry. Deposit into savings at the beginning of every month, still do not spend. ($250.25)
54) collect pepsi stuff caps - enough to get something actually useful for the new house or a fun gift for Richard (Currently: 101) Promotion ended, got four cds to give as christmas presents, plus giant cd binder, plus mork and mindy season 1 dvds for myself)
55) wear makeup at least twice a week for three months (3/12 weeks)
56) replace brakes on bike and use it at least once a week until there's too much snow - to be resumed each summer
57) use bike to pick up groceries at least once a month in Oshkosh - only happened once, count as unfinished
58) make three reusable "plastic knit" grocery bags and use for every grocery trip for at least one month
59) spend an entire day alone at the beach/in the woods
60) go camping with just Richard in the middle of no where. Just us and a tent.

Other, cont. (1/10 Completed)
61) talk to that woman about photographing her wedding, and convince her that she wants me to do it. - hired on as of 4/28
62) list one of my suitcases on etsy by the end of 2009
63) learn to make my own resin jewelry
64) host at least three craft nights after moving to Milwaukee - (first - 3/21/09)
65) take one photography class that expands my knowledge and skill (MIAD - Holga class summer 2009, cost: $280)
66) buy/build/find and refinish a dining room table that both Richard and I like
67) save $1000
68) save $3000
69) learn to cook tofu well
70) keep the friends in Oshkosh that I love, even after I move away

(1/10 Completed)
71) make a budget with Richard for 2009 and stick to it for at least six months
72) go for a weekly walk alone for two months
73) visit Minneapolis, understand what the fuss is about - result of a spontaneous roadtrip while in Eau Claire, want to go back again)
74) actually use the things I salvage for art stuff, instead of just collecting it and giving it away when I move - always in progress
75) make envelopes and stationary from the wallpaper samples I have
76) make a blog post at least once a week, for as long as I can
77) make my website look more professional
78) market my website and photography
79) build my wedding photography portfolio (finished with Jeff/Jene wedding on 17 June)
80) build my "house book"

(1/10 Completed)
81) make applesauce from the apple trees at my parents' house
82) go on a picnic with Richard
83) go horseback riding with Richard
84) pan for gold
85) get my first pedicure (goodness knows my feet could use it)
86) go to Canada
87) crochet a granny-square blanket in colors I like (perhaps blue and brown or green and brown)
88) crochet at least one present for each holiday (christmas - dad)
89) go to each Maxwell Street Days with Beth this summer (except for the one where I'll be out of the country) - it was wonderful, and I'm sure I'll do it again in 2009
90) buy a dremel

(3/9 Completed)
91) learn to make (and make) a linocut print or stamp.
92) use linocut/stamp to make save-the-date cards for the wedding. did it. made them. mailed them.
93) collect 1,000 my coke rewards points - use to get something useful for Richard and me [TRY to get more than 1,000 - preferably enough to get that tv....yeah right] (June 23: 623) - Yeah, I got 1000, and now there’s really nothing that I want, so I used what I had to buy small presents for Christmas
94) create a business plan.
95) create a business.
96) learn to sew proficiently
97) read one new book each month in 2009
- January - "No One Belongs here More than You" by Miranda July
- February - "Scott Pilgrim: Precious Little Life"
- March - "Angels and Demons"
98) eat better, healthier
99) be happy for each day as it comes

The End
100) put $1 into savings for every item completed as they are completed (22/99)
101) donate $1 to Clinic for Special Children for every item uncompleted after 1001 days

Overall I have finished 22 list items, and there are so many in progress.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Spring Break

This past week has been really quite busy. It's Richard's spring break from teaching, and it is wonderful to have him around all the time. We've filled all the moments as best we can with wonderful activities.

On Monday we went to the Titanic exhibit at the Milwaukee Public Museum, it's just too bad we didn't know about the "live actors" that would be participating on Tuesday. It was quite the interesting exhibit, all sorts of artifacts, and full size examples of rooms aboard the ship, as well as a giant section of the actual ship. It was awe inspiring, and a little humbling. As we entered we were given boarding passes detailing an actual passenger aboard the Titanic and when we reached the end we were able to find our passengers' names on the memorial wall to discover if they were saved or perished. Throughout the exhibit were personal narratives which really brought the whole thing together.... that, and the giant "iceberg" in one of the rooms.

Wednesday was quite the adventure when our neighbors Tom and Amy took a field trip with us down to Schaumburg (outside of Chicago) to go to IKEA. Yes. IKEA. Richard and I have been looking for new side tables for our Malm bed (yep, from Ikea) since we moved into our place in Milwaukee and I retired my bed frame made of shelving units to be used for upright storage once again. What we had been using were two very mismatched pieces, one unfinished kit piece from my childhood and a partially stripped table I bought for $2 last fall so I could have a table in my rented room.

Although we love the Malm bedframe, all of the options for coordinating bedside tables weren't quite what we were looking for. So, we wandered, and picked up quite a few things along the way. What we found were cute little three-drawer chests called Kullen. Richard and I have found that our styles are meshing, and more and more it comes out looking quite modern.

Of course, because we got new furniture and toys we spent most of Thursday building kit furniture and rearranging the bedroom. So now our bedroom looks like the picture to the right, very clean and modern, but please, disregard the brown fabric that I have yet to finish making into a curtain. Richard took the photo on his iphone (yes, I'm marrying quite the geeky apple boy) and I'm actually amazed at what blow outs our "energy efficient" light bulbs create.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Back to Wisconsin!

Well, I returned home from Savannah yesterday, and there is so much to talk about. So much to talk about I can't even sort it all out, I'm at a loss for words!

The picture is the view from the "front porch" of Anna's dorm. She lives in possibly the best dorm setup I've ever seen. Private bathrooms, a two burner stove-top, and the ceilings are the tallest ever. Not only that, but the building itself is kinda gorgeous. Most of the SCAD buildings are, because many of them are converted from... well, whatever they once were. I think this is why they don't all have that gross sterile mass-produced feel to them. Anna may be rather embarresed, but I think she's just adorable, so have to share the video tour she did for the photo building Bergen Hall, just click on the flash tour, then Bergan Hall, then videos.