Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Taco Tuesday - cat spy

Taco and I spent a long time staring through the door together.
 Sometimes Peter would stare back at us.


And sometimes he would nap.

Taco kept sticking his paw through and trying to swipe at Peter.

Peter just doesn't care.

Taco meows with indignation throughout the ordeal.

I keep telling Taco to mind his manners, or else his friend won't come back to visit us again.

Saturday, November 14, 2015

how to refill your Pilot Precise V5 rollerball pen

Because who doesn't love taking apart a pen and re-filling it with a different color of ink?

Here's what you need:
+ a used-up Pilot Precise rollerball pen to dismantle
+ pliers, probably needle-nose
+ a small cup of  water (like a rinsed-out yogurt container would be fine)
+ a big fat rubber band (or one of those rubber grippy things you use to open jars)
+ a syringe (or a pipette, or an eyedropper, or maybe even a plastic drinking straw could work, but it'll be messy!)
+ ink!

Basically, the hardest part of this operation is to rip this ink-feeding plastic bit out of the body of the pen.
Wrap the rubber band around those disc-things right behind the white plastic piece, and grip the rubber-band-wrapped-plastic with the needle nose pliers.
Pull. Hard. I found it was easier to grip the pliers with my dominant hand, and hold that steady while trying to yank the body of the pen off, sort of towards the side, so that nothing goes flying off into the distance, and also you won't accidentally punch yourself in the face.

You can see that I used enough force to leave a mark on the plastic. It's not quite as shiny anymore. If I figure out how to do this without squeezing the bejeezus out of it, I'll let you know.

Next step: rinse. Leave the feed in a cup of water to soak, and rinse the body of the pen out in the sink. Shaking the water out of it helps - just point the open end towards the sink. You're done when the water runs clear. The water soaking the feed might need to be changed a few times.

The fun part: refill with ink! It can definitely hold 1.2 mL (yes, I measured!) and maybe a smidge more. The syringe with a blunt needle is the neatest way to do this, followed by a pipette or an eyedropper. You could try to pour your choice of ink (hahahaha, no, don't!)...or maybe employ the straw trick. (Stick straw in liquid, cover top with thumb, lift out of liquid, position over pen body, release thumb....and probably over-fill by a lot. Prepare for spillage if using this method.)

A note on ink: fountain pen ink works really well for this. I'd think of any other kind of ink as an experiment. My guess is that acrylic inks would clog it up eventually, but hey, you were going to toss this disposable pen anyway, right?

Last step: put the feed back where it belongs. It slides back into place and then you just give it a little push (no tools required) and it snaps closed.

My black pen now writes purple. What color will you use in yours?

Sunday, October 18, 2015

cat party

During the cat party...

After the cat party....

There was much paper-crinkling and catnip consumed.

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Taco and the screen creature


Oh. It's a moth.

A really BEEFY moth.

Does its mouth creep you out, too?

It has a hairy butt.

It has a furry belly, too.

 If there's one thing I have learned from macro photography, it's that bugs are really hairy.

I had to shut the window so that Taco didn't launch himself out the third story window.
He has good battle instincts, but bad gravity instincts.

Sunday, August 9, 2015

Taco twinkle toes

I heard a slight rustling noise in the kitchen, behind me.
Ever alert for unusual noises - you never know what Taco is going to get into next - I look around, and then peek around the corner of the fridge. 

Gotta sniff these magnets. Never know when you'll get another chance at this.
This box is open. I expected him to fall in at any second and require a rescue.
Look at his crazy toes, straddling the box edge.

He decided enough was enough, turned around and leaped down like the feline master of physics that he is.

I was impressed.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

woodsy walk in Vermont

 One lady keeps chickens in her yard.  I really love this chicken guillotine shot that I made mr. chewytulip take for me. That chicken certainly wasn't going to wait around for me to take a photo.
 Went on a hike and found the most adorable mushroom, ever. So round. So orange. So tiny.
 I don't know why there was a pushpin stuck in the tree. But there's a tiny red bug on the pin.
I like the pattern on this leaf.
 Took a bridge pic from another bridge. It's a a Vermont thing.
 This plant is obviously out of control.
 I didn't find my cat here.
 Borrowed my sister's dog for the walk.
Was greatly disturbed/intrigued by this shiny rainbow slime on tree bark. I don't want to know. (But I do.)

a book on self love

Hey guys!
My friend is publishing a book on the topic of self-love.
But she needs some help to get it published, so here is the project on kickstarter.

Why I want to help:
1. I like books.
2. I like Mary.
3. I like when people dream big.
4. Self love is pretty important, and you can always get better at it.
5. You can get a reward with just a $2 donation, which is very accessible.
6. Mary is a cool lady and I think what she has to say is valuable.
7. Taco told me to. He owes Bug a favor.

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

summer update

It's been a pretty good summer, so far.
Suffered one broken finger (not mine, the Significant Other's - and no, I did not break it for him. In case you were wondering. A basketball was the culprit.)

Had a strawberry bonanza.
There's a strawberry farm down the street. It's just as awesome as having an ice cream place across the street. :)

The tiger lilies are in bloom. I've taken oodles of flower photos this season, which makes me happy.

Found these striped beauties in a flower basket outside of a store front. I dig the stripes.

If you grow flowers in your front yard, chances are you'll find me loitering there, camera in hand, possibly making creepy faces towards your windows.
Sorry, in advance.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

the gingers steal the show

(Completely off-topic: I love red-heads in the human world and the cat world, and the word "ginger" is super fun to say. Take a moment now to say it. GINGER. Anyway, I realize some people use it as an insult, but it shouldn't be. So please don't take it as such.)

It's a special talent to go off on a tangent before even starting a blog post. Ha!

Peter, the neighbor's cat,
LIMBURGER, our newest feline addition to the household,
meet for the first time.

Limburger is terrified.
Peter looks interested.

Then we caught them making out.

They sprang apart, obviously guilty.

This is like Taco's worst fears, by the way. That we go out in the hallway and play with other cats all day.
It was only a few minutes, I swear.
At least the other cats don't usually leave lipstick on the collar.

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Taco Tuesday - he murders that which cannot be murdered

Okay, I'm going to let you in on a cat toy secret.
Ping pong balls.
They're perfect.
Cats can't eat them, they're really cheap, and you can toss one in the bathtub and close the curtain for instant kitty mayhem.

Taco has started to figure out how to eat them.


In other news, Good Omens is a really awesome read, and I am totally loving my sunshine-yellow toe polish.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Taco Tuesday - deeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeerp

I wasn't really planning to post anything today. But then, at the eleventh hour, a magical moment occurred.



The atmosphere in the room was positively GLEEFUL as I confirmed that these images were captured.
I love this cat!

Monday, May 18, 2015

kicker of dandelions

I have, on at least one online profile, described myself as a professional dandelion kicker.

 When I see a field of fluffy seedlings ready to take flight...well, I want to help them along.
So I run right through them and kick as many as I can.
And the next time I see that field full of yellow flowers, I'll know I had something to do with it.

Many thanks to "the mister" for patiently wheezing all over at least ten of these in a row, while I fiddled with camera settings that might capture the moment.  (Okay, it needed to be set to a faster speed, but we were running out of light! Next time we'll nail it! But you can see a little of the whiz-blur from the departing seeds.)

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

rainbow curtain

Today you get a rare peek into part of my workspace.
It's the "pretty" part - the one that's not a chaotic pile of stuff.
This is where I hang things up to dry. Like this curtain that I painted.
And some envelopes I've been working on.

Look at it! Revel in its rainbow glory!

 It lives in the kitchen now.
It goes with the red walls and the orange tablecloth that I made last week.
It makes me insanely happy every time I see it.  That might wear off, eventually. But for now, I'm a little sad because I wonder how much time will pass before I make something this "perfect" again.
(I'm a little competitive with myself.)
Speaking of perfection, I just want to mention that my apartment looks pretty neat in these photos.
Do not be fooled!
It's mostly a wreck.
I make a few photograph-able corners, now and then. I *do* wish that everything could be aesthetically pleasing all the time, but that's not real life.
 And it would require many overstuffed closets.
And possibly a maid.
Anyway...cheers to pretty curtains, clean-ish corners that you're happy to photograph, and not being Martha Stewart!