Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Stereographic Cards

I have all of these cards with dual images on them from mom which I thought for a long time were supposed to be people we were related to or something. It turns out they were an entertainment and could be viewed through a stereoscope, presenting a 3D image.

Sort of a very early View Master.  I have a few which tell an odd little story about two little girls. Apparently the entire set of 12 was available from the Co-Operative View Company of St. Paul.  I may not have these in the right sequence.  There are elaborations of the storyline on the back, I've just noted the captions on the front.

The set was titled "Little Runaways in Brownie Land"

                      The Little Runaways Curlylocks and Sunnyheart looking for Brownies

                  The Sleep of the Innocents--A Dream of the Strange "Kitty"

Disappointed and Lonely the Little Guardian Finds Relief in Tears
Where the Elves Kept Christmas--Hoping for the Brownies Return
The Rescue of the Runaways--Faithful Fido Fetches Father

Monday, September 8, 2014

Chicon 2012 Strolling With the Stars Collage

I'm having trouble resizing a picture or two so I'm fooling around with online photo editors.  This is a collage from piZap.

We went to Chicon, the World Science Fiction Convention in August 2012.  There was a daily Stroll Among the Stars, where you could walk about a mile or so and talk with your author idols.  It was so cool.

I'm in all of these shots but I may be hard to find with only 6 months worth of hair regrown after chemo.  I had what I refer to as "football head" because that's what it looked like. I was unable to get my hair to part in the middle as it should for love or money. It had this awful, awful part way over on the side.  So look for the woman with not much hair whose head looks like a football. That is me.

Mrs. Mary Dow's Dark Cake

I'm cleaning up my picture files.  I'm endlessly fascinated by old recipes and I see this among things I've collected.  If I were way cool, I would have made the cake and had a picture to accompany this but nooo, I am a fool.

Friday, September 5, 2014

Little Marvin Ye Jokester

It's time for me to get back to family history work.  I have spent some time at he Minnesota Historical Society looking through old newspapers and I am so easily distracted by ads and recipes and other articles of the day.  The newspaper writing in small town newspapers could be so sensationalist (though this is not).

I hoped I could take pictures from the microfilm with my iPod, but the angle of the reader and the glare from the lights makes the shots I took pretty useless. Still, I am here to share with you anywho.

Little Marvin found a button in his salad.  He remarked, "I suppose it fell off while the salad was dressing."

High 1930s humor for your Friday.

Librarian D.O.A. Booknotes

I’m at the bottom of the pile of books that have been waiting by my pc since January! for notes about them to be written up.   I’m putting them upstairs on my shelves after finally getting them noted here.  I have a pile upstairs of course that I didn’t bring down because this is my craft room after all and there isn’t room for much more than my crafts.


Two Gardeners: a friendship in letters:  Katharine S. White and Elizabeth Lawrence

I first read Katherine S. White’s book Onward and Upward in the Garden and became fascinated with her friendship through correspondence over many years with southern garden writer Elizabeth Lawrence. 

This alternates letters between the two and I honestly wish the editor had just let the letters stand on their own.  I really wanted to read them all, they were that pleasant and full of gardening information.

The personalities of the two women comes out so well.  I really was charmed by Elizabeth, and her generous personality and beautiful writing.  Her knowledge of plants and their growth habits all over the country was astonishing.  She gained this knowledge through yet  more correspondence with farmers and housewives via market bulletins.  She would see plants offered by common local names and write to ask about them to see if she could identify them.


Hide and Seek:  Ian Rankin

In the second Inspector Rebus novel  the detective finds a junkie dead in a hovel with what looks like signs of satanic worship.  Something nags at Rebus about the scene, and the way some of his fellow detectives handle the body and crime scene. He should let it go but of course he can’t. 

Rebus makes an overture to his estranged brother who is well off and seemingly everything he is not. 

The ever lonely Rebus compare his life to his sibling’s throughout, and wonders if he could have been something different.



Heirs of the Body Carola Dunn    

Daisy Dalrymple  helps sift through claimants to be the heir to Fairacres, the family estate.  I read this a while ago before I started watching Downton Abbey and it all looks different to me now.  I see a bit better how English law determined who could inherit and who could not.  When I read it I thought Daisy should just get the estate, it was more than unfair to dig these people up to keep her from what should be hers.

The heirs apparent must prove that they are actual relations.  Since they are scattered far and wide geographically and in their life situations, and their ties seem quite tenuous, it isn’t an easy thing to sort out.

Daisy is very good at reading people and judging their motives so she can be invaluable. 

Having all of the heirs who have been located come to Fairacres seems like a good idea until accidents begin to occur.
Her detective husband Alec, who has been reluctant to enter into any family feud situations proves invaluable in sorting things out.

Saturday, August 30, 2014

From the Diaries of D.O.A.


We spent a few hours at the State Fair today.  Mostly we wandered.  I only had my beloved Cheese Curds and they did not disappoint.

We took the Park and Ride Bus and it was smooth as usual.  The new hub however was a terrible mess of lines of people waiting to get tickets.  Half and hour in line?

Then as we entered the fair you looked down and it was just a sea of humanity.  The whole place was that way.   Hot from people though the temp itself was in the reasonable 70s.


Doctor Who: Into the Dalek

Shades of the movie Fantastic Voyage the Doctor, Clara and two soldiers from a rebel ship are miniaturized and sent into a haywire “good Dalek” who is malfunctioning after having seen the birth of a star, and experiencing beauty.

I thought it was amusing the Doctor named the Dalek “Rusty”.   It sort of personalized him.

In another echo of Fantastic Voyage, the Dalek’s anti-bodies attack our little group when one shoots a grappling hook into the “floor”.

The episode is a race to find what is causing the malfunction and see if it can be used to turn the other Daleks from their destructive ways.

There is more of the theme of getting to know the new Doctor as well.  He asks Clara if he is a good man.   At the episode’s beginning and end she has to say “I don’t know”.   From what I’ve seen so far, my answer would be “not particularly”.

Librarian D.O.A. Booknotes

City of Darkness and Light: A Molly Murphy Mystery by Rhys Bowen

Molly is happily settled in with Daniel at her Patchin Place home.  Baby Liam enjoys life as only a baby can.

Two letters arrive.  Daniel’s mother is unexpectedly going on a trip across country with a friend.   Molly’s beloved friends and neighbors Sid and Gus are in Paris hoping to persuade the circle of artists there to promote Gus and her paintings in the community.  Impossibly, they invite her to join them there.

This isn’t something that could be managed on Daniel’s police captain salary, but what a lovely dream, eh?

At dinner there is the sound of a window breaking.  As Daniel and Molly head towards the front of the house there is a tremendous explosion and then fire.  Molly is knocked out for a few moments then finds and digs Daniel free. 

The steps to the upper level where baby Liam and nursemaid Aggie are have disappeared into rubble.

Desperately they go into the street calling for the fire brigade.  Daniel climbs to the second story window of Liam’s room, returning with a small bundle.

The New York Police have decided to crack down on a new group called the Cosa Nostra.  Daniel, who is leading the effort no longer has a safe place for his family in New York.

With his mother out west, there is no safe place to send Molly.  Unless they can go to Paris with Sid and Gus for a visit.

Sid and Gus pay for passage and Molly begins a long voyage with a baby and a rather ratty fellow passenger in tight ships quarters, nearly deathly ill herself for the length of the voyage.

Arriving in Paris, Molly and Liam aren’t met by Sid and Gus.  Making their way to the address the women gave her, Molly finds they have been missing for several days.  She talks her way into using their apartment until they return, but there she is, in a foreign country, with a tiny baby and no money or friends.
Somehow she will need to talk to the denizens of the artistic community to see if she can recover her lost friends.


Bulbs in the Basement Geraniums on the Windowsill: How to Grow and Overwinter 165 tender plants by Alice and Brian McGowan

Every year about this time I bring in my houseplants. There are always a few tender perennials that look so nice yet that I think I’d like to bring them in too.  And how about this plant over here…could I overwinter that inside?  As I was looking up plants that overwinter well again last year (a yearly search) I saw a reference to this book, and found it via Amazon’s used book service.

It has a huge list of plants that will do nicely inside, or that can take in and keep through the winter, bringing them back into bloom in early winter.

All the information you need is here, including what a tender perennial is, and a nice chapter called “Overwintering 101” which talks about the environments indoors that will suit plants.  Find out how to take cuttings, how to prepapre and entire plant to come indoors and what to do about pests.
Wonderful watercolor drawings show you how to do everything.


Simply Beautiful Rubber Stamping 50 Quick and Easy Projects by Kathie Seaverns

I’ve managed to do Christmas Cards each year for the last couple of years and I have fun and really like them.  I haven’t managed to do birthdays though, and some of it stems from lack of design inspiration.

I think my cards may be a little busy.  It takes me several hours to do each one.  Tons of thought.  With no artistic sensibilities.

This is where rubber stamping comes in.   If you have the stamps you can make wonderful little scenes or features and just color them in with all the pleasure of a five year old who didn’t know they had no talent, but how they did love a crayon and coloring book.

Simply Beautiful Rubber Stamping has fifty projects with ideas simple and more complex.  You can easily adapt any of the projects to your own needs.   I love her color choices and layouts.