Sunday, February 28, 2010

Sunday = flea market

I should have known. The fourth Sunday in the month, the day of the big flea market, is notorious for less than wonderful to downright awful weather. Well, it could have been worse. But couldn't the weather today be like yesterday?
Take a look for yourself:

This is definitely not a glorious blue sky. And the promise it was holding was fulfilled. After I had been at the flea market for about half an hour, it started to rain.

A random photo - antique bird cages. This was before it started to rain.

I just love antique doors. Luckily for my wallet, they don't fit in our little farm house.

And this is what the rest of the flea market looked like. At least the exhibitors that were still there. The rest were already packing up and leaving.

I did manage to snag a couple of treasures before I went home, looking like something akin to a drowned rat.

Some ephemera and an old book cover. Nothing inside. Perfect to use! But it got wet while I was carrying it around and the dye came off on my jacket. Ooops.

These two treasures were scored separately. A lovely vintage velvet jewelry box and a fantastic vintage necklace! I was amazed that they match so perfectly in colour, a subdued dusty rose. Much more subdued than my camera would have you think.

I also found a treasure trove of old lace and picked a few pieces.

Well, that was all for this flea market. Too many plastic covered tables - not photogenic and not good for sales, either. But I am happy with what I found and there is always next month!
Have yourselves a wonderful Sunday!

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Evidence of spring

I have been hearing different songs early in the mornings of this week. The birds have changed their tunes. They are singing spring songs.
So, as today is a wonderfully sunny day, I went out to the garden to look for other signs of spring.

What a glorious blue sky!!!

My snowdrops! To think they have been growing underneath all that snow!

The Helleborus are coming too!

Some foxglove - successfully braving the snow.

Swelling buds on the cherry tree.

No, these are store bought signs of spring - some tulips to greet me at the door.

More store bought springiness. I need a bit of colour to brighten the days without sunshine.

I'm hoping it won't be too long now. And tomorrow, the big flea market will take place. Since the weather is promising to be mild tomorrow, I will definitely be going.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Mute Monday is being interrupted for a tour of Swarovski's Crystal Worlds...

Yesterday, I promised I would share photos of some of the exhibits. First, let me quote the pamphlet that is handed out with the tickets:
"Here a subterranean landscape made of thousands of crystals awaits you. Be prepared to embark on a journey that drifts between dreams and reality, where you will encounter fairy tale characters and mystical creatures. These underground Chambers of Wonder, built unter the aegis of multi-media artist André Heller in 1995, house a collection of fantastic installations and glittering works by great artists..."

This is the famous giant face that guards the entrance to these "crystal caves".

I can only really convey a facet of the installations, as they also consist of ever changing light installations, so that the colours you see in the photos are only a moment of the whole.

Inside the Crystal Dome.

Poseidon's Puzzle

Within the Crystal Forest, a huge jellyfish, an installation called Leviathan, by Thomas Feuerstein.

This installation totally blew me away. I could have spent hours in here. This is a spiral consisting of 48 large polygon structures; documenting the fascination and scientific importance of crystals through graphics, pictures and illustrations.

And again, constantly changing colours...

Then, on the way out, you enter the Crystal Stage - the largest Swarovski retail space worldwide (this place is not only brimming with crystals, it is overflowing with superlatives...).

Love these marketing slogans - so poetic.

Talk about artful packaging.

Like a miniature showcase. Reminds me a bit of slides - acrylic frame with a flexible membrane to hold the beads in place.

Eye candy with bling.

Well, I hope you enjoyed this little glimpse of the Crystal Worlds. I think we were lucky to go there at this time of the year. From the look of the parking lots, it must be jammed during the summer months (The pamphlet is available in 19 languages!).

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Sunday - but not to the flea market

This morning, the sun was shining; the sky was blue. Max whisked me off on an excursion. No, we didn't go to the flea market - there are very meager pickings there in February.
So where did we go? Well, take a look at the photos below:

We drove into Austria, right into the Alps; as you can see in the two lower photos.
What were we doing there? Well, we visited Crystal Worlds - an amazing exhibit of art of many different kinds, most of which included Swarovski crystals. This is also where Swarovski crystals are actually manufactured.

I am still blinded by all the bling. Especially all the bling in the showroom/sales room which you have to go through to reach the exit. Great marketing strategy, huh? And yes, of course I bought some beads.

I was totally blown away by some of the exhibits, though. But I have to sort through all the photos we took, so I will share them tomorrow. But go take another look at the first photo - that is a light projection through a facetted crystal, with a colour changer, projected on the ceiling. It was awesome!

Friday, February 19, 2010

another mended heart, work in progress and sign of spring

I made another mended heart. Can't seem to get these off my mind. And I am loving the wire as thread...

This is a piece I am working on presently. Now, what do you think this is going to be? Any guesses?

This is a sign that spring can't be far off. Yes, they are birds. But the special thing is - these are starlings. Starlings migrate. So this means, they are coming back. Sorry the photo is not so good. But if you click on it to view it larger, you should be able to make out the lovely markings on their feathers.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Ringing the bell

Today is a special day.

Today, Barry will be completing his last scheduled round of chemotherapy at the Chemo Day Care Centre at the Princess Margaret Hospital in Toronto.

There is a ritual at the hospital - in that those patients completing their last treatment of chemotherapy ring the bell as they leave. And when it rings, the nurses and volunteers and other chemo patients pause for a moment and applaud.

Today, at about 2 p.m. EST, Barry will be ringing that bell.

And today, at that same time, hundreds of people from around the world will also be ringing bells, to celebrate this moment with Barry. They will also be ringing for family and friends that have been touched by cancer.

Above is the bell that I will be ringing. Maybe, if you are really quiet, you will hear the bells.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Happy Valentine's Day!

Hope everyone is having a wonderful day!

No flea markets in the snow. But I have news of our Round Robin! Actually, I have just received my necklace, after its trip halfway around the world! Mine is the first to return... and it is so incredible!!! What an adventure.
I can't share pictures yet, as Cindy, Sharon, Véronique and Esther have not yet received their necklaces. But it won't be long now!!!
Stay tuned for some eye candy.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

and the snow falls

This is what my world looked like this morning.

What you can't see in this photo is the fact that it is snowing. It has been snowing since the early hours of yesterday morning. Nonstop. The streets are a mess. Traffic is a mess. Cars sliding around. No fun driving to work and back.

The birds are hungry. Constantly. I have been trying again and again to get a good shot of them. Not a chance. Always a flutter.

Two chickadees and a blackbird. All this snow is making it even more difficult for them. Even if I put out a kilo of bird seed (which I did this morning), it gets covered by the snow so quickly.

We will just have to hope that it will finally stop - but at the moment, it doesn't look that way.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Longing for spring - I'm looking for clues... and work in progress

It's that time of year again. I am longing for spring.

So badly, I went out and bought myself some flowers. Aren't these nice?

This is what it actually looks like outside. Only, the fog keeps getting thicker.
I decided to take a look around the garden to see if I could find some clues - some signs that spring might be on its way.

Moss growing on a branch of the old pear tree in my yard. Well - it's green.

Buds swelling on the wisteria. I'd say that is a sign.

Lichen on a piece of very old fence. It's green, but not a sign.

My cats are ever helpful. Casanova and Kiki: "Whatcha find? Can we eat it?"
But no sign of spring here.
While I write this, Captain has jumped up on my lap to have a snuggle - ahem, I beg your pardon - he is watching out to make sure I don't get attacked by mice while at the computer. How thoughtful of him (not that I have ever had that problem...)! Now if I just had longer arms!

Hasel buds - still very tight. Not spring yet.

High up in the cherry tree - I can see the buds getting bigger. Can you see them? Definitely a sign - but it's not saying when.

What else have I been up to?

My very first attempt to play with the enamels I recently ordered. These are torch fired and the colour is supposed to be purple. Just a couple of wires with ball ends and enameled. A first try. Not very spectacular looking. But exciting!

Some more resin components I have been working on...

As for spring, I will have to console myself by looking at this magazine, while I wait for her to arrive.

Monday, February 1, 2010


You know how you often read about how the internet and the computer isolate us? Well, I guess in some cases it may be true. Those people probably don't have a blog.
Since I started blogging just over a year ago, I have met so many of you wonderful people here. Something I am very thankful for. And I have found friends, that I would never have met any other way.

Such as Pattie, who lives way down in Mexico, where they don't have snow... sigh! Pattie and I decided to trade some of our "stuff" and this is what she sent me:

Sea shells, mermaid's tears, lotteria cards, some Mexican fabric, milagros...

and an intriguing little bundle, so beautifully wrapped.

Which contained this wonderful necklace Pattie made for me, to remind me of the beach. She knows I love the beach.

Isn't it lovely! Thank you sooooo much, Pattie!!! You are such a good friend!

Casanova, dosing in the sun.

Captain, taking a sun bath.
My kitties decided to take advantage of the sun this morning. How right they were!
It is snowing again now...