A couple exciting things have happened upon our inbox this week and they seemed worthy of sharing in blog form.
The first was this adorable photo from a couple of happy customers in NYC:
Carol Vinzant is a wildlife rehabilitator and she sent us this shot of an orphaned baby squirrel. She says she's using the Berkley Illustration image to build confidence in the little guy and figures it gives him incentive to work hard and reach for the stars. Hopefully he'll also learn how to properly knot a western tie. Her blog features some interesting tidbits about viewing animals in the wild which is good reading for us, especially after our recent adventures in otter tourism. I'm pretty bummed that we don't have the space for the free replica orca featured on March 18th.
If that wasn't already Ryan's feel-good art moment of the week, we also randomly received this image from Hans:
Wow, Hans, wow! You should have seen the look on Ryan's face when he saw this. It was a cross between flabbergastery and humblement. Yes, I realize neither of those words exist in the dictionary proper but they are the exact words that describe the expression. Here is the reference point, in case you need a refresher. No word yet on whether Hans has picked up the "Dancing in the Dark" falsetto through the transfer.
In the other inbox...you know, the one that is on the front porch and holds tangible items and parcels, we received this book today:
I've been jonesing for good wildflower spots for a while now so I don't know what took me so long to get a guidebook. I'm sort of bummed because it looks like most things don't really get cracking (that means "blooming" in wildflowerese) until July but I guess that gives me plenty of time to plan my routes and picnics. HOLD UP! I just noticed the glaring lack of possessive apostrophe on "Oregons". Gah! Good thing I have a purple Sharpie handy.
If you happen to have photos of Berkley Illustration images meeting wildlife, permanently affixed to your body, or just a good wildflower spot in the Pacific Northwest, we'd love to hear about them!
The anniversary escape to the wilderness was a success!
I'm excited that I finally get to share my anniversary present to Ryan:
The "X" (that's ten to you Romans and a kiss to you letter-writers) is a vintage sign letter from 26 Olive Street. The piece de resistance below is an original by Ian Dingman (you may recall we also have this piece by him too).
First of all, if you have ever stared and Ryan and I from behind, this is almost identical. I'm even one inch taller than him! Second of all, we celebrate our dating anniversary starting from a night we camped out on the roof of his old carport watching the stars and such. Can you believe that I didn't commission this? Could this piece be any more perfect? EEEEIII! Thanks, Ian, for cosmically intercepting our anniversary vibes and getting it down on paper before I even thought of it!
Meanwhile at the cabin and surroundings:
And yes, in case you were wondering, we did end up seeing one lonely otter. Observe my CSI photographic evidence:
Using my expert sharpening software, I am able to get a closer look at our river friend:
I find that reds seem to translate really oddly from screen to screen and also look different on the monitor from the actual print version. I'm feeling a little too tired to do an official photo of the real print what with all that labor intensive camera clicking and importing and sizing, so here is the lazy-woman's version:
Man, I didn't even flip it so it's going the right way. La-zy. Actually, we're supposed to be going out to dinner in a few minutes so I'm being a bit of a speed-blogger.
Only 20 of this babies will be printed so get 'm while the little guys are still tadpoles.
Perhaps inspired by the marine life month, I've been hard at work trying to secure a location for Ryan and I's ten year dating anniversary this weekend. Before we heard about our tax bill, we were planning to go here:
But after the tax man had his way with us, we decided we would have to settle for here:
I don't think it looks like too bad of a consolation prize, do you?. Allegedly there is a family of otters that live on the riverbank next to the cabin so perhaps Ryan will be inspired for next month. If I'm lucky, maybe I'll score a family portrait photo to share for the next time we meet too...
It's been a pretty good month over here for newsprint media. After a starring role on the cover of the Portland Mercury weekly newspaper a couple weeks ago, Ryan's art is the cover-boy for the newest edition of Portland's Willamette Week.
Pretty! (I can say that as I am Lucy, not Ryan.)
In another Berkley-in-print related development, this enticing offer came in the mail today:
What do you think? It's a pretty unique name for a university so I think a lot of people might want to buy one. The gold and blue really work well together with the name too. I have to make my decision by May 1st!
Somewhat related to this: When discussing potential future names of our children (no, I'm not pregnant but thanks for asking), Ryan and I agreed that we both like the name Calvin. Unfortunately right after this agreement was made, we realized that his name would then be Cal Berkley. Whoops.
I was eager to report on last weekend's viewing of the Handmade Nation Portland premiere, but our lovely burg has been hit with a sudden dose of springtime and typing indoors just didn't seem like a reasonable chore.
After a couple days of acclimating to the sun again, however, I'm ready to share.
If you are lucky enough to live a town with a screening of Handmade Nation, you need to go! Faythe Levine's labor of love is not only chock full of interesting and relevant talent (including some friends!) but it's also a well made film with a great soundtrack. I dare you to not be inspired to make something after watching it. Double dare you, even.
Faythe mentioned in her Q&A that she was shooting for getting the film onto DVD in the next couple month so keep an eye out. I'll keep you posted if I hear anything.
I should also mention that at the Friday premiere (the one we attended) viewers received some pretty insane swag bags full of an almost unreasonable amount of goodness.
Elsewhere in the weekend, my husband went on a day trip to the Emerald City Comicon and all he brought me was this blurry photo of a nuclear Bat family.
[Aside: I've been finding "my _____ went to _____ and all I got was ______" jokes hilarious lately. It all started when I came up with this one for Ryan last week: "My wife went to Ikea and all I got was this lousy LEKSVIK". I found it hysterical and Ryan didn't get it. So...as usual, I'll just sit here and continue to amuse myself.]
Anyway, back to the weekend of handmade festivities, I got to help Cathy and Torie fill some eggs for the new Crafty Wonderland gumball machine (craftball machine?) which was fun and proved super popular at the next day's third birthday celebration for the ol' Wonderland.
...and the rest of the weekend that wasn't spent indoors with the crafty set looked something like this:
Four notes: 1. Cilantro is really hard to draw. I was proud of myself for getting it done without Ryan's assistance. 2. Homemade lemonade is better. 3. I love having outdoor time with friends again. 4. While typing this post I had to look up how to spell "Jamiroquai". I'm not going to tell you why.
This week has been rather non-eventful save for starting to do my aerobics DVD again only to blow out my knee (Hmm...are my joints trying to copy someone else we know?). It appears, then, I'll be looking for some swimwear I can wear in public so I can start doing laps at our neighborhood pool instead. It's quite annoying to be mentally ready to work-out only to have your silly knee stop you from doing so.
As a result of the home-stay, I've been cruising around the interwebs looking for some home decorating inspiration. I'm in that mode where I have so many different projects I want to tackle that I'm paralyzed with where to start. Naturally, that means that I'm finding too many things to distract me. I could really use one of Mary Kate McDevitt's to-do chalkboards (I love them all!).
So, yes, I've been cruising around Etsy quite a bit and I realized I'd been favoriting a bunch of feather related items without even knowing it. Perhaps this is the evolution of the "bird art" trend. As a vegan, I certainly don't condone the way a lot of feathers are collected (especially down feathers), but I think these fine feathers are charming and cruelty free.
Nesting Material - Limited Edition Hand Coloured Gocco Print by annarubyking
I almost bought those merit badges for Ryan because our 10th "dating" anniversary is coming up, but then I found something else that worked even better. Shhhhh... Yikes, I shouldn't have even said that because now Ryan is going to feel pressure. Sorry Ryan!