Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Christmas tree ornaments

I bought most these ornaments at the Lauscha hut at the Chicago Christmas market. I went there almost every year, when I lived in Michigan, with students from Albion college. It was always a bit of an adventure what with winter weather and often bitter cold temperatures!  
The "smokers" (Rauchermännchen) (which I purchased at the Chicago Christmas market and at a Christams market in Germany,when we were there one year) are from the Ore mountain area of Germany- which lies in the east of Germany, on the border of what used to be Bohemia but is now Czech republic. It is an area famous for wooden toys and Christmas objects. 

Of course I have a cat ornament. (I think this one might be from Inge-Glass,which is in Coburg, even though I bought it at the Lauscha hut). 

Had to get this glass slipper ornament! 

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Goodbye house

So on Friday, November 22 we drove up to Albion to sell our house. Here are a few pictures from the trip.
A picture of one of the small towns we drove through. 
Quite a few of these towns had huge grain silos right in the middle. 
We had just enough time to split a turkey reuben at Cascarelli's - the only restaurant we went to regularly downtown. This is the sign over the bar. Then it was off to sign the papers and sell our house!
This is the house we sold. Bye bye house. After that we had a bit of time so we decided to go to the "new to us" Bigby's café: 
Pretty nice! Wish they would have opened while I still lived there! 
Then we went to visit a good friend and neighbor AG (and fellow cat-person): here is a picture of her big orange cat Finnegan: 
Then we were off to meet friends from the college who now live in Ann Arbor  - we met them at our favorite Brewpub: The Dark Horse in Marshall. For some reason I didn't think to get any photos from there-probably too hungry and thirsty and busy talking! 
The next day we met our other friends M & D at the Roxy Café in Jackson. It was chilly in the morning. I forgot to get an inside pic so I quickly took this one once we outside: 
Bill with D &M.
Then we were on our way back to Ohio. We passed lots of wind turbines on the way (a different road than the one we drove in on).
wind turbines
After not too long we were back at our new home (we moved here from a smaller apartment in the same complex in June). 
The new casa GK
It was a big relief to sell the house and I still cannot believe it happened so quickly! I'm not sure if we'll ever buy another one. Not for a while at least. After three moves in three years I definitely want to stay put for a while!  

Sunday, August 18, 2013

And Only to Deceive (Lady Emily, #1)And Only to Deceive by Tasha Alexander
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I liked this a lot. Emily, the heroine is very likeable. Her mother is perhaps too stereotypically awful, making Emily seem all the more pleasant. I liked how we got inside her head - her ambivalent feelings regarding her dead husband. I also liked the allusions to the Iliad, which I have yet to read. It seemed obvious to me who she would end up with, but that part also worked nevertheless. I will probably continue to read the series.

View all my reviews

Friday, July 26, 2013

Saturday, July 20, 2013

A few new photos (July 2013)

Bill about to enjoy his marguerita

His and hers margueritas

My new Futon cover from IKEA (for my Lyksele futon) and a new cushion to match.

The home office is starting to come together.

The stuff on display here will probably change quite often till I'm happy with it.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Pictures from our trip to visit family in Bucks County, PA

Tomatoes at the farm ("Blooming Glen") where Bill's nephew Doug works.

Doug (nephew), Jason (friend), Lydia (Bill's mom), David (brother-in-law), Bill & Nancy (Bill's sister).

Orchard at the farm


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David's 1963 beautiful blue Valiant

Interior of the Valiant

David, Nicole (Doug's friend), Bill, Lydia & Doug outside the "Amish Buffet" called "Shady Maple"

David and Jason

My favorite picture: Christian (good friend of Nancy's) and Lydia -- both looking good at 90!

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Where my mind is at: Sunday, June 16, 2013

This is a list of all the tabs I have open on my computer right now

The Society of Spectacle

Guardian article about Debord and his book

Another on-line copy of it

wiki article on "commodity fetishism"

wiki article on "The Society of Spectacle"

A 1973 film Debord made based on the book

Brain-pickings post about the "science of chunking"

Brain-pickings post on the filter bubble

Brain-pickings post on the book "The Information Diet"

Brain-pickings post on Dennis Dutton's "Provocative Darwinian Theory of Beauty"

In other news: we were supposed to have moved into our new apartment yesterday but instead they told us we cannot move until next week.... So we re-scheduled the movers for Sunday, June 23. I sure hope the move happens then! (We're just moving to a bigger apartment in the same complex). On Friday, June 28 we will drive to Cleveland to pick up Lydia (Bill's mom) and then fly to Philadelphia with her to meet up with Bill's sister Nancy, who will take us back to her house in Bucks County where we will be staying for the week.

Right now I must go get my laundry and fold it. Not sure how all of this relates to the "Society of Spectacle".

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Im Nebel by Hermann Hesse

Here's a nice - if somewhat sad poem by Hermann Hesse:

Im Nebel

Seltsam, im Nebel zu wandern!
Einsam ist jeder Busch und Stein,
Kein Baum sieht den anderen,
Jeder ist allein.

Voll von Freunden war mir die Welt,
Als noch mein Leben licht war;
Nun, da der Nebel fällt,
Ist keiner mehr sichtbar.

Wahrlich, keiner ist weise,
Der nicht das Dunkel kennt,
Das unentrinnbar und leise
Von allem ihn trennt.

Seltsam, im Nebel zu wandern!
Leben ist Einsamsein.
Kein Mensch kennt den andern,
Jeder ist allein.

Here's a page that discusses various translations of the poem.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Hooray for A Fool in the Forest favorite albums list(s)!

Thanks to A Fool in the Forest "Best Albums of 2011 list" I'm getting acquainted with some very cool music/musicians, whom I would otherwise probably have never found out about. And yes I am a year behind....

Wednesday, April 17, 2013


Just some links for now:


kundalini & biology (science) 
Throughout this book the term kundalini awakening is used interchangeably with metamorphosis, spiritual alchemy, spiritual acceleration, the inner marriage, the sacred marriage, The Passion and even The Great Bliss. The energy of kundalini could be variously called prana, chi, mana, Baron Carl von Reichenbach's odic force (od), Wilheim Reich's orgone, Ken Wilber's Spiritual Eros, Henri Bergson's elan vital, Tielhard de Chardin's radial energy, Freud's libido, archeus, etheric energy, vital life-essence, vital energy or life force. and even Sheldrake's morphogenetic fields. Also around the world it is referred to as ka, ichor, inua, sila, manetuwak, oloddumare, qi, Tao, ki, aether and quintessence.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

My sun kitties

2013-03-19 11.44.48 by cathie
2013-03-19 11.44.48, a photo by cathie on Flickr.

George is the orange and the grey tabby is our 18 year old Hans.

Monday, March 18, 2013

A quote about DFWallace from a New Yorker article by D.T.Max

"He conjured the world in two-hundred-word sentences that mixed formal diction and street slang, technicalese and plain speech; his prose slid forward with a controlled lack of control that mimed thought itself. "

Read more:

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

More Byngs!!

Here's info about my third cousins three times removed,  John Byng's eldest son:
1) George Henry Charles Byng,
2) Henry William Byng (who was a Page of Honor to Queen Victoria) He met a rather gruesome and somewhat mysterious death: decapitation by train in 1899 (You can read an account of it here if you scroll down a bit. 
3) Rev. Francis Edmund Cecil Byng, 5th Earl of Strafford

Monday, March 11, 2013

Some information about Sir John Byng, 1st Earl of Strafford (1772-1860)

Sir John Byng, 1st Earl of Strafford.
 Can be found here.   He married my 1st cousin five times removed: Mary Stevens Mackenzie.

Here's a picture of their son: Viscount Enfield, 2nd Earl of Strafford, Captain George Steven Byng, who was my second cousin four times removed.

George Byng, 2nd Earl of Strafford


Thursday, February 7, 2013

Monday, January 21, 2013

Some pictures of Hans going for a walk wearing his new jacket

It's been cold here in southern Ohio - so we got Hansi this fleece-lined jacket for him to wear on his walks. He doesn't love it, but he won't let him deter him from his walk...

Monday, January 14, 2013

"catawampus" is my new favorite word

I've just decided - "catawampus' is my new favorite word: 
also catawampous, cattywampus, catiwampus, etc. (see "Dictionary of American Slang" for more), American colloquial. First element perhaps from obsolete cater "to set or move diagonally" (see catty-cornered); second element perhaps related to Scottish wampish "to wriggle, twist, or swerve about." Or perhaps simply the sort of jocular pseudo-classical formation popular in the slang of those times, with the first element suggesting Greek kata-. 
Earliest use seems to be in adverbial form, catawampusly (1834), expressing no certain meaning but adding intensity to the action: "utterly, completely; with avidity, fiercely, eagerly." It appears as a noun from 1843, as a name for an imaginary hobgoblin or fright, perhaps from influence of catamount. The adjective is attested from the 1840s as an intensive, but this is only in British lampoons of American speech and might not be authentic. It was used in the U.S. by 1864 in a sense of "askew, awry, wrong" and by 1873 (noted as a peculiarity of North Carolina speech) as "in a diagonal position, on a bias, crooked." (from: the Online Etymological Dictionary)

Saturday, January 5, 2013

A few snapshots from the end of the old year and beginning of the new

Returning to Oxford before the snow storm on Dec. 26th
Mieze watches the snow
cats and books
Quizzical Mieze
Mieze watching a video clip about fairy tales

Vegan lunch! (hummus, tomato & avocado on a "everything bagel" from Kroger. (They're vegan).