Friday, 28 June 2013

Regarding Resourcefulness

As you may be aware, I work at a library. Mum and the Siblings come in on Thursdays to help out with odd jobs around the library, and sometimes one of those jobs is Rearrange The Display Walls For The Season/Holiday/Programme/Etc.

Our (actually, mostly everyone's) Summer Literacy Programme theme this year is Digging Holes And Undergroundness And Things.

There is shockingly little content in the poster-room having to do with that sort of thing.

So we had to be resourceful.

While I worked the end of my shift, Mum & Co. put up some flowers (with children's and authors' names on). After a curry break at home (we live ninety seconds from the library) we went back armed with printouts of book covers and things.

After we'd stapled the covers to the wall, we realised that we needed More Stuff. Luckily Mum was able to find a springy/summery poster and we stapled it to the wall. Unluckily, it cut off extremely abruptly on one side - it was half of a giant posterbannerthing. We were unable to find the other half.

Our half had trees and a sun and words:
 'A good book'
 Obviously there was SOMETHING missing.

'We could put words above it,' Mum suggested. 'Dig into a good book.'

We were about to do that until we saw the problem with capitalisation -

'Dig into
A good book.'

That doesn't work. Unless:

'Now, my fellows
Dig into
A good book

But that might have gone over the children's heads.

Just then Smallest Sister (D) pointed out that she knew more or less where the other half of the poster was. We encouraged her (vociferously) to go and find it, then.

She came back a few minutes later with the other half.

The other half reads '. . .never ends.' and has on it. . .a picture of an autumn-leaved tree. And a winter tree. And snow.


We ended up making The Classiest Arrow Ever to put next to the poster. Our display looks like this:

A good book ---> (there is a book on the top of the shelf below)

Better than snow.

After that there was the small matter of Not Having Any Other Posters Which Go With This Theme. So we rummaged through the poster drawers some more.

After a short time, Mum pulled out a poster of the Justice League (DC is my sworn enemy, but our Avengers poster is in the teen section right now) and had a Brilliant Idea.

A few minutes later, D and Mum and I were sitting around a tiny table in the children's section, surrounded by scissors and pens and colourful paper.

Some time after that, our masterpiece was finished. Pictures will be posted eventually, but I shall endeavour to use words to do justice (no pun intended) to this magnificent thing.

Superman is holding a small gardening spade. Green Lantern has a blocky diamond pickaxe and a tiny plastic yellow beach pail. Wonder Woman's lasso has become a gardening hose. The Flash's lightning-bolt emblem has turned into a golden spade, and Batman, of course, is holding a Bat-trowel. (That one was my idea. I'm rather proud of it.)

Aquaman has nothing.

I'm hoping to conduct negotiations with people and snatch the Avengers poster for our nefarious purposes. Tony Stark will look amazing with a tiny plastic pail.

Friday, 8 March 2013

Regarding Culinary Magnificence

Well, maybe not quite. I made some things on Wednesday, though, and they were very tasty. I started off with an Earl Grey Panna Cotta, which was super easy and very yummy. While I was waiting for it to chill I made meringues (which I whipped by hand, whee!) and custard (from the meringue-caused yolks). The meringues were delicious, but I got the custard much too hot and it curdled. Oh well - two out of three isn't a bad turnout, I think! I finally got my hands on Nigella's new cookbook yesterday and am planning to make the Nutella Panna Cotta from that (because why not?).

In other news, I've finished the first of the Song of Ice and Fire series and have started (sort of) on the second. My new book (Warriors #5.1: The Sun Trail) came by post on the day of its release, so I've been reading that as well! I picked up 'Anansi Boys' from the library, too - but I should get through 'Neverwhere' first, seeing as the first part of the radio play will be broadcast on the sixteenth (insert insensible noises of uncontrollable excitement here).

 On a possibly less productive front, I've been chiselling away at the new RuneScape quest ('The World Wakes') which is apparently the most important quest released so far! It's been pretty amazing, but the battles can be frustrating. I think it took me about thirty tries to get through the first big fight, but after that it got easier.

I'm continuing to work on The Book (or rather the construction of its universe). I've got some pleasing things lined up but I need MORE. Always more. Everything should be hugely grand and magnificent by the time I've finished.

 Oh, and I saw SKYFALL a few weeks ago! It was very, very good - perhaps the best Bond film so far. It made me want to go inhabit Scotland for a while.

And now: an abrupt ending.


Wednesday, 16 January 2013

Regarding Achievements and Anticipation

I'm all caught up on the main Warriors storyline now. I started 'Bluestar's Prophecy' after finishing 'The Last Hope' and was pleased to find that the Special Edition books may help fill in a lot of gaps in the family trees. There are a few lineages on the official site that go beyond what's covered in the main series, and I've been meticulously adding to and correcting the information I took away from those. I'm actually quite proud of myself for having managed to put (some of) my scribblings into a format which is (possibly) actually comprehensible by the average human brain (I think). I'm excited for 'The Sun Trail' but I also really want to see what happens next in the story of the cats by the lake! Patience, as always, is the key.

I've been finding the most delightful obscure music lately through Pandora - my current favourite channel is Sarah Jackson-Holman, and I've trained it to play a selection of other interesting things such as 'Requiem Waltz' by Emily Jane White, 'In Your Dreams' by Dark Dark Dark, and 'Pretty Little Head' by Eliza Rickman. My mum also discovered Mika recently, and I love 'Underwater'. (I think that the latter is probably the only song on this list that you can actually find online.)

Also, I have put some digital words down on digital paper and have officially started writing The Book. It's very satisfying. I'm a page and almost-a-half in and I've already got a footnote. I actually drew some things, too, a few nights ago: sketches for Mobster Putter and Tabby, my parody universe based on books by Cynthia Rylant (with illustrations by Arthur Howard). Yes, they are books for small children. But you must know that I also checked out some of the Eloise books from the library when I went to work this morning and I have thoroughly enjoyed them. I do not put myself above reading books for small children as long as they are brilliant books. In fact, I quite enjoy them. (I'm also working on a portrait of the Eleventh Doctor in the style of Lauren Child.)

I became totally distracted while using Google Maps on Monday and ended up touring Dartmoor (well, a very small bit of it) using the road-view feature. I went along a lovely road and found a) breathtaking landscapes and b) what appeared to be wild (or feral) ponies. I was very pleased with this.

My mum made amazing gluten-free banana bread today and I put lingonberry jam on mine (of course!) which led to a discussion about PLANTING LINGONBERRY BUSHES IN OUR GARDEN. How magnificent would that be? While looking online for places to buy bushes, we also discovered a fruit (THE FRUIT OF THE FUTURE according to one source) called the Hardy Arctic Kiwi. We may be forced to buy and grow some out of sheer curiosity.

I also changed the font of my blog header because Calligraffiti causes it to load temporarily as Comic Sans and I just couldn't let that happen anymore.