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Leaves upon the water

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Anybody looking for a handmade leather pipe-carrying bag? I have one I'm trying to sell. It was originally meant as a gift, but it didn't work out, and since it was a custom job I can't return it. Originally designed to carry pipes, but it could probably carry art supplies or other nifty things.

Here's some pics. Drop me a line if you're interested.

Pipe bag 1
Pipe bag 2
Pipe bag 3

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I'm here! I'm alive!

I haven't posted since August, because that was when this year's Halloween costumes kicked into high gear. (And, to be honest, given the volume and complexity of said costumes, I really should have started a LOT sooner than I did, and focused a LOT more on getting them done. Lesson learned. I'll be starting 2015's costumes as soon as we know what they are.)

Last year we did Batman villains; this year we were the Arrow family. I was Black Canary (yes, I was a blonde. Insert jokes about my true self coming out here), Darthsatyr was Green Arrow (the version in the vest and Robin Hood-esque hat, not the CW version) - and I'd just like to point out that he grew the facial hair and it looked awesome. Looks awesome. He's keeping it. ^_^ Our friend A was Huntress, and her daughter L was Artemis. This meant I got to work with all kinds of fun stuff like leather, vinyl, and spandex. I even got a serger, but couldn't figure out how to use it in time.

The party was a bit smaller than last year, but everyone who did come seemed to be having a great time. There was home-infused apple moonshine, and candy corn jello shooters in giant plastic syringes.

After that came my birthday. We were still recovering from the party, so it was pretty low-key, but still lovely. I was just happy to be relaxing and spending some time with Darthsatyr.

Then it was back to work, and scrounging for more freelance work, as my two big projects from the spring and summer are both done. Anyone need a proofreader? It's gonna be a cold winter, I hear...

On the writing front, I did get a few more chapters scribbled out of Beast and Beastliness, so I'll be posting them soon. I also discovered a fic I thought was lost forever - "Hungry," the X fic I wrote for the X/20009 (or was it 2010?) challenge, and which they never posted. (Warning: It is NOT my usual silly fluff!)

So, what have all of you been up to?
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So, the car has been fixed, to the tune of around $500. This got us a replacement seal in the coolant system, and a new belt, plus diagnostics and a coolant flush. Hopefully this will be the end of the car problems for a while.

In general *knock on wood* the Prius has been a fantastic car. Not only is it still really fuel-efficient at over 100,000 miles, but it's given us very little problems. We've had to replace its battery once (not the hybrid battery, thank goodness!), and obviously there was the body work after we got rear-ended. This has been the first time we've had to take it in for mechanical issues that weren't just routine maintenance. That's pretty damn good.


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(I feel like I should post something here about Robin Williams, but I'm still too stunned by the news to say anything eloquent.)

It's August! How the heck did that happen?! I'm starting work on various Halloween costumes -- I don't want to give anything away, so let's just say that I'll be working with an interesting variety of materials, including spandex. This should be a learning experience...but then, last year I didn't think I could turn a zoot suit into a tailcoat, so I'm trying not to panic.

The Prius is in the shop...which is almost a first for this car, despite over 140,000 miles on it. The "Check Engine" light came on back in June. We did an oil change, and the light went off again... until about two weeks ago on a really hot day, when it came on again right before a fabric-scouting trip. This time, we refilled the coolant tank, which was dead empty, and the light went off. Until Sunday, when it came back on...again, on a really hot day. Interestingly, when I turned it on the next morning to get the engine light code read at a local shop, the light was back off.

The codes confirmed there's an issue with the cooling system, so we took it in to be checked out. Here's hoping it's just a leaky hose or something easy and not too expensive to fix.

My freelance work is slowing down. I'm torn between panic over the loss of income and relief that I won't have a ton of work to do while I'm costuming. It's a weird feeling.
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Question for the costumers:

Do any of you know what kind of fabric or other material is being used to make superhero costumes these days? It looks kind of like textured rubber, but seems to mold itself to the body more like spandex.



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So, just in case anyone needed a bit of hope that the world isn't entirely going somewhere in a handbasket, LeVar Burton's Kickstarter to restart Reading Rainbow hit its $1M goal in a single day.

Watch the video. He cries. I nearly cried just watching it.

I don't care whether it's nostalgia, geek solidarity, or the love of reading, but it makes me feel all warm and fuzzy that this happened. Reading Rainbow was a wonderful, joyful program, and I hope it comes back to inspire a whole new generation of kids to love books and reading.</a>

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Happy Star Wars Day! In it's honor, have this fic, with...er, nothing whatsoever to do with Star Wars!

Fandom: Disney's Beauty and the Beast
Rating: PG
Genre: Romance (in every sense of the word!)
Disclaimer: Disney owns the characters and storyline for their version of Beauty and the Beast. I am making no money off of this; it is an affectionate homage to one of my favorite films of all time.

Chapter 9: EpistolaryCollapse )
Links to previous chapters:
Chapter 1: The Bluestocking
Chapter 2: The Beast
Chapter 3: London
Chapter 4: The Ball
Chapter 5: The Fateful Decision
Chapter 6: The Lion's Den
Chapter 7: The Pack of Wolves
Chapter 8: Lion, Fox, and Wolves
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Happy flower time! The waves of spring blossoms are breaking hard and fast, and I have more buds on the white lilac than ever before. Here's a haiku for the First of May, inspired by the huge, ancient weeping cherry tree I pass on my way to work:


Every year, in spring,
This old gnarled and knotted crone
Dons her rosy veil.

In sadder news, RIP Bob Hoskins. "Bye, Eddie..." At least he was spared too long of a battle with Parkinsons.

To end on a somewhat more upbeat note, I'm finally having a bit of a breather after two solid weeks of really intense work, both freelance and the day job. I may even post the next chapter of Beast and Beastliness this weekend!


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Happy Easter, Passover, and 4:20 Day! (As Loup put it, the official holiday of Taco Bell).

This seemed like a good opportunity to post some thoughts about food, in particular, the Paleo Diet, which we had attempted earlier this year.

It's an interesting idea, wrapped in a gimmicky one - eat the way your pre-agricultural ancestors would have eaten. So, avoid grains, dairy, processed foods, sugar, and anything that couldn't be hunted or picked and eaten raw. (Technically, you can eat meat and fish raw - we mostly cook it to get rid of bacteria and/or parasites. And because, for the most part, we've been socitally conditioned to find raw meat gross. But it is edible.) This also excludes legumes, with some exceptions like green peas and string beans because you can eat them raw, and for the latter, you're mostly eating the pod. They claim that both grains and legumes contain anti-nutritives, a claim that I'm not quite sure I believe, given how many people in the world survive on rice and beans.

There is definitely something to be said for avoiding sugar and overly processed foods. I love cheese, but the fact is that most if not all other mammals stop drinking milk for good once they're weaned. And while I have my doubts about the issues with grains and legumes, the sudden sharp increase in celiac and other gluten sensitivies does make me wonder if there isn't something wrong with our modern wheat, at the very least. On the other hand, it's not like agriculture is a recent thing. Humans have been growing and eating grain for at least ten thousand years - doesn't it seem like if that were an inherently bad thing, it would have died out long ago (or we would have)?

Another issue: I try not to get too caught up in the gimmicky aspect of Paleo, since there are other reasons behind the food exclusions. But let's face it - if our hunter-gatherer ancestors stumbled across a stash of Twinkies left by some mischievous Time Lord, they would eat the hell out of them. Which leads me to that other issue. We live in a world full of incredible variety of foods. Limiting ourselves to what our paleolithic ancestors could have eaten is narrowing that variety to a very small range, and ignoring the positive advances we've made. We're denying ourselves all of the rich, inventive, and widely varied flavors that humans have created over the millennia, and that seems like a shame. There has to be a way to enjoy and celebrate that variety while still eating well and being healthy.

It's often said that all Jewish celebrations can be boiled down to "They tried to kill us. They failed. Let's eat." Yes, and let's enjoy the wondrous variety of our world and our cultures, while eating fresh, local, and non-processed foods as much as we possibly can.
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Chapter 1 of 1
Fandom: Buffy/Angel (seasons 7 and 4, respectively)
Rating: PG. Warning: Adult themes
Disclaimer: I didn’t invent any of these characters or settings, especially the IRS. I am making no money off of this, and also am not claiming it as a tax deduction (although it would be awesome if I could…hey, don’t writers refer to stories as their babies?)
Two Certain ThingsCollapse )
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