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Saturday, December 31, 2011

2011 Book List

These are the books I read in 2011. Tomorrow starts a new list!

  • Steven Naifeh and Gregory White Smith; Van Gogh: the Life (NF)
  • Toni Morrison; Beloved
  • David McRaney; You are Not So Smart (NF)
  • Ray Bradbury; Fahrenheit 451
  • Philip Mould; The Art Detective (NF)
  • Rebecca Skloot; The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks (NF)
  • Wolf Mankewitz; A Kid for Two Farthings
  • Edward Dolnick; The Clockwork Universe (NF)
  • Barb Schwarz; Home Staging (NF)
  • John Robison; Be Different (NF)
  • Jean Naya: Staged to Sell (NF)
  • Lawrence Anthony: The Elephant Whisperer (NF)
  • Bill Turnbull: Confessions of a Bad Beekeeper (NF)
  • Ransom Riggs; Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children
  • Bill Bryson; I'm a Stranger Here Myself (NF)
  • Richard Settersten: Not Quite Adults (NF)
  • Alice Ozma; The Reading Promise (NF)
  • Matthew Algeo; Harry Truman's Excellent Adventure (NF)
  • Leonard Sax; Boys Adrift (NF)
  • Aldous Huxley; A Brave New World
  • Jan Struthers, ed; Women of Britain, Letters from England (NF)
  • Xinran; China Witness (NF)
  • Starr Osborne; Home Staging that Works (NF)
  • Chip & Dan Heath; Made to Stick (NF)
  • Joshua Wolf Shenk; Lincoln's Melancholy (NF)
  • Leonard Sax; Girls on the Edge (NF)
  • Rachel Ferguson; The Brontes Went to Woolworths
  • Roger Housden; Saved by Beauty (NF)
  • George RR Martin; A Game of Thrones
  • Nora Ephron: I Remember Nothing (NF)
  • Veronique Henderson; Color Me Confident (NF)
  • Rachel Friedman; The Good Girl's Guide to Getting Lost (NF)
  • Xinran; The Good Women of China (NF)
  • Gregory Benford; The Wonderful Future That Never Was (NF)
  • James Geary: I is an Other (NF)
  • Xinran: Message from an Unknown Chinese Mother (NF)
  • Maryrose Wood; The Hidden Gallery
  • Tony Horwitz; Baghdad without a Map (NF)
  • Connie Willis; Doomsday Book
  • Elizabeth Strout; Olive Kitteridge
  • Madeleine L'Engle; Penguins and Golden Calves (NF)
  • Mary Roach; Packing for Mars (NF)
  • Maryrose Wood; The Mysterious Howling
  • Joyce Dennys; Henrietta's War
  • Stuart Brown; Play: How It Shapes the Brain, Opens the Imagination, and Invigorates the Soul (NF)
  • Jasper Fforde; One of Our Thursdays Is Missing
  • Amy Chua; Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother (NF)
  • Agatha Christie; A Pocketful of Rye
  • Joyce Dennys; Henrietta Sees It Through
  • Tony Horwitz; A Voyage Long and Strange (NF)
  • Matthew B. Crawford; Shop Class as Soulcraft (NF)
  • Agatha Christie; Murder at the Vicarage
  • Leonard Mosley; Backs to the Wall, the Heroic Story of the People of London during World War II (NF)
  • Barbara Demick; Nothing to Envy: Ordinary Lives in North Korea (NF)
  • Steve Corbett: When Helping Hurts; alleviating poverty without hurting the poor and ourselves (NF)
  • Simon Winchester; The Map that Changed the Word, William Smith and the Birth of Modern Geology (NF)
  • Richard Stearns; The Hole in our Gospel (NF)
  • Alexandre Dumas; The Three Musketeers

Friday, December 30, 2011

Ione, a knitted hippopotamus



When I saw the hippo pattern in Susan B. Anderson's Itty Bitty Toys, I knew immediately that I wanted to knit it, but I was still working on my blanket project.  When I finished that, I requested the book from the library again.  It took almost two months to become available - a popularity well deserved.  The patterns are beautifully written - so easy to follow!  (If you don't knit, you may be thinking, "Are there hard to follow patterns?"  The answer, unfortunately, is yes.  Some designers are better than others at pattern writing.  It's like being able to teach and do.)                                                                          

I named my hippo Ione (eye-own), after one of the nemiads (water nymphs).  If you've ever watched a hippo twirl in the water like a ballerina, you'll agree that they are water nymphs.  Ione will be a  playmate for my baby visitors.  In between visits, she'll goof around with Lumpy.

Ione was knit in less than a skein of Baby Bee Twist, an over-purchase for a baby sweater I made in 2010.  I never seem to believe that a baby sweater will use less than one skein of yarn, and do not always get around to returning the left over skein.  Usually, but not always.

There is a giraffe in that book.  If I had any yellow or orange-ish yarns around, that would be on my needles tonight.  Ione was that fun to knit!

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

thoughts on: Van Gogh, the Life

Van Gogh: The LifeVan Gogh: The Life by Steven Naifeh

Van Gogh was a complicated, demanding, and offensive individual, and Naifeh and Gregory White Smith do not shy away from this.  Unlike many popular portrayals of the great artist, here we meet a man less misunderstood by his family and more alienated by his own difficult behavior.  Sympathy runs both ways - for Vincent who is unable and unwilling to behave in a manner which would allow the closeness he desperately sought with others, and for his family, especially his brother Theo, who were emotionally and financially drained by the demands of an adult son who would not support himself and left a trail of broken relationships behind him.  It is this conflict which dominated Van Gogh's life - his desire for close familial bonds with either his own family or one he invented, a dream made impossible by his own obsessive and overbearing nature - and much of the narrative is devoted to the way this cycle repeated itself throughout his life.

Artistically, it was interesting that the painter considered a master of color and landscape so long resisted either.  Despite pleas from his brother, he insisted upon drawing pen and ink portraits for years, despite his lack of skill in this area.  He was drawn to what eluded him, both in life in art.

Vincent's mental illness, compounded by syphilis and alcohol, is explored as it was revealed at the time.  In this way, we see Vincent as both he saw himself and as others saw him.  I think that is the brilliance of this biography - being able to feel for both Vincent and those who did care for him; not judging or romanticizing either; knowing that great art came from great pain and longing and that none had the means of easing that pain.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Rambling about Reading

I have been lax in writing up my recent reads.  The list in the side bar is updated, but I've skipped telling you about the last several books I've read.  I'd been copying my thoughts from my Goodreads account, but I haven't updated there either.  I got out of the habit, I suppose, while I was busy with the home improvements.  Okay, I got out of the blogging habit altogether.

Right now, I am half way through a massive new biography of Vincent Van Gogh.  I would be further along if I had not left it at my mom's house over Thanksgiving.  My mom lives on the east coast.  I don't.  It was a library book.  ARGH  I annoy myself.

She mailed it back to me, but it has not arrived yet.  I am hoping the delay is just the post office being so busy this time of year, not that the book is lost.  Which would be bad.  Even though nobody else wants to read this book from the Anythink.  It is a brand new biography, featured on 60 minutes, and I have one copy out, renewed twice, hopefully not lost in transit, and my husband checked out the other copy so I could continue to read it, and nobody else has requested this book.

(Unlike season 6.2 of Doctor Who, which has 3 people ahead of me on the wait list.  The Anythink, which I've ranted about before, has a fantastic dvd collection, and often long wait lists for them.  The books, not so much.  They also have a problem with people stealing dvds.  Please don't anyone steal Doctor Who before I get to watch it.  Please!) 

Anyway, Van Gogh.  I love his paintings, always have.  My mom had a print of his sunflowers in our house when I was growing up.  I have a poster of a harvest scene I bought at a big exhibit a few years back.  I was very excited when I heard about this book.  (Tying all my rambling interests together, I heard about it because I am a Doctor Who fan, and was reading a Doctor Who thread on Ravelry - knitting site - about the episode where the Doctor meets Van Gogh.) 

I am finding this book very interesting, but I have to say, Van Gogh was not exactly like I imagined him - not all tortured but benign.  I feel incredibly sympathetic towards his family.  He was an incredibly difficult son and brother and friend.  Still, fascinating, but not in the, "Gee, I bet we would have been friends if he'd been my neighbor," sort of way. 

(If there are books in my list that you want to hear about, let me know, and I'll write it up.)

A Rough Eared Monkey


I have the most trouble with monkey's ears.  They always turn out wonky.  Last night, when I was making this cutie, I decided to try not turning the ears inside out while stitching them.  Instead, I whipstitched around the edge, and let the rough edges show.  What do you think?  I rather like the way they look.

This monkey will be a going away present for a one year old, so I hope the ears hold up to chewing and rough handling.

(Lumpy is on the left.  He looks like he needs a bath.)

I did not name this one, which is difficult for me.  As soon as they have faces, I want to name everything I make.  We were watching a movie about the Stone of Destiny (that was also the title) being liberated from Westminster Abbey by young Scottish nationalists in 1951, so I wanted to name him Ian, after the main character.  But I didn't, so this is not Ian.  This is a monkey who will hopefully be loved and named by a little girl.  

Update - 2/11/12 - Her mom texted me to say that "Boots" is her toddler's favorite stuffed buddy, the only one who is still in the crib with her every morning, usually in her arms.  That makes my crafty heart happy.

Baby Sizes?

This is my favorite baby sweater to knit.  I've made it several times over the past seven years, most recently a year ago in the same yarn.  (Hobby Lobby Baby Bee Sweet Delight)  I love the simplicity of the design, with just that bit of detail around the yoke.  It's not too bulky.  It goes with anything!

There is, however, one problem:  I don't know what size it is.  The pattern says it is 0-6 months.  What does that mean?  Some newborns are tiny, and some six month olds are 20lbs.  I know it is not newborn sized.  We have this bear doll which is about the size of a 7-8 lb baby, and it is way too big for the bear. I don't even know if the sleeves are in proportion to a baby's girth at this size, because the instructions are not specific.  They just say to knit to desired length.  So I just guess at how long I think a baby's arms are.

I've knit it as a gift, received thanks and assurances that it fit, but I've never actually seen a baby wear it.  For all I know, it has never fit a baby recipient.  That is about to change.

This time, I made it for a knitting friend.  I've asked her to tell me how much her baby weighs when it fits (I know it is too big right now), and to tell me if the sleeves are the right length.  Plus!  I asked her to measure her baby's head when the sweater fits, so I can make a matching cap!


It is so nice to have sympathetic knitting friends who don't find all of those instructions bizarre when given a gift!

(That is not Lumpy in the photo.)

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Lessons Learned Today

1.  If you apply heat (like an iron set to cotton) to those end panels of your kitchen cabinets - y'know, the cheap laminate ones - the fake woodgrain piece comes off.  It's very thin plastic.  As thin as paper.

2.  Nail polish remover, which eats the finish off real wood when you spill a drop, does not degloss said fake woodgrain cabinet end panels.

It was a craft fail day today.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Angora Sweater Pillow

A friend kept telling me it was easy to make a pillow from a sweater.  She has made several, but I think she is more talented than I am, so I wasn't convinced.  Wrong!  It was super easy.  My big fear -  the whole thing unraveling and falling apart - did not happen.

We bought sweaters at the local thrift shop.  This one was an angora blend which I think had been washed on the wrong setting.  It isn't completely fulled/felted, but it is rather dense.  It looks like it shrunk length-wise; maybe starting life as tunic length.  Or maybe that is how it was made.  Who knows?  I washed it when I first brought it home, on the wool cycle, so it was clean and waiting for me.

Can you see the sequins?  So not something I would wear, but for a pillow, it is just right.  I love the softness, the cables, the colour.  I think it is perfect for winter.  So cozy. 

Because the knit was so dense, I did not make an inner pillowcase for it.  I just sewed straight lines around the front panel, left an opening, turned it, stuffed it with fluff, and hand stitched it closed. 

I am already looking forward to making more pillows.  Most of mine are a decade old.  Time to freshen things up a bit. 

Friday, November 18, 2011

Loving my Crafting Space

We did two major things to our basement this fall:  we knocked out a huge built in bar, and we replaced the carpet with laminate flooring. 

The bar, like all horizontal surfaces in our house, seemed to have a gravitational pull of its own, collecting clutter from every passerby.  I have hated it all eight years we have lived here, because it used up a good 40 square feet of the room.  I wish I could find the photos of it.  It was not hideous, just huge, two levels of tile countertop, one bar height, one counter height.  The base was drywall; it was built in when the basement was finished by the prior homeowners. 

Now that it is gone, we have a dedicated craft space.  I have a table of my own, and my daughter has her drafting table.  I never had the luxury of being able to leave works in progress laying out before now.  That often meant I just didn't start something, because I didn't want to get out the sewing machine, gather the supplies from their homes in various rooms, set everything up, be interrupted, not get back to it, and have to put everything away undone so we could use the table for something like breakfast or dinner or schoolwork.

Not anymore!  Now all the craft supplies are in one space.  Yep, the sewing supplies, the glues, the papers and paints, the fabrics, the bits and bobs I collect thinking I might make something out of them.  They all reside in the basement now.  (Not all the yarn has made the move yet.)


I took the sewing machine out on Wednesday to line the Hogwarts bags, and did not put it away when I was done.  Did not get back to it yesterday, but since it was still out, today I finally made a sweater pillow.  I know I would not have made the pillow if the sewing machine had not still been sitting out.

I love having this space so much that I am going to show you what it looked like today, as I made the pillow.  It's a mess.  Usually, I wouldn't want to show my house looking messy, but I think you will appreciate seeing my space in action.  I meant to take photos of it last week when I had my Craftastic friends over.  There were six of us, all working on our own projects while chatting and snacking - loved it!  However, I was holding a baby as much as I could, so I forgot to take pictures.

(To help you visualize, the bar was located where my sewing table is.  It covered most of that window.  Huge.)

Hogwarts House Bags, Lined and Ready

Ready for giving.   I lined them on Wednesday. 

I love how the Ravenclaw bag turned out.

I am less happy with Gryffindor. 

Gryffindor was knit as instructed; Ravenclaw I changed to a basketweave texture.  That change made the bag less stretchy, sturdier, and slightly shorter.  I was able to pop the lining into it no problem.

The Gryffindor was a different story.  Because the knit fabric wanted to pull in or bunch up along its vertical lines, I added interfacing to the lining, to stiffen it.  That resulted in a stiff and crumply bag.  So I tacked the bottom edge of the lining to the bottom seam of the bag.  That helped a lot, but it still is not as nice as the Ravenclaw.

This would not bother me so much if they weren't going to the same home, where they will invite comparisons. 

Kid-Made Gnomes

We had a copy of this book about gnomes in the 70's.  I am sure it was given away long ago, but gnomes, like so much of the 70's are back.  (Owls, even more so.  I keep seeing owls everywhere.)

When I started planning my basement remodel, I began looking at a lot of decorating blogs, and the ones whose style I most liked were the Scandinavian bloggers.  I don't read any of the Norse languages, so it's all looking at pretty pictures for me.

Anyway, gnomes either never stopped being popular in Norway, or they are enjoying a resurgence there like they are here.  On one of the blogs I saw a cute kids' craft to make gnomes, so when our little friends were visiting last week, we made gnomes.  Except they called them elves.






They were just the right balance of not too hard and not too quick to make, so I thought I'd share them here in case any of you are looking for something to fill one of the upcoming school break days.

The set to the right were made by a five year old.  I love the bangs she gave herself!  She made one to represent each of her sisters and herself. 

They are made from scraps of paper, wrapped around a toilet paper tube.  We used scrapbook paper that was left from a different project.  Wrapping paper would glue more easily, I think.  The hat is a square of fabric, tied at the top.  Those were scraps from a friend, already cut.  So this was a no cost project for us!

Below is big sister, with her gnomes.

(The walls look purple with the flash, and I didn't bother trying to fix it.  I was lucky I remembered to take photos at all.  We also sewed some toys, and I totally forgot to take any pictures of those.)

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Laundry Room: Done, and Fabulous.

I love my "new" laundry room/mud room/pantry.  Seriously, every time I leave or come home, I am instantly happy with how this room turned out.  It's the pass-through from the garage to the rest of the house, so it gets a lot of traffic.

We bought this wardrobe at IKEA to replace both the closet and pantry shelves my husband knocked down.  It fits perfectly in the space, and holds so much!  It was our biggest expense, but worth it.

Why would I want a closet removed?  Because it was so close to the washer/dryer that I had to stand to the side to open their doors, and was constantly backing into it while moving laundry from one machine to the other.  That's why.

I did not take before photos, because I knew I had taken photos of every room in my house a few years ago.  When I went to look for them yesterday, the entire program was missing from that computer.  So you'll have to settle for my descriptions of the before.  Sorry.

Open shelving, in an L shape hung on part of the wall where the wardrobe now stands, and on part of the wall where you see Trixie's little bed.  Open shelving looks chic in magazines where pretty glass jars of pasta and coffee sit neatly.  Shelves of cereal boxes, chips, and tuna cans looks sloppy.  Add school books and art supplies, and it is a disaster zone.

Worse were all the shoes that I would trip over to get to the cereal.  My family likes to keep their shoes near the door, and keeping them tidy was a source of daily conflict. 

The floor used to be sheet vinyl that was peeling up, scratched, and stained.  Now it is nice, clean ceramic tile.

Above the washer and dryer there used to be a shelf with mismatched old kitchen cabinets sitting on it.  And a lot of goo from laundry detergent.  I would like to put a new cabinet there, one that fits properly, but haven't found one in my price range yet. 

That small door is my daughter's laundry chute, in case you were wondering.  I say it is hers, because she is the only one who uses it.  The rest of us have hampers.

While I'm explaining things, the bottle on the floor is white vinegar.  I use it instead of fabric softener, and also use it to prop the washer door open when it is not being used.  Front loaders tend to get stinky if you don't.

Oh, Trixie's bed - we leave Trixie in the laundry room when we are all out of the house for any length of time. She is accident prone if unattended.

An unexpected benefit of removing that closet, which reached almost to the window sill you see here, is that the whole room is brighter.  A fresh coat of white paint helped, too. 

Other than a cabinet for over the laundry, the room is done.  I'd like to hang something on the wall about where Trixie's bed is, directly opposite the door into the family room/kitchen.  If I find something, or make something, I'll let you know.

I've thought about putting an extendable drying rack where the closet used to be, over the dog food container.  I'm as yet undecided about that, though.  It would be nice for hats and gloves when it snows, but I'd still hang my clothes to dry in my bathroom. 

I consider those last things decorating decisions, not remodeling ones.   So in my mind, the room is done enough to show it off.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Blocking Mizzle


Most of what I knit doesn't need blocking, but shawls do.  I washed it on the hand wash cycle, and spread it out to dry.  I just patted it into place on my sweater racks, no pins or wires.

I love the way it turned out!  

The pattern, Mizzle, was free.  You can download it from Ravelry.  It was a quick and easy knit.  Just the kind I like - something I can knit while watching tv with my family.  I thought it would be perfect to show off the colour variations in the yarn without turning out stripey or splotchy. 

I did change the pattern on the outer edge.  I wanted it more open, so I did this: 
row 1:  k2 (k3, yo, sl1, k2tog, psso, yo) k5
row 2:  k2, purl across, k2

The yarn, which I won from What's Up, Cupcake, is "Snowflake Sock"  from Little Red Bicycle.  100% superwash wool, hand dyed.  I have to say, when I was knitting this, I had doubts about whether it would be wearable.  The yarn was not "next to the skin soft."  However, washing changed its feel entirely.  It is now soft and light and cozy, just what you'd want in a shawlette.  Or mini-shawl.  Or neckwarmer.  Wrap.  Thing.  Whatever you call it, it's done!

Monday, November 14, 2011

365 At the Playground

Swinging
Running
Sliding
Not exactly sliding.

365 Sea Lions

Last free day this year.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

365 Knitting my prize

This is the yarn I won in What's Up Cupcake's giveaway.

Knitting for Christmas After All

The Ravenclaw bag is done, at least the knitting.  I think Luna would like it.  Instead of being given for her birthday, I'll be giving it at Christmas.  The Gryffindor bag will go to my littlest niece, who likes to be Ginny Weasley.

I still need to line both bags.

For Ravenclaw, I decided against the chevron I'd originally planned.  Instead, I purled the blue squares which keeps the knit fabric a bit flatter and sturdier.  I also knit the motif on the back.  The Gryffindor only has the emblem on one side, which I now regret, as I'm giving them to sisters. 

This is the back, with the dogs enjoying the sunshine.  (My floor is not quite as dirty as it looks.  Trixie had just been pulling tufts of fur off her mountain lion.)

Monday, November 7, 2011

A peek at what has been keeping me busy

New floor, new paint, new furniture. 
Both the laundry room and basement are now done.
I still have lots of "stuff" to put away, though.
More photos to come - my camera has been neglected while I work,
but I'll take some soon.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Just send me to Hufflepuff where I belong.

My niece loves the Harry Potter books, which my sister reads aloud to her, and she loves to play out the stories and create her own.  We played this quite a bit last summer.  She is always her favorite character, Luna Lovegood.  (I chose Mrs. Weasley.)

She told me that when she is eleven (she will be seven later this year), she just knows she'll be sorted into ____, because she is smart.  (She is.)  

That is what I remembered.  I remembered playing lots of HP, that Luna is her favorite character, and that particular sentence, excepting the name of the house.  I filled in the blank with Gryffindor, and proceeded to knit a bag for her birthday gift, imagining the fun it would add to her games.

I was about 3/4 done, and asked my husband for ideas of things to put in the bag, things related to Luna or Gryffindor.

"Luna was in Ravenclaw," was his response.

Oops!  LOL  All I could do was laugh at myself.  I finished the bag anyway, though I left off some of the details.  I'll be starting a Ravenclaw bag soon. 

The pattern for this was free, available on Ravelry, named HP House Fair Isle Bag.  I knit it in Hobby Lobby's I Love This Cotton.  After I knit the Ravenclaw bag, I'll be lining both of them.  Having knit this one, I've decided to go down a needle size for the next, to get a denser fabric.  I'll also be using a chevron chart a friend designed, rather than the checkerboard.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

365 Giraffe

365 Gorilla

365 Hippo, in and out

Free day at the zoo!
The hippo did underwater ballerina twirls before getting out to sunbath.
I watched in delight, but no photos.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

365 Do you knit Christmas gifts?

Not me, at least not this year.
This is for a December birthday.

365 Both Kinds

I have both kinds of dogs:  floppy eared and pointed eared.
Dog ears are so expressive!  


Jeb's ears are like velvet; we love to pet his soft ears.  He loves it, too.
The bandana is a first; he was given it at the vet's yesterday.  
All the techs and the vet told me what a sweet natured boy he is, very cooperative.


Trixie's ears work like radar, pivoting to better track what is going on.
I love the way she hold her nylabone in her paws.  
She only ever chews one end, leaving the other intact for a better handle.

Basement Progress

I love the wall color!  Depending on your monitor, it may or may not look a lovely blue grey.  In person, it is.  As you can see, we have also removed the carpet.  I am borrowing spare garbage bins* from my neighbors, and most of it should be gone (out of my garage) with this week's trash.  After that, we will tear up the padding, and dispose of it the same way.  There is only so much room to store trash, so no point in taking it up too soon.

* Some of my neighbors and friends have two garbage bins.  We only have one, and have never needed a second.  So I am borrowing bins this week.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

thoughts on: Design Sponge at Home

Design*Sponge at HomeDesign*Sponge at Home by Grace Bonney

I don't know why I keep checking out books that come out of blogs I follow.  I always expect them to be more than print copies of things seen or read on the blogs.  This one, like the others I've read, is not. 

There are pretty pictures of many homes, like the "sneak peeks" on the Design*Sponge site.  They seem less personal in print, however, missing the little comments from the homeowners about what they like best about their homes.

Crafts and floral arrangements fill the rest of the book.  Neither goes beyond what you find online, but they are nicely organized and presented.

I like the Design Sponge site.  I hesitated to write about not liking the book, but that seems dishonest somehow.  If you are looking for home decor inspiration, I recommend visiting the site. 

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

365 Elephants and Tigers

Our local zoo has a few free days in the off months - 
two each in October, November, January, and February.  I try to go to as many as I can. 
Today, my daughter and I went after she got out of school.

Elephants are one of my favorite animals.
A new Asian Tropics exhibit is under construction,
and I think the elephants will like their bigger and better place there.
To get them ready for their move, transport boxes have been placed in their current enclosure.

Last year's cubs look grown, but are still full of mischief.
This young tiger was attempting to escape by means of the drain pipe.  
I am happy to say he(?) was not successful, turning back when he realized he could not get his back legs on it without losing balance and falling into the dry moat.

Across the yard, this one happily perched on top of the fence meant to keep the tigers from destroying this particular tree.
Looks pretty proud up there, doesn't he/she?
It's a six foot fence, and the tiger leapt up there as effortlessly as a  big dog on a sofa.


The next free day is only a week away!

thoughts on: The Art Detective: Fakes, Frauds, and Finds and the Search for Lost Treasures

The Art Detective: Fakes, Frauds, and Finds and the Search for Lost TreasuresThe Art Detective: Fakes, Frauds, and Finds and the Search for Lost Treasures by Philip Mould

Mould introduces us to the world of art historians, restorations, and the risky business of buying and selling art through the stories of six paintings.  Through them, we are given a taste of the thrill of the discovering forgotten works, the historical research to authenticate them, and the process involved in restoring them.  I've always been interested in art restoration, and I enjoyed listening to Mould's adventures and meeting the characters he encountered - including a forger, a hoarder, and self taught experts in their fields.

I listened to this on tape while painting my basement.  I'd like to find a copy to look at the illustrations.  I read in another review that he includes before and after of the restorations and side by sides showing the Rockwell forgery.