Today was a beautiful day – unusually sunny and warm. We all stayed home for various reasons, although it’s a Friday. We hugged. I biked. Older Kid made another miniature book and some amazing fairies for their library. Younger Kid made a cool battle shield. We went to the beach together and it was warm enough to really enjoy wave running. And we saw whales! This is the first time, although we’ve been looking for seven years. There were three, and they kept jumping, showing their backs. One jumped half-way out of the water, and another spent a couple of minutes just flipping his tail.

Life is good.

Another awesome day

Woke up to a hot breakfast (two dishes! fancy eggs and sandwich), tea, cleaned counter, unloaded dishwasher, cute notes, and a pom-pom on my spot courtesy of the kids.

Took a nice relaxing bath with a fun book (Disaster Inc, Caimh McDonnell) and bubbles in a cleaned bathroom.

Arranged and hang two more memories frames, in that blank spot over the couch that’s been annoying me ever since last October-ish when the construction stopped and I started doing Zoom meetings on the couch (really Skype and Telegram, but who’s counting).

Put some stickers onto the cat shelf over my head because taking it down and covering it in wall paper is more work than I feel like doing.

Got a light crafting project going – exciting.

Am listening to a fascinating class by Linor Goralik on costume and just heard a great story: Apparently during the Meiji period Japan started electrifying far-off regions. The effect was about the same as it is for cell towers – people got worried in inverse proportion to education levels. There were stories that electrical wires must be painted with the blood of virgins. As a direct response unmarried women all over rural Japan started to blacken their teeth, at great expense, to look married in case an electrician comes by (before electricity only married women blackened their teeth).

Life is good.

Good Things This Week

  • I have a really comfortable reading place on the veranda again
  • Victoria Goddard published yet another novella and it’s NOT about making Cliopher Mdang OR Jemis Greenwing Even More Happy And Victorious (not that I’m not eager to find out what amazing things will happen to Cliopher Mdang next)
  • Saw the Anselm Kiefer retrospective at SF MOMA again, this time without kids, with a good friend, and using their audio guide. It’s really hard to look away from his paintings, I keep coming back to them and seeing them in my mind’s eye.
  • Saw Gerhard Richter again (because it’s the same exhibition, yes) – the way he makes oils look like pastels is uncannily beautiful and absolutely mind-blowing in all of the very diverse ways he painted.
  • Had a really good conversation
  • Got started on the craft station. Turns out it’s a whole-family project, which somehow makes it less stressful and more fun. Also, there’s that warm and fuzzy feeling of being supported 🙂
  • Started watching Fall of Civilizations: Han Dynasty by Older Kid’s request. They took notes! It’s really interesting. Will probably listen to the other episodes on Spotify – the video is nice, but I’m a text person.
  • Have I mentioned SF MOMA? Really amazing exhibit on furniture (mainly chairs, a few lamps, very few peculiar objects).
  • Made a super-quick chicken soup that Older Kid actually ate, which is great, because they were sick and didn’t want to eat. Feeling Parentally Accomplished.
  • Singing teacher claims I have a wide and unexplored range. This is going to be fun. Turns out learning things is my hobby – who knew I even had one?
  • Showed kids Oscar. They laughed.

Tree Nook

This was my first book nook, made entirely from scratch. Геройству что виною было? Скупость. I just can’t bear the thought of paying over $200 and getting something that isn’t perfectly the way I imagined it.

Apparently my idea of the perfect cozy place is an apartment building populated by people I like. This surprised the heck out of me. I blame the influence of my MIL and her children’s stories.
Of course there’s a cozy balcony with a cat and a table for drinking tea while reading

Sunny Town

This is another CoolKatz Craft book nook, the Traditional Christmas Intrigue. I’m not a Christmas person.

What made this one special is the kids participating. E made the person in the window (intended to represent them) and decided that their best friend lives in the white house. Y made the gondola and decided that the person to live in the magic-and-books house must be E. They themselves, obviously, occupy the cat house on the right.


This is Venice Alley from Cool Catz Craft, but I decided not to follow directions.

This Venice is fully submerged on a regular basis, which is why it’s inhabitants are mercats and octopuses. The summer months, when water retreats and exposes the buildings, are giant lotus season.
I am particularly happy with how the black cat came out. You can juuuust see it peeking around the corner.

It reminds me of my favorite day in Venice, June 7 of 2002. I delayed at St. Mark’s Square to see what the pigeons would do when it got covered with water. Turns out the pigeons, unlike myself, can fly and simply moved to the masts of the boats moored nearby. I, however, walked back to my hotel in the rain, waist-deep in warm water. It was exhilarating.