Posts Tagged 'books'

New Bookshelves

I have a lot of books and Norm has some books so together we have a lot of books. When I moved in with all my junk 3 years ago, we reassigned my bookshelves for board game, Lego, and craft supply storage. My books stayed in their boxes and eventually moved to under the basement stairs. And that’s where they stayed until a couple of months ago.

We had talked about bringing them out before but we didn’t know where to put them. There wasn’t a free wall in the living room, dining area, game room, guest room, or desk room (aka the office). We realized that the only room that we might be able to rearrange was our bedroom. So we thought, and we measured, and we imagined, we measured again, we did some googling, we measured again, and then we went for it.

We looked online at Ikea, knowing that would be the fasted way to start this project, but we started our physical search at a locally-made furniture store in Westminster. We figured we would be able to find beautiful, well-crafted shelves and support the local community at the same time. The pieces were beautiful, and we had the option of what wood and stains we wanted our shelves to have. They would be made right in town, and would only take 8-10 weeks to make! I was like, “Ok, perfect, sounds great!” But Norm was like, “8-10 WEEKS?”

So we left and went to Ikea. On a Sunday afternoon. And picked out three Billies. They were build and secured to the walls by Monday night, and we had all the books upstairs and organized by the end of the week. The natural light in our room is amazing and during the day it’s easy to find exactly what you’re looking for.

But night time is a different story. We have a couple of lights next to the bed but they aren’t bright and the shades restrict how far the light is thrown. So Norm ordered some light kits off Amazon, and had those fully installed 2 weeks later. He even mounted a wireless light switch for the shelves next to the regular light switch!

We still have some books scattered around the house, and we’ve slowly been collecting them and adding them to the new shelves. I love that my books are out for easy perusing again. And Norm loves that we have a place to add new books to.

2013: a Review.

I started 2013 with a fantastic list of resolutions, and  it turned out to accurately describe my year. OOPS! So for my only post this December, I’m going to reflect on those “goals” and offer up a year-end review.

1) Eat More, Exercise Less.
-I didn’t run or roller blade or bike ride or promise to partake in a 5k and I spent almost no time at the beach this summer even though I bought a beach sticker. I did walk a lot with Stephanie but only until it got chilly outside aha. Then she tried to convince me to join a gym with her and I responded with a sad face and hoped she wouldn’t bring it up again. I ate so many hot pockets that I hot-pocketed myself out. I ate a lot of pizza and a lot of mac&cheese. Om nom nom. SO GOOD!

2) Don’t leave Massachusetts.
-While I didn’t make it to California or NYC (as I secretly aspired), I did visit Vermont a half dozen times. So many times, in fact, that I made new friends (multiple), on top of one of my very best friends (acquired at college. Read: go to college, make best friends).

3) Reading Goal for 2013: 1 Book.
-I finished 3. So while I tripled my goal, it was a pretty pathetic goal and nothing to be proud of.

4) Drink more Soda.
-I think I drank about the same amount of soda. Although my dental hygienist did suggest I cut down drastically, or limit soda to meals instead of for a breakfast snack, for the sake of my teeth. Yeah, I didn’t do that.

5) Run Desert Sand into the Ground.
-She died. And allegedly went to the car graveyard down the street from my house but I’m going to check into that. Her replacement, Green Car, has no problems to report (yet). And because I was determined not to be swindled, I made out very well when purchasing her. I’m not saying my actual salesman loved me, but I left happy and that matters more. To me.

6) Continue to Live with my Parents.
-Success! The only child, and oldest child, still bunkered down at home. Yes, my brothers make fun of me. Yes, it makes it hard to bring random men home since I’m not allowed to have boys in my bed. And yes, I’m basically obligated to watch Panda whenever my parents go out. But at least the rent is cheap? (SO CHEAP!)

7) Spend Frivolously.
-I started aggressively saving this year. Then my car needed replacing and my savings went with her. Then it took me a couple of months to get back on track, with insurance and excise tax and all that jazz. But I’m back on track, and only a dozen new dresses later!

8) Neglect The Tragic Whale: Blog & Shop.
-So, this happened. I shut my shop down during the winter, spring, and summer. I haven’t blogged, really blogged, in months. This was never my intent. My sincerest apologies to any readers left.

9) Dress Down, Every Day.
-Uhm, so there was a span of time where I wore the same pair of jeans for 3 weeks without washing them, and with visible food and smutz on them. Coupled with sweatshirts I pulled out of the bottom of my laundry basket, AKA the place I hide my sweatshirts from myself when they really, really, REALLY need to be cleaned. Because they have spaghetti sauce or chocolate or salsa down the front. It was a rough year.

10) Allow the World to Crush Me.
– Success! I already said it was a rough year (see above sentence). And for a while it literally felt like a great pressure was pushing down on my shoulders, which made it hard to breathe and then sleep and then think. But with my world-class crew of doctors I was able to get everything in check! Even though I was being pushed down, I pushed back. So I guess, in the end, I won.

BAM! In your face, 2013!

Anna Karenina

I recently discovered that Anna Karenina, probably my favorite giant Russian novel, has been made into a movie. In my excitement I sent a mass text to 20 of my closest friends, including the one I was sitting next to. This is the stick-figure dramatization of the conversation that followed with my brother:

And in case you haven’t seen it yet, here’s the trailer!

It hits the US November 16th. And like every film I’m dying to see it will only be in select theaters.

You just can’t make it easy for me, can you Movie Industry?

Books: not just for reading!

Several long weeks ago, my friend asked if I would make an e-reader case for him. Just a zipper pouch, something simple. While I’ve made some sketches and picked fabric, I haven’t done it yet. (Sorry, Jabe!)

But I did successfully make a case for my own Kindle!

I took a hard cover book I wasn’t planning on reading again, spray glued the pages together, and cut a Kindle-sized indent into it.

Looks like a book:

But surprise! It’s 300 books!

BEST OF ALL, I can leave it laying around in my car and don’t have to worry about someone breaking in to steal it :)

Kendra’s Library

Recently, my friend Kendra sent me a suggestion for a new whale story. And this is what came of it:

Kendra’s Library… A Tragic Whale Story

Like any intelligent whale, Kendra was always looking for ways to expand her knowledge and better herself.  And what better way than to petition for a library in her town?!

But she was unable to gain support in her community.
“We don’t have money in the budget,” one town official said.
“We could barely afford this new neon sign pointing towards the town hall,” said another.
“It will never be!” said a third.

But Kendra wasn’t about to take no for an answer. She called on the town to help her raise money for the library.

It took a long time and many bake sales, car washes, and grants, but Kendra finally collected enough money to build her library! And because she hired an independent contractor, instead of the town contractor, the library shot up almost overnight.

The officials that tried to keep her down were so pleased, they offered to let Kendra cut the ribbon on opening day. “As if I wouldn’t,” she thought.

Whales of all ages rushed through the doors and admired the shelves and shelves of books. No one touched them, though. They were waiting for Kendra.

She carefully selected one and slowly opened it. Disappointment spread over her face. Not a word could be read! The water was causing all the ink to run!

The ink started drifting around in the current and some got in Kendra’s eye. Within days she had developed a nasty eye infection.

The infection spread to her brain, and it wasn’t long before she succumbed to it. Kendra was never able to enjoy the library she worked so hard for.


Hello, I’m Kerry! Maker. Sewist. Fan of all things bright.

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It's Fluff! Curious, master napper, likes to try new veggies.


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