Thursday, November 14, 2013

The Last Hurrah

The soft coolness of early fall has given way to the bitter chill of impending winter. Weather reports forecast temperatures dipping below the freezing mark and warned of possible overnight frost. That was the push I needed to evacuate my garden of the last of its crops and to finally see what was going on underground.

I had planted some sweet potatoes pieces that had sprouted in my cabinet because I left them in there too long and didn't eat them in time. Two years ago I had done the same thing with a piece a friend of mine was about to throw out. With my first attempt I was so excited and impatient to see the roots, I dug them up before they had fully matured. I didn't know I was supposed to allow the leaves to die back before harvesting them. This time I resolved to be patient and give the plants the time they needed to fully develop and I was rewarded with the roots you see above surrounded by the green tomatoes that were still growing on the vines. In all, I picked over three pounds of tomatoes and dug up nearly four pounds of sweet potatoes. The large one in the center of the photo weighed over a pound all by itself. Not bad for a vegetable garden that appeared to be nearly lifeless.

I haven't decided what to do with the roots yet. I'm toying with the idea of sweet potato pie, mashed sweet potatoes, sweet potato fries or sweet potato chips. Then again I may do nothing, preferring to hand them over to my mother or sister to prepare for the Thanksgiving feast. It would be the first Thanksgiving that I am able to contribute something from the garden that everyone can partake of. I expect that several of the tomatoes will be ripe by then as well and I'll be able to make a salad for the holiday feast. Some that I had picked green a couple of weeks ago finally ripened to a beautiful red this week and went into my dinner salad so some of these greenies should be ready by the end of the month.

It's moments like this that make all the hard work of gardening worthwhile.

Ballo ergo sum
- Gitana, the Creative Diva

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Harvest Time

This is the time of year my husband risks life and limb to harvest the apples in our tree. This is no small feat when you consider my tree, which I purchased believing it to be a dwarf variety, is over 25 feet high. We didn't harvest as many apples as we usually do but there were enough for me to make two apple pies and a couple quarts of fresh apple juice. This year I have a masticating juicer that I have been putting through its paces and it hasn't disappointed me yet. In addition to apples, I've juiced pineapples, carrots and pears. It is my intention to move as far away from processed foods as possible and the juicer is one step in that direction.

Another step towards healthier eating is my dehydrator. Dehydrating isn't something I know very much about but I decided to give it a go for the first time last week using some freshly picked basil. I learned a couple of things pretty fast. One: dehydrating takes a lot longer than you expect; two: dehydrating takes A LOT LONGER than you expect. Because I didn't have a dehydration guide, I had no idea how long it would take to dry my basil. Three batches later I can confidently say that it takes 18 hours...yes, that's right...18 hours to dry basil. This doesn't count the initial washing and drying of the wet leaves before placing them in the machine.

Speaking of that, there was no way I was going to be hand drying several hundred basil leaves by hand with paper towels so I decided to speed up the process by placing them on a sweater rack and putting the leaves in my clothes dryer on air dry (no heat). Worked like a charm. Word to the wise: basil is at its best when picked BEFORE they bloom. That's when the leaves contain the most oil and are the most aromatic. My first batch came from post-bloom plants and the results were not nearly as aromatic as my final batch which came from plants with no flowers on them. My son had suggested I try dehydrating bananas to make banana chips which I think is a great idea but I can only imagine how many days it will take to adequately dry a high moisture fruit like banana.

Hmmm, juicer, dehydrator, vacuum sealer (got that too!) if I could only find room for a pressure canner...

Ballo ergo sum
- Gitana, the Creative Diva

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Glorious, Glorious

A bee samples a golden marigold.
Petunias in their final curtain call.
Basil (foreground) and marigolds.
Glorious morning glories.
Today was a very gray day in Brooklyn, comfortably cool but gray. Although it didn't rain, the overhead clouds cast a sad pallor over everything. Luckily I have a cure for the gray day blues waiting right outside my front door. It brings a smile to my face and greets everyone who passes with brightness and joy. Of course I'm talking about my garden. Although autumn is leaving its mark on her, she fights back with beauty and bounty. Here, take a look. Isn't she pretty?
Hanging plants on my porch.
Asters and Alyssum

Ballo ergo sum
- Gitana, the Creative Diva

Friday, October 4, 2013

Harvest Time

I've gushed on and on about my garden enough times for anyone reading this blog to know I really love it. The feeling of growing, picking and eating my own food is unrivaled. Add to that the beauty of the abundant flowers I also grow -- well, it doesn't get any better than that for me. Rather than gush any further, I'll just post a few photos of my little slice of heaven on earth. These pictures were taken within the last few weeks so it's a good representation of what my garden looks like now. Autumn is upon us and summer's bounty is waning but until frost kills off the last of my greenery I'm going to enjoy it to the max. Then I'll put all my pots and shovels away and spend the winter planning next year's garden.

Nope. It doesn't get any better than this.

Morning glories on my fence.
Bi-color corn. It was good!
Petunias in one last burst of blooms.

My garden goodies.
Jalapenos, a pepper and 12 inch cucumbers .
Dwarf apple tree.

Marigolds -- lots of them!

Ballo ergo sum
- Gitana, the Creative Diva

Friday, August 30, 2013

Winged Bling

Butterfly Bling - Variations on a theme
In my continuing quest to work my creative mojo, (see last post here), as well as to use up some of my expansive stash of supplies, I have decided to use the some of my RTU's (go here or here or here to see previous posts explaining this). In this case it began with a piece of sprayed watercolor background that I had left over from a previous project. To that I added some ribbon, a little rubber stamping and some bling to make it shine and I loved the result. Not content with just one card, I decided to create four more in different colorways.

The butterfly stamp, from one of the very first stamp sets I bought when I began card making more than six years ago, was stamped with VersaMark watermarking ink on a piece of white cardstock with a satin gloss to it. I then colored the image with either shimmery chalks, PearlEx pigment paint powders or a combination of the two. The backgrounds were created by spraying Stamp Zia's liquid watercolor paints on a piece of watercolor paper, drying between colors with a craft dryer (a blow dryer works fine, too.) The base card was specifically chosen to coordinate with the watercolor background. The flourishes, stamped with Inkadinkado Gem Stone Flourishes clear acrylic stamp set (#98977), were inked in a coordinating color and studded with self adhesive rhinestones that picked up some of the colors in the background.

To see photos of the individual cards,as well as the rest of my work, go to my Photobucket album here. Thanks for reading. Comments especially welcome.

Ballo ergo sum
- Gitana, the Creative Diva

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Reclaiming My Mojo

I can not believe it has been nearly six weeks since my last post and the summer is nearly gone. Time does not fly. On a slow day it careens past us at breakneck speed . At other times it moves so quickly it can not be seen by the naked eye. And yet it happens every day. That must explain why I look in the mirror and don't recognize the woman who looks like my mother and wonder what happened to the real me.

In the meantime I've been very busy with my garden, which always brings me great joy, and I've been trying to get back into a crafting groove. To that end I have been creating cards as well as some little embellishments. One of the recurring motifs of this summer has been the dragonfly. I have never seen so many dragonflies in my garden as I have seen this year. They are unsurpassed in number and size as evidenced by the photo of a huge dragonfly that visited me last month (Beautiful colors on the body, don't you think?). I love the look of dragonflies and in the past have purchased rubber stamps and embellishments of dragonflies to use in my crafting. This time I thought I would try my hand and creating my own little dragonflies embellishments. Using a paper punch, I punch out several dragonflies from acetate and colored the wings with Stazon solvent ink. I punched out more dragonflies from card stock, cut off the wings and colored details onto the bodies with gel pens. Then I glued the paper bodies onto the acetate dragonflies and bent the wings up at a slight angle. Voila! Little dragonflies that measure only one inch square.

I also created a card for an upcoming challenge card swap with Oriental Stamp Art Yahoo Group. The challenge was to create a card with only the colors black and turquoise. I love limited color challenges so I signed up and created the card you see below. I stamped the envelope with watermark ink and dusted it with blue-green pigment powder. The subtle sheen changes from blue to green as you move the image in the light.

In a departure from the standard A2 sized cards (4.25 x 5.5 inches) I usually make, I have begun using a smaller 3.5 x 5 inch format which lends itself very well to a quick and informal kind of note. It so happens I have a box of blank cards waiting for embellishment so when the mood strikes me, I just grab one or more and I can start crafting. The other two cards on this page were the result of these creative urges. In both cases I used items from my stash of supplies that been seldom used in the past so I'm starting to rediscover the treasures hiding in my drawers and closets.

My intention is to continue on this creative bent and get back to the level I had reached a few years ago. It was a fulfilling, joyful and magical time for me and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Really now, who wouldn't like a little more joy and magic in their lives? I hope you'll come along for the ride.

Ballo ergo sum
- Gitana, the Creative Diva

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Summer Is Upon Us Once Again

It happens to me every year. I make no plans to go anywhere or do anything with the hope of actually relaxing around my garden but inevitably my time fills up with all manner of unexpected things, personal and otherwise. At times like this you will notice large gaps in my blog posts. It's been two months since my last post and my garden has gone through quite a few changes since then.

Orange Daylilies
First of all, it rained constantly throughout the month of June, so much so that we came close to breaking the record for the rainiest June in NYC history. As a result, my garden, indeed the entire city of New York, is green and blooming. I'm overjoyed that I haven't had to drag out my hose once this year so far and my garden is growing like gangbusters.

In an earlier post, I had just started building a raised garden, something I had been wanting to do for some time. It is well underway now and boasts crops of onion, garlic, cilantro, lettuce, basil and marigolds. (I'll have to provide more updated photos soon. These were taken weeks ago.) In addition, I built a trellis for my climbers like cucumbers and beans. The trellis frame is constructed of 1/2" schedule 40 PVC pipe and connectors (available at any good home center store) and covered on one side with standard chickenwire (harder to find but not impossible).
The biggest challenge I have faced with the raised bed so far is my neighbors cat who seems to think that my crop of basil is the perfect litter box. The next challenge will come once the rains abate and the summer sun reigns supreme. Lettuce and cilantro don't tolerate heat well so I have erected a tunnel frame over the bed that I will cover with shade cloth to reduce the heat on my delicate veggies. I'm also planning on putting some of the leftover chicken wire from my trellis project around the bed. I'm hoping once the bed is fully protected, this will deter the cat from using my patch as his personal toilet.
Tiger Swallowtail butterflies.
Dwarf apples.
In other news, my flowers are magnificent, my apple trees are fruiting well and I'm still blessed to be visited by some of Nature's most beautiful creatures as they pass through on their way to parts unknown. Last week I saw a pair of beautiful Tiger Swallowtail butterflies chasing each other around my backyard. I was fortunate enough that they hung around long enough for me to grab my camera and snap a hasty shot of them before they flitted away. To see more pictures of my garden as it has progressed this year, check out  my Photobucket slide show here. As I add photos to the Photobucket album, this slideshow will keep updating with the new images. I'm seriously hoping to be able to get back to my crafts table soon and start creating some cards. It's been so long since I've made any that I'm wondering if I've lost my touch. We shall soon see. As always, I'll be taking photos and posting them here and on my Facebook fan page, Gitana the Creative Diva Enjoy. Ballo ergo sum - Gitana, the Creative Diva

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Another Mother's Day Card

(Click on photo to view a larger image.)

Okay, now I really want to crow. I have managed to create two Mother's Day cards ahead of schedule. For me, that's nothing short of amazing. My inspiration for this card was a notification from one of my Yahoo groups that the weekly layout challenge was due. I haven't participated in a challenge in quite a while but I decided to give this one a whirl and, as is my custom, get more bang for my creative buck by making the card do double duty. Not only do I fulfill the challenge requirements, I have completed a card I needed to make anyway. An Asian theme and a rubber stamped image were among the requirements for this particular challenge so I pulled out all the stops. My last post featured a card I made for my mother. This card is for my sister. It just so happens that my sister loves Asian design also so this card was a no brainer.  

The layout challenge for this week was a criss-cross  pocket card. You can see a tutorial for this layout here. I used a different Asian themed origami paper on the two front pocket flaps and fabric paper on the back of the card. For the inner pull out card I chose translucent vellum so that the pattern of the paper could be seen through it. After stamping and embossing the central image of the woman, I used my Cuttlebug and an oval die to cut it out. Also cut out the larger black oval layer and edged it with gold paint. The belly band is a one inch length of cardstock wrapped around and adhered into place with sticky tape. Gold bamboo and Asian coin stickers are added to the belly band and the central oval is adhered into place using double stick dimensional foam to make it stand off the page. Stazon solvent ink is used to stamp the sentiment on the vellum. Once dry, solvent inks will not smear on non-porous paper such as vellum. A goldtone eyelet and tassel are added to the top to provide a pull for the card. Gold flower stickers add a final touch.

Ballo ergo sum
- Gitana, the Creative Diva

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Ahead of Schedule

I'm one of those people who always underestimates the amount of time it will take me to complete a craft project so I tend to put it off until the last moment. This invariably leads to either a) a sleepless night trying to complete something that should have been started days earlier, or b) an unstarted/unfinished/ unsatisfactory project that won't be ready in time. That's happened more often than I want to admit.

This year I took the bulls by the horns and actually sat down to make a Mother's Day card a week ahead of need. In order to make the process go a little faster, almost all the elements I used, with the exception of the green leaves, were things I already had on hand.

  • Card base -- DCWV Mariposa Box of Cards collection
  • Flowers -- Petaloo
  • Black swirl rubber stamp -- Hero Arts Florentine Scroll Background 
  • Sentiment Stamp -- Impress Rubber Stamps
  • Ink -- Tsukineko Versafine Onyx Black (sentiment and scroll),  Versamark Watermark Ink (scroll), Ranger Distress Ink (shading around oval and leaves)
  • Three-part butterfly (solid contour, black veining and body) -- Memory Box dies
  • The solid blue butterfly contour was colored using pigment inks and gel pens before the black veined wing details were attached. The body was encrusted with self-adhesive rhinestones. 
  • I designed the leaves in a drawing program and cut them with the eCraft electronic cutter. 
  • Florentine Scroll stamp was inked first with watermark ink then with onyx black ink. Image was then embossed with black ultrafine embossing powder. Because of the "dimples" in the card's texture, the impression looks somewhat distressed and antiqued.
It just so happens that one of the Yahoo groups I belong to is sponsoring a giveaway drawing to celebrate National Scrapbooking Day. The requirement for entries is that it must contain one or more elements created on an electronic cutter using MTC software. Well, the leaves on this card were created in precisely that manner so I entered my card into the drawing. Hey, who knows? 

Ballo ergo sum
- Gitana, the Creative Diva

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Keeping Myself Grounded

(Click on a picture to view a larger image.)

 photo teapottip2.jpgAnyone who has known me for more than five minutes knows I love my garden. Getting down and dirty with my plants is my favorite form of meditation. During the cold months I find myself poring through seed catalogs, gardening magazines and Pinterest for all manner of garden inspiration. As it turns out, Pinterest was the inspiration for today's garden project -- a tipsy tower of plant pots. Here is the original image that inspired me on the left. My rendition of it is on the right. Looking at them side by side I notice that mine looks short, stumpy and less elegant by comparison and yet I like it all the same. Next time I'll use taller, more elegant pots but for now I'll content myself with my happy jumble of petunias and violas.

Next on my agenda of garden projects is my raised garden bed. I procured the PVC lumber and had it cut, screwed it together and placed it in my front yard where it will serve as the new home for my vegetable garden. I have bought the landscape cloth, soil and amendments I need to fill the bed and have plants ready and waiting in the wings. I've been longing for a raised bed for so many years. Now I've finally gotten off my duff and done it. More on that project in the near future. Stay tuned.

Ballo ergo sum
- Gitana, the Creative Diva

Monday, April 22, 2013

Getting Into a Small Creative Groove

(Click on any photo to view a larger image.)

I've been pretty busy lately doing a whole lot of creative things that have nothing to do with my crafting. This is the time of year that consumes me with preparing my vegetable and flower gardens...gardens that are not confined by the limited plot of dirt I have to cultivate but that spill over into every conceivable pot and receptacle I have. Then there is the business of spring cleaning which, when you have a dog that constantly sheds, never ends. And then there is my baking, something my family and I have been enjoying immensely for the past several months. There is never a lack of bread or cookies in this house. As satisfying as these endeavors may be, they can not substitute for the singular enjoyment I experience when I sit at my crafts table with paper, rubber stamps, ink and imagination. This week I carved out a few slivers of time and played for the first time in many months.

The pieces you see here are smaller than my usual creations. The card top left is only 3.5' x 5", smaller than my preferred A2 size of 4.25" x 5.5". The central motif was created on a 1.75" x 2.75" card by masking out the moon and brayering different colors of ink to create the background. The mask is removed, the bonsai branches are stamped in black and the edges are sponged with black ink. This layer is adhered to black cardstock just a scant 1/16" larger all around, creating a thin black frame. The turquoise layer is stamped with an Asian text rubber stamp using a glue pad. Ultrafine black glitter is sprinkled over the glue and set with an artist's fixative. This is also layered onto a thin black frame which is  gilded along the edges with a paint pen. Gold bamboo motif outline stickers and tiny hot glue rhinestones asymmetrically frame the central motif which is centered on a black card.

To the right you will see the results of a random moment of inspiration. This is an ATC tri-shutter card. Although I have made tri-shutters before (see here and here for my previous examples), they were always in the standard A2 size. This tri-shutter, when closed (as in the top photo), is no bigger than an ATC, measuring 2.5" x 3.5". I placed a quarter next to the closed card to show the scale of the completed work. It took a little imagination and a good measure of fractional math in order to adapt the full size template of this layout down to this size but I think the result is quite pleasing. No extraordinary efforts here...just basic black stamping on card stock with a little die cut butterfly, some white gel pen accents and some tiny rhinestones.

It feels good to manipulate the paper again. Now to find the time to do so on a more regular basis.

Ballo ergo sum
- Gitana, the Creative Diva

Friday, March 29, 2013

Epic Kitchen Fail!

(Click on a photo to view a larger image.)

Ugh! I won't even go into details. I'll just say that everything I did in the kitchen today did not go well. I heated up leftovers -- they were dry. I tried baking a bread in the oven instead of my bread machine -- it was a crusty bowling ball. I tried baking a pound cake -- it rose so high it spilled over the edges of the pans. The batter that hit the floor of the oven starting burning and smoking so I opened the oven to slip a cookie sheet on the lower rack to catch the spillover but that was enough to sink the cakes. They were a hot mess. Truly, my oven and I were not on friendly terms. Just take a look at these pictures. They're awful. I had been planning to send a cake to my mother-in-law's house but I can't do that now. To add insult to injury I now have the unenviable task of cleaning the burnt bits inside the oven.

There was one saving grace behind all this. In spite of the ugliness of the cakes, the remnants were still tasty and my husband was gobbling it down by the handful. In my efforts I used up nearly all my baking ingredients so now I'll have to do a supermarket run to stock up again. Hopefully my next attempt won't be quite as pitiful. C'est la vie.

Since my unfortunate day in the kitchen three days ago I am proud to say that I have successfully baked a loaf of white bread and a marbled banana bread. The ugly pound cake has been devoured. Here's hoping the demons in my kitchen have been appeased and will haunt me no more.

Ballo ergo sum
- Gitana, the Creative Diva

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Blown Eggs

(Click on photo to view a larger image.)

Waaaay back in January I posted a brief tutorial on the art of blowing an egg. In the span of time from then until now a dozen different things came up that distracted me from actually doing anything with all those clean and empty eggs. In spite of the fact that Easter is right around the corner, I finally decided that I wasn't going to rush them. I want to take my time with them and let the eggs speak to me in their own good time. I also decided that regular paint would just not do so I wanted to experiment with something that would really make them special. It so happens that this decision coincided with my acquisition of some pretty nail polish colors -- colors I would never wear on my fingernails but would look awesome on something else, let's say, an egg!

Above is a photo of two eggs I have worked on. The burgundy one in the foreground has about six layers of polish on it to achieve depth of color. The stripes are accomplished with 1/8" super sticky tape that was applied to the clean egg before the color was painted on. There are eight sections in the design and every other section was given two additional coats of clear glittery polish. The protective top layer of the tape was then carefully peeled off, revealing the original white color if the egg shell. Microfine gold glitter was applied over the tape and pressed lightly with a finger to assure adhesion. A clear semi-gloss polyacrylic finish was sprayed on to protect the color and prevent the glitter from flaking off. I haven't decided if it is finished yet so I'll let it hang around my work table a bit longer.

The teal one has only just begun it's transformation. Still don't know what direction it will go in but no doubt it will be beautiful when it's done. Just look at that deep rich color. It is definitely better suited to an egg than to my fingernails.

I'll be sure to post more photos as I make progress on these eggs. Stay tuned.

Ballo ergo sum
- Gitana, the Creative Diva

Sunday, March 17, 2013


(Click on any photo to view a larger image.)

Angel and her boyfriend, Michael.
Angel with her very tall recruiter.
On Monday, March 11, 2013, my youngest child, Angel, began an adventure that will forever change her life. She left home to become the first member of my family to join the Coast Guard. It has been her dream to become a marine biologist since elementary school and she believes she will get closer to that goal by joining the military. She will spend the next two months in basic training in Cape May, NJ with more than 40 other recruits from around the country. If all goes according to plan, she will graduate from boot camp on May 3, come home for 5 days then ship out to the next phase of her training where she will spend the next several years.

Big brother goodbye bear hug
Although it can be difficult for some parents to let go of their children, I've never had that issue. I suppose it's because I don't think of it as letting them go. I think of it as letting them get on with what they have been trained to do, that is, to get on with their lives and become responsible, contributing adults. Sometimes that means they will be far away but I have faith that they will never stay away for too long before they make a pit stop at the old homestead. Distance can not sever the ties that bind.

And so it was that my youngest hatchling flew the coop, armed with a backpack filled with essentials and a bag of oatmeal raisin cookies that she and I baked in the wee hours of the morning. Her training requires that she be on a nearly total communications blackout for the first few weeks, and then only minimal written communications. For someone who lived connected to her cell phone, that may be a tall order but this is what she signed up for.

My baby is gone. A woman will take her place.

Ballo ergo sum
- Gitana, the Creative Diva

Monday, February 25, 2013

Busy Days

(Click on photo to view a larger image.)

Me and Sal
A view of Sal's property.
This month has been one for the books, one in which I've been kept busier than a tap dancing centipede. Earlier this month my husband visited a friend of ours up in the mountains of NY to find that he was recuperating from two back-to-back surgeries, two post-surgical infections and four separate trips to the hospital in less than a month. When he returned home, my husband was visibly shaken and very concerned for our friend Sal who appeared thin, frail and weakened from his medical ordeal. He didn't like the fact that Sal did not have anyone to care for him during the day and, frankly, was afraid he might die if left alone. Long story short...I spent nine days with Sal, making sure he rested, ate, took his medications and didn't overexert himself, a tall order considering this is a man who does it all, does it well and is fiercely proud and independent. During my time in the mountains we experienced a storm that dumped over a foot of snow, turning everything in sight into a living Currier and Ives scene. I ate eggs fresh from the chickens, woke to the sound of a cock's crow and reveled in the sight of the snow-clad mountains in the morning sun. It was truly heavenly.

Bowling with my young'uns.
Angel's Valentine Cupcakes
I returned home just in time to go bowling with my kids and help my daughter and  her boyfriend make cupcakes for Valentine's Day. Well, truth be told, the only help I offered was to supply the ingredients, the kitchen and eat the cupcakes but, believe me, that's enough. Being away for over a week left me with mountains of mail, both snail mail and email, to catch up with, baskets of laundry and hundreds of dog hair dust bunnies. That's not to say that my family didn't clean up after themselves but, honestly, does anyone's family clean up after themselves well?

Somehow in the middle of everything that was going on, I managed to do some baking and whipped up two delicious pound cakes from a recipe given to me by my oldest daughter's mother-in-law a few years ago. These cakes had my husband swooning, they were that good.

Coast Guard cadet on board
One of my surprise birthday cakes.
The highlight of my return home was my birthday weekend. I had expected a very quiet day with no fanfare whatsoever. Instead I received dozens of calls, email, text messages and Facebook well wishes. I was surprised with two birthday cakes and several gifts. My son cooked me a shrimp dinner and I was plied with wine and spirits. The following day we went to dinner at my sister's house where a going away dinner for my youngest daughter was being held to commemorate her imminent entry into Coast Guard boot camp.

Puppy patient in recovery.
My remarkable month was not without its down side. This morning I fell down the basement stairs...again...and was lucky that I didn't break a bone. I did, however, sprain my left shoulder badly enough that it swelled up to the point that I couldn't move my arm and the pain was close to unbearable. Fortunately, it's  nothing that rest, pain killers and some muscle relaxers can't take care of in time. Then my son and I had to take our dog to the vet to have her teeth cleaned, a procedure that requires she be anesthetized as if she were having surgery. My son was there to reassure his dog, I was there to reassure my son who was beside himself at having to leave his "little girl" alone with strangers for most of the day. We went to breakfast where I managed to get ketchup all over my light pink top and was witness to some quiet drama going on between two waitresses vying for the same customers and tips. In short, it was a day filled with minor mishaps and major annoyances, but even this day has its silver lining. It's over now.

Ballo ergo sum
- Gitana, the Creative Diva