Friday, March 15, 2013

Social Media

With exceptions, caveats, and moderation... I love social media.

The end.

Seriously. I think it is a marvelous tool. And when used properly... hammers for nails, paring knives for apples, seam rippers for seams... you get the idea... when used properly social media can be great.

I am reminded of a woman I was introduced to... when the mutual acquaintance mentioned that I blog and use FB she actually grimaced. Then she made a sweeping motion at me with her hand, and said, "I will never. Do you actually communicate this way with your friends?"

And you know how the right answer usually pops in your head two hours later, in the shower? This time I was happy to readily speak in my own defense, and reply: "Yes! It's terrific. I can stay in touch with people from all over the world. I can discover interests we share in common, and discuss issues that we don't agree on. It's a practical way to manage schedules and events that my children are involved in, while showing support for schools, and causes." And when I saw that she was firmly unconvinced I fell on my sword and added, "And my husband and I love to chat with each other, sometimes even while we are home, together."

_Because what more absurd, silly, superficial thing could two people do but engage with each other at any time of the day, for any reason?_

Seriously, again, our lives are not the same as they were ten, twenty, one hundred years ago. But we are still social beings. I love face to face real time communication, but the circumstances of our lives make it impossible for me to share boba and literature with Tarie, in the Philippines. Social media brings my brother's lives closer, even when they are half a world away. I am no less capable of seeing friends in person, listening, and engaging in the "real" world. But my social world, my life, is enriched by all the resources available. I imagine there was a time, a century ago, when people grimaced at the new fangled thing they were calling a telephone, but in my teens I could make ten cents last for hours, and the time I spent chatting with Geoff was priceless, so why would I miss the chance to engage with him today, in whatever way I can?

{this moment}

A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment.
A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.

:: Inspired by Soule Mama ::

If you're inspired to do the same, leave a link to your 'moment' in the comments, for all to find and see.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

We Prepare For The Faire

Whether you are preparing for Maker Faire, an apocalypse of zombastic proportions, dueling with your frenemies, or just need to decimate a piñata, there comes a time in every life when you need a reliable weapon. A destructive, yet safe, oversized battle axe, a vorpal sword. Something with heft, cushion, and duct tape.

Max has something for you. Let's Make!

Max started making these cudgels, broad swords, hammers, axes, and flails last year. They are fun to use. There is something primally appealing about picking up a large stick and swinging it around, hitting another large stick, and shouting, "Now stand aside worthy adversary!"

If you want to build a fun, affordable, safe(ish) arsenal, then begin by gathering your supplies:

Supply List
foam... pool noodles are great, and can sometimes be found in the thrift shops, and yard sales
tape measure
2 part epoxy
hack saw, and utility knife
access to a circular saw
Duct tape... lots!
a Sharpie

Max's idea to build these weapons was inspired by a cudgel his dad brought home from Burning Man.* Fortunately, we had all the supplies he needed to begin his Make project. The PVC is 1/2 inch diameter, scraps from various irrigation repairs around the house.

*Geoff, Alex, Suki, and Grant were at Burning Man, together, in 2011. I made Geoff a long white, silk tunic, and at Burning Man he was charged with defending the Trojan Horse, and keeping spectators from being crushed under the 50' tall, 28 ton moving art piece. He carried his foam and duct tape cudgel to exercise his authority, and can be seen near the massive wheel, 45 seconds into this video. (I cannot suppress my delight.)

*CLICK HERE:* There's more, at Love & Rockets ~ Art & Engineering...

Monday, March 11, 2013

Like Her Mama

We found my old-old camera. My favorite one. Geoff resuscitated her, and when Maria asked, I told her how easy this camera was to use.
All the buttons were accessible with one hand.
I remember how marvelous it was when I had a baby in my arms, on my hip, and it was no problem taking pictures, even changing settings, while still keeping my sweet snug and safe. And it's not heavy.

She asked me to show her how to turn it on, how to switch to the viewing mode.
We showed her the video mode, too. She had it figured out in no time.
For a few years she's made herself acquainted and comfortable with my camera(s).
She's even had her photography published!

Geoff and I love that for the rest of the day we could hear Maria narrating little scenes, filming her documentaries about pets, and favorite objects.
You know blogging is in her system when she has to record her food! Classic blogging symptom.

Hencakes, definitely vlog worthy!

Only, she's not just blogging. She's vlogging.
Video + Web + Log (a portmanteau of the terms video web log)
Of course to complete her process, we should help her get her films on her blog.
(Note to self: Dust off Maria's blog.)

It does make me proud to recognize that she's like me.
It makes me even happier that she is so very much herself.