Canadian Themed Teacup and Saucer Collection

Today I found the second of these Canadian series of bone china teacups and saucers. I love to have something nice, sort of romantic and traditional and Canadian too.

But, I’ve learned to be less casual about what I bring home as a collection of anything. If a collection does nothing but gather dust bunnies, unseen by human eyes most of the year… why do you really keep it around? The dust bunnies don’t lack for entertainment.

Think of something you have collected but never use, almost never see and could really do without. Bring your collection out where you can see it. Clean and dust it off, make it look presentable again. Then take some photographs of it all. Take close ups of patterns and details you like. Take far off shots to include the whole set. Take as many photographs as you want, all the photos you need to remember your collection and the reasons you valued it.

Now write about why you should keep the collection or how it’s time you let it go and gave yourself the space, removed clutter from your life. Write for and against keeping it. Debate with yourself and be fair to both sides of the argument. When you’ve finished writing the debate either keep the collection displayed where you can see it and enjoy it or find a new home for it. Most things can be donated to a local charity where they can be auctioned off or sold to someone else who will treasure and value them.

 

Turn Posts and Categories into Faux eBooks

Lorelle on WordPress has created images in her sidebar to link to favourite, popular posts and categories in her blog.

But, she has made the images look like more – I thought they were going to be ebooks she has written. Did you think the same (if you have seen them) too?

Could you do the same? Think about the posts which tend to get the most traffic from your older posts and rewrite the titles as an ebook title. Then create a little image file. Then pull up the posts you wrote and loved, the ones you thought would attract readers but just never took off. Dust off the dust bunnies and give them another chance. Do the same for your prime/ important category or categories.

Put a selection of the images in the sidebar, together. Keep them uniform in size and colour, etc. So they look like a set and will all seem to be something you did intentionally rather than random links to other sites or ads.

I bet you will get more clicks on them. I clicked on them in Lorelle’s blog sidebar because I thought they would be an interesting ebook to download and read.

Dust Bunnies

What do you know about dust bunnies? Or do you think they don’t really exist, like pixies, fairies and the Loch Ness Monster? Dust bunnies are real, I’ve seen them. I’ve swept them up and cleaned up after them.

Downtown Dust Bunnies – Two sets of sisters on a mission to uncover the cause of the recent increase in dust bunnies.

Museum of Dust

Connie Hwang: Art Museum Dust Collection

From Wikipedia:

Dust bunnies (or dustbunnies), also called dust mice, are small clumps of dust that form under furniture and in corners that are not cleaned regularly. They are made of hair, lint, dead skin, spider web, dust, and sometimes light rubbish and debris, and are held together by static electricity and felt-like entanglement.[citation needed] They can house dust mites or other parasites, and can lower the efficiency of dust filters by clogging. The movement of a single large particle can start the formation of a dust bunny.

Dust bunnies are harmful to electronics, as they can obstruct air flow through heat sinks, severely raising temperatures and shortening the life of electronic components.

Dust bunnies have been used as an analogy for the accretion of cosmic matter in planetoids.

In Jude Deveroux series, dust-bunnies are small, but deadly, little creatures resembling fuzz and was described as looking like “something that rolled out from under the bed.”

The ‘Dust Bunny Facts’ and ‘The Evolution of the Dust Bunny’ (below) come from another site. Not updated in awhile but clever enough to be worth saving. So many clever things have disappeared online.

Dust Bunny Facts
Last updated 06/07/2006

Where to find them or ” The Natural Environment”

Dustbunnies have been around for centuries and are an untouched resource of easy-care pets for our busy life styles. They have lived quietly along side us and have already been domesticated.

You probably have one or two which have “adopted” you and you wouldn’t even know it.

The Dustbunny seeks out spaces that receive little traffic, and preferably dark – although some do become curious of the outside world.

Dust bunny Defenses

Dustbunnies have their own paratrooper squads that one must be on the look-out for. However, since the Dustbunnies do not have their own Air force they depend on fan blades to transport them, so invasions usually take plan during warm summer days

There are also small legions of foot soldiers that parade across the floor when the ventilation units are turned on.

When heavy objects are moved they will scurry for cover. This is the best time for capture.

Submitted by Robin and Anna: Did you know that Dustbunnies eat spiders and other things that crawl into there territory. Also, they like to use pencils as excise equipment. It may cost $100 per day to capture them if you live in a big city.

Dustbunny Social Life

Dust Bunnies are very prolific. There is no such thing as ONE Dust Bunny. Left to their own vices, dustbunnies will reproduce at alarming rates.

Dustbunnies like to use stereo-systems as their own personal Singles Clubs. Dancing usually takes place on the older models with a LP turntable, as the laser show of the CD drives have been linked to Fur Cancer in studies conducted at DBU.

Believe it or not DISCO is still their favorite music. If you find any dancing on the head of you needle, please remove gently and place off to the side so they can catch their breath.

There is now a new “Take your Dust Bunny to Work Day”.. If you do this, make sure you only bring back your home Dust Bunnies and not the ones from work. Although, the ones at work may like a nice holiday.
Dustbunny care:

Care for dustbunnies is very low maintenance.

Feeding: Dust Bunnies will find their own food. They have a tendency to turn vegetarian – if you do not wish them to eat your houseplants you may wish to gently wipe them off the leaves with a gentle but firm “no”.

Dustbunnies need a quiet, dark place to make a hutch or home, under beds and dressers are the ideal spots. If you wish them to find their own space, don’t be surprised if you catch them crawling the walls and hanging from the chandeliers.

Dust Bunnies prefer small hidden places where no on looks.

When giving you Dust Bunnies a bath, make sure that you have the safety net put on. This way your Dust Bunnies will not get sucked back into the wash or go down the drain. They enjoy congregating in pipes and Router Rooter may hurt them.

Now that the heating season in here, make sure that you have collected your Dustbunnies off of the heaters and registers. Burnt fur does not smell very good and it does spook your Dustbunnies.

When using a dehumidifiers, please pay special attention to the coils. Dustbunnies like to drink from these and may become too wet to move. Gently wipe them off and place in a dryer with cloths. They will collect on the lint screen and then can be released.

Health Care: Unlike many pets, Dustbunnies do not need inoculations or veterinary visits. If your Dustbunny begins to look peaked, build it a nest of laundry lint and in a few days your pet will be looking fine and frisky.

Making your home Dustbunny friendly:

If you are missing an item, check the Dust Bunny hutch. Unlike Raccoons who will actively look for goodies, Dustbunnies will only take what they can get easily especially anything left on the floor near their home.

Natural enemies of the Dust Bunny: Giant sucking machines (i.e. Hoovers, Kirbys, Dust Vacs, etc.) keep them as far away from your Dustbunny if you don’t want to scare them.

Glossary of terms

How to speak Dust Bunny

Underground Railroad: Air ducts

Express Lane: Using the air ducts while furnace or AC is in use

Caribbean Vacation: Dryer lint screen

The Evolution of the Dust Bunny

Dust bunnies are, of course, the harmless little bits of fluff that accumulate under furniture where ever people live. Seldom noticed, though often known about, these rather harmless little creatures exist in many places. There are, of course, those homes in which no self-respecting dust bunny would live. Overuse of cleaning products and or frequent violent cleaning seems to interrupt the breeding of the adorable dust bunny. This should be discouraged whenever people actually live as it would seem to indicate an unhealthy environment for humans or dust bunnies.

However, there are some residential places that rarely have dust bunnies. They go straight from “just cleaned the place” to “hibernating dust bears” with no small cuddly dust bunny stage in-between the two. Hibernating dust bears are fine, until you actually need to clean. Then, of course, you run up against the “do you really want to wake the dust bear” problem. Naturally, I recommend leaving the dust bears alone in their natural Habitat. Who knows what a dust bear will do once woken?

If the dust bear is allowed to complete its hibernation, it will again evolve to the final form. The final form is the dust devil. These are no longer harmless bits of fluff, nor are they sleepy. These are dangerous balls of accumulated flotsam that can threaten a household. Ever wonder if the monster under the bed is real? Well, it is and it is a dust devil. They have a taste for small innocuous children and harmless pets, they leave kindred spirits alone.

There is only one known cure for a household infected with dust devils. Dynamite is guaranteed to remove all traces of the dangerous beasts. Unfortunately, it will also require the rebuilding of all the furniture, if not the house itself, but is absolutely necessary if the house is infected.

The tricky part to all this is to know when the dust bear, harmless sleepy creatures that they are, need to be removed from a house. Timing is critical, you should not disturb dust bears until it is necessary. But wait that critical day and you may well be missing a small child or pet next time you take a head count around the house.

What can you write about dust, how creative can you get with something so simple and yet so legendary?

Edward Scissorhands in ASCII Art

I’m not an illustrator, I just play one on my own blog. But, I’ve got the idea to create an ASCII art illustration for Edward Scissorhands’ 20th Anniversary. I can’t believe it has been 20 years. Anyway, wish me luck. It’s going to be bigger in size than any ASCII Art I’ve created in the past. I drew a sketch of my idea in the coffee shop today. I like it so far. But, bringing it from my hand drawn sketch into ASCII is going to be challenging. Not that I can’t do it. Just a bit tricky. So far I have my Edward. It’s possible this won’t be the final Edward but it’s what I decided on while in the planning stages.

I’m also going to work on creating some kind of ASCII art gallery. Every now and then I bump into an old ASCII art I did myself and forgot about. Plus there are so many others which are really good and I’d like to keep them from falling into the realm of dust bunnies. Also, I will try to keep artist initials with the art. That’s something not every one does when they show ASCII Art. So, another project. I think I will just start it out on WordPress.com. Gives me something to do with my login there. I will have to look into how it works to use a lot of image files there and if it is tricky to export them later (should I end up doing more and want to move it to a domain).

For now… Here’s Edward!

Another Way to Say Divorced

One of the things I got thinking about this morning was other ways to say divorced, another phrase. How about ‘in between marriages’, as they say for people who are unemployed. Not that women have to marry again but it seems we tend to do so, or at least be looking around with that as the end goal. Here is my list of other ways to say divorced:

  • In between marriages
  • Exploring new men
  • Refreshingly single
  • One man down
  • Unmarried
  • Despoused
  • Otherwise engaged
  • Paired out
  • Wanna be widow
  • Matrimonially unchallenged
  • Looking for Mr. RightBehind
  • Repenting in leisure

What can you come up with? We are the word people lets see what we can do for divorce. Someone can come up with something funnier or more sarcastic than mine.

While looking for ideas and inspiration for divorce phrases I found other divorce related resources, humour and quotes. Some pretty bitter and nasty. I didn’t save much of that, it isn’t productive and it seems to be a way to keep yourself in the past rather than letting you move ahead into your future. Also, blaming others is too easy. Not that we should everything is only our own fault. But, through it all press on, move ahead and find something great you can focus on for your own future.

“I’m an excellent housekeeper. Every time I get a divorce, I keep the house.” – Zsa Zsa Gabor
“Getting divorced just because you don’t love a man is almost as silly as getting married just because you do.” – Zsa Zsa Gabor
“Marriage is too interesting an experiment to be tried only once.” – Eva Gabor

Did you know there are Divorce Planners and Divorce Coaches? I can see how it would help but it seems kind of a cynical thing, for our world community to have need of these services. When you start looking around it’s interesting how much of an industry divorce is becoming. Yet there isn’t a ton of stuff giving support, humour and the light hearted side. It’s mainly geared to the lawyer stuff. I think something more is needed. I may work on that, having been divorced once myself now, I’m at least qualified in that way.

Divorce Network – Twitter link
Divorce MagazineTwitter link
Divorce SaloonTwitter link
Divorce Diva Blog – Twitter account is somewhat active, the blog is gathering dust bunnies.

Dastardly Yours – Divorce cards.
Divorce Party Supply

I found this on a site but they didn’t give the name of the person who said it originally.

One of the reasons that fifty percent of marriages end in divorce is that those men who promised that they’d die for their woman just don’t come through.

Dust Off your Old Posts with WordPress Plugins

If you have a new blog, this isn’t something you need to consider really. However, if you have been blogging awhile and have amassed some nice content you begin to think about how much is lurking under the surface, like a crocodile in the water or an iceberg waiting for it’s Titanic. Why let the dust bunnies be the only ones to read your old posts?

You can revamp and old post, write it again with new information, new links, a change of opinion is even possible. But, what if you don’t want to rewrite your past brilliance and yet would like it to be read in spite of that?

Here are some WordPress plugins to help you out:

I use Time Machine myself. It gives me a widget in the sidebar with a post from the current day taken from past years.

These plugins will bring an old post back into your current blog feed. I wouldn’t like this unless it came with a note explaining it was from the archives. Your old post could be outdated after all.

Different When You’re Not There

As seen on ZenCopy: 6 Questions to Transform Your Writing

How would the room you are in be different, if you were not there?

This is like the thing about the light in the fridge going off when you close the door. Or, if no one is there to hear it, does a tree still make a noise when it falls in the forest. The whole thing about not being there bugs me. If I am not there, how are things different? If I miss my bus one morning, is the bus ride as uneventful as usual, or do I miss something? What happens if you happen to turn left instead of right? The road not taken.

Would the room be different if I was not here? Yes. For one thing I’d turn off the computer, the TV and the lights before I left if I was planning on being out of the room awhile. Dust would be able to settle where I am currently seated in the chair. What about other things, little things and minor details? If I step out of the room is that lucky for me? Is that the very moment the old tree finally gives up the ghost and falls on this half of the house? Or is it unlucky? If I’m out of the room is that when the dust bunnies really start to mess things up?

The Art in Hoarding

I heard about the woman who was missing and later found under the stash of all her hoardings. I have watched the TV show Hoarders and cringed while thinking of my own collection of clutter and the dust bunnies I haven’t sucked up yet. But, I’ve also looked at photos of collections of clutter and been drawn to them. Things like bookshelves full of books, jars and jars of canned goods, collections of teacups and saucers, you get the idea. There is a beauty in excess.

This started me on an adventure to find others who have thought the same.

Flickr: Beauty in the Clutter
Flickr: Windowsill Art
Flickr: Little Things Belonging to Women – Feminine clutter.
Fine Particulates: The Art of DeCollection
Tumblr: If I Were a Hoarder
Tumblr: Bookshelf Porn
Matters of Style: Maximalists and the Art of Clutter
Design Sponge: Sibella Court

One interesting thing I found is the word maximalist.

Wikipedia says:

Maximalist is a quality of excessive redundancy oft exhibited by way of the overt accumulation of appurtenances that reflect current society. In other references the term refers to either the ostentatious displays of the extensive possessions of the super-rich or the obsessive collecting as frequently found in the behavior of garage sale shoppers who accumulate common household goods past reason.

Revamping the Organized Clutter

I really need a day to turn off everything and just get organized again. Revamp my organized clutter. The clutter is taking over. I can see the dust bunnies peeking out from under my desk, waiting to make a grab for my toes. As messy as things are they are beginning to forget their place and lose their shyness. I’ve even got an old fashioned cobweb hanging down in one corner of the ceiling. When I run the ceiling fan I can see the cobweb blowing around. I keep meaning to get the broom and sweep it away, I just haven’t gotten that far yet.

I have a little filing cabinet. But it’s become a stash for things I need to sort through rather than a filing system for the things I need. I feel guilty. I feel like a hoarder in training. I feel like I’m going to find things I thought I had lost if I ever get this mountain sorted out and gone from the floor beside me.

I don’t know how people (some people) manage to stay tidy, organized and focused. It’s a skill I lack. I’m still trying to conquer the daily struggle to be self disciplined. I guess it’s part of that too. I need a fire sale, except I’m afraid I have too much to lose that I actually should be using. If all my ducks were in a row I’d be so much better, more effective, better organized and smarter too. My ducks just keep wandering around as if they will find a pond of water if they just keep looking.

I have enough common sense left to know the only way to tackle this is to actually get up to my elbows in it. To bring a garbage bag for expired coupons and other things past their due date. To pull out my file for clip art and snip those out from the morass. To type out the web sites that sounded interesting and see how many of them really are. To find anything personal, financial or legal in the stack of paper and put it aside before I dump the rest into the recycling box. There aren’t a lot of short cuts in tidying up your own clutter. Ignoring it for long periods of time just doesn’t work.

So much of this stuff is all part of some idea I had at some time. I get a lot of ideas. People who write (creative types in general) tend to get an onslaught of ideas or a trickle of inspiration. The problem is not to get yourself lost in the clutter that seems to build up so easily.