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July 2015

June 2015

Firewheel weekend

Not a lot going on this weekend, which was nice. I decided to finish a project I'd set aside when I got busy with work in the spring: tiling a firewheel, my favorite wildflower, on the side of a crappy old cinder block.

We'd been using this block to light our charcoal chimney, but I think I will promote it to a plant stand now that it's all fancy.

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Mosaic projects always look a little shitty before you grout them. It's hard to visualize what will happen. Depending on the color you use, grouting can unify and gloss over imperfections or fragment the image and magnify your mistakes.

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I was afraid using dark grout ran the risk of the latter, but hey, this is just a cinder block. The stakes are low. Still, looking at it covered with dull black goop made me nervous.

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I like it, though! It highlights some things I'll do differently next time, but I think it gives it a nice, cartoony crispness.

I'm going to tile the other side with more or less the same image. Maybe I'll use red grout in the center up to the end of the orange part of the petals, just to see what happens.

This is all a test run for a much bigger project I have in mind.

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I plan to tile that dull, slanting concrete step with a firewheel explosion this fall. But that's going to take a lot of planning--and kneeling--so I want to get most of my mistakes out of the way now.

(I have no plans to tile √úter, although he often stays still enough for me to do it if I wanted.)

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Here are some firewheels from real life. We have a strip of them in the front yard that reseeds itself every year, and I think it looks really hot. I worried that it might be boring to do a flower mosaic, but no way; firewheels are rad. They couldn't be boring if they tried.

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Since I had firewheels on the brain, I pulled up the spent plants from this year's bloom and plucked the dried seed heads to separate out later. Sometimes I give seed packets to friends, but this year Eric and I plan to do some guerrilla wildflower planting. So if you see a random patch of firewheels next spring...it probably wasn't us; those things are everywhere in Austin. 


Dammit, I miss blogging.

I like Twitter, I love Instagram. But I miss writing--and therefore thinking--a little more deeply about things. I miss telling stories and sharing more than one picture at a time.

So I think I'm going to do it here.

At first I thought it would be better if I waited until I could find a single focus--all the advice about blogs tells you to do that: narrow it down, you fucking flakes--but I couldn't figure out what that would be. Mosaics? Too slow. Gardening? I like it, a lot, but enough to write about it all the time? 

Dogs? I think mine are hilarious, but I don't want a dogblog. 

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Besides, I'm afraid it would make them self-conscious. 

I know! The world really needs another food blog! Yeah! 

No!

I like a lot of things and I want to write about all of them, so okay, I should go ahead write about the same disparate crap I always did. 

I did know, though, that if I was going to start fresh I'd need a solid blog design and a beautiful header. 

I sat on my hands for a few weeks trying to come up with something really clever and sharp and finally decided, you know, if there's one thing I've learned it's to not wait to do something until everything is lined up and perfect, because it never, ever will be.

I'm still hoping I can make this more visually interesting once this starts to take shape. Or maybe it will look kind of boring forever.

Either way, I hope you will come see me sometimes.