Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas (even if you don’t celebrate it)!
This is not a typical post. Since Christmas is not a typical day, I thought I’d do something pointedly appropriate for Christmas, but it really isn’t my usual blog style.

My pastor gave a sermon on this carol Sunday, and I used some notes from it, and my own thoughts.

Charles Wesley said “Merry Christmas” one of the best ways. (Isn’t it cool that he wrote something in 1739 and we STILL sing it today? That’s quite amazing. Anyway…):

Hark the herald angels sing
“Glory to the newborn King!
Peace on earth and mercy mild
God and sinners reconciled”

(Col 1:19-20 “For God was pleased to have all His fullness dwell in Him, and through Him to reconcile to Himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through His blood, shed on the cross.”)

Joyful, all ye nations rise
Join the triumph of the skies
With the angelic host proclaim:
“Christ is born in Bethlehem”

Hark! The herald angels sing
“Glory to the newborn King!”
Christ by highest heaven adored
Christ the everlasting Lord!

Late in time behold Him come
Offspring of a Virgin’s womb
Veiled in flesh the Godhead see
Hail the incarnate Deity

(“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning….The Word became flesh and made His dwelling among us. We have seen His glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.” (John 1:1-2, 14-15))

Pleased as man with man to dwell
Jesus, our Emmanuel

(My pastor pointed out that Christ laid asside the independent use of His attributes as God during the time of His humility on earth. Wow, I can’t imagine that. I mean, we daydream about being super-powered and things like that, don’t we? (Well I do.) And He voluntarily laid aside everything! To die! That blows my mind. I mean this is true all year, but this carol brings the truth home yet again.)

Hark! The herald angels sing
“Glory to the newborn King!”

Hail the heav’n-born Prince of Peace!
Hail the Son of Righteousness!
Light and life to all He brings
Ris’n with healing in His wings
Mild He lays His glory by
Born that man no more may die
Born to raise the sons of earth
Born to give them second birth
Hark! The herald angels sing
“Glory to the newborn King!”

Now I had the HARDEST time finding the lyrics to verse 4 online,
but verse 4 deals with Christ as Savior! We can’t leave this one out!

Come, Desire of Nations, come,
Fix in us Thy humble home;
Rise, the woman’s conquering Seed,
Bruise in us the serpent’s head.

(The KEY to the Old Testament: Genesis 3:15 And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.)

Adam’s likeness now efface,
Stamp Thine image in its place:
Second Adam from above,
Reinstate us in Thy love.

Once more reconciled to God by this life-changing, personal Salvation!

Hark! the herald angels sing
“Glory to the new-born King!”

Now I COULD have found a verse for practically every line in this wondeful hymn.
Here are two other websites that did, but I can’t say I necessarily vouch for their doctrine, I just wanted to find the lyrics: here and here.

 

Toy Trends

I am not really sure if the “clay creatures” I make from polymer clay are toys or statues or what, but here are a couple of sites that inspire me – or at least keep me informed of the latest collectable toys out there.

ToyCyte – This website features different toys and designers, and mentions the Beastlies which are high in demand and made of polymer clay!

Tomopop – This website features different toys and designers too, most seem to be Japanese.

I like these two sites because they aren’t just online stores selling items; they don’t even sell, though they link to sale sites. These sites focus on showing the toy designs and their designers.

There are other interesting sites out there like ToyQube and even TheBananaLab but those are more like stores and less like blogs.

I’m sure there are other toy sites out there – got any inspirational links for me?
I will do another blog on inspirational polymer clay sites, but this one is just focused on toys. I admit I’m not an authority, and I don’t even like most of the designs, but I find it interesting that so many custom vinyl/collectable toys are out there!

If you are looking to make your clay items zing with the trends, try checking these sites out for ideas.

More Geeky Surprises

When last we left our hero (?) she was opening a box from ThinkGeek.

And she still is.

All of my awesome friends have figured out that I am, apparently, a big geek, and have sent me fun geek stuff this year! Wow, I am so humbled to have friends that know me well enough to know the stuff I like!

Tim (of here and here) sent me MIRACLE BERRY TABLETS! Have you ever heard of these things? These things are AWESOME. Or… actually I didn’t try them yet. But in my head they are just mind-blowingly cool. Go check out the wikipedia article here.  See, this berry contains a substance “miraculin” that makes your tongue quit detecting sour/acid for awhile, and that turns all sorts of sour foods into SWEET foods. It rewires your tongue and makes everything taste new. How fun! Can’t wait, can’t wait… I promise to blog about it, perhaps more than one place – I will keep you posted. I had this great idea to let my friends over at The Secret Lair try them too.

Rewire your taste buds - for SCIENCE!
Rewire your taste buds - for SCIENCE!

And JD of bystillwaters.etsy.com and here, (AND her husband John of here) sent me a glowing necklace that looks exactly like something I would wear (and am wearing right now, since instant I opened the box, and am going to wear to the office Christmas party tomorrow).

I’m not doing a good job taking photos of this thing, in low light, to catch the glow, but anyway – it shifts colors from red to green to blue.

Fuzzy photo, but shows the glow
Fuzzy photo, but shows the glow

 

AND, not knowing well enough to leave alone (JB said she refused to buy these for me) JD and John bought me… MANA POTIONS! Ok, actually they’re energy drinks, but HOW COOL IS THIS anyway?

Mana potions? For me? Muahahahahaaha...
Mana potions? For me? Muahahahahaaha...

If I still played WoW there would be a sheep joke here.

Anyway, again I thank God SO MUCH for each of you! I mean, it’s so amazing and wonderful to have Christian geek friends! And none of you ever has to send me anything for Christmas, and yet I’m so flattered and humbled that you did. Your friendship is the real treasure here.

And I should probably not have set a precedent for showing stuff people gave me on this blog, but it’s SUCH COOL STUFF. Whee. 🙂

Unboxing the Unexpected Box

HOLY COW!

Lo, tis a box of joy!

I was floored today to find a box from Think Geek. I did not expect anything.

And inside… was a bunch of things off of my Think Geek wish list!

It was from the awesome JB – of JB’s Cresties and CatharsisComic (and also her dA page here).
Is she not nifty?

First I saw a Titanium Spork (of Daily Giz Wiz fame). That went right into my purse. Beause, hey, who knows when I’m going to need a titanium spork? These are uncertain times! Will I need a spoon? Will I need a fork? Will they be out of spoons and forks? I’m prepared for it ALL now, baby!

This is going in my big green purse.
This is going in my big green purse.

Then, wow, there was a USB OWL! And it’s so uselessly adorable!

Here it is sleeping on my mouse pad.

I have bored the owl already.
I have bored the owl already.

Then I moved it over to the speaker.

O RLY?
O RLY?

Now the little mascot owl needs a suitable name. JB said perhaps “Lord Sporkington” but I am not entirely convinced. Ok not even half convinced.

Then I pulled out a box of mad science! It’s… it’s RADIOACTIVE TUPPERWARE!
Ok it isn’t really, but it’s definitely as close as I’m going to get. MUAhaha!

Eat and Glow, it says. I like.
Eat and Glow, it says. I like.

And, to make the mad science food ensemble complete, a Pyrex-type beaker mug thing with graduations on the side! I say, intelligently making a long rambling sentence that isn’t very good.

That’s because my brain is full of the fog of JOY.

Now I want to drink something green.
Now I want to drink something green.

So I just want to reiterate: THANK YOU JB! You made my day into something amazing! I am so humbled and thrilled to have a friend like you! I definitely thank God for bringing you into my life.

Snow Today

I am photoblogging about the snow today, as requested by Fogllama, who lives in non-snowy area and is fascinated about snow in the same way the Weasleys are fascinated by Muggles. Can’t say I like that comparison, but anyway, let me proceed:

Foggy, THIS is an ice scraper.
Foggy, THIS is an ice scraper.
This is placed conveniently by the back stairs.
This salt is placed conveniently by the back stairs.
This is how my yard looked at 7 am
This is how my yard looked at 7:00am.

 

Around 8:30am the parking lot looked like this.
Around 8:30am the parking lot looked like this.
Around 6:30pm it looked like this.
Around 6:30pm it looked like this.
And here is my driveway around 7:30pm.
And here is my driveway around 7:30pm.

I get less snow at my house than at the office. The office is in the edge of the “snow belt” and get lake-effect snow from Lake Erie.

Failure

JB (jbscresties.com and catharsiscomic.com) said she likes seeing “crafts gone awry” so I am posting a couple of polymer clay things that didn’t go as planned.

Not sure what can be done with these
Not sure what can be done with these

 

These little guys were made of layers of colored clay, and translucent clay – then covered with a thin layer of black clay, then stamped into, then the top layer was shaved off, revealing the stamped clay color only in the inset stamp pattern. Great, complicated idea, that is just not pretty.

I may do this again sometime – but these sure did not turn out very well.

Just not cute. At all.
Just not cute. At all.

 

These little guys… I thought maybe paint would repair them, but it didn’t. The lizard on the far right is mokume-gane, though, not paint. The cat on the far left is still waiting on more paint but it just looks so ugly to me I don’t think paint will repair it!

But you never know – maybe someone else thinks they’re cute.

And you can still learn through experimentation, even when the experiment fails.

What do you think?

Podcast Extravaganza!

I thought I’d give out a list of all the podcasts I listen to (with links!)
And if you want to suggest some more, please comment!
 
 
 
Podcast Novels
“Heart of the Hunter” – by Sam Chupp
“Chasing the Bard” – by Philippa Ballantine
“Playing for Keeps” – by Mur Lafferty
“Space Casey” – by Christiana Ellis
Nina Kimberly the Merciless” – by Christiana Ellis
“The Takeover” – by Mur Lafferty (Ok, not exactly a novel)
“Quarter Share”, “Half Share”, “Full Share” – Nathan Lowell (And many more)     

Of course there are lots of other good ones out there – I just haven’t listened to them yet! I plan to get to Billibub Baddings and Murder at Avedon Hill soon.
If your podcast novel is not on this list, well, I’m sorry but I am… picky and will just quit if there’s a lot of profanity or other “mature content” that I don’t want piped into my head. I really tried to listen to Infected and 7th Son but just could not make it through. Sorry guys.

Gravatars, Holy Cow & Plug for Myself

I was featured on the Polymer Clay Productions website back in June and I never knew it, until I did an ego search just now! (The link to my feature is here.) They have a podcast too.

You can commission me! Or you can check out anything on my etsy page to see what’s there and get a ballpark of how I price things. I have made a custom figure from someone’s sketch, though prices would vary. And the big Copper mech dragon was about $125 as well.

 

Jury Duty

Monday
Monday I had Jury Duty.
Of course, in my head when the judge came out I called him “Udgey” and when the prosecution came out I called him “Edgeworth” and the defense was “Phoenix” – and, strangely, it was a little bit like that.
No the defense and prosecution and judges weren’t like that, really – the jury was!

Stolen from DS Fanboy
Stolen from DS Fanboy

The defense and prosecution started out by asking questions of the jury, to see if anyone was unfit to stay (due to some kind of bias), and it was amazing the weird stuff that came out of the woodwork.

They disqualified one person, and the replacement was the granddaughter of the previous judge in the court. (And she looked like someone that could be in an Ace Attorney game, too – she was about 19 and had loads of blond ringlets and was continuously chewing gum.) Another jury member turned out to be the neighbor and friend of the prosecuting attorney. They asked if anyone had ever had a crime committed against them and fully half of the jury raised their hands to say they had had their homes/cars broken into. And this is a small rural village, not some kind of grimy downtown depressed area!

I had no idea it was so hard to pick a jury, even in a little case like this.

Anyway they didn’t pick me to stay on the jury, so I actually got some other things accomplished like sending a package to Philippa Ballantine (go read her books/listen to her podcast novel) and getting my snow tires put on. I helped babysit a 5 year old for about an hour, too. I went to get out all my old action figures so he’d have something to play with and I had 2 Darth Vaders, 2 Darth Sideous, and 1 Darth Maul Uhh… well everyone knows bad guys are coolest anyway.

Other things I did yesterday include impulsively buying The Secret Sketchbook of Brian Froud. (I’m not sure I’m happy with this purchase.) I even made some art [$5 + shipping, if you are interested, e-mail glimmer (at) glimmerville].:

Buy me, I'm cheap.
$5
Also, the description of this Tome of Levity  game supplement book cracks me up. Any game mechanic that lets you eat the fruit out of still life paintings is awesome.
 And one more parting link: A poem by G. K. Chesterton, that was quoted in part on The Sonic Society.
 

 

 

 

 

 

A Week of Links

I decided to make a big pile of links that interested me this week. Hopefully you’ll find a few interesting too. And if you have any you’d like to add, by all means comment and/or mail me ( glimmer (at) glimmerville.com )

Well this week I found the website www.twellow.com – it’s a neat site that lets you search Twitter users by interest, so you can find other people whose interests mesh with yours. And, in fact, while on Twitter @GrammarGirl (who has a great podcast and book) mentioned this website: http://earthquake.usgs.gov/eqcenter/recenteqsww/ that shows earthquakes practically as they happen.

Fogllama showed me this website http://finviz.com/calendar.ashx that lists economic indicators each day, and what their actual outcome was vs. the predicted outcome. It also gives an idea of how important those indicators are. Very cool. Or perhaps scary.

Aviary is a neat online art/photo-editing suite that aims to be a lot like Adobe CS.
I haven’t messed with it much, but I thought I’d share the link. While you’re at it, check out Tineye – this website lets you identify photos to minimize theft of your art and photos! And to make it a threesome, Google just released a new version of Sketchup, the online, free, 3D modeling software according to this blog.

My Korg DS-10 came this week, which also prompted me to download Milky Tracker (suggested by Dudymas) but I didn’t install it yet.

And I ordered some Apoxie sculpt from http://www.avesstudio.com/ – can’t wait to try this stuff.
So far all I made is this tiny axe:

I am having a hard time finding any tutorials, but I did find a website that supposedly carries DVDs. I haven’t tried ordering any yet. Another place that seems to sell sculpting DVDs is Massive Black.

The Ever Awesome JB has a new weekly comic all about Crested Geckos and it’s over here: http://jbscresties.com/comic/
She also has geckos for sale!

Well that’s about it for now. I know these links had very little rhyme or reason, but that’s about how I work.