Saturday, April 30, 2011

google, why does blogger not like android?

Bike Ride to Moving Site

The sun came out today! Only those of you who live in the Midwest understand how amazing this is.

Eli is on a band trip to Adventureland today, and the rest of us decided to take advantage of the awesome weather and go for a bike ride. We rode down through downtown, where one of those nasty Cedar Rapids smells assailed our noses (sour corn, probably, from one of the processing plants), and then headed along the river to Czech town.

I'd been wanting to go over there for a while. They are moving the Czech museum to higher ground after it was completely flooded in 2008. You may remember the pictures--it was kind of an emblem of the flood.
But when you see those flood pictures, you can tell that the building is HUGE! Their website says it'll be a record-breaking move of 3 million pounds! I was having a hard time picturing it.

But, when we got to Czech town, there it was, up on enormous I-beams, propped about 6 feet above the old foundation. There were a few other "tourists" checking it out, too.

The wet weather has postponed the move (I guess moving a 3 million pound building is not something you do in mud). I think I might have to stop by on the day they actually move it.

Here's a cool animation about the moving process.

In other news, the forget-me-not I got from Judi a couple years ago is blooming!
It's come up every year, and has pretty leaves, but the flowers are really great.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Easter Resurrection

I couldn't decide whether to put on this tablecloth at first. I mean, we were all wearing jeans, and it was just the four of us.

I decided to use it in the end. We didn't need a dressy table, but I liked being reminded of my grandma. The little crudité dish belonged to my other grandma, and the tulips had been at church, in memory of mom and dad, and Bruce's mom and dad.

Bruce pointed out that every holiday, we have those loved ones close, even if just in our memory.

Before dinner, we spent a lot of time outside--we finally have sun and warm temperatures, and the green has returned to the lawns. Wildflowers were blooming when Bruce and I went walking at Palisades Kepler--Dutchman's breeches, spring beauties, rue anemone . . . . The long winter hadn't killed them off--it had merely delayed them, and they seemed to be bursting forth, just in time for Easter.

Sunday, April 17, 2011


In celebration of Earth Day (a bit early), our town had a festival. They even had a sculpture commissioned--this dung beetle--the ultimate recycler!!!

The weather was not good--snow in the morning--but most of the festival was indoors, so I went.

And quickly came back to get Robbie!

Besides the sculpture, recycled art, and other random stuff, the Eco-fest had a room where people could make music with old electronic toys and junk.
Scrapyard Challenge, a husband-wife team from Brooklyn (Brooklyn NY!) had tools and a music program on their computer. People could make a circuit with electronic toys, wire them to the computer, and play music.

Not having much confidence in my wiring skills, I created a recycled art sculpture,
Robbie got into the electronics--taking stuff apart and rebuilding things. He took apart an old toy with switches, and hooked up four switches to four different notes on the computer.
We were probably there for 2 hours. . .

So I did finally have time to think up and create a musical instrument, jingling keys that created an electrical circuit.
On my first visit, sans Robbie, I stopped by at the recycled fashion workshop and saw my textile-savvy friends Sonja, Brooke, Ramona, and Carissa. They were taking thrifted clothes and altering them to make new, hip outfits. Lots of brave scissors-wielding goes into that.

Here's one of Ramona's creations--a 50's dress that she updated while keeping its retro flavor.
Carissa joked that she feared seeing people who knew how to sew. "They're going to say 'she's not using pins! She's not measuring!'"

All of those talented women are going to present their work at the 3rd annual recycled fashion show on April 30. I'm going!