Today is my girl’s birthday. Because we are the silly geeks that we are, I thought she might like some silly “mag cover” pics. I got up at 5am and opened the GIMP on my new gPC (upcoming post on that), started playing with it and here are the results. Let me know when it’s your birthday and send a pic if you want the same treatment. ;-)


And, since it’s Madison’s birthday sometime this month, here’s our other birthday girl!

Pet Fancy

Every now and then I read a post and smack myself in the head, saying “Why didn’t I think to blog that!” I’m sure we’ve all had that experience. Today, it was this post from Green Colibri.  I’ve been using Blackle as an eco-friendly alternative to the Google home page since last year. There were about 140,000 Watt hours savedat that time; as of this writing, it’s 479,622.172 Watt hours saved. I think I Twittered about it, but I never thought to blog it. So read the post by oyvind and use start using Blackle for searches. It’s good for the environment and it looks much cooler.

cre8Buzz! Logo

I’m enjoying this new site so much! Cre8Buzz! is a friendly network of talented people trying to spread the word of their projects while making friends and contacts. Because of the ranking system, and the communities, it is easy to quickly find talented people in many fields. Two things I noticed immediately: the warm welcome from the community and the lack of css themes. Both may be attributable to the relatively small size of the user group.

BumbleBee Theme

The Buzz, as some users call it, just launched recently. Many users keep the default theme, which is clean and functional. Some try using Myspace themes with predictably horrendous results. Some members use themes from khenny of Quartz Mountain Communications, a California-based web design studio. His themes are very good but limited in number. As some of you may know, I love to play with themes, changing them to suit my mood. So I’ve started saving them to where they are available to all. While the site is not “live” yet, the themes can be accessed now. I hope to get the site built up soon, with a snappier look and an upload facility so everyone can share. As always, feedback is welcome.

So come join in the fun, sign up on Cre8Buzz! and use my themes or create your own. Stop by my page and give a shout out to my friends Antman, RealWorldMom and piper of love. They all have great profiles and links to some really slamming blogs of their own. Peace.

I’ve only been on Twitter about one month. In that time, it has impressed me greatly with it’s potential for building relationships in such a simple way. I didn’t know Ashley but, as John Donne observed:

No man is an island… Any man’s death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind; and therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for thee.

The world is filled with pain and it’s easy to turn away. But we don’t have to solve all the problems to make a difference. If you’ll allow me one more quote, it’s so eloquently expressed by Loren Eisley in The Starfish Story:

One day a man was walking along the beach when he noticed
a boy picking something up and gently throwing it into the ocean.

Approaching the boy, he asked, “What are you doing?”

The youth replied, “Throwing starfish back into the ocean.
The surf is up and the tide is going out. If I don’t throw them back, they’ll die.”

“Son,” the man said, “don’t you realize there are miles and miles of beach and hundreds of starfish?
You can’t make a difference!”

After listening politely, the boy bent down, picked up another starfish,
and threw it back into the surf. Then, smiling at the man, he said…”
I made a difference for that one.”

Ashley Spencer Memorial Fund(click for more info)

You can make a difference. Give if you can.
Spread the word.
It works if we all stick together. Peace.

Photo: Long, Misty DaysFog 4

Originally uploaded by dragonci

If my external environment matched my inner one, I would be sitting in a not-so-comfortable armchair in a 19th century Victorian house in dire need of repair. Looking through the open french doors, I would see this misty, dreary landscape of barren trees; old trees with strong, gnarled branches that almost call to you, “Come, come throw the rope over me…”One of my all-time favorite songs, though one needs the music to achieve the proper effect:

Long, Misty Days by Robin Trower (hear it!)

Long misty days
Torment they who would change their ways
Once in a while will come my way

The thrill is gone
Misty days linger on and on
Once in a while is here to stay

We feed this fire
Lovers in a nursery rhyme
The words belong to you
And the melody was mine

Long misty days
Torment in a million ways
Once in a while will come my way

Oh harbour moon
Shining in a lonely room
Weeping willow cry for me

Sing me a song
Simple as the day is long
Our hearts are crying to be free

And take the sky
And tell me if the moon is blue
And if it’s meant to be
That my melody was you

Long misty days
Torment in a million ways
Once in a while will come my way

Long misty days
Torment they who would change their ways
Once in a while is here to stay

For a variety of reasons, I’m not into the holidays this year (again). So, I started wondering if I should try something different. Something that means more to me than the canned pop culture xmas thing I knew growing up. This year, I’m celebrating the winter solstice.

The solstice is the time of the death of the old sun and the birth of the dark-half of the year. It was called “Alban Arthuan by the ancient Druids. It is the end of month of the Elder Tree and the start of the month of the Birch. The three days before Yule is a magical time. This is the time of the Serpent Days or transformation…The Elder and Birch stand at the entrance to Annwn or Celtic underworld where all life was formed. Like several other myths they guard the entrance to the underworld. This is the time the Sun God journey’s thru the underworld to learn the secrets of death and life. And bring out those souls to be reincarnated.1

In 2007 ce, the solstice, “Mean Geimredh”, in Irish, occurs December 22nd at 6:09 am GMT. I know it’s hip to use UT now, but others in the universe might think it provincial and a touch arrogant – solar-centric, even. Maybe I’ll get up and watch the souls coming out of the underworld. Since it’s a Saturday, they shouldn’t hit much traffic on the Garden State Parkway… ;->

1. Celli Laughing Coyote, “Yule – Winter Solstice: The longest night of the year