Monday, April 8, 2013
i don't remember having a spooner as a child. but, at some point my mom bought a pretty cut glass container, set it in the middle of the kitchen table, filled it with teaspoons and called it a spooner. a bit of research just taught me that a spooner or spoon holder dates back to the victorian era when having a pretty "vase" of spoons on the table was a welcoming gesture and also a sign of at least modest wealth.
when i moved back to hagerstown a couple of years ago i wanted a spooner. looking back, i may have thought that my days of being spooned were over (hee hee) so i needed to creatively add the word spoon to my vocabulary in another way. who knows. i'm just weird about these kinds of things, i guess. i'm not fond of cut glass so i wanted a more unique vessel. my friend bonnie and i were shopping an antique store and bonnie spotted a clear glass container that reads "keystone egg and cream beater". it was love at first sight and i adopted it as my spooner.
a few weeks ago bonnie and i were shopping another antique mall in indy and i eyed a man inspecting a clear glass container that had "feet" and some markings that i couldn't quite see. i got as close as i could without invading his personal space. then he called his wife over and she inspected it as well. i heard him say something about it having been part of a mixer set. i was intrigued and i wanted it . . . bad!
bonnie and i went on our way and i saw a lot of cool things in that mall but my mind was still on that footed container. i figured the couple had already bought it but, always hopeful, i wandered back by its location before we left. and there it was. when i actually had it in my own hands i could see that it had measurements on one side -- 1/4 PT. up to 1 1/2 PT. i had no idea what i would do with it but i gladly paid the $9 price to make it my own.
on our way home bonnie asked what i planned to do with the measuring jar and i replied that i really had no idea. i was simply attracted to it. days and days later i was grabbing a spoon out of my spooner when it hit me. why would i be a narrow-minded, discriminatory person? why give spoons so much extra attention and leave the forks in a dark, boring drawer? so, yes, i grabbed my forks from their dungeon, put them in that magical container and created my own forker. yes i did! and i smile every time i need a fork, yes, i do!
Friday, April 5, 2013
delicate and fragile
silently hiding in the shade
your glory shines
in your trefoil leaves
and long slender stems
constant and abiding
you greet me each morning
illiciting a smile
and a prayer of thanksgiving
for the blessings you give
kindred spirits like us
understand that beauty fades
but the joyous hearts
at our core
are reborn in the morning sun
photos (c) julie king
Wednesday, February 13, 2013
for some reason i've been craving quiche lately. i often wonder what causes these weird, out-of-the-blue longings. is it a metabolic imbalance in my body? could i be low on potassium or iron? is the cosmic void sending me a way-too-subtle message? anyway, i decided to whip up a batch of quiche on sunday and this recipe more than satisfied my craving.
i found a recipe online (somewhere?) and then added my spin to it. here goes:
brown 8 slices of bacon and crumble
toss 8 oz of shredded swiss cheese and the crumbled bacon together and put in the bottom of a large pie pan
mix together in a bowl:
2 T melted butter
1/2 c flour
1 1/2 c milk
salt & pepper
shredded fresh spinach
pour contents of bowl into the pie pan and cook for 35-45 minutes at 350
it smelled so good that i could barely wait for it to cool to cut into it. yummo! i ate two rather large pieces. then i went back to crocheting a wonderfully slouchy hobo bag in a tweedy brown. as the afternoon wore on (me in my pajamas with doggy zoe asleep on my feet, watching a marathon of friends reruns) i could hear whisperings coming from the kitchen. i snuck in there a couple of times to see what was going on but all was still and quiet. as my fevered fingers double crocheted and back-looped-only, the whispers became more urgent. it seemed to be calling 'julie, julie . . . you know you want me". finally i could wait no more; i answered the call of that quiche and popped it right back into the oven on warm. and yes, you guessed it. i ate two more substantially awesome pieces.
Tuesday, February 12, 2013
me at 60 years young
a few weeks ago i accidentally let myself run out of deodorant. i knew i was running low but thought i had an extra stick set back somewhere. maybe in the make-up drawer or under the new pack of toilet paper? the next day the extra stick was nowhere to be found and i thought ok i'll just stop at cvs on my way to work at the antique mall and buy some. slow-moving traffic and a long line at mcd's (did everyone
fast forward to the day of my 60th birthday and my daughter wanted to take me out for dinner and a movie. i wanted to see a romantic comedy but there was nothing playing so i suggested we see lincoln. from the get-go i was captivated by the cinematography. the cigar smoke floating in the light from the window was mesmerizing. daniel day lewis was wonderful. i've always loved james spader and he did not disappoint. but overriding all of these thoughts and feelings was a nagging memory of my afternoon without deodorant. my mind kept focusing on how many un-deodorized, cigar-smoking men were closely gathered in the room. remembering how badly i reeked after only a few hours, i seriously wondered how they could stand each other's company.
at this point, i was struggling big time to hold my giggles inside. i kept telling myself to straighten up and act like the adult that i surely ought to be at 60 years old. but it was nearly impossible to do. it didn't help that my bladder was bursting. and then, in the middle of that bladder-wrenching hilarity, i had an epiphany. i knew that i was back. i was okay. i had weathered a relentless, sometimes hopeless, always painful, mid-life crisis and i'd come out on the other side. still laughing, still loving life, still poking fun at myself -- i was 60 years old and i felt whole and happy.
and then i got up and giggled all the way to the bathroom to pee.
Monday, February 11, 2013
i love this time of year for the plethora of wonderful gardening mail order catalogs i receive. i can spend hours perusing the selection of plants and vegetables. i dream about the kind of garden i would have if only. if only i could garden full time. if only i had a country farmhouse with a large plot of land. if only i had access to free (or very cheap) muscle. if only the muscle was available and found me
this year's crop (pun intended) of gardening catalogs do not disappoint. take the new 2013 burpee catalog (not literally -- if you try to grab it, i'll smack your hand). this one is a feast for the eyes. my favorite part is the "new" section full of fun, new hybrids with entertaining names like "sweet thing hot pepper" on page 4. one 24" tall plant produces loads of 6-9" cayenne-shaped peppers that transition from green to yellow to orange to red. i imagine relaxing on the deck with a book, silently watching the peppers change colors like a family of chameleons. this makes me smile.
on page 7 i'm drawn to the "caracas carrot". only 2-3" long each carrot has a deep orange color and is loaded with flavor. i imagine myself reclining at the edge of the garden while munching on a juicy caracas and painting orange-filled paintings in my mind. this makes me smile.
and then there's the "sugar heart pea" on page 9. it's a 2012 taste test winner and totally fat free. i imagine an 8' x 10' room filled with 37 bushel baskets of different varieties of peas. in the middle of the green mounds is a wonderfully thin woman (me!) taking her fill of every single kind of 100% fat free pea. this makes me smile.
but as always, reality sets in. my gardens never live up to my expectations. i want to blame it on lack of muscle (be still my beating heart) but i know it's that my garden standards are a bit too high. i want to have meryl streep's garden in the movie it's complicated. her garden is an awesome arrangement of weed-free raised beds, each filled with a bounty of beautiful vegetables. i imagine it's me there in that garden in those super-cute bibs, with that adorable gardening hat and the harvest basket slung over my arm. the basket is filled with sweet thing peppers, caracas carrots and sugar heart peas, all the produce needed to make the awesome dinner i'm cooking for my faithful
Saturday, February 9, 2013
a couple of weeks ago i was working in the kitchen and noticed that my dog zoe had disappeared. i thought she was resting so i headed to the bedroom. no zoe on the bed. than i checked the living room. no zoe on the couch. keep in mind that i'm living in a small (but adorable) 4 room apartment; there aren't alot of places to hide. i called "zoe zoe" and heard scrambling noises and a thump coming from the bathroom. she came running down the hall. i made over her and asked her why she was hiding in the bathroom. she cocked her head and gave me one of those looks that make me so wish she could speak. but since she can't and i'm not clairvoyant, i went on with my evening sans an answer.
the next night i was mixing up a quick veggie quiche when it happened again. zoe disappeared and when i found her she was hiding in the bathtub!! she seemed scared and so pathetic. i began to worry that she was suffering from having lost her twin bella a couple of months ago or maybe she wasn't adjusting to living in town in an apartment. i hugged her and held her on my lap making over her and telling her how much i love her. once she seemed reassured i headed back to the kitchen to take my dinner out of the oven. that's when my overzealous smoke alarm (incongruously located in the kitchen??!!) went off as happens almost every time i use the oven. and it hit me . . . zoe is afraid of the smoke alarm! if her quivering little body had not been so sad i would have laughed out loud. the bathtub? really?
all this got me to thinking about fear and our comfort zones. if you watch the evening news you can get a full list of things we should fear and worry about -- the flu, global warming, higher taxes, healthcare costs, aging and the list goes on and on. i sometimes feel like it would take 3 of me to keep myself adequately safeguarded from all the possible dangers lurking over me. my personal comfort zone simply won't abide non-stop worry. i choose not to worry every second of the day and maybe even less than once a week. i'm shooting for less than 1 minute of worry a month!
so what do i choose over worry and fear? i choose to walk my dog at least 3 times a day with my head held high, my step light and carefree and my soul filled with hope. i choose to visit my friends at the library where i check out books and movies that inspire me to be a better person and lift my spirits high. i choose to do something every day that makes me laugh, the big, belly-shaking kind of laugh that makes my eyes water and my heart soar. i choose to fill my home with houseplants that live and breathe instead of material possessions that i simply don't need. i choose to be silly and funny with my grandkids and to make memorable moments that shape their lives. i choose to reach out to a friend every week to say hey let's grab a pizza or come walk zoe with me. you get the drift here. i choose to live a simple life that nourishes my soul.
fear is a funny thing and i choose to laugh it away. and, just for kicks and giggles, one evening i may join zoe in the bathtub. who knows, maybe she knows a secret or two about living a brave, peaceful life.
Posted by julie king at 10:54 PM
Sunday, July 22, 2012
Wednesday, May 2, 2012
some of the best things in life are fleeting. sweet, warm babes too quickly grow. a snowflake perfect in symmetry and icy wonder quickly melts. juicy red raspberries fall from the vine initiating the year-long wait for more. the heady aroma of succulent lilly-of-the-valley fades as summer blooms.
perhaps these things are most special because they are fleeting. it truly is the small things in life that keep me inspired and engaged.
Posted by julie king at 10:40 PM
Friday, April 20, 2012
she slowly walked thru the sea of dead head dandelions silently standing sentinel, reverently paying homage to the glory of the rising sun. floating puffs marked her passage as birds sang their welcome.
she liked this time of morning -- brimming with quiet, quivering with possibility. she breathed in this day, this moment, embracing the one chance to live it fully. in the distance she saw a lone deer gazing at her, ready to take flight if needed. she sent the doe a silent message of reassurance: we are one with nature this lovely morning. no need to fear or stop your quiet sojourn. she followed her sweet dogs into the old bean field wondering what identity the field would take on this year. stopping to watch a few big black birds swooping in the sky, she released her heart to soar along with them. as much as she loved her alone time, she knew her heart was lonely. smiling, she realized that in the field of dandelions she was the one standing alone. the one trying to be brave in her quest for recovery. the one still questioning her place in the world. the one still harboring so much hope in her soul.
Posted by julie king at 8:02 AM
Thursday, April 12, 2012
i was floating free
a slumbering soul
waiting to be born
life was dull
a listless gray
waiting for sunshine
longing for joy
your first tentative approach
awakened my spirit
to all the joy
inherent in our
slowly i emerged from my shell
facing the first rays of light
with hope in my heart
and all my potential
came to life right
i'm participating in magpie tales again after a looong absence. i've missed writing and am glad to be challenging myself again. click here to read more of the original poems and stories based on the above image.
Saturday, January 28, 2012
i've been playing around on pinterest alot lately and one of the things i've been most attracted to is the abundance of subway-inspired art. so late at night when i'm bored and feeling a thirst for creativity i've been playing around in photoshop creating a few subway type art prints of my own. each of these features my original poetry or verse and some are available in more than one background color. the titles will each take you to the listing in my etsy shop.
now i'm off to hang out with photoshop some more. hee hee
Posted by julie king at 7:57 PM
Wednesday, January 18, 2012
SOLD!!!!! thanks, kelly!!!
SOLD!!! thanks, jennifer!!!!!
introducing my new etsy shop: jae jean vintage. on a whim i bought a drill and a dremel tool. i felt the need to go all 3d and get my hands dirty. i went looking for something to create and stumbled onto this idea. luckily i work at an antique mall and get first pick of all the inventory the dealers bring into their booths. it is so fun to find all these rusty vintage lovelies and then marry the pieces together to create something new and useful and unique.
once these first 6 were done i had a brainstorm to call them nesters. they are the perfect little nests for holding art or sewing supplies or for displaying a vintage collection. i can see them in the bathroom holding little soaps and crocheted cloths or in the entryway filled with family photos and a few trinkets.
and did i say that i looooove drilling and dremelling?!! it gives me a total rush and feeling of sat-is-fac-tion! i can't wait for spring/summer when i can start going to yard sales and flea markets.
Posted by julie king at 11:38 PM
Monday, January 2, 2012
turn on the spigot
an image of my dad
floats to the surface
of my mind
i lay my hand
where his hand
must have laid
a thousand times
i close my eyes
and imagine that
i can feel his energy
pouring into me
as water seeps
into the ground
after a gentle rain
so his quiet guidance
permeated my life
and even though
the spigot of his life
no longer turns
i still see his artistry
in the bricks of this house
i hear his voice
in the swaying trees
and i feel his hands
guiding my novice hands
as i humbly try
to carry on what
he nobly built
so many years ago
Posted by julie king at 12:58 AM
i went to see we bought a zoo in the movie theater today. i went alone, sat alone and was quite content in my own company. well, i was sort of ok with it. near the end of the movie i had an epiphany, what oprah would call an aha moment. like a rapid-fire slide show i saw my life as i'm choosing to live it and knew i was not really living at all. i've isolated myself from the world and humanity in so many ways. the truth is i've been hiding out. hiding from failure and disappointment. isolating myself from challenges. filling the precious hours with joyless tasks. honestly, i just don't know what i want to do so i do very little. there i said it -- i do very little.
one of my dearest and closest friends sent me a one line fb message recently. it read: "you are the bravest person i know." i cringed inside and said to myself well i have one person fooled. i know what she meant. so many women have used the b word (brave) in connection to my decision to leave my 10 year marriage and my corporate job. as it turns out the leaving and the quitting were quite easy compared to the moving on. for years i had created a story in mind. it went like this: 50-something free-spirited woman's creativity is being doused by a claustrophobic marriage and a corporate job. all her dreams will magically come true if she can rid herself of these chains. guess what friends? i've not yet found the magic wand that will make it all happen quite so easily.
it's way past time for me to face the truth and dare to dream new dreams!
truth -- i am a rudderless boat in a slow-moving stream and the view is becoming quite boring
dare -- i dare myself to do SOMETHING -- take a class, join a book club, learn to belly dance, train for a mini marathon, anything. for god's sake, woman (that's me!!) you are rotting on the vine.
truth -- i isolate myself from joy
dare -- i dare myself to sing and dance and laugh every day!! sing out loud to the shins, dance the pony to some old time rock and roll and laugh to old movies like tootsie and trains, planes and automobiles.
truth --i need a real job with real challenges and real benefits
dare -- i dare myself to drag out those big girl panties, think outside the box and get it done already
many bloggers pick a word as their mantra for the new year. words like grow and shine and learn are popular. i've decided that for the month of january my word will be truth. i'm going to look it square in the face and stare it down. once i've peeled back all the delusions and exposed the bare naked truth, then maybe i can move on to a new word in february. i'm liking the sound of thin and young and sexy. hee hee
Posted by julie king at 12:22 AM