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Fat Bird, Part 2

18 Aug

Talk about having no fear. While Fat Bird is wary of us, the pair of friendly birds, Bird 1 and Bird 2 are just so daring! On Monday evening, they casually sauntered onto the garden terrace and right into the house!

Yes, into the house without hesitation or fear. Walked right in as if they do this all the time to explore the house in all directions, towards the dining area and the living room. 

They even came right up to my carving area. I sat quietly to admire their head bobbing and funny walk, mesmerized by their bravery at the same time.

Then suddenly they realized they were ‘lost’, they panicked and tried to fly away. In their frantic flapping, they knocked themselves against the windows that were closed. Silly birds.

Hubby managed to catch them, one by one and gently set them into the garden again.

Thank goodness, no injury to the pair. Phew. I hope this spooked experience won’t make them stay away from the garden and us. We shall see the next few days.

Why Not an Owl?

15 Aug

I have been asked why a dinosaur and not an owl for my second tattoo as I am so into owls, with all that carving that I do?

Well, it’s because I have been going on and on about the dinosaur era when I reminisce about life in my musings, it made sense to assert my dinosaur-ness with a permanent one. But a dinky one to salute life with a good chuckle.

The owls? They are different and seriously, too many to decide which one I like because I love all my Citizens of Gigglesville. And as I see and create them in 3D, somehow I cannot picture them in 2D.

I have yet to carve a dinosaur and my dinky dinosaur looks good as is, on paper in 2D, it’s apt and a good decision.

Would I consider a third tattoo? Hmm… will give it some serious thought when I get to that crossroad in future.

Carving-11

A Bargain, Part Two

10 Aug

The square blocks from Daiso are not as easy to carve compared to my usual balsa wood. They are not soft, being harder and more dense therefore, harder to carve. 

I started to carve Citizen #64 of Gigglesville but the progress is very slow. Even with sharpened tools, it’s slow. In the midst of it, I diverted to the new balsa wood for a couple of quick ones and Citizens #65 and #66 came about at a much faster pace.

Sometimes there are no shortcuts even at a bargain. I should stay focused. 
It took me several hours each time over a stretch of several days to complete Citizen #64. That’s too long compared to the balsa wood which I take only 40 minutes to an hour to carve a citizen up.

Maybe if the blocks are not suitable to carve citizens of Gigglesville, I should consider using them to create other elements to support the township. Something to think about.

Citizen #64, the giant

Citizens #65 & #66

A Bargain

7 Aug

Thrift stores are the best. At a fixed flat price, you can find just about anything from these places. We have Daiso, the Japanese brand here and I must say, it’s one of our favorite haunts.

Every now and then whenever we go to the mall, we must visit a Daiso store. And surely, we will find something useful and at a bargain. Last week, I found some ready-cut wood blocks (8 pieces in a bag) on the shelves and thought the size was perfect for carving. At half the price of my usual balsa wood but three pieces less than what a foot of balsa would yield, it’s a bargain.

Slightly bigger at 1.2 inch by 1.2 inch compared to my usual one inch by one inch balsa, I think I can manage although the label did not mention what type of wood these blocks were. I even discovered a set of diamond files, perfect for filing those crevices!

With the new materials (incidentally, I bought two more pieces of balsa from the art store) and new tools, Gigglesville is set for another boom in the coming days! Whee…..

Carving-10

Giving Up

3 Aug

I finally decided to ‘give up’ two more games on my iPad, deleting them several nights ago. Remember Candy Crush Saga was canned awhile back?

It’s not a total give up but a technical one because I still play these games in Facebook on the laptop (at home) or desktop (in the office). My iPad has been so slow, rendering it almost useless, it’s aggravating.

I don’t have pictures and music on the iPad, so I suspect it’s the games’ data accumulated when I play them and it hordes the space on the device thus slowing it down. With the RAM dropping down to 200MB or thereabouts most times, what can I do? I can’t even read anything on Safari, let alone crush some candies!

So I canned both the Monster Busters apps. This is on top of clearing away other apps that I don’t use any longer. I even deleted the Facebook app!

On hindsight, maybe it’s a good thing to make me less dependent on my iPad as I find myself doing more meaningful things in my free time, like carving up a whole township of Gigglesville citizens!

A Tribute – The Great Wall of China

27 Jul

The carving efforts have improved with time and dedication. This most recent piece is a tribute to hubby’s uncle, a man with a great passion and unusual life mission which is to walk the Great Wall of China.

This little 31mm Wanderlust Owl comes complete with a cap, a backpack and hiking pole, just like the man who has traversed the Great Wall in a spate of several years since 2009. He would continue on each year from where he left off on the previous journey to pursue the improbable dream and fulfill his mission with amazing courage.

You can read all about his adventure in details on his website: http://ooithin.wixsite.com/count1million

Hats off to you for this courageous and determined effort! You deserve the Wanderlust Owl.

Carving-5b

80% Effort, 100% Result

25 Jul

Golf is a funny game I always say. It is also a game of opposites. When you try hard, the more difficult it becomes somehow. But when you don’t try so hard, everything clicks. It is almost like when you hit rock bottom and just about to give up, you play one of your best games and because of this, there’s a renewed zest again.

Over the weekend I decided to participate in an away Interclub match for my golf club. After all, a golf buddy signed me up ages ago, I thought it would be good to try playing again after such a lengthy rest.

It has been three and a half months since my last competitive game. Although there were a couple of social games in between, the performance and ability had been questionable. With the persistent tennis elbow, golf has taken a back seat in my life. In its place is of course, the carving and the growth of my Citizens of Gigglesville.

So without any expectations except to not aggravate the elbow injury, I played my best game ever! This is truly a case of 80% effort and yielding a 100% result. I am dumbfounded at my ability but pleasantly gratified with the achievement.

The partnership with another lady saw the two of us emerging as the best pair (not first runners up or even second runners up but BEST pair) for our club, beating the men who are always better. Each of us played one under to our handicaps for a combined Stableford 74 points.

Well, it is indeed a confidence booster and a new secret discovered – putting in only 80% effort to yield a 100% result. This theory has made me wonder if I have been doing it wrong all these years? Hmm… If this is the case, I should remember this formula to have a good outing and at the same time, enjoy the game and not aggravate the injury.

I now look forward to future games and no, the Citizens will not be forgotten, they will still strive in numbers.

The Pet of Gigglesville

24 Jul

In the thick of carving, I suggested to hubby that he should try his hands at this too instead of just fiddling with his air plants. So I gave him a tiny leftover piece of balsa to try.

He was keen but wasn’t sure he could do the owls, so he opted for something else and we ended up having a baby elephant!

Tiny little fella is now deemed the official pet of Gigglesville. Ain’t he cute?

Carving-6

A Good Mess

20 Jul

Everyday I would sit at the living room and carve if time permits. Gone are the days where I would be on the iPad, being device-reliant all the time which is bad. So this is a good thing.

I wouldn’t say the place is messy because I am stationary in the middle of the spacious comfortable zone. And with everything I need within reach in an IKEA RÅSKOG trolley (which M2 helped to put together), it’s a good spot. A good mess I’d say.

Days when I don’t have time to carve, I would take out the Citizens of Gigglesville and just look at them. Simple silly act but full of satisfaction. Delight would envelop my heart whenever a citizen is completed. It’s funny how I discovered this engrossing activity, thanks (sort of) to the tennis elbow.

Carving-2

My Poor Canvases

18 Jul

I have been so engaged with carving lately that my poor canvases are just sitting in the corner collecting dust. Even the tubes of oil paints are neglected because I use acrylic instead.

Everyday I would carve a piece, two if the mood hits and definitely more on weekends. The citizen count of Gigglesville now stands at 48, minus the superheroes series.

Sigh… I hope to go back to painting. Eventually.
Canvas