frenchtown fiber

Chris Mundy and Kate House try to make art while navigating the crap life throws at them.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

A Minor Obsession

I'm kind of addicted to Postcrossing now. I am allowed to send out 5 postcards to start, then I have to wait for people to register them. When the postcards are registered, my address will start popping up for people who want to send postcards. I have sent 3 cards, and I have a 4th address. Every day I am requesting one address. Tomorrow will be my last address, and then I have to wait wait wait. Here is what I am obsessed with. When I get an address, I click on that person's profile and read what they have written about themselves. Usually they will tell you some basic info about themselves, but then they usually write extensively about what kind of postcards they want to receive. It can get very specific. So many people want lighthouse cards. Also, cards with specific animals (Cows are popular) and cards with food. Many people say they don't want ad cards. Have you ever seen racks of those cards, say by the entrance of a restaurant? I think some of those cards are cool. Some folks request stamps, lots of them, making sure they get canceled, some people want their cards sent in an envelope. There seems to be just 2 minds about hand made postcards; people love them or hate them. I said i would be happy to get any card. I don't especially collect them, for me I think it is more about contact with the world out there.
After you read the profile of the person who's address you have, you can look at the wall of postcards they have received. (Members can scan and upload the pics of their postcards, if they want to) From there you can click on any postcard and read the profile of the person who sent it. Then you can look at their postcard wall, and click on one of their cards and read another profile. Repeat again and again until you have wasted a lot of the day, and finally you have to get up and do some real work.
Here are the countries I have sent cards to in the last few days: Netherlands Ukraine, Sweden and now Belorus. I wish I could get cards from Italy, but it is random.
I have a big stack of postcards hanging around. I'm hoping I can use a lot of them up.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011


I've been all about Art Journals lately. I was looking at a website for the 1000 journals project. Someone has 1000 journals wandering around the globe. Should you be lucky enough to get one, you are supposed to add to it and then it gets sent back when it is finished. A lot of them are AWOL, no one knows who has them. The person who started the project says they would feel fortunate to get 50 of them back.
There were other links on the site, one of them for Postcrossing. It is a site where you exchange postcards with random people. I used to be involved in a pen pal zine a long time ago. I don't remember what it was called. Anyway, since I have nothing else to do (joke) I signed up for it and I have sent my first postcard. Once that card is received and registered, I will be eligible to receive postcards. A nice diversion.

I also started my American History class (1815 to 1900) yesterday. Looks like that will keep me busy. Tonight Kate has some kind of tie-dye class, I will chill at Borders while she is there. I am at work, and I can barely stay engaged. Someone put me out of my misery here (I know, be careful what you wish for) I've kind of given in to my ADD for now. No point in trying to stay focused on any one thing.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Reenactment of the Battle of Monmouth, NJ

On fathers day my family and I went to see the reenactment of the Battle of Monmouth. It was cool because, not only does my dad love history, but my son has joined the First NJ regiment. My son is the guy in the tri-corner hat.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Journal #2

Friday, June 10, 2011

The Great Hamster of Alsace

I'm not kidding, there is an article in the NY Times today about this. It is about a very large wild hamster (10 inches) that is losing habitat in the Alsace region of France. France has been ordered by the courts to do more to protect this hamster.

It's a classic summer Friday where I work. Most everyone participates in the summer hours program, where you work an extra hour every night, but then get a half day on Friday. The nature of my job requires that someone be available in the department at all times, so my workmate and I take turns having Summer hours. It is her turn today, but I've had a whopping 5 e-mails so far today, so I'm just chillin' over here. This is why I have time to blog.

This morning I took Kate to the College of New Jersey so that she could compete in the Special Olympic Summer games. She's been doing this since she is 13. (She will be 28 this year.) I've given myself the Saturday of Summer Olympics off for years now. I'll go back on Sunday morning to watch her play her last matches and then hang for the awards before we all go out for lunch afterward.

My extremely social husband has already lined us up to go to dinner with a couple we know. I personally would rather just hang around, maybe make some art, but, whatever.We don't get a lot of Kate-free time. I would like to finish up an art journal I have been working on. My method is to prepare a number of sheets for the journal, and then work on filling both sides of those sheets. When they are done, that's a journal, and I bind it together. I have finished one other. I generally don't enter contests or try out for juried shows; it usually is a lot of work and I get hopeful but it ends in rejection. I did send my first journal to "Journal Arts" Magazine. Maybe they can use a couple of pages. We'll see. The thing is, I bent one of their many submission rules. I was supposed to send a check sto cover the cost to return the journal if they didn't want it, but instead I sent a pre-paid UPS envelope. Is that acceptable? Will they now throw it into the trash with no comment?

At any rate, I hope to take pictures of the journal I am working on now, this weekend. I've been meaning to do that for weeks. How does time pass so quickly? Why do I feel so busy all of the time? I haven't been bored in 20 years.

Joe went riding too fast on his motorcycle, a couple of weekends ago, so Kate and I went to NYC. There isn't a lot of Joe-free time, either. We went to the Museum of Folk art and saw a great quilt show. They also have a lot of other stuff in their collection, such as some of the coolest weather vanes you are likely to ever see.  One thing we do every time we go into the city is go to a store called "Conway's." Conway's has the cheapest clothes I have ever seen. It is a giant guilt trip, because you know slave labor made these throw-away clothes, and, like I need anything? One thing that helps me not buy nearly as much as I might is that they have no dressing rooms. You are flying in the dark there. I did manage to buy a Indian style skirt in bright orange. I was really struck by the color. And the fact that it was $7. Now I spend my spare time looking for shirts to go with it. Dumb, dumb, dumb. After that we went to China town, just because we had not been there in so long.  Kate and I both bought $3 sandals out of a bucket there. I bought soap just for the wrappers. (The soap always smells terrible, but the graphics on the wrappers are so cool.) I bought the plastic for shrinky dinks. I always wanted to mess around with that stuff. (I haven't done it yet) Maybe I can do that this weekend?

Well, when I start writing stream-of-consciousness-style, I know it is time to give it a rest.