Sunday, August 31, 2008

Gifts from others, gifts to self, presents!

Gift giving: maybe because I have never kept Xmas or really had a birthday I like giving gifts and I like getting gifts whenever. Gift giving is fun, and so is getting them: nothing better than seeing something and thinking, “Oh I bet X would love that!”

Anyway, I did give one gift over the weekend, but not as many gifts as I would have liked. I was sort of sat upon by my ill health (sometimes when your heart doesn’t beat right, it is like a giant coming and sitting on you – ug!). So that kept me down, but I will make up for it this week!

But I did give MYSELF a few presents (oh was the task to give to others, oops!). Seriously, most of these I got over a month ago and have just been waiting to arrive. For example a sort of friend and person who picks up things for me in Japan offered (as he was sending me two books I bought; a Ghibli card collection – I said yes!) As you can see, the artwork is stunning and now I am wishing I got twice as much, but that’s the old problem of the pocket versus the eye (my eye is GOOD at finding things to get, my pocket not so brilliant in finding the money to get them.).

As it happened several people this weekend gave me gifts including a woman who had the stall next to the yarn knitter (last blog post) who was lusting after the Ashford (why is it EVERYONE including Neil knows this and I can’t remember it?). this woman sold goods out of recycled products, in fact everything she sells is recycled, but you would never know it. Anyway, after we chatted for a while she said she wanted to give me a card, because she said it embodied me. So here it is, and I guess in a way it is how I operate (I just tend to use more swear words!). Linda had some nicer way of saying it (like, "this is so you!"), I just said thanks and wheeled off in a daze.

I was kind of in shock (actually I medically WAS in shock but for now I mean emotionally) that someone at a farmers faire would just GIVE me stuff. I figured it meant either I exude some special essence, or I look REALLY bad, or maybe they had a similar mission we did, to give something that weekend. Which might be true because I was then given another gift, one which is just as much about who I am, the embodiment of me. It is this necklace which the person actually had commissioned for me (how humbling and cool is that). So yes, that’s right, I now have a pendant of Hello Kitty in her Goth boots, with a bloody knife in one hand and a severed heart in the other. SWEET! How incredibly kind and cuddly is that? And she even looks like me!

Plus by post I received from a land I will not name, these stickers, which when I received them, immediately made me lust for more, because I want to put them on people’s postcards. But I only have these six. ARG! Oh well, how do I decide though who gets the “Kangaroos Next 25 km” warning?

Actually a few people sent in gifts this weekend to help with the Postcard Project, which is becoming sort of a collective project as the postcards and the stickers are coming from literally all over the globe. Admittedly I end up doing some of the hand work, but I think this is great, how so many postcards sent out now have 3-6 people’s assistance in the creation of them (one person sends a card, another a sticker, another gives a stamp, I assemble and write the message - that's four right there!). So here is one person whose gift arrived this weekend, they sent me some postcards to send, along with a rubber stamp. I, being me, immediately put one of the postcards and that stamp to work (hey, we have people who LIKE spiders on the list!). As well as this person/s who send some cards to add to the collection. I have to say I have a few candidates in mind for that woman in blue, as well as the seagulls.

So, if you get one of these postcards, I hope you won’t feel it is less of a surprise but more of the joy in receiving a group effort, that your card has ALREADY traveled and been cared about by people before I started on it, just in order to get to you! Thanks to those who sent in cards. As for me, I sent out 32 today (a weeks work) but still, that’s 64 in two weeks so yeah, I do spend hours finding, ordering and buying postcards every week.

In another gift to myself, a person we contacted in Japan went to a limited Exhibit of Oga’s art work, another artist who does some work for Ghibli Studios. I have seen his work in the Museum in oil paintings. To give you an idea, here are four of the postcards, just “simple” reproductions of his art. I only have one set, and since the Exhibit is going off, I can’t get any more, so I am afraid this IS a gift for me (sigh!), and you will only be able to appreciate them on here (or when you visit me in person).

I was also given ANOTHER necklace this weekend. An Opal necklace, which the person said that opal as a necklace is supposedly bad luck……but what else could happen to me? I really wished they hadn’t phrased it THAT way. I prefer to think of it as since my disease makes everything topsy-turvy, that bad luck opal will be good luck for my heath – and that’s is why I am going to wear it (when not wearing the heart cutting out Hello Kitty!).

Also, a gift I had been waiting on for a LONG time – I don’t know how long, so let’s say 6 weeks, a long, long time (two months?), finally came. And that is my Gothic Lolita Hello Kitty Mug designed by h.naoto (he is Japanese fashion designer – if you are somehow overflowing with cash he has tops for $200 or so, but I want a red spider backpack he makes which would be perfect for a wheelchair and is only (just say it fast so that word sounds believable) $88 or so – if it helps I have a $10 off gift certificate?). Anyway the mug was considerably less but is the touch of COOL, Hello Kitty is subversive, Hello Kitty is not just pretty and pink (except when covered in blood). She's cool, and though I can’t wear goth loli (would probably die of heat just putting all those layers on), I can enjoy my Gothic Lolic Mug. Ahhhhhhhh……it is true, some of the best things are worth waiting for (like a new kidney?).

I think that is most of the pile of loot that I gave myself and got (notice I didn’t mention what I gave because I am kind of secretive about things like that – to me gift giving is like a form of communication. Unfortunately I think that means either, I really like myself or I really like Japan, or I really like Hello Kitty, or all three). I hope you had as much fun as I did with giving and maybe you will show me the gifts you gifted yourself with or received?

Also, for every postcard and card and gift I have received, thank you for thinking about me. I try to write you to let you know but with the swiss cheese brain I have now, I miss people out. That isn’t intentional. And the same with postcards, sometimes I find I have forgotten someone so I write one right away! It was fun showing you all the stuff, I liked it (I was like “Here, here, look at this! Look at this!”), so I hope you liked looking? I hope you received or gave some good stuff too!


yanub said...

Hurray! Beth got presents! And postcards coming in and going out!

The lady who gave you the card about dancing in the rain must have sensed something about you, to have spontaneously given you something so appropriate.

Anna said...

The postcards from artist Oga were so beautiful.

Must check him out on the web.

Take care and go out dancing in the rain.

rachelcreative said...

I left for a weekend with the in-laws before seeing your challenges. Ah well.

There's some great treasures on this post! The commissioned pendant is so cool.

Glad you got outside.

Anna said...

The mug is really really cute. Makes fluid intace mutch more enjoyable:)

Must stop blogging at work. Doing librarycards, very boring. Hate that. Love working with the books or the people or the computer but hate doing administrative stuff.

Neil said...

The card the lady gave you is perfect. I suspect that she's shrewd observer of human character, and I further suspect that you weren't shy and quiet about yourself. You don't have to say much for some people to understand you very well. Even so, it's just perfect.

And you're getting presents; lots of fun, that. I bought myself TWO pairs of runners on Saturday, while the kids got one pair each for school. I will put one pair away to pull out when the other new par is dead; buy 1 get 1 at half price is sometimes worth it.

We also bought the movie "Blow Dry" on Saturday. We watched it yesterday and I would highly recommend it to you; especially if you're an Alan Rickman fan. The movie is set in Yorkshire, and the word "fook" is used frequently.

We watched the movie several years ago, and the next day my Beloved said to the eldest son as he headed off to school, "Remember, it rhymes with 'book.' not 'luck!'"

I hope today is one of the better 1/3 of days for you, dear.

Zen hugs,

There won't be much outside stuff here today, since it's all of 7 degrees C outside, and it's raining.

Lene Andersen said...

Way cool! I may even be persuaded to say that about the Hello Kitties from the dark side (bloody heart? That mug? - way cool!). And the Oga cards are drool-inducing. Breathtakingly beautiful - my favourites are the two bottom ones. Wish we lived closer so I could drop by and see them with my hands (why is it you can see something better when you touch it?). And the opal is gorgeous - I know they're supposedly bad luck, but so beautiful.

Dancing in the rain. Yep.

cheryl g said...

You get gifts because others see the amazing person that the voices keep trying to distract you from seeing.

The Oga artwork is so beautiful, the detail, the depth of color... that exhibition catalog is truly to be treasured.

After being over this weekend I am motivated to do a project I have been meaning to do for a long time. I will start on it for the nights that I do not want to work with driftwood.

FridaWrites said...

Those are some cool HKs and postcards!

I agree with Yanub about the card gifts, some people are just really good at reading others and giving because they like to (as you do).

Gift I received this weekend: someone who works w/the Arthritis Foundation classes helping me out for free with some beyond-PT water exercises, and lending me 4 books that are helpful and give tips I hadn't thought of. I'm such a know-it-all sometimes (or a read-it-all) that I think I don't need more, but there's really good info in these. Wow for the free help, since our pocketbooks are under stress but I know for sure they have a very tight budget. They like what they do, but don't make a lot of money doing it.

wendryn said...

Wow, cool stuff!


I bought a copy of Goodnight Moon for a 3 year old this weekend. He really likes it. Nyx and I went to the dog park twice and the pet food store once. She's still a little nervous about buildings with weird smells, so it was very good for her. She's become a very picky dog, though - she only likes treats of they are actually meat, none of these crappy baked treats. Hee. I think that means we spoiled her a little bit. Of course, the reason she doesn't get baked treats is because most of them have wheat in them, and if you feed this dog wheat her farts will clear a room. Seriously. Since you said your level of jokes included fart jokes, I thought that might make you crack a grin.

Oh, and I hope you like Edward Gorey. :)

Marla said...

Lovely post! We love the post cards and gifts you send us. You are such a sweetie! Back to blogging and looking forward to catching up with you.

I posted a picture of your most recent gift to me and M on my post today.

Gaina said...

See, this is life telling you that you are a good person and you do deserve nice things, no matter how much your inner 'chatterbox' will try to convince you otherwise :).

I love your mug.

I am going for my wheelchair assessment tomorrow. This is the equivalent of trying on new shoes for me! **squeal**

Gaina said...

**email follow up comments**

Mary said...

There is a story about opals that is quoted in my family.

My grandmother (born in October, which opal is the traditional birthstone for October) refused to leave any of her grandchildren her beautiful opals because they are supposedly bad luck to anyone not born in October...

I was born in September...Damn!

Some distant cousin got her all her gems...

Enjoy it anyway...

Casdok said...

What wonderful thoughtful and interesting gifts!
Glad you bought yourslef some as well!!

anabel said...

Aside from medical stuff, it seems you've had some cool things happen this weekend.

I still have the postcards from the animae expo to send to you. I'm sometimes not so great on my follow through. I'll get those out this week and give you my address to become part of your project. Many thanks.

Lisa Moon said...

Wow, those Oga cards are gorgeous!

I have another blogging friend who has the same disorder as me(CRPS=severe nerve pain) and she tells me that opals are GOOD for this! So wear that opal, my dear. It can't hurt!

And how freaking cute and cool is that hello kitty pendant?! Lucky you!

Maggie said...

The little monsters on the ferry ride were just awful. It made the ride back seem like hours. Otherwise, not too bad. Glad you enjoyed the presents. More good news to come, look for an email.

Dawn Allenbach said...

I love seeing the presents you receive. It's OK that you don't share what you give out because it's between you and the receiver.

Sorry I've been out of touch for a couple of days, but I've been evacuating from Gustav and worrying about my fish. Been reading, but haven't had the emotional fortitude to comment.

Raccoon said...

the HK necklace reminds me of the cover to the computer game "American McGee's Alice." Actually, I think you would like the cover: a grown-up Alice (18-20 years or so), holding a bloody butcher's knife, and the Cheshire cat, with a ring in its ear and a rather skeletal musculature --

Nice mug, too.

Neil said...

Dawn: I haven't been following the news, but it sounds like you're safe from Hurricane Gustav. But the next one misses you too.

Hugs to all,

Elizabeth McClung said...

Yanub: Yeah, it is nice getting presents AND postcards.

I am not sure why the woman gave me the card, but I guess I must talk too much

Anna: Yes, I am very grateful to the person in Japan, to allow me to have some of the exhibition stuff.

Rachelcreative: It's okay, doing stuff is fun. Yeah I really love the commissioned pendant! That was a great loving gift!

Anna: Yes, great mug, the mug that goes on the "Caregiver does not touch" shelf - to preserve.

I too was killed out of a library career by doing a summer of cards for books coming in.

Neil: I'm glad you got some runners, I always like those sales. I especially used to like them as I went through shoes fairly rapidly.

Now, since I need more of the world to come to me (I'm not exactly going to scour the city getting bargins), I'm pretty chuffed when I get stuff.

I'll try to check out that film Blow Dry.

Lene: There is a dark side to hello Kitty - and the dark EROTIC side as well (but we won't revisit that). I really like Oga, I saw his oil paintings and they were amazing and while this is a toned down version it is still pretty great.

Cheryl: Well now I am curious to find out what this project is?

Shhhh, I was keeping the catalogue a secret until I can photograph it. I don't know why people give me things when I am at a point where I seem to be trying to either amass the bulk of obscure hello kitty or give out the rest of my possessions.

Fridawrites: Thanks, and yes, maybe she was very intuitive and better at reading me than I her - that's a good explaination.

I'm really glad you got some good gifts and I'm glad that you found some water exercises, I know you wanted that.

Wendryn: Yes, some of this is really cool stuff, a guy on my desk named Chester approves!

Cool, Goodnight Moon and taking time with Nyx, I think was some of the good time, and good gifts, yes.

Oh yes, I like Edward Gorey, I have a lot of his limited editions. And went to his museum acutally and met his lover there. Amazing work, and an odd guy in a genuis way (I seriously have no idea how he got jobs as he never changed his style, it was weird from day 1).

Marla: I'm glad your back and I'm glad you like the presents, I hope you used them. Giving presents to on-line friends is sort of hard as you only see a bit of them. So I am glad if they made you happy.

Gaina: I hope the wheelchair assessment goes great tomorrow. They can take a while sometimes. But since you are looking forward to it that shouldn't matter.

I love the mug too - it is WAY cool!

I don't know, sometimes people can be blinded by the flashing lights into believing I am human.

Mary: Wow, harsh story, I didn't even know that Opals were bad luck at all. Just want to let everyone know, please send all your bad luck emeralds to me, and your curses will be lifted...

You think that might work? Nah, me either.

Casdok: I am fortunate in having caring friends, and in thier gifts.

And I just wish I had a pocket as big as my eyes, and time to enjoy the things I buy.

Anabel: aside from the medical, it has been a sort of 40/60 weekend, wanted to see the squirrels but that didn't happen, I really want it to happen but had to fight the owner and the police today. But some good things did happen. That I took all these pictures from my hospital bed doesn't diminish that I enjoyed getting them.

Lisa Moon: Yea, the Oga is amazing, better in Japan where you can see it in oil painting (take the trip!).

Wow, it was a gift to me but if it will actually reduce your pain I would give it to you. Do you think it would?

Yeah great pendant, and good to know that there are some happy and twisted souls like me.

Maggie: sorry the ferry was such a hell trip, but I did enjoy the presents, particularly bling HK - she so trippin'

Dawn: I am hoping you are back in NO soon so you GOT your birthday package? I am also glad you are safe. That's a good present for me.

Raccoon: I HAVE that game - you are right, it does look a bit like that. Have you played it?

Yeah, it is a sweet mug, wish I could hold it (haha!). Oh well, what we order isn't always what we can use exactly by the time it arrives. Still, I OWN it, I COVET IT!

Elizabeth McClung said...

Wait, there is ANOTHER one headed to NO - in that case, don't come back for your birthday prezzie.

Raccoon said...

no. It came out after my accident, and a friend who tried it but didn't think it would be very user friendly for me.

Their are actually making a movie version starring SMG/Buffy. I read somewhere that they were filming in Vancouver, back in November...

FridaWrites said...

Glad you're safe, Dawn.