Category: Wiggly Pets

Septembers Events – 2017 (by )

Fri 1st Sept 11 am - 3 pm Gloucester: Community Craft Day at Gloucester Cathedral - upcycled accessories a Salaric Craft workshop.

Fri 1st-2nd Sept Cheltenham: Jean's performance as Joe in the Young Gloucester Opera and Dramatics Society's production of Fame at the Parabola Arts Centre.

Sun 3rd Sept Oxford: ICFP-International Conference on Functional Programming where Alaric will be speaking about the programming language Scheme part of Kitten Technologies.

Tues 5th 6:30 Stroud: Villanelles Poetry Evening with the Gloucester Poetry Society. Performance as part of The Wiggly Pets Press.

EDIT2: Talk is Wednesday lunchtime at the Museum of Gloucester.

EDIT: there is some confusion currently as to weather this talk is on Tues or Weds as the History Fest have it down as Tues and the Museum for Weds - Currently trying to sort it out 🙂

1pm Gloucester: The Start of Art general interest talk on cave and rock art at the [Museum of Gloucester](http://venues.gloucester.gov.uk/Freetime/Museums/events/Talks.aspx] part of the [Cuddly Science's)(http://www.salaric.co.uk/cuddly-science/) Histories.

Sat 9th 3-5pm Gloucester: Food For Thoughts at the Cafe Rene, poetry performance as part of The Wiggly Pets Press.

At three things to be confirmed later in the month 🙂

May’s Challenges 2017 (by )

May is about my picture and children's books - there is a write a book/script a day challenge for the first week of the month. It's called NaPiBoWriWee and is actually more insane than the nanowrimo writing challenges 🙂

I have plenty of ideas for my picture books and zines so this is kind of a great way of actualising some of them 🙂

I am being slightly boring in that I am focusing on stories I kind of need finished for festival, workshops and my activity booklets anyway... but the plan is to kind of continue the challenge and actually spend this month working on my children's stories and picture books (and yes there is actually a distinction between the two groups - they heavily over lap but not completely - so I have kids books with no pictures and picture books that are not aimed at kids!).

So for those who want to know this means I am working on:

1) The Origami Story Box - this is a series so as long as I get number one done I will then work on it until I get bored 🙂

2) Scripts for the Paper Pals Theatre - same as above really only these are scripts for making the puppets act!

3) Folded Friends - again another series and yes it involves the origami and paper craft creations but this one involves humans too 🙂

4) The Little Books - there is lots of finishing up to do for The Little Book of Spoogy Poetry like finally putting it on Amazon and making sure the audio is out, same with The Little Book of Festive Poetry, then The Little Book of Easter Poetry needs to be put together and zined and The Little Book of Baby Poetry needs recording and zining. There are also many many more that are written but not edited or illustrated so probably going to get bored before completion here as well 🙂

5) City Scum (might be Scum City I can never remember!) - this is Alaric's role playing game and I need to finish the illustrations for it!

6) Activity Booklets - these are booklets I create to accompany workshops, they contain stories, games, facts and stuff to make and do. Main focus is Cuddly Science 2, Salaric's Arty Activity Booklet, Funky Folding, Spring Time Activities and Summer Activities.

7) Colouring Books - finishing off my Myths colouring book, sorting some sort of year thing for Love: A Stranger Dream, finish the Autumn Colouring In Booklet and make a Spring and Summer version.

8) Admin stuff - sort out Orange Monster which is my illustrations and kids books blog and in general sort out my art work and writing into easier archives for searching, sort more places to sell products etc...

9) Graphic Novels - I have unfinished The Punk Universe comics so getting them finished and planning out the other story lines 🙂

10) Zines and things - there is stuff waiting to be scanned, edited, printed, folded, stapled, and the Wiggly Pets blog needs some work on it.

This is obviously a lot of stuff which I doubt I'll get through but it gives me clear goals and shows me exactly what there is to do 🙂

My only concern is that there is no room for random creation - but then that does have a tendency to just happen anyway so maybe that's not a bad thing?

And that is just the writing side of things... so apparent from that little lot I am also having a finishing things off month again. So the aim is to try and finish one started project or work on a larger already started project each day - at the moment this is mainly things like candle making and knitting

Suppose I'd better get on with it all then 🙂

The Jan Recap… (by )

It's the end of January so what has gone on in the household snell-pym in the first month of 2017?

For a start there was the end of Christmas, I am still making the last few Advent vids ready for Christmas next year. We delivered presents though sadly not all the presents so we still have a back log!

Also mine and Mary's birthdays - mine involved a coffee, meal and shopping with Al before hospital stuff but we have only just done the proper celebration with kids and friends this weekend just gone which was also Mary's birthday. There was also posh vegan/Gluten Free brunch. Mary has so far played in the Waterstones cafe with her friend Lilly as her party is going to be in two weeks time. We've planned the party and got stuff ready for it.

This includes me working out how to make upcycled unicorn head bands and tail belts and little roll and pop up horses for the kids to make.

My mother was hospitalised so there was a trip to Essex and the adventures of getting home on the train which were unexpected.

DIY wise we have fixed several toys, remounted a coat rack which had pulled off the wall, dealt with networking and upgrading Jean's computer.

We got a telescope - an amazing thing which was a pool of Christmas money instead of presents for Al and Jean and part of mine and Mary's birthdays. We've seen binary stars so far. It was an undertaking to assemble and we now need to build a storage/transport box but it is assembled and being looked through though we've only had like three clear nights!

I've had three lots of testing at the hospital which took it's toll and norovirus hit the household. I missed a theatre meeting about performing a monologue and a poetry recording evening but I am being given second chances at those so that's all good.

I also missed my Krav self defence one off class and a poetry book launch which made me sad but on the other hand I was live streamed reading poetry at Food For Thought.

Talking of poetry I have also been typing up and editing poems from the BOOKCASE (Not shelf) of notebooks I have. The shear number is insane obv. not all of it is usable but a lot is so I have been organising Turquoise Monster and have even started submitting work again (as in 2 poems so far). I've written three poems this month predictable all about Trump. Of course I am doing my poetry writing challenges so I've drafted a good few more mostly not about Trump.

Jan has also been me gearing up for the poetry writing challenge that I host over at Wopo.

I have also designed, refined and created mini poetry scrolls, story scrolls, made bookwallets etc... for blank scrolls for others to write poetry on, personalised pencils and made write your own poem kits, made and put together 100 mini zine surprise pouches, story boarded two more zines, drafted half a short story, edited a couple of flash fictions, tried to write daily on this blog and started on the mammoth task of trying to sort out the Salaric Craft blog.

Also Storystorm - what used to be Picture Book Idea Month has rebranded and moved to Jan. so I have been idea generating and expanding on those ideas for kids books.

Alaric has been making a cufflink holder for the cufflinks I made him for Advent, the girls have been making invites and decorations for Mary's party and we have all been working on the cosplay outfits for True Believers Comic Festival which is this weekend coming. This has involved sewing, sticking, painting, metal twisting, papier mache and buying new wellys.

I had to get a third print run of my colouring book Love: A Stranger Dream made and in general have been trying to sort out The WigglyPets Press.

I have been teaching myself origami and have folded lit. hundreds of things from geometric modules to make bigger things from to little stand up foxes to pretty little boxes.

We've organised things for getting back down the allotment, so just sorting out containers for soil etc...

I've knitted four hats, made an Ironman craft kit, taken the kids to two (not us) birthday parties. Three projects are still currently being designed and refined including mending a rocking horse that is older than me. I accidently made a pair of slippers from an old coat whilst trying to make a portal gun (please tell me this happens to other people!).

Alaric made my laptop usable again (for now) and we had a chicken fatality 🙁 and we had to fix the chicken run and stuff and general animal stuff to sort out. We've got our new electric car and there was pie making!

NB pie was not chicken Al is veggi!

Jean is still at Scouts, Jujitsu, and Drama and Mary is doing her Ballet, both girls are missing climbing but for one of the parties we did get to go "caving". Alaric is still doing Krav and Hackspace each week. Oh and of course we had to do my tax (sobs!).

There were also visits from and too various family.

So that was January - it snowed and it rained and there was scary fog.

Making and Creating (by )

So today has been a making things only day - when I got up I knew writing was going to be a no go as I am still recovering from the cognative tests at the hospital yesterday. This is what I made:

Upcycled book made with graze boxes and old colouring books

An upcycled book-wallet from graze boxes and colouring in books.

Flip note-let booklet with customised pencil

A little flip notelet holder also made from graze boxes and colouring in book (ie off cuts from the one upbove). Including a half pencil I have customised.

Origami boxes for story and poetry scrolls

Origami boxes made from special card Al bought me yesterday, for the large illustrated scrolls both story and poetry. Decorated with patterned tissue paper and stickers of my art work.

These are all still in the concepts phase as I need to see how they hold together etc... Also I have seen the colouring I did after the head injury and it is not pretty but mostly salvagable by help of black marker round the edges.

Here is more of the same from different angles:

WigglyPets Press mini pencil

I ended up using a cheese knife to remove a section of the vanished wood so that I could ink onto the pencil. Very pleased with how they came out though.

Book-wallet for blank poetry scrolls

The book-wallets are for blank poetry scrolls which can be used as note-lets. I am so so pleased with how this came out!

hand made book-wallet

It is lit. some card cut out from a graze box with colouring in sheets stuck to it.

Book wallet pouch with blank poetry scrolls or mini notepaper in

Using origami skills I then folded a double pouch which I stuck on the inside. I folded it out of an off cut from the uncoloured colouring in sheet I used from the inside.

Inside of upcyled book cover

I put the blank poetry scrolls which are little pieces of paper with my art work on that I have printed and cut to size. I hope they will help people get writing 🙂

Story Scrolls and box folds

These boxes came out lovely but the reason one has stickers on it is that it is actually very easy to buckle the cardboard, I ended up using a cheese knife to score lines where I wanted to fold and I added in a fold to make popping the boxes together nicer and avoid the ripping that occured with the first box. p.s. if anyone has seen my craft knives and metal ruler I would be most pleased to have them back but to be honest I don't think I've seen them since we moved from Essex!!!

Of Test Drives and Zines (by )

Surprise Pouches for mini-zines

This is a Surprise Pouch - they contain one mini zine each plus some other bits and pieces like but not always stickers, page corners, charms and so on 🙂

I love them, I am very pleased the idea worked so well. They will be coming to shows and things with me, they are 50p and will first appear at the OK True Believers Comic book Festival in Feb. I'm there as Wiggly Pet Press and there will be cosplaying and things a foot but I'll bore you with all that at some later date 🙂

I've spent the last few years writing and illustrating and constructing zines (little homemade comics and booklets) but have not always had the infrastructure to actually birth them completely into the world. Now I do. Now I am finishing off all those little zines that have been langishing on hard drives and the like (or worse in my head!).

So be prepared to see alot more of these little butes 🙂

Also I am in general mixing the writing up with the arts and crafts side of things, making tie in necklaces and writing stories for the steam punk accessories I'd made and so on.

Yes I'm aware I need to sell it all on line or something... I do have various e-shops I just don't always remember to list new things or tell people when I have!

Mary had Ballet today it was her first time in the new more advanced class, she was shy and with drawn, it is probably because she hadn't really slept but it was also because her two friends are not in this class. We are seeing how the next few weeks are going but if she continues to be distressed then the teacher says she can drop down again.

Then we went to test drive the Zoe - an electric vechile - we've wanted to have an electric car... well since before Al could drive. I used to enter all the comps to try and win a hybrid when they first came out - of course we never won 🙁 But now we are in a position where we might be able to do a lease for three years. Electric cars are still emergent technology so we wouldn't really want to invest as such in owning one (at the moment) but leasing one would cost us less than running our car plus we wouldn't have to do the maintinance and that is driving me insane (haha!).

Yeah I'm sick of spending weekends crawling under cars getting my cloths drity when it's a desperation factor because I need to be somewhere - also bare in mind I can't even drive!

The show room where lovely and we got hot drinks and we all got to go in the car. Jean likes it because it's smooth, I like it because it's quiet, Al likes the way it handles, Mary doesn't like it because a) it is not a red tesla (kind of agree on this one as we don't really have a choice of colour and they are all erm... muted but at least they are not biage!) and b) it was too "jumpy" this was actually Al getting used to the breaking system.

I like the back lights stylistically not too keen on the front ones, am sad that if we get it then I can't really put decals or anything on it and we don't even get funky hub caps because that all costs more or ment we had to wait longer or something.

I was pleased and yet embarrassed that I was asked if I wanted to test drive it.

We were supposed to then go shopping but there had been ceiling fans all rotating at different speeds around the lights and I'd had to think about numbers without the naps I am taking for the head injury during the week - the result was that I completely crashed and we came home, not really sure what we then did until I started folding things for comic book festivals but I know I slept.

Whilst Mary was in ballet I got another origami book from Waterstones because it has the little baskets/boxes I want to fold for Mary's birthday party in. I think it is counting as my birthday present from Al but I already have it because I finished all the projects I can do in the other books and have infact started to improvise weird geometric structures out of multiple sheets of paper and altering simple folds to be other things. Hence the Surprise Pouches which probably do exists elsewhere but for me are an adaption.

Alaric is helping me out with some zine formating as my brain is just not playing ball at the moment. The Christmas decorations are still sitting in piles in the living room but I am taking things at my own pace.

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