Sunday, February 3, 2008 --- It's been so long...since I've seen you, my old friend...

I have missed my poor blog. I didn't realize how close we had become...until I couldn't spend time with it? (Do blogs have gender identities? Hmmmmm. Perhaps that could be a future post topic...) Anyway, in pondering my remorse for being such a bad blogger -- a great song popped into my head about friends -- by Joan Armatrading.

Now, before you go and think I am in my late 40's or early 50's, I'm not. Of course, I have had grey hair since I was 19 years old -- so perhaps I have an old soul? That aside, I got into Joan as a kid because my mom used to listen to her all the well as Maria Muldaur, Cat Stevens, Joni Mitchell, et al. Her "Me Myself I" album has long been one of my favorite selections to listen to when I am feeling moody and introspective. So, in honor of my good friend-blog, I'd like to share this great song, "Friends", with you all. Might I suggest a nice glass of wine -- or your favorite smooth spirit of choice -- before you listen? Joan's voice is deep, rich and strong -- I find that it kind of sinks into you like the heat of swallowing a luscious gulp of red wine...I find Amaretto di Saronno works well, too. Anyway, I've included the lyrics here for your enhanced enjoyment. I'll be back soon...thanks for hanging in there with me, everybody!

[ Sidenote: Congrats to the GIANTS!! Woohoo! You can take the Butterfly out of New York, but you can't take the New Yorker out of the Butterfly! ;-D ]


[It seems as though the closing embed tag keeps getting dropped when publishing -- which makes the song player not want to work in Mozilla -- probably cock-sucking-Blogger's fault...What else is new?]

Friends by Joan Armatrading

It's been so long
Since I've seen you
My old friend
I remember your eyes
How they would shine
Those crazy times
When you and I
Fooled around
I remember the time
You fell in love
Didn't know how
To say goodbye
To your baby
And you made me take
The goodbye note
And that little girl
She cried and cried
And she asked me if
I knew exactly why
You'd gone
I told a lie
I said you felt
She'd be much happier
With someone else
But then you'd do
The same for me
Remember when
We stayed out late
We'd cause a fight
But we would never stay
To the end
I loved you then
I love you still
You know I think
I always will
You're a good friend
A good friend
To me
Who was it
Who came for me when I was
Stranded in the bad man's land
Who was it
Who put up bail for me when I was
So desperate to get out
Who believed with me
That I was not guilty
Who gave me beer when I was thirsty
And who gave me twenty-five dollars to hold

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Monday, January 14, 2008 --- Experiencing Bloggus Interruptus...

Dear Friends,

I have been neglecting all of you. It is true. Things have been a little hectic since I started my new job -- and when one is no longer freelancing from home, it is hard to keep up with a blog as easily as before. Once things have settled into more of a routine, I plan on getting back to posting regularly. But for now, I am experiencing Bloggus Interruptus.

Please, bear with me... Thanks!

-- The Butterfly

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Wednesday, December 26, 2007 --- Things have been so crazy...Crazy Fun!

I got some great's a sampling of it on our NEW table...Well, not actually new, but a great hand-me-down from my mom and her boyfriend! It just needs a little bit of repair to some of the tiles and grout, but it is perfect for our little dining area. I love it.

I got to play with this little dude (N.J.) on Monday night thanks to my friends, Lori and Michael, who made him!

On Christmas Day, we had a great time opening gifts and laughing...Here's the man saying, "Please, no paparazzi!"

And finally, I leave you with this absolutely hilarious video of my mom enjoying the free Venom mask that was included with the Spider-Man 3 DVD package. None of us could stop laughing -- she is quite a character, isn't she?

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Friday, December 14, 2007 --- Moments of Light Around the House...and Depth of Berries.

[ If you are going to swipe any of my pictures, I think we all know that the polite and righteous thing to do is to make sure you credit me for it with a link. If you don't, well then, you are a photo-thieving asshole and you should be shot... ]

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Monday, December 10, 2007 --- The Second Annual 2007 Blogger CHRISTMAHANUKWANZAAKAH Online Holiday Concert has been going strong all day!

The concert has been a smashing success over at Citizen of the Month! However, Sophia, Neil and I needed to do some fast creative brainstorming earlier was brought to my attention that the original yellow (gold) Star of David was not a good idea for historical reasons. I will not dwell on those reasons here (look it up on Wikipedia if you don't know the specific history) because I don't want to take away from the positive issue at hand -- which is that we actively pursued and came to an excellent solution! The *NEW* and *IMPROVED* Blue and White Glowing Star has been incorporated into the now revised logo design.

And, if you are here for the "Concert Buttons" -- you can now download the whole pack which includes the original 5 from my previous post as well as *7 Bonus Fashion Buttons* not pictured...Slightly different versions with shadows for depth and two with a "magical glow"!

Click the button below to get .ZIP file package!


<---------- IMPORTANT NOTE! ------------>


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Sunday, December 9, 2007 --- Do You Know What Is Happening Tomorrow?

Well, if you don't know, you should! Neil Kramer aka "Neilochka" of Citizen of the Month (and twitter) is hosting his Second Annual 2007 Blogger Christmahanukwanzaakah Online Holiday Concert Extravaganza! What is this exactly? Neil explains it best:

"...It is now time to raise our voices in song again in this new holiday tradition. Hanukkah songs about miracles. Christmas songs about faith. Winter songs about the beauty of the season. Kwanzaa songs about new traditions. It is the 2007 Blogger Christmahanukwanzaakah Online Holiday Concert, right here on Citizen of the Month on Monday, December 10th (with a re-broadcast on Christmas Day). The concert is for YOU and by YOU — and this year will be bigger and better than last year..."

Basically, anyone from the blogging-community-at-large is welcome to share a recording of him/herself singing a favorite holiday song! It is meant to be fun...and possibly quite we all celebrate the great big inclusive Holiday of Christmahanukwanzaakah! Plus, if you are too embarassed to sing, Neil also welcomes photographs from bloggers to help "dress the set". It should be a great time. And, if you have never checked out Citizen of the Month before, you really should because Neil's blog is hilariously funny and incredibly well-written. [ I should hope so on that last part because Neil is a professional writer in "real life"! ]

That said, you'll be pleased to know that I have a submission in this year's concert. I sang "The Man With The Bag", a song that was originally recorded by Kay Starr in 1950. This song has always made me laugh because of its unapologetic theme of Christmas greed LOL! (Hence, my allusion to it in the sidebar where I have my Xmas Wish List!) Plus, I love the peppy big-band sound of it. As I explained to Neil, I don't have a particularly great singing I decided to really ham-up my submission in the hope that "really funny" would excuse "lack of talent". I recorded it with a clothespin on my nose so that it would be really nasal and then I tried to do a little bit of Ethel-Merman-like styling, although sans the great power of Ethel's voice. Anyway, I think it is pretty funny. I mixed it myself on the computer with an instrumental karaoke track -- not bad production value for being recorded in my home office. Join us at the concert and feel free to laugh at me and my song! I also submitted the "Winter Berries in Snow" picture from the previous post below as decoration for the concert so you'll probably see that too.

I also created the unsolicited artwork pictured above -- I was inspired by the idea of trying to create a logo design to incorporate the 3 holidays into a graphical image that was clean, attractive and symbolically cohesive. It was a great graphic design challenge! I used the three colors of Kwanzaa (black, red, green) -- the Christmas Tree symbols (which double as general holiday season/winter symbols too) -- and a gold blue and white glowing star of David -- as well as a blue background as another Jewish/Hanukah nod. I sent the graphics to Neil last night, but I still don't know what he thinks of them. He may or may not use them, but my real purpose was to create them for my own use to promote the concert because I think it is such a fun idea and concept that Neil has started. People are certainly welcome to borrow my button for use on their own blogs...I think it is kind of neat to have a "I participated in CHK 2007" badge for the sidebar so that blog readers can revisit the fun we had anytime and maybe become new participants for next year's!

[ I would love it if folks credited me for the button if they use it, but it's not necessary. Just leave me a nice word in my comments if you are going to borrow it! Share the love, baby. ]

Click the button below to visit Citizen of the Month:

<--------------------------- UPDATE 12/10/07! --------------------------->

Hey folks! I created this modified version button badge below (4 colors) that folks can also use in their sidebar -- year round if you like (!) -- to provide a link to the concert festivities any time. It's a nice way to thank Citizen of the Month for hosting this wonderful event...

You will need to host the button image on your own site and modify the code below accordingly. Here's the code you will need to use the buttons:
<a href=" concert/" title="Check out the 2007 Christmahanukwanzaakah Concert!"><img src=" NAME OF CHOICE.png" title="Check out the 2007 Christmahanukwanzaakah Concert!" border="0" /></a>

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Friday, November 30, 2007 --- Kneel before the Temple of Coldness...and get your wax worms here!

Behold! Our glorious new Temple of Coldness...If you follow me on Twitter, you'll know that we recently had a refrigerator breakdown at the Butterfly Cocoon. Our kind neighbor, Teresa, took in our wayward food for temporary storage across the hall so that we wouldn't lose everything. Initially, the apartment maintenance guy, who showed up at our door to check the old monster, said he would need to replace the fan motor (I think?) in the morning to get things running again. Of course, behind closed doors, we said out loud, "Why can't they just get rid of this energy-sucking-fucker and give us a new refrigerator like Teresa has?!?"

Well, I am pleased as punch to announce that they did just that! Three nice men came in, cleared out the old, rolled in the new, and even helped put away what little non-perishable food we had left in the old dying beast. Magnets and pictures have now been replaced on the new magical fantastical Whirlpool.

I especially love the clear drawers that let me see exactly what is in there at all times. Nothing is worse than forgetting about some random vegetable purchase, only to discover some weeks later that you have a drawer full of rotten celery or cucumbers...Ick! [OK, yes, there are worse things -- like heinous rape or murder -- but, in terms of refrigerator things, you get the idea... ]

Now, I am sure there are you nosy little bitches out in Cyberland who are going to zoom in and examine the contents of our refrigerator. And, you are probably going to say, "Hey Butterfly, what's with the container of LIVE WAX WORMS?" Ewwwww.

My longtime readers will know that the worms are a special treat for our amphibian friends -- specifically, our two Australian White's tree frogs. Usually we feed all of our frogs crickets, but occasionally, I will hand feed these guys a few wax worms. I don't feed wax worms to the three Cuban tree frogs (not pictured) because those frogs are too fast and nervous to be held and fed. If you drop the worms into the tank, they will just dig themselves into the soil, never to be seen again. So, it requires holding the worm in front of a lucky frog's face to be snatched in the moment. These two frogs at left, known collectively as "the Bung Monkeys", are very happy to be held and fed. Because they are fat and slow. *heeheehee*

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Monday, November 19, 2007 --- Felt like a spiffing up was in order...with NEW and IMPROVED Banner Action!

I was tired of my old banner -- it was boring me -- hence, the new one! Hope you all likes...if not, too bad. I also added a subtitle for the fun of it, changed my email envelope, and am considering changing the "About Me" text, but I haven't decided what to say yet. Another day.

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Thursday, October 25, 2007 --- Some things I would trade for a spleen...I mean, a Spleenal action figure!

This is a post for my blogging buddy, spleenal. He's swapping spleenal action figures (blank ones for bloggers to decorate themselves, and then, share pictures of their creations to post on his blog!) for neato things of your own. So, Spleenal, here's what I've got in lieu of splosh porn...

For the spleenal Christmas tree -- a handmade ornament from New Hampshire -- a wooden bluebird on a perch. Or, if you happen to be Jewish, he could hang out in a bushy houseplant just for fun? OR...

A funny little bug in a box, complete with wiggly legs that move when you shake him? OR...

A little wire wind-up robot that jumps around on his rubber-booted feet?

Whaddya think? I tried to think of cool little things of mine that were inexpensive (as per your guideline) while still the spirit of my toys for your toys!

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Monday, October 22, 2007 --- Ok, my bloggy friends, let's try this again...Starbuck's Song of the Day Swap, Sweetened.

Since no one has stopped by here lately to take me up on my Starbuck's Song of the Day Swap offer -- I have gained another extra Song of the Day card. So, now we have 2, count 'em, 2 FREE songs to trade for other different songs -- OR, you can trade something else interesting! Whatchagot??

You people may force me to throw in a custom designed banner or Flash animation for your blog, but I hope it doesn't come to that...You'll have to be trading something pretty good for me to whore myself out! ;-D

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Saturday, October 20, 2007 --- Wanna Swap? Starbuck's Trading Card Day!

Okay, so, you know how Starbuck's has this Song of the Day promotion going on with iTunes? Well, today, the man and I went to Starbuck's and we received 2 cards -- obviously, we don't need both. Anybody out there got an extra card you don't need from another day that you wanna swap for today's (10/20/07) song? No Kenny Chesney, please.

Drop me an email and we can exchange download codes -- 'cause hey, free music is fun!

If you don't have a Starbuck's card, but have something else cool to trade, let me know. I'm open. Besides, it might be more fun to do a "totally random items, interweb swap meet..." Whatchagot, bloggy friends?

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Friday, October 19, 2007 --- I must have you, Lime NmG...I love you!

Oh, if only I were independently'd be on your way from Ohio to my loving arms NmG! *sighs*

See what this little cutie is all about at the Myers Motors website.

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Tuesday, October 16, 2007 --- Hi, My Name is Butterfly. I am a Vicks VapoRub addict and I have been clean now for...about 16 hours!

Apparently, I am not the only abuser of Vicks VapoRub out there. However, unlike Aunt Jackie (see yesterday's comment section), I have never eaten Vicks -- I am strictly a "sebaceous nasal abuser" of the substance. As part of my recovery program, I am required to do this Public Service Announcement on the proper usage of Vicks VapoRub...

According to my jar (and the Vicks website), the DIRECTIONS FOR USE are as follows:

See important warnings under "When using this product."

* Adults and children 2 years and over:
  • Rub a thick layer on chest and throat or rub on sore, aching muscles.
  • Cover with a warm, dry cloth if desired.
  • Keep clothing loose about throat/chest to help vapors reach the nose/mouth.
  • Repeat up to three times per 24 hours or as directed by doctor.
* Children under 2 years of age: Ask a doctor.

Other Information

* Store at room temperature.

Questions? Call 1-800-873-8276.

Okay, that's all fine and good, but I still fail to see how a child under 2 years of age can:

  1. Read these directions.
  2. Call a doctor.
  3. Assuming the fucking receptionist will ever actually put the doctor on the phone, is a baby really articulate enough to ask the doctor any questions about the use of this product by someone his/her age?

Hmmmmm? Moving on.

The WARNINGS are as follows (I have made bold the particular sections of interest that relate to the forms of product-abuse engaged in by Jackie and me ):

For external use only; avoid contact with eyes.

Do not use:
  • By mouth
  • With tight bandages
  • In nostrils
  • On wounds or damaged skin

Ask a doctor before use if you have:
  • Cough that occurs with too much phlegm (mucus)
  • Persistent or chronic cough such as occurs with smoking, asthma, or emphysema

When using this product, do not:
  • Heat
  • Microwave
  • Add to hot water or any container where heating water. May cause splattering and result in burns.

Stop use and ask a doctor if:
  • Muscle aches and pains persist more than 7 days or come back
  • Cough lasts more than 7 days, comes back, or occurs with fever, rash, or persistent headache

These could be signs of a serious condition.

If pregnant or breast-feeding, ask a health professional before use.

Keep out of reach of children. If swallowed, get medical help or contact a Poison Control Center right away.

©2007 Procter & Gamble. All Rights Reserved. All copy and claims valid only in the U.S.

I must say, I had never considered microwaving my Vicks before, but...

And, I love the fact that "All copy and claims valid only in the U.S." So, if I am in say, France, I could do ANYTHING with Vicks VapoRub (including putting some on my pooper, for freshness) because none of these warnings would apply there! Awesome.

Of course, it does not surprise me at all that I am an abuser of Vicks VapoRub -- considering Jackie's history of eating it until the age of 30 -- we come from the same maladjusted, Vicks-abusing family. I am quite sure that her older sister, aka my Mommie Dearest, was probably the one who fed it to her for the first time, as their mother probably did to her...Yes, my own mother started me on the path to my greasy-nosed nightmare.

But, there is help out there. Pick up the phone and call the 1-800-number. You'll be glad you did.

/end P.S.A.

[Disclaimer: I make no promises that I will not nasally abuse Vicks VapoRub in the future. I'm just sayin', if I have a bad cold, I may use again. I'll let my sponsor deal with it when the time comes...Thank you.]

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Wednesday, October 3, 2007 --- Ode to the small Asian woman...on Great Mofo Delurk Day 2007!

This in an Ode, with a capital "O", to the small Asian woman who altered the blazer of my brown Jones New York suit. You are simply amazing...There is no perceivable evidence that this jacket was ever disassembled to make your expert adjustments -- except for the fact, of course, that it fits me perfectly now!

I found this little brown tag stapled to the inside label of my garment, which bears your handwriting. I have no idea what it says, but I suspect it contains secret messages pertaining to the magical spells you perform with your tiny hands and sewing machine on my clothes. I am keeping this tag because it will remind me of you, your excellent workmanship and the very simple happiness I felt today when I tried on my jacket for your final inspection.

Small Asian woman, I do not even know your name, but every time I enter the dry cleaners where you work, you greet me with your warm and enthusiastic smile. This brightens my day for a moment, and for that too, I thank you! Your small moon-shaped face, with its laugh lines and creases of old age, is full of kindness. I like to imagine you being my own tiny grandmother or perhaps a dear great aunt, but we are just strangers. You will never know that I think about you, but I do. And, I hope that you are well-loved.

Today is Great Mofo Delurk Day 2007! Please, don't forget to leave a comment on all of the blogs you read...lurk...stalk...Trust me, you will be making people smile.

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Sunday, September 23, 2007 --- Fun with Eggs on the Autumnal Equinox!

Today was the Autumnal Equinox -- a rare opportunity for eggs to stand up on end! Here are two eggs that I spent some time photographing this afternoon by candlelight...

...different angle...

...sepia toned...'cause I liked the way this looked too!

...sepia toned again...

And finally, by natural light, just for the fun of it. Took this one with my phone camera -- still came out pretty good for a phone picture!

Hello, Autumn! Let the Dance of the Leaves begin...

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Saturday, September 8, 2007 ---, your widget is really getting on my nerves... :-(

For a few months, I had the "Music Like..." widget in my sidebar. You all may have actually played some music from it in the past. (??) It was nifty.

Lately, I was noticing that when I clicked play (usually while I am writing a blog post, I will play it to listen to something while I write, etc.) the first song played completely, but then, the songs that followed would play about 4-5 seconds before skipping to another song snippet of 4-5 seconds...over and over...and over. It was like channel surfing against my will. Little "preview" snippets of songs, one after the other.

I don't know if this is a problem with -- perhaps it is a glitch? -- I don't remember this happening in the past. Maybe, there was a trial period on for the widget, and then, it was meant to stop working? Who knows? [Maybe one of my readers who uses knows something about this? Let me know if I missed something.]

Anyway, it was annoying me. I decided to scrap it and substitute in my own player -- because I already have plenty of musical content available from my WBFR radio project that I could use. Now, you will see in the sidebar my own radio player that will play music at random from my personal library. Currently, it is playing from the WBFR_dance and WBFR_winter_2007 mixes. I will keep adding more songs to the XML playlist that pulls the music from my WBFR project, but I also need to add some newer content. Eventually. The point is, my own radio station player will not annoy me and will be more reliable. Hopefully, some of you will enjoy the music. There is some really good stuff in there, if I do say so myself. ;-)

For more information on any of the artists or albums, send me an email (check the sidebar for the address) or leave me a comment. I am always happy to talk music.

[NOTE TO SELF: You'll have to sub-out the widget on The Daily Lizzard also...a future task...with uploaded music to suit the Jazz-theme we have going on over there...Fun! Yeah, very future task.]

UPDATE: Put together some fast and dirty content for The Daily Lizzard's radio player yesterday (! was really bugging me!) because I had some free time while I was waiting for somebody...And, I am excited to say that not only does she have some really great jazzy music to play over there, but a lot of it is from indie artists who deserve exposure -- so this is really nice all around. Plus, I used a beautiful color-coordinated player for her blog that I love. Take a listen if you have the it in the background while you surf the web...You'll feel like you are in the Lizzard's personal Jazz Lounge with martinis for everyone! But, I'd like an Amaretto Sour, please! [The more sour, the better...with an orange slice and cherry...K-thx, bai.]

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________ - THE BUTTERFLY BLOG - Copyright ©2007 Vanessa Lee Hamlen. All rights reserved.

Would it kill ya?

What I Am Doing...

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About Me

I am a graphic designer. I love animals and have quite a few pets. There is a frustrated DJ inside of me --- hence, my ongoing obsession with making music mixes.

Recent Posts


Musical Goodness

-- Music from Butterfly's personal library --

LORI'S LABOR: A collection of 6 unique playlists with varying intensity and mood for your listening pleasure! I created these original mixes for my friends to use during the labor and delivery of their first baby, Nicholas.

You can visit their blog here: ---> The Bridenstines!

Listen to my comical, purposefully nasal, total HAM-job submission to the 2007 Blogger Christmahanukwanzaakah Online Holiday Concert in the mini-player above!
Links and Friends

vanessa lee hamlen
towhead productions
lizzie sue
the Daily Lizzard
joe hinsburg
fleck family
katie haverly music
joe sorren art
the sneeze
archie mcphee toys
eric joyner robot art
nishant choksi illustration
neth creatures
grammar girl
go fug yourself
jeffrey fulvimari art
don't click it
favourite website awards
paul neave
jared tarbell flash art
liquid journey flash art
my pet skeleton
tobie giddio fashion illustration
van beater art
pure breed revolution
pixel girl
jay bibby game reviews
the mighty jimbo
be the boy
sweet blog o' mine
bent objects - sculpture blog
terry border art
anne taintor - vintage gift items
anne...straight from the hip
the naked rabbit world power foundation
i can has cheezburger
passive aggressive notes
citizen of the month
the daly blog
craxy's blog
john's adventures
guerrilla gardening
kung foodie
this is blythe
deron cohen art
life student
hug nation
march of the hugmobile
tales from the dad side
ikea hacker
easy being green
marc johns's blog - mildly amusing drawings
ideal bite - easy green living ideas
gathering in light - c. wess daniels
schmutzie's milkmoney or not, here i come
we are rantasaurus rex, hear us roar
the "blog" of "unnecessary" quotation marks
lyrical venus
the world's most local burger
readymade: instructions for everyday life
giant microbes
busted tees
inarticulate fumblings
i am the diva
wesley riot
queen of spain
in palinode's palace
mustaches of the nineteenth century
sera faery NEW! - the daily overdosage NEW!

DO NOT CLICK on the following links if you are under the age of 18! These blogs are not for you...

really bent
where i vent my spleen
cocky bastard
tassy pink

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