big lightbulb

Happy easter!

I was originally going to draw the Grand Slams as well but I simply don’t have the time to do so.

Upcycling for Tarot deck collectors!

Sometimes, you’ll find yourself hunting for a thing to hold a thing.

Harvested seeds from last year need a vessel the breathes but not too much.
Sewing supplies need those blue butter cookie tins.
Your newly made lavender mead needs some awesome bottles for short-term storage.

This is what a large part of my life is consumed by: Containers.

I’m obsessed with containers.
If I’m out and about, somehow I find them. Containers stalk me, and I stalk them. I always need more things to hold things.

So, when I realized my tarot deck collection was becoming a little… unwieldy…
it was stashed in my subconscious that I needed to deal with that.

You see, I live in a tiny space, and things tend to get tucked deep in far corners until I need them - and then I have to dig.
I don’t want to dig for my decks.  You kinda want your decks at hand and available rather than a few layers deep in a closet.
I also don’t want them collecting dust on my very-full shelf.  I’m a little lazy with ‘the dusting’ and I prefer to keep things neat and simple if I can.

So, I was wandering around a junk shop many months ago while keeping an eye out for ‘boxes of appropriate size.’ 

While drooling over an antique chest with a billion teeny-tiny drawers, I spied something a bit more relevant.

old. card. index. drawers.
D’yknow the kind I mean?  Think dewey decimal, flipping through those little index cards to find that book you need to get, shhh, quiet, library-kind.

A big ol’ lightbulb went off.

It’s painfully perfect.
Decks w/o boxes fit with about 1/4″ to spare.  Therefore, decks with a very basic box also fit. 
Use your lwb’s to separate the decks or do something more creative than that!  (I was considering wrapping them in a nice cloth, but don’t like that I might not remember which deck is which.)

Decks that are slightly-larger-than-standard-deck-size?

Most deck bags will fit, too!

Start sustainability rant.
Upcycling is very important to me.
Recycling is fine and dandy and a darn sight better than letting all your sh*t fester away in a landfill, but if you’re looking to be truly conscious of the embodied energy and life cycles of things you use… effing upcycle!

Take a thing and give it a new life.  It’s like adoption for objects!
Don’t pitch that mangy pupper into the woods cuz’ he’s not doing what you wanted him to.  Give him a bath, some training and a ‘new’ loving home. <3

End sustainability rant.

Since computers have more-or-less taken over the jobs of these beautiful pieces of history… and, let’s face it, most of us can’t keep our deck collections terribly small… I feel like it’s a solution worth sharing.

These things were naturally made to a standard size, and I’ve seen singles, sets of two (I have another steel one which stacks one drawer high and two wide),  there are even your super-library chest-of-drawers-style ones.
Some of these boxes are wicked cheap (or free!)

Smoke cleanse ‘em. Douse them in salt (being mindful of the material they’re made of) and/or do what you’ve gotta do to make them a happy home for your decks.

I hope you find this when you need it, and you can have a chance to let the librarian in you have their moment.

Author Spotlight: sponsormusings

This feature is a collaboration with panempropaganda and everlarkedalways as part of Panem Propaganda’s 100 Days of Mockingjay: Shipping and Fanfiction.

This interview is a companion piece to an article written for Panem Propaganda, available at X.

With many thanks to panempropaganda, everlarkedalways, and sponsormusings

Graphic by everlarkedalways​. Interview by papofglencoe.

[Ed. note: I have retained the British English spelling in sponsormusings’ answers.]


“She is everything. She has given the fandom not only some of the sweetest AU’s, but she is also a great friend. Social Standing… was so in character, probably more than any [other] AU I’ve read. And… the ending, which I love! It’s the best work of any kind that I’ve read set during that time.” -chele20035

What is so unique or special about Everlark to you?

I think it’s because- both together and individually- they represent overcoming all the odds, overcoming adversity. They represent how the world around us can affect our lives in ways we can never imagine, represent how even one person can make a difference. They represent hope.

Basically, I love them to pieces, and I’m not sure I’ll ever be able to completely explain why they mean so much to me. I guess over three books, they just crept up on me.

What inspired you to write Everlark fanfiction in the first place?

I think, like so many others, I got to the end of Mockingjay, and I was absolutely desperate for more. I couldn’t remember the last time something had stayed with me so strongly, and while I didn’t actively go looking for fanfiction, when I stumbled upon it, it was like everything inside me said “Yes, this is good.”

Prior to that, it had been over ten years since I’d written something creatively, and while I enjoyed reading other people’s stories, the urge to write reared its head. After such a long dormant period of creativity, I didn’t want to ignore it - I really wanted to follow through with that desire to write. So I did.

What’s your personal favorite of your own fics and why? What inspired it?

This is actually a pretty hard question, because I’m not the most objective when it comes to my own fics! I’ve got a soft spot for a few different ones, for a variety of reasons. But if I had to choose, I would have to say Drifting Between Grey and Blue- mostly because it’s a story I always love writing, and those versions of Katniss and Peeta have come to mean a lot to me. Plus, it allows me to explore and develop the supporting characters, which I enjoy.

I originally started it for Fandom4LLS in 2013 - at the time, I was on holiday in Europe, and I was struggling to come up with an idea for my submission. I had about three different false starts, and then dashed out the opening scene with no idea of what it really was, or where the story would go.

Two days later, I was standing on a sidewalk in Barcelona, staring up at Casa Battló, a house designed by the amazing Antonio Gaudi. Now, my husband is a big art gallery buff- me, I can last about two hours, tops. But standing in front of that building, I just remember thinking, “This is art. Architecture is art. This is my art gallery.” And the idea of Peeta as an architect was like a big lightbulb suddenly turning on. As odd as it may sound, within five minutes, the story had virtually unfolded in my head. It’s grown and expanded since then, but for the most part, a brightly coloured house on Passeig de Gràcia was my primary inspiration in its inception.

What’s the greatest challenge for you to writing Everlark?

I think it’s always a struggle to make sure I keep Everlark in character in a modern AU.  Characterisation is something I really try to focus on a lot, because I cherish these characters as SC wrote them. I’ve agonised at times over my interpretations of Katniss and Peeta, wondering would they really say that/do that/think that/act that way? There is absolutely a sense of flexibility in AUs, of course, because Katniss and Peeta aren’t bound by the rules of Panem and the Games. But to always retain that essence of them can sometimes be a challenge for me.

Plus, you know. Smut. That’s one hell of a struggle, lol.

When you’re pushing the limits of character or situation, what ineffable traits of Katniss and Peeta/Everlark do you keep intact to preserve their characters?

Katniss’ strength, her fierce loyalty, her stubbornness, her need to protect, whether it be herself or those she loves. For Peeta, his innate sense of good, his desire to help others, his charm, his way with words - or sometimes struggling with the loss of them.

What’s your favorite Everlark trope and why?

That would undoubtedly be the ‘Haters to Lovers’ trope! There is nothing my Pride and Prejudice-loving heart craves more than watching Everlark bitch and fight and be snarky with each other, only to be madly in love by the end of the story.

What is an Everlark fanfic that has stayed with you? Why?

I’m going with a sentimental favourite here, simply because it was what led me to finally take that plunge and write. Salanderjade’s The Green and the Gold was the first WiP I ever read back in 2012, and she pulled me in with her beautiful, descriptive words set in a pre-epilogue canon world. She was also the first author I ever reached out to, and as a result, we’re still good friends to this day. So that fic is one that will always stay with me.

Another would be Five Loaves of Bread: Dark Toast, by aimmyarrowshigh. The world building was terrific, the story intriguing, the development between Everlark realistic and when I finished it, it stayed with me for days. But please, I can’t talk about the ending to The Good Wife [from silvercistern’s The Ashes of District Twelve]. Now that has always stayed with me. (Oh no, now I want to cry).

What is your favorite Everlark headcanon or fanon?

Just picking one is an absolute killer! But…I like to think that in Mockingjay, after Katniss had cried herself to sleep when Buttercup returns, that the reason she finds herself in her bed the next morning is because Peeta carried her there. And I like to think that Haymitch was 100% a substitute grandfather, and that the knowledge that the toastbabies would never have the worry of being reaped helped him to heal from a lot of his demons.

sponsormusings is the author of works such as Contract Clause, Drifting Between Grey and Blue, and Portrait of a Victor. She is on AO3, FF and tumblr as sponsormusings.

I made it to my dentist appointment on time. Safely. The car warmed up enough to melt the ice before I drove away. It was slow going getting there but I like driving in the snow sometimes.

When I was a child I’m certain the dentist and hygienist didn’t wear gloves during routine exams and cleanings. They washed their hand frequently. In 1981 when AIDS hit the news everyone started to glove up and wear shields over their faces. I remember thinking “But I don’t have AIDS. You don’t need to wear a face mask.” Initially that was kind of scary but now all the developments are interesting.

A few years ago my current clinic started making patients wear clear protective eyewear. Today they gave me tinted glasses. They reduced the glare from the work light which is now a series of tiny LEDs instead of a big fat, hot lightbulb. I found the “sunglasses” to be rather relaxing.

I can nearly fall asleep during a cleaning. In the past what kept me on my toes was having to repeatedly lean over to spit out the rinse into a sink. The change to a suction tube meant I didn’t even need to open my eyes anymore as I could stay reclined the entire time.

There is no waiting to develop x-ray film. They use something that is the equivalent of a digital camera. The x-rays and high-def color photos appear on a high-resolution monitor instantly. There’s still a USB cord attached to the x-ray thing that goes in the mouth. I fully expect that to be wireless in a few years.

One thing that hasn’t changed is the lead apron we wear during x-rays. Oh how I love the feel of that heavy blanket. Sometimes I wish they’d just leave it on me for the entire exam.

How many gamergaters does it take to change a lightbulb?

One to publicize the address of the Home Depot the lightbulb came from, five to complain to the sites and newspapers that Home Depot advertises in that they’re being bullied by Big Lightbulb, the rest to sit around in the dark and masturbatorily congratulate themselves on their alternate hypermasculine narrative, not realizing that this joke is a metaphor for their willingness to disregard their fellow human beings’ humanity.