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Month: June 2023

2023 St. Louis Pen Show

Posted in Pen Shows

Jim and I needed a vacation after all of the Athena stress, but we had trouble figuring out where to go. We ended up deciding on a long weekend trip to the St. Louis Pen Show. We weren’t really sure what to expect, but we were pleasantly surprised.

The entrance/registration desk was at the same level as the hotel lobby, with the show itself one floor below. Thankfully, there were both two elevators and a stairway, so there wasn’t a bottleneck — at least not that I saw.

The space allotted for the show was rather large. There were two adjoining rooms, or perhaps it would be more accurate to say there was a large conference/ballroom with an anteroom. However, you want to look at it, both areas were used as show floor.

Ink Battle: Diamine and Monarca

Posted in Ink

As I mentioned in my first ink battle post I do my best to purchase inks I’ve already tested, but that isn’t always possible. And so, more often than I would like, I end up with a couple — or more — inks that are very similar.

Based on the comments that I received on my last post, I need to clarify a couple of things. An ink battle — unlike ink dupes — is between two inks I like. I enjoy using them enough to have them both in my ink collection. If one of the inks performed poorly or caused problems, I wouldn’t keep it. And, if that were the case, an ink battle would be unnecessary.

Bottom line: you can assume I have no problems with any ink that appears in an ink battle. I may decide, when using the inks side-by-side, that one performs better, but the point of the battle is to choose a favorite color. I use a pair of similar inks in pens with the same nib, then test them out to see which I like better.

Ink Rainbow

Posted in Ink

I’ve got another tag post today, but it actually originates in the fountain pen world this time! Issue 338 of Ink Journal (6/11/23) featured Ginger Peachy Pens‘ YouTube video, A Rainbow of Ink Faves TAG #InkRainbow23.

An ink rainbow seems especially apropos given that it’s pride month. I’m following Sarah’s rule of going with the first ink to come to mind in each color category, but I’m adjusting the color categories somewhat.

I don’t have enough pink inks to need a magenta-specific category, but I do have enough gray inks to warrant their own category. I also have enough blues and purples to add blue-black and blurple.

Fountain Pen Cosplay

Posted in Fountain Pens, and Personal

If you’re a member of Goulet Nation, or if you follow me on Instagram, there’s a good chance you know about my Makeup Monday posts. On any Monday that I have the time to do so, I match my makeup to a pen. Usually a pen I own, occasionally a pen I want, sometimes one of NibsAndFlourishes beautiful photos.

At some point, someone on Goulet Nation called it fountain pen cosplay. While I still wish people a happy Makeup Monday, I tend to think of the matching by that term. Over the years that I’ve been “cosplaying” as fountain pens, I can’t count the number of times someone has requested that I teach a class or write a post. So, I’m finally doing so. Having said that, I’ve tried to write this post so many times. Never have I started a post as many times as I have this one. But, I think I’ve got it figured out now.

Be aware, this post is really long. I’ve added links so you can pop straight down to any section that interests you if you don’t want to read the whole thing.

Out of Reach Pens

Posted in Fountain Pens

A while back, a question was posted to the Facebook group Goulet Nation:

Are there any pens that just are outside our reach but stay in our desired list even as we know we won’t get them?

I’m highly fortunate to be able to purchase most pens I want, but there are definitely some that are outside of my reach. To be honest, even if I won the lottery, I don’t know that I’d buy these pens. I have a hard time imagining spending so much for a single item — big ticket items, like a house or car, excluded.

Genetic Testing for Mental Health

Posted in Personal

I’ve written about mental health a few times now, generally to share information I’ve recently learned. This post only differs from those in that I haven’t recently learned about genetic testing for mental health.

Jim credits the genetic test he took about 9 years ago with changing his life. The one I took about 2.5 years ago wasn’t quite as influential, but it saved me from the medication equivalent of Goldilocks and the Three Bears.

Neither Jim nor I have done much research recently on the genetic tests we took. So, I won’t attempt to give you much in the way of up-to-date information. Instead, I want to tell you about what we each got out of taking the tests. I hope this gives you enough information to be able to talk to your doctor about getting a test done, especially if your current treatment isn’t getting you the results you want.

Dupe The Expensive Vibes

Posted in Fountain Pens

If you’ve been a fountain pen person for any length of time, you likely know that their prices have a VERY wide range. But, if you aren’t married to a name brand, you can get the feel of more expensive pens for a small fraction of the cost.

Granted, I make no promises on the quality of the various pens and nibs. Some may be great, some may be crap. But, these let you have that expensive look without the dollar outlay. And, if you’re saving enough on the pen, there’s little a good nibmeister can’t fix.

Note: I’m NOT talking about knock-offs today. That will be in a future post.

Athena: One Month Post Treatment

Posted in Cat

This post is a continuation of my series on her treatment and integration into the household. If you haven’t already, I suggest reading my previous posts on her. You can find them on her tag page.

Like the previous posts, this one is in a journal-esque format. I’m covering major/important events and updates, rather than what happens each day.