Pick Me!

A weblog by Laura Moncur


Twitter Log: 2009-09-05

Filed under: Twitter Log — Laura Moncur @ 1:42 am

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I’m So Sorry, Linda

Filed under: General — Laura Moncur @ 11:55 pm

This postcard from PostSecret broke my heart.


It reads:

i work at a vet clinic, when euthanizing a pet, we give you the option of staying in the room with them or leaving.
…..always stay… they look for you once you’re gone.

I wasn’t strong enough to stay with Linda when it was all said and done. I had been there to give her all the injections and help her live a full year after her diagnosis with kidney problems, but in the end, I just couldn’t stay with her.

Linda’s Last Visit To The Vet by Laura Moncur 09-27-07

I’m so sorry, Linda.

PostSecret‘s beneficiary is the National Hopeline Network. It is a 24-hour hotline (1 (800) SUICIDE) for anyone who is thinking about suicide or knows someone who is considering it.


I Am Speaking at the Utah Open Source Conference 2009

Filed under: Blog Stuff,Living in Utah — Laura Moncur @ 3:09 pm

I am totally stoked to announce that I’ve been chosen to speak at the Utah Open Source Conference this year.

These are my presentations:

This is the first time I’ve done a presentation like this since my student teaching so many years ago, so I’m feeling pretty nervous and excited all at the same time. If you are in the Utah area on October 10th, please drop by the Utah Open Source Conference and give me a boost of morale. I’ll probably need it!


I’ve Finished My Halloween Costume

Filed under: Fiction,Halloween — Laura Moncur @ 10:00 am

Dowager Moncur’s Spectacles by LauraMoncur from FlickrAfter much gathering and sewing and plotting and planning, I’ve finally finished my Halloween costume. This year’s theme is steampunk, so my costume is all Victorian and funky glasses.

The dress is a prom dress I found at Thrift Town for fifteen bucks and a corset from a serving wench costume.

The hat is a derby hat I bought at Thrift Town for a couple of dollars with fifteen dollars of flowers, feathers, beaded trim and tulle sewed onto it. I used this hat as an inspiration for it.

The jewelry is from my collection of jewelry from the Eighties and the mourning pin was from my grandmother’s collection of “junk” jewelry.

The spectacles were found in a little shop in Baker, Oregon that time forgot. It was stuck in 1986 and still had all the “cool” stuff from back then. They kept their inventory for so long that cool finally found its way back to it.

You can see more photos of the costume here:

Dowager Moncur’s Spectacles by LauraMoncur from Flickr

Honestly, my Halloween costume has birthed a life of its own and I’ve written an entire story about it.

There are five entries to the story and one will post at Steampunk Stories every Wednesday until Halloween. ENJOY!


What Is Steampunk?

Filed under: Halloween — Laura Moncur @ 11:17 am

After sending photos of my Halloween costume to all of my friends, I got a few emails back from them who were totally confused. The link to the Wikipedia page wasn’t enough for them, so I found this video that does a good job of describing what Steampunk is.

Here is a video from the California Steampunk Convention last year:

I’m so excited about the theme for this year’s Halloween party! Yippee!!


Twitter Log: 2009-09-25

Filed under: Twitter Log — Laura Moncur @ 1:42 am
  • Mary Travers (of Peter Paul and Mary fame) died. Age 72 died from leukemia. :( #

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Easy Steampunk Costumes

Filed under: Halloween — Laura Moncur @ 10:00 am

Mad Scientist CostumeWhile looking at the costume sites online, I found this cool Mad Scientist Costume. You can see it in more detail here:

When I saw this costume, I realized that it would be a perfect and easy steampunk costume. It comes with the brown robe, the apron, gloves and goggles. All you would need would be a top hat and some good knee-high boots and you’d be DONE! EASY!

From now on when people don’t know what steampunk is and still want to follow along with the theme for the Halloween party, I’m forwarding them a link to this costume.

Check out the closeup of the goggles. It’s almost worth the forty bucks just for those cool goggles:

Mad Scientist Goggles

For women it’s a little more difficult to find anything really good. I didn’t want to have a costume that was too revealing, so I used a prom dress and the corset and top from this Tavern Wench costume. If you want to go the sexy route, there are a bunch of vampire and pirate costumes that could be repurposed for Steampunk.

Steampunk VampireThis pirate costume would work as a Steampunk outfit if it were coupled with leggings, combat boots and a good brass gun of some sort. Even that hat would work as long as you wear some cool goggles around your neck.

Also, the intersection of vampire costumes and steampunk are strangely similar. This vampire costume is perfect for steampunk, just lose the choker and collar. It comes with the top hat, so all you need to do is add some steampunk gear and you have an easy costume.

I’ve been planning my costume for months, so I’m feeling a little surprised at how easy it can be to throw together a Steampunk costume. Tomorrow, I’ll talk about Steampunk Gear.


Twitter Log: 2009-09-26

Filed under: Twitter Log — Laura Moncur @ 1:42 am
  • My Teddy Bear is in a commercial on Plaid Stallions! He was a TV star and I never knew it!! http://bit.ly/DXj85 #

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Steampunk Gear

Filed under: Halloween — Laura Moncur @ 10:00 am

The thing that distinguishes a Steampunk costume from a Goth or Vampire costume is the GEAR. Here are the essentials.


In the past that never was, it was a very dangerous place. Or, so you would imagine considering the wide array of weaponry. Here is a How-To to make a Steampunk Gun from a Nerf Gun:

Here is my How-To to make a Brass Ray Gun:

Here are ideas for more steampunk weaponry:


For some reason, goggles (or strange eyeglasses) seem to the MOST important feature of a good Steampunk costume. Here is a slideshow from Flickr showing TONS of ideas for goggles:

An Embellished Top Hat

It’s not enough to have a top hat. It has to be embellished in some manner. The easiest way to make your top hat steampunk is to put your goggles on it. Then you don’t have to wear the goggles on your face for the whole party (hot and hides your eyes).


You don’t necessarily need combat boots, but they seem to be a favorite. Spats also help complete the look.


Gear embellishments are the best way to distinguish yourself as Steampunk aristocracy. Here are some ideas for jewelry, clothing and other gear embedded jewelry.

Cameo Jewelry

For the ladies, it’s always nice to have some sort of cameo jewelry.

I especially like my mourning pin from my grandma’s collection of “junk” jewelry. It was perfect for my costume.

Dowager Moncur's Spectacles by LauraMoncur from Flickr

With just a few additions, you can make a boring Victorian costume into a Steampunk costume. Have fun!


The Dowager Moncur’s Spectacles Update

Filed under: Halloween — Laura Moncur @ 10:00 am

Dowager Moncur's Spectacles by LauraMoncur from FlickrToday, the second installment of The Dowager Moncur’s Spectacles has posted on Steampunk Stories.

This story will continue to post every Wednesday until right before the Halloween Party.

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