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Artie Moskowitz holding a prosthetic hand that he manufactured using a 3-D printer.  Artie has made over 50 of these hands for people all over the world.

I’m so excited!  Artie Moskowitz, owner of 3D Printer Farms, will be back to lead another class for Garland Area MakerSpace at our July 10th monthly meeting—at the North Branch of the Garland Texas Library.*

Back in May Artie demonstrated the ZMorph—desktop technology offered by his company that is capable of 3D printing; CNC machining; and laser cutting.  The Zmorph has lots of capability and even more safety features, making it ideal for use in libraries for classes for young students.

For the July class Artie will bring the plastic parts (made on the 3D printer) and he will teach the Garland makers how to assemble them into a prosthetic hand.  Artie has been making and assembling prosthetics for a nonprofit corporation that distributes them to people worldwide who might not otherwise afford them.  We will also learn more about this organization at this Garland Area MakerSpace meeting.

 

 

Measurements are taken from the person needing the prosthetic hand. These measurements and related drawings are then input into software such as Fusion 360 and the parts for the prosthetic hands are printed (joint by joint) on a 3D printer.  After printing (manufacture of the parts) the prosthesis is then assembled by hand.

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*Garland Area Makerspace

Tuesday – July 10 – 7 PM

North Branch Garland Texas Library

3845 North Garland Avenue 75040

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Four pounds of produce from my front yard - harvested Sunday June 24, 2018

I thought about a gentle reminder I got this morning from a dear friend of mine in regard to my deep distress over the President's treatment of the families of immigrants in South Texas.  She said that at least he signed that executive order halting the disbursement of children to cities thousands of miles from their families with no mechanism in place for later tracing and reuniting them.  "That's something to be thankful for", she said.

And I thought:  "Yes that is indeed something to feel grateful for and I do."  I allowed myself to feel thankful that this has been accomplished.

It's interesting what gratitude does to us.  For me it brings a feeling of relief from stress somewhat like the exhalation of a sigh.  Perhaps the feelings of gratitude  are feelings of love.  At any rate gratitude, like love certainly produces a sense of well-being, a state of grace.  Also, gratitude seems to come upon me in waves once I allow myself to be grateful about one small thing. And that's what happened to me this morning.

After truly feeling grateful that children will no long be sent away, I felt grateful for having a friend like Deborah to remind me to be thankful for what is, even if I feel like at the time it is not enough.  That is important.  Then thinking of Deborah reminded me of all the other friends and family I have that I am also grateful for and I allowed myself to feel gratitude for them.

I went into my poor, neglected yard and harvested four pounds of vegetables and fruit.  When I first planted this garden five years ago, I carefully weighed and tracked every single thing I harvested.  That first year I harvested 625 pounds of produce and figured the value, given current market value at just over $1000.  I was indeed grateful.  Today I remembered all the food my garden has yielded for me over the past five years and I am grateful.  I even weighed the produce today--something I haven't done from my garden for at least three years.

Gratitude is expressing thanks to the world and to our friends for the gifts we are given.  Gratitude comes with its own rewards.  I've kept a gratitude journal off and on now for over 15 years.  A friend of mine in California gave it to me.  I'll faithfully write in several days of gratitude and then I'll put the journal away and sometimes not pick it up again until months even years later.  I'll have to look for it again now that I've thought of it.  I've never been one to keep a regular diary of any sort.

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Gratitude is not to be confused with complacency. Just because one feels grateful, it does not necessarily mean a task is finished.  It is often a necessary wide spot in the road of an uphill climb where we stop to rest and gather strength with the remembrance of good things that have been achieved.

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Moto and Liz in the Garden.  Moto took a self-photo of us today shown above and sent it to me with the following message:

 
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To escape TV images of our President who, against all better judgment for a case of dignified restraint in face of the human rights crisis our nation faces, continues to act like a side show barker stirring sensationalism for his agenda to keep his base stirred up with hatred, I went to the garden today to turn my attention to the beauty of nature and positive activity.

As usual, I was not disappointed. The garden always seems to yield up treasures that I am in need of at the moment. Today after pulling grass from beds and watering the thirsty plants, Moto, a 25-year-old man stopped by the garden.  Moto is from Japan.  Moto is on a two-week visit with a friend he worked with in Japan who lives in Garland.  In spite of  the fact that the USA flattened Hiroshima (his hometown) Moto still loves the USA and its people.   Of course, Moto is too young to have been around in August of 1945 but he grew up with the stories and in spite of it all has chosen love over hate..

I walked in the garden with Moto, showing him around and describing many of the plants in our garden.  He kept saying over and over how beautiful and peaceful the garden is. And how wonderful Texas is.

Being with Moto today reminded me of the enduring qualities of both love and nature—two of the most wonderful resources to be found on our planet.  Dr. Harold Jacobsen, a scientist from the Manhattan Project told us that Hiroshima would be barren of life and nothing would grow for 75 years. 

Nature had other plans.  The following spring new shoots were seen springing up from the debris all over the city.  Hundreds of trees are still standing today that were around the vicinity when the bomb went off.  Though broken and badly charred, they survived and soon were healthy again.  Each A-bombed tree is called a “Hibaku Jumoku” – survivor tree.  According to the City of Hiroshima there are about 170 survivor trees representing 32 different species.

 

One of the 170 survivor trees in Hiroshima - Photo Credit:  Norm Galloway - https://www.flickr.com/photos/nalogg/3324546883

Love and Nature will endure in spite of all appearances to the contrary.  Moto and “Hibaku Jumoku” affirm this truth.

Thank you for sharing time with me today, Moto.

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Speaking on Behalf of Love and Hope against all odds

The huge majority of people knocking on our back door from Guatemala and San Salvador are not criminals.  They are parents with their children who are trying to escape horrendous conditions in their own country—conditions that the USA played a part in creating over 50 years ago by orchestrating coup d’états and overthrowing their democratically elected leaders for the benefit of corporations such as the National Fruit Company. I hope that Americans will seek the whole truth of our history with these Latin American countries and not merely listen to snippets and video clips of hatred designed to further political agendas of a few.  If we send these families back, for many of them it will be a death sentence.  I’m extremely disheartened and sad about this situation.   

Once upon a time our government made room for people asking for asylum and we granted it.  I think that time is here again for this generosity of spirit from the American people. 

For those who read scripture:  Hebrews 13:2 "Be not forgetful to entertain strangers for thereby some have entertained angels unawares."

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Disclaimer:  My thoughts and my comments on this situation as for any of my posts are my own and in making them I am not speaking on behalf of anyone else or in an official capacity for any of the many groups that I belong to.  This is a message completely from my heart and no one else’s.   I speak for myself as an American who believes that more Americans should come forward and speak out.  Silence too and failure to speak up also influences outcomes.

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East London’s Maker Mile – This is a cluster of makers who have a central Machines Room (Second from left) that serves as a meeting point for the makers in this area. [Drawing from World Economic Forum]

Innovative Makers in Londons Maker Mile

Following is detail regarding a few of the makers from London’s Maker Mile:

Bert and May offers a range of handmade and reclaimed tiles. Their encaustic cement tiles are ideal for using on walls, hearths, splash backs, and floors and outdoor in the garden.  All their tiles are created using natural pigments in a vast range of colors and styles to suit any aesthetic.  https://www.bertandmay.com

Machines Room – This 2000 square foot space has a full range of machines for processes such as laser & vinyl cutting, 3D printing to CNC. They host events and exhibitions (available for hire). During the day, the area functions as a co-making and co-working space. (Currently, for the Garland Area Makerspace, the North Branch of the Garland Library serves as our Machines Room.) Read more about the Machine rooms at https://www.fabhub.io

Music Hack Space - Music Hackspace is a platform for experimenting and interacting with sound and technology. They incorporate diverse methodologies and aim to create an open playground and exchange of ideas and sounds that embraces new and old technologies. Newly available open source platforms, both hardware and software, are granting far wider accessibility to new interactions with music and audio than have not been possible before. It’s with these technologies that we base our program of workshops, artist talks and meet-ups, and hope to encourage people of all backgrounds and skill levels to create and engage with music in previously unrealized ways.

Music Hackspace was founded by Jean-Baptiste Thiebaut in 2011, beginning as a subgroup of the London Hackspace in Hoxton with early activities consisting of weekly meet-ups where participants could present and discuss their projects to an engaged audience with a set of common interests: sound, music, creativity and technology.    http://musichackspace.org/

Opendesk is another innovative maker community found on London's Maker Mile. Open Desk is an online furniture store that uses open-source design and manufacturing to circumvent the traditional global furniture supply chain. Opendesk allows customers to select furniture online and matches them with the closest fabrication lab where their product will be made on site. This cuts the most expensive and most polluting step of the supply chain – logistics – out of the process.

Garlands Maker Cluster has already begun

Local authorities, academic institutions and major corporations are waking up to the potential of the movement, which is shaping up to be a key player in urban transformation over the coming decades.  I hope we can soon say the same for the Garland leadership.  Garland Area Makerspace (GAM) is creating our own version of London's "Maker Mile"—We may someday be reflected upon as an interesting case study too in regard to the power that is unleashed when makers come together.  

The Garland Area Makerspace currently does not have its own large space. But beginning in July we are expanding by creating smaller maker interest groups who meet in people's homes. As mentioned, our first maker interest group, Eco Makers, will meet in my home twice a month to study and create things from recycled materials--plastics and soda cans to start.  I expect other GAM groups to form as well—music hackers, woodworkers, fabric designers, etc.

Who knows where Eco Makers will go? Perhaps we will grow to create our own version of Precious Plastics--an interesting project to emerge from Maker Mile in London. Started in 2013 by Dave Hakkens, Precious Plastic is an open-source project that reengineers plastic trash into everyday essentials like bowls and cups, as well as larger items such as tables.

Local authorities, academic institutions and major corporations are waking up to the potential of the movement, which is shaping up to be a key player in urban transformation over the coming decades. Get better educated about what makerspaces are and can be for Garland.  

GAM will continue to remain as a cohesive group that meets once a month in the North Branch Garland library while at the same time branching out to collaborate and develop our own special areas of maker interests.

Eventually, I would like to see a diagram of Makers for Garland that is similar to the diagram for London’s Maker Mile, only clustered around our downtown area where we all work together in support of the prosperity of our local economy.

In terms of clusters of makers in our community, we already have them--in our libraries, our schools and at the Gilbreath-Reed Technological Center in Garland.  We all need to figure out a way to come together and unite==despite our different locations.

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It seems in the past week that both Dallas and Garland Animal Services Departments have come under fire.  From what I gather the two issues of complaints are much different.  In Dallas it seems people are concerned for the welfare of people in that viscous pit bull attacks (even involving deaths) are the main sources of those complaints while over here in Garland we have animal rights folks saying that animals are maintained under inhumane conditions at our shelter.

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No Cruella de Vils among our Animal Services Personnel in Garland, Texas  

In fact, they deserve some gold stars!

I probably wouldn’t even be writing this post except for my own recent interaction with the Garland Animal Services, which was more than satisfactory for my pet and me.  Last Sunday, June 3, I was away from home from 1 to 6 PM.  When I came home my 18-year-old rat terrier, Bubbles was gone.  I have a fenced backyard and a dog door leading from backyard into my kitchen.  Someone must have opened my unlocked gate in my absence and let Bubbles out.

After running around calling her for about half an hour throughout the neighborhood, I posted to the local online neighborhood gossip chain and then I went to the online mutt shot gallery that is posted on our Garland Animal Services site. 

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There she was.  A note below her photo said that it had been posted within the last hour.  That brought me so much peace of mind to know that Bubbles was safe and not been hit by a car or destroyed by a larger animal.  Otherwise I would have worried all night long about her safety.

Charlie and I were at the Garland Animal Services one minute before 10 AM when they opened on Monday.  When I was filling out the paper work, Charlie went back to the kennel area to see Bubbles.  He reported that she was drinking water and that she also had food and a clean cage.  [Note to Cynics and would be Critics:  Ok you can say that since it was 10 AM that the cages are cleaned just prior to opening the facility at 10 AM.  I’ll give you that.  The real test is to ask if the facility has SCHEDULED spot checks for water and clean cages throughout the day.]

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I sent an email to the Garland Animal Services on Friday asking them if they had a schedule they followed throughout the day to ensure the animals have water and clean cages.

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To prove their merit for this star, here is a message that was in my email box this morning from Mr. Hugo:

Good afternoon Elizabeth,

We do an in depth cleaning in the morning and we have officers make rounds on half hour or hour intervals, depending on availability. We do check water levels and soiled cages. There are times, like today, that there is a lot of people visiting the shelter. We do our best to make sure that someone is back checking on the pets as soon as time permits. 

Thank you,
Hugo Espinoza

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Bubbles needed a rabies shot so she got one prior to being able to leave the facility.  I held her as she was given the shot and she did not even flinch, much less bark.  My dog is old and arthritic.  Sometimes she yelps when I pick her up.

Also I talked with a friend of mine who said that two years ago she had a squirrel in the fork of a tree in her backyard.  It was foaming at the mouth and bleeding from its rear end.  She called Garland Animal Services and they were at her house within the hour.  The fellow who came put on big gloves and gently removed the squirrel and put it in a cage.  He ask my friend if the squirrel had been close to her dog and told her that a vet would check for rabies on the squirrel and let her know either way.  He also assured my friend that the squirrel would be put down humanely.  Jane said that you could just tell he was the kind of person who loved animals.

Bubbles, My Friends and I all think the Garland Animal Services personnel deserve a Five Star Rating for their treatment of animals and use of resources they are given.

 

Bubbles and Liz give the Garland Animal Services Personnel a 5 Star Rating

 

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Libraries and local businesses are often the backbone supporting maker efforts to build a makerspace in a community.  I was thinking about that today as I delivered flyers to the North Garland Branch Library, to our downtown Library and to several of our downtown merchants.  The Garland Area MakerSpace is particularly fortunate to have great support from our local libraries and our local business people.

My first stop was at the North Garland Branch Library.  Not only do they support the Garland Area MakerSpace by providing a space for our monthly meetings, they also allow us to post announcements of our latest public programs.  This morning I was dropping off announcements for our Lampwork glass bead class to be held Tuesday June 12  - from 7 to 8:30 PM at the North Garland Branch Library.  Our downtown library also took our flyers to distribute to their customers.

Libraries and Makerspaces in almost all communities are closely affiliated and no wonder.  Libraries often feature their own maker activities as well.  For example, this spring the North Branch Garland Library featured a rock-painting event that was hugely successful (all rocks were taken).  The children painted messages of encouragement and good cheer on rocks that were then scattered about in places throughout Garland.  Members of the Garland Area Makerspace attended this event and donated some of the paint.  Coming up soon the South Branch Garland Library is featuring an event for children to 15 year olds where they will be making tie tacks for Father’s Day.

 

Robert A. Smith, Commercial Real Estate Developer in Garland Texas at Rosalind’s this morning along with Lola, manager of Rosalind’s, and Cary Hodson, owner of Intrinsic Smokehouse & Brewery.  Both Rosalind’s and Intrinsic are located on the downtown square of Garland.  Cary really likes makers.  He helped to bring our monthly Urban Flea to Garland.  Speaking of which, the Urban Flea will be on the square this very Saturday!

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On the left we have Main Street Café--a great place to eat.  They have been supporting Garland Area Makerspace by taping our announcements to their front window ever since we began. On the right is the front window of Intrinsic Smokehouse & Brewery displaying the announcement for our lampwork glass bead class on June 12. 

You can see information about the Garland Area Makerspace in other downtown windows as well:  Dos Banderas, and Main Street Deli to name a couple.  We also have supporters that are not located in our downtown area.  For example, Rockler Woodworking and Hardware, located at 584 W Interstate 30 in South Garland and 3D Printer Farms located at 7223 Blythdale Drive in Dallas.  We love them all.

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COME TO OUR JUNE 12TH MEETING AND HELP US STRENGTHEN OUR NETWORK WHILE LEARNING HOW TO MAKE THINGS YOU NEVER HEARD OF.  IT’S FUN!  And so are the people!  Life is too short to be a hermit.  Get out and meet people, mix it up, and have some fun!  You deserve it!  Come join the makers in your community. Let’s build something great together.

 

GARLAND AREA MAKERSPACE

Tuesday June 12

7PM

North Branch Garland Library

3845 North Garland Road

Garland, Texas 75040

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Jun 3 @ 10:46 am

In addition to our monthly meetings on the second Tuesday of the Month, we are also forming special maker interest groups that will meet twice during the month.  These groups will meet in members homes to further their knowledge and skills in a particular area.

For example, Eco Makers will be meeting in my home twice a month beginning in July.  This group is for those who are particularly interested in making items from what others might label as "trash."  More information on this group will be upcoming.

Some of the Eco Maker Ideas and Crafts we may be exploring include the following.  Of course there are lots of other materials to be considered such as paper for one example.

ECO MAKER IDEAS

MATERIAL:  Aluminum Cans

1.  ALUMINUM CAN WIND CHIMES - https://youtu.be/r_J76L6e1S0

2. YARD FLOWERS WITH Aluminum CANS - https://youtu.be/c4lHhBZLP9k

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xt2Z5mnCQ-8

3.  EMBOSSING ALUMINUM CANS - https://youtu.be/iKKd2xHiMSk

4.  MAKING BUTTERFLIES FROM SODA CANS - https://youtu.be/rKDqGKCUonI

MATERIAL:  Plastic

5. 38 Ideas for those plastic water bottles - https://youtu.be/xEAOvFG1AmM

6.  Precious Plastic – Create things from plastic - https://youtu.be/VdUkOjIP0Ok

This video is for the more sophisticated and serious maker.

Still it is interesting for the curious and those who may be considering delving deeper into transforming materials.   

 

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COME TO THE NEXT GARLAND AREA MAKERSPACE MEETING

Tuesday June 12 - 7 PM

North Branch Garland Library

3845 North Garland Avenue - Garland, Texas 

 Janell Jenkins, Garland Area Makerspace board officer and artisan will be presenting a program about an ancient bead making technology that is over 3,000 years old--lamp work glass bead making.