Color Style Kyle

Combining art, creativity, design, family, health, humor and books.

Archive for March, 2008

How to Find Four-Leaf Clovers – 4 Luck-of-the-Irish Tips

Posted by Kyle Design on March 10, 2008

Irish Shamrock Beaded Badge Holder LanyardsWith St. Patrick’s Day just around the corner, I’ve been thinking Irish thoughts and decided it was a good time to look for 4-leaf clovers. It was a beautiful spring day here in CA yesterday and I was out for a walk with my girls. Ocean Wave Money Clip in Silver and CopperThey were practicing new tricks while riding their Wave skateboards (those cool, new 2-wheeled riders that combine the feel of snowboarding, skateboarding and surfing that I seem incapable of learning to ride), and I was out looking for four-leaf clovers. I found two within the first 30-seconds of searching. So, how do I do it?

Four Leaf Clover Light Switch PlatesSomehow, I’ve always been good at finding 4-leaf clovers, and I don’t think it’s just because I’m part Irish, although perhaps it helps. 🙂 But I have learned a few tricks of my own (sadly, Wave riding not being one of them) over the years that I will share with you below.

Desk Top Holder for Business Cards with Eye DesignBut First, Am I Qualified? I grew up in an artistic family where really “seeing” the things around us was stressed and discussed. So a byproduct of this training is that I developed a good eye for finding 4-Leaf Clovers. I used to save all of them in this huge sticky-paged photo binder. And I found more than just 4-leaf clovers: I would find 5-leaf, 6-leaf, 7-, 8-, and more multiple-leaf clovers. I had hundreds of 4-leaf clovers, over fifty 5-leaf clovers, more than ten 6-leaf clovers, etc., on up to a 15-leaf clover. (!) Sadly, when I finally moved out of my parent’s house I thought that I didn’t want to be hauling around this big binder of clovers (Is this a weird obsession? I could always find more, right?) so I tossed it out! My kids now say, “What were you thinking?!? We wish we could have seen them!”

So my only recourse is to keep looking, and finding, and proving that they can be found. Here are some tips for finding your own that seem to work for me:

Comparison of Fake and Real Shamrock Plates1. Know Your Plants – There are some similar grasses that have 3 leaves, but they never (in my experience) have multiple leaves. Real shamrock plants have sets of leaves on one long stem with a faint lighter ring pattern about one third of the way down the leaf itself. The fake plants have multiple sets of leaves and flowers on each stem and are solid green.

2. Look for Overgrown Patches – I seem to have the best luck where the patches have a chance to grow a bit wild. (The best patch in my neighborhood growing up was in the yard of the divorced woman who never quite got around to mowing her lawn. My biggest haul was nearly 50 in one day.)

Contemporary Cross Pill Box3. Look for The Cross Pattern – I just let my eye scan over the whole patch, looking for a change in the pattern. Three-leaf clovers are angeled more like a peace sign, but 4 leaves forces the pattern into more of a cross. Real Four Leaf Clovers Growing in PatchI don’t dig through the leaves, but I will occasionally run my hand over the tops of then to tousle them a bit, perhaps exposing some new leaves. Can you find the four-leafed clovers in the patch at right? There are two of them. (There were five in the general area, but the picture was getting too small to be able to see any of them. The second one is just to the left of the center four-leafed clover.)

4. Know When to Move On – Some patches have them, some don’t. If you find one, you can usually find more. So if you aren’t finding one right away, move on to the next patch where, hopefully, you’ll have better luck. 😉

4 Leaf Clover Drinking FlaskIf you’d like to see more of my St. Patrick’s Day Gifts, my 4-Leaf Clover Gifts or any of my unique flasks, pill cases, money clips, beaded ID lanyards, light switchplates or business card holders shown, please click the links here or click on any of the gifts in the photos above.

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Posted in family, Holidays, kids, Unique Gifts | Tagged: , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Cosmology: Makeup Of The Stars?

Posted by Kyle Design on March 1, 2008

Celestial Moon and Stars Light Switch PlateI’ve been attending the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory’s Science on Saturday lectures here in Livermore, CA, being held in our new <a title="Livermore Valley, CA, Performing Arts Center and Bankhead Theater" href="http://www.livermoreperformingarts.org/. The series presents lectures for students and adults to help make science interesting and accessible. This particular lecture was about cosmology, and the lab lecturer, Dr. Steve Asztalos, was introduced (in a slip of the tongue by a long-time school board member, no less) as an expert in cosmetology. Big Oops! First, a brief vocabulary lesson:

Cosmology is the scientific study of the origin, evolution, and structure { or makeup 🙂 } of the stars and galaxies within the universe.

Cool Name Badge Holder in Flash DesignAstronomy is the scientific study of the behavior of the stars, galaxies and matter in outer space, especially the positions, dimensions, distribution, motion, composition, energy, and evolution of celestial bodies and phenomena, including stars, planets, nebulae, and galaxies.

Stargazer Measuring TapeCosmetology is the study or art of cosmetics and their use, as well as the practice of beautifying the face, hair and skin. Famous cosmetologists you’ve most likely heard of include Max Factor (who specifically designed makeup for movie actors that wouldn’t crack), Vidal Sassoon, Paul Mitchell and Kevyn Aucoin, who was known for doing the makeup of stars (the other kind). Please see the star-gazing cosmetology clients in the adjacent photo of a tape measure.

Now, on to the lecture, entitled “Our Dark and Messy Universe: How one particle might light the way”. Great lecture, and there were two demonstrations that really helped clarify Albert Einstein‘s general theory of relativity, E=mc², as well as some other concepts about space for me.

Cool Liquor Flask with General Theory of RelativityOne is the idea of the expanding universe where things that are the farthest away are moving away from us at the fastest rate. A local high school teacher and some of his students demonstrated the concept using 5 evenly-spaced Nerf balls on a rubber rope. As the rope is stretched, all balls are moving apart from each other, with the ones on each end moving away from each other faster because there is more stretch between each individual ball, rather than the whole lot of them just moving a specified distance.

The second concerned how it might seem that we are the center of the universe because all matter is moving away from us. In reality, it just depends upon your perspective.

Stargazer Business Card CaseDr. Asztalos demonstrated by using two transparencies of random dots or stars, the first one being a starting size and the second one having been enlarged or expanded. When you line up the same dot on each transparency, it appears that all the other stars are moving away from that star or planet. However, if you randomly pick another set of stars and line them up, the result is the same – all stars are moving away from the chosen set, and the ones farthest away are showing the greatest distance between the original star and the expanded star.

All in all, it was a very interesting lecture with a great turnout of both students and adults. The next lecture in the series is Saturday, March 1, 2008. Check it out if you can!

If you’re interested in more gifts for those who work with celestial stars, please visit Gifts for Cosmologists. If, however, you are looking for a gift for those who work with movie stars, check out our Gifts for Cosmetologists collection.

Posted in Community Service, kids, Science, Space, Unique Gifts | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

 
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