Thursday, June 30, 2005

A post of many colors…

The lighter side of me...and all the other posts I've wanted to share:

First, I'll post my month of softies
  • June bug entry.

    Here they are, two bugs for June:




    These are flatish and are meant to hang on a wall. I'm sending them off to my niece for a late, late birthday present. I hope she likes them. I know I do! I used glittery felt for the eyes and bits for the butterfly wings. The one with the hat/wings is supposed to be ladybug. Jon said the wings look like a hat. I guess, it does...somewhat. grrr

    Next, I will insert a pic of Mr. Nelson. CUTE DOG ALERT!!!









  • Food from our co-op also, our little kitchen:


    That's a lot of green, mommy!

    Carrots, yummy!

    My studio...Halfway painted...Story of my life.

    Painting I did in the early 90's. It was 6' by 4'. I wish I still had it...I shall have to do another one. The surface is a composite of plaster, paint and various materials to add texture. It was on a wood surface.



    The pictures you are about to see are of our hallway. They are quite terrible. Hopefully, in less than a month these pictures will change radically.



    Half the wall paper is gone...at least the blue curtain looks all right. That's just sad...

    illustration friday: Heros

  • illustration friday




    Phil Oches is one of the most important folk singers of our time. Lots of people know of his songs but few knew of him. He was against the war in the 1970's and I'm guessing he'd be against the war we're in right now. He is one of many "heros" in my life. I wish he had lived longer than he did (he took his own life in 1976) and I wish he was here now to inspire people. Sadly, his
  • songs are very relivant to this day.

    I did this paintings a few years back (about 5). It's on an American flag. I was inspired by
  • Jasper Johns The quote on top of the Phil Ochs picture is

  • "Here's a land full of power and glory...Beauty that words cannot recall
    Oh, her power will rest on the strength of her freedom, Her glory shall rest on us all."

    -Phil Ochs

    On the rest of the flag is a quote from William Shakespeare,

    "What a piece of work is man! How noble in reason! how infinite in faculties! in form and moving, how express and admirable! in action how like an angel! in apprehension, how like a god! the beauty of the world! the paragon of animals! And yet, to me, what is this quintessence of dust? Man delights not me; no, nor woman neither, though by your smiling you seem to say so."

    --From Hamlet (II, ii, 115-117)

    Wednesday, June 29, 2005

    eBay!

    Just wanted to let you all know I've posted several ACEO paintings on eBay. You can view them at:

  • Emily's Paintings on eBay!

    Thanks!
    Emily
  • Monday, June 27, 2005

    Stuck in the brush and other musings...

    It's starting off to be one of those days. Last night, my car overheated and looks to have sprung a leak. Jon's going to have to fix that when he gets home. This means I'll have to ask for a ride from my dad-in-law. Not a problem...still, it's annoying.

    Then when I put Mr. Nelson outside for his daily duty he chased a rabbit into the thick thorny brush by the garage and instantly got tangled. This was not good. I had to hack at the side of the bush and make a path to save him. Let's just say my arms are totally scratched, raw and in pain. But I got him out and he was truly thankful as I got several licks and mostly a kind look. I think he blamed me for throwing him outside. I hadn't taken my allergy medicine yet and was quite irritable at the time.

    Now, he's growling at the fan...this is the first time he's seen it, so he's adjusting. He's looking at it like it's some demon going to pounce.

    I'm working on getting him to use the great outdoors as his only bathroom. I've been keeping him close to me or attached to various door knobs in the house. It seems to be working...Hopefully.

    Well, I've got lots of pics and a few stories so here goes.


    On Sunday, I awoke early to start my watering of house plants. According to Ed, my dad-in-law, morning watering are the best as they don't let the plant get moldy at night and don't fry the plants in the hot mid day sun. Which reminds me, I need to plant our newest tree, a Colorado Spruce. Anyway, I opened the front door to water my two potted plants and out of the corner of my eye I see something furry dash away. I'm like, "what was that?" I look at my pots and to my horror my orange flowers have been decapitated. What was once like this:


    Now looks like this:






    Petal fragments...

    I know this was a squirrel searching for some water. It's been 98 degrees around here...and no or little rain. So, I put out a birdbath that broke (the base) and filled up the top with water, balanced on bricks and I think, I hope my flowers are safe.

    On to some crafty things:

    Loot from Mimi:






    Surplus City Finds:

    Got it for 10 cents!
    And this too!

    This is so cute as Lydia is into flamingo big time.

    I hope she'll look like this when we are done. I actually made them a bunch of frogs from this kit and they came out pretty cute.
    Little wooden people shapes. I love these and some pretty felt. And lots of material which I can't find the pic I took...

    I had a little situation right now. Apparently, Norrie went on the back porch and closed the door and was out there crying for nearly 6 minutes before I found her. She was trying to come in but her hands were full of doll bottles and a bear. Poor thing. Fortunately, I'm her and I've got a limited supply of junior mints. They come in handy for calming down tearful toddlers. Now she's back, grumpy and doesn't like the fan too. Gotta go....

    Saturday, June 25, 2005

    A hot day in Altoona, PA

    My, the weather actually feels very much like A Southern California summer! Supposed to get in the mid-90's today. I love it! Sure, you won't see me step foot outside until the sun passes it's 4pm route, but I'll eventually emerge. Actually, I'm at my parent-in-laws using their computer. They just drove up. We're planning on leaving the kids here and going to Surplus City where they sell all sorts of mechanical type materials and FABRIC! I've got my list of things I need to get. Mostly, yellow and white fabric because I plan on making quilted curtains for Norrie's room and I need some lacy fabric to replace the worn stuff in the hall window.

    Well, they're home and we can hit the road soon. They've got such great stuff there. Lots of craft stuff and lots of things to use for seasonal projects. I'm just trying to get some fabric. I'd go to another fabric store...Jo Ann's but the employees there always seem so mean and unhelpful. I'm planning on writing a letter to the company and ask if they're planning to close down that shop, or something!

    I'll write more later. Hopefully, I'll be able to put some paintings up on eBay. I'm working on some ACEO's and want to have them up by tonight or tomorrow. I hope this heat doesn't slow me down.

    Friday, June 24, 2005

    Busy...Lots and lots of pics...softies too!

    Our Altoona Area Food Co-op is starting to fly! This is great! I put an ad in the paper and looks like things are starting to roll with more people finding out about the co-op and interest growing. Yah!

    I'm actually going to be posting a bunch of pics. Hopefully, this will make some sense! :)

    Had to put one of some of my cats. There are four. I'm just posting two right now. But more are on the way! This one is of Kiwi. I think they were feeling neglected. This is the first time I've posted their pics.

    Simone. She's a bit shy but boy can she get grumpy. I love this cat...kind of like me!

    Here is a plush cat I did. She's made from a baby sock (reused!) that I inverted and then embroidered a face on. I'm going to be making lots more of these in the future. Plus, my girls love the sock kitties!

    Another pic of kitty. She looks rather knowing...

  • Mimisent some 70's magazines (Vogue?). I love these hats! Thanks, Mimi! It's a great clipping and I feel inspired.
    My little basket of work. Don't let this fool you...I have TONS of projects surrounding this. I just happened to see this one orderly basket and thought I'd share it. These are my mini-mini-quilts. Plus, I'm making some ACEO cards. Should be interesting.

    **********

  • The following pics are of our Mr. Nelson. DO NOT BE SHOCKED. He had his hair trimmed and it was a bit excessive. Or rather, his mattes were a bit excessive. My dad-in-law thought he got sick and lost a bunch of weight. He did lose about 5 pounds but it was all hair! It's a bit funny because now everyone thinks he is a girl. I think he hates this on one level. But on another, people tend to think he is all male for obvious hair removal reasons. I'll save you any pics or descriptions. ahem... Just think really short hair trim and very pink skin.



    Messy house, I know...

  • Guinea Pig dress I was going to make something similar like this for Mr. Nelson. But as one of my internet pals mentioned...make it look "he-man" in colors and style. I think I will! Mr. Nelson you are saved...Although, I must admit he looks quite good in blue hair clips. :) Unfortunately, it was I, and not my girls, who put them in his hair.



  • Thursday, June 23, 2005

    Pillows, teddies and a few other handmade items...

    It's late at night and I'm very tired but what the hay. I'm putting up a few images of various things made by my mom. And one mini-quilt by me. Here they are:

    Teddy patchwork. Made for my niece's birth.



    I have to admit the lighting in these images is rather good. I wish I had sunlight like this all the time.
    A tini pin cushion with an embroidered kitty playing with thread on spool. So sweet! It was my mother's day present from my mom.



    This bear is fully quilted on the front and back. I love this bear. My mom made it for my daughter. It has her name and birthday on it. A beautiful way to celebrate her birth.



    Made by my mom for Lydia's 3rd birthday. I still need to put more stuffing in it. I love the kitty's smile...very coy.

    All of my mom's work is done by hand...in the sense that she doesn't use a sewing machine...or very rarely. These are examples of her work. She can do requests for similar colors or different colors and images. Let me know if you like anything!


    Below is a pic of a mini-quilt I gave away for a Christmas gift.
    Sorry the picture is so dark. I had to wrap it right after this picture and I was stressed because I did it so late in the night...kind of like right now. :)

    Anyway, I will have more bits of work (and better lighting) up soon. I'm going to try and aim for the weekend...unless it's a totally lovely weekend...sigh. Plus, I've got to share what was in my package from Mimi.


    Sometimes, I wish I had a mini-photo studio. Wouldn't that be nice?

    Reading...

    Just happened to be reading commondreams.org and read Arianna Huffington’s piece about the news and what makes a news story. Very interesting actually. Her main solution is to turn the station...in effect boycott the news. This is not with out just cause. I've actually been boycotting or just refusing to give news stations (and TV) my time. It's really very trashy, actually. There seems to be no real sense of community or an attempt to aim toward professional journalism. The only ones I can say does this is BBC news and Yahoo news. I’ll read the top 7 news headlines on Yahoo and that’s about it. I prefer not to wallow in yellow journalism (most of the time), in blatant over-the-top commercialism and news sponsored by so many corporations. It's just ridiculous.

    I stopped watching TV news awhile ago when I saw news reporters wearing trendy tight outfits...Usually and almost always it was the women who have to be subjected to this crap. Then it got to be where you'd only hear about entertainment and the spectacle. You'd really hear this in Los Angeles, where I'm originally from. There was nothing about communities and nothing about the little suburbs around LA on these stations.

    I was actually impressed for awhile when I came to this little town of Altoona. They actually talked about companies in the area either downsizing or recently, new companies starting up (very few, unfortunately). But even these news stations are starting to succumb to the pressure to be "hip" and "trendy". The women are starting to wear youthful or rather sleazy looking clothing and the stories are starting to look and sound a bit too familiar.

    There is a way of reporting news that doesn't have to be bland or be about Michael Jackson. There is a way because I've seen it on BBC and it's very interesting. I'd say it's even caught the current administrations attention...They're trying to cut funding to PBS and NPR. These are the few stations that are moderate and level headed. Usually you can find stories on NPR and PBS from all walks of life and humorous bits that would NEVER be shown on regular news shows. Unless of course, the story featured a blond, plastic young person in great or minor peril. But do we all want to only see various forms of Barbie dolls? I don't think so. I know I sure don't. Even if a person has a leaning towards a particular belief, political view, etc. there should be the opportunity to listen to classical music, see a Mr. Rodgers rerun, or hear a different point of view. This is what makes our country one of the more interesting countries after all. All of the variety and the oddities and all the blue ribbons and all the rapping, all of this makes our country so much more interesting. This is what makes our country a community and I, for one, want to hear about it.

    Tuesday, June 21, 2005

    First Day of Summer...

    and of course, the fireflies are out! How very poetic as well as good timeing. Lovely.

    Hope you all had a good summer soltice. I spent my day mostly on the back porch, working on illustration friday, cleaning, and chasing two little gals that appear to have summer in their viens. A great day...even my allergies and headache seemed to fade a bit.

    Stuff I'm into lately:
    1. Nora Jones (though after listening to her CD for the 5th or so time, I'm like why are the songs so typical. The songs are primarialy a woman waiting/wanting a man to save her or turn her on? Very annoying and actually a bit disappointing to hear from this beautiful voice)
    2. Pom Pom critters (I've made about 14 of these guys from this project pack I got at AC Moore. I've got the glue gun burns to prove it)
    3. Sunday morning Jaffa Mosque Flea Market. I'm trying to get myself to be there when it opens. I know all the good stuff has been nabbed by the time I get there...nuts!
    4. Reading my flea market book finds...mostly suspense and mystery paper backs.
    5. Knitting and sewing. I'm working on mini-quilts that I'm going to have a store for on my webpage...and I'll showcase them here.
    6. Playing on the back porch with the kids and being there with my kids.
    7. Fretting about my sister coming to visit and I haven't finished a darn thing! Plus, my bestfriend might be coming at the same time. I'm seriously worried as we only have one bathroom!
    8. Trying to get the last bit of wallpaper off.
    9. Trying to find the energy to do this while on strong antibiotecs for my ear infection. I still can't hear out of my left ear...but this isn't too surprising as it's been like this for years.
    10. Cursing myself for not training the dog to poop only outdoors instead of on newspaper. We're working on it...sigh.
    11. Getting ready for the Bedford County Fair.
    That's it for now!

    Illustration Friday

    M. Run
    This image is for Illustration Friday's word or words of the week. This week is "Black and White". I'm doing a simple black and white image. I'm sure you're a little curious about this illustration. It comes from stories my dad-in-law tells around the dinner table. This one just really stuck in my head! Guns and gals ruled the day and occasionally this woman would dance outdoors on picnic tables in the nude Lady Godiva fashion and shoot those that tried to steal a glance. It was a colorful time and the talk of the town for years. Apparently, it still is.


  • Illustration Friday
  • Sunday, June 19, 2005

    Happy Papa's Day!

    Oh, it's father's day! And for us, that is father's day and father's birthday. Poor Jon, had to work on Saturday. His boss actually said don't groan about working on Saturday, at least you have a job. What a thing to say. This coming from people that start everyone at 7 an hour and base your pay on the speed/quality of work you do. Totally production based.

    This leads me into the question of what ever happened to unions in the US? Why has the working man/woman/person been screwed so royally? This is really ridiculous. At one time, you had a 5 day job, about 8 hours. Now, it's 6 days (if you're lucky) , mandatory overtime, health coverage for only the working person (or pay $200 for each additional family member), no lunch breaks (if you take a break off company, you have to clock out and work to cover that time), and other poor treatment of employees. This is if you are lucky to have a job. This is so wrong and so unfair to the workers. And then there is the annual lay offs...keeps you in line, I suppose.

    So, this has been on my mind lately. But it's fathers day weekend. I sent Jon off to get a bunch of free chainlink...hope it's in good to okay quality. I'm plugging freecycle.org That's such a great place. Also, I'm plugging my co-op group Altoona Food Co-op. They are great. We're finally on a bulk ordering system for fresh veggies/eggs and other items. Very nice. Plus, it's organic and you're buying from local farmers.

    Yesterday, we went shopping and then over to my sis-in-laws house. She has a beautiful mulberry tree in the back and we picked a little butter container full of mulberries. How wonderful it is to be able to do that. It's so nice and fun to do as a family. The girls had fun chasing each other and just being kids. The weather is great with bits of warmth and coolness and very little humidity. I'm starting to get the rhythm of the weather back here. Also, my antibiotics are kicking in (for my ear infection. My doctor finally succumbed to me having swimmers ear) and my allergies are mostly under control.

    We went to the Unitarian Meeting today and it was very nice. We got to light candles and had a cleansing ceremony. Very nice and I got to meet more people.

    Well, I hear my 3 year shouting and pounding. She must be up from her nap.

    Oh, and I got material from Mimi! Thank you! It's lovely! I'll write more and that and have pics. One more plug, I got my diva cup. It should be interesting and I hope I get the hang of it.

    Here's to mulberry jam and fishing at Canoe Creek! :-)

    Thursday, June 16, 2005

    Illustration Friday...

    Oh, I almost forgot about my illustration of the week!



    Summer time was always a time for outdoors and trying to catch bubbles my mom would blow for us. So, I did two paintings. Both are with Sumie ink and pen.


    This is a quick memory sketch I did of my girls playing in their sandbox on the back porch. I think my cat snuck in because there are tiny paw prints everywhere. Now, I have to search for a kitty treasure. Wonderful...

    Tuesday, June 14, 2005

    Humid and sick and allergies...

    I've got a cold, it's humid, my left ear is clogged and I ran out of decongestant. The good news is Mr. Nelson is being doggie sat at grandpa's, Norrie is taking a nap and I think Lydia is ready to go down in a bit. I feel like making mini-quilts but feel icky and annoyed. I've been stuffing my quilts in my sewing box (to avoid little hands) and when I take them out they are all messed up...pieces everywhere. This is frustrating from someone is messy but not with her art projects. Sigh. I'm going to take some empty shoe boxes and make them my project box, I think.

    I'm excited because I'm getting some free material from Mimi of www.mimikirchner.com/blog/. I can't wait.

    I did my interview yesterday, and dang I felt good about that. Even though I was congested and suffering from the humidity (car air conditioner is busted and I pushed the stroller up to grandparents house (up as in uphill) in red hazy humidity. I think the total weight of the stroller was close to 100 pounds...with Mr. Nelson tied to the stroller. It was not easy to say the least).

    Fortunately, today I don't have to worry about going out too much. I was planning to go out actually, but I left my keys at the grandparents and they took forever to bring them down. I should have pestered Jon to get them.

    Yesterday, after the interview I removed wallpaper and this was probably a mistake. I should have taken a nap but I just felt like attacking wall paper. Hopefully I'll do some more today and then I can start on the bottom half. This is the worse wallpaper I've ever seen. It's even on the ceiling. Painted over. 5-6 layers deep. It's ancient and at first it was a little fun to remove now it's like WHEN THE HECK WILL THIS BE FINISHED!!!! Plus, no one's helping me because they are I don't know what's. My sis-in-law is like I should help you. And I'm like yes! Come on over. She then says, "I don't like removing wallpaper." Gee, thanks. She's at home watching fireflies...and I'm sweating bullets removing aged wallpaper.

    Oh, and the fireflies are back! I didn't see any but I'm going to keep an eye out tonight.

    I feel all sick and want to be taken care of but I have to take care of everyone else. Wah! I'm being a big sicky baby.

    Anyway, at least it's sunny and bright. I miss the dry hot sun of California. Of course, I would watch it from the window as I don't tan but turn a lovely shade of reddish purple.

    Sunday, June 12, 2005

    Sunday...

    Well, tomorrow I have an interview. Nerves don't fail me now. I'm at my in-laws typing away and promising not to mention anything about my sister-in-law,J., as she wants to remain anonymous to the world. She's writing a book but will not be putting her name on it...but shall be using a pen name. She is a self confessed hermit crab. Ah, well. I guess I have to respect her wishes...or until she doesn't check my blogs.

    Both my girls have heat rash, a cold and now I have a cold. Life could be worse. I just can't wait till tomorrow is 4pm because then all will be over and I can continue my quiet existence of illustrating and tending to the young ones of mine.

    We've discovered "Ruby and Max". This holds not only the kids attention but actually all of our attention. I like "Spongebob" but even that has it's limits. Ruby and Max is really cute and I have several ideas for painting various rooms in the house. Speaking of houses, my sister moved in California and has now been redecorating and updating. Unfortunately, she left me the new house phone number. This is unfortunate because my sister, Becky, didn't tell me or my dad-in-law that she wasn't going to be at the house all week. I started fearing the worse and as it turns out she was staying with her husbands in-laws and was too tired to call me and let me know if she was all right. That's typical of my sister. And I guess it's typical of me to worry like mad and imagine the worse. I guess I'm cross between Anne of Green Gables and John Candy in "Only the Lonely". Let's just say, I was ready to call the police and had everyone drowned in their new pool...scary stuff.

    In other art related news, I'm working steadily on getting ready for the Bedford County Fair. I don't expect to get a blue ribbon...but it would be nice. However, I'll be glad to enter and see if I get at least some praise and hopefully some contacts. I'm actually excited about going as there is going to be tons of crafts, quilts, foods, animals, etc. I think I'd like to enter at least 25 paintings (they are small...so it's not as impressive as it sounds). However, I will have to put wire backing instead of the tooth ridges. This is going to be a pain. I'm thinking I may have to just get some new frames. I'd like to register early but I'll need a week to get this done. I guess I could aim for next Monday as a deadline.

    I'm also working on a graphic novel by Jon and myself. It's taking me longer then expected as I keep having interruptions of the sick kind and some regular life stuff.

    I'm feeling rather shy writing...usually I'm home alone typing here and now I'm surrounded by activity. I'm feeling a little better after talking out my nerves. I woke up at 7am reviewing and collecting information for the interview tomorrow. Actually, monster.com has some pretty good tips for interviews. They are quick and to the punch. Handy. I think it's even good for general life purposes as well. I feel confident. I just wish I felt better over all...cold wise.

    I will leave on this note:

    Maria - I Have Confidence Lyrics
    "Sound of Music"


    What will this day be like? I wonder.
    What will my future be? I wonder.
    It could be so exciting to be out in the world, to be free
    My heart should be wildly rejoicing
    Oh, what's the matter with me?

    I've always longed for adventure
    To do the things I've never dared
    And here I'm facing adventure
    Then why am I so scared

    A captain with seven children
    What's so fearsome about that?

    Oh, I must stop these doubts, all these worries
    If I don't I just know I'll turn back
    I must dream of the things I am seeking
    I am seeking the courage I lack

    The courage to serve them with reliance
    Face my mistakes without defiance
    Show them I'm worthy
    And while I show them
    I'll show me

    So, let them bring on all their problems
    I'll do better than my best
    I have confidence they'll put me to the test
    But I'll make them see I have confidence in me

    Somehow I will impress them
    I will be firm but kind
    And all those children (Heaven bless them!)
    They will look up to me

    And mind me with each step I am more certain
    Everything will turn out fine
    I have confidence the world can all be mine
    They'll have to agree I have confidence in me

    I have confidence in sunshine
    I have confidence in rain
    I have confidence that spring will come again
    Besides which you see I have confidence in me

    Strength doesn't lie in numbers
    Strength doesn't lie in wealth
    Strength lies in nights of peaceful slumbers
    When you wake up -- Wake Up!

    It tells me all I trust I lead my heart to
    All I trust becomes my own
    I have confidence in confidence alone
    (Oh help!)

    I have confidence in confidence alone
    Besides which you see I have confidence in me!

    Friday, June 10, 2005

    The days... they be a bit muggy

    It's 6:43 am as I type this and it's actually pleasant outside. Not that I got up willingly to view the great outdoors, make my hubby a sourdough bread sandwich with turkey and cheese and coffee to go. No, I stumbled from my bed because I felt like I had a pillow stuck over my face. In fact, I did have a pillow stuck over my face...all right, I didn't have a pillow on my face it was just my sinus' swollen and my nose totally sealed because I forgot to take my 24 hour Claritin-D. Boy, that stuff is a life saver. I had to take some motrin to ease the pain and I'll need to use my nasal spray. Life is much more complicated when you have allergies. The sad thing is I didn't admit to allergies until recently and have been suffering for many, many years. I'm guessing all the way back in elementary school. I used to get massive headaches and kids would tease me because I breathed loudly (hey, I had clogged nasal passages, kid!). Now, I know why...plus, I'd get green headaches from being in the plants too long. Poor me...

    I'm typing without my glasses and now my left eye is starting to ache. Maybe I'll sneak back into bed and contemplate life. I know it stinks that I can sleep in...but that's one of the "privileges" of being a stay-at-home-mom....every now and then you can actually sleep in. Of course, various other activies are all communal such as bathroom time. sigh...We've got to work on that.

    Real quick...Mr. Nelson is officially boycotting pooping outside. He seems to actually hold it in until we come into the house and uses the newspaper. This is kind of a cute, loyal thing he has but I want him to poo outside. My dad-in-law dog sat Mr. Nelson while we were away in Ohio and said he bonded with Mr.Nelson. Said dad-in-law is dropping hints that he wouldn't be object to keeping Mr.Nelson and knows that I have tons of stuff to do, let alone deal with a dog. I'm annoyed...I said I could loan Mr. Nelson for a day or three but he said that would just confuse Mr. Nelson. It probably would but it would help me too. He's playing all his cards...this is a mean pinochle player and he knows how to wheel and deal. I have to watch out with him...or I may become dogless. Not that it isn't tempting in the middle of the day, when we're all hot and muggy and the kids are demanding attention and so is Mr. Nelson. But at times like this, when all is quiet and I take Mr. Nelson outside and it's a good feeling, how could I part with him? Even in the rush of kids and stressful moments, it's fun and crazy and yes, really a mess. Right now, Mr. Nelson is sleeping on a cushioned chair. He's such a sweet dog...when not hyper. I do love that crazy dog.

    Tuesday, June 07, 2005

    The Joys of Yarn

    My it's a good feeling to make something with yarn. I just recently learned to knit and about 8 months ago I started crocheting. So, I've been really having a blast at these two. I learned to knit a bit from my mom. She taught me about 2 years ago, when I was pregnant with Norrie. But then we moved to PA and knitting got brushed aside. Then I started reading up on various blogs and seeing these gorgeous scarves, sweaters and socks at the stores...and seeing these really high prices too. So, I thought I can do that. I started to explore the book my mom got me but for some reason it wasn't clicking. :-) Then, I found out about "Stitch and Bitch" and ordered that book. For some reason, this made an impression on me and took away some of the myth of knitting being only for brilliant, precise people. I jumped in and actually started to understand some of the basics. I have one proud orange scarf ready for winter use and am working on two more. For one of the scarves, I'm using three yarns to create thickness and the other scarf has four yarns for thickness and texture. I like odd, different textures and would eventually like to incorporate beads. I'm actually thinking of purchasing some wool and a small spinning device so as to create my own yarn and get the feel for wool. I'm a bit nervous in using wool as I seem to shrink everything in sight, much to my horror. I shrunk a beautiful black shawl I loved because I forgot it was wool. I still get a knot in my stomach about that.

    The good thing about shrinking that shawl is I started a crocheted shawl for my self. It's 99% done and I just need to get the last of the edging finished. It's really thick for winter. I'm going to love that shawl. The unfortunate or fortunate (depends on how you look at it) thing about knitting/crocheting around little ones, is they get really excited about doing these things too. So, I'm missing two crochet needles and I've on several occasions found my knitting needles in their hands and my knitting work laying around needle-less. And as you knitters out there know, this is quite horrible. Fortunately, I'm very methodical in this department and can get that needle back in place.

    So, here are some pics of my gals doing what gals and guys of this age like to do...Imitate the big people in their lives.


    I don't go around hugging my yarn. Well, maybe on occasion...

    One thing to note, it seems that if you have a house filled with interesting, unusual objects and a tad on the messy side this makes for a more interesting and visually stimulating house for kids. Some people beat themselves up ( and I sometimes feel like doing that when I can't find something I'm looking for) for being messy. But actually, it's a good visual thing to have bits of clutter. I'm not saying avalanches of mess but little puddles here and there makes for a more relaxed home. And artistically, it's just darn fun.

    Monday, June 06, 2005

    It's good to be a woman...

    Being a woman and giving birth is so incredible and beautiful and so painful. It's all of these things and more. It's a line between death and life. If you've never had a baby or are a man, you just don't know. For me, that ability to give birth and nurture that baby with all that you have is amazing. It always amazes me how we can easily go into destroying ourselves by whatever means. It so saddens me to think of war, poverty, illness.

    Even if you can never have a child a person can love just as strongly and fiercely. Don't get me wrong. I believe that we can all love as mightily as a mother. It's allowing yourself to open up to the mother inside of us all that is the key. I feel so sorry for men and women who have been forced from whom ever to fit into roles, to hide their tears, and so much more. I know it sounds a bit new agey or whatever but opening up our selves to just ourselves, is the first step. It can be done.

    Why did this suddenly come up? I happened to be reading various blogs and I come up on
  • Bellablue and I'm reading about the birth of her second daughter and I just start crying. The joy of a happy and healthy birth is amazing. And her daughter's expression... Plus, Midwives Rock! I was so lucky and blessed to have midwives at both my daughters births and both times went beautifully. Sorry male doctors but midwives have usually been there and this can make all the difference.

    Honestly, love doesn't just come from giving birth. The love comes from the work you do for the baby...Cleaning, tending, playing, laughing, giving structure and guidance, protecting, and so much more. This is were the love comes from and grows in you. It's like that idea of tending a garden...It's such hard work but in the end you do receive the rewards from it. It's that simple and that difficult. Anyway, I'll stop with all the mushy stuff for now. :-) Tend your gardens and watch them grow.
  • Saturday, June 04, 2005

    Digital Illustration...

    Here is my interpretation of "Digital" word of the week.


    Titled "Bad Connection"

    In other news, it's a humid day...very humid. Fortunately, it's not terribly hot. I love Southern California heat. It's always a dry heat, unlike the East.

    We went to Ohio for Memorial Day. It was so fun to be with my dear friend, Caroline. I've known her for ages and seeing her again, was beyond words. Our drive to Ohio was about 4.5 hours but our drive back was 6 hours. Construction, and getting lost were the major factors. Getting lost because the diverted road didn't have ANY signs and we took the wrong exit. Fortunately, Jon knew the way through the Julian Woods Community near the commune there. It was pitch black and hard to see anything...let alone we were driving over the mountain. I would have loved to see this in daylight...in fact, we'll probably go back there pretty soon. I was so scared we'd hit some animals and I kept saying slow down. I saw enough dead ground hogs, dear, and various small critters to know this is happens. But we went slowly and then I had a very odd and haunting moment where I thought I saw some people carrying lanterns in the distance. It was actually the green glow of dear eyes and her
    fawn.

    We realized that most people that hit animals must be going at speeds well beyond the recommended mph. We didn't hit any animals and made it safely home. I hate seeing creatures laying there on the side of the roads...I'd rather see them in their natural setting or in magazines in their natural setting. This is one of the darker sides of road trips...esp. back East.

    Wednesday, June 01, 2005







    Wow! I almost missed this one! Here is my submissions for the Month of Softies. I actually made this doll a few years ago but the flower is totally new. Hot from the press is a little light blue crocheted flower. It seems to brighten up her dark dress and somber expression.

    The reason I'm so late...we went to Ohio to visit my dear friend I've known since junior high. She had a baby boy a few months ago and I finally got to see him! He's so cute! I will post pictures of him as soon as they are downloaded (or developed...I still use a 35 mm for those special occasions! I'm so happy to be back in PA but I miss my dear friend. My girls had a wonderful time...my friend, Caroline, has this huge bit of land (3 acres!) and they have this massive plot they took the plowed and the girls for some reason were attracted this like glue! Actually, most of the kids under five were loving the dirt! Caroline is a bit of hippy (but she doesn't know it) and I miss her already...Next time, I'm definitely staying a week.

    Sociable

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