Friday, December 30, 2005

Fuzzy Feet Finished

As I was wrapping this gift for my mother, I realied I never shared an "after" photo of the felted fuzzy feet that I was making as part of the Fuzzy Feet Knit-A-Long

Mom loved them and they were a perfect fit, too ;-)

Friday, December 16, 2005

Daddy, I still miss you

Tonight is the anniversary of my father's death.

I'm still working on a way to replace the sadness I feel at this time of year with the joy of the season that surrounds me.

Perhaps tomorrow, I will wake up and feel like dragging the boxes of Christmas decorations from the basement, decking the halls, putting up a tree, wrapping packages and baking cookies. Maybe I won't feel like it and will make the effort anyway. But tonight, I'm going to sit with my sadness, remember my dad and miss him.

Monday, December 12, 2005

Natural Abundance

This is what my neighborhood looked like the morning I was out, just after sunrise, shovelling the walk and laughing at the natural abundance exercises that ask us to find 5 interesting stones and 5 interesting leaves.

I realized just how much I miss the opportunities to enjoy natures abundance in small ways, like having coffee and writing my pages, sitting on the deck in the morning or coming home and enjoying the garden or falling into the hammock with a good read.

These days, I come home to a garden that looks like this--dark and snow-covered.

Natural abundance at this time of year consists of ice and snow. So, instead of stones, I offer icicles ...

... and instead of leaves, a snow covered pine.

Artist Way: week 6 check-in

Soon after I posted the message on the discussion on the quilting forum, I lost my connection with the network--while fixing an over-billing issue, my ISP un-configured my cable modem ... grumble, grumble. Sorry for the delay.

I'm back on track with my morning pages, and arrived on the page 7 out of 7 days. One of the themes that came up (in my pages and in the money madness exercise) was how I'd fallen out of the habit of regular mani-pedicures, facials and massages. All of the above are so much more expensive here than in California, which is a big contrast with the relative cost of living there and here, and somehow, I guess I'd decided that it wasn't worth it (and neither was I). In response, I allowed myself a couple of luxuries--I finally made the time for a new haircut and I booked an hour of therapeutic massage at a local wellness center. A freebie that I received as a result was a coupon from the hair salon for a free facial. For my artist date, I went to the drugstore and bought a handful of new, fun stuff from the cosmetics aisle.

On the morning after a big snowstorm, I found myself shoveling snow and laughing at the prospect of finding stones or leaves here. As a result, natural abundance took on a different form for me this week--pictures to follow if I'm really reconnected when I get home tonight.

When it comes to the exercises for this week, I'm reading them, I'm thinking about them, but I'm not always doing them. It's easy enough to find excuses--the demands of the holiday, the horrible weather, my continuing aches and pains and physical limitations--but it's also a pattern for me. The same thing happened when I worked my way through the book before, when it was summer, I was healthy, etc., etc. Over our holiday break, I plan to continue morning pages and artist dates and take a harder look at some of the exercises I resisted. I think there's an issue there for me that merits some introspection. I did complete the money madness exercise and found an interesting contrast, in one response especially, with a couple of others. On her blog, Tracey said, "Money causes people to change." In my response, I crossed out "causes" and ended up with "Money ENABLES people to make changes."

A couple instances of synchronicity stand out from my week. In the big book order I received on Friday was a huge book (much larger than I was expecting), written in layman terms on trigger points. In the massage room on Saturday morning was a big, color chart of all the trigger points on the body. Also in the order was a Rachel Ray cookbook, purchased as a secret santa gift for someone at work who collects cookbooks. On Friday, she mentioned, out of nowhere, that she likes Rachel Ray, but does NOT like her cookbooks. I like the cookbook and will keep it (or use it for a gift for someone else). I picked up a gift certificate for her favorite sushi restaurant instead.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Flag Honors

I walk past these flags on the plaza near the Capitol each day.

Today's Flag Honors commemorate Pearl Harbor Day.

These days, it seems the flags in Michigan fly at half-staff more often than not. It is a sad reminder of Michigan soldiers, killed in battle every day.

The Magic in Group Quilts

I believe that there is magic in quilts made from lotto blocks, or swap blocks or blocks donated for a comfort quilt or guild president's quilt or other effort that comes from many hands, many hearts, many creative minds.

Last week, some panels of from the AIDS Memorial Quilt were on display here for AIDS World Awareness Day. That larger than life group quilt project is filled with that magic. The emotional response of the viewers of those panels is palpable.

These Hard Times blocks are from last month's block lotto activity on the Quilting Forum on I think I organized the monthly block lotto to create some of that magic. I am looking forward to seeing the quilts the winners make from the blocks.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Holiday Quiz

What Christmas Ornament are you?
brought to you by Quizilla

I am the Christmas Dove.
christmas dove

(I think I need to make a wool felt dove ornament now, don't you?)

Tipsy Trees: A Tale of 2 Quilts

(This photo is darker than the actual quilt, which has a much lighter background in the tree blocks,)

A friend and I spent black Friday far from the shopping mall, making string-pieced tree blocks from fabrics in her stash and scraps. Here are the tops we made.

Stash Sunday

thirty-two FQs
Originally uploaded by jeansophie.
The theme for this week is, "I know why I bought it, but still ..."

I love these monochromatic fruit and veggie prints and couldn't resist this stack of 32 fat quarters ... even though I rarely choose to use prints in my quilts anymore.

Artist Way: weeks 4 & 5

Even though I'm still not getting the purpose of linking to a blog that exists only to be linked to ... here's my link.

Artist Way Quilters: Chap 5 Check-in December 4, 2005

My apologies for not posting last week's check-in ... life and physical limitations have dominated my life this week. In an attempt to catch up, here's my check-in for the last two weeks.

Morning Pages - In week 4, I was 7-for-7, despite a very busy week, travelling and forgetting to take my journal along. I could hardly stop writing--my pages often were twice as long as required and usually ended with drawings of a design idea. Last week, I only managed morning pages 4 of 7 days. I've been waking with such intense pain that it's been taking me an hour to get out of bed ... and not time to write.

Artist Date - In week 4, although I spent lots of time creating with my friend, I didn't find time for an artist date for myself. Yesterday, after reading about Ryan's artist date, I decided to make a trip to the local garden club's greens sale and make a wreath.

Synchronicity - In week 4 I continued to notice all kinds of synchronicity among the messages of this group. We may have different expectations of TAW, but the similarities we share always make me smile. I also had to smile when, after I ordered flowers to be delivered to my Thanksgiving hosts the day before I arrived, I came home to email from my friend describing a trip to look for a centerpiece for her table and her lack of success. (If only FedEX hadn't screwed up the delivery, it would have been just perfect).

The rest - As I mentioned on the Quilting Forum, I actually enjoyed the week of reading deprivation during week 4, but I noticed that as soon as it was over, I couldn't get enough of the written word. Last week, I found myself buying magazines every time I passed a rack and ordering a bunch of books that have been sitting on my wishlist at Amazon for a long time.
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