I've found that auto-timed photos seldom work, although in my experience they work a little better than asking a waitress to take a photo. However, in this case, that old gold colored background is a disaster that, of course, we didn't realize. Plus the focus is not sharp. Plus I now have a serious intellectual dilemma -- I feel like a much too serious elder generation with my current hairdo and am a bit jealous of my lovely daughter and granddaughter -- while bursting with pride that they are both, certainly to me, stunning and wonderful.
Anyway we had an afternoon tea together (that martini glass holds a concoction called a Tea-tini). Baby Stella is not in the photo because she was sleeping so peacefully in her carseat-carrier at her mother's feet that we didn't want to wake her. It was damp and by the time we left the restaurant actually raining. Rain again today. The rain means I don't have to water the two abundant baskets of purple and white petunias that were a mother's day gift. They are hanging on the patio looking like we are in full throes of spring ... I guess we are.
As women very often do we all discussed new hair cuts. Looking at this picture, I will be the first to do it -- tomorrow morning, I think, something shorter and younger looking. The only one who doesn't want a new hair cut is Stella. We are all delighted that her hair, scant thought it is (she's 3 and a half months old) is becoming a chestnut color.
My friend, Bev Sykes, from the Swap-bot site, posted the following advice that she found in a 1948 Singer Sewing Machine manual.
Prepare yourself mentally for sewing. Think about what you are going
to do...Never approach sewing with a sigh or lackadaisically. Good
results are diffcult when indifference predominates.
"Never try to sew with a sink full of dirty dishes or beds unmade.
When there are urgent housekeeping chores, do these first so your mind
is free to enjoy your sewing. When you sew, make yourself as attractive
as possible. Put on a clean dress. Keep a little bag full of French
chalk near your sewing machine to dust your fingers at intervals. Have
your hair in order, powder and lipstick put on. If you are constantly
fearful that a visitor will drop in or your husband will come home, and
you will not look neatly put together, you will not enjoy your sewing.
Remember, this is big business telling women not only how the machine works but how they are supposed to look and act. I wonder how many of us do a lot of sewing with dirty dishes in the sink. How often do we have on lipstick and powder and perfect hair?
This wonderful quilt by the quilt artist Barbara Mckie caught my attention when I was looking for a picture I took last year of the golden glory of forsythia. I realized this catches spring in a delightful way -- with the humor of the lions as well a the flower in its various stages -- so familiar to all of us with lawns where the dandelions pop up seeming to smirk at us like that lion on the upper left. Each of her lions has his own personality. Isn't this fun? I'm feeling inspired to take myself into the sewing and do something. I need to make a small art quilt with a spring theme. I wonder if I can borrow a little of this idea, twist it some way and surprise the person I will send it to. Hmmm... I hope the sun continues to shine so brightly all day.
Pepper Cory was yesterday's speaker at the Bayberry Quilt Guild's meeting. Her topic was "Art Scrap Quilts" -- a talk she's given a number of times and did fluently and humorously using eight or ten quilt tops (far easier to pack for plane travel than finished quilts) -- several antique and some yard sale discoveries.
This is a topic close to my heart because I think, for many, "every day" quilters who do not think of themselves as art quilters, making scrap quilts is, in fact, a creative and artistic process. I always feel that way when making a scrap quilt, like the log cabin one I'm currenting making (see post below) Nearly every choice of a piece to add is an artistic decision. With the log cabin quilt my parameters are light and dark -- and the little contrasting color squares are dug out of my stash each time I finish four blocks that will go together. Most of my scrap quilts -- and a very large number of my quitls are in the "scrap" cagetory even when I'm using stuff from my stash that is not technically "scrap" -- i.e., I may be using fat quarters never before used. But I save scraps from all projects and try to include them in later projects.
Pepper is from North Carolina, works with several fabric companies designing fabrics and designing stencils for quilts. She was one of the most comfortable and likeable speakers I've heard lately.
Ten day old lambs -- in this picture mama sheep has two twin, white daughters (one not in photo) and a pen-mate has two little boy lambs, one brown and one "apricott".
There's a "Farm", not a real working farm but one with special animals -- though not a petting zoo sort of place -- where Rachel and Cori often take the little boys. I heard from someone who lives very near that lambs were born a few days ago. Sunday was a chilly blue sky day so I went with them to the newborns. Another two sheep are expected to have lambs any time now.
The farm is also home to two very hairy donkeys, twos Shetland cows, Scottie and Fiona -- very long haired and beautifully horned -- a ram who fathered these lambs -- long thick wool -- a pair of goats, plus some chickens of a very fuffy sort. They all seem to be breeds chosen for adaptation to the kind of winter we have. They have enclosed shelters but not really barns, and they have sectioned pastures. The farm is at the edge of a marsh with a boardwalk to a viewing point where one would want to have binoculars for bird watching on a nice spring day. I have no idea how this farm operates, we saw a woman and a man tending the animals, giving them buckets of food, late in the afternoon. The woman held a lamb up for the boys to touch and "baa" back to for a while. No admission is charged. One just parks and wanders around.
The first day of spring, yesterday, this was what I saw when I looked out my window a little before dawn -- a white and gray world, a couple of inches of wet, fluffy snow clinging to the haphazzard branches of my little forsythia bush. I had noticed tiny tree leaves trying to open and thought: one nice warm day and that brush will be covered wit yellow flowers.
This strip quilt was made using drier sheet as the foundation. This quick and easy method is always fun because I can choose exactly which piece comes next but will always be surprised when I put several together and see the patterns formed.
The mid-70s are a surprise! Part of me remains in the 50s -- age, I mean, not decade of 20th century. It's a joy ride, new experiences land in my lap and I've become a better quilter, poet, writer than I expected. It's a rich life for a person never rich financially. Hey, this is what the mid-70s are like!