Archive | November 2016

Waiting…

I’m waiting for H to wake up from his morning nap so we can go to Costco.

This is my first post since before I left for Colorado and my workshop training. I won’t say it’s the first post since my old life and I’m now in my new life. It has been a progression that began last year and will continue through any remaining years I have. Learning, always learning.

On the drive out, on the 9th…

I laughed.

In disbelief.

In amazement.

I had never gotten past the idea that such a man could even be considered for Pres, let alone elected to the job.

So, I was stunned. Then, I laughed.

A wild card elected to the “highest” office in this crazy country.

If I was disappointed, it was only for a moment. Unlike many people, I keep myself at quite a distance from the political game. I don’t for a second believe that this office or the person in it is really ever concerned with the goings on of regular folk. There are too many puppet masters. You don’t get to that position in the political world because you are a great person, at least not these days. Even the best of people elected to that job must be corrupted in some way or fashion. Anyway, I don’t have stars in my eyes when it comes to politics. I don’t have faith that a single “leader” will save us, make or break us. Therefore, I am not devastated when one person or the other is elected. I observe.

But I do find it funny to see who people choose. To me, the choices were: the establishment NWO woman (whose largest backer was big pharma which kills nearly a million people each year – legally) or the Troll. Latest numbers show the majority of people wanted the woman – by 2 million. But the electoral college, who knows better than us (right?) – and whose role was established with the Constitution (maybe the only part of the Constitution being observed these days?) – voted for the Troll. If you can’t laugh over this, you might just go crazy.

Like Kansas. I see Trump as another Brownback, only on a bigger scale. The conservative minded folks with “values” voted in Brownback for a second term…only to find themselves jobless when he made certain cuts, especially in education. There was large scale disbelief.

One of the biggest national voting increases this year was among Hispanic voters, who turned out in larger numbers to vote for…the Troll.

On the other hand, with all the big tax cuts in Kansas for businesses, business owners did well. Personally, this was a good year for H and me. After a decade of struggle, I am grateful for this improvement. With the pro-biz attitude of the Troll, I suspect this trend will continue.

Just like earthquakes in Kansas will continue because big oil wants to have its way…and will get it. Just like pipelines will continue to be foisted upon people who don’t want them.

What I do see happening in the reactions of many people who wanted the woman, is the realization that they must fall back upon themselves. Who are you really and what do you stand for? How do you want to live? What will you do? They would have fallen back upon themselves anyway.

I think it’s great. The sooner we quit looking to selfish “leaders” to save us, the sooner we can begin to make changes to our own lives and realize, when it comes right down to it, us regular folk only have each other.

I had a friend on FB tell me angrily “you’re better than this” when I posted a meme last year which showed a quote from the woman and a quote from Hitler, which were exactly the same. My point was, hey, these people think alike…and what does that tell you? My “friend” obviously cared more about her political beliefs than the fact we had been friends for over a decade. I have seen this trend among many people. I responded something to the effect that the woman doesn’t give a damn about you. The woman doesn’t know you and doesn’t care about you. But I know you and care about you, and yet you care more about your political beliefs. What does that say about you?

I saw another meme on FB and H said it was true:

342 members of (the last) Congress are millionaires.

These people do not care about you.

H just woke up.

Done waiting.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

HOTS progress and other things…

I spent four or five hours today tackling must-dos. My back is feeling it.

We go to Colorado next week for the workshop I’m attending, so we’ll be gone for an extended period. Since it IS November in Kansas, that means it could frost or freeze at a moment’s notice, even though nothing of that sort is in the forecast, which of course doesn’t mean anything. I don’t want to risk losing any plants, just in case, so steps must be taken.

I’m pretty happy with the amount I got done today which included but was not limited to: planting mums in the flower bed, locating and bringing down some warm clothes for the trip, vacuuming upstairs and down, prepping the upstairs spare room for its conversion into a greenhouse (more or less), hoisting in and hauling up the outside set of chairs and table to said greenhouse room (thanks H!), picking up the latest harvest of walnuts and hulls I’d dried, etc…etc…

Here is the outside table and chair set. I’m going to sit here in the sun this winter and drink tea, stitch, dream, etc… Having this up here makes me really happy. It is right next door to my sewing room and will also serve as a private room for the big girls so they don’t have to put up with the little girls, who will be stationed downstairs.

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You get the drift. Many things were moved. Things do look better. It’s coming together and that makes me happy. I can probably finish up the bulk of it tomorrow by getting the plants in and organized and then I can concentrate on what I need to pack.

So, HOTS stands for my “Holding on to Summer” piece that I’ve been working on for a while now. It’s about the changing of the seasons and how, when the cooler days first began I was really dreading the end of summer. But, here we are, well into November and overdue for our first seasonal frost. I’m guessing one will hit when I’m still in Colorado, though, hence the great movement to get things safely put away. I had been putting off doing a lot of this preparation because Indian summer just keeps going, as my gardens can attest. I’m finally getting loads of tomatoes, which is really nice. But I’m going to have to pick lots of them before I leave, and also dig up the sweet potatoes. Yes, I still have much more work to do.

Here is my progress so far on Holding on to Summer.

I’m pretty happy with it so far and have big plans for the finishing touches. I really like how the butterfly on the right came out, and recently came up with another idea for finishing the wind square, which I may or may not get to before I leave. I’d like to stitch something else in the sun squares, but am not sure what at present.

So, what’s going on outside. I took a number of photos to share. I’ll post them all in a clump. I like to post these to share as inspiration.

I’ve gotten lots of volunteer basil starts, which I’m excited about. Except I need to get those picked and hung up to dry before I go, too. I just love that side patch of zinnias. I think those might have been from a different package of seeds, as they seem to be shaped a bit differently, although I can’t be certain.

In other news:

Like many others, I have been watching some of the happenings at Standing Rock. I try not to watch (or share) too much of it. It is important to me to let the game/freewill choices of others play out and stay at what is referred to as Point Zero. There is a whole lifestyle regarding this and has to do with how karma works in our reality, but I won’t get into that at present. I will say what I am talking about has its roots in Australian Aboriginal culture and, I believe, all native cultures knew these truths about how things really work in this universe. But, due to the wiping out of these native cultures, much of that knowledge has been lost. Honestly, these days I can see how this has been done intentionally.

I have seen a lot of people show surprise at what is being done to the people in Standing Rock. I guess I’m old enough now that nothing much surprises me. After all, the trouncing of human rights is how this country (and others) got its beginning. It’s the way things are done. It’s what this country has done to so many others all over the planet. We’re just seeing it up close and personal with this particular case.

I do feel like things in our world can change for the better, but WE have to change. We have to make other choices, especially about how we use oil. Governments aren’t going to make the changes for us, they are in bed with the corporations. It’s the private citizens who have to find the courage to stop living the way we’ve been trained to and start breaking out of the mold. I know we can do it. We can help each other.

This will likely be my last post for the next couple weeks, unless I am feeling very industrious. I won’t have much stitching time before I go. Even before I saw Jude’s TimeOut sign I had already realized I was ready for a little break myself.

So, I leave you with this…

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And this…

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Sun. Star. Book…

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Here’s my little SunStarBook. I worked on it this weekend. I’m pretty happy with how it turned out.

Here is the inside of the front and back covers.

And the back cover…

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I mentioned in a previous blog I was working on making a drawing book for myself. I had purchased a very large artist’s pad with pages too big for me to use for my small efforts. I thought I would share my process here.

I began with cutting the big pages lengthwise and folding them up accordion style. Then I used my leather punch to put in holes for binding. I then used embroidery thread for the binding.

As it turned out, I didn’t make the binding holes big enough, so I had to redo the pages after I’d already stitched up the first one. I needed the larger holes because I stitched through several times to make it really secure. Plus, I needed room to add stitches for the inside fabric binding.

In my efforts to mold myself into a fabric artist, I’ve been working with my own Spirit. I’ve asked my own Spirit to help me find my way. I felt that influence when I went to the big fabric bin to find a suitable piece of cloth to work with. Without even thinking, I snatched up a scrap of black duck cloth/canvas. I knew instantly this was the cloth I wanted to use…and thanked my Spirit. The cloth still felt like it had chemicals on it, so I gave it a wash, dried it on the line outside and left it wrinkly when I cut it out. As it turned out, I really enjoyed working with the duck cloth. It’s woven and easy to get a needle through. It also gave the book the kindof of comfortable feel I wanted it to have, simple yet, well, artistic.

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I began with a tatted star. I made these a few years ago. I have one just like this somewhere I want to put on a jean jacket. It’s actually made out of crochet thread I dyed some time ago. I’m happy to use the tatted stars as it’s a pattern I copied from some antique tatting I found, rescued really, although the star shape was my idea. For the back cover I went with a sun made out of fabric I dyed recently, and I fashioned it with flames made out of satin stitch, or wrap stitch, as Jude Hill likes to call it in the way she uses it. I’ve seen a number of fabric artists make suns this way and find it very endearing. It was also really fun to stitch.

The masking tape is a trick I learned from my old quilter friend who is gone now. This was her method for easily marking lines by laying down a piece or two of tape, marking with a fabric pen, and then peeling up the tape. I simply stitched (running stitch) alongside the tape for one row, came up the middle between the two and down the other side. Then, I peeled off the tape and filled in the kantha (running stitch) rows.

I used a blanket stitch for the edges, which worked well for keeping the fibers of the duck cloth together. It tends to unravel easily.

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I really like how I used the orange kantha in between the variegated blue/purple. It looks like the sun is raining.

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I used Jude’s invisible stitch to tack the layers together when adding the backing. I developed a kind of mantra as I worked. It was a bit tedious, but I didn’t mind. The words helped me concentrate and monitor where I was in the stitch.

Down, up, invisible slide through layers…Down, up, invisible slide through layers…Down, up…

For the inside I used a 6×3″ piece of canvas to work as a fabric binding. It was to this I attached the covers.

Sun. Star.

The sun is a star.

Sun. Star. Book…

In other news…

We only had ONE trick or treater last night. The neighbors didn’t even bring their kids over. I’m not all that surprised.

The last two times I’ve passed out candy I haven’t had many kids. There are bigger, better neighborhoods who tend to go all-out and draw the crowds. Having gone out with the niece and nephew a few times I don’t blame parents for wanting to have the treating centrally located. I don’t blame the kids for wanting to get the best haul.

But one thing I like to do is buy like one bag of candy. Then I will mix it with a variety of toys. So, this year, I had a bag of tootsie pops and mixed in a bunch of super balls (the super bouncy kind) and some of those champagne poppers (party favor things.)

What did our ONE trick or treater take?

A big red bouncy ball and a champagne popper.

Who said all kids want is candy? Last time it was the same story. The kids went for the toys!

One a sad note, today I have to take my Spider down. It is, after all, November.

 

 

 

 

Leather works and pecan progress…

 

Several years ago I made myself some leather thimbles. I needed a thimble for all the embroidery work I was doing, but didn’t care for the hard metal and plastic ones. Pushing a needle through cloth can cause some wear and tear on the digits. Here’s one I made out of some thin leather. You can see the hole I wore through it. I stuck a small scrap of thicker leather in there, but it doesn’t work all that well since it tends to shift around. I have a brown thimble that fits better than this one and is in better shape, although also wearing through, but I can’t find it. Either I misplaced it or it has become a cat toy.

So, yesterday, I got out some leather scraps and got to work. I’m happy to report I now have 6 new leather thimbles of various thickness in the bag as well as a handy pattern for making more. My fingers are thrilled.

Thin…

Medium…

Thick…

The others I had made worked pretty well, but I hadn’t made them lengthy enough. The shorter ones had a tendency to pop off the end of my finger. I made these longer so they will stay on better. I also made these pretty snug with some extra stitching because the leather will eventually stretch out with use.

In other news, I have four quarts of pecans in the freeze.