Trades are fair…

“If someone likes something you have and you want to share, don’t just give it away, trade something,” said Judith Baker Montano, a well-known crazy quilter, in a class I took years ago. “I like trades. Trades are fair.”

Her words resonated with me and have stuck with me all this time.

I admire people who give of themselves freely, without limits. They are a special class of person. I recognized long ago that I am not that kind of person, that my gifts are selective, albeit generous at times, but I am choosy with my gifts.

Like this blog, you could say 8 months of writing, photographs, of sharing of myself, my work and my life, is a kind of generosity, whether it is well-received or not. For many years I was paid to write, and I was good at it. I always write each blog in the hopes that someone finds it interesting or helpful.

I don’t have any photos of stitching today, as I woke up late again, and now my day is all off-kilter.

The late day met me with the neighbor’s dog barking again, incessantly these days, and the stench of lawn fertilizer sprayed at the house catty-corner from us, cats and ducks to be sorted and cared for, garden to be watered. It is suddenly hot, so the sprinkler is going.

I do have photos of kittens…


The gray babies are into everything…already at that wrestling and chewing stage. They are outside for the day. I don’t think I can bring myself to leave them out all night, but I am ready for them to be in their new homes, or at least out of mine. They are too big and rough now for the littles. It’s not fair to keep them together.

Wide-eyed Buzz…


And Molly…


If I could keep one, I would keep Molly. If I lived in the country, I would probably keep them all. But Molly intrigues me. I see her mother in her, and her and Buzz’s coats are the softest fur I’ve ever felt. Molly is fluffy with interesting markings. With proper care I know she will grow into a beautiful cat.

(That messy floor…leftovers from keeping the plants alive here this winter…I haven’t vacuumed because it would scare the kittens…)

Yesterday, when he got home from work, H and I did this…


We put up the frame for his pool cover, which arrived yesterday. I was bummed because, on top of already feeling exhausted, it took up the entire evening. We had to Gorilla tape each joint and connection to keep it from constantly falling apart. It still needs the cover and cement for the legs, otherwise it will easily be destroyed by the winds we get here.

This cover will prevent the leaves, twigs, debris, perhaps some bugs, and other things from trashing up the pool. The past two years it was a constant struggle to keep it clean.

Yesterday was warmer, too, so I “hopped” in and scrubbed dirt off the entire inside rim and sides. I say “hopped” because it probably took me 20 minutes to ease myself into that cold cold water. I scrubbed for an hour. Being in water, especially cold water, is exhausting. And it was after that we put up the canopy. I went to bed at 9ish…got up at 5ish for an hour…and didn’t wake up again until 10:30 a.m.

About trades…I wrote a this week about my annoyance at having been volunteered by the barking dog neighbors to teach their daughter crochet…for free. And then the neighbor to the south who wants “one of those” doilies but doesn’t want to pay for it, actually said she didn’t know “when” she would pay me, and then laughed.

I have reminded myself, again, that Trades Are Fair, and I will not do things for people for free. If nextdoor wants a doily, and asks me again, I will suggest she trade me the dog pen panels that are part of the junk on her porch. I think I can use them, and I would consider that a fair trade.

If barking dog neighbor is too lazy to teach her own daughter how to crochet, or even take her to her grandmother who knows how to crochet but requires a trade of work, then barking dog neighbor can pay me money. That is a fair trade.

I feel better already.

Have a wonderful holiday weekend.












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