Sunday, December 31, 2023

New pov

Before any wayfinding, the starting place ~ gratitude.

This instant? Grateful that this ancient Win7 Acer booted up and gave me access to the only graphics program I ever spent any time learning. PSP5 still gets my banners done! 

But a warning to me to not allow skills to rust. Stay busy with a wider array of tools and objectives.

Do you think that banner is a sunset or a sunrise?

Thursday, December 28, 2023

the need for change

We pulled over when we saw them on the hill.
 I  rolled down the window and honked out a passable donkey "Howdy!  They left off snacking and trotted right up to the fence. No reply but, the swiveling ears. I dub them Colorado and Maine.

The first week of winter break behind us, I'll have a long weekend at home and in the studio, then back to the county.

Change is in the air. I'd make a list, but that's the kiss of death. The things I've been thinking will come to life. 

Meanwhile, I'm spending this evening with Stanley Tucci looking for Italy in all the damned kitchens and restaurants. In Umbria, a squadra of women hunt boars.


Thursday, December 21, 2023

A deep dive


I watched "Maestro". I'll wait a while before I comment on the film.

    We spoke once. 
     How many of you can recall how rich and immediate a human voice could be on the phone? Real phones connected by webs and switches of copper presided over by women. The Operators.
It was a dark early winter evening. Somewhere in Manhattan I connected a call. Three rings and a woman answered with a curt "Yes?" I sensed a secretary annoyed at having to work late. 
    "I have a person to person call for Leonard Bernstein." I pronounced it exactly like the caller had. 
   The woman said, "Who's calling?"

   That was none of her business because she wasn't Leonard Bernstein and this expensive service would not start earning for Ma Bell until the man himself was on the phone, but I had to be business like about it. 
    "Is Mr. Bernstein available?"
She got the message and clunked the handset down.
   I knew who he was to a point. In 1969 I had little musical interests beyond Led Zeppelin, Santana or the Stones. I had never heard his voice.
   "You got me out of the bath. This better be good." Wet or not, he lit a cigarette. His voice was thick and sexy.
    I go pro. "Mr. Bernstein?" 
 "Yes, my dear, put them on but I'd rather talk to you."
  How full of snappy comebacks do you think I was at twenty? Zip.
   As trained, I evaporated. Closed the switch, wrote down the time to the second, slotted the punch card, and took the next call. Smiling. 

Monday, December 18, 2023

holiday shopping - not


I went to the post office yesterday. Madness! You'd think they were giving away gold bricks instead of making you wait an hour to cough one up! I might go back in a day or two when people give up the illusion of stuff getting where it's going in time for Christmas.

As of today, you won't get any from me in time for Christmas gifting, especially this one which just might slither out of the inventory basket into my own stash. Devil, get behind me.

There are plenty more here and here.

😎And just now, something new. Fancy Bags until they are all gone.

Saturday, December 16, 2023

Peace for a moment

It was too cold to go meteor-watching last night, but this was worth the chill. I read that the full moon falls on Christmas this year. There will be better shots.

Jude is a 'fluencer. 
Feathers are everywhere.

When I got home, I settled in to see the last season of the Crown. There was a lot of weeping, while I faked away at these feathers. 

Years ago I pulled swan feathers out of my imagination. This time I came up with feathers from some rough customer. A Harpy Eagle, maybe. 

Thursday, December 14, 2023


Liz very kindly intuited that this piece was needed at home and I'm very grateful. It's hard to put a finger on all that has changed since I made this one. Much and little.

The part that interests me is that I never loved this piece until it was gone. My mantra during most of the construction was, "Now what the fuck?" Large pieces will get out of hand in a heartbeat if you let technique have its head. Constant control over the design is exhausting when all you want to do is fall into exuberant color beats, make warp and weft go organic, and cover the thing with stitches. 

I have a very large starting point and cast of character rolled up in the closet. Large enough that I'm considering building it with the machine rather than by hand. Either way, I'll be clearing off the design wall soon. Get it underway. 
I can't swear at something until it gets real.

 I wonder if anyone noticed that I cannibalized the unresolved "Firmament" for this one. I lost my way with that one. Summer of 2013. 


I had all good intentions of getting outside for a few steps, but when this old throw (fresh from the washer & dryer) came out from under Bailey, I noticed it was coming apart around the edges. And Lo! I happen to have a cone of thread that was very close. 

l'audace? I was listening to a foreign movie last night when I fell asleep. It's been a long time since I dreamed in French. Tonight, I'll find an Italian film. 

There was a haircut. Really. Chunks all over the carpet. 
I just didn't go far enough, YouTube videos only show DIY haircuts by young things with stick-straight hair. I had to improvise. 

Tuesday, December 12, 2023

As dealt

 Choice, chance, and/or change. 

 Maybe I haven't been around enough to know if this is an original layout. If anyone recognizes it, please clue me. 

Regarding no particular question. (Great way to wiggle out a story, isn't it?) All you need is the gift of gab, a Master of Bullshit, with minors in Woo-woo and Sociology. A quick read:

A loss or setback is easier to take if you're not the victim but the instigator of the change. Be open to anything and everything, but guard against overindulging physically and emotionally. That hollow feeling the day after the party only gets harder to shake. 

finding the horizon

I've known for a while that, as one ages, injuries take longer to heal. Illnesses, even nonsense like a cold, take longer to get over. 

This also seems to hold true with emotional doldrums, upsets, or other internalized grievances be they real or drummed up. There is no easy fix. 

I know all the steps and I'm taking them. These days the steps are necessarily shorter, so results seem further into the future than I care to look. 

So, I do what I have always done my whole life. Watch my steps. When I was a teen there were several injuries. I raised hell poorly.  The nurse who gave me bad advice on how to use crutches was adamant. "Watch your feet."  

Good advice was hard to come by once you were out of the ER with everything mostly intact. The follow-up with physical therapy should have included, "Now that you are healed, watch where you are going." There wasn't any PT. I didn't learn to keep my eyes on the horizon until I was driving (legally) many years later. I wish I could remember who said that. I owe them.

As of this moment, I'm looking ahead. Baby steps. No retreat.
To quote our friend, "Just Going".

The eye candy? I bought the marble maze off of FB marketplace. With a little discernment, a great way to score cool stuff and help your neighbors out of their hoarding. I love playing with this as much as Charlie. He has his at home. This set stays with me.

His love of and initiation into good music continues. At a mere nine, he doesn't seem to have the pre-Christmas frenzy that some kids fall into. He hasn't asked me for anything in particular so I will have to come up with something. Be creative.

I broke my featherweight out of the closet to dust and take better pictures. Of course, I threaded it up and test-drove it a bit. The stitching as smooth and dependable as ever. 

I read somewhere that some quilters can look at a quilt and tell that it was done on a Singer Featherweight. I believe it.

I went as far as dipping into the cloth closet to see if there was anything that called me to complete it. There were several. Two machine-pieced tops ready to be sandwiched, backed, and quilted. A big tub full of bits and pieces of commercial prints that I used to work with before I took up dyeing. Yes, that long ago. But nothing grabbed me by the hair, so I'll stay with the plan to sell it. Email me if you want details or more pictures. 

Hearts are flexible if you meet them halfway with a little care and attention.