Wednesday, February 28, 2007

2003 poem december

It is dark still when we awake
just the tip of sunrise in the eastern sky

hard to rouse them
from the warm cocoon of sleep
wrapped in compelling dreams
and the safe insulation of unconsciousness

it is dark still as they rise
mind and bodies struggle to the surface

the lightening sky in the east makes an urgent invitation

morning ablutions done barely done
then out the door
down out street braced against the
icy atlantic wind

they say we are expecting a nor'easter

down our street, the wind at their backs
it is light

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

done for now

Another top finished and ready to be quilted. I have one more UFO to be pieced and I will have three for the year. I don;t know whither these tops will goest but at least they are at a resting stage. When I determine what to do with them I will be motivated to do the quilting, either by myself or by someone else. This one was designed by Judy Laquidera for her One Hour a Day challenge and it was fun to follow along and see how quickly it went to together. My squares in the border did not match perfectly because I trimmed the squares a bit smaller than the design called for, but I had all the triangles and squares cut from another project and I was determined to use them. I did buy new fabric for the borders, from the new Laurel Burch collection. And that is that.

Not your average baltimore album

I decided to use some of my photos of our own stuff to make some images to mix in my Baltimore Elegance. After all is that not what the baltimore ladies did? her are some pictures of altered photos that I'll use for block patterns. The ship is one of my paintings, the hutch is in our dining room and the heart is from one of my paintings also. This will be fun! and since I am not a tradtional appliquer i will not need to do all of the tradional blocks It feels very freeing to suspend the rules. Or maybe it is just the fever talking heheheh.

email blues

My notes, made with glass tippied pen and brown ink. Love that brown ink.
Well, Yahoo doesn't seem to be delivering my mail to my quilty groups so I am adrift on a sea of no mail.
I am sitting on the couch and my energy is coming back but I am still grounded due to germs. I want to run out to Pier One and look see what's on sale. In my morning pages, which today were ornery pages, I keep coming back to things that I want and I want a bedroom that is in keeping with my designer sensibilities. Right now it is just a mess, with laundry in baskets because we cannot fit the stuff into our inadequate storage places, The dressers are cousin Shirley's cast off and Peggy's from when she moved. And mine is inaccessible. In order to open it I have to stand on the side (because the laundry baskets are in front of it) and grasp the ugly pulls-old fake colonial style with one side dangling free of its screw hole- and inevitabley I strain my already fragile back and I am just so tired of it. Yes just so tired.
And the closet is just a catastrophy, a scary dark hole inhabited with shadowy creatures who thrive on disorder and lounge upon the cobwebbery. Before I go in it -which is rare because I usually make Mike do it, I mutter incantations and surround myself with healing energy. Until I try to wrench some forgotten article of clothing from its wire hanger and pull the whole pile down on top of me, only to find out that the d***d thing doesn't fit anyway anymore. And what was I thinking when I bought that? Well it would have been much worse with out the healing energy I can tell you that!
I know this is whiney and that is a good description of how I feel, trapped inside this helmet of congestion and plagued with poorly decorated room, lol. At least I entertain myself.
If you stop by, leave a comment , would you? and send some healing energy because I have used up all mine,

Monday, February 26, 2007

mostly loafing

Mike made this cross section of a wing while he was in school.I love the shape of it and I can almost hear the wind whooshing over the wing, giving it lift: the Bernoulli's principle. I want to put it in a collage. Haven't figured out whether to photo shop it into a collage or put it in an actual collage then photo shop it. When did photo shop become a verb?
I keep thinking I am going to get ambitious and go sew something but my head cold prevents me from actualizing my ambitions. Even though I really really want to, the energy is not flowing in that direction.
Tomorrow I am staying home. I already called work. I don't want to share my germs with anyone and I feel lead headed.Today felt like a total waste.
Things I did do: some Finding Water excersizes. Put some batteries in my camera. Drank a liter of ginger ale and cooked a passable dinner even though I can't taste a thing. Cleaned the crud off the stove and shined my sink. Made a chocolate pudding pie for Bailey. Made some notes for a doll I want to make-or a series of dolls, for the Gail Wilson contest. It is fun to think about even if I can't get around to doing it. Half the fun is in the scheming.
O yeah I took Katy shopping for clothes so she has a few things to wear for her new job. Did NOT want to but I had promised her that I would and I decided to load up on decongestants and just do it.
She has dyed her hair brown! In exchange for peeling potatoes I cooked her some rice-a-roni, I drive a hard bargain. And I got talked into letting her drive around a little. So now, the dishwasher is gurgling in the back round and the tv is off. I may find a few minutes to sew, now that Mike has left for work and there is no more kitchen work to do.

Things that are beautiful: My Murano glass pen, an owl in the branches of a leafless tree, the cross section of a wing, a shiny stove and a day off. and of course, my Katy.

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Finding water

Did not do my morning pages as I dashed out the door this morning, arriving at work at one minute past due. Work was very very busy and went by fast. Fast is good.
So I was thinking that I should do my morning pages tonight and then decided to do them in the morning. On a new day.
I did do my artist date today which brought me into a paper/card type store. Usually I do not go out into the mall during my lunch break, prefering the quiet back of house to the noisy roiling wave of humanity that is in the mall, especially during winter break. All kids, all the time.
Today I decided to bring myself to this pretty store instead, an oasis, as an artist date. I did not bring my wallet and did not buy anything, just browsed. What occurred to me is that I could make most of the things in this store and I did not need to buy any box of cards, or rice paper prints (I have some blank sheets that I could paint on, stamp on-once I used sunflower leaves as a stamp and made my own wrapping paper.) I can even make pop up cards and origami cards, fabric cards, pen and ink cards. Not a thing did I need to buy. While I was in there the sales girl asked me some questions about what programs she needed to put on her mac and we chatted about that for a bit. Satisfied, I left. So for my first artist date, I accomplished not inspiration, but confidence. I am an accomplished artist.
I began a sentence to say what I was not, rich famous etc and then I stopped. I am an accomplished artist. That is enough.

Friday, February 23, 2007


..all blocks done and sashed and inner border is cut and ready to sew and pin.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

New Book and breakfast In Aquebogue

why Mike is more fun~

This morning when I was lamenting that I could not work on my projects because I was going to be away for the day, It dawned upon me that I have a Janome Jem in a case ready to roll and why could I not just bring it along with me? So I did and I did paperpiece one sampler block. So I am quite satisfied with myself because one I did do my morning pages and two I did bring my stuff with me and three I did use it and how much better does it get?
Uncle Mike is much more fun than I am and this translates into I can do whatever I want. Why uncle Mike is more fun:
Book Swap update! I received my book from Carol yesterday and she sent me a gift from her heart. She sent me "Cold Mountain". Her letter told of why she is connected to this book, and that because of the mountains, from whence she comes, it resonates with her. As it happens, Charles Frazier is one of my favorite authors and I am reading "Thirteen Moons" now. So I thank you Carol for this gift. I am sure I will enjoy it! Pure poetry.
I love to swap stuff. It really is a way to make connections and share your passions with other like minded beings. I have swapped multitudes of blocks, mainly from Dear Jane groups and I have swapped fabrics and been a secret santa and a swapped artist trading cards and postcards...and most of all I have been able to share my love of art and textiles with other quilters which has been such a gift since I first found the Dear Jane web site a few years back. That was my first list. Now I have found sewing machine lists and other quilting lists and drawing lists and writing and dying and dolls and photshop and lists for just about anything and then there are blogs and it goes on forever. the wonder of the internet and the wonder of us all.

Monday, February 19, 2007

Finding old stuff-or excavating by accident

Day three of morning pages is done. I was using an old notebook. I have many, many journals in different stages of their lives, some in my bookshelf, some on my worktable and some in my bedside table that date back to 1972. I had thought that I would make an artist date and go out and but a new spiral bound note book but rather than put off starting I just picked up an old one, which was lying around, half empty and forgotten, and used it to begin my morning pages. I did not look at the contents until today. Day three.This is what I found. undated

It is hard work
all that forgetting
erasing all the evidence
after getting to the root of it all

saving what is worthy and good
of some use,
and piling what's not in cords
like lumber

empty vessels now incapable of harming
but dead ghostly-
you have to keep an eye out
lest one move and reach out and grab you

hard work all of that forgetting
and the vigilance
& the separating & the separating & the separating
hard work guarding all those fissures and renumerations
those piles of bodies like logs like corpses only they are
only just dormant

knowing this is enought to make you sleep light
and dream of coloring in the lines
dream cats and others on the page knowing you are
bartering with your potential
safety equals failure

giving up that vigil
will cost you
consume you
all those fissures filled and
heaving with ghosts
not dead just dormant

lies as widespread as the roots and limbs of of sturdy green ivy
climbing up a wall
finding every fissure
to fill with itself

it is hard work
all of this forgetting
when all of this history is embodied
but not spoken
acknowledged in a dream with a silent nod from a ghost
hard work to be the keeper
ever vigilant
the post is remote
the renumeration is nil

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Day two

Day two of morning pages. Done.
Pictures of frozen garden, DJ block for Caroline and #42 1948 singer sewing machine cabinet. Love this cabinet. I got this from an ebay reseller in Levittown for 51 dollars. Love the drawers. Love the ink well in the top drawer. Love the stool that opens up like a piano bench. Love the spool holder in the column of drawers and the column of drawers. Can you tell that I love it? There is a #15 singer inside, sleeping. Needs a few parts and some work, but for now she is dreaming of days gone by.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Hour a Day-sort of

I am pretty much caught up with my Hour a Day Quilt challenge from Judy L.'s site. I have been using a slightly different sized triangle left over from an old project so there is alot more trimming and fidgeting to get them together. The centers are from a nickel swap and the other parts are left over from Jen and Jay's wedding quilt. Everything was pre cut so I am retro fitting it all into her pattern. No doubt there will be some unsewing, to realign some points. Not quite as easy as cutting it all to fit, if that makes sense. But I decided that if I was going to do this I was not going to buy anything for it and so far it is working out. I am working for the next few days so I guess I will catch up again this weekend.
I am thinking of immersing my Dear Jane assemblage into a tan dye bath to help give it some color cohesion. I am so not liking the peachy backround color. But I am afraid of ruining the whole thing. I have never done such a drastic thing before. At least not to a quilt. Any thoughts? Should I be brave? Will I be remorseful in the morning?

For Virginia Wolf 1.11.01

Of what use is all this knowledge
profusion of theories
concurrent planes of reality

what use is all this bounty what expansive
form to fill and
pride and
purpose to defend

what vast void whose edges to define, must be defined
and dimmed hopes to re-ignite, and
dreams to pump full of shape and noise and noise and noise

thoughts heavy and pendulous
leaden globes
suspended in viscous timeless galaxies

too much matter
detritus of reason, reason's inevitable debris
undeterminable truths
layer upon layer of truths

not enough silence
or silent space
not enough of that elusive grace

too much cause and effect as fragile and thin as Saturn's rings-
of what use is all this knowledge if
severed from the heart

thoughts spinning on self axis
heavy molten globes
doomed to collision
fractured consciousness
inevitable madness
all this knowledge
this wondering and worrying at the boundaries of fiction
at the thin thin threads that bind us each to our own orbit
knowing that they too are a thin fiction.
what is the use of all this knowledge
if all trajectories lead to irreparable despair
to stones in the pocket

Florence Said, a poem

I used to be a size six
all elbows and stringy hair and angles.
How those angles hurt
lurking at every bend.

I would thrust my leg out, my foot so far way- detached-
My mother used to tell how some doctor said her feet were so big they were
just another bend in her leg.

I remember that time in Brighams in Porter Square
(do they still have Brighams in Porter Square?)
warmer weather, must have been summer,
I was visiting from boarding school:
(can you visit from boarding school?)
we met in Brighams
neutral territory
all shiny formica and florescent lights humming and the smell of milky dishrags
left in a vanishing trail on the counter.
Her leg, long, thrust out in fromt of her, her foot, sprouting festering blisters
How far had she walked in those coarse sandals that cut into her feet,
a martyr
like Jesus

“nice shoes,” I said
“you want them?” she said, “I can get more.”

I used to be a size six.

Florence said, “I carry a lifetime of grief in my belly.”
That always stayed with me
justification for my big belly
for my grief
a vessel for it
a council

When did it become toxic
a target for media venom
an emblem of self hatred

I carry a lifetime of grief in my belly
round and soft
mapped by the births of my children
able to expand and contract and embrace several lives
I carry several lifetimes of grief in my belly

Cistern brimming with abundant life
expand to refill, contract to rebirth
advise and counsel in every breath

I used to be a size six
I carry a lifetime of grief in my belly

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

February 12x12x12

This is my February journal entry for the Quilt Studio for the 12 x12 x12 challenge. I used a batik back round and fused the face and shapes on it, over which I stitched a shimmery netting and machine free handed it. The base is timtex, which is like a stiff batting. I like the way it came out but I am not sure how to finish the edges. But for now it is as finished as it is going to get.
In a couple of minutes I am going to get a hair cut which will reveal much more white hair.
I am conflicted of course by this, wanting to remain ever young and the nubile goddess that I once was. However I am rebelling against that concept (that age invalidates us-how absurd!) now that I am fifty and wish to find new and deeper meaning in my existence.To all my fans and groupies, I hope you are not too dissappointed! But I do look forward to not having to plough through the paparazzi when I am trying to ride my motor cycle through my upscale neighborhood. And of course, it will make grocery shopping so much less cumbersome.

Monday, February 12, 2007

Bouncing in.....

I blame Amy. I saw her PING and was off on a search to find me some a them georgeous Asian fabrics. I did locate some while at Patchworks in Sayville but not the ones I wanted. I wanted the taupes, the palest blues and creams and silvery grays. Still I was able to lighten my wallet a bit and bought some fabrics that were totally out of character for me---Animal Prints!!!Of course I will be mixing them with my usual brights and darks to make them Sing out Loud! and I haven't even got a clue what I am using them for. But it will be along the lines of *quick and easy* and who knows where it will all lead.
Last night I finshed the second two sets of my Spring Fling Blocks and I am taking a couple of days off before I start the next bunch.
Tonight I will work on my 12by12by12 block which will be revealed as soon as it is done. I bought beautiful midnight blue sulky thread to do the stitching with, if I can get my machine to co operate!
Thanks to all of the people who came to my defense, in comments and privately, re the lady who did not like my language. One out of 16,000 ain't bad. I realize I am a liitle rough around the edges for some people's taste, but I am a Kind, Spiritually Rich, Compassionate and Creative person and I like myself just the way I am and so does God. That is why I removed her shaming comment. I don't care to be attacked in my own (blogger) home. How rude.
Tomorrow is post office day! I am mailing books, fabric and blocks far and wide...hehehehe.

Friday, February 09, 2007

Order of the Snippets

Order of the Snippets is a Secret Organization whose Mission is to Self Proliferate in the sewing room-in the area of the machine-under, behind and in the Wheel Wells of Chair, with the devious intention of attaching themselves to your Socks, your Sleeves and Hind Ends, to facilitate their Dispersal into the far ends of the Realm. They fear Nothing and No one....except for the Mighty Vacuum,( and I hear the occasional Boston Terrier) who, when called upon, in times of extreme need, can be counted upon to Breathe Fire and hurl them into the Abyss of Bag.
From whence
there is no
Extreme measures for Extreme problems.
On the wall: Baltimore Elegance Blocks, Swap Blocks in progress and Hour a day blocks in progress. As you can well imagine there were losts of snippets launched in the making of thse crazy little blocks. Janiac presiding. The little appliqued blocks were left over from my Jane-they did not quite fit in so I will use than as seeds for another.
IN OTHER NEWS... have received my new book Finding the Water, by Julia Cameron.Which book is being read by another on line blog group so named. Hope to tackle my writing-of-the-memoir-block. I am a writer Goddammit!***
I have also been meditating on which book to send to Jessie in our book swap...I have a couple in mind. What else does one send in a book swap? Book marks? Book lights? chocolate? I have a few othe ideas which I will not herein divulge mwahahahaha.
After tomorrow I will have four days in a row off and I have no intention of leaving my sewing room at all. I have Sets to Make, Hours to Stitch, Appliques to Fuse! Well I may be occassionally be seen dancing in the street but only if the temp goes higher than thirty degrees farenheit.
***which brings up another point. I am politally opinionated person and since it may occassionally be the case that I that side of me to be seen here in blogland I must respectfully and sadly decline to be a part of any blogring which doesn't want me based on this sometimes blasphemous side of my nature, as it were.
So here I state. I am a democrat, way left of center, and I believe that only love will heal the world and wars do not fix anything only create more wars which make some people very rich and kill alot of innocent people. Phew. Glad I got this off my chest.
So I send you my healing love and encourage you to be politcal activists on your blogs if that is what you need to do. For me-it is about sharing my art and some of myself. Amen and amen.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007


Here we all are in Florida, cousins, aunts and my grandmother. Aren't we all stunning?

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Many Janes One Jane

Don't know what to call this Jane. It is a compilation of a few false starts. CW repros, Dutch repros, brights. I was looking through my Bags o Blocks to see if there were any to share with a friend and it suddenly occured to me that I should just sew them together already because the weren't doing me any good in a bin. Whether they were matchy matchy or not. And so I did.
There are 81 blocks, mostly from the Dear Jane book, and several designed by Tilde, whose blogs are in my links. There were some that I did not use. In truth I ran out of design wall space and some just were not lovable at all. So I used some batik that I had bought online to use as an applique backround and did not love enough to use, nor dislike enough to fling --- and I am quite happy to have done this top, to be done with the assembly and ready to think about borders and quilting, if, and, etcetera.
And so I have joined the current DJ swap-in thirties repros, because I have made a vacancy to fill with a new project. Kind of:)So that is what I was up to today. Finishing stitching and printing out blocks for the next swap!
One of these days I have to find my Name and Claim list and see if I am actually working on any of the things that I thought I would be. Well yes I am -my sampler and my journal quilts, and now Judy's challenge and a swap. Not so bad. And one top done.

Friday, February 02, 2007


I am home today and already my sewing room is calling me. Just dh and me in the house til tomorrow and I don't have to go any where. Bailey is at a sleep away Model Congress, where the kids form committees and debate till all hours and then sleep on the floor of the host's house. And they love it. Sooo, I will get to play all day. DH is putting electric outlets in my painting studio so I will be able to use it even in the shorter hours of winter. Judy 
is doing an Hour a Day quilting challenge on her blog which I have joined. I believe Hanne did the last one and I loved the results. I have all of the fabric for this in my stash and even have the half square tris left over from my daughters wedding quilt and I am using Laurel Burch nickels from a nickel swap with blacks and brights. I am looking forward to this:)I will have to cut the units a little smaller because I will use the ones I have already made instead of starting from scratch. So my blocks will be little smaller
Lately I have been in a kind of flurry of trying to settle on a project to focus upon. I have flitted from Bear Paw to Dear Jane to beading to journal quilt to Baltimore to Machine applique. I haven't been able to settle on one. I am not sure why but I am trying to just go with the process and let myself alight on whatever project is calling me that day. Today I am going to play with my Dear Jane blocks and see if I can get some closure on this bag of ninety blocks. Many changes in color scheme and some other than Jane blocks tossed in. Maybe I will call it Jane Salad.

In any event, they are all things that will get done one thread at a time. There have been so many changes in my domicile of late, think it has discombobulated me (moreso than my usual state and that is considerable).
We had about twenty minutes of snow today which has all melted, This is after a week of the weather genii forecasting a Storm to be Ready For. So we shopped, got out our wellies and our shovels and..... nada. Meanwhile the poor folks in Florida got slammed with killer tornados while in their beds asleeping-with no warning.