Monday, September 29, 2014

Monday morning catch up

I spent most of the last week making sure I had labels on all of my work and cutting sticks the right sizes for the ones that had not been exhibited yet.  Tomorrow, I hang my work for the exhibit that opens Oct 10. 

I was so exhausted that I spent Saturday napping - which I never do.  But by yesterday (Sunday) I had recovered enough to go into New York, planning to see a film that was not available in NJ. Unfortunately, the sound in the theatre was at 120 decibels -- so loud that it was painful. A request to turn down the sound was ignored, so we got our money back and left.  This is not the first time and I am officially done with movie theaters unless they are indie/boutique theaters like Film Forum, Lincoln Center, or the Angelika in NY. We have already crossed all large chain theaters off our list.  No film is worth the pain!
I did take a few photos as we wandered around midtown.

42nd St.   The crowds were almost impossible to get through.  This reminds me of when my son saw someone with a similar sign and bought him a bagel.  When he handed it to the person, the guy rejected it.  He really did not want food.  Can't speak for this man.

Walking east toward 5th Ave, a glimpse of the Chrysler Building --arguably the most beautiful and elegant in NY city.

And at 42nd and Park Ave, Grand Central Station.  Another beauty against a modern backdrop, at least from this angle. I love the juxtaposition.
Inside the station I took a couple of pictures but my flash didn't go on.


Off to the right, an empty space.  Amazing!

Walking back to the west side on 43th st, this was the sight on Broadway. I could have sworn that this now-police station used to be the TKTS  booth.    It is kind of cool that B'way is, for a few blocks, a pedestrian walkway.  But they really need to make it mrs user-friendly and attractive.  Oh well, nothing is perfect.


But for me, NY city is pretty close to perfect - with all its flaws.  Today, back to work.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

L'Shana Tova

Translation from the Hebrew: "for a good year."  It's what those of us who celebrate Rosh Hashanah wish each other.  I always begin the holiday by having dinner here for my kids and grands, preceded by cooking and baking for several days.  After all, what is a holiday without food???  Brisket, noodle kugel,and this year I roasted two chickens: one with pomegranate and mint and the other with orange juice, honey, and cumin.  Multiple desserts, wine, and lots of laughter and noise.  No pix of food, but I managed to take a few of the grandkids before the evening was over.

Josh, Ben, and David at the table.

Emma with Jake.  Notice her fake smile.

Emma with Josh -- another fake smile.

This morning I am cleaning up the dishes and pots from last night and then sewing sleeves and labels for the rest of the day.  With the Jewish New Year, autumn has arrived with rain, making everything look extra green as the trees are also beginning to don their red dresses.
Enough of this idle chit-chat.  Off to find a needle and thread to sew those missing sleeves...

Friday, September 19, 2014

time warp

This is what happens when I come back from the West Coast and am still on California time.  I am up till all hours (it's almost 1:30 a.m but my body thinks it's 10:30) then I sleep till 9:30 am and am eating 2 breakfasts and multiple other meals because I'm starving at the wrong hour and then at the right hour. ARGH.

The sum of my day: sorting through the mail, doing laundry, unpacking supplies, and finding   looking for hanging sticks in correct sizes for all my quilts. I can see that I shall have to get out the saw for the sticks and repair/redo sleeves that have had holes cut in them for the Walker hanging system. And yes, I need to make a few labels. Needing to do all that hand sewing makes me wish I were a tv watcher (but not enough to actually BE one).

I unpacked, heat set and washed some fabrics I printed at the end of class.  They are the final layer on my ugly demo fabrics for the Portland workshop.  We worked with glue screens and after I improved a student's fabric with this particular screen, I went to work on my own.  I'm really happy with them (which doesn't take much because they were dreadful). Now I have to figure out how I am going to use them, eventually.
I was trying to use up as much paint as possible so I wouldn't have to cart it home.  I am seriously thinking that in the future, I will teach surface design only within driving distance of my home so I can pack all those supplies in the car and not have to schlep a 50 lb. suitcase around the country.  I am too old and decrepit to do this any more. So THERE!

Puttered around the house today but tomorrow morning I will attempt to beat the hordes to the supermarket and stock up on food for Rosh Hashanah dinner Wednesday night.  Not only is my refrigerator pathetically empty, I have to cook over the next 4 days and set the table. This is why I am clearing my quilts off the dining table.  

Ok, it's almost 2:am eastern time and I had better scoot to bed or I will not be up early enough to beat the supermarket crowds.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Point Lobos

Got to the hotel here yesterday and took a walk down to the Cliff House restaurant for dinner.
There was a lot of sun, so I shot these rather blindly -- but oh, my - how lovely the landscape just at the Pacific Ocean.

Shangri-la in the distance, and just look at nature's color combination.  If this were a painting I would think it was trite.

Dinner at the Cliff House was pretty divine, too.
Had a trek back up the long and steep hill, which I hope walked off a calorie or two -- but not sure.
This morning I have been luxuriating in the sun on the patio, catching up on some things I wanted to read.  Flight check-in pretty soon and then I might take a walk.  Tonight, giving a lecture at the San Francisco Quilt Guild and am looking forward to it.

Tomorrow, back to New Jersey to take care of all the STUFF waiting for me.  It's been a great trip!

Sunday, September 14, 2014

mangoneidas y diablitos

This afternoon, my friend Rachel and I took a walk around the Mission district -- a gritty neighborhood I loved when I was here last year.

We stopped in the Cut Loose clothing factory outlet and (either sadly or fortunately) nothing looked good on either of us.  But it was great stuff.  After that, we had pupusas at the indoor food market -- totally enjoyable.  Pupusas are a Salvadoran food  made of cornmeal,stuffed with cheese and your choice of whatever else: pumpkin, greens, pork, etc. and served with spicy cabbage slaw and hot sauce.  Yummy.  I think I need to find a recipe and make these when I get home.

As we walked, we passed a restaurant with what looked like thousands or people standing on line (or  in line if you are not from New York) and the line stretched around the corner.  I stopped and asked some guy what they were giving away and he said "nothing. This place has the best burritos in the world." 
 A few doors down,  we passed a sign congratulating La taqueria for being selected by Nate Silver as the world's best burrito.  We were not about to go back and join the line.  I stopped to take a picture of this sign because it tickled me. And Rachel and I continued on our way.
We saw a lot of teenagers eating what looked like frozen gazpacho and in another block we discovered what it was.  A guy with a stand on the next corner was pouring stuff into a cup, adding a biig scoop of snow cone ice, adding more stuff, and people were standing in line for that, too.
We recognized it as the frozen gazpacho -- good guess, but not quite.  It was mangoneidas y diablitos -- a concoction of mango, ice, mango syrup, tomato-y hot sauce, cayenne pepper, more mango, more hot sauce.
 People were also skipping the hot sauce and having the mango and ice with other stuff, like coconut syrup, frozen strawberries, and who knows what else. Too sweet to contemplate.  We opted to try
y diabliitos because the combination of sweet and spicy appealed to us.  Not knowing whether we would like it, we decided to buy one and share it. It was fabulous!  Here is Rachel with it.
And yrs truly, checking it out before I dug into it with my fork.  Yes - you eat it with a fork, not a spoon. Can't figure out why, unless he had run out of spoons before we got there.  And that thing that looks like a straw is a plastic thing covered with what Rachel said tasted like guava paste and cayenne.


You have to know I am going to try this one at home.  Seems to me it would make a great drink with some gin added:-).  I'll let you know.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

On the road again


At Portland airport in the United Club,  brunching (early lunching) on cheese & crackers, yogurt, coffee, and ice. On my way to San Francisco to stay with a friend in the city and then give a lecture. Heading home on Wednesday.                                                               

In the meantime, I finally have time to revisit more of the wonderful fabrics printed in class on day two.
As I look at the pix I took, I'll share them with you.  The big fun was printing with glue on a screen. We prepared the screens at the end of day one and they dried overnight.  Such cool designs!
Here are examples of how fabrics can be saved: just print over them with a glue screen:-)  and work in layers!




This was a deconstructed piece (green layer) that Joyce wasnt happy with.  She printed with a grid and was in the process off adding those 3-D looking circles when I snapped this.
After yesterday's class ended, Gerrie and I packed up, rested our feet, and then went out with Mr. C to a wonderfull Catalan restaurant.  I tell you, the food in Portland is universally interesting and terrific.        

on to the next city...

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Posting but Blogger is acting weird

Or maybe it's my wonderful keyboard.  Trip to the Apple store is on my radar screen.  Every time I hit the delete key on this keyboard, it turns off the computer. Argh.

Anyway, today was day one of Can this Fabric be Saved? and I would say that in most cases, the answer was "yes."  As usual, there was lots of variety in printing fabrics and I was happy to see the fun.
Here are a few results of layers added to masking tape resists.



And here is Gerrie, concentrating as she prints one of her pieces.

We had a very busy day and finished by preparing our screens with glue resists for tomorrow. Can't wait to see what happens!

Tuesday, September 09, 2014

Do I need a catchy headline??

Nah.  I'm in Portland, OR -- that should be catchy enough.  Got in last night and Gerrie Congdon picked me up at the airport. Yippee - I have a day to deal with time zone issues and am spending it with Gerrie and the handsome Mr. C.

Today, I had the tour of downtown Portland.   First stop, Gerrie needed knitting needles. I wandered happily around, soaking up all the color. 

As if that weren't enough, we had to stop at the needlework store next door so Gerrie could get some embroidery thread.  Uh huh.
Basically, you could say we spent the day shpatziring (Yiddish for strolling around, shopping, going on an expedition without any particular goal) and it was wonderful.  We stopped at a lovely store called Canoe, where we saw lots of things we wanted to buy.  One of these minimalist home furnishings places with well-designed items that you see in the shelter magazine photos of other people's homes. Gerrie loved the Noguchi lamps (upper right).
I was tempted to treat myself to an elegant coffee thermos in orange or red or lime green. Fortunately, I don't have room in my suitcase.  But maybe when I get home...
Then we went for a fabulous lunch which we forgot to photograph because we were so hungry. But while we were waiting for our main meal, I snacked on a salad of tomato, celery, beet, pickled jalapeno and a mushroom.

We hit the Apple store, which was large and crowded but didn't have the new iPhones or watches (not that we were going to buy any of these, anyway), but still...

Finally, we had to visit a fab craft gallery called The Real Mother Goose.  I tried on a gorgeous, to-die-for silk top that fortunately, was too big -- so I couldn't buy it.  But Gerrie tried on a stunning jacket that looked wonderful on her and (of course, my fault - she had to buy it). So, Gerrie's day was a success because she bought stuff and mine was a success because I didn't:-).

We went back to Gerrie's elegant abode and crashed for the rest of the afternoon, communing with our iPads.  She made a yummy dinner and here I am, back at the hotel. I had better get to bed because I need to be up at the crack of dawn tomorrow so I can get to the guild meeting in time to set up for my talk.

Saturday, September 06, 2014

this is not a holiday weekend

But it feels like one. It is the last weekend that the pool at my condo is open, so it still seems like summer. (besides, it's hot and humid)  And I've just come home from a housewarming where I met some neighbors I hadn't met and reconnected with some I've known for years.
Fun! 

On the topic of quilts, if you are going to be in New York in the near future, the NY Times had a fabulous article on all the exhibits coming up.  Click on the link to get there.

In the meantime, I have spent the last couple of days frantically packing and even more frantically sorting pieces for my exhibit in October.  Thursday, the other artist and I schlepped our stuff to the gallery and along with the gallery director, selected and laid out the show.  What a lot of work!  We hang it at the end of this month and the work will be up for 3 months.  If you will be within driving distance of Montclair, NJ on October 10, I invite you to come to the opening.

Looking forward to seeing my friend Gerrie Congdon in Portland next week and then visiting with my friend Rachel in San Francisco before I come home and have to get organized for the upcoming events.  If I can blog from there, I will.