Friday, February 26, 2010

oh, great, two more feet of snow!

I can't take credit for this one -- my friend Mona sent it out this morning with the above subject line. I had to share it with you.
It is still snowing here.  Yesterday morning, as it was starting I took a picture of the table on the deck but it wasn't worth posting. But compare it to the one I just took, 24 hours later (and still coming down).
Later...I was cleaning off the cars before they came to plough the driveway and who was in the street in the middle of all this?
By the time I ran to get my iPhone they were further away, but they are huge! I was knee-deep in snow and didn't get everything cleaned off but better than nothing.  The sun is out, everything is melting - it reminds me of the way it was in Boulder when I lived there. Big snow - sun came out and there was never any ice on the roads. Delicious.

we need more snow?

It still hadn't started snowing at 6 this morning, so Marty got up to go to work.  By the time I got up, around 8:am, huge flakes were falling and this was the view out the front.  Needless to say, he never left the house.  The rhodies looked rather sad
  but the azalea bushes looked good enough to eat.
This was a heavy, wet, slushy snow and it was especially pretty so my camera got a workout today, capturing the woods.
 

 

 I won't post all of them, but you get the idea.  The plows and back hoes have been out all day and it is still snowing. Supposed to keep going till 4:00 tomorrow afternoon. My Studio Six crit group meeting was bumped to next week and my evening crit group, likewise.  But the Studio Montclair crit group is small, so we posted and commented on each others' work by e-mail this afternoon.  Turned out to be a pretty good conversation and while it will never take the place of a real meeting (with hugs and food and wine), it is a good thing to do between monthly meetings.

I leave you with this.  The current issue of Art Quilting Studio has an article I wrote, called "Cinderella Quilts."  They did a gorgeous job of photographing my work and I'm pleased with it. This beautiful magazine on heavy paper, is suspending publication after three issues. 
You might want to grab an issue, which will be a collector's item.

I spent the afternoon and evening throwing out piles of papers so I could rearrange the bookshelves in the sewing room and actually see what I have. If I couldn't file it, I threw it.  Anonymous would be proud of me.

P.S. - this is the last picture (for now) of Miss Emma. I promise. And you don't have to comment.  Just take in her expression and the pose. I wonder what she's thinking.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

self fulfilling prophecy?


Tuesday, Feb 23rd, 2010 -- A day that begins on a scattered note ends with the focus and concentration that you need. But even if you are able to accomplish a lot by eliminating some of the excess distractions, you still might not be able to find enough peace to fully realize your dreams. Try to avoid making a final judgment about the value of your work now. Just keep showing up and doing the best you can. Fortunately, you should have a more positive perspective within a few days.
Today began on a scattered note, indeed.  I knew I had to go to the studio but had no clue what I was going to work on since I have several large projects I should be working on. (don't you hate that word "should"?)  

I got to the studio after having stopped to buy some of that brown rice green tea and brewed some right away while I cleaned up a little bit and took a deep breath.  I stuck the project in process on the wall, finished adding to the length, and got to work on the next step. I was working on three different things at one time and it felt sooo good.  But at 2:00, sleet and freezing rain made me think I had better leave for home before the roads iced up.  I continued to work on one thing and have been at it all evening.
Jessica's father came home today from Fla. for a few days to meet Miss Emma and  has kindly offered me a ride to Brooklyn tomorrow. It will be a luxury to have someone else drive. 
I may start to like the color pink!

Monday, February 22, 2010

Sunday - Monday

 As I drove into NY yesterday, the weather was so clear that I decided to do a drive-by shooting. I had my good camera, which I held up and clicked without looking and the results weren't bad. Notice the Empire State Building to the right of that big tower in the middle. If you click on the picture, you'll get a really good view of the skyline!
The girls were supposed to be discharged yesterday morning but they weren't sure they were going to send Emma home with her mother.  We sat around all day till they made up their minds but finally left around 6pm and headed home to Brooklyn.  Here is Jessica, with her friend Lisa holding the baby just before we went home. Lisa's the delivery nurse who put off her vacation till after she delivered Jessica's baby.  Now THAT's friendship!! 
Emma is home under UV lights today to prevent jaundice and we're hoping her numbers are down tomorrow so she can stay home.

Monday, Feb 22nd, 2010 Horoscope: Your word is as good as gold and you are willing to forgo personal pleasure in order to fulfill your obligations today...blah blah blah.

My obligations today were:
#1 taking Marty to pick up his new eyeglasses, which we hope will be an improvement over what he was wearing. So far, so good.

#2 buying him a new cell phone with large numbers and text so he can see who he is calling. A new phone always takes getting used to, so the jury is out.

Afterwards, we had a fabulous sushi lunch in a place next door to the AT&T store.  The tea had the most wonderful flavor and when I asked what it was, they told me it was brown rice green tea.  I will have to search for some tomorrow.  Till then, I'm done.

Friday, February 19, 2010

It's a GIRL!!!!

 Marty not only called the date, but the gender -- and we are thrilled to have a girl!! Even my grandsons wanted a girl cousin:-)). We spent all day sitting around while Jessica, Tommy, and the doctor all took naps - and Marty and I finally went out for his b.d. dinner to a lovely French restaurant a couple of blocks from the hospital.  Emma was finally born at 8:55 tonight; she waited till we got back from dinner.  7 lbs - 2 weeks early. Yikes!

Here, she is an hour or two old and hasn't even been weighed yet.  Of course, you can see how beautiful and intelligent she is - LOL. And she stopped crying the minute she came into my arms.
 
We got home at midnight and think it's time to fall into bed.
Thanks for all your messages and good wishes!!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Marty's birthday wish

Looks like he might get it. Jessica's on her way to the hospital and we will be leaving soon for the same destination. Will keep you posted!!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

post script

Just a note for all my unhappy readers who had trouble translating the French.  Son of a gun -- the stupid translators refuse to translate it to English because my site is in English and they are inflexible.
SO - I've added a translation under the French and I apologize for not having done it when I posted. 

Sometimes the French just comes all by itself and I can't control it (don't ask!) so I go with it.  But now I will know to translate it when I'm done so you can read the English right under it. 

Today I went to visit my friend Susan Lisbin who is one of the most talented artists I know - and I LOVE her work.  It was the first time I've been out of the house in weeks and it felt wonderful, despite the cold. 

Maybe I'll have something interesting to blog about tomorrow night.

Mais où sont les neiges d'antan?

Elles sont partout, et elles sont devenues les neiges d'aujourd'hui.
The snow is everywhere today.
Voilà la famille Bambi (comme on les appelle chez nous) derrière la maison, en mangeant au bord des bois. Il y en avait six ce soir - d'habitude il y en a plus -- des fois, huit. Hier, je les ai vus courant tout ensemble, comme si quelqu'un les chassait.
Here is the Bambi family (as we call them at our house) behind the house, eating at the edge of the woods.  There were six tonight - usually there are more -- sometimes, 8.  Yesterday I saw them running together as if someone was hunting them.
Ces Bambis mangent tout, ils vous donne Lyme Disease (j'avais cette maladie il y a 10 ans) et à vrai dire, ils sont une nuisance.  Mais comme ils sont beaux et gracieux!  Mon mari peut passer les heures à les regarder sans s'ennuyer.
These Bambis eat everything, they give you Lyme disease (I had it 10 years ago) and truthfully, they are a nuisance. But they are so beautiful and graceful!  My husband can spend hours watching them without getting bored.
On another subject -- did my horrorscope give me a push this morning? Yes, indeedy!  No procrastination in this house!  You can tell by the condition of the formerly organized boxes (see, it never lasts long) that I was working all day. 

Here's the problem: I got myself involved in a project that requires thinking ahead. Not a good idea.  I tried an experiment that turned out to be so butt ugly that I actually laughed out loud. All by myself.  Then, I just went back to my usual M.O. and it is turning out much better.

But now the place is a mess again and I am hoping to get out of here tomorrow and spend time with a friend.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Hmmm.....

Just had to share this daily horoscope that came waltzing into my inbox today. I'm telling you, this guy lives in my house!  Will report back tonight if I get unblocked-LOL.

Tuesday, Feb 16th, 2010 -- Although you may feel a growing urge to express yourself artistically, you may be blocked until a sudden burst of creative energy gets things flowing again. However, this is not a license to procrastinate, even if you feel a bit lazy. Don't worry about where the process might go; just jump in and let it unfold spontaneously.
R.

busy day

Thursday will be Marty's birthday (when I traditionally pick up the check at a restaurant of his choice) but we sort of celebrated it today.  The kids were off from school, so Hilary brought Josh and Ben over late this afternoon and Ross and Nancy stopped on their way home from D.C to Manhattan with Kayla and Alexander.  They all brought cake and we wished Grandpa a happy b.d a few days early. I retrieved my mother so she could see the children.  It was a very lively afternoon, to say the least, and as my mother said, 'a few days -- what's the difference?' LOL. Right.

My grandmother always said her birthday was Nov. 3 and I was her birthday present:-).  But we discovered her b.d. was on Nov 4. (well, as Nov. 5th I was a gift in either case).  We always celebrated my father's birthday on New Year's Eve because it was supposedly Jan 1.  After he died, I discovered his birth certificate said Jan 2.  So who was right?

Marty's mother always said she was a year older than she actually was. Uh - why would anybody want to do THAT??  One of life's mysteries.

...and so to bed.

Monday, February 15, 2010

renewable energy souce

Renewable because the stuff multiplies like crazy when I'm not looking - and because it is, of course, recyclable. It's both an energy drain and an energy source.

Energy drain because I am exhausted from having spent the weekend attempting  to clean up this space, which looks like this because I have been working.   Now I can't work because I can't think and I can't think because I have created this mess while I have worked. Ah, the irony. You get the picture. And in case you don't...
I haven't even gotten to the 6 rolling bins under the ironing table, but you can see I'm making progress from the neatly piled (well, neat is relative) fabrics on my cutting table. Below is my ironing table and you can see  how much space I have for ironing all this fabric. But I don't mind.
I'm ironing, sorting, and filling plastic boxes. Here are the official categories:

BLEH -NEEDS WORK
GOOD STUFF
HARD TO USE - SHIBORI & MISC.

LEFTOVERS
DARK STRIPS
LIGHT STRIPS
An energy source because as I iron and sort I renew acquaintance with my own hand-printed cloth, which sparks new ideas. Even better, I am lucky enough to own gorgeous fabrics from two other energy sources. 
*disclaimer - neither source has asked me to mention their fabrics - I'm just a loyal fan!
Handloom Batik will be at MAQF this month, at NJ Quiltfest in March, and at Lancaster in April.  Don't miss her.  I can't wait to see what's new when I see Usha's booth this year: I missed last year's show.
 While sorting, I stopped in mitten drinnen to spread out a few pieces from my small but delicious stash.
 Then, of course, I also use Helene Davis' hand-dyes which are so lush that they work with any fabric I've printed, no matter what.  You can e-mail Helene from her website to tell her what colors you want, or stop by Bob & Helene's new building in Paducah during the show. 1149 Jefferson St. (I think).
 So now you know all my secrets: these are the  only fabrics I use with my own...although I will admit to having a few yards of Judy Robertson's stripes which are almost gone.

Had enough?  Tonight, while I was in the mood,  sewed together some of the fabrics that have been sitting on my wall for what seems like months. My process, as you know, is to throw stuff at the wall and see what sticks.  Then, I arrange it 17,000 times and shoot before I decide what will be the final piece. This is a small one - about 12" sq.

These are only a few - heh heh. Enough to drive anybody crazy.  So with that, I am going to say goodnight to my fabrics and to you. Enjoy your day off tomorrow if you are in the U.S.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

snowed in

Backtracking a bit - so bear with me.

Marty's right eyeglass lens fell out as he was driving to work on Monday, so he turned around and came home. A sign from the universe!!  He's been complaining forever that he can't see - but has he been to the eye doctor for a new prescription?

Happily, his regular eye guy wasn't in so he had to see someone else who could look at him with fresh eyes (sorry). She ditched his progressives for bifocals and gave him a new prescription. They should be in on Monday. In the meantime, he is walking around with one lens because it keeps falling out. He says can't tell the difference. Snort!

While we were there, his other doctor called with a cancellation so off we went, after the eyes. Then headed for happy hour at the restaurant next to the pharmacy. Aaaaah.

When we got home, there were 2 boxes waiting.  One was layette stuff for Shmooey (who has yet to make his or her appearance) and the other was a box of gems from Mrs. Closet. My joy is boundless!

Yesterday the skies were clear and blue and we were hoping the snow would change its mind. Another day with two medical appointments, which took till dinnertime. Sushi - and miso soup, which I already told Del I didn't think was as good as mine.

The evening was fun. For too long, I have resembled an overgrown tree and Marty was starting to look like Santa Claus. (Such a stunning couple.)  Then I read that a pricey salon was having a cut-a-thon with discounted prices; all proceeds going to the Unicef Haiti Fund. Hairdressers from other salons joined them to donate their time.

Another sign from the universe -- so off we went!  Since haircuts were less than I normally pay, I was thrilled. Strictly walk-in and you get whoever is free. As it turned out, I got a great cut from a hairdresser I will use again at a salon I have been to but didn't like the haircut I got from someone else.

Marty, OTOH is not used to paying such prices, so my treat. His b.d. is next wk, so an expensive (for him) h.c. and beard trim and a manicure were my gifts.   He was very happy and he looks very handsome.

I think it has stopped snowing, but not sure. The driveway had been shoveled and the streets plowed last time I looked, but I'm not looking again and I still hear the salt trucks. I cleaned a couple of feet of snow off the car but it now has an inch or so again -  maybe more by now.

Here are my annual woods-in-snow pix, taken while it was snowing.
This is how the photos came out of the camera -- misty, with sort of a reddish tinge.  I hit "auto correct" and got this:
But honestly, I think the first one, while less dramatic, shows how it really looked through the mist of the very fine snow coming down. Rather more ethereal than this corrected picture...and truer.
Here is how it looked tonight.
 Weather report says sun for the rest of the week. That would be nice.

Monday, February 08, 2010

Privacy and blog break

 I had a very disturbing experience yesterday: I found a photo I had taken in January on somebody else's blog -- posted without attribution and without having asked my permission.

I had no idea where she had found it because it is not posted it to my blog -- and if I had posted it, I had thought better of it and removed it because I wanted to use it for my own artwork.

When I contacted the blogger, she insisted it was sent to her by someone else.  NOT true.

I finally tracked down my original photo in a Picassa web album I didn't even know existed, thanks to Blogger, which apparently uploads into Picassa every photo you upload to your blog, whether or not you end up posting it.  Apparently, this artist had taken my photo from Picassa and used it on her blog.  I am NOT happy and have let her know she should remove it ASAP.

Once I discovered the PIcassa album I think I changed the privacy options to having to sign in to see the pix.
I hope it works.

This is a warning to all of you that if you are on Blogger, your pix are out there waiting to be stolen.

When I come up for air again, I will post. Don't know when that will be.

Saturday, February 06, 2010

What I'm reading:

The Tender Bar by JR Moehringer - a memoir that reads like a novel. Beautifully written, it's a poignant, moving, funny coming of age story -- and it's real.  Jessica gave it to me after she had finished it and she was right when she said it was terrific.  Actually, I was up till midnight reading it last night and finally finished it tonight.

What I'm doing:
Not a lot. Ran to the market this morning to avoid the buying panic based on storm predictions (that may or may not happen). Got home and unpacked groceries to find a copy of (snort) Soap Opera Digest in my bag, for which I was charged $3.99. Can you imagine?!! Even if I watched TV, which I don't, I don't believe I have ever watched a soap and this would hardly be on my must-read list. I threw it into the recycling and then fished it out so I could bring it back, but I was too tired. It was the last item on my receipt, so I imagine it belonged to the woman behind me who must have been pretty annoyed not to have this literary gem when she got home.  Soap Opera Digest, indeed.

I cooked and baked this afternoon, finished the book and spent the rest of tonight doing therapy sewing.
That's the news from the front. Still feeling bleh like so many others in Blogland. Do you think it is contagious through cyberspace? In any case,to bed to sleep it off and see what tomorrow brings.
At least I have food in the house and don't have to go anywhere - snow or no snow.

Thursday, February 04, 2010

tonight I am reading

Well not yet, but I will get out my book soon. A real book, not a Kindle book.

I spent this afternoon at my studio, sewing, and of course, left the camera there. I am not going back till who knows when, but happily, I have my good camera at home (my creaky 8 year old Canon S-40 with 4 megapixels that takes better pictures than my newer Nikon with 8 megapixels). Of course, there is nothing to photograph at the moment...

Last week's cold left me with a cough and enough tiredness to just put my feet up tonight.  I was going to go to bed at 8:00 but was afraid I'd be up in the middle of the night.  Would rather stay up and sleep in.  Tomorrow is a day for catching up on business.

So for now, thanks for your wonderful and fun comments this morning (was it only this morning???) but I am going to read.
xo
R.

Now what??

The 200,000th person stayed for 0 seconds and did not leave a trail or a comment.  So much for THAT idea.  Neither the several people after that -- so Tie-Dye Judy, you may have been the 200,004th but you were the first one after 200,000 to leave a comment!

I'm out the door shortly to a doctor's appointment but will check back later tonight.  You are all great!

stitched

This piece has been sitting on my wall for a few weeks and this afternoon, taking a break from something that required too much concentration, I finally stitched it.  It is mounted on black cotton, which you probably won't see because I am going to stretch this piece around a 12" gallery wrapped canvas.  I've used them all up so have to go to Jerry's tomorrow and buy more in this size. I have to admit it looks different, stitched. And as I sit in my chair and look at it from across the room I am pleased with it.  Not only did it make itself, I was able to use up some of that pink fabric I dislike so much. It conjures up any number of things to me -- but I have to wait till it tells me its name.

Rifling around looking for green fabric, I found this piece which I shall not cut up. Thiox through screens, which took out some - but not all -- of the color underneath.  I suspect there was too much turq. in that base color.  Needs another layer, but I'm not printing these days. OTOH - I plan to spend a couple of hours in the studio tomorrow, so I will at least take it with me and leave it there till I am ready to deal with it. There are too many other things in line ahead of it.


P.S. - as of my bedtime, only 49 more people to get to the 200,000th.  Leave a comment and an e-mail contact just in case it's you.