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i am a creative person. mother to a daughter who is an active young woman and a constant blessing in my life. i hope that you enjoy your visit here and that you will return often.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

i have some moss rose flowering. there is a big variety of colors and they all look so happy. i've been picking them and putting them in this uber tiny vase and have been surprised to find that they will last a couple of days as a tiny cut statement of a flower.


the TAST (www.pintangle.com/) challenge this week was a Sword Stitch. i was completely uninspired by this one and kept putting it off and putting it off . . . finally i tried doing it on some tea stained 14 count aida cloth. i used a cotton thread and made very small stitches, placing the stitches as close to each other as i possibly could which resulted in an effect that i felt happier about. i could see this being used as the thorny stems of roses possibly. i have cropped the top photo a lot so that you can really see what is going on . . .

then i stitched a bit of it onto the postcard that i've been working on in basically the same way, although i have photographed the top one vertically and the lower one horizontally, and inserted a metal bead in the "top" spaces that were created. the stitch can't really be seen all that well as used with the beads but it does work i think.

now i must get myself out into the cool evening and do some potting of flowers.

i hope that your evening is full of cool breezes and fragrant flowers too.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

i've been off course on the making of art (as well as everything else) for several weeks now due to many unexpected out of town trips (with no end in sight). i'm feeling frustrated and blocked and overwhelmed. so yesterday morning i sat myself down outside and spent hours working on an interactive mail art piece. i simply enjoyed the sound of the birds chattering and the fountain flowing and the feel of the sunshine on my skin and played . . . and played . . . and played . . . i actually set a timer for thirty minutes but by the time it went off i was feeling so deeply involved that i just ignored it and kept right on working/playing.
i'm glad i did. i feel so much better and actually was able to get some hum drum house and garden things marked off of my list later in the afternoon as well. am pondering the idea of committing every morning to art/creation but unfortunately don't feel that i really have the time.
maybe a compromise with just two mornings a week going towards nothing but art . . .
the loose eggs are reversible and have words that form a phrase (maybe more than one?) on one side with "wishes" on the other. the piece measures approximately 7 inches by 9 inches and is on watercolor paper. there is a letter written on the other side. i left part of the perforated edge as a decorative element and used stitch, watercolor pencils, oil pastels and a variety of pens as well as lots of bits and bobs found in the collage box.
i have not forgotten about TAST but hope to post on that later in the week.

Friday, June 18, 2010

there is a killdeer couple that have been hanging around the garden for the last couple of weeks. they tend to be pretty noisy and recently i've noticed them becoming even noisier and doing their "i'm injured and won't be able to get away from you" dance if i happened to be out in the yard and moving around much which was a clue that they had a nest close by.

this morning there was a LOT of dancing and screeching and when i investigated i discovered Cricket kitty on the front porch. i let her in and went back to watch the parent birds to see if i could see any chicks with them. sure enough there WAS one. running about on it's tiny stilt like legs in one of the cleared out planters. i ran for my camera.

i suspected that the closest parent bird would make a big fuss in an effort to lead me away from the chick and that the chick, rather than follow, would drop down and become almost invisible.
this is exactly what happened. i was able to walk right up to it and even touch it without it so much as blinking. meanwhile the parent bird was really putting on the dance and trying to pull my attention away from junior.

i didn't want to overly stress the birds so after i got a few shots of both of them i pulled back just enough for the parent bird to think that she could safely encourage the chick to get up and quickly and quietly run for the pine hedges while she continued to do the distraction jive, simultaneously inserting herself between the chick and i.
junior did just what he/she was told.

i thought it was so funny that the legs and feet of the chick were almost the same size as the adult birds while the rest of it was all fluff and tiny stuff~!!~
you can see that it still has it's downy feathers and not even much of a tail just yet . . .

later i found that the parent birds were watching over not just this one chick but at least two and very possibly more. it seems that the parent birds don't always keep them all herded up together in one group all of the time . . . possibly so that if a predator does find them it doesn't kill the whole nest full . ? .
the parent birds have led the little ones all over the place as they demonstrate the art of catching bugs and the "hide while i distract" behavior as necessary. it's been fabulously fun to see this new family out and about in the garden today.
i do worry that my cats will terminate any happy endings here but i'll keep them locked down as much as possible. and btw: the mowing will just have to wait a week or two.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

it's TAST (Take A Stitch Tuesday) once again.
Sharon b at www.pintangle.com/ is demonstrating the Italian Knotted Border Stitch today. i found this one to be reletively easy to do. i didn't experiment with it much but did feel the need to jazz it up with an additional (colonial) knot falling between each of the stitches.

once again i've chosen to do the work on the same fabric postcard that i was stitching on last week.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

my Strawberry Fields Forever Quilt-A-Long doll quilt top is finished. i ended up finding a brown (earth) reproduction with pink dots (strawberries) for the zig zag setting but couldn't help myself and had to add the solid cheddar in the form of a skinny outer border . . . hmmmm, does cheddar go with strawberries?

think of it this way: it's a picnic by a strawberry field and the menu consists of a fabulous bread, CHEDDAR cheese and a beverage of your choice with freshly picked strawberries for dessert . . .

i hope the sun is shining on your picnic today~!~

this little top is just a bit wonky and i'm guessing that it's because i hand pieced the blocks by eye and then machine pieced the remainder. i actually like a bit of wonk in my doll quilts as it makes them seem a bit more "genuine" somehow . . .
now i need to start thinking about getting it quilted . . .

for a fun look at everyone's strawberry fields forever doll quilts go to: www.humblequilts.blogspot.com

~!!~THANK YOU Lori for sponsering this fun and challenging project~!!~
i'm proud to say that i accomplished trying two new things with this little sweetie. using half blocks and using a zig zag setting. loved doing both and will definately use these techniques again.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

i've been challenging myself (sometimes) to take my camera off of the automatic modes when i shoot . . . while doing this i get very few decent photos. but this one of the ornamental fruit tree by our front door was at least acceptable enough to demonstrate that spring has finely sprung around here. ~!!!~hallelujah~!!!~ i spent most of this morning doing some embroidery work. the other day i was wandering around in blogland when i discovered www.pintangle.com/ . Pin Tangle is an "online resource, news and information" blog relating to embroidery and textiles by Sharon Boggon, an Australian woman who goes by sharon b. this lady knows her way around a needle (~!!!~) and is willing to share her knowledge with those who stop by. if you like to embroider you should take a look at this one. i LOVE to embroider and have done it since i was a kid so i've managed to learn a quite a few stitches but this blog is going to stretch me to completely new levels. every tuesday there is a feature called "Take A Stitch Tuesday" and a new stitch is demonstrated. there are links to other bloggers who are participating and practicing that particular weeks stitch so we can all see many of the possibilities in using it and share the experience of freshening up our skills together. so this may become a regular tuesday thing for my blog too . . .

a while back i won a give-away from Carolyn Saxby at www.love-stitching-red.blogspot.com. i've said it before and i'll say it again: this is one of my favorite blogs~!~ Carolyn is a fabulously talented mixed media artist who ALWAYS manages to inspire me when i go for a visit. and the cool thing is she actually maintains another blog: www.carolynsaxby.blogspot.com in which she further shows her work and sometimes even gives tutorials on how to become a mixed media art diva yourself~!~
well, anyway, back to the giveaway . . . i won a huge package of assorted art goodies and within that package there were several hanks of various and beautiful threads. you can see one of those in the above photo. thank you once again Carolyn~!~
i pulled out the twisted orange and black thread from this beautiful assortment and decided to use it within my TAST practice.

today i'm stitching on a fabric postcard. feel free to enlarge any of the photos for a closer look at my work as well as some notes that i have included. this stitch is called a "Ladder Stitch" and i liked it's sort of primitive woven(ish) quality. i experimented with incorporating beads into the stitch and that was fun and i'm sure has many more possibilities . . .
i also played with changing one of the edges into a free form curvy line . . .
i now realize that doing the stitch in a furry twisted thread probably complicated it a bit for myself but those threads also add so much in texture that i'm really not sorry that i tried it.

the beads i used within this bit are handmade using colorful recycled paper from women living with HIV/AIDS as well as refugees displaced by a devastating civil war in northern Uganda. i invite you to be part of "eradicating poverty one bead at a time" by checking out this website:
www.BeadforLife.org where you will also find beautiful and interesting jewelry made from these beads.
"All proceeds from sales go to BeadforLife, a nonprofit organization that supports community development projects in health, education, employment, and housing to the impoverished in Uganda"

so here you see the finished seam. i added a bit of leftover (recycled sari) silk ribbon and some buttons, stitch, beads, etc.
btw: i took the liberty of flattening the larger paper beads a bit as i didn't want them to stand off the card as prominantly as they were. they weren't easy to flatten and are truly quite sturdy beads. i love the one on the far right that was made from a bit of text.

i have also included a photo of the stitch from last TAST called a Buttonhole Herringbone.
i liked the way that this one resembled crocheted trim and made a lovely scallop as it was being worked. i didn't like that my stitch had "horns" at the top of the curve and so to compensate i added a single red colonial knot right between said horns. i think i like the way it looks now better than before i added them . . . once again, the possiblilities for adding and subtracting various elements are endless.

so here you get to see the card coming along as a whole. there's more work to do but it's getting there don't you think~!?!~

Thursday, June 3, 2010

still unruffling my feathers from a few days out of town . . . hope to be back to a "normal" pace soon.