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Showing posts from July, 2011

An Art Journaling Epiphany

I've been a writing journaler for many years. As a child I had a 'secret diary' with a tiny key (those are lost now). My need to journal daily began in the late 70's when every year my uncle would send me calendars from Switzerland - where he lived at the time. There was always enough space to write a bit about the day. From there I progressed to larger, Moleskine sized journals - but they remained primarily written journals describing the days happenings, ponderings, and daily life - the good, bad, maudlin and silly.
Some years ago I discovered art jounaling and realized with delight that I could add art to the words I was already writing. My only problem with that is that I felt compelled to make the pages 'right'. I wanted each page to be able to stand on it's own. Complete and well done. I was asking too much of myself and taking hours to make each page - not a bad thing necessarily but it did cut down on what I could turn out. I still maintained a separ…

My Life As An Eliminated Position : The Journey Continues

In a similar position we all must surely think "why me" when something like having your position eliminated happens to you.  I also think "why not me?" It can, and does,  happen to any one of us in a flash a heat beat can bring chaos and change. Maybe we should think "who better than me?". Easy to say and hard to do for certain!

Now that the initial despair of the aftermath (and the attendant swelling of eyes and face) of learning that my position is being eliminated has passed the next  phase - (perhaps a bit of mourning?)  has begun.  I met with the Union President yesterday, I may have a case. Heck, I should have a case! The process has began. I think I am returning to more rational thought and the lethargy of depression has lifted just a bit. In all honesty, I'm worried about the potential of returning to full time work in a highly stressed environment - knowing that it will take a heavy toll on my body has made me take a step back and think, hop…

Buddy Which Way Do I Turn? I've Become Another Unemployment Statistic.

As the person with the highest seniority in our office I thought it unlikely that I would be having one of those tender tete'a'tetes that inform you that you position was being eliminated. This afternoon, however, I was advised that, in fact, my position is being eliminated as of July 11. I was not to take it personally. Huh?!! I am a union member and HR is telling me  that I cannot bump people who have been employees for several months simply because they were hired at a higher level because they were a friend of someone. Also, because I wasn't a golden child I did not get reclassified when everyone else did which is what made the difference.
Yes, I am filing a grievance. Yes, I am angry - and yes, at the moment I am feeling a bit whiney too.  I afraid to lose health insurance. I'm angry that I did more that was in my job description  because I "had the knowledge" and I'm angry at myself for playing nice and not making waves. I was told anyone else who to…

Crocosmia Dreams

These beautiful Crocosmia flowers bloom on the walkway as I enter work and every year their beauty and intensity of color take my breath away. I was drawn to the contrast of the brilliant red flowers against the dull greys of the walkway and just had to take a photograph - which I seem to do every year. I'm especially pleased with this year's variation on the Crocosmia theme though!

Lazy Girl

I think Tillie is mirroring the way I've been feeling lately. She likes to sit in this sunny window and watch the goldfinches feeding above her head. Today she just wanted to laze. She displays complete relaxation doesn't she?
I think Tillie felt the loss of our oldest gal Cleo on Saturday. It was over time for Cleo. She got lost for awhile on a rainy Friday evening and we had wondered if she had gone off to pass away alone. We got to see her again though and it must have taken every ounce of strength she had to find her way her back home. She must had slid into some water and we dried her off and put her on a heating pad but on Saturday she had no interest in food and it was clear that the time had come. Thankfully, our wonderful vet agreed to meet us and Cleo passed with our hands caressing her. I think she was ready and glad to be free of the pain of kitty old age - 19 years.
It's odd to be the 'parents' of a single feline now after our height of nine in the house…

Memory Quilt Top Finished -At Last! Completion Is Close At Hand !

A long overdue promise is near to completion. About a year and half ago I was commissioned to make a quilt from a lovely lady's deceased husband's shirts - incorporating family photographs. In the interim I had two significant spine surgeries and nearly gave up ever getting this quilt done for her. I offered to give her the names of some other people who could make the quilt for her but she declined. She wanted me to make it. Many of the shirts were made from slippery polyesters and acrylic materials as well as velvets and cotton jersey. Each shirt had to be picked apart and stabilized with fusible interfacing before I could use it in the quilt. I had originally planned to make a quilt pattern and intersperse the photos throughout the pattern. That was the plan, at least, until I saw the variation of fabric weights and materials and that there were 30 photos to be used. I decided to go ahead with simple square blocks and a wide border for the photographs. 
As I was worki…

Lacey Prairie Shawl by Cheryl Oberle - Finished!

In my continuing obsession with shawls this is the latest one I've completed from Cheryl Oberle's Folk Shawls book. I love this book and am working my through it as one of the shawls screams at me to be the next on the needles. This one is called Lacey Prairie Shawl.  It's about 76"across the top of the triangle and 46" deep.
I used Universal Classic Shades yarn. It's 70 % acrylic and 30% wool. I generally shy away from all acrylic yarn. It is generally less expensive but I find it pills and sometime shreds - but I thought this looked like a more substantial blend and decided to try it. For a mostly acrylic yarn this is very nice to work with. The colors are very nicely blended - though, IMHO, nothing beats Noro Kuryeon for beauty in blending colors. The yarn is somewhat loosely spun but does not fray or break on the needles. I hardly ever use blues and purples but decided that I need to make something that used these colors. I still have a bit of or…

Quilt National 2011

I always look forward to the release of Quilt National.This volume marks the collection in the 17th biennial exhibit that highlights the best of the best on contemporary textile art.
This edition doesn’t disappoint! The art work is truly the best of the best and each page is worthy of time for appreciation. I had to add some photos of the pages – of course! Each one is "clickable" for a better view. The photography is brilliant. No one does photography better than Lark and this book is no exception to that rule. If you love textile art this is one of those "must have" books for your collection. Any stitcher, quilter, art quilter, or mixed media artist will find something to say "wow!" about. This book is a bargain and really is a keeper. Apologies for the slight blue cast in these photos. I wait for sunny days and then still have issues ! What can I say?!
























note: this book was provided to me by the publisher for the purpose of an honest review. No ot…

Happy Independence Day !

The Fourth Of July always makes my think about history. Our history. The history of a strong, independent nation. I am, I think, privileged that my personal history includes being a descendant of of one of the signers of the Declaration Of Independence. His name was William Ellery and he was the governor of Rhode Island at the time . The Ellery house still stands in Newport. Even though I have spent a good deal of my life away from New England it will always be home to me - as it was to my ancestors. I have a decent grasp on the politics of time which necessitated to wording of the Declaration itself. I wonder, however, what these proud, independent thinking men might think about the way their words and and their intentions have been debated and morphed in the ensuing centuries.
Many of the men who were signatories on the Declaration had legal training and knew how to craft their words. In 1787 the Constitution of The United States followed up on the ideals that began with the Declarati…