I’ve been frustrated with WordPress for a long time but things got even worse. Something as simple as changing a font or color must now be paid for. While I respect their business model I also respect my right to change hosts. I’ve gone ahead and migrated all of these posts to a new blog which, while needing some tweaking, is going to work out well.
I did this over the past few days while trying to sort out my thoughts about the Boston Marathon. Please visit the new Major Thoughts Blog as this one will no longer be updated. I’ll get back to sewing and quilting and all good things over there.
Thanks – I hope you come along and continue the ride.
Filed under Aging, Amish, Applique, Bridezilla, Craft, Design Wall Monday, Family, Friday Night Sew-In, Gloucester, Massachusetts, Paper Piecing, Quilting, Quilts, Rants, Sashiko, Sewing and Needlework, Travel, Wool felt
Even thought I still have to cope with idiots who do not know the meaning of Advent - I like Advent. It begins on Sunday and is a familiar ritual involving lit candles and a winter cleaning of the soul. I find myself taking inventory of the past year, what went down (vs. what did not - like my weight) and thinking about what I want to do with the time I have left. Face it, at my age I know I have less time ahead of me than I do behind me and I’m good with that. I’m tired, for Pete’s sake, but I still want to make sure I use that time wisely and well.
I’m also busy making Christmas gifts because 1) I like to, and 2) all funds are delegated to paying bills and utilities. I have a place in the family room all cleared out for a Christmas tree – we can pick up a small one for very little and I have a need to get back to trimming a real tree that smells good, sheds needles – the works. I like the long observance of Advent and slower Christmas. I’ve never been one for the Black Friday or Cyber Monday sales frenzy even when I did have money to shop. I just don’t particularly like shopping. It seems a waste of time to me and is often very frustrating. I like simple things, good lines, fine fabric and appreciate a nice seam finish. Try finding that these days.
Maybe that is why I can spend hours embroidering wool felt and watching Christmas movies. Every ornament is unique, every movie gets better with another viewing. Right now I’m watching ELF on an endless loop. There are more good one-liners in that movie than in almost any other Christmas movie. This past Sunday was the Downtown Santa Parade and while Santa looked pretty authentic sitting on top of the fire department’s ladder truck, I knew it wasn’t the REAL Santa and it was all I could do to not yell out, “YOU SIT ON A THRONE OF LIES!”
Slow down and enjoy the season. Life outside of the usual frantic holiday circus is pretty sweet and makes for better memories.
The dog days of summer are here with a vengeance. Living so close to the icy Atlantic used to mean an afternoon sea breeze that cooled things off to the point where you had to close a window at night. Not any more. I am a climate-change believer. I used to have at least five or six summer weight cardigans I needed to wear in the evenings out here. Now I’m slicing the sleeves off old t-shirts to find something cool enough to wear around the house.
In July and August we crank up our trusty R2D2 air conditioner in the family room and I haul down my embroidery floss basket, a tub of wool felt and start cutting up birds, stars, ornaments and mug rug pads so I can embroider my little projects that I sell locally. I’ve set up a corner of the room that now looks like a wooly tornado hit it – complete with splattered bits of color from the bits of wool and knots of embroidery floss that get snipped off as I work. I could clean it up every night after a session of sewing, but what is the point? A sample of works in progress:
There is always that bit of a re-learning curve that comes with taking up embroidery after a long break. I fumble around trying to remember old stitches and sometimes invent new ones in the process. I get very frustrated that the work isn’t spacing evenly until I hit my rhythm and I’m back in the groove. Then I wonder why I ever stopped – hand sewing is the most relaxing thing (well, next to a cigarette and a martini but I had to stop smoking years ago and you really should not #gdas).
BTW, I highly recommend the “R2D2″ style of AC for a single room use. I’ve put up heavy (upholstery remnant) curtains in the 2 open doorways to the room so it stays remarkably comfortable. Joe rigged up a little template so we can tuck the exhaust hose out one of our windows. The only other work is to make sure there is a bucket next to it because it needs to “pee” every 5 hours or so. (We don’t leave it on overnight.) The water gets taken outside to the porch to water the flowers. It’s a win-win.
I wait until I have a bunch of them finished before I bag and tag them – it’s a very gratifying part of the process. My tag reads “MSQ” as a tribute to my mom who used to make and sell small quilts and table runners at our shop here in Gloucester. Since her last name was Major, she tagged her products, “Major Stuff Quilts” – hence, the MSQ on my label. I like sewing in the evenings while we watch a movie, surf around the DIY channels, or just discuss (and solve) the world’s problems. Joe is always there to bounce ideas off of and give me solid tips on getting the most bang for my embroidery buck. Best part - he really gets it about my sewing, quilting, etc. and that is a remarkably redeeming quality in a partner.
EDIT: If you were wondering, #gdas is a Twitter hashmark for a Friday evening TweetChat where spirited, earthy sewing enthusiasts pop a cold one and discuss projects, tips, good food, and whatever else strikes our fancy. (The name Get Drunk And Sew tells you all you need to know.)