Sunday, November 30, 2008

Funny online tests and early morning ramblings

I went to this site and took two online tests - what else to do at 4:30 am on a sunday right? I tested to see what I would be as a character in the 1400's and to see what "leading lady" I would be if on the big screen -

So, for the 1400's character I am the "harlequin" - which means:

You are a mystery, a jack-of-all-trades. You have the king's ear, but also listen to murmurings of the common folk. You believe in the value of force and also literature. Truly you are the puzzlement of the age.

Yup - friends would certainly agree with that last sentence.

And for the leading lady - I was Very Glad to see that I would be the quirky and independant Katherine Hepburn (if only I had those legs)

You are the fabulously quirky and independent woman of character. You go your own way, follow your own drummer, take your own lead. You stand head and shoulders next to your partner, but you are perfectly willing and able to stand alone. Others might be more classically beautiful or conventionally woman-like, but you possess a more fundamental common sense and off-kilter charm, making interesting men fall at your feet. You can pick them up or leave them there as you see fit. You share the screen with the likes of Spencer Tracy and Cary Grant, thinking men who like strong women.

I love the statement about not being "classically beautiful" - or "conventionally woman like" - don't I wish that interesting men would fall at my feet!

Fern wrote a post recently about how women grumble that men can't fold sheets correctly, which of course I agree is a crock. But for some reason this post kept nagging at me - why? Finally I realized that it has been years since I've done the family laundry - DH does it all! I haven't folded sheets in YEARS!!!. Would I get branded as a non-sheet folder by some stay-at-home group? In my defense, I do my own laundry and I do iron what I need to be ironed. I do my own clothes folding and putting away. I haven't sunk so low that someone else will fold my undies and stuff them into the drawer. But sheets and towels - nope - haven't done them for at least 5 years.

Does that make me a bad sheet folder? or not "conventionally woman like". Hmmmm....

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Illustration Friday - Balloon

My first Illustration Friday in a long time -

I've had this piece for awhile, and am showing the full size one - and a cropped one - (and please don't ask why this type is underlined - if I knew the answer to that I'd be a millionaire)

Which one do you like better? (ignore the background color - if I understood scanners - I'd be a millionaire...again!)


Came home a day early from Florida due to storms that were predicted for northern Florida, Georgia etc. Easier for us to fly in clearer we packed up and came home. Left 74 degrees - arrived to 32 degrees....but it's home, and my own bed. I've had a quiet morning already and that means I haven't been shouting answers at old deaf people. (They're so classic - insisting that it isn't their hearing that's going but that we "young people" don't enunciate and that we speak too quickly). But all in all, it was fun to see the family, see how all the kids have grown over the past 6 months; get a chance to sit in the sun and just try to enjoy it all.

We did alot of bike riding; in flat Florida there are mountain bike trails that have been developed from old phosphate mining areas. Lot's of root encrusted trails thru swamps and woods; and some easy rides thru Florida grasslands. One thing I don't hear at home is "watch out for the armadillo!"

We belong to this club in Florida and they do a great job of maintaining the trails. I guess they have to - minimal natural hills and mountains down there....

One of the trails - fairly gentle and tons of fun.
This guy took a flying leap across our trail - jumped like a 'roo. Didn't know they could do that.

An armadillo hole - or maybe a gopher turtle hole.

There was virtually no computer access at my mom's house - don't ask me why. None of us could hook up to the wireless - or even when wired! Someone said that perhaps the modem in encrypted - huh??? Why would they encrypt a modem? Have to call the service and see what the heck is going on. Mom's computer is old and slow and I could never get on between the kids playing games and watching YouTube. And actually it was nice to have a bit of a break from it all.

At dinner one night I was teasing my mom about her "fancy" dishes - ones that she bought on her honeymoon and that I have NEVER seen used. She admitted that she has only used them sixty years. I told her that I needed fancy dishes and that she should give them to me etc etc. She won't part with them, and I don't blame her! But later in the week she gave me a great present - a box of all of the old recipes from my Grandmother. This is really a treasure, and I have alot of sorting to do with them and want to make sure that I preserve the original recipes - yet use them all. I adored my Grandmother and she was a great cook. I will have to stay away from the recipes from the 60's which always seem to start with a package of jello....but I have now her recipe for yeast cake, and rugelah, and peach pie.....

All in all it was a good week - lot's of family, friends, food and much to be thankful for. Especially being back at home.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Animal Wednesday - a Canary

Bad scan but I actually did paint this canary! And it actually does look like a bird - doesn't it? (Cris - what do you think?)

This is for one side the the animal triptych that I am working on. This side has all vines crawling over it and the bird will be perched on either a painted limb or a glued on piece of wood. I painted the bird on a piece of canvas and might back it with something to make it a bit 3 D. Also, alot more trimming needed.

So, HAW everyone - may all your birdies be flying free (except of course for Mr. Tom tomorrow) - and may you be wearing a hat.

Friday, November 21, 2008

I should have more faith in myself....

Remember this quilt? I was convinced that I was the only one who liked it. Well..I brought it into work today along with a few others for a group of us to pick out which one we wanted to give to the latest new baby. EVERYONE picked this one - they just loved the colors and how different it was. I must admit - I was totally surprised! Someone asked if I could make it large sized - well...we'll see about that.

Off to Florida tomorrow and am having the usual leaving home blues. What to take? What to leave home. Pack and repack. Less clothes, more art supplies. I truly hate the process, and would simply stay in place if I could.

But Mom and I have planned a day out together - just the two of us - and that will be a treat. Usually we are with brothers and cousins, aunts and uncles. I want a day with mom that I can remember and treasure.

Have a good weekend everyone -

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Wednesday night - random thoughts

Two awards from my buddy in the wonderful city of London - thanks Joss - you're the best!

Go take a look at this fabric work - blew me away!

I refuse to listen to the news this week - too depressing and who needs it anyway. Get up. Go to work. Do your best. Trip on the sidewalk...fall flat on your face (again) and quickly get up and hope no one notices (high-ish heels, curb) Come home with a sore finger hoping for sympathy. Get little, if any.

And right now I don't feel in the least bit guilty that I hear the dishes being rearranged in the dishwasher. Continuing "discussion" - on the fact that I don't load the dishwasher well - my response is " you just want control" have at it!!

Finished three quilts for an unknown baby this week, the unchosen will go on Etsy. (oh, there is one that is SO cute, with a little pocket for a toy - wait till you see).

Leaving for Florida on Saturday. I should be glad but am not so excited. Too many people coming and no time for any solitude. Aren't I a pill?


A sign I like

Near our bike riding place is a laundromat called "Bubble it". Its classic and but I need a tripod to get a good picture of it at night, all lit up. This picture of the building is lousy, but I love the sign.

Animal Wednesday - the Beginnings of a Triptypt

I know that I haven't posted alot lately. Work has been so busy (catching up!) and I'm trying not to work late, or overtime. Plus, we have a friend at work who is having a baby and it is due today. She doesn't know if it is a boy or a girl, so of course, I've made two quilts ( a boy one and a girl one) for us to give to her. That's kept me busy at night. PLUS I drink a ton of water so I am either drinking water, sewing or going to the bathroom!!!! Thanks again for all your emails and concerns and good advice - you are good friends!

This is what I was working on last week when I took the header into the humidifier. I am going to put a cat on one side and a bird on the other side. I'm showing two views because of the flash, I couldn't get it to not reflect.

Different and interesting eh?

Happy Animal Wednesday to you all and may all your animals be happy, clean, full with animal food and snoring under the bedclothes.

PS - another quilt giveaway here !!

Sunday, November 16, 2008


Another giveaway - must be the season! Lovely journals.

I am wide awake and also exhausted. One of the triggers that we discovered for my fainting spells is the drug I take for RLS (Restless Legs Syndrome - may you never experience it). The drug, called Requip, works well for the RLS in my case but has a high side effect of syncopy (fainting). So bye, bye, drug and while I am not cutting it out cold turkey I am cutting back on the dosage. Hence twitchy legs all why not take advantage of being awake and get and two little lovely quilts finished. (Pictures later)

It's a cold day, but the outdoors are calling and a short bike ride is in the works. Along with me comes the sketchpad and a book on tape in case I feel like cutting the trip short. Am I a spoiled princess or what?????

Saturday, November 15, 2008

A warm but misty day to go for a kayak ride. The river was covered by wisps of mist that floated by with the gentle wind.

Doesn't it look intriguing around that corner?

Shoreline fog.

DH sailing away with no fear of what is hiding in that fog.

Gorgeous sunset - Doesn't it look the beginnings of God offering his/her hand to David who is also reaching out? What I really mean is that it reminds me of the Michaelangelo painting of God and David in the clouds.

Whew - edited this post Sunday am. Terrible spelling. Wrong words. Wow I must have been really tired!

I love contests with giveaways

and this one gives away a beautiful quilt! Look at the beautiful colors in that quilt . The rules are that you leave a post at this blog and link it and post a thingy on your sidebar. You can also make a video and post on you tube but that it too much for me! I found out about this at Karen's blog .

I hope I win! The odds are high but I feel a win coming on for something. Maybe it's the Bose Radio that my singing group is auctioning off - we didn't sell alot of tickets so since the odds are low I bought a ton for my nieces and nephews (and ME).

Regarding the quilt again. I just love pink - not bubblegum pink but rose, and dusty rose and all other delicate, subtle shades of pink. Why? Well my mom was a redhead and she tended to dress me as if I was a redhead (when she did dress me a million years ago). So I wore alot of tan and "classic" colors. And oh boy - I hated it. When it came time to choose my first dress - totally on my own - it was for my Bat Mitzvah and I chose a pink chiffon with pink sequins. Someday...if you're all good, I'll post a picture of that magnificent dress - which of course, had matching shoes. I really don't wear alot of pink, but I still love it. I love to sew with it and make girly quilts.

The lip is looking alot better - surprisingly fast! It the stitches were out it would just look like I had a fat lip. DH is worried that my mom will think he punched me, since I'm not telling her about this latest issue. But the rest of the family wouldn't worry about that, they'd know that if DH tried a punch, he'd be flattened by his tough Brooklyn girlfriend. He'd definitely look worse!!!!

By the way - I love pug dogs and thru Mariannes site found this site - another pug lover. Of course I immediatly went to her Etsy site and bought a few things..for Christmas presents of course, NOT for myself.

Time to get ready for my first spinning class in a year. 55 minutes of torture. Wish me luck

Friday, November 14, 2008

Friday AM

Even tho' I am home, I am not going into work today - am still too traumatized and need a real day off. Plus my lip would scare everyone - the medically inclined included. I am going to go to the local spa and get a massage, and a haircut. And put my feet up.

The worse part about the last few days was the waiting. Waiting for heart test results - echo cardiogram...stress tests...radioactive in strange cameras. I kept thinking - what is something is really wrong? What if I need a "procedure"? What if..what if...

I am hoping that this is a true wake up call for me - and that I can truly join Lynn's advice about living healthier and taking time for myself that will do me good physically. Why do I neglect my physical well being? Why do I take care of the outside but don't take good care of the inside? I'm trying to figure out why this is? Am I just lazy? Do I think I'm immortal? Do I hate gym exercise so much? (I do love outdoor bike riding but it's getting cold here and that makes it tough).

I used to do indoor spinning class and am going to try that again. It's good for you and makes you a better bike rider when the weather allows it. I HAVE to make myself get up and go to that. I HAVE to take my sneakers with me on a business trip and USE them for walks and/or at the gym. I have to learn to indulge myself with good health and not just with a good book and a cup of coffee in bed.

I know we've all gone thru these questions and that there are no easy answers. I'm hoping that this latest escapade will allow me to have that 'wake up call" that people talk about.

But right now..I'm heading back to bed with a good book and some coffee - there is a time and a place for each one of these indulgent actions and after the past few days - I don't trust myself with exercise alone. DH and I are going for a short hike later - just to get out and about. Its a start....and one has to start somewhere.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

I tried a mobile post

...but it didn't work. Long strange story to tell about the last few days - hence the no Animal Wednesday post.

About 6 months ago I had a fainting spell - but just assumed it was from being tired, and a bit under the weather.

Well, it happened again on Tuesday night right after dinner. My day had been good but hectic. Met a friend for a flu shot...had a good busy day at work...came home and we had a late dinner....and then pow! out like a light. I felt it coming on and instead of being sensible and simply laying down on the kitchen floor I headed up to the bedroom. Where...instead of falling into bed...I did a major face plant on the floor - hitting the humidifier - which shattered (plastic but deadly) and split my lip open. With gushes of blood, poor DH was FRANTIC and angry and scared. Long story short - straight to the ER where they decided that my blood pressure was not compatible with life and I was admitted. And stitched up.

48 hours later and I am out. Nothing wrong on all the millions of tests. Everything normal...except that I fainted.

Dr. says to drink more water and eat more salt and if I feel a faint coming on...cough.

So I'm home, with whiskers in my lip, and a headache and glad it wasn't worse. So glad.

So...that was my week! Hope you all had a better week! and I'm saving the masterpiece of animal art that I was working on for next week!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

This is so much fun!

I found this link on Diana's blog (lovely artist is she) and I have seen it before - this is the first time I have gotten it to work. What a hoot! What fun it would be to paint that big!

At the same site, you can also make circles out of your uploaded artwork. The first one was a bird picture, I love the way the legs are sort of inside an egg.

and a purple and pink drawing of pears. Interesting as a circle; dark and light, sort of yin and yang.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

A fairly quiet weekend

Yes, I did stay in my jammies until late Saturday, and then my nephews came over and we watched the latest "Indiana Jones" which was great fun. Sunday morning we had muffins and bacon and played with paints. There is something very non-confrontational about painting and talking at the same time. A lot gets said while pretending to look at something else.

I painted circles on a black background.

Sean painted a sad elf. We all don't know why he is sad - but he certainly seems morose doesn't he? Perhaps he's thinking about the upcoming lousy Christmas season.

This face is an attempt at some abstract something. Not finished yet - obviously.

A study in some colors. I got some new paints with luscious colors and wanted to get them onto canvas to see how they look. I like the colors but now have to decide what to do with this background. A sunset seems to trivial and predictable. All suggestions welcome.

Took the boys home to NH and then rode 12 miles on the rail trail, and off road. You'd think with all this bike riding I'd have lost a million pounds by now, but no...steady and slow - the story of my life.

Sunday night Award

I got this from Lynn, the quilting maven! There are rules...and as usual, I am not going to follow them except to say that I truly treasure all my blogger friends - near and far, new friends and old. You have allowed me to travel a road that I would normally have never shared...giggled at silly posts; been kindly critical of my artwork and supportive as friends.

Here's to Blogging friends forever.

My Saturday

Yup. Got up early and puttered, then went back to sleep. Woke up hours later to coffee and chatting. Stayed in my PJ's until 1:30 PM!!!. Made a crock pot of turkey chili, got dressed and went to a party. Came home and the boys got here for dinner and a movie. I'm so relaxed, I don't know if I'm awake or asleep.

Maybe my take it easier mantra is working.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Letters arranged alphabetically

As is usual, Kerstin comes up with some interesting ideas - I liked this one and tried it. The first few letters sound like they could be a shriek "AIIIEEE" type. Being a scientist, the last 4 reminded me of MRSA - which is that lousy bug you've all been hearing about - Methicillin resistant Staph Aureus - something we all don't want to get. Can't think of something for the T.

The red swirl has nothing to do with the letters, just an available piece of paper. I was trying to see if it is true (in my world) that the darker red looks closer than the lighter red. I guess it me I really just see darker and lighter. What do you see?

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Thursday morning - quick post

On Monday I wrote about a meltdown - and how I want to do so much and don't have time for it all. I've calmed down over the past few days, and realize that I don't have to give up anything - I just have to stop obsessing about completing things in a tiny amount of time. Give myself a break on the time limits! And not to worry if I don't want to finish a project. I find that if I start something I become compulsive about finishing it and it worries my mind if I don't. Well - to hell with that - if I start a project and don't really like it...bye bye project! Easy solution eh?

And with that in mind - I started working on a new little project last night which I know will take a long time to finish. Suki had written a post about an abandoned house and I kept thinking about a house being built with love, but then getting abandoned and with my propensity for anthropomorphism - I feel sorry for the little house.

So, my favorite overall wearing line people are going to build a house but then leave it to move back to the city. The house is lonely but then little animals start to move in, and raise their families there and the house welcomes them and becomes the "Happy Little House"

Hey - it's my way of controlling my world - make a happy ending! I'm not such a great drawer and DH has "offered" to help with perspective and ideas. I did ask him not to help by saying things like "that bear looks like a fox" and useful things like that.

And I am not going to obsess about finishing this project. It will be finished in it's own time, covered in a nice book cover and probably given to some deserving child.

I do feel better about this now. I just have to remember.....

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Pictures from a friendly weekend and Animal Wednesday

A quick sketch of a bird face.  I've decided to do a bit more sketching  - quick stuff - to try to get into the habit of observing. Anyway, I think it does look like a bird....right????
Some photo's from last weekend on Martha's Vineyard.  The first one is after a nice hike, overlooking (of course) an ocean view. 

This tree was in the old Chappaquiddick graveyard - I thought it was the perfect size, shape and color for an autumn tree. 

We took the ferry home on Sunday and it was cold and windy and blue, blue, blue.   I just love it over there, there is something about that island that is relaxing and calming. 

I had very firm plans to have a fairly quiet weekend, starting with a concert in town on Friday night (Rachmaninoff - Vespers); a good sleep in on Saturday and a visit to a friends Open House on Sat. afternoon.   Then Sean, my 16 year old nephew called, and asked "what are you doing this weekend auntie? How about the movies?".  I couldn't have agreed faster.  MUCH more of a hassle, driving here and there, and sleep overs and changing the beds - but in it's own way MUCH more relaxing and fun.   This picture was taken after Brian's track meet, amazing to watch this kid run.   

Happy Animal Wednesday to everyone.  

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Running Late

Like her creator, Miss Em is running late for everything these days! She has a lovely hat and new pot for the happy, prickly couple and wishes them great success in their new life together.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Something's gotta give

I had a complete meltdown last night. I didn't rant and rave (which I'm proud of) but did pout and whine (which I am not proud of). Of course I realize that I had this meltdown due to burning the candle at both ends for a week, but not burning with a clean flame.

A week of travel, and business dinners (and breakfasts....and lunches...!) and more travel home; then a weekend away with the friends was just too much in a way. During the weekend I didn't draw, knit or read for one tiny minute - we were too busy chattering, hiking or cooking. I had a great time, as I've said - but this morning I realize that I can't keep going on this way and that something has got to go by the wayside. I feel that I can't continue to work as hard as I do to support my little family; exercise and live a healthier lifestyle; be a wife (need I say more...that's A LOT of work!), draw and paint and sew and knit. There are some days when it all seems do-able and there are others when I really feel that I have to choose which direction I am going in.

I would drop knitting but took it up because it was something that I could do and be in the same room as DH while he cooked or watched a movie. I could participate and be with him while not really engaged in his activity.

I can't stop exercising, in fact I need to do more. We bike ride together and hike and I need to boost up the independent exercise routine for health, weight and stamina.

I can't stop working yet - simply can't. I've thought about selling our house, living a simpler lifestyle - but it has to be near a good hospital which knows about transplants - if, god forbid, we need that expertise.

That leaves a choice between being a wife; drawing; and sewing.

Tough choices.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

First Annual Floundation Club get away

I'm going to add color...and some more details and make some tee shirts for my friends to commemorate the First Annual Ladies Foundation Garments Weekend Getaway. Long beach walks, hikes, lots of wine and non-stop chatter.

We're planning for next year already - and are going to spend some money going to an active type spa. We all need REAL R&R.....

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Little Dance

Got home early AM. Leaving again this morning for the girls weekend away, I'm looking forward to it, but hate leaving home so soon, even for just one night.

Miss Em being eaten by a water snake sort of bothered me, so I redrew her this week and gave her an independent solution.

As I see these, I think I like the sky colored in instead of the water. What do you think?