Tuesday, February 28, 2006

The Art of Dance

I have a very special nephew who is incredibly talented. When Ian graduated from high school he had to decide which direction he wanted to head in. He could play tennis or he could dance. His mother (my sister) and father are both dancers and run this company. He's been on stage since he was very young. At the same time he excelled in tennis and was the state champion his senior year. He chose dance and has been at NYU, Tisch School of the Arts for the last 3 years.(They only accept 30 for each class). He graduates in May and has just landed a summer job with Mikhail Baryshnikov and his dance company. So, are we surprised? No. Are we proud? You bet!! He and I spent a day together at Christmastime and talked about his PASSION for the art of dance, the creative part we all experience when we get lost in the moment, when you make something out of feeling or out of nothing. He's got it, and I love to see it in him! He's had the most interesting teachers and some very interesting classes...in one class they had to interpret an Andy Goldsworthy work. Imagine that.

Check out this move:

Look at those legs! Who'd think those were under the baggy hip hugging (or hip falling off) jeans he wears!

Guys are in pretty short supply when it comes to ballet, but really, where else do you get to hang out with beautiful girls, keep your body in top physical shape and wow people with your dance moves?!

So, if you're in the NYC area and want to see some great dance, hit the Tisch School of Arts, 2nd Ave. Dance Company, March 30th - April 3rd. "Major Concert"

And one more thing...you HAVE to check out my fellow 'Frayed Edger' Deborahs blog and see what all she's done this time!!!

So, if one uses a blog to brag, does that make it a brog? (That's from Bruce for all you who know his humor!)

More of Dancing at Sunset

So I HAVE been quilting, a little here , a little there. It has been a challenging piece to work on...first because of the painted fabric and the stiffness of it. I decided I didn't want to take any chances with machine quilting and the possibility of having to rip it out if Ididn't like it...once holes are made in this painted fabric they'll be there for all future generations to see forever! So, I did a seed stitch through the layers and will probably add another color to the pink/salmon one already there.

I also did a fern stitch in some of the borders, not sure you'll be able to see the detail I hope will show:

And then I did a little embroidery around the seed square, and added beads to the 'roots' of the trees.

I'm not sure how I feel about this quilt now...it's so hard to see the quilting unless you're right on top of it...even then you have to look REALLY closely. I'm just going to finish it and put it away for awhile. Distance always works for me.

Sunday, February 26, 2006

Bar Harbor

We have made a winter weekend trip to Bar Harbor with our good friends, Ned and Loel. No lines, no waiting. And the winter rates are just great. We are right on the ocean and I was up early enough to see the sun rise, not a difficult feat for me since I'm a morning person.

It's about 1 degree this morning with a wind chill that would knock your socks off and even the sun looks frigid coming up. We're staying at a motel that is right beside the ferry terminal for the highspeed ferry The CAT, that goes between here and Nova Scotia. If you're looking for a nice vacation trip, this is the place to go. Bruce and I did it last year and drove all over and found this:

and this:

and this:

The first two are the home, or close to the original, of Maud Lewis, a tiny crippled lady (very politically incorrect I know) who is like the Grandma Moses of Canada. I found her work a few years ago and was so excited to stumble on this. The last picture is of some metal sculptures that are attached to every pole on the main street of some town (sorry, can't remember), each piece different.

But I digress. I'm only adding these few pictures because there is no ART to be found here this weekend. Everything is closed up tight, except for the beautiful bookstore on the way to Southesast Harbor, 'Port of Call', and the College of the Atlantic Museum. This museum is chock full of stuffed stuff, like this magnificient eagle,

And then Loel found this traveling box of stuffed birds, beautiful loons, owls, and woodpeckers, all kinds. She's the best birder I know and she knows all the bird calls and can identify one warbler from another. I envy that, but as long as I'm with her I don't need to learn it, too. I'll just keep filling my head with colors and fabrics.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006


Since my fellow Frayed Edges friends have been making amy butler bags, I decided to check out some of the patterns and saw this one:

This is called the Rural Messenger Bag. Has anyone ever tried it? It looks a little big, but since we're leaving for a week in Ireland in March I thought it might be a nice size to carry my journal, (since I'm so inspired now by Joanne and her journal pages) and other artsy things to play with. If anyone has any experience with this bag please pass it on. My first criteria is that it has to have directions that are PLAIN and SIMPLE! And can it be modified to be a little smaller? And who besides equilter carries these patterns? I can't tell you how cool it is to be able to put a question 'out there' and know I'll get an answer soon! The quilting community is a wonderful resource!

Monday, February 20, 2006

I've been sick again this past weekend but finally dragged myself out of bed (seems like 5 pounds lighter) and showered yesterday. And quilted!! And it felt good. I alternated on a little beading on Dancing at Sunset, (pictures soon), and when I got too tired I climbed back into bed with one of Jude Devereux's books, The Summerhouse. I think it's an old one, because one of the lines in it is "You think Goldie Hawn is going to look that good at 50?" And we all know how good she looks at 60! But with unlimited funds and the DESIRE to work out regularly, anyone could keep their youthful blush.

One of my duties these next few weeks is to head up the open house at our little village library. As a member of the board of trustees I came up with the great idea of holding it, not on a sunday afternoon when everyone is doing family things and the library is normally closed, but on a saturday morning when the WHOLE TOWN is IN town picking up mail and food for the week...so now I'm in charge. And it's amazing how organized I am. Article for local paper delegated. Food delegated. Postcards done. I just need to make a bunch of posters. Of course I want every one to be a work of art, and all different but I'm already behind because I wanted them to be done by now. So who knows what we'll end up with. Anyone have any good ideas/gimmicks for getting people to come to open houses besides the word FREE mentioned several times? Joanne, isn't this your domain?!

And one more thing: Brothers Grimm, the movie...DON'T GO THERE. Horrible, horrible, horrible. I always ask Sarah about movies before I watch them and this one slipped through the cracks, and one little boy will have nightmares about being swallowed by a horse for the rest of his life. Sorry, Landon.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Morning Walks

I've been enjoying reading everyone's blogs these past few nights when I get home from work and collapse on the couch. It's about all I can accomplish, although when I leave for work at 6:30am I have HIGH EXPECTATIONS for my evenings. Like working out or at the least walking a couple of miles. But, the couch. And a glass of wine. And the bag of chips. Oh my. So, this morning I instituted my "if you can't do it at night do it in the morning" routine of a couple years ago. I got up with the cows and walked in the nearly full moonlight. And here it is 5:15, I've walked 3 miles, and STILL have lots of energy.

I live in the country so walking right up the yellow line is not a problem and it feels kind of rebellious in a weird sort of way, right up the middle. I'm such a rule breaker! Anyway, when I was in this routine a few years ago, I made a small piece that tried to capture the dark, the houses I passed, the stillness and peace at that time of the morning. The words say " Walking in the dark, planning her day...looking for authenticity." I'm not sure where the last part came from or exactly what it means...I think I heard it somewhere and said to myself oooohh, that sounds meaningful, I think I'll use it!

For the more experienced eye you can certainly see the Deanna Hartman influence...and isn't her work beautiful. Inspiring, as all you fellow bloggers works are inspiring to me. So, thanks for the excuse to sit on my couch with wine and chips!

P.S. And what about this:

This farmhouse is just down the road from me and is stunning in any season, but particularly in the winter moonlight. Lucky me.

Friday, February 10, 2006

So Nice

I have a son and a daughter, 32 and 28. When they were young I would plan these wonderful art projects like making valentines or decorations for holidays. We'd start out at the table and usually within 5 minutes I'm sitting there all by myself making wonderful art projects. I loved it actually (alone time) but there's always the dark side. Sarah was/is very talented and me being the ever encouraging mother tried to promote this side of her, but she was just too busy with other things to do much artwork. But now she has taken up knitting. I tried ONE MORE TIME one christmas two years ago and bought some yarn, needles and a book. The yarns are so much fun these days, and she really got into it. She made scarves and scarves and more scarves...beautiful colors and textures. She had so much leftover yarn, she decided to do some squares and put them together. And this is part of her project that she is very proud of.

So now that she's mastered the square and rectangle, I'm going to encourage her to branch out and try something NEW. All of you expert knitters...what's next?? Advice please!

Get ready Sarah, are you reading this? Next year's christmas presents, coming up!

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Tomorrow is Friday!

Thursday at last! This is the last day of the work week in our office. These days I've been doing my dental assisting job four days a week instead of the two I usually do, thus not so many posts. By the end of the day I'm pretty beat. I work in a very busy orthodontic practice where we see about 60-70 kids and adults a day, one doctor four assistants.If anyone has had kids in braces you know an ortho office is very different from your regular dental office. Because so much of the technical stuff can be delegated and done by staff, that leaves the doctor free to be the thinker and delegator. For the most part we have great kids in our practice, and having worked there for almost 20 years I've seen a lot different personalities come through...both kids and their parents. I've seen kids that are quiet and shy but always cooperative, and some that are comfortable talking to anyone, even the stranger in the next chair. So we have a great vantage point for the study of child development AND parental guidance. Most parents have no problem letting their kids have work done on them without being right at their side, knowing this is a good skill for the kids to learn, independence. Yesterday I had a little girl who for whatever reason had decided she didn't like what we were doing and just wasn't going to open her mouth anymore. (We were trying to do something we had done several times in the past, nothing new) The parents were present(red flag); they begged, then they threatened, then they begged some more, then they tried to bribe with "if you do this we'll stop at mcdonalds and get a milkshake" but the little one was stubborn. It was SO OBVIOUS this kid was manipulating the parents, who, even though we accomplished nothing that day, probably stopped at mcdonalds anyway. They were so engaged in this dance, they had no idea what they sounded like. It's so hard to be a parent and know what to say when, and I totally believe a little bit of bribery (I prefer to call it reward) is alright...after all, aren't we all working towards some end? A cup of tea when I finish quilting this last section! A piece of chocolate and a sit down after I clean the house. I guess successful parenting comes when you know where to draw the line. Next week I'll post about some of the unofficial surveys I do with the kids, like how many tv's do you have in your house?

Tomorrow back to my fabric and maybe I can post some progress pictures!

Saturday, February 04, 2006

Dancing at Sunset

This is what I am and will be working on for quite a while. You may recognize the pink background, it's the fabric I posted a few days ago and didn't know what I was going to do with. And then I started laying colors on top of it and this started to happen. I wish I was the kind of quilter that starts out with a sketch and knows exactly which color is going to go where. It would make my virgo very happy, or the "perfect" part of my personality very happy, (if anyone has ever done personality testing like Myers Briggs, there's another one out there called the Personaliaty Puzzle which tells whether you're Powerful, Popular, Perfect or Peaceful or what combination you are) but my creativity has no room for autocratic pre-planning. In this instance I auditioned fabrics and shapes and ideas all at the same time. And I think they work. Looking back, that was the easy part. Now for the quilting. Oh, dear. My friend Sarah said "Just start." And so I will. Oh, dear.

close up of Dancing at Sunset

On another note, we had our Art Quilts Maine meeting today. I always come away feeling energized by the sharing and creativity of the group. For instance, Sarah (another Sarah) shared a calendar she had put together for her friends and family of pictures of her quilts...one for each month. What a great idea! It doesn't HAVE TO BE FAMILY PHOTOS. Not that there's anything wrong with that. Deborah had some of her small pieces and her house series of postcards, which I could hold in my hand for the last time. Maine's loss is Texas's gain...but we'll still be able to experience her shine from far away. Kate led a dual workshop on working with angelina AND carving our own stamps...I made a beautiful leaf which is definitely going to show up in something sometime. Thank you Kate!

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Birthday Girl

I couldn't resist...one more picture of my sweet granddaughter sitting on her new rocking chair. I think she likes it!