Tuesday, May 8, 2012

I'm Back!!!

Wow, it sure has been a long time since I've posted anything...

Life didn't get in the way, it just happened. Lost a parent. Changes with the kids. Life imitating art. You name it, and it probably didn't happen, it just felt like it.

I'm still quailing up a storm. I have been doing a series, well two wall pieces so far, but the rest will come. I'm calling these my "Art Shields" and I love how they are coming out. I'll post pix later this week or early next week. Quite out of the box for me, but I love them.

I've also been piecing tops and finishing quilts that I've made in the past. What is amazing is that I still like the tops that I'm quilting, even though I pieced them years ago. I've been having a ball making many, many quilts out of my scraps. But I do look into my very large closet in my sewing studio, with the hundreds and hundreds of yards of fabric, and wonder when I'll start using that.

Not much else happening. I still am loving my life as a semi-retired. I've gone back to my Paralegal services, which keeps my mind sharp and give me some traveling. I think it is very important to be using both sides of my brain. I don't want to lose it!!!!

Here's to me starting to post again. I must be feeling good!


Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Social Media

I just really don't get the whole "social media" thing. What I see is a way to not have any social contact, other than one sided, linear, written contact. No voice. No interjections. No laughter. Nothing really personal, as in that nuance of the voice.

I've tried. I joined Facebook. I don't like what it has become. I don't like what I have become. I go there, hoping someone will have commented on something that I've posted. When no one does, I either delete it or go on, feeling like no one really cares. And then I wonder, is that what it is all about. Popularity?

I'm not one who needs hundreds of friends. If you are a friend on FB then usually I do know you. There are a couple of people that I admire and like seeing their posts, but for the most part, each person is someone that I do know.

But somehow the knowing for me is being diluted by having to post on FB what I am thinking. Will I offend? Will I inspire? Will I irritate? Does anyone really care?
And today I realized that that is it. NO one really cares. They care about posting, but this is not the way to show any true caring...

The younger generation may be all involved in their posting. They have experienced a very different world than one that I have matured in. To them this is nothing. But to me, I care. I want to know that I mean something. I take my words seriously. But I am not making any connection.

I'm done with Facebook. I'm tired of it taking my time, looking, waiting, posting, hoping that someone will respond and show me that I count. I think that is what the whole social media thing is about. Public Display showing that you Count! Well, I'm a very private person, always have been. I think and internalize a lot. I'm deep. And I guess I'm too deep to be what I feel is superficial, which is how I read "social media".

I don't have an iphone, ipad, cell service at my house. My cell is in the car, for me when I'm out and about. My convenience and safety net.

When I'm with others, I want to connect. But what I see is everyone else on their phones and pads and they are connecting outside, elsewhere, not being there. I have always taken to heart the statement by Marshall McLuhan "be here now". I live by that idea. Yes, I am still an old hippie, but I don't see a lot wrong with that.

So, if you want to connect with me, it won't be via Facebook. I am here, now, and open to communication. Real communication. No social media hype.


Sunday, July 3, 2011

Happy 4th of July

Sitting here in 92 degree heat, which is VERY warm for us on the Monterey Bay, I'm thinking about what the 4th means to me. I remember as a child the huge fireworks displays that we went to. As a member of our local Rotary Club, my dad was often the one who helped set off those big displays. We would go to family friends and have a b-b-q with the hot dogs and the kids running wild until all hours of the night.

Later it was partying with college friends and trying not to blow ourselves up as we lit whatever explosive device we could lay our hands on. Since I still have all five fingers and toes, I was very successful!

With our children we continued the tradition. Living in San Jose, CA there was a huge community-wide event downtown, with live bands and lots of fireworks. Often we'd take public transportation, anticipating the crowds which were huge. We would also have b-b-q's, again with our friends and their children, who would run wild but not all night! Fun and family and excitement for the day.

Moving to the coast we now have a different experience. No fireworks allowed. Too dangerous. We, though, often ignore the law and, listening to the police scanner, would have our own fireworks in the driveway. The beaches are war zones with out of towners coming over the hill and leaving the beaches trashed with firework debris. Not a pleasant sight, but always cleaned up the next morning by the locals.

We are lucky enough to have the World's Shortest 4th of July Parade here in Aptos. Short in walking length, long in endurance. Hokey. Very small town. We have the politicians, the little league teams, the high school spirit teams, the beach chair brigade, the dogs, the dance teams, the Klingons, and, again this year, the KPIG marching band, decked out in costume (pig noses), back after an absence of several years. It is fun and family oriented, and local and just a blast.

This year I created a couple of patriotic pieces. One for a couple who always hosts a party, usually a day or two before the 4th, and a table runner for me. I thought, why not. I'm usually making things for everyone else, this could be fun.

So, happy 4th to all of you. Keep safe and sane. Light some fireworks for me!


Friday, June 17, 2011

Why I Quilt

Asked recently on an art quilt list to which I belong was the question: What has quilting done for me?

What has quilting given me? LIFE!!!

I've always sewn but could not understand this idea of cutting little pieces of cloth and sewing them together into these strange patterns. My sister, also a quilter, kept pushing me. We'd shop for fabric, which of course I'd buy, and every once in a while I'd buy a magazine and check it out and put it aside.

It was during El NiƱo here at the coast: days and days of constant rain, gloom, and we'd just moved here so I thought we'd made a HUGE mistake with this really crappy weather. I had all the fireplaces (3) burning, all the lights on in the house, and then I came across that darn quilting magazine. I had fabric so I thought, what the heck!

And I haven't stopped since. That was 1997. I have that first quilt in my family room, visible each day to remind me of whence I began, because I'm very far from that first quilt pattern!

I've quilted, been a board member (several times) of our local guild, been in shows, had quilts travel and be shown in Europe, opened and, unfortunately, closed a quilt shop. But I still love it and it does keep me sane. I stitch every day, whether by machine or by hand. I must do it.

And I do both traditional and art pieces. LOVE this and have no plans to ever stop. And it helps my arthritic hands to keep them moving!

Piece On!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Lesson Learned

We don't always get our way. In fact, as we age, we get our way less and less. My last blog was full of optimism about my best friend and her expected recovery. I did not get my way. My sister for life passed away on March 28th, much too soon for her and for the rest of us.

I've taught my kids that life isn't fair. It often isn't. Carole lived a good life. Married to the love of her life, Bob. She took care of the dogs, turtles, yard, house, stray friends, family, anyone in need of a little TLC. She took good care of her body and soul. Her veins just gave out on her. This isn't fair. Why take her when the bad guys get to stay around. Life really isn't fair.

At my age it will be hard making a new best friend. I don't even know if I want to try. With Carole it came so easily. We were so alike in so many respects. And just enough unalike to make it interesting and give us something to talk about. You just can't make up all that history quickly, nor should you.

I miss her daily, hourly. I wonder when my heart will stop hurting.

Life will never be the same. It has been changed forever. I still look forward to what's coming next. It's just so hard that I can't lift up the phone and call her and tell her what it is...

Back to creating. Cutting up the cloth and sewing it back together in another way. Colors and patterns and ideas all meshing together. Each day a step in the right direction.

Carole. I miss you more than I can relate. You are in my heart forever.


Monday, March 21, 2011

What Comes Next

Time flies like arrows, fruit flies like bananas, as the saying goes! Time has flown.

This last week was one of the longest in my life. On Monday we moved my parents into assisted living. This was a long time in coming, planning, cajoling, pleading, and then finally just putting the foot down and saying "it is time". But moving parents from their home to an apartment is an experience like no other. Paring down. Searching for the right place. Filling all the requirements. Packing. Picking. Packing some more. And then the physical moving. But we got it done.

Followed moving day with a seminar on asset protection, given by a local radio talking head. I had such high expectations. I guess I just needed some guidance from someone as to how to protect my parents, and then maybe I'd learn a bit to protect myself. What I found out is do not ever go to these things!!!! Never. It was merely a sales pitch for his firm. I shoulda known better! Actually I did, deep down, but I think I was too tired to listen.

Then daily visits to the "old folks" home, putting things away and making sure they were being taken care of. That all seemed to work and. luckily, continues to work. It really pays to do your homework!

Then, on Thursday, arriving home I was told that my best friend, my sister for life, was in the hospital with a brain aneurysm. What! How could this happen? Fear, terror for her, and a mad dash to the hospital many miles away. And this continues to go on and on.

I don't know what the final outcome will be but I have HOPE. She is strong, brave, stubborn, and strong-willed. Not much gets her down. She will make it through this. But the slow, daily progress, or lack of progress...

Going through this experience brings home the fact that we never know what will become of us. We are not in charge. Some things just happen.

She will survive, after all she is my sole-sister. The thirty some odd years that we've been friends is not for naught. It has been to build the foundation to keep it going. After all, we still have that time to look forward to, the time that she gave me in a gift, that showed us, in much later life, sipping martini's, together, and laughing. Yes, we still haven't done that yet. I have to get her use to martini's first!

Peace on in the world of ever changing outcomes!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Weather or Whether

It is almost obscene. The weather. Here. Like summer while the rest of the country digs out from under snow and ice. I feel blessed on one hand and bad on the other. What have we done to deserve this great weather?

Then I think of the weeks preceding this time of warmth. Rain. Flooding. Bitter cold, at least for us here on the Monterey Bay. I know we live here because we love the beauty of the area. However, I found myself, this morning as I got up, wishing that we were having something other than sunshine and warmth. What am I thinking!?

Is this the gentle introduction to global warming? Will the summer be cold and overcast, more than last year? Will the rest of the country freeze up and crack due to the brittleness of the earth? Or is this just our climate changing as it always has.

And then I remember. This is just the beginning of 2011. The year is new. We should have a lot to look forward to, at least I hope so.

Actually, as I sit here, I remember the bitterness of the shootings in Tucson. I fear for this country that has gotten so harsh with politics and armed crazy people. What type of a future will my adult children have? What type of a world is being created for them?

We grew up differently. The 50's. Rebelling against all that it meant. Vietnam. Our protests. Sex, drugs, and rock and roll. It sure was different. We lived it. We grew within it. However, where are we now?

Facing social security. Living longer, but is it better. Retirement. Who wants that? My heart breaking at the cruelty that is growing up all around us. Where will we end up?

Whether we are involved personally or are just on the side-lines, what we create will effect us all. We must continue to be involved. And aware. Of all that is around us and can effect us.

Tonight the President will give his State of the Union. I still have faith. I look forward to hearing his words and wanting to continue to believe. I look forward to seeing the audience, people crossing party lines to sit with one another. Like a group of people rather than two opposing forces. People working together. I can only hope.

So here I am. Hoping for moving forward. And yes, even hoping for a little rain sometime in the near future...