January 20, 2017

More (overdue) stitches

Updated 1/22/2017
It's catch-up time as shortly after I posted my progress in a Year of Stitches, I got too sick to stitch
Was it a bad pizza? Was it the flu? Who knows. I put the bed on the piece because I won't stitch the more appropriate toilet.

Next came three black hearts as I struggled with three deaths. First, my husband came home to say a co-worker had been killed. Then we learned a relative of his died. The final blow was learning that a close friend of my brothers had died.

 I decided to stitch a bare tree next. And then decided to do more with the hearts. I added a traffic construction cone next to one heart for my husband's co-worker.

I added an M for Maurer so I would remember always the heart was for a family member of my husband.

Next to the heart for the "Good One" I put a flower,  small tribute to Jimmy Buffet.  For years, I associated a grownup Jimmy with Jimmy -- he loved to party, have a good time and seemed to enjoy Buffet. 

The younger Jimmy? He was part of my brothers' group that was always hanging around. Always! His death surprised me but I was not surprised that each of my siblings wanted me to know he had died. 

What is amazing is how many in my siblings' childhood neighborhood have remained good friends through the years.

I say their neighborhood even though I lived there too. I  was the eldest, with different interests and responsibilities. One told me recently she saw me as "the big kid who was doing big kid things." Yeah, big kid things like the first with a job, the first with a car and the first to leave to go to college.

Many of them came to my mother's service last fall  even though she had moved away more then 40 years earlier. Many shared "remember when" experiences my poor mother lived through - unknowingly hiding a  runaway, her children using windows as midnight escape hatches to catch up with friends, coming home to find "too sick for school" kids were joined by friends ...  

 Jimmy kept reminding me to think of him as the "good one." He was not the one who borrowed my car. He was not the one who hid in our basement for days. He was not the one .. you get the drift.

I thought Jimmy was always at our house in Livonia. But I just learned my youngest brother met him on their first day of kindergarten. I am sure I would have learned more about Jimmy at his service. Alas, this flu thing continued so I missed out again. Sure going to miss that kid -- the one with a very good smile and a life filled with love.

January 17, 2017

Carolina Lily leading me to baby's room

Imagine a baby's joy while staring up at a mobile of Caroline Lilies. Or should I turn the wildflower - the latest topic for Project Quilting - into bright hot air balloons to float over a granddaughter's chair? 

 How pretty the flowers would look in a variety of orange fabrics! Some flowers could come from translucent sheers, some shiny silks, some heavy cottons. 

How pretty if the flowers were of glass! Could you fuse oranges into 6 petals shaped in the kiln? Or would you need to blow the glass?

 Wait. What was the plastic stuff we used way back when to make flowers. You shaped wire and then dipped it and waited for it to dry. Look, I found a box from 1972 on ebay, But buying would ignore my "use the stash so you don't need to move it" rule.. 

 Ah, but back to the real world and the current Project Quilting challenge: 7 days to create and FINISH a Carolina Lily inspired project that has at least one of these three things: 

  • Three layers stitched or 
  •  Patchwork or
  •  Appliqué.
Though I really prefer these three suggestions from Kim Lapacek that we make something that:

  • makes you happy, 
  •  expands your skills, or 
  • brings joy to your life
What to do, what to do, what to do.

 Do I make a 3-D Carolina Lily using the stabilizer I have wanted to try? Or combine wire and pieced fabric into a standalone flower? Or finally tackle the fabric bowl on my wish list? Do I make a table runner that features a field of lilies made by fusing bits of oranges? Or do I embroider the flowers? What can I do with fewer then five days left and a very uncooperative body? Do I even own orange fabric? Or orange paint? Or orange dye? An orange doily?

 Back to bed. Dream some more