Thursday, April 26, 2018

Too Fast

This month is going by too fast. One expected even and one not expected and I've been thrown off the creative track. It's very difficult getting back on again. I can't seem to wrap my head around anything heavily involved. Right now I'm having a lot of fun just knitting dish cloths. That isn't helping out my wallet but I can do it and not think about anything else. I've always wanted to learn the seed stitch and now I know how to do it.

I finally found a quilt shop that's close to me. It's been in operation for six years and the owner is very nice. I went through a very old telephone book. Remember those? Yellow Pages? Yeah... half the shops were closed due to lack of business or the owners aging out with no one to take over. I would have to plan a day trip to visit the next closest shops. Thank goodness spring has sprung. Or has it? I started a fire in the fireplace last night. It got chilly again.

I was able to get some fabric for doll bodies and a pretty little print for some upcoming primitive dolls. Stay tuned.

Saturday, April 21, 2018

I Did It!

I've been planning to make new bedroom curtains for several months now and finally did it. Because the planet has shifted positions and the moonlight is coming into the window at full force. Even if it's not a full moon. Very simple, used the previous curtain as a pattern, took two hours while listening to The Pointer Sisters (yes, old school), and viola! Curtains. Checked off the list. I also finished my second dish cloth and will start the third today. I'll try a new knit stitch.

On to the next thing.

Friday, April 20, 2018

Is it April?

I know things happen. It's called life. It's how you bob and weave, roll with the punches, take a dive into something new and fall into a pile of very large and very soft cotton balls or slam into a concrete slab. You get where I'm coming from. No matter what plans you have, or goals, or deals with psychic bumble bees, there is a little imp or pixie or freaking faerie waiting in the shadows to throw things at you. Anything from the size of pebbles to... I don't know... boulders.

I thought that this was going to be a decent month. Ha, ha, haaaaa. Yeah. I have to remind myself to look at the nice and good things that have happened and not have the weird, 'you've got to be kidding me' stuff take over my thoughts.

Right now I am waiting for the Bug Guy to get here. His window is 9 AM to 11 AM. Because he's new on the route, he probably won't get here until 10:45. I won't be able to go work in the dungeon because I won't be able to hear the doorbell. So what's a gal to do? I searched high and low for some fabric to make some new bedroom curtains. Nothing complicated, just something to keep the extra light out. Street light, moonlight. That sort of thing. The piece I was looking for took about ten minutes to find. It was pretty. But would work better as part of my table cover for my next show. Drats! I continued looking. Found something nice but not enough yardage, then something nice but would look better as aprons. This was not going well and I was tearing up things I'd already straightened. I finally found something that will work. The stripes may not go in the direction I think they should but no one but me will see the bloody curtains. Today, I will make curtains. If it's the only creative thing I do.

April has been screwy. One big fool joke. Where the heck is spring? We got up to 60 degrees early on and then snow, rain, high winds, snow, icy mix, then a melt, and more snow. Today it's supposed to be in the 50s. Of course I feel sorry for all the migrating birds right now. I'm sure they are way confused and possibly starving. The neighborhood heron and egret have returned. The birdsong has changed. And a herd of six deer ran through the yard. Please, no more snow. Not only has it screwed things up for the birds, it's screwed things up for me. I'm off my days again. One week I thought it was Friday for the whole week. This week I thought yesterday was Friday. What do I wear? I know about layers but that's getting old. I've had a doll show, a funeral, and I've been given more responsibility at the other job. I'm still trying to wrap my head around that one. I was exhausted after the funeral. I had three days off from the other job. Sort of. I did laundry, caught up on paperwork, paid bills, cleaned my bathroom, vacuumed the whole house. Then I sat and read. That's it. Part of my brain was yelling at me that I should be doing something. But I needed that time to regroup.

Regroup. I was working on new dolls for the show but the design wasn't sitting right with me. Yes, I messed up some fabric (I don't have a lot of it for skin tones), and stuffing, and time. I began the usual of beating myself up but the dolls weren't working. So this morning, I started to take them apart and unstuff them. Along with wash fabric for the curtains.

Breathe. I will unstuff while waiting for Mr. Bug Man. Then to the other job. I will make curtains today. See ya!

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Toledo Doll and Bear Show

I did it! I survived my first venture back into doll shows after about eight years. I'd done doll shows many years ago and stopped. Now I hope I'm back. At least for some of them. It was a nice show. A true doll show with antique, reproduction antique dolls and bears. There were also some antique miniatures and dollhouses, and two reborn repaint doll artists. A few vendors were selling fabric for fancy doll clothes. Just about everyone was nice. I sold my first piece before the show started. I didn't sell a lot but I made some new friends who gave me lots of advice on other shows, suppliers, and where to get information on doll related things. There were two teddy bear artists, an animal artist, and me, the only doll artist who made their own work.

I got such a good response with my work. Quite a few were happy that I was there because I was different. I had pieces for everyone. Normal to Halloween! People were asking if I was going to come back next year because they knew someone who liked Halloween or cloth dolls. One lady, who is with a cloth dollmaking club, is trying to get their own show together and asked if I would like to be a vendor. I gave her my info. She really liked my dolls. Someone commented on how varied they were. I told them that I had to do different things or my head would explode. Then she said, I guess you have to find your style. I told her that I have a style, that if you look close enough, that all of these dolls were made by one person. Whether its' in my paint job, my color palette, how I make my outfits, you can see it.  And I am good, working on being better.

I guess I really missed being a part of the doll show circuit. I guess I'm back and I'm looking forward to the next show.

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

A Tribute

No one said life would be dull. Or how many things would get thrown at you while you're trying to find your place in the world. Just when I thought things had settled down just a bit, again, a canon ball got hurled through one of my sails. I was awakened early this morning by a phone call from my cousin. Her mother had just passed away. I couldn't make out the story because I was struggling with remaining cobwebs of a dream and she was crying. At first I didn't cry because I knew my aunt was no longer in pain. That she was tired and she finally made her exit. I hung up because my cousin's brother had arrived, wherever they were. And then I started to cry.

My Aunt Beverly wasn't my favorite aunt. But in our own little way we had some special moments. I was one of her flower girls when she remarried many moons ago. I loved her house and the smell of it. I could make her laugh with my stories. She liked, appreciated, and encouraged my art endeavors. I could talk to her about many things and she listened. We would go on walks to the neighborhood store and get the best corned beef sandwiches. When I was younger she would pay me to drive her places. She made the best macaroni and cheese. From scratch, what some are now calling custard style. You know how when you have a get-together and people bring a dish? You wanted Bev to bring the mac 'n cheese.

Aunt Beverly was a talker. Non-stop. She would have been a great hostage negotiator because she would just talk the individual down. Into submission. Talking about them and why they're doing what they're doing, then talking about her odd family, then the weather, and then the state of the world. Not being able to get a word in, they would pay the cops to take them away. As a child I saw her in action, there was no winning an argument with her. She'd wear you down and you'd just throw your hands up and walk away. And she did that by never really raising her voice. She was firm and steady, but not loud. Then I'd always see a smile or a smirk on her face after the disagreement, she'd roll her eyes and be on to the next thing. Talent, sheer talent.

We all thought Aunt Beverly would outlast us all even though she had smoked a lot. Giving it up years ago. She had tuberculosis as a child, later having a lung removed; two marriages and two divorces; two children and two grandchildren; survived breast cancer, she suffered a heart attack and two strokes. The last stroke was the one that wore her tiny body out. I was going to stay with her for a few days out of the week this spring but now that won't happen. I am glad she was able to stay in her home until the end.

Aunt Beverly was my last living aunt on my mother's side. One of a set of twins, her twin Beryl was my third favorite aunt; out of a total of 14 children. My mom's sisters were amazing to me. One, Ruth, passed before I was born so I didn't get a chance to meet her. But the ones who were in my life were funny, caring, hardworking, adventurous, talented, and a little bit left and right of center. They were wonderfully unique. I am so honored to have had them in my life. Mildred, Bernice, Bobbie, Margaret, Ozetta, and Beryl.

Aunt Beverly is with them now and Granny. Talking and laughing and drinking. I know she has her beer in one hand and a cigarette in the other. Aunt Bev, I will miss you and always remember you.


Monday, April 2, 2018

Hello April

I got up yesterday morning and was shocked to see white stuff on the ground and little fluffy white things floating around. After a lot of rain and gusty winds the previous day. All day. Yes, Old Man Winter is still hanging around. Glad the snow didn't stick but it's the nightmare of it all. But spring is coming, a little late but it's coming. At 7 P.M. it's still light out. Birdsong has changed and green things are starting to grow.


I didn't post a lot last month. Eegads! I made my one year anniversary on being back in Michigan. Okay... so now what? Good question and I'm working on some answers. Still figuring me out, I love being a work in progress. And starting a new chapter in The Book of Wendy. So here we go.
My front page for April in my bullet journal.

Got my Christmas gifts started too. I'd always wanted to get them started in February but March is okay. I love knitted cotton dishcloths. 

And here are some witches I'm working on. I had to go out and buy a brand new paint brush to paint their stockings.

It's Been Awhile

I've just began to get creative again. All through the lockdown, my creativity has been haphazard, discombobulated, ship shod, and non-e...