Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Pretty Things

Here is a pretty view of our flowering cherry tree and Service berry tree. I'm glad I took this a couple of days ago, as yesterday a cold front moved in and the wind is blowing the blossom petals off today.

Last week Anna had her orchestra concert at the school. Sorry it is a little shaky, I was just using my pocket camera's video mode and didn't have a tripod. This is just one of the songs they did. You might recognize it.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Gardening weekend

We had some really nice weather this weekend. Too bad we couldn't enjoy it with a bike ride. Instead we worked in the yard for most of the weekend. Frank fixed the sprinkler part that was broken. I put in new plants and new drippers to go with them and to find the others and stake them down. Frank also built a couple of garden boxes from some old redwood we got free from Craigslist (unfortunately there wasn't enough to do more boxes). We put them in place and filled them with soil that I had purchased from Home Depot. The yard is looking nice today.

Friday, April 25, 2008


I just finished reading a book on Freidrich Hundertwasser (he changed his name quite a bit and goes by several names). Hundertwasser in german means hundred water. He gave himself this name. His birth name was Stowasser. I had heard of the name but never knew much about him. He was born in 1928 and lived in Vienna (and many other places throughout his life) and died in 2000. I really like his works. He sounded like a very interesting guy. He really cared about the environment and not much about money. These are some images I found on the internet.

Later in his career he was well known enough to be able to design some buildings. The one above is the KunsthausWien in Vienna.  He didn't believe in the straight line, so you don't see many on his buildings.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Happy Earth Day!

What did I do today? We drove to school. What? I know, I know. Anna was somewhat disgusted we were driving. I told her I was going to a new class at the Y and I didn't want to be the new person coming in late. She said I could have rode my bike (after I walked her to school, which is what I do to go to the museum). I said I would do it next time.

I told her I was not too worried about it because we walk to school most of the year, whereas a few people will be walking today only because it is earth day. Why not do it every day? Maybe what we need is Earth Year.

What else did I do today? I made this little piece. It is about 5-1/2" square. I used the leaf stamp I carved the other day and printed it on different scraps of fabric. Everything for this piece was either found, reused or something I already had on hand.

This is actually the second piece I did. The first piece you cannot see as I sent it off for the Go Green challenge for Quilting Arts magazine. Maybe if I'm lucky, you will see it in a magazine. I hope to do a whole series of these. The background is tissue from a clothes pattern (I used for Anna once). I stamped and did some rubbing on it. I fused one layer to a piece of one of Frank's old shirts (that he was going to donate). Then I laid down some dried leaves and fused another layer of tissue on top of that. The fabric leaves are appliqued on and then hand stitched in the middle. The green circles are old yarn buttons which I have no idea where I got them. The other weird green thing is half of a frog(?) clasp. I'm hoping to sew some twigs on as the border but I have to coat them with something first.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Preview and Play

Here I started this piece last week. It is not finished yet. I'm doing some hand stitching now and will show you when I'm finished.

Last night I sat down to carve a leaf stamp for an idea I had for another piece. You can see it here on the right. I couldn't stop at just one. I turned the stamp over and carved the back side as well. Same leaf shape, but different design. Then I did another one with both sides.

Then I kept playing and thought to myself, "What if I did both sides with some pre-planned design in mind that I could stamp on top of itself?" I tried a couple of those. I particularly like the one below.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Pay It Forward

This is a lovely little piece I received from Lisa Call (the photo doesn't do it justice). You can go to her website and there is a link to her blog. Somewhere on her blog she has a better picture of this. Why did she send me this? Because she was participating in a Pay It Forward meme. I was one of three people who left a comment and promised to continue to Pay It Forward.

What does that mean for you? Here is the official wording:

I will send a handmade gift to the first 3 people who leave a comment on my blog requesting to join this PIF exchange. I don’t know what that gift will be yet and you may not receive it tomorrow or next week, but you will receive it within 365 days, that is my promise! The only thing you have to do in return is pay it forward by making the same promise on your blog.

When you leave your comment, please also do one of two things: leave your post address or e-mail it to me.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Wonderful Weather

We finally had really nice weather for this weekend. It was around 70 on Saturday and around 75 today (with some wind). Saturday I went to a yoga workshop and spent some time doing yard work. I only made a dent in the overwhelming amount there is to do. Last night Frank and I watched the movie, La Vie En Rose. I highly recommend it. It was very good.

Today was the last day of skiing at Bogus Basin. Frank went skiing while Anna and I went to the grocery store. We also made some Marbled Chocolate-Banana bread.

Anna got a new push scooter for her birthday as she was getting too big for her other one (and she preferred mine). I got one for Frank, too. So now we can all scooter together. Anna spent time this weekend breaking in the new scooter and having a friend over to play today (making water balloons was the main activity).

After Frank came back from skiing, I went on a bike ride. It seemed everyone had the spring spirit. There were so many people out doing things today. Quarry view park was busy as I rode through. Lots of people were out enjoying the greenbelt. Some crazy people were trying to swim in the river, which feels freezing even in 90 degree weather. Several girls were out in bikinis in Julia Davis park. Everybody has been waiting for this.

I only rode 6.8 miles as I am very much out of shape. The last mile is up the big hill and I'm happy to say I made it up, even against the wind. It's the first time since I've been sick. However, Frank tells me Tuesday is suppose to be in the 40's and we might even get some snow at night. I guess I won't take off the flannel sheets yet.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Anna is 11!

Happy Birthday to my sweetie! Today is her official birthday. She woke up to a birthday surprise - snow!

Since Frank is in L.A. on business today, we were going to have Anna open her family presents tomorrow when he is back. But she begged and pleaded with me today, so I let her open a couple today (it's not her fault Frank is on a business trip). But the rest will have to wait until tomorrow.

Monday, April 7, 2008

Klimt for Kids

Here is the project I did with Anna's class last week. I talked about the artist Gustav Klimt and showed them pictures of his portraits with lots of stylized patterns. I had printed out their school portraits and they used those, created background patterns and clothes patterns. The first picture is the example I did to show the kids. The second one is one that one of the girls did.

Some Art and Labels

I've managed to eek out one small work lately. Here is the first version (the edges are cut off some). It didn't come out exactly how I was thinking. I didn't really plan the construction and just started sewing parts together. I'm planning to try more versions in different ways. The background fabric is an old linen/cotton shirt I had that I tea dyed. The binding has two different colors and was not a good experiment.

Over Hills and Dales

I've been going back and putting labels on my old posts so that things will be easier to find. If you just want to see pictures of Anna, you can go to the sidebar and see the Anna labeled posts. I haven't gotten them all labeled yet.

Sunday, April 6, 2008

Anna's party

Even though Anna's birthday isn't until Wednesday, we had her party on Saturday. We decided to have a crafts and make your own ice cream sundae party. Several of Anna's friends don't like cake, so we didn't make one.

Since I'm not a soccer mom, I did not realize that Saturday was the first day for spring soccer games. Anna only invited five people. One couldn't come, one had to come late because of a soccer game and one had to leave early because of a soccer game. It was a small affair but they all had a great time.

We didn't have time for all the crafts we had planned. After every one was gone, Frank, Anna and I did the last one which was making people out of wood blocks.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Meet Clair

This is Anna's new little hamster. She is a dwarf blueberry hamster. She has a good disposition and doesn't seem to mind being picked up. But she is so fast that you can't hold her more than a second or two because she jumps out so fast. She fits in the palm of our hand and we can cup the other hand over her. I should have put a dime or quarter next to her so you could get an idea of how small she is. It was hard enough to get a picture because she zips around like a ball in a pinball machine.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Auction Piece

This is the finished piece of all the block prints from the kids in Anna's class. I'm taking it to school tomorrow to show them. It will be in the silent auction next Friday night for the school's annual fund raiser. I think it turned out wonderfully but I doubt it will get many bids as it isn't bright, cute or have pictures of the kids on it. We'll see.