Tuesday, February 28, 2006

rain delay

We got the downpour as predicted. Lot of puddling going on! But I also haven't got to the post office yet. (I do not like to drive in the rain more than I have to...)So our miniswap package is sitting waiting. The sun is shining right now but word is another system is on its way. Don't worry - the goodies will be on their way too!


Update: Looks like the storm has passed. I am always awed by the blue of the sky here after a good rain. So fresh... The quality of light is lovely.

Must photograph miniswap and get to the postoffice while the sun shines!!

after the rain

Monday, February 27, 2006

splish splash

the new tub

finally. after over a month of showers and bathing in the kitchen sink. my kids are clean again! the bath was installed over the weekend. and while the room is without lighting, running water, and proper walls for that matter,(thanks to papa for hauling all those buckets!), the two bugs still had a bath. and loved it. could barely get them out of it...


Thursday, February 23, 2006

Corners of Our Home 4

hallway corner.right

While not really a corner - there are a lot of corners present. When D and I married he understood that I came with a lot of books. A lot. This is just one of the many bookcases he has built into the house to accommodate them. I am not fond of clutter (though find it everywhere lately!) but do love the look of full bookshelves. Next to it is our little gallery. Curated by the bugs.

hallway corner.left

See more corners here.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

dancing Maria

Had a quiet but productive weekend. Made it extra long with taking yesterday off too. We toured a charter school (a kindergarten possibility) that really impressed us, and in the afternoon I took the big bug to Nanny McPhee (really darling - and so many great knitted sweaters / vests!). I always worry about taking her to the movies. (She is 4 1/2 and sitting through it isn't the problem - but the loud sounds and her sensitivity to "scary" situations are.) This was only our second go at it and the PG rating put me off. But she insisted she wanted to see it - and really seemed to enjoy it. Especially all the "naughty" behaviour of the children.

We also had a birthday to attend on Sunday for our little neighbor S who turned 3. The big bug really wanted me to "make something!" and had been hounding me to try a cat from Denyse Schmidt Quilts. She carefully chose some fabric from our limited stash then helped me piece it together. She was in charge of putting her foot down on the pedal as we sewed her together. On completion she named her "Maria" (as in the Nutcracker) and decided she needed a tutu. Then S needed a matching tutu. The result was this

maria and tutu

which the big bug had no trouble modeling before we wrapped it up...

You can see more photos of Maria here.

Now to finish up our Mini Swap...

Friday, February 17, 2006


as usual today, just a little sadder.
It is four years since my dad died unexpectedly.
I miss him.




Have patience with everything unresolved in your heart
and try to love the questions themselves ...
Don't search for the answers,
which could not be given to you now,
because you would not be able to live them.
And the point is, to live everything.
Live the questions now.
Perhaps then, someday far in the future,
you will gradually, without even noticing it,
live your way into the answer.
- rainer maria rilke

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Corners of Our Home 3

K's corner

This is what the little bug is looking at when she falls asleep at night. This is what the little bug first sees when she wakes in the morning. The painting is from D's time at art school. Painted from a stuffed chicken as a model. The mobile was a gift from a dear friend who found it at the Portland Saturday Market. The little bug loves to make all the noises of the animals flying above her as she drifts off. We moved her into a "big girl bed" quite early. She was just 16 months old. The crib was no longer for her. She shares a room with her big sister and wanted a bed just the same. She actually sleeps better in it than she ever did in the crib. And now can awake in the morning, pad over to my bedside and awaken me with kisses.

See more corners here.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Self-Portrait Tuesday - All of Me #2

all of me

I am a mom, wife, lover, daughter, sister, aunt, cook, gardener, artist, writer, clown, nurse, tea-drinker, doctor, niece, decorator, collector, designer, comic, tear-wiper, nose-blower, giggler, booboo-kisser, granddaughter, storybook-reader, beginning knitter, muse, seamstress, arguer, driver, hand-holder, actress, errand-runner, assistant, listener, bad dancer, too-much-chocolate-consumer, procrastinator, talker, friend. All of me.

More Self-Portraits here.

happy heart day

valentines 06

Monday, February 13, 2006



Had a lovely weekend in Big Bear. A little too short. And a little too hectic. But the big bug loved loved loved tubing down the hill with her dad. Laughing in that free way that brings tears to my eyes.

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Corners of Our Home 2

corner #2

corner #2

This is normally the quiet corner of our house. It is the seat my mom seems to prefer when she comes to visit. Lots of stories read here. Trying to get lots of knitting done here - though a story on a lap takes precedent. This house is so much about light. Again, it is the light of this corner, especially in the morning, that I love.

And the chair. I love this chair. It came to us from my in-laws. As did so much of our furniture and furnishings. D's parents had taste. It is a Milo Baughman design. The matching ottoman is long gone. Victim to too much rough-housing on the part of my husband and his brothers. We reupholstered it after rescuing it, the original vinyl torn, with this wonderful fabric. So soft - in color and touch. It is a comfortable spot.

There is a birds nest just outside this window. In the tight space between the roof and the chimney. Every year since we moved in, a family of birds has called this home. Every year there are new babies. Every year we watch to see them exit the nest and take their first careful sojourns around our backyard. I was worried that recent roofing and painting would disturb them, but they are still there. And spring is around the corner...

See more corners here.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006


We had a flood in the studio at work, and as I sorted through some painting rags in a box I came across this dress. The label reads "Hawaiian Paradise" and I hope to reinvent it as a skirt. I love the fabric. It doesn't seem terribly "Hawaiian" to me - or is there something I don't know?

Hawaiian Paradise

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Self-Portrait Tuesday - All of Me #1

ambient lightraking light

One of the first things I was taught while studying for my degree in Art Conservation was that raking light showed all the imperfections. A painting could look perfect in carefully set-up lighting, but once you put a raking light across the surface the cracks, creases, past damages, past corrections, the effects of time, would often come, well, to light.

I am not completely comfortable with the whole idea of aging - with the effects of time. I sometimes can't believe I am 35. Then I look back at what I have experienced. Where I have been. At my husband. At my two amazing, beautiful daughters, who themselves are growing older. I have done all this. It has taken time.

More Self-Portraits here.

Monday, February 06, 2006


A quiet weekend passed by too quickly once again. We had grand plans of preparations for our bathtub which is to arrive tomorrow and set us on our way from this
bathroom redo
to this

Instead, we spent Saturday thrifting (or trying to) while the little bug and I battled head colds. We did come away with a raincoat for the big bug which she loves.

Sunday morning it was hard to get out of bed, and when we did we puttered around doing some yard work while D finished the new blue door for the bathroom and started working on the leaking return line for the pool. It really is always something with this house...

Can't wait to see the new tub. All the fixtures too. It really will be a transformation, and testament to D's talent and hard work.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Corners of our Home

Kitchen corner

This is my first post relating to Amanda's wonderful Corners of My Home pool on Flickr.

This is probably the busiest corner in our house. And rarely does it look this quiet - or tidy! The corner bench was one of the first things Papa built for the house when we moved in. Originally there was a door to the right, and between it and the window were the hook-ups for a washer and drier. The narrow galley kitchen had nowhere to sit - a priority in a kitchen for me, as it seems to be the spot where all my friends and family end up when they visit. We converted an unused storage area into a laundry room, removed the door (which adjoins a door onto the outdoor breezeway anyway, so was a bit redundant) and inserted this. It is wonderful. All storage drawers underneath full of art supplies and cookie cutters! It is where we eat almost every meal. It is where most activities take place. It is where games are played and stories told. In the morning it receives a perfect sunbeam. We still have a little work to do on it. The wiring for the light fixture needs to be redone (hidden) and the clock moved. And it is in the works this spring to re-plant the yard, including doing something outside this window so there is more to look at than fence.

See more corners here.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Makes you think...

From this article in the most recent edition of London's Sunday Times:

So why are children now doing so badly? Possible explanations are numerous. Youngsters don’t get outside for hands-on play in mud, sand and water — and sandpits and water tables have been squeezed out in many primary schools by a relentless drilling of the three Rs and cramming 11- year-olds for the national tests.

“By stressing the basics — reading and writing — and testing like crazy you reduce the level of cognitive stimulation. Children have the facts but they are not thinking very well,” says Adey. “And they are not getting hands-on physical experience of the way materials behave.”

Ginsburg says parents too can do their bit. “When did children stop playing with mud, plasticine and Meccano and start playing with Xboxes and computer games?” she asks. Parents should switch off the television and “sit children around the dinner table to debate issues such as ‘What should we have done about the whale in the Thames?’ ” says Adey.

If these experts are right — and our children are losing the ability to think, the burning question is: what is the value of what they are being taught in primary school and of all those test results that every year rise to new heights?...

Not so different than this side of the pond is it?