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Caught up in the Christmas decorating spirit

Needing a Christmas tree, my friend, BK created one. BK and I work well together,though our tastes are very different. She claims that she is too left brained to be creative. It’s not true, as evidenced by the Christmas tree she made. We went shopping and looked at the available artificial trees,but none of them really fit the bill. I kept saying you need something tall and skinny to fill that space and pushed forward my idea of a two dimensional tree using swags. “I have some chicken wire, maybe we can use that?” BK mused. Enthusiastically, I agreed, I pictured an advant-garde  tree adorned with a few ribbons and large sparkly balls. BK had other ideas. She bought garland, white LED lights, and Christmas balls in gold and silver. She ended up with was a narrow eight foot tree  tastefully adorned with organdy bows and clusters of ornaments. It looks like an expensive boutique designer tree. Not at all ...

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landscape escape

Trying something new at my art class, I painted a triptych, not the  gorgeous religious ones you find in Russian and Greek Orthodox churches like the example on the left. Though the more I look at the more I want to do something like that. Inspiration is everywhere, you just have to look, don’t you? Back to the subject at hand. I started with this photograph that I took of el Parque Arquelógico de Pumapungo, Cuenca.  It’s a little busy so with Greenwood’s guidance, I simplified it and stretched it out. Here are my three paintings, first as individual separate renderings and last as a triptych.                

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A new fork in the road

Filled with enthusiasm from attending Malcom Massey’s talk on e-publishing, I mentally went over the possibilities. I could self publish a book! What kind of book? My Griselda stories? a cookbook? The best blog posts from this blog? A novel? Then I thought about painting, fixing our house, crafts and all the other things that I do. So the book idea goes on the back burner, it’s not time to go down that road yet.

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Steve stole my title

11.11.11 was going to be my post title until I read Steve Cotton’s post today on mexpatriot-in the key of steve, not that I couldn’t just use the title too.Titles cannot be copyrighted. Of course, the truth is that he beat me to the title,he didn’t steal it, unless he is prescient. 11.11.11 is a powerful date for numerologists, gamblers and other people who see magic in dates and mathematics. I like the idea of magic, I have been known to consult tarot cards and read my horoscope on occasion. An astrologer did my natal chart once, but I gave him the wrong birth hour.What can I say? I’m lucky that I remember the date of my birth let alone the hour.Knowing that I was unclear he gave me two options,one based on what I thought was my birth hour, and one on what actually was my birth hour. Using the correct time,he was spot on. Using what I remembered ...

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Crazy idea? Just my style.

Quilting is not my thing. The idea of quilting is intriguing but the reality of it is that I don’t have the patience, precision nor persistence to plan and pull it off. Quilting started as a way to save money, piecing scraps together to make new blankets and has evolved into an art form. It’s all gotten rather expensive,in my opinion. The fabrics aren’t cheap by any means, but if you’re going to put that much energy into something, you want it to last.  However, there is one type of quilt that does call out to me, the crazy quilt. I have bits and pieces of crochet, embroidered handkerchiefs and blouses and other bits and pieces. I am thinking of making a quilt out of all those things. Not a big one, just a small one.  It’s another way to whittle down my fabric stash.Even though the turbans and pantaloons took up quite a bit. There is still more in ...

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Shrug is not always a verb

Remember the $10 ( that’s about seventy-five cents those of you still thinking in dollars) tank tops that I bought for Tuafor?  Adapting the directions that I found on Cut out and Keep, I made a shrug for Tuafor. One of my favorite things about this shrug is that I incorporated a pair of lace sleeves that I saved from one of my tops.While I was removing the lace trim on a nylon top that had wasn’t worth saving I decided to save the sleeves too. I’ve been trying to temper this tendency of mine to hoard scraps. Saving lace trim didn’t seem too outrageous but I felt a little guilty about the sleeves. They sat on the end table for a few days while I argued with myself about keeping them. While hacking apart the tank top, inspiration struck! The shrug needed sleeves, the brown looked good next to the burgundy tank top, it all came together with the ...

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slow as molasses

I don’t know what is slower, our internet connection, my operating system (windows) or my little laptop (acer). I have a new faster better laptop, but this one fits better on my lap. Watching The Big Bang Theory I was struck by how much technology I don’t use. Sheldon was trying to contact Amy. He said he IM’d her, tweeted her, emailed her and some other stuff that I didn’t catch. I email and blog that’s about it for me. I have a facebook account with 10 friends, 8 of which are family members. I never update my status because it doesn’t make sense to me. I do upload the occasional photo, but mostly I use it to see photos of my grandchildren. Oh, I have skype. I like skype, it gives me the illusion that my kids might call me. Though I have learned that phones calls only go out of Mexico very seldom into Mexico. Admittedly, my comadre ...

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Costume revealed

Breaking with my longstanding tradition of stitching on costumes until the very last second, I finished my costume a few days ago. There is a sizable dent in my fabric stash, some of it went into a sultan costume for BK’s husband. I cut out the vest, but she decorated it and made his pantaloons. Our turbans were created for the event by skillful tying.The sultan sat patiently while BK stitched a large jewel to his recently wrapped headdress. BK and I gilded the lily by adding more bangles and bracelets to our outfits.The sultan got a sash and a sword. Said sword was featured in a dance that I performed after drinking two glasses of wine. I am sure that there are photos out there of that! BK had an Indian Shalwar Kameeze with a matching shawl that she borrowed the pantaloons from. The shawl was reincarnated as a popper and veil. Her top is a purchased coin decorated ...

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Not Miss Muffet

 Here is my Duct Tape Double wearing the witch mask and costume. She is just waiting for her borrowed hat to complete the look. I made her arms and a head. The white eyed look didn’t do it for me so I reached through the blank eye sockets and drew some eyeballs. I must of gotten the angle just right because they seem to track you as you walk back and forth in front of The spider is pretty big, I was going to make several but he took up all my stuffing. I had a bag of new fiberfill and three old pillows so I expected to be able to make several spiders.  It’s been quite awhile since I last made any stuffed toys. The eyes gave me fits. I made two little eyes on the side of the head but they didn’t seem correct. Finally, I  looked up spider eyes. Turns out that there is a wide variation ...

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