We're back after nearly ten days in New Jersey. Many things are calling me today such as laundry and food shopping and plowing through the mountain of mail, but I did want to share the first gladiola from my garden which welcomed us last night when we returned.
When we make a trip,I always pack a project (or two or three) to work on. While I'll post more about our trip in the future, I can report today that quilting is now complete on the "Mérida Remix" quilt and I've finished knitting the pink scarf I've been carrying around for ages!
I've also gotten three bunches of grapes appliquéd on the Brownie quilt and I'm working on the embroidery for the Soul Food apron. Another project I've been carrying around a while is a Christmas cross stitch project for my literary characters tree in the library at school.
This is my Dad, Daniel C. Warner, about 1942. He's a veteran of World War II and will celebrate his 90th birthday in December. Besides teaching me to ride a two-wheeled bike, my Dad played catch with me, taught me how to use tools and do household repairs, explained how things worked, showed me how to read a map. He also taught me to make a bed the Army way! This was pretty revolutionary back in the 1950's before women's lib. I always believed I could do or be anything I wanted because of my Dad. Happy, happy Father's Day to you, dear Dad.
“Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince, and dinner like a pauper”Adelle Davis
My husband has a great deal of fun at my expense when it comes to breakfast. Taking Adelle Davis' advice to heart, I am a very enthusiastic breakfast eater. When I'm having my breakfast, Jim will come in and ask if I'm having my perfect, balanced breakfast. He tells me my breakfast looks like it could be a picture in a health textbook. Before he met me, he didn't eat breakfast. I take credit for his now eating a bowl of cereal at the very least.
Since my summer vacation just started, I had plenty of time to make my favorite breakfast on Wednesday, or Egg Day, as it is known around our house. I started with half a ruby red grapefruit with Splenda brown sugar.
This is my very excellent egg poacher and brown eggs from the Farmers Market.
“I went to a cafe that advertised breakfast anytime, so I ordered French Toast during the Rennaisance.”Stephen Wright
I love toast made in the oven with ciabatta or bagette. And yes, I like real butter. Properly brewed English tea is also a must and warranted its own post here.
"We do not stop until night-fall". "What about breakfast?" " You've already had it." " We've had one breakfast yes,but what about SECOND breakfasts?" - A dialogue between Aragorn and Pippin. — J.R.R. Tolkien (The Fellowship of the Ring)
One of Anna's good friends just had a baby boy named Finn so I'm making a new baby quilt. Finn's nursery has a nautical theme and is done in blue and yellow so here's the pull from my stripe stash. I did a series of tutorials on making this quilt. You can check the rest of them out here, here, here, here, and here. It's a Kaffe Fassett design that I've tweaked a bit.
Here's the first cluster of grapes along with an embroidered tendril. The leaves will have embroidered veins eventually, too. I decided I needed to appliqué the next leaf down before I did the second grape cluster because of the spacing.
I've also picked some quotes from several of Palmer Cox's Brownie stories to write in the four areas where the hands are appliquéd. Here's one from "The Brownies and the Railroad":
"We 're here to aid the human kind, To note the want, to ease the mind, The more we serve, believe me still, The better we our mission fill."
My parents were married 62 years ago today. Happy anniversary to two wonderful people who are also great parents.
It's all I have to bring to-day by Emily Dickinson
It's all I have to bring to-day, This, and my heart beside, This, and my heart, and all the fields, And all the meadows wide. Be sure you count, should I forget, Someone the sum could tell, This, and my heart, and all the bees Which in the clover dwell.
Began the morning by making a 3/4-inch bias strip...
...to make 1/4-inch stems.
This is the stem for the first grape clusters. I used the tracing to place it.
Using an embroidery hoop to appliqué down the vine and stem.
Adding in the first grape leaf and grapes. Each cluster is 12 grapes and there are probably five or six leaves on each side. Guess what I'll be doing from now until forever? Not to mention the three more little brownies that will be placed in the grapevines. What was I thinking?
Emily: Oh, Mama, just look at me one minute as though you really saw me... I can’t go on. It goes so fast. We don’t have time to look at one another. Oh, earth, you’re too wonderful for anybody to realize you!... Do any human beings ever realize life while they live it?—every, every minute?...They don’t understand, do they?
Tamara, who blogs at Quarter of an Inch, has posted a request for an explanation of blog names. Seems like a great idea to me, so I clicked on her Mister Linky device and joined in.
Mine is a fairly self-evident story, being a quilter and a librarian, but I liked the funny mental picture I came up with when I thought about what a quilted librarian would look like. It seemed fairly unique and searches would bring me both quilters and other librarians. So that's my story and I'm sticking to it. Check out Tamara's post for other "bloggy" stories.
Progress was made on the Brownie quilt this weekend. The final border and corner blocks were sewed on and then I used a tracing to center the title.
Patterns of the letters are ready for tracing on Wonder Undered brown fabric.
The title letters are all cut out. (It was a fantastic weekend, so I took work out on the porch whenever possible.)
The Brownie for the title is being traced on cream fabric.
I used the tracing again to place the Wonder Undered letters before I ironed them on.
The letters are ironed on. I'm glad I decided to fuse this part of the quilt. I was worried because most of it is going to be hand appliquéd, but that's just me being paranoid about the quilt police. It's my quilt. I can break the rules if I want to!
I embroidered the Brownie for the title whilst sitting on the porch. It was lovely.
Ready to appliqué the title Brownie.
Making a tracing of the grapevine border from Elly Sienkiewicz's book Appliqué 12 Borders and Medallions.
Beginning to pin down the vine. Now, I'm turning out the lights in Safety Pin Studio and getting ready to watch the Tonys!
I got some very sad news this week. My dear Aunt Joyce passed from this world. She was married to my Dad's younger brother, Tom. The picture above was taken on the front porch of Joyce and Tom's new house in Lima, Ohio in the early 1950's. My mom is on the left, my Aunt Irma (wife of Dad's youngest brother, Bobby), me in the middle and Joyce on the far right. She had the world's greatest sense of humor and a radiant smile. We always had a wonderful time when we went to visit at their house or when we saw them at my grandparents or when they came to Columbus to see us. She loved having everyone together at her house. She lost a brother in World War II and I think that was why family was so especially important to her. We shared a love of quilts, too. She was a collector and had some beautiful antique quilts.
This one is me with Uncle Tom at our apartment on Long Street in Columbus, early 1950's.
Tom and Joyce have three children. Mark, the oldest, was adopted, then Joyce discovered she was expecting and Fran was born early, so she and Mark are only about seven months apart. Tom, the youngest, was born several years later. The photo above was taken at my Grandma and Grandpa Warner's house. From the left, Joyce is holding Fran, Tom is holding Mark, my cousin Mike Bolish (son of my Dad's older sister, Mary Jane and her husband, Bob Bolish) is holding his sister Patti, and I'm holding my brother Dan.
This last one is Tom and Joyce with Anna on her first birthday in Crawfordsville. My Uncle Tom was a Purdue grad, too, and they came down to see us when they came for one of his Purdue reunions.
Thanks for open arms, bright, dancing eyes, that killer smile, and ringing laugh. Thanks for listening and caring and making everyone welcome. Thanks for boundless love.
"I have only slipped away into the next room, I am I and you are you. Whatever we were to each other, that we still are. Call me by my old familiar name. Speak to me in the easy way which you always used. Play, smile, think of me. All is well." ~HENRY SCOTT HOLLAND
I have to brag a little. Our daughter, Anna, is going to be the new company manager for the Huntington Theatre Company in Boston. She's worked as the assistant to the managing director, Michael Maso, for about a year and a half, but had to go for this position when it opened up. We are so proud of her and happy that both our children have jobs in the fields they want to be in during these incredibly dismal economic times.
The picture above is one of my favorites of Anna and her dad. It's from a Wabash College production of The Man Who Came to Dinner in which we all appeared. Anna's first love is directing, but she's also a wonderful actress. The play was directed by Jim's former student and current Wabash theatre department chair, Micheal Abbott who blogs at the Brainy Gamer.
And now for the exhortation...I know everyone is feeling the results of this recession, but people and organizations in the arts, and most particularly, the theatre are being savaged by it. Grants have dried up, large donors aren't coming up with the big bucks, and box office is off. This is where you can help. Wherever you live, please, go to the theatre. Most theatres rely very heavily on their box office receipts to fund what they do. Even if you can't afford to donate, you can probably afford a ticket. There is no substitute for live theatre and it may be an endangered species. If you have little children, take them to live theatre early and often. Even small towns usually offer some kind of children's performance. Trust me, they'll love it. Community theatres, college and university theatres, as well as festival and regional theatres could die if their audiences disappear. Since the livelihoods of both my husband and my daughter depend on live theatre, I thank you for your support. And since I love the theatre, I encourage you to be an enthusiastic and frequent audience member.
The four hands are appliquéd down and now I'm cutting away the excess fabric underneath the hands with the appliqué scissors.
Now that the trimming is done, I've started putting on the last border.
The two sides and the bottom will have a winding grapevine with leaves and grapes appliquéd.
I learned a nifty way to make circular appliqué pieces using removable paper price tag dots. Put the dot down on the wrong side of the fabric, cut the fabric with a 3/8 inch seam allowance. Take a running stitch around the edge (just like you do when you make yo-yos), pull tight, remove the paper dot, press and you have a perfect circle ready to be appliquéd down.
The title, The Brownies, goes on the top border along with another little Brownie that I'll embroider.
This is one of the candidates. I'm also planning to add a few more Brownies in the grapevine areas. I don't see how I'm going to get this all finished by July 1st, but if I don't, at least I'll have something to enter in the guild shows!
This morning's email contained a nice surprise: Kathi of Kathi's Creations nominated me for the One Lovely Blog Award! Please click over and check out her blog which features all manner of handmades and lots of great Etsy goodies. Many thanks, Kathi. I'm really touched that you nominated me for this award.
The rules governing the One Lovely Blog Award are as follows:
1)Accept the award, post it on your blog together with the name of the person who has granted the award, and his or her blog link. (Check.)
2)Pass the award to 15 other blogs that you’ve newly discovered. (Please see below. In no particular order, not all quilters, and some great international blogs, IMHO.)
3)Remember to contact the bloggers to let them know they have been chosen for this award. (Done and done except for Minka, Deepa, Hideko, Lucy, and the Button Floozies who don't have email hotlinks anywhere I could find them on their blogs!)