Friday, October 25, 2013

{this moment}

A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment.
A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.

:: Inspired by Soule Mama ::

If you're inspired to do the same, leave a link to your 'moment' in the comments, for all to find and see.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Looking For Fall

Not far from home, we went on a picnic lunch, in search of fall. Maria, Amira, Alex, William, Janece, and me. It's so nice to have a beautiful, dependable, spot to go to, where we can imagine ourselves in a New England wood, a Pacific Northwest forest, the North Woods of Wisconsin. Imagination is certainly a major player in this exercise, but it's worth the effort.

We will do this again.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

What Does The Fox Say?

Our favorite fox? Fantastic Mr. Fox, Roald Dahl's literary fox of mischief and cunning, as well as Wes Anderson's come to life interpretation. But, who can resist the “Chacha-chacha-chacha-chow” and the “Fraka-kaka-kaka-kaka-kow” of the hilariously endearing Norwegian comic duo, Ylvis?

So, what does the fox say? According to some field recordings from the Macaulay Library at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, it is the Red Fox - Vulpes vulpes that says, "Chacha-chacha-chacha-chow!”

Look what I found! Sorry~ I don't have a designer name for it, but I picked up this half yard from Joanne's. Could. Not. Resist! And I love that Maria is still small enough that I can whip up a simple skirt with a panel of 45" wide fabric. I added to the length of the fox print with this espresso and polka dot print... a frolicking fall combo, I think.

Favorite foxes, check. How about favorite sewing tools? Even for sewing garments, I am lost without my quilting tools. I love my self-healing cutting mat, my straight edge, and definitely my rotary cutter. The clerk did a pretty lazy job of cutting my half yard, but thankfully with the straight edge, mat and rotary blade, I had everything straightened out in a snap!

Is this a favorite sewing tool? Well, sort of. I wish I didn't need a seam ripper, but when I have to take a do-over on a bad seam, then I hate to be without one. A seam ripper is a must, for me.

And I definitely, definitely love my pinking shears! I'm _a-frayed_ I would be really frustrated with all those loose threads, if I couldn't finish raw edges with this very useful tool.

My best sewing projects, the ones where I feel good about the results, always include time spent with a hot iron, pressing the fabric, pressing the seams. I am not always eager to make the time, clear the space... but finally, I've learned to just do it! My ironing board and hot iron are key to sewing success.

Even after having to ripping out the polka dot trim, and recutting the fox print, then reattaching the polka dot trim, I was able to finish this simple skirt in short time. Fantastic!

Paired with her eyelet slip peeking through, Maria and I are ready for a fall leaf and fox hunt hike with friends.
A-hee-ahee ha-hee!

Tuesday, October 22, 2013


Max is at school. He ate his breakfast muffin on his way out the door. He's going to Creative Writing Club at lunch, and staying late, in the library, until Alex can pick him up from school. He's still working out what to be for Halloween, but never mind any distractions... the boy diligently keeps his life, and ours, in regular order.

Maria is home, on fall break (Don't I wish we were all on fall break? Yes, I do!) She and William are using an architectural app on the iPad to plot out our house, and to make up new houses. She's also whipping up menus, dishes, and fun in her play kitchen, reading, drawing, and taming Mister Foo.

Geoff will be heading into work, soon. His days are long, and full. I'm sorry to say, his CNC router, Frankenrouter is put on the back-back burner, for now. Still, as busy as work keeps him, he still finds time to be supportive, fix things, develop ideas, and inspire us.

William put up the cemetery, with the tombstones he made. It's a funny thing having a cemetery in the yard... I remember last year, and while I was proud of what William accomplished, how beautiful those headstones are, I was feeling a bit of the creepy association of death and grave markers. But then something really lovely happened. It wasn't a creepy thing, after all. It was a solemn and dear space, and we all had a sense of respect and reverence. It was not a joke, a mocking-death creation, but an historically reflective gesture, an artistic nod to culture and the human experience. We wound up spending many evenings gathered around a campfire, reading aloud, and feeling a content pleasure in being outside with a kind and gentle feeling for the ones who came before us. William's talents and thoughtfulness brought something lovely to our traditions.

Today, Alex has his Japanese language class.

Last night he came home from his engineering class, where he's been working on some 3-D modeling.

And when he's not at school, doing homework, or assembling our family disaster preparedness kits, he's busy with his start-up company, or designing marvelous T-shirts... please do vote for his submissions! I'm not sure when the new sketch happened. It is an intriguing part of this morning's kitchen table still life.

And, here is our Foo. Mister Washburn Foo. Have I told you? He collects Lego bricks. Well, first he sneaks into the boy's room, finds a grey, or black, brick, and then absconds with his treasure, which he hides in little spaces and dark corners around the house. He also has a potato he loves and plays with, then stashes away. Seriously, a potato. He likes to take down the bunting I hang, and he sprints through the house to leap up to my bedside window, where he tracks the birds, and quivers with eager anticipation of something not nice for birds.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Five Good Things

We still have three more watermelons on the vine! And each new one we split open is tastier than the last! This one I asked William to slice into so he could feel the tension and hear the pop when this bursting fruit is cut.

Good Things:
1. My concerned, thoughtful, and generous friends have made a difficult time easier, and remind me how lucky I am.

2. Ice, and pain reliever. (They count as one, this time, because they go together and are so helpful!)

3. Judy won Put An Egg On It, and it makes me happy for her.

4. My mommy is back in Southern California... it's a comfort just knowing she's that much closer.

5. Geoff, William, Alex, Max, and Maria... my family are a dear, good thing.

So as not to be obtuse... I am on the mend (I hope) from a bulging disc. In fact, I was going to post about my ailment and pain, last week, but then it all got so out of control, I abandoned my blog, and a whole lot of other things, too! It started a month ago when I woke up with what I figured was a basic pinched nerve. Naturally I paid it little heed and kept urging myself to walk it off and carry on. At this point in the story Geoff is free to say "I told you so," because I scoffed at his oft repeated advice to seek medical attention. I am just so loath to see doctors, take meds, make much-ado-about-nothing. I did finally see my physician and he ordered a scan, but before I could keep the appointment today, I was all day in the ER on Saturday. Yeah, basically I was a feeble, writhing, blubbering, twisted and desperate piece. And now we know why: Bulging disc. I was afraid they might tell me It's nothing-go home, but by then I was fairly certain the MRI would reveal a small and snarly, fanged gremlin chewing on my nerves and tendons!

My mom offered to come and help (so glad to have her on speed dial, just in case.) Janece was ready to feed us, and the goats and the chickens! (I've got her number handy, too.) Anna came with pie and chili, and sympathy. Diana came with good advice, a good accupuncterist (sp, I know... blame the meds) and these awesome links for ice packs. Ice packs! I was reluctant, but now Ice and I are friends. So, I am chillin' and healin' and copin' and hopin'. I don't recall anything I did to injure myself, but you can be sure I will not be lifting any goats, or carrying sacks of feed, anymore!

Please, tell me, what's good with you?