Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Tula Tuesday::week 4

So, can you see the trouble I have gotten into with this Tula Tuesday thing and Lizi Boyd’s book?
There's no telling where it may end up...
but I have an idea...

(Edited 2/1/2018  tula’s city sampler square #64)

Thursday, January 25, 2018

my big girl boots

Complaining about a problem without proposing 
a solution is called whining.
-Teddy Roosevelt

Oh yes. How easy it is to complain and whine these days. About so very many things. 


What good does that do?

Uncomfortable with how much shelter I have found in complaining (not my responsibility, the problems are too big, why don't "they" do something...) I decided to put on my big girl boots and find some small thing I could do to contribute to bettering the lot of folks here in my neck of the woods. It took some time to discern where I thought I could help, and I did find some meaningful volunteer work...at just about the same time the work found me. Isn't that the way the best things happen?

This work is going to challenge my own status quo and I think there will be a bit of a learning curve. Part of me is a little apprehensive. That's a tip for me that I'm headed in the right direction. I am fascinated by the makeup of this board and the mission of the organization. My first meeting is tonight and I've been reading and thinking and making notes for days. Wish me luck.

Do you know Marge Piercy"s poem To Be of Use? You may read it here, via The Poetry Foundation.

I listened to an On Being episode the other day...The Call to Community in a Changed World. Krista Tippet spoke with Anand Giridharadas and Whitney Kimball Coe. Near the end of the session, Coe asks, "How do I show up in the world and in my community and beyond, and am I going to show up with an open mind, an open heart, and with curiosity?"

Being active and engaged in the outside world and at the same time, being solitary in my sewing studio seems to be a good balance for me these days. How about you, dear readers? How are you navigating these choppy waters?

(Also, I just updated my other blog, A Repository For Growth, a link can be found in the sidebar.  I hadn't been over there in ages.)


Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Tula Tuesday::week 3

This past weekend Batman and I found the most wonderful children's book called I Wrote You a Note , written and illustrated by Lizi Boyd, a Vermont artist. I have long loved her fun wrapping paper, often hanging a sheet of it as wall art. (I also had her wonderful book Flashlight on my wish list a while back and received it as a gift from Lindsey).

I Wrote You a Note  is a true gem and it has inspired me to make a few Tula squares, today's being the first. The end papers in the book are especially beautiful on this icy, overcast and cold day here in Vermont. Inspiring thoughts of renewal and spring, these colors and brush strokes were irresistible to me today, and so I pulled a bunch of fabrics to make this square.

The green print is leftover from this bag. The blue and white print is leftover from this quilt. And the grey and cream print is from a fun little prize I got for finding a "golden ticket" in my trimmings package during the last challenge run by Umbrella Prints.

I've heard a rumor that a few of my quilting buddies from CT days are jumping in on Tula Tuesday. I'm wondering if Ellen and Cathleen (better known as "the queen of everything") have sewn a square today...

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

tula tuesday::week 2

inspired by a snowy day in the green mountains.

(tula's city sampler square #42)

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

kicking off "tula tuesday" 2018

Back in early August, I snuck away from Vermont for a few days and visited the newlyweds in Washington DC. Lindsey and I had long talked about looking for evidence of women's history in the midst of the testosterone that leaks out of our nation's capital. Since Lindsey and Scott were planning to move to Detroit in September, we hatched our August plan and had great fun on our mission. 

We did spend a morning doing a bit of shopping, and Capital Quilts was on our route. Such a treasure trove of inspiration!  I thumbed through up a copy of Tula Pink's 100 Modern Quilt Blocks and I told Lindsey about my Instagram friend, Jodi over at Palinkasquilts who sewed a square from the book 100 days in a row. And Lindsey gave me a look. A look that said I dare you, Marmie. 

Well. I bought the book. And the book taunted me for months.

Then I finally realized that I really wanted to stitch some of those blocks and I really wanted to frame the sewing as an ongoing commitment. I just couldn't face an every*single*day commitment. So I decided once a week would be just fine. "Tula Tuesday" was hatched! I'll be sewing and posting a picture here every Tuesday in 2018. 
I decided that my very first square needed to be special. The humble 9 patch is one of the oldest quilt squares around, and it's actually quite modern in its simplicity as well. I used some of my homegrown, hand dyed indigo linen and some of my very favorite Liberty of London lawn to sew today's square.

I'll be sewing from my fabric stash and will not buy any new fabric for this project. I hope to include some fabric from old clothing as well. I'm not sure what I'll do with the squares at the end of the year...I'm hoping the process will lead me to a nice finish.
You can read about Tula's City Sampler, 100 Modern Quilt Blocks  here.

Are you making any sort of long term commitment to a creative project? There's some fun inspiration for ongoing projects in the latest Uppercase magazine 

Let us know in the comments!


Sunday, January 7, 2018

the other side of the coin...strength

Gosh. Thank you for all of your good wishes. Both here and over on Instagram and via telephone. I do feel well cared for. And I appreciate that. I'm a lucky girl.


Embracing vulnerability was just the right thing to do.

It gave me a chance to count my blessings. To rest. To heal. To wait. To be patient with myself and my body. To be resilient.

A week after the accident I'm in a better place. Stronger. More determined. More inspired. Ready for 2018.

The deep freeze here in Vermont has been filled with white blossoms, gentle light and blue shadows. There's been more snow, more wind, more fires in the Home Comfort, more soup and more early evenings.

There's been nesting too. I found the Harry Potter inspired, hope-filled black and white print at The Diggingest Girl...read about Emily here. She's is a super cool artist and I'm glad I found her in the midst of these dark days. 

And my tee shirt? It's mighty special. Printed carefully and with intention, you can read about it here. I feel like a badass when I wear it to the gym. :-)

I've got all sorts of ideas and plans for 2018. Check back this week if you're curious to see what's up.


Wednesday, January 3, 2018

embracing vulnerability

I was involved in a car accident on Sunday afternoon, right here in our neighborhood. It was New Year's Eve afternoon and frigidly cold. I am OK, the person who hit me is OK, the condition of my car remains in the hands of the insurance adjuster. Bruised, sore, rattled...but I know it could have been so much worse. Thank goodness for seat belts and safety features. Cruising into the new year with ice packs, arnica gel and a heating pad has given me pause.

Batman and I just updated our wills, and signed them this morning. That act loomed larger for me after the weekend's adventures. All the "what ifs".

The brutal weather has impacted our neck of the woods. A chimney fire gutted a home down in town. Farmers are struggling to keep their animals safe and watered and fed in the extreme temperatures. Going outdoors requires extra time to bundle up. And the forecast for the east coast looks grim. Mother Nature is lashing out at us for our carelessness with her bounty. It is hard to witness.

And then there is the stunning twittering about whose nuclear button is bigger. I have no words for that.

The last few nights have been restless for me. The full and bright moon has kept me awake. The discomfort in my shoulders and neck and torso has made me shift position time and again during the night. I spend a lot of time meditating under the covers, sending shining energy to the White House, hoping it will somehow change what's going on in those hallowed halls.

I'm finding that the best way to deal with all of this is to open myself up to the unanswered questions. To feel the discomfort, the uncertainty, the dread. To just sit in the midst of it. To honor its presence. To name it. To absorb it. To embrace it. To let it wash over me. To release it.

Only then can I set it aside.

And concentrate on the things I can change in my own life, in the lives of those close to me, in my community...and through that...some small part of the world.


We all need to show up for one another. I am here for you, friends.