inhale...exhale...relax your shoulders...repeat as often as needed

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

pausing... catch my breath,
and get ready for the work ahead.
i may be away from here for a bit,
so i thought i'd leave you with some 
wild indigo.
(this may be my very favorite color).

what's yours ?

Monday, May 30, 2011

this morning

in our neighborhood.
and at the vermont veterans memorial cemetery.

War is what happens when
language fails.
-Margaret Atwood

(may we work on expanding our vocabulary...)

Sunday, May 29, 2011

work in progress

since my sweet sewing machine is in the shop for her annual tune up,
i've put together a portable handwork project.
using the english paper piecing method shown in this book,
i'm making a ball for another expected baby!
(yes, bobbi, you spotted some sock monkey fabric).
the author uses cottons and linen together in a most lovely way.
i got a little bit impatient with the fussiness of the prep work,
but the ease and precision in the actual sewing has been worth the effort.

have any of you used i love patchwork ?
what project did you try?

Saturday, May 28, 2011


vert mont
green mountains
come, dear reader, come sit by my side.
take a few deep, cleansing breaths.
stretch your arms up over your head.
take a few more breaths.
put your hand over your heart and feel the steady beat.

just be.

it is enough.


Thursday, May 26, 2011

giveaway winner and new handwork project

Henry and I sat on the screened porch this morning, and he helped me randomly select the sew, mama, sew giveaway winner. The winner is...JUST JINGLE, a really fun and inspiring blog, and I am delighted to have found it via this giveaway. Crafting in Worcester, MA, the author shares tutorials, links and fun peeks into her process.  Go on over and see for yourself.

And, oh, lucky me...I'm a winner, too! I've followed Pomona's blog from the very beginning. I feel like she's a kindred spirit, despite the ocean between us. I'm looking forward to finding her parcel in my mailbox! Thank-you Pomona!

It's been fun to explore so many new blogs these past few days. Thanks again to the folks at sew, mama. sew for organizing this huge adventure! And thanks to all who popped by here and left kind comments.

I've organized a small handwork project to keep me busy while my friend is away. Small and portable, it will be perfect for the upcoming long weekend. Can you guess what it might be?

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

one of my best friends

(If you are looking for the sew, mama, sew! giveaway, click HERE).

This afternoon, I will drop my beloved sewing machine off for her annual tune up. It's so hard to let her go for a week. I bought her (after much budget crunching) in December 1994, and over the years, we have become very good friends.

I have sat in front of her and stitched so, so many things...
  • clothes for all four kids...overalls, dresses, shirts, quilted jackets
  • Halloween costumes
  • baby clothes for shower gifts
  • costumes for dramas (both in-house and in the wider world)
  • nightshirts for Batman
  • prom dresses
  • home goods...pillowcases, tablecloths, napkins, curtains
  • tote bags, purses
  • mended and patched...rips, tears, holes
  • welcome babies, to send loved ones off to college, to hang on walls, group quilts
  • finished a quilt that was left unfinished by cancer
  • art quilts
  • memorial pieces and celebration pieces
  • challenge quilts
  • many, many pieces have left the house as gifts
  • and some projects have landed in my fledgling etsy shop
My sewing machine and I have worked together in so many intangible ways as well.
  • I have gone to her for comfort and retreat when the world seemed to be loosing it's mind.
  • Many a plan has been hatched while quilting yards and yards of lines with her.
  • I have found forgiveness for others and for myself under her watchful eye.
  • I have worked through grief with her steady stitching as my comfort.
  • I have worked in secret with her, behind closed doors, on many surprise gifts.
  • Sometimes the only place I can find my voice is when she listens, without judgement.
  • She and I have become dream weavers, and we share secret ambitions.
And so, as I send her off for her much deserved R&R, I say thank you, dear friend, for aging gracefully with me.

Monday, May 23, 2011

sew, mama, sew giveaway

Sew, Mama, Sew! is a fun blog, dedicated to fabric and sewing. I pop over there occasionally for tutorials, inspiration and the fun sense of community. They're hosting a huge online giveaway, beginning today. Carve out some time in the next few days to brew yourself a pot of tea, and check out all the fun. You'll discover blogs you've never read and you might win some handmade goodness.

At the last minute, I decided to play along, and here's a peek at my giveaway...

a sew and sow life tea towel,
appliqued with a bit of my own shibori hand dyed blue,
a bit of birch and fern fabric.
 a collection of woodland inspired fabrics,
(mostly fat quarters).
if you click on the image, you'll see better details of the fabric.
and a set of six of my notecards from my shop.

Here's how it works...
-Leave a comment here on this post, or send me an e-mail (address is in the sidebar).
-Be sure to let me know how to get in touch with you in case you win!!!
-I will choose the winner at random, there are no gimmicks.
-I will ship internationally.
-This giveaway will be open until midnight (EST) on Wednesday, May 25th. I will post the winner's name by 9 AM (EST) on Thursday.

So...join in the fun, leave a comment and cross your fingers for good luck! Thanks so much for stopping by to play along! And many thanks to Sew, Mama, Sew! for the organizing logistics...well done!


Sunday, May 22, 2011

this week

(baby turnips from my friend liz)
and sew
(japanese fabric from the cupboard).

after a week of rain and computer glitches
i'm working on adjusting my attitude.

inspire me...
what are you hoping to accomplish this week?

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Friday, May 20, 2011


the state of being carried away
with joy and love.

rapture on earth.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

techno woes

I will not bore you with details...
I have been having ongoing trouble with my new laptop.
Let's just say that I've become friendly with the folks at the Genius Bar. 
Hoping all is well now.
(Going back this morning...Friday! ARG!)
So, the last few days have been mostly "unplugged".

In honor of the US postal system,
tonight I put together another Etsy treasury
called snail mail.

PS The baby quilt is on it's way to Sweden--it's a girl--and a brand
new generation for our family.
My beloved Aunt Margretta and Uncle David are great grandparents!

(I will do my best to catch up with all of you tomorrow).

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

green, wet wonder

If I had influence with the good fairy,
I would ask that her gift to each child
be a sense of wonder so indestructible 
that it would last throughout life.

-Rachel Carlson

Monday, May 16, 2011

100 balsam seedlings

this weekend,
batman and i were joined by lindsey and nine of her friends,
and maddy, the pooch.
it was a very wet weekend,
so folks worked between the raindrops.
 all 100 balsam seedlings were planted by lunchtime
on saturday.

then there was napping, hiking with umbrellas, baking,
 games, reading, music making, cooking,
talking, laughing, talking some more,
drinking (ahem), 
"circling up" before dinner,
 eating, lots of dish washing,
s'mores around a smokey fire, 
sleeping, more baking, more rain, tidying up.

and then they were gone,
and the house got very quiet.

the best thing about our
is sharing it with those we love.

thank you, dearest ones,
for making light work with many hands.

Friday, May 13, 2011

fabric fun

my own shibori hand dyed blue, 
stitched with birches and ferns.
a forest in a bag.
and some William Morris inspired honeysuckle fabric,
matched with the much loved cotton/linen blend.

having fun in the playground  sewing studio today!
happy friday, friends.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011


there's a fun way to shop without spending a penny...
etsy treasury.
handmade love.
my latest spree here.

have you ever fallen down this internet rabbit hole?

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

patience is a virtue, right?

The rickety, old trundle beds up in Vermont have been disposed of. The twin beds from Connecticut are now in the back bedroom at our "bit of earth" in Vermont. I made these two "Chinese coin" quilts years apart and yet their common, sunny yellows make them lovely companions.

We are clearing out the upstairs of the house in Connecticut to have old carpet pulled up and hardwood floors laid down.  We will enjoy the new floors and they sing "resale value" as we check things off the list.

I am trying to cultivate patience, but it's always been a challenge for me. Here are two quotes I come back to again and again.

"The greatest prayer is patience"...siddhartha guatama (buddha)

"Have patience and the mulberry leaf will become silk"...spanish proverb

Do you have wisdom about patience that you might share with me?

Sunday, May 8, 2011

nests and rivers and roads

 a pair of robins have been sitting on this nest,
built right outside the front door at our place in vermont.
such a sweet and devoted pair, this mama and papa.

and i have a new tune in my head...
check out  this song (via my friend jamie).
our family is all over the place,
for very good reasons.
but sometimes i miss everyone.
especially today.

Saturday, May 7, 2011


i prefer this version of mother's day.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

pinking things up

pink linen
tiny fabric origami flower from this book.
my sweet pink tabby
and i'm waiting for pink apple blossoms...

where are you seeing pink?

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

two generations of yellow flowers

i was sewing this morning.
ladybugs anyone?
i found a yard of this gorgeous fabric in my 
mailbox yesterday, a belated birthday gift
from gretta. 
she said it reminded her of playing under the forsythia
down by the stream when she was a little girl.
she doesn't know that it reminded me of the wallpaper
in my bedroom when i was growing up.
my mumsie saved a few bits of it
and someday i am going to do 
something very special with it up at our place in vermont.

thanks gretta. thanks mumsie.

and thanks to all of you who left comments on
yesterday's post.
i am glad i am not alone.
just maybe in the minority.
that's ok, i've been there before.

Monday, May 2, 2011

our predicament

i am not chanting usa, usa.
i am not waving the flag.

i am holding our fragile human family close to my heart.

we need mending.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

happy may day!

spring minestrone (from super natural cooking)
multi-grain toast fingers
bok choy and granny smith slaw
(from the vegan workshop which will soon appear as an e-book)
iced peppermint tea

a lunchtime picnic on the front steps, in the sunshine.
and now batman is off to brazil for work.

what mischief will henry and i get up to 
while he's away?

any suggestions?