In my mind, I'm five years old having a high old time wandering and wondering. In reality, I'm now approaching my late 60s, wowza! I tell you a lot of creativity is still to be found in this old young self. In you, too, whatever your age. Welcome to my barefoot world!
Can I get a "cute"? How could I resist showing off that photo of Molly the pinky-nosed (wild) Cat's recent cuteness. So, what kind of little of this, little of that have you been doing while staying at home? This afternoon I made a delectable dish of creamy brown rice and mushed red lentils that I savored slowly, the way I do with desserts. Sure I'll combine brown rice, lentils, fresh garlic, kim chee, and eggs again, but the exquisite taste (there I go floating) won't ever get repeated, even if I knew the amounts I used. Oh well, c'est la vie. :-) Clackity clack clack clackity clack clack. . . . I've been sewing covers for the outside pillows. See the top two pillows. The covers were made from Mama's nightgowns that she liked but hardly wore. Must wear out the old stuff first you know. The fabric of the flowered pillow on the bottom is from the Husband's mom's stash. I wonder what she was going to do with the upholstery quality mater
We left the fruit on the high branches, and some of the lower branches, of the persimmon tree for the birds and squirrels. I don't know if the neighborhood feral cats like persimmons. Molly the (wild) Cat sniffs her nose at the orange fruit. The other morning good fortune struck. I not only watched a crow in the persimmon tree, followed by a bunch of tiny birds, but also a squirrel. That squirrel was chittering so loud, the Husband and I went out to the back yard to find out what all the fuss was about. I wouldn't be surprised if the squirrel was yelling at the tiny birds to get out of its persimmon tree, because that was where the furry guy headed after it ran down the birch tree in the next yard. January was a flurry of decluttering, reorganizing, and sewing curtains, along with getting as much heavy stuff done before my cataract surgery next week. (My gosh, already, next week. Shudder) I was such a worker bee that I became physically, emotionally, and spiritually
The other morning I went through the last of Mama's clothes hanging in the closet. Hanging at the back of the closet was a little girl's red coat with matching red bonnet. The outfit is in pristine shape, as if it had been bought yesterday. It was, about 64 years ago, at least. Most likely I wore the jacket a few times. I was a fast grower in my early years, both in height and girth. See how cute the hat is on the camel in this collage. Yes, that little girl being directed to look at the camera was me sporting the red hat. Mama must've just put it on me because in another photo with only Big Brother and me, the bonnet was perched limply on the top of my head, as if Mama said to Daddy, "Put the hat on Susie's head." Snap. I'm thinking about cutting the red coat apart, along with a few other things I found in Mama's closet: her wool black dress, a blue tweed jumper Mama made for me in 7th grade, and a blue wool skirt I bought during my early
A few weeks ago Saturday Night Live featured a video about two women talking about their hobbies. Oh my gosh, I recognized myself. When I was a young single thing living la dolce vita in San Francisco, a guy I met for coffee asked, "What are your hobbies?" "Hobbies?" "Interests. What do you like to do?" Totally stumped, I was. I liked to read and write, but I didn't consider those activities as hobbies. They were simply a part of what I did. Without trying, in the last three years, I've embraced hobbies. Sewing, drawing, painting, gardening, and crafting are what have showed up at my door, thus far. That guy at the cafe 40 years ago? I never saw him again. SO, MOLLY DID The other day I didn't feel like folding the pieces of fabric I laid out on the bed in L Studio. It wasn't going to bother me if Molly the Cat felt like lying on top of the fabric. I told her so, too, before I sat down to contemplate how much of the vari
Sewing machines, bicycles, and vehicles are the things that I like to push pedal to the metal. Here are 13 of my favorite ones from today to long ago. Kenmore portable sewing machine. About a decade ago, good friend BB gave me her 1970s portable sewing machine when I was having a sewing fix and she was in a down-sizing mood. After a thorough tune-up, the machine was good to go. Vrrrroom, vrrrooom. I'm going through another spurt (and probably last) of sewing. This morning I started sewing curtains for the upstairs hallway. Yup, that's them in "draft mode" in the above photo. Eliza Do-a-lot. Some of you know about dear 25-year old Eliza. She's a no-nonsense old lady's white sedan with hardly any blind spots. Eliza was Mama's last car. When Mama broke her hip in 1997, I started driving Eliza back and forth from El Cerrito where the Husband and I lived. By the time Mama felt confident to drive again, she needed to renew her license. She couldn'
Closed eyes no more. Time to be responsible, my aching knees. ~ Su- sieee ! Mac That was my pronouncement to myself this morning. Neither The Husband nor Molly the Cat heard, so you, dear readers, are my witnesses. I am going to do my best to go through, organize, and throw out the piles of papers and boxes of stuff that are in this house, as well as "do" instead of "thinking about doing" something fun and creative for no reason at all. Yes! In that second regard, I am happy to say I made something yesterday evening. Actually two somethings—those coffee cup cozies you see in the above photo. Sewing them was easy-peasy. Unlike the first time, a bunch of years ago, when figuring how to do it completely stumped me. I was sweating bullets while stitching it on the machine. Sweating bullets, what an image! We've been getting coffee to go lately so cardboard coffee sleeves have been collecting in our car. We don't remember until we get back into t
It took the itchy flea bites to finally get me to the sewing machine. For me, a good summer means insect bites, in particular, flea ones. The other day, I came home with seven flea bites on my left leg, from ankle to hip. A few years ago I discovered if I apply heat to an itchy bite, the itch goes away almost instantly, which means I don't end up with scars because I didn't scratch as much, giving the swollen bite sites a chance to heal properly. So, this morning, after I opened the blinds and curtains, I headed to the sewing machine, which has been waiting to be used since the start of the year. The scissors I bought in May finally came out of its package. A box of fabric on the sewing table was already open. Snip, snip. A rectangular shape was cut out of a fabric scrap. The rectangle was folded in half for double strength. On went the sewing machine. One side, two sides sewn. Rip went the rice package and rice poured into the pouch. The ends of the last open side w
The Mama loved to sew dresses for me in pink when I was in elementary school. I didn't care too much for the color, but because I wasn't interested in looking at fabric back then, she bought what she liked. Long story short, once I got to a point where I began choosing materials or ready-made clothes, I avoided pink. Then somewhere in my late 40s, I thought the color pink is fresh. It's bold. It's got pizazz. It's joyful. It's happy. Again, long story short, I think I'll put some pink in the tunic I am going to sew soon.
I walked into a woman's boutique shop in Santa Cruz to check out a very cute East-Indian style top that I saw in its window. It was similar to ones I wore when I was a very young thing. I thought if the cost was right it was going home with me. I was even willing to pay $45 for it, although I thought it was worth $20 bucks. I have no sense of how much clothing are worth these days. Twenty bucks was how much I paid for eccentric stuff, which the the parents called hippie clothes, at import shops when I was a very young thing. The East-Indian tops of yore were made of a thin cotton. This modern version was made of a smooth, rich-feeling fabric that turned out to be rayon. Not being silk, I figured the top would be very affordable. Then I finally found the price tag. One hundred ninety-eight dollars! Shall I say that again: $198.00!! Seriously. When I got home, I looked up the designer online. Maybe I'd find the top for cheaper. Ha! $218.00!!! I saw several
The most amazing thing happened to me yesterday morning, as I was pedaling my pretty pink bicycle. Quite freaky, in fact. Totally insane. I wish I had one of those cameras strapped to my head so I could've recorded the whole thing, which lasted a few seconds but in slooooooooow motion seemed God, Almighty! long. In my mind, what I did is akin (almost) to attempting the circle-of death-biker stunt. Hey! Don't laugh. You gotta remember I'm a fat, young old fogey turning 60 in a few months, which I say in a very positive way. Okay, okay. I think I've got your attention to the kinda, somewhat, yes, indeed risk I experienced yesterday morning. It was about 8:17 a.m. For those of you who don't know my normal pattern, that hour is like sunrise for me. The Husband was still snoozing in bed, the Mama was eating her breakfast, and Molly the Cat was gazing out the back window probably thinking about climbing the fence. Me, I had a meeting to go to and by, golly, this time
See that mess of fabric on the right. I'm almost finally going to turn them into some things. Operative word here is almost . A couple hours ago I ordered more fabric from Sew, Mama, Sew! Almost 8 yards worth of different happy, calming designs with such names as Good Earth, Daisy Dance, Carnations on Gold, and Poppy Parade Brown. So, once my shipment comes in, I shall drop everything and sew pillowcases. Pillow cases? Yes, pillow cases. I'm going to get off my butt and sew at least seven pillowcases for "A Case for Smiles," a fabulous project sponsored by ConKerr Cancer. Based in Philadelphia, the nonprofit group delivers donated handmade pillowcases to terminally ill children in hospitals across the United States. The founder is Cindy Kerr who started making pillowcases for her son and other children in the oncology unit in 2002 to help bring smiles to the kids as well as brighten their hospital rooms. According to the ConKerr Cancer Web site, the organization
That's right, I admit it. I'm a craftsgal wanna be. When I was younger and lived in San Francisco, I thought it would be so cool to sell my handcrafted wares on the sidewalks. It didn't matter that I had no wares or skills. I've been daydreaming again about selling my handcrafted wares, but this time at farmers markets and online at etsy.com. Still, no wares and no skills. When I get tired of writing, I visit crafts blogs. Sewing, knitting, beading, whatever. I especially like the blogs by crafts ladies who repurpose old stuff into fantastic things that I want to make, such as clutch purses out of used skirts. Last fall, I finally had the space and time to try my hand at crafting. My first attempt was a hedgehog. That's it in the photo. It only has one eye. Next, I made was a pinwheel. I go gaga over pinwheels. They're what I associate with Fourth of July and family picnics. One day, I would like to learn to weld so that I can create one crazy gigantic pinwhee
"Busy, busy," the husband said to me when I asked him if he read my latest Take 25 to Hollister, California post . "Yeah. But I'm not making any money," I said. "Well, you're not robbing a bank." That's why I love the husband. The mama's sewing machine is still good to go! We're two freelance writers, just minding our own business. Though lately we haven't been good at minding it. Yesterday, I did look at online job ads for freelance writers and bloggers. Is it so bad to say I'd rather earn nothing for writing a post to my blog than get paid moldy peanut shells for researching and writing a tight, comprehensive article? Well, at least for yesterday. I may just be disciplined today. Yesterday, I spent much of the afternoon checking out the various sewing and crafts giveaways being hosted by Sew, Mama, Sew! I didn't count, but I'm sure there were far more than a hundred bloggers who were participating in Sew, Mama, Sew
I’ve been talking to the husband and the mama about changing to cloth napkins for almost two years. (Time flies quickly when you’re old. That is, older.) The husband and the mama had no objections. Cloth napkins are more economical than paper ones, as well as more than one tree would be saved. But any moves of finding and purchasing cloth napkins were going to come from me. My research was sporadic and disheartening. There weren’t, and probably still aren’t, many places to buy cloth napkins, nor were there a variety of choices of napkins. And I am very particular about shelling out money, between $4 and $5 per napkin, for something I could easily make, if I had the time. As for the mama, who is even cheaper than me, I imagined her hiding a paper napkin amongst the expensive cloth one and pulling it out to wipe her mouth when I wasn’t looking. A couple months ago, I finally did walk my talk. It was fun and a hoot putting my foot to the metal of my mom’s Singer treadle sewing machine