Blog Entries

New Roof

          as i write this we have 9 men tromping around on the roof, ripping the old one off and hauling pounds of new shingles up the ladders. the weather co-operatoed just long enough so they had time between rain storms to get this done. with 9 guys they’re telling us it will be done today and they will come clean up tomorrow.  seems like the monsoon season has just re-scheduled itself to november and december. for the last week we’ve had a blue tarp over half the house. classy.  by the time we’re done fixing/repairing/replacing this will be a whole new house. 

          i’m tired of it!  and i found out today so are the neighbors!

          and when these guys are done, next dry period, the same company will be painting the outside. Louie has gone into hiding. don’t blame him. we couldn’t stand the noise either so went out for breakfast. 

          this week has been spent being social. lots of company and visiting and holiday cheer. No christmas shopping.  we’re getting a roof for our christmas. had a big  argument over what color.  Grrr voted for black mixed with a small amount of white. i voted for white that will reflect the sun. i keep telling him our a/c bill will be go up considerably but he isn’t believing me. he won - so looking forward to a ‘i told you so’ moment this next summer. 

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          Condo is all freshly painted, carpet got cleaned and we’re set to sign the papers with a realtor next week. 

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          these are the current warps being worked on. the light color is really lavender. it’s going to be a baby blanket. there will be a second one that will be dark blue because the warp is hand dyed and moves from lavender to navy.  the red warp is on the wolf loom and there will be 3 different scarves of varies shades of reds. just completed 2 scarves that need cleaning up and fringing. 

          lola is still on vacation.

          and i’m still working on tapestry samples in the evening while watching tv. pix to come later. have the handouts written until i think of what i need to add. so far have 7 students on the list. 

          had to drive to Phoenix for a high def cat scan. between construction and traffic i was late. then the hospital was so large i couldn’t find where i was supposed to be. toured the parking lot until i found a MRI sign. they check you in like you’re going to stay and send you with a guide to where you are supposed to be. got the pictures taken, then they guided me to the exit which was not the same one i came in.  couldn’t find my car. Seriously. i have a seahawk flag on the car but never realized how many cars have flags. i’d guess about 40%. hiked miles thru that parking lot before i found MY flag.  ltoo much exercise on my cranky knee. 

          So far for christmas we’ve hung a wreath on the front door. even thou i water it most days the needles are already falling off and we’re tracking them in. that’s what i get for buying a real one. Grrr aske why plastic. bad question! i’m a snob about real vs fake. and yes technically it’s a waste of money becuase i’ll just have to throw it out after the holiday but it smells good in the meantime. 

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          Louie is such a goof ball!  he lays on the bed and i stop by to visit when i pass the door way.   this is how he greets me. the toll is a belly rub. 

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till next time. 


Thanksgiving Week

WOW! i’m giving thanks that this week is done! 

          spent 2 days at the huge craft sale. thinking i did well but won’t know until the book keeper writes me a check. as much work as it is it’s also a lot of fun. See people you haven’t seen since last year. no chance to visit because we’re so busy but fun. now i need to unpack and check my inventory list. 

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          it’s damn cold!.  had to actually scrape the car window yesterday morning. also wearing actual showes with socks this week. we moved here for the sunshine. 

          It also poured rain the day before and when it finally dries out we’re getting a new roof. nobody seemed to know how old the existing roof really is but every storm we lose shinges and it’s looking dire.  so grrr called a roofer and we’re on his schedule for the next dry period. (and it’s supposed to storm again this week) and he also set us up for an entire outside paint job.  this is going to be a whole new house. this place has the most unusual cloud formations i’ve ever seen. 

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          the condo gets carpets cleaned this coming week and then we can sign the papers to get it sold. good thing. we’re spending money we don’t have. and we don’t normally do that. 

          for a while it looked like we’d be having steak for thanksgiving dinner. i had ordered a turkey hind quarter from Safeways.  they told me you can’t order hindquarters and we don’t have them.  in every other state in this country you can. what’s wrong with arizona???  i don’t want a 20 pound turkey.  they only had 3 fresh ones left (all over 30 pounds) and sent me over to the freezer area. i picked thru and found the smallest they had. got up to the cashier and turns out it’s $51.00. (organic)  and i wasn’t even sure it would fit in my oven. (oven sizes here are another topic. ) told the clerk no!. not paying for a 51.00$ turkey. She adjusted my bill, i returned to the butcher. who told me i should have ordered one. around and around we go. so i purchased a very nice sirloin steak wrapped in bacon and all the fixings for thanks giving dinner. 

          but i just couldn’t let it go.  steak and stuffings for thansgiving is just wrong!.  next day after running errands we stopped at Fry’s grocery. they only had frozen but we purchased a 12 pounder frozen solid. with enough soaking in hot water it thawed and we managed turkey for dinner. we’ve also had turkey for the last 4 days. enough. the rest is going into the freezer for soup. 

next year we’re eating out. 

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          both looms are warped and have items started (for next year).  have not touched a loom or even turned the lights on in the studio. came home last night, dropped the boxes of inventory in the studio, ate more turkey and took a nap. 

          but grrr’s been busy. he’s back to turning pens. they are stunning. (even if i prefer skinny ones.) gifted one to his eye dr. 

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          and Louie is fine. he’ll be fine until they start the roof. that will be a test of how well he deals with new stress.  he’s such a serious cat!. 




          the weather man kept saying rain. by wednesday morning 99 was flooded and i decided it was definitely a 'stay home day’.  you can watch the waves on the pavement out front of the house. and we again have garbage cans lined up in the patio.  There is a seam in the roof and somehow they just can’t get that sealed. as soon as it dries out i’m calling AGAIN.  good thing they offer a guarantee. 

          not sure i have my new medical coverage all figured out. got a call yesterday and was told to expect a packet in the mail. then got an acceptance letter from a company i never contacted. changed my drug coverage too. Wallgreens has been a big help. all the paper work and comparison prices on drugs just makes my eyes glaze over. 

          Tuesday grrr had more eye surgery. this was to remove the scar tissue that had formed from the cataract procedure.   they only did one eye. expect the other one done in a couple of weeks so we’re back on eye drops 4 times a day. he’s gotten so much better about letting me touch his eyes. no longer fighting me everytime i get near him. 

          the painter has been busy at the condo. he was done and then we changed our minds on one of the rooms. fortunately he was good sport about it. took a couple days off to work another job and came back to the last room. am expecting a call to come settle up the bill and do another walk thru. next comes calling a carpet cleaning company. 

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           last week a friend came over and she got me motivated to start threading pattern on the gilmore. finished the heddles and now to re-sley the reed. good project for a rainy day. Recommendation set is 24 and it’s way too dense. these are supposed to be baby blankets, not rugs. it’s a soft spun cotton and beautiful.  re-sleying at 18 and expect that i’ll run out of reed width before i use all the warp ends. poor planning. won’t be done in time for the craft sale but good start on next year. plan on a wool silk blend for weft. 

          am also working on tapestry samples in the evenings. just completed one using paper warp which really has a mind of it’s own, and different paper wefts. doesn’t lend itself to much detail in the design but interesting texture. so far only one warp has snapped. it’s strickly a sample to show you can use just abut anything. only depends how adventurous they are. Grrr told me it looks like a birds nest.  did a show and tell of small looms at the general meeting. so far have more than enough names on the class list. we’ll see how it works out in january. 

          took a monitoring class as the craft club. some of these clubs do things very differently. you can’t get in until a teacher shows up. they are the only ones who have the ability to unlock the front door. everything is locked up tight. every cabinet and drawer!  they also have security cameras all over.  makes me wonder whom they don’t trust. 

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          Louie has claimed the guest room and bed as his day time recreation area. Not sure what he’s watching but it got very intense. the afternoon sun shines on that bed and he luxuriates in the heat.  more often he looks like this. plus from that bed he can watch the traffic up and down the hall and keep tabs on where we all are. 

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            i completely relate to this guy. where has my sun shine gone?  pulled my only coat and scarf out of the closet this week. bought a pair of shoes without open toes than i can wear socks with and am sleeping in sweat pants and t-shirts. and i’m blaming it on all the folks who are putting up their christmas decorations before thanksgiving. it’s your fault!

          and as for the political scene. i’m putting my head in the sand. don’t believe anything is going to change and found this winnie the pooh cartoon that pretty much says it all. 

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Best News!

          Best News!  no surgery this year.  had an appointment with my favorite surgeon.  he had been called to the hospital so actually saw his PA, Valerie. Seems Michael whent back to what ever country he came from. too bad- he was great eye candy. 

         this is the knee that had a anterior cruciate replaced and tendons repaired about 30 some years ago. it’s been giving me problems for the last year.  had xrays taken and we talked about options for the future.  for now i’m getting cortisone shots. the feeling is this should hold things for while. then she told me i’m a good candidate for a new treatment that’s not quiet ready yet where they inject new fluid between the bones to replace the cartilage.  am feeling much better already. i can stand in the shower and the knee doesn't shift to compensate the sloping floor.  when that happens the pain is immediate and off the chart. right now it’s staying stable on it’s own. plus i’m sleeping better - no pain.  feeling so much better already. 

          I did make a start on warping the gilmore. every little bit of progress counts. 

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          but first i want to show off what Grrr made. he’s back into turning pens. it’s an acrylic of some kind and beautiful. he calls it a rope twist. i much prefer the skinny pens but it’s beautiful. 

          have been working on a written handout for the tapestry class. got it down to one page. Concise and simple. most of the class will be watch this as i do it and explain. the handouts mostly talk about warp and weft relationship. what works best and what doesn’t . still have more samples to make and of course i’ve got way more ideas than time. will post pictures of those at a later time. Spent time with a local couple that weave tapestry and used to teach here. They have amazing Navajo blankets and smaller tapestries all over their walls. they are donating plastic tubs of wool to the class. didn’t take it all. would have needed a truck. picked primarily teals, blues, rusts and oranges and box of browns. more than enough to get started. it’s a different size that what i have been using so that means even more samples. 

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          got this smaller quilt done on Lola.  all batiks and nothing fancy.  this quilt had Louie supervising from the side of Lola’s table. the photo shows him peering over the edge of the extra batting width.           

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          next mounted a huge opportunity raffle quilt for the quilt club and the backing is too short. am waiting for a rescue.  width is perfect. but the backing is exactly the same length as the top. HUGE!.  a very soft outdoor woodsy feel to it. plan on stitching leaf shapes all over. Contacted the owner who is across the country and when she gets back will deal with it. she’s contemplating removing the pale blue border. i disagree, it definately needs a border. (however it’s not my quilt).  we’ll discuss it when she’s back. 

this is why we live here!.

have a good week everyone. 

till next time. 

A Little of Everything this Week

          This week has really gotten away from me. not sure exactly what i’ve managed to accomplish. haven’t touched the un-warped gilmore loom. warp still hanging down the front.  

          have spent an ungodly amount of time on trying to make a clickable calendar to put the on weavers web site. maybe it’s time to contact the Mac club and ask for help.  i know it can be done. one of the clubs has a clickable google calendar but google likes pc’s.  i can create all kinds of calendars but the software turns them into pdf files and those are not clickable. any mac users out there willing to help let me know. 

          have also not been sleeping well. am stressed out over monday’s appointment with Dr Benoit about my knee.  one minute i think it’s not bad enough and the next i know that even thou it’s maybe not that bad it is unstable and it’s a good way to take a fall and hurt other body parts. and i don’t like hearing it grind. plus he’s going to ask me how my shoulders are and right now the left is very painful. got a shingles shot 3 days ago and it hurts a little more each day. grrr got one too and hasn’t even noticed. 

          Wednesday morning the thunder never let up. it like trying to sleep in a busy bowling alley. Grrr said it rained and showed me we still have a small leak in the patio. poor Louie kept trying to crawl inside my body. under the covers just wasn’t close enough. tried laying across my throat. he’s too heavy for that. finally crawled down into the bend behind my knees. i’d stopped his drugs about a week ago and he’d been doing so well. 

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          grrr has been busy in the garage. this is what he came in with. i love mine. but now i’m giving him a hard time about the fact that there is no inscription inside. he’s good but says he’s not THAT good. am also thinking these were his excuse to purchase a new polishing machine. but i still want an inscription.  i can wear this while weaving. my diamond gets hidden away during weaving as it catches and breaks warp threads. 

          have been spending time with Lola since i’ve gotten the electrical fixed. the lighting issue was operator. two switches and a remote all have to be synced. who knew? and the tablet needed a tighter plug. so i’m back in business. 

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          attended a quilt meeting and we’re discussing having a quilt booth at the farmers market in the Bell parking lot. They have a good size group of sellers and the parking lot is alwasy full on Thursdays. the club owns a tent and tables and those of us who wish to sell will be paying the club either a commission or flat fee (to be decided later) for the use of the equipment. after putting 11 pieces on consignment for the fall craft sale i still have a garment rack full of quilts. 

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          spent saturday at a wood show in Phoenix. WOW!  it was an event!  live music and food and some amazing wood art. grrr had entered a piece. don’t think he won any prizes but did get a $50.00 certificate for purchasing more wood. i took photos and nobody stopped me.  don’t know which piece won but we all voted. this was my # 1 favorite. Stunning!  The letter explained that it was originally supposed to be a tool chest for his wood shop but when it was done his wife claimed it.  not everything was furniture. 

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A huge varity of items and imagination. 

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a weaver friend from back home wrote to ask how “ ir Louie” was doing so we’ve changed his name. this cartoon is so accurate. i’ve learned not to shake my finger at him. puts him in instant attack mode. 





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          i’m complaining about being cold. it feels silly but i can’t believe how chilly 70 degrees is when you’ve acclimated to 110.  dug out socks and a jacket and have put an extra blanket on my bed. my bedroom has windows that won’t close and if it’s 45 degrees at night then so is my bedroom.   we know the windows in this house need replacing but i also know we’re going to start with these three.          

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          not much progress on things this week. Have the reed threaded with 600 ends at 24 epic and decided it’s wrong. too dense. will be re-sleying at 18. this is supposed to be a baby blanket not a board. 

          two quilter friends showed up and selected 11 quilts of assorted sizes to go to the fall sale in November. i have a garment rack of completed quilts they sorted thru. they’ve been here long enough to know what will sell and what probably won’t.  several of the choices surprised me but i’m a trusting soul.  i thought i was the only one who loved brown and black together.  they passed on some of the most bright colorful ones.  maybe next year.  so i’ve measured and lowered prices to what the market here will bare. Ouch! but i have so much inventory i need to make room or i need to stop producing. and that’s not likely to happen. 

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          finished the flying geese and passed it on to the group to bind and either sell or donate. ruler work is not my favorite but it seemed to be what this needed. 

          then did a scrap batik top. just did easy loop de loops with a variegated orange and red.  then moved on to a kids quilts of colorful cats.  

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          have a date for the next teacher gig.  january 15. wednesday afternoons will be basic tapestry. not Navajo. it’s a whole different animal. You can do navajo patterns but we will be using small card board or picture frame looms. i don’t own much wool so am begging wool left overs from fellow weavers and spinners. but this gives me time to get some samples made. 

          And Louie says Hi. He knows he’s not supposed to be laying on th guest bed but if he tries to look cute maybe i’ll rub his belly instead of making him move. unfortunately it works. 

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New Patio Floor

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          Louie dealt with being locked out of the patio rather well. moved his food and litter box into the studio and locked his cat door.  showed him where things were and he was ok with it.  was even brave enough to sit on the back of the sofa and watch the guys work - until they turned on the shop vaccuum. spent the rest of the day under the bed. On day 3 we moved his posessions back in and showed him the cat door was open. he’s a little hesitant about stepping on a shiny floor but his food bowl was empty this morning and he’d used the litter box so he’s out there. 

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          The quilters are now meeting in the bowling alley and had asked for Christmas place mats. have 2 done but in posting the photo i noticed the other one is going the opposite direction. will fix it before it gets handed over. they’re small so someone else can quilt them on a domestic machine and find a backing print. have another design in my head that needs graph paper work done before i start cutting. so it’s another possible set. 

          today i’m going to tackle that flying geese quilt top that’s on lola. it’s been there a week and i’m tired of looking at it. just going to do ruler work and grid lines. just ‘get’er done!’  

          also need to sort thru quilting threads. The thread here gets brittle and dry and Lola gets stubborn and i get cranky when the thread breaks every foot or so. time to sort my stash. i’ve talked to people about ways to save it or even if it can be used for piecing and have been shown and told about some awful examples of why you don’t do that. but it just hurts to trash what looks like perfectly good thread. 

          had a weavers meeting and retrieved 5 dish towels i sold off the blog from last week.  got some bath mats from 2 years ago re-qc’d.  have a date set for a teachers meeting next week. have committed to teach a taapestry class come the first of the year. had talked about starting when the beginning classes were done but then we’re into the holidays. so it’ll wait and i can get a couple samples done. had 35 members attend which is an improvement. covered the Christmas party, the arts and crafts fair and even the up coming Spinning Bee. 

          at the meeting one of our members gave a short talk about making baskets.  learned a lot about him.  he was a peace corp volunteer in Ecuador for a couple of years and lived with the indigenous indians who got him started on his basket making. They make double baskets. each basket is lined with a differently woven basket making very strong usable containers. i brought a selection of what i’ve made over the years to add to his show and tell. mine don’t have the good stories to go with them. 

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          and of course i can’t ignore Louie Louie. he tries so hard to fit into his cat perch. usually it’s a hind quarter that’s hanging out, not his head. that just can’t be comfortable but in the day light it does give him the best view of his neighbors. 



          off to warm up Lola. she’s running like a champ. i’ll show the geese quilt next time. it’s not one of my favorites. 



Towels are done!

          politics in this country is coming unhinged. makes me think about moving to Canada. now i hear that Russia is grooming someone to become a third party candidate in this coming election. i’ve started not believing anything i hear or read. 

          finally completed that towel warp. total of 17 dish towels!  assorted colors. the photo is of the last batch i removed, got hemmed and washed. took them to the board meeting and they got QC’d on the spot.  now all are up for sale. All are linen in plain weave.  sometimes a person just needs to get into the rhythm and throw the shuttle. not think. just weave. 


          Delivered  my last 2 quilts this morning. The quilters are having to evacuate the club room.  Bell recreation center is having major problems with main electrical feed. possibly closed for 6 - 8 weeks.  one member has a good size inclosed patio members will meet at on occasion. and when they need quilts quilted they will be delivering and picking up here at the house.  the group has a shortage of christmas place mats so will squeeze in a couple of sets to use up my holiday prints. 

         currently have a flying geese top mounted and can’t seem to make a decision as to how to stitch on it. Checked with pinterest. no help there. found lots of geese quilts and there is no consistency for quilting patterns. some have feathers, some have waves, some have just an all over stipple.  am thinking will do straight lines with rulers and grid work in the larger white spaces. i just noticed it’s upside down. 

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           almost completed  the weaving of this tencel scarf. the second on the same warp will be much more brown. and the big loom is waiting for more heddles. After doing the math (i actually counted heddles) for the next project of a baby blanket and am short 140 heddles. called Gilmore and they should be here any day.     

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          the temps are currently in the low 90’s. it’s perfect. and i must have acclimated to arizona. yesterday i wished i’d brought a long sleeve shirt. 

          Grrr and i met with a realtor at the condo yesterday. sounds like it’s the perfect time to sell except we have to get the place empty and repaint the large rooms. he recommended off white color.  he’s meeting with an estate sale guy and i’m calling the painter we’ve used before. 


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          the floor of the patio is being worked on as i type this.  putting the same acrylic stuff on it that the front patio has. which means Louie will be traumatized - again. his litter box, cat tree, food dishes, etc are all stashed around the studio and all the furniture is now outside and his cat door is locked against him. it’s only for 2 days but he doesn’t understand time. this is going to be hard on both of us. 

          he’s so territorial about the studio space i get tackled and bit every time i enter the room.  it’s a hassle to carry a spray bottle so i’ve started picking him up when he grabs me. (he hates to be picked up.) however it’s not working like i hoped it would. i hold him in my arms belly up and snuggle his stomach and he purrs. that’s not how this was suppose to go.  life is hard when you have a neurotic cat. for both of us. 



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          only one doctor appointment with grrr this week. and he was able to pick up his new glasses. i’m scared he’s expecting miracles. after all the surgeries and testing he still has macular so no matter how good the glasses are he’s not going to see like he did years ago. 

          somehow i thought i was going to have several stay home days this week. didn’t turn out that way. thursday morning was a bead meeting at bell.  and then we’re having the patio floor done with the same acrylic stuff we put on th front patio and friday the handyman will be here to take care of a bunch of things:  ceiling fan in guest room, moving the frig from the garage to the patio and fixing the door handle on the front door before it comes off in someone’s hand. Etc. 

          last week’s blog caused some interesting reactions and conversations. heard from people from long ago and received a stack of friend requests from names i’ve never heard of. those got deleted. the surprising thing was that people preferred to contact me either privately or thru email. only a couple used the comments on face book. but now everyone knows what i look like so you won’t be seeing me again. am back to showing every day stuff and Louie. 

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          this photo will be a center piece in a small quilt. i can’t believe how many times i had to rip parts out in order to make it right. am still in the process of cutting parts and pieces out for the blocks that will surround it. those colors are shown below.  the black background was a bad choice.  it has a very subtle pattern that only shows up in one direction. Oh well. didn’t see that problem coming. so i’m ignoring it. 

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          Have 8 more linen towels off the big loom and a gold/yellow tencel scarf started on the small loom. 


          Completed another large quilt for the club. It features western cowboys and Indians themes. did the best i could for a design that was appropriate. found lines that looked like they’d make good war paint and used that. Got that done and started a small one of my own. 

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          Ignore the towel on the floor. it’s to keep the machine oil off the carpet. i lay it out all neat and tidy and then Louie comes in and makes his nest. 

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          this is one of Louie’s hiding places. this or on top of the frig. when the vaccuum cleaner is running or when there are strange workmen in the house making loud noises and sudden movements. he supervises from up there. and when he decides to come down you can see just how much dust he’s collected because he spends the next 3 hours cleaning himself. 

till next time. 



          for years I’ve avoided putting my self on the internet.  have always been terribly self concious so i talk about and publish photos of my pets, my textiles, my living conditions and grrr.  


          one of the quilting groups i follow has a challenge going about posting photos of your self at least 20 years apart. looking back thru my history i don’t have many photos but have rounded up those that i have. i’m usually on the other side of the camera. 

          but here’s a few each about 20 years apart.  the back of the first photo tells me i’m about 4 years old. 


          this second photo is what i used for advertising weaving.  this was the front of my business cards.  my face has been super imposed over my glimakra draw loom. taken about the age of 30. 

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          the color photo was an ID card at a place of employment. i cropped out all the information; employee number, security clearance and finger print etc. taken about 40 years old. and maybe because it’s my own pictures i don’t see any relationship between the 4 year old and the 40 year old. 

           this next photo is my favorite of all time,. the one i’m most proud of. it was a huge event in my life. the hospital sent me two of these id cards. one for each shoulder. 

          and last but not least a current pix. this was taken by my Macintosh in low light (bedroom) while i was contemplating what exactly i was going to say on this blog. 


          lately i’ve seen multiple posts on one of my face book groups about getting old. suppose that’s what got this ‘ 20 year selfie’ thing started.  it’s bad enough my body reminds me every morning.  i’m seeing wrinkles, gray hair, extra pounds. i’m definitely not the cute, wild, skinny 25 year old any longer. 

          i’m not ok with my physical limitations. i have to pay attention to the amount of time i spend on the looms and standing at the long arm.  these are my passions. years ago the doctors warned me that every bone and joint i damaged (and there were a lot of them) would cost me in the future.  they did not warn me about my short attention span, poor memory, and faulty vision.  

          i’m surprised that i’ve actually made it this far. completely unexpected considering. . .   my belief is that it comes from genetics. as much as i did not like my mother i can thank her for this.  i can also thank her for my angry spirit, survival instinct and independent attitude -  but that’s another story.   i have a good and happy life from a bad start. not all of my years have been positive but age mellows decisions and attitudes and i’m proud of who i’ve become.

 I kno in my 70’s and thankful for my many blessings.