Saturday, November 26, 2011

finding it

"It's the last one in the store," he murmured, his voice low. "And I can't just give it to you because......"
"We'd be mobbed," I asked?
"Yes," he breathed. "And you can't go out that way, it'll make them go crazy."
"So, I'll have to exit the store, and come back around through the entrance." I calmly stated.
He nodded, stepping closer. Our hands brushed and I opened mine to see a folded square of paper;
A torn portion of a scratch and win coupon.
Desperate times call for desperate measures.
And adventure is where you find it.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

cold driving

I dashed across the parking lot, puddles shining neath the street light.
Into my car I dove.
On with the lights, the windshield wipers, the heat, the fan, the radio.
As I backed out of my stall and headed for the exit a litany of accidents were being recited.
Falling snow can make home seem very far away.
Toiling along with the throng, I watched as slushy rain transformed into large wet flakes of snow that seemed to come from a spot directly in front of my windshield. Like a star burst, the flakes spread out and out and out.
I can remember staring into oncoming snow as a child and feeling as though I were weightless and flying through space. Of course this is not the sort of thing a tired driver should ponder.
I switched stations and adjusted the heat.
In the past, attempting to stave off sleepiness on the homeward commute, I have tuned in to stations I don't like and programs that annoy, to jar myself into wakefulness.
Sadly, I have come to enjoy my usual default choices and they have lost their abrasive value.
Ah well, the season of cold air is descending upon us. A cold driver is an alert driver. Break out the mini gloves.

pressing in

I mark time by the passing of Guild meetings. This past year, I have clung to our monthly challenges like a drowning man to a log. Having some small project to work on has been healing and joyful.
I actually finished the November challenge early because I knew my spare time was going to be a scarce commodity as the month wound down, or up as the case may be.
I pieced and sliced and stitched and pressed.
I gripped the edges of the little quilt and roared all over the surface with machine quilting. Hmmmm, not bad, only picked out two sections.
A day or two passed. My little quilt winked and glowed on the fireplace mantel.
Then last evening, as I perused notes taken almost a month ago, my eyes fell on the November Challenge criteria--- must be a variation of nine patch,check, must contain GREEN. Oh oh.
No green.
I squinted at the tiny print in vain.
Absolutely no green.
Now a challenge isn't a challenge if it doesn't meet the criteria.
I toyed briefly with appliqueing a green leaf in the centre.
Then it struck me.
This mini quilt is an object lesson.
I had toiled away, oblivious that I was missing some of the information. Some of the necessary information.
Time was short, life was pressing in, and something was lost in the translation.
There in lies the real challenge. I must remember the criteria, what is the necessary, the important. And that will take the challenge out of the challenging.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

and to all a good night

Magnetic camels from a child friendly nativity set roam forever on the door of my fridge. The star has been put away so they are not making much headway.
I hadn't noticed until this evening that Christmas is never completely put away at our home.
Blown glass stars catch the light in my living room window.
A copper cookie cutter star glints on my china cabinet shelf.
A nativity set is always available for the grandchildren......
A Christmas cactus is blooming its heart out, a splash of festive pink.
A large wreath of curling birch bark adorns a bathroom wall.
And, the post-it notes on my fridge have a tumbling snow man awaiting my shopping list.

The Carpenters have just sung the last triumphant notes of Ave Maria.
Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night.

worth a try

I sewed this evening to the poignant strains of "Oh Little Town of Bethlehem."
Later, after foraging in the fridge, I sat dreamily snacking on crisp watermelon cubes as I listened to "I'm dreaming of a White Christmas."
Suddenly, as though wakening, I became aware of the strange juxtaposition of watermelon and Christmas carols.
We listen to Christmas carols all year at our house, and it seems the last few years that watermelon is available year round too. Seasonal treats both and yet they "work" together. Maybe that's why they do.
A friend suggested spaghetti squash and ice-cream as possible partners tonight. A sort of deconstructed version of pumpkin pie a la mode.
These unlikely duos abound.
Swedes skinny dip in snow banks.
Iced tea tastes great steaming in a mug. Hot lemon anyone?

I wonder what other festive combinations are worth a try?

solidly modern

Our October guild challenge was to make a Modern Quilt, using only solids.
My stash was woefully lacking in solids. I did have a striped fabric though, which I was able to slice and dice.
Presto, solids appeared.
I knew I had succeeded when my modern quilt met with the approval of my modern daughters.

whisper of coming winter

November morning.
Frost has whitened every roof top.
Roses and fever few are blooming amongst the tangle of drying, gold tipped foliage. All things scarlet and golden have replaced the greens and pinks of summer.
In the back yard, the fig tree is resigning itself to the coming of winter. The upper leaves still reach crisply for the light, but the lower ones will be snatched away on the next windy day.
The morning clouds of peach and gray are giving way to high blue skies, clear and fresh.
I love autumn days. The richness of color, the whisper of coming winter.