Saturday, June 23, 2018

Another Summer.... a writing prompt story

THIS WEEK'S WORDS  provided by sunday whirlagig come from "Five Chinese Verses" by Wendy Xu: toe, gate, glint, while, gaze, text, dimming, cooling, taste, sweltering, without, forward

 My offering is:

Another summer on the farm

She hadn't been to the farm in a whole year.

She still remembered the feel of the place though.
She started looking forward to it last month, while she was finishing up grade 6 and tired of learning.

She came nearly every summer as she grew up,  to visit her gran, to get out of the city and her mother's hair, to experience country life. Her mom drove along the lane approaching her summer home, the safety and happy place gran provided. She loved the way the sun sparkled through the leafy trees along the long drive to the door. It sparkled like fairy dust in her mind, like she was entering a magical place.

This year she would ride the horse by herself she decided. She would eat half the blackberries she picked, she would kiss that boy on the farm next door. She was 12 and old enough to do lots of things here. She gazed out at the fields seeing it all looked the very same as last year, grasses waving to her in welcome, sun glinting off the metal barn roof, cat resting in the shade of one wall.

It was hot here, no doubt about it, she remembered the feel of cotton shirts sticking to her sweaty back after helping gran in the garden. The sweltering heat of July.

She remembered the creek nearby was great for cooling off after playing in that sun. While the  creek rushed over rocks, she carefully stepped from one rock to another trying not to slip into the cold water or step on a fish. Those million little fish playing in cool water.

She loved the freedom gran gave her. She felt like an equal, like she was an adult with so much freedom. Gran said to choose wisely, then trusted her to do so. So she did.

She thought about taking a book to that old tree with the arms. She loved being half hidden, swatting away flies, dreaming of boyfriends to come, reading adventures in a book and imagining herself living them. She swung her feet on each side of the branch, toes still damp from the creek, pink polish on the nails. She always loved pink. She remembers buying her first lipstick here at the 5 and dime, bonnie bell pink lip smackers. She looked great in that. She left it here because her mom felt she was too young for make-up but gran didn't mention it if she noticed.

She gazed out at the fields again, seeing the little gate to gran's driveway ahead! I'll bet gran is baking cookies for me, she thought, and could almost taste them. Those big fat ones with sugar on top. One last text to her best friend Whitney to say good bye for the summer. Gran preferred them to live old school here, no devices and secretly she agreed it was kind of nice to just be there.

Just her and gran. Equals. Oh she loved gran! Just two women playing cards on the porch at night,  or singing along with gran's fiddle. Or going into town to a square dance. Yes, that's where she'd kiss that farm boy alright... behind the dance hall after they danced and had some punch.

She was happy to see everything looked the same, clothes on the line needed her to take them inside. She liked to know life would always be just the same here so she could relax, knowing what to do and what not to do. Life was so complicated at home right now.

She hoped her mom would just drive off quickly without a big show of telling her to be good.  She wanted to start the good times, to put her shorts and t-shirts in her dresser with the cracked mirror, to put out her drawing stuff on the little desk in her room.

Her mom was going through a difficult stage and annoyed her right now.

Finally, we're here! She waved to gran from the open car window...

Thursday, June 21, 2018

I Like Thursday #94

L to R, yours truly, Diann from little Penguin quilts and Sharon Engel, award winning quiltmaker
Welcome to this week's list of likes. Let's start with meeting up with friends!
Through blogging, I have met some mighty fine and fun people, and here are two of them.
The picture was taken by Sharon's husband at the outdoor quilt show this past weekend in Berthoud, Colorado.

We three, Drew Milo and I headed north to the town of Berthoud. It was known in 1900 as a town to help one heal lung conditions, and is now known as a flower center. This show was small but nice in a shady park.
I've never been to Sisters Oregon but it was terrific to see quilts hanging in nature.
Diann blogs from littlepenguinquilts.  We met she and her husband on a trip to Boulder last Spring and have a lot in common. She's so easy to be friends with! We walked around looking at lovely work, some we'd like to try, some we just admired.
Sharon is an award winning quilter, freshly back from Paducah show where one of her recent quilts was shown. What a fun person to know! She was with her husband and daughter, and we all got along famously! Sharon has jollied me along this move, listening and making me laugh when I was closer to tears!
Milo makes a friend

Milo gave them both two paws up!
I liked this santa quilt, and several made with repro well as this modern flower...
great way to use large blocks!
Tired? When we all went separate ways mid day, we continued on to town for a rest
and a bite of lunch amid lush flowers
it was cooked on this... just kidding!
cool outdoor gas stove from days gone by. I like a gas stove but....
I had fun looking thru an outdoor antique store after lunch... remind you of the 60's?
 fancy french cookware from some fancy restaurant I guess...
a few vintage gnomes...  Kind of wanted the rolling trays below
hard work for some...
a small pail with rollers attached
and playtime for others
I love looking at items from years ago, wondering what the people were like that held them
I like old homes too, especially this little house now a barber shop...
Who lived there???
look closely... think it's haunted?
 Now this seems to remind you of time gone by, repairing a clock instead of buying a new one
I love alleyways... behind old homes are cool alleys

We all liked the Italian Ices
Mine was creamsicle  YUM, my favorite flavor of popsicle growing up! Drew got Mango, and Milo had some of each, declaring, well I'll let him tell you
MILO: " is this what you've both been eating while I have kibble?!!! Wha'  the heck! And why didn't you get me one? Not one of the kid size y'all got, I mean POODLE sized? What are you thinking..."

ER, maybe we won't let Milo speak at the moment... I've heard people say they wonder what their dog is thinking... not me... from what I hear in my mind already.
I'll finish my likes with this flamingo-in-a-stump, of course!
Milo's Moment: I loved being with my pawrents and meeting new friends and Aunties! 
I like the sweet icy stuff, and watching kids at the pool...
they won't let me swim... that's profiling at it's worst. I never pee in a pool.
I like shade, and will on occasion pee on these kinds of bushes
LeeAnna's likes... sunset colored roses!!!
Gosh Mama! You had your turn... just because you forgot... okay she also loved the way this tree was trimmed...
and because I love her, I'll let her jump in my post!
Now, stay! clickety click on her links to friends also keeping it pawsitive today!



linking to some of these
Our World Tuesday
Travel_Tuesday  Our World Tuesday

  http://sky watch Fridays
Thankful Thursdays pet parade
willy nilly Friday (random images)
habbyartboutique fridays

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

A Home of our own

 We found a house, hooray!

Nothing about this move from Maryland to Colorado has gone as planned but it seems we finally have a place to call home in Aurora.

We thought we had a home last fall but the deal fell through because the sellers had not disclosed it was owned by a trust and would not release the trust info. We thought we had the rental as long as needed but the owners decided to sell in this hot market. We soon found out how hot it was.

We looked at so many homes trying to find the right one. When we lost bid after bid to cash, 30K over value, appraisal bridges, multiple offers, our agent said, stop looking for the right house and take any house. 

Then this one came back on market because interest rates went up and the buyer had to back out. We were looking at it when the call came in the house we bid on the night before, had three offers over our bid at asking price.

I wrote a note to the owners, "we love it, we'll take it, please choose us, leave the elephant" and put in a bid at asking price.
They accepted!
They had lovely artwork including a 220 lb ceramic elephant from India.
We were nervous through each stage of negotiating, appraisal (it was priced right!) inspection (the usual things including radon mitigation so we chose a few items to request and they agreed to some) loan and interest rates, taking a loss on the MD home to sell quickly, and all the paperwork to close the deal. After losing the other house one week before closing, I didn't want to discuss this until it was a done deal.

Our home may not be our dream house, but it's pretty, close to work, there is a lot of walking nearby, a porch on the front and back, and a larger yard waiting for us to make it into a haven.
We are all uneasy in it at the moment. I've been trying to clean it so I can put away my possessions. I need to make lots of decisions about where to store things differently than I have in the last 18 years.

The studio situation is two small bedrooms side by side, one for tables and design wall, one for supplies. Not optimum but with a bit of mountain view on a clear day.

I realized my old systems may not work in this house, so I have to open my mind to designing new ways to store things. Big changes might be stimulating but they are also tiring.

Right now it's empty with big running places for Milo, who is scared and staying right next to me.
He goes off to explore the yard, then quickly returns to stick to at least one of us. We are trying to figure out what the trees and bushes are so we know how to care for them
The movers will bring our possessions to the house and we'll find places for them in the days to follow. We'll need to put up wire mesh first to keep Milo inside the yard! And learn how to keep the lawn alive with watering.

That's a big deal here.

The sky has not been blue in a while, with forest fires in Utah coming over, and rain, and hail.
We are so tired. But we are grateful not to be looking for another rental. We hope this will be a good  home for us, a place to learn and grow, a place of happiness and joy, a base from which to explore the area, a place for friends to gather and for me to create.
I've been bringing over flamingos, cows and mermaids, to make it look like home. Just wait til these Coloradoans realize a Flamingo is moving into the 'hood.

We even have a mailbox in front of the house, pretty unusual these days...

The past year has been so stressful and the housing market in Denver is so cut throat for buyers, that we fell into despair with the looming deadline to vacate the rental. It's not over by a long shot...
This may not be our dream house, but it's a good house and we are grateful to have it.

 I have been supported by many of you through this ordeal, giving me hope when mine had run out, encouraging me to keep trying.
 I love you and appreciate the connection we've shared, it's what life is about to me.

Sunday, June 17, 2018

writing prompt A chance to sparkle

The words above came from SundayWhirl writing prompt this week... here is my offering...

                                                  A chance to sparkle
This was her shot at the big time!

As far back as she remembered she wanted to act on Broadway, and here she was with a herd of other actors, waiting for their names to be called.

("stop fiddling with your hair" she heard her mom say in her head)

She could hardly catch her breath... she must not forget the words to the audition song. She feels so alone here in NY with her family all back in Minnesota. Should she call her mom now? Just a quick call to hear her say, "honey, you are the best actress I ever gave birth to!"  Her mom is so supportive, she never forgets to send treats to the apt here, so she doesn't feel so lonely.

Dad is her protector from all harm.  He checked all locks on the apt door and reminded her to take care of herself while walking around the city.

He has always been her rock.

After talking to him, she stands a little taller, she feels more capable. He taught her what it means to have integrity. He taught her that a person might be able to get away with a misdeed but they will not feel real pride unless they do the right thing.

He believes in her.

Because they believe in her talent to succeed, she feels like she is standing on a firm foundation to build her life.
She can do this! She's GOT this.

If this is not her gig, she knows a role will come along for her because this is her passion in life.

Take a breath! Remember the dance moves, she's done them a million times. She knows what she's going to do.

Please let me not fall as I pass the director, please please, please let me remember the words to the song and get this part! It's so perfect for me.

I need the money. I need to believe this is my place, my future, my now.

Later I can cry, or laugh, but for now, I must be terrific! I must wow them, give them something to remember.

Sparkle! It's not enough to have passion, you must show passion... share passion with others.

What? Was that my name, I mean number? Is it my turn? Sparkle! Breathe. Show them who you are!

(thank you for reading my words... I have many older stories on this blog, written from my heart, under the category 'writing for pleasure', HERE
One of my favorites is " Litter of Extroverts"... link: -litter-of-extroverts-short-story-

linking to  

Friday, June 15, 2018

turquoise is lovely

Turquoise is the color of the month at Rainbow scrap challenge. It's one of my very favorite colors.

I did a slightly larger Dresden from the scrap bin...
Look at the little scissors, and the fish, the planets.
When you are looking at color sometimes it's hard to tell... blue? Turquoise?
That's why a mix is fun.

cut offs from Dresdens
other turquoise stuff around here...
turquoise scraps in a clear bin

brown scraps in a turquoise bin
empty bins in turquoise

sharp turquoise things plus a spray bottle
IPAD cover
Irish chair   "Paddy O'Furniture
and turquoise words from a turquoise pen on a turquoise mouse rug!

linking to these fun parties!
design wall Mondays at smallquiltsanddollquilts
 scrap happy Saturdays
sewcanshe Saturdays
whoop whoop friday

Thursday, June 14, 2018

I Like Thursday #93

Welcome to this week's list of likes... so many.... from garden centers to videos to dogs playing on a hot summer day... Let's get started.
 I liked the cloud's intense color and highlights on our sunset walk this week. It looks like a painting to me.
This statue for the garden made me happy this weekend
 I used to go to the garden center in MD just to see all the colors, so this weekend we checked out ones in Aurora and Parker.
Mr and Mrs gnome will welcome you in to share the beauty with me...
Now I know what to do with Milo's rock collection.
BTW, I had a miracle moment this week when Milo urped up a rock he swallowed on Friday night. We were visiting with our neighbor when he grabbed another rock. I tried to get it out of his mouth but he rolled over and swallowed it. We looked for it hoping he hadn't and waited a couple days watching for signs of distress. Then on a walk, out it came, thank God! What a blessing.

I've tried to stop him from picking them up, when I see it I pull them out of his mouth, but I just don't know short of electo-shock therapy how to stop him.
Back to the garden center... look at these cobra hoses.

Wild right?

Then there were the guardians...

and the peaceful
and all the flowers!!!
So dramatic! I could do patterns like this and people would say it wasn't realistic. Thanks Mother Nature... hope we can take care of all you've given us
beautiful pots too heavy to lift!
cool fish to swim through the flowers
Love the design of this modern, yet timeless pot.

Clay, rock, and artistic!

enormous blooms

 ski chair

 I liked learning to fold a towel into a sea turtle at a neighbor's house while our dogs played.
The 9 year old daughter was learning to do it so she could show her class in a demo.

She was highly distracted and having a hard time paying attention to the video so I had her teach me.

Mine is on the left, and the mom said she saw monkeys from folded towels too...
I liked sharing the moment with them while Milo played.

We also went to some neighborhood yard sales and met the most astounding people! From the man from Louisiana playing cajun music to the massage therapist I want to become friends with (when we were leaving I said I will need your number so we can become best friends and she said, but of course! And got her card, when I found out she was a therapist! ) to the two couples who moved in next to each other when the houses were built, to the woman who used to juggle at the Renaissance Festival.

We bought an entertainment center from a man who "adopted" a boy who's father was killed in the line of duty as a policeman, what heart.
Look at the antique sewing chair I found, but didn't purchase
sure hope that didn't go to goodwill. I suggested if she didn't sell it to send it to Smithsonian! Or to historical society in Arvada.

Milo's Moments
I like yard sales too.... I met lots of people and dogs, and ate more than a few chips dropped on the ground!
  I met this dog, staying over at her neighbors... it was hot and she was older but we laid around 

and tousled then just laid around together. 

It's nice to just be with friends even if you aren't doing a lot, right?  
Mama's friends are also writing "I  Like" posts, wanna see?



linking to some of these
Our World Tuesday
Travel_Tuesday  Our World Tuesday

  http://sky watch Fridays
Thankful Thursdays pet parade
willy nilly Friday (random images)
habbyartboutique fridays