Thursday, January 23, 2020

I Like #177

from inside the train station in Cheyenne WY
Welcome to this week's list of likes.
Let's hope I can figure out dh's computer to write this and show pictures!
I love old homes and architecture.
in Cheyenne
apparently it's been cold for a very long time!
they do boot statues in WY
butterfly bench in children's area of Botanic Gardens
I liked the dragonfly bench at the children's area
hand puppet area
I liked the huge planters for eyes on this wall
this bench is even too small for me!
tree bench
Peacock bench
I liked this quote:
From an English translation of Don Quixote: "All I know is that while I'm asleep, I'm never afraid, and I have no hopes, no struggles, no glories — and bless the man who invented sleep, a cloak over all human thought, food that drives away hunger, water that banishes thirst, fire that heats up cold, chill that moderates passion, and, finally, universal currency with which all things can be bought, weight and balance that brings the shepherd and the king, the fool and the wise, to the same level."

Kansas City library list of fairy tales for adults

this was from a post about their library doing a challenge to read 10 books in different genres.
A little backstory on me:
I spent some time in acupuncture treatments for allergies/sensitivities, and couldn't go home right after so I stopped at the library. I went up and down each aisle pulling a book from each aisle to peruse for a couple hours. It was life changing. I especially liked the big overview books on a topic like castles, or orphan trains, written for kids. I learned a lot in a short time.

I was looking for old movies or tv shows to watch at lunch one day. I started with saying, "old movies" to the remote. Long story and search later, I found the Donna Reed Show on tubi on demand. 
I started series one, episode one and even dh laughs at the show. It was rare that a woman carried the show, it was focused on a woman, it took on topics that are still important, it was funny not silly or slapstick. There were a lot of episodes made to watch too.

I'm looking forward to using these library books!
I know when a bandana goes on, I'm going with my peeps for a rideinnacar. I liked hanging out with them on Saturday. I couldn't go in the art gallery here because the shop dog didn't like other dogs.
hmph. I worried that Mama wouldn't find her way back out to me.
I like to keep my wits about me on walks, and like to keep watch of other people out walking. I made Mama stop while I hid behind this tree to keep an eye on the guy back there. Oh sure, she pulled on the leash and said "come on Milo" which could have given my hiding place away, but I stayed til the guy was well ahead of us.
you're welcome.

now sit! stay! visit mama's peeps also keeping I LIke lists and tell her if you wrote one too! She'll add your name in


Tuesday, January 21, 2020

together tuesdays


I didn't have a lot of interesting meetings this week, sorry to say.
I am in mourning as my computer died. It had been showing signs of old age (as many of us do) but soldiered along. Then one morning, it  wouldn't wake up. It seemed to die peacefully in it's sleep after upgrading it. Oh I tried the usual resuscitation techniques, and it briefly lit up only to finally leave us.

This computer was bright red, and with me for a long time. We shared so much, it brought me to writing in the modern day as the keyboard was great for my hands. I am temporarily using my husband's computer but the configuration is all wrong. I have a very difficult time using the keyboard and need to constantly correct miss hit keys, and it makes my shoulders hurt. The hope is that my husband who saved the contents the day before actually saved the pictures and info I had stored there.
Don't get me wrong, I'm glad to have one, and to keep moving but I am in serious mourning as the newer laptops all have the keypad like my husbands.
Change is not always good.

1. Gloria and her son.
I met Gloria when we first moved into the neighborhood. Her black lab and Milo love each other, and I liked Gloria from the start. She is very busy however, so we don't see each other enough. She is a breath of fresh air here in this area. For the last two weeks I've been thinking of her a lot, then she called.
I think some people are mentally connected like that.
We got together yesterday at her home, and picked up conversation like we'd just been together instead of it being 6 months. Our lives are so different but we have a grand time sharing them.
I met her 17 year old son, and he was also a bright spot. Instead of being bored and sullen, he was funny and engaging and able to converse with us.
He recently got his driver's license and an older car. I told him I remembered getting my license on my 16th birthday, wanting intensely to be independent of my parents for even an hour, but having to use their car to do it. I felt exhilarated but also frightened to drive that big car alone, like, should I be driving by myself?
He said he feels the same way!
Across the age difference, across gender, across experience, we connected in shared feelings!

2. We finally went exploring a bit last weekend and drove up to the capitol of Wyoming, Cheyenne.

 It was like turning back time, and driving into a Western movie. I am sorry I can't rave about it, because it felt dead like some towns that used to thrive but fell on hard times. The brochure I was reading in the car, said "shopping galore!" and we found a downtown full of closed businesses, with floating trash and cigarette butts.
Apparently the town started in 1867 with the coming of a railroad stop, flashed to life with the cattle business, then 20 years later that fell apart with a blizzard that killed the cattle. All the mansions built with momentary riches fell into disrepair, and the townsfolk tore them down. The lovely historic tour brochure with it's many dots on streets and descriptions, were of places no longer there.

We started our trek at the train station, where there was a rally for women's rights. It was crowded with men and women, in the  nicely restored building. I  thanked the organizers for keeping the dream of equal rights alive. As I looked at a table of pamphlets a young man who might have been developmentally delayed asked loudly, "were you just on stage?
I replied no and smiled.
He snorted with a laugh, and said, well you LOOK like someone who was!A short connection but in that moment I felt something... I don't know what. Maybe I wish I'd been on stage.

The clerk in the gift shop for the station said she grew up in Cheyenne. She looked to be maybe 60-ish, wore very tight jeans, a western shirt, high stilletto heals, and a LOT of make up for 11 AM. She was friendly and talkative about her city when I asked what to see there, "You should come during Western days" she raved!

She said a couple of her many siblings moved away but most of them still lived here like she does, and she LOVES living here. 
after looking around a bit, we wanted to leave and drive the extra hour to Laramie as University towns usually have lots to see, but the road was closed due to snow and high winds.

The art dealer said winter was awful here. His shop was in the old doctor's house and office, for the railroad workers. While I was there it made a lot of noise startling me. He said it was built by drunken railroad workers so...
He had bronze statues out front that cost $120,000 ! I wondered who there would purchase such an expensive statue. Twice the cost of my first house.

We spent the day there, walking around, then went to the botanic gardens for a bit, and to a quilt store and I read up on it's history on the two hour drive home.The town was wild and dangerous when it began and still is one of the most dangerous places to live in the area.

3. the third interaction was with Onyx, Gloria's lab. I took her some rabbit treats as she injured her ACL and is not allowed to run. She is usually a bit wary of people, but she welcomed me and the bag of treats into her home.
 She shares the house with 4 cats, so I gave a treat to one cat who sniffed it. "Sniff..... Sniff.... Sniffsniffsniffsniffsniffsniff...." while Onyx watched. Suddenly mid-sniff, Onyx walked over and ate it. I laughed. Two other cats playfully took turns punching each other. I was kind of amazed that this household with 4 cats, one lab and some fish all lived in harmony.

Saturday, January 18, 2020

sewing saturday... which way do we go?

5 blocks on the design wall
I sewed this week on a couple projects with bright green scraps, for the rainbow scrap challenge.
this means pulling down the stringy mess of that box of leftovers and sorting through to find the lightest and brightest of my scrap greens that are the right size.
I have wanted to try this paper pieced pattern of crazy geese for a long time now, so I went to my old sew precise software, found the blocks and printed them out to finish at 6" square.

It takes a while to sew these, because the angles are all wonky, and when you paper piece then flip the fabric over, sometimes it doesn't cover the area. But I still like doing it a lot.
the back of one block
I finished the susan wiggs book on disc while sewing these.... cute fabrics but very odd and busy with the four blocks next to each other. Not quite what I hoped it would look like.
I'm thinking I should have chosen maybe one or two blocks to repeat. I don't love the skinny ones.
It might look cuter with different colors, so I'll do it another couple months in other colors before abandoning the project.
For now, it was fun.
The other project I made, I  L O V E
I'll show it next week maybe, but it came out so much better than I expected, and it makes me clap my hands when I look at it! That feels nice!

Thursday, January 16, 2020

I like Thursday #176

Welcome to this week's list of likes! I like poodles (don't most people?) so when I saw these on sale at Pier One last weekend, well, one to keep and one to share with my poodle loving friend Diane, who has two white poodles!

I liked being able to take Milo to Pier One too, and he sniffed and looked at every shelf within reach!
All the clerks had to pet him too, so he felt like a very important poodle.
The garden center in a nearby town also had a Christmas sale, so I got this lovely BIG snowflake to hang over the mantel
I like glitter
I also got this winter planter on sale, and plan to corral some stuff on the desk!

Trader Joe's often has the prettiest flowers, and this time they are the most delicate shades of pink roses! Heavenly!
They also had two baked goods I like, that cinnamon bread is moist and yummy toasted with butter.
I love getting mail, and Monika sent me a gorgeous pair of poodle earrings and this beautiful hand painted card, that, ahem, has glitter on it! It's on display next to the Baltimore cow.

Oh what a lovely surprising week it was! My good friend Pat in NY sent cow fabric. She said it called my name, so she had to send it.
Oh my heart! Artsy cows, and cute staring cows! They were still moo-ing my name as they got here! Now how to best use such perfect fabric?
I also loved getting two bags of lovely scraps, including so many half square triangles, of all blues and greens from my Maryland friend Ellen. Out of the "blue"! I felt so rich in friends this week!

I liked TV again this week, the bachelor, two new shows on PBS, a dating show where the two people meet doing a choreographed dance! How fun! This is Us and the Good Doctor are back, yea!
Howard's End is a wonderful period piece, and Sanditon is a Jane Austen work being finished for the show by a current writer. So good!!!

I know tomorrow is all about Painting and drawing, but I loved finding a new drawing class on my alma mater, YoutubeU  lol. I even ordered the book right away, and found a brand new sketchbook to draw in. More tomorrow!
I am so enjoying my current two books. One on disc by Susan Wiggs has characters who are figuring out a family mystery that took them from VA to France. The nightime book is the latest Rhys Bowen spyness book, so delish I can't wait to get to it every night!

this applies to all people, especially artistic souls... wisdom here!

Milo's Moment
I love all these toys equally... the best!
 Mama, I wrote all about my likes on Tuesday, (read about me here) tell all your peeps to go see that. I was highly entertaining as only a poodle can be! Oh, yea, I like all of you guys too!

Now sit! stay! and visit mama's friends who kept a list of likes this week too! And if you write your own list, tell mama and she'll add you in!


Tuesday, January 14, 2020

together tuesdays

1. Milo here: I had a nice connection this week! Mama and I were having another uneventful walk, and I was sniffing every bush and trunk for my "pee mail" when I heard Mama say, look!
That always means something interesting is somewhere nearby.
I turned and there was the growly little white car I bark at! (mail truck) and...
the guy got out and walked by and put something at another house, then smiled at me on his way to the growly car. He stopped and I looked up up up (he's tall) and he smiled at me and reached out his hand. I looked and looked, then danced around, hopping from one place to another, laughing and touching his hand, then darting away. Game was on! Don't let the guy touch you while you touch him with your nose! He was fun but had to go too soon.

2. When we moved into this house, another family 4 houses down moved in their house the same day. They invited us over for 4th of July party, and we really liked them. When we ran into her over the holidays she said a couple of neighbors next to her were meeting up at the Tavern and would we like to come? I said yes! She texted us the time and day.
when the evening came, dark and very cold, we questioned going. I said, lets go for a while at least.
There were four couples and all very nice and fun, well traveled and kind. It felt very nice to be included and we all decided the next outing of our little group should be comedy  night.
We long to be part of a group like this, so fingers crossed it will continue.

3. This weekend we took it easy, starting with a garden lecture on xeriscaping. Milo loves going here, so he was highly disappointed when we just sat and stared at a man talking.
Milo: what the fizzy happened to my peeps? Usually they don't just sit and stare except at night at the "talky-talk" (TV) I entertained myself with a little boy, then chewed the lid off the water bottle, then had to actually jump up on Mama to walk around and sniff stuff. I wanted to look through the dog stuff, and found a great ball with the loudest speaker ever! Funny though, when I started squeaking it, all the people turned to see me which was great as Mama rushed me out of the area and we walked around which was much more fun than staring.

LeeAnna here, Milo was a magnet for people that day. One little boy who looked like he much preferred running around with Milo, reached for him, smiling a tentative smile, turning into a grin as Milo leaned on him. I could tell the boy really wanted a dog, but his dad said, "be still" He longingly looked at Milo the rest of the time, petting him when Milo came close. I was reminded that people will open up to dogs even when other people frighten them. Another woman came up with a very old teensy poodle, and said her 5 year old standard would have caused a scene so he was left home. but she loved him.
at the music store with Dad where I petted a lot of people

4. the last meeting really affected me....we were having lunch at Panera and Milo ignored his food in favor of getting a plate of sandwiches like ours. A couple walked by and stopped,  staring at him. I am training Milo to reach out to nice people by sitting and shaking paws. He went over and leaned on the woman, who melted into smiles.
Turns out, they lost their very old lasso apso a year ago and they were just emerging from mourning. We all related the loss and the need to love again. She and I were so sympatico, and conversation flowed like honey between the four of us, punctuated by Milo's antics. She is at that stage where you begin opening to the possibility of  risking loving again. I can't explain all the important topics we covered, from training a dog to the state of the world today, but it was like we knew each other.
Ever met someone who felt like that?
When they reluctantly decided to go on and let us finish lunch, she asked to hug me.
Yes, yes of course.
When they thanked me for talking with them, I said "of course! That's what life is, these connections. The rest is just spackle" and both husband and wife grinned and agreed.
Of course I didn't have my cards on me, so I told her of my blog, as a way of continuing the contact. I hope she does contact me sometime. If not, she and her husband enriched our lives by just this meeting with them.

Saturday, January 11, 2020

sewing saturday

at least I'm sewing again. It was really hard to find my sewing mojo after the holidays and being sick.

I decided to try Bonnie Hunter's lozenges pattern for the rainbow scrap challenge this year. Free on her blog, I printed it out.
decided to make them bigger at 3.5" X 6.5"  scrap color, and 2" squares.

The color this month is light or bright green... most of my numerous green scraps are dark or muddly. Hmmmm... it occurs to me I have not been replenishing the scraps for a while.
To transfer the bits to the sewing machine, I made a felt board with a piece of cardboard that came under cans of green beans (appropos no? ) and leftover gray felt taped to the back.
this is going to work fine.
they look odd because I'm not going to sew them together now, I want to totally mix colors. The light and dark squares are not just black and white, I used really light, or really dark colors. I think it might look fun when done, hopefully like Bonnie Hunter's picture!

I got a surprise New Year's gift from my friend Diane in Texas... lookie at the fun Christmas fat quarters! Thanks so very much Diane!
 Linking to

scrap happy Saturdays

Friday, January 10, 2020

The Monet Exhibit

meeting a bigger than life Monet as we entered
it's not easy getting timed tickets to the Monet exhibit in Denver. Then driving there, finding parking, walking distances to the actual door, etc. We did it, and on our appointed time were handed devises to listen to curators discuss the work. It took over two hours to see it all!

the show was so large, organized by places he lived and worked, and styles. I loved one of these early paintings done from a high vantage point in Paris. Most painters of the time used a lower viewing point.  Aren't the frames magnificent? Note all the people, and mood, and pale colors.
I noticed he chose to almost always center his horizon line, to mute colors, to manage to add details while being abstract, and to mix pure color on the brush so that each dab of paint blended but not totally the colors.

I'm including detail shots, and was lucky enough to get very close to see brushstrokes. The guards were not like the ones at the National Gallery of Art in DC.
Monet was fascinated by nature, and frustrated by working outside painting in real time as the light is constantly changing his view of subjects.
He went out in all weather, always observant, blurring the lines between object and reflection, using almost the same intensity of color for reflection as object, so that the sky was often seen under the horizon only in the reflections.
forcing the viewer to choose where the object is and where the reflection is

The detail in each leaf, the composition was entrancing in this one to me

I admit I loved the ones painted in Italy.
I stopped a long time to absorb the gentle field scene with these children

this one fascinated me for the sun, painted with a strong spiral of thickened paint
The last galleries were of his time in Giverny, water lilies and bridges. He began to paint for an hour, then take breaks. He obsessively designed and redesigned his garden, even rerouting a river despite the objections of his neighbors.
He was a man driven to paint. He shared a love of light with his contemporaries, learned from them, respected them. He spent a lifetime exploring his unique vision and style, persisting in art despite his father demanding that he go into business.
He so inspired me that I bought a small set of acrylics to try his dab technique. I watched painters on youtube as they explained how to paint like he did. I like more intense color but I want to learn from someone who recognized the subtlety of color and light, and how the human eye mixes colors on a canvas.
this was one of two videos I watched: