Monday, March 19, 2007

Spring has sprung

While it never really felt like winter here in Houston I am discovering the changing of the seasons all the same. I hadn't really realized how dormant everything had gone and how much green was missing from the landscape. We had biblical rains last week; flooding the end of our street, bringing the bayou up over its banks and popping all the plants in the sunny days that followed.

With warmer weather a girl's thoughts turn to shoes. I really should return these, but they are SO cute and in keeping with the flower theme! Plus I have always wanted a red pair of shoes...

And of course Spring wouldn't be complete without bunnies. I made this one thanks to a great tutorial from Betz White.
This is a bunny for a one year old birthday girl. Micaela and Sofia fell in love so I made two more with appliqued polka dots of fabric on their fronts.

And Spring also brings babies, my little brother and his wife had twin baby boys Friday afternoon. I'm in the midst of finishing up a project (ok make that plural) for them.

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Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Food for Thought

The current edition of Orion Magazine has what is in my opinion a must read article The Idols of Environmentalism: Do environmentalists conspire against their own interests?

Once you read it you will see it is not coincidental that it is offered online free.

It goes a little deeper than the now de rigueur argument that we can't buy ourself out of trouble by shopping for energy efficient, organic, local, recycled etc. etc. to the very roots of what got us here in the first place; the way we think, live and the language that we use. The very roots of what makes us a society. I also appreciate his lament of our turn from nature as something transcendental to simply another resource.

I agree with his premise that we, as a society, are not ready to make the real changes required. I am so very sad that I think it will require great crisis for people to recognize what they must give up in order for any of us to make it. I am looking forward to the second part of the article.


Sunday, March 11, 2007

New redwork

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Friday, March 09, 2007

In the garden

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Sunday, March 04, 2007

The Giving Tree

When we had our house inspected we were told we should take down this tree:

It is too close to our foundation and also has some sort of disease so it is pretty sad looking. Juan, determined not to pay anyone to do it, bought a chainsaw with an extension and started bit by bit taking it apart. I was helping him lower branches pully style when I realized the branches were covered with lichens Parmelia sulcata to be exact.

My next thought was dyestuff so I spent a few hours scraping branches and filling up two ziploc bags with fungi. Supposedly it yields a yellow to golden brown color.

The weather is gorgeous and my plan today was to garden, but I got derailed, not to mention sore fingers, from working to scrape off the lichens. The day is still young though so I am going out to plant jasmine, water our new plants and transplant the dye plant seedlings.

The tree isn't down completely yet. The big fall is what makes me the most nervous. Juan, as always, is underwhelmed by the task. I'm glad he's so handy. The past two weekends he spent digging a French Drain all the way around our house. The rains here are biblical and there is a slope towards the back of our house. The soil here is "gumbo," which is to say heavy red clay making this an epic job. Here's the after shot of the back of our house. The plants in front, which will come back, are Ruellia, which the hummingbirds love. The vine on our house is Fig Ivy.

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Thursday, March 01, 2007

In the moment

I recently celebrated another year on this planet; my last year of being in my 30s. Birthdays do not freak me out, but this last move and my desire to figure out what fulfills me has led to lots of soul searching and unfortunately a lot of down time (emotionally). I prefer to think of the year beginning with my birthday and in that vein I am committing to the 28 day Meditation Challenge sponsored by Tricycle. I have been sitting off and on since Sofia was born (some 7 years ago), but would really like to place it firmly in my life in the same way I brush my teeth twice a day, without really thinking about it. I kicked it off by going to sit with a group of people that meets once a month. It was really wonderful to sit in a group and I look forward to returning.

In other news I've started seeds for my dye garden and the woad, yellow bedstraw, sacred purple basil and marigolds have sprouted. Not so the indigo which according to the instructions is challenging to get started. The bed is ready to go (I gave away 10 azalea bushes to someone on a plant exchange list). We also planted muscadines, a celestial fig and blackberries last week.

Today I finished this sewing machine cover

I like the top and side fabric best, I've used every last scrap of it (bought via ebay a few years ago):
I also received my redwork swap package (sponsored by the lovely Dorie!). I figured the bird needed to out of the house.

Many thanks to Faun! New art for my room.

Here's what I sent to her

Illustration copied from old children's book. 'Nuff said.

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