Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Art Quilts Around the World-"Opposites Attract"

     For our fourth challenge, we were to create a quilt designed from the theme "Opposites Attract". What immediately came to my mind was when I taught art, and we did an exercise with color using all the six basic primary and secondary colors.  The exercise was to place opposites on the color wheel together to show how dynamic the two together could be.
Basic Color Wheel
     I also chose to take the idea of "opposites" a step further by using symbols to create phrases that represent opposite thoughts...Up/down; positive/negative; and in/out...I was very happy with my results until I finished quilting it. For my quilting thread, I chose a multicolored thread and when finished, my bright, opposite colors that were to attract each other became greyed and dull!!  I am showing both the "before" and "after" so you can see what I mean!!

Before quilting

After quilting
     Actually the pics here don't really show the difference as much as seeing the real thing....but one of the things I love about these challenges is to try new things..and learn from the success or failure of each!!!

Monday, July 29, 2013

Memory Monday #30

     Last week, I wrote about visiting Salem Village where Lincoln lived as a young man. This week, I am going to take you in the opposite direction...west to Hannibal, Missouri. My home town is only about 35 miles from Hannibal which is located on the Mississippi River....and the home town of Samuel Clemens as a boy....a wonderful place to visit as a kid!
     Mark Twain has always been and still is one of my favorite authors. I love all his novels and short stories...his adventures and his wit just keep me enthralled!!
Portrait of the Man
As a child, Mark Twain was synonymous with Tom Sawyer, Becky Thatcher, Injun Joe, Hucklebery visits to the home where "Tom" lived with Aunt Polly and to see the fence that got white washed all the time were really special!
The house where Samuel Clemens lived...the prototype for Tom Sawyer's home
     And outside of town, on the river bluff overlooking the Mississippi, is the actual cave in which Injun Joe hid; Becky and Tom got lost in; and can still be visited today!  What a thrill for a very imaginative little girl...especially when the tour guide could make the whole story really come to life!!!!
The interior of the cave
Sign telling about Injun Joe outside the cave
The entrance to the cave
     And of course the river, the riverboats, the bluffs....all looking very much as it must have looked 100 plus years ago!!!

The Mighty Mississippi River from the bluff at Hannibal..that is Illinois on the other side.
    If any one reading this entry has not read Mark Twain...I highly recommend any of his work...and if you have an opportunity to visit Hannibal do so!  You will love it!!!


Monday, July 22, 2013

Memory Monday #29

One of my heroes...Abraham Lincoln
     Last night we watched the movie "Lincoln"..the new one with Daniel Day-Lewis...(I highly recommend it!) so that helped me decide on my topic for this memory.
     I grew up in Illinois...the Land of Lincoln!  We lived only about 70 miles from Springfield, Illinois which is also near Salem State Park....the village where Lincoln lived as a young man from 1830-1837. It was here that he first became interested in politics.  Being so close, it was a favorite visiting place and  frequent School field trips....and Girl Scout field trips...and family trips.  My newly wedded husband and I even visited Salem when we were home on leave the first year we were married!
the wheel at the Mill 
A typical cabin in Salem
the old Mill on the Sangamon River
     Even at a pretty young age, my romantic imagination loved visiting the old cabins..some of which were original...some reproductions and hearing all about the tales of that soon to be famous man!  I haven't been there for nearly 50 years, but I hear it is much the same as in my childhood.  My home town was a Lincoln/Douglas debate site and can lay claim to a "Lincoln Slept Here" house!

Monday, July 15, 2013

Memory Monday #28

    My lovely little home town was very fortunate to be part of the Carnegie Library Program.  As I have told before, my mom was quite the reader...she made sure her kids read at an early age...thus giving me a love for books that has remained with me throughout my lifetime.  I have spent MANY hours in this beautiful building.  Even as a little kid...8 or 9, I would ride my ol' faithful bike to the library; would sit in the some what dark but rich with wood and brass fixtures, room for children and read.  On days when others were out playing ball, I could be found with my nose in a book.
     The librarian knew all of us, of course.  A little lady, Miss Schadel, adored my mother!  Whenever new books came in, she would call my mom and hold them for her until mom or one of us could go pick them up! My mom even served on the library board for many years, so the library was like a second home to me on many rainy days...or even sunny days when I could get away!

Carnegie Library-Pittsfield, Illinois

The public library of Pittsfield has 23,000 volumes and 1,634 members. It provides a variety of services like homebound book service, cassettes, interlibrary loan, large print books, magazines, microfilm, microfilm reader/printer, paperback exchange, reference materials, talking books, videos, audio books, genealogy material and story hour.
The Library in its earliest form started in 1855 with 40 members and 400 volumes. Among the first trustees was John G. Nicloay, then editor of a local newspaper and later to become personal secretary to President Abraham Lincoln. The library moved to its current location (Exhibit 3.11) on May 9, 1907 when it was also opened to the public.

Andrew Carnegie, three-quarter length portrait, 1913.
Andrew Carnegie

 Born: November 25, 1835
Died: August 11, 1919
Andrew Carnegie's life was a true "rags to riches" story. Born to a poor Scottish family that immigrated to the United States, Carnegie became a powerful businessman and a leading force in the American steel industry. Today, he is remembered as an industrialist, millionaire, and philanthropist. Carnegie believed that the wealthy had an obligation to give back to society, so he donated much of his fortune to causes like education and peace.

Monday, July 8, 2013

Cotton Robin 2013

    A few months ago I signed up for this year's Cotton Robin Challenge/Exchange.  We make a center block and send it to the moderator.  She sets up the schedule and mails the center blocks with addresses of where your block goes next.  So when one gets someone else's block, they add one border and mail it on to the next person on the list.  Then the next person adds another border and mails it to the "finisher"!  The finisher quilts it and adds a binding then mails it back to the original center block maker.
My Center Block and extra fabric
This is my center block and some extra fabric I sent to be used if wanted...not a necessary item. We also sent a list of our likes and dislikes concerning quilting/fabric.

     Somewhere from Canada to New Zealand, my block which was all done except for the finishing, disappeared!!  In not wanting to hold everyone up for the "reveal", the moderator asked that some of the group offer to make a quilt for me!  Very nice of everyone...My block/quilt was about two months overdue!!  Well, just as the group was preparing to get another one ready for quilt showed up in New Zealand...and after finishing it, it was mailed to me.  I received it today!!!  And it is really lovely!!!  I wish it could talk and tell us just WHERE has it been?????
Horizontal center block orientation
Vertical Center Block Orientation only decision is how to display it...with the center block vertical or horizontal...Help me out, readers!!!  Give me your "vote"!!!!!

Memory Monday #27

    Another favorite form of entertainment that I participated in while growing up was going to the movies.  Remember, we did not have television and going to the movies was a whole different experience than going today.  For one thing, we didn't have to pay an arm and a leg to get in...for those 12 and under, the cost was 10 cents! ( I couldn't find a "cents" symbol on my keyboard!)  That's thin dime! So for a quarter (.25 cents), we could go to the movie, get popcorn and a coke!

The Clark Theater
   We didn't have the gigantic screens of today...but we did have a lot of choices...just not all at the same time.  A typical movie rotation went like this:
     Sunday-Monday: one title; Tuesday-one title; Wednesday-Thursday-Friday: one title; and Saturday-(matinee and evening): one title. That was FOUR different movies in one week!!!  AND... the specials...every showing would have a newsreel, a cartoon, coming attractions then the main feature.  On Tuesday, there would also be a matinee and a special drawing for prizes.  On Saturday...there would be all of the above as well as a "Serial"!  This would be at the matinee...very kid oriented!  And here is where you would see "RinTinTin" or "Zorro" or...."The Lone Ranger" in action!!  Each episode would end in a cliff-hanger and you would HAVE to come back the next Saturday to see what happened!!!!
   Being a "townie" I could go to movies a lot!  For matinees, we could even ride our bikes, leave them at the bike rack, and never even considered that our bikes would not be perfectly safe and still there when we got out. We weren't allowed to ride our bikes to the movies at reflectors or lights on them.  But movie going for little kids was really mostly the matinees...the "big" kids and teens went at night!

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Happy Fourth of July!!

Celebrating America's Birthday!!!
Happy Birthday, America!  And may we all celebrate many more!  Have a fabulously fun and safe Fourth of July, all my American brethren!!

Monday, July 1, 2013

Memory Monday #26

     Growing up in the forties and fifties was really almost as pleasant as is pictured in the old TV show "Happy Days".  We didn't get into nearly as complicated situations, but we did live in innocent times.  We could virtually roam the town all day; our parents left car keys in the car; we didn't lock our doors when we went out...unless we were leaving town for a period of time.
     One of our favorite places to hang out in the summer was the local City Park.  The land which the park was on had been donated by one of the more wealthy families...the Kings...who owned the local mill and other properties.  There were picnic areas, playground area, a lagoon for ducks with a fountain, and a swimming pool.
The lagoon area of King Park
     The lagoon area was near one of the picnic areas.  There were the standard grills and picnic tables.  I remember as a kid we would often have family picnics there.  Towards evening, we would be highly entertained chasing and catching fireflies!  Another favorite activity was to roll down this very high hill (at least it seemed high to my small child dimensions) and see who could roll the fastest..then to get up and be SO dizzy!!
     And going to the swimming pool was an almost daily activity!  We would ride our bikes with our towels and swim suits tucked into our baskets.  Although none of us were fantastic swimmers, we did love to play in the water.  
King Park public swimming pool
     In my youth, the rock building seen to the center left was the "shelter house".  At the end you see, there was a concession stand that sold pop, candy, etc.  The white building on the right was built after I had moved, but on the other side of it was another rock building which housed the girls' shower room on one side and the guys on the other.  The shower areas were open ceiling...just ceiling over the center part of the building where the baskets, cash register, etc were kept. When we got to the pool, we would pay our dime, get a basket and go into the shower area. We would change into our swimsuits, and turn in our baskets with our clothes to be shelved.  Each basket was numbered and had a corresponding key which we would pin to our suits.  We would need this key to get our belongings back.  
     After a period of time, we would go get snacks...we would have to get our baskets to get our money out, then run up the hill to the concession stand.  We would make our purchases and sit around in the grass...eating and drinking.  We couldn't take food and drink into the pool area, but as soon as we were finished, we would go back into the pool.  Or sometimes we would wait to get our snacks at the end of the time we were to leave the pool and have them on the way home....whoops...drinking and driving!