Monday, January 29, 2018

Memory Monday

“Marriage: Love is the reason. Lifelong friendship is the gift. Kindness is the cause. Til’ death do us part is the length.”  -Fawn Weaver

     The wedding is over; the honeymoon is in the past; we are on our way back to Reno...January, 1964.  We are loaded with wedding, placemats, blankets. We decided to leave the crystal and silver at my parents' house. Then we have to find a place to live because Dick didn't have a high enough a rank to live on base. We found a nice little furnished bedroom and bath, a kitchen and living room combined. 

Our first apartment
    Our unit was downstairs on the front. The entry door was under the stairs. The building had four units...two down and two up.  It had been built in some guy's back yard...not many building codes at that time! It was small but relatively new and seemed pretty great to us for our first home together!

This is our kitchen.
      Right across the street was a appliance repair business.  There was only one parking place at the apartment per car but we could park one of our cars in front of the business before they opened at 8:00 and after they closed at 5:00 M-Sat...Sundays they were closed so we could leave it there.  Because Dick had to leave before I did, we parked the car he drove in front of the business.
     My job at Penny's was no longer there...they weren't too happy with me leaving during the busiest time of the year.  I was having a hard time finding anything and to be frank, in order to pay rent I HAD to have a job too...Dick's military salary wasn't great and he didn't qualify for off base housing allowance.  I finally found a job with the Heart Association as a of those obnoxious people who call you up and plead for money.  It was a six weeks' gig.  We were literally living one day at a time!

     I was soooo good at what I did that, after  six weeks' was up, I was hired on by the Cancer Society to do the same thing!  And for this, I went to college!!! We were living in the newly wed bubble though so all was good!!

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

North Texas SAQA Meeting

“If you ask me what I came to do in this world, I, an artist, will answer you: I am here to live out loud.” 
― Ă‰mile Zola

     Last Saturday the North Texas SAQA Circle met in Grapevine at the Must Love Fabric shop.  We had ten members there and had a very interesting meeting. The month before we had brainstormed ideas of things we could do at our monthly meetings.  We came up with several ideas:  techniques to demonstrate, how we each work and where our ideas come from etc.  This week we all brought our sketchbooks/journals to share how we used them as a tool for our creativity.  It was really interesting to see how varied and yet how similar our sketchbooks were.  Some use theirs very frequently to get ideas started; others more casually and less often.  I, myself, am a kind of off and on...but I do enjoy journaling when I do it!
     Then we had our usual showing of what we had been working on which is always a favorite!  Always inspiring!
Deborah brought an abstract square she is working on and explained
how she worked with it and plans to continue 
Deborah had taken a class from Cindy Lohbeck
Another example of Deborah's dyeing
Jen is working on some small art after taking a bit of a sabbatical..
Glad to have her back in the swing of things!
Another small art by Jen
Jackie showed a stunning work of art. Be sure to enlarge this so
you can appreciate her hand stitched circles. 
Jackie had also taken a recent class from Sue Benner.
Taking a photograph and interpreting it into a fabric work of art.
Andrea has also been bitten by the ice dyeing bug and
had several beautiful pieces to show us.
Diane, a new member, had several small pieces to show us.
I think she will fit in quite well!!
Another work by Diane
And another.
Jaye showed her Century Plant which is finally finished!
You might be able to enlarge this to see the billions of French knots
which make up the  blossoms.
          Our last bit of business for the meeting was to discuss what we are doing at our February meeting.  We are going to be meeting at the same location and decorate our share of the tote bags that each Texas Circle is doing for the SAQA Conference hand outs. The conference is being held in San Antonio this year in April. Each of us is to bring paint, stamps, inks, brushes, stencils, whatever can be used to decorate the bags.  It will be a fun meeting!

Monday, January 15, 2018

NTAQ January Meeting

“Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up.” 
― Pablo Picasso

    My NTAQ Art bunch met always, a real boost to share our creativity with each other.  Our challenge this month was a painting by Georges Braque "The Echo".  It is an abstract picture with some definable objects.  Our challenges are not necessarily to interpret the pictures exactly but to use the shapes and colors as inspirations to create something original. Here is the picture on my design wall with my work.  It is not one of my favorites but since I rushed it together I guess it will do.  I was working most  of the day and night yesterday getting my "Century Plant" finished so I only spent from 10:00 to Midnight last night on the challenge!

Georges Braque/ Jaye
And here are the ones done by the others:

We had a couple people not able to be at the is a picture of all the challenges together
Michelle's is upper left...I didn't get an individual pic of hers

     Then we had our "show and tell" of other works! Kay had really been busy since our last meeting.

Kay says this was done "just for fun"!
Kay added the circles after finishing the quilt, feeling it needed a little something more!
A small work Kay brought to get some suggestions on what to do with  the background.
This is a sea turtle Kay did as a reminder of her recent trip to Hawaii
     Bethany had been busy doing some ice dyeing:     

Bethany plans to leave this as a whole cloth quilt and add stitching
      Wendy had a most spectacular quilt to show....the backs of her quilts are alway as wonderful as the fronts!!
The front
The back
    And I showed my Century Plant.  I had originally planned on entering this in a show in South Texas named "Life on the Rio Grande".  I didn't get it finished by the I am now going to get it finished to enter in the SAQA Conference Texas Only SAQA members' show in April.

My "Century Plant"
It is not quite finished....I need to quilt the borders and stitch down a few of the blooms that I haven't done yet.  I also took several pictures on the process of this quilt as I did a few things that I had not done before and plan to write a blog on that.  So I am not going into much detail on how I did this one.
     And the meeting ended with lunch, conversation and lots of laughter, as always!

Monday, January 8, 2018

Memory Monday

“I celebrate the connections in my life, from my past, present, and future. I joyfully accept love in all its healthy forms!” 
― Amy Leigh Mercree,

     We are now back at Dick's parents' home.  While we are there, all the neighbors throw us a shivaree.  Now for those of you who are not familiar with the  custom, shivarees were "celebrations" of marriage. Originally they could get pretty wild...usually a newly wed couple would be in their new home and the community would show up one night and mischievously wreck their home! Nothing malicious...all in good fun! The couple would expect this to happen so would have beer and snacks set aside for when the partiers would show up.  Sometimes the bride would be "kidnapped"  while the groom had to watch his domain being wrecked!  Then all would get back together and help clean up and the party would  begin. Crazy, I know!  I wonder if they still do that anywhere?

    Because we were not living in the area, what we got was just the party!  It would not have been appropriate to wreck his parents' house!  It was a nice party, a chance for me to meet all the neighbors. And their tradition was to give the couple a "money" tree.  Bills had been collected and some creative person would make flowers or something out of the money and place them on a branch....a much nicer tradition than what I was used to!!!
Dick and Jay after the shivaree with money tree
This picture was taken in Dick's parents living room...that is a window behind me, showing off the beautiful farm land that surrounded them. Right down the road were his paternal grandparents and just a few miles away, his maternal grandmother...all of whom were at our wedding.  His brother and little sister Janice are still living at home.  Fay is nineteen and farming with his dad; Janice who is 14 years younger than Dick and in total awe of him, is eight.
25th anniversary
This is a picture of Dick's mom and dad celebrating their 25th wedding anniversary August 14, the summer before we got married.  We were in Reno at the time so not able to attend.  Brother Fay 18 and sister Janice 7, in the background.  Again, a community party held in the church hall.

    Next stop...Reno, Nevada...our first apartment!

Monday, January 1, 2018

Memory Monday

“You can start anew at any given moment. Life is just the passage of time and it’s up to you to pass it as you please.” 
― Charlotte Eriksson

     How appropriate that today, a Monday,  is the first day of the New Year!  I am returning to my Memory Monday blogs and I love "fresh starts"....a new day, a new week,  a new year!  And also appropriate is that this memory is also about New Year's eve!

    So here we are,  back in Pittsfield after our brief honeymoon in St. Louis. It is December 31, and we are going to yet another Dance Club party at the American Legion....there will be much drinking and eating and general chaos!  My sister and her family are still at Mom and Dad's...totally, there are 12  of us sleeping there.  My cousins who don't party with my parents stay home with Judy's babies...Doug 2 and David 20 days old.

     Looking back, I am sure this whole "everyone together" was a little foreign to Dick who although had a large family of aunts, uncles, cousins, grandparents...more than mine...but they all lived close enough to go home in the evenings!  I do remember at one point while we were all there,  all we girls were in another room doing something, baby David began to cry, but then got quiet.  Judy went to check on him and came back just astonished!  He had been on his back and was now on his stomach!  He had rolled over at 20 days old! It is a miracle!  Then Dick quietly (he was a quiet person), said "Oh, I hope it was alright.  He was fussing and I had seen others turn him over which seem to quiet him, so I just did that too!"  Well, you can imagine!  All my female relatives just thought that was the bravest, smartest thing a man could do!  From that moment on, Dick could do no wrong in their eyes!  You have to realize, men had very little to do with babies back then so for him to even think about what to do was amazing!

Judy with baby David, Doug and my mom looking on
     So that evening we all dress up and head to the American Legion; after the dance we went to a house party of some friends of Mom and Dad.  Now we are going home and are all feeling no pain at this point.  I remember as we six (mom, dad, Judy, my BIL, Dick and I) all pile into Dad's car, Dad driving, he begins to back out to the driveway, swerving backwards while gunning it.  Dick looks back and hollers...Dad brakes and we stop just inches away from a large tree! 
    When we get back to the house, my poor sister who was just 20 days away from having a baby and who had probably not had an alcoholic beverage since her own wedding, became very ill!  While Dad who is pretty bombed himself, takes care of her, Mom and I are taking care of baby David....he needs a bottle...and we rock him.  The strangest thing about having been drinking and gets very dizzy!  So when one of us got dizzy, the other would take over!  We took turns until he finally fell asleep! Tough kid!  He survived!
     Then, before we headed to our new home in Reno, Nevada, we go to Dick's parents to spend a few days with them.