Monday, October 24, 2016


...board. Story board, that is what this is. It could be a book cover idea. Most of the work that goes into this kind of thing is your own imagination and when you can spark your imagination, then you can work on re- writing your story so it's more interesting. I'm halfway through reading a book that is mostly about trying to decide which year is actually the Jubilee year. At the same time I'm writing a book and I've been challenged to make it more interesting and less complicated.
That's a tall order! I tell people my first novel is literary fiction, in characterization and style. Admittedly, many times when I try to explain what literary fiction is to people, I do occasionally see the glaze over in their eyes... probably thinking about their coffee break more than about my explanation. To the best of my ability and most exhaustive endeavour, I tried to keep the historical facts straight in my first novel. Now, as I'm writing the next book I'm trying to decide if historical fiction is my niche.
Knights and maidens all on the road to... Jerusalem. I know, there are a lot of novels out already... and even a movie made from one of those novels.
well, let's see if I can write something that might pique your interest!
And, then I'll make cookies...
Mmm... they're even better than the last time I made them. I ran out of flour but that actually made a lighter, fluffier cookie. Mmm, mmm, good!

Saturday, October 22, 2016


A person needs some spark, you know... some reason to want to. I think my spark is struggling to find my place. Still. I enjoy taking pictures of what others have contributed to the world. I think the reason that always amazes me is because I do have a fairly good idea as to what kind of gumption it takes to build something from scratch... and maintain it. Building it is one thing but maintaining it takes a lot of dedication. To build a home, pick a site, then envision what kind of home you'd like to build, what your style is, what you're willing to maintain... these are all investment steps that make the dedication phase a much more natural follow up. I have noticed one thing about my journey that is looking for grounding. I can feel it when I'm in an area that feels good.  I return to the area, simply for the feeling. Isn't that wonderful? Two qualities need to exist for me to return, time and time again. A feeling of welcome and openness. I don't even think I can convey how a community can do that without doing anything, really... but there is still a feeling... so I return and ride my bike down those country roads. There is one tiny little drawback to my penchant for those country bike rides. When you take a fantastical spill on your bike and it happens to be on a day when no one is on the trail, you can be in a bit of a dilemma. Canada is big. Trails are long.
This could be embarrassing. So, first you lay there, on the gravel. Then, complain as much as you want. Nobody can hear you anyway. Then, the good thing about underpopulated trails is you're just going to guess how much road rash you've got from the stinging feelings and the thumping of all the sore spots. The good news is that you don't even care about all that road rash if you can still get back on that bike and ride those miles back to where you parked. Gritty, huh? I have to say, though, that isn't what I'm looking for when I say I need some spark.

Friday, October 21, 2016

Edgy Inspiration

Inspiration can be found anywhere and I don't even need to know why I like something the day I take a picture of it. I just try to follow my instincts and sometimes I find a photo expresses something I'm thinking about. The first time I took a photo of this sign I did not like it. To me, this sign is ripped. There are a lot of meanings to the word ripped but I am thinking about the word from the perspective of something that is torn. Most things that are torn need mending. But... what if tearing something is the mending? I also thought about wind when I saw this sign.
Finishing a blanket yesterday has me antsy for inspiration today. I look at this one unfinished project I've had on the go for a while and I just think it is like my boredom... boredom is not inspiring.
 Hours and hours of work has gone into making this yet I don't finish it. I am seeing it this way today.
It is like criticism. I like the unfinished edges of this, just as it is. Sometimes I think criticism can feel this way. Maybe it makes some people feel ragged but maybe criticism helps some people feel comfortable... not because the process is easy, necessarily, but because the goal is the end product.  
So, I hand stitched the edges of most of the pieces on this coverlet already. I must have critiqued the blanket and thought it was just too messy with all the threads hanging out like they were after a wash. So, when thinking about criticism as a test that I put my work through to see if the work stands up to the rigors of someone elses' prying at it a bit,.. then the criticism can become a strength test.
So, looking at this coverlet, I'm still bored with it but I saw it in a completely different way today. I thought, you know, if I would cut each one of these out, separately, and frame them and then group them together... they'd look awesome hanging on a wall, as art! That would also enhance the individuality of each piece and that really appeals to me.
From my journal... 2007...

Thursday, October 20, 2016


Front and back photos. It's a simple blanket, a square. The Red Cross and scripting depicts principles. The patchwork with the barren trees, waiting for spring, depicts the kind of mule- headedness that it takes to get through a tough winter... and seasons of drought of any kind. Another piece of artwork taken from my novel.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Burlap Respect

"Burlap Respect? What, pray tell, is burlap respect?" page 64 The Orchard Walk
I woke up with a steel guitar vibration running through my body. Alive! That's what it feels like. Then, inspired by or should I say reminded of a quote from the novel I wrote... I started feeling that electrified steel guitar and...
I re- think which fabrics to include in this current quilt.
 This picture is how I start the process of making a blanket. I throw all the fabrics down on the floor and start snapping pictures. I love scripted fabrics so I'm using one I purchased this last year called Old Script. Any writer who is reaching for authentic storytelling will be reading Old Script for inspiration. I certainly have and do.
I respect the people who gave me this burlap gift (framed picture) and I find inspiration in it often... and enjoyment!
Whatever you make and give...
Blankets... too many things to mention...
just make it with 

Monday, October 17, 2016


Before 2009 I had never heard of the word tell other than in the context of children tattling on each other. Tell, as an archaeological term, was introduced to me by a customer who came into the business where I worked, at that time. He was a brisk man with sharp, piercing eyes and he wore a fairly large cross around his neck with a big red slash of colour on the cross. Do notice that I didn't say splash of colour because the jewelry was not a to be taken lightly piece. I would say it was a serious piece of jewelry for the man who wore it. He was a man of the cloth I think you'd say in today's terminology. He recommended I read a novel to familiarize myself with this term.
An artificial hill that has been created by generations of people building on the same spot is the basic meaning of a tell.
 I most certainly wasn't thinking about this on Saturday when I took these photos. Truly, I was just enjoying the scenery, the weather, and walking on this rather well groomed path surrounded by a hill. It is not easy to find something like this on a big expanse of flat prairie.
Wouldn't this be a great field trip destination? History teachers would love this! It could be called a tell site!

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Sound Man

What do you think of when you think of a sound man? I know, I know! All of ;you happily married are snuggling up to him right now in your warm cozy beds.
Those of us who are not so lucky have been up for a couple of hours thinking of the past, present and future.
Once again, I made some burnt offerings. Not on purpose. I set off the smoke alarm so I'm guessing I probably woke up other tenants... just one more reason to own a home if you possibly can.
Back to a sound man... There are times that a song, in my sound system, on my computer, is just so perfect it is so amazing to listen to... and I just wear it out!
So, I have huge appreciation for a sound man! Some are rock stars, some make rock stars sound good.
   All are appreciated! Antiques gain value, you know. I'm actually referring to this flag, which is a WWII original, but if your antique sings or plays guitar... lucky you! 
(definitely having some play on words today)
And, finally, that fever I was battling left and that's when I like tackling that once a month cooking!