Book Review: Matilda Empress

23 May

 

I judged this book by its cover!  It features my niece (one and the same with my previous post)!  Not only was she best in her class, but also a fashion model during high school working in New York, London, Paris, Tokyo, Seoul, Cape Town, Singapore and more.

Matilda Empress is historical fiction from an obscure period of British History.  Matilda was the daughter of Henry I and mother of Henry II.  The narrative is elegant with elaborate details of the days and times of 12th century England and Europe.  Descriptions of clothing, meals, medical treatment, religious customs/beliefs and more…evoke an appreciation of the life and times.

The author does a lovely job introducing each chapter.  I needed more information.  I was lost a few times.  I recommend reviewing (then referring to) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Empress_Matilda  to follow the story which closely follows the historical time line.

My favorite character is Greta, Matilda’s lady’s maid… for her devotion, dedication and resourcefulness during decades of service.

 

Friday Photos: IChing No.9 Taming the Power of the Small

19 May

David Hinton’s translation is ‘delicate nurturing’.

My niece, twenty years later, BEST in Class

Kiwi for gardening

16 May

Yesterday, we were pleasantly surprised to find potted “Hardy Kiwi” for $12 at Cox’s Plant Farm.  I thought kiwi grew on trees like apples or cherries.  It is a vine that prefers a trellis to support perhaps 100 fruit.  We’ll let you know how we did.

http://ediblelandscaping.com/careguide/Kiwi/

 

From Houzz: Incredible home design from Japan

10 May

Amazing solutions to constraints!

 

Friday Photos: IChing No.4 Youthful Folly

5 May

“Youthful Folly” is Wilhelm’s translation, which also includes “hopeless entanglement” in the text.  I appreciate David Hinton’s translation of “thicket” as a concise visual.  I found this thicket on my walk in the woods.

Thicket, Cumberland Gap National Park

2017 Return of Shower Caddies

2 May

This is year three for our adhoc group of friends to provide homemade shower caddies to the women of Wheeler Mission Shelter for Women and Children @ Christmas.  Photos below are the first 25 of 72 caddies.  We gather in November to fill the shower caddies with personal care items.

The caddies are made of outdoor fabric which is water and mildew resistant.  I take the opportunity to maximize the colors and patterns of with each fabric order.  Having placed 10 orders in 3 years, I am VERY satisfied with ordering online, delivery, quality and value from fabricguru.com.

This design features four outer pockets, plus three buttonhole slits in the bottom for drainage.

Friday Photos_____________I Ching No. 2 Earth

28 Apr

Clinch Mountain overlook (Obviously a favorite photo…see header)

David Hinton translates hexagram No. 2 as “Earth”.  Wilhem translation is “receptive”.  Other translations include “field” and “flow”.

Field in spring

Eagle Creek watershed

Book Review: Sewing can be Dangerous by SR Mallery

25 Apr

Sewing can be Dangerous and other small threads…the title grabbed my attention.  As much time as I have spent sewing over the years, I never thought of it as dangerous.  Sooo…how is sewing dangerous?  S.R. Mallery’s collection of eleven short stories have fascinating characters from eleven times and places.

Danger exists in conditions in the garment district, delivering a warning message, communicating directions, disguising passports…to name a few.  My favorite short story is “Precious Gifts” set in the Washington Territory in the 1870s.    Mama bought a new Singer Perpendicular Action Sewing Machine.  You have to read the story to find out why she set up her new machine in the corn field.  The story tells of her passion for sewing, aiding a young Chinook Indian on his Spirit Quest, exchanging gifts and adverting a conflict due to her quilt making magic.  Love it!

Friday Photos: I Ching No. 3 Sprouting

21 Apr

Sprouting melon seeds

The potential energy is astonishing!  Each one of these melon sprouts can become a vine that produces a dozen melons which each have hundreds of seeds in their center!  These sprouts are from one of last year’s melons, which was from seed Dad saved from the previous year.  Tomatoes can be even more prolific!

Parts of seeds:  embryo, endosperm and coat(protective layer)  Notice in the lower left corner that several seed coats cling to the new leaves.

 

Looking forward to the fruit of these sprouts in mid and late summer!

“Sugar Kiss”, Sand Stone Melon Co. Inc.

Support of hospice care with prayer shawls

18 Apr

The season of Lent concluded Easter Sunday as did this project offering prayer shawls for hospice care ministry.

The challenge using this bulky acrylic/nylon yard from my stash is that all the edges rolled!  I am grateful for the knitters who have posted instructions for “blocking” on the web.  This solution required some trial and error.  These small shawls got straightened out.  I will avoid buying bulky yarn in the future.

 

 

 

 

One more thing!  I had this nice “satchel” style bag…marketing material from an exposition.  Well…It occurred to me that a large appliqué (from my shower caddie project stash) would cover the advertising.  It is just the right size to hold seven folded “blocked” shawls.

Well…I meant two/three more things.

Last month, I was introduced to the pattern for these caps.  Two of them now belong to long time friends who are undergoing chemotherapy.

May God bless everyone during these difficult times.