Friday, October 16, 2009

Chrysanthemum, AKA Kiku

I had to spell-check Chrysanthemum (and I got it wrong) before I started writing this one. I wasn't sure about the "h."

I finished #4 last night, and I like it. There are a few things that are not perfect, but I really like the colors. The light, middle, and dark shades of red together show up mostly as a glow, not a color change, and I think that adds a nice touch. It also looks very Christmassy so these temari can double as ornaments for my guild's annual Christmas display.


I had some help stitching this. C likes to pull the needle through (when she's not busy doing something else). She also announced to her mom, several times, that grandma was working on a new samari ball. I pronounced "temari" for her very carefully after that, but I'm not sure she got it yet.

The weather has been dark and gloomy all week, and I'm starting to feel it. The weekend is supposed to be nice, though, so there is an end in sight. I can't wait for some sunshine!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Blog Action Day/Climate Change

Today is Blog Action Day, 2009. I hadn't signed up to write a post about the topic this year, because I couldn't think of a thing to talk about regarding embroidery and climate change, but when I got ready to post today I realized my topic actually fit.

Our guild wants to save money and the environment by having each person bring their own mug to use, that way we can avoid using the nasty Styrofoam cups, and do good at the same time. I have a plastic cup with an embroidered insert that I made several years ago, so I went looking for it. Of course, I could not find it, but I ran across this:


It is a tin enameled cup (the kind you would use for a camping trip) covered with beads in the Ndebele or herringbone stitch. It was a gift to me from a former director from South Africa, and was made by a Ndebele woman in that country. I was fascinated by it when I got it, and could not figure out how it was made until I got a herringbone stitch bracelet to make, and then I could see the stitch. The beading is done across the narrow dimension by stitching two beads on at a time. That is what makes each row tip in a different direction.

Keeping from throwing away one Styrofoam cup a month is not going to save the world, and at this point I'm not even sure climate change can be reversed. There are even people here in the Mid-West who wouldn't mind several additional degrees of heat in the climate, at least during the fall and winter. But I read today that soon there will be no ice at the north pole during the summer, and things will begin to accelerate. Ice melting leads to oceans rising, warmer oceans lead to more tropical storms (think Katrina!). The most disastrous change, in my opinion though, is that land the currently provides a living could become desert. Think dust bowl on a world-wide scale.

So I will bring my cup to guild meetings, and cut down on my driving as much as I can, and will do my best to act locally. If you are interested in helping, here's a website with suggestions, and there's even some good news there!

Thank you!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Party Time!

Last night we had the celebration of our guild's 30th anniversary. We had lemon fluff cake and punch, Swedish coffee and herbal tea. (Do we know how to party, or what!)


There are still three charter members who are active in the group. We had several former members join us last night, and one very special guest, who was the founder of the guild. She had a needlework shop in Homewood and taught many of the first members how to do Hardanger and other Swedish needlework techniques. She was very excited to be with us.


The table was covered with beautiful embroideries.

I am not a charter member; I joined about 20 years ago. It's been 20 years of stitching, learning, and friendship! I would be happy to be a member for another 20 years.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Number three!

Here is number 3 for the JTA entries. This is a "merry-go-round" pattern, so called because the stitches go up and down past the equator. I like the way this one looks, but I may have to do another one for my entry, this one did not turn out very even. You will notice that there is not a picture of either of the poles! It's only my second one with this pattern though, so I am improving.


We spent Saturday at Bengston's Pumpkin Farm. There was a petting zoo. P didn't actually pet any of the animals, but he did provide a piece of carrot to one of the kangaroos.


C of course petted everything. There were goats and sheep and calves, and llamas, and kangaroos, and a zebra, and a camel, and an eland.


After the petting zoo we went on a hay-ride with no hay, through the pumpkin patch, through the haunted barn, and the shop, through the fun-barn which C remembered from last year, and had a small snack.


I love this picture of P checking how big his sister is. When it came to his turn, he stood on tiptoe, which probably gave a more accurate measurement. There was quite a hollow where scores of people have stood to get their picture taken.


Here's the whole gang waiting for the tractor ride. It would have been more fun if it had been a little warmer, but we managed to enjoy ourselves. There are more pictures on my flickr site if you are interested.