Saturday, June 30, 2012

friday evening in late june. aimlessly lounging on the porch swing. it had been a hot day and the end of the week. we picked up pizza and a movie. but it was too beautiful outside to sit in the cool dark house. we curled up on the swing with edgar on his bed beside us and cats sprawled in the shade or skulking through the grass or pouncing on our chests. we watched the clouds forming pictures in the patch of blue between the trees. and listened to ryan adams. a couple of hours to breath and relax completely. i took 279 photos. on the swing surrounded with dreamy beauty.

Friday, June 29, 2012

it was a day of beautiful happy magical energy yesterday. the studio was open. i sewed on the porch all afternoon. my parents puttered around helping in the studio. my mother made bouquets of baby apples from the apple tree in the garden. (i'll get a photo of them). my father tied up the clematis.
interesting, warm people wandered in the door. one couple driving from brooklyn, ny to toronto happened to stumble across my little shop. they weren't spending any time in kingston, had just come off the highway and driven into our neighborhood (that is, incidentally, nowhere near the highway) and saw the quilt sign. it felt like a movie....a series of events that doesn't seem real. the sound of her thick brooklyn accent, her husband's non-stop jokes in the background. the evening sun drenching our little room of fancies. it was delightful. sadly, she was looking for a baby girl quilt (which is my hottest item, my bread and butter, really) and i had none to show her. but throughout the day i got 8 stroller quilts quilted.
today, the heat is murderous at 8 am. edgar and i went walking at 7.30. and coming back into our shaded yard was a happy respite. and now, i'll head over to my little garden studio and start the day

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

i was crossing the yard to the studio tonight. and i heard the distinct tinkly bell. i paniced. i was so excited. i ran in the back door of the studio. grabbed $5 and went dashing out the front door to the street. desperate to get to the sound of the bell before it had gone too far. do you remember 'dickie dee'? the bicycle full of ice cream and freezies and popsicles. do you remember that feeling? do you remember crowding around the little freezer on a bike. with neighbor kids. wondering if you had enough money to get what you wanted. and tonight i felt like i was 7 years old, racing after the dickie dee guy. but when i got to the street, it was just a bike with a baby trailer on the back, ringing a bell. oh, the disappointment. i haven't seen a dickie dee in years. tonight i was telling tom my sad little story and he told me he'd seen one ride past the house yesterday. a real one. not an imaginary one like the one i saw. so, the dream is alive......
tomorrow, thursday, june 28th, our little studio is open from 1 until 9. tracy is on holidays, so it's just me and the quilts.....and all the other stuff. lots of other stuff. i'll be there!

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

sarah came this morning for tea. but we had coffee instead. and she brought me flowers. she always catches me off guard with her thoughtfulness. she arranged them in my measuring bowl with care and precision. and they ended up looking like a bowl of peonies or full-petalled cabbage roses. did you guess that they are carnations? just plain old everyday carnations. they are a beautiful, stylish touch for my pretty little neglected house. she knew just what i needed.
and we had one of those visits that could have gone on all day. i hope we do it again soon.
the days have cooled and the morning is fresh and crisp. edgar has more energy and tennis is on the tv. the 8'o'clock bell just rang. i love how it echoes through our village, our little inlet of the city. bells ringing and fading into the morning. and it sets a little fire in's 8 already. i've been cleaning and puttering for a couple of hours. but now i have to start the day for earnest. quilts to finish. and a tea-date with a friend i haven't seen in ages. and the bookstore this afternoon. a lovely day ahead of me.....
on thursday we are opening the studio for a quiet little sale. tracy will be on holidays with her family so it will be just me. me and my quilts...

Monday, June 25, 2012

it looks like another beautiful summer morning has dawned. and i'll be working on the porch at the studio, building quilts. in the early hours, i'll lay out squares for quilt tops, with the clack-y drone of the sewing machine starting later in the morning. the little house with it's porch and charming little rooms gives me energy like i've never had before. it's an easy constant flow of work.
when i look straight up from my little porch table, i see this.....
and to my left, i'll have edgar, if the day isn't too hot....and if i glance up, i can keep an eye on our house. if tom isn't at work, he sits on the porch swing on our porch, with his guitar and sings.
so, i head happily across the yard to put in a long day at work. i'll put out the open sign, if any locals want to stop in. i have new hardcovered journals for $15 and there will be new quilts everyday as i work away for the 'quilts in the trees' event we are having the 12th of july.
i hope it's a happy day for everyone.....

Sunday, June 24, 2012

stella is the cat who quietly demands to be near me. she is the only one of our cats who sleeps with us and i usually wake with her curled into my arms, tucked against my chest. she started sleeping with us to begin with because she would do the same thing to edgar...curl herself around his legs and he would then be afraid to move and he would wake me in the night to come and move her. she has an intensity about her that usually photographs looking like a grumpy face. but i love that this photo captured the meaningful look she always gives me. she is, without question, my favorite cat.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

i made lemonade this morning. it has been a morning of doing the things i've been wanting to do, those things that get crowded out by the louder chores. i woke up at 5.18. first i checked on edgar, let him out into the yard to stretch and pee. i made a cup of russian tea. and in the stillness of early morning, i read my friend's manuscript. and loved every word of it. it was the perfect start to this day. the quiet tasks keep whispering to me. the lemonade is frosting on it's own shelf in the refrigerator. and i'm about to walk with edgar. and then there are squares waiting to be put into quilts.
so my day is happily and productively underway.

Friday, June 22, 2012

another pink-skied night. edgar's evening walk gives me a few moments to drink in all the beauty. the air is thick and honey-scented. and when we walk past our house, my garden stops my heart a little. the sweetpeas are wandering and meandering through my front meadow garden. full purple and white blooms. curled like little orchids. hydrangea and hollyhocks too. and soon the queen anne's close to flowering, they will be cavorting with the other lovely wildings soon. i love this dense green tangle of plants and flowers and vines.
and just inside the front door, sitting under the chain that sounds the boxing ring bell that serves as our doorbell, is a little collection of yard sale paintings. these simple paintings sing their own little tune. and they sit happily with a little wooden tray of beach glass.
the day is late. at 9.45 the sky is still streaky. and the lightning bugs are burning. and the week has been a busy one, so we are off to bed when there is still light in the sky, like i remember doing as a child. i felt trapped by my bedroom in those days, but now, i'm grateful for an early night to relax and sleep hard.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

i painted a new sign today. just a quick little sign to catch the eye of passers-by. and all afternoon i sewed colorful little squares together, making a pile of baby quilt tops and 1 big top. on the porch with the dappled light of my shade trees surrounding me. i sewed until the sky was gray and the sun was slipping away. hours and hours of sewing and the beauty of the colors and patterns and juxtaposition of both kept me happy and energized all day. and when i headed back home, the lightning bugs were like flashlights. huge and exaggerated.
poor tom.....awakened at 6 this morning by my screams. curses and terror. as floyd pranced in the kitchen door with something huge and black in his mouth. and the look of murderous pride in his eyes. i shrieked. and i heard tom leap out of bed in the room above me. it was a bird. a pretty big starling, i think. floyd dropped it. tom threw him outside and covered the bird with a towel. the bird was alive and terrified. although it didn't move a bit so we wondered if it was dead. but when tom took him out, he flew. floyd is in the house now and the door is closed. and my throat hurts a little from my screaming.
edgar and i walked along the lake before the heat slams us today. there was a slight breeze off the water. the sounds of morning. the humid mist. now to the studio for a shower and a day in the fabric.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

the night is misty and damp and dark. too clouded with humidity to see the moon. the streets are heavy and pungent. they smell of honeysuckle. and climbing roses. lemon balm and grass. thick green smells. i came home from the bookstore a little after 10. and edgar and i wandered down to the darkened park that overlooks the harbor. the grass long and dewy. wet, really.
we passed neighborhood homes with windows sleepily lit. and our little stone house almost swallowed by the front meadow. hollyhocks growing up the walls. and other plants, some identified and others not, crowding the plot that leads to our front door. waist high in spots. it makes me giddy to see it, i love it so. i love it's misunderstood beauty.
this night is shadowy and gothic, like a victorian novel. still and silent. shrouded.

another one of our adventures on father's day was a stop at a little studio we have driven past for years. paintings and cards in a lovely 150 year old white studio overlooking the lake. surrounded by cedar trees and my kind of beauty. a perfect way to share a day with my wonderful parents.

Monday, June 18, 2012

just now. there must have been 50 or 60 lightning bugs in our back yard. at any given moment there were 10 - 15 lit up. or more. dashing through the dusky light. tom caught one with his first try, and i couldn't bear making it stay away from it's friends. it crawled around my hand and my arm, lighting up my skin. and then flew off into the shady half-dark. i tried photos, but it didn't really work. and i didn't have the patience for all i wanted to do was dance in the long grass and flirt with the lightning bugs. tom, a few cats, a hazy, dusky june night and a city yard popping with lightning bugs. our little country plot in the heart of the city. it really is amazing!

a 1950s style resort. wooded grounds dotted with cabins and screened in porches. open porches with wide floors lined with rocking chairs. groups of adirondack chairs. barkcloth curtains. a coffee bar. an echo-y and hushed dining room. screen doors that slam. like visiting a past. my childhood and before. a beautiful day, just minutes from home, but another lifetime. and sharing it with my parents for fathers day.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

so, we didn't see radiohead last night. we were on the road, only about 1/2 an hour away from home, when our friend andre phoned tell us the stage had collapsed. we weren't sure of the bad it was, if the show was cancelled etc. tom got online and found this photo. and the news that someone had been killed. we took the next exit and turned around. we had layers of complicated feelings. we were disappointed to miss our show, but more importantly saddened and sobered by the realization that people had been seriously injured and even killed. this wasn't a weather related collapse like so many last summer. it just collapsed. poor design? poor construction? poor materials? how does that happen? 40,000 tickets sold at $62.50 each and something like this happens? it's mind boggling!
but we were safe. and home again in 1/2 an hour, without any inconvenience. back in the day, when my summers meant driving hours and hours to see as many shows as i could afford.... we had no phones. no internet. and when there was internet, it was only accessible at home. we would have arrived at a tangled mess of tens of thousands of people being told to turn around. instead, we had a friend phone us just moments after it happened. and we were texted and facebooked by friends. we were phoned and emailed by ticketmaster to say the show was cancelled and our money refunded. there were message boards and news sites that tom checked as we were driving, to get the details. the change in the past 15 years is huge.
so instead of radiohead, we went to andre's place for a bbq. the boys had guitars. i had the fabric vessel i've been working on. and we had a lovely evening. today we'll spend with my parents for fathers day. we are safe and happy and very fortunate.
this photo shows the stage before the collapse and after

Saturday, June 16, 2012

i'm up too early. i'll need a nap today, i can already feel it. but i love the day when it's young. the air is clear and a little cool. the birds are busy. and i'm busy in my own groggy way. i swept the porch while edgar wandered around the garden, sniffing for intruders. i'm making coffee and having a bit of breakfast.
this afternoon we are off to toronto to see radiohead. we love our summer roadtrips for concerts, although i am always loathe to leave my little home. it's a gorgeous weekend and we'll be home to sleep in our own bed tonight and have an easy and delightful father's day it's all good.
this oriole is in our yard, filling it with song and colour. i didn't do a thing to these photos......straight from the brightening. just a naturally gorgeous bird. we have cardinals and bluejays and goldfinch in our yard as well. it's a colourful little bird sanctuary in our yard, despite all the cats.

Friday, June 15, 2012

a slow sunny morning with tea and yesterdays dishes bubbling away in the dishwasher. 6.08 am and the sun was hitting my face with such force i wanted to be awake and enjoying it. tom rolled over and muttered..."is it 6.00 already?"
our evening last night was delightful. a lovely flow of people. fun. interesting. engaged. the conversation was full and lively. and now i've started planning my 'quilts in the trees' event. there is a frenzy of cutting and sewing and building and compiling and all the fabric energy that goes into the making. i want 15 or 20 quilts hanging in the branches of the big trees, displayed in all their happiness. for a quilt is always happy. there is joy in a quilt that is sewn in. and seeing them fully, instead of folded or rolled or draped on a chair makes it a louder joy. swinging in the green of summer trees in our little garden yard where you can walk between them, interact with them. oh, i'm getting impatient for this to happen. it will be soon!!!