Thursday, November 29, 2012

in the early winter, there is a magical time of day/night when the world is dark and your house is bright.  it still feels like day because it essentially is.  the house is bustling around getting home from work, preparing dinner, tidying etc.  but the windows are still uncovered and the light of what we do, shines out into the darkness.  seeing life from the darkened outside always gives it a layer of coziness. it's a little like being on the front porch except with the separation of darkened silence. 
the past few days, if you were seeing into the vignettes our windows create, you would see us doting on edgar.  the first day after surgery, he ate and drank and peed and pooed, walked around the yard and rested really well. we were really encouraged. but the second night was a little scary and distressing, as the nights can be.  he was uncomfortable and gassy and seemed in pain. and he didn't care to walk any more.  but we got through that and late in the day yesterday, we were able to get him settled once more on the couch he loves.  there is an elaborate layering of garbage bags, quilts, leak pads and diapers.  and now that he's on the couch, he's like his old self again.  except that he leaks pee and sometimes blood.  and keeping his skin from getting irritated is a challenge. and he's very unsteady on his feet, only able to walk without both tom and i actively involved.
in a few hours, we're taking him back to our wonderful vet, and he will try to flush this stone out of his urethra and back up into the bladder.  it seems like such a little thing.  but it's so huge to our little life.  thank you for all your wonderful caring comments and your prayers.     

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

it was snowing tonight when we brought edgar home.  little gusts of white around the lights.  the first gentle snow i've seen this year.  he was so very groggy from almost 5 hours of surgery.  a 'marathon', our dear vet, uncle d'arcy, called it.  when we arrived home, our friends met us and helped carry him in to his bed by the fire.  we are still very much in a crisis, for although an entire speciman jar of pea sized stones were removed from his bladder, the one stone that is lodged in his urethra wouldn't budge.  this is definitely a life threatening situation.  we are hoping that the inflammation will diminish and this awful little piece of rock can be flushed back into his bladder.
for tonight, he is comfy, under quilts and cats, by the fire, drifting in and out of consciousness.  and when he wakes, he whines for water and drinks heartily, which is a wonderful sign.   

Saturday, November 24, 2012

our week has been complicated.  edgar has been ill.  it's been an up and down sort of week.  all sorts of anti-biotics and pain meds for our boy.  a huge infected wound on his leg, swollen to twice it's size with pitting edema.  and now bladder stones in his urethra, a catheter and surgery on monday morning.  and my friends have been doing all they can to make things easier.  last night, before the onset of bladder stones, i set up my quilts to take part in the most delightful yearly event at our local waldorf school.  tracy and i at side by side tables, her charming encaustics and my colorful literary quilts.  tom was home with edgar, while tracy and i had a fabulous evening meeting wonderful people and selling our items.  but in the night edgar's issues worsened.  i had hoped i would be able to take part in the event today as well.  instead we were at the vet's x-raying his bladder at 9 a.m.  and tracy took over my table completely, selling my stuff and her own and relieving all the stress i felt from feeling like i needed to be in two places at once. 

tonight we are exhausted.  we've been a little edgy.  nervous and frightened about edgar's surgery, about dealing with his catheter (hoping it stays in place), and the injections i need to give him.  there was a loud knock on the front door.  when i turned on the light, not a soul was there, but a brown paper package lay on the step.  and inside the most delightful fabrics, perfect for holiday napkins.  i don't know who found these perfect fabrics, (it feels very 'storybook robin-ish' to me), but they are simply perfect and i love them.  and i love my friends who take such good care of me and show me they care everyday, and then step it up even moreso, when i need it more. 

Saturday, November 17, 2012

today is my grandmother's birthday.  sometimes i feel alot like her.  she has been gone 15 years.  she was strong and gentle.  and somehow always had peppermints with her.  i think of her every day.  it's hard not to feel her presence while i make quilts.  she was a quilt maker too.  but not as a leisure activity. she hand sewed scraps together into cozy quilts to keep her family warm on their gusty prince edward island farm.  there was no plumbing or electricity until the 50's and by then most of her children were grown.  she made quilts all her life to pile on their beds.  i can't help but think of that as i work. i have a quilt she made for me when i was 14.  it's always in the studio with me.  i can see her hand in each stitch. the love around that quilt is palpable. i'm sure some of the scraps come from clothing she wore when my father was a boy.  
today she would have been 107.  and how i miss her.   

Friday, November 16, 2012

the nights are colder now.  we try to keep the cats in. although they aren't quite sure they want to stay in.  edgar has a morning walk and a few outings into the yard throughout the day, but is happiest on his couch in the warmth of the living room now.  
and the literary quilts are humming along.  i keep making them.  and they are beginning to leave the studio as well.   pip has a new home.  as does mr. rochester.  today i concluded 'great expectations' and have moved along to 'jude the obscure'.  oh, thomas hardy! he is one of my favorites.  i read him as a girl and his characters are like ghostly siblings for me.  i wonder what sort of quilts we will dredge up together.
revisiting the books that carried me through the dark and cold nights of my girlhood, has taken me to those days in my mind more than usual.  there was no tv in our house and we were far from people in general, much less other kids my age. so i was a child who would read and re-read, tumbling into books, keeping characters in my head, and filling my head with the interior spaces of a manor house or a humble drafty farm.  i know my aesthetic was shaped by the images the words formed for me. 
so the month of november that sits between the fiery beauty of october and the busy excitement of christmas, has carried me back to the classic literature of my youth.    



Monday, November 12, 2012

november is blowing warm.  the air is gentle, unlike the novembers i expect to brace myself against.  edgar had his birthday yesterday.  his eighth birthday.  he shares his birthday with remembrance day.  we took him to my parents place.  it's his favorite spot to wander in the fields and around the naked gray trees and amongst the barns that have stood for almost 2 centuries. a lovely afternoon visit with my parents.  soup with warm, fresh from the oven cornmeal and caraway crackers for lunch. a perfect sunday.  
mr. rochester is completed and listed in my etsy shop.  he and jane  eyre are upstairs in bed together (hehe).  they make a great couple.  today i'm working my way through 'great expectations'.  and we'll see what comes from dickens.  i'm looking forward to miss havisham bursting her way into my studio in quilt form.

Friday, November 9, 2012

a cold november morning.  i'm eager to move into the studio.  but there are so many little chores that demand me first thing in the day.  the cats make me jealous.  they sleep curled on blankets or the heat vents.  and i want to just read by the fire with a cat warm on my feet. but the pull of the studio is stronger.  i'm listening to 'great expectations' now.  and the literary quilts are going smaller today.  i'm thinking they'll be more of a lap size.  the perfect size to stretch over you while reading.  

the cozy and warm studio is open again today from 11 until 6.  

Thursday, November 8, 2012

i dug through the fall and winter coats that make their way out of summer storage, one by one as needed at this time of year.  (ha, summer storage.  sounds so fancy when they're really just piled in the catch-all room.)  i pulled a big brown, slobber spotted suede jacket off the top.  most of my coats end up being designated dog-walking coats after awhile.  and last night edgar and i headed out around 10 to simply circle the neighborhood before bed.  he's been sleeping too much.  the new reality of cold weather makes neither of us eager to wander.  and last night the air was the coldest i've felt.  we ran a little.  i had bare legs under my skirt.  i don't think i'm ready for the onslaught of cold that's coming. 

i finished jane eyre a couple of days ago.  she's very pretty.  i'm quite taken with her. she's listed on etsy now too.  i'll get mr. rochestor finished today. but probably won't have time photograph him.  i'm really enjoying the direction
of these literary quilts.  my friends mark and tracy really encouraged me to explore these and i'm so grateful they did.  without their excitement i think i would have just had the bovary's and then gone back to business as usual.  but now my head is spinning with plans of the new directions i want to take these quilts.  all my quilts really.  change and growth and goodness for the new year.  organizing and planning while listening to such perfectly crafted words and sewing. it's good.  

now i'll get my tea.  although i don't feel much like moving from my little quilt nest, with ellsworth, our biggest, warmest and sleepiest cat, smushed against me purring. 

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

it's like summer never was.  like barefoot was never an option.  like the leaves were never a whisper above instead of a crunch underfoot.  like i didn't step out of bed into flipflops and a sunny morning to take edgar blearily along the lake at 6am.  now i wake up to the robotic murmur of the furnace blowing the house hot.  it would be nice if hibernating was an option for me.  i'd curl under a stack of quilts and sleep until april. 

my jane eyre quilt will be finished today.  and if i'm lucky, so will mr. rochester.  i'll try to get them photographed as well, but that may not happen until tomorrow.  i finally photographed charles bovary yesterday.  and listed it on etsy.  he's very masculine and solid.  but with a soothing gentleness at the same time.    

Thursday, November 1, 2012

jane eyre is winding her way into the quilts i'm making now.  i'm building layers of squares into patchy tops as i listen to the tale of her early life at the school for orphans.  and there are 2 quilts taking shape that i really love. i am feeling connected to something sweet from my girlhood as i revisit the classic literature from my youth.  i love the language and vivid imagery.  and the familiarity settles in me as i hear the words i've read so many times.  i've been reading jane eyre since i was 12 and wouldn't know how many times i've spent whole chunks of days curled up in her solemn story. now there are quilts that blend her and i together.  i really like that.
i showed you emma and charles bovary.  and there is also a hester prynn quilt. although the work was done by the time i started her story, she was clearly in my mind when i chose the pieces of gray and red for her quilt.  she is listed in the shop
so i continue the quest of filling my mind with the figures of literature, loving the words and the cadence of stories.