Saturday, January 27, 2007

I wrote to Juliet Marillier and she wrote back!

I mentioned earlier that I've been reading the books of Juliet Marillier and loving them. All of them. I still have a few left, I've been trying to savor them (the stack on the left contains the books I've read, the stack on the right the ones left to read--plus an extra one for my niece's 12th birthday). Juliet has written tomes in a short amount of time--they are published in Australia first, then the UK, and then the US. Then they are translated into different languages. I've read some fantasy--but most doesn't draw me in, except maybe Mists of Avalon. I think what I like about Juliet's books is that they are based simultaneously on history and fairytales. Some are more obvious fairytales than others, some are more concrete history than others, and then there is always a bit of magic mixed in. What I like about fairytales goes deeper than the happy ending, neatly resolved tale where evil gets its due and good persists. It is the journey of self-discovery, the battle of good/evil within, the magic of believing. Bruno Bettleheim says it so much better than I'll ever be able to.
Juliet ranks right up there with Jane Austen, JK Rowling, and Stephanie Pearl-McPhee in my book of authors who keep me coming back for more, spark my imagination, or make me laugh.
So I wrote to Juliet because I found her website and noticed the fan art part. I sent her The Six Swans to post--and she did! And she wrote back--a very personable, friendly note. She mentioned that she used to do counted-cross stitch--I just knew she had to have a textiles connection--with the way she writes about textiles.

Monday, January 22, 2007

Opening reception for Colorado's Small Stitches: Beads and Thread

Friday night was the opening reception for Colorado's Small Stitches at the Tointon Gallery in Greeley, Colorado. I curated the exhibit--so it was really amazing to see it all come together. Here's a photo with almost all the artists who are in the exhibit. From left to right: Rob Watt, Dustin Wedekind, Connie Lehman, Stephen Beal, Lynn Jablonski, Amy Clarke Moore, Kevin Kissell, Jane Mathews, Carol Shinn, Carol Kruger, Sara Rockinger, Jill Powers, and Fran Meneley. Not pictured: Christine Ambrose, Melinda Barta, Ilze Aviks, Tom Lundberg, and Melissa Athey.
The opening was really fun because a group of people who I haven't seen in a long time since I moved to Loveland and then to Denver from Fort Collins, came to the opening. They have kids who were 5 and 7 and now are 15 and 17 and taller than me and looking like beautiful adults--how does that happen? Of course there is never enough time to talk to everyone at an opening. I did meet some friends of Robin Atkins who have known her for over 40 years and then it turns out that I grew up in the same neighborhood and went to the same high school as their kids, but just a couple years before--it is a small world. Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Finished Clotho's Thread

Sunday night I finished Clotho's Thread with a wonderful feeling of completion. I started it in September and it took 49.5 hours. I've started Anne's spindle--see the design in the background. I was trying three different sizes and chose the middle one. It is fun to work on a small piece. It should take about 1o hours to complete--or about a week since I usually can only do about an hour of beading a day these days. Hannah is getting better about not needing to grab my beads every time I bring them out--so I've been able to do some beading while she's awake.

Friday, January 12, 2007

Happy New Year!

I hope you're enjoying a good start to your New Year. My Christmas was one of the most peaceful and relaxing I can remember in a long time. Strangely enough, I think it was the massive amounts of snow that we got that helped contribute to that. Here's Hannah checking out the first snow on December 21. I had to give in to the snow and it was nice. I took a week off of work and it was great to have time to get things done and recharge for the New Year. I spent a lot of time playing with Hannah. I got a lot of crafting done watching snow. I spent time with my Grandma Barr who was visiting from Kansas (though her trip was shortened on both ends because of our 2 blizzards). She did leave us with a pile of gingerbread men and pecan tassies. Hannah asks for a "man" and plays and talks with him until she finishes eating him.
I worked on scanning in images of my Grandfather from the boards my Aunt and mom put together for his funeral in March and at the same time worked on Hannah's sweater. I'll think of these images every time I pick up her sweater--they are now intertwined. I spun the top promptly on returning from SOAR where I purchased it from Cameleon Colorworks--it is their autumn color way in Bluefaced Leicester--I love it! I was able to do the spinning in two evenings. It spun up like a dream. I promptly ordered more (which I haven't spun yet--but I'm looking forward to it). I started Hannah's sweater, domino squares on my domino needles and am designing it as I go.

I worked on Clotho's Thread (I'm almost done!). I helped Kelly shovel snow. I read books (I finished the second in Pamela Aidan's series about Fitzwilliam Darcy--the hero from Pride and Prejudice--very good once I got into it--and started Wolfskin by Juliet Mariller).

We got more snow--on December 29th--another 10 inches or so and then on January 4th we got another 10 or so inches! Today it snowed a bit, but only 1 or 2 inches--so it is manageable. I feel like I'm back in Iowa!