Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Dashees Garden Tuesday 18/ My Favorite Quilt

     Below is a picture of my favorite quilt.  I made it a few years ago.  I love the soft colors! It has many scrap nine patch squares.
     I enjoy sewing a quilt top together much more than quilting the layers.  My quilting is simple, and often I use a filler other than batting.  I think this quilt has flannel sheeting in the middle.  I like to use flannel because it is easier to handle and sew than batting; the flannel sticks to the cotton.  Less frustrating when I get impatient!


Friday, June 24, 2011

Weekly Music Nugget 19/ Theory Practice

     While surfing the internet I discovered a nice site for learning basic music theory or brushing up skills.  There are listening exercises which can be randomly selected or customized.  These include interval and chord identification exercises.  The chord exercises are particularly nice to have access to, and I have been playing with them, polishing up my skills.
     There is also much of value for the novice, such as basic knowledge and skills needed for reading music.  Here is the link http://www.musictheory.net/.  Check it out!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Musiolarant

     During the past month the subject of coed college dorms caught my attention.  I thought about the acceptance of this in most universities, and the more I pondered the crazier the idea seemed.  As a mother of three boys, I have some idea of what high schoolers do and think about.  I can not imagine letting these kids loose in coed dorms three months after they graduate and expect them to behave responsibly (although nowadays "responsible" means protecting yourself).  Behavior was a problem in uni-sex dorms, as I recall.  All of this reminds me of experiments in making it legal to do drugs in certain parks......doesn't  work.  The situations get worse.  Whatever happened to morality? ! Oh, yeah....society redefined it.  Society redefined God.  Wow, we certainly think a lot of ourselves.....
       What is even more amazing is that coed dorms have been sanctioned for years by supposedly intelligent people.  I just do not get it!  Well, enough of my rant.  The main purpose of this post is to give a link to an article in Meridian Magazine, an online LDS publication.  Go to this link and read the article entitled  Catholic University  http://www.ldsmag.com/blogs?id=24&view=entry .
 
    

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Dashees Garden Tuesday 17/ Rose Garden

     The above is a sample of my newest project.  I have been embroidering fussy cut roses onto 6x6 inch patches.  The one above has not been finished or trimmed to size.  Good way to practice embroidery...maybe also a good way to go blind!!  Ha ha!!
     I think each patch will be lightly quilted, backed with a pocket, and then a few will be laced together into "My Little Pink Rose Pocket Book".


Monday, June 20, 2011

The Feast



     There they go.  To my home.  Then to the front...... chomp chomp on the hydrangeas...hmmmm...this is a great deli....OOOOOOOOO....something new.......check out this hibiscus........yum!.....................................................what is that I spy?  Oh yeah....didn't we just try these roses a couple weeks ago.....NEW GROWTH!!!!  Our fave!!!   Hey, eat up, guys!!!     OOOOOOOO...MORE on the other side.......chomp chomp chomp chomp chomp and so on..................You know, I am getting full.....Oh, lets leave the last bush.
     And that is all the gang left.  Curses!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Sunday, June 19, 2011

The Carriage House

     For many years my mother worked next door to our house as the administrator of a nursing home.  The building was an old red brick mansion complete with an expansive front porch and a carriage house in the back.  On the  side facing my home was a driveway that passed by a side entrance and ended in a back parking lot.  Beyond that was the red brick carriage house which was used for extra storage and a second garage for my family.
     The carriage house was fun to explore.  It had two levels, the upper of which was intriguing.  At the stairway end was my dad's camping gear and at the far end was a hole in the floor through which hay had been lowered to horses.  In between was a spacious and rather empty area.
     My sister and I would daydream about how we would remodel and decorate the building. We thought it would make a great apartment, which was where my sister dreamed of living as an adult.  That was not my dream; nevertheless, it was fun to imagine the place as a modern 1960's apartment in a big city--somewhere other than our midwest hometown of 20,000.
     The interest in decorating probably came from my mother, who had a natural talent for such and did paid consulting for locals.  Our home was an old house that my parents bought and remodeled when I was about 10.  My sister and I were old enough to hear all about the plans and watch the transformation.  We were included in the planning of our bedrooms, and my mother would often run her ideas by us for other rooms. If she was not remodeling  she was moving furniture, changing furniture, painting, planning, or driving around town with us and imagining what she would do with other people's homes.  She always had a few favorites.
      In the end, the carriage house remained a garage.  My sister went to college, married, and eventually bought a home.  I lived in apartments until marrying late.  So many times what we think we want when  young changes as we grow up, but isn't the dreaming fun!
    
     
    
    
     

Friday, June 17, 2011

Weekly Music Nugget 17/ Newbies to Classical Music

     While browsing blogs I discovered what I think is a good blog for someone just getting started listening to classical music.  The writer, not a professional musician, discovered and fell in love with classical music; he uses his blog to share what he learned during the journey.  The blog is easy to read and it is well-organized.  From what I have read so far the writer seems knowledgeable. The link is as follows:http://www.getintoclassical.com/
     There is a recommended list of music for getting started with your listening.  It is divided by the standard historical divisions of music history.  I have a two suggestions to add here.  The first is to listen to a composition that has several short movements such as Enigma Variations by Elgar (1899) or The Planets by Gustav Holst (1916).  A short attention span will appreciate these!  The second suggestion is to skip the Schnittke viola concerto.  I love the fact that a viola concerto was put on the list (I am a violist) and this one is a terrific piece, but I found its mood very dark.  I have learned many 20th century works, but the first time I heard the Schnittke it weighed me down emotionally.  I have intentionally avoided learning it.  A substitution might be Der Schwanendreher by Paul Hindemith or the Bartok viola concerto. 
     I could go on and on, but this is only a nugget.  Check out this blog; it has some good tips!
    

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Dashees Garden Tuesday 16/ New Doilies

     Recently I found a gold mine of vintage doilies at an estate sale.  A few will be used on my Etsy bags.  The first photo below shows some that will work beautifully on future Dashee Drawstrings.  Each has a great space for an added phrase!
     The second photo is of a beautiful piece of embroidery that I think I will keep for myself; it has a stain that I can't get out.  Not sure what I will do with it yet, but I love it!   



Sunday, June 12, 2011

For Love of Jade

     My mother tried to expose my sister and me to all the arts.  If opportunities were not available near our hometown she took us to Indianapolis or Cincinnati.  One of those journeys included a visit to the Cincinnati Museum of Art when I was about 15 and a discovery about myself.
     The museum had a collection of Oriental art. During the perusal of such I saw some figurines made out of something unknown.  It was jade.  The most beautiful stone I had ever seen.  Oh, that soft, luminous, green....I wanted to squeeze it.....you know, like in the old  Charmin commercials..... Oh!  Jade!  The carvings were magical and mysterious.....I wanted to touch them.  I wanted all of them.  Then I felt something I had never felt before or since.  A pure, unadulterated urge to steal.  
     That feeling surprised me, and I examined it.  Curious, I thought.  So this is what people feel when they have gold fever, maybe?!
     Then we explored the section of gold items.  They were beautiful, and looked more touchable and squeezable than the jade.  I waited for that new urge to hit again, but the gold just didn't quite hit the spot.
     The urge to steal never returned, but jade remained my first love.  It still looks edible and squeezable.  I adore it.

    


     

     

Colors

      While reminiscing I reviewed some family members and discovered that I associate each of them with particular colors.  For example Aunt Jean, my mother's sister, was purple, gold, and black lacquer.  She loved those colors, and they seemed to fit the part of her we considered to be "a little bit of Hollywood".  Her decor was dark and rich with an Asian twist. I remember Asian figurines, a  black lacquer cabinet with Chinese figures,  a gold velvet chair and purple accessories.  One home even had a wall painted mauve!
     Jean also enjoyed happy colors like yellow.  Her light bedroom reflected her cheerful, positive nature.
     My paternal grandmother was pink.  Her two daughters created a pink bedroom for her.  She had pink clothes.  My grandfather bought her a big pink De Soto long before Mary Kaye cosmetics existed (true love...).  She planted lots of pink flowers.  Definitely pink!
     Aunt Peggy was an artist and lived in all kinds of colors, but one combination stands out.  For her college Masters project she carved a series of wooden female heads and torsos which she washed  with various shades of pink and orange.  Wild!  They decorated the sitting area of her studio for many years. My mother and sister nicknamed them "the boob ladies". 
     Aunt Harriet, Peggy's older sister, was another pastel woman.  She was more like my grandmother and liked pink.  She also looked good in light hues.  I think of soft colors when I remember her.   They reflect the meekness and patience she developed from teaching and her lifetime battle with physical disabilities.
     It is difficult to pair a particular color with my other grandmother. Perhaps blue fits her personality the best, but there wasn't much blue in her home.  I associate her with a necklace she often wore.  It was made of variously shaded beige beads.  I think they were speckled.  The beads were unevenly shaped and reminded me of pieces of candy.  My sister and I liked to feel them.
     My grandmother's sister Hote was a talented seamstress.  She worked with many colors, but I think of olive green in particular because of a suit or coat she made in that shade. She also looked good in that color.   A second color is purple for the big amethyst ring she owned. Last, blue for her big feather chair in a blue pattern.  So pretty and comfy!
     My mother enjoyed decorating and worked with many colors, but two stand out.  One is red because it was her favorite color.  The other is blue. When she was young she owned a beautiful sapphire blue gown that was beautiful on her.  Her personality was definitely blue!
     Warm, earthy and comfortable colors are my sister....warm reds, gold, camel and khaki..with a dash of the exotic!
     Last, me.  Another blue, I think...........and floral pastels.
     I have left out the men......no colors jump out at me right now.....interesting...
     This is a fun activity for jogging memories!





    

 

Friday, June 10, 2011

Weekly Music Nugget 17/ Music for Children

      Fond memories from raising my children include watching my middle son race around the house as Zorro to Grofe's Grand Canyon Suite and a few years later, making up a story about a mouse adventure while my youngest son listened to Elgar's Enigma Variations
     Music can be great fun for children.  I recommend the classics such as Peter and the Wolf and Carnival of the Animals, but many other works will do if you have a good approach.  I particularly like using a theme and variations movement or a composition with several short movements, like Enigma  or Holst's The Planets.  They are easier on short attention spans.
     Below is a link to a webpage that has a nice list of classical music and associated activities for young children.  This music is also great for adults.
http://prekinders.com/classical-music/

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Aliens

     Well, I am behind in posting because of computer problems again.  Hopefully they are fixed!  Perhaps some of the creatures below caused the mischief...
That looks yummy
Stretch
A bunny from space
I don't want to know...
What a partner for this straight man
Sorry...the antennae are not hidden!
What is it!
                                                               


   

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In addition to being a violist, I am a wife and mother (three sons). I dabble in writing, handwork, sewing and photography.