Friday, October 21, 2011

A Secret for Remembering that Anything is Possible

Fidget has gotten into photography lately. When she is out of film she uses my digital camera. Which is nice because we can delete a lot. She has taken to making videos of her 'kids'. She's into superheroes too. So yesterday after Bible study she borrowed the camera while I was making lunch. She said  she was doing family portraits.

But that's just Pooh Bear, I said. No, she said, it's a family portrait of Pooh Bear and Silky! 

And this is her new superhero, Blue Diamond. I love her spelling. At this age I just so love to see her creativity coming out, so I don't want to correct her all the time. If I did I'm sure I could discourage her very easily. She often leaves out vowels and word endings. We do work on those things at school. But being a kid is about being creative. I want to foster that and I want her to remember that when she grows up she was always encouraged to create. 

Here is the painting I'm making her for Christmas, from my favorite photo of her at the nearby topiary gardens. I work on it after she's in bed every night. When it's finished, I'm going to start writing the story that goes with it. I can't wait until it's Christmas and I get to give them to her. One look should be all it takes anytime she needs reminding that with imagination, anything is possible!

Monday, October 10, 2011

Columbus Day Cavorting

The Pres and I had work to do this morning. I'm getting near the end of the oil portrait but the more I do, the more I see that needs done. The Pres was experiencing the same thing in his work. Clearly it was time for a change of pace. After a couple of games of yard baseball with Fidget, we set off riding our bikes and had lunch in town at an ancient diner. This afternoon we went looking for low tide at Brenton Point State Park. But there are public access water spots all along the road leading there, so we stopped at plenty. We even found a little bit of pottery! This piece has 'CO' on it. I'm not sure that it's really old but it was intriguing. Of course I kept it.

I can't get over the vibrant greens in the water plants. It is such a good feeling to walk among them and to feel them swish your feet as the tide sways them to and fro. 

 But they are also slippery!

So, it was Columbus Day and Christopher Columbus was the last thing on our minds. But the same God who called him across the water is still leading us today.

Tomorrow, it's back to work. The Pres and Fidget are back to school, and I'm back to wrestling with the painting. But since God has called us to this life, there's no place we'd rather be. I'll put the latest picture of the painting here. I don't know if anyone else can see the progress but it makes me happy to share it. 

Tuesday, October 4, 2011


 Hello and happy fall from Harbor View! I have some soup simmering and just a little bit of time to knit or drop a line. I love this time of year. Something about the cold is invigorating. And there is still plenty of time to consider making things for friends and family members for Christmas. As long as I have a minute I'll show you a secret Christmas project. I know it doesn't look like much yet. If it did, I couldn't show it here. I am partial to greens, but even so, isn't this yarn pretty?

Here is last year's secret project: holiday-theme quilted place mats with matching napkins! Christmas ornaments, stars, geometric designs, holly and peppermint sticks mixed and matched to make cheerful place settings for everyone in the family, and even some friends who didn't expect a gift.

I tried to keep one side Christmasy and the other side vaguely wintry. That way they can be used all winter. I had seen a place mat sort of like this on a wall at the local quilt shop and thought I'd try it for Christmas. They had only one pocket for the napkin, but I put two. When you have two though, you end up using them for the silverware and there napkin has to go on the plate or on the side.  

They're shown on our glass-topped dining room table, made from an old door from a slave cabin in Orangeburg, SC. The Pres made the table when we moved to Virginia three years ago; Fidget's former teacher at Beaufort Montessori and her husband gave us several special old doors when we left, and this one was our favorite. The table was perfect for our new dining room. We'd never had a dining room- or a dining room table. I love the look of all the layers of paint partially sanded under the glass.

I love being able to make things for loved ones. We are pretty low budget around here. But that doesn't mean handmade gifts can't be as special, or even more special in some instances, as store bought items. Another thing I want to make is a painting of this little scene for Fidget for Christmas. I have such a great story idea in my head. I'd love to give Fidget the painting with its own story! I think that would be a most memorable gift.What are you making this season?