December 30: Snake mask

December 31, 2012 § Leave a comment

Though I am not a huge fan of this modern age, I often wonder how people got by before the Internet. For example, tomorrow night we are going to be at the Tacoma first night celebration. Every year, the effigy of the old animal from the Chinese zodiac is burned, and the new one is welcomed. As we are bringing in the snake tomorrow at midnight, we needed a snake mask, just like we had a dragon mask last year. And here is where I get to my point: because I didn’t feel like looking for our maskmaking book (yes, we have one), I went online, did a Google Images search, and came up with this design. It is made of felt and lovely, but I wanted to be done in five minutes, so I used construction paper instead. I think that the results are pretty good.

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Happy New Year, everyone. Thanks for reading. I won’t be back until 2013.

December 29: more goddesses

December 30, 2012 § Leave a comment

More goddesses among trees! The entire family participated.

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White Tara levitating

 

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Artemis running

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Brigid, camouflage

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pinecone labyrinth goddess, J’s piece

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Venus, also in camouflage

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D’s piece

 

December 28: A dress-up whirlwind

December 29, 2012 § Leave a comment

What better way to spend a Friday night (if you have kids and no babysitter, at least) than with kids’ friends playing dress up. The kids and the grown ups had a great time; the house was full of life and mirth. After having way too much sugar, J. and N. were a whirlwind of activity, and the camera caught this:

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I did no editing of the photos. I like them just the way they are, especially the blur.

And now for some peace and quiet after all that activity. To bed with a book and perhaps some very mellow music.

December 27: model train festival and little people

December 28, 2012 § Leave a comment

The end of December means model train festival in Tacoma. At least for our family. I am not too keen on trains, but love the fanciful scenes built around the trains and the tracks. They are stuck in the old days forever, with old cars, hobos, and quaint and quiet Main Street. Here are a few details:

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It’s like in The music of chance.

And our Lego builder’s train was exhibited:

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December 26: gods and goddesses perched on trees

December 27, 2012 § Leave a comment

While trying to regain a sense of safety and confidence in this world, I return to my favorite and most healing creative endeavor: making collages. I may even have embarked on a long-term project. I have a large coffee table book about trees that I bought for $1, and that’s been sitting under my art desk, waiting for something to be done with it. So tonight I cut out a Krishna, Brigid, and a Moon Goddess, and perched them in trees. I intend to fill the book with more images of joyful, life-affirming deities in the days to come. Tonight’s project was done in very little time, as O. has decided not to sleep unless I am lying in bed right next to her, so she can put her hands on my face (which means that she is staring at me right now, wondering when I am going to be done already). Because of the haste, and the use of regular white glue, the pictures look a little wrinkled, and ill-glued. They may look better in the morning, but by then I will have moved on to other things.

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Three people today affirmed my creative journey for this year in some way — two enjoyed something I made for them, and one said I reminded her to “stop and smell the roses.” I think maybe I should do the same. And start to really enjoy the process, and this blog. In other words, no more complaining!

December 25: a snapshot of Christmas

December 26, 2012 § Leave a comment

I spent the whole day trying to get the lighting right on my camera, with mixed success. They should make special Washington cameras: for the place where it’s always dark. It was a nice Christmas, as Christmases go, with the emphasis on gifts, which some say is unavoidable when you have kids.

Our child made us a beautiful gift at school:

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The gnome family, with the baby gnome standing next to the dove, all with jingle bells on their heads. I will cherish this one.

A little baby preferred wrapping paper to actual gifts

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and certainly one little boy was quite creative, building, you guessed it, a Lego set.

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My wish for Christmas is if not for a photography class, then at least to conquer the mysteries of my camera. Until then, I will keep trying.

 

December 24: Snowflakes for Christmas Eve

December 25, 2012 § 1 Comment

This morning, O. and I were home alone. I was cutting out snowflakes from a template (an angel snowflake, and a tree of life one) and she was discovering finger puppets from a basket. Every so often she would look up and smile at me. A perfect moment, a nice respite from my recent obsessive worrying about the world.

Here are the snowflakes:

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And here is the book I got them from. It’s old, something from D’s mom. If you find it, I recommend getting it. Though you may prefer making your own designs. I did one this morning, but O. ripped it up.

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Happy Christmas everyone. I wish us all peace.

December 23: another poem about the Northwest

December 24, 2012 § Leave a comment

The great Yakima fire

(based on a true story)

In the morning the fire caught them unprepared.
Whereas the boys had nothing to save that they could not make again
when they were older or make up from rope and skin and teeth marks,
and whereas the girls never had anything to start with,
while the husband felt wise and heroic and escorted the children in the manner of the finest firefighter,
and this being long ago
no parakeets, parrots, or Pekinese were in need of saving,
and the operation was so efficient
they all relaxed too soon
sitting by a river bank giddy about how they would rebuild the house
and Who will get the best room now that we are older
and Sissy is about to marry,
and for a brief fateful minute no one noticed that the mother was not there.
When they finally turned around
molasses-slow
they saw her running back into the house
shouting The sewing machine! What will I do without my sewing machine?
And then she was gone.
Later the daughters made an oath never to marry or cook for another or make others’ clothes,
and except for Etta, who married for money, they kept it well.

December 22: frozen food

December 23, 2012 § Leave a comment

I have worn myself out by worrying and have decided to leave glorious art projects for a different night. (What do I worry about? The list is endless.) Tonight, while J. was watching Star Wars for the 20th time, and O. taking a short nap (she has four front teeth coming in, so sleep has been lacking for us both), I quickly made chicken nuggets and fish sticks. If this child refuses to eat real food, at least I can try to make what he does eat healthy: I use organic meat, vegan mayonnaise, and homemade bread crumbs. Because I was in a hurry, I used the same recipe for the fish sticks as for the chicken nuggets — roll in a mixture of mayo & lemon juice, then in bread crumbs. I have to say this is a bad idea. Next time I will heed the recipe and roll the fish in flour first, as the sticks came out sticky, with much of the bread crumbs falling off. Now I know.

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It is interesting how nothing ever looks appetizing in a plastic bag.

December 21: Last shirt and lament

December 22, 2012 § Leave a comment

I was going to do a Solstice craft tonight, but by the time everyone’s needs were met and the last Christmas tasks done, there was nothing left in me. So here is the picture of the last kid T-shirt I made today. If I don’t make another one for a year, it will be too soon.

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Although I didn’t make a Solstice craft, J. did. In case you are not sure what that is, it’s the sun. The side without toothpicks is the dark side; the toothpick-laden one is the light side of the sun, sun reborn. J. will turn it to the light side tomorrow, to mark the beginning of winter, the birth of the sun and of the goddess, who will be a maiden again. To the right of the sun is about 1/5 of my total pile of Christmas letter sent in the past week.

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I have nothing to make for anyone for a while now. Oh, the freedom for making crafts for the sake of crafts again!

 

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