July 31, 2013

Paint, Stitch and Worry

I'm warming up, falling back on comfortable.  When my mind is a big empty cave filled with nothing in terms of creative thought, it's easy to go to what I find simple and easy - painting, sewing, and quilting.  Am I dumb for saying yes to donating work to the annual fundraiser auction?  Not this time.  My creativity brain cells have been on hiatus and I need to wake them up.

During our July 4th celebration (and after a bit of wine), my wonderful friend Deb asked me if I'd be willing to paint a piece or two of furniture AND make a quilt.  I must have had too much wine because I said yes.  What was I thinking?!?  At lunch last week, Deb reminded me that I had agreed to paint two pieces, a cradle and a stroller.  A stroller?  Who paints a stroller?  I was SO relieved to find that not only was she providing the furniture, but it is doll furniture.  Whew!  I can do this.  I am a little concerned because the furniture is not of good quality.  It was put together with one of those hydraulic staple guns, peppered with the little holes on the surface, gaps in the joints and poor wood surface quality.  My name is going to be on it, so I want to be sure I make it clear that I painted donated furniture.  I may make a small quilt to go with the cradle to distract from the flawed wood.  When in doubt, distract!

When it comes to the larger quilt, I am not going to make myself nuts trying to resize and redesign a quilt pattern or make one that is so complicated that I barely make the deadline as I did last time.  This week, I went to the local quilt shop (a luxury that I did not have in my old town) and was immediately overwhelmed.  My mind was buzzing as I took in all of the patterns and colors.  How does anyone look at all of these bolts of fabric and know what to take home?  After cruising every short aisle at least four times, I made a decision.  I bought three yards each of both black and white solid cotton.  What a dork.  But I also found a couple of books with great designs that I want to try, so it wasn't a total waste of time.  The book "Transparency Quilts" has wonderful information and quilt designs that I appreciate because they are non-gender specific.

This quilt entitled "Small World" really caught my eye.

This weekend is the last year that the International Quilt Show will be here in Southern California, slated to move to Portland next year.  What distressing news!  My husband "H" has insisted that we go early, make a day of it (for as long as we can stand the growing crowd) and then enjoy lunch at the beach, taking in a bay cruise (if I remember to bring Dramamine for sea sickness because I am a total weenie).  Sounds like a great day.

We are trying to keep ourselves busy on the weekends and distracted from worries.  H is a diabetic.  When work stresses him, which it does all the time, he stops taking care of himself.  I got a call from his doctor this week, concerned about abnormal blood test results.  The worrying begins.  He did a "do over" and the results came back better, but glucose levels are running higher than usual and we don't know why.  Is the insulin bad?  Are the test strips bad?  Is the meter in need of replacing?  Is the insulin just not working so well all of a sudden?  It's hard to be creative when mom & wife mode kick into gear, when life and health are more important.

Today I am going to try to enjoy having time for art, even if it's spent painting doll furniture, maybe even play with fabric for a while and paint or stitch away some of my worries.