tiny dresses for tiny humans

I can’t believe these wee things would actually fit a human.  They’re just so tiny!

LittleGeraniumDress2LittleGeraniumDress1I had the fabric scraps…

and the pattern was free…

and there sat my sewing machine…

I like looking at flowers on fabric and all, but I’m ready to look at flowers outside.  Lenten roses, primroses, forsythia, daffodils, Redbud blossoms…

Oh! I’m going to San Diego!  Soon!  And our friends are going to take us to see ranunculus (ranunculi??) outside.  That’s crazy.  I always see ranunculus in seed catalogs (which I’m getting daily right now–you?), but as much as I love them I know they’d face certain death here.

Stay warm.  Stay hopeful.



I don’t know why I should be like What?! about the snow on the ground this morning, but I am ready for Spring.

P1000066(1)I have some tulips inside.  I’ll let them grow up in a bubble, never telling them of the fate that has befallen their cousins in my neighbor’s flower bed this morning.

P1000062When people ask me what I’m up to, I’m like Oh just trying to stay warm, and they probably think I’m being cliche and vague, but that’s actually a very accurate description of what I’m doing.  My sister makes fun of me because I always have a coat on, like always.  I’m 39, and I’ve decided I need one of those old lady house coats.  You know, the really long ugly ones, with the zipper?  Hang on, I’ll find one….  OK, this.

My husband would leave me.

But at least all this trying-to-stay-warm weather has given me time to work on some projects.

P1000067I’ve been a knitting foo this winter.  Some sort of nesting instinct.  In case some younguns do show up.

P1000064New quilt time, yay!

P1000071(1)Need to beef up my stash, though.

My son has been turning wood like crazy lately.  The stars are completely aligned in Ezekiel’s favor, because he inherited his great-grandfather’s lathe and we live down the road from Jeffries, which is like the awesomest store in the world.  Seriously.  People come from all over to shop at this place–aisles upon aisles of the most beautiful wood specimens I’ve ever laid eyes upon.

P1000070(1)I’ve been begging Zeke to make me stuff, but he’s blowing me off.

I need a boxelder bowl.

Stay warm!

oct, maybe kisses







oct is here

plenty of jerusalem artichokes from the looks of it

my friend told me she’s heard of people having to move, they’re so invasive

flower patch still spittin out zinnias; fine with me

another hen is laying.  saved from the stewpot {not. not that i’d do that}

i have to wear my ugly apron into the woods when i feed the goats because they hop up

they hop up with their mud and muddy my pants

not anymore

now the apron

unflatteringest apron which ever was ever

and the boots

the pink boots that will survive the apocalypse

all bad deeds are done in the pink boots

just lovin these early oct days

windows open

a bit of rain here, some rays of sunshine there

a cool breeze here, a stillness there

the cat sleeps as if near death; this is what she does at the equinoxes, her hair either falling out or filling in

interesting about cats

maybe we will hike tomorrow

maybe we will kiss in the woods

maybe he will take my little hand, maybe i will take his freckly one



september and i just b sewin’

…with my little pin doggie.

P1070364I can’t believe I haven’t posted anything here for over a month.

I’ve been tweeting, though, so that’s something, right?

I started teaching a Physical Science course at a homeschool co-op.  Very new to me.  I generally stay at my house and, you know, sew.  My little brain is like but I don’t want to think about Newton’s laws; I just want to think about sewing stuff. 

Like when I’m supposed to be teaching Latin, but end up coloring the insides of tea boxes.


My friend went to Homer, Alaska and brought me this rock.

P1070363I love rocks.  I think my friend is very brave to go someplace where Grizzly bears eat people.  She said it was so beautiful your words catch in your throat and you want to remember everything your eyes can take in.  She is in love with Alaska and she wants to live there.  But the Grizzlies, I remind her.  She says, lightly, dismissively, well, yes, a hiker was attacked near where she stayed, while she was there, but, you know, those things happen, and it’s just so beautiful.

It reminds me of in The Odyssey, the Sirens.

Just trying to wrap up Summer (still haven’t vacationed yet) and get ready for Fall (yay, Fall!!!).  My little flower garden is still spitting out a few blooms here and there.

P1070359We have company coming next month and I’m trying to create some little play areas for their little ones.

P1070366Under the stairs will have to do.

I have been trying to make a more conscious effort to do things when it’s convenient.

Like, instead of making a special trip to the store for something for a meal, just postpone the meal, make whatever I can using what I have on hand, and then pick up groceries the next time I happen to be driving by the store.

And just saying no when people ask me to do stuff that’s going to make me harried or so tired that I’m not much of a help anyhow.

I’m trying to schedule dental and ortho appts on days when I’m going to be out and about.

Just killing two birds with one stone, that kind of thing.  I know, it’s common sense, but I certainly get caught up in the insanity and then have to reign it back in.

OK, but one area I’m having a hard time with is in my decision to make running more convenient.  Normally, I drive to a rec center where I can run indoors in the air conditioning, and then shower.  And then drive home all happy and clean.  My new convenient running plan has me swinging by the hilly park on my way home from dropping my daughter off at dance, say, and running in the hot August sun mid-afternoon.  It’s like running in a bag.  Sweat comes out, but then does it go into the air?–no, it runs down my neck and arms and legs, drenching my headphones and clothing and socks and shoes and watch band.  My glasses fog up, and then my nose is all sweaty and my glasses sliiiiiiiide down my nose, resting on the very tip.  Then after I run I get into my car and drive home, my sweat leeching through the beach towel I’ve draped over my seat, and into the upholstery.  I’ve got the AC cranked up, because I’m about to die.  And then suddenly I go from immensely hot to immensely cold.  The AC has cooled my soggy clothing and I am now freezing, thinking how I’d like to take a hot bath once I get home.  It’s 95 degrees outside.  My dear friends, this ought not to be.

Running should be convenient AND pleasant.  The unfairness of it all is turning me into this bitter, bitter gal.

I fear I may have to revert back to a state of inconvenience.

Which is simply unacceptable.


the finest of afternoons


My mom told me once that (someone had told her) our minds seek harmony.

I think that’s true.  Balance, balance, balance.  One can never rest for danger of tipping the scales in one destructive direction or another, not truly, not completely…not here.

But there are moments, for me at least, when I can relax and breathe and everything feels fine, just fine.

Yesterday afternoon was fine, walking around a friend’s garden, seeing her point out Japanese varieties of this and that, and her wee tea tree, and nasturtiums, and then her vintage Shasta camper.

And this afternoon was fine.  Walking through the woods with another friend and her little boy and little girl, and my not-so-little-anymore girl, all the while collecting mushrooms and exploring these tiny secret worlds of color in decaying trees and poking their way up through packed-down leaves.  The color and beauty and sheer exquisiteness take my breath away.

Beautiful people, beautiful places, and beautiful, wonderful things.


summer sewing and not cooking

P1070288I got a sheet set that came in a little fabric bag.  Cut the bag up.  And a duvet cover that came with shams–yeah, right, like we use shams, cut those up.  Made a wee bedding set for a little girl I know.  (Clementine box doll bed.  It’s gotta be a clementine box bed.)  This little girl is just the most adorable thing ever.  She has three older brothers who are all really boyish boys.  They’re always in their tree house or digging up sassafras roots to make actual homemade soda (they collect antique bottles and let things ferment and they have some gadget that crimps the bottle caps on–it’s crazy; they’re the real deal), and then their tiny sister is there with her dainty Mary Jane shoes and her baby dolls and her baby doll “car seats” (little wicker baskets)–which her mama actually buckles into their vehicle.   I can’t wait to give it to her!!!

Working on my daughter’s quilt.

P1070291My pattern is: looking at a Pinterest picture on my phone every two minutes.  Needless to say, I really have no idea what I’m doing, and I’m confusing myself.

I finally finished a little lap quilt.  It’s not a quilt, technically, just a blanket.  Front and back.  I’m thinking it will be nice for an ever so slightly chilly fall afternoon on the back porch.

P1070296People have been giving me produce.  See how nice it looks on my counter?

P1070293Will I do anything with it, though? Ah, that’s the question.

I’m such a horrid cook.  Wish I could just toss stuff in a pan and saute it to perfection.  Add a liddabit of dis, a liddabit of dat, and…poof!  Food for the people!

But no.  I’m all looking on the Internet, trying to find a recipe, getting discouraged when I have everything but the marjoram, looking for another recipe, altering a recipe, cooking some ghastly concoction, burning the food, starting a fire, turning off the smoke detectors, answering the door cause my neighbors have come over to see if we’re OK because they heard the smoke detectors, crying a little bit, scrubbing my stove, having to take another shower to get the smell off, going to bed late and exhausted…

In the end, it’s just so much easier to take a picture of the vegetables, and then go sew something.

Do you know what I mean?  Does anybody…know? what I mean?

Probably not.  Probably just me.

there now that’s better


I just wanted some flowers to be inside so I picked all the things, even the things that aren’t supposed to come in.

A few big fat bumblebees are hovering around my hollyhocks.  The bees are so covered in pollen that they look like sloppy toddlers who’ve just eaten too many powdered donuts.

I walked with my friend today.  Walking in East Tennessee in June is exactly the same as sitting in a sauna.  It’s no wonder so many people don’t exercise here, because it doesn’t really feel like safe exercise. There’s no wicking.  One’s internal temperature just builds; the sweat streams down in rivulets.  It’s almost as if…as if… one is melting, instead of moving.

There are turtles everywhere here now.

Box turtles–I pass them all along the way.  When we walk at night our dogs give them a quick sniff and a happy little tail wag.

Snapping turtles–Last week I had to stop as a car was in the middle of the road, it’s driver walking around in front of the car trying to corral a snapping turtle.  The turtle did not like the man.  The man nearly got snapped.  I think he might’ve been interested in killing the turtle and taking it home to eat (people do that here; people eat everything here), but he got bashful when he saw me and let it go.  I felt like saying, “I don’t care! You can eat that turtle!”

When I was little I’d catch little painted turtles at a pond near here.  They were the size of half dollars.  So, so, so cute.  I would sit in the shade with my Dalmatian, who had social anxiety just like me, and I’d sort of line my turtles up in order of ascending size.  The two biggest were, of course, the mom and dad, then there’d be some teenagers and little kids and always a baby.  I’d kiss the baby.  My mom would’ve probably not been super happy about me kissing turtles.  I also had an animal graveyard for animal corpses I would find.  I did little funerals for them.  Sometimes I’d cry.  But I don’t think I was absolutely, legitimately sad; I’d just sort of make myself cry because I liked the idea of being sad.  Also I shared suckers with my Dalmatian.  I’d take a few licks, then let her, and so on until it was done.

Good times.  Good, good times.

wasted years, cockatoos, and Angelina Jolie

Saw this at a cute little store o’ curiosities the other day and there was no way it wasn’t coming home with me.

P1070262All these years.  All these years I’ve been going to thrift stores and not once have I considered buying an old kettle in which to plant a succulent.  Oh the tragedy!!

I love little hens and chicks like that, don’t you?  They’re so exquisite.  Look at all that this website has.

New thought now.

I was thinking yesterday about a few things.  One is that I’d like a bird.  A cockatoo.  I’d get it from Parrot Mountain when it was a baby.  I’d go visit it when it was still in the nursery and be so happy that people from all over the world were petting it and talking to it and making it happy.  Then it would come home.  It would sit on my shoulder all day long.  I would rock it and scratch it’s tummy.  It could make all the messes it wanted, and I wouldn’t care.  I would just sweep it up every day before bed.  We would be such good friends.  I’d put several names into a hat–names like Sylvester or Amos or Bryn or Hoyt or Patrice or Ophelia or Honorine–and then tell the cockatoo that he/she could pick out his/her own name; just bob in there and pick one with its beak.  If it picked one that wasn’t my favorite I’d say, “Pick again.”  I would knit it stuff.  Seriously, I would.  Ravlery would have a new “knitted bird apparel” category because of me.   I’d make sure we allowed for a home for it in our will, as it would surely outlive me.

But I can’t do any of that because my cat would kill the cockatoo and dismember it within hours of it arriving home.

And the other thing I was thinking was that I used to think Angelina Jolie was kind of a mess, but now everything I read about her seems to suggest she’s not a mess at all.  I read once that most people come to a crossroads in their life in which they have to choose whether to continue on a path of Success, or change to a focus on Significance.  I’m pretty sure she went with Significance.  And that’s ace, I think.

I’ll bet Angelina has a bird.