23 October, 2020

Etching in sand


A child's fingers hastily turns white nobs
On a fire-engine red etch-a-sketch
Scribbling grey lines on a grey background
Tongue stuck out in concentration
Mind not knowing what will come.

While a brown wrinkled monk's hand 
Slowly sweeps gently over the surface
Of golden sand, smoothing, never lifting
Or displacing a corn of concern without
Silently celebrating the exhaling of breath.

21 October, 2020

Work table


Giui ordered a new adjustable office table to be delivered to our home. 

Very chic. Very good quality. But, boy oh boy, was the putting it together an eye-opener. Guess after so many years and so many moves, this woman is no longer the Ms Master Fix-it I need to be! (Hint: if you can not lift pieces off the floor, maybe you shouldn't be putting it together using one hand to balance and one hand to screw in the bolts.)

My father used to say how good it is with age to engage Young Blood. Now I know what he was talking about. 

 

20 October, 2020

Winter lights


The days are getting shorter and shorter. Now is the time when winter lights in store windows or through laced curtains make a walk in the morning cheery. 

 

Velvet pillowcases

 


I used to volunteer at the Oxfam shop. Fortunately, I was designated to the book section. Nothing better than to work with books all day.

There was another section, my least favourite, that dealt with household accessories. There was often really strange stuff there. For instance, customers regularly brought in elaborate embroidered velvet pillowcases from the 60s, which I found horrifically ugly. Yet, surprisingly they always found a buyer. Who'd guess.

19 October, 2020

Beadwork


 

Years and years ago, I did beadwork. Very similar stuff to the drawing above. Wonder what happened to it all. Set free in the universe.

18 October, 2020

Quilting by numbers

 


1,500th blog post, this one
15 years of blogging, who would have thought
My son and daughter asked
If I would start blogging again 4 months ago
And even if I wasn't convinced, 
This is number blog post 43 this year,
16 this find month of October.

It was easier to do than I believed it would be
As is the quilt I drew along the way (see above)
Quilting by numbers, a new take on
What I liked to do as a child, paint-by-numbers
When I would try to finish before the 
Paints dried up. I thought the same
Would happen with this blog. Dry up. Not so.
 

16 October, 2020

Middle Ages


 I love living in Lübeck which has existed since the 7th century during the Middle Ages. Everywhere my feet walk, others have done so for hundreds and hundreds of years.

Also, how weird would it be to live in a place like Singapore and be older than the country? (The country became self-governing in 1959.) 


13 October, 2020

Oxford Mills


My sister's and I learnt to row a boat on the river behind our grandparent's house in Oxford Mills. This was, at that time, a small farming village not far away from Ottawa. There was an telephone operator in the grocery and hardware shop who would pass through (and listen into) the telephone calls to the various residents.

Anyhoo.. there was a river behind our grandparent's home and we were allowed to take the heavy red rowing boat and row up to the cemetery and back. We were not allowed to go into the direction of the dam. Those were the simple rules we had to keep to. 

There were a lot of wonderful dragon flies, frogs, painted turtles and birds to discover. There were also dangers... snapping turtles and blood suckers. A child's paradise.  

12 October, 2020

Bubbles


 

Grandma B.


Both my grandmothers were artists. One painted in oils, a gentlewomen's pursuit. The other knitted, embroidered, crocheted, made lace, sewed, quilted, painted porcelain, and much more. It is odd that the Grandma H., who came from a middle-class family, and only occasionally painted, was considered the artist. Whereas, Grandma B., coming from a poor background, and was always making something, was considered frugal instead of artistic.

Yet, when I think back to Grandma B., there wasn't one day that went by without her creative spirit finding something to make joyful. She was amazing. I wish I had told her that. 


11 October, 2020

Slowing down


It was a strenuous week at work, coping with an edginess in the air. Colleagues and bosses wanting me to magic something out of thin air. Like a gremlin, my thoughts scatter. My promises follow jaggedly to appease the needs of others, but rarely solve the problems in any way whatsoever. 

What I do need is to stand still, slow down my heart, and get better at saying no to others and yes to myself.

10 October, 2020

Curtain of leaves

 


We have a willow tree that partly fell, tipped over into a large pond around the corner from where we live. This happened four or five years ago during a storm. Initially, I thought it was going to die. Surprisingly, the tree continued to grow. It offers the best of hiding places for children and adults alike. You have to climb over its tilted trunk and through a curtain of leaves and there you are in wonderland.

09 October, 2020

Hippy generation


Many people who meet me think that I am from the 60s hippy generation. Actually, not true. Even my older sisters were too young to be hippies. Though that did not stop us from embracing some of the music and life choices (wink wink nod nod). 

Knowing this, it is all the more shocking to discover that even though I am not an true blue old hippy, I am a Cursed Baby Boomer. Hardly seems fair.

 

Broken toe


Another broken toe
One of many;
Past life as a ballet dancer
And also, me who continually 
Stumbles in the dark of night

I ask a friend about toe pain
And she shares sympathy
... she broke one of her
Toes when she was 
Six years old! Hardly
in the same league, but
I let this pass without
Comment. Companionship
Overrules comradery

 

08 October, 2020

No excuses. Just fun.

 


The above is a silly colouring-book style of drawing. It is also an excellent way to relax while listening to an audio book or half-watching a film. No excuses. Just fun. 

The weather has turned and done a deep dive into "shit weather" over here in northern Germany. So doing the drawing above is like going back to Grenada as a child, when every day seemed perfect for playing in the water and on the beach.

06 October, 2020

Rituals



For months now, I have been sending a friend of mine a drawing with an inspirational quote every day. It is my way of sending her a prayer and wishes that she will find the strength to stand these times. 

This ritual of drawing, even if it is nothing more than drawing wallpaper patterns, or quilts, or folkart brings a calm joy into my heart. And, just maybe, to my dear friend, Maria. 

05 October, 2020

Autumn leaves


Step-for-step over-and-over
I take leave of our house and
Walk down purgatory, past hell,
And veer towards paradise* 
Across cobblestones 
And gravel pathways, 
Occasionally I trip over 
Sunken tombstones of
long forgotten dignitaries
hidden under autumn leaves

(The street corner I live on is "Purgatory" and there is a small alley with houses called "Holle" and the cathedral at the end of the street has a section called "Paradise" so the story above is not a metaphor.)

 

04 October, 2020

Undercurrent

 


We are experiencing a second wave. Different than the previous one. This time there is an undercurrent of collective fatigue, confusion, fear and stubbornness pulling each and everyone. How to swim strong?   

03 October, 2020

Flowers and fishnet


Long ago, in the late 60s, I had a dress with a similar pattern to the drawing above. There were flowers and dots and either the background or the flowers were in a garish pink. I wore blue fishnet stockings with it. I thought I looked really chic. Blue and pink a perfect match.

Then one of my sisters told me the fishnet pattern didn't match with the dress pattern. That was the day I gave up on being a fashion queen. If fashion was more than matching colours... I was off that train. 


 

02 October, 2020

Lemonade

 


We had an amazingly hot summer. Plenty of opportunity to find the best recipe for homemade lemonade. This one from Chef John was my favourite.