Stuck at Home

Well, we are following the rules and staying indoors while the Corona madness continues across the U.S. We did a ton of cooking today and after three loads of dish washing, I made myself a nice iced coffee in my favorite mug from Created Purpose.

My husband made a serious amount of stuffed shells and we froze them so in the future we don’t need to cook some nights! Today I was in charge of lunch and tried to use up whatever was starting to go bad in the pantry. Turned out pretty good!

 

 

 

Top Five Tuesdays – Shop Local

Top Five Reasons I Love Shopping Local


 

  1. I can most likely walk there!

    Hooray! Shops down my street are so much more appealing than big box stores that I have to drive miles to get to!
  2. Owners bring their pets to work.

    I love how small business owners can just do whatever they want because they own the place. And that includes bringing their dog to work! Love being greeted by a pup at the door.
  3. There’s a good chance the owner is working on the products right in front of you (and might even ask your opinion about it)!

    I love watching artists working on pieces (jewelry, sewing, anything!)
    So cool to see the artist in her/his process. 
  4. Money goes back into the local economy.

    In your face AMAZON and misc big CEOs! Enough said!
  5. They remember your name and what you like! Maybe even save the last item for you since they know you are coming.

    Love that first class treatment! I would never get that at Target.

Wait! The Decade is Over?

I remember thinking the year 2020 was soooo far away! And VOILA! Here we are. Where the hell did the time go?!

This week I’ve been seeing everyone on social media post their top 9 photos of the year. I figured I would pay tribute to the decade in my favorite photos. I scanned through 10 years of photos in my archives to see if I could trigger some thoughts or feelings about the past 10 years. I could have easily chosen vacation photos, but that is way too easy.

Some years will feature more photos and some will have less. Could have spent hours going through my archives (oh so many photos), but I picked quickly to force myself to really reflect and write something meaningful!

HERE WE GO.


2010

My work was featured in a local art museum’s show. Someone purchased the large photograph of keys. I was shocked to know someone bought this particular photograph, because it seemed the least appealing because of the specific subject matter. Also, I found it slightly awkward as such a large print.

2011

I worked at Borders in Providence Place Mall for less than a year before I found out it was going out of business. I was devastated. I was even more devastated when I learned they were filling the former space with a shoe store. Says a lot about society, doesn’t it? When I was single I spent many Friday nights sitting in the cafe, drinking hot cocoa, nibbling on warm chocolate chip cookies and reading books I didn’t plan on buying. Maybe that’s why they went out of business….?

When I was single, I took many trips to New York City with my friend. I was always aware of art exhibits and was so enthusiastic about visiting art museums! We never let the weather stop us from having a good time. I remember loving this photograph of our rain boots. I have to make it a point to get to NYC with my friend! I am talking to YOU Sarah!

I remember taking the bus a lot this year. I carried my camera on my back and just photographed anything that captured my interest. I remember seeing this sticker of Diane Arbus’ photograph in Warren, Rhode Island. I found it odd but I was excited to see it since I remember seeing it so many times in art school.

2012

I am still obsessed with this photograph. I remember seeing this at Blithewold Mansion. I photographed it for a while. I had to catch the exact moment. I ever got around to printing this! I should!

Here is 30. Here is where it all began. Here I am pictured with my husband. We weren’t even dating yet. I thought I would invite him to my 30th birthday party at  local piano bar. I didn’t think it was a big deal. It was just me with a bunch of my friends, hanging out, laughing at drunk people (not us). Later he told me how extremely proud and happy he was to be invited amongst my closets friends. This was a major life lesson for me. Something may be small to me, but mean the world to someone else.

OOOOOH I love a piece of history. This building was renovated and turned into an antique shop. While they were working on the exterior, they exposed the original sign. I thought it was so neat. I ended up asking my parents and some other relatives about the shop, and they had many stories to share. I love history!

2013

I met Andre Leon Tally at RISD. Enough said!

This wasn’t my first time at the show, but I remember loving this dress. If you have  a chance, checkout StyleWeek!

Here’s our first day with our new dog. I remember now how skinny she was. A whole 29 pounds. Poor dog. We fattened her up real fast.

2014

My husband and I are not real fans of winter.  We don’t mind it during Christmas, but once January and February are here, we are just out of our minds. I came home to find my husband made a dinosaur out of snow. It was EPIC. I wish we had better photos.

Hands down, one of my all time favorite photos of my dog. She always had her nose in this tree (the squirrels loved it). It reminds me so much of her little personality.

I remember that summer we were the talk of the neighborhood. We planted these sunflowers and they turned out to be MASSIVE!! I am so glad we took a photograph with them, because we were never able to grow them this size ever again!

2015

Did I mention we hate winter? This year, he made a ship, complete with a seat for the captain and his first mate. First mate was ME by the way, not the DOG!

Just because this makes me laugh. I refuse to be serious.

Here it is. My wedding dress. I took this photo because I wanted to capture this detail forever. I loved the lighting here. I had no idea what the lighting would be on our wedding day, so I figured I would snap this shot. Glad I did.

This was the very last photograph I took with my phone at my wedding. I love this photograph and it made the album. I spent a lot of time punching those paper hearts. I love the way they ended up on the floor and the way my shadow landed in the photograph.

2016

 

The year I took the time to make my grandmother’s famous cookies (and made my mom cry). They were good. I should really make time to make them again!

I love the summer program at my local library. Staff gets themed shirts. My husband and I started taking photographs together in our matching shirts. Glad we did because he doesn’t work there anymore! BOO!

 

2017

Ok, OK. I know I said no vacation photos. But I like this one!! It was the moment life came full circle (sort of). I loved watching the show Full House as a child. I dragged my husband to this site so we could see the facades of the famous houses featured in the introduction of the show. It was cool!

2018

Am I getting more mature? I feel like these days, I stay closer to home. Maybe that is what happens when you get married, get a shelter dog and an exhausting (but gratifying job). I walk the dog around the block a lot. This is the local frame shop. It is one of the most beautiful buildings in town. I especially liked it on this day because it was cloudy, and its color popped. I remember going there as a child with my parents and now I go there for my own items. It is so rare to have a small business around for that amount of time.

A sentimental year for sure. I asked Dad if I could borrow (and photograph) his old project and home movie reels. I just love the look of the machine (and the old footage). I yearn for the old days, sometimes.

This year, I felt I lost my connection to art. Well, this was the new muse that brought me back to life. Ironically, this building has been around my lifetime. Guess it was super special this day.

2019

This year was not a good year. This path made me think a lot about life.

Mom celebrated a landmark birthday. My husband and I had so much fun making these cupcakes. It was a much needed distraction!

It was the year of giving. I chopped up my wedding dress and made gifts for family and friends. I kept a few items for myself.

This dog is so ridiculous sometimes. This photo makes me laugh so hard. This year I think the dog was in control of everything and the humans were along for the ride.


Well, there you have it! While this doesn’t sum up each year, it makes for some interesting memories. Welcome 2020!

 

Sewing 101

   A good teacher recognizes your potential. A great teacher will push you to work harder and go the extra mile. A good teacher is very hard to find. I found one!

   I started sewing lessons at a local small business this year. The shop owners offer a garment sewing class one night a week. It has been very hard to attend class on a consistent basis with holidays and personal commitments but I stuck with it!

   For my first project, I was sure to purchase the pattern that looked easiest to me. At some pointMy plan was to build my confidence by making something easy. Sounds like a great plan, right? Well, my teacher had another plan.

   This class is really nice because there are only four students. The teacher tends to each student, giving others time to work on their piece. The first week I learned about the right and wrong sides of fabric. We also worked on adjusting and cutting the pattern to suit my measurements.

   I figured I would have this garment completed in a few classes. After all, I chose the easiest pattern in the store! It doesn’t even have sleeves or a collar! But, as we went along, she suggested I learn French seams. She said it was a lot more work, but an investment in my future sewing. Anything with French ahead of it is always sounds good to me – french fries, French bulldog etc. Great! Well, not so great. It took lots of concentration and attention to detail, which is not my strong point. I made a few mistakes while attaching the French seam to the garment. I became very acquainted with a seam ripper (for those who don’t sew, it is a tool to undo the stitches).

   I trusted my teacher because I know anything that is an investment of my time now will pay off later. Well, months later my purple, linen top is done. Unfortunately, I can’t wear it now because we are entering winter and it is freezing! I will tuck it away in my closet and look forward to wearing it next summer. I cannot wait to make another garment. I’m considering making the same garment in a different fabric so I can really get the process down.

   I (we all) are fortunate to have small businesses like this, where we can learn these life skills. The more I shop in big box retail stores for clothes, the more frustrated I become as the quality of clothing is horrific. I notice it even more now with a slightly more mature sewing eye.

   Funny, in life you encounter so many teachers throughout elementary, middle and high school. You recall being young and wanting to get away from teachers come summer. We all wish, as children, to have an adulthood void of teachers, right? But I don’t feel that way any longer. We need teachers! Sure Youtube is great for learning, but those Youtubers cannot provide hands-on assistance or encouragement!
Dedicated to my teacher Liz.