Saturday, April 20

Of Shoes and, not ships, or sealing wax.

I am trying to renovate my life. I am realising I need to be shedding much of what I once enjoyed and loved, and moving on to new 'nakedness', as it were.

A sort of Less is More idea. These dolls I made gave me much pleasure, in their creation, and much pleasure in designing and sewing,  their clothes, and making many of their shoes, using leather and glue and trims and cork, or leather, for the soles..
I loved cleaning the greenware, firing the porcelain, painting the faces and firing the paint.
Then the construction of the bodies, if they were cloth. Many of them have plastic armature, which acts as a skeleton, so the dolls can be posed. The full porcelain dolls required some skill to 'string' and that was an art in itself...heaven forbid you shatter a limb!

I did not sculpt the dolls myself, but enjoyed choosing which artist's dolls I would make. I loved the variety, and the differing styles of dolls. I really enjoyed the wonderful friendships I made, with fellow doll enthusiasts, and the many laughs we shared in classes, and at Doll Shows.

The time and season for porcelain dolls now seems to be past, and I have sold my kiln, as I can no longer life heavy weights. 
In fact, since moving to where I live now, I have not made a doll, and I discovered the joys of quilting and that took over my life for a period of years.
I did manage to knit some dolls clothes, for my 'babies' and also a little sewing of clothes, but there are still naked dolls, and sadly, I know now I will not get around to clothing them.
For me, their season has ended.
(Incidentally, for most people the season has ended I suspect. They were a fad/craze that has run it's course, and the hundreds of dollars spent on greenware, eyes, armatures etc will never be realised in monetry ways) The pleasure, however, was priceless.

I initially began my dollmaking career at a Studio. I was quite good at constructing the bodies, and soon became 'employed' so to speak, for the students who did not care for those chores.
I loved working with electrical conduit pipes and joints to construct skeletons for the really large dolls, and the Man of the Studio and I, could often be found working out problems together, amidst tools and glues in the garage of the Studio..
The Lady of the Studio was all about painting, so my love of construction and 'working things out' became a benefit to their business.

Once I had my own kiln, I did not attend so many classes, but was on call for the construction of dolls- Christmas was rush hour, as doll makers raced to complete gifts. It was fun, and I would spend evenings with Gom, watching TV and sewing the dolls together. Better still, I got paid for my skills, so it was win win.

For a number of years, I was not ready to part with my 'family'. I loved each one, and had happy memories of the process of making them. We used to have cabinets, in our living space, filled with my happy dolls.
Then the time came that they were banished downstairs and I did not see them so often. Guests would stay in that downstairs room, and I wondered if they really liked the dolls staring at them.
Everyone has differing tastes, after all.

I still love most of the dolls, but in a practical world, I need to quit them now.
When my son became ill, he was living downstairs, with the dolls. He had intended to make his own life and move away, so we had not worried about the dolls.

Once he became ill, we decided to let him have his treasures and art surround him, and so the dolls have been banished, and I realise the time has come to part with them.

My daughter actually dislikes this doll, but I love her attitude, which I think the sculptor captured very well. I made jewellry for her, necklace and earrings, and was so happy with her suede shoes, which are not visible in this shot. She is posable, so she can assume several positions.

I have been reading many of my old blog posts, and cannot help but think about how much my life has changed in the last few years.

I so loved my patchwork and quilting, and miss it in my life, but the paralysis of my present life, prevents it, somehow.
I know, if we could see round corners, we may not continue this journey.
People say, life is all about the journey... well my journey has become almost unbearable.

It has reached the point of "Stop the World, I Want to Get Off!!"

On a lighter note, as I was sitting in the Doctor's Waiting Room, I suddenly noticed this huge Orangutan enter the room!
She was cunningly disguised as a Leopard!, in a huge, bright Leopard skin sort of tent. With matching handbag! "Goodness!", I thought."Quite dramatic!"
Then, entered a mother with a small boy child in tow, plus a babe in arms.
The boy child turned, and was suddenly arrested, at the sight of the Leopard! He was so startled he gasped, said OH,  and then he pointed, at the Leopardess..
The beautiful Leopardess smiled at him, and asked him his name, then she asked how old he was?
He held up five fingers, and his mother hastily said he is Two.
More children came into the waiting room. All seemed enchanted by the wonderfull Leopardess! She was so delightful to the children, and they all seemed drawn to her wonderful disguise.
I could not help but smile and admire her wonderful boldness. Her smile lit up the Waiting Room!

When I look back on the music I have posted, or listed here, I am happy that I have such a wide-ranging taste in music. Over the years it has given me so much joy and pleasure, I constantly think I want to thank all the musicians of this world.

Bob Seger, Against The Wind.

Tried to post this video, failed dismally. Am I "Losing It?" haha. or not....

It has rained, dismally, all day.
I hope tomorrow has some space for sun.

Monday, April 8

Some Random Thoughts.

I call this pic, which I shamelessly stole from some email or other, my "familiar" my friendly Crow, telling the Cosmic Clown, who keeps attacking us, that he damn well better watch out!

Recently, we were having a clear out of various unwanted pieces of furniture. I had a lounge suite, which though still very comfortable, had been relegated down to the garage, because it was surplus to our needs after we bought a new leather lounge suite.
After Gom died, I was trying to downsize the massive pile of 'things' he had stacked in the garage, and the old lounge suite was one such item. Because it was still very comfortable, and of sturdy good quality, I washed all the covers and advertised it 'Free' on a website.
Next day I recieved a phone call, asking if the lounge suite was still available. "Yes". "Great" said the person whose gender I knew not, from the voice calling, "can we come and collect it?"
"Please do". I asked my daughter to come and help me with getting it out of the garage, as my son was, by then, disabled.
There came a knocking on the door, and I opened up to see a smallish, somewhat, 'mufflered' person, and a very thin woman standing expectantly at the door.
"Oh, Where is the strong man?" I stupidly said, then thought, that is being sexist, so I next said, "Oh, are you it?"   I cringed and died a little!!
I had expected to see some burly man to load the suite. I felt so stupid after blurting out those words.

My daughter nearly died laughing later, every time she thought about how flustered I became.
The first 'person' at the door, was a woman by figure, under the layers, but she had a very strong beard, in that the stubble was quite thick, and dark. We could not work out if he /she was being a man or woman. There was a man in the vehicle, but he seemed to be disabled also, ie, incapable of helping with the furniture. Anyway they decided they liked the lounge & chairs, so we helped load them in the their rather clapped, and battered,  old station wagon.
They left, with the vehicle positively bulging with pieces of lounge suite, and we were left to wonder and ponder.
Then, to our horror, we found one of the corner seat cushions (shaped, so useless for anything else) from the sofa was left behind! I should explain here, that the cushions,  and the back,  and arm pieces all detached from the suite, so there were a lot of pieces and cushions to deal to.
I felt awful, as the lost cushion was no good to us. I duly tried phoning back the number I thought was the enquiry number, on my mobile phone, explained why I was calling, but was told it was a wrong number.??? So we never did find out who they were, or what they thought about the missing cushion. Perhaps they felt that was the reason the suite was free.
I felt awful, as I would never sell, or give away something that was missing a piece or defective in any way. Unless I made it clear whatever the defect may be. I have put our old mower out on the berm, and it has been taken away, by a nice polite man who asked could he have it? I replied please do, we are having a cleanup. We are fortunate here, we can have six household rubbish, or garden waste, Council collections a year. It is so helpful, and if 'pickers' come along to take stuff, they are welcome to it.

This is a picture of me, holding Zane, my son's gorgeous dog. He is such a treasure, and we are so glad we got to rescue him. We can not imagine how anyone could have parted with him, he is so affectionate, and devoted to my son. It was like they were made for each other. He is Corgi/Chihuahua cross, and is just such an obedient clever little boy. We all love him, ...even Honey seems to be quite fond of him.


I have been thinking of bizarre things, as I am often wont to do.
I see those, "Who would you like to invite to dinner, from the departed in history?" questions.

My take on that would be, "Who, from history, would you most like to slap?"
I posed the question on facebook, and got a couple of laughs. We all agree, the choice is just so wide, there would be many candidates I could think of. Henry the Eighth being one, for being such a pig to his wives. (which really is an insult to pigs, because they are gentle creatures, and far more intelligent I would imagine.)
Or Idi Amin, for being an inhuman monster.
As to the living.... well, there are one or two, who spring to mind, and Kim Hung Dung is one of them.

I dreamed it was the end of the world, because Kim Ill sicko had pushed 'the' button. I was amazed at how quickly the cloud reached us, and I was also amazed at how calm I was.
Of course I think none of us can really know how we would react to anything, until it happened to us.

I have been on an Aeroplane that was struck by lightning, and it shuddered and bucked in the sky. I just felt really calm, and was amazed at a normally, very efficient, capable friend, who just panicked. She shook violently, and could not stop shaking for the remainder of the flight. I calmly ate my meal and was not the least bothered. Gom remarked that I had not even grabbed his hand!
I am more afraid travelling in a car, than I am in a plane.

Today my lovely daughter, and my granddaughter took me out to a wonderful peaceful Bamboo Buddha garden nursery, and cafe. It was so beautiful, I would like to return. We then went to have a meal at our local pub, and it is always pleasant and very convivial. We met a friend, and his son, and had a chat. Such a nice outing.

I recently treated myself to a Tablet. I have had such pleasure using it to read blogs, facebook, mail and various interests,on the internet,  from the comfort of my bed, or lounge chair. How lazy I feel, how priveleged. How guilty, when I think of the poverty that abounds in the world.
I am sure my Grandmother, who loved gadgets and new technology, would have loved it all!

My daily horrors and fears threaten to overwhelm me. My son is getting weaker, and is frequently drowsy with drugs for his pain.
If I stop to dwell on it, I just go into blind panic and terror.Distractions can be music and mindless TV.
I find I am too frozen to read books now, or do my beloved patchwork.
I wonder if I will ever recover.

Sheryl Crow, Every Day is a Winding Road.

Thursday, April 4

April Showers.

Could be April Downpours!

I can scarcely believe it is April. I had a much loved Aunt, whose birthday was in April, and my Grandmother named her Lorna April. She was never known by either of those names, but I always felt April was a pretty name. I loved her dearly, and after my mother died, she became my surrogate mother in a sense, because she was always there for me, and we shared some wonderful laughs over the years, until her death. I still miss her greatly.

Every now and then, I try to remind myself, that before my whole world changed forever, I used to be a quiltmaker, patchworker, embroiderer. This is a photo of a bag I made some years ago, and have only recently begun to use. I am amazed at how much it can hold!
I have forgotten the name of the designer, and I apologise to whoever it is. I changed several things on the embroidered panel, but much of it is the same. I loved making it, and wish I still had the mojo.

This second picture is of the back of the bag. It has handy side pockets, and an inner pocket of large dimensions. It can hold an amazing amount of 'stuff'.

I have been attending a course, run by a lovely Psychologist,  designed to help Cancer sufferers, and their Carers, (and taking this bag along). I have found the course immensely helpful and grounding. In my moments of panic, I can think about what I have been learning, and try to put it into practice.
I so admire the young women battling their personal battles. And, indeed the older sufferers, who are dealing with Cancer.
I am sure I would not so so well. Of course, I also believe we have no real idea of how we would cope with any event, until we experience it personally.
As a carer, I have difficulties of a different nature, and of course, there are dark days when I feel I am drowning in panic and terror.

Easter seemed to bring it's own demons, and as Easter is the Anniversary of my Grandmother's death, I always find it hard.

When Gom & I were younger, we would host a party on "Black Friday" as we called it. ( As my GP said, he has never understood why it would be called "Good Friday", since the story goes they hung the poor chap for an agonizing death.)

The weather kept nice for the campers over the weekend, but yesterday turned into the day from Hell, as far as the weather goes. Pouring rain, cold temperatures. Today is another horror day. I awoke in the wee hours, remembering I had forgotten to put out the rubbish bins. Since it was raining, I was reluctant to rise from my warm bed.
However, once I heard a truck rumble up the street, I dug myself out, put on a jacket and sandals- yes silly choice I know! I stumbled downstairs and out into the dark. To discover my neighbour was out doing the same as me. We had both forgotten the night before. Luckily we were in time, and so the bins are now empty again.

This is a pic of my first camelia opening up. I am  not expecting many flowers this year, since the camelias had a somewhat balding haircut earlier.

This is a picture of my son and daughter and I when we went down to Sydney and my son and daughter went to a Nick Cave concert at the Opera house.
A wonderful friend had organised for Brett to meet Nick Cave after the concert, so that was special for him, as he has been a long time fan.

This is a huge cruise ship which was docked at the Quay, and we were told it was on a 99 day cruise. I wished I could go on a cruise.

This is the Opera House, behind a ferry that crosses to Manly. I tried to get another photo of the Opera house without the Ferry, but it was blurred.

Recent days have been hard, Brett is becoming weaker, and seems to eat little. There are days when he doesn't get out of bed.
Some of his wonderful friends came to visit him over Easter, and took him out for lunch, but he was very tired when he came home, though admitted it was great to see his friends.
I feel it makes him sadder, to think of all he has lost, and is about to lose.

I was not really a fan of Nick Cave, so didn't go to the concert, but there are one or two of his songs I do like, and I was going to suggest one, for my song for the post.
However, I cant remember any titles of the songs I do like.
So, I will just leave it at Nick Cave.