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Sunday, March 30, 2003  
I'm printing up stuff for an exhibit about NYQuilts! and started fussing with the Epson utility because I didn't like how the first print looked. Lo and behold -- out of ink. Don't you hate it when the solution is just as easy as that? Geesh. Why do I keep myself around?

OK, it's to give you information like this:

Ock·ham's razor
VARIANT FORMS: also Oc·cam's razor
NOUN: A rule in science and philosophy stating that entities should not be multiplied needlessly. This rule is interpreted to mean that the simplest of two or more competing theories is preferable and that an explanation for unknown phenomena should first be attempted in terms of what is already known. Also called law of parsimony.

Written at: 3/30/2003 09:47:00 PM

Saturday, March 29, 2003  
Naomi asked in comments:
In the small section, I saw illusory 'circles' of pink that don't seem to be visible in the larger area--is this an aspect of the design or just something I'm imagining?
When I look at the photos I see some large squares on point. They seem to be 3 or 5 squares on a side and are formed by the on-point "square in a square" of the small blocks. Most of those edges seem to be formed more with the contrast of a light center area of the blocks against the dark outermost triangles. Areas that don't pop out this way are more muddy contrast wise.

Interestingly, (perhaps!) the stars that I saw in my drawn and early mock-up versions don't seem to pop out at all.

I'm not purposefully placing color except to keep a lot of a single print from ending up in one place.

Before I started I made three piles of each color block - designated light, medium, dark. Light v dark was pretty easy, medium was not so clear. Both colors had similar amounts in each of the three piles, which I thought was interesting. There are fewer fabrics involved in the greens than in the pinks.

My main thought in placing them really is to make some areas that are appear to be lighted areas and some areas that seem shadowy with of course areas that are neither. Right now I am alternating blocks based on whether they have red or green outer triangles. I figured start out this way and then re-arrange if I didn't like it. The finished configuration is supposed to be 14 X 20-22 blocks.

Written at: 3/29/2003 01:42:00 PM


Want more pink?

Well, I aim to please, so here you go.

210 pieces stuck on my wall....

Written at: 3/29/2003 12:43:00 AM

Friday, March 28, 2003  
Last night I started putting up those little pink and green squares. So here for your viewing pleasure are 72 out of 320 squares:

Click photo for detail image.

Written at: 3/28/2003 12:15:00 AM

Tuesday, March 25, 2003  
Whooo hoooo! I just finished true-ing up the last of the pink (and green) squares. Now I have to push back my sewing machine table so I can arrange them.

Interesting day otherwise, I guess. I woke up this morning and had only one thought other than getting to work - LIPSTICK. Who the heck knows where these things come from. Now you have to understand that this thought came really last night when I bought a new lipstick, one of the long-lasting variety in a rather dark red. Needless to say, it was still there when I got up this morning. (Max Factor Lipfinity is indeed long-lasting)

More importantly you have to know that your faithful writer is not into makeup as a rule. I guess sometimes you just have to do what you have to do and last night it was new lipstick.

It was worth it just to walk into work and have everyone say - oh my - you have lipstick on. One person noted that it was "sassy" so I'm calling the whole thing a success. Don't get too used to it folks because I just don't have it in me to do it every day. Does this uncharacteristic behavior mean it's spring?

Written at: 3/25/2003 11:30:00 PM

Monday, March 24, 2003  
In other news, today was another Monday at work. Listened to my ipod on the way in and as it happened, my man James Taylor sang these words to me. Didn't seem to matter to me if they were written about Ireland or not.
Belfast To Boston (God's Rifle)

There are rifles buried in the countryside for the rising of the moon
May they lie there long forgotten till they rust away into the ground
Who will bend this ancient hatred, will the killing to an end
Who will swallow long injustice, take the devil for a country man
Who will say "this far no further, oh lord, if I die today"

Send no weapons no more money. Send no vengeance across the seas
Just the blessing of forgiveness for my new countryman and me

Missing brothers, martyred fellows, silent children in the ground
Could we but hear them could they not tell us
"Time to lay God's rifle down"

Who will say this far no further, oh Lord, if I die today.
--James Taylor

Written at: 3/24/2003 10:37:00 PM

Sunday, March 23, 2003  
On the other hand, some people don't like cats (hard to believe, I know), so check this out. All I can say is "wow - now THAT's a dog!"

And while I'm at it - a small fanfare to announce the addition of textism to my blogroll at left. Said dog above is his, as is the wonderful photo and there's much to like there. And when I read today's post, well, I just knew it was meant to be.

Written at: 3/23/2003 09:33:00 PM

Wednesday, March 19, 2003  
Great machine quilting class tonight! Good job ladies. Remember practice makes perfect. It's very rewarding to me to see the progress that someone can make in an evening and then see it multiplied over a week's time. So keep up the good work, and be at one with the force of the machine!

Written at: 3/19/2003 11:17:00 PM

I'm totally obsessing about my webcam. How cool is it? Let's just say that my herd of cats now have a small but dedicated band of watchers all around the world. They wait, as I do (and the cats) for the nice patch of sunlight to come around the house and hit the top of my cedar chest. Then, right on schedule, parade o'cats. One after another they hop up, look out the window, take a snooze, groom in ways that seem physically impossible... in otherwords - they act like cats. Only now - we can see them.

I suppose it's a good thing that we now know that cats really do move during the day when no one is home watching. And I can only speculate on why this is of interest, but it is. Despite some suggestions that it be titled the "all-naked-quilters-all-the-time webcam" it's not so just get over that. On the other hand, I could see setting it up next time I start working on a big project! Time lapse quilting. Stay tuned.

Hit the refresh button to see the photo change here.... If it's dark - well, it's dark.

Written at: 3/19/2003 11:03:00 PM

Tuesday, March 18, 2003  
The sad news..... Well, Jeremy over at Antipixel found something that says it all -- No war is inevitable. Go out tomorrow and be peaceful towards your fellow earthlings. Pet a dog or cat. Be nice to someone whether they need it or not. Do something strong whether you think you can or not.

In other news, also sad: I am in the process of transcribing my recipes to the Cookware Deluxe software. That's going along ok. Last night I was to the point of copying a couple favorite cookie recipes given to me by the mother of my first boyfriend, in college. What a coup it was getting those recipes. Anyway I wanted of course to attribute the recipes to her. I remembered her first name but not how to spell it. Knowing she was pretty active in her community I did a couple web searches and discovered the news that she died in April 2002. Mother of three boys, all now married and I'm sure ecstatic grandmother of six; wife of 50 years.

What memories I have of wonderful meals created by her. And her baking was non-stop. I have only a handful of recipes from her hand but I use them regularly and I hope that serves as a small tribute to her -- Claire Salzbank.

Written at: 3/18/2003 01:41:00 AM

Monday, March 17, 2003  
And in the "ain't technology great" category -- I snagged an iBot today at work. Thanks whoever you are who bought this thing without knowing you didn't have firewire! First off, we played with it all day long and that was wonderful. I found out how to set it up and what software would allow me to do what I want. Finally I bought the thing (thanks again!) and brought it home. I set it up while listening to sad news on the radio. (I can't talk about that now) Then I tried a few things to get it up and running. Finally I checked in with my work guru. Thanks David! And voila, we're live and in virtual.

So if you want to see me or the cats..... bookmark this. It may not always be on, but it will be interesting when it is.

Written at: 3/17/2003 10:16:00 PM

Saturday, March 15, 2003  
What a week. Hot (at least, hot enough inside work to merit short sleeves and no extra layers!). Long (long enough that when the manager on duty said Go Already to the other manager and me, we both BOOKED and giggled like giddy school girls.) Be that as it may, along with some other low points.

I will tell you that I have only a short stack of pink squares left to true up. Yeah! And I have been very productive in the kitchen today. Lasagna. Chicken Soup. Red Sauce. Meatballs. Whooo hoooo!

The chicken soup seems like a particularly good batch, having benefitted from the carcass of a roast chicken, along with one specially made for soup. It's simmering now with its last round of veggies and smells great.

With that the newly cleared out freezer will have some good stuff in there for quick meals - chili, red stuff, meatballs, chicken soup, lasagna, veggies.

Now I'm toodling off to bed.

Written at: 3/15/2003 11:58:00 PM

Wednesday, March 12, 2003  
See this? This is the sort of thing that sometimes makes me think I'm going crazy because I see stuff like this and wonder why no one else ever mentions seeing irridescent clouds. Is it me? At last, some indication that indeed, it is not just me.

On a different note, when I'm not being the grocery cart police, I get great satisfaction in the grocery store observing what other people are buying. Compared to other people, my pile of groceries is a big pile of raw materials. The things that many meals and many different foods can be made from. Yes, I buy the occasional goody or the emergency cans of soup, but with a variety of basics in the pantry, you can make a lot of different things, eat well, and eat rather cheaply.

My main problem? I just seem unable to cook in small quantities. I love to use all my big pans. I made chili last night and filled the new dutch oven completely. A gallon of chili.

Last weekend I cleaned and sorted through my spice cupboard. The new Penzey's order was the cause of this. I have lots of herbs and spices now. I am also bad at judging how much volume a given weight of herb is. So instead of small "spice jars" most of my spices and herbs are in mason jars of the pint or quart variety. No reason to be stingy!

Finally, tomorrow I'm teaching class one of two on machine quilting. I spent tonight rounding up my samples and stuff. I better go get some sleep or I'll be the one nodding off in front of my sewing machine.

Written at: 3/12/2003 12:06:00 AM

Sunday, March 09, 2003  
Saw my folks today for a bit and then did the normal grocery shopping routine. For a change, too many things looked appealing. Or perhaps it's the influence of all the food blogs I've been reading? Anyway, my frig is stocked and I even grabbed a bargain corned beef and threw it in the freezer. yeah. Tonight I made the first of it (boneless lamb roast) and then, I had a mission.

My brother's birthday is today - happy birthday Mike! - and his normal present was a little late in the making but he'll have it tomorrow - PB cookies.

Got a little piece of paper handy? Pen? OK write this down:

  • 1 cup creamy peanut butter (like skippy or jif - not organic au natural stuff)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 egg.
Mix all that together well. Put on sheets as 1" balls and stamp with either cookie stamps or the very respectable fork criss-crosses. Bake at 325 F for about 10 minutes. Watch at the end so they don't burn.

You won't find better AND they're great for people who have problems with flour. While I was in the mood I made some gingersnaps too. House smells exceptionally good at the moment. 95% of the stuff is put away and all the dishes are done. Yeah.

Written at: 3/09/2003 10:44:00 PM

Thursday, March 06, 2003  
Yesterday was the presentation of 15,000 poems submitted on the Poets Against The War web site. The poems were given to members of Congress. My own poem finally appears there, and it's a small thing in a big wave of small things.

Tonight I went after work to see Ron and his fellow crew members commended by the Town of Colonie Town Board for their actions in Monday's rescue. Since people sometimes grumble about their tax dollars going for something that doesn't seem to immediately benefit people in the town, this was a chance for Colonie to say - we as a town did something to save those three lives, and we're proud of the people who had the training and experience to do it. Nicely done.

Went into the cold night with Ron and admired the slim crescent bowl of a moon in the sky. After that I got in the car to meet up with Ron for dinner. The president was wrapping up his question/answer period. I didn't hear his statement but I guess I was at least momentarily relieved that he wasn't announcing a commencement of bombing. That's what I was prepared for in my head. Instead, just another "they have to or else. the deadline is coming." Had a nice dinner and started home.

Stopped at Stewarts. Ron had already stopped for what we needed so I helped out by answering the payphone and then went to my car. The other woman in the shop had locked her keys in the car so I lent her a coin to get to her emergency key. Her car was covered with peace bumperstickers and she was also covered with buttons. I asked if she'd been to the Mall where I worked, where the peace activists had been out in force protesting the arrest of a man who was wearing a shirt saying "Give Peace A Chance." She had and we chatted about that while she got the key and unlocked her car. She gave me my coin back and a button (choose peace) from her coat. She lives in a nearby small small town.

A nice meeting, by chance, and a better end to my journey home in the cold late winter night.

Written at: 3/06/2003 11:10:00 PM

Tuesday, March 04, 2003  
Ron was involved in a rescue of a family whose small plane crashed in Massachusetts. Now he finds himself in the middle of a media whirlwind, being in many newspapers and morning news shows. None of that matters as much as a job well done -- proud of you, Ron and fellow rescuers. It was a tough day to be out hanging under a helicopter. They make their own wind and the windchill effect follows accordingly. It was amazing that any of the family members survived their night out in the cold and we offer our thoughts for the small children who continue to fight for survival.
5 March 2003 -- Today's update.

Written at: 3/04/2003 12:12:00 PM

Saturday, March 01, 2003  
Beans beans beans. Despite all the boy-humor about beans, beans are good for you. High fiber, low fat, tasty and cheap. In the past few days, I've cooked 4 (that's f.o.u.r) pounds of small navy beans. That sounds incredible doesn't it. Say it with me - four pounds of navy beans. Two pounds went into a test batch of baked beans. The other two pounds went into a batch of classic navy bean soup. It's all good.

I did the baked beans in the crock pot, and I have to say that they're good, but I prefer a thicker, how shall I say, spreadable kind of baked bean. These weren't soupy but there wasn't anything holding the beans together.

The bean soup looks like a great success. The beans are cooked and the soup is smelling good. I removed some of the beans and pureed them so the soup is thicker. I KNEW I should have bought that conical strainer. I just want it. The little cuisinart did a fine job though.

I'm about halfway through truing up all those pink and green squares.

Bought a couple new books today and so I think I'll listen to the weather report and then curl up with one of them and a glass of wine. Wild living? You be the judge.

Written at: 3/01/2003 11:09:00 PM

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