Category Archives: online learning

December 22, 2020

Learning a new craft means more mess. For needle felting: wool rovings, specialized needles, finger and thumb protections, foam pads to perform stabbing operations on.

But I am having so much fun!

The end of the year brought some formalized goodbyes: to corruption, duplicity, psychopathology, sexism and racism. LIES.

And of course, COVID-19.

And now we must add: and mutations. (Did you hear the one about Ireland? After centuries of oppression, they can finally keep the British out! Ar-ar)

More personally, as I’ve stated elsewhere, I want to spend less time in grievance. And, I want to read more this year. Both feel do-able.

Today: pin wheel cookies and a dog walk at Cutler Park.

Have you ever seen Stevie the Wonder dog on Instagram? He’s adorable. Lives with some nerve disorder that makes walking difficult, but he is famous and beloved and everyone sends him packages. So many videos of him opening packages. Stevie_the_wonderdog

Above, is Finn’s version. Unfortunately what he is dispatching at the outset was a household gift. I thought it was a dog toy. (Oh well! Sorry, MR! He DID enjoy the treat inside!)

(In case you’re wondering about the clumsy links, the updated WP makes selecting text nearly impossible, especially if near a line break or photo. Errr. But on the positive tech-front, K figured out how to download photos from iPhone to Lenovo laptop. It requires a format change on the phone end and takes a LONg time — because along with innovating to a stellar degree, Apple also spends a fair amount of energy crafting intentional ill-ease across platforms — but wait! I hear farting sounds. Is this grievance? The good news is I’ve already deleted 1,000 pictures off my phone).

Speaking of farting, if you haven’t seen this, you’re welcome!

A way to go

In the past, the chakra work I’ve done was in-person and not just in-person, but in-person with people I knew and trusted over a span of many years.

We called it Sacred Meditation, as devised by Richard Moss. It both started and ended with the heart center.

A very different enterprise! I wasn’t quite prepared for how an unbounded exercise working from the root up would go. And even more, I wasn’t sure how much to share about what was arising. This is a public forum, after all.

Meanwhile, out in the world, a new confederacy was forming and the number of bodies falling from Covid kept escalating. Both staggered the mind.

I’ve emailed Acey. Let her know. Also suggested that my overwhelm was a testament to her intuitive power and how she communicates.

Would it make a difference if there weren’t absolutely catastrophic news stories unfolding like tidal waves? Perhaps.

After some more thought, however, I realized that I am brave and curious enough to keep doing these exercises.

Hear that? I’m pretty brave.

What I’m not prepared to do with any amount of ease or elegance right now is talk about any of it. So what? I’ll dip in and out and share the pictures. See how that goes.

Orange equals overwhelm

Today, I should say. Today, orange equals overwhelm.

A little background. My tech skills need updated. I need to learn how to transfer photos to my new laptop so that I can then delete 1,000’s (and I mean 1,000’s) of pix from my phone. Talk about too much!

Then, I need to figure out why blogger won’t let me leave comments (and there, I speak of too little. Too little interaction with some beloved blogs because *#%*£#).

Finally and most immediately, I need to update my blog-reading app. I thought I was keeping up with a chakra exploration led by Acey and come to find out, I’m way behind. Way behind.

Which is actually a terrific place to begin: with that ancient and enduring sense that I am not enough. Perhaps this sense dwells in the lower midsection. A second chakra phenomenon.

Is looking backward an indulgence? Is it at some times and not others, for some people and not others?

Wondering about that.

I scanned Acey’s posts and took a few pix before and during the morning’s dog walk and then pulled out my SoulCollage cards (so much orange!) and went down to my studio (so much MORE orange!)

There was no prayer, music, or movement involved. Just a burning punk and curiosity. I will let most of the photos sit while I let an approach appear.

But to start: a corner of orange fabric sticking out of a desk that once belonged to my mother caught my eye this morning.

It’s a piece of high-end linen given to me by a local upholsterer with a scavenged piece of paper stitched on top. I don’t remember when I made it, but it’s years ago. The design looks map-like and therefore holds excitement, but the grubby aspect makes it also seem forlorn and wrecked. As I go through the chakra exercise, I will add to this little wrecked, forlorn, exciting map-like shape and see what comes.

I was already thinking about yellow and how key it is to orange, when on our walk (our very COLD walk), I came across a plastic gate in a neighbor’s yard.

Look! In that space between panels, is where orange vibrates.

If I was to pick an emotion that would be moderately difficult to explore right now, it would be MISSING. Missing, as in tender longing, not as in regret or obstruction. I suspect I spend a fair amount of time avoiding how much I miss certain aspects of earlier phases of my life, including (MOSTLY) but not limited to my sons.

More soon after more reading, exploring!

Check it out: Acey’s chakra exercises.

Words mostly elsewhere by

Sitting down right now at the laptop with a boiled egg, coffee, and commitment that might be described as fierce. Got to get through the next chunk of manuscript where very severe cuts will be required. Hurm hurm (Harley sound effect).

Many other words could be called upon to describe this day, this cold and blustery Earth Day, this Day 42 of Containment, but I must conserve. Besides, I don’t want to make you crazy with all my robe-making changes of mind. So here is a story of the morning in pictures.

PS Acey I haven’t forgotten that I promised you a copy of that picture of Prince!

PPS I’ve gained 15 pounds since making my card stock body model in a class of Jude’s some time ago, but that should only impact boob-sizing and with a loose robe, even that isn’t critical.

Gorgeous print of Harriet Tubman painting by South Carolinian artist Natalie Daise aka @gullahmama on Instagram. Her work is gorgeous and her prices really, really reasonable.

Alright, so I lied. I am busy procrastinating in full-throated style! But before I go, some thanks are in order.

First, I want to thank Nancy for so sweetly gathering up her threads and shipping them to me from California. The package is decontaminating in the garage and right now all I really care about is that she gets well!

Also, thank you Joanne. There is something about the steadiness of her day by day reporting that I find so reassuring right now. It doesn’t hurt that she talks about food even more than I do! Tonight, based on something mentioned there, I’ll be making chili. Thank you Joanne.

Lastly, to all who weighed in on the backyard — thank you. To be continued!

Draw a line

Prompt for Day 8 from Acey (see footer below) was draw a line then collage. I don’t like this result but I’m grateful for the direction because I was feeling constrained from making marks on the pages and very much wanted to.

I think “see further” might be a good refrain for what’s emerging here though. The binocular view finder a heavy handed but apt symbol.

Below are a few digital collages of other pages. I turned the big-hatted model into a tree just as I did James Franco.

Of the women collaged yesterday, she was the figure who held the most allure. She is on display for sure, but blocks her breasts with her arms and shields much of her expression under a huge hat. Being half naked but hiding herself is a posture not just of mystery but of control. What if it is SHE who is shaping her image and access and not the designer or the photographer?

Below, find the lines depicting worldwide food consumption trends (also from yesterday’s collages) paired with a solitary figure and, if you look closely behind the orange stripes, a monster.

Here is the book’s first moveable flap.

This cretin with his thumbs up was selected at the direction of picking something “other.” To see a crass salesman next to the pronoun referring to our middle eastern woman pokes at the contrast between Iraqis/Iranians and us.

For info on this collage project see Acey’s blog sparklinglotusink

For more SoulCollage cards of mine, go to Flickr on sidebar and open the SoulCollage album. Or, track the SoulCollage tag here