26 Mar

Back to Arty Content

Now back to our regularly scheduled content (no more scary euro-music).

Recently, I have gotten many wonderful responses to my sweet shop pin cushions from  bloggers and lurkers alike. Since a girl can only use so many pin cushions at once, I have been more than happy to trade for goodies. Last week I received an envelope of these wonderful goodies from reader Joanna:

Goodies from Joanna
She dyed the silks herself and sent me a panel of hand painted Lutradur and an unpainted roll full of potential. I have a couple of more trades in the works. Am I lucky or what?!

26 Mar

Musical Eight Ball

Here’s a fun one from Diane. You answer each question in the following meme with whatever’s palying on your iPod shuffle, or in my case, my computer iTunes smart playlist. (I opted not to use my entire library as it had a lot of holiday stuff and kids stuff which I don’t listen to regularly.) So this is from my collection I listen to most often. As Diane says, “It’s more fun than the Magic 8 Ball!”

How does the world see me?
Tangled Up in Blue by Bob Dylan
We’re off to an interesting start :-)

Will I have a happy life?
Angels with Dirty Faces by Los Lobos
We only just loaded our extensive Los Lobos collection last night, so I haven’t listened to this song in a long time. Not sure how to interpret it as an answer.

What do my friends really think of me?
Back on the Chain Gang by The Pretenders
Oooh. Am I that hard to get along with?
Do people secretly lust after me?
Work That Sh## Out by Dsico
Hee hee. This is one from TS&WGH’s vast library of “Mashed” music. It pairs Destiny’s Child with Jimmy Hendrix. I guess it’s appropriate?

How can I make myself happy?
Cocaine (live) by Eric Clapton
No, no, no! Although I love, love, love this song and Clapton)

What should I do with my life?
River of Fools by Los Lobos
Maybe I shouldn’t have started this silly meme…

Will I ever have children?
American Girl by Tom Petty
OK, I have one of those, sort of (my girl holds and American passport, but was born in Germany).

What is some good advice for me?
Superman by Five for Fighting
I think I have one of those too…

How will I be remembered?
The Best of Love by Ocean 11
OK. I can live with that. It’s Ska too, which is interesting.

What is my signature dance song?
Ring of Fire by Social Distortion
I guess Social D is more danceable than my Johnny Cash version, but really, whaaa?!

What do I think my current theme song is?
Can’t Buy Me Caroline by Go Home Productions
Another mashed song, this time combining the Fab Four with something heavy on rock guitar that I don’t recognize. I’ll interpret with the “Money Can’t Buy Me Love” part.

What song will play at my funeral?
Walk This Way by Aerosmith
I kid you not, I am NOT making this stuff up!!

What type of men do I like?
Just Another Day by Oingo Boingo
Does this mean I like your basic odd, tech/geeky, 80s kinda guy? Ooh, I just missed “A Boy Names Sue” by Johnny Cash by two songs!

What is my day going to be like?
Get out of Ms Jackson’s Bed by 10000 Spoons
It’s an appologetic kind of song and I don’t think it bodes well for my day. The music is upbeat though.
Thanks for the distraction, Diane. I think.

25 Mar

Euro Silliness

TS&WGH makes me laugh. That’s a big part of why he’s the World’s Greatest Husband (IMHO). Yesterday, he emailed me the link to this site and a “cheesy euro-disco” video. But first, I browsed the site a bit under the category of “cheesy euro-disco” and omigod is all I can say! What were they thinking?!?! I apologize for so many links and no pictures, but if you’re adventurous, this is potentially a hysterical time waster 😉
For the full effect of my adventure, you should first warm up with either of the following ABBA-esque videos: Armi & Danny or the Danish hippies. Now you are ready for Dschinghs Khan or his His Rocking Son. Are you feeling like you gotta move your feet yet? This entry has an instructional video (recognize the music?). Now that you get the genre, you probably are sighing in relief that the 70s are over and this stuff is a thing of the past, here’s the one that TS&WGH sent me. The scariest part, and the too much information part, is that I have actually heard this song on the radio! My only excuse is that I actually live in Europe. Pretty sad, huh?

22 Mar

Hey Quilt Artist!

Yesterday I pondered when or why I could call myself an artist. And you responded with great insights. I often wonder are we artists because we say so or because someone else says so? Based on everyone’s comments, I guess it doesn’t matter. It’s just words and we can choose to use them, or not. Our choice. Based on everyone’s comments I guess one is an artist when one is willing to say it out loud, regardless of what she may think others percieve her as. And I’m not sure whether to be uplifted or depressed by Karoda‘s proverb about life going on even after enlightenment. I know even established artists have to do laundry sooner or later, but I guess I’m always holding out hope for those laundry fairies to materialize and take it all away. (One can wish, can’t she?!)

Because the quilting must go on as well (and what a great excuse not to do laundry), here’s a sneak peek at my next project. I liked the simplicity of this little block, and although it is representative of the whole piece, you will never recognize it in the finished product.

Snow and tree block

21 Mar

Just Wondering

Every now and then I take one of those silly online quizes and I am always suprised when they tell me that I am a creative soul, or a free spirited artist, or some such crap. I must have checked the boxes that I thought they WANTED me to check, not the ones that would show my REAL being.

So why do I have such a hard time accepting that I could be an artist? How and when are we able to define ourselves as artists? It’s not really like there’s a test like for lawyers or teachers, or a uniform like for soldiers or firefighters, or a specific place we go to like a factory worker or a lumberjack. I have this nagging feeling that I am just a housewife with an interesting hobby. I am a bit competitive though, and I suck at being a housewife; so I’m wary of defining myself as such. I’d rather define myself as an artist because there’s so much more possiblity with that. But can I? At what point do I cross over from cool hobby to actual artist? For me, I don’t even have a day job to quit and try to support myself as an artist. (I already ignore enough of my household chores to warrant being fired from THAT job!) Besides, one can be an artist and have a conventional job as well. Hmmm. I was just wondering…

19 Mar

How I Spent My Weekend

It’s been killing Katja to see me make craft aprons for all her friends and to not have one herself. Finally, yesterday, I made one for her. She picked the rainbow colored splotchy fabric and dictated that the apron have a heart and a bunny on it. Here she is proudly modeling her apron:

Katja's craft apron

In other news, the Kindergarten my neighbor’s kids attend had a hobby and art show today to raise a little money. They held it at the church to which the Kindergarten belongs. There was no fee to show there, as they figured the crafts would draw the people in, and then the Kindergarten could make it’s money from sales of coffee, cake and hot dogs. I don’t know if I’ve mentioned it before, but there must be a law here in Germany that if you hold an event you must have coffee and cake! There’s coffee and cake at the school open house, there’s coffee and cake at the music recitals, there’s coffee and cake at the soccer tournaments, and there’s coffee and cake at the craft show. Anyways, my neighbor thought that I should show my quilts, so I did. I had nothing to lose. I didn’t expect anyone to actually buy any of my quilts, especially since I don’t have any smallish, low-priced, ones I’m currently willing to part with. But, it was a nice opportunity to share my passion. Many, many people stopped to talk about the quilts and the different techniques with which I had made them. They were very curious and a little suprised that these were not like the traditional ones they’ve seen before. Certainly the ladies who organized the event were happy I was there to fill out the space and offer nice things to look at. My neighbor knits socks and we did sell a few pairs. I enjoyed the morning and everyone’s reaction to my art. And, now I think my aquaintances understand what I do a little better. The other vendors (who did sell a few items each) were a woman with all kinds of felted treasures, a water color painter, two ladies making lace, a wooden toy maker, and a family with model trucks complete with building site accessories.
Hobby and Craft Show

Hobby and Craft Show

17 Mar

Costco goes to the Carnival

Today we enjoyed yet another cultural exchange. A friend planned to go to the annual Schrier Markt today and suggested we come along. This was a typical european street market with cheap kitchen wares, knock-off clothing and plastic flowers, plus the ubiquitous beer stand and wurst stand. However, it had one distinctive difference: five trailers with Schriers, or hawkers. For €10 you could purchase a huge bag of cheese, wursts, fish, sweets or pasta, and the hawkers with their microphones made a big show of their wares and your need to purchase them. It was kinda like Costco goes to the Carnival.
K with pasta Schrier

The bag of various pastas we bought was almost as big as Katja. The kids wasted no time diving into the bag of wursts either!

Yummy wurst!

Check out Zavi with our bucket o’ cheese. I liked the presentation almost as much as the contents. (That’s TS&WGH in the background with the massive bag of pasta.)
Bucket o' Cheese

16 Mar

Ides of March

TS&WGH, my hero

No I never actually remember which day is the Ides, by TS&WGH (Tech Support & World’s Greatest Husband) usually reminds me. I remember the anniversary part of it, but never the actual date.

When I fist met him, and he showed interest in me, I told him that he was too tall, too young, didn’t make enough money, and he was moving away, so I wasn’t really interested in dating. (Notice I said nothing about his hairline, which I did, and still do, find sexy.) He thought those were pretty lame reasons not to date and proceeded to woo me. One year later we moved in together. Things went well for the next two years and I didn’t really see a need to change them, but then he started talking about joining the army. I wasn’t convinced that the institution of marriage was the all that it’s cracked up to be, but I did know that the army could get pretty confused when people and things don’t fit neatly into their little cubby holes, so on the Ides of March, after finding out that he was accepted into the army’s “college op” program and would go to Officer Candidate School, TS&WGH proposed and I said yes.

Here we are a little more than ten years and two kids later and if he asked me to marry him again, I would in a minute. We’ve had some amazing adventures together, both good and bad, and I certainly couldn’t have predicted that I would be living this life, but I also can’t imagine living it with anyone else.

I love you, honey.