Monday, April 20, 2015

spring things

Their bloom was interrupted for several days but this is still a good year for lilacs -- they survived rain, snow, and freezing temperatures. And so fragrant, it's almost too much.

The origami seed packets are for an outreach project of my herb group. Did you know the Monarch butterfly is at risk because of loss of habitat, specifically milkweed? Milkweed is its only food source in the larval stage but agricultural methods, population growth, and weather have nearly destroyed the natural stands of milkweed. There is a big movement to replant whatever milkweed is native to your area. Even though you may not live along the Monarch butterfly's migratory route, there are many strays and they will visit your milkweed until they get back on track. It is sobering to realize how far out of control the situation became.

Not much time for stitching lately but this month's pathway sewing ritual will be "in the green." It has to be, everything is green everywhere I look. I only have two more books left to read in the Outlander book series so thought I'd prolong the inevitable by reading something else, The Orphan Train. So far so good.

Week 13 of Journal52 is spring cleaning. Cleaning is not one of my strengths, but garden clean-up is different. I love seeing how all the plants are doing, which ones are returning, who's gone toward the light.

Astrologically-speaking, a few big things happen today -- the sun moves into Taurus and a waxing moon enters Gemini. I guess you could say things are going and growing -- growing under earthy Taurus and going (here and there) with airy Gemini. Sounds like spring.

Monday, April 13, 2015

red sunflower prayer flag

I'm reposting photos of the prayer flag I made after the 2011 earthquake, tsunami and nuclear power plant disaster in Fukushima, Japan. From what I understand, there are still many problems as a result of those events although we don't see much about it in the news anymore.

I wove, stitched and hung the red sun prayer cloth in March, 2011. In September, 2011 petals were attached to change it into a red sunflower because sunflowers absorb radiation -- and there was a sunflower planting project underway in that stricken region.

The red sunflower prayer flag has been hanging outside in the garden for the past four years, I believe it has served its purpose -- to release hopes and prayers for comfort and healing to all who were affected. What is left here now, the transformation of cloth and thread by time and weather, is something I love. For many reasons.

Today is a waning moonday in Aquarius. If there is something you are releasing, it's time to let go of the last of it. What remains may be something you love.


Tuesday, April 7, 2015

reverence, obedience and the invisible

A little rosemary bookcloth is ready to go to work -- I love using cloth bookmarks, my paper ones always get mutilated. I just got the book and haven't actually started it yet but it looks promising. How can it not be wonderful --  by Alan Chadwick -- and with that title.

The pages in my calendar planner are wispy thin but washi-taped edges make them easier to page through. I thought the pile of freshly-washed and folded cloth looked like washi tape too when stacked just so.

Journal52 Week 11 is inspiration, my page is all about color. I'm just learning this about myself -- how lovely it feels to work with color, especially painting which is new to me. Trying to keep my inner critic out of it, she is such a pain. One thing for sure is painting page backgrounds will always be something to look forward to during this year-long art journaling project.

Today is a waning moon in the sign of watery Scorpio. Under Scorpio's psychic tendencies, we see how deep we go and what it is we want, especially what we want to end.

Deepening to see then.

Thursday, April 2, 2015

violet moon

Winter came back today, we all knew it would. I just hope we can slink through this cold front without any snow because the trees are already blooming and leafing out and that would be so sad.

It feels like I've fallen behind in nearly every aspect of my life. After thinking about this, I've decided I don't want to catch up because that only implies more rushing around. So back to my word for the year -- flow. Flow can be slow or fast, light or heavy. It can be stopped and it can resume. I guess flow is really just being happy with the pace of life, however it goes. A new rust object for dyeing, Jan brought me the horseshoe on the far left. I think he found the other one, too. 

I miss stitching moons. Happily I came across some long-forgotten moon squares once intended for a moon quilt. Decided I still really want to make a moon quilt so basted violet moon onto a background of harem cloth. But something was not right. Looked at it on and off for a few days. Decided I hated the metallic thread; decided I hated the dark purple blanket stitching; one too rough and the other too harsh. A quilt has to be soft, right? Took it all out. So much better. This required an awful lot of decisions to be made.

After living for quite a few springs now, I notice things -- the same bird songs, how the air smells, the way some rooms in the house get darker as the sun rises higher, muddy pawprints on the carpet, and excitement for the seeds I plant. And so much hope.

The full moon is coming up on Saturday, April 4 so here's wishing you a big circle of light and hope. xo

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

b&w moon trail

I've been stitching a simple black and white moon trail as part of this year's stitch ritual, pathways -- one meandering pathway for each of 13 moons. Last Friday was a new moon, an Equinox and the sun moved into Aries, to mention just three of the day's events -- it was a big day, celestially speaking.

The violet vinegar has transformed into the loveliest liquid magenta. Some pussy willow stems are rooting nicely nearby, almost ready to be potted temporarily until planting time outside. And there's another art journal page for week 11 of Journal52 -- the prompt is to just write. The title of a recent email article on simplicity was Don't Take Action and I like the idea of not needing to Especially since my immersion into the Outlander book series because what I will choose given the opportunity is to Well into the fifth book with just two to go, I hate to see the end come near.

Around here in Zone 5 Colorado, it's time to get seedlings started indoors. This week from the afternoon of March 26th (1:45 PM MDT) through the 28th (9:48 PM MDT), our waxing moon will be in the sign of Cancer, making it the perfect time to plant those seeds. The best time of all, actually.

After some warm days in the 70's and 80's (F), our Nanking cherry bush is blooming so the bees have one more place to forage. I've been learning that pussy willows are a good early source of both pollen and nectar for bees as well -- try to keep them in mind when I'm thinking about new plantings.

Spring. There is a definite sense of things coming together now.

Monday, March 16, 2015

violet moonday


I made some flower food today -- a tiny bottle of violet champagne vinegar. It needs to brew for a few weeks before it's ready. Last year I made violet vinegar on Earth Day, April 22, 2014 -- that means the violets are blooming over a month earlier this year.

Directions to make violet, Viola odorata, vinegar and a little more about using violet as herbal medicine are here. I was taught years ago that violet syrup soothes unnamed grief. It stuck with me but I have never really come upon a situation to use violet for that purpose. Recently I read that homeopathically speaking, violet people are bright and perceptive, but can be sad or depressed to the point of crying without really knowing why. There seems to be a connection there. Violet is a great healer, indeed.

More good news is that since violet blossoms in the spring are not seed-bearers (those happen in the fall), we can pick them freely.

I'm stitching the little rosemary bookcloth. I was thinking since rosemary is a brain herb, good for studying and remembering, I should use it in a reference book of some sort. The power of suggestion, you know.

Journal52's Week 10 for art journaling was coloring book inspiration. I used a black/white/gray illustration from an old magazine and colored pencils. I didn't think I would like this prompt all that much but I did. The chakra points weren't in the original illustration -- and the Thoreau quote was synchronous, if only I really did have a canoe.

Today is a waning moonday in the sign of Aquarius, a good time for group work and play. And, as always, that strong Aquarian trait of making improvements might make itself known, watch out. Equinox is coming up this week -- did you know both spring and autumn equinox are good days to develop fairy vision?

Thanks for visiting, have a wonderful week and a smooth change of season -- and I hope you get to see a fairy or two. Think I'm going to sink into the color purple for a while now. xo

Monday, March 9, 2015

leaf patch moonday

Green on black continued...I stitched a tiny leaf patch. Small things appeal to me now, maybe because I have so many projects in the works.

I tried the egg-in-the-avocado baking method that I've been seeing around. Baked at 425 for 11 minutes, the egg came out pretty well, but not sure that I'm a true fan of the hot avocado.

Journal52's art journal prompt for week 9 was "artistic restraint with shape and color" so I went with cut & torn circles and painted shades of green. The result is inner circles. It is what it is.

Today is a waning moonday in the very psychic sign of Scorpio. Scorpio days are fertile and beneficial for garden work, especially watering and pruning when the moon is also waning. Now is a great time to give houseplants haircuts and showers and pop a few nuggets of dog food down into the potting soil as an easy fertilizer. Make sure your dog doesn't see you doing it though. Desire and focus are Scorpio gifts -- another is the ability to more easily end connections.

Think I'm going to spend a few more days in the green. Wishing you a great green week, thanks for visiting. xo