Where does the time go?

It’s been 11 days since I posted although it feels like it was just yesterday. Steve says that time is time—always the same—but I think that time is moving faster these days. I’m feeling rushed even though I don’t have any looming, horrible deadlines. Why is there still so very much to do? I know I’m not alone. It’s the same for you. Let’s all take a deep breath and slow down for a moment… and perhaps have a glass of wine.

I am still spending time each week on taking the photo for my photo class. This week’s challenge is to Go Big. We are free to interpret that however we want so I decided to show big hands, or a hand as it turned out.

When you really look a hand in different positions, the proportions and shapes are odd, but because we know what a hand looks like, we know what it is.  In this photo, if you didn’t know what a hand looks like, you might think that it was mostly big fingers.  Side note: I have a new prime lens and there’s more of a learning curve to using it than I thought there would be. It’s interesting to not be able to zoom in or out. It’s going to take me a while to adjust to the distance I need to be from whatever I’m shooting.

Have you ever tried to draw a hand? It’s not easy because when you look a hand in different positions, the proportions and shapes can be odd. But because we know what a hand looks like, we know what it is. Our eye corrects for the distortions that are right in front of us. In the photo above, if you didn’t know what a hand looks like, you might think that it was mostly big fingers.

I used my new prime lens for that photo, and the next one. This lens has a fixed focal length. You don’t zoom in and out with the camera, you ‘zoom with your feet’. As near as I can tell the optimal distance from me to my subject needs to be about 3 feet. There’s more of a learning curve to using this lens than I thought there would be but I’m determined to master it.

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That’s Bear. He’s hard to catch because he won’t stay still.

I travel to Georgia tomorrow to visit the Chattahoochee Evening Stars for a workshop on Sunday and a lecture Monday night. Maybe I’ll see you there! I’ll do my best to post some pictures on Instagram :-).

Paper towels, please…

I just read an interesting article about these super-blowy warm air Dyson Hand Dryers. Contrary to what you may think, they are not less germ-y.

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Many people (not you and me, of course) do not wash their hands well enough before using the air blower. According to the article:

…(the dryers) launch far more viruses into the air, which linger for longer periods of time and reach much farther distances, researchers recently reported in the Journal of Applied Microbiology. This is particularly concerning because viruses, unlike many infectious bacteria, can easily maintain their infectiousness in the air and on surfaces, and just a few viral particles can spark an infection.

Paper towels are, according to the research, much safer. And with that thought in mind I’ll re-post this TED Talk by Joe Smith on how to dry your hands with one paper towel. It works!

 

You never know what you’ll see if you just look…

I stayed in San Clemente while visiting the Surfside Quilt Guild and my hotel was just a mile from the beach. The one mile walk down to the beach was very nice, the uphill mile back to the hotel was good exercise :-).

I walked to pier for the last time Wednesday morning and took photos of seagulls because I think they are cute.

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They look like birds with an interesting attitude… sort of nonchalant and friendly. And these guys were posing for me so I got closer…

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Close enough to notice that their tails are dotted!

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Who knew! And once you notice the dots, don’t don’t you think that they pull the black and white color scheme of the feathers together? Nature is just jam-packed with little quirky details.

 

 

When all you need is an even better simple phone…

I wrote about mom’s new princess phone a few days ago. It turns out that that phone didn’t work well with her hearing aids. The sounds were garbled and it didn’t take long before she was frustrated. You might have heard my very deep sigh when I realized that the phone shopping was not over. Continue reading

Show and tell…

Christy Hoffmann is sharing her finished Stars in the Garden that she entitled “Alaska Bugs in My Garden”. She writes:

This quilt was finished and entered into the Clark County Quilters Show in 2011 in Vancouver WA.  I did hand appliqué and hand seed beading around all of the flying bugs that I designed to replace the pieced stars. Val Pellens, the free motion quilter, quilted a poem I wrote around the border in large lettering:  “Oh Alaska summer bugs, please come fly, flutter & buzz, in my midnight garden so bright, ablaze in rays of sunlight”. It won Second Place Judged and Third Place Viewers Choice for Large Applique. It also won First Place for Large Applique in the 2011 Sandy Historical Society Quilt Show.  I was sad to see it finished, it was so much fun to work on!

Christy Hoffmann

I love it! The bugs in the center are a good touch. Well done!

When all you need is a phone…

My mom and telephones have not gotten along well for the last several years. The more advanced the phone is, the less she likes it.

When mom moved a few weeks ago to assisted living I asked about phone service. Someone told me that the service in the apartments didn’t work so I got mom a non-contract flip phone from AT&T. Seriously… what was I thinking!!!! After 4 weeks mom told me that she’d rather not have a phone than use the little flip phone.

I asked the folks at Preston Place again about telephone access and was told to call Verizon to activate the phone service in her apartment. OK, I could do that. But when I called Verizon they said ‘no, they don’t do that anymore but Frontier might’. I was about to come unglued (this had been a frustrating day) and the nice man on the phone kept saying, ‘ but wait… we have this cellular thing.’ It only took him a few tries but he finally got me to listen to what he was saying and it’s pretty cool.

Verizon has a small shiny black box with an antenna that plugs into an electrical outlet. It’s called Wireless Home Phone. You can plug a landline phone into the back of it. In fact, you can plug in 2 phones!

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This is the Wireless Home Phone unit.

They are having a promotion so the initial $40 fee was waived. I signed a 2 year contract locking in the price at $20 a month for unlimited calling (+fees and taxes). That’s cheaper than the flip-phone contract was going to be.

Mom’s fancier Panasonic cordless phones worked but she didn’t love those phones. They have too many bells and whistles and have been hard for her to use. Mom asked if I could just get her a telephone—and she asked in such a way that I knew I might as well find what she wanted, now, not later. So I Googled retro phones and found all sorts of choices.

Mom is now the proud owner of a beige princess phone. It isn’t smart. It’s just a phone and so far she is very happy. UPDATE: I need to get a better/more expensive princess phone. This one is a little twitchy but her cordless landline phone works very well. She doesn’t like it as much, but she can use it.

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It’s loud enough for her to hear, the buttons are big and lit. It’s not as heavy as the original princess phones, but it feels sturdy.

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I wish I had known about this years ago. Mom had phone service from Cableone and I know it was more expensive than this service is. And I wish I had thought to get her a retro phone a long time ago too.

I’m sharing this because I know some of you may know people who are having similar phone problems. I hope this helps!

Show and tell…

Look what came in my email, from Sylvia Phillips:

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She wrote:

I am 80 yrs old and I have been appliqueing for 60 yrs..It is my first love…my daughter and I took your class when you came to Hershey, PA several yrs ago..I am working on some of the blocks from your book “Aunt Millie’s Garden”..I am enclosing photos …thanks again….

Sylvia, you do lovely work and I’m happy that you are enjoying sewing Aunt Millie’s Garden. Happy stitching!