Feb 2 and a hideous green

feb 2

It looks much more yellow here than in the box! The thread I used (Sulky rayon machine embroidery) is that awful bronzey yellowy green that shows up before spring really gets started. It does not show up so well in the deeper texture of the machine needle felted fabric. I'll try using some heavier thread on the next one. I do have a layer of iron-on stabilizer on the back because without it the stitches go right through the felt. 

I wonder, too, what I really need for a base layer. I was told to use basic craft felt for most work. I don't like the looks of that, and I can make huge amounts of topography in it by overworking particular areas. I have some wool jersey that I felted (on purpose!) that is a little heavier. I could try not using anything, and letting the wool felt to itself. Wet felting relies on the wool felting to itself, and containing any non-felting inclusions. I don't know if dry felting does that. 

So, I have some experiments to try. 

I will leave you with a picture from Family Circus: 

Family circus pyramid

I like Alice just hanging out on my back, holding Aerin's foot. 


stars in/of stars

twenty six

Once I could draw a five pointed star, in roughly 3rd grade, I remember putting them everywhere. (I was a child of deep enthusiasms.) This star was a thing I figured out one day much later – each line of the star could be extended beyond a single star and into a series. There is something pleasingly self-referential about a star made up of stars. 

In other news, Family Circus restarted tonight. Henry is teaching us, which is a pleasure. I think Al likes not being outnumbered by females sometimes. Henry is astonishing, and funny, and pushes us all which means we'll do new things this session. There will be pictures!

fire! in a good way!


Aerin's young man got torches for juggling, and hadn't tried them out yet, so we all piled outside to help. Aerin brought her fire poi too, and let Alice try them. It turns out juggling in the dark is hard, and juggling flame in the dark is really hard, because you can't see the handles, and you tend to focus on the flame, and it all gets pretty exciting pretty fast. The third picture is AYM working with one torch. The first one is Aerin noodling with one torch but not letting go, so it works more like poi. 

The poi, in contrast, are on the ends of chains and you spin them, so seeing them is a smaller issue, but the potential for whacking yourself in the head is higher. Which hurts like whacking yourself in the head with a (largish) superball, and chars pieces of hair and smells bad. But you don't run the risk of catching the wrong end of the torch in your hand. 

a helping hand

"Aerin, can I stand on your shoulders in the kitchen for a minute? I want to try something…"

"sure. What?"

"you'll see"

loud thumps and banging, some "get your elbow out of my ear" and "oops, sorry" and "my eye" and I find this in the kitchen


and then


and nothing left but her feet in the ceiling


um, yeah

Alice has been kind of wrapped up


working on her science fair project. She has taken on Molecules as a topic, and it goes on FOREVER.

Aerin has been going batty
with studying for (and passing with flying colors thank you) midterms. She has also been at the receiving end of a series of talks about what to expect in high school. And started signing up for classes.


I’ve been hanging out

trying to remain calm, and mostly failing. I have been knitting a lot, the happy socks are almost done, but the rest of the creative endeavors have taken a back seat.

I continue to collect and wear objects of a very specific set of colors. I am continuing to roll with it, because it is still kind of fun and exciting, and it doesn’t feel dangerous yet. Out of character definitely. Unexpected, yeah, that too.

Which is why I went into the store full of brightly colored sparkly stuff from India and exited with these chinking on my arm.

Originally uploaded by Dancing Crow.

I figure if I can make myself laugh, it is a fine place to be. Plus I gave away one of my rhino shirts. Just peeled it off and handed it to Janet, which made her crack up, especially when she saw the new rhino on the shirt underneath…

The thing of the week is late again. These are the beginnings of it

mixed silks
Originally uploaded by Dancing Crow.

by now, you know I’m good for it.

TIF 7 almost done

TIF 7 almost done
Originally uploaded by Dancing Crow.

I need to trim it up square, and decide on borderage.

Also today was circus class with Red Kate. We worked really hard on handstands and stretching, and finished with things we were practicing – I did a roll up on the fabric (getting more interesting) and Kate is working on splits.



I am hugely amused by the mother/daughter straddle-up head stands. Sorry it comes up so huge, I’ll fix that soon.

Oh, and Red Kate here –