Wednesday, September 28, 2011

I am standing upon the seashore. A ship at my side spreads her white sails to the ocean. She is an object of beauty and strength. I stand and watch her until at length she hangs like a speck of white cloud just where the sea and sky come to mingle with each other.

Then someone at my side says: “There, she is gone!”

“Gone where?”

Gone from my sight. That is all.

Her diminished size is in me, not in her. And just at the moment when someone at my side says: “There, she is gone!” there are other eyes watching her coming, and other voices ready to take up the glad shout:

“Here she comes!”

And that is dying.
Henry Van Dyke
my mom sylvia
october 22, 1934 ~ september 28, 2011

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

on holy ground

'Walking with loved ones as they approach death is a sacred time. Your hands, your touch, your care are instruments of God's presence. Your voice allows your loved one to trust so he or she can move into a new relationship with God. You are standing on holy ground.'

my mother is dying. yesterday we met with hospice as all her family gathered one by one around her. we had to discuss those things i never wanted to before. my sister my stepdad and i. we took decisions on her behalf, she can't see or speak anymore.

they came, the aunties and grandchildren, the cousins and friends. each saying in his or her own way, goodbye. my sister and i sat each on the side of her bed, holding her hands and made promises to her, those things a mother would want, need to hear. we'll take care of each other, she'd never have to worry.

hospice told us maybe a week more, maybe tonight. i foolishly thought i'd been prepared, this has been a long grief filled road. but now, holding my mothers wisp of a hand, i know i've a ways to go.

x lori

this is the hardest thing for me to write about. but it's too much a part of my life (it is my life) to not be open about here. i began this blog for my mom, 3 years ago, when alzheimer's was taking her farther and farther away from us. my stepdad would bring up my blog on their computer and set her in front of it, and she would read. after a time she would not be able to read anymore, but just look at the photos. for a long time now, she hasn't looked at all. somehow i know she would be okay with me writing this. she always felt that everything i did was brilliant. just like a mother tends to do.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

treasure hunting

all photos, (except the shelf and book ones) are taken with a pentax super me and fuji film, my last flea market find!

we went to the flea market in town. once a month the carpinteria museum hosts it for a few hours on saturday morning. we always find one or two small treasures, although i like to just look. the thing i liked best today was watching my granddaughter. she had five dollars of her own to spend and she's now old enough to walk around with a friend, coming back to check in with her mama and me every so often (it's a small market and we can still see her).

the girls chose matching friendship bracelets which they proudly posed with. the museum attendant ladies said they wished all the children that visited were like sadie and her friend. since i can't take credit for that its okay i boast right? but if i were to say how proud i am of my daughter... oh these girls of my heart...    

my finds pictured are: an old leaf candle holder, a wooden shelf installed by myself (there was even a power drill involved!), two vintage crocheted hangers and an old alice starmore knitting book filled with beautiful photos and classic designs. grand total: seven dollars!

we haven't seen the sun in days and last night there was a spectacular thunder and lightening storm with what felt like hurricane winds, but judging by tonight's sunset you would never know.


Tuesday, September 20, 2011


the opportunity for late afternoon light in my space is almost gone now. by the time i get home from work, there are only minutes before it's too dark for photos. and tonight it was uncommonly foggy too, making it even darker. luckily owen, my puppy, waited patiently (sort of) to play catch, while i hurried to get these.

i also need to apologize for what i wrote in my last post, saying i don't use photo shop or any photo manipulation. i've been feeling guilty and i want to explain. i really don't use p.s., but i have it. i use it for resizing photos to a larger dpi when an editor requests it. and i didn't buy it, it's photo shop elements, and the software came with my leica camera when i bought it. i'm grateful for it because i can't do this resizing in picasa, which i also use. sometimes i use the tuning button to bring more light to a photo (i don't like flash), and sometimes i use the writing tool to add words to a photo. i've been told (by editors) that this doesn't qualify as a shopped photo and is accepted even where manipulated photos are not allowed. when i said that, i wanted to tell you that the orange of the sky was true. and i didn't add that. it's my goal and hope to try to achieve natural photos always. plus to be honest. always. this was really bothering me. i'm sorry. i guess the truth is i do and i don't. (that would be the gemini in me! aggg).

okay! it's been a busy week! everyday, flags flags and more flags! the candy corn banner was dreamed of on the long drive home from my mom's on saturday. stopping at michael's, i found the right color wool, it's 'full o' sheep' and 'washable ewe' stitch nation by debbie stoller. the orange is clementine, the yellow: duckling, and the off white : little lamb (such cute names!). ravelry notes here. and in etsy here.

the fall banner was a request, and even though it was hard to get a good photo, the colors are pretty and autumny, i hope she thinks so too! the wool for this one is from loops & threads - luxury sock - super fine. in the colorways 'redwoods' and 'canyon'. in ravelry here.

i'm reading 'mollie makes' and 'cloth magazines', LOVE these, so colorful and inspiring! and did you see the little pencil pouch? i found it at michael's on the dollar aisle. it holds double points perfectly! i was so happy with this find i bought two extra, to give away. if you'd like one let me know, there's the tiny flower one and the red squiggly one. i love that my dpn's have a nice safe place to be when my knitting leaves the house. i'll choose a name at next week's yarn along (wednesday sept. 28). non knitters, you can still use it as a pencil pouch, cute!

and on my needles in the basket, a new sweater for a favorite little girl. thank you for the birthday wishes for my son and for coming here, i almost don't want to mention this, but its because of you, i have four hundred and ninety nine followers since this week, welcome new friends. there are so very many exciting things happening around here these days.
linking with small things weekly yarnalong. and natural suburbia's creative friday.

xo lori

Friday, September 16, 2011

and just like that

kyle and mom

kyle and my 'daughter - in - love' , vanessa

this was the sunset last night, in all it's glowing orange gloriousness. i guess i've never said this, but i don't use photoshop or any photo manipulation tools. i am positive i'd make a mess of it, but more, it's supremely satisfying to try to make a photo with natural (epic) light and patience and luck (and sometimes filters). after uploading these i was pleased they came out, even showing rings radiating out from the sun. i love that the camera can pick up things sometimes our eyes can't see. linking with natural suburbias creative friday.

thirty years ago today my firstborn son came into the world. in a spectacular way, he was born on our living room floor. oh he was a planned home birth, but he came a bit quicker than anticipated, arriving just minutes after my midwife's assistant did. i know he probably can't believe he's 30 (i remember like yesterday feeling the same), but what's even more strange, i can't believe i have a 30 year old son. in the photo above he and i are in hawaii, when he was at university (and i was the only woman in his life, hee hee) and now here he is with vanessa and in love. today, on his birthday these two are in hawaii visiting her family and their friends and celebrating his day.  aloha au ia`oe my son, you came into the world and made mine. happy happy birthday, i love you to forever and back. mom.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

plans big and small

knitting, reading, planning place

{my photos of zimbabwe, africa 2009}

knitting and reading and planning (dreaming) this week...

i cast on for a sweater, knit a bit further than shown here, then saw a pattern i like much better and pulled the whole thing off. so now i only have a pile of lovely curly wool. it is tosh merino light, madeline tosh, colorway alabaster, from my stash. i love this beautiful handpainted wool. can you see the difference in these two skeins? switching off every couple rows is necessary so there will be a better flow of color and less obvious changes in skeins. hopefully the new pattern i plan to make will do it justice. have you done this too, changed your mind well into a project? oh dear. i've begun the new sweater, but don't have much to show, perhaps by next week!

a new box of books arrived the other day (i'd been saving for these!),  i love them all and so am reading them all at the same time. i should say giving each one equal time and attention, and although i haven't read enough to give a complete review, i can say the knitting book is already a favorite. and rachael's book is such fun, i've not read a book like this before.

here are the books:
'how to knit a love song' by rachael herron of

'mindful movements', ten exercises for well-being by thich nhat hanh (the book comes with a dvd which i really like, i'm not sure if the electronic edition does, but probably not?).

'my grandmother's knitting' family stories and inspired knits from top designers, i see a few i'd like to make!

and the 'namibia bradt travel guide' , for the trip we have booked for next may.

we've been in a planning frenzy for weeks, doing research on what we'd like to see in africa and where we'd like to go. we'll be making a giant loop around the country of namibia, staying almost a month and in eight different camps and lodges (want a peek at one?). now all the reservations have been made and our itinerary is complete. it's still a ways away, but i like this part as much as the trip, the reading and learning and looking forward to. and dreaming of africa again.

linking up with small things and the weekly yarn along,
happy peaceful rest of the week friends!