Sunday, June 7, 2020

Standing


 Standing and Kneeling

I will never be able to say that I truly understand the righteous fear, anger, hurt, and injustice that my fellow human beings of color have carried with them for centuries.  I am an older privileged white woman.  I have never felt what they feel because of the color of my skin.  I can say that I feel ashamed.  I feel ashamed of the white oppression, the automatic privilege, the inequality, the inequity, and the lack of compassion and justice that I see around me.  I stand with my fellow Human Beings.  We are each made in the image and likeness of the Holy Spirit.  I kneel with all those that pray for peace and understanding...for equality, equity, liberty and justice for ALL.

I am an educator.  I began teaching in 1975 in a school that had been all Black before desegregation in Florida.  Our white students were the ones bused in from a neighboring white city in southeast Florida.  I was part of a group of educators from several schools (both Black and White) that met weekly as part of the Human Development Program.  I thought at first that our meetings were to help the children see one another without seeing color first.  It was not.  It was so that we, the teachers, could see each other and the children without the filter of color or race.  We couldn't help the children if we didn't help ourselves first.  It opened eyes and allowed a level of compassion and  'understanding' that wouldn't be possible without the glimpses into each others lives and culture that we shared.  I guess it was like group therapy.  We signed on for a commitment of one year.  We met weekly for several years in my classroom after school.  I  had thought that I was enlightened and unbiased.  Here I was teaching in a school in a Black neighborhood in a school that had only relatively recently been desegregated.  I didn't know that I needed enlightenment.  I was a 22 year old graduate with my head in the clouds.  I had a lot to learn... and learn I did.  I think that I learned enough to make things different for my children, those I have taught over the last 45 years and my own daughter and son.  I know that both my children have best friends with skin darker than theirs.  My son marched in a recent protest holding hands with a black friend.  My daughter' s roommate is biracial. 

I am also, for the first time in my life, ashamed to be an American.  I have tried to hold onto the last shreds of my pride during the entire Trump administration.  Watching the man who is President, who  is supposed to represent me and ALL Americans show his contempt for the people he SERVES is heartbreaking.   I shook my head in 2016 and cried.  How did a man who is a known racist, narcissist, misogynist, and compulsive liar become President of the United States?!  Now the whole world is watching his response to the Protests for Justice and the Pandemic.  The whole world is shaking their heads.  He represents us!  This needs to be reversed!  

I kneel in prayer for this country and all its people.  I kneel in prayer and hope that I will live to see what Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. prayed during his I Have a Dream speech in Washington:

"I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character."

"I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed -  we hold these truths to be self evident:  that all men are created equal."

When you say the Pledge to the Flag, I pray that you will really take the time to think about the words that you are saying:  "One nation, under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all."



Saturday, May 30, 2020

A Runaway Bunny & a Snowman For Taylor: Reversible Children's Corner 'Lucy'

Taylor: Soft & Sweet & Quick

 Like a Bunny!

Here I am again with another cute little dress made over a year ago!  
The blog may not have been active but I sure have been! 


This sweet little dress was made for darling Taylor, the daughter of my friend and school team-mate Kristin.  She was just a year old when she wore the bunny side of this dress.  It is a well designed lined jumper dress that makes adorable reversible dresses!  The appliques on this dress were hand cut and machine blanket stitched.  The bunny eye was hand embroidered.


Pattern:  'Lucy' by Children's Corner Patterns, size 1  
Peasant Blouse Pattern:  Australian Smocking & Embroidery Magazine
Fabric:  by Sarah Jane for Michael Miller Fabric, white batiste,
 and white satin batiste for bunny from my stash
Applique:  vintage quilt pattern
Notions:  whip-stitch piping, vintage pink shell buttons, 
 French Lace and rick rack:  my stash

The reverse side of the jumper has a snowman from a clip art collection I purchased ages ago with button eyes and hand cross stitched mouth.  The fabrics on this side were all in my stash and I have no idea where I got them.  The only thing I know is that I made my 25 year old son a Christmas vest using the blue fabric more than 20 years ago!
Oops! Buttoned the wrong way!
I think this reversible 'Lucy' came out almost as cute as the little one for whom I made it!


Thank you for visiting!  Blessings from me to you for joy!

Thursday, May 28, 2020

Harper's Children's Corner 'Sara's Skort'


Well, this is one of many things I have sewn
 that I haven't blogged about!
I need to catch up!

This is such a good skirt pattern for active little girls!  It is perfect for P.E., climbing trees, and hanging from monkey bars because it has a hidden pair of shorts attached!

Pattern:  Sara's Skort by Children's Corner Patterns, 
size 5 length and 4 width.
Fabric Purchased from Farmhouse Fabrics in a fabric bundle kit.


I made this cute little skort for Harper last year from fabric left from sewing two other outfits for Honey Bee from a fabric bundle I purchased from Farmhouse Fabrics.  That bundle was wonderful!  There were two yards of each fabric.  (See the bunny appliqued CC 'Lucy' here.) It also came with a free Children's Corner pattern that I have yet to use.  Sara's Skort is now out of print but Children's Corner Patterns have issued an add-on pattern for their Robert Shorts and Shirt pattern that will replicate the skort perfectly.  

As you can see, Harper loved the skort!

Harper in her mommy's kindergarten class.
Blessings for joy to you and all those you love!


Monday, May 25, 2020

Some Thoughts During a Crazy Time


Hello!  It has been ages since I blogged.

It has and continues to be hard to cope and survive the Covid-19 Pandemic.  My heart aches and I feel a lump in my throat when I think of the millions of people in the world who are or know someone who is sick, lonely, stressed, frightened, unemployed, depressed, or dying lonely deaths due to this virus.  The lump grows bigger and I can hardly swallow.  Tears flow at a moments notice.  Hot and heavy.  Everyone is affected.  EveryoneEVERYONE...

I  am struggling with what my mother euphemistically called "lowered feelings".  I really have never felt so helpless and desperate for hope before.  I miss seeing friends and family and hugging people.  I miss hugging my son the most of all.  Logan lost his job (as did my husband) through this pandemic and is working for a friend a few days a week doing construction.  Therefore he isn't staying safe enough to be close to us.  We are over 65 and my husband has a heart condition and I have diabetes.  Two strikes each.  Logan comes for dinner a couple of times a week and sits in the backyard six feet away from us to eat.  My entire body aches to hug him and hold him tight.

I miss the children in my kindergarten class.  I miss their daily hugs and small hands in mine.  I miss seeing their faces!  I worked so hard to learn all I could to continue to teach them well via Microsoft TEAMS that I developed stress induced shingles after two weeks.  (Yes, I had the vaccine.)  They covered the left side of my face, eye, and scalp.  Eight weeks have gone by and I look better but I continue to have some bumps, pain, and what feels like red ants biting.  There are still visible lesions inside my lower eyelid but the one on my cornea is gone.  Please take note:  the shingles vaccine prior to 2017 is obviously not as effective as the one that was developed later.  Please ask for the new vaccine the next time you visit your doctor.  It is a two part vaccine.

We have been blessed to have our daughter come and stay with us during most of this period of isolation.  She was and is our greatest blessing during this time.  She stayed with us (continuing to pay for her apartment) for six weeks.  She worked from home all during that time.  She is only 26 and has a full social life but kept in isolation for us.  She has gone back to her apartment now but continues to see us at least twice per week and is limiting her social interactions to those who are also maintaining social distancing.  We are so very grateful!


I long for what I took so for granted.  I long for the life and freedom we had before this pandemic.  I long for my classroom full of eager kindergarten children.  I pray that we will be that carefree again.  I pray that all those who lost their jobs gain new ones soon.  I pray for both effective medical intervention and a vaccine to eliminate Covid-19 are developed quicker than expected.  I pray that people will be kinder and softer and more willing to find common ground with each other.

I pray that we can hold onto HOPE.  Hope for the future of our country.  Hope for the economy.  Hope for the future of a free, equal, and appropriate educational system where children's emotional, social, physical, and character development are as important as meeting academic standards.

This is my last week of  'school' for 2020.  It is a week of enrichment activities (online) for the children, parent conferences (phone and TEAMS), staff and team meetings (TEAMS), a drive by promotion ceremony for the fifth graders, paperwork and cumulative folders, another drive by of the kindergarten children to pick up their belongings and goodie bags, time in the empty classroom to clean up things left in mid-March and put things away for the summer.

Giant Pineapple Upside-Down Cake for Family this past winter.

When all is wrapped up for school, I will continue to do what I have been doing to try to stay sane.  I will continue the daily gourmet meals, sewing, and working in the garden.  The house has been sadly neglected so I will give the house a thorough cleaning, including all closets and cupboards.  I will continue to thank God for the blessings of two new babies born to our family this past week:  EK was born in Kentucky and her family is beyond thrilled.  She is the only child of the only grandchild on her mother's side.  A longed for miracle.  IR was born to my niece just two days ago at home here in Florida with his daddy, grandmother, midwife and an acupuncturist in attendance. His mother was sick the entire pregnancy but continues to amaze us with her strength.  Another miracle! His two year old brother says that IR is his best friend!

As my friend Kaye has always said, we will just continue to put one foot in front of the other and keep moving, keeping in mind what my mother used to say, "This, too, shall pass."

I will be back with more upbeat posts in a couple of days featuring sewing and maybe a little cooking and gardening.

Blessings for good health, solace, peace, and happiness to all who ever may read this blog.
Two little Oliver + S Lazy Days Skirts for a friends little girls.

Sunday, October 27, 2019

Toddler Halloween Skirts



Walking up the garden path,
I spy a yummy sweet,
Halloween is here again,
Knock, knock - trick or treat?
Unknown

Two years ago I made a couple of little bitty identical skirts for two little sweeties.  Rosalie was 1.5 years old and Avery was just over two.  The fabric was some I had left from other projects in my stash (probably from JoAnn).  Perfect with the orange lace for these two cuties!



Thursday, October 24, 2019

Fruit Slice Skirts


Back in 2012 Kristin at Skirt As Top posted a tutorial on how to make the most adorable little fruit stripe skirts.  I just loved the idea and tucked it away on my Pinterest Board.  You can find her tutorial HERE.  Last year I finally got around to making two of them for my friend Rachel's little girls.  I also made Harper and Rory pretty peasant blouses to wear with them.  Fun!

I made Harper an Orange Slice skirt.


Rory received the Lemon Slice Skirt.


The peasant blouses that I made were similar with the same fabric but with different trimming on the sleeves.  I used Simplicity #4206 for the blouse with added width and length to the sleeves to make them puffier.


I know that I will be making more of these little skirts in the future.  Perhaps a watermelon or a lime? 





Monday, October 21, 2019

A Smocked Bonnet for Vivian

"Booties and bonnets, ribbons, and lace
Little stuffed toys all over the place!"
Unknown


One of my oldest and dearest friends, Sherri, had her first grandchild this year.  What a blessing sweet Vivian is to her family!  She is the child of Sherri's younger son.  Sherri and I met while in college and have been friends ever since.  She had her first son while still in her twenties and I didn't have any children until my forties!  However, she had been waiting quite a while to be a grandmother and spoiled my children silly!

This smocked bonnet was one of the shower gifts I sent to Texas.  Vivian has modern parents but I thought that they might enjoy a little bit of vintage charm.  


Smocking Plate:  'Strawberries & Flowers' by Ellen McCarn.

Adjustable drawstring crown to grow with baby!

 I am linking this post to Shabby Art Boutique at   https://www.shabbyartboutique.com/2019/10/create-bake-grow-gather-party-389.html
Check out all the other lovely links!


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