Encouragement

A few years ago, I was introduced to machine quilting.  Let me say from the outset it wasn’t something I would have chosen for myself and I will always be indebted to my husband for purchasing the machine for me.

Quilting will always go hand in hand with the concept of encouragement. In fact, it is not the concept but the reality of encouragement.  Firstly, my husband, getting the proper advice for the sewing machine; secondly the encouragement from two friends to book quilting rather than sewing classes; and finally finding the right location for those classes.

Four, two-hour classes and I had a lap quilt, having learnt how to cut with a rotary cutter, to thread, sew, change bobbins and importantly not to be afraid to make mistakes.  Since then the most important tool I have is a Jemima.  Jemima is a ripper so as this ripper has a name it just shows how often I use it!!!

I have begun to understand how friends have been so absorbed in occupations and hobbies fabric related.  It is so tactile.  From choosing the fabric, treads batting to the actual making of the quilt top each step is tactile.

However, I have digressed here from writing about quilting and encouragement.  Every step along the way I have been encouraged. Roisin telling me get a piece of old fabric and sew.  “Put the foot to the pedal and sew”.

Then there was the utter magic of those four quilting classes with three ladies whom I am telling you have the patience of Job.  Honestly it amazes me when looking back how they survived me and kept their cool.

So, who were these angels?  They inhabit Appletree Crafts in Newtownmountkennedy in County Wicklow.  Their names? Marie, Sinead and Trina.  Now neither their halos nor wings are visible but believe me they are quilting angels who constantly encourage.  Their shop is a veritable Aladdin’s cave of fabric.  So, if you are visiting the garden of Ireland drop in, even if quilting is not your thing. Or, on the web http://www.appletreecrafts.ie

I have continued to try new adventures in this my 60th year.  I am writing this overlooking the Aughrim river on a sos beag (small break) from a Quilting Retreat.  Yes, I am attending my first Quilting Retreat.  It is an absolute blast.  A retreat led by Trina, Sinead and Marie from Appletree Crafts and attended by ladies who have offered nothing but support to each other .  The tips and generosity of spirit has been so special and uplifting.

Possibilities

Have you ever received a birthday card/ greeting card and just read the inside of the card without registering what was on the outside? I certainly have.

During the last 12 months I celebrated a significant birthday and the other morning I was struck by one card I received.   The greeting said “Happy birthday! Wishing you a year of endless possibilities.”

I started to look back over the months since receiving this card to see what I had done but stopped myself.   This card was all about possibilities from now not for looking back.   Now that is so positive.   Possibilities are endless.   It gives permission to try things.   To have more and more possibilities in one’s life.

So, it was back to my trusty journal, fountain pen and list.   Lists help me to focus but this list was slightly different as I put the word “possibility” into the centre of a clean new page and from there using different coloured pens let my mind have free rein.   Then closed my journal.

Today I looked at the word list and I was amazed.   What I was looking at was a totally positive list which was bright cheerful deep and different to any list I had made before.   The difference this time was that I hadn’t allowed myself to edit.   I hadn’t allowed myself to think what could prevent… I hadn’t shared it with anyone.   Sometimes I have found that sharing my ideas has led me to scrapping those ideas.   Yes, and I have so regretted giving away those opportunities.

IMAG1158

But this is not a time for lingering on “what might have” been.   This is definitely, a time for possibilities.  This list now requires further lists.  Oh yes.  I took one possibility and again using a fresh page and coloured pens and worked how it could be achieved or in one case how I could get information in order, to start the process.

My journal is now expanding into pages of possibilities.  Brightly coloured pen pictures with some very dubious art work.  Artwork! I never use art work but yes, my style of artwork is decorating many a page wow.  I never knew.  No that is not quite right I never allowed myself which is totally different.

I am so glad that I decided to hang up each birthday card I received in my room and to keep them there for the year.  One never knows just when or where inspiration will find one.

 

imag1157-e1529343526518.jpg

Thanks Nonie for reminding me to open up new possibilities.

 

 

 

Found

My post yesterday entitled “Smile” featured an image of a sketch depicting a girl with an umbrella.  It was a very happy uplifting image but I hadn’t been able to find the artist’s name

Thanks to a friend of mine Kay I have now found out that the artist is Molly Hahn.

Molly Hahn is a catoonist based in California and she is known for her daily comic “Buddha Doodles”

She began these sketch doodles as a daily daily meditative practice and gradually found that people wanted to see more of them.  So she started posting “Buddha Doodles”on line at http://www.buddhadoodles.com

Molly Hahn has published a number of books including Buddha Doodles Gratitude Journal : Cultivate Love and Buddha Doodles Gratitude Journal: Shinning Your Light.

Even though it seems I am very late in getting to know Molly Hahn’s work , I am thankful to have found another inspirational artist. Where would we be without them?