There is a wall in my home in my dining room/sewing room where I love to hang a seasonal wall quilt. It warms my scrapatch. This one I made two years ago. The center is a panel, "Pumpkin Hill" to which I added borders of my own design. The scrappy circling geese border was my first attempt at this pattern, so were the pieced pumpkins on the corners. The table runner was made with some maple leaf blocks which were some of my very first pieced blocks. Both of these were quilted with simple lines with the walking foot I eventually found the bottom of the box of my basic Brother.
Outside in my tiny postage stamp urban yard, a Carolina Wren has come to call and it is trilling on the fence. The last of the golden oak leaves are starting to drift by my window. Fall is my favorite time of year and I love autumnal colors. Today is one of the ordinary miracles of life.
Playing on my player today is "October" by contemporary American composer Eric Whitacre. This music and the calling of the wren makes my heart open and vibrate. My darling daughter will be playing this in concert this fall in one of her university ensembles. Something I am looking forward to very much.
Later today I hope to be quilting a table runner for a good friend in a swap for the Quilt and Needle.
"Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away."
... from "The Paradox of Our Age" by Dr. Bob Moorehead
I added a Playlist feature to my Blog. Please click on this feature in the right hand-toolbar to hear the soundtrack of my life.
Today I am playing one of the pieces of instrumental music that has touched me the most in my life. It is "An American Elegy" by Frank Ticheli. 'An American Elegy was composed in memory of those who lost their lives at Columbine High School in 1999 and in honor of the survivors. Ticheli said, 'It is offered as a tribute to their great strength and courage. . . . I hope the work can also serve as one reminder of how fragile and precious life is and how intimately connected we all are as human beings.' Calling the work 'an expression of hope,' Ticheli incorporated the school's Alma Mater in the closing section. Currently associate professor of music at the University of Southern California, Ticheli served as composer-in-residence with the Pacific Symphony Orchestra from 1991 to 1998. He has written many works for bands, orchestras, and chamber ensembles, and his music has won numerous prestigious awards."
The first time I heard this played in a live concert it was one of those moments in my life "that took my breath away." It was at a Summer Band Camp concert at the University of Massachusetts in Lowell on July 17, 2004. My daughter, Marissa, was playing in the concert in the flute section. All of the performers were high school musicians and their college camp counselors. There was not a dry eye in the audience. Hearing her play and looking into the beauty of my daughter's eyes never fails to catch my breath.
I do not play a musical instrument. My quilting is my art. While I sew, this music plays in the background. Last summer I hosted an Americana fabric swap on the Quilt and Needle Quilting Forum http://www.thequiltandneedle.com/index.asp
I like to think that my quilt blocks, that are pieces of my heart, are sewn into the quilts of others and together as quilters we blanket the world in warmth and love.
The moment I love best in quilting is when I finish the last stitch on the back of the binding of one of my quilts. Then I snip the thread, smooth the fabric and turn it slowly to see my finished quilt .. it is always one of those moments that "take my breath away" ... to think that with my hands I have created this beauty in fabric.
It is a beautiful fall day here in New England. My windows are open, my music is playing, the fabric will soon be flowing through my fingers as my sewing machine hums and my heart is full.
................... (Kathy's Song, Paul Simon, 1965)
Today I begin this journal.
These words fall like rain drops, the hopes and memories of my life. Like the song, these are the only words I know are true ... the ones that are my own. They may not be right ... "rightness" be a debatable thing ... the only truths I know are the ones in my own heart. The songs I shall quote are whispers in the background of the soundtrack of my life.
It is raining today in my northeast kingdom. The steady stacatto drip outside a gentle sound ... like the tapping my fingers on the keyboard; we play a duet.
I live in Massachusetts. I piece together this blog like I piece my quilts ... one scrap of bright colored fabric, pinned and stitched to another ... and sometimes pulled apart and stitched again ... until it takes form and becomes the patchwork tapestry of my life.