Thursday, August 28, 2008

Another Good Book

I finished a book by Rebecca Kohn today. It's The Gilded Chamber: A Novel of Queen Esther. Ms Kohn is obviously a scholar, and the story is riveting.

Her discussion questions at the end were thought provoking. She mentioned Purim, the celebration of Queen Esther's saving her people, and the triumph of sorrow over mourning. Then she asked if in our ancestry we could see such stories and if women still, well, got their power, from beauty.

I consider myself a Yankee, but had some Southern ancestors. There's a story of one at the end of the Civil War, when Jeannie (Jeanne?), a young pregnant widow, defied Yankee renegades who had crossed swords at the door of the family's store, which had been set on fire. She ran under the swords to get a bolt of muslin to cover the wagon that would take the family west.

As she came out, one of the soldiers grabbed her by the hair and said, "If you weren't such a pretty little thing, I'd cut off your head!"

Mother and I always thought the soldier was teasing, but now who knows?

But, as the story goes, Jeannie got what little "power" she had from her beauty.

The family came west, she had her baby, and that's part of my history.

I think that now women still get power from their attractiveness, but so do men. More and more, though, I think women get power from their management skills and intelligence. Being a good conversationalist is badly underrated as a power tool in my society.

Esther, as portrayed in Kohn's book, "goes along to get along". We all do now, too.

Men and women are largely wired differently. I know we're all people, but I do think men, at least of my age (56) and older, tend to think of "who's winning" while women are more into negotiating.

Esther had a lot of negotiating skills, and really, her beauty was part of that.

New Items in Shops

The two photos on top are of small tapestry pillows in P and P Vintage. They're usually used for Christmas decorations.

The two lower photos show two of the new Dance Series. Dancing Triangles and Dancing Stars were a lot of fun to make. They are in P and P Homemades.

BBC News

I thought I'd write about the New Cold War and nuclear winter, but decided to go with a different BBC story.

It's the caption competition.


Wednesday, August 27, 2008

International Business

P and P are rejoicing today.

We sold wood toys to Canada. We sold vintage needlepoint to Japan!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Not Today

I can't blog today. I'm too (pick one or more)

a. stressed

b. black

c. white

d. purple

e. poor

f. rich

g. middle class

h. male

i. female

j. Christian

k. Jewish

s. Muslim

t. Buddhist

u. shinto

v. Hindu


x. Protestant

y. scareligious

z. scary

l. warped by my life experiences

m. angry

n. uncaring

o. loving

p. young

q. old

r.______________(fill in the blank)

to be verbal.

I'd label this "joke," but politics aren't really funny.

Ok, politics ARE funny.

And I really want to write about visiting the college library today.

I don't remember that the doors were so heavy.

They went back to the Dewey decimal system.

I'm used to pedestrians walking out in front of my vehicle all the time, but it really worried me that five different cars pulled out right in front of me when I clearly had the right of way. They seemed to assume I'd brake for them. Of course I did, but I hope they don't get badly surprised some day. I know that some adolescents have the idea that they will live forever, but all these were alive on 9-11-01, when supposedly Americans finally learned that death is possible at any moment.

Some Americans knew that before then. Maybe I really AM too old.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Fantasy in Histology 2 and the First Rule of Middle Class American Economics

Above is my embroidered fantasy of a neutrophil, the white blood cell notable for its tri-lobed nucleus, engulfing a bacterium.

I'm sure you are aware of the first rule of middle class economics, even if not by that name. It regards the phenomenon that always occurs when a family saves a few dollars for a worthy project. Like major dental work. Immediately upon obtaining some success, a major appliance breaks.

Happily, in our case today, it's an appliance I can and intend to do without. The clothes dryer died. It was the very first clothes dryer I ever had. Once, when asked if I wanted my house wired for 220, so I could get a dryer, I replied, "Not while the Sun shines."

You don't need to know how it was that I ended up with one seven years ago. Well, our clothes are happily hanging on a rope in the garage today. It's a three walled garage, so even though they are not under the Sunshine, they have a little breeze.

Life is good.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

One of My Many Character Flaws.

is that I don't tolerate long discussions, usually. I figure there are a finite number of answers to a question and that the sooner I decide which one is the most correct, the sooner it's time to move on to something more interesting or fun.

I don't seem to tolerate a lot of socializing, either. The exceptions are the church comfort making group and gym buddies.In both cases, we're talking while we're doing something productive.

I realize this is different than most people. I've always thought of myself in the top 5% of good decision makers, though I've made some whoppingly bad decisions. Maybe it also means I'm in the lowest 5% of the politically savvy. (I use the word "political" in its larger sense.)

So. There you have it.

Saturday, August 23, 2008


Door of Hope by Sawyer

I usually get my news from the BBC web site. That's because many times American news sources have advertisements that move and distract my eyes. However, I know that the BBC has a little different slant than others.

So I was looking at American sources today and got so depressed that I googled "Christian news". That led me to the above article about evangelism in China during the Olympics. It's strictly forbidden, of course, and the Christians are not standing on street corners passing out tracts. But it seems to be a real endeavor. Why did I not know about this? Or simply assume it would happen and lend my prayer support?

It reminded me of one of our very best episodes. We live in a college town, and a few years ago a couple of Chinese students came by on bicycles and started a conversation. They are from the ROC on Taiwan.(There are a lot of Christians in that China.) Both husband and wife had masters degrees in microbiology, my favorite, so we had a lot in common.

We'd see them around town and eventually we mentioned that they really needed Jesus in their heart. They agreed and came over for lunch. In our living room they accepted Christ. Holy Spirit confirmed that it was a true conversion.

We did nothing in this. They were so ripe for salvation that they were falling off the tree. I am so grateful to Father that we could participate in this little way. Many workers labor for years without seeing much fruit. No doubt some one else had planted and watered.

I keep thinking there must be many in Beijing who are also ready.

Then, too, a student from Saudi Arabia stopped us to ask questions the other day, about local housing.

Mr. P says it's not likely, but it could happen.

Friday, August 22, 2008

The Good Wife

I've been working on some embroidery, specifically, another histology fantasy, and several in a series of Playful Shapes.

I had to take time out to do some sewing for Mr. P. There is a garment, much made by Hanes and Fruit of the Loom, which, bless his heart, he prefers homemade. It's not math or science, but seems like a good, wifely activity.

Above is my photograph. I was fashionable when it was taken. I'm very old.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

MORE Runaway Bunnies

I hesitate to publish before the world our bad ranching technique. The fence needed mending. So three of Snowflake's bunnies escaped into the basement. One walked right up to me and said, "Excuse me please, I'd like to go back with Mama now." The other two learned very quickly to hide under the washing machine.

Whitney the Cat, before rabbits, used to like to snoop around the basement. As soon as the rabbits came, she stopped going into the basement at all. I asked her just now if she'd like to become a Bunnie Hunter. She emphatically shook her head NO.


P.S. Caught them with the help of the water hose on MIST. I can herd them with it, to a board leaning up against the basement wall, in a corner. Then I could pick up the runaways! Thank you, Father.

These runaways were especially troubling because they're not eating solid food yet. Leaving out solid food wouldn't have worked. I did see one drinking out of the water dish in the cage. It had to climb up on a wire in the cage wall to be high enough to reach in.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Blame it on Adam and Eve

CLIMAX (Menopause)... ( dedicated to every woman in the world.----prefer larger)next image from folderI went to the doctor yesterday. I said that when I get the chance, I intend to discuss a couple of design flaws with God. I mentioned teeth and menopause.

Doctor said to blame it all on Adam and Eve. Before the Fall, he said, there were no design flaws. Hmmmmm

Is Baghdad Bob in Georgia?

According to an Associated Press news report Russia says it's withdrawing from Georgia, while moving some forces deeper into Georgia.

Isn't this vaguely reminiscent of Baghdad Bob declaring something like "The Americans are not here." ???

Now I'm not naive enough to think all news sources are totally accurate (a newspaper employee once told me that some people have the power to kill a story). However, it's obvious to me that there have been Americans in Baghdad for several years. I know some who have been there.

Is this the same kind of outrageous lie?

Did you know that there are Kansas National Guard in Armenia? I googled"American military in Armenia", skipped the 1920 report, and found some interesting denials and confirmations. I don't necessarily think that every American military move should be published, but can't people stop lying? Just be "wise as a serpent."

Regrettably, I keep seeing two sides to the secrecy question, but my major reaction now is laughter.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Race Relations,Works in Progress and Teachers with Guns

Once when I was newly assigned to a classroom. the students and I took some time to get to know one another.

There were three races of humans in the room, about equally divided. One student asked, "Is there any kind of people you don't get along with?"

I thought a moment, then said."Well, you know those purple people, the ones with the orange polka dots? I might have trouble with them."

He thought a moment and said, "There aren't any people like that."

We smiled at each other. Our comic timing was perfect.

Both my weird sense of humor and my conscience have recently been at work. If I ever do come upon purple people, with or without polka dots, I mean to make friends. So I've been working them into my creative endeavors.

Now, if you see any purple people here or in my etsy shop, you'll know why.

I really must tell you of my completely negative reaction to the school in Texas getting court approval for teachers to carry.

If I'd ever carried a gun to school, someone would have taken it away from me. Interpret that anyway you like.

I really think Americans must be allowed to arm themselves. It's in the Constitution for a good reason. I do understand the opposite opinion. In the space of two years I had two students who killed people in what were probably accidents. If the guns hadn't been there, it wouldn't have happened. I still think Americans must be allowed to have arms.

However, in a school!? I think, since it's publicized, it might just provoke the crazy into making an incident.

One supposes only the big teachers who know what they're doing would carry guns. I once taught with an ex-policemen who said, "This is the same job, only now I don't carry a gun." I would have trusted him with a gun in school, I think. He seemed sane.

But overall, I thinks it's a disaster waiting to happen.

I once taught with a guy who was absolutely sadistic. The State eventually banned him from coaching, but he was still scary in the classroom. Why was he still there? But he was. With a gun? Actually, he once said, either about me or a school administrator, when he was mad at both of us,"I'm going to kill that woman." And he wasn't even purple. For the record, he was the same race as I. I asked for reassignment to another school the next year. When I mentioned him to a coach at the new school, she said,"Oh, he's possessed!"

Surely such a person would not be allowed to carry a gun to school.


Let us pray for one another, and work harder to keep guns out of schools.

Hmm I see just below here a reference to Phil. 4:6.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Phil 4:6 and New Shops

6Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.

The above is the weekly scripture for the Ruebee group LEAN ON HIM.

I saw it quoted on my doctor's wall once. How unusual and pleasing.

We had originally intended,of course, to offer our own creations on P andP Homemades.

Then I became aware that supplies and vintage items were selling well. Trying to be a good free enterpriser, I added them to the shop, and they sell. But now the title HOMEMADES does not fit very well. So I made two new shops, one for supplies, and one for vintage.

Nothing much is listed in the new shops yet. The inventory is still in Homemades.

Moving items to the approprate shop will be time-consuming, but I'll feel better about the shop descriptions.

I'm finding that I have to stay away from the etsiers' Christian chat rooms if I want to get anything done. That's painful because in a short time they have become like family.

"Who serves my Father like His child is surely kin to me."

Above is an upcycled photo album with two blue eyed bunnies discussing lunch.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Works in Progress

Actually, I think the one on top is upside down.

I've done some more work on these, since the photographs.

I think you might be wondering, from my previous post on aceo's, how a blind man can help me do this. Well, here's the story. It got to be very late at night, when I was working on the top one, which may well be upside down. I had a fit of the I CAN'T DECIDES. So I would hand Mr. P a fist full of colored pencils and ask him to pick one. He would. Then I would decide where and how to use it. It's all been altered since then, but that's the story.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Art Cards, Editions, and Originals

Known as aceo's, they are 2 1/2 in. by 3 1/2 in., pretty cheap, and collectible.

Mr. P, blind as a bat, has been helping work on one. I tell you, I have been rummaging through the fabric stash, among other places, to find all the right colors. Somehow, aceo's seem more doable than larger works. The reality, of course, is that they can take as long, and certainly take as much planning and design as a larger work, I think.

Fantasies in Microbiology (3) Helicobacter pylorii

Fantasies in Microbiology (2) Strange Strain of Escherichia coli

Fantasies in Microbiology (1) Candida albicans in All Her Mycelial Glory

Fantasy in Histology Number One Initially Inspired by a Wright-Giemsa Stain of a Bone Marrow Smear, Showing a Megakaryocyte Giving Rise to Platelet