Sunday, March 27, 2011

Exciting news

I have worked full time for many years now, and have always been very lucky to have interesting positions where I felt I could make a contribution. I work in not for profit agencies who are dedicated to making a difference to our community. For the last 18 months I have had the great pleasure of working in a very satisfying position, with great colleagues.

Like most not for profit positions, this job was reliant upon our funding base, which was due to expire in June this year. I have, therefore, been considering what to do next. With my family's support, I had decided that I would try to find a part-time position next. We are now not so dependent upon big salaries, now our house is paid for, and I have so much I want to do outside of work!

The big news is that this week I have been offered a really significant job in another not for profit agency, very close to my heart, and is Three Days Per Week!

I have to bring my other work to a satisfactory conclusion, so I will be working two part time positions for about 7 weeks, but after that my new routine begins. Woohoo indeed! :)

After that piece of news, just a few pictures of things which have delighted me this weekend:

Hand knitted tea cosy thanks to the ladies at the Floreat Salvation Army fete.

Quilt top pieced mostly from op shop fabrics. Now on the design wall whilst I try to decide if it is finished. I think it needs another border. Just a small one in orange ??

Monday, March 14, 2011

World Music Festival

I have been away to a most wonderful music festival called WOMADelaide. World Music of all kinds -calypso, bluegrass, pop music from Nigeria, psychadelic pop from the UK, Indigenous rock, Fado from Portugal... here is a picture of the very talented Marshall McGuire playing his harp.

We went to 13 concerts over 2.5 days in the lovely Adelaide Botanic Park setting. It was very well run, we had a very happy time and I am so glad I went. It was so relaxing to move between one concert and the next and then sit down again and listen to another one!

We brought home a lot of CDs to remember the event by, and some photos -most of which are on my DH's camera which he left at work.

I have a feeling heaven will be a lot like WOMAD- people from every country on earth, all playing music and having a great time in a garden setting, everyone happy, and great food!

I am afraid the carbon foot print is getting a lot bigger this week, after coming back from Adelaide I am off to Canberra for one day as part of my work.

This coming weekend we are going to be away with some friends.

See you when I get back.

Monday, March 7, 2011

In praise of generous craft women

Tomorrow is the Centenary of the International Women's Day, whose rallying cry was always "bread and roses" -women calling for beauty as well as sustenance for themselves and their families (see the words of the song below)

I have spent today very happily sewing some pillowcases to go with the "East Meets West" quilt which was my first ever queen size quilt, and in the process I have been thinking about how much I have always loved working with my hands in the way women have always done. From high school onwards, every moment away from my studies was a moment to engage my hands in activities-to rest the mind and enjoy the peaceful absorption I feel in working this way.

My love of craft has been encouraged by women who have shared their gifts with me, as women do, freely and with great grace.

I remember my Grade Three teacher who taught me to knit, and my mother whose praise of my early efforts kept me at it even when it was difficult.

I remember my sister showing me how to embroider.

The "Home Economics" teacher who showed me how to sew and make clothes.

I remember the women behind counters in shops, who helped me find the resources and gave me the tips to try new things -beading, macrame, a thousand things. Women who wrote books I borrowed from the library, inspiring me to try harder.

Trish of Quilting Matters, who taught me my very best love -quilting.

Then there are all those generous bloggers (see my list to the right) who take the time to create tutorials to show other women how to do things -how to insert a zip, how to make easy pinwheel triangles, how to use the buttonhole foot on my sewing machine.

Thank you, all for giving me this wonderful gift -the ability and confidence to make things for my home and in doing so to express my own creativity.

Song lyrics

As we go marching, marching, in the beauty of the day,
A million darkened kitchens, a thousand mill lofts gray,
Are touched with all the radiance that a sudden sun discloses,
For the people hear us singing: Bread and Roses! Bread and Roses!
As we go marching, marching, we battle too for men,
For they are women's children, and we mother them again.
Our lives shall not be sweated from birth until life closes;
Hearts starve as well as bodies; give us bread, but give us roses.
As we go marching, marching, unnumbered women dead
Go crying through our singing their ancient call for bread.
Small art and love and beauty their drudging spirits knew.
Yes, it is bread we fight for, but we fight for roses too.
As we go marching, marching, we bring the greater days,
The rising of the women means the rising of the race.
No more the drudge and idler, ten that toil where one reposes,
But a sharing of life's glories: Bread and roses, bread and roses.
Our lives shall not be sweated from birth until life closes;
Hearts starve as well as bodies; bread and roses, bread and roses.