Like A Magnificent Museum

The internet - it’s like a magnificent museum with endless choices of viewing material. I can peruse folk art, learn about politics, visit foreign countries, see amazing landscapes, and on and on.

AN ORNAMENT I MADE FROM DRYER LINT

I MADE THIS TO HOLD SPECIAL THINGS

MY PURPLE ARGYLE TABLE RUG

A WEE JACKET I MADE FOR ADELINE

MY CROW MADE FROM OLD SWEATERS

My favorite pastime is to look at all the wonderful art, especially fiber art. OMG! I love it! But I'm not sure how much I want to look at it anymore. 

Lately, I find myself choosing NOT to look at art, especially my kind of art, online. 

So much of what’s out there in WebLand is wonderful, but looking at it has at least two negative effects:

I GAVE NICOLE POLKA DOT "STOCKINGS"

1) I feel overwhelmed by how wonderful everyone else is and then I lose faith in my own work.

2) My head gets so filled up with all those images that it is like a garden full of weeds that you have to get rid of in order to find the tomatoes ... my own vision gets lost, or smothered by all those other images.

MY QUIRKY, TWIRLY MAKE-DOs

And, I'll add 3) I really dislike it when I see something that I might make but once I see it from someone else, I worry that I'll seem like I am copying. So then I never pursue it myself.

Oh, and 4) Sometimes I see something that I know is a copy of something I've made and that's a tad annoying. 

 
 

My Favorite Eggplant Dish

Ingredients

  • purple Japanese eggplant
  • mozzarella
  • small tomatoes
  • one-two eggs, whisked
  • Italian breadcrumbs
  • basil - chopped fresh or dried 
  • olive oil

Note

You don't have to do all that salting and pressing that the big Italian eggplant seems to require. But, you will pay more for the Japanese eggplant.

eggplant ingredients

I’ve mentioned my eggplant addiction before and several of you asked me to share my recipe. So, now is as good a time as any. It’s very easy, although there is a certain amount of effort required to do the prep work. Actually, that’s not necessarily true. It’s true for me because I make a lot of small helpings at once and then I eat one every day for as long as they last! 

peeling the eggplant
dip the eggplant in egg

Peel the eggplant and slice it. Make the slices about 3/4" thick. Dredge them in egg and Italian flavored breadcrumbs. Spread the slices on baking sheet and bake at 375 degrees for about 25 minutes.

eggplant on baking sheet
chopping tomatoes and mozzarella

While the eggplant slices bake, chop the tomatoes and the mozzarella. Line the baking dishes with tin foil - this will save you from a lot of misery when cleaning them after they bake. To assemble the dish, put a few tablespoons of sauce in the bottom of the dish, then a slice of eggplant, then tomatoes, mozzarella, and more sauce. Sprinkle with basil. Repeat this layer and then, if you like mozzarella the way I do, add a lot of it to the very top of the dish. 

layering the eggplant ingredients

If you want to save the dish for later, add the lid and pop it in the fridge - or even the freezer. But, if you must have some right away, then cover with tin foil and bake at 375 degrees for about 50 minutes. 

eggplant ready to save for later
eggplant fresh out of the oven
 
eggplant dinner
 

It might look like a sloppy mess to you, but it is so delicious! If you make it, let me know how it turns out! One more thing - brush a wee bit of olive oil on the plate before adding the eggplant, once again for the sake of easier cleaning - that mozzarella can really stick to an untreated plate!

That was then ...

It was the beginning of June and I was gathering textiles to use for embellishing some lovely little books. Each book is a different, bold color and I was searching through my stash for the right pieces of fabric to complement each colorway ... lavender, turquoise, green, red, and sunflower yellow. I also had a few bracelets and necklaces in the works, with beautiful beads and gorgeous hand-dyed silk carrier rods. I’m particularly fond of the turquoise colorway that I was putting together for a necklace. 

GROUPING COLORS ... I DO LOVE COLOR ...

GROUPING COLORS ... I DO LOVE COLOR ...

I really enjoy this part of the process ... the gathering, and the color-love. I have so much to choose from ... necktie scraps from a huge bag which Doug brought home from Robert Talbott in California, strips of sari silk and recycled silk yarns from Frabjous Fibers, pieces of vintage clothing from many sources, vintage linens, ribbons, laces, and trims galore.

The general feeling around here is that I could hole away in my studio and it would be a at least a year before my various raw materials and supplies might start to thin out. But these projects have been hanging in limbo. I have not touched them.

The weather was fine and so was I (or so I thought). My two new knees had liberated me from my existence as a housebound hermit. "It’s like I have my life back," I’d say when asked how those knees were working out. I looked better than I had in years. How ironic.

WHEELS OF MY OWN AGAIN ...

WHEELS OF MY OWN AGAIN ...

After several years of sharing a car with Doug, I had wheels of my own again. As one friend said recently, "You were just getting back to being Morna and now this happens." 

It was the beginning of June and my world abruptly tilted on its axis ... I was diagnosed with lung cancer.

Stage Three. Inoperable. Lung cancer.

I think you can imagine the expletives that went tap-dancing through my mind. 

Oddly, my initial shock was very quickly followed by a prolonged state of euphoria. For many weeks, I was extraordinarily happy. Life was good, the world was a beautiful place, and I felt energized by what I can only describe as good vibrations. More about that some other time. 

HERE I AM ON JULY 16 ... ABOUT FIVE WEEKS POST-DIAGNOSIS ... I WAS HAPPY ... GO FIGURE ... 

HERE I AM ON JULY 16 ... ABOUT FIVE WEEKS POST-DIAGNOSIS ... I WAS HAPPY ... GO FIGURE ... 

Now it is mid-September. I’ve had radiation therapy five days per week for six weeks, plus chemotherapy one day per week during those same six weeks. Doug has driven me to Memorial Sloan Kettering more times than he wants to think about, and Adeline has taken me on the days when I get chemo, bless her heart. Now I am on a break - to recover and get strong for the next rounds of chemo, which will be the really horrid, lose all your hair ones. I can only hope it brings me some meaningful survival time. 

 
pastel petals
 

If this has all been TMI (Too Much Information), I apologize.

I just thought it was time to share with you, what it is that’s been happening here. 

 
red splat
 

Just a few more

Of course I neglected some of my favorite stitchers when I posted about mark makers on Wednesday. So, here are just a few additions - and I’m probably still forgetting somebody. If so, please forgive me! It’s not intentional.

Note: If you click on a picture, you will be taken to that artist’s website.

I love the Mark Makers ...

A line is a dot that went for a walk. -Paul Klee

 

I love the mark makers ... their obsessive-compulsive scratchings, their lines, their dots, their diagonals and cross-hatches. Their marks make little pathways for me to wander. Their colors take my breath away ... each time, I think: this is my favorite one.

Note: If you click on a picture, you will be taken to that artist’s website.

I love to make marks, too. Once I start, it’s so impossible to know when to stop. So ... I won’t stop. I’ll just keep marking, cloth after cloth after cloth. 

 

Do not fail, as you go on, to draw something every day, for no matter how little it is, it will be well worth while, and it will do you a world of good.     -Cennino Cennini