Total Pageviews

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Big Pores

I have never been one to fuss with makeup and all of the products that so many women invest in when pampering their bodies. Water. Never soap on my face. Just water. At a very young age I began to think that something in soap would only clog my face, so I just never used it. And I have been pretty fortunate to have pretty good skin. For a woman of 61.

But lately, I am not so happy with these pores on my face. Why are they so big? Have they always been like this? I am just not a mirror person. Is there something I should do about this?
So I wrote to Christina and asked in detail what she thought and her suggestion was really simple.

I bought for under $10 some Oil of Olay Regenerist Anti-Aging Deep Pore Cleanser and some small organic sponges. Tonight I have used it for the second time and I have to admit, my face feels really nice.

Why all of a sudden?

I have been noticing people. Women my age, some younger and looking older than me. Some older and looking old. I am looking at them and thinking - I don't want to look like that. Their skin looks almost like it stinks. It looks like it is rotting. I don't want my skin to rot. It may be getting old, but it doesn't mean that it is dying. It doesn't have to be dying.

I am still alive and pretty vibrant, creative, infused, and infusing. I don't think that I should be rotting away just because I am no longer young. That doesn't mean that I want to get all of this surgery done and stuff like that. But I am thinking that I should take care of what I have. After all, I have the type of body that almost never ever gets sick. Pretty healthy. I need to take care of the casing.

I think it started when Beth gave me this dainty little ruby ring. It is very tiny and I keep looking at it on my ring finger and I am constantly surprised at how feminine it makes my hand look. At how feminine it makes me feel - this tiny little ring. It occurred to me that , yes, I have great hands. I don't ever think about that. I just do what I do.

I am feminine. I don't ever think about that. I just do what I do.

I want the experience of that. Now this does not mean that I am going to wear nylons and high heals. But I want certainly to start taking better care of myself like my skin. I don't want anyone looking at me and thinking:

"My god, she's rotting away!"

Most Days

I have this thing with nature, it seems, of late. I don't know, maybe it has been like this for ever, but I have really only noticed it the past year or so. Yesterday was a perfect example. Prediction of rain, possible snow. Some wind. Of all days to have to travel on buses to go to the dentist. Well, maybe I will cancel. I'll get up, look outside. It will be cold, miserable. I have waited too long for this adjustment as it is, what is one more week. But when I woke up, there really wasn't a wind and no rain. So I got dressed and ventured out.

As soon as I boarded the bus, it began to downpour.

When my stop came up to transfer to another bus, the sun was out!

I am sitting in the dentist's chair, waiting for everything to happen and I am looking out into the square and it is pouring out. I am thinking - I am right next door to a Rite Aid and I have been seriously thinking about buying a facial cleanse (another blog entry)... Ah, but it's raining.

I leave the office, and the sun is out! My friend Christina has suggested a product which is not expensive, so I go to the store then to the bus stop. Here's the bus. We are half a block away and it begins to pour!!

The whole day like this.

And today. Last night - Snow. All night on the television, even the mayor of Portland is on telling everyone how he has all of his teams on the ready, to make everyone safe for the snow today. I go to work, I come home, THEN it snows.

I think I have good weather karma.

I also have good parking karma.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Threading a Needle

I learned to make a quilt block called "Flying Geese". I had to do quite some practicing to get the points to all come out, to get the sewing machine to do what it needed to do to achieve perfection. But perfection I did achieve and the resident quilters were amazed and very complimentary at my first piece. It was just a bag with some embroidery. It never did go on display at the store as the pattern maker who is from Australia, decided to pull her patterns from her distributor and sell them privately in Australia and so they were no longer available to us.

I can copy a Chanel suit without breaking a sweat. Quilting? Oh my god!!!! Such a universe.

Shortly after completing the piece I went through our complete book offering at the store and found nothing - nothing that gave me any great detail on the "Geese" technique. Someone did mention, however, that I research an 'old' book by Jinny Beyer - they could not remember the title. That evening I searched Amazon and found the above book. I started to browse and found a page dedicated to "how to cut the thread and threading the needle".

That was it. I dished out the $5.00 for the book. You see, I was talking to the "Always In Stitches" group that meets on Friday evenings in the classroom about making a quilt and doing the quilting by hand when one of them said "Why don't you piece it by hand too?"

In my search through our books, I found the pattern book called "Tried and True Renewed". On the cover was a quilt I fell in love with. I know it is built on browns. I thought I might like it in greens, but I really DO love the browns too, or am I being visual? Am I liking the browns because that is what is pictured? I don't know.

So, this is the quilt I am going to make this year. Totally by hand. Totally portable. I have been practicing stitching by hand, trying out various thimbles. Thimbles are not easy to get used to because I have never in all of these years, despite all of the handwork I have done, a thimble has never been a part of my history. Getting comfortable with one is such a difficult task. There are so many different types out there. And sizes. And, the more vocal I am about the ordeal, the more women are offering me their tucked away thimbles to try. I am going to have to buy a box just to hold these.

And needles! I have used embroidery and milliner's needles all of my life. Long thin needles. Now I am trying to adjust to needles that are barely and inch long. I keep saying that my hands are too big for these needles - but that is only an excuse. It is just an adjustment.

I have to get my body and my mind to change its stubborn ways. It is never too late to learn something new. It is becoming my mantra. "Something new. Learn something new".............

I have time to practice. Scraps of fabrics. It will be awhile before I can get the fabrics I need for the quilt. Tax Return. So, every day I work a little more. It will be a great quilt when it is finished. I am excited. I will show you how it is going as I work with it. maybe one day I will even work a class around this. Imagine - me teaching a quilting class.

Is there no limit........................................

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Sunday Afternoon

I haven't seen Christina in over a year. We recently re-connected. She moved to the Gorge, an hour's drive from here. We lost touch. It took over a month to get our schedules in sinc so that this Sunday was possible. It was just a lovely day. We went to the market for fish and vegetables and came straight home. No errands. Too much talking to do. Gifts to exchange. Stories to tell. I cooked - she ate.

I made a mango avocado salad with fresh herbs and balsamic vinegar/olive oil dressing. We had bought this imitation crab leg that was really really tasty and I sauteed that in butter and she ate that straight out of the bowl. It was absolutely sinful. I'd serve it to anyone, no matter that it was imitation. It was so good. It was made from real fish, just not crab. I am going to have to look for it again and buy more. I swear, it is something that could be very addictive.

For the salmon, I thinly sliced up three colored peppers, snow peas, broccoli, carrots. I think that was it. These I lightly sauteed in a pan pre-seasoned with oil and candied ginger. At the very last minute, I added chopped cilantro of course. I put these on a tray to keep warm in the oven while I worked on the salmon.

I then made a broth with white miso paste and got that going at a good boil. I dropped in the two salmon steaks and let them sit in this broth for about ten minutes. Then I divided the vegetables, and placed the fish next to them and poured on the herbs. The miso makes such a lovely broth. And the fish is so moist and tasty. It was very good.

Thing is, too, you can freeze the broth and use it again for more fish as it just gets better every time you use it.

I did make a dessert, but we got so into eating it we forgot to take a picture. Before the whole dinner preparation began, I cooked some huge blackberries with a spoon of sugar and got maybe a quarter cup of essence from it. This I sieved twice in tea strainers so that it was completely delicate. When it came time for desert, I took out the container of cream and Christina began whipping a small amount of it. But it wasn't whipping up. So I took over and I got confused. What was wrong? I opened the fridge and looked. I grabbed Half And Half instead of Whipping Cream at the grocers. Disappointing. So....

No bed of cream under the ice cream. I made Matcha green tea ice cream with an orange essence which I served in little bowls and drizzled the berry juice over it lightly. I wanted each taste to be complete. It was accomplished. I wanted to serve it on a cloud, but the cloud did not appear. No matter. We enjoyed.

The day was great. We talked about so many things. I gave her Baba's cloth which probably means nothing to any of you, but it means a lot to us. Baba Muktananda is a Guru long past now. Dear to both of us. It was an emotional moment between us. Reparation. Things should not stand between people. We don't have time for that. Too much is happening in the world. People are separating and isolating out of fear. We need to gather more. I know this personally. My phone rings maybe once a week? I am a big isolator. It is not good. I leave my house to go to work, to go to the grocery store, or to the doctors. I never go anywhere.

We need to come out of our caves and embrace each other. Listen to each other. Help each other. Just be there.........