Thursday, March 16

A Gift of Books

Books are such wonderful gifts and I was the recipient of not one but two books from friends.  
 A Book of Simple Living by Ruskin Bond was sent by a dear friend. She sees my life mirrored in the stories in this book and I must say she's right.
You can open the book at any page and start reading, the stories are more detailed observations and advise which springs from experience.
 
Let me share what I found on page 30.

'The smallest insect in the world is a sort of firefly and its body  is only a fifth of a millimetre long.One can only just see it with the naked eye.Almost like a speck of dust, yet it has perfect little wings and little combs on its legs for preening itself.

That is perfection.'

The second book is from a friend who is a foodie, enjoys my cooking and sends me recipes. He knows I like Bengali food and has brought Mutton Kosha all the way from Bangalore.
I have yet to get started on The Calcutta Cook Book but it's my type of cook book it has stories about the food along with the recipes.
I must add some simple dishes from this book to my repertoire and I'll have a Bengali to critique the results so I can hone my skills of preparing Bengali cuisine.

I hope you have something interesting to read. Have a great weekend.

Sunday, March 5

1 year of Stitches at the end of February

After the 17th of February I didn't find time to do any stitching, not until the 25th.
 25th February 2017. A Woven Wheel.
26th February 2017. Love the circular puffy structure of the Woven Wheel and I couldn't stop at one so I went ahead and made a few more. Looks like the flowers of the Acacia tree which is in bloom and visible from our deck.Like little powder puffs.
27th February 2017. Couldn't think of how to connect or embellish the woven wheels so I decided to start on a butterfly.
There are a number of butterflies to be seen in the Lamb's Rock area where I live so I decided a couple of butterflies should be featured.

 28th February 2017. The place I live in is very popular for those interested in butterflies.On weekends you'll find camera toting enthusiasts peering into bushes and lying flat on their stomachs to get a shot of these delicate creatures.This is the first of two.

Monday, February 27

The Kochi Muziris Biennale



 The work of Eva Schlegel caught my eye at Aspinwall House.
 A long corridor with windows which would normally let you see ferries plying in the sea between Fort Kochi and Ernakulam now had these laser cut words cut into sheets of translucent paper and stuck on the window panes. The words were from quotes and one needed to walk back and forth along the corridor to read the entire quote.
Spent just a day at the Kochi Muziris Biennale.

Sunday, February 19

A tumultous month

We're past the middle of February and I'm wondering where the days have gone. 
February began with a wedding in my husband's family. So not many days were spent doing embroidery. 
I picked up the needle again only on the 8th of February.
Embroidered these composite flowers - combining lazy daisy stitch and woven wheels to create these poinsettia like flowers.


 In the garden there are red, salmon pink and white poinsettia.
 13th February 2017. In memory of a my school principal Ms. G. Devadason who passed away today at the age of 89. She was called Dodo for some reason. Must try and find out why.
 14th February 2017. a little cross stitch heart for Valentine's day.
15th February 2017. Cable chain, the name comes back to me, encircles the heart.
16th February 2017.

Health issues with elderly parents continue. Either my husband or I are taking a bus at short notice to go be with our respective parents.
They live in a world which was relevant probably fifteen years ago.They live a slow life.Smart phones, internet banking, shopping online is amazing and confusing at the same time. Have to get my mum familiar with the working of a smart phone she's curious and willing to learn.
Just curious, do you utilise all the features on your smart phone? At times do you feel it's all Greek?
It's so important to keep abreast of technology. But it's funny I live in a small town where cash is required and credit or debit cards get to be used sparingly, you ask someone on the road for directions to a place but the moment I get to a larger town or city it's all cashless and life is technology driven - ordering a cab or food, finding a location or getting driving directions. I have one foot in both these worlds and I think a number of people in India find themselves in a similar situation.
We moved to this small town to lead a slow life but technology has come to stay and to stay relevant or function in the wider world I have to keep abreast with technology. So it's a hybrid sort of life I lead.
Have a good week.

Saturday, February 11

Week four in a year of stitches

Between the 18th and 24th of January I had to rush to take care of my mum who had a fall which left her with four cracked ribs.
Mum and Dad are in their eighties and quite fragile. It's awful to have to see them in pain.
Mum is improving each day. Her positive spirit and can do attitude coupled with her implicit faith in prayer is making all the difference.  
 25th January.2017. Started on an up-and-down flower. Followed the instructions from this tutorial.
26th January 2017. The Up-and-down flower complete.
 27th January 2017. Added one more.
 28th January 2017. The centre made with cast off stitch.
29th January 2017. Both flowers have centres now.

Wednesday, January 18

Week 2 of a Year of Stitches

 9th January. A second black work dragonfly. One is not enough.
10th January. A buttonhole wheel flower.
 11th January.I decided to make a small cluster.
 12th January.
13th January.
 14th January. Needed something,so I decided to add a circle of french knots.
 15th January.
I like the way this spontaneous stitching is coming along.

Sunday, January 8

1 Year of Stitches

The first post this year and I'm excited about participating in the challenge - 1 Year of  Stitches.
In one line the challenge is about filling a 12" hoop with embroidery, a stitch, a line or a motif everyday.
 1st January. I started off with a red bullion stitch rose.
2nd January. Decided to add a ring of french knots and bullion stitches around the rose.
I don't use a hoop for my embroidery so I decided to mark a circle 12"in diameter. I'll be filling this space with embroidery.
 3rd January. Chain stitch around the circumference of the 12" circle.
4th January. I plan to fill the circle with flowers and insects and try my hand at Brazilian embroidery and some Stumpwork so that the forms stand out in relief.   
5th January. I'm just adding elements as I go along. I have no plan.
 6th January.
 7th January. First flower is done.
8th January. We had a lot of dragon flies in October here in Welaro so I decided to embroider a Blackwork dragonfly.
That's one week's worth of embroidery and I'm quite pleased with the way it's progressing.
How has the first week of January been for you? 

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