tiny steps

modflowers: fungi fellowSo life with a dog continues…

I never appreciated, as a child, the work my mum put into turning our dogs into the well behaved, well trained, well adjusted creatures they all were. But I tell you what, I do now.

Having a dog is hard work.

As with children, you have to put the needs of another before your own at all times, which can take a bit of adjustment.

In my case, getting out of bed around 6 o’clock every morning to “see to the dog” has made me glad that I was already on the way to becoming an “early to bed, early to rise” type.

Except now, I don’t really get the “early to bed” bit, since I have to wait for the whole family to be settled in their beds before I can calm the dog down sufficiently to get to bed myself.

modflowers: fungi fellow I am also getting a lot of exercise – walking the dog is the only way to get her to settle down in the house and stop her doing the “three B’s” – biting, begging and barking. When restless, she nips playfully at us and everything around her, can be a pest at mealtimes and patrols the garden trying to spot our neighbour – and warn him off.

Unfortunately, she seems disinclined to run after a ball or toy, meaning that usually I am covering almost the same distances as her, apart from when she is busy chasing after other dogs on the park – one of her favourite things, happily.

modflowers: fungi fellow Don’t get me wrong, it may be tiring, and difficult at times, but it is an enjoyable process for the most part.

I’m pretty sure I’m getting fitter, which is also much appreciated. Over time, as my stamina and the dog’s attachment and obedience increases, things will get easier.

Surprisingly (to me at least) I am managing to fit in a bit of sewing. Like making this little fungi fellow.

modflowers: fungi fellowI’m not sewing every day, because sometimes Lupin just won’t sit still long enough. And sometimes, the process of tiring out Lupin tires me out too.

So much so that during her doggy naps, when I should be getting stuff done, I am often also to be found crashed out on the sofa.

But we are both making progress…

All be it in tiny steps. ♥

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learning to let go

modflowers: learning to let go - ATCsSometimes it’s hard to let go.

I like making Artists Trading Cards. You may remember, I made some before.

I still have the ones I received in the previous swap I entered. They are, I think, tucked down the side of the kitchen Drawer of Doom (so named as it is the drawer where everything that is small, sad and doesn’t have a proper place or purpose ends up.)

modflowers: learning to let go - atc'sI decided to enter this year’s Artist Trading Card swap, which takes place on Wednesday evening as part of Sherwood Art Week.

I like the process of making a tiny piece of textile art – they have to be just 2.5 by 3.5 inches in size – or rather, ten tiny pieces of art, which is how many you need to bring to the swap. You then receive a random selection of ten cards made by other people in return.

I’ve based some of this year’s designs on miniature patchwork quilts. There’s the log cabin block above, and a couple of patchwork and quilted ones…

modflowers: learning to let go - atc'smodflowers: learning to let go - SAW 16 ATCsThe rest are embroidered and appliqued designs.

I really like them and I am tempted to make more to frame, as they are quite satisfying to do and pretty when done.

modflowers: learning to let go - ATCsThey can be displayed, used to make greetings cards, or even sewn onto clothing like a patch, being entirely made of fabric.

modflowers: learning to let go - atc'sBut I must admit, I have a confession to make.

I find it hard to let go of these miniature artworks once they’re made.

I like the idea of swapping them for a random selection of other people’s works, really I do…

But I just feel – and it sounds awful I know, so don’t tell anyone – I just know that I’ll like mine best.

modflowers: learning to let go - atc'sSo I’m treating this as a test of character. A challenge to my selfish nature. A lesson in letting go.

I will not hang onto them. I will not hoard them. My little artworks, about which I feel so proud and proprietorial, will be released into the world, hopefully to brighten someone else’s day.

modflowers: learning to let go - atc'sAfter all, I can always make myself some more, can’t I? ♥

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no drill required

modflowers: little boxesSome things take a long time to come to fruition.

You may remember that I decided back in February to put some of my creatures into boxes, to turn them into wall art.

With that in mind over the course of a few months I foraged a few potential creature containers along my vintage travels.

These little boxes, drawers and tins have been sitting accusingly on the shelf by my work table ever since, daring me to get cracking.

I’ve ignored them, mainly because the thought of getting the electric drill out fills me with horror.

modflowers: little boxesI’m actually OK with a drill. I have put up shelves, made picture frames and done other handy tasks in the past.

But do I suffer from a chronic lack of confidence with power tools and handy-person jobs generally, the legacy, I think, of having a Dad who never let me get near any practical tasks as a child.

modflowers: no drill requiredThe thought of drilling into metal tins to attach fixings brought me out in a cold sweat.

I don’t have a vice, or a functional workbench, or a practical partner to help me.

And the drill, which has been avoided for some years now, is located… somewhere, I’m not sure where, under a bed, or on top of a wardrobe, or (worse still) buried in the outer reaches of the attic’s roof space, all places I’m not keen to explore any time soon.

modflowers: little boxesBut, having a surfeit of creatures and wanting to present something new on my stall, the time came to gee myself up and get on with it.

So I decided to think laterally. I dispensed with the drill altogether. After all, there’s a lot you can do with a screwdriver and some good strong glue. Instead of hanging decorations, I went for more standing ones.

I’m quite pleased with the results…

modflowers: no drill requiredmodflowers: little boxesWorth the glue-fumes-induced headaches, I think – I hope.

And confirmation that necessity – or for me, fear – is the mother of invention. ♥

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