Ice On The Kneeling Window

December 31st, 2017

I took these two pictures this morning of the ice covering the kneeling window in our bedroom. They both have so much depth, color and texture.  They also remind me of landscapes.

Arms Wide Open, Our Big Old Birch Tree

December 31st, 2017

There are two tress in our yard that have as much to do with me wanting to live in  our house as the house itself.

This big old birch is one of them.

She stands in our yard, her arm wide open in a big hug, greeting who ever comes up the driveway.

The Woman In The Window

December 31st, 2017

Can you see the woman leaning against the window mullion.

The woman has been in the window since we before we moved into the house, but I only just saw her a couple of months ago.

Whoever painted the window last created her.

There she is, every day and night when I lay in bed and look out the window, leaning casually against the mullion, her elbow bent and her hand reaching up to her chin.  Her posture suggests a confidence,  thoughtfulness and ease.  Being in the window seems the perfect place for her to contemplate the world around her.

But why did it take me so long to see her.

I’m thinking it has something to do with the writer Shirley Jackson.  Because it was only after I saw her drawings that I saw the Woman in the Window.

I got the book when we were in New Mexico.  A collection of short stories, essays and drawings that were compiled by her children after her death, called Let Me Tell You.

Many of her drawings are stick figures of her and her family.  Cartoons that tell the story of her life as a writer, mother, and wife.  They are much like her writings of the same.

I’ve been reading Shirley Jackson since I was a teenager.  My favorite books of hers were always “The Haunting of Hill House” and “We Have Always Lived In The Castle”.   I didn’t know about the writing she did about her family until I read her biography, A Rather Haunted Life,  last year by Ruth Franklin.

Reading her biography helped me understand why I related to Jackson’s stories my whole life.  They spoke to me of her feelings of being and outsider.  And of her struggles with trying to figure out how to be a writer, mother and wife in the 1950’s and 60’s.

One of Shirley Jackson’s Drawings that remind me of the woman in my window.

Now I know, realistically The Woman in the Window has been there all along.   But there’s  a part of me that likes to  think maybe there’s something else going on.

Shirley Jackson didn’t live to far from us in North Bennington, Vermont.  What if one of her stick figures came to life one day and walked off the paper.  Instead of being closed up between the pages of a book, she searched for her freedom and found it, gazing out my bedroom window.

Oh, how happy I’d be to have her there.  I imagine the conversations we might have.

If I ever repaint that window, I will never take a razor blade to what some might see as a paint splotch and I see as a woman.  As long as I’m in this house, The Woman in the Window will be here too.

Unless, of course, she decides she to move on.

Another of Shirley Jackson’s Drawings


Circle of Women, Getting There…

December 29th, 2017

Like the rays of the sun, the women create a circle around the center.

Now to sew the women on, trim the backing and figure out how to finish it off….

Self-Portrait with Fate and Studio in Door Knob

December 29th, 2017

Throughout the day I use the back door to go to and from my studio.

A few days ago I saw, for the first time, my reflection in the door knob.  It was so clear, almost like a mirror, so I started taking self-portraits.

I love that my studio is a part of the picture, because it’s so much a part of me.   Of course Fate is always right there with me too.

This is one of my favorites.

Thirty Second Frozen Waterfall Meditation

December 29th, 2017

That’s Fate’s shadow you might see moving back and forth across the ice in the video.  She sat down next to me when I was taking the video and waited with me till I was done.

Circle of Women, Continued….

December 28th, 2017

After all my avoidance techniques it was actually warm in my studio when I finally got there.  By the middle of January I’ll be so used to the winter weather I won’t think twice about going to work.

I finished the blue stitching before lunch and after it I sewed down the felted spiral (the scarps from the inserts, remember from yesterday’s post) and did more stitching around the whole circle.

I couldn’t get a good picture of where I ended up with the piece this evening, but  I’ll get one tomorrow in the morning light and post it then.

Studio Dog, Always Ready

December 28th, 2017

When she’s not sleeping her crate, Fate likes to nap by the door of my studio.  I think she doesn’t want to miss anything.

If someone pulls into the driveways she’s at the window before I know what’s happening.  She also knows Jon’s ringtones on my phone, so when he calls or texts me, she up and ready to go.

Bedlam Farm Wool Tree

December 28th, 2017

Maggie’s Tree

Maggie bought some Bedlam Farm wool and made her daughter Abrah   a tree from it.

I never imagined when Maggie bought the wool that she wouldn’t be using it to knit or crochet something.  I love a good creative surprise.

Maggie sent me this picture before Christmas but I couldn’t post it till now because she didn’t want Abrah to see it.

It even has a little crescent moon between the branches.


Thirty Second Blowing Leaf Meditation

December 28th, 2017

I was amazed that this leaf wasn’t blown from the branch, it held on by the tiniest connection.