We have three giant maples growing on the side of the house. The one in front of my studio has a Yoni created by the two main branches (which are as big as trees themselves) twisting themselves around each other.
Spider webs guard the Yoni opening where mushrooms and a little maple tree is growing.
I hung one of my Yoni Potholders on the scaly bark to take a picture of it.
I see that maple tree every time I walk to or from my studio, every time I look out my front window. We know each other the way I know the crows who live around the farm. With a familiarity that borders on the mundane, yet with a little attention, awe-inspiring.
I have a few Yoni Tree Potholders in my Etsy Shop, each one comes with one of my Yoni Tree Pins. Just click here to see and buy them.
I’m always trying to figure out the best way to ship my work environmentally and financially.
We shop on Amazon a lot because we live so far away from the stores that have the things we need. With all the packages coming into the house, I started reusing the boxes to ship my quilts and pillows.
But just yesterday, I thought to reuse the padded envelpoes too.
This is where the lint roller tape that I save really works because it covers a lot of space. I used it along with some stickers to make the packages more recognizable as mine and less as coming from Amazon.
Even though it’s written directly on the Amazon envelopes that they can be recycled with other #2 plastics, they really can’t be. So this is a good way for me to reuse them before they go in the trash.
I like the way my brown paper padded envelopes look better, but not as much as I hate throwing away the plastic envelopes from Amazon. And of course, then I save on shipping too.
My brown padded envelopes cost more to ship because they weigh more. I’ve read in some places that the extra weight and manufacturing the paper envelopes may offset the environmental benefits of using paper over plastic.
But there’s so much conflicting information, it’s hard to know the truth.
So I’ll keep reusing the boxes and envelopes that I can and continue to try to make the best decisions about how to ship my work in ways that I can afford and are good for the environment.
I took my walk in the Yoni Woods on Monday. On Tuesday I sat at my sewing machine trying to capture the essence of the trees I saw the day before.
I wanted to show the movement and groundedness of the trees I saw and emphasize the vulva-like shapes and vaginal-like openings.
Yoni is the Sanskrit word for womb, vulva or vagina. All the life-creating female sex organs. It is a symbol of the regenerative powers in nature. And so, the regenerative powers in ourselves.
I used one of the Vintage linen napkins that Kathy sent me as a ground for my drawing. I put a piece of solid pink fabric under it and my cotton batting under that. Then, I stitched a tree.
I cut out the white linen from the Yoni shape revealing the pink fabric under it… …then stitched the Yoni fruit…
…and colored them in with permanent marker. Then I added the insulated batting and backing and sewed it all together.
I made four more Yoni Trees but I haven’t sewed them all together yet.
I had the urge to make some patchwork potholders using embroidered linens and just finished those up this morning. But I’ll get them all made into potholders and have them for sale in my Etsy Shop early next week.
I sat in the hole I had dug, knees bent, my head resting on the top edge. It was like being in an earthen bathtub, comforting, held by the earth.
Through grass and it’s roots, hard-packed soil, rocks, darker denser soil and more rocks I dug a grave, with Jon’s help, for Zelda. The same kind of earth we moved for Red, only more of it.
It’s hard work and even though I’d rather not do it, it also feels good to do. It’s a ritual of death that works for me.
It’s strange digging a grave for Zelda when she’s still alive, laying just 20 feet away. But it’s a reality that when one of our farm animals dies, we have to be prepared to do something with the body.
Zelda, though old, is still a big and heavy animal.
If we didn’t dig a hole for her close by, we’d have to get help moving her after she was dead. And because it takes a few hours to dig a hole, it’s best to have it ready before she dies.
When it was deep enough, I looked down into the hole and actually found it inviting. That’s when I stepped into it and sat down.
This is what I’d like for my body when I’m dead, I thought. A hole in the ground just big enough for me to curl up in.
Just yesterday he was laid up all morning, with an upset stomach. So we try to keep him away from the things and places that smell really good to him, but really aren’t good for him at all.
One of the places he likes to spend a lot of time is behind my studio. It’s where the cats poop and is home to at least one woodchuck. I’m not sure what else goes on back there.
So a while ago I put up a two foot high chicken wire fence. After that I would watch Bud stand in front of the fence, patiently watching what was going on behind it. It seemed to do the job of keeping him out.
Until a few days ago when I called him and saw him come running from behind my studio and jump over the chickenwire fence.
That’s when I put up the bright orange snow fence. I thought he would see it as a barricade, something that he couldn’t get past.
It only took a few days for Bud to realize the snow fence was only stapled onto the side of my studio and tied along the top with a string.
If he ever took it seriously as a barricade, he must have forgotten all about it when he saw or smelled something more enticing on the other side of it and, instinct taking over, just jumped into it. The fence ripped off the side of my studio and Bud was back in.
Now it’s my turn again.
This weekend I’ll put up a three or four foot tall chicken wire fence, and cross my fingers…
I finished designing Ellen’s first Springtime quilt this afternoon. It has a mix of old and new fabric. A hand embroidered linen, and apron. Sari fabric from India, (some that I brought back) a hankie and some vintage fabric.
I’m still waiting to get the wool batting from St Pete’s Mill, in Minnesota. It usually takes about 2-3 weeks, although the woman I ordered it from said she’d try to hurry it up for me. So I’ll design both quilts first, then have them and the backings ready when the batting arrives.