Monday, October 5, 2015


As a former English Major (and once an English major, always an English major.  Although I have a master's degree in a completely different area, I still thing of myself as an English major) and one who studied linguistics, I know that language is always fluid and changing.  For the most part I'm OK with this.   Some things, however, annoy me.  "Awesome" for one.  That's lost all meaning.  My concept of "awesome" is one of those moments that you feel you are standing in the presence of God.  When you feel awe.  When you feel both a part of a great universe, but also humbled.   Now, maybe I'm just hard to impress--but I don't think it's a term that should be used in describing, say, your 79-cent burrito from Taco Bell.

A more recent one is "reaching out."  I still think of it in a caring way--so-and-so's mother just passed, I will reach out to her.   It shows that someone is hurt, physically or emotionally, and you want to give support.  It's holding out a hand.

It's not how I feel about contacting the cable company because my phone is out again.  It seems to have replaced the simple word "contact."   "I need to reach out to Bobby's mother to see if she can bring cookies to the party."  Huh??  Is it that hard for Bobby's mother?  What has she suffered?

But there's a change in a word that I like very much.  "Makers."  Simply meaning someone who makes stuff.   Whatever kind of stuff.  Cookies.  Robots.  Costumes. Furniture.  Anything that gets made is made by a maker.

I like it because it's not pretentious.  It gives me something to call myself.  I've made things my entire life.  I can't remember a time that I didn't fiddle around with stuff.  "Artist" doesn't describe me--I don't do anything that I would call "art."  "Craftsman" means a level of detail and finesse that I usually don't do.  But stuff labeled "arts and crafts" is just too cutesy.  "Maker" is just about right.  I make stuff.

Hence the blog silence.  It's time to be thinking Halloween, and the Trail, and to be making stuff.  With a little stuff on the side.  Stuff like . . .

Chicken sweaters.  A friend asked me to knit some for a friend of hers who dotes on his chickens.  Apparently they're the latest "in" thin for people with pet chickens.
I don't have a picture of the recipient's chickens, so I swiped one off the web

I made them (how could I say no to a chicken sweater?) but buzzkill that I am, I included an article showing that putting a chicken in a sweater is really bad for their feathers.

And because other people like to make stuff too, I taught an indigo dyeing workshop.

But mostly I'm prepping for Halloween.  We're starting to build the trail, which begins rather inauspiciously with planting 2x4s and nailing up old pallets.

At this point it's hard to believe that we're making something that will make people run screaming--and then go back to stand in line again (up to a 2-hour wait) to do it again.

At home, I've been working on some masks--these are my swamp scarecrows.


And these--for the creepy cabin--are just plain wrong (only showing one picture--hate to admit I made two of them)

And then I retreat into cute.  The museum needed some witch bean bags for a game

And now to close with a few random pictures.  I entitle this "Three Peacocks and A Cat In A Circle."

This is Noko Marie, thinking that it's her turn for attention after we return from shopping.
And to close--we were walking down to get the mail, and Bob looked down, and I don't know how he spotted the tiniest baby turtle.

Now to get back to making.  Bob's making too--so more to come.