Tags: sewing

new year

Envy is one of those Deadly Sins

The first thing I envied of my cousin's was her cat. It was a Siamese, obviously the coolest possible cat. I was three, she was four, rather the way my mother was a year older than her mother, only the other way round. The cat had a name, Ting, but it was just called The Cat, or Kitty-kitty-kitty. My cousin was very important to me and we spent a lot of time together over the years. She was my friend all that time when every year I was in a new school, or two. One year I even started the school year at her school, for a month.

I loved to go visit her, taking the train from Oklahoma City to Wichita, or later riding in a car across the plains. She lived in a house at the end of a cul-de-sac at the end of the suburbs of Wichita, Kansas. I don't recall that there was anything in sight beyond the end of the street, or behind the back yard, although there must have been, even if it was Kansas. It was always the same house -- no matter where I had been living. Not only a house but a yard. She had a back yard with a swingset, and a spruce tree (what use was that, a prickly old spruce tree, except for Christmas?) that grew quite large over the years, and crabapples.

She had a front yard too, and a hose with a sprinkler, and a pack of neighborhood kids, and kindly adults who would swing you around to play Statues on summer evenings when it was beginning to cool off. Sometimes there were fireflies. Sometimes there were said to be chiggers, but I never saw them. They had an air conditioner. They had Dr Pepper in the fridge.

My cousin had roller skates, and could use them. She had a big stuffed panda bear. She had the spring horse. She had the Tiny Tears doll and the Chatty Cathy and the Barbie and Barbie's Dream House and an Easy-Bake Oven. She had a toy piano, and later a real piano too. Then she had go-go boots... and like that. (She got a little sister a couple years before I got a little brother.)

Barbie was for slightly older girls back then, instead of little girls like it is now. When I was nine, my mom got a sewing pattern (I still have it) for an assortment of twelve-inch fashion doll clothes, and she made a bunch of barbie clothes, and sent them to my cousin for Christmas. My cousin's barbie even got a little dress made out of the scraps of a golden silk Japanese brocade kimono that my dad had brought back when he was in Korea and they had made mostly into a cocktail party sheath dress for my mom. Then there were no scraps of that fabric left over.

But I was allowed to learn to use the sewing machine.

I was fascinated by the way three dimensional forms could be fabricated from flat material. Using scrap materials became interesting to me. The change of scale that occurs is wacky, when you take a small print and then make something tiny out of it that makes it seem like a large print.

Later my cousin envied me the ability to sew. She thought I had an exciting life of travel, and that Wichita was boring. She went to the same school system, with the same selection of friends, all the way through high school.

Which I did not.

And look how we turned out!
new year

A lot of it going around

If you're maybe noticing that you're older than you used to be, and are feeling sad/angry/confused/worried/frustrated that you haven't accomplished as much as you/other people in your present or past/annoyingly critical voices inside your head think you should have, and if you're maybe feeling something like "I'm not a real grownup like everyone else," and if you're maybe also feeling sad/angry/confused/worried/frustrated that your body isn't working the way it used to, and you're maybe thinking, "if that's true then how am I going to DO all those accomplishments that I/other people/voices in my head think I ought or want to do?", and maybe you're also wondering how are you going to dig out from under the accumulation of habit and procrastination and self-doubt to some sense of satisfaction in your life again, then post this same sentence in your journal.

Got that from elisem

Some days as you know I eat that bear. As you know, I have some new recipes for that bear. At times I recall my youth when some part of me at times did feel the satisfaction of skinning the bear, although the skin is probably in a box somewhere waiting for me to finish making the teeshirt out of it.

Then other days I spend beating the computer at Monopoly only one in four tries.