Turtle Trax Diary for May 11, 1998. Page #10
by Lucky Magnolia
The beginning of the May diary, to catch today's Scorpio Full Moon. It's also called the Turtle Moon!!!!!!!! This is the big one, Elizabeth!!
Jimmy and Hattie, at right, are ready to set out on a walk through the neighborhood, which we take every night. The daffodils and other Spring flowers sure did well this year!!
So we use a tasteful lime green, to match the sprouts of seeds we will be planting this week! It's actually the usual time to plant in Ohio, but many overachievers already have their gardens up and growing, due to the extra nice, early Spring. Not us, we have this web site to plant and cultivate and weed! Gardening is going to be a huge time challenge this year! But it is so good for unstressing the sensitive little Lucky!
Today is Mama Wanda's birthday! She's 19. Not bad for my mother-in-law! We went to breakfast with her, at The Parlor, our favorite dineresque breakfast hangout, and did a Wooster Food Co-op run afterwards, like we always do. My brother works there, so it's fun to see him and shop! I am completely sold on the feverfew pills I've been getting there, to keep me from getting so many bad headaches! No side effects! The brand is Nature's Way, and the product is MygraFew. You take it every day. Herbal delight!
We start the diary with the unveiling of the first card of The Kitchen Tarot, my life's project for the next eleven years. Last month I had a different card to offer, and I am leaving that drawn one in the page you go to to buy them, and those ones are sold hand colored. But now you can collect the first "real card" of The Kitchen Tarot, based on an image of the first quilt made for the project. Whatcha think?
This quilt is 34"h x 20"w, with all hand sewing, including the technique I came up with for making colander holes, which is to cut through all the quilt's layers, chop a hole, and bind it with satin stitching. All the writing in this piece is hand embroidery. The quilt also has mardi gras beads, bugle beads, both real clay and fimo objects, buttons, and some of my 3-D stuffed forms. The cat at the top is waiting for me to run the water, which any self respecting Kitchen Cat cannot resist staring at endlessly. I figured the first card should also introduce cats into the kitchen, where they usually hang out, except at night, when they're on our bed. But that's a different deck!!! The hands in the image are the cook's hard working pair, always busy in the kitchen's every process. In a regular Tarot deck, the first card is The Fool. The Colander is my substitute, because it is simple and lets everything just wash over it, and its presence cleanses by simple purification.
We have added a whole bunch of new Turtle Art Camp dates to our schedule, beginning with Aug. 12-18, and one scheduled a month, through Jan. 6-12. We can also create a camp at other times which suit you better, and will then find more campers to fill out the group of up to four people. Our July camps are full and have a little waiting list, so that's why we created six more. They all begin on a Wed. and end on a Tues, for best airline pricing! Send an email if you want to come!!!
We've been really busy, running all over Ohio, teaching at schools and art museums. When it rains, it pours. We truly enjoyed all the classes, especially working with the Garaway students, in Sugarcreek and surrounding villages.
In the photo at right, eight grader Chris Gonter-Dray and Jimmy work together to airbrush Chris' diary tee shirt, in a project where we assisted the students with painting techniques. The Garaway eighth grade had just returned from their Washington DC adventures. We hear that Chris is also quite the basketball player! Other students equalize the competition, by getting into wheelchairs, along with Chris, and they play one on one!
We were teaching kindergartners and first graders at Garaway Schools, around Sugarcreek. Here I am with some proud authors, who in only one hour designed their own books about going to school. Each student began the story with themselves sleeping in their beds, and made pictures and a little writing about all the specific things they do each school day. Some of these kids milk cows or feed goats in the morning. One boy drives tractors already! And a few of the Amish boys know how to drive horse teams in the fields.
Jimmy and I enjoyed having the kids read their stories to us, and Jimmy also liked telling the boys his own inflated adventure tales, like how he cut the tips of a bull's horns off, to make his watch falb. I keep telling him to not lie to little kids, but they love his amazing whoppers. This is a man thing, I guess, as the boys adored him! They also love to touch his strange hair. Asked me if mine's a wig! Jimmy woulda said "Yep! Why, it's hair I pulled off a wild stampeding critter one time!....."
I have added more journal entries from artists in the Dishtowel Calendart Quilt Project, which I am curating, with 35 artists using the 1998 "Mom's Kitchen" dishtowel in a quilt. The quilts must be finished by the Spring Equinox, next year, and I will show them in our Gallery web page. I am also trying to find at least one cool venue for this show, which includes really well known artists and new name artists, some of whom have been our students, all of whom are our friends and talented people. If you're a Dishtowel Artist, don't worry if you haven't begun your piece yet! I think I have to almost start ours over...like in January!!!!!!! But if I can, I'll keep working on the piece in progress, very sporadically. Jimmy is making four of the funky apple pies, in leather.
When we taught at The Cincinnati Art Museum, we got to spend some time with daughter Gretchen and her beau Mike. We always love going down to their place, strolling along Ludlow Avenue, in Clifton on the Gaslight, and peeking into the shop windows of this relaxed and picturesque neighborhood. Cinci is gorgeous in the Spring every year, but this year is even better than usual! The museum put us up in the fancy Omni Netherlands Hotel, and we're supposed to be there again in a week, for our "second coming" trip to the museum. But I wish we could just spend the night at Gretchen and Mike's, and have the museum give us a blob of food money, so we could go to Gretchen's IGA and have a nice barbecue on the third floor balcony of their quiet little apartment.
My mom's 81st birthday was May 8th. And remember, Jimmy's mom, Mama Wanda, has her birthday today! We have these Super Taurus Moms, whose BD's fall on Mother's Day every other year or so! So this weekend is always a powerful one around here.
At left is my mom, Marie Shie, known to the grandkids as Panny. She lives at West View Manor nursing home, which is about five miles from our place. She's got Alzheimer's Disease pretty bad, and can hardly talk, but she can still kiss and smile and hug. She's holding Lulu, the doll Mom's sister Louise sent her several years ago. Mom has always loved kids.
Dad (Richard Shie) and Mom have been married for over 53 years now. She doesn't usually know who he is, and it breaks his heart! I love to be with both of them, when I can coodinate for my sister-in-law to bring Dad to the home at the same time I can get there. About once a week, we have our little reunions. I feel badly that we can't have them living with us anymore, but they both need professional care round the clock. My sister-in -law is a professional home care person, so she and brother Jim have had Dad living with them since he broke his arm over a year ago at our house. There is no educational preparation for taking care of one's parents' old age needs, and I feel strongly that our generation must try to do a better job of figuring this out and passing the knowledge on!!!
Now we come to Saint Quilta the Comforter, and what she's up to this month! I have made six new paintings of her, doing her Kitchen Blessing Fiesta dance. You can find these paintings in the Stuff to Buy section, in the Diary section. And if you want one, hurry, because ALL SIX of the "St. Quilta the Comforter Blesses This Studio for 1988" paintings are now sold and gone!!!! But I will be making new ones, in new themes, for a long time!
Here's one of the new St. Quiltas, "St. Quilta the Comforter Dances Her Famous Kitchen Blessing Fiesta." It's a 15" x 12" unstretched painting. You can see all six of the paintings in the Stuff to Buy page. And there is a Saint Card of one of these images now, too! Enjoy!!
I think that all the imagery here was directly influenced by our El Cinco de Mayo party, in the kitchen, and by The Kitchen Tarot, which is on my mind a lot nowadays!
I want to dedicate this diary entry to the memory of Barbara Mortenson, who passed away Thursday, May 7, 1998, at her home in Philadelphia. She died from cancer and lived a model life, remaining positive and loving and making her art. For the lucky people who knew her, or even met her, Barb was an inspiration. We sadly miss her, and send our sympathy to her family and other loved ones.
Now then, here is a photo also dedicated to Barb Mortenson, who had a brilliant sense of humor and would approve of my way of getting the students' attention. I simply taught them Eric von Zipper's weird thing*, and they saw it as "Sunglasses!!!" Instantly they all wanted their pictures taken and I ascended to idol status! I have to keep up with Jimmy Crockett, in my own little ways!
*Eric von Zipper was the bad motorcycle gang leader in "Beach Blanket Bingo." Didn't ecplain this tricky hand coordination's origins to the kids.
Turtle Moon Studios
Susan Shie and James Acord
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