Tuesday, 23 December 2008

Not tomorrow but the next day.

I'm sorry about the spacing of this post but I've editied it three times and it still ignores my returns. I've even put full stops in - that usually works. No luck.
However - lots of lovely comments:

Heather - I have a great mental picture of the 'Timber' moment.

Deanna - What is an Akita? I might want one (don't tell Clive).

Pat - the chewing goes on as Smudge has started eating doors. Do cats have teething problems - he's eight months old so it seems a bit late.

Wabbit - we have a 'get off' spray (we call it 'bog off' spray) which does stop some of the carpet scratching but I must confess I've never thought of spraying it on Stevens, That's some inventive mind you have. I remember big wagging tails - no ornament is safe.
We were talking about my friend Olga, who sadly died and it was good to know that lots of you knew her, too. Thanks for the emails. This is Olga wearing one of her bodice creations.
And this is the luggage - her C&G final piece. It had all the things you were likely to use on holiday (plus quite a few that you wouldn't) on the outside. Really need a close-up. Olga was a great one for fossicking in charity shops and found some amazing stuff.
I have been working on my stuff for Salisbury museum exhib in January. I've finished Skulljuggery and facebook and am working on this design which is based on a historic site - Old Sarum - and what goes on beneath it.
In a minute I will be collected by my friend Jane and taken to a 'Pagan' lunch at Elli Woodsfords - to celebrate the solstice. As a member of the Church of England (who doesn't go to church) this is a challenge, but I like to be ecumenical. I don't think it will involve bacchanalian revels but I'm taking some wine, just in case.
I was reminded on Sunday of the reason we stopped going to church. We went to the local Carol service. All in candlelight, lovely singing and just when we were all feeling really spiritual the rector preached a very boring sermon for over forty minutes. Talk about turning spirituality into a sore bum!
Are blog rules the same as dinner party rules - no politics or religion? Apologies, if so, but it made me so cross.
We have to take a small gift for the solstice lunch and I made some dear little books, in tiny cases. Can't show them, as they are part of the next lesson for the catalogue killers. Will put them up later.
Yesterday we had all the granchildren here for a rehearsal of the Boxing Day panto, Snow Beauty and the one and a half dwarves (it's the recession). Such a hoot and Smudge joined in by stretching out on Snow Beauty's carefully constructed bed and going to sleep.
After this, we had a Chinese takeaway for lunch and I found a new way to amuse five children - give them a pair of chopsticks each and put a hazlenut on each plate for them to pick up. Hours of fun.
I may not be back before the day (big cooking session tomorrow) so I wish you all a happy, peaceful, Christmas with all sermons limited to ten minutes!


chrissythreads said...

Hi Maggie,
Our number 2 cat has just disgraced herself by unwrapping my christmas present using it as a scratching post whilst the dogs sat looking on with thier 'we wouldn't do that' faces on.
We were also regular Church goers until a couple of years ago. I sat in a Christingle service whilst a 50 year old lay reader literally danced around the church & the service seemed to have very little to do with Christmas. This was followed by a 'who are you?' look as we left the church (The family had only been attending it for 50 years so I suppose it might take a while to register!) and my daughter (Girls brigade, baby fellowship, Sunday school etc... ) being not invited to join the youth group.We all left feeling bereft and haven't been back. I do miss it though and live in hope of one day finding a good old fashioned anglian church were we can feel we belong.
Enough moaning. A very happy Christmas to you and yours.

Genie said...

Happy Christmas Maggie and Clive and Cats, enjoy your pagan meal
looking forward to next instalment of catalogue killers, just going to put pics in album of altered book with the utee, haven,t had time to do much else.

Clare Wassermann said...

Happy Christmas and a very creative and productive New Year. I agree about the church thing. I love the singing and would dearly love my kids to go to church but usually I have difficulty following a sermon and it's pergatory for them so we don't bother. Shame though because churches are wonderful but underused buildings - they just need a bit more accessability in there - it doesn't need to be happy clappy, just in modern English and to the point!

Gina said...

Have a wonderful Christmas Maggie. Sounds like there has already been lots of fun!

artisbliss said...

I'm struck by how many Brits I'm acquainted with who have the same complaints about church. I guess my hope for you all is that you would locate a church (C of E or otherwise) that meets your spiritual needs and makes you feel welcome.

Good luck with the cat(s) and the Christmas tree. We have four of the little darlings and they enjoy playing ping pong with the ornaments.

SimpleEndeavors said...

An Akita is a large Japanese dog. They are very independent and cat like. Even though Stormy graduated from an advanced obedience class, he would only do what you asked if the treat in your hand was up to his standards. Otherwise he would give you the look and stalk off to do his own thing. This is a link to a picture of Stormy, our first baby, http://gallery.me.com/rdki#100057. Not all akitas are good with cats, but Stormy's best bud was Trouble the cat. When Trouble died unexpectedly, Stormy moped for months.

Have a Merry Christmas!!


Unknown said...

Hi Maggie, your design is really beautifull. Have a very appy Christmas for you and your family.

Doreen G said...

Hi Maggie
I sat through a midnight Christmas Eve service once where the minister preached about Meusli--my kids never went to church again.
Since moving to Canberra we have found an Anglican Church that preaches the right stuff-makes everyone feel welcome but not pressured into anything and none of that hand clapping-dancing arm waving stuff that embarrasses the daylights out of me.
All the best to you-Clive and all the family and may 2009 allow you to continue creating in the same wonderful way that we have become used to.
Regards Doreen G

Deb Hardman said...

I always thought it was good to learn about other people's belief's. I think the more I learn, the more I find common ground. We really aren't so different inside.

Sorry to hear of the loss of your friend. She looks like she was a vibrant life-force. Her talent & imagination are pretty apparent too. She would've gotten along well with my friend Mary Hertert, the owner of Color Creek Studio here in Anchorage. Her suitcase reminds me of something Mary did to a Salmon on Parade fish several years ago.

I also want to say I appreciate the way you make replies to your comments in your next post. I have a difficult time doing emails to everyone who comments because it involves so much back & forth, copy & paste, & wastes a ton of time. I feel guilty when other people email me replies! I just can't keep up with it.

Lastly, I love your Archaeological piece. The layers & depth, & the mystery in it are very intriguing.

gilby said...

Hi Maggie,
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to you and yours.

Heather said...

So many of us have been driven away from churchgoing for one reason or another. I like traditional services which are very few and far between these days. We attended regularly for years when my husband and three of our daughters were in the choir. I was put out, however, when those very same people with whom we had left the Church on Sunday morning blanked me in the High Street on Monday morning. Our youngest daughter follows Wicca, and is one of the most caring, good people I know. I am sure your pagan lunch was a lovely occasion and you needn't have felt apprehensive. We could do with a few more pagans to help us save our poor planet as they live in tune with Nature, and rather like Native Americans, they make sure they give something back to Mother Earth when they have taken something from her. Do hope you and Clive manage to relax over Christmas - I've no doubt 2009 will be another frantic but hopefully fantastic year for you both. Your family panto sounds great fun, I expect Smudge will steal the limelight! I loved Olga's work - so original - lovely lady.

Heather said...

Forgot to say - I think Old Sarum is already fascinating. Looking forward to seeing it when finished.

Julie said...

The Boxing Day panto sounds like a lot of fun. Have a wonderful family time. A very Merry Christmas to you and Clive, Stevens and Smudge. Enjoy!

Judy said...


Peace and goodwill for the festive season. Chop sticks and and a hazelnut I am sure I could entertain even my grown up grand children with that one. Hope Smudge leaves you some doors -haven't heard of caats chewing like that but then they are all different

Writer in Residence said...

Dear Maggie,
Living in a wonderfully multi-cultural city and country (Toronto, Canada), friends and acquaintances celebrate Christmas, Kwanzaa, and Hanukkah, if not in equal measure, at least with equal joyfulness. So I would like to wish you and your family and all your readers a "Happy Christmakwanzaakkah" to which I would add (only partly tongue-in-cheek), "...Or other religious or non-denominational seasonally appropriate solstice greeting of your choice."
Peace, love, joy, and happiness to you and yours, and thank you for your continuing inspiration and amazing artistry.

Pam said...

Hello Maggie,
I would like to wish you and your family a great holiday. This season has a different meaning for each of us, but the general spirit seems to be the same.
I ,too, am looking forward to having some time off and am patiently waiting to begin working on some art again.

Penny said...

Happy Christmas Maggie and Clive and thank you for an inspiring blog and your equally inspiring book and free on line course, I have been having fun doing the altered book here at the beach.

Aslam said...

Your art work is attractive and beautiful as compare to other artists work,i am also a artist my art work is presented in form of these cards on this website.
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artisbliss said...

A technical question, Maggie. I'm currently making some mixed media pieces that will be mounted on wooden artist mounting boards for hanging. The pieces will be 20" or so square and probably rather heavy. What should I use to attach them to the mounting boards? I thought about just gluing them down but I don't think that would hold up over time. What about double stick mounting foam or some such? Or have I missed some secret way of holding a heavy piece upright on a mounting board? Can you throw some light on the subject? I'd appreciate your insight.

Jackie said...

I wish I'd had time to read this sooner..I wanted you to tell Elli to get back to blogging..I was just getting into it and she stopped..in fact it was seeing her blog that inspired me. I think the blog is a good place to sound of (politely ) about your greivances. Watch out for a possible rant about bouncing cheques on mine coming soon..or not..depends on the outcome.

Aussie Jo said...

Your sermon piece reminded me of one Easter when we were on holidays in the Snowy Mountains. We went to mass Easter Saturday and copped the hell and damnation sermon for 40 minutes in the singsong voice. Our four kids sat in stunned silence!!!
Luckily this xmas our 9pm mass sermon was two minutes!! The priest had already had the 'family' mass at 6pm and I think he was exhausted.

Megan said...

I thought I'd tell you that I'm an art student in upper 6th form, and for our art projects, we include artist histories. For one of the three artists in my current project, I am including you, so if you have any tips for my artist history on yourself, it would really help!

The WestCountryBuddha said...

I just love the idea of a hoard of children using chopsticks to get a hazelnut off a plate - sheer genius! We used to put a pile of flour on a baking tray and make it into a cake shape into which we then put a sixpence (see, such a long time ago..ah, me!) in the middle. We each had a knife and had to take it in turns to cut away bits of the flour shape by slicing. The idea was to stop the sixpence falling off into the tray. Hours of amusement. AND, ahem, we still occasionally play it today and my DD's are 25 and 27!

The WestCountryBuddha said...

Oh, and PS...Happy New Year to you too!