Adult Music Recital May 15, 2014

Adult Music Recital May 15, 2012

Two words – “I survived.” Everyone was more advanced than I and excellent musicians. Very inspiring to me. Here we are with our teacher, Elaine, on far left. Good time was had by all, including me. Very nice people to meet with get to know. Sharing a love of music was a bond between us that created an air of comfort. Lovely little event. Elaine has more adult students, but some of them couldn’t be there for the recital.


Recital Time

The week has arrived for the adult music recital at my music instructor’s home on Thursday. I am fairly well prepared, but decided at the last minute that I would play on the piano My Heart Will Go On from ‘Titanic’ instead of The Barcarolle from ‘Tales of Hoffman.’ I made this decision primarily because I am playing the latter on the flute. Thinking it might be boring to play the same song on two instruments, switched my piano piece yesterday, without telling my instructor. She will be surprised on Thursday when I whip out my Broadway music book! 🙂

Should be a nice event as only adults are involved and no guests are permitted. Right up my alley. Most certainly don’t want DH there to hear me play my feeble little pieces. 

I ordered a cake as my contribution to the recital, with musical notes on it (of course). Think it will look sweet. Little message of congratulations to participants also will be on the cake. 

It’s been less than a year since I started music lessons. My first public performance on the flute at church was a TOTAL disaster. I am praying for a better outcome at the recital. 

Wish me luck. Onward! 

A Little Late in Discovering a Rock Star

For what it’s worth, here is the review I posted on Amazon after purchasing one of George Michael’s CDs. This really sums up my new-found passion for this now aging rock star. That noted, I love this CD and the style, tenderness and heart that this talent puts into this event. Unfortunately, it was taken from a live performance, so you have to endure the applause, but it’s well worth that annoyance.

I’ll admit right out of the gate that I must have slept through the 80s. It wasn’t until I found the “Faith” CD at a thrift shop that I knew much of anything about George Michael’s music. I spent $1.00 on the used CD and immediately started listening to it in my car. I was hooked on the tunes I knew by him, like “Father Figure,” of course. This 1998 Grammy Award winning CD led me to purchase “Symphonica.” I could go on at great length about how fabulous this CD is (and it is!) but suffice it to say that here is a talent who has “grown into his skin” and is very comfortable with who he is. This is reflected in the way he approaches his singing and songs. If I were going to try to define his style, it’s a cross between R&B and jazz. The tune that sealed the deal for me and made me thrilled that I had purchased this album was “The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face.” Michael’s gentle, tender, heartfelt interpretation of the song is nothing short of inspired beyond words. I could listen to it all day – and probably will. Some rock stars spend their lives being who they were when they were young, but this one has accepted his maturity and demonstrates it with style and grace. Buy it, listen to it, tell all your friends about it!

And, by way of contrast, here is some George eye candy from ‘then’ and now. To me, he still looks great and so at ease with himself now. That raw intensity of his youth is gone – as is the earring that I must say I really liked – but he’s got to be 50-something by now. Talk about grace trumping youth. “You go, George!” You’re my new music idol. Sorry I’m so late in finding you.


The Veil Was Lifted




I went to the grocery store today after a challenging, tiring riding lesson. Half-way through shopping, I realized that I was perfectly, utterly, blissfully calm, like a sailboat slowly drifting along with a gentle breeze. I am posting this so I will remember this day, this feeling and know that I will have it again . . . and again . . . and again. Praise God and whomever else sent this feeling to me today. I am thankful beyond words.

Moving Up to the Big Time!

Today (right under the wire as the deadline was March 31), I entered Venice at Midnight in the Denver National Quilt Festival.

This is not a garden-variety local guild quilt show. You must submit pictures (overall and detailed) of the piece. A panel of jurors decide if your quilt is “good enough” to be included in the show. There are cash prizes awarded for the winners in the different categories.

I don’t expect V@M to make the cut, but I thought it would be fun to test the waters with this show as a number of my quilting friends have encouraged me to enter the Pacific International Quilt Festival which is held in San Carlos in the fall. That is a HUGE show. I doubt if I was turned down for the Denver show that I’d be accepted for the PIQF, but it’s fun to try.

Here are the pictures I sent with the application. I wish the bottom border was not crocked as it is. Will probably get me kicked out of consideration. I find out this week if this top will be Denver bound or not. Excited! 🙂 ImageImage

The Hardest Part Begins Now

Latest Version of Merlin Portrait

I take pictures with my cell phone so I can get a totally different perspective of the piece. At long last, the pieces are all glued down. Now the really challenging part begins. Thread painting involved literally sewing around all the pieces, filling in sections, adding shading with thread, all the while effecting the quilting process. This is where I could really encounter difficulties as I haven’t done this before.

Will re-do the brows as I’m not at all happy with them. But, truth be told, this does look like Merlin and DH gets teary-eyed when he looks at it. As it’s his anniversary gift, that’s a good thing. He thinks it’s amazing and that’s what matters most to me.

Very Hard to Let Go


I am making a portrait quilt of one of our Collies, Merlin Lancelot, who is waiting for us at The Rainbow Bridge. This project is the most difficult piece I have made since I started quilting in 2008. The technique is complicated, but in some ways very easy. But here is the hitch: It requires the quilter to just “let go” and don’t try to make the portrait look exactly like the photograph used as the inspiration and pattern.

The most difficult part has been getting Merlin’s “fur” to be dimensional. I tried yarn and decided I didn’t like the look. So, then I decided to try the strips as seen in the photo above. I’ve been hours working on just this chest part. I think – but am not certain – that I’m happy with the look of the simulated fur, knowing there will be more strips of contrasting fabric to replicate shading. Click on the picture to get a closer view of the “fur” strips.

One may wonder where Merlin’s paws are. Well, after all the fabric is pinned down and quilted (with a layer of tulle applied on top prior to thread painting, which actually is the quilting, I will then applique Fall leaves on top of the tulle (then quilt over those) to symbolize the fact that we rescued Merlin in the autumn of his life (he was 8 or 9 when he came to his forever home with us).

This is an art quilt, so there is no pattern to follow, except the one that’s in my heart as I recall Merlin and what a magnificent pup he was. When I work on this quilt, I sense his presence and somehow, I want to make such a perfect piece in memory of him that I let that need get in the way of just letting go and being free in the moment and making of this unique kind of memory.

This has a very long way to go. Today, I will begin gluing down the pieces – at long last. My goal is to finish that by Sunday, when we have another class, where we will learn the thread painting technique. We’ve already been exposed to it and I’ve practiced it, but it will be challenging for me because it involves – AGAIN – letting your creative vision take over.

All of this said, I’m excited working on this project and enjoy the hours Merlin and I spend together, if he only in spirit with me.

Will post more pictures as I continue on this creative journey. Right now, taking a break to walk in the forest. Need some physical activity and time to commune with the nature.

Onward. Be well. Take time to breathe. Be good to yourself.