this is to be my symphony.

the husband took the kids to visit family for a few days.  I took the sacrifice to stay home and keep the fires burning.  to protect the homestead from aliens.  to feed the fish.  It was tough, but somebody had to do it.  It’s funny being ALL ALONE for a few days.  Lonely and exhilarating.  I found that with such a huge amount of free time I wasted quite a bit of it.   I had 3 dvds to watch  ( THE DEVIL WEARS PRADA, LETTERS FROM IWO JIMA, and BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN).  I put away some winter stuff and pulled out some spring stuff.  Dusted, vacuumed and moved out some outgrown clothes… Trimmed trees,  laid down some brickwork in the yard and made 2 fabulous pizzas.  


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here is one side…..

and here is the other………

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it took an incredibly HUGE amount of time.  the front and back panel were already made (see previous post) but the actual construction of the bag ate up hours and hours….because………..A) it’s all hand sewn. and B) I was making it up as I went along, trying to “invent” bag making.  (here’s a secret, I have no confidence in my pattern reading ability and have never really made anything following a pattern……)

so, anyhoo, I am quite pleased with the outcome… it is lightly quilted, but I feel that in the future I will add some sashiko stitching, and the inside is lined beautifully but the bottom still needs just a touch up here and there.

The family came home tired, hungry and hauling huge bags of dirty laundry (there were gone (only) 2 days.)….. and they brought me a present!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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I LOVE IT!!!!!!!

I leave you now with a poem I found at the end of a book, a poem that strikes me as the perfect recipe to live by, and I hope that I can create this kind of lifestyle for myself and to inspire others around me to appreciate….

To live content with small means,

to seek elegance rather than luxury

and refinement rather than fashion,

to be worthy, not respectable,

and wealthy, not rich,

to study hard, think quietly,

talk gently, act frankly,

to listen to stars and birds,

babes and sages, with open heart,

to hear all cheerfully,

do all bravely,

await occasions,

hurry never—

in a word, to let the spiritual,

unbidden and unconscious,

grow up through the common.

This is to be my symphony.

William Henry Channing (1810-1884)   

11 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. maura
    Apr 04, 2008 @ 02:41:40

    thanks for posting your symphony~


  2. ditoh
    Apr 04, 2008 @ 14:08:38

    It`s all so beautiful! Glad you got some quiet time.


  3. Jenna
    Apr 04, 2008 @ 15:05:48

    Your bag looks great. I often think I come up with better results, when I’m not following a pattern. It may not be the fastest way to work, but you get what you want in the end. What a lovely poem you shared.


  4. jude
    Apr 05, 2008 @ 00:49:55

    amazing what you can do with a bit of time on your hands, quite a symphony. and now you can be off making a dirty laundry quilt. ahh… the simple life.


  5. Ravenhill
    Apr 07, 2008 @ 04:51:29

    Jan, I am so happy for you! To have several days off with no family around sounds just delightful! I loved reading this wonderful post. You got so much done. The bag is so pretty. I would love to make one like that. I adore the blues you used. Thank you for sharing the great poem, definitely a good way to live.


  6. tiktiki
    Apr 07, 2008 @ 05:44:07

    yes, it sounds like you were quite industrious during your free time. what kind of pizza did you design???


  7. Grandpa H
    Apr 07, 2008 @ 17:24:56

    Jan, I like your bag, using your blue japanese fabric. I to find it very hard to follow the directions in a pattern, I to like to do my own thing. I also like the TWIG planter. I am always thinking that I will make something out of twigs but just never get around to it. We do have a lot of twigs around here. Love Grandma H.


  8. Jacadamia
    Apr 09, 2008 @ 10:41:34

    What an awesome bag, hand sewn!! you know I can barely sew on a button by hand.
    Love your welcome sign , they know you well!


  9. whereishenow
    Apr 09, 2008 @ 22:34:33

    thank you for all your comments. I am quite pleased with the bag and using it every day to go shopping and to hold all my shopping bags.

    had a sick kid home 2 days, and beginning of school stuff and no time to sit and stitch. ARRGGHHHHH!!!!


  10. maura
    Apr 10, 2008 @ 00:45:54

    i cannot get over the beauty of your bag…and how cute your grandmother’s commnent is.


  11. whereishenow
    Apr 10, 2008 @ 01:33:17

    dear maura….. to tell you the honest truth, i am really pleased with the bag and myself can’t get over it… (what an ego!!!)

    by the way…. grandma H is my mother….


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