Friday, April 10, 2020

Time Slips Away

Tomorrow is the 13 year anniversary of my blog.   The person I was when I started writing this blog on April 11, 2007, has slipped away from me, it seems so long ago, and so much has changed.   And now, in the midst of the Covid-19 quarantine, there is no reason to believe that things will ever be quite the same again.    I was concerned about the state of the world for my grandchildren when I first started writing, and I am even more concerned now.    Although I must say, my grandchildren are more likely to take it all in stride than I am; the resilience of youth.

Tomorrow is Easter Sunday.   Although my husband and I no longer celebrate religious holidays, Easter was a very big event in my childhood, and even in my young adult years.    During this quarantine, I have started writing letters to my grandchildren every Sunday, and since there is no real news to report, I find myself recalling things from my childhood in those letters, remembering, for instance, the white cotton gloves and Easter bonnets of my childhood.   My family has not mentioned my pen pal endeavors, so I don't know yet whether the kids are even reading them, but it has been an interesting form of journaling for me.   

The stream of consciousness involved in writing those letters reminded me that Easter used to be filled with traditions involving family and food, so I am planning to make a little more effort than usual this weekend for our own Sunday supper.    In that same "trying harder" tradition, I made cocktails last night for the first time.   Jack and I are not cocktail people,  or at least we have not been in the past. But we have both collected a variety of spirits over the years, kept in a basement closet.  

I found a 'classic' recipe for Bees Knees on line.  Since we had honey and lemon juice and gin on hand, that was my first effort.   I made one cocktail for us to share, which was plenty, but I enjoyed it enough that I will be on the lookout for other simple options.   In the course of searching for the gin, I also found a little raspberry vodka and Chambord in the cupboard, so that will be the foundation of Sunday's treat.   I will also make a loaf of bread and perhaps a cinnamon coffee cake as well.   

I am still making masks in a variety of patterns, depending on what materials I am able to find.  Today I am experimenting with strips of ACE bandage and cut up leggings for the ear pieces, although my husband thinks he found a source for elastic and has ordered me a supply.   More and more people are requesting them.   It pains my surgical arm to sew for any length of time, but I am trying to make several a day.   The masked photo below is of Jack's niece, Sarah, an ER nurse in Mississippi, wearing one of my masks.    I am also sending her the scrub hat that I am modeling below, with buttons sewn on the brim to save her ears from the elastic ear wraps on most of her masks.

Sarah says that wearing homemade personal protection items helps the nurses feel connected and supported by their families and communities, and that is very much worth my effort.    But making and gifting masks to friends and family feels much the same as making and gifting bags or quilts; people seem to take them for granted, somehow assuming that because sewing is a hobby, I am using my fabric and time and postage to send these to them for my personal pleasure.   So sometimes I need to walk away from all of it.    See how grumpy I am?   Isolation is making me too cranky to always trust my responses.  I am grateful that my immediate family always seems delighted to receive my handmade offerings, but they are more the exception than the rule.

Aside from making too many masks, a sad and troubling task, I made pen wrappers for the Grands to mail as an Easter gift, since I cannot shop for the types of things I would usually have bought.   I mailed them along with new pencils for Joseph and art pens for Renée.  They are not very practical, but I hope they like them a little.  Joseph's is designed with a dragon, his school mascot, and Renée's is covered in owls.  They machine embroidery, a Sweet Pea design, and are fun to do.

It is trying to be Spring here, although last night we had snow and hail and freezing temperatures.   

The trees are starting to bud, and my one daffodil made a brave attempt to bloom before doing a face plant onto a neighboring rock.   Some days I think I know exactly how the daffodil must feel.    I will try my best not to do the same.


Barbara said...

Well, congratulations on your blogiversary. My 10th is coming up, and I didn’t realize you’d been bogging for three years before I joined in. I know what you mean about hand-made gifts. It’s not as if I expect much from others, but I’m often disappointed by their reactions. It’s hard to put into words what is missing. The making is so fulfilling and loving, but the giving often falls short somehow, and it’s hard to say why. It won’t stop me from making gifts in the future, but I’m learning to adjust my expectations of others. I love the picture of you in the scrub hat.

Marie Louise said...

When I was a little child Easter was one of the highlights of the year, because at that day we all got new clothes and when we were lucky also new shoes.
That was what Easter meant to me.

One day I gifted my eldest brother a beautiful quilt. How disappointed (and angry) I was when I discovered one week later that the quilt was now used as a dogs bed!
That was a valuable lesson.

Maybe you should allow yourself one cocktail a day until times get better. That will improve your mood!