Monday, December 29, 2008

We Had Christmas:

We travelled back to NJ as usual for Christmas, and had a very busy series of visits. It was all very nice. Rayona was given some wonderful wooden toys by her relatives, as well as some much enjoyed books. The favorite gift by far, however, was the (ahem...) pink plastic princess shoes from our cousin. We have not been able to separate her from them for very long so far. They seem to make her quite happy.

It is good to be home, though sad to leave everyone as usual.

In other news I will be most likely putting up one or two waldorf dolls in the shop this month -one of whom will be African-American if anyone is interested in that. I am excited about it. I hope they will sell, as they are not inexpensive to make. I think I will stick with knitted clothing for them for awhile for a few reasons. One being that I have anxiety attacks about sewing tiny garments, and the other being that I think knitted stuff is better for grabby little ones -at least it seems to hold up better to my daughter. Plus, there's almost nothing cuter than the sight of a dolly in a totally hand knit outfit -no?

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Waldorf Doll For Ray -Love Mommy:

This doll was a real labor of love. I now completely understand why they cost so much ready-made. Not only are the materials expensive, but the process requires a lot of muscle. That said, I LOVED making this for her. I think she turned out to be very cute:

One thing I'll say about being a beginner at this whole Waldorf Doll thing is that there are a few things you probably can only know from experience. For example: how to make a neck that doesn't wobble. I didn't worry about it too much until I started to make her wig. I chose worsted weight wool/mohair yarn, because I had some already, and it was pretty, but HEAVY. So then the head wobbled a little more. I reinforced the neck with a band of knit fabric left over from the body, then another. It wasn't terrible, but I still didn't feel confident that in a year it would hold up. I then decided to take the plunge and re-do the neck. Oh, I forgot to mention that I had to make her head twice, but that's another story. Anyway, anyone who makes these dolls can probably attest to how involved a process it is to remove a head and rebuild a neck once the doll is finished. It was a task, but well worth it, as she now is solid as a rock. I think that this is my favorite project so far, and apart from a few snags I can say that I may have a knack for this. In fact, I am considering putting one up for sale in the shop soon. I wonder if anyone will buy it...we shall see. I could sure use a cheaper source for supplies if anyone knows of one.

Monday, December 15, 2008


There is a pair of tiny wool pants in the shop .

More creative stuff soon. I've had the flu.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

We had a lovely time:

Though I see my parents every few weeks, I had not visited their home in almost a year. I needed a dose of cozy, and I got it. If you'd like to head over to Flickr, there is a large set of photos of the house in which I was raised. My parents gave me my appreciation for the old, and the ornate.

We sat down to our traditional vegetarian Thanksgiving dinner, which is my favorite meal of the year. As a matter of fact, we all love it so much that we repeat it for our Christmas dinner. Although we have a large gathering with all branches of my husband's extended family at the holidays, my parents and I have promised each other to always have a separate meal that maintains our own traditions a few days afterward. You see, there are only three of us on my side, and it is easy for our celebrations to fall away over time, or to be overshadowed, and squeezed by holiday schedules. Especially given how they differ from the rest of the family's. This feels really important to us, and we will always return to it. It is always the same.

When I returned home this year I was really struck by the warmth and glow inside. My mother makes a real effort to surround herself with meaningful art and decorations. Most of them are religious and medieval. "You've gotta tank-up on beauty" she says. My father's work is evident in every corner of the house as well. Church music, early music and classic literature are his world. Both of my folks are highly creative, and I must say that they sort of create their own reality. Their house is like a museum, and I appreciate that they exposed me to so much history as a child. I too tend to live in the past, and ignore present day intrusions whenever possible.
So I felt really lucky to be there, and I am grateful to them for keeping our history warm for me.