Join Janet on her adventures as a designer, writer, maker, and farmer in montana. no two days are ever the same. you might even see a bear or two.

Finding Your Face

Finding Your Face

The first lesson in the Cori Dantini mixed-media class has dragged me right out of my comfort zone and into unfamiliar territory. Cori is a wonderful teacher. And it’s partly because she is so wonderful that I am willing to allow myself to be dragged into that unfamiliar territory. I made myself sit down yesterday morning for an hour to sketch faces. That’s it. That’s all I did. I sketched faces. Some of them were just the features. Some were faces with hair and other details. I didn’t stop. I didn’t erase. I just sketched.

No, you can’t see the results of my work. While it isn’t as bad as I thought it might be, I am not yet ready to share with anyone outside the class Facebook group. Cori talks about this process as “finding your face.” I am getting closer to finding mine. It’s clear that with practice, I may master the mechanics of drawing, but I don’t know that I am ever going to have the intrinsic talent that makes it come easily or look original. I liken it to knitting: I can teach someone the mechanics of knitting—how to make the stitches, how to read a pattern, how to finish a project—but that doesn’t mean that person will understand knitting at a level that will allow them to be a designer.

Part of me wants so badly to give up and go do something else—something easy, like weeding—but I won’t.

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The front of the Fika tote is done:

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This is actually Fika Front 2.0. I was not happy with the first version, for a couple of reasons. The lining fabric I intend to use for the inside of the bag is a black-and-white print. When I used it for the linings of these pockets, the white peeked out along the sides and tops. I decided that would drive me batty enough that I wouldn’t want to finish the tote. I had enough fabric to cut a second set of pieces, and these pockets have a lining of plain black Kona. I am much happier with this version.

I’ve also come to the conclusion that I just don’t like foam. I don’t like working with it and I don’t like bags made with it. Waxed canvas is always going to be my favorite material for bags. I probably won’t do another foam-based bag again.

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That Black Australorp hen is either very close to end of the 21-day gestation period or has passed it, but she shows no signs of getting off the eggs and I hear no tell-tale peeping. She left the box for a few minutes the other day, but I didn’t move fast enough to get the flashlight to candle the eggs to see if there is anything viable under her. The husband is convinced she’s sitting on a bunch of rotting eggs. I am not yet ready to give up. This is progress of some sort.

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I did make it to Costco yesterday. When I was there a few weeks ago, I noticed they were carrying these:

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I picked up a package of these and some Cajun turkey breast from the grocery store and tried one as a sandwich wrap when I got home from town. It was phenomenal. I hope that Costco continues to carry these or that other stores pick them up, too. They are a great alternative to bread/tortilla wraps, especially for those of us not eating bread.

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We had to post another Craiglist ad for employees. One of ours gave his two weeks notice a few days ago. The husband noted that we need to stop hiring people who live in Whitefish. That’s the ski resort about 40 minutes north of us and everyone wants to live there because it’s so hip and trendy. However, most of the work the husband has is down here in the southern part of the county. We hire these guys from Whitefish and they decide after a few months that they don’t want to drive so far.

The husband ordered the plywood sheathing for the new shop roof. He also priced out the metal roofing; he was going to put on plain galvanized metal roofing, but the Architectural Review Committee (that’s me) asked for a comparison between that and brown metal like we have on the house. The price difference is small enough that I would prefer the brown metal to match the house. (This is why we have an Architectural Review Committee.)

At the very least, he’ll get the new shop under roof before winter and can keep his concrete forms and trailers out of the snow. I’d love it if we could also get some doors on it and the garage floor poured. He poured the foundation last August, so we’re rapidly approaching the one-year mark on this project.

A front came through—with wind—and temps are going to be in the mid-50s for the next week or so with some much-needed rain. I’ll be happy if it rains every day, although I am not sure how that will impact the husband’s schedule. I just don’t want to have to worry about fire season already, and it’s too early to be watering the garden. It will be nice to have a break from weeding, too. I’ve got beans soaking so I can do a canning run and I need to cook down some chickens from the freezer to free up some space.

And there will be sewing, no doubt, and probably more sketching, too.

Looking for a Free Chicken Dinner

Looking for a Free Chicken Dinner

Spokane is Not the Same

Spokane is Not the Same