Cross Stitch Patterns from Fine Art by Scarlet Quince
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Scarlet Quince Ramblings

Cross stitch ... art ... life

You’ve come a long way, baby
Wednesday, October 21st, 2009

My latest project (like I needed another one) is scanning old photos and memorabilia. Partly this is to make pictures that there’s only one copy of accessible to other family members, and to get our slides out of boxes and onto the net where we can look at them without having a major production (plus usually when we get the projector out, it’s broken), and also to get some electronic copies in case the house burns down.

One of the things I’ve scanned so far was an old copy of the Wooster College (Ohio) alumni bulletin, which ran an article on my grandfather when he was about to retire in 1959. Here’s a snippet from the table of contents:

On the cover we present this month another professor, Roy I. Grady ’16, who will he retiring officially at the end of this year. To hundreds of alumni this picture will bring back memories of the chemistry “lab” — not only to those who took a few courses, but to men who have gone on to vocations where they have used the knowledge they learned here as well as to those who have received in this room the inspiration to continue work in graduate school. There will be memories, too, for women who “worked off the science requirement” here and later, to their surprise found an amazing number of uses for information they acquired, in their own kitchens.

OK, I know it was 1959, my mother didn’t have a paying job, I didn’t know anybody whose mother worked outside the home (aside from school teachers). But still! This is a COLLEGE magazine, remember. Maybe girls weren’t taking chemistry so they could have a career, but the implication that they were too dumb to guess that it might ever be useful irks me. My mother and her friends raised funds and got a swimming pool built in our little town. They got the school playground paved so kids didn’t get covered with mud at recess on rainy days. They organized and ran scout troops and libraries. They were smart and capable and they kicked ass at whatever they did.

I know a number of young women these days who feel that women’s lib did them no favors. They would rather stay home with their babies than go to a job, and wish that their husbands would just support them instead of expecting them to bring home a second paycheck. I understand that being Wonder Woman is exhausting. But yikes! Before we wish the “good old days” were back, let’s remember what they were really like.

Austin String Band Festival
Monday, October 19th, 2009

We went out to the Austin String Band Festival on Saturday, sponsored by Austin Friends of Traditional Music. It started Friday night and I’m sure we missed many good performances. Saturday morning there were workshops — fiddle, dulcimer, harmonica, mandolin, and singing. I had intended to attend a few of them but we got a late start — first I woke up feeling kind of oogly, then we forgot the folding chair and had to go back for it, and then we stopped at Academy to get a second folding chair because for some reason when we bought the first one years ago we only got one. Then off to Camp Ben McCulloch in Driftwood!

It was a beautiful day — low 70s, dry, clear blue sky. And my kind of festival — not crowded at all. (I hear that at the recent ACLFest people were standing packed like sardines, despite the fact that it rained the whole weekend.)

I missed some of the workshops I would have liked to attend but did arrive in time to join the Sacred Harp (shape note) singing in progress. That was fun. (If you aren’t familiar with Sacred Harp, the music is written on the usual staff but the notes are different shapes to help those who don’t read music. You sing through it once on the names of the shapes, fa, sol, la, mi, then again with words. I don’t really know the shapes so I just mumble through that part.) I accidentally ended up sitting with the sopranos and would have moved once I spotted the alto section but the sopranos were seriously outnumbered so I stayed where I was and “helped” them. They probably wish I would have moved.

We had lunch and then the performances started. There were 45-minute sets under a shelter (equipped with hard benches — we were glad of the folding chairs) with 15-minute sets outside by lesser-known bands to fill in the gaps. We only stayed until about 5 but there was a tremendous variety of music — Cajun, Mexican, Celtic, all sorts of takes on traditional, bluegrass, and old-timey music, and one band which categorizes itself as “alt-folk-progressive”.

It was a lot of fun and completely different (I don’t get out much). Usually on Saturdays I go to a yoga class then rush back and fill orders before the post office closes and then it’s three o’clock and I’m kind of going, wow, where did the day go? This was a wonderful change.

Online Needlework Show
Friday, October 2nd, 2009

I just forced myself to finish proof-reading my page for the online Needlework Show.  I feel like I have checked and checked so when I get that email saying “here it is, check one last time” it’s very hard to fire up for checking AGAIN.  But I found a couple of errors, so it was good that I checked.  I don’t have this kind of issue with proof-reading other things.  I don’t know what it is about this. But it’s great to be DONE, two whole days ahead of the deadline.

I’m trying something new for this show: introducing a new pattern at the show.  Not featuring a pattern that was just added to the site, but a pattern that is not on the site yet at all.  It’s a nifty vintage Christmas pattern which I like a lot.  I’m not going to tell you what it is — you’ll have to visit the show to see it. (It will be added to Scarlet Quince after the show.)

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