Friday, May 3, 2024

Five on Friday

 Some highlights from my trip to the States from February 12th thru March 12th.

1.  First stop was Brooklyn, NY where I spent a couple of days with my youngest son and even got to see some snow.  Because of the storm (that actually wasn't as bad as predicted) my flight was delayed and JetBlue changed my airport, but it all turned out fine without too much of a delay.

2.  Grateful for my friend. Angela, who is my stopover spot when I arrive to New Orleans.  She and I worked together at a law firm in downtown New Orleans in the early 90's.  I always rent a car from the airport there and then drive to Mississippi where my mom is.  After the last time I was there (2 years ago when my mom had wrist surgery) Angela had moved to California and I was so sad to know that she would no longer be in New Orleans ... but hallelujah, she moved back just one week before I arrived.  I always stay with her before and/or after a flight depending on the timing.

  3.  My mom was released from the nursing home on February 15th and my brother and I picked her up late that morning.  Her first request after 3 months of institutional food was to go out for lunch so we went to a place called Petra (owned by a Jordanian guy)  -- Middle Eastern food and Arabic music, so I felt right at home.

4.  My eldest son flew in from Denver to spend time with us.  Unfortunately the weather was very cold, windy and rainy while he was there but we still managed to get out and about.  He's not one to do much sitting, but unfortunately, because my mom is reliant on a walker and was still unsteady on her feet at that time, she wasn't able to get out much.

5.  However, she did manage to get down the stairs (and back up again) for my 58th birthday on the 26th of February -- we went out for Japanese food and then had cupcakes back at home.

Life is not measured by time. It is measured by moments.
(Armin Houman)

Happy Friday.

Thursday, May 2, 2024

Back in Time

My last post (aside from yesterday's) was on September 22, 2023.  And in order to get us to today, we must go back in time.

On September 26th, we traveled to Al Quds (Jerusalem) for a family wedding and returned home on Saturday, October 1st.  Unless you've been living in a bubble or under a rock, then I am sure the date of October 7th has been seared into your subconscious.  For those who don't know or who may have forgotten, my husband is Palestinian and has many family members in Jerusalem and also in different parts of Jordan.  My focus has been on witnessing, listening and learning and, of course, being thoroughly disgusted with governments and politicians and all their lies and propaganda, along with being heartbroken at the devastation, loss and death that is happening in Gaza.  

On November 16th, my mom walked one block from her apartment to a convenience store for snacks and on the way back, she was hit by a truck, while she was in the pedestrian crossing and was using a cane for balance.  The driver said he didn't see her as he was turning.  Her left ankle was crushed and the tibia broke through the skin.  She required several surgeries and was in the hospital for 2 weeks and then in a nursing home for 2-1/2 months.  I knew that she would need me most when she was released so waited until February to travel to the States.

When I went to clean her apartment on February 14th, the day before she would be going home, I noticed the calendar on the wall was testament to the time she had been away.

On January 19, 2024 my dad died.  He had not spoken to me since 2005 so I already felt like he was gone and didn't feel a great sense of loss.  But as his daughter, and because of Louisiana law, my brother and I had to sign papers agreeing to his cremation and in dealing with that long distance, I did have a little mini breakdown.

A week later, a very good friend died.  In fact, he and his wife (and another friend) were the ones who accompanied us on our first family trip to Jerusalem in 2003.

That brings us to February, a trip to Dubai for business.  Then a month in the States to take care of my mom and see my sons.  I returned to Kuwait on March 13th which was the start of Ramadan and then the Eid holiday was in mid-April.  My focus remains on events in Palestine but I'm still walking and taking pictures; just not sharing them anywhere, so figured it was time to come back to my blog.

I'd like to say thank you to those who have checked in on me over these many months.  I appreciate it and will stop by your corner of the world very soon.

Peace and blessings.

Wednesday, May 1, 2024

The First of May

 Growing up I don't think I ever really heard much about this particular day, May Day.  It has pagan origins as do many of the holidays that we observe and acknowledge.  Over the centuries, the how and why wind up being co-opted or sanitized and often we celebrate certain occasions because it's what our family or community does without really knowing the significance or history.  But, the truth is, everything has a reason for beginning and May Day has many backstories.

Beltane is the Gaelic May Day Festival that celebrates the midpoint between spring and summer (while Samhain, or Halloween, is the crossquarter between autumn and winter).  One represents rebirth, and one represents death -- which could also be thought of as light and dark, growth and rest.  The yin and yang of life.The innocence of dancing around a maypole (though that has a checkered past according to one article I read) and May Basket Day that used to be a thing in the late 1800's and early 1900's when handmade baskets of flowers or treats were hung on doors at dusk.  (Puritans discouraged the maypole dances so perhaps that's how the tradition of baskets came about.)On May 1, 1886, an uprising of workers in the United States demanded shorter work days and better working conditions.  Peaceful protests after a few days turned into the Haymarket Riots that resulted in repression across the country and the wrongful labeling of 8 men as anarchists, 7 of which were sentenced to death.  4 died by hanging, one committed suicide and 3 others were pardoned after 6 years.  Ironically, May Day was established to honor the Haymarket Martyrs by European countries with socialist or communist influences, while the United States, the very place where the protests started, decided to choose the first Monday in September as its May Day and called it Labor Day.

This May Day, we  honor the workers and are reminded that significant societal and systemic change often occurs because of unity through protests, demonstrations and strikes.

And although the distress call often used by aviators and mariners of "mayday, mayday" has nothing to do with the first day of May, I think it is very relevant in these distressing times.May we always seek to shine a light on injustice and speak truth to power.

The ideals which have always shone before me and filled me with joy are goodness, beauty, and truth.
(Albert Einstein)

Friday, September 22, 2023

Creative Inspiration

As the title suggests, crafty inspiration is definitely what I need right about now since the most I've managed this past week is weaving in the ends on this granny square blanket.
My craft group is still meeting every other Saturday which is the only social activity I'm involved in these days.  September 12th was International Crochet Day so some of the crocheters of the group had a special meet-up for that.

We had a very nice view of the sunset from the coffee shop where we sat.
I made 19 colorful doilies to take along with me as gifts for everyone who showed up.
One craft friend secretly took two and later showed me that she had single crocheted them together and added a handle to store her prayer beads in.  A great idea -- but if I had done that, I would have had to create double the doilies.  I'm definitely keeping it in mind for future doily making.
As the weekend is approaching, Rosie wishes you a restful one.
Take care.

Thursday, September 21, 2023

Throwback Thursday: Seeds and Snow

 I always take lots of pictures when we travel and yet rarely do I share or post them properly.  Today when someone on Instagram posted a nature art spiral made from seed heads that had floated to the ground, I was reminded of our trip to Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan at the end of April/beginning of May 2022.  Spring was a fine time for our visit there as the weather was really pleasant for sitting outdoors and the city is very walkable for sightseeing.
At the oldest park in Bishkek, there were seed heads floating all around us on the first day of May, 2022. They were literally piling up just like snow drifts.

And, as you can see, I scooped up a handful just as I did with the snow on a day hike we took in the Ala Archa National Park.
And speaking of snow, I found this little guy on a walk in my neighborhood. 
One of the nursery schools tossed a lot of supplies at the end of the school year and now that kids are back to school they seem to still be cleaning and clearing things out. 

Hope September is treating you well.
Take care.

Tuesday, August 1, 2023

Bird Watching and Stitching

 How is it August already?  All last week I was confused on what day of the week it was and woke up this morning thinking it was the last day of July.

Over the weekend, I did some simple little bird stitches that are found in the digital library of, documenting Palestinian Embroidery.
The backgrounds are cut out from a local museum calendar that showcased a collection of vintage rugs and prayer mats.
Birdwatching is something Miss Rosie and I have in common.  She often falls asleep on the table by the window when she is watching them which is exactly what she did when we came back from the vet yesterday.
Unfortunately, have been going there every day with her since Sunday.  Not sure what happened, but I noticed on Saturday that she had swelling on her right leg -- like a small ball on the side.  Vet says it could be some sort of strain from jumping.  I hope it wasn't caused by me because she has a very bad habit of sneaking up behind me and laying at my feet when I'm in the kitchen and then I nearly fall when I stumble over her.  The vet had pricked the swollen area with a needle to see what was inside and unfortunately, the next morning, Rosie decided to gnaw on it causing yet another problem and more medications required.  
She looks so pitiful but is doing okay and still playful and is happy as long as she is getting packet food and treats.  I just hope the wound heals soon.

Happy new month.

Tuesday, July 11, 2023


 In an effort to use what I've got, I'm finding cross-stitch patterns that fit frames I have on hand.
* * *
A recent finish is this Palestinian embroidery design from Gaza that symbolizes palm trees.
The pattern can be found in the digital library of Tirazain.
Palm tree photos taken on recent walks.
Have a terrific Tuesday!

Monday, July 10, 2023

Hello Again!

 Three months since my last post.
Certainly not intended, but when days and weeks and months slip by, not being here becomes a habit that seems hard to break.  However, last month, a couple of blog friends dropped by to check in and that was the nudge I needed to get back on here.

In my last post on April 13th, I shared my progress on the 27-week stitch-along I was taking part in -- we were at 15 weeks then -- and as of last week, the SAL was complete and I'm happy to say I finished it right on time.
Today the hosts for the SAL, Tangled Threads and Things, provided 5 border options from the very simple to a little more detailed -- but I'm thinking I'm done.  I like the simple one they shared, but if I get it framed, then there will be a mat around the design and there's already a lot of pattern -- so I think I'm gonna leave it as it is.  Does it really need a border?  

Lately I've been making a lot of doilies.
The stacked shell mini-doily to be exact.
A pattern that is easy to remember so can be worked on at craft meet-ups, while waiting, or while traveling.
Lots of people travel during the summer so our meet-up this past Saturday was quite small.

And finally for today, let me introduce you to Rosie.
She showed up in our stairwell around the very end of May or beginning of June.  Since Jingles died in July of 2020, my husband has insisted we do not need another cat but, he's actually the one who started letting her inside and she seems to have won him over with her sweetness because she is now officially a part of the family and is a very good girl.

See you again soon.
Take care!

Thursday, April 13, 2023

Life in Stitches

April's full moon was visible Thursday night even as dark clouds floated by. 

On Friday I completed the 5-week Ramadan stitch-along I was doing with The Tirazain Initiative.
And I've been keeping up with the 27-week long blackwork stitch-along hosted by Tangled Threads & Things.
Weeks 1-15 are done.
12 more weeks to go.
Patterns released every Monday.
When I walk, I see designs that resemble what I'm stitching.

Hope this finds you well.
Happy Thursday.

Tuesday, April 4, 2023

A Meandering Morning

Only from the heart you can touch the sky.
A nice morning walk through one of my favorite neighborhoods that's just a short drive away.  I don't think I've been there since our nephew was here at the end of October last year.  In fact, when I posted about his visit back then, I said I would share highlights of my favorite spots that I took him to, but never did -- so this is one of them.  The walking path goes nearly all the way around the neighborhood and there's lots of covered workout spots with exercise equipment that anyone can use.  Lots of nice houses, too, with gardens and flowers that I always enjoy seeing.

I didn't take many pictures when he and I walked that day, but I can tell you he was very glad to see a different side of Kuwait since he spent most of his time going to work with my husband and visiting customers.  
There's also a spot along the walking path where you can see all sorts of feathered friends.  I didn't go by there today but will check next time to see who is in residence.

Wishing you a terrific Tuesday.

Sunday, April 2, 2023

All the Blues

 Pay attention; see with the eyes of love.
(Magdala Marie Gilbert) 
I found this dead dragonfly as I crossed a pedestrian bridge the other day. Carried it to a group of flowers on the other side so that nature could do it’s thing rather than it blowing around on the concrete.
Had a beautiful walk along the corniche this morning.And instantly had someone twirling around my feet when I stopped to take my first photo.
This area by the sea has a colony of cats, many that have been TNR'd -- and unfortunately, when selfish, irresponsible people see an area where cats are being fed, they dump more and more house cats. 
Sadly, my walking meditation ended in a rather distressing way as I watched a guy run over a black cat.  Realizing what he'd done, he hesitated only a split second before driving off. He was a father whom I’d seen walking with his young daughter, but while I checked around my car for stray kitties (there was a black and white one sleeping under my car) he just didn’t consider his surroundings.  I couldn’t leave the poor thing in the middle of the street so moved it to a sandy spot along the fence line.
Today there is a memorial for my cousin who died in her sleep on March 22nd after a brief illness. She was 63 years old.  She was an animal lover who had taken in many stray cats and dogs over the years. She also crocheted and, in fact, it was her sister who taught me to crochet nearly 40 years ago. In lieu of flowers, the family has asked that donations be made to an animal shelter so I will be doing that in remembrance of her.
Sunday blessings.
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...