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Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Ash Wednesday

When I was growing up in Iceland this was one of my favorite times of year. Starting with Bolludagur or Cream Puff Day, which was this Monday. We start the day by waking our parents and any other adults in the house, by banging on their duvet with a long stick, and counting the number of blows we could get, each blow meant another Cream Puff for us. This stick was made by us days before, out of a long piece of wood and decorated with strips of crepe paper in multitude of colors.
Sprengjdagur or Eat until you explode day, was Tuesday. That day the menu consisted Salt Kjot and Baunir, a stew made out of salted lamb, yellow peas, potatoes, turnips, and in my family Sod Kokur a big dumpling like cakes made from four and water. I, as a child, loved this meal and still do.......it is on my wish list when I go to Iceland for a visit, my Uncle Eirik always makes it for me.
Then came my all time favorite day Oskudagur or Ash Wednesday. There are new customs that have evolved over the years. When I was growing up, it was the day we...the girls....tried to hang a bag filled with ashes on every male we could find. Days before we made our bags out of scraps of fabric that we had been collecting all year long. The bags were a simple construction that we hand stitched then added a long string with a bent straight pin on the end. They told the story of the what fabrics had been used for each member of the family, much like a quilt would.
My Mother has a cousin who was a seamstress and made all our dresses, I would collect the scraps of fabric left over. We made our bags in our Sewing Club, where we talked about who was going to get each bag and how we were going to hang it on their back. The boys we had a crush on got the most beautiful bags. Planing was important as the men made it hard for us to hang bags on them. They would wear Rain Slickers or Trench Coats that were impossible to hang a bag on, it was important to get the men in our household before they could put their coat on.
One of the most memorable Ash Wednesdays for me, was when there was a man who visited the Book Store, where my Mother was working. He was from a foreign country and was oblivious to the fact that on the back of his Wool Coat were numerous bags. He smiled on each child as they were hovering around him, laughing, pointing, and slapping each other on the back, at this point the boys had joined us in the fun. No doubt he was thinking how happy and friendly the children of Iceland were. By the time he left the Book Store he must have had over thirty bags on his back. As an adult, I imagine his surprise as he took of his coat back at his hotel, to discover these colorful little bags filled with ashes. I know I would have been delighted to make such a discovery.

First published March 2006.


Posted by Mo'a :: 9:45 AM :: 20 Art Connoiseurs

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Thursday, February 15, 2007

Felted Bag

It was three years ago that I took a knitting class at a local yarn shop. My project was to knit a bag to be felted. I think I had a fear of felting. A couple of weeks ago I finally felted the bag and then I started embellishing.

Here is the before.

Here is the after.

I had an extra head drawn on velvet. I decided to paint it to go with all the embellishments, that I was adding to the bag.


Posted by Mo'a :: 5:42 PM :: 23 Art Connoiseurs

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Thursday, February 08, 2007

A Meeting At Starbucks and Creation

Nessa of The Chrysalis Stage and I met at Strabucks, last Saturday. Nessa and I met through Waking Ambrose, she is the first blogger I have met in person. Well that is not entirely true, I have friends who have become bloggers, but that is another story.
Anyway, Nessa and I talked for two hours. I have a feeling that the reason we could talk so easily with each other is that we have some knowledge of each others life, through our blogs.
She is a lovely and beautiful person and would be easy to talk with, under any circumstances.
We found that we had a lot of things in common. One was that we both like to create and to write. Although she is a more serious writer than I am and her spelling and grammar is far superior to mine. On top of that she had her post, about this meeting, written by Sunday and here it is Thursday and I am just now writing my post. I have an excuse....sinus headache and I am sticking to it :)
It was a fun meeting and I am sure we will get together again, I look forward to that.
I am also looking forward to meeting other bloggers that I have come to know through their blogs. Spring will be here soon and I am sure some people from Connecticut and New York will be more inclined to travel :) Now I must get back to the studio to clean and fix it up.....I will be expecting company soon.

Please visit me also, on To Live a Creative Life, there is a new post.

Above Photo: "Creation" Wooden box 7 1/2 by 5 1/2, figure 3 inches, Polymer clay and paper. By Mo'a

Posted by Mo'a :: 3:08 PM :: 15 Art Connoiseurs

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Friday, February 02, 2007

The Adirondacks And A Tiny World

About fifteen years ago, when we lived in Saratoga Springs, NY, we used to like to go into the Adirondacks. We were charmed by the area, it’s natural beauty and the Adirondack Great Camps. We had the pleasure of staying in a couple of the camps over weekends. See here and
here, check out their movie. And here is the site for the Adirondack Museum in Blue Mountain Lake, NY.
We also fell in love with the Adirondack furniture styles, so much that we have a room in our home furnished in the Adirondack style blended with Navaho rugs, American Indian pottery and a few Icelandic treasures thrown into the mix.
I also found myself being attracted to diminutive furniture in the Adirondack style and collected a few pieces, that have survived three moves and a kitten......that in itself is miraculous.
Recently I was reading a blog called Beautiful Art, where I saw photos of tiny twig furniture that the Debbie makes. Her furniture was featured in Victoria Magazine in their February 1991 issue.
I had not unpacked my own twig furniture, that I had put away in the first place, because Brie, when she was a kitten, used to love to go and bat these little treasures about.....which did not sit well with me, as you can well imagine.
A week ago I made a little environment for my furniture. At the same time a little Tree Spirit by Rachael DiRenna arrived in the mail and she immediately flew into the middle of the little place, that is now fully furnished and lives on top of the piano in our family room. The little Tree Spirit kneels next to it, enchanted by and watches over this little world.


Posted by Mo'a :: 4:04 PM :: 14 Art Connoiseurs

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Doll Maker and Artiste Extraordinaire

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