Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Doing What I Can

“Don’t let what you can’t do stop you from what you can do.”
~ John Wooden

How are you my friends?

I'm doing okay. My left knee is still a bit sore and believe it or not my right knee started acting up too. But overall I am walking much better than a week ago. I've decided to use a cane now and then too just so I don't over stress my joints when I have to walk a bit further. I'm just so thankful that I can still move around and that there have been improvements. I guess I should have gone to the doctor but really what can they do for me besides give me painkillers? I will try to schedule an appointment for next week and get it looked at as well as deal with my blood sugar test results. I really did not have the energy this week to deal with the doctor, testing for sugars and leg and all of the things that come with I wait awhile.

Around the house, I've been contemplating how to move things around. It seems a never ending job around here. I'm making room for mom's medical lift chair and walker (with a seat and basket) to be delivered by my brother. He has had to go out of town and get these items as they have no storage room where mom lives and she doesn't use these mobility aids anymore. In fact she hasn't for the last two years. It turns out I might need these items myself and if I had to purchase these items (again) it would cost me quite a pretty penny.  So I've decided to keep them here at  my home in case I do need them.  I'm also returning the stove I bought a few weeks ago and getting the exact same model as a replacement. There was a minor flaw on the stove top but it was in a very noticeable place so I'm getting a replacement which will be delivered Thursday.

My creative juices are flowing but I'm not entirely up to making anything.  Instead I've been admiring a lot of handcraft on line.  In particular, I've been admiring the Boutis work of the French.  Boutis is a Proven├žal word meaning 'stuffing', describing how two layers of fabric are quilted together with stuffing sandwiched between sections of the design, creating a raised effect.

I've long admired Boutis and once I even asked a long distant relation to pick one up for me. She did in fact search for a quilt for me when she went to Paris, France.  However I was quite disappointed when I got it and found it had a tag on it stating "Made in India"!   I could have purchased a similar quilt here in town and in a more appropriate size (French beds are a bit narrower). Nonetheless I did appreciate all the effort my relative went through to search for and find me a quilt.  She also had to get her Parisien friends to visit the vendor from time to time as the quilt had to be ordered.  Then her friends brought it in their carry on luggage when they paid a visit to Canada.  That quilt really made the rounds!!.  I enjoyed my quilt for about 10-12 years but I gave it to the goodwill last year.  I don't plan on buying another one soon  But I would like to make a Boutis for myself one day.

Boutis Quilt Ideas

Photo Credit:  Satin Moon
Photo credit: J. McEwan's  Etsy shop
Photo credit: Japan Lovely Etsy Shop

I've got so many lovely projects to work on right now so boutis making won't be happening anytime soon. But it is so nice to dream.

Pendleton Blankets 

I've also been dreaming about this cream, gray and light blue Pendleton blanket.  Some day I might have one for my bedroom.

Photo of the blanket alone.

Blanket dressing the bed.
A throw blanket like the one above, in shades of cream, khaki and black, might work for my front room. It gets very chilly here from about November to about February.  A throw blanket is a must.

I love Pendleton blankets and own two already. They are quite expensive but I've noticed the prices have remained almost the same since I bought myself  one some 20+ years ago. As far as blankets go the price is actually no more expensive than other quilts and comforters and what's more the Pendleton blankets are great heirloom pieces. I use my Pendleton blanket in the bedroom but I'd like another for those extra cold days. I inherited another one from my mother but use it for decor rather than as a cover because of it's lighter overall colour.  Some of my long time readers might remember the one I purchased for my nephew's baby.

This week I've also  been enjoying reading my two books (see my last post if interested in the books) but it seems like I haven't done anything. I have in fact been dealing with a lot of little things related to the university procedures, my medical appointments, various business related to my condo and follow up matters concerning my new appliances.  Also this week I need to get some grooming done.  Earlier this week, I put some henna in my hair and my nails are really overdue for a nail treatment so I have an appointment tomorrow. I'm so pleased I could get in as I only just called today. Usually the nail technician is so busy I can't get in when I want. God is with me on this.  You might be laughing about now.  But I really rely on my pedicures to treat an on-going ingrown nail problem.   I've noticed that after 10 months of going to this young woman and having her do my pedicures, my ingrown problem has improved a lot. This means I have far less pain than I used to have when she does my nails. Halleluia!!! You would not believe just how painful it has been every time I go and get my nails done. Most people equate getting nails done with a time of relaxing and pampering.  But trust me, it hurts a lot when the nails are embedded in your skin and the technician has to do minor surgery without anesthetic.  True, with the price of such things, it is a luxury though and I feel very blessed to be able to get this done on a regular basis as part of my health regime. Diabetics needs to look after their feet.

Well I've rambled long and I want to get the dinner made and more reading done. I hope you all have a lovely rest of your week. 


Susan said...

Hello Joyful.....Well I think pedicures are wonderful. Wish I could go often but I cannot. I'm due, though. I LOVE fire engine red polish.

I loved that white quilt. Very pretty embossing, indeed.

Hope the rest of your week is good, too.

I find swimming regularly keeps my joints mobile. When I don't swim, I can tell the difference. Luckily, I'm only 10 minutes away from an indoor pool that charges $25 a month for use and I could feasibly go 6 days but I usually only make it two or three. Still, it's great.


Beth Zimmerman said...

My pedicures and acrylic nails were one of my first contributions to our ongoing budget cuts. I miss them although, at my weight, I didn't always find it to be such a wonderful experience. I will probably renew the pedicures when my feet are back out of hibernation.

Those quilts and blankets are gorgeous!

Hope your knees feel better soon. Mine are not fans of this cold winter weather!

Joyful said...

Hi Susan, learning to swim is on my 'to do' list but I can only take lessons sporadically and when the weather is better. Otherwise it is too cold for swimming. I would love to spend more time in the pool and hot tub. By the way you have an excellent bargain where you live. I'm afraid I pay much more than that even if I go only once a week.

Joyful said...

I understand Beth. It is hard to justify manis and pedis when one is on a very tight budget. I don't understand your weight comment though other than maybe it made it more difficult to hold your legs in position. It does take some muscles that we don't often use. I haven't cut out my mani-pedis because they make me feel better and my feet really need the treatment. I cut out my hair appointments and anywhere else I can cut first. If my toenails get back to normal I could get by with fewer pedicures. I've ordered an infrared pad for my knees. I hope it helps.

OneStonedCrow said...

I hope you get to make some Boutis someday Penny ... looks very interesting ...

sorry to hear about your knees ... it must be very difficult for an active person ... I hope that a cure or relief is found ...

Joyful said...

Yes, Graham it would be so awesome if I could make a Boutis some day. I don't want to start with a small item like a baby bib or ornament, lol. I want to make something I can put over a table or a bed. Even if I made only one that would be okay. I love the challenge (not overwhelming one, lol) of making something with my hands.

Yes, my knees are a problem far sooner than they should be. I was worried about it as it runs in the family. I still have hope though. The pad I ordered should help a lot. At least I hear good things about infrared sauna and I may get one of those some day. For now, I'll start with the pad. I'm also taking various kinds of herbal and other such medicines. I don't pop any pain pills. At least not yet....plenty of time for that later if needed and I'm hoping I don't need it.

I hope you are doing well my friend.

Dorothy said...

I hope you're feeling better soon and all your sorting around the house gets done as you'd like it.
I'd never seen boutis quilts before. They really are exquisite. Thanks for sharing... I hope to see more of them again.
I have a genuine Amish quilt on my bed. It's one of my treasures. I think quilts have that about them. An endearing charm.
Rest up, and enjoy the online browsing.
Dotti :)

Carole M. said...

hope all improves for your knee problems soon. Relating to the boutis quilts; I'd not heard that word before but it appears much like trapunto. Are they one and the same?

Joyful said...

Thank you for visiting Dotti. It's great that you have an Amish quilt. I'm glad too that you think of it as a treasure. I happen to love hand made things, esp. quilts of all kinds. Enjoy your trip. Blessings. x

Joyful said...

Thank you for your well wishes Carole. I do not know much about trapunto. At first glance they appear to be quite similar though I have seen videos of trapunto which show a very different technique than traditional boutis making. I've also seen contemporary video that show virtually the same technique as boutis. Perhaps some folks have mixed up these two quilt techniques as boutis comes from France and trapunto from Italy. A lot of the people using the techniques come from neither of these countries so I'm sure the techniques for both styles of quilt-making have evolved.

In traditional boutis making, the quilter stitches two similar lengths of fabric together and creates a design on the back side. They hand stitch around the designs and then "stuff" the design using cotton or silk threads. This is a labour intensive process and there is no "batting" (middle layer) as such.

Diane said...

Just been catching up with all the posts I have missed, somehow time does not seem to be on my side this year. Love all the quilts. I just hate it when you buy something from a country thinking that it is special and then you find made in India or China on it. It happens too easily nowadays you have to look hard to find out where it was made sometimes!

Sorry about your knees, I hope the Dr comes up with some answers for you, nothing worse than not being able to get around without pain. Take car and look after yourself. Diane

R's Rue said...

Love that quote!
Thanks for sharing!
Come say hi!

Anonymous said...

I didn't know you are having trouble with your knees. Hoping you get better soon.
Love the quote too.
Take care of yourself.
I love handmade quilts...

Rosemary said...

Sometimes it feels like life is a mountain that gets taller the more we climb :) Hope you get a chance to rest, recover and rejoice!

Denise said...

Praying, and loving you.

momto8 said...

the blankets are just gorgeous!! My daughter featured Amish quilts for her senior project in college..
hope you feel better...and get some relief!
John Wooden quotes abound in this house...

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