Sunday, July 27, 2008

The Good Lord Will Take Care of Us

This block is in memory of my father’s cousin, Amelie Dalier (82) and Amelie’s niece, Sandra Richard (58). They drowned together as the flood waters consumed the first floor apartment that they shared on Cleveland Avenue in Mid-City. In their obituary it states that despite urgings by family and friends to leave the city, they decided instead to stick it out as neither one owned a car so evacuation would be difficult.

Claire Dalier, Amelie’s sister-in-law recalled Amelie saying, “The good Lord is going to take care of us.”

Amelie’s words are the inspiration for this block. In thinking about the block, I wanted to illustrate Amelie and Sandra rising from the flood waters of New Orleans into heaven and ultimately into the arms of the good Lord whom, I am certain, is taking care of them for eternity.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Love, Grandma Betty

This block is in memory of my grandmother, Elizabeth Lay Eastwood MacConnell, a long time resident of the French Quarter who died while evacuated in Texas on September 29, 2005 exactly one month from Katrina’s landfall.

The main photograph of my grandma was taken by a photographer in 2005 at The Quarter Scene Restaurant where she ate breakfast daily. It really captures the essence of my grandmother. The smaller picture is one of the four generations (Grandma, Mom, myself and my daughter) that was published in the Times-Picayune shortly after my daughter’s birth in 2003. The excerpt is from a collection of letters written to me by my grandmother. It states, “It was nice to have Beth and Claire here for a visit-We enjoyed showing off 4 generations of girls at our favorite restaurant. We didn’t tell them-they figured it out by themselves-I guess there must be a resemblance between us.”

I used cat fabrics for both the front and back of the block as my grandmother was a “cat lady”. The beads are an old pair of glass Mardi Gras beads which remind me of the necklaces that my grandmother would wear regularly and they also represent her love of New Orleans.

One of the blessings of the evacuation (although, we didn’t see it as a blessing at the time ) was that my mother, my father, my husband, my daughter and myself were able to spend every day for a month together before Grandma got sick and died peacefully. My grandmother told my mother earlier that she dreamt that she would go to a small town and die there. Although she missed New Orleans terribly during the evacuation, small town Lampasas, TX reminded grandma in many ways of her small town childhood home, Owego, NY.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Brainy Ideas

So I'm thinking of doing a series of "brainy" quilts...mostly minis and ATCs using MRI images of the brain (my own brain of course).

I had surgery last year for a non-cancerous tumor and found out last week that I'll need a little radiation as it's growing a little...Bad tumor! BUT.... good radiation...cyberknife radiation that is supposed to be very specific to the tumor and has very few side-effects.

I am so fortunate that it's NOT cancerous and is very slow growing and I really have no symptoms. I am however surrounded by MRI images and brainy talk and of course my way to deal w/ all of this is to create and turn them into something fun and wonderful to me so if anyone has links to brain fabric or stamp images or brainy trinkets and feels like sharing the info, I'd appreciate it. Plus the MRI images are all black and white flim and digital images which is really appealing to me from an artistic standpoint there are so many cool posiblities ... dyeing, painting, etc. not to mention cutting them up and also altering them on the computer....

Pre-surgery last year I talked up the idea of having a post-surgery brain party(although I never did) and found all of this cool brain stuff on-line especially on etsy...SOOO if anyone has a really great brainy site on-line...I'd love to know about it!