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Sorry and Thank you!

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Thank you to everyone to has left such lovely comments the last several weeks – comments that I have failed to respond to.

I apologize for not replying to them personally.  I have no excuse.  I genuinely appreciate and value the time taken to read my blog.  When you make a comment, it’s like frosting on the cupcake!  Better than that really…..it’s like SPRINKLES on a chocolate cupcake.  No…..better than THAT even…..it’s like a piece of New York baked cheesecake with homemade hot fudge sauce drizzled over the top.  And a ripe juicy strawberry sitting next to it.  THAT’s how good it feels to get comments.

Please know I appreciate your comments and will strive to be better at acknowledging them in the future.

Cracked – finished

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The Back

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Pema Chodron thoughts

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Pema Chodron is another of my most favourite Buddhist writers and speakers.  I have at least 6 of her talks and many of her books.  I have said for a long time now that it is not safe to be a black man in the USA.  This is what Pema has to say about the current situation.
“It has finally really gotten through to me how dangerous it is to be black in America, especially for black men. It feels like Emmett Till all over again. Even in the case of Trayvon Martin, who was killed by a private citizen, I wonder ‘How could it be that George Zimmerman was not convicted of any crime?’ As this systemic oppression is seen over and over again in full sight with no justice, it is not surprising that there will be violent reactions such as the tragic shooting of 12 innocent police in Dallas.

If parents of black children have to teach them how to behave with police so they won’t get killed, there is something wrong with this picture. This situation is deeply disturbing to most Americans, including most police officers.

In the US, racial injustice has been going on since the days of slavery. But what is different now, is that the videos of the murders are there for all to see, and white people can no longer ignore what is going on. I am one of them. I don’t know what the solutions are. In fact, anything I would come up with I am already hearing from Black Lives Matter, Dallas Police Chief David Brown, and others, but there has got to be a way for us to move toward justice for all these victims of endemic racism.

The root problem is fear and hatred and how this escalates, which is where my kind of teachings could be useful. I am committed to continue to help where I can.”
~Pema Chödrön

David Michie blog post

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I really like David Michie’s writing.  I think I have all his books on meditation AND his fiction books about The Cat.  Disclaimer:  I don’t have a particular fondness for cats.

Whether you are into meditation or not – I think his latest blog post should resonate with everyone.  Here’s the link.  The topic?  Finding it hard to let go of past hurts?  A mindful perspective.

Here is the first paragraph just to entice you….”Every one of us will experience hurt, betrayal and disappointment.  What matters is how we deal with these feelings.  As the Dalai Lama says, ‘Pain is inevitable.  Suffering is optional.’  What he means is that although it’s impossible to avoid upsetting experiences, we do have a say about whether negative events or people continue to affect us.”

I’ve been practicing ‘letting go’ for quite awhile now.  And, I’m getting better at it.  The freedom that I feel from letting go, especially of PEOPLE STUFF, is amazing.  It takes conscious effort to not get caught up in thoughts and issues that can run me into circles – but it is certainly worth it.

I do seated silent mindfulness meditation most days for about 30 minutes.  I didn’t start with 30 minutes though.  I started with 5 minutes and it was TORTURE.  But, each day or two, I added a minute and before I knew it – 30 minutes.  It’s one of my most favourite times of the day.

I also do Yoga Nidra, which is a guided meditation, most days.  I started doing Yoga Nidra about 5 years ago after learning it in a yoga class (thanks Diane!).  It’s conscious relaxation of body parts.  Another name for it is ‘Yogic Sleep’.  There has been great success using it with veterans (and others) with PTSD.

Meditation keeps me grounded.  Keeps me sane.  Keeps me from lashing out at people.  Keeps me from smacking people over the head.

I think I’ll keep meditating.

Cracked

I’ve been enjoying appliqué lately.  I recently bought a book on appliqué called The Quilter’s Appliqué Workshop by Kevin Kosbab that covers most varieties of appliqué.

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In the book, he has a quilt called Eccentric Concentrics which features reverse appliqué.  Here is a picture of his quilt:

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Based upon his quilt, I made this.

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It’s five layers of fabric.  I did reverse appliqué and back basting (thanks to a Ravelry friend who teaches back basting).  Each layer is cut away after the appliqué is finished so you end up with one layer of fabric.

Here is a slide show of the basic process.  Now I need to decide how to quilt it.  Probably by machine.  The name?  It sorta resembles cracked eggs to me.  Our local show has a theme of “poultry” for the 2017 show so I’m thinking it might fit the theme.

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