Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Turning Over a New Leaf

The page has turned. And here I am with a whole new year ahead.

I love January. It is my absolute favorite stitching month...it's too cold for much outdoor activity...the calendar is relatively clear...and there blossoms forth a lot of creativity from needle and fabric and thread.


We went away for the New Year's holiday with our family but I had plenty of time to reflect and plan and dream. And I got good use of my new journal and its cover. The moon on New Year's eve was not visible but I sensed its presence. And I got to work.

I have three bead journal pieces to finish from last year and a number of other commitments to complete in January. So, for me, January is a catch-up month -- I think you'll see lots of beading this month if that's your fancy -- so I guess it's a bit of an "Old Leaf" month...

As for the New Leaf...Allow me to introduce this one made by my dear BNF (Blogging Needle Friend) Pam T. Pam has spent the last year battling a cancer recurrence and I have learned and grown a tremendous amount through witnessing her honesty, her spirit and her courage. She and I have become friends and when I needed a bead pattern for a leaf -- she pointed me to this one...and sent me one of her own. (The pattern is in Bead & Button magazine June 2005 -- you can purchase the .pdf for $3.95 here.)


And so I've spent the past few days trying out Pam T's leaves...I tried different sizes and colors but I still like hers the best. And my eye was continually drawn to her matte olive green leaf with the pink metallic charlottes for veins...She used these same leaves in her July bead journal piece titled Tree of Life pictured below --


It's one of my favorites...that pink tulle swirl represents all of her friends supporting her and willing her to live and grow...You can see all of Pam's bead journals here...they are autobiographical and quite moving to me.

So...inspired by Pam's new leaf on life...I started my own leaf...and one leaf grew to many.


And I had time to reflect on the next phase of my life...the next 19 years...until that next Blue Year's Eve in 2028.

And Pam was with me in her leaf. Reminding me that time is precious...that the present moment shouldn't be wasted...and ultimately, that all we can do is really be alive and feel every moment...even the ones that aren't that great. Because all those moments ultimately write the story on our soul...and that makes each normal day...each habitual routine...more significant. What can I make of a "normal" day of cooking, cleaning, driving and stitching? And have I made a difference?


OK. Told you I've been thinking. Oh, and making leaves...

And planning to be productive and finish those bead journals soon. They're already completed in my head...just need to get the beads on the fabric...

I'm looking forward to all of those hours with my needle and thread.


And before I go...there's one more thing I have to tell you about Pam. She makes BEAUTIFUL beadwork.

As if it weren't enough to send me her Leaf on Life...

She sent me a whole bouquet of them with berries and ribbons and leaves...

A beaded barrette she had made to wear in her own hair but no longer could since all her hair had fallen out because of the chemotherapy. And now I wear it and I remember Pam and her beauty and her strength...and hers becomes mine.


Well, Pam's hair is growing back and I believe there is a new barrette in her future...

And Pam, I'll have to come up with something extra special for your new locks...because I'm so glad you're still here to read this...we'll have to dream up something magnificent!

Happy New Year!

P.S. Thank you to Bobbi for taking the barrette picture yesterday. I was having trouble taking pictures of the back of my head...

19 comments:

SHELL'S SHED said...

Inspiring, uplifting and a joy to read and look at. Thank you (and also Pam) xx Shell

méri said...

Pam's barrete is a real beauty.
I've just read her words saying the tests were ok.
Wishing you and Pam a very good year 2010

Sheila said...

*Sniffle*. The leaves and the barrette are lovely.

Carol said...

The barette is absolutely stunning. Your leaves are great. Love your choice of colors, as well as Pam's.

As I get older, I wonder what my legacy will be. Will I be remembered more than a short time after I have left...what will I be remembered for...some bad I am sure...but of later years some very good. I want to be remembered for more that what I materially created.

Pam has had a profound effect on me also. She just may be one of the most courageous people I have met. We are lucky to have all known each other, don't you think...

Cheers to the New Year and a new LEAF on life!!

x, Carol

Dolores said...

What a wonderful post. Friends - they make the world go 'round. Love those leaves and the barette.

Gerry Krueger said...

What a great post... Friends are to be cherished while we have them. I grieve for years when dear ones even move away...

I'm trying to find that issue at my library. They don't have the issue but as soom as they open I'll call and see if they have it on the computer.

Gerry K.

Vicki W said...

Another beautifully inspiring post!

Dees said...

What a beautifull tribute to Pam. She is an admirable woman and though I have only met her online, have grown to love her! You are absolutely right that it is important to remember the things that do matter.
Have a wonderfull 2010!

Loralynn said...

What a lovely inspiring post. Your pictures are gorgeous as is your friendship with Pam.

Ingrid Mida said...

I love the idea of turning over a new leaf in the new year. Your posts are always uplifting and fill me with inspiration. Best wishes to both you and Pam.

Allison Ann Aller said...

I think your posts could be collected into a book...this was again so thoughtful and lovely.

The barrete and its maker are amazing! And so are your leaves too, draped over that dictionary (brilliant staging yet again.)

A happy, blessed, productive, and wild New Year awaits you, I have no doubt...so glad we get to be there with you.

Salley Mavor said...

What a beautiful story about the leaves and the moon. And the beaded leaves are remarkable! Thanks so much for your comment on my blog about my self-portrait. It feels good to share something personal and have people relate to it.

Robin said...

I hope Pam's hair is growing back all thick and lush like yours so that she can wear barrettes again. Hers that she gave to you is so lovely... makes me want to buy a wig (as mine is too fine and thin to hold a barrette, especially with the weight of beads)! LOL... New leaves, a metaphor for life at its best! Bravo, dear friend!

Stella Pesci said...

Beautiful beadwork, Susan...the leaves are gorgeous! The barrette is a masterpiece...may Pam have a full recovery and healthy, long life. What an inspiration she is, thanks for sharing her story and work with us. I love all your new projects...have a wonderful new year!
Stella xxx

Wanda said...

The leaves are beautiful as is the barrette. I don't know Pam personally but, through you, I know she is just as beautiful and full of just as much love and life as you are. Thank you for sharing your reflections, once again, with all of us. Although I usually feel like you are talking just to me!

FredaB said...

I am so glad that your friend received good news on her cancer. I wish a long and happy life for her. Anyone who has gone thru this terrible disease deserves the best from there on.

Your leaves are gorgeous. Is it the peyote stitch? Does the download give you directions for all the leaves you made?

Hugs

FredaB

pam T said...

OOOO Susan!!! you are a WONDER. Thank you so much for these heartfelt words! I am honored and humbled. I feel very strongly that I made it through the last year MOSTLY because of my wonderful cyber friends and all the love and support I received. Thank you to YOU and ALL of you, for helping me more than you could ever know. Thank you again Susan, for such a wonderful post. I'm still here, and still beading, though woefully lazy, but am going to get going on my BJP post haste!

Elizabeth said...

Wonderful Post Susan!! I am taking on the Latest BJP and I am about to start my first !!! Your leaves are magnificenta nd your story of Pam is so touching and I am off to visit her right now!!!In case you don't know, your blog is one of my very favorites!!! hugs!
Elizabeth

Chris said...

What a beautiful gift! She is so talented. Here is to Pam's health and many more years together!

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