Zoom Lens, Quilts, And Kids

 When I was little I got to lay on my Mom’s bed if I was sick. If I was too sick for school I was too sick to play so laid there, nothing else to do but study her quilt. The small pieces, of drab flower printed fabric, were surrounded by boring white and ugly, cooked egg yolk, yellow.

Yesterday John, Brian (a friend), and I photographed thirty of my quilts, again. We discovered a zoom lens was necessary or the main pattern would be clear but the details of each print fabric would be a smear. Many of my quilts have backs, telling a different story but retaining the same theme as their fronts. Those shown below are backs and as a result each has to be flipped and photoed again.

Close to the fifth hour, in the hard sun, Brian and I were lifting a heavy big one to the two ladders holding a fabric wrapped board. We pinned the Dragon Quilt to it and Brian said,”If you made smaller quilts, they wouldn’t be so heavy!” I complained, “If I didn’t make such nice quilts we wouldn’t be photographing them.”

It’s exciting for me to see these pieces from a distance because they’re so big that while I’m hand sewing them I can’t see the color balance and pattern, I know it’s there but I can’t see it. I think they would entertain a child although I’ve grown old enough to appreciate the soft colors in my Mom’s old quilt.  nancymauerman.com

Quilts Of 3




Is Mediocrity Taunting You From Your Shelves?

In the year 1978 my father insisted that everything that could be invented had already been invented. Least you think he was a poorly educated man let me say he had a PhD. in electrical engineering and even after his retirement, foreign countries hired him and transported he and Mom as often he would allow. My Mom had a nonstop wild imagination and disagreed about all things having been invented. Don, my brother, had both my father’s brilliance and Mom’s inventive streak but he died too young.
For the last thirty years I’ve asked teens what they would love to grow up to be if they had any skills and every mental gift. Always the shocking answer is something like, “OH I don’t know, just an accountant or manager; someone who makes lots of money.”
“No,” I’d say hoping to whet their dream appetites, “Let’s say you already had the education and skills to dance a new dance never seen before, invent a car fueled by water that levitated and turned to pink Jell-O if hit by another one. “Or,” I said, “let’s say you could create a force field of heat or cooling to surround a person, pet, or plant, eliminating the need for home heating. But “No, they all said just wanna be accountants.
Here’s a call out to all parents, don’t be satisfied with mediocre kid’s books! Stretch young minds. I was encouraged to read the classics to children and found at three and six, my son and daughter understood the characterization, plots of Shakespeare, even as I butchered the reading of it while they ate meals. I lack a good vocabulary so I often looked words up then I explained them to my kids. This experience has inspired my writing. Little kids should have the permanent influence of great and advanced books as well as Pixar movies that are sophisticated in terms of character, plot, subplot, etc.  nancymauerman.com

Meteor Flies in Open Window

Malachi says pay tithing, “and prove me now herewith, saith the Lord of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it.”
In my ladies group someone said those windows don’t just help financially but angels will protect and help you too.
John’s response was, “The windows sometimes let things in that aren’t pleasant or comfortable. Sometimes unpleasant circumstances line you up for something you’ll need later. Open your window and a meteor might fly in!”nancymauerman.com

Seven’s the Lucky Number

A friend, Brian, and I were talking about older cultures whose boys were trained in all manly things by their uncles. Brian said he’d seen instances were children wouldn’t learn from parents or parents didn’t teacher their kids well..
When I taught teens, regularly, I often had parents tell me they’d taught their kids a certain principle over and over; nothing took. I taught that same thing from the manual once and their kids came home VERY excited to have heard and understood something NEW! I told parents I thought it took hearing a thing seven times before a new idea be comprehended. They’d already done all the work.
Brian said something similar happens in his family, but it’s his wife who can hear an idea, from him, over and over, rejecting it every time, then talk to her Mother, who suggested the thing ONCE and she was excited and ready to go!
Of course the answer hit us both at the same time. A formula!
Brian is to count his suggestions and after the sixth calls his mom- in-law!
I wonder how many times someone has suggested this formula to Brian and I?nancymauerman.com

You’re Free To Do As You’re Told

I’m a Morman (Latter Day saint) who follows Buddha, has a favorite Catholic Saint (1136 Hildegard von Bingen) and I claim a Rabbi. Rabbi Lapin taught me if we would do just one thing; just one, all the following wonderful things would be the result:
Prosperity of all most all of us would rise
Crime would fall, radically
Prisons would not be crowded
Kids would finish high school
Kids would have families
Neighbors would help neighbor
More people would want to work
Government would become small
Taxes fall
And my beloved President would have written a book on how great marriage is rather than what a jerk he was.
Marriage is the key. I don’t believe in force or legislating good behavior but I can think of a million ways to encourage, promote and celebrate marriage. Many think the great popularity of the Twilight Saga is its plot’s strong sharp pointing toward marriage.
God made the universe using eternal rules (I think of them as physics). Rule 1: freedom to choose. Several other rules follow, each explaining a cause and effect formula. Choose to follow= joy. Choose not to follow=sorrow. Rabbi Lapin explained this cause and effect; no marriage= sad behavior= anarchy= it’s impossible to have a government.

I drew the pictures below except the yellow painting of Hieldegard. I made the picture of Christ looking to us to be more like children. The cricket reminds me of Buddha and the last painting to the far right is of Rabbi Lapin.nancymauerman.com
Jesus Grasshopper Hildegard Lapin

Define Art: What Is Creation?

As an artist I make a word sound in my mouth or a mark on paper to represent a tree. To say the word ‘tree’ does not cause one to grow in the air before me. To squiggle charcoal on a page does not cause a tree to grow from the paper, I’m simply using a sound or lines to represents a tree.
Evidently God can talk and make something take form; come into existence. Beethoven took an orchestra and MADE something. He didn’t represent Napoleon’s voice with a sound; he didn’t use a combination of horns and strings to sound exactly like a man talking, or drums to sound exactly like Napoleon walking. He dedicated a music to the man but Beethoven CREATED A THING: music.
We have a tendency to say ‘real art’ has to look exactly like the apple; exactly! But we like Beethoven can create a thing. It might also have an apple as an idea to spring from but the power of the piece tells a story to our inner being, like a Ludwig’s Fifth Symphony.nancymauerman.com

Flamenco In Olive Room

The Joy Of Light Sticks

You could argue the difference between ‘happy’ and ‘joy’ is semantical but I say both are qualities we can practice. Like learning to play a piano we can gain greater proficiency. Look into the faces of those who have listened to their mother’s, “Share with your brother.” as a personal challenge, not as a committee project. These people seem to glow from the inside out, as though they consumed glow sticks daily after every meal.
As they broaden the idea of ‘brother’ more and more they truly see the homeless guy as a sibling and they change.
Is there a change in people’s chemistry as they receive and notice more and more messages about WHAT to share? I wonder what would happen to the world if half the people in my neighborhood woke up every morning wondering, “Wow, I wonder what will happen today? Yesterday as I drove to the grocery I saw a friend waiting for the bus so I circled the corner and offered him a ride. I took him downtown where he was heading to take his final exam. What adventure will I run into today?” John recently purchased more than a hundred  tiny glo-sticks. Now he’s finding homes for them, it’s been truly interesting.


Focus On The Bird’s Neck

John just said a prayer over our meal; something like, “…What a great day, it was good to be with friends, we always have plenty to eat and we like this food, thank you, amen.” Afterwards he laughed telling me, “Well, I just didn’t have anything to ask for.”
I told him his prayer reminded me of an East Indian story I just read. A great teacher gave seven brothers each a bow and arrow and took the oldest deep into the forest. The teacher pointed to a fake bird high in a tree and said, “Pull your bow aim your arrow as though you were going to shot off the bird’s head but don’t shoot.” When his pupil was in position he asked the boy, “What do you see?”
The oldest brother saw the tree, the bird, the tree, sky, the teacher and his own hand. The teacher did not let him shoot but took him to the others and brought out the second boy and basically he said the same thing and got very much the same answer. Finally the youngest, aimed then was asked but he answered, “I see the neck of the bird.” He was allowed to shoot.
I told John, “You’re focused on the present. You’re dying of cancer but all you can say is, I had a nice day.”nancymauerman.com

Advice To Mothers: Rule # 3 If You Wake Up Grumpy

c ,Woman one said, “When I wake up unhappy I just fake it until I am.”

Lady two said “How can you fake happy?”

I’ve often waken not wanting to get out of bed.When I was four I didn’t have this problem. What changed? That’s what I want to know. I think this should only happening if by chance you’re sleep walking and the minute you step out your front door the earth opens up under your feet, and as you fall, becoming only dimly aware of what’s going on, a jagged root catches the diamond studded dress (the Queen of England lent you on the condition you return it the way it was lent otherwise your head will be cut off) tearing the pretty thing a pretty big rip, from neck to hem, but as this realization begins to wake you a pterodactyl, once thought extinct, grabs you by the hair and launches toward the sky but the sound of more earth falling in has awakened your mother, whose visiting because she’s in recuperation from having her right arm amputated and your Mom, with a spurt of Momily adrenaline, grabs your feet with her left hand and yanks you from the antique monster’s grasp, with such super human strength, all most all of you lands in a heap at her feet, at the edge of the gaping hole, but your hair continues to fly ever higher in the talons of the pterodactyl. Blood mixed with the mascara, you didn’t take off the night before, dribbles down your arms waking you fully, but what strikes you, with all its venom, is the fact that having ridges of scars on top of your head for the rest of your life won’t at all bother you one wit because the Queen’s gonna cut off your head.
NOW I can see you waking up unhappy and grumpy
Suggestion: always remove mascara before bed. Becoming such an orderly person would have prompted you to have taken off the Queen’s dress immediately after coming home, and between these two events, world history would have changed like a butterfly in the rain forest. But on the other hand, don’t take off the make -up, discover a living dinosaur and Sigourney Weaver will play you, hairless, in the movie and waking up grumpy will be worth that.
Now the first lady explains, “Wake up grumpy= force a smile= your kids and husband will become happy= happy is contagious= you become TRUELY happy! (or as I always say, while you force that smile just remember: You’re not being beheaded today!)nancymauerman.com