Fiction Writing and Other Oddities

Tuesday, August 26, 2008


It's birthday time for all of us Virgo folks and despite my best efforts to dissuade people from even mentioning it, I was lucky this year. My husband got me a sewing machine because my old Pfaff bit the big one and I was using my mother's machine from the 1950's but many of the rubber pieces on it are crumbling. I'm very happy he caught my comment about my desire for a new machine before they became scarcer than hen's teeth. Seems no one sews anymore.

To my shock and dismay, even Wal-Mart is getting out of the sewing and fabric business so I'm not sure where I'll find supplies, but I'm going to keep on as long as I can. I don't sew a lot anymore--who has the time? But I do have a pressing need to sew. I've discovered that if I make very, very wide-legged long pants out of light fabric, I can stave off the ravages of summer rashes. Even a blade of grass brushing against my ankles in the summer will leave long red streaks that blister and itch for a month afterwards. I'd say I have sensitive skin, but that makes me sound like something out of Princess and the Pea, when it's more like something you'd find on one of those late night medical shows. 'Nuff said about that unpleasant topic.

At least I have my new sewing machine!

And my sister really got me where it counts. She took our really old 8mm film and had some video place put them on DVD. It is so incredible to watch ourselves as children--and my mom and dad, who passed away about ten years ago. Those DVD are the greatest gift of all, I think.

This evening I played around with ripping the DVD to my computer's hard drive (it worked) and I purchased a utility which then lets me convert the files to standard mpeg (or other types of movie files). Once I do that, I can "be my own producer" and clip out a few to put up on YouTube. Not that I think there will be a lot of folks interested in watching a couple of kids running around with hamsters, a duck, and a boat-load of Christmas presents... But I enjoy watching other folks' videos, so why not?

And amazing how much work my parents and grandparents put into holidays for us--and we didn't even truly appreciate it (until now). My grandfather made doll beds and furniture out of scraps for our dolls while mom and grandma made Raggedy Ann & Andy dolls, and entire wardrobes for our Barbies and other dolls. Not to mention matching outfits for my sister and me. Our dolls were better dressed than most kids--even if all those clothes were made from remnants from the curtains, table-clothes and upholstery my mom and dad happened to be working on. Mom and grandma sewed constantly. Now I know why, and I can see why that sewing machine meant so much to me.

So here's to nostalgia, birthdays, and getting that happy, weepy feeling over silly things like old movies and sewing machines.

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