Obtuse – a way of life, my life

Low literacy – I still struggle with my literacy and understanding.  Life is hard and I have seen more than my fair share of grief. My low literacy wasn’t for a lack of trying but a learning disability that was overlooked. This was in many parts, first of my femaleness – some bloke was to marry me and care for me so it wasn’t important that I learn to read. Secondly, I was raised in poverty and with it abuse and neglect. The latter appears to happen more to special needs children, more so the high functioning ones like myself. My special needs required more from my environment and my care givers were not up to the task, so, well, a beating or two would bring me into line. Thirdly, we moved a lot. I attended 9 schools in 10 years. It was a long and winding youth of waking up in a new home once or twice a year, this included a new school too.

So, I became someone else’s problem with each year. Occasionally, someone would notice that i wasn’t up to snuff and would send home extra work. Then we would move again and I would literally wake up in a new home, my bed but different walls. Another new school, no friends or family to say hey, let me read with you. In no way did I appear special. No one sought me out to say hey, I would like to help. I was tainted, not trying hard enough, not being pretty enough, nor any apparent skill that would be endearing to any other soul. Nothing.

I had to help myself and without an education it wasn’t easy. I did what I could. I learned everything I could without crossing those institutional doors of education. They let me down and I was certain that I didn’t want to spend fifty thousand, or more, to be let down again. So, I am mostly self taught.

I started by learning how to sew at the age of 19. It was one subject that I enjoyed but only had a little bit of teaching – it was moving too much that kept me away from the sewing classes. So, I bought a pattern and some materiel and borrowed my soon to be third step mother’s sewing machine. I didn’t do the pattern any justice at all and I ended up at the hospital to have a broken needle removed from my finger. The skirt was worn once and then promptly discarded. Somehow this failure just had me trying for more. I enjoyed that creativity. So I kept at it.

So, I have become obtuse. I will slowly digest the meaning and if I do not understand I start again. Eventually, it will sink in. Yet, I need to ask and pull the meaning out even if the recipient of my query’s isn’t happy with my process. It is my process and I will get to the end of it the best way I know how. And if I am obtuse, it is because I am still choosing to learn.

So get over it. I am not doing any thing wrong when I demand clarification. I have learned that, yes, I can demand clarification. I have rights and I will not give up either my right nor my understanding of what is happening. I will be the thorn in your side until I have satisfied that I have understood what is needed.

Have patience and we will both have a better life.

Low literacy isn’t just my problem. It is society’s problem. And it is costly – more so than the cost of the education that will cure this ill. And not all of can find meaningful literacy due to disabilities. I know that I am lucky in that I worked hard and found my literacy despite my learning disability’s (yes, I have more than one).


A change of space.

The last major space of our small condo is finally done.  Gone are the textured walls.  These were smoothed to hide all of the punched holes and dusty texture in the master bedroom.  We added some donnaconna board and and another  layer of drywall to dampen the sounds that animate our shared spaced.  It seems to have worked – not a 100% but nothing ever is.  I am happy with the 75% that I feel that I got out of it. 


We had a local business do the dry walling and mudding to smooth the walls.  It was fast and efficient. 

My partner and I painted, added the new floor, new light, new baseboards and more paint.  It feels great. 


Sewing again

It has been a long time since I have taken on any project larger than a pillow. My son is getting married in June and I need a dress to dance in. With my daughter in tow, we hit the fabric store and found a new Vogue Pattern V1422 by Amy Reese.

Image result for v1422

So far, I have cut out all of the pieces. Three for the skirt lining, three for the skirt underlining, 3 for the bodice lining and 6 for the dress. A slightly larger project than I anticipated for the dress.

The reviews of the dress are that it is a little tight so I added a bit for my large frame and it should work.

Tomorrow I start the sewing bits 🙂

Austerity for the planet – our last chance. Really.

Our planet has a bug.  Human parasites that have been increasing the temperature of a whole planet.  No mean feat really.  How many latte’s must I drink for  my impact to be felt.  2.  That isn’t many but as my best guess, i will stand by it.  So, i am 15089 latte’s over my limit, perhaps more as i haven’t kept count.

Latte’s and coffee are my last addiction. In each sip, i understand the human carbon chain that allows for me to enjoy this powerful drug.

The latte in this photo was crafted by a barrister that has practiced this  art for 15 years.   It was an amazing day with my daughter in town.   Dresses were bought and long talks over latte’s and smoothies.


Our conversations often turn to the environment and how precious and unique it is.    And as there is so many of us humans, that we must all really do our part to slow down and care for our only home, the planet earth.

Really, if you were an alien from another planet, would you recuse us as a species.   I know i would hesitate and ponder deeply our need to survive.  Over a Latte if you please.

I know i digress but that is how i am wired and coffee is my medicine to keep it in check. enjoy your day.






Bespoke: Botanical Beach 2018


I am writing this under a blood red sky.  Smoke fills the air as the scorched earth burns.  It disheartens my very soul.

This last June, I revisited Botanical Beach.  The beauty is unshakable. 


We left early so that we could be at the beach during one of the lowest tides of the year.  And before the crowds.

At the entrance to one of the paths down to the beach is a fallen log with fungi.  I am always interested in fluid lines of mushrooms. DSC01634




The horizon of the United States is in the background.  The changing tide brought the waves crashing into the rocks.


The tide pools were inexplicably bare and cloudy.  Global changes are reaching even here.  Gooey ducks clams and seaweed abound still yet the once plentifully urchins are gone.  The wardens of the park say it is the tourist taking souvenirs of the once bountiful sea life.    Really.  It could also be sunscreen and other pollutants. Either way, once a plentifully waterway is now unwell and unbalanced. 

We may still have time to make a difference. It is only a guess as we know more about Mars than we do our own seas.