Monday, November 23, 2009

morfar kammar håret

morfar brushing my hair (ca. 1978?) i have a feeling he did not brush his daughters' hair. some things skip a generation. (not sure where this is, but i see i brought my dolls with me.)

it's been a while since i've posted many links. i've saved some up. don't recall on which blogs i found them.


katja spitzer
the wingtipper
emmi's illustration blog


yu yasutake
katharina trudzinski

and mav's beautiful new site.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

saturday morning

golden delicious at the alemany farmers' market

elephants and little girls saw these guys thursday. so good.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

commitment issues

Cross-posted on Sew Green

I’ve been reading a lot of Wendell Berry's books lately, and one of the main themes throughout his essays and fiction (haven’t gotten to the poetry yet, but i’m sure it’s there as well), is that of committing to a place—working to protect and improve that place, the land and one’s community. While I am all for that in theory, I have had a very hard time putting that idea to practice in my own life.

I’ve lived in San Francisco for over ten years now, and at various points I’ve tried to commit myself to this city, but have never really succeeded. Part of this for me has to do with having grown up in two places, Sweden and California, and usually missing where I am not. Another part is my wondering if I’m really a city person. I long for more green and quiet. I also wonder if there is a place where it’s easier to build community. Often SF feels like it’s a city for (mostly hipster) 20–30 year olds and/or the wealthy.

I could go on and on about what makes me think about moving away. But one of the things that is really exciting about and makes me want to stay in the Bay Area right now is the food movement. There seems to be so much interest in making connections with surrounding area farmers. (We here are lucky to live in an area that has a lot of biodiverse, eco-conscious, farms.) Restaurants that use all locally produced or gathered food are cropping up left and right. People are raising chickens and bees in their backyards. They’re gleaning fruit and meeting their neighbors in the process. They’re building gardens and joining CSAs. Check out how this wonderful woman collects farmers’ market leftovers and distributes it to local food pantries.

I am trying to figure out what I can do to enter this movement more, to commit more to this place I call home. I do subscribe to a CSA and go to the Alemany Farmers’ market every Saturday with two lovely friends. And I sometimes write about agriculture related books here and there. But I want to do something more. Maybe join Slow Food San Francisco, attend some of the Kitchen Table Talks, go to Garden for the Environment events or volunteer at a local farm. I wouldn’t mind hanging out with some sheep. (Would love that in fact.) It would be fun to start a little group of people who go and visit different Bay Area farms on the weekends.

Worldwide Opportunities on Organic Farms (WWOOF) is something I’m considering, though the farm I’ve been thinking about contacting is in Sweden, so there goes the rooting myself here idea.

Starting a backyard garden (for real!) in 2010 will be a growing (oh geez) and rooting (oh geez again) experience.

Or there’s this group, amyitis, that sets up a garden with you.

What are you all doing to involve yourselves in your place more actively?

Some links about new farmers/farming methods
Redefining farming (with video)

A new family farmer (video)

The Greenhorns (trailer)

Wes Jackson is the co-founder of The Land Institute and writes about farming using nature as a model.

{Flowers and leaves all found (mostly on the ground) around this glorious place.}

Sunday, November 08, 2009

lexington street

that squirrel is out there

i think you have to see these hairy hunks in person, but they are really good and funny. click on the thumbs.

tulip diagram

we were supposed to diagram a flower as homework for class.
i bought five tulips at the farmers' market, and i figured they would be fairly easy to diagram as they don't have many petals, like a rose or a dahlia has. but of course of the bunch, i managed to choose the misfit tulip to diagram. it had seven tepals (a word one can use for sepals and petals when the sepals and petals look almost the same), instead of the six tepals its friends had. and it had seven stamen instead of six.

the misfit tulip did make me look more closely. the sepals and petals of this tulip are slightly different. the sepals have tiny pointy tips, while the petals' tips seem to be inverted in a v.

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

stamens and pistils everywhere!

looking down at our table of four on the first night of botanical illustration class. as my classmate said when we observed the mess of our dissections, flower carnage. she was glad her plants at home weren't there to witness it. the peeling off of sepals, petals, stamens and pistils and the cutting open of the ovary to locate the ovule. it was fun. we learned about complete and incomplete flowers; perfect, aka bisexual flowers (i like that the bisexuals are perfect); imperfect, aka unisexual flowers; superior and inferior ovaries and more.

anu tuominen (wow) found via camilla.


Tuesday, November 03, 2009

textile + book inspiration

in progress

today: fika with amanda and a walk in gorgeous weather, a delicious cheese purchase to be enjoyed shortly, sewing at home with pinky leon, and tonight botanical illustration class. a good day.

feeling inspired by
these three women who opened their own green fabric screenprinting biz.

also by wonder wonder wares

and ah-yi's wood block printing

also enjoying wendell berry's novels. i imagine that most folks in the food/agriculture movement are familiar with berry's foundational essays, or at least with his oft quoted words that eating is an agricultural act. reading his essays, i wondered how berry would integrate his ideas into stories. i read jayber crow first. such a heartbreaking and heart filling story. the ending is powerful and painful and beautiful. it was comforting to know while reading jayber's story that (i think) all of berry's novels are about the people of/near port william, because i knew i'd want to visit port william again. so far jayber crow is my favorite, but a world lost is also wonderful. berry's ideas and beliefs about community and farming and spirituality are certainly evident in all of the novels i've read so far, but they are communicated through the characters in a thoroughly believable way. impressive that someone can write such clear and complicated essays and also be a masterful storyteller. now of course i'm curious about his poetry...