Cynthia St. Charles Store

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Beartooth Weekend

Last weekend, Joe and I took Michelle to the Beartooths Mountains. She has been working for Americorps / Montana Conservation Corps this summer and has not had much opportunity for recreation. Although the weather was hot and sunny in Billings, by the time we reached the summit, a storm was moving across the mountains. This made for some really interesting light.

Saturday morning, we got an early start from our camp at Beartooth Lake. We climbed steadily all morning to reach Lonesome Lake, pictured above. It lies at the base of Lonesome Mountain, which we climbed a few years ago from the other side.
We fished our way down, stopping at each of the lakes along the way. Here is Michelle fishing at Horseshoe Lake.

We finally started catching fish at Claw Lake. Joe caught a couple of nice Lake trout. Michelle and I each caught several nice sized Brook trout.

As we left on Sunday, we paused for a look at Beartooth Butte. The trail we'd hiked the day before climbs from the base of the Beartooth Butte along the full length of it.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Slow Progress on Primitive Hearts

Joe and I have been spending our days working on the renovation of the apartment on First Avenue. By evening, we have been exhausted - flopping in front of the TV. Joe tends to use this time for his evening nap, but I have found it is my only opportunity for stitching. So, I relish this quiet restful time of day.

I started this piece - which I am currently calling "Primitive Hearts", late last winter. It is a whole cloth piece - resisted with Elmers Glue Gel and painted with Setacolor transparent paints. Then, I stamped it with hearts using metallic paints of various colors. After that, I screen printed with various screens of text continuing with the love theme. 1st Corinthians 13 is one of the text passages screened - shown clearly above.

The final, very slow phase involves adding embroidery stitches in all of the areas resisted with the glue gel. I am continuing with the primary colors in pearl cotton and am using very bold primitive stitches.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Shipping to International Quilt Festival

I've spent the entire afternoon preparing quilts for the International Quilt Festival. This year, I was juried into a number of exhibits, much to my surprise and delight. For more information about the International Quilt Festival, follow this link.

These will go out tomorrow for Houston:

Goodness Gracious Great Balls of Fire will be in The Sky's the Limit Exhibit
will be in the American Traditions VI Exhibit
City Lights
will be in the Tactile Architecture Exhibit
Medicine Wheel
will be in the 2007 Journal Quilt Exhibit
Miniature Leaves and Twigs
is going to the IQA Auction
two Journal Quilts from the Creative Quilting Book are going into that exhibit

and Leaves and Twigs was juried into Quilts, A World of Beauty Show

That was a lot of paperwork, packaging, and worst of all, sewing labels on the back of each quilt.
Alas, it is all done and I am off to bed. We are going to the Beartooths for the weekend and plan to leave tomorrow afternoon.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Body Worlds

I have just returned from 6 days in Portland. Elizabeth was going for a training session in Cranio Sacral Therapy and I went along to take care of Airus while she was in class. We stayed with my sister, Shirley and her family. It was a good opportunity to visit with them.

On Sunday, Elizabeth's class ended early, so we went to the Body Worlds Exhibit at the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry. I'd read about this exhibit last fall when it opened in NYC. I was visiting another sister on the east coast at that time, and the New York Times review of the show turned me off to the idea of going. Real human body parts did not sound interesting to me, and the review I read discussed the ethics of the donation process.

Since Elizabeth is a body worker, she was interested in seeing the show, so we went.

These are real human bodies, donated for exhibition purposes. Body parts have been plastinated, then the remaining tissue has been decomposed away, exposing the specified organs, bones, etc for exhibit.

I found the exhibit to be interesting to a certain point, but overwhelming by the time I neared the end of the exhibit. I could not help thinking about the fact that these were once living human beings we were gawking at. The exhibit was very crowded and that made me uncomfortable, too.

My favorite part of the exhibit was the veins, arteries, and capillaries - the blood system - preserved and displayed without any supporting tissues - it is a very intricate and delicate looking - almost fiberlike system that was quite amazing to observe. A number of organs and body parts were shown in this way.

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Beartooth Morning

This is what dawn looked like at our campsite on our final morning in the Beartooth Mountains.

Airus was up early. He loves the outdoors and was so happy climbing on the rocks near the campsite.

Airus is now 16 months old and has a lot of words. He can identify all his body parts by name. Knows the name of every family member, including the dog and cat. He loves to point out and name lights, trees, rocks, the sun and moon. He also knows "hot, oops, down, no, hi, bye-bye, phone, doll, guy, car, ball, girl . . . and more . . . We sure had fun with him.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Labor Day Weekend

Joe and I are just back from a long weekend in the Beartooth Mountains. It was a wonderful opportunity for us to explore new trails and rekindle our love of this vast, unique wilderness. We parked our RV at a beautiful location and did four day hikes from our base camp.

Our Saturday hike started bright and early at the Clay Butte trailhead. At this altitude (9,600 feet), fall has already arrived and foliage is starting to change color, creating a spectacular visual treat along the trail.

Our destination for Saturday was Hidden Lake. So named because it lies tucked deep within steep mountains about a mile or two off the trail. We used our map, the terrain, and a compass to guide us to its location. It was a very steep drop to the lake. It took us quite a while to find a safe way to descend, but it was well worthwhile. The fishing at this lake was excellent. Nice big cutthroat trout!

By now, you are probably wondering why I don't just change the name of my blog to something like "Beartooth Lust". Well, actually, the window of opportunity for enjoying this wilderness is limited to about 30 days. The steep road remains buried under snow until Memorial Day weekend. Snowmelt makes the trails impassable through the month of June. Mosquitoes take over at that point, and make it miserable until mid August. By mid September, it is getting pretty cold. I feel fortunate that I was able to spend so much time in the Beartooth Wilderness this summer, as I have not had the opportunity much the prior two years.