Sewing with less stress Front

Sewing with less stress Front
My newest sewing book

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Sewing with less stress back cover
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I am a mother, a grandmother, and a teacher. But whatever happens in my life, I keep sewing. I have worked as a political communicator and now as a teacher in my formal life. I have also written extensively on sewing. I have been a frequent contributor and contributing editor of Threads magazine and the Australian magazine Dressmaking with Stitches. My book Sew.. the garment-making book of knowledge was published in May 2018 and is available for pre-order from Amazon



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Wednesday, February 10, 2021


This is just a short one. Appropriately.

I would like to report a miracle. Seems to me that is always worth doing.

As long time readers of my blog will know my old girl Daisy was a much abused puppy mill mom when we got her. 

She was full of tapeworms, had never had her feet outside a cage, never been fed from a bowl. For months she threw up every time we fed her. I remember the first time she stood on grass. Her eye sight is bad in one eye, maybe from a blow to her head the vet said.  She lost most of her teeth.

She is a wonderful little dog, though, absolutely the best. So loving so bonded to me. But she has her scars. She still starts at loud noises, and gets upset if a man raises his arms.

Daisy missed a lot in her life. 

She has never played with toys at all. Once my mom sent her some small stuffed animals. Daisy went frantic. She ran around possessed trying to hide them in the backyard. If she saw anyone looking to where she hid those stuffed animals she would move them to a new hiding spot. In Daisy's mind were these her long ago lost puppies?

Who will ever know.

Then, in her late middle age we got this cat. This crazy confident happy little cat. My son's dog ignores the cat, and Daisy has seemed bewildered by her. I have had my moments when I even wondered if adding a cat to this dog household was a mistake.

But the cat hasn't cared. For some reason she has decided she loves Daisy. She gets in the dog bed with her and purrs when Daisy walks by. She shimmies underneath Daisy's body and delicately grooms her legs.

And lately they have started to fool around, duck and dodge, nudge each other.  At first the cat was just being a nuisance but then Daisy started to respond. She has started to go looking for the cat for some gentle wrestling every now and then.

But tonight for the first time Daisy went and got a tiny ball and batted it to the cat. Who batted it back. For a good ten minutes they rolled that ball back and forth to each other.

Then I saw it. 

This crazy barn rescue little cat has given Daisy what no one else ever could.

The ability to play, to be the puppy she never was.

I don't know about you, but in these times, this small miracle meant a lot to me.