Thursday, November 30, 2006

Cancer Awareness: Look Good...Feel Better Program

The day I accompanied my mom to her oncologist app't (Nov. 1) to find out what her treatment would be, the doc matter-of-factly said, "You will lose all of your hair in 3 weeks."

Later, we ended up running into a friend of hers that worked in the "Images" clinic. My mom urged me to try to go back to work, but it was already late-afternoon and I realized that we should stop through there that day and told her so. This is a service provided to cancer patients through the Look Good...Feel Better program, which I think is absolutely fantastic! The program tries to help patients deal with treatment-related changes in their appearance through workshops that include skin care and make-up lessons, options for dealing with hair loss (wigs, hats, scarves, turbans, rockin' it bald!), and nail care techniques. It works on the principle that when we feel good about how we look, it helps our health both mentally and physically as well, and that's important!

Another friend of hers, Marian--who is the program's official contact at Hospital Center--whisked her into a room with a salon chair and we actually had a lot of fun helping her to try on different wigs. My mom had already planned to wear one and really got into it and took our advice by going with wigs and styles that were different color- and style-wise than what she was used to. One definite consideration color-wise is something that would brighten her complexion once she was really into her treatments. They really do look like her hair. You can't tell the difference at all.

She looks great and it really did make her very happy. Thank you so much Marian!!!

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Dennis Quilt begins

Well, I've fused it it's stitchin' time!

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Too Many Fans

I got free tickets through my job to see the Washington Redskins (Ugh! Their name!) play the Carolina Panthers. It was my first NFL game and I'm not a football fan at all. I'll admit I wasn't following it well. My fan of a husband was in bliss though. Only love and free tickets could make me go to a football game and he was so happy. Cool seats high up in a suite with cushy chairs. On the way up, I remember a girl telling me "Carolina sucks!" as we walked up the ramp. After the game, which Washington won, I looked at my outfit as we were walking out to the car surrounded by thousands of hyped-up fans.

I realized I was wearing Carolina's colors of turquoise and black. Um, oops? Then again, given how I feel about the name, I sure as heck wasn't wearing burgundy and gold. Now that I've been to a game I don't think I will again.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Thanksgiving Eve & Darfur

We have so much to be thankful for. I was reminded about that this evening as my husband and I stood in the cold looking at images from Darfur in the Sudan projected 40 ft high against the walls of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum. As part of the exhibit Darfur/Darfur, leading photojournalists documented the devastation as a soundtrack of haunting music called "To the Sudanese Women" accompanied it. It was very late and there was just the 2 of us and a photographer taking pics of it.

"Why isn't more being done?" I asked him. They are heartbreaking images. Villages being burned. Over 400,000 people have been killed, millions are homeless. In the corner pic were portraits. On this Thanksgiving eve I know I have much to be thankful for.

How can you help? Keep track of the news. Write letters to let others know how important it is. Support relief efforts and spread the word in your own community. You can also support museums like the Holocaust Museum because the memory of its reason for being is the driving force for its speaking out against other genocides as well.

You can read more about the exhibit here.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Hope and Remembrance

One of the nicest things about working at Chorus America is being able to attend concerts of local area choruses. I took my mom with me to a performance of The Washington Chorus today at the Kennedy Center. Today's concert "Hope and Remembrance" was their season opener and a commemoration of the 5th anniversary of 9/11.

They performed Beethoven's Eleigischer Gesang, Op. 118 andMozart's Requiem. They also premiered a commissioned piece by composer Joel Puckett entitled "This Mourning." In addition to the orchestra and chorus (whose "sing-whispering" during the piece reminded me of what it would be like to have souls everywhere) was a "choir" of crystal glasses. The piece ended with the glasses fading out--keening and eerie. The new piece was my favorite and I thought it was beautiful. I had a chance to meet Mr. Puckett and tell him so.

My mom liked the concert a lot too. I'm so glad she was able to come.

Saturday, November 18, 2006

Buzz Buzz

Who knew my extension table could double as a lightbox? Heck I wasn't using it...
Since here I am! I love Jennifer's quilting room!
Renea doing pieceing on her featherweight.
Here's Jennifer, the hostess with the mostess! I'll miss you!
Here we all are. I'm the one in the very back with my face being blocked, LOL.

Went to a bee with some of the ladies in the guild. Our guild coordinator Jennifer, is leaving for Florida. I will miss her as she helped support my crazy idea to create a website to bring the guild into the 21st century, LOL. We had a really good time and I was really productive. You can see a bit of my piece in the corner on that striped background (which I didn't keep as the background--whew!)

Friday, November 17, 2006

Artist David C. Driskell

First, I would like to think everyone so much for your kind thoughts about my mom. I really appreciate it.

The Washington Post has been running a fantastic, very interesting series called "Being A Black Man" and today's installment is a video interview with artist David C. Driskell. When asked about his parents, he says that his mother was a quiltmaker.

I think you'll enjoy it for his insights on art, his career and process, and inspirations. Enjoy!

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Dennis Prep

Once again, I thought I'd get a piece ready for a show and once again, I decided to take my time. Oh well, lol.

You can see the preps I did for the Dennis piece.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Where Has Sew Chick Been?

A bit on the preoccupied side lately...

This is my mom. She was being "difficult" when I tried to take this photo. youngest sister's just like her, LOL.

Last month we found out that she has breast cancer. She just started chemotherapy and in less than 2 weeks she will lose all of her hair. She's okay with me writing this. Her doctors were surprised at her reaction when she found out, because she had a feeling, even dreams, for a while that something was wrong. "What did they want me to do? Mope? No, I move on," she told me. "Now that I know, I can get better." She worked at the Cancer Institute at Washington Hospital Center for years, so she knows what to expect. She has a lot of friends looking out for her there and good doctors taking care of her.

My siblings and I were all stunned pretty speechless at first--which is hard to do to us--but you know, she's really, really positive and optimistic. We will be too. We're taking turns going to appointments with her so that she won't be alone. While with her there recently, I noticed people looking at us because despite it all, we still managed to laugh.

In the future, I'm devoting Thursday postings to ones relating to breast cancer and cancer awareness.