Wednesday, November 19, 2008


"Making Do" for Mrs. Staggs...

I think today is the last day for sketchbook Wednesday with Mrs. Staggs. Her prompt was "makin'do." You can click on the photo to make it larger.

As it turns out, a very sweet person (CLF ) and I were having a correspondence about this subject after a recent post of mine. She reminded me of the expression on the page above and I thought it was perfect to use on the page.

For 20 years I didn't own a dryer. I chose to hang clothes outside or in a very large basement where we had clothes lines. This was personal choice based on a really short lived idea from the 70's. I would be "saving energy." Imagine that?

I canned or froze vegetables that I grew in a large garden, made my kids clothes and my own, made and sold shopping bags and aprons,, had a string of part-time jobs so I could stay home with my kids and create things, too.

Doesn't that seem that quaint? We never went to Disney World because I thought we should see the real world as my parents had thought for me. We played board games, I cooked from scratch, we "made do."

It is a different world now, but I still live the same way as I always have. I have a dryer though, still recycle everything, avoid "fast food", etc. I never used paper diapers on real babies, but everybody does now. And, yes, I still have a clothesline.

I am not afraid of the future with its economic instability on the horizon. My late mother was a child during the Depression. Making Do in New England is a way of life passed down through generations, probably from the time of the Pilgrims. There are plenty of other people like me in New England. We don't live quite like Tasha Tudor (whom I adored) but I think many people live quite simply here.

On the other hand, I traveled extensively in and out of the country, showed art in galleries, wrote rock and restaurant reviews for an entertainment newspaper, and had an interesting journey in life despite "makin'do." I think a lot about entropy and that has changed the way I make do in some respects.

I have a few pages left in my sketchbook, so I think I will continue on with it. I am very excited that I met deadlines and that I stayed with it! There were a few times I was stumped and other times where I was frustrated.

What I did: I painted the borders, scanned it, added text and printed it. The ribbon is velvet and the button is chipboard.

Enjoy your day! If you "make do" just once today, you will have make a small impact on the world.

4 comments:

Eileen said...

Do they even sell cloth diapers anymore?

Liina said...

cloth diapers are a huge fashion among ecolically conscious mothers.

Mrs. Staggs said...

Hi Helen,

Well, once again I love your page. It is one of my favorites. I love that border. What a long time it must have taken to paint it. The drawings are sure wonderful too. This old quote is one that always seems appropriate to whatever time we're living in, and it is especially so now. Many folks have never had to even think that way, but I suppose that's about to change for a great many of them. Hopefully, some of those changes will stay with them after we've gone through this recession. I think that living mindfully does make a difference, and that's what this quote makes me think of.

Thank you for the pleasure of your company throughout this project, and for sharing your artwork with me. I've so enjoyed the both of them.

All my best,
Lena

Anonymous said...

I use my clothesline outside when the weather allows.
I've enjoyed all of your pages and discovering your blog.