Thursday, May 21, 2015

Rain Some Other Day

When a drought exists year after year, all our heads turn to the sky with anticipation for a good soaking to drench plant roots and clean up the dust. I live in the dark red area called 'exceptional drought'. This is the first year the town I live in has enforced watering restrictions because we get water from the spring melts running off the mountains. Not so if it doesn't snow. And we had very little snow this year. Climatologists are calling it a death-grip drought driven by Arctic ice loss as well as human-assisted global warming.



Some folks claim they can feel rain or any change in weather in their older bones and joints. Well, scientists say it isn't so. Weather doesn't cause our bodies to feel worse. However, I have got to admit that when the clouds move in over the valley, what they do is cut off more of that glorious southern Cali sunshine. It seems colder and my whole body wants to hibernate, and get dressed in sweatshirts and mittens again. I want to be UNDER quilts rather than work at making them.

Weather does affect our moods no matter what scientists tell us about facts. Weather pushes dusty winds, brings on allergy symptoms & helps create natural light deprivation. Now, THAT is a measurable influence disrupting our body-clocks and causing depression in some of us. Rather than to lay blame on the weather for our emotions, it seems like a good idea to know what drains a person and then plan around it.


Because of all the steps involved in quilting, even if I never turn my machine on, I am still in the process of planning for the times I am actively quilting, so having a day or several days like this one really doesn't make it a non-quilting day. 


One of my current quilt block swap partners shared that she uses a 2.5" iron-on interfacing to join her batting. She is from Australia so calls it wadding. I liked her tip. And then, I realized that if I posted pics of the blocks I am making for her, she would see them. HAH! Caught that in time. When we started chatting, I learned that she uses the blocks she gets in the swap to make baby quilts for one of the local hospitals. She sent me a pic of one from last year and it is stunning. I feel over-joyed to contribute to this cause. I am always impressed with folks who have a generous heart and find ways to give back for the gifts they have received...or just do random acts of kindness. It is so much like seeing the cycles in nature...giving/receiving; rains/drought; high heats/freezing colds.

One of my long-ago science classes questioned if the Earth has the same amount of water it had when it first formed. If you include the three states of water (liquid, ice, and vapor), the amount of water has been constant for 4.5 billion years. It just moves through cycles and exists in various ways. Fresh water is becoming a more rare resource.

I guess its like the energy I give to my quilting. It comes and goes as part of a natural cycle. However, what I do in my quilting and how I try to do it, serves to reduce my personal carbon footprint. Here is a very simple and free calculator if you are interested. http://www.nature.org/greenliving/carboncalculator/index.htm

Predictions say this drought is not going away, probably not in my lifetime. Sigh. I think of all the times I said that little ditty: "Rain, rain, go away. Come again another day." What were we thinking? Oh right. We weren't. We were taking for granted that we could play and the world would spin and nothing would ever change.

Thing is, the drought here in Cali is going to affect the country. Food prices will go up and then cotton because it too is a crop, which means all the quilting supplies I use will see prices going up and maybe quilt stores going out of business. 

Part of the low carbon footprint will continue at a lower level for me as I keep using up what I have, sort of shopping from my stash and my closets.  Everything I write here seems to come back to my quilting. Everything I quilt comes back to how it touches my spirit.