What kind of sewing machine do you use?

I have a Bernina Activa 230 PE.  Free arm extension table, hands free quilting, seven presser feet, button-hole memory ~ perfect.  Prior to this beauty, I’d been sewing on a 1982 Singer since I was eleven.  With Bernina by my side, I no longer yell obscenties as a bobbin clumps and stitches slip.  I.  Am.  In.  Love.
What kind of camera do you use?
Canon EOS 450D with an 18-55mm IS Lens.  I also have a Canon EF-S 55-250mm Telephoto Zoom Lens and a EF-S 28-90mm Lens.  My husband has a Canon Rebel 35mm SLR with two lenses that are compatible, all because of a little red dot.  This set-up is new to me, and I am learning.  

I still have a Canon Power Shot SD1000 digital elph, 7.1 megapixels.  It’s a powerful little pocket-sized friend.  I use it, mostly, on manual when I use it.
Really, any camera can produce great results if you take the time to navigate its features.  Keeping a keen eye out from behind the lens, spending time in the digital darkroom [photo edit program] and taking a lot of shots knowing you’ll keep only a few frames are just part of the process of collecting great photos.

Have you studied photography?
Throughout high school and college, I lived in a darkroom.  I’m just starting to find my bearings in the digital world.
Do you have a degree?
In undergrad, I majored in Creative Writing and Art history, while spending free course space in art studio classes.  Then I skied for a few years, worked as a poet in Montana for The National Endowment for the Arts.  When I decided on grad school in Portland, Oregon, I earned my Master’s in Teaching, preK-8 with an emphasis in Language and Literacy, Early Childhood.  My greatest achievement has been my Mama-to-Three degree.
Do you miss school?
I’ll open the doors to a classroom again.  For that, I am certain.  For now, I’ll keep my eyes on three very important students.  My new dream is to go to school to become an auctioneer.  Really.  I’d wear only vintage cowgirl duds.  Really.
How do you do it all?
Through the lens of my blog, I often choose to highlight the joys and celebrations of my family, my island.  It’s a bit like sifting through the dirty clothes hamper to find the one, unwrinkled and spotless item.  My house goes from super-clean to a total and complete wreck.  Dishes pile, words get written.  Laundry gets put away, the computer stays off.  Repeat.  I have my moments away from kneading bread or tending squabbles with my ladies where I lock the bathroom door with a cup of coffee for a moment’s peace, a moment’s breakdown.  My sewing space is organized, my knitting within reach. This allows me to sit and be rather productive in a small amount of time.
What kind of sailboat do you have?  How did you learn to sail?  How can I become a sailor?  Is it safe to sail with children?
We have a San Juan 26, 1957 Lightening and a Puddle Duck (a sailing a rowing dinghy).The sailing adventures of my mountain-raised husband proves it’s never too late to learn.  Go to your local library.  Read, read and read.  For those coastal, check with your local Y, recreation department or Red Cross.  Take a week or two and do an intensive site-based-aboard class.  I spent my childhood learning by racing and sailing dinghies.  A small craft under sail can teach you everything you need to know.

I started sailing when I was six weeks old.  Well, at least that’s when I was first afloat.  I grew up going to camps, racing and belonging to sailing clubs.  With our children, we have a strict rule that any child above deck wears a PFD.  Under sail, they wear a harness if they’re in the cockpit.  They love the sailboat; we have a blast.

What are the three best parenting books you live by?
A Sense of Wonder, Rachael Carelson
Child of Mine, Feeding with Love and Good Sense, Elizabeth Sater
Living High, An Unconventional Autobiography, June BurnWhat are the best children’s books your girls can’t live without?
Andrew Henry’s Meadow, Doris Burn
Little Island, Margaret Wise Brown

Newberry, The Life and Times of a Maine Clam, Vincent Gaston Dethier and Marie Litterer
Pirate Girl, Cornelia Funke and Chantal Wright
The Sailor Dog, Margaret Wise Brown and Garth Williams

If I were on “Inside the Actors Studio” these would be my responses to James Lipton’s 10 questions:
What is your favorite word?
What is your least favorite word?

What turns you on?
Good people, down to their core.  Ones with golden hearts, clever minds and a keen sense of whit & humor.
What turns you off?

What sounds do you love?
Baby giggles, cicadas in a New England summer & waves rolling back upon beach pebbles.

What sound do you hate?

What is your favorite curse word?
In the worst of times, I prefer f^%$.

What profession, other than yours, would you like to attempt?

What profession would you not like to do?
exterminator, pest control

If Heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the pearly gates?
I’d love you to make me a loaf of bread.