3 year old Jonathan is quite the conductor, as he takes his baton and conducts the 4th Movement of Beethoven's 5th Symphony. This little guy has incredible rhythm, and this just proves that music really does affect the soul. I'm just glad he didn't poke his eye out with the baton. So much enthusiasm!
If you have a chance, check out his channel HERE - you will be amazed at the intensity by which this little Jonathan also plays his violin with the Chandler Symphony Orchestra.
I just wanted to touch base with my readers and let you know that I am still fighting this flu. I have not fully recovered and it's been 3 weeks. I just can't seem to shake this, even after taking antibiotics for a week.
I haven't felt like writing or doing much of anything really, but sleeping. I still feel completely wiped out and my breathing is labored still. If I'm not feeling better by tomorrow, I'm going back to my doctor. This is ridiculous.
Everyone else out there stay well. I'll shake this off soon and be back to sewing, crafting, painting, and telling stories in no time. I didn't want you to think something had happened - nope - I've just been really sick since before Christmas.
Is your Christmas shopping done? Mine is as done as it is going to be. Are you rushing to the grocery store for last minute items on your holiday menu? We are too.
Even with all the last minute preparations, as I sit here in my family room in my pjs and enjoy the Christmas tree and the fire and the sounds of my children laughing, talking, and playing games, I think of how blessed I truly am to have a loving family and wonderful children, true friends, and a loving, adoring husband. I must have done something good in my life to be so enormously blessed in this life.
This year has been especially tough for us with Big Bear still not able to find a job that follows in his career path, but the Lord has been good to us and has provided for us along the way. Somehow, Big Bear has managed to juggle the bills with little money in his pocket, and we've both been able to bring in a little extra for our family needs by doing landscaping, aeration, handyman work, computer work, or web design. In addition to this, though, we are blessed to have family that have pitched in and offered, unselfishly, to help us through this tough time. We could not be more grateful.
We are not poor. We are not living in a tin hut. We are not starving. We are not cold. We are not homeless. We are blessed beyond measure, so I don't want anyone out there to feel sorry for us - for any reason! We have a beautiful home, a bountiful pantry, and a fantastic family. We have each other and we have a bank that holds our mortgage that has been more than generous with helping us take this economic crisis to the finish line. They've given us a forbearance program and we have communicated with them regularly. Thank you Chase Bank! That is probably because we have as much invested in this house as the bank does too. Still, we are very grateful that Chase has worked with us so that we don't lose our home.
When I reflect back on this year, I think of all the memories - like Sarah's excellent grades (A's) and her interest in being a cardiologist. I think of Matthew and how helpful he has been from cleaning to helping his dad with yard work. He even learned how to drive the tractor this year. Glen started 5th grade this year at the elementary school so Matthew is the only one left being homeschooled. Glen is doing good and giving every day his best effort. We are so proud of our little man. All of our children have sprouted this year. I can't believe how they've grown! I also reflect on how responsible our children are, how good natured and compassionate too.
I think of my granddaughter, Reagan, and how much love and joy she has brought us all this year. She is such a blessing and I am so proud of my daughter, Kimberly, and her husband, Zak - they are loving parents and we couldn't be more proud.
I'm thankful that I still have my mother. She turned 86 this year and is still going strong even with her challenges. I enjoy our conversations and hope she likes the gift I made for her.
All in all it has been a year filled with wonderful memories and lots of love and laughter. We may be short on money and wish Big Bear had a job, but we are surrounded by so much to be thankful for that money seems almost insignificant. Well, almost.
So, on this Christmas weekend, I want you to reflect on your blessings. Your family. Your friends. Pray for peace and that our soldiers are safe and come home healthy and in one piece. Pray for those who have less than us. Find happiness in the giving and gratefulness in the receiving.
I hope everyone has a Christmas filled with blessings, joy, laughter, love, hugs, and presents under the tree. Surround yourself with family and friends, holiday music, and the warmth and spirit of the season.
Blessings to All!! (No peeking before Christmas!)
In all my years, I have never had my dander fly so high as in recent days given that a pattern designer emailed me in a rather obnoxious and accusatory tone, and told me that I had infringed on her copyright by posting a tutorial on my blog using her quilt pattern. So, given that I know a bit about copyright law and know when I am stepping over the line with regard to patterns, I made sure that I was not breaking any laws before I let her railroad me into deleting some 7 posts that were a recent tutorial on my blog.
As it turns out, I was correct. I have not plagarized her instructions or her work, or her drawings. I have not copied her pattern in any way, shape, or form from the envelope. I simply purchased her pattern, took pictures while making the quilted table runner, and explained my process for putting it all together. You should note:
"There is no such thing in U.S. Copyright Law concerning "moral rights" of a copyright holder. Selling an item relinquishes future control over that item unless BOTH parties agree otherwise or unless otherwise specifically stated by law. And, there is no protection under the so-called "common law copyright" for things that are defined as being eligible for federal copyright nor is there "common law copyright" protection for things defined as being ineligible for federal copyright protection."
If I have done something wrong, then I will be the first to admit my error and I will swiftly delete the posts, but from what I understand today about the copyright laws governing patterns, she does not have the right to tell me what I can and cannot post on my blog regarding her pattern, nor can she tell me that I cannot post a tutorial on how to make this item using her pattern that I purchased, just as long as I am not plagarizing her instructions or physically copying the pattern. I even changed the dimensions throughout the pattern. In other words, you can't copyright a quilt block unless it is truly an original and unique design. You can't copyright a triangle or a circle. You can't throw a quilt together using traditional quilt blocks and claim you are the designer of a new copyrighted design!! I've seen quilt pattern after quilt pattern using the same quilt blocks and technically the same design - the only difference being the fabric used. The quilter photographs the quilt, makes up her own pattern, and wa-lah, publishes it and sells it as if she is someone with an original creative thought.
In my posts, I had originally shown an image of the pattern I had purchased and even told my readers to purchase the pattern for the sew-a-long. A number of patterns were purchased across the country that I know about to sew-a-long with me. Most of these readers are beginning to learn how to sew and appreciated the extra explanations, instructions, and images of the process. That is the purpose of my sew-a-long: to teach my readers from my experience as a quilter and seamster - not to give away patterns or infringe on someone's copyright.
The designer claimed that I was telling my readers how to make her table runner. Well - uh - yes. I was teaching them how to sew and quilt and simply using her pattern as a guided tour you might say by which they could sew-a-long with me.
Well, to make this long story short, I've taken a rack of crap from this lady. I won't be buying any more of her patterns. I won't be offering to post her banner in my sidebar. I won't promote her patterns even if she said I could scream them from the rooftop. I'm not even going to tell you who she is in this post because God Forbid I should ever breathe her name. She might actually make a sale!! She should have been thanking me for promoting her patterns and linking to her site from my blog, instead she blew a gasket of dimensional proportions.
So, I have published a page "Copyright - Know the Law!" in hopes that sewing, quilting, crafting, and creative bloggers like myself won't hit a wall of legal mumbo-jumbo every time they make a blouse, or sock monkey, or use a commercial pattern to show readers how to sew and quilt or craft or knit or cook!!!
And, I hope that those of you who have designed your own patterns will know that we are not out to "get" you or steal from you, and we are not out to take anything away from your creative patterns. If you are so enraged by anyone who would actually use your pattern to teach another how to sew or quilt, then for goodness sakes, stop publishing your patterns, lock them in a vault, and shut up about it! We are simply proud to be a part of the creative community and want to share and teach with others. I hope you will begin to realize that if you had to qualify every person who, over the last 70 years, inspired a quilt pattern or quilt block, or quilt in general, the world would be a colder place - because there certainly would be no more quilts, quilt tutorials, quilt patterns (inspired by other quilters and quilt blocks and quilt patterns), sewing instructions, or the like.
Every time a meatloaf recipe is posted, does the cooking blogger have to identify the first person who ever made a meatloaf? or risk being dragged through court for copyright infringement? If you post a recipe, it's out there folks. Like Julia Child, expect some blogger to come along, pick up your recipe book, and start a blog by making and posting pictures and telling stories of how he or she made every recipe in your book in a year. Change it up a little if you like, but a recipe, just like a pattern is protected only so far. As for patterns, they are protected from being copied and sold off as someone elses creative work, or copied and illegally distributed. But just as Ford cannot tell it's purchaser how and where they can drive their vehicles, pattern designers cannot tell seamsters and quilters how and where they can use their patterns after they have been purchased.
Yes, there is such a thing as copyright infringement, but this is not it. However, if the facts, as I know them, are incorrect, then please let me know so that I don't continue to make a fool of myself. But show me some "evidence." Good, solid, hard evidence and legal proof - court cases and federal law, that back up your claims. Just telling me that I am wrong is NOT enough. I have my legal proof, where's yours?