April 28, 2015

patience and a TIP (collecting material for a future tutorial..)


I never wanted to, but because things keep going differently than I thought/hoped
, I feel it's time to let you know that I have a progressive muscledisease. Not that you will need (or maybe even want) to know this and everyone has issues and burdens in their lives, but it feels important to me to do so. It has been very bad & incalculable for many years now and progressed again the past couple of years. Even more rapid since the beginning of January (although recently at times a bit better, thanks to treatments (except in muscleweakness). And I've always had hope of finding something to also stop the progression and even reverse: I now know of some options I believe that might and can't wait to try. But need to be stronger for that to even be possible, which I'm working on any way I can, as always).

the severity is of a kind that makes it very hard to believe how I've been able to create anything at all (just a handul of people know more or less how bad it has been for many years and is). That I have from time to time, in (very) small steps and mostly lying down, is because of different reasons, and some help from my boyfriend, but most of all: all kinds of pretty clever solutions, if I may say so myself - and I think I may :D. And what I've done has always made me incredibly happy & proud!

unfortunately 2 years ago, among other new symptoms, my hands started to tremble from time to time, while I've gotten less control over them anyway. My vision can be weird/blurry suddenly for a while at times too. Although these are the least bad kind of all symptoms and not the reason I'm extremely limited in everyday life, but as hands and eyes are about the two most important 'tools' of any miniaturist, this is not very convenient, to put it mildly. Besides that it's quite scary of course and I have no idea how this will develop and what this will mean along the way mini- or otherwise..

of course I'll keep doing whatever I can whenever I can and put it here, like always, because creativity is like a lifeforce to me and I couldn't even stop the ideas if I wanted to. But now you may understand why there is little, why I never finish some things, progression if any is slow, or I seem all over the place :D. But I've always rather chosen to do small steps on the only type of thing that I can at the already rare moments of opportunity, than do nothing at those moments just because I'm not able to do the kind of thing I 'need' to progress, finish or like working on most, or even second or third etc. Any step makes me happy and being flexible goes a long way!

miniature-TIP
after all this non-miniature-seriousness I'd like to share a miniature-TIP for everyone of you who, like me, would like to make a mini golden cane/butterfly palm someday. I love those, have one myself.
image: Ikea.nl
with the same realistic kind of stalks, ending very thinly at the end of the leaves, which is impossible to replicate I think. And even if it could be; why bother if there is material that resembles it nicely in miniature? Although not everyone will have access to it, the material for this is not only perfect but:

free (got your attention?)
natural
and in many peoples homes - ending up in vacuumcleaners/the trash - without even realising it

huh? What could this mystery-material be? Cat whiskers! I've been collecting them for a long time, when my eye caught them on the floor or my duvet. Having a bunch by now, perfect for a full palm.
'see' the plant already? It's just a small bunch in my hand, but imagine all of what I have in the bag, painted green and with leaves: I think it will be great!
I know this goes without saying and can't imagine anyone thinking of doing it, but just to be very clear in this day and age:

with this tip I absolutely do NOT imply or advise
anyone to pull whiskers out- or cut them - of any cat's face.

they loose them quite often and collecting them might not go fast, but neither does a collection of miniatures, it takes time. And you can always work on a (few) stalk(s) as you find them if you don't want to wait. Unless you wait for a tutorial, for me making that plant will not be in the near future. So in that case you'll have time to collect enough of them (or have them collected by family and friends with furry friends if you don't yourself) and in time I will do a tutorial on it.

take care and till next time!


36 comments:

  1. I wish you to find operational hands
    thank you for sharing your good ideas with us

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    1. Thank you so much Claude and I'm happy you like my ideas :D

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  2. Tjonge Monique, dat is heftig! Ik vond je werk altijd al geweldig, maar nu kijk ik er weer met hele andere ogen naar. Natuurlijk. Ik vind het bijna ongelooflijk wat jij weet te maken. Goed dat je allerlei mogelijkheden vindt om toch datgene te doen wat je leuk vindt (en vreselijk goed in bent). Met jou hoop ik dat de opties waarover je spreekt inderdaad zullen helpen de progressie van je ziekte te stoppen of om te draaien!

    Leuk idee om snorharen te gebruiken. Nu maar eens de buren porren om ze te verzamelen. Katten genoeg in de buurt (maar niet in mijn huis).

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    1. Dank je wel Josje, dat is fijn om te horen en dank voor je compliment :D Ik hoop -en denk - het ook!
      Ja lachen he? Ik vond het zelf wel komisch en ben sowieso dol op alles dat miniaturen niet alleen realistischer, maar ook makkelijker maakt :) Ah, da's fijn, dan zijn er ook vast wel buren bij die ze voor je willen verzamelen en met meer katten gaat het natuurlijk ook harder :D, succes!

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  3. I always suspected that you were missing in action because of your illness but of course, never knew what the illness was. It's a relief sometimes to acknowledge to people outside of your family that there is something wrong and that you find it difficult. Thank you for sharing with us and I can only hope that your good days exceed the bad days. It makes your miniatures even more remarkable considering what you go through to make them. You are a huge inspiration to all of us =0)

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    1. Thank you so much Pepper, I did find it scary and your comment makes me happy and your compliment is great to hear! And you're so right, it is/was difficult. I've never 'said' it out loud like that (maybe hoping it wouldn't be real or something, despite all medical ajustments I'm surrounded with and is hard to ignore. Making it so important for me, because I needed to do that finally as a next step or something. And I guess you speak from experience, if I remember correctly? I so hope the good will be more often and would love them to exceed the bad days: I'm sure they will someday!

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  4. I'm sorry to hear about your health woes. :[ Sending you positive energy and good thoughts for recovery.

    I'm going to start following Jasper around more often...he's likely to get suspicious. :D

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    1. Thank you Brae, that's so sweet of you :D Hahaha, you do that, you can find whiskers often where they sleep or play, good luck!

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  5. Hi Monique, i can imagine its been very tough for you especially when you have ideas that are difficult or impossible for you to see through, Creativity is important to all of us (even those who haven't found it yet) and once our artistic talent has been released it becomes difficult when things stand in the way or hold us back from doing it....you have found ways around this and i'm sure that you will continue to do so and keep creating in some form or another. Best wishes Tony.

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    1. Thank you Tony, that's very kind of you and means a lot. And you are very right about creativity, I do believe that too. And also that people can be and most are (very) creative in all sorts of things, but saying they're not just because they don't do well in the 'arts & crafts' kind of creativity. Which I also believe everyone is better at than they think and have seen proof of that often.

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  6. (((Monique)))

    I hope what you've found out helps you as much as possible. I am keeping you in my thoughts and sending all the positive energy your way that I can.

    Thank you for sharing your beautiful spirit with us.

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    1. Thank you for your kind and sweet words Azteclady, feels good!

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  7. Hi Monique! I am very distressed to learn of your illness and I know that there must be times where you feel much despair! You've stated you have struggled with this disease for a long time. You sound like a woman with a naturally strong will and determination to get better. The human body is capable of so much greatness but is still vulnerable to that which can hold us back when we desire to move forward. I know that you are doing everything that you can think of to assist your body towards that end, and yet one cannot help but be impressed by what you have been able to achieve despite your illness. What you have accomplished in light of the obstacles which you have described, makes what you have done even more remarkable! I think of the delicacy of the laptop project that you set for yourself and the hand and eye control which that project requires!!! You continue to hold very high standards for yourself and will not settle for less than the Best even when physically challenged by your disease. You are quite a resilient and resourceful woman!
    I will pray to God for continued strength and recovery for you, Monique. I believe God answers prayers Especially when other solutions fail and/or disappoint us.
    About the cat whiskers: I will be waiting to see what and how you make them into a plant! Only YOU would take on a project of this nature.

    Not at all surprising :D

    elizabeth

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    1. Thank you so much Elizabeth, your words really touched me. You are absolutely right: despair has been a part at occassions, it's not easy, but luckily that's not often and never for long.

      haha, you will see it will be great, I'm sure of it (but first want to finish do some other things, and people have some time to collect whiskers, but I look forward to it, think it will be fun!

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  8. Jemig Monique, wat een verhaal over jouw ziekte!
    Ik sluit me helemaal aan bij Josje: ik kijk nu met nóg meer bewondering naar jouw prachtige mini uitvindingen/creaties, dan dat ik dat sowieso voorheen al deed!! Ik hoop ook dat de genoemde opties je zullen kunnen helpen, meis.
    Wat betreft de snorharen.....heb ik effe pech: ik ben echt superallergisch voor katten, vooràl voor de haren, dus......helaas geen mooie plant voor mij :(! Moet ik er toch maar wat anders op verzinnen, hè? Alleen ben ik voorlopig ook even uit de running, misschien daarna....:).
    Groetjes, Ilona

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    1. Dank je wel Ilona voor je lieve woorden, en dat hoop ik ook, maar denk het wel! Iets teveel positieve verhalen van mensen in ook behoorlijk wanhopige situaties, dus dat moet deels of veel gaan schelen, I'm sure of it!
      He wat ontzettend jammer vd kattenallergie, irritant zeg.. Zouden de snorharen daar ook onder vallen omdat dat uit hetzelfde materiaal bestaat (dacht ik) als nagels? Mmmm.... mocht ik ooit iets anders bedenken, dan laat ik je dat weten, want verdorie zeg, zou toch leuk zijn als je ook een palm kunt maken! Wat rot dat je voorlopig (weer geloof ik?) uit de running bent, gaat ook niet echt lekker he? In ieder geval heel veel sterkte joh!

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  9. Una idea muy original.
    Me gusta como afrontas la enfermedad.

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    1. Gracias, eso es bueno escuchar Isabel! Y estoy contento de que al igual que la idea de los bigotes :D

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  10. Dear Monique,
    Very sorry to hear that your health is suffering. I do so enjoy your posts and the amazing attention to detail. I remember when I first discovered you when you made the handcream ... amazing!
    Now as for cat whiskers - if only Cleo my Siamese cat was still with me. I remember one of my sons trimmed her whiskers once but luckily they returned in full glory, I think he cut his own hair at the same time!
    We miniaturists see treasures in so many things!
    regards Janine

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    1. Thank you Janine, for your kind comment and compliment!
      I'm sorry about Cleo (and obviously for more than just her whiskers :)) Haha, they do return luckily, and your son will probably not do things like that anymore.
      We do, don't we, everything gets an extra glance to see if something can be made, it's an 'obsession' within an 'obsession' :D

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  11. Dat zal een mooie palm worden, wat een geweldig idee! Ik heb hier 2 katten rondlopen maar ben bang dat de snorharen de stofzuiger in verdwijnen, ik vind er nooit! Maar ja ik ben best kippig dus misschien zijn ze er wel maar zie ik het gewoon niet :).
    Die palm heb ik toevallig pas bij Ikea gekocht, maar mn katten -on topic- hebben 'm al half gesloopt.
    Vroeger heb ik 11 jaar een palm gehad, schijnt erg lang te zijn; maar ik betwijfel of deze zo oud gaat worden.

    Voor wat betreft je ziekte: ik vermoedde al zoiets.
    Zowiezo zo ontzettend shit als het minder gaat; en dan ook nog die rotte onzekerheid. ik heb enorme bewondering voor je inventiviteit en je volharding. En ja, die inventiviteit blijkt ook duidelijk aan je miniaturen.
    Ik vind het hartstikke moedig van je om erover te bloggen want dat is toch een hele horde om te nemen.
    Maar misschien lucht het ook wel op.
    Ik weet niet welke ziekte/aandoening je hebt, maar ik blijf graag een beetje op de hoogte van medische ontdekkingen en onderzoeken, misschien kom ik iets tegen waar je iets aan hebt.
    Als je wilt kun je me ook altijd mailen over mini's of gewoon een praatje of whatever.

    Hou je taai, meis en ik hoop dat het nou toch de goede kant weer opgaat.
    Groetsels en een dikke knuf,
    Gee

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    1. Dank je wel Gee, ik denk ook dat het heel mooi gaat worden. Ah, kan ik me voorstellen hoor. En dat je ze niet ziet kan 2 dingen betekenen: dat ze je niet zijn opgevallen, ik weet nl. niet of ik ze ooit heb gezien tot ik er een keer 1 onder m'n neus had en dus niet te missen en het palm-idee kreeg en er soort van op ging letten, ze iig sneller opvallen. Net als dingen die je nooit zag en als je het zelf hebt zei je het ineens overal, dat idee.
      OF, mijn katten hebben altijd meer snorharen verloren (heb er nu nog 1), dat kan natuurlijk ook, geen idee. Maar volgens mij is het een aardig natuurlijk fenomeen, al zal de ene kat vaker snorharen wisselen dan andere kan ik me zo voorstellen.
      Oh wat zonde van je palm! Mijn kat heeft soms ook heerlijk liggen ravotten in de bladeren die over de bankleuning hingen :D Dat klinkt erg lang 11 jaar, netjes!

      Dank je wel voor je lieve woorden, het was inderdaad een lastige en had zo gehoopt dat ik het gewoon kon laten. Maar het werd minder en minder en omdat ik nogal hoopvol ben ingesteld heb ik ook dan nog het idee dat het niet hoeft, maar inmiddels werd het toch echt tijd.

      Je mailvoorstel hou ik in gedachten, al zal ik dat niet snel doen omdat ik al blij ben als het lukt met m'n allerdierbaarsten een beetje in contact te blijven. Maar dank dank dank, erg lief van je! Groetjes Monique

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  12. What you have shared has increased my admiration of your achievements! I love your imaginative ideas and the amazing reality you achieve.

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    1. Thank you so much Susan, that is really great to hear!

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  13. I am so sorry to hear that. Your work is amazing. So perfect and so detailed and true. I hope you get stronger. I do think that the ability to be creative is very helpful and therapeutic - even just to think of all the ideas. I have so many ideas that I don't have time to accomplish. Anyway, wishing you the best!

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    1. Thank you Penelope, for your kind words and compliments! And you're so right, creativity - in any form, even in the mind as you say - is therapeutic. It's a shame isn't it, we - whatever the reason - can't accomplish all our ideas? But everyone is an accomplishment and thrilling! I hope you find more time for them, and I wish you all the best too!

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  14. En primer lugar,lamento mucho que tu enfermedad avance,me gusta tu actitud al enfrentarla,no perder nunca la esperanza de que pueda frenarse o incluso curar,eres muy valiente! Y comprendo que tengas días en que todo se hace muy difícil,yo también sufro una enfermedad crónica que no me deja hacer todo lo que mi cabeza piensa,pero estoy segura que con tu tesón y ganas de superación harás frente al día a día !!
    La idea de los pelos de gato,me parece fantástica,tu palma quedara maravillosa!!
    Besos.

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    1. Gracias por su agradable y cálidas palabras usted Pilar. Lo que hay que saber que usted tiene una enfermedad crónica .. usted sabe muy bien lo que puede obstaculizar. Le deseo mucha fuerza. Y me gusta que te gusta la idea de los bigotes de una palma encuentra una buena idea!

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  15. How very brave of you to share your illness. I am praying for healing and your speedy return to Miniatures. I wish you the best.

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    1. Thank you so much, that's very kind of you!

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  16. Very sorry to hear of your medical troubles. We in the miniature world understand in a way no one else can. I wish you health and a friend who can mini with you and help when needed. You are a treasure in the mini world so I hope you will still remain present.
    As for the cat whiskers. I have never seen them on the floor and I have a cat!

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    1. Thank you Grandmommy, for your kind words, and big compliment! I will remain present for as long as I can and if the treatment I plan to undergo as soon as I'm fysically able to does what I think it can do, I have a lot of ideas!
      Haha, I don't know if I've ever seen them before one caught my eye being right under my nose. But can't remember ever seeing one the many years before that :D Maybe it's because they didn't loose them before, but I think it's more likely it's because they're thin and not easily noticed and you start seeing them now you know to look for them. If I'm correct about the last reason. But will be different from cat to cat how often maybe? Good luck finding some!

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  17. Dag Monique, wat ontzettend jammer dat je gezondheid niet goed is. Je hebt zoveel talent en goede ideeën; ik hoop echt dat jouw spierziekte zich zo rustig mogelijk houdt, zodat je lekker door kunt werken aan je miniaturen. Ik wacht rustig je tutorial over de snorharen af!

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    1. dank je wel Luduina voor je fijne compliment en wensen. Ik hoop het ook! 'Niet goed' is wel een behoorlijk understatement trouwens; vorig jaar is door een arts gesproken over een verzorgingshuis vanwege de ernst van mijn situatie.. Die tutorial stond sowieso nog niet op de planning, ik wil nl. eerst wat andere dingen doen, maar besloot dat het nu noemen ervan mensen de gelegenheid geeft snorharen te verzamelen aangezien het echt wel een tijd duurt voor je er genoeg hebt voor een plant, vandaar.

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  18. Monique, you have no idea how frustrated I feel for you. You are so dexterous, I find this so unfair! I'm now even more amazed at what you have accomplished, you truly are one of the best at making miniatures. I have extra appreciation for everything you have made. (I had wondered if you had Arietty working on your behalf at times :D ). Thank you for opening up to us as well. I don't know what else to say to you, I love your work and your ideas so much. Genuinely hope that you can be helped, you are absolutely worth it!! I don't know how to go from serious to miniature serious...but here goes,

    I'll collect some of my cat's whiskers for you, I see them the odd time when hoovering. I can get you some elusive black ones too, belonging to my other cat Lisa :D

    It's always lovely to see a post from you, now I understand how difficult it is for you to make your content, I would be very happy to see non-miniature related posts from you, if you feel the need to blog. Our posts are for staying in touch with one another as well as sharing our creations.

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    1. Thank you so much Sarah, for your sweet and warming words and huge compliment! I don't know Arietty and I can assure you he/she has not been working on my behalf, haha. The only help I've got is from my boyfriend who has cut and sawn things for me.
      Thanks for your suggestion on non-mini-related blogposts, you're absolutely right and it's a good idea and I might do that.
      Ooeehhh... black whiskers, that sounds great! I do have enough whiskers for a good size palm, but thanks for your kind offer.

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