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Showing posts from February, 2023

Five-Year Quilt Update

It was Halloween night and I was around a campfire with friends, tatting my lace. A friend leans toward me and whispers, "Were you homeschooled?"  I giggled, holding up my tatting. "Is it obvious?"  He laughs, "Yes."  How many stitches are in this quilt? Probably as many miles I've traveled. And yes, this quilt is marked with the memory of many places seen.  I've reached that five-year deadline, and it's not quite done yet. I'd just finished getting the quilt mostly together last year.  I worked on a lot of other projects throughout spring and summer but began working on tatting some lace mid-June.  End of August I decided to go on a five-month road trip. My quilt was still not finished, and I didn't want to bring all of it with me. I labored every spare quiet moment and finished quilting it by end of September using a large embroidery hoop, thimble, and thread. I often had to wear bandages on other fingers . . . my callouse

Unnecessary But Aesthetic Gates

I'm in that last stride before stepping homeward.  I've been accepted into a six-week work study program at the John C Campbell Folk School, and my second week is half over. It's one of the fairest work exchanges I've ever found myself doing. We work three weeks for lodging, food, and for up to three weeks of classes plus two weekend classes. But even the "work" is arranged to be pleasant, if you don't mind sharing some full-hearted effort. I've grown at least half a muscle in each arm, and I've been much too busy to do anything except soak in abundant opportunity. The staff like to let you know the place is haunted by friendly ghosts. Last night my roommate and I awoke to find our bedroom door wide open, so maybe it's true. I like the idea of Olive's ghost watching over the place, walking through the gardens, and visiting the students in all her favorite places. This school seems to have a theme of unnecessary but a

Throwing Out the Fleece to Make Stone Soup (Travel update)

December was a step into Dostoevsky's words, "the soul is healed by being with children." It was the time of basking in Elizabeth's greatest fairytale, a true-ish story called "Green Dolphin Street". I spent the first half of the month staying with a friend, waiting with her for her first child to come. She and I processed a small deer, and then when the little one was born, I tried to help by cooking and cleaning. I tended to spend much of my spare time sewing on her treadle machine. I kept busy, but never too busy to not be able to take breaks for holding baby. There's been so much contentment. I didn't want to leave.  But time inures us ever onward.  I went to visit an old friend who is going through a divorce. It was sad to be there. She and I worked on projects together, I filled the house with piano music, and I cu