Bitterly Cold Winter, Wrapped Up In Wool

Monday morning saw the accumulation of a whole lot of snow overnight.  The sun was shining and I was grateful for that, as I picked up the shovel and cleared the sidewalk, yet again.  I was excited to be heading for sister-friend time, a hearty soup and warm-biscuit lunch prepared by my Ya-Ya, Wendy Lees, and the experience of felting with a woman who knows wool, so well.  In fact, like me, wool is her history…her story.  Ruth Purves-Smith, oh, how I grow to love you!  Now, you have been my teacher and I treasure that!

Gathering together means the sharing of stories, the week’s events, creative projects, vision, frustration, hard work and yes, edits on cover letters, even dog tales/tails!

Meeting  Booster for the first time was more than fun!  This sweetie really wasn’t ever supposed to have a chance at life, but because of her willingness to negotiate around Booster’s many special needs, Ruth gave her that!  Apart from very unique dietary concerns and the fact that she has to consistently wear a little diaper, Booster seems to lead a very happy and contented life.  As Max’s best friend, I can tell you that this gives me great respect for Ruth.

Settling in, I loved the colours and textures that began to spill out into Wendy’s living room!

I’ve had opportunity before to watch a remarkable lesson on felting delivered by Leah C. Donald  to my grade three students.  However, I didn’t have the opportunity to share in the experience because it was necessary to supervise the students’ use of the felting needles and to be a part of their process.  So, I was excited to actually manipulate the media and to enjoy the hands-on practice.

Ruth brought some of her creations and I was at once, in awe.  Hmmm…no pictures of lunch, likely because I was enthusiastically ‘putting it down’.

 

I decided that I would like to create a hot pad for the table and to focus on technique.  I was definitely the slowest person in the room!  It took quite some time before I sorted out the use of the felting needle.  Thanks for your patience, ladies!

 

Yesterday afternoon was just one of those magical times that created memories, both in my heart and head, but also in my body.  The warm smell of wool, the texture and the concentration…all so wonderful!  The next time you feel really cold, I highly recommend wrapping yourselves up in wool, good food and friendship.

Support the Custom Woolen Mills, when you can.  Buy your gifts from artists and artisans.  Buy music from local artists.  Support the creation of treasures that come out of your local community.

 

Drives to Appointments

This whole series of short posts is about how I hope to remember to help others.  When life is such a whirlwind, it’s easy to become spun up in your own life, so much that you don’t remember that there are very practical ways that you can help others.

Naomi and daughter, Erin, are forever-friends.  I remember watching them perform as colour guard together…such beautiful and energetic young women!  Now, both married, they continue to share their journeys as women in a very different world.  Recently, Naomi has enjoyed the birth of her second babe, Jasper. We are grateful for Jasper. Well, on the day that I did a call out for a ride to my doctor, Naomi and Jasper made the time.

kindness-quotes-hd-wallpaper-26Off we went in early morning, in the rain, to Forest Lawn.  Thank you for your offer of a ride, Naomi.  I loved our conversation…and all to ourselves, I feel like I got to know you more for the very first time.  I love you and I’m grateful for your kindness.

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Where are you, Valerie Jean?

Thoughts of David Carlin…and a bit of writing…caught me missing my sister.  Everyone should be so blessed as I have been in my life…to have one sister…or to have a friend who has somehow become as close as a sister.  I remember going to sleep the night she was born.  I know a person shouldn’t make deals with God…but after all, I already had three brothers!  Maybe it isn’t right to ask God for signs or wonders.  But even as a wee thing, I had a deep and abiding faith.  I already knew the mystery of God.

It was a humid April night in North Bay.  I stared at the sheer drapery that hung motionless over my open window.  I said, “Dear God, If you are going to give me a sister…please move the curtain.”  I fell asleep staring at the drapery…motionless…but, with tremendous belief that it would move.

In the morning hours, my father came to my bedside.  I remember him shaking my arm…”Kathy…Kath…Mommy got you a sister!”

Sigh…magic!

In North Bay, after David Carlin’s art exhibit in Callander, Val and I enjoyed silence in our air-conditioned Super 8 room and then went down to Trout Lake for a picnic dinner.  This photo sort of says it all for our family.  We had good times at the lake…squealing and laughing…swimming and leaping off the docks.  It was a wonderful thing to share a picnic and to think of our childhood years…and our mother.

P1110671Back in the day…same location…my family…

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You Are My Sister

My sister defended her comprehensive papers this morning…this part is done…now forward she goes.  I’m proud of you and love you.

You are My Sister
by Antony and the Johnsons

You are my sister, we were born
So innocent, so full of need
There were times we were friends but times I was so cruel
Each night I’d ask for you to watch me as I sleep
I was so afraid of the night
You seemed to move through the places that I feared
You lived inside my world so softly
Protected only by the kindness of your nature
You are my sister
And I love you
May all of your dreams come true
We felt so differently then
So similar over the years
The way we laugh the way we experience pain
So many memories
But theres nothing left to gain from remembering
Faces and worlds that no one else will ever know
You are my sister
And I love you
May all of your dreams come true
I want this for you
They’re gonna come true (gonna come true)

New Cars and Sister-Friends

It is a great thing when a friend buys a new car and does it with her own research, confidence and decision-making!  Today, we all jumped in and drove to a McDonalds mere blocks away just to celebrate the drive and to buy an ice cream cone.  The experience was magical from beginning to end!

Happy Birthday, Elma Flaherty!

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My dear and treasured friend, Elma, turns 95 on February 19.  There are some people who mark your life with blessings again and again, and Elma is one of those people for me!   I include Jadea Kelly’s music here as a beautiful sound to enjoy while watching our Elma’s slideshow. :0)

Tonight we shared family dinner and I knew, once I waved my goodbyes at the front window, that I must recognize some of the years that we have shared…I love you, Elma Flaherty!

Front Entrance, Goodbye February 5, 2012

Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen

The sister-friends and I went out to the movies tonight!  We had all read the book, Water for Elephants at different times and loved it!  We hadn’t seen any reviews about the movie and so were somewhat cautious, given that the narrative was so darned amazing!  Well, I’m here to tell you that the movie was absolutely beautiful!  Next to The King’s Speech, I think it’s my favourite of the past year.

The characters, for me, were perfectly cast. I particularly love Jacob and Rosie!  The setting, lighting, camera angles were spectacular!  And unlike The Time Traveler’s Wife, this movie was able to stick quite closely to the story, without losing any of the ‘flavour’ established in the ‘read’. 

I highly recommend this movie!  Oh God, I feel such emotion when it comes to the treatment of some of our animals and I want to thank Nikki because her knowledge and deep sense of love for ‘elephants’ has somehow really touched me tonight! I’m pretty sappy for the moment!

"Elephant" Albertina, Vienna/ Black Chalk/ 230 x 340 mm/ by Rembrandt 1637