here i am again, playing catch up as i try to take a deep breath. summer is gone. autumn is here. i've had a cold, unusual for me, that turned into bronchitis. this makes twice in a few months that i've had to make a trip to the doctor for an uncomfortable infection that left me compromised and unhappy here at home. but the days are crystal clear for a change, the sunlight is filtering in quietly at different angles than before, and i herald the changes of the seasons. hello, autumn... hello, smell of smoke in the air. hello, hot cups of ginger tea with a cookie on the side, hello chilly evenings, hello colors spreading from mountaintops down, down down into the valleys here below. in honor of blue skies and fluffy white clouds - sapphires and pearls
my days are even quieter now. i live half a mile up a gravel road from my mailbox, maybe i've said that before, but it makes a huge impact when i have to walk that far to pick up the mail. walter and i have a lot of quiet time to spend together, out here walking amongst the woods, down by the little stream, or down in the studio where i tap away and he either sleeps or brings me assorted toys in vain attempts to pry me away from my work. bless his heart. he really has matured, but still has that crazy springer spirit and still has a wild streak in him. he always will. life is never dull. we walk down Wooded Way in the soft rain, or in the cool shade of yellowing leaves overhanging the little one lane road. we stop by the stream to search for buckeyes, gone now mostly, and we stop to listen to the toad that took up residence in the wet earth beside the stream this summer. we sit on the porch to listen to the breeze in the trees. we just sit, and listen. we are quiet, and we are content. who wouldn't be, with peace and calm, like this? i love calling this place home. it has a name - did i mention this? - Heartrock Hill. that name was selected all the way back in 1996 when i had a sign made, but i never knew it would hang on the log walls of this cabin. it makes my mother relieved and happy to know that i am loving this place, and keeping it beautiful and safe. and it is loving me right back. a grainy look at my rainy day rainbow bedroom
i find treasures waiting for me out in the woods, or right at my back door. i gather these things and carry them inside with me, i place them here and there, and sooner or later they inspire me enough to work their spirit right into my work. i pull roots from the edges of rivers or worn spots in a trail; i clip fern fronds to press between pages; i break off a stem of dried queen anne's lace, still standing in the meadow, for the simple reason that it reminds me of a bird's nest. does this make me peculiar? i don't even care. not anymore.
i see sweetness in the clouds, in the fading leaves, in the trees. i see the little girl i used to be. my spirit is in every single thing i see, in every piece of artwork i make with my hands.
now that the early evenings come even earlier, now that the cool falls down around my shoulders as walter and i walk at dusk, i relish the time of drawing in, of shutting the windows against the coolness and the dark, of curling up on the red sofa with needle and thread in hand and stitching, stitching, stitching, long past midnight and into the wee, wee hours of the long, long nights. these nights are soft. they stretch out long and wrap themselves around us, they send us quiet dreams, they rock us in our sleep. these nights are sweet, and comforting, and full of the peaceful spirit of home. i wish you all the sweetest of times in the coming days and weeks and months ahead. sleep well. walk always in awareness. be yourself. and be well. xo
postscript: i completely neglected to mention a couple of things here, once i got to remembering all of the autumn things... my French General workshops filled up very quickly, and enough folks have signed up for a waiting list that a second workshop has been made available, for Friday October 18. yes, that is my birthday, too. i would love for you to come and spend the day with Kaari and me, stitching and creating a wrap bracelet for yourself. if interested, sign up at French General, here.
also, i've been contacted by a sweet North Carolina gal who has invited me to teach a workshop in her Wilmington studio the weekend of November 9. it will be a two-day workshop, and i'm not quite sure yet if it will be friday and saturday, or saturday and sunday. depends on several things. i've decided to teach the wrap bracelet workshop there, since it is a new class and a lot of you have expressed interest - and it will be on the east coast, for those of you who lament the west coast offerings. i know how that feels! let me know if you are interested, so i can get a good idea of numbers. it will be small - 10 or so.
don't forget, i'll be working on setting up the studio to teach small, intimate workshops there as well. give me time to invest in tables and chairs and extra tools, to do some local research for places to stay, for places to cater lunches, for little side trips. interested in visiting a pottery studio and a goat farm out this way? in purchasing fresh goat cheese, pottery and beeswax candles right there on the farm? interested in spending part of a day exploring this gorgeous area with cameras and journals, and coming back to create something based on what you have seen, heard, found? let me know what appeals to you, in that regard. i'm hear, and i'm listening.
one more thing, and then it's time to go walk down little Wooded Way: i've spent the better part of today listing new pieces in my shop. go take a look. several things have sold while i was writing this post....
thanks for continuing to be here. i know that my posts have grown farther and farther apart; the time spent writing and editing photographs seems elusive these days, in spite of the fact that my hours have actually, finally, quietened and settled down. i do appreciate your coming back to read, to let me know you are here. xo