Tuesday, March 17, 2020

The Postponement

As I sit at my laptop writing, the sun shines happily through the window and onto my sleeping puppy. My orange cat grooms my black cat in a show of feline brotherhood. My fiance reads a book in the other room. In an hour I'll settle in with a cup of tea and we'll watch an old movie.

This could be any March day. But it's not.

There's an odd sense of normalcy amidst a panicked country, and I find it trapped in my apartment now. A deadly virus crept into our lives, case by case, until it infiltrated the very air we breath and the surfaces we touch. I'm probably not going to suffer serious health consequences, but I could carry this and hurt someone I care about. So here I sit, honoring the self-isolation requested by the state and national government. My school has suspended classes for the next three weeks, with the possibility of another three to five weeks more.

The Citizen's Forum of the 1860s was meant to bring people together, and that's exactly what we don't need at this time. I could live with cold-like symptoms but I wouldn't be able to live with myself if I'd contributed to some else's illness. I made the call to postpone the conference, and the swing of emotions that accompany that decision. It has taken about a week to really come to terms with it. After a year of planning and hard work, it's hard to delay.
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Our goal is to postpone for at least a month or two, possibly run the conference in June, or even a smaller version in the fall. Time will tell how the virus runs its course. In the meantime, I'm home for at least the next three weeks. We're doing our best to participate in social distancing, so no trips or visits with anyone for the foreseeable future. I could really use a family visit right now.

I hope you are safe and well. I think I'll feel a bit better in another few days. My puppy and kittens are certainly working their therapeutic magic.


Wednesday, March 11, 2020

Punch Paper Needle Book

Oh the pre-conference bliss...between the tiny details and planning, I find myself yearning for a creative outlet. Punch paper is easy enough for that, as well as inexpensive.

All the materials for this needlebook was available in my stash. The little paper squares took the longest to set just right. I attached the finished punch paper piece to silk-covered chipboard. The blue fabric on the inside is a bit of leftover wool. It's not perfect, but it's adorable and would make an excellent gift!

I have a few more goodies set aside to photograph. I'll be creating posts for them soon!


Tuesday, March 3, 2020

A Rug Hooking Class

Recently I've had the opportunity to take a rug hooking class. I have no desire to crochet or knit, though they seem to be pretty popular hobbies for people in living history communities. Too much counting for me (ha!). Give me teeny tiny beads all day.

Rug hooking is an old craft. After using every conceivable bit of fabric for clothing, quilts, and anything else, the final stop could be a hooked rug. Ladies cut them into strips, then pulled it through linen or burlap, and voila! The designs are adorable and very economical for the time period. Waste not, want not.

I saw a kit online, and the little sheep looked cute, so I Amazon Primed that thing to my doorstep. And it only took a few minutes to realize that the materials weren't great and I was in over my head. Hence the rug hooking class, from someone who knew what they were doing!

The instructor showed me the actual materials I should use, as well as explained the different techniques available. Then I saw some of her work; I'm excited to see what I can do next! She was very kind and helpful, and showed me enough to get started in this new craft.

We pulled out the terrible yarn and I got to work with the real wool strips. It's slow but steady work, and it didn't take too long to do a small area. It was very relaxing, and I can imagine myself finishing a whole rug in no time! I had fun playing around with the colors.

I'm almost done with my little sheep. I plan to fill in the background and border over the next week or two. It's the perfect project to do in front of the tv at night. I'll show you the finished piece when it is done!


On My Bookshelf: December

December has been a really rough month. Between what happened in Oxford (not far from where I live...) and just the general pandemic issues,...