Well, its official, school is now in session and my free days are several months away again. I surely did enjoy my summer, though. I got to spend two full weeks with my daughter and her family. Those four little Js are something else and their Nana and Papa would move heaven and earth for them. And that brings me to the latest family news....my lovely daughter is expecting J#5 in February. Wow!!!!!!
Appalachian Art is already in full swing. Last week we learned about Cherokee and Appalachian basketry and this week we begin actually making a basket. This AM we went out on the walking trail and gathered willow branches to use along with our commercial reed to make the "Round Reed Wall Basket" from Lyn Siler's Handmade Baskets. We made these at the end of spring semester and they were quite a success. The students all produced nice baskets without a lot of trouble. Everyone is very excited to be making baskets.
Monday, my better half and I went on a day trip to Cades Cove in the Great Smoky Mtns National Park. The Cove is a special place for us for several reasons. I am a descendent of the Myers family who lived there before it was designated for park lands. My great, great grandparents are buried in the cemetery at the Methodist Church. When our daughter and son were young, this day trip was one of the few things we could really afford to do with any regularity. We often left early on a Sat AM with a picnic lunch and spent the day in the Cove. If you arrived early , or stayed late, the acres and acres of fields were usually dotted with whitetail deer, groundhogs and an occasionaly fox or black bear. The kids loved to see the animals. Many days they counted well over 100 deer in the fields and edges of the woods. Sometimes we hiked out to Abram's Falls or returned home by way of Parson's Branch/Rabbit Creek Rd. So yesterday was a good day, even though it was just the two of us. We want to take the little Js sometime. On the way into the Cove we stopped for YUMMY fudge and Louwe and Egbert coffee. At the visitors center we met a very nice Park Range, Lisa Free, who was in costume spinning on an 1800s wheel. We had a very nice visit with her and exchanged fiber resource info before we parted company. On the way back out of the Cove we stopped at Burgermaster, another family favorite stop, for shakes...strawberry for him, peanut butter for me. Fun day. We plan to repeat this trip the last weekend of the month for Old Timer's Day in the Cove and neighboring Townsend, TN. This event features lots of crafts, demos and old time music.