Pastel “Walking With Emma” by Mary Ann Prehn

A lovely piece of art reached me yesterday. The moment I saw the pastel, I was cast out into an intense longing, a reverie, washed over with love of what was before and what I profoundly miss . . . walking in the long shadows either sunrise or sunset, with Emma, with the beautiful healthy landscape of the oaks before they were assaulted by the wildfire, and Mary Ann has captured the true heart of it all in this pastel she made for me (perhaps after enjoying knitting some Walking With Emma socks?) Surely the artist is completely unaware of the fact that in two days it will be the four-year anniversary of the wildfire, for the timing is so mysterious, and although I am not sure why she has bestowed upon me such generosity, that aside, it is the miracle of the heart and mind and of strong emotions which have completely touched me. Thank you Mary Ann, I am so very honored to have this piece, and of course, I am certain Emma feels it too.

two years . . .

Two years ago I had just submitted my Walking With Emma sock pattern. It actually seems longer to me now, that very difficult time of my life waiting and waiting for the construction to finish on our rebuilt house, and eager to get my post wildfire life going again. I worked hard to distract myself on the sock pattern collection, as well as laboring to make a new place to walk, and together those elements symbolized so much to me at a time when everything seemed in such disarray, it was completely therapeutic! Now, two years later, I am revisiting those sock prototypes, and chose the ocean blue one, a chart D ribbed variation from the one-sock stack, about to cast on for the second sock so that I can not only enjoy a finished pair, but so that I’ll have some small thing to knit while walking along the territory ahead, since I must now be out every day with Juno, taking those steps again, and again, away from sadness and towards gladness!

Oh, and maybe a little explanation about all the boxes? Recently I found this collection of eight beautiful handmade nesting Shaker boxes, which I’ve wanted a set for ages, and aren’t they gorgeous! Outside of just keeping crafty things in them, I hope to use in future as photo props. I don’t have a desk this time around, instead I’ve gathered for my work space (the loft) a drop leaf table, two beat up dressers stacked one on top of the other, and an old hutch I found, and I now have homes for every imaginable craft related bit or bob I should ever want to keep, and must say that however pleased I am with the lovely groupings of vintage sewing boxes, Longaberger baskets, and Shaker boxes, I am admittedly exhausted searching in thrift shops and on Ebay, and am satisfied to say there is not a thing in the world I am in need of, being thoroughly, well and fully, done setting up shop! Kind of an old-timey space . . .

Outside of the sock thing, and another stack of prototypes for a new design, I am oh so busy being a puppy mom again, for that single most element of my life is the best, and find that caring for another being is the surest way to happiness.


jenjoycedesign© new artful spaces

There is a whole different gait about me in this holding place.

jenjoycedesign© finished

Seeking out new photogenic sweet spots …

I look and look in this new place, and think there is nowhere artful …

jenjoycedesign© Autumn sweaters finished

 Then the sun only needs to fall a little and the angles of glowing light reveal it to me …

There are the same warm light and shadow like old friends …

Coming to visit for the afternoon.

jenjoycedesign© new things 1

Come friends, and sit at the table, and I will make tea in my new teapot. I am so glad you are not lost, but found again and again …

and every day.

♣    ♣     ♣

Oh, and the Autumn sweaters are finally finished. The sweaters were one of the few things I took with me when the fire came.  (( Thank you so very much Wendy for the buttons! ))  I hope to get them to my nieces soon, and experience their beautiful form & faces, and  those familiar places of Calistoga  … soon.