It’s been a long three months since I last wrote here. My health has been faltering for more than a year now…more like two if I’m honest. I have asthma and arthritis–both manageable on their own, but in tandem, they make life challenging sometimes. At 61, I’m not as resilient as I once was; it takes me a lot longer to bounce back when I get overdone and that’s been happening a lot. I finally decided I had to quit my job at the bookstore, which I loved, but I just couldn’t keep up with it physically. I started at 4 days a week, went down to 3 in 2018 and last May went down to 2 and I still couldn’t keep up. Too tired, too weak, too much pain. I should have stopped last spring, but I’m stubborn and I always think that “tomorrow will be better”. Which is generally true if you aren’t pushing yourself to the brink daily. The brink has been getting closer and closer lately and I was in danger of falling over, so I finally accepted something had to go. I really miss it, but that’s the way it goes….
I have been home now for 5 weeks. I have started exercising again almost every day and I’m getting a lot more sleep. I’m up to almost a mile a day on my exercise bike, which isn’t much, but it’s a lot for me right now. I am constantly balancing pushing myself and staying just within the bounds so I don’t get sick. The winter weather is always a challenge–cold, dry, windy–but I am making slow, incremental progress toward better health.
I have been doing some writing and I am working on my online classes, but the progress there is also slow. I realized that I need to do a lot more work before the classes will be ready. I went back to the drawing board and reworked the concept completely a couple of weeks ago because I realized I was leaving a lot of things out–things that I have covered in person that need to be written out and imaged. There will now be an introductory basics course with one basket for those that have never done coiled basketry and either aren’t sure they will like it or for “craft dabblers” who just want to do one basket. For those who are interested in more fully experiencing coiled basketry, there will be two more comprehensive courses in Shaped Baskets and Open Bowls. These will both incorporate the basics in the intro course, but will have a wider scope and will include patterns for several baskets as well as a section on design. I am also looking into different materials for both cordage and yarns. I have a set of go-to materials I like, but I will be doing samples of different materials so students can choose what most appeals to them. When I have more of those samples done, I will share them here.
As for my own creative work, I am planning to get back to the lionfish and finish it. I have a warp on my loom I want to finish–a set of towels I started in the fall of 2018 to play with a new loom my husband gave me for my 60th birthday. I have two coiled pieces bouncing around in my head that I want to do and a tapestry that’s bouncing in there too. In addition to working on my health, I am trying to set aside at least one day a week for my studio work, but that hasn’t happened yet. Maybe this week…
So, that’s where things stand right now. I hope to get the first class up soon and I apologize for the wait. I am always working on things in my head, but my body can only do so much.
I hope all of you have a wonderful year and I will keep you posted here on what I’m doing.