And we're still working on it!
Last week was the week of social engagements--and three of them were on the same night. I had my EGA holiday party, Dearly Beloved had a gathering with a volunteer group he belongs to, and we had a neighborhood thing. We had figured out a complicated logistical plan for getting ourselves hither, thither, and yon--Dearly Beloved was going to drop me off at the EGA party, then drive to the other side of the county to make an appearance at his party, then drive back, pick me up, and we would drop in on the neighborhood get-together. As we were gathering things to put in the car to transport to all these functions, we looked at each other, and in common accord (which does not always happen!) said, "Do you really want to do all this?"
Instead we had tomato soup (hey, it's red) and grilled cheese sandwiches and watched Christmas movies on DVD.
That night while reading blogs, I found that Erica Wilson had died. I don't think there's a stitcher of a certain age who doesn't remember her program on PBS in the early 70's. I will never forget the opening, when she galloped through the door of her "cottage" with another colorful and exciting project. I must have stitched half a dozen of her whimsical crewel pieces during that time, and still treasure her Embroidery Book, the Christmas book, and the two Needleplay books in my library.
The NYTimes obit compared her to Julia Child in her influence at the time. This all made me think about the fact that Julia Child inspired hundreds of cooking shows as well as amateur chefs, while needleworkers are definitely not in the mainstream. I think there are two reasons for this: obviously, everyone has to eat. The other has more to do with the social changes in our world. Let's face it, most needlework projects take a long time to complete. It's sloooooooow process before you have the pleasure of a finish. Several years ago, I read a statistic that explained why, perhaps, we don't have more stitchers in the 25-45 age group: the average working mother with young children and a full-time job has only 45 minutes a day of personal time--and that includes time for bathing, grooming and dressing. When something takes as long as our typical project does, and you have, what--maybe 10 minutes a day to call your own?--you're going to scrapbook or surf the net, or flip through a magazine. You're not as likely to thread a needle because about the time you find your place again, you need to do something with a bitty person.
This makes introducing Gay Ann Rogers' concept of 12 stitches a day to prospective stitchers a priority. GAR suggests setting up the needlework, needle threaded, and just putting in 12 stitches every day. It's amazing what you can accomplish in 12 stitches. It's an idea . . .
But back to the mundane. While getting ready to leave for Baby Girl's for the week-end, I was doing laundry. The washer started screaming in the high-pitched voice of appliance death and stopped spinning. On the first load. (We're hoping it's just a belt. Since it is the week before Christmas and I am NOT in the mood to go appliance shopping.)
So, in a remarkable turn of affairs, I took dirty clothes and linens to Baby Girl's home and did my laundry there. I suppose there's a symmetry to the whole thing, thinking back on the loads of dirty laundry that arrived with her visits.
We had a fantastic visit. She cooked dinner for me Friday night and it was delicious. We went to see the new Sherlock Holmes movie on Saturday (and I plan to go see it again). We had pizza Saturday night. And I came home relaxed and happy.
But, you ask, have you stitched anything. Uhhhhhhhhhh . . . .no.