Storyhill Fest. An amazing lineup of folk musicians who came together at Clearwater Forest Camp near Deerwood Minnesota to round out our Labor Day Weekend. It's just twenty miles from Brainerd. Practically in our backyard. Dick and I attended the festival on Sunday, September 1st. Our third year consecutively. The event is organized and hosted by Chris Cunningham and John Hermanson, a folk duo known as Storyhill. (This photo is from our attendance in 2012.)
Avalon is one of their songs. Beautifully touching. "Sister leave me here to breathe my final breath. I leave you facing life in the face of death. There is no deeper truth. There is no truer rest. Avalon. Avalon." It will be played at Dick's and my funerals... a peaceful sendoff. One of my favorite performances this year was Love We Are We Love by the duo "The Sea The Sea." Last year's festival featured Carrie Elkin and Danny Schmidt, who were present at this year's event but didn't perform on the day we attended. Their song, Company of Friends impacted my life... my lifetime. Storyhill Fest. Impactful. Life changing.
Oh, I do love Ace Hardware Stores. Throughout the years, they haven't changed. No matter where one is located across this country... in cities and small towns, the atmosphere is the same. Walking through the door instantly transports one back in time. It's being greeted at the door with a friendly "Hello," and "Can I help you find something?" It's the homey items that line the store shelves.
A small, independently-owned business like Ace Hardware requires small town banter... exchanging pleasantries. It's just expected. "Have your baby chicks arrived at the post office yet? How's your crop of tomatoes this year? We just stocked the cutest canning jar lids in aisle 5." From today's visit, I came home with two fun treasures. First is a magnetic hook for the side of my fridge to hang my mitten booklet that holds "to get" lists. (The three handy dandy kitchen charts, that I printed onto magnet sheets, came from marthastewart.com.)
In addition, to add color to my world, I snagged this ceramic "paint can" on a 50% off display of valentine-themed items. The words, LOVE LIFE, is carved into its side. I lined the bottom of the inside with a circle of red felt to cushion the sharp points of pencils and pens.
A few other little handy kitchen tools from my Ace Hardware outing will show up in future posts. Count on it.
This patchouli oil sparkled in the afternoon sunshine where I set it atop a porch railing with the autumn-leafed trees in the background. The genie-in-a-bottle flask is as special as its contents. It was one of those unique-to-me sort of gifts that only comes by way of someone who knows you as well as you know yourself. In this case, it was my daughter Heather.
Commonly referred to as "hippie perfume" because of its popularity in the 1960s by those who lived an alternative lifestyle, patchouli is a bushy herb of the mint family that thrives in tropical regions. Derived from the plant's dried leaves, the oil has a calming effect to ease tension, soothes dry chapped skin, and its antifungal properties are useful in treating athlete's foot. The pungent, earthy, musty, scent is penetrating, so go with just a little dab if used as a perfume.
In the late 60s and early 70s, I wore two perfumes - Windsong, that could be purchased cheaply at a dime store, and Patchouli Oil. During that time, I worked as a cashier at the Scott Store located in the East Brainerd Mall, which was the first indoor mall to be built in Brainerd. When I was assigned the register closest to the exit to the parking lot (as opposed to the register going out into the mall's hallway), Aggie, an energetic coworker with white hair who I thought at my young age must be in her late 70s but was probably 50 something, ordered and stocked products like sponges, cleansers, measuring cups and bowls, oilcloth, etc. in the household department near my register. Whenever I wore patchouli oil, she was very vocal about trying to uncover where "that musty smell" was coming from. She moved boxes of merchandise waiting to be displayed on store shelves, searched underneath stock that hadn't moved in a long period, cleaned out the shelves in the cabinet where the register sat... trying to find the source of the mustiness to eliminate it. I wasn't brave enough to tell her that it was me. So Aggie. I'm telling you now. It was me. You can stop looking.
Yep, Dick and I were up in the wee hours of this morning to gaze in awe at the amazing dark amber colored lunar eclipse. I took this photo at 2:33 a.m.
A total lunar eclipse occurs when the Earth blocks the sun's rays from the face of the moon. The moon is then fully in the shadow cast in space by the Earth. Today's partial eclipse was scheduled to begin at 1:33 a.m. Eastern and the total eclipse was to last between 2:41 a.m and 3:53 a.m., so I shot this photo 8 minutes before the total eclipse. The partial eclipse was to end at 5:01 a.m. It is an unusual occurrence because the last time a total lunar eclipse happened on the winter solstice (1st day of winter) was way back in the year 1638. The next time it will occur on the winter solstice will be the year 2094, so I figured it was this year or never for me. I convinced Dick of it, too. He stood behind me holding my upstretched arms steady to minimize my camera's movement. After the fact, we thought it would have been easier if I had lied flat on my back on the ground, but I liked that it turned into a two-person effort... a tender moment.
My daughters tell their kids stories. One story my daughter Heather has retold is that each year, when I was growing up, I spent hours looking through a Fall/Winter Sears Catalog choosing the perfect fabrics for dresses my mom would sew for the new school year. One year, I chose a fabric with monkeys printed all over it.
My 6 year-old granddaughter, O'Malley, gave me this drawing and swatch of monkey fabric for my birthday because I like to sew and the fabric reminded her of the story. Isn't it the sweetest gift one could receive?
Just in time for October's cooler temperatures, my daughter Jessie gave me a sweatshirt for my birthday. I had complimented her on the sweatshirt she was wearing... and she remembered.
A stitched triangle at the base of the neck adds a spot of detail to its solid color... a perfect shade of gray.
It's slimmer cut is roomy enough so as movement is not restricted, but it doesn't look like I'm wearing one of Dick's sweatshirts. The inside is lined with a layer of fleece making it soft, cozy, and warm. My trip to Bayfield for my birthday spent with Dick... and my three girls and all their sweetness. My birthday was most perfect. Yes, perfect.