Wednesday, July 31, 2013

#552: Counting Blessings

You know that story in John
where the guys have been fishing all night and
Jesus tells them to throw the nets on the
right side of the boat
and they catch 153 fish?
I love that story.
Codfish, in a tote at the Ruthie B, 
Nantucket's last resident dragger.

So here they are:  exhausted, disheartened, hopeless.
They do what Jesus says and catch more fish than they can haul.
And John says, "It is the Lord!"
John, who only a short time earlier had watched Jesus
tortured to death on a cross.
Now He's inviting them to breakfast.

Can you picture it?
The boat brought in to shore with its net
stuffed with thrashing fish, probably musht.
The men laughing and calling out numbers:
I got 17, 18, 19...
32 over here! 33, 34, 35...
Counting blessings thankfully,
then sharing them out:

19 raspberries

Four fat peapods,
multiplying peas.

Six bantam chickens, not yet laying eggs,

One treasured grandson,
learning to balance like his mom.

Sunrise over my home island,
shared with tens of thousands in the summer.
Welcome,
and if you'll excuse me,
I'm off to have breakfast with Jesus...

Saturday, July 27, 2013

#551: Masterpiece, Ireland Galleries

This is Lorene Ireland:
with one of her creations at the Folk Art and Artisan's Show.
A similar design won an award at the
World of Wearable Art in New Zealand.
I cannot even imagine the time and focus it must take 
to create such a masterpiece.

Her pieces are covered with thousands of seashells,
artfully arranged.
Her grandmother's shell collection
 got her started.
Many times that spark of creativity is
ignited by love of someone.
For me, with the necktie chairs, it was my dad.
For Lorene, it was her grandma.

She has a shop down on Old South Wharf.
There are a whole bunch of tiny shops on the wharf
which I love to visit.
Usually, the shopkeeper/artist is there,
continuing to follow their passion.

Even when it involves loading and unloading
for a show.

Friday, July 26, 2013

#550: After the Folk Art and Artisan Show

I sold one piece, the baby bear chair:
Which will now be loved by a toddler in New Canaan.
It was disheartening to sit for 3+ days and make only 1 sale.

Although a couple of hundred people came by the booth.
We gave out quite a few free Lifesavers.
Did you know they're called Lifesavers 
because they look like mini life preservers?
Well, now you do.

This is Marcia.
She's a photographer  and maker of teddy bears.
I loved having one of her bears in our booth for company.

As the show wasn't that busy
 I spent a lot of time visiting other booths.
21 of the 64 booths at the Show 
were from Nantucket.
Here's the one right next to us:
she makes jewelry.

She took a class from Sara Hutton years ago, 
and launched a career.

She likes turquoise and pearls,

A lot.
The freshwater pearl earrings were quite popular.

Here's what I love about pearls:
they form in oysters around a
grain of sand, like pus around a splinter.
Except, they're beautiful.

My life has irritants too, given by God for a purpose.
The question is, what to do with the irritation?
Make pearls, or pus?

Thursday, July 18, 2013

#549: The Nantucket Folk Art and Artisan Show

I'm in it! Woohoo!
I've never applied before as even the smallest booth costs $500.
Ouch.
But this year my friend Marcia Strickland
is sharing her booth with me.
 Baby Bear, Mama Bear and Papa Bear chairs are ready for 

Baby Bear's chair has a silk tie pouch 
for a Beatrix Potter story.

I made 3 more of these stools,
which explains why I haven't blogged for a week...

And another toddler rocker, in red,
for Marcia's handmade Butterscotch Bear.
By handmade I mean no machine sewing,
all by hand.
She amazes me.

 Here's the booth.
I'm thinking a few silk neckties would spice it up,
have to talk to Marcia ...

Hopefully, these, plus Marcia's Nantucket photos, 
will all be gone by Monday.
I'll let you know.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

#548: Nantucket Community Garden

Not everyone on Nantucket has a yard.
Lack of a yard is no obstacle to an island gardener,
we have a 40 plot community garden
out by Bartlett's Farm.
Which currently smells like honeysuckle.

Some gardens are elaborately structured.

Others, not so much.

It's a place for experiments--
will tomatoes grow better in a black tote?
Check back in August.

Is  black plastic better for keeping weeds at bay?

Or mulch?

Or hay?

The Colorado potato beetles have arrived,
but with many helpers, they get picked off quickly.

Veggies, flowers, community, whimsy.

The robin approves.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

#547: Hope House Haiti

So what does a Nantucket blog have to do with Haiti?
Outside our fish market is a bookcase:
It's filled with kid books, classics, mysteries,
all kinds of books for summer reading.

This sign asks for donations for Hope House 
in Fond Parisien, Haiti.
Take a book and leave whatever amount you can.

This is Yvrose Ismael and her husband, Pierre Richard.
They are the adoptive parents of the 30 children of Hope House.
Their first child came to them three years ago, just after the earthquake. 

The children now have a home,

a school,
along with 300 other students,

A well, electricity...

and a cow, for milk for the little ones.

The connection is this:
Yvrose worked on Nantucket summers
to earn money to pay the teachers in her school.
She was just back this summer for a short visit
to share with the Vacation Bible School kids 
about God's faithfulness in all things.

The VBS kids then raised enough money to
get chickens for Yve's kids in Haiti.

They're hoping to buy a parcel of land 
next to theirs to build a farm.
And,  given the faithfulness of God,
I believe it will happen.

Monday, July 8, 2013

#546: Colorado Potato Beetles, part two

Ahh, for the good old days on Nantucket.

Not the windswept moors and Sankaty Lighthouse,

nor the patriotic monument on Main Street,

nor even the Sconset walk,
no these are the same as always.
No need for nostalgia here.

What I miss are the days before Colorado potato beetles.
This is one of two egg masses I discovered this morning.
Before last year we had never seen this, ever.

And we'e been growing potatoes for over a decade.

Not only do they attack our potatoes,
they're on the tomato plants

See? Jabba the Hutt wannabees.


And what's that on the eggplant?

More. The battlefield expands.
How I long for the good old days of plant potatoes,
hill up potatoes, harvest potatoes.
Eat potatoes.
And no sharing with Jabba wannabees.

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