It is time, once again dear friends, to be off. I leave tomorrow for a place that feels like a small slice of heaven. I often experience a deep yearning to return to this haven when I have been away too long.
This Shangri-La is an escape from one life's endless responsibilities, the perpetual to-dos, the nagging worries, and other realities of the everyday. A place to think, to breathe in the fresh air of majestic snowcapped mountains, and be close to the sea. A somewhere that I can be surrounded by the healing elements of such a magnificent natural landscape that is much different than the plains of the Midwest.
I am traveling to Seattle, Washington but more specifically, Port Townsend to partake in the 3rd annual ArtFiberFest.
It is hard to adequately articulate the creative ebb and flow of this retreat, which is so very different from others that I have attended.
This gathering, where we speak a somewhat different language, using words such as fabric, thread, needle, felting, stitching, beading, dyeing, is far from the welding, soldering, hammering, liquid nails, metal, and painting mediums most mixed media artists are normally accustom too.
It is this world that is rich with soft fibers and beautiful textures waiting to be touched and embraced, and artisans that preserve age old traditions of quilting, sewing, and intricate handwork, along with pushing the boundaries of these utilitarian processes, with their hints of cottage craftiness, into the elevated realms of art.
I will experience the best of all worlds during my visit. Normally, when I participate in a retreat each and every minute is jammed packed with loads of activities.
It is lots of fun to be going and doing, spending time creating and being with friends. However, on this trip not only will I have the privilege of teaching a class with my adorable mother-in-law, Marylin Huskamp, vending, and being a student, I also have the rare opportunity for a day all to myself... to be alone with my thoughts, explore the beach, walk the quaint streets of a sleepy downtown, soaking-up the sun or rain with no set agenda. Moments to unwind and let the day take me where it will.
Although, I truly savor the idea of these upcoming days... I know in my heart that every second will bring me one step closer to the moment when I come full circle having traveled the pathways back to a place here in Kansas that I adore and dearly love... a place I call Home.
"But even being out in the world
experiencing Life, having an Adventure
there is a small space in my heart
with a longing to be Home."