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Thursday, June 20, 2013

Back from my Iowa Get Away

I spent a week with a friend that I went to high school with.  She stayed put while I was the one to move all over the country.  So now I envy her for her stability and success.  She and her husband have a good business in a tiny town on the Des Moines River in Van Buren County.  You can google the county or the town, Bentonsport and you will find your way to her shop, it is called Iron and Lace.  Her husband is a very talented blacksmith and she is a potter, weaver, and much more.  Her signature pottery has the imprint of Queen Anne's lace (a common weed)  and you will see from some of the pictures how beautiful it is. 
The first pic is of their shop. A picture taken at an earlier time.

Second pic is me weaving a rug on her loom in the shop.  This is the first time I have gotten to weave on a big heavy loom like this.  Quite different than my little Baby Wolf.

This picture is of Miss Betty!  She just whipped up this "little" bowel while I was weaving on the rug.  I really felt I was in my element and enjoyed it so much.  It was Memorial Day and she likes to have demonstrations going on for the customers.  She would tell them that I was a friend on a working vacation.

This is Ginny, who is an artist that works in the shop with Betty. In her spare time she ties off rugs as you can see here.

This is just a small sample of their work.  They hold classes on a regular basis to teach their crafts.  The county has a program that is very successful that I will have to talk about another time.  But they are deeply involved in this.  Retirement?????  Not on their radar. 

The river was above flood stage while I was there.   This old bridge has been preserved as a walk bridge now rather than be torn down.  The new bridge is about half mile up stream.

The last picture is taken from the porch of her store.  So you can see how close to the river she is.  They have had to sandbag in the past.

So you can see why I ended up not traveling over the county like I usually do.  I did go into town once but got caught in a tornado!!!!  Really.  It rained off and on while I was there and I had made plans to go into the nearest town about 6 miles away to visit some other friends and the sky looked like rain, well the closer I got to town I saw a white wall of water and knew it was going to be raining like mad in a couple minutes so I stopped at a church that was on this road and parked under their overhang and it hit.  It rained so hard that I was running my wipers while under this overhang and the little car I was in was rocking.  I have to admit I was a little scared.  When it passed I went on into town and there were trees down all over town.  BIG trees.  After supper the friends and I went for a drive and saw the damage.  About a mile up the river there were alot of big pine trees snapped off about 15 ft off the ground.  At first they said it was straight line winds but a few days later after better evaluation it was classified as an EF1 tornado.  OK that was close enough.
Well I am caught up for the moment.  Got to teach my friend and her daughters a different technique on the loom and came home and am now making tote bags on the loom.  Got 4 done so far.  Will have to look at my other blog if interested.   Its

Till next time: Teachers open the door, but you must enter by yourself-----Chinese Proverb