Hello everyone! Thank you so very much for all your lovely, compassionate and thoughtful emails and comments. It never ceases to amaze me how wonderful and caring people really are.
One of my designs did get chosen for Annie’s upcoming special interest publication. I wasn’t really sure how I’d react to having a project set before me, but I found out, oddly enough that I really do love to quilt! I thought quilting for me had come to an end. I had been contemplating selling off my sizable stash and concentrating entirely on my writing. But due to Mikes’ passing, I’m beginning to discover what is really important to me and quilting is, after all. My hopes and dreams are that I can combine my quilting and writing – which is what I’ve wanted to do all along.
I’ve written two children’s picture books (for ages 4 to 8) that do combine quilting and writing. I’m patiently waiting for that “needle in a haystack” publisher that will take on my stories. Fingers crossed!
I’ve also discovered, thanks to my son, that I need to drop all the “shoulds” from my life. How many times in the past did I consider what I “should” do instead of what I really wanted to do? Public perception, social pressures and old ideas that have been drilled into my head are going by the wayside. Mike’s untimely death has made me realize some very important things. Time is limited and it may very well end abruptly. No more trying to please everyone with the decisions I make. No more wondering if someone will not like me if I turn them down. No more anxiety over which direction to go. I will step back and really assess my decisions, using updated criteria. I’ve learned that life can easily take us on tangents, in directions we have no business travelling.
I want to spend as much time as possible at the lake in B.C. It’s peaceful and quiet and relaxing from morning ’till night.
(Photo of my quilts together with Rachel Elliott’s quilts)
On one of our trips home from the lake, something incredible happened to Rick and I. As we were driving past Radium and up to Olive Lake, on the side of the road (highway 93) we came upon a mother grizzly bear and her two cubs. There was no one else on the highway, just us. We were able to stop so near the bears and watch them. The cubs began to frolic with each other, play fighting, while mom paid no heed to us or her cubs. It was a special, incredible moment.
You know, if that wasn’t enough of a gift travelling home, we were about to receive another. I jokingly said to Rick, “Ok, since it must be our lucky day, let’s go find Bear 122!” For those of you unfamiliar with this beast, he’s an infamous male grizzly who, at times, has terrorized the Bow Valley Parkway / Castle Mountain junction with his antics of eating a black bear and fathering almost all of the bear cubs in the area. He’s quite the brute and quite the character!
Rick took me at my word and instead of turning onto the TransCanada highway off of highway 93, we went straight through and travelled the Bow Valley parkway, craning our necks the whole time looking for the big fella. Of course, the whole search was a wildcard, like searching for a “needle in a haystack”. We got to the intersection leading back onto the TransCanada and lo and behold, there he was! I was speechless! Who the heck goes on a bear hunt and actually finds the guy you’re looking for? No one, that’s who. It was crazy.
I got some photos of him as he walked in front of our vehicle and into the adjacent field to eat, eat, eat, which I suspect is all he does most days. We knew it was Bear 122, because he had a cut on his face, apparently caused by an errant porcupine quill. He was basically on the move the whole time, so my photos are okay, but not great. He was gigantic! Clearly the master of his domain.
The sighting of Bear 122 was one of those rare moments neither my husband nor I will ever forget.
Thanks so much everyone. Hope your summer is going great.