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Plays well with others: QUF4PMST8UEM

I can have a lot of fun just on my own.

I am a woman who enjoys working with other people.
I also passionately crave the company of my own silence.
There are many times that I hanker to be with others making art, making jam, raking, ice skating, working at almost anything.
Togetherness makes my heart sing.

Paste Paper by SBB 2011

My friend Chandler sent me this quote.
I wish I had the exact source. If you know of it, please send it to me, so I can note it here.

“Design school taught me that collaboration makes ideas and outcomes more meaningful — not only in the final results, but also in the process. Life is so much about the process — having fun, playing with others. My artisan partners are the best part of the work I do.”

Karen and me at Lake George 2011

I have a slew of artisan partners. I play with Karen Arp-Sandel all the time.
I am playing with Janet Reich, Michelle Gillett, Alana Chernila, Gina Hyams, Jenny Laird, and Lynnette Najimy in ‘Out of the Mouths of Babes’.

Jess Conzo, Diane Firtell, Gina Hyams 2011

Coming up on my ‘Out of the Mouths of Babes’ blog series will be two months full of women writing about their mothering and creativity.
Monday, Shari Simpson-Cabelin’s post will be up.

Later this week, Kelly DiNicoria and Sherry Collier will be featured.
Kelly sent me this note the other day that sums up why I am so passionate about ‘Out of the Mouths of Babes’.

I LOVE the idea of nurturing mothers’ creativity in that way! I am taking the Level 2 Momoir course with Cori Howard starting next week (I did Level 1 through SheWrites) and I am really becoming interested in the idea of helping people to tell their stories, especially mothers. It is so empowering to tell your story, and I feel SO strongly that we need to consciously build and nurture small havens of non-judgment for women. We are so hard on each other, and most especially hard on ourselves!

Kelly DiNicoria

Out poster by Rose Tannenbaum

See how this happens? One little spark ignites another and soon we are all blazing with warmth of shared wisdom, experience, tears and laughter.
That is what the evening of March 2 at the Berkshire Festival of Women Writers is all about. Please follow our blog series. You are invited to attend our March 2 event. And please, savor the value of your mothering. If you have a story you’d like to share with us, consider submitting a blog post to me at

Your comments are heartfully appreciated.
With love,

if you are curious about those numbers, they are there to verify my authorship of this blog so I can play on the Technorati site. xooxox

100th Post on the Laundry Line and International Women’s Day

Splendid Goat

All day long I have been rooting around here in my studio, writing and not writing.
I have driven kids around in the muddy March chill, to and from and home again.
I have watched the mighty Housatonic running near flood stage under the bridge.
I have read post upon post in honor of International Women’s Day.
I have not come up with a post of my own.

By Cathy Hoffman of Cambridge, MA my girl Catherine at Duck Pond

Until now. I just spent an hour at the kitchen table with my girl pouring over our latest Amazon purchase of “A Day in the Life of the American Woman: How We See Ourselves” by Sharon J. Wohlmuth, Carol Saline and Dawn Sheggeby (2005)
My girl, my 13-year-old American woman, loves to read real life stories of women today. History entertains her, but the contemporary stories of combat nurses or Pentecostal preachers are what she chooses over and over again.

Last night at Simon’s Rock College of Bard, which is about 3 minutes from my desk, I heard Alison Bechdel speak about her graphic novels. Her presence at Simon’s Rock is part of the Berkshire Festival of Women Writers happening during March. Alison created the cartoon strip “Dykes To Look Out For”, which she wrote for 25 years. She has published a graphic memoir titled “Fun House” which came out in 2006. Her passion for telling her own story, in her own way, is such an amazing testament to a woman in possession of her voice.

Siena Laundry Line

This is my 100th post on Laundry Line Divine. At this hour, nearly the end of this day, I am in my jammies, having had an ordinary sort of day, bumping between my work and my work, experiencing no great success, but a good deal of pleasure. I walked my 16-year-old half way to school this morning. He said he did not mind that my nightgown stuck out over my wool pants and boots, under my Carhart jacket. It looks like a dress, he said. I sat with my husband, talking over his work plans, our kids, and what we desired today. I came up here, thinking of some remarkable thing I could say, but instead, spent my work hours, reading other women- like
Marianne Williamson over on Huffington Post, Lissa Rankin at Owning Pink and the details about International Women’s Day at the Museum of Motherhood.

What else could I do today, but be a mother?
I thought about making a list, I love lists, of 100 remarkable women.
I thought about making another list, loving them so, of 100 women I would like to lunch with like Almanzo’s Mother in Laura Ingalls Wilder’s book “Farmer Boy”.

Meet me for coffee?

But, what I ended up doing was being a Mom, with no list, just my life, today, ordinary and wonderful. I noticed the sparkles on the snow; still snow here, as I swept salt off the back steps. I watched our fish lazing about the tank, getting old, as far as fish lives go. I made breakfast at lunchtime. I drove up and over the mountain to fetch our pal who spends Tuesdays with us, noticing this 16-year-old, voice deep, coat open in the sun, stepping on snowy chunks just like he did when he was 8. I endured the teasing of my own 16 year old, who started today asking me if I remembered that he loves me. I folded yards of laundry and put it away. I cleaned up the dinner dishes.

Then, I ended this day with my girl, reading about other women, other mothers, other lives spent hugging, holding, sweeping.
This is our work, along with everything else, tending this hearth and these hearts.

Here is what the International Women’s Day blog has to say:

So make a difference, think globally and act locally!! Make everyday International Women’s Day. Do your bit to ensure that the future for girls is bright, equal, safe and rewarding.

Bookstore in Hardwick Vermont

Here is what Marianne Williamson wrote at the Huffington Post:

The last thing we should do, in honor of International Women’s Day, is to celebrate it in some ultimately meaningless way. Rather, in honor of our foremothers, for the sake of our oppressed sisters around the world, and for the love of all of our children both born and not yet born, we should wake up now… kick ass now… and change this world before it is too late.

Mary in a bucket shrine Perennial Pleasures, VT.

I think I will close here, considering our stories of kicking ass and being ordinary all in the same day.

Love, S

PS While you are at the Museum of Motherhood site, look at our second “Fe-Mail” blog. Karen and I are featured bloggers there, every Tuesday in to May! Thanks Joy Rose!

PPS That gorgeous photo of my girl is taken by my dear friend Cathy Hoffman. As a photographer, Cathy as the ability to capture beauty and elegance with such skill. I am surrounded by her images here in my studio right now. xoxox Thank you Cathy!

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