2009 In Review

Every year we say that the year was busy. 2009 was no exception to this rule.

Robin continues ramping up in her position as Region Director for the Greater Pacific Region of the Embroiderers' Guild of America (EGA). Besides being the administrative head of the Region of 26 chapters, she is on the National Board of Directors. The headquarters is in Lousiville and one of the Board meetings is in Louisville. The March weather mostly cooperated and was only chilly. Will went along to keep Robin company and help keep some balance. Then the fall Board meeting and National Seminar was in Pittsburgh. Robin and Will took time out to see the Phipps Conservatory -- one of the few Victorian glass houses (1893). It is quite a lovely serene place with wonderful Chihuly glass permanently installed. It had the added benefit that there was an additional Frabel glass exhibit too. Another day took us to the Frick House and Museum. It was a perfect time capsule of the turn of the last century and had a Symphonic Organ; which they played for us!

2009 was also the year of doing outreach projects for EGA. In February, Robin coordinated the exhibit and designed a teaching piece for Stitches West (the largest fiber show on the west coast). In May, Robin co-coordinated and co-developed a project for the Maker Faire (the largest DIY show in the US) called the 1000 Hands Quilt. The concept is to have crazy quilt squares made up for people to drop by and embellish at the booth -- hopefully a 1000 hands worth of people. The idea was Twittered about, put on Facebook, received a Editor's Choice Award at the Faire, put on the Maker Faire blog, published about in the Inside EGA newsletter, and an article in CQOnline Magazine. September was the Stitching Festival - a smallish show. Then in October we took the quilt blocks to the Pacific International Quilt Festival, the largest quilt show on the west coast, for another run. We are at 20 blocks mostly done on our way to 24 blocks total and about 400 people.

Robin has been doing some teaching - only 9 classes and 1 workshop this year. However, this was also a year to learn more - 17th C. gold braidwork, Or Nue, Egyptian Pattern Knitting, Ribbon Manipulation, more Card Weaving, and Temari Balls. During the gold braid class, Robin got to put spangles on a forehead cloth; a part of the Plimoth Jacket project that attempted to reproduce one of the 16th/17th C Late Elizabethan embroidered jackets. As an official spangler, she will have her name on the official documentation of work in a museum. Of course these were not the only spangles Robin sewed on this year. There are a number of them on her gollar. Pictures are on the linked picture page.

2010 will be especially busy for EGA stuff with the National Seminar being in San Francisco in September. In addition, we are going to do a road trip of Oregon, Washington, Vancouver and Northern California to visit chapters. Of course we will try to fit in friends and family along the way too. This year Robin visited a number of more local chapters doing her Region Director presentation. On one such trip, Will went along, and the hostess took us for lunch and private tour of the Monterey Bay Aquarium.

We continue to do some medieval stuff. The magic that is Erinwood (a private tournament with full medieval feasting) was Memorial Day weekend. July 4th week found us in Gold Beach Oregon for an interkingdom war. Lots of other smaller events scattered throughout the year as time permits. Will trys to attend fighter practice regularly as well.

August found us up in Alaska visiting our friends and attending a medieval event up there. It was cool and rainy most of the event, but we had a nice visit anyway. It was good to see friends and hang out with Robin/Anne and Cathy/Maeva.

We have been traveling a lot. January was Los Angeles (Getty exhibit) with stops in San Jose (DaVinci Exhibit), Paso Robles (family), and San Luis Obispo (medieval feast and teaching). February was back to Paso Robles to teach Viking Chain Weaving. March was Louisville. May was Cloverdale and Erinwood. July Oregon. August Alaska. October Pittsburgh. It always feels good to be home.

In between trips, Will has been very busy with work. He is doing a lot more team lead and project design work these days. He does Yoga at lunch twice a week and we do our private pilates class on Monday night. It keeps us both sane.

This year we had to have Pete put to sleep. He was getting a bit slower and more cranky. Then all of a sudden he got lots worse. We took him into the vet who sent us to a specialty clinic. The diagnosis was cancer - lymphoma. They made him more comfortable. After a week he was no longer eating, and then not drinking or purring. It was time. He was the best cat ever and I don't think we will ever meet his equal. Pickwick is doing his best and is really coming into his own now that he is 5. He is our snuggle and purr machine.

We wish you all a wonderful heathy and fulfilling New Year!