Tag Archives: letter

Smorgasbord Saturday (in bits of red)

This Saturday I:

Spent a few minutes repairing my childhood Raggedy Ann doll for Felix to play with.

While fixing up her little foot, I realized that I couldn’t remember much about Raggedy Ann.

This is what I found on Wikipedia:

[Johnny] Gruelle created Raggedy Ann for his daughter, Marcella, when she brought him an old hand-made rag doll and he drew a face on it. From his bookshelf, he pulled a book of poems by James Whitcomb Riley, and combined the names of two poems, “The Raggedy Man” and “Little Orphan Annie.” He said, “Why don’t we call her Raggedy Ann?”

Marcella died at age 13 after being vaccinated at school for smallpox without her parents’ consent. Authorities blamed a heart defect, but her parents blamed the vaccination. Gruelle became an opponent of vaccination, and the Raggedy Ann doll was used as a symbol by the anti-vaccination movement.

I so love that she was named after two poems combined and had no idea that she was the symbol of the Anti-Vaccination Movement.

Wrote Jude a letter.

and inspired by SouleMama’s recent bit of yellow, I attempted making my first tote using this Sew Mama Sew! tutorial.

My stitching isn’t as straight as I’d like it to be, and I feel like the bag needs a little something more on the pocket, but altogether I am pleased with my first tote!

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From Letters to Words

I think I have the luckiest mailbox.

My dear friend Jude writes the most wonderful letters. I’m giddy every time I get one! Jude Stuecker is a fiber artist whom I met at Penland in North Carolina where we were both Studio Assistants during an 8 week Spring Concentration. She made a beautiful quilt for Felix that lives on the red recliner. Jude is currently in the middle of her busy summer show and festival season.

Also this week I received post cards from ever talented writer and poet Claudia Manz. Claudia changed my perspective on poetry completely. I met her during a month long fellowship/ residency at Jentel in Wyoming. Prior to that I just didn’t “get” most poems, didn’t really know how to think about them and in turn took the unfortunate stance that I just didn’t really like poetry.  After hearing Claudia share some of her favorite works as well as watch her work and listen to her read, I found a whole new appreciation and enjoyment for poetry altogether.

Claudia sent two poems from Portland.

A Letter to Felix

June 25, 2009

Dear Felix,

Today, we are celebrating your first year with us!

I can still see your beautiful bluish purple body and scrunched up face, fresh from my womb; The way you squinted at the bright lights of your new world that magical day one year ago. I will never forget your latching onto my breast and spending those first few hours, days, weeks staring at you. Watching you grow has been truly incredible. Your neck got stronger, you rolled, you sat, you crawled. Oh and walking. You started 2 months ago- and all of the sudden you’re such a big boy!

I love laughing with you. Your joyfulness has made my life so much fuller and richer. Watching you inspect each new thing you see has helped me re-evaluate and appreciate so many things around me that I can so easily take for granted, like smelling flowers. You smell flowers slowly, with your mouth wide open.

I love how you sign for milk while you’re nursing. Clap your hands and begin to dance when you hear music. Start to beat any cylindrical form as if it were a drum. How you say “oooooooohhhhh” at particular things that catch your fancy, “ouf” when you hear dogs bark, and “uhhh” when you hear a train passing through town.

I love how much you’ve developed into your own person. How you know what you want to do and which direction you want to go. How you’ve figured out ways to tell us how to get you there, like pointing in the direction you would like me to walk.

Seeing you with family makes me happier than you can know. I feel so fortunate that we are able to live so closely to our families. The way you watch your Pappy, reach for and hug your Nani, laugh and giggle with Grandma, play with Baba and interact with your aunts, uncles and cousins brings me so much joy and makes me feel as though there is nothing more I could want in life.

It is sweet how well you play with Elmer and Turnip too. Turnip follows you around for attention and lets you grab her and pet her like crazy. Elmer will bring you his chicken or stuffed toy. I know he always takes the ball from you, but soon you will get his game of keep away and be fast enough to chase him down.

I love you more than I thought possible. Having you in my life has deepened my love for Papa too. I love watching you together. How happy you are to see him when you wake up in the morning, when he gets home from work, even when he enters a room. How oftentimes he is the only person you want to hold you. I love how you two cuddle, sleep, and be silly together. I love to see you kiss papa, mouth wide-open, eyes closed.

I have so many thoughts and emotions about today. But most of all, I am bursting at the seams with love for you. You have lit up my life and made it something so special, something I never expected. I’m thrilled to think of spending the rest of my years watching you grow and learning from you, with you.

Thank you for being you, Felix.

Love,

Mama

This day last year:

(this wasn’t actually taken today, but close enough for now.)