I’m post-dating this blog to December 31, 2022, but I’m writing it on January 8, 2023. I had some heavy grief at the end of 2022 and ongoing…so I wasn’t up for writing much then. So I’m going to try to focus this morning on the past year.
Looking over the 2022 blog posts today, I realize that the majority of the year was quite boring until May-July. Beginning in January, I was working on finishing “Cathedral” and doing some collage work. I was fretting over work more than usual and obsessing over planning our trip to Portugal.
In March, we were beginning to venture out to eat and drink, but we were mostly avoiding indoor places. The yard guy planted my asparagus bed in the womb garden in the Back Forty. I still had hopes at that time that he would be reliable help, but I ended up letting him go later when he raised his prices and then started not showing up. Sandy got some bad “news” about his heart. I took Leighanna Light’s Vintage Metal Deck class again, this time on Zoom, and enjoyed that a lot!
We were celebrating in April because Tim had a great scan and it appears that the chemo had worked wonders on his cancer. We spent our usual Easter weekend in Lake Waccamaw and I was concentrated on our upcoming trip to Portugal as well as going to Focus on Book Arts in Oregon in July.
In May we made an epic journey to Portugal, in which we learned just how disabled Sandy has become. In hindsight, it was a lovely trip even though we had to make some changes on the way. I could see myself living in Tomar or Tavira if we ever made the leap. However, we have a lot more of that country to explore in the future. We made new friends there so possibly we will visit them in Braga and travel around northern and central Portugal.
I was dismayed during this time when I was informed that Focus on Book Arts had been canceled. I had bought non-refundable plane tickets thinking that our travel insurance would make that a safe bet, but it didn’t cover event cancellation. In June, I used the money refunded from FOBA to go to Pocosin Arts School of Fine Craft and take a week-long wooden book class from Dan Essig. This was another retake for me, but I don’t work with tools enough that I needed the refresher, and I always learn something new from Dan. I am still reworking this book.
I needed that workshop to recover from the news that Tim’s cancer was back and that Sandy didn’t want to move to Portugal anymore. Back to therapy!!!
In July, Susan and I decided to go to Portland anyway. We had a great time and got to cuddle with a Boston terrier puppy on the plane from Chicago to Portland. We ate well, went to the Japanese Gardens and Powell’s, and took a paste paper art class from Jill Berry at her home.
I also made some great leaf printed papers with Susanne in July!
In August we went back to the lake with some friends and we played with cyanotype printing. I asked our friends to make pages for me for a book I’d like to make about the lake one day.
In September, I cut “Cathedral” off the loom, we rescued a baby squirrel when its nest fell down our chimney, and went back to Lake Waccamaw where we got to see a much diminished Hurricane Ian up close. It was still scary enough that I can’t imagine what it must have been like in Florida. I rescued a little yellow slider turtle.
October brought two lovely weekend trips: first, the Tapestry Weavers South retreat in Elkin where we had a relaxed time in Leslie Fesperman’s new space for the Yadkin Valley Fiber Center and dyed yarns and cloth in indigo.
Then, I took another book workshop with Leslie Marsh. A couple of friends I’ve made from her other workshops and I stayed at the Breezeway Motel on the soundside and saw some gorgeous sunsets.
Sandy turned 70 in November so of course we had to celebrate that! On his actual birthday we had dinner with friends and the restaurant’s owner offered him a shot, but he had to take it straight from the bottle. My husband is a bad-ass, y’all.
Then on the weekend, we decided to take Amtrak to Charlotte, stay in an uptown hotel and go to the Mint Museum and Bechter Museum. We left early to go back to Greensboro, and the train hit a tree trunk that had been put on the tracks and our car decoupled from the rest of the train! Sandy was about to open this door between the cars when he changed his mind about two seconds before it happened.
Thanksgiving at Lake Waccamaw began well, then Tim got really sick again. We did have a good time for a couple of days…watched football, had drinks around the firepit.
December was a swift downhill slope for Tim when he stopped being able to eat at all. He died on Christmas morning.
This is a photo from about ten years ago when Tim was playing pirate ship with his grandson on the hammock. I love this photo because it captures the moment when Tim just said something outrageous to Jake and has that wry smile waiting for Jake to respond to it.
We are devastated – a world without Tim is a much emptier place. He was loved by so many people.