Tag Archives: Friendship

From the Creator’s Heart #209

Standard

Image 11-6-18 at 1.01 PM

N is for North Mountain Park

Standard
N is for North Mountain Park

A couple of weeks ago, I received an email:

Hi Andrea,
It’s me, Textile Ranger!  I am going to be in Phoenix the first part of next week, April 8 and 9, staying by North Mountain State Park.  I have stayed there before a few years ago, so you when you wrote about hiking at South Mountain, that registered with me.  It may be very far from your part of Phoenix to where I will be, but I just wanted to check with you about possibly meeting for lunch or an art museum visit or something on one of those days.  If you can’t make it, that is fine, but I didn’t want to come to Phoenix without mentioning it to you.
If you don’t know, Textile Ranger is the blogger behind Deep in the Heart of Textiles. I can’t remember how I stumbled across it, but I love it for the quilts Textile Ranger creates. She’s interested in (and writes about) everything textile, from fibers and dyes to antique clothing. She’s been weaving for decades. (She also has a nature blog, Little Wild Streak.) So, she’s something of a celebrity to me, and I jumped at the chance to meet her in person. And since I’ve been meaning to check out North Mountain Park, I suggested we hike there together before going out to lunch.
IMG_3426
We met last Tuesday at the Visitor Center. She gifted me with a nifty water bottle holder that clips on nicely to the shoulder bag I usually carry when I’m hiking. Now I have a free hand!
fullsizeoutput_cdc

Textile Ranger

And off we went. Ranger (she spent two summers as a park ranger at Big Bend) suggested a 2 1/2 mile trail that didn’t have any steep elevations. Perfect for walking and talking.
IMG_3383
The huge park has breathtaking desert and mountain views. We had some good rains a few weeks ago, and we’ve been rewarded with lovely wildflowers.
IMG_3375
Globemallow below:
IMG_3378
I want to call these buttercups, but I’m not sure that’s what they are:
IMG_3382
These flowers remind me of how little children draw flowers, just circles on a stem; I don’t know what they are–
IMG_3391
But there was an area that was literally blanketed with them:
IMG_3402
And the palo verde trees are just beginning to bloom:
IMG_3413
Closeup of a pale verde blossom:
IMG_3412
And the cholla cactus has these beautiful magenta blooms:
IMG_3416
Back at the visitor’s center, there is a water fountain that dispenses chilled water. Heavenly! And there are beautiful plantings by the building. Don’t know what this bush is:
IMG_3418
I think this is a pink globemallow:
IMG_3421
Cool sculptures:
IMG_3427
Which are the perfect backdrop for another picture of the Textile Ranger:
IMG_3428
I am so thrilled that Textile Ranger is not just a virtual friend any more, but a real friend whom I know face to face. We have lots in common. She’s also a former elementary school teacher, and she loves to read. I’m so touched that she reached out to me. Be sure to check out her blogs, Deep in the Heart of  Textiles and Little Wild StreakShe’s going to post her take on North Mountain Park on Little Wild Streak today.
North Mountain Park is a place I will explore in more detail in the future.
AtoZ2019tenthAnn

In the Meme Time: How to Make Friends

Standard

nice

Monday Morning Wisdom #170

Standard
Monday Morning Wisdom #170

Friendship is one of the most valuable treasures on earth. Like a precious gem when light shines through, it projects all its colors onto the background of our lives. Truly, it is friendship that makes us rich. To share with a friend is to double the joy, while sharing sadness halves the pain. When we’re with a friend, the sun shines warmer, the birds sing more beautifuly, the ocean is wider, and the mountains are higher. ~Marjolein Bastin

How I Learned to Love Geometry

Standard
How I Learned to Love Geometry

This article appeared on Doing Life Together on May 26, 2017.

I met Deedee in Girl Scouts.

She went to public school, I attended parochial school. Our paths would never have crossed in elementary school were it not for Scouts.

What I remember most about Deedee from those early years is that she loved ballet, and often spent “down” time moving through her positions or practicing her arabesque.

Deedee’s family valued education. Her mom taught high school history; her dad was a Ph.D. who taught at a nearby college.

Her first name was really Cornelia. Her father affectionately called her Corn Doodle. (Back in the day, Corn Doodles were a snack something like Cheetos®.) From there, the nickname morphed into Doodle Deedle, Deedle, and, finally, Deedee. (One of her sisters was named Priscilla, nicknamed Lolly–but that’s another story).

We didn’t become good friends until high school, where we were in chorus together.

I hated math, mostly because I found it tedious and difficult. I had to repeat freshman algebra during the summer.

Fir0002:Flagstaffotos

But the first day of sophomore year, I discovered Deedee was in my geometry class. We also had lunch together the next period. We chose a table, sat down with our food, and after the first bite, Deedee opened her geometry book to the homework assignment and said, “How will we solve the first problem?”

My reaction was Can’t it wait? Like maybe seven hours or so?

But I didn’t understand something elemental about Deedee. She loved math. To her, problems were puzzles. She couldn’t wait to take them apart and conquer them.

That day set the tone for the whole year. Frequently, we started our homework during lunch. We didn’t necessarily finish it, but talking through the first few examples with Deedee helped me learn strategies for analyzing the problems. When I was stuck, she gently helped me draw figures, or reminded me of applicable theorems.

I did very well in geometry that year. And I actually enjoyed it.

I wish I could say the same for my junior and senior year math courses. Deedee was not in my classes then.

But I still use what I learned in geometry. Sometimes you have to calculate the area of something. Geometry comes in handy for figuring out how much fabric I need to sew curtains or piece a quilt.

Deedee Holt

The last time I saw Deedee was in 2002. My daughter and I were visiting my parents in my childhood home before I took her off to college. Deedee and her son, John, happened to be visiting town at the same time. We met at the Fireman’s Fair in an adjoining town.

Sadly, Deedee passed away ten years ago this month. She’d recently completed her course work toward a certificate to teach music, and was serving as a substitute teacher as she searched for a permanent job. I wanted her to move from Washington state to Arizona so she could teach in my district, but her son had just one more year of high school to go, and she didn’t want to uproot him.

The world is a bleaker place without Deedee. I’ll never forget her.

SaveSave

In the Meme Time: Laughter

Standard
In the Meme Time: Laughter

Laughing (photo by nosha)

Three Other Poems

Standard
Three Other Poems

From time to time I post poems I’ve written. (You can find them by scrolling down my sidebar on the right until you get to “Are you looking for a particular TOPIC?” and choosing “Poetry” from the drop-down menu.) Here are some more.

Treehouse_access_and_roundwalk

The Treehouse

I pictured a roof and walls and windows,
A literal house built in a tree.

Instead, my dad built a floor
Surrounded by a railing,
Benches built into the perimeter.

Salvaged attic stairs granted us easy access.

My brother and I climbed up with books
And peanut butter sandwiches.
We lived there all summer,
Reading, eating, and pretending.

If it didn’t rain too hard,
The massive willow tree kept us dry
Inside its enveloping branches.

 

At Home AO_old_house

It wasn’t my home,
but I felt truly at home there
complete acceptance
no judgment
only love

Kathy’s mother tolerated
what mine would not—
silliness
non-stop giggling
toys and books all over the floor

The house was old and cavernous
a “great room” from early days
double staircases criss-crossed each other
a basement provided secret access when no one was home
it’s gone now

Gone are the parents
who created my best friend

and the friendship is gone, too

 

German soldier playing violin

Photo found on histomil.com

Onkel Joachim

I never met you

Mom told me about
Her beloved brother
Violinist and pianist
University student
Bright future ahead

Then Hitler
Turned you into a soldier
On the eastern front
Never to return

The gypsy said
You married a Russian girl
And conduct an orchestra

I hope she’s right

Poems © by Andrea R Huelsenbeck