Larkspur began flute lessons in December, using my childhood flute.  Friday night was her first recital.  Being shy, and being so new to playing the flute, she was not excited about playing in front of an audience.  Our plan was for just the two of us to attend her recital.  It could be a special night for us, a little date.  Jonny needed to be home to put younger children to bed, and Larkspur was afraid of her older brothers teasing her.

Friday afternoon, Larkspur made a last minute change of plans, inviting one of her friends to join us for the evening.  Dominique helped Lark get ready, painting her nails to match her dress for the evening, and then acting as her adoring audience as she played through her piece a few last times.

I had to park several blocks away from the recital location, and as I am slooooow, watched from behind as Lark and Domi held hands and giggled their way down the street and into the church.  I thought to myself, that this was so much better than Lark and me going it alone, both of us nervous as can be.  We followed the sound of the flutes as we searched inside for the room where everyone was warming up.  When we found the room, full of older children that were mostly strangers to us, I think both Larkspur and I felt a little lost, not knowing quite what to do.  A friend’s older daughter saw us and immediately walked over, took Lark under her wing, and told me she would take care of her.  (I will love that sweet girl forever.) Domi and I headed back to the sanctuary to find seats.  We had been waiting for a few minutes when Domi told me she would be right back.  I assumed she was going to the restroom.  Several minutes later she came back, telling me that Larkspur had forgotten her glasses.  So she hadn’t gone to the restroom, but had gone to check on her friend one last time.

Larkspur, being the youngest and newest student, was the first to play.  She played Twinkle the best she ever has, and I had a hard time not crying, seeing her standing up there so brave, knowing how nervous she was.  Afterwards I took the girls to our favorite milkshake spot.  Dominique was the ultimate encourager, telling Larkspur over and over again how she had done such an amazing job.  They laughed and acted silly and had a great time.  I thought of the change that is taking place, as Larkspur moves towards a time in her life when friends begin to play such an important role.  I’m so thankful for the relationships she has, for the sweet friends in her life.

I think there’s a gift in the fact that these little girls have watched their mamas grieve the loss of friends.  I believe that it has helped them have a deeper understanding of  the precious gift of friendship, even if they don’t realize it yet.  And I know that Larkspur truly felt it this weekend.  She will always remember her first recital, more for the friendship in that night than in the performance itself.  Good friends have a profound impact on our lives, one not quickly forgotten.



Jams for Bea and Other Distractions

I haven’t really sewed in ages.  When my girls were younger I sewed them lots of dresses, and mostly enjoyed doing so.  But in the years since my little boys were born I have found sewing to be too much trouble.  I don’t have a space to keep things out and handy, lest they be destroyed (by my little boys) and it is just so much easier to pick up a knitting project.

But lately I’ve been kind of antsy, wanting some faster gratification.  I am less and less mobile and not being able to do housework is making me a little crazy.  I need to do something that feels productive!  And Beatrix needs shorts.  Shorts are pretty easy, and I have a good bit of fabric stashed away from my sewing days.  I pulled out my copy of Carefree Sewing for Girls, because it has an easy pattern for making pants or shorts.  It didn’t take long to sew a couple of pairs for Bea last week.  Jonny was quick to point out that what I made are not actually shorts, but “jams.”  Just like the ones his grandma used to make for him when he was a kid.  Yeah, I guess he’s right.  I totally remember jams, though mine were store bought.  At any rate, while our memory of jams is that they were dorky, ours weren’t made from linen blends.  Linen blend jams are surely quite stylish.  At any rate, Beatrix likes them.

I’m still distracting myself with yarn dyeing, though that process is slower.  Right now, it is looking like I will have a shop update next week.  Wednesday, I think.  I did a huge outdoor indigo vat last weekend, my best yet.  I feel like I learned a lot, and I am really happy with how my skeins turned out.

New for this update, I will have a handful of sets of fingering weight mini-skeins.  I used all plant based or natural dyes and created a pastel rainbow.  These sets are really cute!  Jonny is also promising to finish up some more bird shawl pins.  We’ll see!

I am hoping to do more sewing in the coming weeks.  I bought the Dottie Angel Child’s dress pattern, planning to make one for Bea, and maybe Larkspur too if I can size it up a bit.  Larkspur is also requesting a skirt.  I made this one years ago, and think I will try that pattern again.  I have turned my bedside desk into a little sewing spot, and that is working well for me.  We recently moved the little boys out of our bedroom (!!!!!) and now I can actually have some privacy and quiet after they go to bed at night.  It feels like such a luxury and not one I am accustomed to!  Not for long, or course.  Though I am actually looking forward to sharing my bedroom with a baby again, so that will be just fine as well.