Sunday, November 20, 2011

The 23rd Psalm & Camp Fowler


The Dove of Peace, seen above, adorns a stole which three quilting ladies from our church made for our pastor this summer. When asked to share some information about the stole, she wrote the following:

The 23rd Psalm Stole
made by Bobbie N., Lee P. and Lynn Makrin
for Jan Hoffman
for summer camp, Camp Fowler, 2011
Preparation for leading a week at camp, planning for teaching 90 youngsters in Grades 3-12, takes months of work.  About 4-5 weeks before our assigned week, Pastor Jan came up with the idea for a stole to wear each day.  But she didn’t have a stole portraying the 23rd Psalm.  So she asked her quilting friends if they could make a stole for Camp Fowler.  They jumped at the chance and quickly Lee put out a wide variety of beautiful fabrics, many deep green fabrics representing the beloved Adirondack forest, clear blues for sky and deep mountain lake.  Bobbie envisioned embroidery and appliqué.  Lynn asked questions, arranged and rearranged cloth pieces.

A glorious stole was created and ready for Pastor Jan on Sunday, July 31, 2011 for the church’s week of volunteering at camp. 
The 23rd Psalm stole was worn each morning for Morning Watch, outdoor devotions before breakfast.  Pastor Jan taught a part of the 23rd Psalm each morning, using the stole, helping the campers memorize the Psalm.  The stole is a rich visual which helped us learn.
The stole hung in the chapel during the day.  Pastor Jan would wear it at evening chapel or display it prominently on the communion table.

The theme for the summer was “Bring Forth the Kingdom.”  A week of summer camp at Fowler helps us practice Kingdom living.  The 23rd Psalm teaches us what the Kingdom might look like.  Signs throughout the camp pointed to the Green Pastures or Meadows, where we play games; the Still Waters where we swim; the Dangerous Places where we aren’t supposed to climb on the rocks on the shore.
The 23rd Psalm is regularly recited at funerals and during Sunday morning liturgy.  Pastor Jan wears the stole at her discretion.

Thank you for those lovely words, Pastor Jan.

Now to the quilting. As you recite the Psalm (seen below if you've forgotten it) you can look at the stole from the left side (Pastor's right) and "read" it down beginning with "The Lord is my shepherd" and then "read" up right side beginning with "Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death" in the dark black section and ending at the top  "and I will dwell in the house of the LORD for ever."  The techniques used were mainly fusible applique with free-motion quilting on top.

Bobbie's notes on stole and embroidery designs are here:
 "First the photo, which is of the chapel at Camp Fowler, which Lee had in her camera. We copied it to my computer. From there I reduced the size to fit the place on the stole. I then printed it onto special fabric made for photo copying. There was backing on the fabric & I left it on to give it more body before I appliqued it in place with a blind stitch on my machine & invisible thread.

The other designs were bought from various sites. Some, like the chalice & loaf , and the feet were excellent. Others were just OK so I digitized them again on my machine.
I have a Bernina 730 machine and use the version 6 Bernina software."

Finally, just like the experience of being at camp as a child with your friends for one very special week within the middle of the summer, this collaboration was similar. We were working together for a specific goal with a definite deadline. It was very fun, easy and a learning experience for me.

I hope the "Quilting Ladies" at church will have the chance to work together again!
Much gratitude goes out to Pastor Jan for the request, and to Bobbie and Lee for
working with me and around my children!

Psalm 23
The LORD Is My Shepherd
A Psalm of David.
1 The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want.
2 He maketh me to lie down in green pastures:
he leadeth me beside the still waters. Rev. 7.17
3 He restoreth my soul:
he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name's sake.
4 Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil: for thou art with me;
thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.
5 Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies:
thou anointest my head with oil;
my cup runneth over.
6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life:
and I will dwell in the house of the LORD for ever.

Published by The American Bible Society
The Holy Bible: King James Version. 2000.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

November Gratitude & Roxbury Farm

Our modern lives are so full with obligations including those of family, work, home, career, friends, etc. We often forget to take the time to show gratitude. The way of thank you notes and simple "thinking of you" phone calls seems to have fallen aside in our modern, busy lives.

     Two years ago, a friend on Facebook suggested a simple "I am thankful for........." statement to become each person's daily "status update" for the month of November. I participated and can say now that it effected me. To have to set aside time for gratitude in my daily life and then to write about it was not only a good exercise, but did change the way I look at my life and all its "obligations."

    So this year, I'm expanding my gratitude to include people, organizations or things for which I am thankful.
   Here is today's:

I am grateful for Jean Paul and his team of farmers at Roxbury Farm in Kinderhook, NY ( These veggies were the last in my CSA Farm Share for this season. Participation in the CSA, for the first time this year, has TOTALLY transformed my relationship with food, my thinking about meal planning and our family's health, I'm sure!

The Farmers wrote in their last newsletter, "We lost 50,000-60,000 lbs of produce due to the flooding and excessive rain.  We thank you for your support during this difficult and season and we are looking forward to an abundant harvest in 2012."

At the much needed, Roxbury Farm Festival in September 2011, I made a small quilt of gratitude, seen below,  for the Farmers to hang in their barn, office or home.


 The brown paths were, in my mind, the ways to access the fields. I did simple stitch-in-the-ditch quilting and then some free motion work in the brown outer border.

Two photos of Roxbury Farm on that beautiful September day.
Please see their website for more photos and information about 
Community Supported Agriculture: Roxbury Farm

Also, check out my friend's blog for ways to use and to store all these awesome veggies: