I thought I'd begin with this photo of one of our Christmas cacti, blooming it's lovely little heart out at the moment. It makes me smile every time I walk into the kitchen. Goodness.
Now. What a week. I try to keep this blog space politically neutral, but I'm sure my personal views come through from time to time and I don't apologize. I am who I am, and I found myself in a nasty Facebook squabble early in the week, when a woman I have enjoyed online (she makes very charming quilts) made some ugly and completely untruthful remarks about the Women's Marches. It shook me to see, firsthand, the lies and hatefulness that is out there. My solution was to discontinue that Facebook relationship, but it nags at me that simply turning away from hatred is no solution at all. Awful.
It felt good to join a rally in downtown Portland on Friday in opposition to the nomination of Betsy DeVos as Secretary of Education, that was organized by our Oregon Senator Jeff Merkely. One of the rally speakers was Eleanore Bailey, the daughter of my old High School/College friend Michael. Eleanore, who was born with Down Syndrome, is a great advocate for students with disabilities and spoke about her own great education through the Portland Public Schools and the right of all students to that same opportunity.
Eleanore and Michael. Goodness!
It has been a good week to retreat to the studio. I finished the piece to submit for the Dinner@8 show. I'm looking forward to being able to share it after the jurying process. Then I started working on a challenge I set for myself to further explore the idea of 3-dimensional fiber art. I will post more about this soon, but here's a taste—
On Saturday Ray and I decided we needed a good walk, so we headed to downtown Beaverton, with the goal of finding the last of three public trashcans that are decorated with my artwork. I had found two, but only knew the approximate location of the third.
Success! It was in the same little triangle park that another of mine is in, just less visible from the street.
The backdrop of all of the week was, of course, the actions of the president, keeping us all on edge. It descended into true awfulness Saturday afternoon as we sat, watching our granddaughter's swim meet and simultaneously, the president's immigration ban taking effect in Facebook post after Facebook post on our phones. Horrifying. And it continues, worse and worse... By last night I felt so dismayed and discouraged that it was hard to imagine what the future would hold. I felt engulfed in the awful. Then I was reminded of goodness—
A friend of my daughter and son-in-law, an immigrant who, like my son-in-law, is studying to become a licensed teacher, lost nearly everything in a fire last month. Last night my daughter posted a Go Fund Me request for modest donations to help him begin to replace things like his computer, basic furnishings, clothing... I reposted it, and within minutes donations began to pour in from our friends, who had never met him, but saw a need and responded. I love you all for not only helping a deserving young man, but for contributing to goodness in this sometimes awful world.
Goodness/Awfulness. Where is the balance today? I'm not keeping score, and one doesn't justify or nullify the other, but we need to keep the goodness going. It's the only thing that can save us—our sanity, our faith in humanity, our souls.
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