|Aspen Rug Hooking Company|
The Art of Living
Tonight is a lovely and warm evening. It is dusk here in the
village; the sun below the horizon, the sky brilliantly blue,
peach, pink and orange. A few stray billowy clouds hang low
promising light rain. The skyscrapers' lights shine bright
like soldiered stars rising to the sky.
My loyal and dear friend Lizzie and I walk past the Aspen
trees and Evergreens that dot the park. The air fragrant with
the scent of freshly mowed grass. It is a blissful walk that
we both enjoy on an enchanted evening such as this.
Alas! Dusk has fallen on my village, a bustling hamlet by day
filled with office workers earning their pay; by night, it is
a haven of quiet bicyclers and people strolling along its
paths. Oh such bliss; oh such an evening as this. Dusk in the
Walking on a gravel trail, my eyes lazily wander to the pond where so much comes to life. Everyday, I see something new; the scenery, never the same from one day to the next. A small yet busy pond flourishing with song birds, ducks, geese, loons, snakes and fish and wildlife that I have yet to spy.
Riparian habitat is special because it serves as home to an abundant variety of wildlife, or as a rest stop for passersby to forage and drink before resuming their arduous journey. Shrinking significantly in numbers throughout the country and the world for that matter, these havens provide the necessities of survival for wildlife.
As I approach the pond and descend slightly, I note the variety of scat littered along the path. Fox, maybe, Racoon, yes, Coyote, likely; so lately the predators have been frequent visitors based on the evidence that lays before me.
Hold on! I stop in excitement; the family of Red-headed ducks has become a family of 7! There are 5-new Red-headed ducklings, and they are out for a short swim with mom nearby and dad lagging behind protecting his brood.
The exotic black Loon is also out for a swim. She glides along the cool water past the Geese. I look out in the distance to catch a glimpse of the Goslings (George and Gracie's recent arrivals -- see Ecological Stewardship Epilogue, April 2014). There are 4 Goslings, but at the moment, George, Gracie and their new Goslings are nowhere to be seen or heard. Hmmm, maybe they are grazing in the meadow under one of the Cottonwood trees?
What is that in the distance coming towards me? A Muskrat? Salamander? A water snake! A rather large one blending in with the pond's dark silty water. All I can see is a little bit of its snout poking out of the water, and a tiny part of its muscular body that acts as a rudder forcing small wakes in the pond. It gets to about 10 feet from the shore, and then I see its smooth black-grey shape go under, down, down, down into the water; its long sinewy body arching slightly above the water as it makes its descent into the blackness. This fellow is quite long and looks more look a serpent than a snake. Time to keep walking. I regain focus to my surroundings after my fascination with the dark 'serpent'; and I can hear the various songbirds singing their high-pitched tunes as they remain perched on the reeds and tree branches.
My walk ascends slightly as I move farther away from the flourishing pond. Enjoying these brief moments are a gift and brighten my day. Today, I sacrificed nothing; my soul and mind gaining everything good. Tomorrow will be here soon enough and will beckon me closer to the water's edge so I can examine all of its treasures and be surprised by each of them.
Once a rug is completed, its stories move from the creator
and become more about daily life. The stories a rug can tell
about a household and its occupants vary depending on the
Cheerfulness and energy can be the norm of one such home where
it's inhabitants run in and out doors, playing games,
squealing with glee, and waiting for the homemade pie to cool
only to be devoured in less time than it took to create it.
On the other hand, a rug brings happiness and warmth to its
home that has only one resident. No longer is the resident
coupled with a spouse, and the children have since moved on;
but the rug, that beautiful rug made for this home is a source
of lovely memories to warm the soul.
And there is the one rug that stands apart from the others.
This rug is rolled up and stowed away in a basement collecting
dust and moths. Its legacy not fulfilled because it cannot be
seen by the home's occupants. This rug may be hidden from
view, but it can hear the torment and heartbreak that has
become this house. The shouting, crying, and arguments that
wretch a person's soul. The rug cowers in sorrow overcome by
its sadness. If only the rug could tell the occupants how much
pain and suffering they have caused, and if they would only
unfurl the lovely rug, it would fulfill its legacy to bring
joy and happiness to this troubled home. If only they would
open their hearts to allow it to happen.
The rugs we make carry a legacy; each one pure, innocent, and
filled with love that is meant to be carried on for
generations to enjoy. Ultimately, it is the rug's owner to
carry-out the legacy by appreciating it and displaying it.
If hooked rugs could talk, oh the stories they'd tell us about
Maybe she was the quiet type who helped others, and had a keen
eye for color and design.
Perhaps she was worn and tired from her daily chores who
salvaged scraps of fabric to create folk art beauty.
He could have been a designer with ideas dancing in his head
that needed to be put to paper.
Maybe he was in pain from his arthritis, and found rug hooking
as a creative way of reliving his younger days when his body
was still pliable.
Whomever the rug hooker was, the rugs tell us their creator
was happy, joyful, and saw life's beauty as a gift to behold
and not take for granted.
It starts with picking up a hook, a piece of linen or burlap,
and making merry as the rug comes to life; its design and
colors to warm a room and bring joy to someone's heart.
The Art of Living is ...
Inspiration from nature's beauty, simple living, love, and peace.