Tuesday, October 26, 2010

The Seashore of Endless Worlds

"On the seashore of endless worlds children meet.

The infinite sky is motionless overhead and the restless water is boisterous. On the seashore of endless worlds the children meet with shouts and dances.

They build their houses with sand,

and they play with empty shells.

With withered leaves they weave their boats and smilingly float them on the vast deep.

Children have their play on the seashore of worlds.

They know not how to swim, they know not how to cast nets. Pearl-fishers dive for pearls, merchants sail in their ships, while children gather pebbles and scatter them again.

They seek not for hidden treasures, they know not how to cast nets.

The sea surges up with laughter, and pale gleams the smile of the sea-beach. Death-dealing waves sing meaningless ballads to the children, even like a mother while rocking her baby’s cradle.

The sea plays with children,

and pale gleams the smile of the sea-beach.

On the seashore of endless worlds children meet.

Tempest roams in the pathless sky, ships are wrecked in the trackless water, death is abroad and children play.

On the seashore of endless worlds is the great meeting of children."
—Rabindranath Tagore (Gitanjali)

I discovered this wonderful poem on Anna's blog, Our Homeschooling Journey, http://days-that-never-end.blogspot.com/ Thank you for sharing the work of one of your favorite poets with us, Anna!

Friday, October 22, 2010

Little Girl in a Yellow Dress Lino Print

I am my own little person. I pick what I want to wear. If I don't get to, I make a great, big, noisy fuss. Sometimes I want to wear all my favorite colors mixed together. Sometimes I want to wear sundresses in the winter and tights in the summer. Today I want to wear sunshine. Sunshine in my hair, sunshine in my dress, sunshine on my bare little toes.

It's a new lino print from my studio! Handprinted and handcolored, in my primroses shop.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Traditions: Join us for a Conversation

Kidoinfo, a wonderful website and blog for families run by Anisa Raouf, based in Providence, Rhode Island, sponsors a great conversation series, connecting parents with information, new ideas and their local community. This November we will talk about Traditions and what this means to families. This posting is copied from the Kidoinfo website, which you can link to by clicking on the title of this post. None of the links in this posting on Acorn Pies will be functional!

Traditions connect your children with your personal and cultural history and form the memories they will later pass on to their friends and families. They may stem from religion, birthplace, seasons, or revolve around a treasured activity or possession, families decide how to carry on, blend or create new traditions. This discussion gives panelists and attendees a forum to share their traditions and learn something new to share with their loved ones in the upcoming holiday season.

Our panel: Beth Curtin, Artist, Sarika Parikh, Teacher at the Gordon School, and Teny Gross, Director of the Institute for the Study & Practice of Nonviolence.

Kidoinfo Traditions Conversation-Panel-web

Plan to join the conversation with moderator Wendy Lawton.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010 from 6:30 – 8:30pm
location: Craftland – Westminster Street, Providence, RI
Tickets: $15. Space is limited. Pre-Register here and receive one free raffle ticket for a chance to win cool prizes.
Includes: Snow Beverages will be serving up free natural sodas, appetizers from WholeFoods, printed Traditions’ Resource Guide and other goodies.

I invite you to share your family traditions with the community in advance of the event. Please describe your family tradition in the comments below.


Sarika Parikh

Sarika is an experienced elementary school teacher of “traditions,” both at home with her family of two boys (ages 17 months and 4 years), and in her 4th grade classroom at The Gordon School, where multicultural education is intentionally incorporated into the curriculum on a daily basis. She holds an undergraduate degree in Elementary Education and a master’s degree in Reading Literacy. Since the day Sarika had trouble completing the “traditional family tree,” assignment in elementary school due to her Indian background, she has been impassioned to empower both her own children and her students to embrace the uniqueness of their own identities. Sarika believes in connecting children to family traditions in simple ways that enable children to embrace and explore their identities in everyday life, through sharing personal stories, connecting with family members, and keeping multigenerational memories alive. Sarika believes that “keeping it simple” will make traditions relevant for young children as well as realistic for families for continue.

Beth Curtin

Beth Curtin is a portrait artist who primarily works in artist’s colored pencils out of her studio in a mill building in Pawtucket. She also enjoys crafts such as knitting, sewing, crocheting, handspinning, toy-making, and formerly, making Waldorf dolls. Her blog, www.acornpies.blogspot.com, emphasizes the joys of art, nature, and outdoor play and publishes craft and toy-making tutorials. In addition to her portrait work, she is currently creating a series of hand-colored lino prints of children at play. These lino prints and Beth’s crafts are available online in her etsy store, www.primroses.etsy.com. Beth is married to Bill Curtin, a professor at Brown, and they have three children: Nicholas, 23, is an executive chef in New York City, Cammie, 20, is studying neuroscience at Middlebury College, and Peter, 8, loves to figure out how things work. Learning and creativity figure large in the life of Beth’s family

Teny Gross

Teny O. Gross is Executive Director of the Institute for the Study and Practice of Nonviolence, a pioneering organization that teaches the principles and practices of nonviolence locally, nationally and internationally. Its Nonviolence Streetworkers Program is widely recognized for stemming gang violence. The U.S. Conference of Mayors selected the Institute’s work as “best practice” in combating gang violence, and the Association of Fundraising Professionals, R.I. has selected it as “Outstanding Philanthropic Organization for 2009.” The Institute received Citizens Bank/NBC 10’s first “Champion in Action” award for nonviolence, Metlife Foundation’s Community Police Partnership award for “Gang Prevention and Youth Safety,”

In 2010, Teny was inducted into the Martin Luther King, Jr. Hall of Fame by Providence Mayor David Cicilline. R.I. Minority Police Association Community Service award, and the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. State Holiday Commission Recognition award. Teny is the recipient of an Institute of Global Leadership Alumni Award from Tufts University where he earned his B.F.A. From Harvard he received an M.T.S. degree and a fellowship in Strategic Perspectives in Nonprofit Management from Harvard Business School.

During the 1990’s Teny had been a Program Coordinator for the Ella J. Baker House Youth Focused Community Initiative, a participant in the National Ten-Point Coalition, and a Senior Streetworker for the City of Boston. He is a veteran of the Israeli Defense Force.


Wendy Lawton
Wendy Lawton raises money for science and technology projects at Brown University. Wendy serves on the board of the Vartan Gregorian PTO and the Rhode Island Museum of Science and Art, and serves as an advisor to Wooly Productions. Her childhood traditions included apple picking, Christmas tree cutting, and annual summer pilgrimages to southern Indiana that were rich in family and food. Wendy lives in Providence with her 7-year-old, Lucy, and they observe many seasonal traditions, some of which involve seashells, pumpkins, poetry and soup.

Raising Kids in a Digital World Conversation

Monday, October 18, 2010

Baby with a Book

A baby boy pauses in his play to look at a board book. His long lashes lie on his cheeks, his curls brush the back of his jumpsuit.

His plump little hand rests on his foot. What do the little ones think about as they gaze at pictures in a board book? We don't know. All we know is that this is where the love of books begin, in babyhood.

This is my newest linocut print. It is designed and hand carved by me. I hand printed it on high quality rag printing paper and colored it with watercolor paint, so each one is unique. My model was a sweet, tiny friend of mine. I remember that cold day when I took his picture. He was warm and cozy inside the house, sitting on the rug with his blocks and his book. All was quiet and at peace in his home as he gazed and gazed at his little board book.

If you want to see more of my linocut prints, go to my etsy store. There is a link to "primroses" in the column on the right. love, Beth

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Granny Squares

I got to crochet a lot this past weekend and decided to try and count the squares to see how many I had.

Then I rested them out on my postage stamp quilt coat to see how many more I need to make.

I'm getting there, bit by bit.

I need to find a granny square coat pattern. Have you ever seen one?

Saturday, October 16, 2010

A Doll for Jayne

I crocheted this doll's hair for a change, now that I am getting better at crochet. It was an experiment, and I like it.

It looks like tight little curls.

I plucked at the mohair with my fingers to fluff it out. I like the way it catches the light, looking downy.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Crazy Quilting

My daughter and I have been making her a crazy quilt, very slowly. She sweetly asked me to try to finish it this Fall. Since she is going to be home from college for Fall break this weekend, I realized I had better get a move on! Yesterday, I saw that I had enough squares to make a good sized throw quilt.

I laid the squares randomly on top of my husband's flannel throw quilt just to be sure. This afternoon I'm going to shop for some blue fabric the color of the background in the central squares. It's hard to find. It is a slightly pinkish blue. I'm going to back it with minky, like my husband's quilt. It is really hard to share a quilt which has minky on the back. Everyone wants it for himself!

So, I'm sending you more color cheer!

Plimoth Plantation

This is the English village at Plimoth Plantation in Plymouth, Massachusetts.

It is a living history museum peopled by interpreters who pretend to be English settlers of the 1620's. It is fascinating to learn about the Pilgrims by questioning these knowledgeable people.

You can explore the reproduction buildings.

Every cottage has a mortar and pestle for grinding corn. The Pilgrims had ground corn with every meal. You can grind parched corn with your child at home to see how much work that is. We did a tutorial about it a couple of weeks ago on Acorn Pies.

The cottages have dirt floors, reed thatched roofs, and mud-daubed walls.

This is a reproduction candlestick/oil lamp. You could put trane oil (cod liver oil) into each of the two wells and have a candle lit, too. My son and I showed readers how to make an olive oil lamp on Acorn Pies recently.

This is a chamber pot.

Beds had hangings for warmth. Windows were covered with oiled paper. Mattresses were stuffed with goose down or straw.

Men and women both wore felt hats outdoors and wool clothing year round. There were few sheep at Plimoth in the beginning, and no spinning wheels or looms. Women clothed their families using imported cloth which they sewed. Drop spindles were used to make yarn for knitting.

Women covered their hair with a coif, and wore knitted pockets for carrying scissors, fire starters, or needle and thread.

Men wore a leather purse.

This man is showing us some little wooden bottles used to keep gunpowder dry.

My son and I have been experimenting with natural dyes, and it was interesting to examine the clothing and to see the gorgeous color combinations.

This is a bread oven made of clay and protected from rain by a little wooden roof.

The interiors of the cottages were dark, so many of my pictures are shadowy.