Thursday, August 14, 2014

What's Ahead: Gardens and Storytelling

Coming home is a slow process. It takes a few days to get back into the rhythm of home life and catch up with all that needs to be done. It took me until this morning to finish putting away my clothes from last week, and my books and other supplies that I took with me are still in their crate, waiting to be re-shelved or otherwise stored away. It's almost as if I am trying to extend the memories by not putting them away too quickly.

But all good things must end, and there is much that needs to be done here at home. The rain came earlier this week and cooled things off, and brought much-needed moisture to my poor wilting flowers. The second planting of cucumbers is coming in and Larry brings me baskets full every day. I made dill pickles yesterday and am making more today--yesterday was dill slices, today will be whole pickles and spears. The tomatoes are beginning to ripen quickly too, and yesterday I made 14 quarts of pasta sauce while working on the pickles.

Elderberries are hanging heavy and I will gather them tomorrow, and the grapes will be ready to pick next week. As I write there is a five-gallon bucket of shucked corn waiting for me to cut it off the cob and freeze it. We are not canning as much this year as the cellar is still quite full and we need to use up some of the backlog, which is a nice feeling. But I don't want anything to go to waste either, so if we can't use it, I'll be looking for someone to take the excess veggies off my hands.

I am catching up on storytelling projects too. A storyteller has to plan ahead to stay employed and I have several irons in the fire. Here's some of what's ahead:

Storytelling friend Jo Ann Dadisman and I are planning a storytelling concert and workshop featuring the very talented Susan Gordon of Frederick, Maryland, to be held November 14th and 15th at the Frank and Jane Gabor WV Folklife Center at Fairmont State University in Fairmont, WV. The workshop will focus on telling the stories of the Grimm Brothers, challenging material in our politically-correct times and yet stories with deep meaning that resonate right down through the years to today's world. The concert will feature Susan Gordon as well as Kirk Judd who will perform works from his new poetry collection, My People Was Music. Jo Ann and I will also be performing at the concert. The workshop with Susan will be held all day on Saturday, November 15 at the Folklife Center.

Another new project is a ghost walk to be held in the town closest to me, Ripley, WV, in October. We're in the planning stages right now, looking for funding and working out a possible route while we are also seeking stories to be told on the walk. I am very excited about this as it's something I've wanted to do for a long time. I'll share more details as our plans progress.

But before either of these events is a trip to Philadelphia, PA to tell stories at a house concert hosted by my friend and storyteller extraordinaire Megan Hicks on September 6th at her home in Media, PA. I am really looking forward to seeing Megan again and telling stories with her and Tommy Pryor. From Megan's publicity for this concert:
Bridging the Great Divide between 

The Big Apple
The Mountain State

Tommy Pryor —Author, blogger, storyteller and host of the monthly storytelling event, Yorkville: Stoops to Nuts (at the Cornelia Street Cafe) will be revving up for the October release of his new book, “I Hate the Dallas Cowboys.” Tommy grew up on the Upper East Side. He makes it sound like the most magical place in the world for a kid to spend his childhood.

Storyteller Granny Sue —Author, blogger, storyteller, gardener, second-hand dealer and balladeer Susanna Holstein is coming down from the mountains to spend the evening with us. Don’t let that downhome accent fool you. She may look harmless, but Granny Sue packs a wallop.

Sounds like a fun evening, doesn't it? Let me know if you live in the area and are interested in attending, and I can send you particulars.

There's also the West Virginia Storytelling Festival in October, the Museum Day event in late September, and the Christmas programs later on. Variety is the spice of a storyteller's life.

So lots coming up in storytelling, and lots coming in from the garden. Now I'd better get back to the kitchen and those pickles!

Copyright Susanna Holstein. All rights reserved. No Republication or Redistribution Allowed without attribution to Susanna Holstein.


Quinn said...

You lead a rich and full life, AND you put up your homegrown vegetables...very impressive! I hope one day to have the chance to listen to your stories firsthand.


You are the busiest girl I know!!! Bar none. Your home produce looks beautiful in those jars. Makes me miss home and my mom to see them. Plus I can just taste the stuff. Smell it too. A tiny bit jealous. However I have to admit I don't can so it's at the right address. Remember to take a deep breath and enjoy the rest of our summer. It's beginning to feel too much like fall here! Hugs, B

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