Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Westfield Heritage Village Volunteer Job

Passing thoughts can be dangerous! Last year I thought that Westfield Heritage Village needed some help in the quilting department (see my post here) and the idea just wouldn't go away. So I signed up to volunteer. It has been a delightful experience to help with the "Christmas in the Country" program, even though is has been very cold (today with the wind chill it is minus 18 degrees Celsius!) This is the front gate of the village as it looked on Saturday night. We have had record snowfalls in December this year and the whole village was bright and sparkly with snow falling gently. After these lights here at the front gate, the entire village is lit only by candles and lanterns.
Almost all of these pioneer buildings are heated by wood stoves. On the left here is a volunteer (also named Cathy) who plays the blacksmith's wife and she is baking gingerbread cookies in that stove! Each building represents a different time period and has a different focus/activities.
I was placed in the Marr building, which is the spinning and weaving shop. Here is Bob working on the original 1860 weaving loom. He is a very knowledgeable weaver, and here is his wife Ellen, who is an amazing spinner.
The Marr building was a busy and popular building
and with all the visitors coming in and out, and the door being open so often, we were very cold! It took me a couple of hours when I got home to unthaw!
So here I am in my little corner where I was demonstrating a mini weaving loom (replica) and knitting some of the wool that Ellen had spun and dyed. Being around all this weaving has lead me to thinking about the possibilities of bead weaving which I have always wanted to try, but I am trying to ignore these thoughts because there are still only 24 hours in the day!
There were other activities going on in this building too, including wool carding, tatting, and rug making. In the summer they will be dyeing wool outside. Here is Laura Lee crocheting a rag rug by the front window. The garland hanging above the window was crocheted with red wooden beads strung on the line...isn't it pretty??!?
Anyway, last year this is the building where the quilters were, so I was excited to be placed there. However in the last year, the quilters have apparently moved to a different building and even with all my detective work, I have been unable to find out which building they are in...but I will track them down! This was lots of fun and if I loved any of these activities it would be a perfect volunteer job for me. But I am a quiltaholic, so I'll keep looking for a quilting job.
So that's what I have been doing in my free time. Now back to my Christmas activities - shopping, baking, gift wrapping, and of course quilting some last minute gifts. I'll post about those tomorrow.


Libby said...

Sounds like a wonderful place to visit . . . hope you find those quilters *s*

Sølvis blog said...

I love the story form the "museum". What a nice ting to be part of. And brrr was it cold!
Merry christmas from Norway