Monday, June 08, 2015

For a few days, I got to live HERE

And work HERE - with some really great students, who made 6 hour classes just fly by.

And this was my porch, right outside those classroom doors. 

Not bad, huh?

Re-entry back into daily life is always a little tough after a weekend away - but after 5 days up at Squam Art Workshops, all I really want to do today is walk straight back into the woods or glide around in a kayak with my knitting.   I knew this going in, since I had stopped by Squam last year - but the difference between a few hours of the magic that Elizabeth and her team create up there and the entire weekend is not the same.  Squam is a retreat in the full sense of the word.

It's a whole camp full of thoughtful details, like handmade wreaths on your classroom door,  knitted flowers on a wooded trail, and charming little envelopes to open each morning. 

The cabins have vintage iceboxes for your cold drinks, with actual ICE FROM THE LAKE as the cold source.  At night, twinkly lights and candles make everything  homey, and for heat, there are fireplaces in all the buildings -stocked by fairies (or college students doing their summer jobs) when you aren't looking - with logs and kindling and newspaper and matches.   The loons call out over the lake and the wind and light play around in the leaves. Giant luna moths perch on the walls, and of course, Amy Christoffers finds 4 leaf clovers every time she looks down at the forest floor.

Even a skeptic like me can't help but surrender - you end up thinking and appreciating and slowing down.  Before you realize it, you are looking around with new eyes.

And as always with these things,  one of my favorite parts is spending time with the amazing industry people who I don't always see in person.  Having a teacher cabin meant that we had time to reconnect and share our ideas and get to chat as "co-workers".   The dock was the gathering spot after classes, before breakfast, and after dinner.  We added space with some additional kayak seating and eventually worked out a two-dock system, but Squam is absolutely about friends old and new, from places near and far  -- and making room for additional people is what you are doing all weekend, both literally and figuratively. 

Plus - when you put a bunch us creative types together for a while, things start to percolate, so I am back at home now, but I have definitely taken a bit of my Squam experience back with me.  I have a notebook full of thoughts and ideas, some new yarns and a few designs in my head.  I have a bit of perspective about my place in the world and my responsibility as a person who can make a difference moving forward.  More on that later.

For now, I leave you with pom poms.

And GIANT heartfelt thank yous:  to Elizabeth for the honor of being included, to the team that made the weekend happen, and to everyone who attended and made the experience of being there so special.    XO


Kate S said...

It was such a treat to see you there and share a magical evening of twinkly fairy lights, creativity and great company! I hope that your transition back from "camp" is a gentle one this week.

Thea said...

:) Same to you, Kate!

Ellen Mason said...

One of my childhood friends had her wedding there -- she and her husband were both employees. Pretty dreamy place.