It's been more than a week since I got back from the Madrona Fiber Arts Retreat and I still have all of the warm fuzzies.
It was my first time teaching there and it felt like home. The students were amazing, smart and relaxed. Even on Sunday, after three days of classes, they were quieter, but still crazy sharp. My students spun every idea (and fiber) I handed to them, they asked great questions and had their own yarn and projects to show and discuss.
I was so engrossed in teaching and talking that I forgot to take pictures in my classes. I also forgot to make time for much shopping. Madrona is so much about conversations and sharing ideas - with students, with other teachers, in the elevator, in a line or at the marketplace or the banquet. I don't remember the last time I came home from a retreat so full of ideas and so grateful for our community.
I was handed three of my greatest compliments at this retreat:
- From a student: You are the least judgmental spinning teacher I've ever had.
- From Suzanne, who runs Madrona: Would you like to come back next year?
- From a fellow spinning teacher: The work you do is important.
When I teach at big events like this I still feel like the kid. I've been in the fiber arts for 20+ years, but in comparison to most other fiber teachers I haven't been teaching long. I'm the new kid that often feels like I don't know enough, because I still have so much to learn!
At Madrona, for the first time, I figuratively and literally sat at the grown-up table and I felt like I belonged there. It was wonderful.
L to R: Janine Bajus, Greg Cotton, Carson Demers, Mary Scott Huff, Beth Brown-Reinsel, Debbi Stone, Stephanie Pearl-McPhee, Amy Herzog and Judith MacKenzie