Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Message From Rota!

I just had an email from Aimee Steiner, founder of the Gypsy Faith project on the island of Rota!  They are most grateful for our efforts to help get books to the people of the island, and she has updated their website to include our chapter's efforts on their behalf.  If I missed anyone, and your name does not appear, please let me know and I will email the info to Aimee and she will get their website updated. 

Here is an excerpt from one of Aimee's latest emails to me:

Dearest Becky (and Georgia Farmgirls):

If only you could be here with me and feel how it is to go from zero to dozens of books. We are almost to one thousand books now. What you and the sisters have done is infinitely important to me.

I was thinking about life in the 3rd world versus life in the US and a whole lot of what we do not have is space. Last year when I visited the US I marveled at the space there is. You see a single person in a car, and whole rooms full of unused furniture. Here I sleep on the floor but use a pillow, which is very American, as is running out of rain. No one (here) hurries if it rains on their head, they maintain the same leisurely pace. You never ever see an unused chair or a one-person car. I have forgotten about how odd it felt to me in the beginning to have people right up in my face while talking, and seeing the men touch each other.

Aimee's stories are amazing to me!  Having lived all my life in a place with plenty of space to roam and more than enough 'things' like chairs and beds, it is hard to imagine - but in some ways intriguing!  She has also told me that she frequently 'haunts' our facebook page to keep up with our activities.  If you want to be a friend of Aimee, her facebook name is Aimee O'malley Steiner, and you can find her in the list of members of our Georgia Farmgirl group page, or on my personal facebook page.  When you do a friend request, just let her know you are a Georgia Farmgirl!

Girls, what we are doing is a wonderful thing!  Thank you so much, from the bottom of MY heart!  Becky

Monday, August 16, 2010

A Day To Remember!

The August 14th meeting of the Georgia Farm Girls (GAFG) was indeed a day to remember!  Lots of hours and lots of laughter at the little yellow cottage ensured things were cleaned and fluffed and spruced up in time for the meeting.

And who was our special guest?  None other than Ms. MaryJane Butters herself!  The founder of the MaryJanes Farm organization came to Atlanta and spent her Saturday morning with the Georgia Farmgirls!  First up was a brunch for about a dozen people at chapter leader Mary Ann Witcher's home.  Everyone brought a contribution to the meal, and it was delicious!

After everyone had eaten, we gave Mary Jane a basket of locally made goodies and hand made gifts from some of our members, including locally ground grits and cornmeal, Georgia Peach candle from a local company, home preserved jelly, chow chow, and honey, and more.

What was MaryJane like?  Well, petite and perky and very girly!  She was also very down to earth and genuine and friendly.  Soft spoken, laughed easily, and talked openly about her family and the operation back on the farm.  Some words I heard to describe her were gracious, delightful, bubbly, lovely, and 'an angel'.  And I agree with all of them!

After the brunch we headed over to the hen house for the meeting.   We had a total of 29 people in attendance for the meeting, and welcomed five new members to the fold!  The new members are: 
  • Lou Fishburne
  • Missy Jones
  • Paula Rainey
  • Barbara Roberts
  • Trina King
Topics covered in the meeting were the Community Partnerships - Unseen Hands food and clothing ministry, the new project to knit or crochet hats or lap blankets for preemie babies or cancer patients, and the Rota project.
Other topics were the October field trip to the Country Living Fair at Stone Mountain, the Summer Flea Market, a quilt show in Milton, GA, and Thursday Night Craft Party.  Mary Ann did a program on 'Preserving the Harvest", and briefly covered the 5 ways of preserving food - pickling, jellies and jams, canning, freezing and drying.  She also talked about how easy it is now to find locally grown foods in season.

Mary Jane Butters was given the floor, and she stood and discussed the Sisterhood (are you a member of the Sisterhood???), what is coming up in the next issue of the magazine (crocheting rugs, making braided baskets, etc.) and many other topics.  She left with us an apron that we are going to pass around among our members, along with a journal.  Each of us is to wear the apron, get some stains on it and write in the journal about what we were doing and what was going on in our lives when we were wearing it, then we can display it in the Hen House.  MaryJane answered many questions, too!  She also gave a few very cool door prizes plus had a box of older MaryJane's Farm magazines for us to pick from as well.  

After the meeting we were treated to gelato (Italian ice cream), biscotti crunch and pizzelle wedges to go with it, from Amadeo's Italian Cookie Company in Dawsonville.  The flavors we had were Madagascar vanilla, chocolate, and white chocolate with maraschino cherries.   It was really delicious!  And so was the fellowship as everyone mingled and talked and spent time getting to know the visitors and new members. 

When most everyone had left, Mary Jane wanted to go outside and take pictures, so I went along to take pictures of her! She walked across the street to take pictures of our Hen House, and the picture below shows her laughing at me taking a picture of her taking a picture of me! A sweet moment for me!

And the picture above is MaryJane kissing our sign and pointing at the word 'farmgirls'.  

It was a wonderful day, full of love and laughter and sharing of ideas.  You never know what to expect when you meet someone like that, but I have to say, when she left I felt as if I had a new friend.  She is that kind of person, and her joy of living and love for others just bubbled out of her!

We would love to have YOU join us at the next meeting, on September 11th!  We can't promise you MaryJane, but we can promise you a time of fun, fellowship and sharing.  

Until next time, have a great week!

PS - Oh, and there are lots more photos on Facebook, if you want to look them up!  Just go to the Georgia Farmgirls group page and scroll down, and you will find a few of them.  Click on one of them and that will take you to the album.