I knew it had been a long time since I wrote, but I hadn't realized how long; nor can I blame it all on the scorching summer (though it does explain the last few weeks).
Nor has it been due to a lack of things to do - there have been many an interesting activity. So interesting that I still want to do an overview:
April offered two fascinating events.
The Sangamon County Historical Society
(http://sangamonhistory.org/) offered a bus trip to the C. H. Moore Homestead (http://www.chmoorehomestead.org/) in Clinton, Illinois. The C. H. Moore house is a beautifully restored Victorian home, with exquisite furnishings, and material examples of the life of the time. The curator, Larry Buss, has a wealth of knowledge on the house and grounds, and along with the house's collection there is also the DeWitt County History Society's museum in the basement, three farm museums, a blacksmith shop, and a telephone exhibit.
This fine outing was followed by the Springfield Art Association's "Titantic Tea." (http://www.springfieldart.org/)
They had the Tea Ladies (http://www.thetealadiesinc.com/)back to host a tea party, which offered foods that would have been on the Titanic. The Tea Ladies then offered a brief history of the people on board, and asked that all those attendees of the tea party to read a card (or more) regarding some of the survivors.
With the coming of May came both the Central Illinois Highland Games (http://www.central-illinois-standrewsociety.com/)and the precursor to the heat), and Clayville's Spring Festival (http://www.clayville.org/).
Both were as fun to perform at as always.
The increase in the heat did cut into the performing schedule, with Clayville not having their usual July activities, and the Elijah Iles House (http://www.ileshouse.org/)cancelling their Strawberry Festival, but I have not been idle.
During this time I have decided to launch Tales of Sangamon (http://www.talesofsangamon.com/), which is a website devoted to collecting stories of Sangamon County, and the surrounding area.
I am truly excited about the site, and hope that some will use it so that stories of the area can be documented, since there is so little Illinois lore in print.
This Story Musing offers a bit of a challenge as I am mostly trying to type one handed, and am counting myself lucky, since for the most of the month I have been dealing with a strained shoulder.
It has also been a busy couple of months, starting with the Root of Nature conference in March. This was a wonderful launch of a new nature education conference for early education teachers, which was hosted by the Springfield Audubon Society. Brian "Fox" Ellis offered a fine keynote address, and equally fine workshop.
I'm still amazed the conference is now over, since it has been in the planning for so long.
The following week I had the pleasure of performing at the Illinois State Museum as they opened their Play Museum. I was actually settled on the first floor, under their very realistic looking tree. It was great fun as I worked with my Folkmanis Gray Fox puppet, which got hugged by many children and petted by a few adults.
It never ceases to amaze and delight me how people, young and old, react to the life-like animal puppets; the movement catches their attention, and even when they realize it is a puppet, they still pet it.
And in the middle of this I was able to offer such stories as, "The Two Foxes," and "The Fox Wife." And when I had my squirrel puppet out I added in the French story, "The Fox and the Squirrel."
Now I am trying to play "catch up" on both storytelling material, and more mundane activities; plus gear up for the St Andrews' Highland Games on May 21st, and Clayville's Spring Festival, which is May 20th, 21st, and 22nd.
I am a Springfield, IL based storyteller with a fascination for how folklore travels, and for history.