The Giving Book

During the time of Covid I discovered a tiny book I wrote in 1982 called “The Giving Book”.  I had created it to share with students I was teaching at a local school. The tiny book was in a dust-covered box of photographs, crammed in the corner of our living room.  I read it and realized that the poems in there were current for today.  I began to replicate the book so that I could give it to friends who needed a lift for any number of reasons.  I have made and sent about 12 of them to people all over the country, as gifts.  People are always very happy to receive them, and it makes me happy to be able to do something that helps people a tiny bit.  I am thinking of having some printed for me by a printer, but haven’t done that, yet.

Get to know Carol Collins

PHOTO DESCRIPTIONS:

1) Carol in 1956 as a young child, tending her family’s sheep on their W. Brattleboro, VT farm. Cards are available for sale with this image on this web site. Visit the cards section under “Products” if you are interested.

2) Here I am teaching Colin, a young boy from Craftsbury, VT to spin. He was only 4 years old. He and his sister, age 6, did very well.

3) Here I am in the barnyard holding one of our lambs. We don’t keep sheep at this time, but we did from 1983-2001. This scene is available as a card. To view it, visit Cards in the “Products” section of this website.

4) Here I am in our sheep barn, holding a lamb. This is available as a card in the “Products” section of this website.

5) My favorite photo of one of our lambs. Available as a card see the Products section. One of my most popular cards.

6) A photo of me in my shop/school/studio in So. Duxbury, VT.  This is where students come for lessons with me, in spinning, dyeing, carding, felting, knitting, crocheting and more. Contact me if you’re interested.

7) Small Felted Balls. We’ve been producing these for years!! They are one of my most popular products.  Available for sale. View under Products page. See Price List for prices. They are available at retail and wholesale. To see where you can buy them, see “Find” page.

Teaching a Student

This was my Uncle Fremont who lived in Texas. He came to visit my family in 1994.

Just as he was going out the door, to return to Texas, he said that he wanted to learn to spin. I found a way to send a packed-up wheel home with him and he assembled it at his home in Texas. Earlier I had taught my father to spin, so my father and I taught my Uncle Fremont to spin by talking with him over the phone, and by hand-written letters, and by sending samples of spun yarn to him via regular mail.

He learned well, and he spun for my business for over a year. That was his last year of life, and I believe that it greatly enriched and enlivened his last year. I reaped the rewards of using his wonderful yarns.

Twenty-five years later, I sent Fremont’s Granddaughter a pair of baby booties I had someone make for me, using Fremont’s hand-spun yarn and my hand-spun yarns. The new mother put the booties on her baby boy, who would have been Fremont’s Great Grandson, if Fremont were still living.

Spinning has a way of connecting people, and touching lives.

Poem: Chores Were Done

Chores were done,

supper was cooking,

and dad had washed his hands.

He hunched his body

back in the saggy-seated rocker

in the dining room of the brick farmhouse.

Then reached over to the cluttered

stand he had built, himself,

and picked up the Marine Band Harmonica.

His arms and hands wrapped

around the instrument,

cupping it, close to his mouth.

He crossed his legs,

and the upper foot began to beat

a rhythm in the air.

His eyes closed, and his brow gathered, a bit.

His lips pursed to press

against the open reeds.

A few notes were all I needed,

to know which Irish or Scottish tune

he was in,

and you could hear the rocker, rocking,

and feel the rhythm

on the old dining room floor,

to match the rhythm of the tune.