Ok. Packed! (No small feat.) At the airport. Baggage checked. TSA cleared. Peppermint tea acquired. And now, we wait.

It’s been a while since I last flew. I think 2005? And I haven’t been to Germany since 1993…which is like a lifetime ago! Pre-mobile phones, pre-Google, pre-websites…like I said, a lifetime ago.

It gets weird when I really think about my reasons for traveling to thousands of miles from home: to study the art of felt-making with Gladys Paulus, textile artist extraordinaire. In a world gone totally high-tech, I am going to fly to another country to intensely study a material that is truly ancient. A material that is likely the first ever textile used by people. Ancient. Pre-pyramids, at least.

(Above: A beautiful piece by Gladys Paulus. Visit to see more.)

The packing list for this expedition includes a ziplock bag of Prismacolor pencils, two sketch pads, several kilos of wool, pliers, sewing supplies, a hat stand (made by my fabulous husband), a pool noodle (yes, for real), and more. Oh, and clothes. (But I am pretty sure that there are more art supplies than clothing. Priorities.)

I did pack one little oddity: a tiny little purple octopus that my younger daughter made for me using Sculpey. I am thinking of this as my version of “Flat Stanley.” Maybe “Flache Krake” or “Flat Octopus?”

I can’t wait to see what we do!

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