The Faces of My People

My house needs some editing. Well, I guess it could use a whole lot of

editing.  Until recently, I sold from my house and barns to antique dealers

and designers but time doesn’t allow for that any more.  What seemed like

an abundance of cool stuff then, now feels like a crowd.  As I was walking

through my rooms, I noticed, not for the first time, that there are an

awful lot of people living here with us. Here are some of their faces….


So many of them are religious. While I cannot be counted among the orgainzed

faithful, something deep in me responds to the music, accoutrements and

ceremony of places of worship whether meeting-house simple or over the top.

My parents believed that children should  grow up knowing about God and

have some experience of church in order to have something to believe in.

They were pretty lackadaisical, though, and I either attended Sunday School 

at  our own Dutch Reformed Church or went with a friend to their Sunday

School or Synagogue. I was fortunate to live in a town that had dozens of different

choices and I visited almost all of them.

Except for the Catholic Church. Things were different back then, the Catholic

Church was more closed and I was never invited to a service there as a kid.

For a long time, I thought I  didn’t know anyone who was Catholic.

Of course, I eventually got in and, once I have my foot in the door, I’m hard

to get rid of !  The pomp and cirmcumstance, the glory of it all has kept me

enthralled with Catholic services and it is always my first choice when in a

foreign country. I have found that I am perfectly capable of lifting my voice in

song in any language. The Tallis Scholars performing Thomas Tallis’ sacred music

is my favorite to listen to, with Krishna Das’  “All One”  a close second.  But, when it

comes to my people, I don’t confine myself to the pious….


My taste is catholic, not just Catholic.


Anybody want to join me in the church of maple syrup? Aunt Jemima is a saint

in my book!


My big garden girls are all inside the house where they belong.


Big Mouth, from the carnival, and Bedroom Eyes, a mannequin.  These guys

don’t go outside, either.


A santa, hand-made by Terry John Woods.  And a mask which has holes in the

eye area allowing the wearer to see. Terry used to have a sale at his Vermont

family farm one day a year, the day after Thanksgiving. People came from far

away places, like California, and slept in cars overnight on his country road in

order to be first through the door. The handmade items and antiques were pretty

wonderful but I don’t think I would give up Thanksgiving for them. It only took

me 2 hours to drive to his hamlet.  And another hour to find the place, tucked

away on a dirt road, a mile down from a five corners. I could never quite remember

which of those roads to take.


Old papier mache angels. Too nice to keep in a closet till Christmas.  And,

Patina and her other sister, Patina.  Patina is technically the green that shows

up on metal when it oxidizes. However, most of us call the signs of age on any old

surface “patina” and get away with it every time.

There are dozens more people in my house, but enough is enough.   Above,

though, is a preview of what’s coming…the faces of my animals! I have a very

strong feeling that, during the editing process, none of my people are going to

get the boot.


  1. Hallo !
    I´m looking for grain sacks, I live in Denmark and it´s impossible to find here. Found you and hope it will be possible to buy from you again, soon.
    Best reguards from Anja Madsen

  2. Stephanie, your true artistry and appreciation of human nature and all that is divine comes through in this blog. Thanks for sharing.