We Are “Pumped” for this Trip South

We are on our way to the Basket Cottage in Milton for Mr. Basketmaker’s two-day workshop. The uprights, weavers and handles are all taped and the car is packed.



And we are extra-extra pumped to visit our dear friends and hosts, Jud & Suzanne. Why extra pumped? Because it’s only a 3-hour drive!

Before we moved to Tennessee over the spring, this trip to Georgia, that we made a couple times every year, always took two days to get down there and two days to travel back home. Those long journeys for work are exhausting. And it was four days of lost time for Eric. He prefers to do most of the driving, if not all. And I’m not just a bored passenger. I set up a little “mobile office” in the back of our van and would work away. So it wasn’t much lost time for me work-wise. I can do my freelance work anywhere.

Nonetheless, sitting in a car for a total of 17 hours over two days is tiring and we probably are a little cranky in front of our hosts!

So this time, it’s not so rushed around here! Instead of being on the road for 8 hours, which we would’ve been all day today if we still lived in New Hampshire, Eric had time to work on a new basket design.


And after closing up his workshop for the evening, instead of staying at a budget-hotel where we would have been if we still lived up North, he’s sitting in his favorite chair watching the Red Sox. (I tried to take his picture, but he wouldn’t let me.)

A Wood Carver and a Kennel

We will be leaving soon for Eric’s workshop at the ever-popular Basket Cottage outside of Atlanta. That means Chance will be going to his new favorite kennel, Kamp Kritter here in Tennessee. We were lucky to find this place. And Tim, the owner, just happens to be a fellow craftsman as well.

He is a talented wood carver and his workshop and studio is amazing. Below are some images of his work. Unfortunately, I didn’t grab a good shot of his more creative work. These were taken at a local craft fair where Tim had a booth. He’s quite popular. When I stopped by to have a quick chat, he had several customers. And what was the big seller? Like most artists, his popular item is a “tourist” item… his carved bears! He sells them like hotcakes. When I took this shot, a woman who purchased one of his larger bears the day before, said she just had to have two little cubs to join it.



Now why does he run a kennel as well? From the story we got when we first met him is that it was his wife’s idea! He said she woke up one day and proclaimed, “I want to start a kennel.” So, yes, they did build and start a kennel but then she didn’t quit her job so it soon became Tim’s new job as well.

It’s a great kennel. Located in a hilly, wooded area, very secluded. And each kennel has their own private dog door to a fully enclosed outdoor patio. I like that! When I’m away, I’m always worried that maybe Chance got forgotten and was holding it all night. Because he’s the type of dog that would do that. He never wakes us up in the morning. If we slept until noon, he would simply wait in his bed for one of us to get up. But if he has his own little patio, I don’t have to worry about that.

I know he’s in good hands with Tim the carver. Anyone who can carve such a cute little bear face like he does has got to treat his canine visitors extra special. And it’s nice to know that Chance is in a creative environment as well, just like his new home here. So instead of worrying about him while in Georgia, I will only be missing him… lots.

Five Questions Friday: It’s Cold Outside

Q: In dog years, supposedly 7 years is only 1 year to a dog. Does that mean if we travel for 7 days straight, does it  feel like 1 day to a dog?
Eric: No. You have it opposite! It would feel like 49 days to a dog!

Q: Oh yeah! Silly me! So when we went to Chicago, did the 8-hour trip feel like 56 hours to Chance?
Eric: You would have to ask him. But in dog theory, I guess my answer is “yes”!
(editor’s note: wow, 56 hours trapped in a car with us? Sounds like total torture!)

Q: How thrilled are you that the Red Sox are in the World Series?
Eric: I’m really thrilled! Very thrilled! And happy that I can watch the Red Sox since it’s on network tv!

Q: How thrilled do you think Yankee-obsessed Joanne Howard is?
Eric: Who cares about her and her loser Yankees. She better get used to it. It’s going to be quite a while before they start winning again.
(editor’s note: don’t be mean to Joanne! She cannot help it that she loves the Yankees!)

Q: What annoyed you this week?
Eric: It is now cold here! I’m very annoyed that we woke up to 26 degree weather! I moved to the South expecting warm weather this time of year!