We miss our instructors and know you do also! We’ve been checking in with folks, to share a smile virtually and get caught up. Laurelei teaches Pysanky Ukrainian Egg Decorating and How to Make a Memory Bear, and is also one of our favorite volunteers. Here’s some news from Laurelei…

You’re a special education teacher in the Osceola district.  How did things go this spring with remote learning? It was terribly difficult to teach remedial reading, I wasn’t able to find a substitute for the ‘face to face’ experience. Every teacher I know was exhausted by the end of the year. I teach ‘bell to bell’, every hour and every day counts, and I’m teaching life skills. I want what is best for ‘my kids’, for them to improve and move on. Unfortunately, the experience was not ideal for my students.

What have you been doing to cope with Covid stress? After catching up on sleep, I’ve been busy! I’ve made three Memory Bears, which are stuffed bears made with fabric that has a special connection to someone who has died. For example, my brother died about a year ago and I made one out of Green Bay Packers material. I’ve got orders for several more Memory Bears.

Photo Credit: Submitted by Laurelei Creuzer

I also purchased a treadle sewing machine from the early 1900’s. I grew up using my grandmother’s treadle machine and I’ve been hankering to have one. I’ve been making masks on it, you can’t move too fast but it is relaxing to move the treadle and sew. My dream is to take my mother’s vintage linens and tablecloths and make clothes for my grandchildren At least for the younger ones, I’m guessing maybe the 23 year old won’t be too receptive!

Photo Credit: Submitted by Laurelei Creuzer
You also mentioned you’ve been finding instructional videos to watch. Yes, I’m thinking about a backyard project to add a mosaic rock path, so I’ve been investigating how to do that. Another thing I’ve been doing is learning how to refinish furniture through on-line videos. I’m starting small, I’ve bought a few starter pieces on FaceBook Marketplace. Oh yeah, one more thing, I’m taking a monthly online class from the Farm Table Foundation and growing my own ‘Victory Garden’, I’ve loved that.

How is your family, during this uncertain time? Everyone is healthy and safe. Every summer I drive out east and hold ‘Grammy Camp’, with my grandkids, we do crafting of all kinds. Sadly, I won’t be going this summer and will miss seeing my 9 grandchildren and some new puppies they are excited about. It would have been the 20th year of camp….we’re just postponing the celebration ‘til next year.

Photo Credit: Submitted by Laurelei Creuzer
Any final words to our readers? I definitely miss everyone at the Folk School. I miss being with like-minded people who enjoy sharing their gifts and learning new skills. Please stay positive – this will pass eventually. I encourage everyone to continue to make connections with others, no matter how small those connections are. We recently did a drive-by birthday celebration for a friend who turned 102! He loved it and so did we.

Photo Credit: Submitted by Laurelei Creuzer