My European/US teaching trip

Whew!!!  Just returned from a five and a half week teaching tour around Europe and the US.

As this is going to be a long post with photos I think I’ll do it in two installments – can’t have you getting bored now can i?

Before Europe I did a 10 day cruise from Sydney to New Zealand as one of a number of quilt/scrapbooking tutors.  That was quite an experience.  We were chasing the tail end of the cyclone so the seas were pretty rough.  Fortunately I discovered that I don’t get seasick.  I taught for 5 days and the other days were spent exploring Dunedin, Wellington and Picton with one day just relaxing on the ship and catching up on my own sewing.  Teaching on a ship can be challenging but it was fun nonetheless.  Sorry no photos….

On return to Melbourne I had just 5 days to get ready for my extended trip to Europe and the US – why do I do this to myself?  It sure was a mad rush to make sure that I had all the quilts packed as well as samples etc – and yes, of course clothes!  I had one suitcase full of quilts and another with clothes – remembering that I’d be experiencing both spring weather with a lot of very cold days – so I had to pack light.  So if you’re sick of seeing me in that stripey top you can imagine how sick I was wearing it!

First stop was Nantes.  I went there to check out all the Aussies that had book releases and was fortunate to teach one class as well.  I had fun hanging out with my Norwegian friends – Randi, Ellen, Miss E and Miss B (I couldn’t do justice to their names).  There wasn’t much time to do any touring – and I’ve promised myself (again) that I will time on any future visits to France.

Deirdre and Randi at Nantes
Deirdre and Randi at Nantes; one of Deirdre’s beautiful quilts
Quilters from my workshop in Nantes; Pour l'Amour du Fil
Quilters from my workshop in Nantes; Pour l’Amour du Fil

Next stop was Norway.  I managed to spend a few days with Randi in Asker – and what a lovely generous friend she is.

Randi; It snowed on my first day in Asker!
Randi; It snowed on my first day in Asker!

She organised trips to shops – Lappe Makeriet (a beautiful shop where we had a sit and sew), Katherines Quilt Shop as well as having her quilt group over for a sit and sew – and dinner with Ellen.

Sewing at Randi's
Sewing at Randi’s; Look at the yummy food!

We both travelled to Røros for a retreat.  Siw from Quiltegården organised a retreat at the Røros Hotel for more than 200 quilters – more than 10 tutors running workshops for 4 days.  That was hard work but who bothers about that when you’re having fun.

Photos from Røros
Photos from Røros

I was sad to leave Norway and Randi but had my next workshop at De Frottende Freule in Schildwolde, The Netherlands.  Inger has been supporting me for a very long time and I always love visiting with her and Danielle.  Again, teaching was fun and I know that everyone had a good time.  I stayed at the Jonkers-Aarf B&B where I’d stayed before.  Breakfasts are a treat – check out the photo where breakfast is just for me….

De Frottende Freule; top right is my breakfast at Jonkers-aarf B&B
De Frottende Freule; top right is my breakfast at Jonkers-aarf B&B

The shop is beautifully done up in the front room of Inger’s home.  Morning tea was scrumptious and so was lunch.

I did have a few problems with customs on arriving at Groningen airport because they thought that I was carrying too many cigarettes – and I don’t even smoke.  They went through all my luggage.  When they asked if I had anything to declare I said “no” but then realised that I had some yummy figs in syrup which I was taking for friends.  Of course they didn’t even bother about that – they were more interested in my clothes suitcase which had nothing out of the ordinary in it (glad I washed all my underwear!!)

More soon…..

2 thoughts on “My European/US teaching trip

  1. Janette Velardi says:

    Hi Irene, Last met with you in Vermont at the Colonial House Inn in Nov. 2016. Great weekend.
    Your trip sounds like it was marvelous. Looking forward to hearing more about it.
    Hoping your US schedule brings you to the east coast.
    I’m thinking I want to be you when I grow up. 🙂

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