Saturday, October 4, 2008

Off to Ft. Kent

I just returned from meeting with Laura, and her lovely daughter, Rachel. Laura is one of our contacts from Ft. Kent. She was in southern Maine this week, so we arranged to meet here. She will be distributing your donations throughout the Ft. Kent area as part of her work at the local food pantry. We stood in the parking lot at Borders, admiring your work. It will arrive in Ft. Kent just in time. Today the air feels distinctly cooler, even in the southern part of Maine. Time for flannel sheets, extra layers, soup for dinner, and of course, hand knits.

As I have mentioned, Nest will continue. Feel free to spread the word to the knitters, weavers, and crocheters in your lives. Donations can be sent to the P.O. box at any time. There is a chance we will do one more drive this winter. If not, we will certainly do a large drive next summer/fall. In the meantime, be sure to knit something wonderful for yourself!

By the way, a few folks wrote to say they are starting projects in their communities. One that comes to mind is taking shape in Washington state. It's called Warmth for Washington. If I am correct, they have decided to accept items beyond the 10/15 date. Items will be collected throughout the fall and winter. Check out this blog for information:

I've also heard about a group in California called The Knit-Along-Gang. Started by a young homeschooler, the gang hopes to bring both young and old together to knit for those in need. I'll let you know if they want to post information here.

Thank you so very, very much for your generosity.


Wednesday, September 24, 2008


September days, with cool nights and warm sunny afternoons, are some of the very finest in Maine. A few days ago we saw the first bits of frost on the grass. The crickets are singing loudly. Evening seems to arrive quite early. Woodpiles are growing higher and higher. Local fairs, a strong reminder that the harvest is coming to an end, are happening in every corner of the state. All the signs are here: cold weather is on its way. Thanks to all of you, some Mainers will find the transition that comes with our change of seasons a bit easier this year.

Today we counted all of the hats, scarves, cowls, mitts, mittens, blankets, socks, and the shawl. We have collected 243 articles of clothing for Nest! When we started this project, we quite timidly hoped for 50, then 75, then 100 items. Next weekend we will meet with Laura, who will take all of these colorful, warm things, along with the love and good wishes knit and woven into them, home to Ft. Kent. They will be distributed throughout the community just in time, as there are some seriously cold winds on our horizon.

We received packages from all over the United States and Canada. We heard from grandmothers, new mothers, beginning knitters and weavers, expert knitters, women who have just come through very hard times, women who felt a strong need to give back to the community, teenage friends, a knitting guild, somebody in the Coast Guard, and people who have visited or lived in Maine. Many of you found your way here from Soulemama's blog. A great big thank you to Amanda and other bloggers for spreading the word.

Nest will continue indefinitely. Feel free to send your contributions to the P.O. box listed on the sidebar. We will continue to contact local aid agencies in our communities and distribute items as they come in.

From all of us, our love and thanks.


Wednesday, September 3, 2008

184 and counting

We just opened all of the boxes, envelopes, and packages that have arrived for Nest. There are, as of today, 184 items! There are baby blankets, a beautiful shawl, a pair of socks, fingerless mitts, mittens, scarves, and cowls. And, of course, 121 hats.

I will continue to check the mailbox daily. In truth, we have no desire to end the project. The p.o. box will remain open. I spoke today with our contacts in Ft. Kent, Maine. (Hello Laura and Linda!) As soon as I know the final details for distribution, I will let you know.

Thank you, knitters, weavers, and crocheters. We have enjoyed your letters and have been touched by your kind wishes. Your contributions will help warm so many hands, heads, and hearts this winter.


Monday, June 30, 2008

Nest: Bringing Warmth Home

As I write this, a beautiful summer day is coming to a close. We spent the morning picking strawberries at a local farm. After dropping them off at the house, we scooted over to the ocean for a quick dip before thunderstorms rolled in. The storms gave us the perfect opportunity to wash and hull the berries, then freeze them for winter eating. Summer in Maine is short and sweet. And Mainers squeeze every last drop out of what it offers.

Many Mainers are also preparing for a challenging winter. The rising cost of home heating oil put a major strain on budgets last year. For many people the upcoming winter will be even worse. It seems everywhere we go people are talking about how they will get by, what their strategy will be, and what changes they are making in their lives. Many of those changes are good. We see more food gardens than ever before. More people take public transportation when it is available. Carpooling is becoming more and more common. There is a spirit of conservation in the air that is refreshing.

In spite of these measures, many Mainers will face difficulties in the coming months. While the price increase for home heating oil is an inconvenience for us all, it is a crisis for many. Although the long term solution to the energy problem is complicated, providing warm woolen items to people in need is not.

Here's where you come in! We are asking interested knitters and crocheters to contribute hats, mittens, fingerless mitts, cowls, and scarves to be distributed in northern Maine before autumn. The sky is the limit in terms of patterns and design. Some of these items will be worn indoors, where it is becoming increasingly common to keep temperatures below 60 degrees. Please mail new items made from natural materials, preferably wool, to the following address

Jean Lee
P.O Box 6011
Falmouth, ME 04105

Many thanks!