To Forge a Cross

This year for Christmas I gave my children, nieces, and nephews hand-forged Christmas tree ornaments, a variation of the Ethiopian crosses that are popular gifts from these parts. A few days ago we took a field trip to an artisan neighborhood in Addis tucked away in the foothills of Entoto Mountain to find out how … More To Forge a Cross

Butterfly in the Deep Blue Sky–no it’s not, it’s a MOTH!

How many lives does an Eri silk moth have? Life #1. Caterpillars cocooned, it got really cold and rainy, and they stayed put. We thought they died. After about a month too long, they hatched! Death deferred! Life #2. Moths laid eggs like crazy, and we had a huge crop of little worms. Then it … More Butterfly in the Deep Blue Sky–no it’s not, it’s a MOTH!

Tied Up In Knots

I’ve been teaching Rosa how to spin. And boy, have we gotten ourselves into a tangled mess. This is not how you spin. This is how you untangle your thread after you’ve gotten it looped around the bobbin because you weren’t holding it tight enough, with everything else you have to think about–keeping the wheel … More Tied Up In Knots

Trumpets and Ag

Cheeks puffed, stomachs tight, lips bleeding. I’m not exaggerating. It takes a lot of power to blow these gourds, and lips were indeed bleeding! Why were these farmers from Western Ethiopia welcoming a bunch of visitors in gray Conservation Agriculture T-shirts with such a work-out of Zumbara music? Beneshangul-Gumez is a region near the border … More Trumpets and Ag