Random Acts of Living

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Golden Wheat AHSGR October 18, Fall Meeting

FALL MEETING and Election of Officers
Sunday, October 18, 2009 - 1:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.
1:00 p.m. to 1:30, gathering and registration; 1:30-2:30 potluck dinner
2:30 to 4:30 p.m., program: Immanuel Lutheran Church
909 South Market, Wichita

Come enjoy a unique program at our annual Fall meeting. The meeting will include Election of Officers and a presentation of Wheat Weaving by Martha and Marie Voth of North Newton using Turkey Red wheat. Their picture and an associated article were on the front page of Active Aging at the beginning of August. You will want to remember to move your chair to the front of the room during the presentation so you can see because their beautiful handiwork is too fragile to pass around.

From our President:
Dear Golden Wheat Friends:
Our October meeting is fast approaching, and First Vice President Harold Popp has come up with another great program. Please put October 18 on your calendar and plan to join us as twins Martha and Marie Voth share their skills of Turkey Red Wheat Weaving and Marquetry with us. One of their specialties is making beautiful pictures of old buildings from wheat straw (marquetry). It is also time for election of officers. You all come!

...After our covered dish dinner and meeting with election of officers, Harold Popp led us all in singing some songs in German including "How Great Thou Art", dedicating it to my dad's memory.

Next was the program given by the Voth sisters on creating artwork from wheat. They said that in the beginning they had used wheat grain in their artwork and they really liked it but so did the bugs. Now they remove ALL grains and seeds from their art medium. They told us about coloring and shaping the wheat and showed us a special tool that splits a wheat stem into six fine pieces that they then twist into a tiny rope with another machine.
They showed how they would take a picture and make copies of it, adjusting and cutting it into sections to get just the right angle to begin making their art.
The different sections are on varying thicknesses of cardboard to give the dimensional effect.
The butterflies below were for sale. There had been three of them but one was sold before I got a picture of it.
The sisters also wore pins that they had made from wheat.
Notice the 'rope' pieces on the pin below. Click on the picture to enlarge it.
Here is a picture of a golfer and the original picture it was made from.
All Kansans out there will recognize our state seal.
I thought these sunflowers, wild geraniums and butterfly was really pretty.
The camera did not do justice to this depiction of Russian Belarus' Glorious Birds.You can see the depth quality on the porch of the house below.
Sorry I couldn't get a better picture of this grand prize winner, it was behind glass and there was quite a glare from the big windows above. For those not familiar with Wichita KS, this is the Sedgwick County Historical Museum, formerly the Wichita City Hall. One of Wichita's 'castles'.
This beautiful cross is a wheat depiction of the ornate iron crosses in many of the GR cemeteries.
Next are the barns and farm scenes. This one a combination of wheat and watercolor.
Many of these are on a velvet background. Note the chicks to the lower right that are woven wheat and mounted on the frame.
This farmyard belonged to their Uncle William, done from old photos.
They consider barns the 'Castles of Prairies'. This one is about putting up hay on the Voth farm.

Another very enjoyable and informative meeting. The Voth sisters are very talented and if you get a chance you should see their work in person, it is amazing!

Sunday, October 4, 2009

The Funeral

Does your family take coffin pictures? Some families don't. I remember dad telling me that he had an uncle that didn't believe in having his picture taken, something about graven images. But dad had seen a picture of this same uncle in his coffin, the only picture ever taken of him. On the Tuesday evening before the funeral the family gathered at the mortuary for the official viewing. Dad looked peaceful, at rest, sleeping the sleep of angels.

Wednesday, September 16 the little church in south Wichita was packed tight with friends and family.

The flag draped coffin stood stately in front of the alter.

Pastor Strother Gross was a good friend and joined in singing many songs with dad. The service was personal and from the heart.

Cousin Dianne requested to sing, I remember her singing at grandmother's funeral, dad's mom, so many years ago.

The pallbearers loaded the coffin up for the final trip.

Dad was a proud Marine and the color guard stood patiently waiting...

...along with the bugler.

Silently the color guard moved in determined form, raising the colors from the wooden coffin...

...taps began playing from across the headstones.

When taps had ended the flag was folded...


...and presented to my mother.

...the final farewell for a life well served.

The pall bearers filed past and placed their corsages in front of the grave.

Back at the church the ladies of the church prepared a wonderful meal for the family.

Cousin Dave picked up dad's guitar from the table and began to play...
...soon we all circled round and joined in. This is what we always have done when we get together.
The video I had put together for dad's 80th birthday played on big screen in the background.
And we sang, and we laughed...
...and we remembered that this is what we ALWAYS do. Below, the remaining two of the five brothers and a little sister.
And everyone noticed the absence of that golden rich tone that was my father's voice. A voice I could always pick out no matter how large the choir. I'll be listening for you, daddy.