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I just finished making a flyer that anyone can print out and post.  (Go to the Resources tab at the top.)  Tomorrow I plan on making copies and taking them around to our community banks, churches, fabric stores, etc.  You should too!



Bastrop Fire Totals

Bastrop County OEM (link at right) released new numbers today for the Bastrop Complex Fire. Incredible, but not surprising devastation. They calculate the fire to have now burned 34,000 acres and destroyed 875 homes.

Tomorrow we’ll discuss pets. (More good news than bad.)

Highway 71

Highway 71

I drove through Bastrop this morning.  I didn’t want to cause any extra trouble for all the first responders that have been working so tirelessly through all of this, but since Hwy 71 was open, I thought I’d see for myself what it looked like.  It was depressing, but not as much as I thought it would be.  This is probably because the burned trees and ashes just look like they are covered with a dark snow.

All of the entrances to every subdivision or private road were guarded by a police officer or state trooper requiring ID to enter, which is how it should be.  As much as I want to see what everything looks like, I think these families should be allowed to deal with their losses and grief in private, without gawkers.

In the meantime, I snapped these pictures.  To do so, I set my shutter speed on 400 ISO, rolled down the window and snapped while I drove, not looking into the camera at all.  Of all the pictures I took, these are the ones good enough to make the cut.

And just for scale, here is a photo from the Austin American Statesman showing Lake Bastrop and highway 21.  It does not show the damage on or south of 71.



Blankets for Bastrop

It’s been not a whole week since the devastating fires broke out in Bastrop Texas.  To date, they have obliterated 30,000 acres andover 500 homes while they burned a swath of land 25 miles long by 20 miles wide.  Many, many families have lost everything in the fires.

We want to help by providing handmade blankets to those families in need.  Whether it’s just to literally survive the next few weeks, or it is to begin to build and furnish a new life, soft and warm handmade blankets help to ease the strain.

You can help.  Click any of the links above.  Even if the only ‘crafty’ thing you can do is use a pair of scissors,you can help.  We have opportunities for knitters, crocheters, quilters, and ‘cutters’.  If you can put together a team, or an old-fashioned sewing bee, and complete a whole blanket, that would be awesome.  If it’s only you, you can contribute to a long-distance group blanket or a ‘virtual’ sewing bee.

You can be the person who donates the yarn or fabric.  You can be the person who cuts it out.  You can be the person who sews the blocks or knits the strips or crochets the squares.  You can be the person who puts those together.  You can be the person who lines and quilts the finished blanket.  You can be the person who washes, dries, and folds the blankets.  You can be the person who mails or delivers the blankets.  You can be the person who helps rebuild someone’s home.  You can be the person who helps them sleep better at night.

Our goal is both short and long-term.  We want to provide for families in immediate need.  Fortunately it won’t be that cold in Texas for a while.  But when it does get cold, we want our neighbors to find comfort in a blanket that someone put their heart into making.