Sue, the amazing list-mom from Here-Be-Tatters organized a "Christmas in July" exchange. It had to have been a huge amount of work because there were so many participants. All those lovely things in the first picture are what I received from Irma from Chile. New things to hang on my tree this December, a towel which just matches my bathroom, the prettiest cut-work mat I've ever seen, and thread to make an edging for that mat or make more snowflakes or use for jewelry...such possibilities...a neck or vest ornament with a wooden holder, and, finally, a pretty blue satin bag covered with tatting in which to keep all my special things. Right now, it's holding all those tatted bits I don't have homes for yet. The giving was just as fun as the getting, but after the loot I got, I feel like a piker! Maria, my exchange partner from Portugal, received those things in the second picture. (You'll note the absence of anything so large and pretty as the hand-towel and the mat). Hey! When's the next exchange? I've got to get started!
Tatting while listening to audio books is what I call relaxation. I get home from work, get dinner out of the way, then park myself in my favorite chair. I pick up my lap desk covered with shuttles, patterns, strings and beads, stick the earbuds in and say, "Checking out!" Nobody bothers me then -- until it's time to go ride the stationary bike, that is.