Laughing Dog Arts

Monday, April 4, 2016

Maggi's Gone

Hello friends,
Been awhile since I have posted anything here.  Today I want to publish a small tribute to a friend who has passed.  I feel a need to do something to mark her passing.

Maggi Birchenough. 
 Maggi and Meg  

We met through blogs back in 2010, and quickly found we had much in common including favorite books, music and a love of art, particularly fiber art, growing things and our pets.  We wrote many long emails, getting to know each other through the years.  Traded plenty of stories and eventually began trading gifts through the mail.  In 2014 she became the Co-rep for SAQA for Europe and the Middle East.  When she found that Portland Oregon was hosting a meeting for that group, she determined to come to the US from her home in the UK and attend that meeting, and, oh yes, as long as she was in the neighborhood, she would come and visit me!
So she did.  We had the most lovely time, walking through my fields 

and sitting on the deck, watching the birds with my cat Tigger sitting on Maggi's lap.  She had to leave all too soon.  After she returned to the UK she was having trouble breathing and had terrible headaches.  Finally she went to the doctor and got the worst news possible, advanced lung cancer.  She struggled but was gone less than a year later.

What did I know of Maggi?  She was kind, thoughtful and generous.  She volunteered at her local animal shelter, walking dogs, petting cats, and adopting one to keep her first cat company.  She missed her husband Robert who passed several years ago.  They had no children.  Maggi had been a teacher and in her later years worked as a dispatcher in a police station.  She was an inspired artist, working in fiber and often having her art quilts shown in big shows, where she also volunteered, helping with set up and showing the art.  She loved to read and to watch car racing!  She kept a blog for years, .
She loved to dye and manipulate fabrics and fibers.  She loved her family and friends.  Loved spending time in her home and yard, tending her garden, watching her cats, Jack and Casper,

helping her neighbors.  She was fortunate to be close with her cousins who were a huge help to her after she became ill.  I know her friend Linda Vincent was also a help during her time of need. 

Maggi and Linda at a quilt show
She was so generous with help to others when she was strong and healthy, I'm glad to know it all came back to her when she needed help.  From my perspective she seemed to accept her illness with strength and pragmatism, not complaining, just doing what she had to and enjoying what life she had left as best she could.  Maggi must have been heartbroken when she decided to give up her cats so they could find new homes.  The shelter where she had spent so much time helped her there, and they found new homes readily.

Her cousins were with her in her home when she passed peacefully, which was brave of them all.  Maggi was loved and will be missed.  I feel blessed to have been able to call her my friend and will miss her, keeping her in my heart forever.