JOY, JOY, JOY, JOY, DOWN IN HER HEART!
Spread love everywhere you go. Let no one come to you without leaving happier.
There are people in this world who just make you happy. Being around them raises endorphins and inspires hopefulness. They are natural born doers. Everything that is interesting to them is something to be studied, assimilated, processed and reimagined in their own inventive and creative way. They tackle new things with a gusto that looks like a train whizzing by to the rest of us. Before we even know what is happening, they are publishing a book on it.
Kaye England is one of those world-class doers. Her contagious energy gives lift to those who are “thinking about it.” Whatever the ‘it’ is that others are thinking about, Kaye is doing. In her life she has become a well-known quilter and teacher of quilting with many published books on the subject. She’s a gardener, farmer, goat and llama breeder, writer, interior decorator, scrap booker, and fabric designer. At various times, she was also the owner of five different retail shops. These are but a few of her accomplishments. I have to take a nap after just listing these achievements. To Kaye however, these are not accomplishments, just the way she lives her life. She doesn’t set out to achieve. She sets out to explore what interests her and she has a way of taking it to the next level! In the process she inspires all who know her and are lucky enough to be part of her world. Her presence in a room lightens moods and encourages activity.
Kaye grew up on a Kentucky farm that did not have indoor plumbing until she was 16 years old. Her two grandmothers put a needle in her fingers from an early age – and quilting was just one of her many hobbies. She was married for 41 years and raised two children. She is now enjoying six grandchildren. When her husband passed away in 2001 she said that, “you have a choice to crawl back in bed and hide, or go on.” Kaye chose to go on and says that, “how you live your life after your partner dies says something about how you were married.” Kaye described herself as ‘’always independent.’’ When she lost her husband she chose to not only live life, but to enjoy it to the fullest. She lives on a hobby farm in Indiana raising goats and llamas. She is an avid gardener and loves to mow her own acreage when she is not traveling. She hosts garden tours in England every year sharing her love of horticulture with others. After Kaye published her first quilting book in the early 1990s, she solved the problem of editorial conflicts and submissions to publishers by simply forming her own company, Kaye England Publishers. She stages her own photo shoots and her son does all the graphics and layouts for her books. Kaye also travels extensively teaching quilting workshops. She is a true Renaissance woman who finds joy in whatever she is doing.
With a hectic schedule of domestic and international travel promoting her many interests, it wouldn’t seem like Kaye would be in the market for a new hobby but when she read about “glamping”, she was intrigued. She had never camped in her life and thought that growing up on a farm without indoor plumbing was all the camping she would ever want to do. Teardrop trailers seemed too small for her and she began looking for a vintage trailer she could take to events and even park in her garden and use when she was not camping.
The process of finding a trailer is different for everyone, but for Kaye she knew that she wouldn’t have to completely rebuild. Her years in interior design would help her tweak it to her tastes, but she didn’t want a big project. A local man who scans the ads on Craigslist and flips trailers lead her to a Shasta Compact in which he had replaced the floor and made a few cosmetic updates. Kaye made the purchase and set about making the trailer a cozy retreat. She replaced the countertop and set out to make it “cute, fun and different.” The exterior paint job on Kaye’s trailer was done by Larry Webb from Gnaw Bone, Indiana. Larry is a bit of a legend among the girl campers and has done several outstanding trailers. Kaye’s trailer is no exception. She had it painted to reflect the things that are important to her. The garden theme includes images of her childhood home in Kentucky right down to the porch swing. Also included is her farm and favorite llama which she says looks exactly like him! The interior is equally inviting and filled with beautiful needlework pieces and quilts. She uses her trailer, which she named “Cluckingham Palace,” in her garden as a spot to visit with girlfriends over a glass of wine.
Kaye entered the girl camping world in the same manner in which she does everything else, full steam ahead. She eventually made her way to the Sisters on the Fly and is an avid camper with the Midwest sisters. Her first sister trip was a non-camping event where she traveled to the home of Karen Reichert (link to: We’re Having a Party – Go RVing- Aug 2015). She had just joined, knew no one in the group, but traveled to their annual Presidents’ Day get together at Karen’s weekend home. She was an instant match and has been actively involved whenever her busy schedule permits. As anyone who knows Kaye will tell you, she is the Queen of the Road. She is a natural born leader and giver. At a recent Sister on the Fly benefit for Casting for Recovery, Kaye donated several of her quilts which fetched a hefty sum at the fundraising auction. She has come to love camping so much that she is now looking at new trailers to take on longer trips and cutting back on work travel and picking up her leisure travel. I have a feeling that leisure and Kaye might have trouble getting along at first, but Kaye will be happy no matter what balance she strikes because her buoyant nature won’t allow it any other way!
Miss Kaye has a way of making everything fun! Our homecoming Queen did a loop around the campground greeting sisters before heading to the Pavillion to decorate for dinner