"I love to talk about my work because I love it so much," says Taneytown resident Betty Buffington. The lifelong Carroll resident is talking about her home-based business, B and B Monogramming.
Six years ago, after the deaths of her mother and mother-in-law, Betty was looking for something to do to fill the void in her life. Always an avid seamstress -- she owns three sewing machines -- she went to a trade show in Philadelphia and fell in love with a computerized monogramming machine.
With the help of a local bank, support from her husband and daughters, and a first order from Stambaugh's Inc. in Union Bridge, her business was launched.
She has monogrammed emblems for schools and sports teams, logos for local businesses and farms, and countless custom designed Christmas, wedding and anniversary gifts. She works from 5 a.m. until 11 p.m. six days a week to keep up with the demand. And she loves what she does.
"When you enjoy what you're doing, you have the energy for it," she says.
Betty's daughters Cheryl and Betsy also participate in the business. Cheryl understands computers, so she can trouble-shoot when the high-tech monogramming machine threatens to break down; Betsy cleans, folds, packs and delivers the T-shirts, jackets, dresses, ball caps, towels and flags Betty embroiders.
Betty has at least 2,000 designs at her fingertips, and can custom design whatever a customer wants. If a customer wants to commemorate his village or home, Betty can do that, too. She'll take photos, copy them and create a design. And her turnaround time is fast -- five days from order to delivery.
It was this combination of qualities that got her involved in Union Bridge's fund-raiser -- auctioning an embroidered quilt depicting the many businesses and organizations in Union Bridge. Proceeds from the quilt sale will benefit the Union Bridge Heritage Committee's pump house museum project.
Once the blocks are embroidered, they will be pieced together and quilted by a team of needleworkers organized by Union Bridge resident Cindy Holmes.
The Union Bridge quilt blocks were on display at the town picnic Sunday at the Union Bridge Heritage Committee's booth. So far, 20 blocks are done, with eight more to go. Betty's designs capture the spirit of the town. She is donating her time and talent to the project.
"I think they need more people to back the town," she said.
Brenda Gear of the town's heritage committee said that
initially, 20 squares were available for businesses to buy at $25 a square. These were sold within two weeks, so the quilt was redesigned to accommodate 28 blocks. So far, more than $700 has been raised from contributions.
"We're hopeful we'll have the quilt by the end of the year," Brenda said.
Information: B and B Monogramming, 775-2476; Union Bridge Quilt Project, 775-0144.
The tiny, historic Bowen Chapel on Bark Hill Road has been the subject of various newspaper stories and feature articles.
On Saturday, you'll have a chance to participate in one of the chapel's events -- a fund-raiser to help raise money to install new siding on the building.
According to Evelyn Howard, the 78-year-old woman who is the mainstay of the congregation, plenty of food will be available from noon until sellout. Homemade cakes and baked beans, chicken and ham dinners for $5, and a bake table should satisfy the heartiest of appetites.
The fund-raiser will include a white elephant table and plenty of games, balloons and prizes for the children. A performance of spirituals is being arranged by Gloria Brooks and family.
"Bring your kids, and bring a chair," Mrs. Howard says.
The event will be held on the lawn of the chapel, 4070 Bark Hill Road. Information: 775-7178.
Starting Saturday at 7 p.m., you can experience an old-time candlelight service held at the Chapel in the Orchard outside of New Windsor.
The chapel is one of the oldest continuous-use United Methodist churches in the area. All are welcome, and services will be offered every Saturday.
The chapel is located on Brick Church Road between Wakefield Valley Road and Nicodemus Road, off Route 31, east of New Windsor.
Later this month, you can enjoy a hymn sing at St. Paul's United Methodist Church in New Windsor. The event is Sept. 24 starting at 2:30 p.m., and music will be conducted by the Rev. Bud Kibbe. Performances will feature Dorothy Drinkwater, Amanda Leckron, Marcus Williams and the Albaugh family.
For an inspiration from nature, try driving along Clear Ridge Road at sunset on a clear night. To the west, you'll see the sun setting over the Catoctin Mountains; to the east you'll see the moon rise.
The simultaneous moon rise and sunset at day's end will take your breath away.
For a triple play, you might get to see a flock of Canada geese fly overhead.
Ah, the wisdom of a 10-year-old. I was driving my son to school Monday, on a picture-perfect day, and I got a lump in my throat thinking about how fast the time was going, and how fast he is growing up. It's my son's last year of elementary school.
After I had explained my sadness to him about the swift passage of time, there was a long pause. Then, the wisdom: "It's only the third week of the fifth grade, Mom. I don't think you have to worry yet!"