Alma Duncan almost didn’t enter this year’s Art is Ageless® competition. She had been disappointed before when the paintings and afghans she entered didn’t place at all.
Marketing director Kurt Lampe and activities director Lisa Montoya encouraged her to submit a crocheted Easter bonnet to this year’s contest. But Alma was reluctant.
“She was not going to let us enter it, because she didn’t want to lose,” Lampe said. “But we both thought it was very cute and nicely done.”
Lampe was the judges’ scribe at this year’s Art is Ageless competition. When he saw the certificate and first-place ribbon for fiber arts placed in front of Alma’s bonnet, he snapped a photo.
“I was so excited when Kurt brought me the picture and showed me that I had taken first place,” Alma said. “I gave him several hugs. I took the picture to lunch to show everyone.”
Alma learned to crochet as a young girl, growing up in Spearville, Kansas, as one of seven children. Her sister was teaching a class, and their mother made Alma and her sisters attend so it wouldn’t seem empty. But she didn’t really pick up her crochet hooks again until she and her husband, Raymond, retired in Texas.
It was the same way with her painting. Alma began painting in earnest when she retired. When she moved to Manor of the Plains three years ago, she set up a studio in one corner of her apartment. Acrylics were her favorite kind of paint, because they dry quickly.
Since Alma moved to assisted living, she asked her niece to take down her easel, and focuses now mostly on crocheting. She especially likes to make hats for babies and, really, anyone who wants one. She’s very close to her sister’s children, and at Christmas, her nephew and niece came to visit with their children. Everyone put on one of Alma’s hats, and they took a picture together.
Alma said she looks at that picture every day for the same reason she makes art and crafts: “I just enjoy doing them. They take me to a happy place.”