Textile Archeologists Study Fabrics to Learn About History

While working as a high school career and technical education teacher, Nichole Thiel received a Fulbright Hays Scholarship. Under this program, Nichole Thiel traveled to India with several of her colleagues to understand the country’s culture, traditions, and history through its fabrics.

As the importance of textiles as a marker of civilizations becomes more recognized, more archaeologists are studying the uses and manufacturing processes of ancient fabrics. Textile archeologists attempt to recreate the conditions that ancient fabrics, usually found on excavation sites or graves, were first spun. Existing knowledge of the types of industries that once occurred in an area provides a starting point for theorizing the type of textiles that originated from that location.

For example, cities on extensive trade routes most likely made in-demand industrial-strength cloths for sailors and long-distance travelers. Likewise, textile archeologists examine the remnants of weaving tools to estimate the thickness of the threads used by fabric makers. This information can also give insight into the types of textiles and cloths produced in the area.

Requirements for Adopting Rescued Pets

USPS Offers New Priority Mail and Priority Express Stamp Designs

After more than a decade as a secondary school administrator and leadership trainer, Nichole Thiel took a brief hiatus to care for her ailing mother. In 2019, Nichole Thiel returned to the workforce as a federal employee with the United States Postal Service.

The USPS raises all its operating costs from postage and specialty stamp sales. Recently, the USPS announced the release of a new line of priority mail postage featuring two natural landmarks.

Available in January 2020, the priority mail express stamp will celebrate the Grand Island Ice Cave of Lake Superior. During the winter, snow runoff develops into beautiful ice formations at the mouth of the Grand Cave. When the lake is frozen over, visitors can reach the spectacular display by snowmobile.

The 2020 Priority Mail stamps will showcase a portion of the Rio Grande flowing through Big Bend National Park in Texas. Both stamps feature the work of Chicago-based illustrator Dan Cosgrove. While there will be no official first day of issue ceremony, the USPS will release information regarding the purchase of first-day postmarks on its website and upcoming newsletter.

Tips for Growing Peonies

A graduate of the Idaho Leadership Institute, former career/technical education teacher Nichole Thiel spent several years as a caregiver before she pivoted to a position as a federal employee. In her personal life, Nichole Thiel enjoys gardening and cultivating peonies.

Peonies are known for their full blooms and fragrance. Most peonies reach their peak bloom by midsummer. However, late-season varieties thrive in areas with cooler fall temperatures and continue to provide lovely blooms a few weeks after peak season.

While peony plants produce short-lived flowers, there are ways to encourage longer and faster-blooming periods. First, gardeners should plant a mix of early, midseason, and late-season peony varieties.

To encourage buds, gardeners should clip off some of the leaves and stems just before cold weather sets in. Since peonies require nutritious soil to produce blooms, gardeners should add fertilizer or compost to the plant’s base. In warmer climates, peonies should be planted in areas that offer shade from the harsh afternoon sun.

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