Friday, July 27, 2007

Days To Feed On

On a recent Sunday afternoon one of my daughter's called me to ask if I still had the puppy crate. Some families ask about cribs, with us, it is puppy crates. Then a question about purchasing a puppy, an English Bulldog to be exact. We had our conversation, we hung up and I thought that was the end of it. I should have known that with my kids a conversation is really the beginning of something...Half hour later I was in her car along with her friend and we were off to Massachusetts to buy a English Bulldog puppy, a surprise for my 16 year old grandson. He had been talking about the need for a pup, and he and I had been looking at them on the internet on July 4. They have an older guy, Cosmo(Cramer). Cos has had some serious health issues in the past and we are lucky we( I say we, I live five houses away ) still have him. He is a great dog, kind of goofy but a lovable boy. Fast forward a few hours and we arrive with the pup and everyone is in love...especially Cosmo.

Meet Mr. Beefy T. Wellington...who is looking quite embarrassed by Cosmo's extreme show of emotion. It's just like grandchildren, I can walk over there, play with the puppy, and come home to my lazy dogs who do nothing but eat and sleep and the occasional yodel to tell me something is happening somewhere but they don't quite know where...

Haven't got much of anything done on the weaving or knitting front but have been having a great time in any case. We were invited(a group of us ) to the Newport Music Festival.
It was a wonderful time of good friends, hors d'oeuvre and wine out on a tented patio at Rosecliff, one of the summer "cottages" to which I had never been before. This was a new and wonderful experience. I considered it an artist date that Julia Cameron writes of in The Artist's Way.


Then on to Friday and a trip to NEWS to visit vendors and to see the various exhibits was on tap. New England Weavers Seminar was held at Smith College in Northampton, Massachusetts. It is always fun to visit vendors. I was able to pick up missing Handwoven Magazines, Handwoven Treasury 19, 8/2 cottons, and seine twine. Then off to the exhibits. Each of the New England state guilds had a challenge for example rep weave, table linens, pot holders. Those filled a large room in the campus library and were all inspirational to look at' There were notebooks accompanying each state exhibit with pictures and drafts that were allowed to be copied for our own use. Also set up was a traveling library of drafts which we also were able to use. My friend was looking for a log cabin weave for a new expected grandchild's blanket. She found what she was looking for. It is a great resource. Then we made our way upstairs to see the mentor and judged exhibits. Then a walk through the wonderful gardens at Smith College. They were obviously set up to be enjoyed as well as a learning tool. There were paths and plants were labled and there were spots to just sit and enjoy.
It was a great day with again good friends, Sharon and Jean. We could not leave Northampton without a stop to Webs, and stop we did. I found some merino/tencel to spin, then started for home. Stopped for dinner and sundaes of course. A perfect day for a fiber person plenty of exhibits for inspiration, plenty of vendors to feed that inspiration, and food...

I am making progress on both looms...

Have a great day and thanks for reading. And please feel free to comment if the spirit moves you...


Saturday, July 14, 2007

Surprise!





Now I can post the photo of the finished knitted item. It was a gift for our very pregnant Nuala, the secretary of our knitting guild. She has three little boys and this little one is a girl. She offered to have the July meeting at her home and one of our members suggested a baby shower, a surprise. We all loved the idea and it was just the best. I really looked forward to this and enjoyed the knitting of the sweater for the baby and possibly because Nuala is just a great person. The baby received woven wash cloths,hand knit and machine knit sweaters, hats, socks(real socks)shawls for nursing, felted booties. We just threw ourselves into this and had the best time. The baby is due September 1. Nuala states she will be at the next meeting, August 8. Funny aside, the next meeting is at the home of our resident midwife...how cool is that. Hmm...

Belonging to guilds have enriched me. I have been apart of my spinning and knitting guilds for close to 15 years, and weaving guild alittle less on and off. The comradery in learning and trying new things is invaluable, not to mention we become apart of each others lives. We are as diverse as we can be in age, beliefs, married, single, widowed, ect. and yet we pretty much just blend and it is something I am really grateful for. Some of our groups have smaller spin off groups, probably pun intended...and those groups have kept me personally afloat in some very real ways in the past couple of years and I guess today I just want to say a public thank you to them, they know who they are. We share, encourage, laugh, untangle balls of sock yarn that beagle #2 tried her hand at, we are just there... So it was with great pleasure to share Thursday night with my guild and Nuala's family.
Here is my next wound warp. 392 ends of cotton novelty of which I dyed some. It will go one the loom as double width and it will be a baby blanket. I am stuck on blankets and shawls and my lttle tapestry deal is still on the other loom.

Have a great day and thanks for reading.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Full Days



It has been a productive week and satisfyingly busy although the refrigerator is still sporting it's duct tape and still I procrastinate. I think because I know it will be a domino thing. I can not even write about it because then I must think about it, and then I'll be off looking at boring refrigerators...
Saturday our spinning guild was invited to a farmers market at Casey Farm. It was wonderful, the weather, the farm, the people and my fellow spinners. Many people came over to stop and talk and ask questions. One person was a alpaca farmer wanting information on what to do with his fiber. He actually went home and brought back some of his wonderful fiber and gave all of us some to spin and knit or weave. It was incredibly soft with much crimp. Looks more like a super fine wool doesn't it? It feels as it looks. I weighed it on my trusty food scale, 8 oz. He is hoping we like it and will come back for more. He is a very nice guy. The farm is Shadow Pines Farm, Alpacas. and can be reached at: shadowpinesalpacafarm@cox.net. He will be happy to answer any questions. Tell him I sent you.
Then another person came up to us and offered lama to us, free. Someone gave to her, she does not spin. So I brought home two lama bumps.

It turned out to be a fun day with going to lunch with two of my spinning buds but when we parked the cars what was facing us but Knit One Purl Too Yarn Shop in Wakefield, RI. So of course we detoured before lunch. After lunch we walked a little and came upon glass blowers. We were mesmerized.
Sometimes it pays to park the car and walk around. We watched this process for a while. They were making a set of hand blown drinking glasses that were beautiful. Watching them was like attending a ballet. Each had a part to play in this dance.
I finished the shawl. It's fiber is hand spun, hand dyed wool and a commercial mohair blend whose colors just went so well with the hand spun. It was a quick weave as I needed the loom for the next item. My other loom is busy with a tapestry sampler on it. I am trying to learn a new technique. I weave, and unweave, and weave again and sometimes unweave that as well as I go through each new section. Slow going but I want to learn it so I am motivated. I have not been able to spend allot of time on it this week because it has been so hot and humid and I needed to finish a knitted item that had a dead line. It is finished. Just needs buttons. Those will be on today and then I can take a photo.
Have agreat day and thanks for reading.

Sunday, July 1, 2007

Watermelon Days




How hot was it? The following photos of the dogs and watermelon are for a friend who states dogs don't eat watermelon when I tell him Maggie and Amy do, although that isn't really a big deal, they eat everything, they are Beagles after all, it's in their DNA.




It has been a varied week, weather and activity wise. It started by the temperatures rising to the point that I went and got my hair cut. Simple and quick as that. It was 95 degrees...one looses all rationality at those numbers. I was having my usual issues with blogger. Figured some things out only to loose pictures and links...so of course in the midst of total frustration and sweating and feeling like I have been sent through a blast furnace my hair was the first to go. I could no longer stand the heaviness of it. Only suppose to be a few inches, chin length. Well unless my ear lobes have moved...Anyway getting use to the "new" me, I don't like change. This took two trips to hair salon, one for the mistake and second to fix mistake.
In the knitting part of my life I remember just last week writing about lists and things to do and prior to that priding myself for working from stash. Well, we all know what pride comes before. My first mistake was thinking I could go to a yarn shop and come out without a bag. Last Saturday I went to a knitting blogger meet-up at Sakonnet Purls. I did have a post about it with the appropriate links but Blogger was having hiccups so it was lost. I met some new to me bloggers who live locally and some bloggers who are already friends; Kristen, Cindy, Debbie, Kimberly, Erika, and Sarah. I found Noro for 4.00 a ball. Sorry, I was not able to just say no. It came home with me, all 5 skeins. More plans. Then blame the heat, the meet-up, the bad haircut and I needed to pick up yarn for a weaving project. So two more yarn shops were visited on Thursday or was it Friday, whatever, the same damage was done. Then yesterday, Saturday off to our monthly spin in at Rhode Island Handspun and I came home with 2 magazines, Wild Fibers and the new Interweave Felt, a drive band for my Louet, 3 packets of Cushing's Dye and more yarn. That's it, I am taking my keys away from me and hiding my debit card.
On the knitting front I am finishing a large shawl for one of my DD to wrap up in for TV or reading for her birthday tomorrow. I started it a while ago with no real plan for it but occasional my DD would comment on it's color or how nice it was. With that in mind it became Cheryl's. Then there is a gift for someone else to get finished .

I am warping both looms, one for a shawl out of some hand dyed homespun and the other for a tapestry sampler I would like to try.
To finish this week I have duct tape keeping my freezer tightly closed. That you really do not want to see. Yes, I am suppose to be refrigerator shopping and consumer report reading, oh God, spare me. That is assuming I have a subscription to consumer reports, which I don't. So I procrastinate and wish I didn't have to deal with this.
Have a great day and thanks for reading.