Thursday, December 21, 2006

Winter Solstice

It's been almost a week since the party to watch the Al Gore dvd, and that was an interesting evening. There were 6 people who came, and first we connected to the website for a message from Mr. Gore and then a Q&A. It was good to spend a few hours with kindred spirits, but as i said before, it was like preaching to the choir. It does tend to get one focused on the global warming issue again and to exchange thoughts and ideas about what individuals can actually do to have an effect on the problem. We got almost to the end of the movie before we lost power again... but it was only out for about an hour.

And today begins the return of the light and signifies to me the new beginnings in the cycle of the earth. hey, happy solstice and return of the light... yippee! We are going to McMenimen's Grand Lodge in FG tonight... live music celebration of solstice. Solstice is always kinda bitter sweet because the 22nd was when my mom died 13 years ago. i remember that day.... Mom was in ICU, unconscious and not responsive. The sun came out for a while and shone thru the hospital window onto her pillow, and i started talking to her about the return of the light and the days getting longer. I was standing at the head of her bed and stroking her hair, and looked down to see a tear rolling down her face. She was so much a sunshine person and had a difficult time getting through the shorter and dreary days of winter. She always started dreaming and drooling over her seed catalogs the week after xmas, and had her garden planned by early January. She waited that day til my sister, Robin, arrived from Tenn, and all her kids were there around her, and then her spirit left.

it is later now... and we enjoyed the live music. The group of 3 included a harp, guitar and bass and they sang mostly Celtic music. It was lovely and i'm really happy we went. The leader of the group, Lauren Sheehan, will be at the Grand Lodge once every month until May, and we plan to go again!

Bring on the light... I'm so ready!

Friday, December 15, 2006

powered up again

We were only out of power for about 19 hours, which makes us part of the fortunate few! There are homes all over the northwest which may be without electricity for days. That was a vicious wind storm with 100mph wind along the Oregon coast and several major highways were closed today because of fallen trees across them. DIL Kate called today and said they had lots of downed trees on their property east of Seattle, but none damaged their home or cars... whew. They do have a small power generator to run the pump so they have water from the well, as well as use of a small microwave... but that's all. If the kids get too bored without their tv, computers, video games, lights, etc, they'll be heading down this way for the weekend.

Tomorrow night we are hosting a MoveOn-organized viewing of Al Gore's DVD An Inconvenient Truth. There are 12 people from the neighborhood signed up to come... and I don't know where the hell we're going to seat them... our TV room is quite small. Maybe it will seem bigger when I get my fiber stuff moved out of there
(2 spinning wheels and 3 big plastic containers full of fiber and yarn). That should make room for about 4 or 5 chairs, not that my stash runneth over..

can't tell you how happy I am to have electricity again. was not looking forward to my pioneer woman routine. Yes, i'm very spoiled now and have become a delicate flower... but I did too much of that pioneer shit back in the "old days", when we heated with the woodstove, the power went out several times every winter, had to fix meals on the stove by candlelight, take care of sheep and lambing with no lights in the barn, and it snowed a lot back in those days. I'd rather be spoiled!

Power less

that's without power. huge windstorm last night in the pacific northwest, many trees down and power lines hangin' all over the place. we are lucky in that we have a wood stove, tho we haven't used it much since we got the heat pump. anyway, i'll have to see if i remember my pioneer woman skills for cooking on the woodstove. my computer is down to the last hour on its battery, so i'll be without it soon... sigh...

that's all for now. will check in again when we are powered again and power-full

Thursday, December 14, 2006

A New Project

(like I need a new project!!) When I did my excursion to NW Wools in Portland on Tuesday, I found a new book which I spent a lot of time with and was not able to talk myself out of having. (and I do need another book like I need a new project) This one really appealed to me... AlterKNITS written by Leigh Radford. It is filled with ideas and projects which kind of call out my creativity and my muse. There are really inspirational quotes, many of which strike a chord with me, and it's not all sugar-y sweetness! (that stuff annoys the hell out of me!) (but in a literal sense, wouldn't it be a good thing to have the hell annoyed right out of you/me??) Anyway, there are several projects which I might try... and today I got myself armed for the first one... felted bags. And these are done the easy way... the buy-a-wool-sweater-at-goodwill-and-felt-it way. I have resisted the call to get on the bandwagon for knitting a huge piece and then throwing it in the washer to shrink it down to felt, and make a bag. This method is remarkably simpler and less labor intensive. There is already one sweater in the washer, and this one has a hood on it, which if all goes well, i will use for making a pocket on the outside of the bag! I really had no idea how difficult it would be to find an All Wool sweater in a pleasing color... so there was a lot a pawing thru the racks before i scored 2 likely bag candidates. Stay tuned for photos...

Wednesday, December 13, 2006


yeehaw! It's looking like there is a possibility I'll be going to SAFF next fall. Jim has been wanting to go to the Outer Banks in NC, and we've discovered that our vacation time share has a place there... so, we'd go in Oct.... and SAFF is Oct. 26, 27 and 28, '07. And, if I'm in that part of the country, i'd most certainly need to go to TN to see Lynne and some twisted friends. Ahhhh, the planning has just begun! and making plans for a vacation is a wonderful way to see past the gloomy, grey, rainy days of this time of year. AND, just 8 days til Winter Solstice and the days start getting longer! ahhhh...

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

returning to real life

well, it took a really long time to recover from that trip back from Crete... must be the age thing. wasn't able to sleep longer than 2 hours as a time, then awake, but not awake enough to get up and do something. that kind of sleep schedule doesn't do much for reviving my (alleged) brain cells. and finally last week my muse kicked in and i got my studio up and running again, started pouring dye on fibers again... and whoooopee... feelin' groovy (Here you should picture Snoopy dancing around and singin') So, a bunch of fibers got labeled and taken to NW Wools today to fill in some gaps in the fiber room... actually, not so much "gaps" as bare nekkid shelves. And now I have some superwash merino/tencel to work on next and will put some up on the fiber blog soon as i can.

holiday plans are beginning to shape up. My sister, Robin, arrives 12/25 from TN about noonish, many of the local family will come for the afternoon and dinner, no family from the seattle area will be here and we'll miss 'em. This is actually the very first time I won't be spending xmas with my very dear son, Chris... but his kids are at the age where they really want and need to stay home and play with the loot that santa leaves, and not be piled into the car and driven to portland for the chaos of family events at Kate's mom's and here! maybe next year we can plan it so that Jim and I can go up there for xmas.

Jim and I will celebrate Winter Solstice by decorating with greens cut from the many fir trees around here, lots of candles and then will go to a live music solstice celebration at McMennimen's Grand Lodge in Forest Grove. We decided not to put up a tree this year, and i'll probably just bring up a few decorations from the stash in the basement. Maybe we should build a big fire and initiate the raki still... hmmmm...