Thursday, July 26, 2012

fibery fun

it has been a LONG time since i've had such a fiber fantasy adventure as i had while visiting the kids last weekend.  Kate has a Duncan electric w-i-d-e drum carder that i've been envying since i sold mine several years ago (and have been kicking myself about that ever since!!)  anyway, i spent several happy hours creating colorful and sparkly spinning batts.
                this -------->>
is some of the bounty of fiber that i was working from.

one of the many batts (lost count how many) i came home with!

and Kate very graciously offered me the use of her dye kitchen and a yummy fiber with sparkles in it!  so, i dyed 2 small bundles... just because.  we were talking about what i had been spinning at home, and she asked me if i'd about worked thru my fiber stash... to which i mumbled something about needing another life time or 3 to finish off what's in my stash, both dyed and undyed, though i can say that the undyed part is getting smaller all the time.  but i won't define "smaller"....

so, it was not only a lovely birthday weekend with family!  i also had a colorful fibergasmic adventure!

a happy birthday in Duvall

 rode amtrak to seattle on friday and had a truly beautiful time with Chris, Kate, Alex and Zylie.
and here are my loving, bright, curious, beautiful, extraordinary beings... much loved grandchildren! could i be any prouder?  or love them more? nope!

for my birthday on sunday, they took me out for brunch... it was a great meal (eggs benedict) but such crappy near-non-existent "service" that i thought Chris would surely go ballistic, but he maintained his composure quite well.  we can safely say that he will never darken their door again!  ever!!

then we walked down to the park by the river where the annual sandblast festival was taking place.  the sand sculpture wasn't quite finished, but the art crew was working on it.  it really was an amazing piece of work.  there was a band and some craft and food booths and a bunch of people mosey-ing about.

and tie dyed clothing!  still love it!

Z proudly wearing the necklace that her dad bought her.

from there we went to the larger than life antique store which takes up a whole block.

when we got back home, there was Tiki waiting for us.  this is a very special pose... don't often see her so still and looking so dignified!  she's a Chinook breed and such a lovey dog!

i amtraked home on tuesday.  i had a happy happy weekend!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

a laugh

as my granddaddy would say... "Ah jest cain't hep it".

dedicated to Meika, who delivered an especially deadly one in Jim's direction during dinner tonight!
and there was nothing peppermint about it.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

garden stuff

view from the garden... little dome and the house.  small part of the solar panel on right side of pic.

this is kind of a "before" photo.  in the foreground are some tomatoes started from seed.  i finally gave up on that nonsense and bought 4 big, healthy, robust tomato plants from the nursery and that's where my garden will come from in the future! part of the problem with starting from seed this year was that they didn't get planted until we returned from Crete in mid-may... that and the crappy rainy cold weather we had til the end of june!  there's still a few clumps of volunteer poppies around as i haven't been pulling them up til i want to plant something there.  i love 'em!

a few days of sun and HOT... and look what happens... the zucchini starts blossoming!

yesterday i decided i needed a garden apron, to have a place to carry clippers and string (or yarn in my case) and miscellaneous other stuff when i'm outside.  so i went shopping in my stash and found this fabric which i originally bought to make pillows which never got made. it is substantial enough to hold up to wear and dirt and abuse, and has enough pattern that it won't show dirt.

another angle trying to show the pockets... still not very clear.

if you want to make one, let me know and i'll write up instructions.  it's SO simple and only took about 2 hours.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

wisdom of a 6-year-old

the following was on facebook on the Ultima National Resources, LLC page.
i thought it was so wise and so sweet, that i copied it here.  there was a photo of the boy and his dog which i was unable to copy here... sorry.  it was really cute!

A Dog's Purpose?
(from a 6-year-old).
Being a veterinarian, I had been called to examine a ten-year-old Irish Wolfhound named Belker. The dog's owners, Ron, his wife Lisa , and their little boy Shane, were all very attached to Belker, and they were hoping for a miracle.
I examined Belker and found he was dying of cancer. I told the family we couldn't do anything for Belker, and offered to perform the euthanasia procedure for the old dog in their home.
As we made arrangements, Ron and Lisa told me they thought it would be good for six-year-old Shane to observe the procedure. They felt as though Shane might learn something from the experience.
The next day, I felt the familiar catch in my throat as Belker 's family surrounded him. Shane seemed so calm, petting the old dog for the last time, that I wondered if he understood what was going on. Within a few minutes, Belker slipped peacefully away.
The little boy seemed to accept Belker's transition without any difficulty or confusion. We sat together for a while after Belker's Death, wondering aloud about the sad fact that animal lives are shorter than human lives.
Shane, who had been listening quietly, piped up, ''I know why.''
Startled, we all turned to him. What came out of his mouth next stunned me. I'd never heard a more comforting explanation. It has changed the way I try and live.
He said,''People are born so that they can learn how to live a good life -- like loving everybody all the time and being nice, right?'' The Six-year-old continued, 
''Well, dogs already know how to do that, so they don't have to stay as long.''

from Ultima National Resources, LLC

this photo has nothing to do with the above story, but it's so cute and reminded me of a siberian husky's supreme ability to get out and go for unauthorized walks/runs.  that is an amazing face!

Sunday, July 08, 2012

around my queendom

Meika at rest!  and chooses her place with forethought to the random morsel that might fall from the table and need to be attended to, smart dog she is!  she loves to lie in this position and be up against a wall, maybe to support her when she dozes off and might wobble a bit.
my all time favorite daylily... it is so graceful and magical looking.  can't get enough of it!

last fall we found some fabulous buys at a huge nursery sale... and this --------->>
is one of them.  it's a miniature pomegranate planted in a big ole (really BIG) ceramic pot.  it seems to be happy and doing well... and is guarded by a funky jointed wood dawg from good will.  am hoping that this plant is not a fave of the marauding deer.

one of those horrific sights!  oh, no... who would do that?  actually, come to think of it, this looks a bit like some of the fallen flamingos here in my queendom.  i've been very negligent! 

Friday, July 06, 2012

olla kala = OK

a Greek friend tells me that the origin of "OK" is from the Greek "olla kala" which means all is good.  so now you know.  and you know a Greek expression, too!

and in my queendom today, olla kala.  my Beauty Berry bush is doing really well in its first year here.  i planted it in early april... it's growing, green and is having tiny flower-ettes.

and i was SO  excited to find a tree frog in one of my hanging baskets!!  hope i didn't bruise the poor little dude/dudette when i reached up to the basket, put my finger in to feel if the soil was dry and landed right on top of the frog.  i watched and he hopped a few inches away and under a flower, so seems olla kala (ha! there it is again...)

it's getting hot.  went out early  to water in the garden and some of the new plants i've put in in the  past few days look to be struggling.  hope they can buck up and be happy and grow.

Thursday, July 05, 2012

loving summer and the sun!

it was a lovely day yesterday for sitting on the patio and spinning!  and for drying newly dyed fibers out in the sun.   gotta say... i love this kind of summer SO damn much!!  not being in the sun when the temp is 80s and up, but sitting in the shade of the pear tree with spinning wheel and book on my iPad.  listening to "King Peggy" and it's a good one.  interesting look into life in a village in Ghana, Africa.. very interesting.

i was spinning the BFL/silk (above) and will do a second bobbin of mohair locks to ply with it.  when Jim admires what i've spun, he then usually asks what i'll do with it.  usually my answer is some variation of "don't know... it's all about the process for me."  i simply enjoy spinning lovely fiber into beautiful yarn.

this is the yarn i spun from the Fox Hollow fiber i bought at Black Sheep Gathering.

Tuesday, July 03, 2012


Fear is the path to the dark side. Fear leads to anger. Anger leads to hate. Hate leads to suffering.

found on facebook... so, ya know, it must be true!  and besides, would Yoda lie? 


i'm declaring that i need a minion.... or several!


From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
minion is a follower devoted to serve his/her master relentlessly.
i especially like "relentlessly" in the definition!!!
something like this would work... or even a robotic being ... something
like a roomba.  basic requirement is that it/they be happily willing to go
along with me and clean up whatever i leave from the last project,
allowing me to go directly on to my next project...  or whatever strikes
my fancy.  this kind of arrangement would make me ever so happy and
just think how much more creative i could be.... it boggles my mind. 

Sunday, July 01, 2012

dyeing again - perfect day!

and a perfect day it was... at least for dye pots. the cloudy 70F didn't do much for those pathetic sun-starved veg plants in my garden, but was great for heating up dye pots in my studio.  and a pleasant surprise... those jars of dye solutions which have been sitting on the counter for about 1 year... turns out the time and exposure to a range of temps has not affected them.  adding some boiling water to the jars diluted those that had gotten thick and concentrated.  well, except for the Jacquard yellow which is a gelatinous mass which does not respond to lots of boiling water and stirring... yuk..

today i was trying out the old dyes for washfastness in preparation for a project i'm doing with Lynne.  and lo and behold... they seem just fine.  no dye wash-out.  happy!

hoping those mohair locks get dry really quickly!  i want to spin those lovelies!

the St. John's wort on the bank looks gorgeous, so of course i just had to preserve it with a photo!  it's such a lovely contrast of deep dark green leaves with those brilliant yellow blossoms scattered about.

and then there's this that i lifted from the interwebs!