Thursday, April 30, 2009

Life is short desert first.

Ice cream sundaes Well, we actually did wait until after dinner, but here it is, in all its glory.  Or their glory.  It was heaven.  They were heaven. Whatever. 

We are on the road today...Albuquerque to Baltimore to Manchester, NH.  Tomorrow:  Toronto and then on to New Brunswick.  Destination:  Nova Scotia.  Stocking up now on calories in case it's cold there.

Stay tuned.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Spring blanket

Blanket1 As I was spelunking through boxes, baskets and bins last week in yet another attempt at organization, I discovered that when I wasn't looking, I do believe my yarns have multiplied.

I was pretty sure I was gaining on the situation, but there they were, everywhere I turned, especially large balls of hand spun yarns. 

I've been having a problem lately with knitting.  I've been finding myself feeling there isn't any purpose in starting anything new...since I don't really wear sweaters, I already have about six shawls, more scarves than I should admit to, and no, I don't like to wear hand knitted socks (love seeing them on others, love to knit them...just don't like to wear them).  I've been wanting to get back to my charity knitting and haven't, thinking there will surely be more people needing help as a result of this depression...but how to find them and make sure the knitted goods reach the right people is always a question mark in my mind.

Then I remembered what my buddy Kay does...she knits piles and piles of beautiful blankets, cutting the yarns at both ends of the rows and fringing them.  After a quick telephone consultation, I grabbed a pair of 60" size 15 circular needles and all the thickest, artsy-ist, lumpiest yarns I could find, predominantly in spring colors...bright yellows, spring greens, and pinks of all shades.  After the first evening, I found myself rummaging around upstairs looking for more.  I am now officially into it.

By the time I discovered how wide it was, I was too far gone to take it apart and start over (I think it's going to be about 6' wide).  I am now committed to knit it long enough to be proportionate...with a nod to the Golden mean, I think that means it will be around 8-9' long.  That should keep me busy for a few more evenings.  Here it is so far...

Sunday, April 19, 2009


BasketOfWool I've been reading and hearing so many discussions lately about time.  We don't have enough, it passes too quickly...or we've killed it or wasted it.  There are discussions about how we're always in too much of a hurry, and how we need to slow down to enjoy our time.  You can even buy a magazine now that will tell you how to simplify your life (I'm thinking buying a magazine to tell you, and possibly some of the fancy products they recommend, is not the way to go).  I don't have any answers, but I sure spend a lot of time thinking about it.  And also:  I'm no longer working full time or raising kids, so it's a lot easier to be introspective about these things when you're not.

I've just finished reading the book called "Little Heathens" (see side bar).  It's about life on an Iowa farm in the 1930s from the view of the author as a young girl.  I really enjoyed it, especially the reminders that it is completely possible to have a clean house with the simplest of products and not support the big chemical industries while poisoning your household.  I also gleaned some good recipes to try on Mr. Sunflower, who will love to see some good farm food come out of this kitchen.

MatOnFrame My time this last week was spent consciously slowing down.  One of the ways I did this was to try to stay off the computer, except for cursory checks on the few blogs I follow, messages, and the Etsy shop.  It's been starting to suck the life out of me.  If I'm not careful, hours each day are gone to doing what I feel is worthwhile at the time but matters for little at the end of the day.  With the house to myself, I decided to finally TAKE the time and put a pattern on my new quilt frame and starting hooking a pattern from Deanne Fitzpatrick that I started late last summer.  I haven't "had" the time to do it, while I've been running around like a chicken with my head cut off, wishing I had more time.  You have it, you use it, you lose it.  Use it wisely, you don't get it back.  Enough from me...thanks for taking your time to read about mine.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

The neighbors

Thanks to Shelly for identifying my gooseberry bushes.  Another Taos friend also recognized them and informs me they may or may not bear fruit one day.  I hope so...although it would be for the wild life, not for me.

BearPaw Speaking of wild life.  One of the first nights I spent in this house,  one of my Golden Retrievers woke me up.  I got up and in the moonlight, watched as a bear came along the side of the house, just next to the building (like inches).  It was spring, and we had no landscaping done, so the perimeter was nothing but mud.  As it got to the front of the house, which is all windows about waist high and up, I followed it inside as it lumbered along on the outside.  It was rather like I was the fish in the aquarium...and for this recovering city person, it was just the best experience. 

The next morning I rushed into town and bought some plaster of Paris, to keep those first prints with me.  This is one of the partials...I have some other full prints, as well.  They now reside on the rock wall on our front porch.  These are the neighbors I love the best.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Odds and ends

This morning I was able to go for a walk without dressing like Nanuk of the North and dodging mud.  I found a couple of things that bring me optimism for warmer days.  First, our lilac bush has buds on it.  Last year we had a late hard frost and had no blooms.  Am keeping my fingers crossed this doesn't happen this year.  I got a closeup of a bud and was amazed to see the tiny promises of purple flowers are actually already showing.

Then I found two volunteer plants that I discovered a couple of summers ago.  I'm thinking they came in via bear or bird.  I haven't gone looking on line to see if I can identify them, wondering if maybe you recognize what they are.  Lots of clusters of little, curly leaves and tons of nasty thorns.  I'm thinking berry or perhaps currant.  If you know, please share with me!PB-Closeup

I got a message from yesterday.  Starting May 1, it seems I probably won't be able to link to their site to show you what books I'm reading.  Not that this will truly rock anyone's world, but it's been fun for me. 

The ski valley closed on Sunday with tons of snow still left.  Awesome year.  Everyone's happy and I heard from a friend who works up there that snow boarders and skiers got along just fine during this, their first year to allow them up there.  Good news all around.