New & Humble Beginnings

As a wife, a mother and a hobbiest

June 30, 2006

Way too much Fun-
I spent last night at a dinner / spinning party; it's the second one I’ve been to - and what a treat they are. Several of my spinning pals (my spinning mentors really) get together and have a delicious dinner & dessert, all prepared by our “hostess of the evening”. But the best part, besides the company, is after we’ve filled our bellies, with the yummiest of yum-yums, we retreat to a comfortable spot in the living room. There we spin, chit-chat, crochet, knit, talk fiber, or whatever - to our hearts content. I adore these evenings and look forward to my turn at being hostess ................... after our room addition, that is.

These evenings are filled with learning and spinning and fiber knowledge, which I treasure dearly.
Since I'm one of the newbie’s in the group, I feel guilty I don’t have more to offer the others. I always seem to be at the receiving end of the lessons and information being discussed; all of which helps to better my skill as a spinner, so I'm grateful as can be. I hope, since I do continue to be invited back, that I am contributing something of value to someone, although I'm hard pressed to know what that might be. I love sharing with these women and adore their company. It is an absolute pleasure to spend an evening with them.

I absolutely love this circle of friends. Much like being a kid again, I look forward to our gatherings with anticipation similar to getting to see Santa coming down the chimney at Christmas. Lucky, lucky me!

Last night an analogy was made about how the “new generation” of spinners (newbie’s like me) are able to learn to spin on the Cadillac’s of wheels these days; much like learning to drive in an automatic luxury car before learning how to drive that ole stick shift of dad’s - that sat at the far end of the driveway for years, collecting dust and cob webs. With that analogy, I realize, I really missed out on an entirely different style of spinning altogether. It almost made me want to check out an old Saxony style single treadle wheel and tackle my way through to spin a hank of mohair………..I did say almost didn’t I? I love my traveling Lendrum and I don’t think I’ll be trading it in any time soon.

I had planned to spin the remainder of my, hand dyed, green silk, but accidentally left that bag at home. I'm anxious to get all the silk on a bobbin so I can ply my mohair-silk blend with the silk single – Mmm., mmm, mmm! I can’t wait.

We all had a little something different going on last night. Susie, a born teacher, was knitting a beautiful shawl out of the richest, softest looking, black cashmere, on those darn circular needles. I don’t think I’ll ever be skilled enough to do that.

Cary was spinning with her drop spindle, and working on the second sock; I don’t care who you are –those are adorable socks!

She also brought a sweater to show us that she wasn’t sure she was happy with. She made it from her very first spun yarn. How special is that? I think it looks fabulous!! Cary wouldn’t let me get a picture of her with it on – but trust me; it was to-die-for cute.

Laura, our hostess, was spinning up a storm on her Magicraft wheel – she really got a lot done. Spinning some of the most gorgeous fiber I’ve ever seen. It was a gift to her and apparently isn't available anymore. It's called Gaywool, (it's from Australia), and it’s a merino and kid mohair blend.
Isn't it stunning?

I ended up spinning some crosspatch; I saw for the first time, at the Olivas Adobe demo, a couple weeks back and instantly fell in love with it. It spins like a dream. I am loving this stuff.

Pretty soon I’m going to have to start plying I’m almost out of bobbins.

What an absolutely wonderful evening we had -
Ahhhhh! Life is good; thank you ladies.


Happy spinning all~

June 25, 2006

Have Faith -
Yep – “ have faith ” was definitely the catch phrase of the crochet class I took yesterday at Anacapa Fine Yarns a LYS (little yarn shop) I frequent these days. The teacher, Anastasia Poland , found the pattern in the Crochet Me an online magazine, Issue 4; February / March 2005.
She requested permission from the pattern designer, Julie Holetz to teach the class using her pattern. In the name of education Julie granted Anastasia permission.

Thank you so much Julie!! This was a fabulous learning experience and I enjoyed this class far more than words can express on this blog.

The class was for an adorable crochet, kimono-style, baby sweater. This pattern is fabulous and it was easy-peasy, so long as you continued to “have faith” in it.

I’m here to tell you, I wouldn’t have ever completed this sweater if it hadn’t been for mdf, E (my dear friend, Elisa) (again) who is a “crochet goddess” in my eyes, [if you recall, she’s the one who taught me to crochet], as she was able to finish the sweater before she went home.

If I hadn’t seen the odd shapes this project took on during class, I’d have a whole lot of lovely yarn, and I'd wonder what could it have become - if I’d just “had faith”. Well.......I took my half finished sweater home and after dinner I started to work on it again. I was so hoping I wouldn’t forget what I had learned earlier in the day. I found myself repeating the words I heard over and over in class - “have faith". I had my doubts on more than one occasion, but I kept "the faith" and voila’ – my first “real” garment project (not an accessory, mind you) is complete. So I’m doin' what mdf, E calls the “happy dance”.

:D ......Yippee for me!!!

I can’t wait to make another one.

June 22, 2006

"Cowboys, Hero's and Outlaws"
In an effort to “get on with life" after AJ's passing and keep everything as normal as possible, I continue to volunteer.
On Saturday June 3rd, I volunteered at Olivas Adobe Historical Park helping out at the booth set up by my Handweavers and Spinners Guild.

It is an annual family festival called "Cowboys, Hero's and Outlaws". This festival is fun for the entire family. Many local groups, guilds, and volunteers come out to give demonstrations, and offer some hands on experiences for kids of all ages.

Some of the festivities included

authentic cultural dance demonstrations,

woodcarving demonstrations,

so many amazing woodcarvings....

and wood toys....

and so much more.

Kids of all ages could participate and learn how to do many of the skills and crafts that were common in the early 1900’s -

Such as; rug beating,

butter churning,

tortilla making,

and of course weaving,

and spinning yarn from hand carded fiber.

Fun was had by all. I can’t wait to volunteer again next year.

June 03, 2006

Coyote Ugly ? I don't think so....... I'm talkin' Rail-Roadrunner -
Last time I saw a coyote crossing the road - it looked something like this........

But today on my way home from AJ's celebration of life - I saw this.................

Yep, that's a coyote folks - NOT a dog. Trecking down Lewis Road heading south along the railroad tracks.

Keep your cats and roadrunners in tonight. That coyote looks a tad lean, and I don't think it's due to his even'n jogs.

more coyote
very cool coyote images

Can you belive I just happend to have my camera sitting next to me?