Sunday, February 2, 2014

GO HAWKS!!!!!!

OMG, I am so nervous.  This post will be short because THE GAME starts in 25 minutes.
Two big boxes arrived for me yesterday, and in them were 14 pounds of baby alpaca rovings.  I received four ribbon winning fleeces from friends in exchange for a fiber tumbler I gave them when I left the farm.  I guess I have lots of work dying this in my future.  It's best to do in the summer, and I prefer to do it outside.  I'm looking for a two burner propane stove for the job.

Here is the first skein using the un-dyed white.  I had to do this last night, just could not wait.

To keep myself in line, I have taken all my spinning supplies to storage.  Since I am doing some garden shows, I need to concentrate on sewing my garden aprons.
Golly, golly, Queen Latifah is singing the National Anthem. 

Monday, January 27, 2014

Missing You

I have been missing my blog and all of you.  So many of you are also on facebook, but it is so short.  I'm having to really discipline myself to do this again.  It's not as if I don't have time, since I'm retired now and do what I want.  As usual, I am always starting something.  Right now we are preparing the yard for the garden this summer and to move a pre built shed onto the property to be my studio.  I am so excited to finally have a place for me to create.  I'm still busy doing shows and markets, so the house is usually in a turmoil of yarn and fiber.  Just finding a place to put things away is more than I can face.
We've made several trips down to Brookings, Oregon the last several months.  Unfortunately, the last trip was to say goodbye to Terry's Mom.  We will continue to visit there, since Terry has more family in the area, and we just love it.
The last two trips, I have brought home several bags of these rocks.
We don't have these red and orange rocks in our area, and I am placing them in one of my gardens.  I think they look just beautiful, but it is going to take many more bags to complete the project.

While replenishing the bird feeders today, I decided to pick a bouquet of berries and stems for the house.  The rosemary smells so delicious.  I love the smell of rosemary and basil.

I've been decorating some Styrofoam head forms for display at shows.  I think this is working out okay.

Here's a picture from our green house.  This planter originally had a tender crop of spinach, and then all these flowers started coming up.  I've never started petunias from seed before, and here they are as a surprise.
Last week Terry and I went to the NW Sportsmen's Exhibition, and I had a blast.  I really wasn't prepared to have so much fun.  We've been looking at trailers and boats and campers.  I bought myself a new red rod and reel, and we signed up for a bottom fishing charter in June.  I'm becoming a fisherman!!!  I never dreamed this would happen.
Yes, I am still sewing and working on several projects right now, but I will tell you about them in a later post.

Saturday, October 12, 2013

What great Marketing and decor

Every Tuesday, I have an appointment with a Vision Therapist in Downtown Seattle.  I take the bus in, since my driving is still not safe, and parking down there is out of site.  I always pass this store, which I am so intrigued with.  I finally went inside and asked it I could take pictures.
I guess I will never go in here to buy clothes, since they are very high end.  But, the d├ęcor is fantastic.
They have covered all of the windows with shelves and shelves of vintage sewing machines.  It was difficult to get a good picture of the windows.

They have used old equipment from spinning mills and garment factories as their display tables and racks.

I love all of these old bobbins.
Here is a small window that didn't cause too much reflection.
And, the walls.

My last attempt at getting a picture from outside.  Have you ever heard of a Jones sewing maching?  Most of these are Singers, but quite a few Jones'.
The interior looks like a factory, so the feeling is very industrial, combined with the high end clothing.  Very stylish.  Love it.

Friday, October 11, 2013

I guess it is Autumn

As I look out the window on this grey, rainy day, I have to accept that Fall has actually arrived.  It has been so mild so far, and so enjoyable.  I love Autumn for the colors and the cooler temperatures, harvests, and settling in for the winter.
Below is "Crunch", a yard character my kids gave me a few years ago.  He gets blown over in the wind, so Terry chained him to the post.  We were thinking a sign that says "This Home protected by Crunch Security" would be appropriate.
I bought a drop leaf table at a garage sale for $5, and we used it in the house until we were able to bring my dining room set over from storage.  I removed the table top and sealed the wood with a spray sealant, and it is now a trellis for my Passion Flower vine.  I love it.

You never know what I will think up next.  Alan used to say if you parked your car for too long at our place it would get planted.   Terry is now learning my penchants' for yard art.

I just barely had enough corn stalks to decorate the telephone pole out by the mail boxes.  The neighbors love it.
And, I'm turning most of my big planters in to All Season plantings.

Monday, I had the wonderful opportunity to meet a fellow blogger for Coffee.  Jean of
moved to this area from Tennessee a couple of years ago, and this is the second time we have met.  Thank you Pat  for hooking us up.
Thursdays have become the best day of the week for us in my new life.  We have a friend who is a personal chef that comes over for dinner every Thursday evening.  During the summer, these dinners took place under the Gazebo and consisted of barbecue and sometimes a fire in the pit.  Now they have moved inside.  April has tenants who have joined us for these dinners, and they are a couple in their 20's.  April is 40 something, and Terry and I are the oldsters.  So, we have three generations represented here, and we have a blast.  Chase is a world class white water kayaker and keeps us entertained with his antics.  He says Terry is his hero, he wants to grow up to be just like him.  I feel quite honored to have these wonderful friends gathered here each week.  They have so enriched my life.
Oh, and before I forget, I have re-opened my Etsy store.  I have yarns and hats listed at this time, but I'm doing it slowly.  And the name?  Fiberfabrications, of course.

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Return to Lopez Island and other stories

Well, here it is a stormy, rainy Saturday afternoon, and it's raining like I have not seen in a long time.  So, I've done some knitting, some sewing, cleaned the kitchen up from the mess we made last night with our Thursday night dinner party that was on Friday.
And now, I will blog while DH watches football.  I haven't even gotten dressed today.  Yesterday I vowed to spend the day doing nothing, and I'm succeeding to a slight extent.
Last week, Terry and I went to Lopez Island again, because the tides were good for clam digging.
When I dig for clams, I get down on my hands and knees, right in the hole, and really enjoy myself, as you can see.
Each day we filled a large bucket 3/4 full.
I'm trying to show off how dirty I am here.  I hosed it all down when we got back to the cottage, with me still wearing it, and left all the clothes in the sun to dry for the next day.  In fact, where we stay is so secluded, we stripped all the way down to our birthday suits and hosed off before we went inside for showers.

 Below, I am filling the bucket with clean water so the clams can spit out all the sand.
After clam digging, we rowed the boat out and set 4 crab pots.  The next day, we pulled up 14 crabs!!!  Then we dug clams again.  We have lots of crabfeeds and clam chowders in our future.
We didn't do any hiking this trip.  All the work we did really wore us out.  We went into the Village for lunch the first day, and I felt surreal.  It was like being on a movie set.  Folks were walking along the streets, riding bikes, and one lady went buzzing by on her brand new Candy Apple Red Moped.
No body lives like this.  It's like a dream

Meanwhile, I have been spinning up a storm, and have finally started to enter items on my Etsy Store.  It is Alpacalady.  I'd like to change it to Fiberfabrications, but I can't.  Oh, well, I will be known as the alpacalady by many people for a long time.
Here is the link to my shop:

I will be a vendor in a Fiber Show coming up in October, which I'm excited about.
Here is the link if you are interested in attending Fiber Fusion Northwest.
On another note, I raised a Stevia plant this year.  I pulled it up by the roots and hung it in the Man Cave to dry.  I later learned that it is a perennial, so I  bought two more plants.  I took about one Tablespoon full of the dry leaves and placed them in a coffee filter.  I tied it shut and boiled it in a cup and a half of water.  Like making a simple sugar.  I'm keeping it in the refrigerator and it will provide sweetener for my coffee for a week.

Finally, I don't think my niece reads my blogs.  This is the finished quilt top for her that I just completed this week.  Now the hard part begins.  And, I have three more quilts to get made.  If it's a long rainy winter, that won't be a problem.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Three Sisters and other bits of trivia

This portion of our little garden is called Three Sisters.  I learned about it this past Spring at the Community Center Outdoor Festival.  You plant corn, beans and squash together.  They provide benefits for each other, such as stalks for the beans to climb, and moist shaded roots.  The corn looked really pathetic until a few weeks ago, and now we are getting enough beans for a dinner for 2-6 every day.  I think I planted pumpkins under it all.  We'll have to wait awhile longer until I can find something growing.
So come along, and I will show you the rest of the yard.  It won't be as amazing and unique as what I had at the farm, but I'm very proud of what we have achieved this first year.

I got this wonderful Tonka truck filled with sedums at the Burien Farmer's Market.  I love Farmer's Markets.  Great finds, and wonderful people to talk to.

Sedums in a large metal cup on an old silver plated coffee stand.

These are the blueberries.  I'm attempting to propogate them myself so we can have more and save the cost of buying them.  I used to propogate Hydrangeas, so I should do will with these.

My sunflowers. 
The heads are HUGE.  I wanted to create a screen between our yard and the neighbors.  It worked.  Now I have to think of what to do that is more permanent and has fullness year round.

This is the fig tree I bought this past
Spring.  It was just a little stick, so I'm quite pleased with it's progress.  Have you tried blue cheese with fig jelly, or honey on crackers?  To die for.  And, I make a fig sauce for pizzas.

I can't believe it's been over a week since I started this.  Time gets away from me.
The weather here continues to be unseasonable warm, and it only gets into the 60's at night.  The gardens, however, know that fall is coming, and it's cleanup time.  I'm excited about having the greenhouse so we can raise lettuce, spinach and carrots this winter.  We are waiting for cooler days to get in there to organize things.  Right now, it's so hot in there you can't bear it for more than a few minutes.
And, the darn tomatoes continue to ripen, so I need to tend to them today and make more puree to can. 

Friday, August 23, 2013

A Knitter's Dream Come True

A couple of months ago, Terry and I were tooling down the East Valley Hwy, when he sees a sign that says "Yarn, Fiber, Classes".  He pulled a u-ey and took me back to check it out.  One step inside and I knew I had found my utopia.  The shop is called Maker's Mercantile and is owned by the daughter of the founder's of the Skacel company.  Hailing from Germany, Ingrid is the one who introduced the Addy Turbo knitting needles to the U.S., and all of the yarns stocked here are from Germany.  Sort of.  More details later.

I don't think this needs explaining, but it sure attracts your attention and makes you smile.

I think ANYONE could find that special button for that special sweater he/she has just finished.  I've never seen such an assortment.

They have a large classroom with lots of tables and chairs, and a couple of couchs to sink into if you just want to sit and knit.  Can you just imagine sitting in this funky couch and drinking coffee. . .

oh, yeah, coffee and pastries!  Riley's Bakery is right here inside the shop!  On Saturdays, they have a knitter's breakfast from 10 'til 2.
I told them that if I weren't a newlywed and wanting to spend every last minute with my DH that I would be living there.
Well, as it goes, they now have a room where they sell locally made yarns, and my yarns are for sale there!  I was very honored that the first two skeins were purchased by Ingred and her daughter who is the owner.
Once I get my act together, I will be teaching a class in dying.
They have also asked me to facilitate a spinning group!
Is this heaven?  Everything I have been trying to find, all in one place.
So, if you are ever in the Tukwila/Renton area, be sure to look up Maker's Merchantile.
BTW, they are slowly gearing up to add sewing and quilting supplies!!!!