Saturday, April 30, 2011

Last day of April

Which means tomorrow will be May 1.  My birthday is in May.  Not excited about it, just sayin.

I got my warp threaded thru the heddles.  About to head upstairs and tie onto the back warp, get it all set, and possibly start weaving. I'm actually going to do some plain weave, and some other things with the same tie up but can change the treaddles to get a different look.  

It's another white warp.  I like white warps.  It's easy to make the towels any color I want then.  :-)

Today we went to Graves Mountain where they were holding a fiber festival.  First one up there, so not many vendors.  There were Alpaca, Llama, goats, and a bunny.  The shearing looked terrible - they took a Llama, and flipped it on it's side, then they use tie downs and stretch it's legs all out and kneel on it's neck.  There was one that screamed the entire time.  I watched it's breathing - it wasn't breathing hard.  But screaming.  I couldn't stand it!  I'm such a sucker for animals.  Sigh.

I didn't take the camera.  Guess I should have but thought about it too late.  The festival was VERY small, but hopefully they'll hold one every year.

Next weekend I'm going with my friend to the Maryland Sheep and Wool festival.  I've heard it's huge, lots of walking, and lots and lots of shopping.  Good thing I only like cotton.  Probably won't be much there.  LOL.  I think The Mannings is supposed to be there, which I like, and I'll probably find some things I'll want.  Can't spend too much tho.....I've been trying to be good and not be bad with spending!

Not much planned for this week.  I hope to get a lot of weaving done.  Monday will be babysitting day.  Thursday, Gabbi gets groomed.  That's it for plans!  Yay!

I'm getting to like staying at home.  I guess that's a good thing.  :-)
Have a wonderful rest of your weekend.


Friday, April 29, 2011

A beautiful day...............

Today was an absolutely beautiful day weather-wise.  It's amazing, as awful as the weather has been recently, hot, and especially with all the storms that went thru the country a couple of days ago.

It's been hot - in the 80s, and now it's going to be cool - April was strange, and now May is going to be more like April should have.  Geesh.  I'm glad for the cooler weather tho.  I don't like anything over 75!

I have my warp on the loom.  Well, sort of.  It's threaded thru the reed.  It's not threaded thru the heddles......yet.

Tomorrow there is a small Sheep and Wool festival at Graves Mountain.  It'll be the first time they hold it.  Only 50 vendors, not sure what they will consist of as the site doesn't show.  Might try to go there.  There is a possibility that my daughter, son-in-law, and granddaughter might show up tomorrow, but granddaughter is ill.....a bad head cold.  So not sure if they'll make it or not.  She might get cranky on a 90 minute ride here.

Been a good week, spent a few days at home, and that felt really good.  Didn't get what I should have gotten, done, but, it's ok!  I don't beat myself up anymore.

I bought a new purse today.  I really like it so far.  I hope I continue to like it!  I'll take a pic and post it later.

I'm in a strange place again.  Changes.  I am making changes again.  I am not doing agility with Evan this session.  Might go back, might not.  We'll see.  I only have 2 days at hospital scheduled with him this month.  This is my birthday month (does that have something to do with this??? hmmmm), and I wanted to keep it open as much as possible.

I'm going to be babysitting on Monday, while daughter goes to work - so it'll be the first time I'm really alone with granddaughter for any length of time.  Scary!  LoL  I'm glad my daughter trusts me and that she likes the way I take care of granddaughter.  I love to play with her.  She's so smart.  Then, all of a sudden, she gets tired and I rock her to sleep.  It's so much fun and so special!

There are a couple of other things to take care of next week, but hopefully I'll get some weaving done.  I don't like it when it takes a back seat!

Happy that May is coming.
Take care


Monday, April 25, 2011

A new day

Today is a new day.  A warm, sunny, day.  A day where the bright green, Spring leaves of the trees, look beautiful against the blue sky of a bright, but overly warm, Spring day.

I decided when I got up today that yesterday was a lazy day for me, a recoup day, and today would be a day to get things done. 

Motivation.  Sometimes it escapes me.  
I made some decisions.  I won't be taking any more agility classes with Evan for right now.  Not saying I won't do it in the future, but right now, no.  I'm tired of it and not getting anything new from it and I go for 90 minutes (not including the 30-40 minutes each way, it takes to get there and back again) and I get to run him 3 times thru the course in 90 minutes because you wait for everyone to take a turn.  Sigh.  It's time to move on from that.  It's not like I'll be competing with him.  Agility is a speed event.  Evan is not a speed dog.  I'm not a speed person.  

I took out all my summer shirts.  Washed them all so they are fresh and clean and not wrinkled.  They are in the dryer, and I'm ready to hang them up when they come out.  I still have some closet cleaning to do when I get the motivation to do so.  But I did find a small wallet I forgot I had.  That's a good thing.

I did my laundry.

I decided I don't want to be fat.  

I got the warp wound, and it's almost half way threaded thru the reed.  I have to take breaks.  It's hot upstairs.  We don't want to put the air conditioner in the window, because the room has so many stink bugs now.  I think we'll try putting screen on the air conditioner so the bugs can't come thru, but the air can.  I don't know why air conditioner companies don't do that. 

I will also sneak around and close some of the vents down here now, so that we can get more air forced upstairs. 

I can only thread so much of the reed at once....staring at the reed, makes my eyes get all whacky.  I see lines when I look up.  I have weird eyes. 

I came down to take a break, from the heat and staring at the reed.  I'm going back up to finish threading the reed.  Thanks to a friend letting me borrow a dvd that I hadn't seen before, I now know a better way to thread the reed, and warp my loom.  Thank you friend!  I've read and seen some ways of doing it, but this one makes the most sense to me.  When I get my hands more used to the motions, it'll work better.  Right now it's awkward but I'll adjust. 

Off to finish my white warp. Then wind onto the loom. By tomorrow, I'll be able to weave the towels I want to weave.  Of course, between threading the reed, and weaving, I still have to thread the heddles.  I love my new heddles, but I need to order another 500.  At least.  I'll start with that - it'll give me 900 at that point and hopefully that'll be enough for each shaft.  They are shiny and new and happy, and I don't have to deal with the rusty old ones anymore (well, I will for now as I don't have enough for this project in just the newer ones, but that's ok). 

I am also waiting for brown thread to arrive from The Woolery.  It was on back order.  I should probably call them and see whether it's in or not and if someone forgot to send it.  Been about 2 weeks since the rest of my order arrived. 

Now I'm rambling.  Oh wait, that's what I do............I ramble!  That's the other decision I made............I'm going to write about my LIFE here, not just my crafting.  

Ok, that's it, time to go back upstairs and finish this warp.  We taped a movie last night (yes, we still tape to vhs tapes) and can't wait to watch it tonight.

Make your life a GREAT one!

Sunday, April 24, 2011


Is Easter.  Happy Easter to you and yours.
It's a holiday for most.  Not really for me.  Yes, I'm Catholic, but not practicing.  No, I'm not the hypocrite that goes to church on major Christian holidays but not the rest of the year.  I just don't go.  I do believe in a higher power.  After all, if I didn't, I don't think I'd be here.......or, maybe it just wasn't my time to go.

At any rate, holidays are hard for me.  I tried to make the best of them when the kids were young.  It was always a struggle as my partner in life, doesn't really get a kick out of any holidays. Not birthdays, not Christmas, not Easter, nor anniversaries.

I don't really know why.  I think there was a disconnect when he was young.  

It's my own fault.  Even tho I tried as much as I could to make things good for the kids, I guess in some way, I let them down. 

It's days like this, that I miss the people that should be in my life.  Family.  But, it is what it is.  I'll make the best of the day for myself, and the rest of the world will celebrate with others.  At least the sun is out.  It's going to be hot (not my favorite temperature) but I'll do what I can.

I've already made bacon to go in the potato salad.  I've boiled the potatoes, mixed them with the mayo, salt, and pepper, a little sweet relish, and some of the bacon.  I sit here with a piece of whole grain toast, a slice of cheese, and a couple of pieces of bacon, and I'm eating and drinking my tea.  The ice maker is clunking (need lots of ice for the ice tea I'll make later).  The horses are snorting out back as they eat the lush spring grass.  

I got on Facebook and no one that I know was on line.  They all are living their lives in another way.  

Yeah, I'm sounding quite sad, aren't I?  Well, time to get off my butt and do something around here.  I'll get dressed, and probably go into town to see if Walmart is open as I need some red onion, more mayo, and a couple of other things that I forgot I'd need for today's meal.  Steak, potato salad, brocolli salad.  It'll taste good later on.  I'll also probably do some weaving, and maybe I'll even start to tear the wall paper off the bathroom wall - hey, might as well be productive, right?

I hope whatever your day brings you, is the kind of day that brings you love, peace, and happiness. 

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Great Educational Opportunity

I was given the great opportunity to view a wonderful video on beginning weaving.  The video is from The Mannings, and a friend who recently took a class there, has shared the video she received during the class.  It was so nice of her to let me borrow it.  She knew I'd been having trouble especially with the warping part of getting prepared to weave.  The video answered all of my questions - it was simply the best educational material I've seen to date (mind you, I've only been weaving for about 7 months now).  

It's really wonderful to make friends, have them understand where you're coming from, and know that they are thinking of you, by sharing something so simple yet so important. 

I've got another video by another professional weaver.  That video did not grab me and say, YOU CAN DO THIS.  It was wonderful to watch the professional, but when I tried the same methods, I didn't get the same results.

The recent video I watched was simple, it was easy, and I'm SURE I can do what he did.  I'm actually looking forward to getting my next warp on my warping board, then onto the loom, which is where I've had problems the first two times I tried it.  

Right now, I'm putting new heddles onto the shafts.  I have 4 shafts, and all the heddles are old, and dirty, and rusty. They would not move back and forth on the shafts very easily, and I would get frustrated when they would stick.  The new heddles are SO pretty, and shiny, and nice!  I'm excited to have them on the loom now.  Unfortunately, they are $18.99/100 and I soon realized, 100 per shaft is NOT enough.  Not even!  I need at least 200 per shaft....that's 800 heddles.  I'll continue to order them, a bundle of 100 at a time, spreading the cost out.  For now, I have 100 on each shaft and am keeping about 100 older ones on the shafts.  I'll use as many of the new ones as possible, and when I get all new ones, I'm going to make a baby blanket.  :-)  I'm looking forward to that.

Something else I'm going to start doing is cutting strips of fabric.  I have lots of fabric, unfortunately, it's not all in yardage.  Some of the fabric I have is smaller pieces - such as fat quarters.  But I'm going to give it my best, start cutting, and see what I get for strips.  The shorter ones should be good to do a few shopping bags with.  I can hopefully get the strips long enough to do one side of a bag, and the ends will be sewn in when I put the seams in.  We'll give it a shot.  I don't know if I'll sew the ends together - I know some weavers that do, and others that just overlap them.  I'm going to try the overlapping method.  

First, I'm going to put another warp on the loom to do more towels.  Now that I've gotten some done, and I LOVE the 5/2 mercerized cotton I used, I want to do even more, so I'm going to do a longer warp (I think).  I have to figure out how many yards I'll need.  The last warp I thought was pretty long and I got the equivalent of about 6 towels out of it.  I'd like to do that many again, but I used my entire one pound cone of white 5/2.  I bought another cone, but want to make sure I don't run out.

Well, the dogs are bothering me -they must need to go out and they probably want their dinner, so I'd better go and take care of that.  Chicken legs are in the toaster oven, and are cooking up for hubby.  I ate Chinese for lunch, and I'm stuffed, although I might make some veggies to go with the chicken so I can have some of those.  Gonna have to find another side dish to go with the chicken for hubby tho.  

Have yourself a wonderful day. 
Thanks for reading.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Project 1 - done!

I finally finished the first of the cloth on Lulu.  It was fun.  I took my time, I didn't tend to get antsy about finishing, I didn't have a lot of time to work on it at one time so the work was spread out over weeks.  I think that was smart.  I got better as it went along, my selvages were so much better at the end, than at the beginning.

Four towels.  Nice size, love the 5/2 I wove them with.   

This is what it looked like, fresh off the loom:
This is what they look like finished:

I also did 2 table mats - patriotic themed, for an exchange.  I like them both. This is the striped table mat.
And this is the table mat I did with red and blue on a double shuttle, first time using it:
 I had a couple of other pieces I did also, one was yellow, it was a mistake in threading, but I liked it anyway and finished it off so that I can use it and remember that I made a mistake, but it looked nice anyway.  
The other was brown thread, 8/2, that I tried to see how it would come out.  The contrast of the brown and white was really pretty, but the 8/2 weft really drew in on the 5/2 warp.  I don't have photos of these two items, yet.  I'll get those and hopefully upload them at some point.

I am working on my rigid heddle loom now.  I have had it warped with Sugar and Cream cotton for a couple of months, but had messed up the warp, and it needed repair before I could start weaving.  Yesterday I fixed the issues, and started weaving it last night.  It's so bright and cheery and fun!  I am going to make a bag/purse type deal out of it.  I'll line it with something fun and pretty and put pockets in it, and use a stabilizer to help it hold it's shape.  It'll be the first time I make anything where I will have to cut and sew my own woven cloth.  Scary!

I have to decide what I want to weave on Lulu next.  I am taking a weaving class next Friday, we'll be learning Summer and Winter, and learning some techniques and tricks and short cuts, hopefully.  That's my plan anyway.  The part I'm not too excited about is that Friday is Good Friday, the Friday before Easter.  Around here, some of the kids are on Spring Break the week before Easter, and some are on Spring Break the week after Easter.  Traffic is always horrible, especially on I95.  We'll be taking a back way home, staying off the interstate because I do NOT want to spend 3 hours on a drive that should take 1.5 hours.  That's bad enough!  

I've gotten to spend some great time with my Grand Daughter, Jia.  She's SO stinkin cute, she is learning so fast, and she's becoming more adorable every time I see her.  She changes SO much in a week, it's totally amazing to me.  She sits in her jungle jumpy seat, and her little bobo seat on the floor, and plays and giggles and watches tv.  I know, they aren't supposed to watch t.v. this early.  But she LOVES Mickey Mouse club and she watches that screen like she knows what's going on!  She's only 4 months old.  Just amazing!

Isn't that the most adorable face you've ever seen?  Look at those cheeks!  She is too cute.  I lover her SO much!

That's about it from me this week.  I'm trying to be better about posting.  I don't think too many people actually read my blog anymore.  But that's ok, it's here for me when I feel the desire to post about my progress.  It's just that my progress is a bit slow sometimes.

Thanks for reading!

Monday, April 4, 2011


Yes, finally!  I have finally threaded Lulu the correct way, to get the twills I was trying to get in the first place.  And now, tada!
This is white warp, dark purple weft.  I love the way this came out.

This is a light lavender on the white warp.  I'm not crazy about it, even in person.  But it's coming out ok.
  It took a lot of work to get this warp on the loom.  I messed up the threading - more than once.  I skipped dents in the reed.  But, I didn't hate doing any of it - frustrated, yes.  But, I did not dislike any of the process.  I enjoyed the entire thing - I was just anxious to get WEAVING.  

I'm having some issues with being comfortable at the loom.  I have a bench, but can't sit on it long.  It seems high enough, it's difficult to get on and off it, and it's on carpet, so it's difficult to move in and out.  I have an office chair, but it's too short.  I put a cushion on the bench, but it slipped and slid all around and that didn't work very well.  I did try some drafting chairs at Staples yesterday.  They were ok.  Nothing that thrilled me.  One was the perfect height, but the edge was hurting the back of my legs.  The others didn't really go high enough but were nice and cushy.  
I'll keep looking.
Tomorrow, I get to see my daughter and the grand daughter who is growing by leaps and bounds.  Her hair is getting long, and it's so curly!  :-)  It's always a long day when we go up North to visit, but I love seeing them.  Other than the day I get to see them, I feel very out of touch.  Hard to explain.

Wednesday, a friend and I are going to PA, to a weaving store called The Mannings.  Should be fun.  We're meeting up with someone I've connected with on Ravelry.  She seems very sweet, and she's taking a week long beginning weaver class.  How lucky!   I'm excited.  I'm trying to tell myself to be frugal and careful with my $ while there.  But how??? LOL
I'm going up to weave a little, after taking the dogs out for a little walk around the property.
The farrier is coming for the horses.  Once he's come and gone, I'll weave some more. 
It's an "at home" day, since the next 2 days will be out and about.  Hubby's bd is this weekend.  I need to get a card and gifts for him.  55.  I'll be next, in May.  55.  Yikes.  

On that note, I'll leave you to ponder life.................