Crazy as a Loom

Thursday, April 19, 2018


My little Naya still tests positive for heart worm, that she was treated for in PA in December.

So she is at the vet's, for two nights and three days, to be treated yet again.

I would rather have a root canal, than leave her there.

I can only imagine that she feels it has happened again:   abandonment.   She doesn't know the word, but I am sure she knows the feeling.

I asked if I could bring her home at night, and bring her back the next morning, but they want her to have "cage rest", and not move around much at all.

I know she will be scared and traumatized, and I am just going to have to try to put it out of my mind, since there is not one thing I can do about it.

I took her bed with her, and an old hoodie of mine, that smells like me, in the hopes that it will comfort her, and she might know that I am coming back for her.

On the weaving front, I just threaded the AVL for 50 more towels, with a bright white warp.
That will be it for towels in 2018...I will have well over 200.  

Months ago, I wound a bamboo warp on the warping board.  I did it in several sections, intending to dye it.   I put it in a small tote, and there it sat.  Forgotten.

So a couple of weeks ago, when I was  cleaning, I found it, and the very next day, I dyed it.   I used a blog post from Melissa at Tangible Daydreams
Her post inspired me, and made me think that I could do it.

So yesterday, L and I decided it was the day.   Well, I decided, and L went along with it.

She sleyed the reed, threaded the heddles, and then we beamed it on.
Unbelievably, it went on without a hitch.
I am beyond pleased, and can't wait to do another dyed warp.

There are blotches of turquoise, green, gold and gray all along the warp.   It's really beautiful.

Today, I spent the whole day with my daughter and two youngest grands.

We went out to lunch.

I had an awesome spinach, apple, black bean and corn salad, with grilled shrimp on top.
Other than the dressing, it was  ZERO POINTS.

And even though I was sad about leaving Naya, these two did a great job of taking my mind off that.

They are the best medicine anyone could ever ask for.

Sunday, April 15, 2018

Spring Fling

  I guess I am very reflective, of late.

Maybe it's the continuing winter that drives me inward.

Life is change, that's a given.

People come and go, pets come and go.  2017 was proof of that.

We get older, our bodies change, in spite of us.  Our perspectives change.

Nothing is static.

I used to think about life as a destination, but now of course, I realize that it's the journey.

Sitting here drinking my coffee on a Sunday morning, watching yellow, fat birds land on the bush right outside my living room window.
I have not noticed them before, but now I have new windows all around, I do.

The old windows were just that:   OLD.   They were painted shut, they had full storms, and to wash them was an event.  So they stayed dirty a lot.  Which is probably why I never noticed those little birds.
I am still reviewing my decision to get new ones.

Like I've said,  I anguished on giving up the "wavy glass",  I know that this was a positive change.
Clean windows, the ability to open them, warmer in winter.  All good stuff.

To date, all the windows but one little stationary one over the cellar way, have been replaced.   In 13 years, I have done a lot of updating to this old house, while trying not to have it look like a "new" house.   Just a better one.

There was one window, in the kitchen, that had the name of the original owner of this house, back in 1790, etched into it.   "John Bellamy"
My carpenter took it home with him, wrapped in cardboard, and he is making a shadow box for me,  with it.

I am only the fourth owner of this old place.  The Bellamy family, the Canfields, the Wilsons, and me.  
In 228 years.

Sometimes, as my life gets nearer to the end game, I wonder what will become of it.   It's a house, a home, and to me and my family and friends, it's the "studio".  There has been a lot of life here over all those years.   I am unable to control the future of it.   But I pray that someone loves it like I do.  And takes care of it, and doesn't try to cover up its personality.

Change, ah, change.

I've been returning to my weaving roots this past week couple of weeks.   I cranked out three large rag rugs, then Lois and I put a 40 yard warp on, and I wove five 2' x 3' rugs this week.

I have a room full of fabric.....totes full of strips and pieces, huge rolls on the floor.  I have been sorting it, bagging up stuff that I don't like, or don't want to fool around sewing together.
The room desperately needing cleaning and organizing.
I still have about 820 lbs of fabric on big (30-40 lb) rolls.

Then I have multiple totes full........not just in the front bedroom which we call the "rug room", but in the loft over the studio as well.

I wanted to sell the big rolls, but it seems that even at a discount, there are not a lot of rag rug weavers out there who want to host that much fabric.

Perhaps I'm a holdover from another time, where rag rugs were plentiful and necessary.

Now there's Target, and, yes, and Walmart.

Ack, change.

Well, I still love painting with fabric.  I love best those rugs that are several colors and prints in a haphazard fashion.  Hit n Miss, they are called.  I still love weaving them.
I call them "container rugs".

So I do it.

And isn't that what the journey is about???  Doing what we do, one day at a time, every day, doing what we love, what speaks to us.   Doing what we need to do?

As I write this, the sleet is hitting the windows.  Yes, April in New York State.  There is still a fire in the pellet stove.   Cozy, yes.   Discouraging, a little.

I just downloaded an app to my phone.  It's called  "All Trails".   I hope this year to walk some of them with Naya, and I hope to drag Lois along, and maybe my friend Alice, when she gets back from Florida.

I used to hike the Adirondacks, but I must admit, my compromised neck makes me wary of doing anything that doesn't keep me upright.   There are so many walking trails within an hour's drive, that I think they may do the trick, and satisfy that need in me to keep moving.

After a blogging break...............

 I decided it really WAS  time to clean the rug room, which is actually the front bedroom in this old house.

Naya is ridiculous sometimes, in her need to be as close to me as she possibly can.

Under the loom, not bothered at all by the banging over her head.

I have been on a mission......trying to restock the rugs for shows.

But actually, I am loving it.

Every now and again, you see something advertised that just looks like it will make your life easier.

I am a huge salad fan.  I pretty much have one every day.

This is a salad maker, from ZOOTZ.

It took forever to get here, probably came from China.......but it got here, and today I tried it for the first time.

So you put your salad stuff in the bowl part.
There's a cuke and a tomato under that lettuce.

You place the bowl on the base, and flip it over.

Then with a big knife, you cut down through each slot.

When you're done, you carefully rotate it a half turn, and cut into each slot again.

And VOILA, you have a salad.

My daughter asked me:  yay? or nay?

Definitely a yay......salad in about 2 minutes.......oh yeah.

And now I leave you with this:  my  new, very organized, pantry, with rubber seals on all the jars.  They are Bormioli, from Italy.

I researched the best way to store food, and these came up first.

The second was Lock n Lock, plastic containers that also have a seal, and lock down on four sides.   I bought those for cereal, pasta, and crackers.

It must be almost spring, right???

Why else would I be cleaning. :)

Friday, April 13, 2018


So, yes, I am on a weight loss venture, once again.

Eleven years ago, I lost 18 pounds, then gained it back, plus 12 more.  Ouch.

Funny thing, how when you get older, your body wants to plump up.  Unfortunately, and honestly, for me, that means right around my waist.   That's absolutely the worst place for extra fat.

I have spent way too much time thinking about how much extra weight I was carrying.   For a long time, I made the excuse that my headaches made it impossible for me to concentrate on losing weight.  Food was my comfort in tough times.

Then I went the route that I was too old to be vain, hence, why lose the weight.   Just buy bigger clothes.

But one day weeks ago, I was at my daughter's, and  my year old grandson kept holding his arms up, for me to pick him up.  So I spent quite a bit of time that day, carrying him around.  He weighed about 23 lbs at the time.
When I got home late afternoon, I was exhausted.   I think I took a nap on the couch....

Then it hit me.   You were tired from lugging an extra 23 lbs around all day.
BUT, you carry around an extra 30 lbs EVERY DAY.

So acid reflux, hip pain, knee pain, get the picture???

Because I sure did.

It isn't about vanity, for sure.  I am too old for that.
But I am not too old to do something for myself, that makes me feel better on a daily basis.

So I went online then and there, and signed up for Weight Watchers, because that is where I lost the 18 lbs, 11 years ago.

I started going to the meetings, because I think the "weighing in" is crucial to my success.   There is anticipation, then gratification, that motivates me.

Snacks these days.

I will say that the "Oprah/WW" ads are totally annoying.   You can NOT eat everything you see......and I think she trivializes the whole process.   But that being said, there is a lot of freedom to eat a lot of things, just maybe not the things you want to eat, or the things you are used to eating.
But I'm adjusting, and I'm doing it.

And so far, I'm down 12 lbs, until I weigh in today, and I hope it's more.

But if I go and only lose a lb, I don't despair.   That's ONE LB of butter.   Slap that on your hip, and say hallelujah that it's gone.
I know this is a lifestyle change, but it's time.

I can't allow myself to say "oh what the hell"......I'm old, so it's ok to let myself stuff my face for no real reason.

Meanwhile, a box of mixed fibers came and Sydney confiscated the box.

I tried using some purple rayon for weft, in my fave shell draft.

Everything outside still looks dirty, but the sun setting is the focus here.

I want to stick around for these two little ones........and having an extra 30 lbs on this old body is not the way to do it.

Happiness is also being able to change drafts with the click of a mouse.

I think, though, that it's time for some weaving changes too.  I feel it, but I'm not sure I know what changes are in the wind.

Not that I don't love making these, but enough already.

Yesterday, we had the last of the windows installed.   Since I bought this old house, 13 years ago, I have been replacing windows..........
I anguished over the living room and kitchen, because they were "wavy glass", and I loved them.

But the storms were truly horrific to remove, and washing the windows was a huge job.
Plus the inside windows were painted shut.
And they were cold.

So it was time, I think.
Like me being old but not needing to be overweight.

This house is old, but it can still be better.

It's never too late for a little change.

Change can be a very good thing.

Thank you all for your kind comments about my last post.   I appreciate all of them.

“For what it’s worth: it’s never too late or, in my case, too early to be whoever you want to be. There’s no time limit, stop whenever you want. You can change or stay the same, there are no rules to this thing. We can make the best or the worst of it. I hope you make the best of it. And I hope you see things that startle you. I hope you feel things you never felt before. I hope you meet people with a different point of view. I hope you live a life you’re proud of. If you find that you’re not, I hope you have the courage to start all over again.” 
― Eric RothThe Curious Case of Benjamin Button Screenplay

Thursday, March 29, 2018

Stay with me.

I was blessed this week, with visits from two of my three daughters.

On Monday I took my first daughter shopping for her birthday, then to lunch.

Then on Tuesday, my third daughter came to visit with the munchkins.

I have been advised that she does not need any more toys, so I buy her craft things, to do when she comes.
So it doesn't take her long to drag out her "craft box", and get busy.

This was right after she went out to "pick up a chicken", which is also one of her fave things to do at Mimi's house.

She had my phone for  a few minutes.......I have 20 shots like this one.  Naya was a very patient subject.

Someone was very happy to get to the play table.

When they left at the end of the day, we took separate cars and met at the Gap outlet.

The girl needed some new dresses.

They sent me this photo when they got home.......she's wearing  one of her new dresses, and he is mopping the floor.
Vacuuming, mopping.
What can't that boy do.

Karen of This old house sent me this picture the other day.  I had to google "jackfruit".
I am enthralled.
I definitely have to try this, and several other recipes on Pinterest for jackfruit.

Another handy little idea.....Egglettes.

You can buy them at Target, Walmart, Amazon.
They are a way to boil eggs without having to peel them.
If you have your own chickens, you know how hard sometimes it is to peel fresh eggs.

I have to give a plug to one of my favorite kitchen items.......the Whirley Pop.

It's a fast, easy, healthy way to have hot popcorn in about 3 minutes flat.

Without the MICROWAVE.   ugh.

I've been dyeing the many natural skeins I have hanging around the studio.

Cotton, tencel, bamboo...... stocking my shelves.
Over the summer, I will try to have stuff dyed for the winter.
I can dye when it's cold, but it's not as easy.  The inside porch where I do my dyeing is not heated.

Sorry if this is a mish mash of stuff,  but this is my crazy life.

I'm busy.

Lois and I have this warping thing down to a science.   We put this 30 yards on, then we went to my neighbor's house.....she's  a friend, that I taught to weave.  We put a warp on her rug loom, too.

Sometimes, when I don't know what I want for dinner.......(DH is cooking MEAT)

I do a little creative cooking.

This is mushrooms, spinach, red onions, red cabbage, sun dried tomatoes.   I also added Cannellini beans.

With a very little bit of pasta, and a splash of parmesan, it was delish.

This is what Lois is up to, when she's not helping me warp.

I have to vent a bit here.   Today I ran into an old friend.   Well, we are not friends any longer.  But we used to be.
I thought we were the best of friends.  For 15 years.

Then last August, I apparently said something that annoyed her, and suddenly our friendship was over.
So today, on my way to get my lab drawn, I ran into her, coming out of the doctor's office.

We were both surprised............she quickly said, "Hi, how are you?" as she flew by and ran to her car.

I said, "fine, how are you?"  but I wasn't fine at all.

So all day, I've felt like this tree root.  Yes.  A tree root.  Bound up with rocks so tightly, probably why the wind blew it over.  It couldn't breathe.

So I'm venting.
I wanted to text/message/email her all day, I wanted to very badly.  I wanted to say, "Really??  Friends for all those years, and that's the best you could do?"

I practiced incredible restraint, and did not.

And all day, I asked myself, why was I so hurt????

Did I have expectations???   I don't think so.   I have not expected to hear from her, since we last spoke 7 moths ago.

But for my life, I cannot wrap my brain around how someone can be so close to you for all that time, share so much of life, and then just nothing. Done.
I guess it wouldn't have felt so bad today, if she'd actually stopped, looked me in the eye, and said, "How are you?"
But she acted like I was someone she didn't really know at all.
I guess that was the hurtful part.

I think that the real rub comes from thinking you know someone, thinking that you can trust them with your thoughts, and your feelings, and then finding out that maybe you were wrong.
Dead wrong.

Well, thanks for listening.
Sometimes, it just helps to say what's stuck in your head.

And then it's time to move on.

Reminding myself of that old maxim from the Big Book.

Acceptance is the answer to all my problems today.

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

A little of this. Some of that.

I wonder if I will ever stop missing him.

It still feels pretty raw.

This little girl does her best to ease that loss.
She is the sweetest, funniest, little dog.

On a mission to eat better.

And while this is not local asparagus, I know it's coming.

 My daughter made a fantastic so good.
DH says I'm going to turn into a salad.

I hope it's this one.

My rack of woven clothing is getting pretty full.

My rack holds close to 40 items, and I want it to be full for summer shows.

Someone finally convinced Daddy to let her get her ears pierced.

She was a trooper.

The towel stash is up to about 170...........almost where I want to be.

I've been cracking the whip ........and Lois has been working hard.

Here are two of her creations.   Love them both.

You don't believe that about the whip, right???  
As if.

Naya and I have been trying to get some walking in, away from traffic.

Country roads work best.

After breakfast, and a quick run outside, Naya loves her morning nap while I drink some coffee.
Morning sun is the best.

Coming up, my favorite golden delicious warp.

My happy place.........

Sometimes I need a little plain weave....nothing fancy, nothing too complicated.

Welcome to my world.

Because every thread counts

Because every thread counts