Crazy as a Loom

Friday, December 31, 2010

Goodbye 2010

I have been remiss, and I do apologize. I said I was picking the winner of the rug naming last night, and I totally got busy with my new toy, and forgot.
I was pretty sure I knew who commented with the winning name, so it didn't take long to pick it out tonight.
The winner is........drum roll..........DebbieB over at Hozho
with the name Walking on Sunshine Solmate Sock Rugs. I love it!!!! Thanks, Deb.
Oh, yeah, and you win.............drum roll..................a Walking on Sunshine Solmate Sock Rug!!!!!! Yay.
Just send me your address, and I will get it out to you. And send me a picture of your toes on that rug while you are singing that song, OK???
Today was another goof off day. Wow, sometimes I just get on a roll, don't I??
L and Alice and I drove to my favorite bookstore, the Northshire Book Store in Manchester, Vermont.
It was a beautiful day, for sure.
My kind of winter day. Lots of sunshine, and moderate temps.
From january2011

I am really struggling trying to resize my photos for my blog. I have done it so long with Windows, and had it down to a science. This is SO different. We took a ton of pictures today, but I am tired already. It took me forever just to get this one photo done.
And I have a book to read, and a great magazine, and a cuppa tea calling my name.
So I will leave you with ONE more photo, and I promise, I am going to get better at this.
From january2011

Here's saying goodbye to 2010, it was a good year all in all.
Looking forward to 2011!!! Which will be here in just a few hours.
Happy New Year to all of you!!! I have loved having you joing me here in my Crazy as a Loom life.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Oh, my.

I decided to buy a new laptop, partly because this is a good time to spend any money on business expenses, and partly because
I have wanted a new laptop for a while now. I have long had my eye on a Mac, and decided that the next time I bought one, it would be a Mac. So today, my friend Alice and I took a trip to the Apple Store in Albany.
After a lot of talking and listening, I came home with a MacBookPro.
All evening I have been trying to get comfortable with it. It is very impressive, and so different from a PC. But as usual, I am determined. Getting my pit bull mentality on.
When we got back, she and L went to pick up the solar kitty house, that L and her friend made for Momma kitty. It is quite impressive.
From january2011

We situated it right in front of the barn, right where Momma kitty likes to bask in the afternoon sun. After she goes in it a couple of times, we will hang some heavy fabric or felt on the doors on either side, to keep the draft out.
From january2011

Hopefully, she will go in it, and snuggle down in the hay, when the sun is shining. She will have her own little sauna in there.
I'll try to get pictures.
It's been a long day, and I am feeling overwhelmed. I don't have the usual program that I resized pictures with on my Dell, so I am struggling here. With any luck, I will get better.
From january2011

So good night for now, tomorrow is another day.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Beating the cold

The sun was shining most of today, and that made the cold bearable.
I got one of the two rugs I am 'reweaving' done. It turned out pretty good.
From december

I love the vintage fabric in this rug, and I love the colors. I will finish the other one tomorrow.
The Weaver's Friend loom is a great loom, 45" wide, with a sectional beam, and a great brake. It is sturdy and turns out great rugs. There are no treadles, the shed changes with every two beats of the beater. I have decided to sell it, because I really want to bring the Cranbrook downstairs, and put it in the space where the Weaver's Friend is. I don't do well getting rid of looms, but I am trying to streamline the studio, and make it more efficient. The bottom line is that I don't weave much on the Cranbrook where it is, and I think I would use it more if it were downstairs.
I am trying to wrap my brain around the fact that I can only weave on one loom at a time. It's so unfair.
I have to tell you about my guilty little pleasure. I have been indulging for 7 or 8 years now, and I am beyond saving. There is no turning back. I initially spent $3800 on this little 'indulgence' of mine, but OH MY, it is still the best money I ever spent. Every night, before I go to bed, I make my preparations. It doesn't take long. I make sure all the lights are off, before I go. Usually Eddie the pit bull goes with me. I don't have to go far, but I do have to go outside, nearly naked.
Yes. And bare feet. Sometimes there is snow, and sometimes, like last night, it is bitterly cold.
At first, my brain rebels, and I wonder if perhaps I am really crazy after all. Then, as I throw my towel over the railing, and lift the lid, and lower my body into the 104 degree swirling waters of my old hot tub, I know it was worth the pain of getting out there. And always will be.
For old bones, aching muscles, a body that has maybe done more in a day than it should, this old hot tub that I have dragged around the countryside, is pure heaven.
Sometimes, the wind is blowing, a fine misty spray covers my face, and I couldn't be happier. This is the most relaxing place in the world. I give thanks for it every time I sit myself down in it.
It may be cold out, but I don't mind.
From december









Monday, December 27, 2010

Brrrrrrrrrrr.

Reweaving an old rug that was sent to me. I love the colors.
From december

I got it going, maybe I will get it finished tomorrow. Maybe not.
From december

I am not liking the cold. Even though we didn't get as much snow as we expected, the wind is cutting, and the wind chill is supposed to be -5 tonight.
As I was warping the loom for this project, I started the fireplace . I wasn't the only one that appreciated it.
From december

Old houses are cold when the wind blows. It is basically a post and beam house, which means that the walls are 'board on board', there is no insulation, and no space to put any.
Eventually the sun came out, and at least it looked warm.
From december

So much cold, and it's not even January.
From december

I want to be like a bear, and go into hibernation. Winter lethargy. Conserving body heat, and energy.
From december

All in favor, raise your hand.



Sunday, December 26, 2010

A jug of wine and ........thou.

You don't mind if I have company, do you?
From december

Look at that face. How could I say no?
I think this might be her grown child, or a submissive boyfriend, cause she was eating the canned food, and grayandwhite was sitting on the chest above her, waiting.
And he/she did not go near the canned food, til she was done. I saw her give the "look", and that was all it took.
So it seems to me, that grayandwhite must be a relative, who knows SHE is the boss.
My friend, Alice, stopped by today, and we decided to take a look around the cellar.
Actually, she wanted to go, and talked me into it.
The cellar is huge, and it is easy from there to appreciate the age of the house, and the incredible work that went into building it.
We found this jug, which was actually pretty dirty, almost black.
From december

It is really in great shape, with no cracks at all.
From december

No identifying marks though, none.
From december

I have no idea about this jug, who made it, what it's worth in dollars, how old it is.
But I know that someone used it, here in this house, sometime between 1790, and now.
That's a lot to know.
I didn't drink any wine out of it, but I did drink some wine out of a glass.

This week I am going to try to get my thoughts together, and make a plan for 2011. Looking at what worked this year, and pondering what I want to do at the studio in the coming months.
After looking at my last year's resolutions, and realizing how badly I did keeping them, I've decided I just need to come up with a list of things I WANT to do, not a list of the things I think I SHOULD do.
It just doesn't work that well.
What kind of lists are you making for 2011?


Saturday, December 25, 2010

Is is over yet???

What, Santa is coming tonight????
From december

We got together at one of my daughter's, for our Christmas Eve celebration. It was very informal, a pot luck dinner which turns into more food than we will ever eat.
Then we did gifts, first a Chinese auction which the kids really got into. $5-$10 gifts produced such a commotion! Who knew!
From december

This year we did Secret Santa for the adults, and it was a good thing. It was fun, everyone got what they wanted, and it was pretty stress free. The best part is that going home was not the usual trucking tons of stuff out to the car that we didn't need in the first place.
It works for me.
As always, there was a rush for the deviled eggs.
From december

This one is MINE.
From december

My number 1 daughter was loving her Flip Camera, and no one was safe.
From december

She looks innocent enough, doesn't she?
From december

Zoesy dog was loving every minute of it. That girl loves company.
From december

Someone was taking a survey, and making a list: did you want to eat first, or open presents first. The first tally was not what she wanted, so she did it again.
Still no luck.
From december

Do it again, Gabby!
From december

The kitchen was a very popular place to be, even though it is TINY.
From december

How many people CAN we fit into this little kitchen, anyway??

Daughter #2 wishes that we would get out of her way.
From december

Daughter #3 has everything under control. Noone is surprised.
From december

Do these glasses make me look smarter?
From december

I just don't want to miss Santa.
From december

This was the nicest Christmas ever. All my family together, in one place. Everyone was comfortable, relaxed, happy to be there. No drama, no agendas, no stress.
Just family, just love, just Christmas.
Ah.


Thursday, December 23, 2010

Fiesta and no fire.

Now to me, fiesta means color, and lots of it. Which is why I called the place mats made from sock loopers, Fiesta Place Mats. They have been popular. The problem is that no two sets of place mats are the same, and more specifically, no two place mats are the same.
The ones on my web site are mostly reds and pinks. They are 'repepresentative' of fiesta placemats. They don't all come that way.
From december

They come in all colors. The issue is in how to present that to the customer who lands on my web site, and says, OH.....I like THOSE.
When THOSE are as mismatched as the Solmate socks. Maybe THAT is what I need to say.

From december

There is NO matching them.
From december

Why would you want to?

From december


Today I was weaving some of them, when I smelled something burning. Now there is a four letter word that people who own big old houses can't even say. I started searching for the source. I walked around the downstairs, and couldn't pinpoint where it was coming from, so I went upstairs. It seemed to be stronger in the blue bedroom, but that made no sense. I was about to call 911, because there was no doubt that something was burning, and if I couldn't find it, it must be in the wall, like electrical. The thought made me shiver.
I decided that before I made the phone call, I should check outside, to see if I could see smoke anywhere around the house. As I started to open the door, my eyes started to sting like crazy. As I was rubbing them, trying to figure out what was happening, I turned back towards the kitchen, and I knew.
Earlier, when I ran the water in the kitchen sink, I noticed that the water pressure was not very good. I assumed that it was due to sediment in the screen on the end of the faucet. I unscrewed the end of the faucet, and cleaned the screen. But there was a cruddy buildup of minerals from the hard water. So I put some water and some vinegar in a pot, and put the nozzle in it, and put it on the stove to boil.
And boil it did. It boiled all the water out of the pan, and fused the nozzle to the bottom of the pan, and eventually melted the gasket.
ACK.
Yes, I took a picture of it, but I will spare you. It looks as bad as it smelled.
And I was grateful, that it was nothing more serious.
Now I don't have to worry about sediment messing up the screen.
There is no screen. :)
So instead I will show you a picture of late afternoon sun and the garden in snow.

From december

Now there, wasn't that better?
I am quite pleased with myself right now. My accountant lady came to help me reconcile Quick Books, and I learned something new and wonderful, something that makes me think I am REALLY getting this. That makes me feel quite accomplished, when in the beginning, I was totally overwhelmed with it. It's quite unbelievable, honestly. I wasn't sure I had it in me. Good to know that you can still learn new things, no matter how old you are.

I know everyone is busy getting ready for Christmas. Sometimes I think there is just too much preparation for a holiday that should be rather simple, don't you think?
I'd rather watch "Amazing Waterfront Homes" on TLC, thank you very much.
And that's just what I am going to do.





Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Brightness and a giveaway.

Another gray day in the northeast. Sometimes you gotta make your own sunshine, if you know what I mean.
I have had this idea for a while, about the Solmate Sock Rugs. I have wanted to do something different with them, but I just wasn't sure what.
Cutting them horizontally into loops, the way I have been doing them, makes the bumpy sock rug that you have seen a hundred times. They also shed a little. The shedding does stop, after a while. They are typical "looper" rugs, just more colorful because the sock seconds are cut into 'new' loopers.
So I asked the girl that cuts for me, to try something different, and yesterday I got back a box of socks cut lengthwise, each sock into three pieces. They are similar to the heel strips I used for the funky placemats.
From december

At first I thought they were too wide, but I was willing to give it a fair shot, so I sewed a pile of them together, end to end.
Wrapped them on the shuttle.
From december

They have very few bumps, and they DON'T shed at all.
From december

I love these rugs...they are the bomb. I like them better than the original Solmate Sock Rugs. What's up with that?
From december

I finished three of them today.
And since they were the only BRIGHTNESS around, I decided to give them their due.
I remembered 'perspective', so I got down flat on the floor for these.
From december

Rather than try to decide which one I liked the best, it is just easier to show them all to you.
You don't mind, do you?
From december

Wow, things really do look different down on the floor.
From december

Ah, there's that sweet place right in the middle, where all is clear.
From december

Then I took them outside, because I thought that the white background of snow would really show them off.
From december

Now here's my problem.
What to call them.
I initially thought that these are Solmate Sock Rugs, 2nd generation. But that sounded pretty dopey.
So I'm asking for your help.
From december

I need to call them something distinctive, that still identifies them as Solmate Sock Rugs, but newer, better.
From december


And for the person that comes up with a great name.......one that I actually use, there is a reward............it will be a surprise.
What? You like surprises, right????
Mid winter, we need surprises, trust me.
Decision time, one week from today.8pm.





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