Crazy as a Loom

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Merry Christmas

It's quiet here on Christmas morning, not like so many years of pandemonium, when my children were growing up, packages were being opened, paper being torn off them, squeals of delight coming from the living room, trying to make some coffee to come alive while it was still dark out.
Nope, that's not the way it is these days.
Having a quiet breakfast, with Roy snoring in his chair.  Quiet.  No newspaper for DH to read.
No hullabaloo.
I miss it.
And I don't.



 You know it's not Christmas in my family, unless I make my infamous famous Greek honey cookies.


Lois groaned when I told her I was making them at the studio in between weaving.
She groaned because they are impossible to stay away from.
I.M.P.O.S.S.I.B.L.E.
 And yes, that's a can of paint on the counter.
Damn maid, anyway.

Boiling the syrup is hazardous.
Yes, it boiled over a bit, making clean up a real chore.
But the cookies are SO worth it.




Over my fireplace at the studio, I realized that I had a study in black and white going on.
Totally unplanned.




My dear friend, Robin, does these drawings in ink..........with a Bic pen, no less.

He recently had a small, local show, this is one of the two prints that I bought, of lilacs.


This work is one that I snatched from my father's antique barn, years ago, and though I have tried to find out about it origins, the best I can cipher is that it is from a print from an old hunting magazine.
 I've always loved it.


 This is an original by Robin, of bittersweet, one of my favorite invasive species.


And the second print I bought at his show, of a fern.
I love his ferns.



The next black and white is a photo that I love, of my three daughters, and my "adopted" daughter.
Left to right, Holly, Brooke, Johanna, and Morgan.
God, I love those girls.



And this one, my paternal grandmother, Vivien Noel Cooper.  She was the first woman in Ticonderoga, NY, to drive around her own AUTOMOBILE.
At least that's the story.


And lastly, this is a photograph of my house, the studio,  taken in 1921.   I have tried to bring it back to that glory.

Back when the highway was dirt.


Yes, it's quiet here on Christmas day.  But it's good. 
We had a wonderful Christmas eve get together last night, with all the noise and fun a body could handle.
A little reflection  and reminiscing and a peaceful Christmas morning never hurt anybody.
Who knew?






Friday, December 19, 2014

The Winner

I have been busy all day putting together my Christmas present to myself.
Why do I do this to myself, I ask.


Anyway, using random.org, I have a winner of the towel giveaway.


It is GLENNA, of Eye of the Needle 

Congrats!!!
Email me your full name and address, and I will send your towel right out.
And let us know how you like it!!!

Happy Friday, back to my project.


Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Snow, a link, and a giveaway.



OK, so you know the history.....head trauma, surgeries, headaches.  But this last MRI did not show any bone growth, so my neurosurgeon said he thought that perhaps my sinuses were causing my facial pain.
Off to the ENT.  Ct scan showed that my sinuses are generally fine, but that the openings to them are very small.
Of course they are.  Pfffft.
His take on my headache is that it is a "cauldron headache".  He said that with all the head trauma from the fall and the surgeries, the hole in the back of my head, the rods in my neck, that maybe the pressure in my sinuses was just ONE thing more to fill that cauldron to overflowing.
He felt that my relief from Claritin D, with the decongestant, and my distress with impending storms, somewhat pointed to my sinuses.
So yesterday I had a balloon sinuplasty done.
He had originally wanted to do it in his office, but the more I thought about it, the more horrible that idea was to me.
I've had enough torture to last me quite a long time.  So I opted for day surgery and drugs.

Yesterday was a long day......and the pain in my face.........well, let's just say it topped the list of AWFUL.  I  was in bed early.
This morning, I have the shadows of two black eyes, and the swelling in my sinuses make me feel like my whole HEAD is a BALLOON.
Tomorrow should be better.  Then we'll see if this helped, or not.

I am trying not to go there......if it doesn't help, I have no idea what is next for me.
I only know that three years of a headache every day, in varying degrees, is enough to try the patience of a saint.
And I'm not.

Moving right along.



I just want to remind you all that the Hip to Be Square looper loom, which I created to continue my recycling efforts of loopers from Solmate Socks, is now being distributed by Andrew Gustin, the son of my friend and mentor, Chris Gustin.  He has done some wonderful things with my ideas, and come up with fascinating ideas of his own........more sizes, color combos.   They make great Christmas gifts for adult and kids, and FOR YOURSELF.....you can see them HERE 
or email him HERE

Lois and I are in collaboration on some new place mats....I am cutting and sewing fabric, and sewing hems, she is weaving.


Our placemat selection is limited, we haven't made any in a while.


Hopefully, we'll get a stack of them done between other things.
We work well together. 


Oh, yeah, I mentioned a GIVEAWAY.

Well, it is Christmas, and it's always nice to get a gift you didn't plan on getting.

So,  the gift this year is one of my brand new design of dish towels  from Crazy as a Loom.


I will randomly pick the winner on Friday the 19th sometime in the evening.  All you have to do is post a comment and mention "TOWEL".

I am trying to get through the holidays without being stressed.  I am very much looking forward to 2015 and all it may bring.
I'm the eternal optimist.
I think that is what saves me, to be honest. 
I can't imagine anything else.
See you in the comments!!!!

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Some dye, and some sun.

Bart and the girls LOVE their covered run, and especially so, now that they have lots of straw to wade around in.  Thanks, Denise, for that tip.



While they are busy scratching and pecking, I've been busy weaving, then dyeing mohair throws.


 A lot of fringe to be tied............


First we soak the finished throw in warm water and Synthrapol.



Then we mix up some dye!!


 I used both these containers......but I have to say that the canner was my favorite.




The dye always looks darker in the water.
So I opt for more dye, rather than less.


This one is lavender.




Then there is a lot rinsing, washing then drying.....by this time I was so busy, I wasn't much in the mood to take pictures.
No, honestly, I forgot.

But the results are astounding.
One cream, then: raspberry, paprika, lavender, sea breeze, evergreen, and caramel.









Can I just tell you that I froze my BUTT OFF with this little photo shoot??   It was brutally cold that day, but I couldn't pass up the opportunity to take advantage of the incredible sunshine.
So??
How do you like them???

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Serendipity

The other day, when I was paying for tin to put a roof on the chicken run, a little voice said, 
"Seriously?  Should you be spending money on this?"
But I felt that it needed to be done, for the comfort of Bart and the chickie girls, so they could have a space sheltered from the snow this winter.  I worry about them.



Then that very night, after sending out my email newsletter, an old customer, let's call her K, emailed me and bought the first SEVEN mohair throws off the loom.
New roof on the chicken run paid for.
No worries.
Sometimes, the universe has a way of evening things out, when you least expect it.
Mostly, you just have to be open to it.
My husband would call it "flying by the seat of my pants".
Same thing.

I asked "K" if this would complete her Christmas shopping.
She replied," ..... tell you the truth I don't know who all of the recipients will be, because I like to surprise people who would not expect a gift.  It's my favorite thing to do at Christmas!  But each one will know how special your weaving is!"

She went on to say that she would gift someone who has been going through chemo, someone who always gives to others, and never herself, someone who has  been supportive of her for many years.

I love this........to me, this is what Christmas is about, should be about.  Giving without any expectation at all.

This first batch of mohair throws are done, I started dyeing them today.
The first one is 'caramel'.


 They'll soon be on their way to Georgia.
   


You can't connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something - your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life.  

Steve Jobs




Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Spoiled Chickens

And no, that's not a casserole.........that's the state of affairs at Crazy as a Loom.



Today I had a roof put on the outside chicken run.



It's a little unconventional.  But that's how we roll.




Now Bart and the girls can go outside and be protected from the elements.



 Hopefully, we will get some warmer weather, and the snow in their run will melt.



They are spoiled.  Spoiled rotten.
And to think I wanted to get rid of them.
Perish the thought.






Monday, December 1, 2014

Busy, busy

There has been a lot going on at the studio..........the oldest part of the house, circa 1790, has been getting an uplift.

First the door, and yesterday, new windows.




These windows will actually OPEN, and can be washed.


They really cut down on the noise of traffic on Rte 4.





 What, says MISS PUSS??????
No drafts??????



The light they let in is lovely.




I take all the changes I make in this old house, very seriously.
I don't throw out the old stuff lightly.


But sometimes, it's time for a change.  The old windows that were in here did their job, for 200+ years.

History, after all, is in the making.




Welcome to my world.

Because every thread counts

Because every thread counts