Crazy as a Loom

Monday, December 31, 2018

Goodbye 2018

OK, I have given up on the idea of putting my photos on my blog from my iPad, then finishing the post on my laptop.

So here I am on New Year's Eve.........not standing in Times Square without an umbrella, so I guess that makes me smarter than some.
I did, however, sit in the hot tub and listen to the rain.
I did not have the coffee with Bailey's, even though I bought a tiny bottle with one serving of it for that purpose.  
I am sitting here  eating home made popcorn, that I over salted........watching my recently hand dyed bamboo dry in front  of the stove.  Hubby has his head phones, so life is is quiet.
Naya is asleep at my feet.

Yesterday, my sweet granddaughter  saw the dollhouse for the first time.  It was a big hit.   She thinks my rendition is "perfect", and though I know I am not that talented at decorating dollhouses, if she says so, then that's good enough for me.

It presently resides in the spare bedroom upstairs, which we call the "blue room".   Positioned on the dressing table, she can sit in the chair and have easy access to it.   Eventually she will take it home.

Another big hit was the antique tractor that used to be my cousins.......bought for him on his 3rd birthday, and he is now 47.    I bought new pedals for it, and DH gave it a good scrubbing.

That did go home with be ridden on it their ridiculously huge basement for now, then outside in good weather.

Lois and I are starting to build up the inventory here at CAAL.

She just made this, and I really, really love the colors.

I have been spending some considerable time in the front bedroom, winding warps to dye.   Tedious, but necessary.
I never thought I would get used to the warping mill, but I am now, and really like it.

Today walking Naya, we came across one of these trees with the thick bark.......Lois and I both want to know what kind of tree it if you have any clue, please do tell.
They are BIG trees.

I know at the end of the year, you are supposed to be here goes:

Yes, I still had headaches this year, daily, stupid headaches.  But hey, I'm still I guess I win.
Headaches be damned.   I continue to  refuse to give in.
Lois and I did a lot of humping around to shows this past year, and I commented more than once that maybe we were getting too old for it, but thinking about it, I've decided that ......hell, no.
We're not too old.
We may groan a little louder, but we are still doing our thing.  And doing it well, I might add.
We make a good team, and we weave some beautiful things that we can be proud of.    And what else would we be doing, if we weren't doing this?   Scary to think of.

Naya came into my life in 2018......and while I said I wasn't going to get a young dog.......she's only 3......and somehow it might have been exactly what I needed.  During Roy's last couple of years, he couldn't walk far, so I didn't either.   That may have not been in my best interest.  
I used to think about how I was going to squeeze a walk into my day. walk is my first priority.........I decide first thing when it will be, then I fit the rest of my day around it.   So, every day, we walk......45-60 minutes......unless it pours or is freezing rain, we walk.   And I've lost 30 lbs this year.....hard to believe. (  full disclosure:   I gained 3 lbs of it back over the holidays)

So I may have saved Naya, and she may have saved me.

Life is hard sometimes, and there are days that I we all do.   But the bottom line is that I still love my life, and I am grateful.......always......for what I have.......for being on my feet, still thinking, weaving, walking, being with my family, and friends.

As for resolutions.....

Happy New Year everyone!!!

Friday, December 21, 2018

Winter perspective

I have to share this photo with grand girl getting her hair cut.

The look needs no's perfect.

It's the look I imagine I have whenever the news comes on.

My friend in Georgia made this for me for Christmas.   She didn't have to spend a lot of money.
She only had to know me.
It's the best gift ever.

When I found the wool in the storeroom, and wound it into balls, I got motivated to clean in there..
then I found this quilt top I had sewn just needed batting and a backing, and then it needed to be quilted.
So I spent one whole day doing's king size, so it took me ALL day.

Then I sent it to someone I hope will be happy to have it.

Merry Christmas.

OK, let me tell you what NOT to not put your photos on your blog via your iPad, and then write your post on your laptop, then GO BACK to add another photo on your iPad.....because when you do...your entire post is gone.

Rant over.

I have been (apparently) quite verbal about my dislike of FACESINCELLPHONES........not that I don't use mine....I do.   But I don't have it in my face, especially when I am in social situations.

But it happens all the time......of course.
You know it.

When I mention it to my children/grandchildren, I am told that I am's not that bad.......that it's not any different than what kids have always done.
I disagree.....and it's not just kids.
It's grown's OLD PEOPLE, too.

Makes me wonder, seriously wonder, what this world is headed for.

Rosie came to visit as well....the "collie mix" that the SPCA told my daughter she was adopting.

But she clearly resembles 99.9%, a picture of the New Hampshire State dog....the Chinook.

I think that when the SPCA goes south, and rescues a bus load of puppies, that they should just admit that they have NO CLUE about what breeds of dogs they will grow up to be.

Sometimes, I just sew all day.   I usually am making things from my scrap basket.

This cowl was from the last warp.

The birds got a Christmas treat, it looks yummy to me.........they apparently agree.

I bought myself a Christmas present.......yep, a water heater for my bird bath.

Bubba Lee is keeping her eye on it.

 I haven't seen one bird near it.  Not one.

This is my venture with wool rugs, woven from those balls of yarn I wound last week.
They are pretty...but they definitely need a padding underneath them.

I still have enough for one more warp........which is going on the Octado soon.

I wanted the pattern to pop more than it kind of disappears.

You can see the pattern better in the next two photos..........

I have to admit, I will be glad when Christmas is over.  I am a true Bah Humbug.......I wish that weren't true, but it is.
Oh, not that I don't love the lights, and the time with family......I love buying gifts for the people I care about......but it's just too much hoopla.
People spending money that they clearly don't have, on things they clearly don't need.
People on the roads, in bad weather, sleeping in airports because travel is such a heartache during the holidays.   Stores shoulder to shoulder with people looking frantic, no one looking like they are really having a good time.
Too much hype, taking the true meaning of the season out of context.

I try to keep it simple in my own head, and I refuse to get sucked into the frenzy.   I used to,
But no more.

Why can't we be charitable, and giving, and good, and loving all year long????

Why can't we just keep it simple?  Why cant we just pu't our phones down, stop instagraming, snap chatting, face booking, spending money, why can't we just be still?

I don't wonder anymore, why home and studio seem to be the most soothing place in the world.

Nope, I don't wonder at all.

Saturday, December 15, 2018


Playing with some scraps of fabric that I wove, and in this case, felted by accident........I made some mittens.

An old friend stopped by and fell in love with them, and left with them and a hood/scarf combo as well.

She always makes me smile.

No snow in these parts, but it has been very cold.
The fields are finally frozen, so the "poop trucks" are sailing by daily, from the huge manure pits  a few miles down the road, to distribute their loveliness onto the bare meadows.

Naya and I walk the hedgerows, when we walk close to home, so it's ok.

The snowmobile trails have been cleaned out, so we walk those too.  I am hoping that with some snow, and the end of hunting season, we can walk in their paths.

This was a gloriously sunny, if cold, day.   There hasn't been a lot of sun since the first of

If you look close, you can see the heron.   Naya and I were quiet, and he let us pass without flying away.

A trip to my daughter's, where my grandson has learned how to turn on the lights to the tree, and takes great pride in doing so.

I did some weaving on the Union Custom about three weeks ago........made some rugs.
For you weavers out there, you know what I mean when I say that the treadles are hooked at the back of the loom, thus requiring one to raise their hips to put their feet on the treadles each time.
Apparently, that is a motion that MY hips do not like.....because after two days of it, my hips were on fire.
An ortho visit revealed that I have TENDONITIS in BOTH hips.

Good God.  Really?????
Isn't a 7 year headache enough pain for one person?

I know, I doesn't work that way.  Oh, that it could.

So I am staying away from any movement that aggravates my hips ......and hoping that some PT and anti-inflammatories might actually help.

The future of the Union Custom is hanging in the air.......but if I can't figure out how to weave on it without causing this again, it will be moving on.  That makes me so sad.......that old loom has been with me since my weaving life began.
If it goes, I will have to do a background check on the new owner.   Bwahhhhh.

Three nights this week, I spent winding balls of yarn......5-6 strands wound together to use on the shuttle to make rugs......this time on my AVL, with the elift.
Cleared out three totes of yarn that I've been hanging onto for no particular reason, made space in the pantry/halfbath/storage room,  and felt quite proud of myself for having the idea.

It doesn't take much to amuse me, maybe that's a good thing.

As always, Miss Naya is my shadow......I am not sure how I lived without her....some days, I can't imagine that I ever did.

Thursday, December 6, 2018


Watching the early morning light, I find myself thinking about my mother, what early mornings looked like to her growing up in England, then coming to upstate NY...... how did early mornings make her feel.

 I have long thought that we are not all that special.  Each one of us, a mere speck on this globe.   There is much written about what "matters". 
Does any of it?
Well, I think that all I can do is live my best life. Every day.
That's it.
If at the end of the day, I am satisfied, then that is enough.

I didn't always think this way.  But now I am older.   Those things that my mother used to say, and believe, that I thought odd..........not so odd anymore.
Funny, how age changes your perspective about so much.

My kids are busy.  Their kids are busier.  It is hard to get to see them separately, much less all
I have been trying to orchestrate a family dinner at my house........I live an hour away from all of them.
After a couple of weeks of negotiating who was going to be available, and who could not possibly make it, I have pretty much tossed in the towel.
In the past, I would have been upset, hurt.

Now, I'm like, yeah, ok....that's life.
It's just not a big deal.

It's a giant step when you realize that your children have their own lives, and that is exactly what you wanted for them.
So get on with your own.

I had a perfect day.   A perfect day at least by my standards.

My headache subsided after an hour or so.......... and became my favorite headache.......a "doable" one.

Then after all my morning chores, I wove on an order  for a few hours........

Then I made some soup.

A Detox Crockpot Lentil soup.   Let me tell you, this one is a winner!!

Then I took Naya for a walk in the fields.  I have decided to NOT bitch about the weather this winter, and at the same time, I have made a commitment to get my butt outside every day that it is not snowing sideways.

Funny about perspective.   In 2011, when my Eddie passed, we got Roy.  I said we needed an older dog, one that didn't need so much exercise.
Well, Roy still needed lots of walking, but after my head injury and surgeries, he was also chill enough to stay with me on the couch.  Then he got me out, and got me moving.  So it worked out.

When we were looking for a dog last January, I said, we don't want a young dog.  We're old, we need an older dog.
Then I saw Naya's face in a photo that Karen of sent me, and I knew she was my dog.
Several times since then, I have thought, oh dear, what did I do.  Naya is a live wire....with lots of energy, who needs to walk EVERY DAY.
And who knew?  That's just what I needed, too.
30 lbs lost, and a whole new perspective about it.
I find myself out there, in the cold, the rain, whatever; and the air is fresh, and I am energized and happy to be out there.
Happy to be doing it for her, for me.

I came back in, and picked up the weaving where I had left off.   Loving this hand dyed organic cotton/bamboo warp, and loving the weaving draft, too.

I made myself two cups of tea while I was weaving, and they both tasted like crap.  It took me a check the milk.  Yep, outdated.
So I finally had my cuppa tea when I was done weaving....then I soaked my sore muscles in the hot tub, watching the sun go down.

I made myself a killer green salad, which I had with a glass of pinot grigio, and I had leftover
vegetarian hash brown bake which I made last die for, I'm telling ya.

So let me just say, I'm grateful.   Less headache, a lovely home, a loom I love, doing what I want to do.  Loving my family even if I don't see them as often as I'd like to.

Life IS good. 

Your life is exactly what you make it.

I choose contentment, every day.

Tuesday, December 4, 2018

It’s a chill wind.

Finally, the electronic interface for the Louet Octado has returned.  And so far, it works just fine.
I have to wind and dye a very special warp for this.

I have decided that I am sick and tired of hauling pellets, and also done with all the dust it creates.

So today, Naya and I took a ride to the Fireplace Company, and picked out our new gas stove.

It's a Lopi, and has glass on three sides.

Unfortunately, they are swamped.......I guess I should have done this earlier, but the installation
is scheduled for January 23rd, and that's really not that far away.

I already have a buyer for the pellet stove, and the pellets, whatever is left after 6 more weeks.

I'm excited.  I know it will be more expensive to run, but sometimes things other than money have to be figured into the equation.  Old age being one of them.

When we headed for home, we stopped in Lake George, and walked along the lake.  The wind was cutting, and my face about froze off.  I stepped too close to the water, and my feet got pretty wet.

It was bracing, that's for sure.

Of course, Naya LOVED it.......she galloped around and was not one bit concerned about getting wet.

When I got home, I had my sights set of finishing up these wool hoods with attached scarves.

They are lined with soft, warm fleece.

I totally decimated my scrap pile making them.

I really do have to have one of these myself.   I love that they keep the neck warm.

I also took your advice, and bought a humidifier.   I did some research, found one that was highly recommended, and ordered it.  So far, I have had to fill it twice a day, it's putting that much water into the air.  My sinuses seem to like it, at least I don't feel like I have a cement block on my face.  That's always a plus.

I am hoping to see my grands over the are so busy these days, and their parents are, as well.  It's a juggling trick to get everyone together.

Whenever I look at their little corner of my living room, it makes me smile.
I just wish I lived closer.

Welcome to my world.

Because every thread counts

Because every thread counts