Crazy as a Loom

Wednesday, March 27, 2019

Cracked and found.


Well, this addresses the "cracked".....my fingers, and Lois' too........around my nails....oh, so painful.

This stuff is amazing, you just have to remember to use it.





"Found" are my car keys......that I lost several weeks ago.  Everyone has tried to find them.....recreating my steps that day, searching the house.  With no success.

In the end they were outside.  I must have dropped them when I got out of the car, and the snow plow guy moved and buried them.
But they reappeared, and the key fob even works.
Little rust on the ring, but that's an easy fix.


 Nothing quite as rejuvenating/exhausting as taking care of your 5 year old grand girl.

She brings the need to sleep, but she also brings joy....lots of it.



We went out for pizza....( homemade manhattan clam chowder first, it's a Friday tradition)


 Then we went to Naya's obedience class, which totally thrilled this little girl.

And a quick stop at Target for essentials.   You know the deal.



She was wired for sound until bedtime.......

but Saturday morning, she had to ease into the day a bit.   She ordered pancakes for breakfast.

What?  You didn't know we run a little diner here????




I love having her.

Even if she does remind me why young people are supposed to have children.

And older people like me are supposed to be grands.

It was a lovely time, and I treasure it.
























This is what Lois is working on.......an 8 harness crackle, with a hand dyed giza cotton warp.


It's going to be a cloak, I think.


I am doing a custom yardage order.......
the warp is navy bamboo.....and the cotton hemp had to be dyed to match this photo.
I think I got pretty close.



And here it is, on the loom........circles, back again.


I have been pondering the complications of life lately....how we plan things one way, and they don't turn out nearly what we imagined; how impossible it really is to lay out a course that will actually resemble what we pictured.
It's one way in our head,
and quite another in real time.
Sometimes I think the joke is on us......even though sometimes it seems particularly cruel.

I do know one thing for absolutely sure.   There is TOO much winter in northeast NY.
I love my old house, I even love the little hamlet I live in.  The countryside is lovely, and it's home.

But the expanse from November to April or May is just too long.  I don't want to do it anymore.

So next winter we are making plans to get out of here for at least 2 months.....maybe 3, who knows.   I know that my psyche, my head/neck issues, my general age and the arthritic changes that come with it, are not happy with frigid temps anymore.  What really clinches it for me, is trying to walk Naya in snow and treacherous ice and worrying about falling and breaking something.

Nope, don't want to do it anymore.  I will try to look at it as a real break, from winter, from working every day, a chance to regroup and take a breath.

Tomorrow, I am going to start doing some spring cleaning.....get myself out of this winter funk.
I have a few areas that need dredging out.   I need to be sending things out of here to be repurposed or loved by someone else.  I think it will make me feel better, at least until I can get outside more.

(I like James Comey, just saying.   I know he's far from perfect, but he is a sensible sounding man, who I believe has a moral compass.
Something we don't see all that often.)

I have a new book, "Where the Crawdads Sing", which came highly recommended to me, so I will say good night.







Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Dyeing for spring.

Spent the day with my two littlest grands last week......I am still on pins and needles though.......my daughter and my grandson both got the flu the end of that week.
If I don't get it, it will be nothing short of a miracle.




My daughter bought me some garlic, at Trader Joe's.........she wanted me to try this "new thing".


It's already peeled, and I think she bought me 4 bags.

Then she whipped them up in her food processor.


She took the resulting mashed garlic and put it in a large, zip lock bag, and smashed it out flat.

I took it home, and when it was frozen solid, I peeled the bag off it.......chopped it up into squares, and put it all in another zip lock.  
Now, when I make soup, I only have to grab out however many squares I think I need.
I have to tell you, it's pretty awesome.  Cheating maybe, but awesome still.


Weaving on the David is really sweet.  I do love that little loom.
I have loved it even more after I put a little silicone spray on the rods that the beater bar slides on.
Now it really weaves like a dream.


This is the progression of the warp that is on it.



I think it's going to be a möbi shrug.......it's washed and dried and pressed, and waiting for me on the sewing table.



This piece is cotton hemp hand dyed warp, with a hunter green tencel weft.


This piece was a warp on the Wolf Pup that I was playing with, and it ended up being 240" long.



These are the last of the towels off the AVL.
Back to yardage.


Walking anywhere around here is treacherous........this snow is heavy, slushy, with ice underneath.
The side roads are muddy all along the shoulders.  Yesterday, we had to come in and head straight for bath time.  Naya wasn't happy.




I started doing some dyeing today.   I need a new batch of weft colors, and hand dyed warps, too.
Dyeing is  doable in the sewing room, in small batches,  but will be so much nicer when it warms up some.
I ordered supplies today, being hopeful, I guess.

I have struggled with wanting a second dog, and not knowing if it's the right thing to do.  Plus DH keeps looking at dogs that are way, way too young, annoying since I am the one who does ALL the dog walking.
My daughter was up over the weekend, with her dog who is not yet a year old.  They stayed over Saturday night, and by the time she left Sunday morning, I swear that if Naya could talk, she would have said, "Thank the Lord."
She was definitely a bit jealous, and it was obvious that her patience was being tried a lot of the time.



These two have a nice relationship.  They don't cuddle up together, but they are kind to each other, and they seem to respect the other's right to all sleeping places.
They even share food.
Go figure.


Sydney, however, is the boss.

And Naya is ok with that.





Saturday, March 9, 2019

Being clear


I guess I wasn't very good at explaining.
I loved the Louet Octado.....it was a beautiful loom to look at, and a beautiful loom to weave on.
There was a learning curve, after weaving on an AVL for a long time, but it was lovely overall.
So why did I get rid of it???

Well, to be honest, I thought Lois was going to weave on it most of the time.  I thought she would like not having to remember her treadle sequence.
But then, Lois still has a flip phone.  So WTH was I thinking?????

Nope, she's perfectly happy to weave on the loom with NO computer, no bells, no whistles.  And I respect that.  It's fine.

So that left me.
And I love my AVL....I would rather weave on it, than anything.
So after much thought, I decided to sell it......it did take up quite a bit of space, and irritated me because it sat there unused.
I thought that perhaps in the future sometime I would try to get a Louet David.......nice size, no computer, 8 harness, and I had heard lovely things about how lightly it treadled.   Plus, since I am a Louet dealer, having it in the studio might help me make some sales.
As it turned out, the lady from Maryland who bought the Octado, was thinking of selling her David.

So she bought the Octado.  And I bought the David, and she brought it with her when she came to pick up the Octado.  It was kind of meant to be.

I also like the idea of having a loom I can weave on if my compudobby has any issues.......or the power goes out!!!  
So far, I LOVE it.  I just wove off 18 yards of cotton in baby blankets, and I must say, it is a dream to weave on.

It is definitely a keeper.......I think I like it better than the Octado.


This is my Saturday morning view.  Naya likes her morning nap, resting up for our jaunt over the tundra.


Could I love her more?????
I doubt it.


I did a little retail therapy yesterday, not my usual thing, but like I said, winter is getting to me.

I shop with "purpose"....meaning I know what I want, I am in and out of the store in as short a time as possible.

I needed a new pocketbook.



I also bought myself four pairs of pajama bottoms........

And a $2 cup, which I did not need for one second.
But hey.
It spoke to me.

There is something about  a cuppa tea in a brand new cup.


Sometimes, I get sad about my two granddaughters who just turned 14 and 15.
They used to be at my house all the time.  They thought Mimi was the coolest person EVER.

We played, and baked, we went to the movies, picked flowers.   They exhausted me and I loved it all.
I felt like the paparazzi following them around.

Now of course, they are busy.....and I have apparently lost my coolness.
I barely see them, and when I do, they are halfway into their phones.


So thank you universe, because I get at least two more goes at this ...........and I am soaking up every minute I can.

Here is one of them.



Yep, spending time with this little beauty and her brother is the reason to hold on no matter what old age throws at you.
Sticking around to see as much of their lives as you can, loving how important you are in their eyes.

The other day, I arrived at my daughter's house, and my 2 year old grandson saw me, screamed "MIMI" and ran down the hall to me, threw himself in my arms, and kept his head on my shoulder for a good 10 minutes.  
Can hearts explode from pure joy??  

Sometimes people will say to me:  I don't know how you manage, how you go on, day to day, with that headache.
My answer is simply, that it's an equation.

You put the headache into the equation, with what you love about your life, what inspires you, what makes your heart full, brings tears to your eyes, and damn, if that headache doesn't get XXXXed/cancelled  right out.


Every time.

And I used to hate algebra.



Thursday, March 7, 2019

Slogging through.

I am done with winter, as I am sure many of us are.
I tried.  
I really did.
I got out and walked right through November, December, and January.
Then in February the ice came......and lots of snow.
Walking became treacherous, and I admit it....I'm terrified of breaking something......anything.

I know, without a doubt, that my neck/head would do poorly with a fall.

This was this morning's temp.
March is not showing any signs of a let up.


I may have lost it.......I'm doing a puzzle.
God help me.


The good news is, my headache is better since my last post.   Doable.   
It's interesting to me, that when it lets up, it takes me days to realize it.
I just slip into the goodness of it, like an old shoe.......until suddenly, I realize, and whisper, "omg, 
it's better, it's so much better."

I wish there were some rhyme, or reason.   I can't find it if there is.
I do know that my ostepathic manipulative treatments make the difference....,and sometimes once a month is too far apart.



This was one of our last walks........cleats and about 5 lbs of extra clothes.


Looking for moles and voles.


Looking at me through the window......I can almost hear her saying......"What????"

Still weaving towels on the AVL.....have quite a ways to go to get the stock up for the summer.


And there's a new loom in the studio.
The Octado is gone.....
And in its place is a Louet David.


It's smaller, lighter, not computerized.
36" wide, 8 harness.

It treadles like a dream....so lightly.
It's quiet.
I really like it alot.


It was easy to sley, easy to thread, and the warp went on quite smoothly.


So far I've got four baby blankets off it, and I think I might have enough warp for 3 more.



I am debating whether or not to keep chickens, or not.
They are a lot of work, and chicken feed is not cheap.

Then I end up giving most of the eggs away........DH and I can't eat that many.  I figure 
I go to a lot of trouble for a couple of dozen eggs a week.

But on the other hand, I do really like the girls.  I like watching them, listening to their conversations, and if you're going to have eggs, you want theirs, not some awful things from the grocery store.



Right now I'm dealing with rats in the hen house......they've chewed a hole right through the bottom of the automatic door.....luckily I have another door, for emergencies, that I can manually drop down, to keep them out while I take measures to evict them permanently.
Or until the next time.
I haven't had them for a few years.
The saying is, you have chickens, you have rats.
Terrific.


Not sure what happened here.


I'm trying to be patient, and not be impulsive.
Thinking maybe that the combination of rats and bitter winter cold may be
the reason I'm having second thoughts about being a chicken momma.

Oh, and getting skunked about 6 times out of the last two weeks has not improved my frame of mind.

That's another post.





Welcome to my world.

Because every thread counts

Because every thread counts