Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Wednesday's Are For Spinning

Today is the day my spinning group meets. I am looking forward to seeing everyone after not being able to attend meetings for a few weeks. Trina is having it at her house, which is nice because she lives in Massena too. Our little group is spread around the area, and most weeks involve a little bit of time spent in the car.

I was very busy yesterday taking photos and listing items on Etsy. I just realized that I am close to 100 orders and think I must do something extra special for the 100th sale in my shop. My drum carder has been put away for a while. Maybe it needs to come out and make a special batt for the 100th customer, if the person spins, of course. Otherwise, I'll have to come up with an extra special skein of yarn.

Here are two of my new colorways that are yet to be added to the shop.

Before I put my drum carder away I made some really pretty batts for the Spindies' Artist's Paintbox for October. The color for this month is warm orange/rust. Of course, I forgot to take pictures before I sent the samples off. Duh! I'll chalk it up to grief brain. If you've not experienced it, I can assure you that it can be quite annoying. And time consuming because I tend to spend a lot of time retracing steps and trying to figure out what I am supposed to be doing.

It is quite chilly here and there is a forecast of snow for this evening. I know it is the last day of September, but I am not ready for this yet. Fortunately, my wool room, which is exploding right now with all the fiber and yarn I am labeling and getting onto Etsy, is warmer than the rest of this very large house.

Jodi, who is now living in Florida, asked for a photo of some fall leaves. This is Crazy Neighbor's tree. The leaves this fall are really stunning, although just beginning to change here in the St. Lawrence Valley. The Adirondacks are another story. I haven't seen such bright reds since we moved back, and some of the oranges are almost fluorescent. It's beautiful, but I haven't had the opportunity to take photos yet.

I couldn't find Seamus yesterday, and then discovered his secret, warm sleeping place. This is the reason I put the fiber I am selling in totes. Can you find Seamus?

And here is Gerard, doing one of his favorite things, sitting in a box. He barely fit in this one, but spent quite some time in there. If a box comes in our house, he has to check it out. Right now he is on top of my arms as I am typing, purring away. It makes blog writing a little difficult, but he is very warm. And for me there is something extremely comforting about a warm, purring cat keeping me company while I do things.

Time to get ready for spinning, and then back to more photo taking and Etsy listing.

Monday, September 28, 2009

A Return To What Passes As Normal

I'm settling back into my life after the passing of my Mom on September 20th. It was a very peaceful death, and my brothers, sister and I were with her. I am just beginning to process it all, and am not looking forward to this grief journey again, but know it is necessary. I keep thinking I need to go to the nursing home, after 4 1/2 years of going to visit Mom there, I guess that makes sense.

I was unable to participate in the Southern Adirondack Fiber Festival this past weekend, as I had planned to do. There is no way I could have done it I was so wiped out and exhausted from the previous two weeks, even though I would have been sharing the booth with my friend Judy from Liberty Fibers. I did a lot of dyeing in between nursing home visits even though I wasn't sure I could go to the show, so I have lots to add to my Etsy shop. Here's a small sampling of what I will be adding.

Fields of Lavender

Ghost and Goblins


Mists of Autumn

This weekend was National Alpaca Weekend, and I have a friend who was having lots of fun festivities at her farm, Angel Knoll Alpacas, so I took some of my fiber, yarn and my spinning wheel and went to the farm. What a perfect sunny fall day it was, and just what I needed-20 minutes from home, a 5 hour day, and friends to spin and chat with. I also sold a bit of yarn and several thrum mitten kits, which was an added bonus to the lovely day.

Angel Knoll Alpacas

Buddy, the dog guarding Farrah, the angora rabbit

A friendly alpaca out for a stroll

Two beautiful horses and their owner John taking visitors for a ride on the farm. They were all very tired at the end of the day.

My yarn and fiber

Now that things are returning to what passes for normal in my life (actually I have no idea what normal is, but for the first time in 6 years I am only responsible for myself, and not for my parents) I hope to be more consistent in posting. I must go now and get together some Spinidie offerings to mail.

Friday, September 18, 2009


Things here are still pretty awful. I have spent many hours at the nursing home this past week, being with my Mom. It has been a very painful, heart breaking process to experience. The good thing is that we are able to keep her comfortable and without pain. Yesterday she was quite perky, and was much more alert than she has been. A Great Dane came to visit her, which put a big grin on her face, a wonderful thing to see. Mom also has Pumpkin, a nursing home cat, who spends many hours sleeping next to her on her bed. I know that brings her a great deal of comfort.

Today, though, she has taken a turn for the worse, and is having great trouble breathing, and she has had a fever at times, and at other times seems really cold. It was very difficult leaving her tonight, but I had to go and pick up Tim, who has been able to come home and work from here. Poor Tim had a 9 hour bus ride to get here, but I am very happy he was able to come.

In between nursing home visits I have been running home to try and get a little dyeing done for the Southern Adirondack Fiber Fest that is next weekend. This is some of the yarn I had dyed earlier, on a chair on the porch at camp. I spent a peaceful afternoon on the porch re-skeining the yarn while chatting with friends who came to visit for the afternoon.

I had better get to bed. I'm thinking that tomorrow is going to be another stressful, busy day.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

What A Difference A Week Makes

Warning: Not a bit of knitting, spinning or dyeing content, and sad besides.

Last Sunday I was enjoying a beautiful day at Cranberry Lake surrounded by family and friends. This Sunday I am writing this as I prepare to go to the nursing home where my mother is a resident to continue our vigil at her bedside as she lies dying. My mom, whose name is Carol Lee, has been a resident there since she fell and broke her hip 4 1/2 years ago. (Keep exercising, and build strong bones.) Last Tuesday I received a call from her nurse saying Mom had pretty much stopped eating and drinking and did we want to put her in the hospital. No, was my answer. Mom will be 90 on September 24 and if it is time for her life to end, then we do not want to prolong it with artificial measures. Hospice was called and is helping us help Mom through her final days on earth. Her leaving us is tremendously sad, but what is sadder is watching her lie in a bed, essentially reduced to being an infant again, although she can speak enough to say I love you when we tell her we love her.

Here Mom is 3 years ago on her birthday. I just searched through my digital photos and this is the only one I have of her, since when she was living with me I did not have a digital camera, and I lost a ton of digital pictures when my lovely son erased them. But that's an other story. Anyway, this is Mom on her 86th birthday.

Mom has a deep religious faith which has helped her through a not always easy life. Last night our friend Noel, a Presbyterian minister, came and read the 23rd Psalm to her and prayed with us. Even though we sometimes wonder where she is because it is obvious she is moving between living and dying, I could see a sense of peace descend on her and her body totally relaxed as Noel was reading the Psalm. And she fell truly asleep for the first time all day. It was quite a powerful thing to witness, and makes me wish I had that much faith in an unseen power. But that is probably not a topic for this blog.

So that is the reason I have not been posting. By the time I get home I am exhausted and can only sit and vegetate, or try to sleep. If you believe in such things, please keep my Mom and our family in your prayers. And I will be back when I am able.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Off to the Mountains!!!

I am waiting for Conor to finish packing and then we will be on our way to Camp Fi-Be-Gar. Or I thought we would be on our way. He just informed me that he needs to do laundry because I put his wet clothes in a laundry basket and didn't tell him and now they are smelly and he has no clothes. Argh!!Tim and his friends were already on the Garden State Parkway above the city at 2:15, so they'll be here earlier than I had thought they would. They may get there before we do.

Here's the boy who is on his way home. I can't wait to see him. We are going to have a good time.

It was a good day at the farmer's market. What a gorgeous day to sit outside and watch the world go by, and spin and talk with friends. I am plying some of the yarn I dyed in Harrisville with a natural colored BFL, and I am loving the way it is coming out. I need to get huge quantities of the BFL, because it is not only great to ply with, but fun to dye too. There is a real depth to the colors because of the color of the BFL.

Bye for now. I will be back on Monday. No Internet access in Cranberry Lake, which is a nice thing sometimes. Here's where I will be in the evening, with just a little fire, because there will a slight chill in the air, I'm sure.

Happy Labor Day Weekend!

Thursday, September 3, 2009

The First Day of the Last School Year

Today was the boy's first day of his Senior year of high school. I am already planning a graduation party, not for him, but for me. His oldest brother's first day of school was in September of 1988, so I've been doing this school thing for a while, and there will be a huge celebration when June 26, 2010 arrives. I'm thinking the party will have to last at least a weekend, if not a week, in order to properly celebrate this momentous event. My ecstasy will not come because my last child will be leaving the nest, but because I will never have to deal with a school again.

But before you can see the boy, you must see his new shoes. Usually I share photos of my feet, but these shoes are too beautiful not to share. Purple and brown and very large. I think I may be inspired for a new colorway of yarn to match his shiny shoes.

Here he is, all handsome and ready to begin his Senior year, in all his sartorial splendor. I was going to try to find a kindergarten picture to show you how darn cute he was then, and how he has changed, but that would have necessitated an extensive search through the archives of photos, and I might have been lost for days.

He was very kind in posing for me. I'm not sure why, but most of the pictures came out blurry. Maybe I need a new camera. Yeah, that's it. I need a new camera so I don't take blurry photos anymore.

Tomorrow is the farmer's market and then we will be headed for Cranberry Lake. Tim and 8 of his friends are coming from New York City, Pennsylvania, and Rochester, NY. It will be quite a gathering and I am really looking forward to it. And the most amazing thing is that the weather is supposed to be sunny and warm. Tim has not had much luck in the weather department when visiting Cranberry Lake in recent years, so it's nice that this will be a good weekend. One of his friends said that she is looking forward to drinking wine and knitting with me. That is a girl who has her priorities straight.

Here is where we will be knitting when we are not on the front porch, gazing at the tranquility that is the lake. Notice the magazine on the bottom of the coffee table. If there is a historical event you would like to read about in either Time or Life magazine which took place from the early 60's to the early 90's, come and visit me and take a look through history.

This is one of the things I will be knitting-my Susie Hoodie. I am going to continue and finish. Not like one, who will remain nameless, who chose this sweater to knit, got us all to join along, and now has abandoned the sweater.

This is the fiber I will be spinning. It is what I dyed at Harrisville. I plan to spin it all and then perhaps make some Twisted Sister socks.

Have a wonderful Labor Day weekend. When I return from the lake I will be madly dyeing because my friend Judy and I will be selling our wares at the Adirondack Museum in Blue Mountain Lake next weekend. I'm feeling a bit stressed, because I need to get a lot of dyeing done. I'm sure things will be fine. que sera, sera. Whatever will be, will be.

Bedtime now. Must rest so I can party with those young people this weekend.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Hello Again

I'm still here, and missing all my blogging friends. Don't give up on me. I will be back soon with a real post, I promise. August has just been a crazy month, with lots of unexpected problems and situations, but I have been feeling very sad that I have not written here. Keep on checking back, please. See you soon.

Here's a sunset from the porch at camp. Pretty isn't it? Inspiration for a new colorway for fall.