Thursday, November 22, 2018

Happy Thanksgiving!

 I made a vegan roast... we'll see how it comes out. It's from one of my favorite YouTuber's, The Vegan Zombie... from his holiday series... roast & gluten free stuffing.. (which is weird because the roast is NOT gluten free, but the stuffing is GF.. and it is SOOOO good.. cauliflower, carrots, onions, celery, spices...maybe someday there will be a gluten free roast..)

Here's a photo of it before baking:

And after, but before turning it over & covering it in parchment paper & wrapping in aluminum foil:

Later, when we get to our friend's, we'll remove the cheesecloth & reheat it... it looks dry, but this is before turning it over, which basted it. I also added the rest of the stuffing to it...the basting broth tastes a little spicy. I'm curious about how the roast tastes. That mini roast is for testing... I may try it before we go.

I read other recipes & rejected them for different reasons: mostly because of comments from others that made it. If I have time before we go, I may make a seitan only roast, or may save the comparison testing for another time.


I hope to get some knitting, spinning, and weaving time today... I want to finish the tuck scarflette, and work on Beekeeper's Cardigan, which I'm not sure I still like...I'll try to get someone to take a progress photo of it on me..and maybe swatch for a little more spinning for the Shetland socks, and maybe do a little weaving on the arched loom... wedge weaving perhaps, or a postcard...the arched loom makes a good postcard size, and if you're careful, you can make it sort of fringeless, or you can make a lot of fringe by warping around the loom. I'll post photos of it in a few days.

Did I mention that I still have some of Jim Hokett's cocobolo kits? They're 8 dent, and are the 'regular" 7" by 8" size. If you're in the US, you can order yours at this link.  You can also ask me about Cottage Creations patterns: I have a few left.

If anyone wants Jaggerspun yarn, now is a good time to order it as the prices will be going up around the middle of December... 

Photos from Archie Brennan/Susan Martin-Maffei workshop April 2015:

On Rebecca Mezoff's blog post here, she talks about meeting Archie & Susan, and others have talked about their experiences meeting them. Here's what I wrote:

"I went to a workshop in Weatherford, OK in April of 2015, at SWOSU, Southwest Oklahoma State U... He spoke with my son (then 13) about his unicycle for a bit on the last day.. my son also wove a bit with us that day.. Good memories!
Can we post pictures on here?"

Here are some photos:

I'd love to know who's following this blog! Leave a comment!

Monday, November 19, 2018

Random thoughts: wildfire,

Random thoughts:

On April 9th, 2009, the day we lost our house to a wildfire that claimed 9 houses in our town... If I had to do things over & grab 6 or 7 more things (I could have, the fire wasn't near our house yet), that loom would be one, my guitar, my Hagen loom, some yarn that I hand painted, and a little journal my mom wrote, and my computer... I was burned out on weaving, but it still would have been nice to have had that loom.

No one told me how hard it would be when kids moved out...especially when they live far or decide to estrange get so involved with caring for them, doing stuff with them, etc.. and then one day they're off. I'm proud of my boys, they've been through a lot, learned a lot...

I feel reasonably healthy & hope I don't find out I have some hidden cancer or something with a harsh treatment that'd ruin my health overall... my roommate, not so much.. last month, he had his gallbladder removed, and is still figuring out what's possible diet-wise... he had a quintuple bypass (traditional) last year.. has trouble breathing from emphysema..


I'm hoping to get some more natural colored fiber for my 2nd sock. I have about 250 yards spun so far, I think it's sport weight, so I'll need more yarn to finish this up.. I just found 3 colors that I need on eBay & hopefully I'll find some Ashland Bay grey shetland as well... I think I found some, but hopefully the seller will sell a smaller amount.

I'm further along now than the collage shows, have approximately 1/2 spun for the 2nd sock:

I've started a toe on the first sock:

Beekeeper is quiet, I want to finish it, but am not sure how long to make it before starting on the ribbing... I'd also like to make Stephen West's Penguono:

and have been collecting some older Chelsea silk yarns for it: 
plus a few other, pale yellow, greens, blues, etc... the skeins from the photo above have been "put away" in a "safe" place... not sure where...

I also have a scarf in progress... anthro inspired scarflet:

This isn't an updated photo... I'm about 3 or 4 inches beyond the slit. Before I embarked on knitting, I tried on a size 6 and 7 needle, and liked the 7 better...

Tata for now, my pretties!

Sunday, September 30, 2018


Did some more weaving on the Tempestry piece:

It's up to date as of Wednesday 9/26... I've woven more since.

I'll be getting more inlay looms (like the one above), and will also have shed sticks again in a couple of days.


The vegan butter cauliflower that I mentioned the other day was pretty good! I don't usually take pictures of food, maybe I should start...

I also found a seitan burger recipe that was pretty good... Here's the link...
I've also found a way to keep better track of what I eat via Dr Greger's Daily Dozen checklist app. You can find it here

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

New stuff in the shop!

I recently got some new looms & tools from another woodworker, Jeff Johnson...

arched looms, needles, and weaving forks:

raised inlay loom:

They are fun to use! I'm doing an experiment with wedge weave on one (I finished the first one that I showed on another blog entry), and started another. On one of the smaller raised inlay card looms, I'm doing an experimental "Tempestry" tapestry... it's a way to record the temperature each day by color, and if it's a rainy day, something we've had a lot of lately, I'll put a strand of blue in between the 2 of that day's stripe... each stripe is 2 passes (or one sequence)...

There's more on it now. I may have to look for my maroon yarn because I think today's high went over 95!

C'mon over to the shop,

More progress on the Beekeeper's cardigan... no new photos yet, but there's about 2 or 3 more inches since the last time I shared a photo.


I've been finding some fun vegan/plant based pages. Sam Turnbull of It Doesn't Taste Like Chicken website has several good recipes.  I've made her stretchy gooey melty mozzarella a few times. I'm about to try her vegan butter cauliflower.  I'll report back!

Her YouTube page is fun too!

I've also been playing with Dr. Gregers Daily Dozen Checklist here (You can get the app on iTunes or Google Play)... it helps me keep track of different foods I need to eat...

Thursday, August 30, 2018

Almost September.. getting ready for 29 Faces, and more...

go to this link for more info, and cool tutorials

This will be September's challenge, as well as updating my website with some looms and tools from another maker that I found. I have a small arch loom that can make pieces up to postcard sized. I'll still be spinning, knitting & weaving...

Here's one that I did before I finished it and took it off the loom:

I'll take a photo of it off-loom after I do something with the ends. This was my first attempt with wedge weave.. I was just changing colors and doing the shapes randomly...

Here's a side view:


I also plan on picking up a long time UFO, Beauty & the Beads:

I'm currently picking up the stitches on the last green row, which takes a kind of long time because there are almost (?) 1,000 stitches on the needle now. I want to change the way I go from bottle green to teal to make it a more gradual looking transition between the two colors.

We lost Liberty on Wednesday morning around 2am. He was either 16 or 17, depending on who remembered right: Gary thinks we got him shortly after 9-11, in 2001, but Micah thinks he was in 2nd grade, and that would have been in 2002... he was a great cat, a lot of people loved him, he took care of the other cats, bathing them a fair bit. Earlier this week, he stopped eating... we didn't get him to the vet in time.  He's the end of an era: he's the only cat that we had when we were living in Valley View, and the only one of the animals that lived in the house.  We'll be burying him next to Parker as long as the ground over there isn't too hard. I'd bury him next to Bean, Boomerang or Loveslug, but I'm not sure exactly where they are & don't want to accidentally dig them up.


March 2018:

Rest in Peace, forever in our hearts...
Fall/Winter 2001 or 2002 - August 29, 2018

3 years ago today, we lost Pixel:

29 faces29 faces

Saturday, July 7, 2018

Beekeeper's Cardigan, Tour de Fleece & more...

I've been thinking about how you some people say that we need to take care of ourselves or we can't be good for others...

For me, taking care of me is immersing myself in a project. The other day, a friend posted about the beekeeper's cardigan on Facebook & it looked interesting. Several people are doing it and some are trying to do it in 4 (???!?!?!?!!!) days.  the comraderie of a knitalong has often been special to me... or a weave along... 

Here are my updated photos of the Beekeeper's Cardigan from yesterday:

Neither photo shows the "iris" as mimeograph purple: it looks blue on my screen. The 2nd photo has Fuschia added and there will be a bit more next time I update... I'm getting close to where I can close the sleeve section...

The other thing that was good was walking a LOT in NY.. I figure I walked between 5-8 miles each day I was there... here in Texas, I don't LIKE walking, it's hot & it's just not the same. I can't even convince myself to walk in better weather, because we don't HAVE to walk everywhere. We walked a couple of blocks from the car to a couple of stores yesterday, and I felt like I was dragging...but that could be because I haven't been walking much since I got home.

I'm also doing Tour d Fleece: today is the first day of Tour d France & 2 of my teams are following that schedule, and the other 2 just go all month:

Yarn Therapy Zone (all month)
Frank Williams Aussie (all month)
Inglenook Fibers (TDF, July 7-27)
Mirkwood Spindles (TDF, July 7-27)

I've been trying to finish up my sock yarn spin, but am still working on that.. for TdF, I've wanted to spin cotton & non-wool fibers... I've been doing a practice spin of silk & flax, and will do a bit more of that later, hopefully... I have 2 braids of that fiber from Inglenook.. and 2 braids of cotton fiber from Blue Mountain fibers.

I haven't quiiite decided how to spin either... spin end to end and then Navajo ply, or break up the braids somehow... maybe 2 ply, I'm not sure... the silk-flax may be okay as singles yarn, but I think I want to 2 ply or Navajo ply the cotton.. we'll see.

Here's the link to this year's Untitled/Unjuried show, Biggest Little Tapestries:

Mine is the Palmetto tapestry, 3rd down on the left, it's still on a Hoket tiny loom. That piece was woven around the beginning of a difficult time of my life... things are still uncertain... life always is... 1st world problems, probably, but we find our ways to move on. 

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Rough Week

Last Thursday, one of the high school seniors drowned at the lake by the high school... he was one of my son's friends, and was set to graduate on May 25th, and join the marines after that. The funeral will be on Wednesday... here is the link to the GoFundMe for his funeral expenses:

On top of that, one of my sons is having trouble with his car and Gary is going to help him with it.

If any customers/potential customers are reading this: this is why I'm getting orders processed/packed more slowly. Hopefully on Thursday, I'll be able to get everything caught up enough to get everything to the post office on Friday, or, if we get to Denton on Saturday, we can drop packages off then...

In other news: on Saturday, I took some looms to our Second Monday, which is a market... didn't do well at all (bad space, plus I wasn't completely prepared... but I learned some things for next time, which may not be until Fall unless I decide to spring for a spot in the Community Center. I don't think this area would be good for this type of crafts..

While there, I worked on weaving this circle:

weaving a circle...

Also, I think for the first time since I've known Gary, I weigh less than he does. I've been eating mostly vegan since October & it has helped tremendously with heartburn. I am trying to fine tune things to make sure I get everything I need nutritionally, like b12.

Going to try to rest now!

Friday, March 23, 2018

Weavin',Spinnin', etc...

Jim Hokett, the wonderful loom maker that supplies looms and tools to Weaving Rainbow is retiring! See his blog post here.  Now is a great time to order...

I've been spinning & weaving:

Continuing with my breed study...

Peppurr overlooking...

 Grey fiber (Finn?) on a Mirkwood mini Celebrian spindle
 Brown Finn on Phang Spindle whittled by a friend
 Ecru Finn on a Goddess Cobweb spindle
 Brown Coopworth on a Goddess Circus Girl spindle
 White Coopworth on a Texas Jeans "primrose" spindle
 Mixed Finn on a Frank Williams Aussie Russian spindle
 black Shetland-Silk on a Mirkwood Zazi Star...I call it the Sunset Freaky 6 spindle: 6 of the stones around the whorl represent my family's birthstones...

I'll figure out what the grey fiber is eventually. Half the fiber is still in their wonderfully labelled bag. Some of the fiber is from Luthvarian on Etsy, and the other is from Laughing Lamb Fibers.

The weaving is done on one of Jim Hokett's tiny looms. We went camping at Palmetto State Park during spring break, and I wove up to the letter E while there, and am almost finished: just need to weave the "O", and finish up...

I'm also working on a pair of socks on 9"circular needles. I think I like them better than Magic Loop...

It's been a challenging last few months with Gary's heart issues... he went to the ER the first time in the middle of December of 2016... got stents in April of 2017 and then in November (on his birthday, even) he had a quintuple coronary bypass. Almost 2 weeks before the camping trip, he had chest pains for the first times since the bypass surgery... that was scary...

I've gone nearly-vegan since October of 2017... and find that it's helped my heartburn issues tremendously. I'll avoid dairy like the plague, but I'll eat meat once in a while, usually as a seasoning, like in taco salad...moar veggies is the way to go regardless!

Sunday, January 28, 2018

Spinning more yarn... ideas...

I've been doing a breed sampler since the beginning of this month. I started with Shetland from Luthvarian, and also spun some Shetland in other natural colors from Friends in Fiber. I still have a bit more spinning left to do before I can skein & wash these singles to get them ready for tapestry weaving. I do have some other handspun singles that are ready for weaving, and I plan to try and see how well they weave on a 12 epi sett and an 8 epi sett.