Crazy as a Loom

Friday, March 24, 2017

On a Friday.



I think spring is near, but not near enough for me.
I long to hear the subtle sound of the earth wakening.

Keeping busy is the only way to deal with it, in my opinion......so busy I am.

This morning, I have potato leek soup simmering on the stove.



And I have started rinsing my warp that I dyed yesterday.


This is a custom order, shades of medium to dark blue.
Some of the colors were straight out of the jar, and some of them were mixed by me and my imagination.
So we shall see.



My sewing table, that Lois and Claire fixed for me (it was falling apart), has risen to the occasion once again.  It is so useful, in so many ways.



Syd is on the window cat seat, totally being NOT helpful.
As usual.



My hands are blue, the studio sink is blue, the floor is spotted blue..........no matter how careful you are, you end up dyeing things you had no intention of dyeing.

I am thinking for summer dyeing, a piece of plywood on saw horses outside.......for warps that take up this much space.




In between things, I am trying to make use of scraps of stuff that L and I have woven.

This mobï cowl is mercerized cotton and hand dyed bamboo.







Being happy with what you have, where you are is sometimes tough.  Sometimes it's a challenge.
But always, when you get there, it is better.





Saturday, March 18, 2017

and the winner is.......

I think one of the best parts of blogging, is that it makes me pay attention to my life.

It fosters gratitude, and deeper thought, to write about my daily routine.


Here's part of a custom order that Lois has been working on.   They are going to be mats for inside of a car.






Things in my house are either things that I use all the time, or things that make me happy to look at.
They have to be one or the other, or they are gone.
I am brutal about it.



My daughter gave me this, and I love it.
You put water in it, then a few drops of essential oil......I like lavender......


It diffuses a lovely fragrance into the house, and changes colors. .  When it runs out of water, it shuts off.





I did some reading this afternoon.........
I had company.
All four critters.



This is what I am reading.

Tonight we went out for pizza.........


The Stella was mine.....DH doesn't drink at all.


 The pizza was to die for.

And we stopped at Barnes and Noble, where I picked up one of my fave magazines........



Now............


The winner of the handwoven dish towel is MARIA HANSON.   Please email me with your address: crazyasaloom@aol.com


I wish I could send a towel to ALL OF YOU who commented.
Please know that your words touched me deeply.


Thank you, for the support and encouragement.  It means SO much.

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

TEN YEAR GIVEAWAY

This morning, watching the snow fall, drinking my coffee, I went looking for a couple of blogs I haven't seen in a while.
And realized, they are gone.
Done.



It made me sad.  I had felt this connection, and while I wasn't paying attention, they left blogland.

So I that got me thinking, wow, I've been blogging here for 10 years.  Who knows how many people I have met here?   How many people have I touched?.........or maybe annoyed?   :)

I started this blog in February 2007, posted a couple of times, then had a knee replacement that didn't go so well, didn't blog again until June. Then I really kind of got into it, and blogging became a regular part of my life.
 Altogether I have posted here 1465 times.   Holy crap.




I wasn't sure, when I started, what it was going to be.   It started out to be about my weaving studio, and my retirement gig,  after a 30 year career in nursing.

Then in 2011, I fell and hit my head.  The next couple of years were the most difficult of my life, and to be honest, I blogged with the feeling that I was desperate for something to keep me together.
Through that time, of severe daily headaches, surgeries, meeting new limitations, YOU were all there.   You encouraged me, you commiserated with me.  God, with my family and friends, you got me through it.
I will always remember that I didn't do it alone.

I don't blog as often anymore, and I've often wondered if I should keep blogging.   I'm not as motivated to do it, but then on the other hand, I don't want to stop either.
So I guess I'll just keep showing up here, telling my story, and hope someone still wants to read it.

To celebrate TEN years of blogging, I'm going to do a Giveaway.

 A handwoven towel of my choosing.



All you have to do is comment, and tell me what you find interesting and want to hear more of.

TEN YEARS!!!!!


Duh!  Sorry.......I will draw from the names on Saturday night...the 18th!

Friday, March 10, 2017

Looking ahead.

I am staying busy in the studio........thankfully, ideas keep coming.

I wonder how, sometimes, but they still come.

We are weaving a few things.




Lois is weaving  shawls in undulating twill, bamboo and cotton.



I am weaving cotton towels on 16 shafts on the AVL, and in between I am weaving placemats in M's and O's in organic natural cotton on the Wolf Pup.
And we have spools all wound for a warp on Monday, more organic cotton, for bath towels in a honeycomb pattern on the Schacht 36".
AND, we have a custom order to be woven on the Union Custom upstairs.

Recently, I found out that someone I knew about 50 years ago, had died last September.  He wasn't local, so it was understandable that I hadn't heard it.  This guy was just someone I knew in my late teens, but someone I always remembered fondly.   He had an amazing smile, and a sweet, country boy way about him.  No games, no hidden agendas.  He was just a nice person.   He wasn't a boyfriend, but he wanted to be, and I think I may have not been very nice.

I hadn't seen him over the years.  I often heard about him in passing, how he'd married and had a family.  I was happy to hear that he seemed to be doing well.

Then, of course, years went by when I didn't think about him any more than I thought about anyone else I knew back in the day.
Then I heard he died.
Now I am not sure what button got pushed, I don't know what shifted in my head.
But for some crazy reason, I wanted to sit down and cry.
And for several days, I couldn't STOP seeing his face.  I couldn't STOP thinking about him at 18, even though in truth, he hadn't been 18 in a long, long time.

I really felt somewhat overwhelmed with sadness, and I could not, for my life, figure out why.
Maybe it was the head injury.
Maybe it's old age.
Maybe I'm losing my mind.

Then it hit me.

I was grieving for the youth gone by, the "way we were" so to speak.   His death just brought it home clearly.  We can never go back there.  If we have regrets, they are just feelings, and they don't change the reality.  Everything that came before this minute, is gone.  Over.  Done.

Is it just me?  Or does anyone else do this??   Sometimes I look back and find myself feeling bad about a lot of the choices I have made.   I made some doozies.  And I know that's foolish.  I know it is a total waste of time.
And honestly, I don't allow myself  to dwell on my mistakes for long.  But every now and then, something will happen, and a memory will surface, and I will wish for a split second that I could do it over, and do it differently.
But then again, I think that it's just a part of the human condition, that  if we spend too much time looking over our shoulders, we are bound to be critical of something we did in the past.  We aren't perfect.   No one is.

So I guess I better just keep looking ahead, before I trip and fall on my face.



So I just reopened my ETSY SHOP 

I have no idea if it will be worth it or not, but I figured I would give it a try.  I have a smattering of things on there, and I'd love to hear your feedback.

I know you all probably remember my labyrinth, behind the barn.  Well, every time my little 3 year old grand girl comes, she goes out there and runs around it.  She's quite fond of it.
Well, when I went to her house, she said she had a surprise for me, on the deck.  She made this for me.  And yes, she made this ...........


I told her, and it's true, it's the best gift I've ever gotten.



Then Sydney pipes up........

what about me??????






Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Maintain

That's the word of the day, I've decided.

Maintain.

Not sure if it's getting older, or if it's just me, but every day I have to make that decision:  to maintain.

This hurts, that hurts.  Headache, plantar fasciitis, a creaking back, a complaining hip.

Yep.   I just want to maintain.   I have to work, every day, just to do that.

By 6:30 am, all the critters have been fed and medicated,   I am usually sitting with my coffee, assessing how soon my head will settle down, and I can get started doing what I want to do.

Some days just simply suck, and it's hard to get started.  Other days, I'm off and running.
There is no sense to it, so I just roll with it.  I haven't found anything else that works.

So I am looking for an anti-emetic.......you know, a pill to stop you from vomiting.
I want to watch the President's speech, just because I feel the need to know what the danger is.  And I want to see all the faces of People of Color, that Democrats will bring as guests.  That will be awesome.  Elizabeth Warren is bringing an Iraqi refugee.
Go Elizabeth.

I want to know, yet on the other hand, I'm nauseated, and not sure I can get through it.

Today I read that while cutting Medicare and Social Security is not on the budget right now, they don't deny that at some point they will be on the table.
$54 billion  to pump up defense................where is it coming from????

Yeah, scary times ahead, folks.  I know a lot of people who LIVE on their Social Security checks.  They don't have a big retirement from some terrific job.  
A cut to Social Security would hurt me, but some people would be in serious  trouble.

So on the studio front, I think Lois has made significant progress in her weaving career.

She used to say that she only wanted to weave rugs, she'd leave those "finer" threads up to me.

But lately, she has evolved.  I have set her to work on different projects, and I have seen her becoming more comfortable doing things that she would never have even tried before.


She wound the warp, sleyed and threaded the loom, wound the warp on, and then did the weaving.

This is a scarf in hand dyed bamboo with cotton.



This is hand dyed bamboo warp, with silk weft.



They are both beautiful, aren't they??


Now if I can just talk her into doing these damn fringes.


My mission to make quilts for my family this year for their birthdays is under way..
Of course the baby got one, on his REAL birth day.....
and this is for one of my sweet grand girls.


Colors were her choice.




My littlest grand daughter loves her Poppa.



And she LOVES her little brother......in fact, she would hold him all day long if she could.


I'm not sure what she is watching on TV in this photo, but surely it is better with a baby on your lap.



So many reasons to maintain.
So many.





Thursday, February 23, 2017

Perspective......again.


It's amazing to me how perspective makes all the difference.

I have found in the last five years of my life, that my constant headaches have made many other things in life, that might have once bothered me, pale in comparison.

When pain, in my case, a headache, rules your life, and every day is planned, and lived, around that fact, you know clearly what matters, and what doesn't.

This week, my headache has been exceptionally brutal.  I have struggled, I will admit it.

Then, in a matter of a couple of hours, this little guy, named "Cooper", was born.

Grandchild # 6
Grandson # 3




And suddenly, there isn't a headache in the world that will stop me making the drive to get there.

And NOTHING matters,except that he and his mom are ok.



Perspective.
You gotta love it.

I confess, when day after day I wake up with a slamming headache, I begin to wonder about the value of life.

But I'm ok now.
I've been reminded in the sweetest of ways.
That it matters.
Life. Family.  Love.


The quilt was done....with his name on the bottom.  I just had to come home last night and put the date on the top.
I hope he'll keep it forever.









Back to the loom tomorrow, feeling very grateful.


Don't ever take life for granted.  It is precious, no matter what.




Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Randomness

Wow,  I can't believe it's been a month.

Where does the time go even??  I guess I am getting old, because it speeds by faster and faster.

Today is my 70th.......yes, omg.......really.   MY 70TH BIRTHDAY.
How the hell?????

Well, no sense crying about it.  Truth is, I am grateful to be here, in light of what has transpired.
So hallelujah, and amen.
And thank you.


Just a few photos, to show you what's going on around here.


Syd is still the queen.



I still love this old house..........it sustains me most days.



I don't care about modern kitchens with granite.
I like my basic set up.  
It works.

It's the house I've always wanted, my whole life.
And there's no way to really explain that.
I just knew it from the moment I walked in the door.


We've been weaving up a storm......L and I.
Some scarves......

Some chenille....


What Lois is weaving on right now......



My birthday gift from L.......  
I love it.


And a Le Creuset dutch oven......from DH.  I've wanted one forever.




I've been doing some sewing.  This is a great space to work in.
The sun pours in the south facing windows all afternoon. Photos of quilts coming soon.



Getting through winter with a lot of homemade soups, but every now and then I crave a really nice salad.



I'll try to post sooner than a month.  Just trying to get through winter here......keeping busy.  Weaving, sewing, baking.....shoveling snow for the chickens.  You know, important stuff.

I'll be back.....



Welcome to my world.

Because every thread counts

Because every thread counts