Saturday, June 30, 2007

full moon

Sleep well.

A long week

A busy week closed this evening, and a most pleasant fashion. Dave and I watched the sun go down behind our hollyhocks.

Dusk found us sitting around the fire, not really talking, just being still.

It was a cool evening, I toasted my tootsies
while Dave toasted marshmallows.

A cold Spotted Cow finished off the evening.

Fire is the most tolerable third party. ~Henry David Thoreau

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Tuesday's Chore

"Years ago,the rhythm of the average American housewife's life was fairly standard no matter where you went. Each day had its own task, and so the work got done in a logical, orderly fashion as the week progressed. It went like this:
Monday: Wash Day

Tuesday: Ironing Day

Wednesday: Sewing Day

Thursday: Market Day

Friday: Cleaning Day

Saturday: Baking Day

Sunday: Day of Rest

Today at Loose Ends we had a special promotion.........get your ironing done for free (by Betty), while you shop. After all, it is Tuesday! Betty and I dressed like washerwomen for the event.Complete with aprons and curlers in our hair.
We had a good turnout,,,,,, And lots of fun, Betty loves to iron, she even got to press a chef's coat. Cool knot buttons on the coat!

Summer can be a slow time at a yarn shop......... this was a fun idea, and I hope there will be more.

Friday, June 22, 2007

Domestic Friday

I love this kind of day, it's sunny and cool.....and breezy enough

that the laundry dried in no time! I am so happy to be at home today, and grateful that I have Betty working for me.........

Feeling very domestic, Dave and I made six jars of strawberry jamWe picked strawberries earlier this week and we had just too many to eat fresh......what a terrible problem to have,,,,,,too many fresh strawberries on your hands!

Then Dave harvested the first spinach from the garden, while I made some hot bacon dressing to go with the greens.. tastes of summer............mmmm.

While picking the spinach , Dave found the first cucumber,,,,,,,remember, this is is usually not safe to plant until after memorial day for fear of frost... June 22 is early for a cucumber to be ready! We each ate half.

Poor Betty is at the shop and we got a HUGE shipment of new yarn in today! Am I feeling guilty? Maybe a little,,,,,,,, Perhaps I should take her a jar of strawberry jam, although I suspect she might like a strawberry margarita more!

Knit Night

It was a smaller group at knit night last evening, but quite pleasant, and we had wonderful refreshments. Jean G made some wonderful butter cookies (no calories at all :0) to go with wine and coffee.

Ginger and Mary Kay were there wearing their sweaters made from Mary Kay's easy pattern, knit from the top down. Kay N has also made this sweater in the same yarn, but a different colorway, but she made her appearance earlier and had to leave to attend her grandson's ballgame. The pattern is free with yarn purchase at Loose Ends. If your computer allows, Click on the photo to check out the elephant pin on Ginger's left shoulder. Click here ????????? to see what it is made from!!! I love Ginger's Eco-friendly attitude!

Don't they look lovely?

Speaking of lovely, here are Sue and Dawn, conferring over a pattern. They are my most faithful knit night "regulars"!

A good time was had by all!

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Bunnys and books

The view from my porch is nice this time of year, it's a great place to have a morning coffee, or an evening cocktail. This porch was an addition to our house 6 years ago. If we had known how enjoyable it is, we would have made it larger. It is usable in all but the coldest months.

Thia morning a rabbit came to share breakfast with me. Dave had thrown a small loaf of bread out for the birds, but this bunny seemed happy to have it.
Later in the morning, a huge crow flew off with the whole chunk of bread!

The bunny got me thinking about a favorite book of mine, Watership Down by Richard Adams. I want to start reading it to Emili soon,,,,,,,, I love this book on all levels... If you haven't read is a synopsis.... Don't read the entire article..... it will ruin the plot .

Click on this link to see a glossary of rabbit language from the book.... My bunny seems to think bread is Flayrah!!

Here is a book quiz,,,,,,,,see what it says about you! It's fun!

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Where is my camera when I need it?

Yesterday was Monday, the first of my summer of Mondays with Emili. Dave took the day off, to stay home with us and play. Red-light, green-light was Emili's game of choice.......Two fifty-somethings and one six year old. You can guess who was the winner.

We did lots of things that were photo-worthy. We picked strawberries, and Emili made another diorama. I got new glasses. We even got the chance to peek inside the Oscar Meyer Weinermobile in Beaver Dam. What a perfect photo that would have been! But did I remember to bring my camera? NO.

Ghen appeared in his Piggly Wiggly uniform for the first time,,,, so handsome. His first job. Did I get a photo? NO.

What did I get a photo of???? Dave playing hairdresser with another woman!

A woman who is NOT related to him! My hair is not that long! That is Dave's hand in the shot,,,the hand wearing a wedding ring! Hmmm..........maybe I should save this picture, it might prove useful if this kind of thing continues...............

No,,,,,,,, now settle down,,,before anyone gets too excited and calls a divorce attorney, you should know that the woman in the photo is my friend, and I arranged the appointment. ........ Wait., that sounds even worse!!! I mean ,,, I approve... Oh........forget it, you know what I mean.

Next time I will remember my camera and spare you all the sordid details of the goings on at MR. D's hair salon.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

On Father's Day

According to Ghen, there is a Japanese saying about children becoming like their parents.....I think it must actually translate to something like this........"a tadpole is still a frog"..... but Ghen translated it and said "A frog's child is still a frog". Dave uses this phrase often when one of the kids does or says something that reminds him of me... Either good or bad. They may not look like me, as a tadpole does not look like a frog,, but the behavior is in the DNA.

Today, I am writing about the earlier generation. Me and my Papa frog. It is really amazing how much we are alike! Except for gender, we look alike. One night about five years into our marriage, Dave said to me "You know, you have your father's legs." Not exactly romantic, or even complimentary, but oh so true. My Pops has short, strong legs. Me too. We both have blue eyes, and fair skin.

The similarities go way beyond appearance and are too many to number here. We like the same foods, neither of us likes to travel, he loves to tell stories, and lots more.

I am so proud to be like my Pops ! He is just the best guy! Most little girls think their Dad is the most handsome, strongest, bravest man in the world. I STILL THINK THAT!! Pops will be 82 years old this year, and I still believe he is the finest man I have ever known. Really. He has never let me down,,, and that should be the gold standard for all fathers. You should see how devoted he is to my mother, more men should be like that. Can you tell how much I love him?

What's odd about this is.... My Pops lost his own father when he was just a very little boy. Sure, he had a step-father and his Grandpa, but how did he become such a great Dad without an example to follow?? A frog's child is still a frog, I guess it's true......

Friday, June 15, 2007

New wheels!

No, I haven't sold my trusty '94 olds. She has over 100,000 miles and a few rust spots, but she runs great and I love her. I hope to be driving her for many years to come.
The new "wheels" that I referred to belong to our new lawn mower. Our trust '94 Yardman mower finally died this week. For about a year, I have been driving the Yardman in a cloud of blue smoke because it burned a lot of oil. But this week there was no smoke...just sputters of the engine and a couple of backfires. R.I.P trusty old '94 will be missed.

Still Busy

I'm still very busy, busy, busy.

No time to read or anything like that, so I downloaded the audio book called The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho, and listened to it this week. This book was recommended to me by my friend Francine of Port Washington. Francine and I seem to be kindred spirits. She thought I would enjoy this book and she was absolutely correct. It's short, and being an audio book it went rather quickly. I'm sure I will listen to it again soon to pick up details I missed the first time.

The shop has been busy, we are getting lots of new things in that I ordered at TNNA. Home has been busy, too. Kyle and Peggy are moving out on Saturday, Sunday we plan to help Megan and Lauren move to their new place, and Monday is my first day in the summer of "Monday's with Emili".

In the summer I spend every Monday with Emili and we have been keeping a journal about our "adventures". It's the highlight of my summer. And it happens every week!

Look for more posts next week.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Feather your nest

Do you know about cowbirds? They lay their eggs in nests of birds of other species. This photo is courtesy of my friend Linda P. She took the picture in her backyard some weeks ago. She reported to me that the cowbird egg did not hatch.

In doing a little research about cowbirds, I found this:

Some species may simply build a new layer over the bottom of the original nest. Brown-headed cowbird nestlings are sometimes expelled from the nest. This rejection, however, may trigger a "mafia" reaction, according to a study by the Florida Museum of Natural History. When the parasitic egg was removed from the host nest, the cowbird returned to ransack the nest about 56% of the time. In addition, the cowbird also destroyed nests in a type of "farming behavior" to force the hosts to build new ones. The cowbirds then laid their eggs in the new nests 85% of the time.

Next thing you know, HBO will be replacing The Sopranos with a show about cowbirds in therapy.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

The Dairy State

As a retired dairy farmer's daughter, I am proud to announce that Wisconsin is back on top again! California cows may have cute commercials, but Wisconsin SHEEP are on top! According to an article in The Capital Times :

Though California has stolen the lead in cow milk production from Wisconsin, we outrank California and -- apparently -- all other states in sheep milk.


Monday, June 11, 2007

Green, green grass of home

As of late, I am finding a great deal of pleasure in simple things, in and around my home. The grass is so green, we had a lot of rain last week and so everything is lush and verdant.
I love to cut the lawn, of course, I use the riding lawn mower, so it is easy, not physically taxing.
Using the rider, it takes about to hours to mow the "kingdom". This is two hours of thinking time for me. The mower is loud, drowning out all other noise, so I have no interruptions, no distractions, it is a good time to concentrate on a problem,, and find a possible solution,,,,Sometimes, the reverse happens, I let my mind wander aimlessly, and often creative ideas will just pop in there! Nature abhors a vacuum, you know!

One of the ideas that I am messing around with is mixing dyed mohair locks in with my scrumbling. The yellow green of the mohair is kinda startling, but I think I can work it in, in small amounts.... Any opinions?

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Dying is unpredictable!

I did some dying today. I have a project in mind that needs some green mohair locks..... I mixed 2 parts green dye called "evergreen" and 1 part " sunflower" yellow. I was going for a yellow green, mostly green.

My steamer holds a small amount, so I dyed the mohair in two batches.
Looks like spinach, doesn't it?
. The first dye-bath was very concentrated and did not exhaust.
For those of you non- fiber people, the term "exhaust" means all the dye attaches to the fiber and leaves the dye-bath looking like plain water.

wear out completely; "This kind of work exhausts me"; "I'm beat"; "He was all washed up after the exam"

consume: use up (resources or materials); "this car consumes a lot of gas"; "We exhausted our savings"; "They run through 20 bottles of wine a week"

run down: deplete; "exhaust one's savings"; "We quickly played out our strength"

use up the whole supply of; "We have exhausted the food supplies"

I got a vibrant green,,, but not the yellow green I had hope for. I put the second batch in the leftover dye bath, and it exhausted almost immediately, before steaming. I added a little more concentrated dye, and let it steam.
This looks like green peas to me!
Now, this fiber is more like what I wanted!

.My only guess is that the green dye "took up" quickly and the yellow took longer, so there was more yellow left in the initial dye bath.....Who knows? Dying is unpredictable.
Here they are side by side, same dye mix for each. Hard to believe....just like me and my sisters, we all came from the same stuff, but we look very different!

Friday, June 8, 2007

Flowers from Nanna

When I was little girl on the farm , summer days were spent outside, running barefoot through all kinds of muck. The soles of my feet were like leather by the end of the season. My parents were busy farming, quite literally they "made hay while the sun shone". My Mom did not have much time for flowers.......the vegetable garden and the crops took priority.

I loved the farm, but I also loved to visit my Nanna's house in town. The "town" had about 200 residents........ Nanna planted flowers in her yard. A few veggies, but mostly flowers......... it seemed to me she had flowers everywhere.......a flower bed in every corner. Right outside her back door, she planted green Bells of Ireland and red salvia.........She also had a "rock garden". I thought that was SOOO exotic! Huge pine trees had carpets of bishops weed around their bases. On the north side of her house, she had a curly willow tree. I loved to lay on the grass under that tree and look at the branches, twists and turns. I have a curly willow now in my yard to remind me of Nanna.
A ruby red peony is also in my yard, transplanted from Nanna's garden.

Wednesday, June 6, 2007


I am a self confessed pack rat, It says so in my blogger profile. I am told that part of recovery is admitting you have a problem........... I do have a problem,,,,,,I collect and keep stuff that others might toss out. No, no, not piles of newspapers or bread wrappers, but good junk, like old sheets, or driftwood, or other stuff that may become an art pieces someday...., or not. Dave insists the clutter in our house is due to my habits.

Today I have proof, that I am not in this alone! I am not the sole pack rat!

Dave replaced the faucet in the bathroom sink. To do this, he had to remove everything from the cupboard beneath the sink. It was like an archaeological dig. Lots of stuff, like ace bandages, nasty old nail polish, an arm sling, and a green substance that may have been bath salts in a former lifetime.

Then came the real treasure............................................

We uncovered Dave's secret stash of Supermax hairdryers, circa 1975!

There were EIGHT in hiding, two in daily use, and, if the one at the cabin is counted, the grand total is eleven!

Ohhhhhhhhh and look...he has captured one the elusive BROWN models. I believe the brown ones are on the endangered list!

Every time Dave spots one of these beauties at a rummage sale, he snaps it up. They have just enough power for Dave's hair, not too much to ruin his style. His style has not changed since 1967........ his hairline has, but not the style.

I have to admit, I use the Supermax, too. No, not the super maxi,,,,,,, not the supermax prison,,,,,,,,,,,the hairdryer. I like it.

They all are in working order, just waiting to blow dry someones hair into a the perfect shag just like Carol Brady's. Quick, where did I put Dave's leisure suit?

Just a shadow of my former blog

This blog has become just a shadow of it's former the end of this week things should calm down. I will write then.

Monday, June 4, 2007

TNNA Day 4

What happened to TNNA Days 2 and 3? Plenty! I just haven't had a moment to write about even the high points. I will tell all, when we get back home. Well, maybe I won't tell ALL!

Here we are the morning of Day 4,,, take note, Betty is perfectly accessorized, even in her nightie!

Here she is frantically trying to fit all her acquisitions into her suitcase..

I am trying on my sock, that must be finished before tomorrow's class.........the photo is proof that Dansko's are wonderful shoes.... my feet have survived all the walking that TNNA involves.........It's just my knees that are killing me! I wonder if the Dansko shoe people have anything for knees?

See you soon!

Friday, June 1, 2007

Things I forgot

We bought some new products

The top photo's are of Betty's haul.........

I bought some perle cotton

TNNA Day 1

Not a lot to report,,,,, but we arrived safely and uneventfully. We both have already seen so many wonderful garments, accessories, etc.........and the market officially opens at 10 AM tomorrow!
Betty has purchased some new products, and we both enjoyed the fashion show. Lots and Lots of shawls and wraps.

We are in our room early tonight , fortifying ourselves for Day 2 at the show. Goodnight from Columbus.