Friday, December 31, 2010

On edge

This weather puts me on edge.  Can't seem to settle in to a project.

The second wave of blizzard is here.

Actual temp is in the -3 range, I think.  But the wind is in the 30+ mph range.

Supposedly there is 10 inches of snow still coming. 

Tired of winter already.

Dang it's cold outside!

Aren't I cute?

This is my getup for windy winter days. 
I didn't take the time to put some hot packs in my boot toes - that was a mistake.

My ski goggles have come in handy- might as well use them since I haven't been skiing in, like, forever.

The tint helps with the lighting and they keep the blowing snow and hay out of my eyes.
Plus it keeps them warm.  

Feel bad for my ponies.  It's -30 windchill out there.  
Wish I had a barn for them to get into. 

As it is, they have to stand in the wind to eat.  
Good thing I do have a shed for them to hunker down in.  
I think they have been choosing to be a little hungry instead of standing in the wind. 

We're not done yet.  The storm has calmed a bit, but it's gathering itself to dump another 8 -10 inches more.  The wind will keep a'howlin', too.

Don't ya wish ya lived here with me?  :)

Thursday, December 30, 2010


Cooper appeared to be a little bit chilly this afternoon.  His sweater was dirty from being outside and his coat just isn't terribly comfortable. 

He has a few other sweaters around that he fits into but aren't big enough to really keep him warm.

I quick made him a new sweater!  It's from a stretched out old sweater that was in the rag pile.  This first one is a prototype and the other arm I'll probably use a little more care and finish the edges that I cut.  Fits him perfect - except I need to take it up a bit "underneath" so he doesn't pee on it when he goes out :)

Snow Day!!!

It was suggested I should go home - the weather is icky and getting worse quickly.  I took the offer and got outa there!

Stopped at the grocery store and picked up milk and bread and some junk food and headed home.

Windy windy with a bit of snow.  We're supposedly in line to get better than a foot of snow by tomorrow night.  Ick.

See how windy it is?  I've even got my own little snowdrift inside my front door.  Isn't that sweet :) ???

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Weaving again...

I'm up and weaving again! 

This is the warp I'm working on presently.  A seven section wide table runner series.  These runners are going to be widely varied in color.  Alot of browns, greens, golds, etc.   I warped with a mix of natural, brown, taupe, tan, burgundy, green, sage green, yellow and a mauve kind of color.  It seems to be working so far :)

These runners work up fast when I have the rags cut.  If memory serves, there are 4 of them already woven and on the beam.  It'll be a bit before I get filled up and take them off, so you'll have to be patient to get a look!

I've been working with denim the past few nights.  Not for rugs, but for blanket quilts.

This blanket is for my nephew.  He's lives up in Canada and his older brother and sister are already in hockey.  He's jealous, so when I found this fun hockey themed flannel, I had to get it!  It's a simple big stripe pattern with the denim and it went together quickly.  I machine quilted the swirly loop de loops reminiscent of someone skating about randomly.

Tonite I whipped up a ruff'n'ready blanket for a friends baby.  He is their first little cowboy and will spend time in barns, trucks and who knows where else, so this sturdy denim blanket will work well for him, I think.  It's been awhile since I tied a quilt.  I've gotten spoiled having a long arm quilting machine available to use.

From the weather reports we are once again in line for some 'weather'.  Sounds like some freezing rain/snow mix, you know, those messy kind of storms?  

Quiet here tonite - the daughter has gone over to her dad's to get in some tv time.  She is not used to being without cable, or even network stations.  I've gotten used to having only the 3 public stations, but I do feel deprived at times.  She has been cleaning and cooking while I'm at work.  It's nice to come home to a cleaner and yummy smelling house! 

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas Everyone...

Christmas wouldn't be complete if I didn't get out my favorite Nativity scene. 

Handcrafted out of woods that have special meaning.  Example:  Mary is made from lilac wood that grew on the original homestead of my paternal great grandparents. I didn't know until we made these that lilac wood is purple :)

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Procrastinate much?

I went off to work today - the only one in my office!  Everyone else had been told to stay home.  They even handed me a key last night and said to let myself in... Hmmm... Newest and lowest paid employee going to work while everyone else gets time off.  Unpaid, but still!  I guess they trust me...

By the time first morning break rolled around, they had decided ( my supervisor is actually about 130 miles away from me) decided that we might as well go on home, no one was working but us.  We had the choice to stick it out till noon or leave at break. 

I left at break.

So today I am doing some catch up... as per usual...  Paid some bills and balanced the checkbook - Did a little cleaning - Wrapped a few gifts and decided what to do about some I am not getting due to backorders - and then realized I still hadn't gotten around to taking care of my youngest nephew's birthday gift. 

His birthday is the 30th.   Of December.  

He is due a denim blanket quilt made by me.  His sister and brother have theirs already. 

So I spent a little time getting some jeans processed.

The pile on the left is for rugs - they are stained and holey.  The pile on the right is what I'll pick from for the blanket. 

I think I'll have enough jeans on hand to get it accomplished :)   All those boxes are jeans - the one in the back are black and the colored ones are in a different pile.  I'm going to stop ripping out the leg strips now and get to work on that dang blanket, but I will get thru this entire pile before I start the next batch of jean rugs. 

It's a messy job, but someone has to do it!  Think I can get my girls to help me????

Monday, December 20, 2010

Rug pictures...

A rug made from burlap - sage green in color.  The burlap was most recently table runners at a friends wedding.  She had 40+ of these 9 foot runners so I've gotten "a few" rugs out of them.   She also got 2 rugs from them as a wedding gift.  I've still got two more to get tied.  Nice "by the door" rugs as they are kinda scritchy scratchy... should knock off some dirt!

This rug is made from waste yardage that came from a home decor type plant.  I'm forever getting donations of this stuff from people who bought it thinking they would use it for quilts and such.  I had alot of the cream that was in long strips and some 3 colors of brown in short.  I ended up laying in the browns in a random pattern on this one.  I think it turned out kind of cute!

dull kind of day

I feel kind of dull today.  I went to work as per usual.

At noon I came home -- and stayed home...

Might have something to do with the weather...  There was a break in the snow when I took this pic - School was let out at noon today - the flakes were falling hard and fast and the wind was picking up.  Predictions were 6+ inches today, with moderate wind. 

I took the offer to go home and stay home.  I've been pushing myself to do some organizing, cleaning and purging downstairs.  The loom is down there and I need some room to work.  AND I need to take stock of what I have for materials.

I would show pictures of some rugs I have finished, but it was just so dark here today, the pictures just don't do them justice.  Maybe tomorrow.

I do know I want to do a run of table runners - not sure what colors of warp I'm going to use.  I realized I have very little of the natural color warp - just colors, so I need to dig into my table runner materials and decide what colors will work with the majority...  I would like to put off ordering more warp.  I'm planning denim next and I do have enough warp for that so I think I'll make do with what I have.

Going to go to town for the last Shop Britton night... with this weather, who knows if anybody will show up :)

Saturday, December 18, 2010

My view for the day...

A rescheduled event is always iffy.

All went well - thank goodness.

Typical cold ---  the wind was very light and only some snow flurries.  Much better than last week!

Here's my little setup.  I took just a few things along with my Structo, some fringed rugs to tie and my square potholder loom.   The structo was a fascinating thing to quite a few people...

If not for the cold - I would have been doing something like this instead...

Bobsled rides!
...  I really need to get my sleigh out and go for a drive!

Friday, December 17, 2010

Latest rugs with crappy pictures :)

I've been waiting and waiting until I can get home during sunlight hours to take pictures of some of the latest finishes...

Lighting for photography is not always easy - especially in the winter here.  The light is just kind of,  weird.

Anyhoo... here's the best I could do under the circumstances.

A very neutral rug made from an electric blanket.  Don't worry, I stripped the wires out of it.  It's a nice soft comfy one.  Just not very flashy!

Here's the flashy one.  It was a blanket that was covered in jungle leaves and tigers. Rawr.

And then there is this rug.  The wool strips were already in balls that were found at a junque shop.  The strips are wider than my preference.  I should have cut them all in half again... hindsight, ya know.  It's a nice enough rug - but I think it would have been a REALLY nice one if I'd done that.  Oh well- it's not worth my time to undo it and reweave it.  This warp is gone already anyway!  On to the next one.

Winter is truly upon us here - more snow yesterday. Last night I started the snowblower and used it until it was way too dark to continue.  Parked it in the garage - and then this afternoon started it back up.  &*%)$# thing!  The engine runs good - just not the drive part.  I know what's wrong, I just don't have the tools to fix it.  I'm hoping the son has his tools in his car trunk.  He's on his way home right now.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Pony pictures....

Yesterday I grabbed the camera to catch a photo of the bunny prints and ended up taking some pics of the girls.  A little cold for my fingers, but couldn't resist them. 
Here is Buzz - looking for acceptance and affection from her auntie Queenie. 
Miss Buzz is at the bottom of the herd here.  I think she's my favorite 'cause we have some things in common.  We both tend to get shoved aside and are looking for someone to love them :o)

Here is sister Flutterby - looking as if she is out in the wide prairie.
  Actually - we're about a 1/4 of a mile from a public golf course....

And enough of the chattin'...
Back to the hay.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Sunday afternoon

These bunny tracks caught my eye today.

Weird, huh?  Before this last blizzard, there was a good 6 inches of snow on this spot where a bunny passed by.  In the back of my mind I was aware of those tracks but they didn't make much of an impression.

But the wind blew and blew -- scouring away at the snow.

Usually the tracks fill in and there is no trace of the "tracker"...  but this time it was the surroundings that faded away.

Kind of like how I feel some days - Work and work and nobody- including myself- taking notice of accomplishment because it all gets filled in with the next thing on the list.

Could be I need to remember that those "tracks" I make as I make my way thru life make an impression somewhere - and under the right conditions they will be clearly seen again.

Wasting time?

As you know, my scheduled event from yesterday was postponed.  So I had a found day at home.

I did alot of little projects - Isn't it weird when you work all day long and you can't really remember or tell what it was you did?

That was my kind of day.  I know I did patch a couple of sheetrock holes.  And I moved some stuff around downstairs so I could sweep up the cat hair and dirt.  And I set up my Christmas tree.

At the end of the day, I found myself making myself a tote bag -
Yes... it's made out of a cat food bag.  Hey, it's recycling, right?  :o)

My sewing machine didn't like the slippery woven plasticky stuff the bag is made of, so if I"m going to do another one, I'll have to mess around with the tension a bit.  We'll see how I like this one for awhile....

Oh yeah - I did some laundry and washed dishes, too!

Saturday, December 11, 2010


Today I was going to be demonstrating some scarf weaving at the local Frontier Christmas event.  

This is what it looks like outside....

Or at least shortly after 8 am.  It's much worse now.

South Dakotans are hardy - but not dumb.  This is the first time in history that this event has been postponed.

My pickup said it's 3degrees actual temp.  Supposed to go down into the 15-20 below range tonite. 

That's actual temp folks.  What makes this dangerous is that wind.  

It's HOWLING out there.

I'm going to go shortly and unload my stuff back into the store and then coming home and digging in to do some work around the house.  

I've got a big enough list to pick from so I won't be bored!

Sunday, December 5, 2010


Snow snow snow

Please ignore the "schmutz" on my pictures... yes - my windows are dirty... 

It's winter - can you tell?

Oh, to have it still be summer or fall!

I just got in from doing the inaugural snowblowing.
I found lots of rocks.

It's one of those days that it is really hard to SEE.
The snow and the sky are the same color - and even the light seems to be that same shade.

No shadows, I guess.

It would be a good day to snuggle in for a movie and popcorn...  But I gotta go put the rugs and stuff back on display at the store.

I came home a handfull of rugs lighter, which always helps.  I also sold a Christmas colored table runner and some of those wild and wooly Santa ornaments.  I had a decent day for the type of show it was.

Tires a person out tho.  All that hauling.  All that displaying.  All that selling.  And then more hauling :)

Friday, December 3, 2010


A finished scarf from re'New yarn.

These previous sweaters had angora rabbit and mohair in the mix.

The two yarns were very different in the weaving. 
The angora -the white yarn- was almost slippery it is so soft and silky.
The pink was the one with mohair was really "grabby" and fuzzy.

Makes an interesting scarf.  The fringe turned out weird - the angora didn't want to stay twisted so I had to go back and twist it up with some pink.  Not quite the look I was going for, but sometimes you gotta just roll with the punches...

It's a good night for scarves.  Snow, snow and more snow came down today!  I have a craft fair to get to in the morning.  It probably won't be pretty getting there :)

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

a different kind of re'New

Making these little guys tonite -

"Santa" ornaments crafted from an old chair spindle.  Crackled and peeling red paint made this a no brainer on what they would become.

What's been waiting on these, is that I wasn't happy with the painted faces and beards that I had tried.

But then I came across this little stuffed alpaca figure that I had been given in a bag of donated materials. 

This may be traumatic for some - but I skinned the little bugger and now his wonderful fiber has become the wild wooly beards of my santa's!

There was only a bit of the white alpaca - so maybe there will be a brown bearded Santa in this bunch :)

Monday, November 29, 2010

My mission, if I chose to accept it....

Got this sad little rug in the other day.

 My mission was to see if I could save her/him.

It had some sentimental importance, I guess.

I believe they said they had gotten it in Mexico.  It looks like it was probably woven tapestry style.

The warp was jute and the weft was wool yarn of different types along with shots of jute, for strength, I'm assuming.

 I think the mission was accomplished!

The rug is significantly smaller than the original.

I had to unweave far enough into the rug to get fringe long enough to knot. 

It's a cute little rug again.  She kinda got a facelift tonite! 

Friday, November 26, 2010


Yesterday turned out to be a calming day.  Alone - nobody telling me to go go go.  No cooking.  No imminent deadlines, etc.

It was a good thing.

In the calm I found some "want to" hiding away.

I finished up a handful of flyswatters that have been laying around waiting -

I started the next scarf warp (I finished that this morning! )

And I got handles put on a tote bag -

Nothing fancy, but cute and handy none the less -

I also did alot of wasting time on the computer and just hanging out. 

On the agenda today - a couple of hours in the shop trying to weave off the current warp and a trip to my Dad's to go eat pizza.   It's a nicer day outside today - the temps have moderated and it's almost nice!

I can't believe there are still 2 more days that I can pretty much call my own :)

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Yup, It's Cold.

The sun may be shining, but man is it cold!  I keep telling myself to be thankful that I am physically capable of taking care of myself and my horses in this cold - without the proper - or best - set up and facilities.

Not much snow - the horses are huddled behind the shed trying to get out of the wind.  They were shivering this morning after drinking their water.  More hay is the answer.  Glad I managed to roll out a bale last night so they have plenty!  Man do I wish I had been able to get my auto water put in...

I'm ferret sitting today.  Fred has grown since I saw him last - he is a character!  My dog and cats are terrified of him.  He is intent on biting them if they get close.  Goofy thing.

At some point today, I think I'll get started on my next scarf.  This one should be fun!  The offwhite yarn is rabbit angora and the pink is mohair - both with a small percentage of wool and nylon.  Should be a soft cuddly one.

I've also got on my list possible projects like painting, paying bills, doing financial statements for end of year for the 4-H leaders, and other assorted organizing issues.  I'm alone today except for the ferret, the cats, and Cooper!

He's got his sunny spot picked out and is chillin' with two of the cats.  I am happy to be home today - and not have to go somewhere unless I want to!

It's been a tough year to focus on the things I should be thankful for - they've been in the background pretty much.  But I am still trying! 

Today I've forced myself to acknowledge those things that are good  - my kids, my animals, my fun co-workers, the people I've met through my weaving and crafting, and much more.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone...

Sunday, November 21, 2010

putting my feet up

It's been a long fall.  Workweeks of a full time and part time with basically no rest on the weekends- has made this old broad pretty dang tired. 

Yesterday's craft and vendor fair and luncheon went very well.  No big problems and good attendance.

The food went over well, with manageable leftovers.

Rugs, runners and other miscellaneous items sold.

Pretty good day, when I think about it!

Today I ventured out on icy roads - rain/sleet/ick happened overnight so I really questioned going.  But I really wanted to get to the big show that some of my rugs were at with the fiber guild.  I got there about noon and stuck around to help break down at 4:00.

Even sold a couple of rugs there!

Slow and steady drive home in the dark -- still icy and always watching for deer since it can be especially bad right now due to hunting season opening yesterday!

Tonite I've got my feet up unknitting a sweater.

This one is lambswool/ angora rabbit.
Can't wait to get this yarn on the loom :)  

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Whatever happens, happens!

Well, it's craft fair day -

The food is prepared - except for the chili that I have to put together when I get to the venue - the booth spaces are set up and organized, and I THINK we have everything else taken care of..... we'll see :)

Already a bit of drama concerning a vendor and her location....   Some people!  

My daughter is home to be a helper in the kitchen.  She's a college kid.   Free food and she's there!

If I can grab a moment, I'll take a few pics of the set up and the food. 

Cross your fingers for us!

Thursday, November 18, 2010


I am frustrated, bordering on angry.

Our local newspaper, who is constantly saying - "support your local paper" etc etc etc - has ONCE AGAIN screwed up.

Last week I ordered a 2 x 3 ad - for 2 weeks for our craft show.

Last weeks ad was there, no problems.

Guess who doesn't have an ad 2 days before the event....

Makes me fume...

Sneaky Bugger

Somebody crawled into my bed this morning.

While I wasn't paying attention...

He loves me- especially when he's cold.

Too bad he can't get a job and contribute to the household -- I'd let him stay if that was the case :)

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Runnin' runnin' runnin'

That's what I feel like!  I've always kept myself pretty busy and productive, but adding another job- and a full time one to boot- into my days and all I do is run around like a chicken with my head cut off!

Been working bit by bit on this craft fair coming this weekend.  I still have to put together vendor packets, make signs for the street, make menu signs, and I'm sure there is a thing or to that I haven't thought of yet/lately.

Tonite I will start doing some baking of items - or parts of items that I can  put in the freezer.  I've got 5 or 6 desserts I have to make in addition to a huge pot of chili and turkey salad for sandwiches.

Our craft fair is FULL!  We even have a waiting list - random people keep calling and asking if we have room for them.  Wish we had a bigger space!  Next year...

I will be glad when this weekend is over - then I can focus on the craft booths I'm doing the first 2 weekends in December!   It never stops... :)

Sunday, November 14, 2010


I've reassessed the purpose of my craft room.  I had thought that the smallest bedroom would do nicely for a sewing and craft room. 

Originally I had planned for 2 bedrooms in my lower level, but plans change with job and financial change.   My lower level didn't get any finishing this past year - as a matter of fact, other finishing in the upstairs is still undone. 

Consequently, I didn't have but one bedroom for when my children come home to visit -- and this dang little room just wasn't cutting it for my "stuff"...

If I would just focus on one thing, it might have worked.  Rug materials take up alot of space!  So I decided that all of that is going down into the one big unfinished space.  I think my loom is coming home over Thanksgiving, too!

Well, it's a bedroom as of today!  I got everything except the closet contents out and a bed and dresser moved in. 
I was all pumped to hang pictures on the walls, but there is this one shelf that I want to use... But do you think I can find it???   Frustrating! It's somewhere in a box I suppose.

I'm planning on using the dresser and this closet for "hand" type crafts -- like counted cross stitch, drawing/sketching,  sweaters to be unknitted, etc.  All those projects that you sit on the couch to do :)

Of course doing this created chaos elsewhere --
All of this needs to go downstairs - and hopefully I'll be able to figure out a system so I will be able to find things at a later date - I can dream anyway....

This reassessment thing can sure be messy.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Start to Finish

Step 1 -- mens sweater, 100% lambswool according to the hang tag.

Step 2 -- turn the sweater into yarn balls... This is what is left over from this project!  

Step 3--  Weave!

Step 4-- Twist some fringe...

Step 5--  Wet finish and, SHAZAM!  
A re'New  scarf....