pj's are the ultimate comfort wear

entire days off spent at home are seldom this month; i seem to always have somewhere to be, and things to do in town. today, i remained at home in my pajamas and it was wonderful! i spun up some chunky alpaca, finished my drop spun muga, finally skeined some handspun wool which i made a couple of years ago, and watched a movie on tv (the musical nine-really awesome). ah, there's never enough time anymore. like my friend bonnie says,"you either have the time or the money, but never both."


a foodies holiday

thanksgiving is a three day holiday. wednesday is for grocery shopping and baking pies. thursday is a day of cooking, table setting, gathering family around, eating, and washing dishes. friday revolves around shopping and creative interpretation of leftovers.

for this holiday, i decided to change our tried-and-true menu up a little. here's my take on the traditional:

tropical fruit salad

cranberry puff pastries
cracked wheat and butterbread stuffing

steamed asparagus
smoked gouda brussel sprouts
mashed squash and golden potatoes

heirloom rice salad with apples & cranberries

broiled sole with shallot butter

pumpkin pie topped with whipped cream

it all cooked up amazingly well! the pumpkin pie is one of the best ones i've had; the recipe called for sweetened condensed milk, ginger, cloves, cinnamon, and nutmeg. i semi-baked the crust, then poured in the filling. the only food which was only ok, was the cranberry puff pastry; it needed cheese, brie or havarti, something to cut the tart nature of fresh cranberries. 

i'm thinking an oyster stuffed fish could be interesting and tasty next year. know any good recipes?



wishes were fishes, and pigs could fly...


surrounding oneself

the new workplace needed some artwork for the walls. as one who knows a thing about creating art, i figured i could help out. so, as something bigger than what i normally do would fill the space better, i got a 20" x 20" stretched canvas, some balsa wood strips, and painted something in a turquoise and green color scheme (it is a spa, after all). as an aside, i have to say that the new utrecht store in town is crazy awesome for someone on a budget.

four brushes, a couple of hours, a limited palette, some spatula painting, hammering tiny nails, and this is what happened. i wanted something abstract; focusing on colors, a sense of water, calmness, and thinking a bit of mark rothko didn't hurt things either. i think i like painting in this scale. in the purely abstract method only, though. if it had been figurative and detailed, i would have done a triptych or a series to be hung together. me and detailed large scale are not friends (see miniature dollhouse if you don't agree).


dizzy spinning

being able to spin anywhere is a fantastic boredom buster. but there's only so much fine yarn you can spin before you want something heartier, chunkier, and more textural. maybe it's the cooler days, and darker evenings, but i'm yearning to spin thicker yarns.

enter the vera whorl and maple shaft lark spindle from jenkins woodworking, with the changeable jay rosewood shaft. yay! i first spun some bison down i had on hand (incredibly soft and springy), then some cricula silk. it's really a lovely spindle and smells amazing because of the vera wood, like frankincense and myrrh. i'm thinking of moving on to either some muga silk, or cashmere.

here is a photo of my ebony wood wrist distaff, alongside my kuchulu and jay spindles. the tools of labor and love.


hills and valleys

with name changes, comes the need for new business cards. i adore the pint sized moo cards, and the chance to show-off multiple images. i arranged them by color, and realized that i'm drawn to the natural shades, with accents of color, rather than full on color skeins. i think i had already come to this conclusion, but sometimes it's helpful to have such a clear indication. when my schedule becomes rote i shall start spinning in earnest again, as i really miss it.


sewing into madness

halloween is over for another year. boo. as in boo-hoo, i'm so sad!!!! i was sewing up to the last minute, only finishing the night before. as the low resolution, not-my-camera, photos show i went as the mad hatter from tim burton's alice in wonderland.

i quite enjoyed all of the details of this costume, and the chance to wear my favorite dress again. the accessories were really cool to work on, and luckily, i had most everything needed. the jacket is a cropped length with long tails, olive green silk with a bright yellow lining, sewn from a simplicity pattern. orange and black tights, grey spotted neckcloth, plaid mittens, white lace cuffs, multi-hued ribbons, purple peony handkerchief, and olive green shoes complete the look. i adored the thimble and spools which are part of the hatmaking trade. i wondered about previous versions of the mad hatter not quite fitting the name (other than the "mad" part).

if i'm not able, for one reason or another, to sew a yellow queen elizabeth the first costume, i shall go as the mad hatter again next year. only 364 days left. boo.