light and space

i have a tendency to pick up bits of nature when i walk around; a fluffy feather, a piece of coral, fuzzy seed pods, driftwood, a twisted twig, really anything that grabs my attention and is small. as a result of this i have a bowl of seashells, a jar of feathers, and a vase of twigs and pods. i compiled the things i found in california in a plastic case i had, little things that refresh memories.

making the bed is always a playful time in my home; the kitties oftentimes become sandwiched between the sheets. it makes me think it could be a place of peace and awareness for them.


diy tools

i've been seeing a lot of mentions about a "blending board" on ravelry and in spinning magazines. it's a bit of a free hand fiber blending tool, allowing you to "paint" with fibers. i have a set of hand carders, but find that when i want to blend a variety of fibers and colors that it blends too thoroughly and in tiny batches. apparently, this board tool gives you a large surface and more colorblocking capabilities.

so, after a little research, i decided to make one rather than buy a finished product. it's basically a cutting board and a foot of drum carding cloth. hammer in a couple of nails, and it couldn't be any easier to start throwing bits of fiber on, tapping them down with a nail brush, and pulling them off with two dowel rods. the pulling action blends the fibers a tiny bit, and you end up with several rolags, ready to spin. i have to finesse the pulling bit, but overall, i'm really pleased with this tool when i want to make colorful spinning fiber. here's a photo of my second attempt, which i've decided to name unicorn barf:



i decided to add some color to my iphone case; mostly because it was a clear case starting to turn yellow. and it was inexpensive. and for the myriad uses of washi tape. i made a paper insert to fit in the case, and added washi triangles, cut out the camera opening, popped it in, et voila!


happy valentine's day

i did a little bit of nail bling for today; nothing too big. it's 24kt gold flecks and a pink heart. i noticed that the 24kt thing was popular in the nail circuit, and remembered i had some flakes left over in a jar from when i was in college and focusing on illuminated manuscripts.

i've got a couple of things i'm messing around with right now, one being spinning on my tulipwood jay spindle. it's bombyx silk and camel. it drafts smoothly and spins with a subtle tawny stripe. the other thing is i traded my violin for a ukulele; just waiting on some better strings, then i'll start to learn how to play it.

for dinner tonight i made vegetarian pot pie filled with asparagus, mushrooms, peas, onion, carrots, and beans, topped with filo dough, and served with rose wine. for dessert i baked white chocolate and cherry scones with strawberry rose champagne tea. the theme was hearts and pink. i used things i found around the house that fit into those subjects. it's really enjoyable setting the table for a special event, i should do it more often.


mud is just fine

i don't know anyone who doesn't have a favorite movie from their younger years; that movie which you saw so often, parts of it are permanently ingrained in your memory banks. there are plenty of movies which i can spend an enjoyable bit of time watching again, which i either own on dvd or will stop channel surfing when i come across. but, i'm pretty sure that there are one or two movies which stand out the most. in my case, it has to be a quirky musical, starring the rascal lee marvin and a really good looking, pre-chair incident, clint eastwood. the movie, paint your wagon.

well, as it happens, i picked it up on dvd last week and decided to watch it with some musical loving friends. it's been quite a few years since last viewing; as i had it only on vhs, and like the dinosaurs, technology changes and viewing devices die. it's strange what one gets out of something so familiar. i've become more eco-conscious over the years, and since moving to and away from california these last few months, i saw something new in an old favorite. for the most part, it had to be the song lee marvin sings early on in the film, "the first thing you know". it goes like this:

God made the mountains
God made the sky

God made the people
God knows why

He fixed up the planet
As best as He could
Then in come the people
And gum it up good

The first thing you know

They civilized the foothills
And everywhere He put hills
The mountains and valley below

They come along and take 'em
And civilize and make 'em
A place where no civilized
Person would go

The first thing you know
The first thing you know

They civilize what's pretty
By puttin' up a city
Where nothin' that's
Pretty can grow

They muddy up the winter
And civilize it into 
A place too uncivilized
Even for snow

The first thing you know

They civilize left
They civilize right
Till nothing is left
Till nothing is right

They civilize freedom
Till no one is free
No one except
By coincidence, me

The first thing you know
The boozer's in prison
And the criminally isn't
And only the rascals have dough

When I see a parson
I gotta put my arse in
A wagon that follows the tail of a crow

The first thing you know
I pick up a blow!
The first thing you know

it just speaks to the environmental warrior in me. and makes me wonder about how far we haven't progressed in the years since it was recorded. paint your wagon was made in 1969. 43 years have come and gone, and i could wish for a better understanding of our planet, and our society's acceptance that we need to preserve it. all the things nature does for us can't easily be reinvented by mankind, and the functions that we will be forced to recreate won't work as seamlessly and balanced as the original.


very cool!

at the january meeting of the carmel crafts guild i gave a presentation about my trip to japan in 2010. as a result, i was given the opportunity by kate larson to write a little bit about it for her interweave blog, spinning daily. it's been very exciting! here is a link to it.