reflections on kansas

it has been almost a month since i was in kansas visiting my folks.  hard to believe how fast time goes by.  i decided after that trip that i would start to work on documenting my adventures a little better.  although it is good to be in the moment, it doesn’t make for a good blog-journal.  but my father is better at capturing the moment.  so thanks to him, i have some pictures to show for it.

my mother and i had tea with a few of the women from church.

tea

i met friends adoptive daughter for the first time.  i actually took this picture.  i couldn’t resist because she was SO cute!  Mari, Mollie, and Maya (who had woken up in the middle of the night, and promptly went back to sleep).

too cute!

the things that didn’t get pictured (and i fit this all in one weekend): shoe shopping with mom, lunch with my former art professor, dessert with my former boss at the natural food store Prairie Harvest where i used to work, a walk with a dear friend, a concert of chamber choral, and my favorite…. a walk in what i considered my second home while i was in kansas.  behind the college that i attended, there was a set of mulched trails that meandered along a creek.  this place is sacred to me and one of the things i miss most about kansas.  i spent more time there in the spring, summer, and fall than anywhere else.  my folks, lucy (their dog) and i went on a lovely spring walk.

mom, lucy, and i on bethel trails

i have done homework on this bench, and had much history is infused here. and now i have made new fond memories.

dad, lucy, and i on bethel trails

it was probably one of the best visits i have had to kansas so far.  it is beautiful in the spring.

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we might skip spring

at this point, we are more than ready for a change of season.  we had a pretty mild winter, but i think we got all of winter in one month…. april.  today is the first time we made it up our driveway probably all month.  it has made us be creative though.  we employed the help of this sled which can haul all of our things about 100 yards from the road where we park, all the way up the hill to our doorstep.

sled

it is tiring hauling 6-3 gallon glass bottles of water all the way from the bottom.  sometimes we can get to the mid point and that is a little better. but it is SO beautiful.  here are some pictures from our drive into town.

going into town

one of the most beautiful houses on our road.

dreamy house

i hope summer is right around the corner.

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new photos

headshot

i will start teaching Zoom Loom classes soon, so i got my coworker Benji to take some promo photos of me at Shuttle Spindles and Skeins in Boulder.  i am off to kansas today to see my folks, but i have been busy working on projects that i will post soon!

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what do you know!

irene just featured the Auroa Earth 8/2 cotton that i used in my blog! there are tons of beautiful colors, i had a hard time choosing.  kate (my co-worker) and i went round and round about the color choices until we got just the right ones. 🙂

irene makes it easy by doing lots of kits.  unfortunately, i can’t follow a     pattern to save my life.  i try, i really do, but when i get into weaving, knitting,   sewing a pattern etc., it seems to evolve to something other than what the piece of paper tells me to do.  BUT, i know that there are some people who swear by patterns.  for those people, irene’s kits are a dream!

she is too cute!

Irene Schmoller Shadow Weave Shawl

                               check it out!

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first set of handwoven dishtowels

yes, i am a weaver, and this is the first time i have attempted hand towels.  it is a common thing for most weavers to have under their belt, but i just now got around to it.  i started with these colors of cotton.  i got them from cotton clouds (i adore irene- the owner… aka sophia garcia :)).

cones

warped them on the loom, and then a few months later, i started weaving.  that is how these things go sometimes.  thus i usually have a few projects at a time in progress.  well, it is probably more than “a few.”

warped and ready

shuttle

weaving is interesting in that you never know what it will really look like until you take it off the loom AND wash it (very important).  so here, the threads look really far apart, but that is just because they are under tension.

towel close up

also, when it goes in the wash, it will shrink a bit.  all considerations that have to be accounted for in measuring the yarn prior to the actual weaving  process.

folded towels

the day before i finished these towels, i was wearing short sleeves outside and expected to be able to get out and frolic in nature during the weekend.  instead, the snow provided a good opportunity to finish the towels.

towels on a snowy day

i am pleased with how they turned out.  even though i have an 8 shaft Schacht Baby Wolf, which can do all kinds of fancy patterns, i just love simple plain weave.  there are weavers who like complicated patterns and those who like color and texture.  i am sure some people straddle the two with one foot more or less in the other, or even equal, but not me.  i am all about color, texture, and pure subtlety.  there is something about plain weave (over one under one weave structure) that is just so simple elegant and satisfying.

beautiful

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feelin’ the love

i know valentine’s day was last month, but i have never been one to follow convention.  on this first day of spring, i am feelin’ the love.  so i thought i would share some pictures of love.  as i was rinsing fiber one day, i looked down to see this and had to snap this photo:

fiber soak water

 

then i dumped the water out and found this in the sink:

for the love of suds

 

one of our clothes pins showed it’s true inner light:

lovely clothes pin

 

my diet is usually impeccable, but lately, i have been indulging in potato chips.  there is love, even there:

potato love

 

and who couldn’t love this face!

maybellethis is maybelle, the sheep that gave me my first fleece.

 

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cotton candy seedling

my friend Cheryl at Recycled Lamb undertook a great project!  the Denver Art Museum is doing a new permanent textile display, featuring spinning, weaving, felting, etc.  they will have their own little “pods” and in the spinning pod, they wanted to feature art yarn.  so Cheryl agreed to send out 2 oz. of fleece to those who wanted to participate.  we could do anything with the fleece to make it “art yarn”- dye it, add silk noils, card it with other fibers, etc.  so i thought it would be a good exercise.  i have wanted to explore textured yarn, but i think i was a little intimidated.  the big question always is, what are you going to do with it when it is done?  well, this was easy, all i had to do was spin it, so i felt like i could be really creative.  Here is what i started with: 2 oz. of raw fleece (shown washed) and i decided to card it with some Louet Silk Merino in fushia.

DAM art fleece

for those of you that know me, i am not usually into hot pink (i am more drawn to earthy colors),  but i had this around and i thought it would be fun for this application.  i was thinking outside the box with the texture of the yarn, so why not the color too!

corespun

i did a Lexi Boeger (aka Pluckyfluff) technique called seedling.  start with core spun yarn, coil it, and navajo ply.  easy peasy!

seedling yarn

i was really happy with the first attempt.  so happy that i want to try it with all kinds of other roving and fleece!

seedling skein

i sent it off to Cheryl.  they are going to choose about 20 to go into the display.  i am so glad i participated!  it was freeing with no expectations and i was tickled pink.  (sorry i had to)

 

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