Thursday, December 28, 2006


How did it get to be the 28th already? I was planning to post on Tuesday, the 26th - my 50th birthday. How could I have NOT posted on that huge date? Opening presents; the book Aurora gave me - Persian Girls by Nahid Rachlin; friends dropping by; a walk in the woods; luxuriating for a full hour during a full body massage -it's the first time I've had a massage - Wonderful! And last but not least the Tuesday evening women's Fit4Life Bible Study, I really wanted to share my birthday with these 5 women that I'm becoming close to as we struggle in areas of physical, emotion/hormonal, mental and spiritual fitness.

After a day of thick fog and rain, the sun peaked out just as it was sinking in the west. The light penetrating the fog and darkness seemed symbolic on this day.

In many ways it's been a hard year for me. With my birthday coming at the end of the year, it's a good time to take stock of the past and look forward to improving during the new year. I would really like to develope some product that I can make and sell. I love spinning and weaving, to a lesser degree knitting and crocheting and I want to figure out a way to help our finances by these loves.

Christmas was very special this year. Everyone was here; Aurora and her BF had breakfast with us, then DS and wife and Faith came over around 9:30 to open gifts. We had Christmas dinner and just hung out together most of the afternoon. When our kids were small a friend described us as a quiet family. Ed & I both thrive on peace and quiet - serenity. Our kids were typical kids but noise was kept to a reasonable level, and so when we get together the pattern usually continues.

Christmas Faith:

After dinner Faith was getting sleepy so Ed rested her on his shoulder. Surprisingly she snuggled her face into his beard.

Walk With Me Wednesday took place later in the afternoon. In the attempt to get back into a regular walking/exercise routine I slipped on my walking clogs and hoodie willing myself to walk, even though my cozy knitting chair and a new project formenting in my mind were calling me. It'd been a day of greys. No rain but low clouds and lowering temperatures foretelling of an early morning freeze. I looked to see what may be of interest but the things that captured my fancy didn't come out well on camera. Walking along the road which leads towards the cemetary, I noticed a hole in the clouds revealing blue - a calico sky.

We had almost 3 inches of rain during the 48 hours of Christmas eve day and Christmas. Water is still pooled in low places in fields. I wanted to get closer for a better shot but this was in the field that I was chased from a few months ago. I now know that she had a gun and was ready to shoot on that day back then so I definitly didn't want to push my luck at the edge of her field!

I want to thank everyone who graciously commented after my six weird things post. It's one of those posts that I'm tempted to delete. I've enjoyed reading other's six weird things posts and am grateful for their courage to post.

Next post will be about fibery things, and maybe a peak at my new exploration. And pictures of the three bamboo Turkish Spindles Ed is working on. :-)

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Tag, You're IT!

I've been tagged, twice! Thanks a lot Lynn and Natalie!

The Rules:Each player of this game starts with the ‘six weird things about you.’ People who get tagged need to write a blog of their own six weird things as well as state this rule clearly. In the end, you need to choose six people to be tagged and list their names. Don’t forget to leave a comment that says ‘you are tagged’ in their comments and tell them to read your blog.”

Deep Breath. It's not easy to be forthcoming and disclose areas of weirdness. The first friend I made when senior at a new high school was a girl whose friends were all in drama and choir. They were the cool kids of campus, I was the little tag-along. One day eating lunch in the hall leading to the stage they decided to start an "ugly people" club and each proceeded to list their ugly merits qualifying them to belong. Who were they kidding? Not one had a feature or attribute they could honestly label ugly. As a whole, they glibbly ignored me, except for the one friend who I think regretted befriending me. Ever since I've shied away from negative tagging. But, in the spirit of the friendliness of bloggers I've met, realizing that it's meant in good fun and a way for us to know each other, I will play. Besides, I loved tag as a kid. (Sorry, no time to scan in some pictures.)

#1. I sucked my index finger until I went to camp as an eight year old. Due to eight years of pressure behind my teeth I was called names like Beaver, Horseteeth.

#2. My folks were fortunate to be lead to an orthodontist who was willing to straighten my teeth pro bono. I was so determined to have straight teeth that I wore the headgear All the Time that first summer. My teeth moved into place in One Year. The weird part? During my honeymoon the retainer was in the leather toiletry bag which got left on the top of the car, blowing off somewhere in Arizona. No problem, I'd worn it at night for six years. My teeth were fine. Not. Within a year my teeth had moved partially back out. This time the orthodontist removed four bi-cuspids before putting on braces. AND I had to see a speech therapist for a few months to cure my tongue thrust.

#3. For more than a decade during my teens and twenties I had to tape my elbow everytime I played volleyball to keep it from dislocating. It dislocated 13 times. It even dislocated once when I dove into water. Do you know how hideous, to say nothing of the pain, a dislocated elbow looks?

#4. While out riding in Butte Creek canyon in the frozen days of January I came across a frozen porcupine. My horse wasn't too thrilled when I gingerly pushed it into a gunny sack and strapped it to the back of the saddle. The porcupine quills graced several of the beautiful bowls Ed made.

#5. Watching colorful finches at our feeder I wondered why God didn't create humans with such colorful hair. Then it struck me that instead He gave us the creativety and capability to do our own hair. :-) And so, off and on for several years I had small streaks of hair bleached then dyed a gorgous blue. This was when I worked at the reference desk at the public library. I'd love to do it again but I don't want to deal with the bleached streaks after the dye wears out (about 6 months) since I have long hair now.

#6. I've eaten Raccoon. (once squirrel, but that little mouthful was hardly enough to taste, beside I love seeing them in the trees) If you ever walk into a house where someone's fixing raccoon, politely decline dinner. Ed loves trying strange foods and different meats. He talked one of the raccoon hunters into bringing him the next one captured. (Yes, people love to go raccooning for pelts in these hills.) Ed cooked it while I was at work. It was tough, shoe leather tough. And very gamey tasting. Not good. I suppose if someone knows how to cook it properly it's okay. Maybe stewed long and slow. Maybe if it were fed corn and milk for ten days before killing.

Now it's time to tag someone. Many bloggers I read have already been tagged so here's some who weren't yet tagged when I checked. Run! Karen; Dodge!Charity; Duck! Marianne; Hide! Rho; Flee! Teyani; and Fly! Cyndy

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Walk? Too busy.

Between the frozen fog clinging to all surfaces, and the endless list of things to do, I didn't get out for the walk with me wednesday. No, I will not count the daily walk to the PO.

We've had three days with the temps hovering around 30 degrees and low fogs which freezes onto everything creating a beautiful, delicate frosty world of tiny ice crystals. I tried to capture the magic to no avail. The chickens aren't impressed with crystalized grass.

The other evening Son and Faith stopped by for a visit. Aurora and Grandpa hamming it with Faith.

I baked half a dozen cranberry date tea breads for last Saturday's music fest. One batch was made with gluten free flour. Delicious!

Ed is waiting to watch a movie. I'll stitch on the felt ornaments I made the other day. The thread is silk spun during September. These will go to family members. I want to make a batch of green ones too.

Two-month old Faith.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Tis the season

Walk with me Wednesday didn't exactly happen today. I popped out for a quick walk after supper, intending to walk around town snapping pictures of the holiday lights. But, the camera batteries were dead, again. (Time for new ones, these have been recharged beyond their limit.) Apparently people were away from home tonight; many places didn't have their lights turned on. A warm wind is blowing in some light rain. A significant windstorm is headed this way tomorrow with the temps rising into the 60s. Maybe it was the wind, maybe the lack of activity on the streets, or the darkness of the night but, like Cyndy, I didn't fancy being out tonight, the warm lights of home drew me back after a short stroll.

Wouldn't you know it; when life is busy another iron is placed in the fire. Last night the call I've been dreading came. The articles are ready for proofreading. Oh sure, like there aren't orders to handle, packages to mailed, spindles to wax and test, Christmas cards to write, Christmas shopping to finish, and a violin which is scolding me from its corner. Deep breath. I was headed to Salem anyway today so I drove the long way around, stopping to pick up the proofs at the log house that I dream of owning. (A newer place with an open floor plan, a large shop, a second house, a barn, 20 acres, beautiful setting in the hills...and it's for sale but way beyond us.)

Still spindling. Every Saturday morning I spin for a couple hours at the LYS. One of these day's I'll remember to take the camera and get a picture. This is some merino/tencel blend. Nice stuff. It's crazy, I'm not sure what it will be used for but I needed a break from all the white BFL being spun for Faith's someday blanket.

Ed's been asked to make some replicas of Peruvian spindles, called Pushka, which I get to test. They're still in the beginning stages of possible production for selling.

Here's the Red Sweater. Sorry about the terrible coloring/lighting. Somedays our eight year old digital camera doesn't want to cooperate. (I'm will not admit to incompetence.)With everything going on these days I'm still managing to knit at least two rounds each day and a few rounds on the sleeve.

A pair of gift socks. Hope they get done in time. Plain 2x2 ribbing for speed. Ha, Froggy knows I'm not a fast knitter!

Saturday you're welcome to join Crooked Finger Band at the Friends Meetinghouse in Scotts Mills 6:30pm for our annual bluegrassy Christmas sing and play along. Bring your instruments/singing voices. Lots of food and good music to share with everyone.

Look what was on our table this morning! For years Aurora and I have sought this hard old fashion Christmas candy.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Creek Walk

Walk with me Wednesday didn't happen until midafternoon as the sun was slipping behind the south ridge. Stepping outside the sky was smudged with a combination of wood smoke and fogfiltering out the sunlight. It happens sometimes in the winter when the high pressure presses down over the valley, trapping pollutants. Instead of walking to the top of the ridge to gaze at the Cascades, my steps turned to the local county park, which is closed in the winter.

This sign doesn't deter the walker, not one bit. Many trails sidestep the closed gate.

A trail leads down to the base of the creek. Hard to believe this is trampled daily during the summer.

Rounding a bend the fish ladder chuckles into view. There's not as much water as there should be for all the rain we've had.

A few steps more and Butte Creek rushes past, but the path is blocked. Is this intentional? The sign warns not to fish for salmon or steelhead.

Look at the way the earth swirls and arcs on the other side of the creek. I don't recall seeing that before. Apparently the heavy floods of a few weeks ago washed enough bank away to reveal this formation.

Back to the path which leads down besides the fishladder, the trail is overgrown with blackberry brambles. No way are we treading through them without leather gloves and a stout stick.

Turning back my steps lead to the main area of the park and I walk across the small concrete wall which forms a pool at the top of the fish ladder. A large tree trunk is wedged into the chute effectively slowing the volume of water for the fishladder.

Dropping to the rocks on the other side of the pool,

Scotts Mills Falls

(Please click on pictures to better see the details.)

Fibery things!!! Pictures to come in a future post.
Yes, the Red Sweater is slowly building round by round, a few each day. It's taking a back seat to some other projects that I'd like to finish by Christmas. (Please don't laugh. As slow as I am, I can still try.)

I've been spindling almost everyday. Ed's playing around with yet another spindle type and it's been fun to play with that one. I spun enough to ply with a ball from the Turkish spindle. The yarn is slowly accumalating for Faith's blanket.

Speaking of whom:

Six weeks