Friday, May 17, 2013

Favorite Things: Ten

{Part of a Friday series with AlexStar and Lee that celebrates our power to discern, discriminate, decide and declare. Please join us in the comments or on your own site if you have a few favorites, too.}

Favorite Fiber

:: Well, this might be cheating a little to have this in here. I mean, come on.

Wool is the super-fiber, it does everything except tie your shoes, and it has such immense history and tradition tying us together with the world. The sheep is not a particularly glamorous animal, nor is it clever, but it has thrived and flourished in step with mankind because of its indispensable coat, which was one of our original renewable resources. Put grass in, wool comes out.


If we really squeeze the thing, though, my favorite blend is MCN (merino, cashmere, nylon). Soft, resilient, lustrous, all the liveliness of wool with the luxury of cashmere and a touch of nylon to hold it all together. In a word, perfect.

Favorite Blog(s) *other than my friends'*

:: I read blogs for two reasons, folks: beautiful photography and hilarity. I also love food and crafty inspiration and all that jazz, but the blogs that become my favorites that I actually just read because I enjoy them almost always have those two factors in common.

I do tend to read food blogs more often than anything. Perhaps food people are just awesome, but I also suspect that it's because I am a glutton and gorgeous photos of well-appointed comestibles hits me right where it counts. The ones that I have followed for years, therefore, are:

The Smitten Kitchen
Have Cake Will Travel
Joy the Baker

My favorite photographer blogs (for a variety of reasons, chief among them, well, duh):

Hula Seventy
The Weaver House

I also love that those ladies are local. It makes me feel close to...something. Success?

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

a & a wools

It is time, friends. Time to cut my losses, shed the deadweight, face the facts, listen to the music, get down to brass tacks, (wo)man up, get on with it, pay the piper...

* le sigh *

Time to admit that I do not have the time I used to. And won't for a while. Time to sell my wool. And my roving. And (sob) my spinning wheel. This means that I am copycatting Tinsley a bit, what else is new, and have set up shop where you and others may go and pick over the luscious fruits of my years of fond acquisitioning. It is alarming how much Malabrigo sock I've been hiding away...

The first installment is up, the rest will be arriving over the next few days at a measured pace, and will eventually include about 90% of my entire yarn and roving stash. You're welcome. All prices are below industry standard to make up for their having been stored in my house rather than being fresh from the shop, though most of it is in brand-spankin-new condition. They have all been kept in cedar-lined bins or chests, and if I do say it, I tend to have excellent taste so it's nice stuff. There are even some multiple quantities of skeins in there, so check the stock and buy early if you want to get your hands on more than one skein. In a few cases the tags have been lost, apologies, but those yarns have been weighed to make sure all is present and accounted for. A tasting:

The wheel I will be selling locally so I don't have to deal with the nightmare of packing and shipping it, but I will post about that before I put it on Craigslist or whatever, so feel free to contact me if you are interested.

Hooray for yarn!

p.s. If you are local we can likely work out some non-shipping arrangement, so just give me a buzz if you'd like to try that and then you can use the 'local' shipping class -- which means FREE!

Sunday, May 12, 2013



This is it.


The penultimate post in a series that was only ever meant to go to {12}. I can't wrap my mind around it, that this girl is almost a year old.


For these photos I just handed her two of her favorite things in the world -- this little box of butterflies and silly music box with dancing couples -- and let her be. Tried to keep up!




The butterflies crashed the party for a while. She was really into putting them around. In her hands, on her feet, on her head, she is very into adornment.




She is walking more and more every day, she quite prefers it now, though crawling is still faster. She dances! And sings! She loves music, especially the tiny kind, like this music box. She tries on my clothes and takes herself very seriously in them. She is a little whirlwind, and full of an insatiable greed for knowledge. In other words, she is ready.


This post is a day late getting published because last night we were at a fancy auction until deep into the night and she stays! awake! until the party! is over! She had the best time, and was rather the belle of the ball, she got many more invitations that I did. So now it means we're celcbrating Mother's Day as well her month-iversary, and we can share it all out with you out there, and your mums and kids and families. Have a perfectly wonderful day!

Friday, May 10, 2013

Favorite Things: Nine

{Part of a Friday series with AlexStar and Lee that celebrates our power to discern, discriminate, decide and declare. Please join us in the comments or on your own site if you have a few favorites, too.}

Favorite Animal To Have As a Pet

:: Kitties.

Favorite Physical Activity

:: Dancing.

Neither of my answers this week is particularly surprising or scintillating, as much as I take my own pleasure from them. I could tell you why I make those choices, but they are common enough that chances are you already know, and then I'd just be engaging in even grosser redundancy.

To make it up to you, here is a tiny airplane that looks like a large airplane photographed with a tilt-shift lens but it totally isn't. Sneaky.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Some Days

Aw, Pumpkin. I know just how you feel. A peek at a certain blanket in the background there, this little girl was done being a prop for the day.

Friday, May 3, 2013

Favorite Things: Eight

{Part of a Friday series with AlexStar and Lee that celebrates our power to discern, discriminate, decide and declare. Please join us in the comments or on your own site if you have a few favorites, too.}

Hot on the heels of all that blathering about choice, it's Friday again. I just lose those early weekdays somehow, wheredigo? (to quote my daughter)

Favorite Tree

:: This category was Alex's doing, I believe. Trees are...significant. If I could have a power animal it would be a tree (don't over-think, just roll with it). I cry far more tears over trees in my acquaintance being cut down than I do the animals I eat, so what does that say about me? The way I remember my childhood (i.e. selectively) I am always going in or out of this tree or that. It appeals to the prey animal in me to be up high, as well as the hunter, the thrill seeker, the problem solver, the introvert and something else ineffable that just feels right cradled in arboreal arms.

Rather than try to come up with just one kind of tree that I love (impossible), I've chosen an individual, one actual tree that was a kind of refuge for me in the foreign New England world of brick buildings and dress codes and mind-numbing scholastic achievement. This beech tree.

Flouting said dress code, ca. 2000

With my friend Patrick.

Favorite Woodland Creature

:: Bobcat. This crepuscular cousin of the eurasian lynx is not only beautiful and exceedingly successful (it is surprisingly not classified as endangered, happily roaming over much of the continent's wild territories in many kinds of habitat), it is the trickster of the cat family. Like the coyote, but far more clever (no anvils or dynamite), this animal seems to delight in puzzles and obfuscation. I admire it as I admire all feline creatures, but it stands out for me because it has managed to remain more mysterious and viable than others of its family. Bravo, for surviving and for doing it with class.

felix rufus, photograph by Norbert Rosing

Thursday, May 2, 2013

[CMND + Z]

I've been spending a lot of time in Adobe world lately. It's a bit of a dream land, the layers of its impeccable order and logic making possible such flights of fancy. Or at least streamlined photo-editing. (Pictures in this post have little to no contextual significance, be advised.)


My favorite thing about it is how infinitely mutable it is, it relieves the pressure of error. You can build an entire structure from the ground up and then go in and futz with the foundation, change the furniture,  the size of the windows, dimensions of the walls, and put it all back. Then back again. Then in triplicate. It's rather seductive and so unlike reality. How many times have I thought to go for the [CMND + Z] (keyboard shortcut for Undo) in real life and been momentarily disoriented and then peeved that it's not there. Stuff those words back in my cheeks. Step down in a different place. Unbreak my favorite mug. Cut my hair longer again. Whoops.


Those are just the frivolous things, it doesn't bear listing the grief we could save. There are all kinds of important and grave reasons that we cannot have a redo or reset button on our decision-making, things having to do with developing personal accountability, reasoning, circumspection, thoughtfulness, respect, character, humanity, all that. But maybe, you know, just once in a while a quick and painless keystroke here and there. What could it harm?


Some things I would [CMND + Z]: joining in heartless laughter when I was eight. Giving up ballet, then gymnastics, then taekwondo, then swimming, then piano, then voice (even if I was crap at it). Not wearing a helmet that day I broke my head. Not even applying to every top university I could think of back when my academic record gave me a real chance of getting in on scholarship. Waiting for ages any time I already knew how I needed to act. Others, too personal or pathetic or boring to list, countless thoughtless words or times patience ran out, usual human stuff. But here we are, here I am, in large part the products of our choices, for better or worse.


Choice is a big theme for me (ha, Hello Friday Favorites!), and has been all my life. In this last year of my third decade, as a single mom of two darling and growing little people, I am all the more conscious of the role it plays and the ways that I need to prepare my children. Which is a tricky thing since it's a bit of a firehose, it can so easily seem to direct you instead, throw you around and drench you and expend all your effort in the wrong places. But it is also the source of our power, the only thing that we truly have any control over, and that is no small thing. I love being able to choose, even when the results gang aft aglay.


Cheers, friends, thanks for choosing to visit.