Monday, November 11, 2019

Out And About: CCW Retreat 2019

Central Coast Weavers Guild Retreat
Camp Ocean Pines
Cambria, CA
November 8-10, 2019

You were dreamin'
On a park bench
'bout a broad highway somewhere

When the music from the carillon
Seemed to hurl your heart out there

 Past the scientific darkness
Past the fireflies that float
To an angel bending down 
To wrap you in her warmest coat

And you ask
What am I not doing
She says
Your voice cannot command
 In time you will move mountains
And it will come through your hands


Still you argue for an option
Still you angle for your case
Like you wouldn't know a burning bush
If it blew up in your face

Yeah, we scheme about the future
And we dream about the past
 When just a simple reaching out
Might build a bridge that lasts


 And you ask
What am I not doing
She says
Your voice cannot command
In time you will move mountains

And it will come through your hands

Through your hands


 So whatever your hands find to do
You must do with all your heart


There are thoughts enough
 To blow men's minds
And tear great worlds apart

 There's a healing touch to find you
On that broad highway somewhere

To lift you high
 As music flyin'
Through the angels' hair

Don't ask what you are not doing
Because your voice cannot command
In time we will move mountains
And it will come through your hands.

Through Your Hands, John Hiatt, 1990

Thank you to the CCW Guild for the Scholarships "Camperships" which allows first-timer Guild members an opportunity to attend the Camp Ocean Pines Retreat.

The Cousteau Cabin Newbies

Thank you to the Sharing Hands: Flo, Kathy, Nancy, iRene, Rich, Jannie, Carol, Teresa, Roberta, Glenda, Ginny, and Cindy.

Monday, September 23, 2019

Fall Is

Fall happened today.

It showed up like an invited guest.
We had been waiting.

 I look forward to my daily spin wrapped in cool crispness.

The Man journeyed out for his own spin.
Heading north on Highway 1.



Fall is in the air.

September 23, 2019

Monday, September 16, 2019

Short and Bitter Sweet

Well, it's happened again and it's probably no surprise to anyone. The month of August came and went with nary a blog post. None, nada, zip.

Sheesh, not even the gratuitous goat pic.

The sad thing is I'm still outlining stories and I continue to take tons of photographs to accompany the blog post. (5603 photos currently lives on my phone.)

Often times I spend parts of my day thinking about a blog post, planning what the title will be (that's the best part), and I write little snippets of the story on small pieces of paper - lots and lots of small pieces of paper - sometimes when I'm composing the story I smile to myself and occasionally chuckle out loud. Weird, I know. Unfortunately, the stories I plan don't make it out of my head.

Recently SLO Yarns celebrated an Anniversary. It's hard to believe but it's been 7 years since I hit the publish button and the blog went live with the first post. Seven years.

It seems like once I retired - and had all the time in the world - my routines changed and writing a weekly blog post got lost in the transition. But you know, at this time, I'm still not ready for SLO Yarns to disappear into the sunset. Partly because - as you can imagine - my head feels quite a bit cluttered with the hundreds of stories waiting to be told but mostly because writing still gives me joy.

I'll try to do better going forward (she says).

In the meantime, here's a couple of gratuitous goaty pics.

Thursday, July 4, 2019

Slow SLO Yarn

One of my many (oh-so-many) current projects is a slow, long-term Sheep to Shawl project. Long term because I'm learning each step as I go. Slow so I can savor the process.

My Sheep2Shawl project began with an Etsy purchase of one pound of raw CVM/Romeldale fleece from an ewe named Ember. Coming from a cold climate (Minnesota) the wool was covered (coated) which helped to keep it free of large amounts of veggie matter (VM) such as hay and field grass. It was beautiful clean fleece.

Ember's lovely locks.

First I chose the individual locks that were similar in color and length. I stacked them carefully so I knew which ends were the tips and which were the cut ends. I'm starting with the lightest colored locks and will progress to the darker wool as I work through the fleece.

The aligned locks were placed in tulle netting and washed (scoured) with 2 washes and 2 rinses using Unicorn Fiber Power Scour and very hot water. The fleece wasn't too dirty but it was rich with greasy lanolin.

4/25/19, Drying in the sun.

5/2/19, Second batch.

 6/28/19, Third batch.

After the locks are thoroughly dried the tips are brushed open (flicked).

Next, the cut ends are placed oh-so-carefully on the metal tines of the Valkyrie Extra Fine mini combs. It took me a few sessions before I felt comfortable with the sharp combs and I keep them covered or lying sideways when I'm not actively combing, especially when my helpers show up.

The combed wool is then pulled through an object with a tiny hole (diz) to make long strips of ready-to-spin fiber.

A light as air "bird nest".

I wanted to spin my prepped fiber as thinly as possible. I didn't think I could do it on my spinning wheel without wasting a lot of it so I learned from YouTube how to spin on a supported spindle.

One bird nest takes me over an hour to spin.

Right now I'm just spinning a single strand. My lofty goal is to spin a 2-ply yarn for a gradient, natural-colored, knitted rectangular lace wrap or shawl.

7/4/19, Spun to date:

 In the meantime, I'm enjoying every inch, every ounce, every minute of the process.

Happy 4th of July and
Happy Summer Everyone.

Wednesday, May 1, 2019

Daily Fiber

Lately I've been pretty good about spinning on my Lendrum spinning wheel everyday. I've found that if I sit down to spin first thing in the morning then I can get about 20 minutes of spinning time.

Here's how I do it: I set the kitchen timer for 6 minutes which is how long it takes for the saucepan of water to boil. I start spinning.

When the timer goes off I walk into the kitchen, add the Old Fashioned Quaker Oats and raisins to the boiling water, lower the heat to medium, and reset the timer for another 6 minutes.

After a few moments, I stop spinning and walk back into the kitchen to make sure I did lower the heat and the oatmeal hasn't boiled over out of the pot. Restart the timer.

Restart spinning. When the timer goes off I turn off the stove, stir in a bit of milk and reset the timer for 6 more minutes. During this period the milk warms up and the oatmeal gets nice and creamy (and I get more spin time).

When the timer goes off for the last time I spin for a few more minutes.

Breakfast is ready, I leave the wheel, and my day begins.