Saturday, February 28, 2009

I Did It!!

28 posts in 28 days! No contest...just a personal conquest!
(Hey, I'm a poet and didn't know it!)

Before I get to far into the post I want to wish my Cosmic Sis, Bobbi, a VERY Happy Birthday -- Hope your day is as special as you are! She may not post today but please go by and wish her a Happy B-day!

Rudy came home mid-day yesterday...boy let me tell you I missed him even though he was gone no longer than me being at work. Coming into this house without that little face to greet me was a hard thing to do.

"Momma, some thing's missing!"

Actual knitting content!

I have less than an inch to complete on sleeve #1 -- Yippee!

Trying to get the entire piece in framed really "muddles" up the patterning. It really does stand out more than the picture shows. This is such a fun knit, of course, I love cables so that's probably my opinion only.

Can you believe tomorrow is March 1st? Come on Springtime...and here they're calling for a chance of snow!?

Keep on Knittin' & Spinnin'!!

Friday, February 27, 2009


...I'm lost without my little man! I'll drop him off this morning, they'll call me later to pick him up...but geez is this going to be a weird day!

Did you know I have a fetish (or two - or three)? I LOVE buttons. I guess it all started when I was granny used to have jars & tins full of buttons, I used to play with them. Organize them by size, color, shape and number of holes. I have a jar of buttons that was my Granny's ~ it still smells like her house. I still collect buttons today, when we visit antique shops the first thing I start looking for are buttons. I have buttons dating back to the mid-19th Century (did you know that Goodyear made buttons before they ever made tires? I have some in my collection), handmade buttons and buttons I've taken off of items before turning them into rags (something my Granny used to do..."waste not-want not" as she used to say), I've even picked lost buttons up off the street. Will I ever use them...probably not. But hey, if you ever need a button...

Here are a couple of my latest acquisitions:

When The Yarn Lounge posted about them I called immediately! Aren't they cute?! Then they posted more...I shoulda waited, hopefully we'll be going to Richmond soon! Dani, check out the Maple Leaf buttons!

Love me some buttons!!

Can't wait till they call me to pick up Rudy....

Keep on Knittin' & Spinnin'!

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Dogs on Thursday

Tuesday was National Spay/Neuter Day...(queue the music of dread) Dum-dah-dum...dum-dah-dum...

Rudy is having his surgery on Friday!

I duzn't know what this means - but can the cat go in my place?

Sad news hit the family again, last Friday night one of my brother's boxers (11 mths old) was hit and killed. Daisy was the sweetest thing (very opposite of Duke), her brother misses her terribly. They're currently looking for a rescue boxer to bring into the family to help Duke through the grieving process. So terribly sad...

Keep on Knittin' & Spinnin'!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Whiskers on Wednesday~~

I think as cat owners we've all heard this saying...

Well that's never held so true until now! I think you know Mr. Ace is a VERY spoiled feline, well...I've now become his concierge and NOT because I wanted to!
In order to "solve" a few problems in the litter box area we bought his a very fancy "throne" in which to do his business...very much like this one~

He seems to like it though he requires that I hold the door for him as he enters, then I must leave to give him privacy. (demanding puss huh?) He'll soon be expecting me to stand there with a warm towel over my arm...but I tell ya, he's NOT a good tipper. I get the same excuse every time "I'll catch you next time, I left my wallet in my other pants!"
HOWEVER, (I bet you knew that was coming) Sunday morning I didn't listen to his demands to GET-UP-AND-HOLD-THE-DOOR at 5am so...

...he left a little pile just outside the door of the new litter box! We DIDN'T purchase the little mat you see in the picture. Who's sitting there glaring at me as I clean it up...that's right Mr. Ace himself!

Guess what I did...taped the little door open! HA!!!!

Keep on Knittin' & Spinnin'!!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

4 Years...

A Letter to my Granny~

Dear Granny,
It's been 4 years since you left us. I miss you more than ever, there's never a day that goes by that you are not in my thoughts. Every project I work on there's something that brings you close enough to touch but too far to hug. I have a couple quilt projects but have great difficulty finding the inspiration knowing you're not here to help me quilt them. Spring is right around the corner, with each flowers beautiful face I think of you. Your birdbath remains in my garden, I wish you could see the birds that flock there. The box of pictures and mason jar of buttons offer me a whiff of you when I need to feel your's just not the same as having you here. Oh, I miss you so very much...

I have regrets...times when I should have stopped by your house to have lunch and didn't. We all wished there was more we could have done. I think Mom punishes herself too much.

This Christmas when Mom was sick and asked me to take a gift to your friend Virginia, I couldn't do fact, I broke into sobs knowing she was in the same Nursing Home one room down from your old room. I know she understood why I couldn't do it...I just felt horrible that I couldn't go see YOUR best friend at Christmas.

You'd be so proud of the kids, can you believe my baby is 21?! I know you'd feel as I do with Chase having moved to Charlottesville, I miss him terribly...but rest assured he is doing very well. David has finally straightened out his life and now has a very stable, healthy relationship. He got his GED and is now enrolled in College courses. Julia has become a wonderful young woman, I've yet to hear anyone say anything bad about her...I think she has your heart.

I don't visit the cemetery as often as I should, but I know you're not there. We may have lost the most precious person in our lives/family...but Heaven gained a beautiful Angel.

I LOVE YOU Granny...

...there remains a hole in my heart that can never be filled.

My Granny was a very spiritual woman, I found this song that reminds me of her. She had SO many favorite hymns. I'm not sure Granny ever heard THIS song but it's a favorite of mine.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Music Monday

We all have "comfort foods" we turn to -- I also have "comfort music", maybe we all do. This is mine...always has been, always will be! This is going to be one of those weeks where I need LOTS of comfort...

I LOVE The Eagles~

I own every CD and have several albums loaded on my MP3 player, unfortunately I've NEVER seen them in concert...maybe some day.

Keep on Knittin' & Spinnin'!!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Heads Up!

Have you seen THIS contest? What a prize!

Keep on Knittin' & Spinnin'!!

Saturday, February 21, 2009

History Lesson

Tuesday's Day Off afforded us another chance to visit The Palisades...and you ask what the heck are they?! Let's step back a few Centuries to the time when our ancestors braved settling this area.

I promise to make it brief, I just wanted to share another part of our excursion. Now, Hubby and I have canoed this part of the New's beautiful and quite amazing to think what took place here in 1755.

Have you heard of Mary Draper Ingles? No...not Laura (Ingles) sister, they were in Minnesota.
Living in this part of Virginia was a very dangerous time for the pioneers & frontiersmen. The Shawnee would raid, kidnap & kill. For Mary to endure all the events of the kidnapping, only to return home was truly an amazing feat in itself. She trekked along these Palisades barefoot, scantily clothed and starving. She was quite an amazing woman!

If you are interested I have 2 books to suggest:
Follow the River by Alexander Thom (a fictional account but very accurate) and
Trans-Allegheny Pioneers by John P. Hale The book cover shows the path the Indians took her from her cabin and the path in which she returned home -(an excellent account of her story and others settlers of the area)

Hope you enjoyed this enough to read more about her!

Keep on Knittin' & Spinnin'!!

Friday, February 20, 2009


Could it be that Spring is upon us? The weather has turned cold again with some wintry participation but check out my garden~~

My crocus, daylilies, daffodils, freesia and columbine are all coming up! The trees are even budding out!

Hubby did bring me some beautiful tulips for Valentines Day~~

I wished I'd had a video camera to show you all the shearing while we were on the farm, it was quite I found a short video on YouTube to share~~

Thanks for all the great comments on my reproduction sewing, I do miss it at times. With my huge collection of period pictures and reproduction clothes I only have but one question...

Is it real...or reproduction?

Hope you all have a GREAT weekend. Do you have anything special planned?

Keep on Knittin' & Spinnin'!!

Happy Half Birthday Rudy...he's 6 months old today!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Rudy--Farm Dog!

(queue music)

Green acres is the place to be
Farm living is the life for me
Land spreading out,
so far and wide....

Shearing days are upon us, for the next few months several farms in the region will be having their sheep sheared. Two farms are back to back using the same shearer, I didn't get to go on Monday...but my friend Tanya did, and I was envious! So Tuesday we drove up to Green Valley Farm to lend a hand, watch/learn and take pictures. The entire way up the road I'm repeating over and over..."I'm NOT buying any wool" -- "I'm just going to learn how to properly skirt a fleece" -- "I'm NOT buying a fleece" -- "I'm just going to help out" -- "I don't have any room for another fleece"!

Rudy encountered his first peacocks, llamas, sheep & shetland ponies! He had a did his momma!

I wished I'd had a video camera to show you him running in the field...I think the picture tells the story.

I do so enjoy watching a shearer at work!

Poor guy...he's part of a father/son team and the son came down with a horrible bug, leaving the father to do all 60 sheep - alone! Monday he sheared all 175 merinos...alone too!

I noticed something very cool, I didn't ask him about them and wished I had so if anyone out there has the answer please let me know. But, the shearer was wearing hand made shoes that looked a lot like 18th century "gillie brogues"

I'd just be interested in knowing if it's a personal preference on his part of something that's in the line of work or maybe his way of paying homage to his heritage?!?!

I did learn how to skirt a fleece you know how hard it is for me to "throw away" wool -- the poopy part is easy to throw away but I saw wool being pulled off that I would have tried to salvage!

Lots of laughter was shared while doing this. Several of the ladies I know from the Hawks Nest Retreat, including the shepherdess. I bought "Eva Braun" from her a couple years ago, which is what my Aran Wrap Cardigan is being knit up in. Eva is no longer in her herd, but I am going to have a nice cardigan from her!

It was so funny to watch the sheep emerge from the barn...

At first the llama (who pretty much guard the sheep) didn't recognize them and was worrying himself to death trying to "shoosh" them all away! I think he finally realized they were "his" sheep!
I love to watch the sheep come out...kicking their heels up -- singing like James Brown "I Feel Good"!!

I was tired when I got home...but it was so worth it...a good kinda tired!

Keep on Knittin' & Spinnin'!! case you are wondering -- I DID come home with a (1) fleece. I couldn't help myself! So much for the pep talk and will power. I figure that was pretty good considering the other ladies had 4 and 5 fleece in their possession!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Whiskers on Wednesday~~

Do you know what next Tuesday is? That's right...Mardi Gras! Who's the King this year?

That's right...the one...the only....AceMan!

What the heck are you talking about "this year"? I'm KING all the time!

Wanna know how I got my beads??

Are you sure?

Fat Tuesday for the Fat King Cat!
I'm such a party animal....can I have another meowgarita?

Laissez Les Bon Temps Roule!!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

My Past-Our Past

Growing up a tom-boy taught me a lot of things...I WON'T be told I "CAN'T" do something, I'll try it at least once which is how I knocked out my front tooth (bicycle), mangled up my right hand (dirt bike) and found a way to take care of my family as a single mom (sewing machine)!
Oh..I've been a "jack-of-all-trades" in my lifetime, some were not so smart -- receptionist/secretary (smart), doughnut maker (semi-smart), worked in a yarn shop (not so paycheck by the end of the week), built race cars (smart), auto body (smart), worked in a fabric store (again, not so smart), lettered vehicles (pre-vinyl decal and a seamstress (very smart)!!

Though at the time I didn't want to do it, I can't thank my Mom enough for sending me to those sewing classes when I was 10...Oh, Granny had a needle and thread in my hand much younger but I was never allowed to use her sewing machine till later.

I started out making bridesmaid dresses (even a few wedding dresses) but this was all too monotonous for me...7 dresses just alike -- ugh! Then the opportunity came to do some sewing for (now closed) Virginia's Explore Park, that lead to sewing for 100's of Civil War reenactors...literally! I had dresses shipped all over the US, as far West as California! It too got a little like making bridesmaid dresses...I made nearly 100 Confederate soldier jackets called "Depot Jackets" and well over 50 battleshirts (reading these two links will probably bore you to tears, but just in case you were curious). But there was something a little more intriguing about this type of sewing, I researched each request, visited as many museums as possible and learned the various sewing techniques used during the time period. This is also how I met my wonderful Hubby!

Clients would send me a "period" picture with any changes or requests and I would make a reproductions to their specifications. This was fun!! My clothes have been in several notable one is Gods & Generals...I was even on set a several times (I stood beside Stephen Lang in my 19th Century best) you won't find my name in the credits, you see we reenactors are often used as "unpaid extras" at various events. But I have made uniforms for several units and individuals who were some of these "extras" -- my BIL & nephew were paid extras in a couple movies in which they were completely clothed by "moi"!

Sometimes I miss it, but carpal tunnel began showing up with all the handwork that this type of work required, I prefer to be able to feel my fingers later...and a big chicken when it comes to surgery.

I hope this slideshow works, I found an old disc the other day that contained my old files. Here is a small sampling of my hard work ~

I am quite proud of this time in my life. As you can see my fiber addiction goes way back!

Keep on Knittin' - Spinnin' and Sewin'!!

Monday, February 16, 2009

Music Monday

I know you guys are probably real tired of my Music Monday posts, but frankly looking for music to post up makes me feel so much better!

All the warm weather has me wanting to change my latitude...and I'm working on changing my attitude, but darn that's hard to do on a Monday!

So my Parrothead is coming out with this post!

...maybe I should go buys some play sand and rub my toes in it?

Keep on Knittin' & Spinnin'

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Support Your Local Farm~~

With all the food scares here lately, it was early last year when I decided to start buying locally. We have a very nice Farmer's Market and a local dairy, Homestead Creamery, that delivers...just like when I was a kid! There's even a vendor who supplies meats of all kinds. A good friend of ours is currently raising Highland cattle, which we have dibbs on a side. I know the grocery stores are now labeling the produce & meats as to their origin, but I still don't trust them.

I have a personal conflict with one of our local grocery chain, my Mom is a 31 year retiree and because of the union they continue to cut her benefits. Now you tell me who made this grocery store what they are today? Those retired from years of blood, sweat & tears! ...okay, enough of that I'll get off that soap box--sorry.

I've looked into joining a CSA, but feel just as good buying from our local farmers on the market and keeping them in business during these hard economic times. Speaking of which I can't wait till I make my first visit this year, I really miss good fresh fruits & veggies this time of year.

OH MY~~NOW...I've found the ultimate CSA! What a FANTASTIC idea...I really don't think it would be hard to convince local farms to do the same, in the meantime...I'm toying with the idea of joining this one!

Do you support your local farmers?

Keep on Knittin' & Spinnin'

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Happy Valentines Day

I hope your Valentine's Day is a sweet one!

See...I've been knitting!

I've been plugging away on my Aran Wrap Cardigan, that is until I hit a road block.
I REALLY love knitting this pattern, that is until I came to the place that made me question my knitting abilities! Thanks to some Ravelry friends & the designer herself, Angela Hahn I'm back on the road to finishing it! Vogue Knitting just assumed everyone knew what they were thinking when writing up this pattern! I believe they were trying to save space in the magazine...wrong place to cut back the directions!! So instead of trying to knit along and figure it out I decided to use Ravelry to make some contacts and see if my questions could get answered without me knitting, ripping and re-knitting my precious handspun!

I can't thank Angela enough for her VERY detailed explanation! She assured me I'm NOT the only knitter who's had the same problem in the pattern.

This isn't the first of her designs I've knit, and won't be the last! I have many, many, many more queued for future projects!
Isn't Ravelry an amazing community?!

Keep on Knittin' & Spinnin'!!

Friday, February 13, 2009

Black Cats, Ladders, Umbrellas...

...and FRIDAY THE 13TH!

Me superstitious?? I'm not doing anything today that isn't necessary...I'll drive 3 miles to work (really I probably should walk) come home and stay here until tomorrow morning! I won't use a knife or scissors. I'll take my chances with knitting needles.

Be afraid...very, very afraid!

Keep on Knittin' & Spinnin'!!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Dogs on Thursday

One picture says it all....

Rudy loves his playdates with Milo!

(a rare rest period)

Keep on Knittin' & Spinnin'!!

Duel Dogs on Thursday

I forgot to add something to todays Dogs on Thursday post!

Rudy has a new Aunt & Uncle to introduce....

Meet Ellie & Fred!! (6 week old Bassett pups)

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Whiskers on Wednesday

Since being the "Spotlight On" cat in last week post Ace is now requiring appointments for photo engagements...I can't seem to get an appointment these days.

So for a different sort of post (and I've probably already posted this but it's so good worth another laugh or two) -- queue the video please:

We'll have to see if I can get any time with "The King" in the next week.

Keep on Knittin' & Spinnin'!!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

UFO's...from way back

A couple weeks ago I spent 2 days cleaning, rearranging and reorganizing my fiber/sewing room (which no matter what I do it's still too small). In the process I uncovered several REALLY old UFO's...and they're not knitting related.

This time of year it's really difficult, you see it's been almost 4 years since losing my beloved teacher & mentor. I have this HUGE trunk that belonged to her, in this trunk there's 4 pieced quilt tops, 2 that I did and 2 that she did. We were supposed to quilt it's too late. I also have several pieced squares she did and labeled with the design...I ask myself all the time if I should do anything with them?

I also found in this trunk this UFO I spoke of...and started working on it again~

My Granny would be so proud...I know she's smilin' right now!

Keep on Knittin' - Spinnin' & Quiltin'!!

Monday, February 09, 2009

Music Monday~~Grammy Edition!

I can't embed the video for this artist but she's my favorite and I hope she wins tonight! I learned about her while watching an edition of CBS Sunday Morning some time back. She was one of the stories spotlighting her as "an up and coming artist" -- I fell in love with her voice and music style...such a jazzy/bluesy mix. I just hope she doesn't end up like Amy Winehouse (who I love to listen to but not look at!)

Hope you enjoy her as much as I do (great video too)....Adele

Her singing is so effortless...

**ETA** ADELE WON!!! Best New Artist!! No, I didn't watch...too much nonsense music for me! Although I did turn it over to see Al Green perform, the man hasn't lost it!

Oh~~one last push for Votes for Rudy! Voting ends tomorrow.

Keep on Knittin' & Spinnin'!

Sunday, February 08, 2009


Is this really February? Granted, this is the worst time of winter for me. We've gotten NO snow to speak of. Everything has been Drab, Dead and Dank for so long...I'm in serious need for some other for of Vitamin D. That came this weekend, finally -- 60 degree temps has lifted my spirits, I sat on the deck yesterday knit while Rudy had his "play date" with Milo and since cleaning my fiber room I found some UFO's of different sorts that I started working on (more on that later).

I even told Hubby to "go fly a kite"...and he did!

Yes, that is The Red Baron!

Where's Snoopy?

I'd love to find the kite that looks like Snoopy on his doghouse!

Keep on Knittin' & Spinnin'!!!

Thursday, February 05, 2009

Dogs on Thursday

...otherwise known as "RudyDay"!

The dryest part of winter is upon us, everything I touch is charged and I shock the crap out of myself and anyone else who comes near. Apparently I'm not the only one who's having problems...

Poor Rudy has static too! Ace walked by him the other day, Rudy shocked him on the butt! Talk about a surprised cat...

Keep on Knittin' & Spinnin'!!

Wednesday, February 04, 2009


Today's Whiskers on Wednesday is a VERY special one! Ace is in the "Spotlight"...that's right he's the Featured Whisker of the week! Go on over and check it out!

"I'm ready for my close-up Mr. Deville....I mean Mom!"

Do you know how hard it is going to be living with him now? He'll be ordering his meals in bed!

If you haven't already done so please go vote for my Little Brother! He is a cute little thing, now if I can just figure out how to play with him and not get hurt...I have to protect these good looks since I'm now famous!

Vote for Rudy in the BISSELL MVP Photo Contest 2009!

Keep on Knittin' & Spinnin'!

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Please Vote For Rudy!!

I'm So Blue....

What is it with all the baby boys these days? Of course, blue is one of my FAVORITE colors!

Two gals in our knitting group are having little boys in just about a month, these are so cute and a quick knit! Blue Steps is the pattern name (Rav Link) it's a German translated pattern and a great way to use up some leftover yarns. I used double point needles rather than circular simply because...

Found this picture I forgot to post about--

They're almost gone now but I bought a box of Honeybell's from Florida...If you've never experienced this orange you've gotta try them sometime. They're only available in Jan & Feb I buy mine HERE Some people call them tangelo's but I can tell you these are NOTHING like what you'll buy in the grocery store. They are still taking orders through this week...go ahead give them a try, I promise you they are well worth the money.
My grandparents used to stop at this store when they took us to Florida, and if we weren't with them they always brought us back something from the store.

I'm bummed the groundhog saw his shadow, I'm SO ready for springtime!

AND....drum roll please......I've narrowed down my favorite Super Bowl Commercials down to 2:


Keep on Knittin' & Spinnin'!!