Friday, July 27, 2007

ufo resurrection

thanks to birdsong i just joined the ufo resurrection ring. for those of you who don't have a clue of what this is-don't be embarrassed-i didn't either. birdsong filled me in. it is a blogring(club) that you can join to make a pact to work on "UnFinished Objects-(knitted objects- mind you.) i have a semi truck load of those-gee-is that a symptom of ADD?(i was gonna list them for you but you would have cried out in pain! i could also start my own "UFB" club-unfinished books club-oh yes i have a pile next to my bed. i guess i have a boredom issue. or maybe i'm just excited about a new project-so much insight-a love of the burst of creativity or something new-or the thrill of excitement-yes, it did get me into trouble as a younger woman-now it shows itself with unfinished fiber projects-a stash of wool that i hide from my family, unread books, paints unused, recipes never cooked. the list goes on.

now where was i? yes, birdsong got me motivated -inspired to join "ufo resurrection." i pulled out an old mohair shawl i was making several years ago.-my gawd-it had creases-from being shoved in a nondescript canvas bag(hey-it's better than my usual hideous bright yellow "grocery-outlet" bag-i'm a bag lady in the making) the shawl was beginning to felt. birdsong, claudia and i meant last night at the one and only pizza parlour around these parts-(birdsong got me out of my hermit hut.) i actually knitted on my "ufo" shawl while drinking beer and eating a greek salad. here's a picture-my stormy sea shawl: it's a oat couture pattern-a very simple pattern, which is probably why i got bored with it. i do love their patterns though. i hope to make one of there vests soon. but i need to finish other projects first!!!!
my other fiber endeavours include finishing my st.patrick day socks and also getting skeins ready for the fair. trying to figure out which ones are the best. hmmmm?

one of the perks of having a hubby in the organic produce field is now and then you get a treat-a real treat. check out these organic heirloom tomatoes we got-i wish i could say they were ours-but my tomatoes are not ripe yet.(except for our cherry tomatoes) check these babies out:

liam loved devouring the "brain" tomato: gee, i think we should have made a film first: "attack of the killer(brain) tomatoes." gee, i'm having deja vu.
the organic farm these lucsious fruits came from is terra firma farm. now, i have never been a bulldog fan. until i saw this picture of lulu: i am in love-l-u-v kinda of love. this cutie lives at the farm:
she rocks! doesn't she just make you want to eat organic produce? she's my little sugar pumpkin! geez steph you are pathetic! i'm really missing having a dog around. i'm thinking next spring might be new puppy time for me. i love rescuing animals-but it's hard when you have livestock and kids around because rescue animals do generally come with baggage. but we'll see if the right one comes along-like chelsie did. i miss her so much!

on a lighter note, i actually brewed a batch of beer a while back. it's ready to drink-yea! it's been so effin hot that i brewed me up a a cool refreshing heffivizen-total hack job on the spelling sorry. here's a picture-complete with lemon wedge-and seed! for good luck. (i just made that up)yum!

Sunday, July 22, 2007

wrapping it up!

hubby took boys to the river. it certainly is hot enough to go, but i just can't go-the amount of people going to the river these days is obscene. it's not locals anymore-our beautiful river spots are in guide books now-our poor river is getting over crowded with sacramentites, bay area folks and marysvillites too!-the impact is devastating. she needs a break-so i'm choosing not to be one more body. plus-why on earth do i want to go and try to enjoy a spectacular river spot as if it were a public pool-remember, i'm a hermitess. jeez at least people don't wash their hair at the public pool-once again-STUPID PEOPLE!

i wanted to wrap up our road trip today. after we left our campsite in yellowstone, we headed to a cabin in island park, idaho. that my bonus sister kim found-it was great-besides the rodent inhabitants. there was an old cemetery next to the cabin-my kind of place. here's a pic of the cabin obviously not taken in the summer. we had 11 family members staying here!

i believe it was the targhee creek that was moving past the side-very cold and refreshing. i saw a weasel drinking out of it one morning-very sweet. we were only about 12 miles from west yellowstone the small historic town next to yellowstone national park. my dad was thrilled as he spent 5 summers there as a redcap for the union pacific railroad-where visitors to the park came in by train. he was 15 when he started. he had his own cabin made from an old box car and the stories he had to tell were amazing! the old depot is now a museum and the curator was tickled to talk with my dad and they gave us a ride in the old restored 193? yellowstone bus that used to take the visitors from the depot to the park.

the town of west yellowstone was a lot of fun. it was decorated with painted bison everywhere.
liam and i got up early one morning and drove to quake lake-a place where a devastating earthquake occurred in 1959(?) it was real creepy. a lot of campers were buried alive there and there is a great feeling of unrest. we continued our journey and pulled over to this beautiful river spot that had a small diner. we were hungry! we were in fly fishing country-check out the sign at the diner:
the diner had stuffed fish all over the walls and they only took cash-no credit cards and no atm-this was nostalgic for me. but the problem with diner food anywhere is there is not much of a choice for us veggie eating folks. not that i never eat of the flesh-but i NEVER eat diner flesh. here was the special of the day-probably the special of the day all over small rural american diners:

our days were spent visiting family in idaho falls- the younguns helped move grandma's stuff-she is turning 99 this fall and has finally agreed to move in with my aunt -n- uncle(at the farm)- we had a family picnic on the farm-4th of july. i spent time looking at old family photo albums and walking into the old potato cellar smelling in good memories. carey and my bonus brother edmund got their first fly fishing lesson from my dad, the kids also had fun swimming in the irrigation canals, liam had a blast plowing thru the farm fields on a quad(driven by my cousin toby)-and everyone just sort of did their thing. all in all it was a wonderful trip-the boys are enjoying-right now-as i type-biscuits and -no not gravy- but my aunt georgia's homemade gooseberry jam(gooseberries from their ranch in montana)-thanks georgia!

the above photo is the old gas pump on the farm.

on our way home we stopped off at my birthplace-american falls, idaho. and it still is a "one" stoplight town(we counted it.). we went to the cemetery that sits above the snake river to visit my grandparent's grave on my mom's side. we also hit the rockland pharmacy to have a coke in honor of my grandpa who went there everyday to have one. the old soda fountain is still there. unfortunately the inside pics are on my film camera. but here is the sign.

i'm bummed that the kids didn't get to try "clover club" potato chips-they are no longer made-these where a childhood favorite of mine. carey made the observation that californians seem more friendly than idahoans-strangers that is. like if you say hello to a stranger in california they say hello back. but in idaho-they just look at you suspiciously. hmmm. i did not notice this but it sure is good to be home. i've lived in 9 states so far. i call california my home now as it's the state i've spent the most years in. funny-i never, ever thought california would be my home. life is funny.

Friday, July 20, 2007

old faithful

i'm having some mild depression here-THE SUN IS BACK. a few days ago we were blessed and treated with a cool, cloudy and rainy day(singular not plural.) it was heavenly bliss. my kind of weather. i was so happy and full of life. i didn't need to water my garden-wow! for you folks who don't live in nor-cal(besides the coastal areas) can you imagine not seeing, feeling or experiencing rain till the end of october? every g.d. day is clear blue sky and hot!-ugh! even when i lived in new mexico we had the summer monsoons! now, i'm not complaining-well, yes i actually am.-summer is a hard time for me. bare with me. i will take our rainy day as special treat. here is a pic. of the gorgeous sky:
i've been working a pair of green socks for st. patty's day-a special day for me-i like ankle socks. can you see the cables? i dyed this fauklands wool then spun it-and had a splendid time too!
okay back to the road trip: no trip to yellowstone is complete without seeing old faithful blow-see, even the mascots are excited.
here, they wait patiently for the special moment:
the crowd got so excited i was unable to take a picture of all three while ole faithful was erupting so i had to pick Able up and get a background shot.-look at that smile. liam and carey both got good videos of this experience.
after old faithful blew i insisted on hiking to morning glory pool-it was only 2.8 mile round trip-even though the boys were tired(it was after 5:00) i pushed. i always wanted to see this pool and never got a chance. it was a great walk-geyers galore-and they would just blast unexpectly as you walked by-how cool! like this one:
i loved evey minute-at the end the morning glory pool was a bit of a let down-the colors were not as brillant because of stupid people throwing things into it clogging up the vent-can i say it again louder: STUPID PEOPLE! they have to clean the pool out every year-this makes me sad and pissed-once again-stupid people. on the way back liam got an excellent photo of a mountain bluebird-one of my favs! ah the sweetness of life.
okay, now everywhere in the park you are reminded of this:
now we had only seen two bison from the car the whole trip-quite a let down. but as we made our way back from our walk -i was a bit tired and hungry too-we almost walked right by this guy. i looked up and there he was- i was speechless- trying to get the boys attention as they had been staring the ground too! and i couldn't remember the word buffalo or bison-i was speaking gibberish using my hands. i mean he was right there! liam didn't want to walk past him-after seeing all the caution "gorging" signs(i wish i could show you that one.). there was no choice. i was not about to walk the whole loop again the other direction. so we forged past this gentle giant. awesome.
liam also has a "poop" photo essay of the trip-this photo here is bison poop:
well, i need to get dinner started i'll have to continue later- ciao!

Monday, July 16, 2007

roadtrip part 4-Thirteen Mile Lamb & Wool Ranch!

okay-i was gonna make you all wait for the fibery stuff for my last post- the grand finale-but i just couldn't wait-i am soooo excited to share this with you all. besides hanging out with family members i hadn't seen in awhile, the highlight of our trip was visiting Thirteen Mile Lamb & Wool Company in Belgrade, Montana(near bozeman). how wonderfully awesome this ranch is. we met one of the proprietors-becky weed who graciously gave us a tour- i had arranged a tour with the manager and we were late(sorry!) and she had to leave. thank you so much becky for our surprise visit. their wool is organic and "predator friendly"- meaning they do not kill native predators such as coyotes, mountain lions,bears,eagles, wolves etc. this is way cool for me as i love predator animals too! the mill is solar powered -hurray!-you've got to check out their website and support this wonderful ranch-the yarn they produce is wonderful -they use natural dyes!-the colors are FABULOUS! and-they do wool processing too! and you can buy rovings and other stuff too! i bought some yarn and some undyed roving for spinning. i wanted more but my car was soooooooo full. so let's get on to the photos! wow, life can't get better than this:
here's the solar powered mill:

oh yes, i forgot to mention-i might go over-board with photos in this post. i can't resist!
notice the gorgeous guard dog!!!!!!!
here's the inside of the mill-for processing the wool.

now, none of this is right order and we missed a few machines.

remember my issue of capturing true color when photographing yarn -well, it's still happening and this picture does not do it justice as the colors are simply scrumptious!
i wanted to move right in and become their personal slave-ha! on our way back to idaho we stopped off at an antique store that was to die for! if i had an extra $1000-okay let me correct myself-if i had an extra $999(there is no sale tax in montana) i would have bought this pair of mohair-(did you fiber loving folks hear me?) MOHAIR- ANGORA GOAT CHAPS from the 1800's-i was drooling-trembling-i have old photos of cowgirls wearing these-check these babies out:
i love montana!

Sunday, July 15, 2007

roadtrip part 3-a color study

besides being a geological extraviganza, yellowstone is a most wonderful area in color study-my god! i hope to use these photos for future dye combinations-i hope i can capture the beauty and awe that the great mother has bestowed upon us.

the pale blue and bone color is just so dreamy and calming:
yum yum sludgy squadgee scum! (above)

for the love of orange!!!!!!
okay-only two more photos for this post:

now if i can only figure out how to reproduce these colors-and call it the yellowstone series. sara! oh sara!

roadtrip part 2!

on our way to the tetons we stopped off at jackson lake-the boys and elle went swimming and fishing:

the journey continues - the tetons have always been one of my most beloved group of mountains. they are breathtakingly beautiful and some believe " grand teton" means "large teat" named by french explorers. hmm. what was on their minds? either they missed the ladies or really wanted a glass of milk-what do you think?
moose country! they love the willows and marshy places-i'm very fond of the largest member of the deer family. unfortunately this was the only moose i saw:
now, i am more of a river gurl than a lake gurl(except for the great lakes-they rock!) but jenny lake has got to be the sweetest little lake ever-it sits at the base of the tetons.
gee, i wonder who jenny was. this lake is cold and clear- liam was inspecting it when he "accidently" fell in. ha! let me clear my throat-this was after i asked him to keep his clothes dry as we were running out of dry ones.

kim, sharon and elle continued their adventure looking for hot springs outside of jackson hole. which was sounded fun but the boys were not into extending driving time-they were sick of sitting in the car and we still had quite a drive back to camp. we opted to head back to yellowstone. on our way we came across an old log catholic church. now i was raised catholic-but no longer follow that faith-(i believe the term is "recovering" catholic-no offense to any catholic readers out there)but i still enjoy checking out churches-i love all the stained glass and icons. this church was simple and everything was wooden-very earthy. after living in new mexico i grew fond of the old latino catholic images(especially the tatoos!) such as the sacred heart and of course the virgin of guadalupe(you go gurl!) here's what we found:

after exploring the church(the boys were real interested in the confessional booths) we were hungry and very very sick of sandwhiches. we stopped at colter bay village in hopes of some decent non-road food. wow! did we luck out-although very unorganized(many upset customers) the food was great-local organic greens, the chicken,buffalo,elk and beef was free range and organic-now i generally(meaning: except when the desire to eat the flesh of certain creatures is so strong my body becomes a stalking carnivore i do give in to these such urges-my body lets me know when i need it-sshhh all you members of the secret society of organic brat eaters) don't partake in "these" such animals-but i think the meat industry really needs to change and i get excited when i see alternatives to factory farming outside my local coop)-i had wild caught salmon(yes i do partake in aquatic animals-i no longer call myself a veggie-even though the majority of my food is plant based) tacos-yumyum and it was afforable too- except for the 5$ bottle of beer i had with dinner-jesus! i had to save the bottle at that price. gee that was a bit wordy.
gotta love the name though! okay fibery folks-i do have some cool wooly stuff coming-but just hold your horses-i'm getting there. i need to get off me damn arse and get some house hold duties done.