Monday, December 31, 2012

it's been a long haul...............

i can't believe it's been 7 months since i last posted. and blogger has completely changed!!!  argh!!!!  sigh.  heavy sigh.  do you know how many blog posts ive written in my head since then...too many to count.  i write in my head constantly- and when i'm alone i write out loud(i.e. talking to myself)  my dog thinks i'm nuts!  besides stephen west hasn't blogged since april 25th.  so, i'll try not to feel too bad about it!

my hubby asked me once if the reason i hadn't posted in so long was because of all my time spent on facebook.  i thought about it for a second-as yes, i am on facebook a lot.  but that's not the real and whole reason.  i realized it was.....depression.  there i said it. i don't like blogging about depressing downer stuff-who wants to read my  whiny-ass complaints -or about me on my pity pot-how pathetic.  but then i realized-the title of my blog is "the woolydaisy-a window into my world"   my world isn't always as rosy, peachy keen and awesome as i portray it be. i only write about the cool and fabulous stuff. but  my life is just like everyone elses-up and down, good and bad-a constant ebb and flow.  yet 2012 seemed particularly hard on me.  i struggled and still am struggling with many things. 

between a minor bike wreck and bad physical therapy i managed to rupture and tear a disc in my lower back(L5-S-1 vertebrae)  the pain was unbelievable....  i was unable to do anything-sitting and driving were the worst!  i'm a very physical person-and being forced into a  seditary life was just too much- everything hurt-i couldn't bike, hike,spin wool or sit to knit, load the dish washer-let alone go to the bathroom without crying. ( i know i know tmi)  but when you start fearing the need to go to the bathroom-you know your life is sucking.....big time.  simple things you take for granted-poof!   the doctor wanted me to do the steroid injections into my disc-that just didn't sit right with me.  -i decided to take the slow less invasive route-i got off the pain killers except ibuprophen, boosted many natural supplements and took it as easy as possible.   what a long haul it's been...if you've never been in chronic pain before you don't realize how depressing it is.  your life is taken away from you.  i'm still on my daily doses of ibuprophen but i'm feeling better and stronger and see light at the end of the tunnel.  i can take walks now- flat ones.  driving no longer makes me cry.  no movie theatres for me  but i can do more and more each day.  and look forward to the day i can ride my bike again.  you see- i was getting really strong and in great shape-best ive been in years.  i felt great.  i was planning on hard to race the downieville classic in my 50th year.  i turn 50 soon....very soon.  there will be no such race for me.  i've come to terms with it, but i'm still disappointed.  i set a goal.  and it crumbled.  i realize now my back will never be able to handle the "trail of tears" -i know that sounds negative-just being realistic. the beginning of the race starts with 8 miles up the mountain-known as the "trail of tears."  taint gonna happen.   2013 is going to be spent rebuilding my body, getting healthy and getting my mojo back!  onward and upward!

a quik update for the latter half of 2012:

our youngest, liam graduated 8th grade-which brought my 14 years of homeschooling career to an end. very very emotional for me.  he is now attending an early college high school in town.  it's is on the community college campus and he earns college credit while also attending high school classes- for free!  it's a fabulous school and program.   best of all he really likes it.  i was so worried about the adjustment-  i mean homeschooled your whole life-then put into 5 days a week public school- i've been going thru a mini version of the empty nest.  

liam has grown and still enjoys his mountain bike racing.  he is now on a high school mountain bike team they have been training and the racing starts in february.  this past summer he did some major races-  i am so proud to say he placed 2nd in his division at the downieville classic-a big accomplishment!!!

beginning of race in sierra city
happy racer!
i won't go into too much detail about his racing as he has his own blog now.  check it out if you are interested
sierra singletracks.  it's a great blog!!!!

we got a new car this summer-her name is ruby-aint she sweet?-we traded her for a our old funky vw bug.

racking my brain here....what else???  we had another fabulous and wonderful annual fiber trash girls retreat in forest city again!  besides tons of fiber fun we enjoyed many goodies:

you can't beat bacon beer and corn whiskey!
big plans to do a whole fiber trash girl retreat post-someday-yeah right~~

i put some fibery stuff in the county fair.

wow!  it's been a long time since i've posted- now my brain hurts.  i can't think anymore-that's it in a nutshell.  i'm tired.  wrapped up the year the best i could . i have tons of fibery project i should be working on!  so-have a great new year!!!!  may the new year be filled with much fibery goodness!!!!

Friday, June 1, 2012

a little bit of this, a lttle bit of that.

the finishing goddesses are hanging around my house these days-yes, it's true-drum roll please!!!! throw in a few fireworks too!

because i "little miss startius of all times" has finished yet another UFO. my kick ass hand dyed, hand spun socks. BFL BABY!!! as seen in my previous post.

being a knitter-i have tons of stuff that needs hand washing. i loath hand-washing my stuff. it seems so time consuming. even with the fancy no rinse wool washes out there-i still loath and i like to complain about it. today i was inspired -a vision brought forth to me-by the old winemakers of italy. if i fill my bathtub with warm water and add my special "no rinse" wool wash-i can clean a bunch of stuff at once.

note my feet(remember the old winemakers of italy) i just walked all over my knits. i did not stomp as i didn't want to felt them. i let them soak awhile and walked some more. when i was done i just put them in the washing machine and did a spin cycle to spin out the extra water. and wah-la! they were done. lay flat to dry. this method is NOT meant for delicate knits!!! this is for your hearty rugged knits. farm knits(thanks ann!) cleans your feet nicely as well:) look at the dirt at the bottom of the tub- yuck! you shoulda seen the water. a tad embarrassing i might add. guess i need to wash them more often. i did get 5 sweaters, 2 vests and a man cowl washed in one swoop!

i recently went to chico for an appointment and as any addicted fiber artist will confess- i HAD to visit the local yarn shop. heartstrings was the name and savings was the game! when my friend and i walked in we were greeted with smiles and i quote "everything in the shop is on sale-everything!" had i died and gone to heaven? i had to pinch myself. i was NOT dreaming. then a horrible thought came to mind-you aren't closing the store are you? i asked. nope-it was their annual sale-to clear space for the new fall yarns. well glory be!!!!

i was rather restrained if you ask me. i got some wool wash-yeah! a skein of misty alpaca-baby me boo.(top skein) in a delicious iced raspberry melody. i have wanted this yarn for a cowl for fricken ever! right below that is a gorgeous skein of tree frog pediboo. ultra soft merino /bamboo blend. it's the most gorgeous silvery charcoal metal color! i started(shhhh) the tidepool cowl for Liam's ES at our homeschool charter. we have had Gale as our educational specialist since Liam was in kindergarten. i wanted to make her something special. bottom left is a skein of noro kuryeon sock yarn- for half price!!! how can you resist that????? bottom right is another noro yarn- "ayatori" 60 % wool 40% silk. in soft subtle muted colors. can you say snugly cowl??
as you can see- i was very good-i coulda gone gonzo ape shit. sale goes till june 9th ya'll, do i smell a Fiber trash girl road trip???? we found an awesome restaurant too!

on the homestead side of things we had a surprise on mother's day-

not 4 baby chicks but 8! our rooster-"gimpy" can barey get around but he's able to get himself in and out of the hen house and get to the food and water-and he obviously can still get the job done as we thought the eggs were blanks. mae bell and june- both sat on the eggs and both mothered the chicks together-too cute. we did end up giving mae bell and the babies to someone as we do NOT need more chickens!!! speaking of chickens. our girls have been laying great!!!!! beautiful eggs.

we had the best lettuce crop we have ever had this spring. we just finished up the last head. how nice not to have to buy lettuce. can't wait to plant more this fall. look at the size of the head.

till next time..........

Friday, May 18, 2012

mini post

a few weekends ago the boys ventured out and rode the north yuba trail. i am still unable to ride- back issues suck! but i made a little hang out spot at rocky rest and knit the time away!

had the whole beach to myself!! note: no longer a Luddite-my knitting pattern is saved on an apple device. yes, it's true. i've been applefied. here's my view while sitting on my blanket.

i worked on one of my UFOs(unfinished object). handspun socks. the pattern is so simple. i love this pattern-check it out! it's free!!!

that's all for now- just a mini post- not feeling like posting much more. maybe later. ciao.

Friday, May 11, 2012

sea otter, a miracle and the happy dance!

lot's happening here at the woolydaisy homestead. haven't had a chance to blog about anything. to catch up- we headed to monterey to the sea otter classic- an amazing bicycling event- our youngest son loves cross country mountain bike racing and sea otter is the bomb! (gee don't i sound hip? hahaha-i'm sure the bomb is already old school-help me out here hipsters)

liam was very excited as sea otter is the "stitches" for bicycling- booths galore with everything imaginable from tires to chain lube, cliff bars to handle bars- great swag!! i was burping cytomax by the end of the weekend!!!

Liam raced the cross country mountain bike race. 14.6 miles i think it was with a lot of elevation gain.

liam did great! he came in 11th out of 31 racers. very proud of him!!

got to spend a wee bit at the beach as well! i "heart " the monterey coast so much!!!

spring exploded while we were gone.

i quickly started some healing salve with all the herbs that were bursting forth! calendula, plantain and self heal.

placed them in in a jar with olive oil to steep on the windowsill. later i will strain the herbs and blend the oil with bees wax to make the salve.

many of you are probably wondering about the "miracle" in due time in due time...saving the best for last:)

I made another lacy gaitor -see previous post, using the same skein. this time i used a different cast on on method with smaller needles-#3 and the rest of the cowl was done on #4. this worked much better.

compare the 2 cowls- the top one being the new cowl with the different cast on. the first one was too loose and floppy. if you want more info-go to my ravelry project page here.

dish rags have been happening on the homestead- i want to eventually have all handmade ones. never buy a store bought one again. here's a new one:

bet you didn't know dish rags could be so exciting and cool- hey they are the bomb too! and so are folks who make them! more to come!

remember "darlin" the merino fleece i purchased from judy at stitches LAST year? well to refresh your memory click here. i finally got around to getting it processed. a huge thank you to mardi for taking it down to morro fleece works for me and to wendy who picked it up and brought it back-saved a bunch on shipping!! it turned out fabulous. sheri does such a great job at morro fleece works.

buttery goodness! luckily hubby was out of town so i could sneak the huge box into my yarn store, studio, closet. now if my back would just cooperate i could start spinning down my stash!!!

DRUM ROLL PLEASE! now the moment you've all been waiting for-the miracle. what miracle? are you ready? woolydaisy-yes, that's me......actually completed a UFO(unfinished object.) insert happy dance- i finished my tappan zee bartlett cardi and i love it so much!!! it even fits!!! this is really big for me- miss winner of the startitus award!!!

hope to get some modeling pics soon. i love elsebeth lavold silky wool yarn-one of my favs!! and in my favorite color too- my sistah sharon describes the color perfectly: "electric pear/acid bio-luminescent bog moss lichen green" thanks for the description sharon-it's perfect!

if you've been keeping up with my blog you will know what this means-woolydaisy-hey that's me-can cast on a new project guilt free!!!! and i did-immediately-got my junkie fix!!!! keep it shiny wooly!!! i casted on my brown-eyed susan shawlette from juju's loops new fabulous book!!!

i'm knitting mine from shibui staccato sock-merino/silk! ultra soft baby!!!! cruising right along while learning the joy and tranquility of becoming a monogamous knitter. well sort of.

Friday, April 13, 2012

SHHHHH! don't tell......

SHHHHHH! don' t tell the fiber trash girls.........but i just couldn't stand it- i HAD to cast on a new project. the junkie needed her fix! but i chose an adorable "QUICK" to knit cowl so i wouldn't add to my towering pile of ufo's that are taking over(see past posts). yes, i finished it in record breaking time! it's called the lacy gaiter by kathy north. the cowl is knitted from noro-silk garden sock. i haven't blocked it yet.

P.S. i am still frantically knitting away on my tappan zee cardigan-i almost lost my mind for a second and turned it into a bolero because i had decided as a reward for finishing the cardigan i could start a new major project-the brown eyed susan shawl from that awesome of all awesome books-juju's loops. see previous post. i even have some shibui yarn ready and waiting in the wings: a luscious merino silk blend. another shhhhhhhhh! i'm suppose to be on MAJOR fiber restriction but i saw it at my local yarn store-meadow farm yarn studio- and it literally jumped off the shelf and into my arms- what can i say? was that a sign or what????

Sunday, April 8, 2012

juju's loops

juju's loops- i've waited for you for so made the trek across the ocean-all the way from london, england. you are now mine, all mine!!!! i'm so happy you are finally here! i want to dance with you.

Juju's loops how do i love thee? let me count the ways.

1. your beautiful patterns- so lovely! i want to make them all! all of them, i said!!!

2.the photography is grand- eye candy! what can i say? knitters porn!!! i want to live within the pages of you!

3. your cute compact size can fit in my knitting bag-i can take you with me wherever i go!

4. your colors and yarns are amazing-i can't help but drool all over you!! i guess you'll have to get your own copy to see what i'm talking about-amazing!!! simply amazing!!!

5. you make me want to commit... commit to finishing projects so i can look as cool as your models!!!

yes, juju- you make me glad to be alive!!! you rock like nothing else!!!!

your creators susan cropper and juju vail, i praise thee, i worship thee and i thank thee. you are true genius!!! they have a wonderful blog that you simply must check out. free patterns too-woot!
my son was able to capture my joy.

P.S. i'm moving to england

Friday, March 30, 2012

hall of shame

while coming to terms with my "hall of shame" concerning my UFO's that seem to breed uncontrollably at a high rate- in my previous post i confessed( yes soxy, i think it was that confessional in Carmel) to you all my problem of never finishing my knitting projects-i just keep casting on!!! i found 17 UFO's without looking all that hard...i know there are more hidden and/or lost in my closet studio. i don't think i really want to know how many unfinished projects truly exist.

but i quickly got to work and i finished one of my projects- "wooly you rock!" i said to myself while patting myself on the back. here they are: my "uvaUrsi bog socks" knit from sanguine gryphon taveller yarn. blue wanted to show you his fabulous built in socks.

so now my UFO count went down to 16!!! hooray for me!!! i was so excited that i felt like casting on a new project!!! the fabulous zuzu's petal cowl- i mean-have you seen the cuteness of this thing??? MOG! MOG! MOG! check it out. who could resist such cuteness? not me!

but just before searching thru my stash for some yarn to cast on- my faithful and true fiber trash girls came to my rescue and convinced me to finish one more project before starting a new one. they were right! okay. i decided to finish my tappan zee bartlett as it will be a perfect spring sweater.

this morning i almost choked on my breakfast when i realized there was a cloth bag hanging on my chair and had been hanging there for some time(actually i really knew it was there- i was just in heavy denial.) i peeked inside and low and behold.....2 more projects!!!!! a baby sweater and another pair of socks- both with yarn i dyed myself.

been so long i don't remember who this sweater was for and what pattern i was using-dang! gee, wasn't there another baby sweater in the last post that i had forgotten who it was for? how pathetic! the socks i'm not too thrilled about and may just frog them and use the yarn for a shawlette or cowl. the yarn is super snuggly-would feel great around my neck! mainly thinking of frogging because they are coming out pretty thin. i like my socks rugged and thick!!!

in the cupboard in my room i also found another 2 projects.

these awesome fingerless mittens- pattern by no other than the fabulous Eileen Lee- who works at my LYS. and a luxuriously soft mohair feather and fan shawl that really needs to be finished as it is so soft and cozy i want to wrap up in it NOW!

isn't that gorgeous!!!!!

so my UFO count as of today is now 2o. ( 17-1+4=20) holy cow! feels good to get it out in the open and talk about it!!

on to other topics-i've been playing and having fun with some 2 step dye processing. i've been painting skeins of yarn in rather bright colors then i do a quick hot overdye in a solid. here's an example:

here's bright-wowza! then a plunge into the hot bath of blue:

i love the iridescent quality this produces.

i end with this ditty of info for you. i'm so glad i learned how to bake bread-thanks claud!!!!!!! cause when you run out of it-you don't have to get in the car and drive to the store. you can just make a loaf. so simple yet so gratifying. i think it should be a requirement for high school graduation.