Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Spinning Class at SAFF

This past weekend, I took my first spinning class, and no, it did not involve a stationary bicycle.  I used a spinning wheel for the first time, with adult supervision of course.  My instructor was the very patient, Julie (she's the one sitting on the floor).  She assured us that spinning should be fun; perfection doesn't have to be the goal.
 The class was held at SAFF, the Southeastern Animal Fiber Fair, in Fletcher, NC.  It was just about heaven for anyone who loves anything fibery--from fiber animals to roving (fiber prepared for spinning) to finished projects. 

And there were spinning wheels!  Who knew there were so many kinds?  From a hundred year old parlor wheel to modern versions made from PVC.  I had told Andy, my husband, that I wanted a spinning wheel for my birthday.  He knows me well enough to take me seriously, so he told me to pick the one I wanted.

I chose a Lendrum, like the one you see in the class photo.  It doesn't look like the kind you picture from fairy tales, but it suits me well.  It's easy to figure out and I can even fold it to take along.  You know, for all those spinning events I imagine myself attending.

There's also a nice stash of dyed wool in my trunk, waiting to be spun...

(Oh, and apparently I frown when I'm concentrating.  Don't confuse that with grumpiness.  I was having fun, honest!)

Wednesday, October 24, 2012


I am excited beyond all reason for this weekend.  I'm going to SAFF, the Southeastern Animal Fiber Fair in Fletcher, NC.  It is heaven for fiber enthusiasts--spinners, crocheters, knitters, weavers, as well as those who raise fiber animals. 

I'm going to take a spinning class on Friday and spend Saturday shopping for my birthday present from my husband.  Yep, I've been given approval to buy a spinning wheel. 

In honor of my trip, I thought I'd offer a few links to amazing spinning/fiber oriented websites:

Joyuna--This post has a picture of some stunningly beautiful sheep.  Really.

One Crazy Fiber Lady--Nice pictures of drop spindles, as well as a beautiful wheel.

The Fiber of My Being-- The first post here shows some Newfoundland dog hair, cleaned for spinning!

The Sojourning Spinner--Love this blog that focuses on spinning with a drop spindle.

Bessybee Fiber's Blog--My goodness!  The gorgeous fiber, ready to spin...

PumpkinTownPrimitives--And, this is Renee Gillespie.  My husband bought my drop spindle from her a couple of years ago, along with an instructional video.  I had a chance to meet her at a living history event last weekend and we exchanged phone numbers.  Hopefully, we'll cross paths at SAFF!

I plan to come back with pictures of my weekend, including my new spinning wheel.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Hey, at least you don't have to sit through a slide show...

Count your blessings, people, I'm showing vacation photos and you don't have to sit in my family room and watch 100's of slides with pictures of my thumb covering half the view. 

For the first time, my husband Andy and I took just our son on a special trip.  We even let him pick the place.  He chose Hawaii (that's my boy!)  We went to the big island, Hawaii.  
One of our side trips was to Volcanoes National Park where we went in a lava tube.  It's a tunnel sort of cave left behind when lava makes its way though.  Andrew loved it!

Depending on which side of the island you're on, it's mostly sunny or mostly rainy, as you can probably tell by looking at the pictures.  There are beautiful views around lots of corners and a wonderful botanic garden on the east, or Hilo, side. 

 On our last day, a local man suggested we drive to the northern tip of the island.  I thought, "Really, it's that much better there?"  Yes.  It is.  This is the Hawaii that was in my imagination--absolutely spectacular.

(Do you like the way I've just jumped back into blogging, acting like I haven't neglected it for the past two months?)

Friday, October 19, 2012

Mad Scientist Birthday Party

My son recently celebrated his 11th birthday (I can hardly believe it!)  My sister-in-law, Lori, volunteered to host the party.  She's great at this sort of thing; honestly, she can plan a party in her sleep.  So, with just a couple days to plan, she came up with what may have been the best party theme ever for an 11 year old boy. 
The party decorations included glass jars filled with color coordinated candy, a plastic skeleton and various desktop type science-theme toys, like a the solar system looking one as a center piece.  Of course, we all had lab coats (men's white dress shirts) and safety goggles (from the dollar store).  Food included "worms" (spaghetti) and a lab experiment gone wrong (the cake, with a tipped jar on it and green frosting coming out).

 We had a great time and Andrew will never forget this birthday!  Thanks, Lori!