Saturday, May 27, 2006

Well, we got out of the house today and that felt good! I even got to visit a nice little shop in Placerville called Lofty Lou's that has knitting supplies and some spinning. It was fun to look around. I just picked up a couple pattern magazines...I'm on a craft diet right now! :o) We went to a farmer's market, Apple Hill and then out to eat on the way home. Now we are all pooped!  Posted by Picasa

The sign for Lofty Lou's Posted by Picasa

A beautiful Iris I saw at the farmer's market in Placerville. I didn't have good lighting but it was so pretty I took the shot anyway. Got a flat of yummy strawberries when I was there too. Posted by Picasa

My girls, J and A, eating apple donuts up at Apple Hill. We love to escape up here and get out of the smog. I also buy a lot of fresh produce up here too. Posted by Picasa

Friday, May 26, 2006

Need Spinning Help!

Okay, ignore the rejected paint color that we haven't finished painting over and the cheap trailer door! I would like you to look at my spinning. This is 3-ply Navajo plied Corriedale (my friend Cary's ewe Valerie) which was nice to spin. I am still having beginning difficulties. I had problems with my singles getting it spun enough and then when I plied I think I overspun feet get too happy! I treadle too fast. I haven't washed or weighted this yet. Is there any hope of this being "knitable"? I have enough of this to spin to do a sweater and this was "trial" to see what I could come up with. I think I will put the plying head on next time and be more watchful of my treadling.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Okay, these posts are in reverse order so if you continue to read and make it to the bottom of today's posts, you will understand why my knitting blog is taking a sentimental bend! This is one of the most precious pictures I have of my Mother holding one of my girls (probably J based on the onesie) while my then 17.5 month old son D checked out his baby sister's hands. He always loved to lay his cheek on their downy soft hair. And when they had their caps on their heads he liked to pull them off. When we went in the car, it was like a game of "capture the flag" to him...he wasn't happy unless he had been able to snatch their little hats off! Now they are fighting over "Larry Boy" (Veggie Tales), who had what Lego blocks first and who is standing in front of who at the TV! Sigh... Posted by Picasa

This is me with my Grandmother, Holly Tisdale Hopkins. I have talked about her several times on my blog. Here she is giving me my first Bible, a Cambridge leather King James. She asked me what color I wanted and gave me a choice, but I told her that all Bibles were supposed to be black and say "Holy Bible" in gold! Where I got that, I have no idea! (My current Bible is burgandy leather and NIV) Grandma was foundational in my coming to faith and I praise God for the example she gave me. We had difficulties at times in our relationship, but never anything to keep us apart. As an adult I was able to realize that she and I were so alike that when she saw her own idiosyncrasies in me, it bothered her greatly. She was born a teacher and remained one her entire life. Sometimes that is a blessing and sometimes that is a "curse". I am "speaking the truth in love." This is the reality. But there are not enough words to express how much I learned from her or how she was a constant in my life which was in constant change throughout my childhood. Not only did she teach me about faith, but also creativity, natural beauty, cooking, gardening, reading, knitting and the list goes on. She loved my scrapbooking and lived to see my page about her influence on my life published in Memory Makers quilt pages book and to see my son born. He was her first great grandchild. 16 days after she met him, she died. I don't know what Heaven will be like and whether or not we will be having conversations with our friends and family about our earthly lives or if that will just be too trivial to think about, but when I see her I can't wait to tell her about all the other things I learned to do or learned about that I was not able to share with her. This June she would have been 100 years old and 9 days later I turn 40. We spent many birthdays together. Sometimes I didn't appreciate that as a selfishly want your own day and I had to share mine with her BD and Father's Day. But now I would love to spend a birthday with Grandma! (And Father's Day with my Daddy for that matter!) Still, my heart is at peace knowing that her Faith in Christ produced works of righteousness, bearing fruit and eternal life! Posted by Picasa

This is a blurry photo but it is another of my favorite layouts. On the left I recreated an applique pattern that my Great Grandma Tisdale put on a quilt that she made for her son's wedding in 1935. His photo is the bottom, large one. When my Mother got married in 1965, her Uncle's widow gave her the quilt and my Mother gave it to me. Posted by Picasa

Okay, so this is not knitting content, what else is new?! :o) On the Christian Artisans list a couple of us have been talking about scrapbooking and I went to see my friend Denise's layouts at and her work is gorgeous. So I thought i would post one of my favorite layouts. It was a semi-finalists in Memory Makers Magazine my state contest and was featured in the May-June 2000 issue. All the photographs are ones I took of my home state and represent both the west, central and eastern parts of the state. That's me in the bottom corner and hubby on the top. Around the layout are written words...names of places in the state and things the state is known for. It's pretty plain compared to a lot of scrapbooking these days but as a photographer I prefer a little cleaner/simple style that shows off the pictures. I'm not opposed to beautiful embellishments, just use them sparingly. I want to start learning how to do digital scrapbook pages, but there never seems to be enough time in the day as well as the fact that I have to many creative interests!  Posted by Picasa

While looking at my friend Denise's photos of her children when they were younger, I was inspired to look back at mine. The photos I took on this day always melt my heart. My girls were four days old, just home from the hospital 24 hours and so tiny since they were twins and born 5 weeks early. This is daughter J. And what is she wearing? A 15" baby doll's nightie that my Mom made to match my Christmas nightie about 197-1971! I still call her my little Dolly and daughter A is my "Baby Princess". It's good to look back on these pictures and remember how sweet they are, especially during weeks like this when their 3 yo personalities are about to drive me insane! LOL Posted by Picasa

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Here is my progress on the KAL shawl. This is unblocked, although the left side is slightly stretched. I have 22 columns across, which I think will block out to about 68-70" if I were to stop at this point, which I won't. I have a concern because the gal I am making this for is about a size 20 (I've never seen her but my Mom says she is between her and me in size). I know that triangle shawls are just not made for women with large shoulders or plus size women. I want it to be functional and I am concerned because unblocked right now the length is just over 30". I am wonder if it will go to her feet if I continue making it wide enough! I hate things that are pretty but can't be used, so I want to make sure to get it right. I guess I dont' really have any other option but to keep going and hopefully it won't look too distorted or freakishly long! This photo does not do the colors justice. The colorway really is beautiful and would go good with my 'mostly salt and some pepper' hair! :o) Posted by Picasa

My friend Debra on the Christian Artisans list, who I recently visited, just had her little boy Andrew on Mother's Day. Please be praying for them. Debra had anemia and blood loss with transfusions and Andrew was sent to a hospital an hour away first for oxygen and now is on antibiotics, still for several more days. Poor Debra has not even been able to hold him and that just breaks my heart. I know how I felt when everyone got to hold my babies before me and I had to wait through surgery and recovery...such a short time in comparison! Anyway, in my quilting class I have been working on this. It's very simple...9 patch blocks and snow ball blocks. It'll be about 54" square when it gets borders on. Debra loves all things vintage so I picked out a fun 1930s reproduction print with little dogs on it. I am hoping to get this done in the next week or so, so that when Andrew is home from the hospital and Debra is feeling well, I can go visit again! :o) Posted by Picasa

This is a close up of the fabric...little white Scotties...or technically they are "Westies". Posted by Picasa

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Well, here I am, it's my 5th Mother's Day (I count the one where I was 4 months pg because I was already a Mom then). This picture is actually for my Mommy! :o) This is the 8th Mother's Day that we have not been together and it really doesn't get any easier. I would say that my Mom's family was matriarchal. Grandpa died in 1962 so us grandkids really only know Grandma. We always gathered either at or with her for Mother's Day and Thanksgiving. These were special times, not without their own stresses, but they do hold good memories...good food, sharing gifts, talking, playing games, looking at everyone's latest photos. Mother's Day was often at Grandma's house in the sunshine, sometimes planting flowers. In later years, Grandma was less physically active, but she sat in her chair like the Queen Mum (absolutely no disrespect intended) and enjoyed watching all the activities as her chicks surrounded her. Somehow I always thought that when I grew up and had a family, I would be hosting large family gatherings too. But our family has spread to NC and CA and my children are the only ones in the next generation. I am no longer at the kids' table! How did that happen?! Everyone has busy lives. We all still love each other, care about each other, pray for each other, but somehow, something is lacking without those shared times. It is said that when God closes a door, He often opens a window...and so I am trying to follow Mary Engelbreit's advice and "bloom where I am planted", beginning new traditions, which aren't always easy with little people, and looking for the joy and the familiar in the new and different places and situations. I am so thankful to be celebrating as a mother today. It was not too many years ago that I was told I may have to give up my dream of having children, so I thank God for them all...even though I feel like I am going crazy! LOL And I thank God for all the women out there who are unable to be mothers biologically but who give their love and their lives to enriching and loving and teaching the little souls around them who are so hungry for nourishment. My life is better for several of these women in my life. Thanks Mom for all you have done too! I love and appreciate you. And thanks make the journey into motherhood worthwhile, bearable and adventurous! Posted by Picasa

D and Mommy. Posted by Picasa

Daughter A, who looks adorable but was being a stinker about having her picture taken! :o) Posted by Picasa

J checks out Mommy's corsage. Posted by Picasa

Here I am with daughter J. Posted by Picasa

Since all three children are in the same Sunday School class I was able to get three of everything. :o) I got three pots of Dianthus and three of Petunia. They'll fit right in with my potted plants. There were also cute little cards that even J and A scribbled on. Nothing like the gifts that come from little fingers! Posted by Picasa

A closeup showing there of the pots with Dianthus. One of them, that looks white in the photo is actually a pale lavender, which I had not seen before. Dianthus grows well here because it likes the heat. Posted by Picasa

The colors in this planter box were jsut so pretty today. I really didn't plan for these to all coordinate (some weren't showing any color when I planted them), but it worked out that way. Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Here is my progress on the KAL Simply Elegant shawl. I still haven't gotten the KAL info posted, but hope to soon. I like how it looks and pinned out one side (this is half) to take this picture. I am concerned that it will quickly become too long before it will become wide enough for the recipient. My Mom looked at the colors though and thought it would be really nice for the lady who will receive it. It is starting to get to the point now where each row is taking longer and longer and you start thinking..."hmm...why did I want to knit a shawl that is going to end in 4 gazillions stitches?!" :o) But, the gals on the Christian Artisans list who are participating in the KAL are also praying along for our friend Dale. She needs a bone marrow transplant and the one donor who had a 9/10 match cannot be found. They are now testing two others who are 8/10 matches to see if there is any possibility of working. We are hoping that God will just "zap" her and heal her, but we are praying for His Will. I love you Dale, even though I have never met you face to face and I think of you and pray for you every day while I work on the shawl. And I pray for the lady who is receiving this shawl too as she is fighting her second bout with cancer. Posted by Picasa

Columbine have always been one of my favorite flowers. I bought two plants this year and a packet of seeds to replenish my flower baskets! :o) Posted by Picasa

I love pansies and all the possibilities of colors they have. They are not the easiest to photograph though. Each one is like a little painting to me and I love to see what colors re combined and come out in each flower. Posted by Picasa