Things I Like

  • Game of Thrones

Friday, May 22, 2009

England - Hyde Heath - Buckinghamshire

May 22, 2009

I'm in England today. I got in yesterday afternoon, May 21st. I did really well on the sleep thing. Due to the lack of sleep on the plane ride over, staying awake until bedtime on the first day is problematic. But I had a couple cups of coffee space over the day and a couple of gin and tonics last night and I slept all night. I woke up at the normal 6:00am ready to start the day. Cool!

My daughter's house (I say my daughter for short even though it belongs to she and her husband and 3 children for short), is really amazing. It's really an estate on several acres. The house is 100 years old but has been newly redone. We watched a movie in the home theater last night in the basement. It was amazing. O.K. please forgive me if I say amazing too many times here :-). They have a huge family kitchen with an agha. If you don't know what an agha is, I'll tell you. It's a huge stove thing that stays on all the time. It has a little burner going inside it and this whole thing stays warm, hot really, all the time. It keeps this immense kitchen warm - well that and the radiant heating in the floors. You never have to turn on a burner because there are these big griddles on it that stay hot all the time. You only have to put your pan on an already hot griddle. You would never be able to use something like this in California but it's wonderful here.

The kids went swimming yesterday in their incredible indoor pool (see - I can say words other than amazing). I plan on getting some exercise swimming while I'm here. At least that's the plan.

My room in England is in the guest suite. It has a sitting area, complete with couch and a lovely bathroom with clawfoot tub and separate shower. The claw feet on the tub are copper as well as the spigots (I guess that's what they call them). Also, the sink is a matching copper as well as the cabinet hardware. The tiles in the floor are all 1" glass tiles which shine in the light. Very pretty.

A weird fact about England? They don't have electrical outlets in the bathrooms. If you want to use your curling iron or hair dryer, it has to be done somewhere in the bedroom. And there aren't always mirrors near the electrical outlets so it's interesting trying to see what you're doing.

I'll post some pictures of the house soon.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Deb's Spinning Wheel

My friend Deb is an artist. I'm an artist too but Deb is an ARTIST. She incorporates her artistic talent in almost everything she does and doesn't do anything in a small way. She has decorated her Majacraft Suzie Pro wheel in her typical magical way. Here it is - ta da!
This is a three dimensional design with feathers, leaves and sparkles. When it goes round it sparkles and shines, it's mezmerizing. Click on the picture to get a closeup of the design.

Friday, May 1, 2009

CNCH Sonoma - 2009

Well CNCH Sonoma was fabulous. We had a great time. We spent Friday night in a B&B in an old Victorian one story house with a wine bar on Friday night and a continental breakfast on Saturday morning. Saturday and Sunday nights were spent at the Sonoma Valley Inn. It was a lovely stay with jacuzzi & swimming pool and quiet nights.

The conference itself was wonderful as well. It was very well organized. We had a finger food and champagne get together and bag exchange on Saturday night. The classrooms were all very spacious and most people had plenty of elbow room and light.

My 2-1/2 day class was on irridescent weaving with Bobbi Irwin. It was the class that everyone seemed to want to be in for some reason. Luckily I got in. I made some grevious errors. In my defense, I had never taken a weaving class at conference or a weaving workshop anywhere. I didn't realize that one should bring a workshop tool kit when away from home. I also didn't spread the warp and check the threading before I left. (Don't ask me why, I guess I just lost my mind.) I was so pleased with myself to have gotten warping accomplished 2 months early that I just put the loom away and never gave it another thought. I do think, however, that workshop teachers should remind people of these things. They shouldn't assume that everyone has thought of everything to bring to workshop. I do have a list of things for next time. There are about 10 essential items to put on this list and in my workshop tool kit next time. I was one of those annoying people who wind up borrowing things from the people sitting next to them in workshop. Luckily, I was sitting next to a very sweet nice lady who didn't seem at all annoyed with me asking to borrow stuff. I did try to not be too anoying though.

If you want to see pictures from the workshop, they are on my flickr pages at:

Hand Painted Bamboo into Singles

I finally got my two lots of hand painted bamboo fiber spun up into singles. They are really shiny and pretty. I will ply them with a single ply wool at some point. I have no idea what I'll do with it when spun up. There will probably be something like 350 yards per bobbin. It's rather interesting how each of the color pallets spun up. The cool pallet didn't seem to spin up as brilliantly as the raw fiber but the warm pallet did. I think one of the reasons the colors are more muted in the spun is because the color didn't seem to penetrate as well on the inside of the roving.