We did it! The number didn’t hit 111,000 until sometime between 10 – 11:30 am today but hey, what close timing. Thanks to all who’ve commented in the past day.
Comments for the drawing may still be made, be sure to put it in the 11.11 post to count and it must be submitted before 8 pm (Pacific Time) Friday the 13th.

Monday a friend called asking if Ed was still looking for a kitten. Yes, though we weren’t in a hurry. We wanted to take it slow and find the kitty that also made it clear s/he wanted us. She emailed me a picture of the kitten that had apparently been abandoned the night before at the retirement center where she worked. It hung around all night then followed a worker into the office that morning. It’d been having a field day on the receptionist’s desk for much of the day.

Seeing an expression of personality on the kitty’s face I let her know I’d be over to see it as soon as I finished my work for the day.

He just now scrambled up into my lap and deleted a few words. This kitty is a people lover! Whether in the office or siitting at the table weighing and writing on spindles he wants to be on my lap. Ed’s lap is just as good, maybe better. He plays hard and sleeps hard. Last night we decided to see what he’d do if he wasn’t crated during the night. I’d no sooner climbed between the sheets then he was in the crook of my back.

He’s also very intrigued with fiber, needles, spindles… I’ve had to be certain that all temptation is out of his reach but my, he’s a climber! He thinks I’m knitting socks for him to chew.

He hasn’t quite declared his name though it won’t be long before we know what to call him by. We think it might be something along the lines of feet, paws, or toes. Check out this back paw:

All of his feet have extra toes; one front paw even has seven claws!


Hold the presses! I’m stoked enough to switch horses from what I’d planned to post.

As of 8:20 this evening the stats show 85 hits short of 111,000 on this blog. Wouldn’t it be a fun coincidence to hit 111,000 on 11/11?
In my book it’s close enough to call for a celebration. How about a spindle drawing?

This last minute change of plans means I don’t have a picture of a spindle. Crazy as it might seem, office work stays on the office computer, personal stuff gets done on my laptop in the living room. Doing otherwise has created chaos in the past.

So, here’s the deal:
Leave a comment on the type of spindle you’d love to have: Aegean, Delight, et el. and your preference as to darker or lighter toned woods. If you’re not familiar with Jenkins spindles take a look at the spindle comparison page at our YarnTools website to see the different styles Ed has created then come back and leave a comment.

Each commenter will be assigned a number according to order of comments, the number will be put into an online Random Number Generator for the drawing.  Some comments will need to be approved before they show up, which I’ll do when I have the time and opportunity. These “hidden” ones waiting for approval will affect the numbering of the comments. I’m able to keep track of their order from this end.

Comments must be made only on this post to be counted.
Deadline to comment is Friday the 13th of November by 8:00 pm, Pacific Standard Time.
The Drawing will take place Saturday morning, time to be announced.

The person with the winning number will win a spindle from what we have in stock.

Spindles are great for taking your spinning everywhere, even fishing!

While the only spinning I did today was while walking with my spindle I’m happy to report that the second skein of Greenwood Fibers roving turned out great. I love chain-plying as I spin singles on a spindle but it’d been ages since I’d chain-plyed with a wheel with it taking some time to get the hang of smoother, less bumpy joins.

All in all, I’m very pleased with this skein.

The skein soaked in very hot water with some Dawn dish soap for about 10 minutes to set the twist then rinsed twice in cold water. A big thirsty towel was used to press out all the water then the skein hung to dry. Having worried that I was adding too much twist while plying, I was delighted that it hung almost straight down with barely a twist. Sometimes it pays to go with the gut instinct.

This yarn is soft with a firm hand. It will have excellent stitch definition and should be great for cosily wrapping around a neck to ward off winter weather.

Fiber: Greenwood Fiberworks 50% Merino / 50% Silk combed roving
Colorway: Mallard
Yardage: ca 400+

Yesterday was one of those days of poor decisions and forgetfulness.

Arriving at Haymaker’s parent’s place for his birthday celebration we discovered that we’d left his presents at home. I own the oversight: Ed loaded the car with the bag of jarred produce that Aurora had helped me can this summer as well as overseeing locked doors, cat out, grabbing the car keys. I got sidetracked gathering a knitting project and completely spaced on the gifts.

There were other incidents that don’t need elaboration. Bless Ed’s heart, he was so patient with me!

Today is Haymaker’s birthday so late this afternoon I buzzed into Silverton to deliver the presents to my daughter.  Ed and I had taken Violet birthday shopping for him on Friday and together wrap the gift she’d chosen for him. She was so excited about it she wanted to take it home and give it to him right away.

Driving eastward to home there was a wide column of billowing thunderclouds blazing white in the sunlight towering high above the Cascade Mountains. They glowed against a deep grey background of heavy rain clouds. I should have taken my camera and tried to capture the glory. There were areas where the sunlight turned the white clouds into opals.

Looking at the mass of darkness with the dazzling whiteness interposed on it I thought about how the people living in the areas underneath only perceived the stormy darkness. Our place is tucked into a small valley, the ridges on three sides block much of the sky, limiting our view. How often do we see only the dark over us when not that far off is incredible beauty if one takes the time to step away from the limited field of view. I can get so dragged down by the heavy black cloud that seems to have swallowed everything.

Then I was reminded that God always sees the whole picture: The entirety of all light, color and beauty far surpassing the darkness. My soul feels solace in such a thought.


(Photo taken late August in the morning. Imagine the lowering sun shining from in front of this cloud with all the sky behind it a deep grey.)

We ate fresh strawberries today. Fresh as in picked from a local farmer’s field and brought to our son-in-law’s birthday celebration. Oh my, were they ever a delicious treat! Haymaker’s sister plunked an entire flat = 12 boxes, what we used to call halicks when I picked berries back in the day.
(Poor quality picture taken by Ed on our cheap cell phone – which only gets reception when we’re away from home.)
IMG0066BI’m not a fan of strawberry jam, syrups, pies or any forms of strawberries except for freshly picked ones. Perhaps it was all those childhood summers of picking them for money, occasionally eating one as I crept along the row made me quite choosey about ripeness and flavor. There’s nothing to equal the flavor of a strawberry ripened to perfection right off the plant. These were just as I prefer them; a tad on the green side which makes a happy tartness. Steady Autumn rains moved into the valley yesterday. The coming week of cold rain will bring a quick end to this fabulous mid-autumn treat.

Haymaker’s mom had already whipped up some fresh cream with a bit of powdered sugar for her blueberry pies. Also perfect  for dipping the strawberries. mmm

The clouds turned from grey to splashes of fiery red as we headed north then east early this morning.
The Columbia Gorge is always a beautiful drive though today the overcast sky muted the colors flattened perspective with low hanging clouds obscuring much of the higher ridges. The picture below is of one of the islands in the Columbia River near Hood River. A boat dock and a partially hidden house tucked on the east side often makes me if someone actually lives there or uses it for a vacation or fishing home.
Arriving in The Dalles (rhymes with pals) we took roads that wound up the steep hillside to the venue where the Columbia Gorge Fiber Festival is being held this weekend. The CGFF used to be in April which didn’t work so well for us and so last year we decided not to do it. This year the organizers moved the date to November and the venue from Hood River to The Dalles – about 20 miles further east.

The views were amazing! I wish this picture did justice to the majesty. That’s a barge in the center of the Columbia, the John Day Dam is barely visible behind the trees, a white barge has just exited the locks on the left side of the dam. Rugged bluffs are faintly visible in the far distance nestled under those clouds. If it wasn’t for the autumn trees this is a monochromatic scene.

The marketplace space has floor to ceiling windows overlooking the town, river and mountains. People were knitting and chatting in the chairs placed next to the windows.

My first stop was at Cheryl’s NewHueHandspuns booth to ogle over her fibers, spinning and creations..


Our friend, Allison, of AGeary Woodworks has a wonderful space in front of the bank of windows. Next year we’d love to set up next to her. (She’s holding one of the bags that she makes for her excellent yarn swifts.)

Next to her is Christine of Upstream Alpacas with fiber and items from the alpacas she raises. (Ed’s talking with her in this picture.) Today I added another 4 oz of her scrumptious alpaca/silk blend to spin up and add to the pound+ that I’ve already spun with the goal of weaving cloth once I have enough.
It was fun chatting with vendors and having the time to really look at items instead of quickly dashing here and there during brief booth breaks.

I feel in love with some products of new-to-me vendors:
Black Sheep Creamery, the cheese made from their East Freisen sheep is delicious as well as the wool from their sheep.

Mosaic Moon, Morwenna and two of her kids made the trip all the way from Ashland, down at the southern end of Oregon. I couldn’t resist her Polwarth/Silk colorway “4th Doctor’s Scarf” roving.

I’d be up too late if I try to name/link everyone that deserve recognition and I need to be up early to polish the Sunday School lesson I’ll be teaching in the morning.

Looking outside across the valley to the north the glow of sunlight, toward the bottom middle of the picture, caught my eye.

Zoom in and you’ll see the glow is the upper portion of Mt Adams looming above a ridge of the Cascade Mts in Washington.DSC00913

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