Tuesday, December 22, 2009


Spring 1996-December 21,2009

After a very brief illness, our dearest Mari passed away leaving us heartbroken. She spent thirteen wonderful, if not interesting years, with us. I adopted her from the Everett Animal Shelter where she was shivering in the corner of the pen, emaciated, and so sick. The vet figured she had been abused, abandoned, and had to eat manure just to survive. We had alot of behavior challenges ahead of us. I used to say she'd be the perfect dog if no one ever came to visit us ! She loved Anna, Ryan, and Marc so much I'd call them her "kids". She was shy, ladylike, and timid, like the whippet they thought she was partly. She certainly didn't take after the lab part as she hated water, as it's only fit to drink, not play in!
We will miss you terribly our "Woofer-woof, Martita, and Mars Bars"

"In a perfect world, every dog would have a home and every home would have a dog."

"I think dogs are the most amazing creatures; they give unconditional love. For me they are the role model for being alive." - Gilda Radner

Her Journey's Just Begun

Don't think of her as gone away-
her journey has just begun
life holds many facets
the Earth is only one

Just think of her as resting
from the sorrows and the tears
in a place of warmth and comfort
where there are no days and years

Think how she must be wishing
that we could know today
how nothing but our sadness
can really pass away

And think of her as living
In the hearts of those she touched
For nothing loved is ever lost-
And she was loved so much.

- Ellen Brenneman

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Half a century

Thank you family, friends, and co-workers for helping me celebrate this landmark birthday. It's been a fun filled and interesting month. I know it's only a number, but it feels very surreal to think I've been here for 50 years !

Marcus Lowe, Anna Brita, and Ryan Michael
The greatest gift that's been given to me in my lifetime are these three. They are so goofy, caring, thoughtful, and always make me laugh - such a blessing. Love you all !!

While we try to teach our children all about life,
Our children teach us what life is all about.
~Angela Schwindt

Co-workers treated me to a surprise birthday celebration at the Snoqualmie Casino where I lost $25 of my b-day money and feasted on all you can eat crab, clams, lobster, and more !
My extended family helped me celebrate on Thanksgiving with presents, and my favorite combination cake, Chocolate Raspberry Rhapsody.

Thank you so much Karen for the wonderful little trip you treated me to. We went to Winslow for two days, primarily to take a knitting workshop with Jared Flood, AKA Brooklyn Tweed
Churchmouse Yarns and Teas offered this, which included a book signing the night before with champagne and other treats. This shop is wonderful.
We ate FABULOUS foods at the Blackbird Bakery, Cafe Nola, and Harbor Public House

What a lovely young man and teacher. Friday afternoon we took his Beaumont Hat/Tam class.

Photos courtesy of Brooklyn Tweed

I finally found something I wanted to knit using the sample yarn Pam Allen sent me awhile back, Fresco, which I love. I chose the tam pattern which uses this brand of yarn anyway. So soft !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

We ran up to Port Gamble which is a very quaint little town farther north. The highlight there is the very charming shop, The Artful Ewe

Such beautiful hand dyed yarns by Heidi, the owner. She has such wonderful taste in how she has set up her shop - I could stay for hours ! Of course had to buy some beautiful sock yarn (which is already buried in my house somewhere !).

Karen, you are a wonderful friend who is so generous and such fun to be around. Tusen tack !!

Heidi's young whippet. What a life staying in the lap of luxury ! I want to live in such a cozy space, sleeping on the comfy chair surrounded by beautiful things !

Just a bit of my stash. Wonderful handspun yarns by Kristin. Check out her Etsy shop

Someday, if I ever start knitting in earnest, I would love to knit Evelyn Clarks's shawl Deciduous

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Knit Cafe

Thank you so much for the wonderful wristwarmers you designed-Lovely Lichen
They are great!

Sunny Barbara, dedicated museum volunteer !

Mary Ann with the hat she knit. This pattern was donated to the museum as a fundraiser by Ms. Lavold.
She also knit this lovely Lavold creation. Very pretty !

The shawl modeled by Evelyn.

Spent part of the day at the museum learning how to input data on some of the knitted pieces in the collection,first two boxes were Icelandic items. It's like a treasure hunt which I find quite fascinating ! Too bad I have to work or I'd be there almost everyday !

Signed up for a Danish cooking class with Anna Brita. Yum !

I like my barn so. Do you think the old farmers are rolling in their graves laughing at silly people like me who collect rusty farm implements, spend money on a falling down barn, and instead of something practical like cows, have miniature horses instead !

Ryan helped put this shadowbox together of items found under the floor during the renovation of the north end. It will hang out there with some other rusty items as Barn Art !

The previous owners left these very hefty parking stanchions chained to the side of the barn. I was going to put them free on Craigslist but we were joking that it's probably holding up the barn, which is leaning quite a bit to the east !

Even though the probability was high, there is no way I would have thought the barn was originally red with it's grayed out and peeling exterior. When Ry took off a board this showed thru - RED ! He is totally disgusted with me that I would even think of having it painted such an unoriginal color.

The guys in the new in and out Ryan fixed up for them.

Anna noticed this hawk sitting atop the covered chicken yard last weekend. It was looking for Sunday brunch! A birder was guessing, from the small picture, that it is a Sharp Shinned or Coopers Hawk.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Latvian Mitten Workshop

Last weekend was the three day Latvian mitten workshop. The museum brought out Sandy DeMaster and Mary Germain from Wisconsin. I met Sandy in 2005 when I took a week long Scandinavian knitting workshop from Carol Rhoades at Sievers School of Fiber Arts. Anyway, they spoke at the Seattle Knitters Guild the Wednesday before, fabulous presentation I might add, to which they brought many, many, mitten samples for us to drool over.
This was one of the most fun workshops I have been to and so very inspirational. There were four Latvian women in the class so it was very interesting to hear them exchange stories with Sandy and Mary about the country, food, symbolism, textiles, movies, etc.. There is so much I could write about, it would take days ! Some of the older Latvian women brought in Latvian goodies everyday and as usual the museum was trying to kill us off with Danish pastries and such !

Saturday and Sunday we worked on a lined mitten sample.

Sandy said these were knit for her by their Latvian mentor Irma. They have "barn protector" symbols on it. Since she raises Finnsheep Irma thought it would be a good thing to have. I want to knit a small pair to put in my barn !

Love the pattern and colors of this pair.

These mittens have the unusual cuffs featured in Mary's booklet "A Distorted View of Cuffs" Check out all the booklets they have to offer on Mary's profile.

Drinking this "Slim Chance" beer probably foretold the chances of getting my sample done !

Such tiny, tiny little mittens which I hear will be for sale at the Latvian Christmas Bazaar on November 7th-8th at the Latvian Cultural Center in Seattle. Can't wait !

Interesting Latvian beliefs about mittens

Mittens and socks should be knitted in summer, then they will be warm, soft and strong. /A. Zvejniece, Lubāna./

One should not wash new mittens when there is an old moon,
they will lose their color and let through the wind. /K. Zilbers, Meņģele./

One should not wipe their nose in a mitten. Whoever does that never gets rich. /J. Andriņš, Taurkalns./

One should not give their hand to another with a mitten on, otherwise they will give away their luck/A. Tidriķe, Pabažu jūrmala./

Link to Latvian mitten charts
Cimdu Raksti