Thursday, December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas

I've been a bad blogger. I apologize. The days, weeks and months just fly by. I will do better.

Happy Holidays, gang.


Thursday, October 29, 2009

The yays and the boos for the week.


Hunting camp, snow, lots of firewood. Family. Living in a beautiful place. Blackjack. Awesome sleeping bags. Hand knits that keep you warm.

Dandelions at 8700 feet. In October.

Reunions. My daughter. A warm house to come home to.

Halloween movies. Beer. Anticipation of a party.

Starting a new project and loving it.


Getting ripped off by a wholesaler.

Gigantic ideological divides.

No snow plow service for our road.


Friends who are hurting in one way or another.


Hugs and kisses to those of you who need them. xoxo

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Saturday, October 17, 2009

I'm going to post a question meme, since I have no substantial content to share this week. It's been business as usual here at Chez Color Fest. Yarn, Halloween, fiber, fall, food, cats, lather, rinse, repeat.

1. Is there anybody you just wish would fall off the planet?
Yes. The list is very long. Bill O'Reilly and Glenn Beck, and the Taliban are at the top.

2. How do you flush the toilet in public?
With the magic of my mind. Or, my hand. Whichever works.

3. Do you wear your seatbelt in the car?
Yes. Always.

4. Do you have a crush on someone?
Alan Rickman and Helena Bonham Carter.

5. Name one thing you worry about running out of.
Refried beans. We must never, ever run out of refried beans.

6. What famous person do you (or other people) think you resemble?
I don't think I resemble anyone.

7. What is your favourite pizza topping?

8. Do you crack your knuckles?
No. My husband does, and it grosses me out.

9. What song do you hate the most?
That stupid Skater Boy song. Avril Levine, I think? Ugh. HATE IT.

10. Did just mentioning that song make it get stuck in your head?
Yes. Shit.

11. What are your super powers?
Sleeping late. Endless drop-spindling. Coffee drinking. Shopping online. Google-Fu. I can knit AND watch tv at the same time. Ignoring deadlines. Beer Snobbery. Farting in Bookstores.

12. Peppermint or spearmint?
Spearmint in gum, peppermint for anything else.

13. Where are your car keys?
Hanging on the key rack. I always hang them there, which is really my one consistent habit of organization.

14. Last song you listened to?
A Record Year For Rainfall by the Decemberists.

15. What's your most annoying habit?

16. Where did you last go on vacation?
The Gulf Coast of Texas.

17. What is your best physical feature?
Probably my eyes.

18. What CD is closest to you right now?
Nada. Everything is on MP3.

19. What 3 things can always be found in your refrigerator?
Half and half, some form of cheese, and tortillas.

20. What superstition do you believe/practice?
I don't like to talk about really bad things happening to people I care about.

21. What colour are your bed sheets?
They are blue with telephones on them that have the words "pillow talk" coming out of the earpieces. They don't match anything, but they were 50 cents at the thrift store, so that makes up for it.

22. Would you rather be a fish or a bird?
A bird. I'd be an owl.

23. Last thing you broke?
I really don't remember. I'm not typically the one who breaks things in our family.

24. What are you having to eat tonight?
I don't know. My mom is cooking for us tonight.

25. What colour shirt are you wearing?
Grey sweatshirt. I stole it from Adam.

26. If you could be doing anything else today, what would you rather be doing?
I'd rather be at Rhinebeck.

27. Do security cameras make you nervous?

28. If you wrote a book about your life, what would the title be?
I'm Not Who I Thought I Was: A Memoir.

29. Last time you went to a cemetery?
It's been a while, and that's good and bad. No one has died recently, but on the other hand, I love cemeteries.

30. Last concert you went to?
We saw Three Dog Night and REO Speedwagon at last year's rally.

31. Favourite musician(s)/bands you've seen in concert?

32. Next concert you're planning to attend?
I think Adam wants to go see the Trans Siberian Orchestra.

33. Do you talk to yourself?

34. Have you ever adopted or purchased a pet?
Yes. Cats and kittens from the Humane Society.

35. Have you ever been present when an animal is being born?
Yes. It's messy.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Last of the Farmer Market bounty
The last of the Farmer's Market bounty until next year.

The Ignacio Farmer's Market was quite the success, especially for its first year. It was such a great addition to our community. Tay and I are talking about growing a market garden for next year in order to be able to participate in it.

Hand spun
Hand spun yarn drying indoors.

I have been one obsessive drop-spindling mofo lately. I have so much hand spun right now, which completely rocks. I love to knit and spin year-round, but when the weather cools down it becomes something of a seasonal imperative to start churning out hats and mittens and scarves. Warm socks. Blankets. The list goes on. (Also, Anne, if you're reading this, I have your mitts 90% done. I just need to finish the thumbs.)

Ice ring around the sprinkler.
Ice ring around the sprinkler. We've been trying to give everything one last good soak before we run out of irrigation.

I love this time of year. The feel of autumn is just so peaceful. The quality of the sunlight is just a little more golden, which seems to bathe even ordinary days in a kind of nostalgic glow. It's hoodie weather, which works for me, since they're my favorite item of clothing next to a comfortable bra. You can stash your phone, keys, and a drop spindle in that front pocket if you don't mind looking a bit bloated.

There's the smell of woodsmoke in the air, which I love. I haven't lit a fire yet, because our house stays pretty warm and I'm holding out for that morning when I just can't stand the cold, which will have to be pretty extreme. I'd like to hold out until November, but we'll see. I'm really used to being cold. We froze our asses off last year in that glorified tent of a trailer and our firewood supply ran out, so we spent a lot of time huddled over space heaters. I woke up one morning and found that my water bottle had fallen to the floor and frozen solid. Taylor and I spent a lot of time at coffee houses, with their seductive combination of central heat and wifi. Now that we've moved home, we have central heat, wifi, and two wood stoves. It's kind of like heaven only with out the clouds and harps and such.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Week (ish) in Review

My booth @ Bayfield Heritage Days
We were vendors @ Bayfield Heritage Days. I made a little money, and we got to visit with folks we knew and make new fiber contacts. It always amazes me how fiber people make instant here's my number, come to my house and we'll hang out kind of connections. Very cool.

My old man
The Mr. turned a year older. He seemed slightly freaked out about his advanced decrepitude, and now he's on a diet and thinking about marathons. He does that every year, though, so I'm not worried. I haven't heard the OMG LET'S SELL EVERYTHING AND MOVE TO NEW ZEALAND spiel lately, so it's all good.

Johnny Rotten
Kittens keep us on an even keel. If we sell everything and move to New Zealand, where will the cats live? Answer me that!

Yarny goodness
I set up shop at home for some customers a few days ago. Much easier than setting up and tearing down the vendor tent. Also, I always have access to coffee and a clean bathroom. The only thing I don't like about vending is port-a-potties. Ugh.

Adam & Taylor
We had some seriously glorious days, so we went on a picnic.

Chimney Rock
Chimney Rock.

Taylor @ Fawcett Gulch

One of my favorite things about where I live is that we can drive for 15 minutes and be somewhere gorgeous and completely away from everyone else. I don't think we even saw any planes in the air. It was wonderful.

deer skeleton
Dead deer. You can't go anywhere around here without finding deer or elk bones. Which is pretty cool, actually. Tay took this photo. She's a girl after my own heart.

the champagne of beers
The champagne of beers! Now in handy dandy quart size!

Engineer Mountain
Adam and Taylor took their annual colors trip. This is Engineer Mountain, north of Durango. It's a fourteener.

Silverton, CO  9/29/09
Silverton, CO. Taken 9/29/09.

So, that's the week in review. I expect my next blog post will be about how Halloween preparations have taken over our lives.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Finding Normal

Adam and me. Weminuche Wilderness, September 2009.

Things are good. We've gotten through all the overwhelming stuff, and we're in a really good place now. Things feel normal and not frantic. We're relaxing and kicking back and spending time doing things that we want to do, not have to do, which feels like playing hooky or something.

I have a show in 9 days, but I'm not sweating it. It's nothing at all like that first show where I was freaking out about being a complete N00b and dyeing everything I could get my hands on until 2 in the morning and such and being worried about putting my products next to the pro's. It was all ohmygodohmygodI'mgoingtosuckaaaaaggggghhhh!! Now it's more like, yay! Show! We love doing these shows because invaribly, we end up meeting really cool people and making instant friends.

Taylor, explorer.
Taylor at the stream.

We are back home, back in the community we love, back in the home that we love, and there are fresh kittens to squeeze. The firewood has been gathered, and I'm slowly rebuilding our pantry supplies. We're working with that instinct that says to gather and save at this time of year. Battening down the hatches. It's a nesting instinct, only we aren't pregnant. More of a seasonal nesting instinct, I suppose. If I had a garden, I would be canning and freezing like mad right now. That'll have to wait until next year, though.

Winter heat
Winter heat. You have no idea how good this pile of wood makes me feel. It's like a big, splintery security blanket.

Johnny Rotten
Fresh Kitteh. Johnny Rotten is his name. This little dude rocks so hard. Too bad they don't stay this tiny and evil forever.

Coffee on the deck with Jack, our constant companion.

The biggest thing on our plates right now is planning our annual Halloween blowout. The party we had last year did not rock as hard as it had in past years, owing mostly to the fact that we didn't live here and it is hard to pull off a party like that in one day of decorating/cooking/etc. This year though, look out.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Ode to a Dead Lizard

Dead lizard

Ode to a Dead Lizard

On the path to my front yard I spied,
A tiny lizard who had died.

Oh, little dude, all gnawed and chewed,
I blame my cats, they are so rude.

In other news, we have moved. At last! There are about a metric fuckton of tiny annoying and hugely annoying things that are pressing and or not so pressing right now, thus the lack of blogity blog on my part.

Things like my husband saying, "blah blah, blah, refinance the house, blah, blah, blah, good interest rates, blah blah blah, appraisal in a week or so." Did you catch that last part? Yeah. My husband is a great guy, but I don't think there's any question why I intend to take up slurping vodka tonics for my cardio.

Oh, and he dropped a washer/dryer combo on me last night. I'm only slightly exaggerating here.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Emma's Yarn

Emma's Yarn
100% Punta wool, hand-dyed and hand-spun by yours truly. I am really digging the drop spindle these days.

Emma's yarn
Thick and thin single, 236 yards. This yarn is for Emma, who saw me spinning it at our knitting group and insisted in her very charming way that I let her buy it.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Sock Summit Dye For Glory Yarns

Hola, yarnies and non-yarnies. These are the yarns I submitted for Ravelry's Dye For Glory contest. It's limited to those of us who will have yarn at the Sock Summit, so I figured, hey, give it a shot, free exposure, etc. I dyed up three batches of yarn, all based on the colors in the Sock Summit logo. In each batch I emphasized a different color and then fiddled with the other colors randomly. I kettle-dyed these yarns, which means that all of the dyeing took place in a kettle of hot water. I combined dip-dyeing, hot-pour method, and then sprinkling the dye powder directly onto the yarn. They are gorgeous, and my pathetic photos really don't do them justice.

All 3 batches
All of the skeins, just in from drying outside. There's the Sock Summit logo for reference.

Dye For Glory Batch One
Batch One, side by side. Before re-skeining and after.

Dye For Glory Batch Two
Batch Two.

Dye For Glory Batch Three
Batch Three.

So, if you like my yarns and you're on Ravelry, please vote for me starting tomorrow 7/23.

In other news, our renters are officially moved out. Taylor and I start painting and cleaning tomorrow.

In other, other news, I completely lost my damned mind and ordered myself some more sock yarn. Commercial yarn. Not dyed by me. Because, you know, I didn't already have hundreds of skeins sitting around the house. It's an illness, I tell you. Sock Yarn Fever.

Also, we are going to go see the new Harry Potter movie AGAIN tonight. That's probably another form of crazy altogether. I don't wanna talk about it.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Catching up here, but not in real life.

So, hey! I thought I'd take a few minutes to semi-catch up here. Life's a bit mad at the moment, but that's alright. I wouldn't mind at all if I didn't have so damn much to do! Adam and Taylor are out fishing. I suspect that we'll be having trout for dinner.

Adam and dinner
Adam w/ last week's catch. They aren't very big, but they're damn tasty...and I don't even like fish.

Anyway, we did the SLV fiber fest this last weekend in Monte Vista. It was fun. We got to catch up w/ Mac and Monica, make a little money, make new friends and generally enjoy the mellow atmosphere. I am totally digging vending at fiber fests. Fiber people are just so nice to be around, and there's always something to talk about.

Color Fest Fiber Arts 004
My vendor tent.

We stayed at the Movie Manor Motel, which is a motel w/ two drive-in screens. So we watched a couple of movies, both of which sucked, (Year One, & the new Sandra Bullock one) but whatever. The novelty, people! We have to leave town to go to a drive in, which is sad. I keep hoping maybe the tribe will build one or something.

Color Fest Fiber Arts 006
My friend Mizpah groping the fiber. Her husband, Chris, makes all sorts of wonderful drop spindles and tahkli spindles and other beautiful things, so we arranged a trade. Fiber for spindle.

Tahkli spindle, wpi guage
My new toys. A walnut tahkli spindle and a darling beehive yarn guage.

Color Fest Fiber Arts 007
A little bit of my yarn. There's so much that I have trouble displaying it all. We're working on that, though. Hopefully for the next show I'll be more organized. We can always hope, anyway.

Also, many people asked me if I dyed it all. The answer is yes. Everything you see comes to me with no color at all. That's where the fun starts, dawg. Ya dig?

Color Fest Fiber Arts 003
It puts the color on the yarn or it gets the hose again.

Anyway, now that we're past SLV, I have to think about Sock Summit. I was contacted by a business owner who wanted to represent my yarn at Sock Summit, and naturally I said yes. So I need to prep a bunch of stuff to ship out w/in the next few days. Also, Ravelry is having a yarn dyeing contest for people who's merchandise is going to be at Sock Summit. Naturally, I also need to do this, as it would be good exposure for me. I understand that there is DRAMA over on Ravelry because people are all butthurt over not being able to enter the dyeing competition. I shall make a point of avoiding that shit. It's yarn, people. Get over it.

Color Fest Fiber Arts 023
Taylor is such a good sport. Both Adam and Taylor are, I suppose, and invaluable helpers. These shows are lots of work. I couldn't have gotten that tent up all by myself, that's for sure. Plus, Adam can make small talk. This is such a bonus for those of us who can't seem to master the art of random bullshitting.

And now, on my horizon: I'm moving. We're moving. Back to Allison, back home, back to my house and my land and my pond and my trees and my garage and my storage shed, and my driveway....did I tell you that I missed being home? Well, now you know. I told Adam that he is not going to be dragging me away from home again. And now he knows.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Mrs. Slocombe is dead.

Michael Jackson dead? *shrug* Farrah Fawcett dead? *shrug* Billy Mayes dead? *shrug*

Dudes, Molly Sugden, the inimitable Mrs Slocombe has died. Now I feel sad, and I am unanimous in that.

Monday, June 22, 2009

I love my job.

This evening's work, drying
This evening's kettle-dyed yarns, drying. I will never get tired of doing this.

Sunday, June 14, 2009


It has been business as usual around here. Trying to keep up dyeing momentum, hoping someone will buy something from me on Etsy, avoiding tedious paperwork, making a mess. I don't have anything new, or particularly amusing to post, so I'll do one of those 5 random facts about me dealies.

1. I read the obituaries every day.

2. I talk to my cats like they're people. Sometimes I think they understand me. This doesn't bode well. I see "crazy cat lady" status in my future.

3. I'm not religious at all, but I do believe in positive and negative energy and the way it affects people. Some people have really negative energy, and they are a drain to be around. Conversely, you know those folks who are a joy to be around no matter what is going on in their lives, and you can't put you finger on why? Positive energy. That's my theory anyway.

4. I am the least conservative person I know IRL. My husband and I have a pact not to discuss politics for fear of our marriage. We get along pretty well this way. It's amazing how many other things there are to talk about.

5. I want at least three more tattoos. One of my friends from knitting said she told her kids not to get tattoos because of how bad they would look when they were old and in nursing homes. I told her that I planned on being one messed up Granny Lady and that the interns would have to stretch my skin out to figure out what my tattoos were. Entertainment for all!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Pretty Things

I think I'll take a little time to inject some color into this grey, dismal day. Summertime, where are you?

Today's finished batch
Today's finished batch of roving. I went outside to try and get photos to use on Etsy, because the house is like a cave since the sun hasn't come out today. *pouts*

Falkland 56s hand-dyed top
I snagged this photo just as it started to rain. Again. Hopefully, the weather will cooperate w/ me tomorrow and I can take some better photos in order to get more stuff up in the shop.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Pagosa Springs Fiber Festival

Our booth, day 2
Adam and Tay in the booth on day 2 of the fest.  We really had a great first day and there's a serious dent in the yarn and fiber in this photo.

Color Fest Fiber Arts booth, day 2
Another view of the booth.  I was going for "colorful" not "a crackhead gypsy set this up."  I'm not sure how it turned out...

Wool vendor
This lady was selling all Colorado-grown fiber.  She was really nice.  I bought a bunch of yarn off of her to play with.


Angora goats
Angora goats!

Scottish Highlander
Scottish Highlander!

Navajo churro fiber
Tons of churro fiber.  Navajo churro is huge here in the Southwest.


Navajo Lake Alpacas
The Burbachs are the nicest of people, and we're going to be neighbors in the fall.  Woot!


Sheep to shawl
Sheep to shawl!  This is where they start with a bag of fiber, card it, spin it, and then weave it into a shawl during the festival.  Completely awesome!

Alpaca before
An alpaca pre-shearing.  So fuzzy!  So cute!

Alpaca Post-shearing
Alpaca post-shearing.  OMG.  So tiny!  Me wantee!

So, hey!  Sorry for the long blog hiatus, but I was all-consumed in getting ready for the festival. It was a great first time, and I made quite a bit of $$, plus I made some excellent contacts and met a buttload of supremely awesome people.  We had a lot of fun, and I'm looking forward to our next show in Monte Vista on July 11-12.