Friday, November 16, 2018

Friday, August 3, 2018

The Road LessTraveled

A somewhat impromptu tic-off-the-bucket-list trip to Wyoming took us to the iconic National Park highlight spots of the Grand Tetons 


and Yellowstone. 


But the Crowds and the tight parking and the RVs and the tour buses and waiting patiently for my turn through the mobs to snap the required photo ops,


and all the buffalo jams (of which I was a participant at our first 3 or 4... or 12 bison sightings) 


wasn't quite the nature inspired wide open space I had always imagined that part of the country to be.

So we did what we do, 
rented an off road machine (a little less demanding than a dirt bike),


picked up a trail map and some supplies and headed out deep into Teton 
National Forest recreation area.


And found what we were looking for. 



Never once paying attention to any Dead End or Caution Ahead sign in any way.
 There simply is too much to experience off the beaten path and down the side roads. 


We crossed paths with a group of campers and a few fishermen but other than that felt like the entire place was put there just for us.

Here's a little action video we had fun making. 
Obviously we didn't run off any cliffs!
Life is good.







Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Family Time is the Best Time

Getting them all together in one place at one time is such a blessing. 
This year's weekend Kesterfest  was held at a lovely VRBO vineyard property


 in North Carolina that not only accommodated us with enough spread out sleeping space, but also offered an array of activities for all. 
Like rock wall jumping


 and ziplining into the pond


 and water trampoline flips


 and kayak tug of wars 


and skeet shooting,

and hanging out with the ever changing matchups of best buddies



and a bit of just plain hanging out, funny story telling and lots of laughter. 



Always lots of laughter.

The daughter and daughters-in-laws cooked up some fabulous meals, the nighttime bonfires roared, the secret walled garden was discovered and enjoyed by many,
everyone's kiddos became everyone else's kiddos and Fritz and I loved watching every moment of it.



 Time is the best gift of all. 




Wednesday, May 30, 2018

The Lady's Sweater

It start just the same as the Men's Sweater, with raising that cute little lamb and all.


But this time I pulled out the lighter shades of gray of Carnie's fleece and blended it with some mohair I had been gifted during the Tour de Fleece a few years back.



It was all just another experiment gone right. The result is such a soft lofty yarn with just a touch of shimmer and halo that was a dream to spin and knit with.


The pattern is one I has admired for a while, Ann Hanson's Violet.  My own homegrown, handspun yarn seemed like a good choice to do it justice.


{How about those buttons?!}

Most of the this knitting took place during our every other week sessions at the infusion lab.
Fritz's nurses have tracked my progress on this one and I look forward to showing them the finished project. They are a wonderful group of people, 

who take such good care of us. 
Always Grateful, 
~Joan










Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Seeing Green

My big guy sheep Carnie produces and enormous fleece. His colors are beautiful ranging from a light silvery gray to dark gray to black with a big chunk of browns and tans just to keep it interesting. 
I do love natural colored wool, but after the dye workshop I went to, I was inspired to play around with some of the leftover 2017 fleece I still had sitting around. 


What I wanted to create was a dark green mossy colored yarn with lots of tonal variation. I wanted some of the natural colors to shine through.
So I choose a lighter brighter green acid dye ("avocado") and went to work. For fun I threw in a little bit of Mac's tan fleece and a couple of locks of white fleece from Leo for comparison. This was just an experiment after all.


What's more amazing than the colors I ended up with is that I managed not to felt any of this wool after cooking it for almost an hour!


I was thrilled with how it came out. But the real test was to spin up a bit and knit a swatch.


I get so tickled when a plan comes together just like I have in my mind. 
{wouldn't it be wonderful if I could make EVERYTHING in life work out that way?!}

I love the colors.

So much so,
This Happened:


It will be a while before I get all this spun.
I am seeing a lot of green outside now (finally) and the gardens need some love too. 

Hope your world is full of the colors you love,

~Joan






Saturday, April 28, 2018

Monday, April 23, 2018

To Plant a Garden...

                                                        ...Is to believe in the future.




That future requires a few replacement layers,


which where a delight to the visiting grands.
{and to the ones who Chick Check in on facetime several times a day!}



With these lovely girls in our right here and now,


we look forward to all the tomorrows to come.