One Grand Opportunity

am a big fan of One Grand Home. That Alexis is something else! And, looky here, she’s got a call out for us to show her our stuff, too!

I love that there are so many people out there anxious to support the work of independent creators/designers. I’m up for the challenge. Are you? Let’s see what we can do!

Okay, Crazypots (Me, too, I know)

ikes! For some reason (levitating cat, perhaps?) I got a bunch of emails this week about some stuff on the blog:

First, why did I post a password-protected post? Why not just not post it?

Well, I didn’t want to forget the sentiment of that post, and I knew I’d lose it if I saved it in drafts, or on my computer – it was a post, so you know, about bringing Lou’s ashes home, and it was sad and a bit raw and I thought, better not to subject readers to this kind of thinking right on the cusp of Spring. I just don’t want to forget what I felt like on that night. I’ll probably re-post it later, edited so that it’s more appropriate for people who don’t live inside my head.

Second, what’s going on with the comments?

My response is only, my bad. I am just getting to reading them all now. I’ll approve them all over the weekend.

Third, 16 questions about what I do for a living:

Interesting that – not sure what post generated the question, but I work in advertising. Please don’t stop reading, though. What I do to make a living isn’t what I do to make my life. I wish (for me and all of us) it were, but that’s okay for now.

Fourth, how am I keeping track of the patterns I’m working on:

Well, not very well, obviously. I have three test knitters working on this sweater, and am re-quilting several of the patterns I did this year so I can write them up. I use graph paper (from CVS, the grocery store, or wherever) to plot everything out. With the exception of Brotman’s Wedding Quilt, where I’m just winging it, I usually take lots of notes that, later, I do not understand at all. Really, it’s crazy, and not in a “oh-isn’t-she-eccentric” way. I need to get a handle on the work, and am going to put some real effort into that in the next two months.

Fifth, what’s going on with the dog situation?

I don’t know. I am a huge fan and recent fiscal supporter of Chicago Canine Rescue, and every week, I think, “Oh, that’s the one.” But, then I think on it, and am not sure I’m ready, still. I’ll for sure keep posting pictures and stories of the potential next dog in my life in the hopes that maybe one of you will love them and snatch them up before I get there. I just keep looking for Lou.

Okay, feel free to keep emailing me, or comment if you like. I promise I’ll review the comments this weekend and get them posted. Thanks for reading and reaching out. I like that the world is smaller. It makes my heart bigger!

I Got My Fleece On

o, I found this great farm, Red Brick Road. I mean, come on, that name is enough, really… but, then I saw their rams and their ewes. Icelandic Sheep! The easiest fleece to spin. What could I do? What would you do?

I know! You’d buy it. And, I did. I got this beautiful fleece from a ram named Fitz:


And this ewe, Faith:

Look at her!

is going to turn over this fleece:

Looks like caramel and marshmallows. I want to eat it.

And I’m going to spin them both like they’ve never been spun before. Oh, the Christmas gifts. My fingers hurt already.

Levitating Cat

April Fool’s Day, 5 days late! Okay, okay, here you go, the levitating cat. That’s the joke — I always look to see what search terms bring people to my site and without a doubt, everyday (I’m not kidding. I mean EVERY DAY) the term “levitating cat” shows up in the search terms. Odd, but interesting, I think.

Don’t get mad if you came here looking for a levitating cat and got all this other blather. I wasn’t trying to be clever or a smart ass or anything, I just wanted to see what would happen …

Elizabeth Murray’s Unbreakable Urge

listen to NPR all day long on my headphones at work. Mostly, it’s soothing background (unless it’s BBC Newshour – they aren’t kidding), but I pay special attention to my local station at 11:00am when The Story with Dick Gordon is on. Sometimes, the stories are too much, and I turn the volume down so I can wait for a more appropriate time to give them their listening due. Sometimes, though, they sneak up on me. Just when I think I can do my emailing, typing, etc., and listen with half an ear, I’m stopped mid-task by the gravity, the beauty, or the simple “just-like-me-ness” of a story.

That’s what happened Friday. Dick was speaking to a woman (interviewing is the wrong word, because it was more personal and had more depth than a Q & A). Her name is Elizabeth Murray. And she is extraordinary. Here’s the blurb from the site:

Elizabeth Murray quit her dream job to volunteer in Monet’s garden in Giverny, France. Her family thought she was mad to leave her cushy horticulture job in California on a verbal promise for free room and board. But Elizabeth says her urge to work there was unbreakable. She talks to Dick Gordon about what it meant to her to toil in Monet’s garden, and how she came to more deeply appreciate the scenes of abundance in his art.

That paragraph doesn’t do the conversation justice, and I encourage you to listen to it for yourself. (The link above will take you to the download-able/streaming audio.)

I’m not a person who cries often… ever. I cried when I lost my dog, my beloved, old, dear, sweet Lou. But that was the first time I’d cried in some 20 years. That said, I teared up — well, let’s just say it– I cried when I listened to Elizabeth talking to Mr. Gordon.

Nothing in her story was particularly sad, so my tears weren’t maudlin. Rather, they were hopeful. I was so completely inspired by the way Elizabeth gave her dream/purpose/love the full measure of effort that it deserved. I see that in my sister — she’s amazing, and one of my heroes. I want that for myself — to say that yes, this is what I want to do, this is what I want for myself, and I’m going to do it. And I’m going to trust that my commitment to doing it is enough to make it happen.

I guess it’s the courageousness that made me tear up. Or something. I’m not quite sure, but whatever it was, Elizabeth’s story moved me in a way that’s shaken up my world a bit. For the better. She’s written a book about her journey, which I’m ordering now. She also works as a lecturer and leads workshops on beauty, sustainability and creativity. I’m hoping I can figure out a way to get her to come to my office and talk to us, teach us, share with us. We could, for sure, use a bit (or a whole hank) of inspiration. And if not that, perhaps she needs an intern, or knows someone who could use a fiber-crazed, knitting lunatic with a love of hydrangeas to pal around with …my urge, too, is unbreakable.