Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Calendar says Spring????

The Sand Hill Cranes, Robins and Red Winged Blackbirds have returned; the daffodils are about 4 inches out of the ground but it is snowing.

One of the perennial bulbs in our flower bed is called an Imperial Crown.  It also is out of the ground about 5 inches.  It is such a regal looking flower, I love it because it comes up so early and can take the cold (20 degrees F) temperature of today.  The blooms won't open for quite awhile yet and they last for many days.  The one big drawback to this flower is the bulb smells like a skunk.

It does multiply (slowly) but I resist digging them up to transplant because of the odor.  It is strong.  Fotunately, not in the flower or leaves.

Another sign of spring - in honor of my sister and friend Deb.... Nascar season is well underway.

Friday, March 1, 2013

March on in, Spring

It still is too early for spring here but the month of March is the "get on your mark" signal for me to look forward to that season.  The end of winter is a bittersweet event because early winter has the wonderful holidays of Thanksgiving and especially Christmas.  Then January- February our creative juices build up like sap in the maples.  Our customers often reward themselves during that period or settle into the gratifying routine of crafting items for others as gifts or for sale.

One of those customers, Michelle from PA, has a blog I really enjoy  as she shares tips she has learned while needle felting.  She creates one of a kind needle felted collectibles.  The blog,, has links to her etsy, Facebook and her other sites.

.Run Red Run Princess Leia This is Leia from Star Wars, one of Michelle's current designs.  I like the Waldorf style of doll making when you can imagine your own thoughts in the doll, Leia is perfect for me.

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Old Time Michigan Winter

 This is a view from the slider onto the deck at the back of the house.  I hope the bird bath doesn't get buried.  The recent years have been mild winters (for Michigan) when the snow doesn't pile high and last for months.  The past 3 days though do remind me of the snows of the 1990's. 

This snow started on Thursday and hasn't really quit for any length of time. Mostly it is "lake effect", lightweight and fluffy; we had about 18 inches by yesterday eve and another 6 inches fell overnight.  At the moment the sun is shining and it is long as you don't have to be out driving in it.
The bird feeders are hidden behind the drooping pine branches, a few birds can be seen on the ground including one male cardinal.  We have 6 pairs of cardinals who stay near the feeders during the day. Late evening when the birds have roosted, we bring the feeders inside to keep two yearling deer from emptying them each night.  The deer still make a trail around the house and are doing a good job of pruning the bushes all the way around.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

2013 hit the ground running

Just over two weeks into this new year and already the technology world is trying to rule my life.  I have another new computer and love that it operates faster but I am having problems learning new layouts so everything is taking me longer- not an even swap at all at the moment. 

One of the pleasant happenings this new year is customer Betty Barry from Ft. Wayne, Indiana.  She has a fiber shop called Little Shop of Spinning.  She is now hand dyeing our sport weight yarn to sell in her shop.  Her color themes are so pretty.  An added plus,only to me I am sure, she is from my home state.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

The Frantic Fun of Fall and early Winter

November and December are always busy months for most people and our household is one of those.  We are truly blessed though with such great friends; our 2nd family who help make these seasons memorable.

We always spend holiday dinners with them.  I particularly enjoy this; mostly for the company but also because I don't enjoy cooking and there is always good food in their homes.  This Thanksgiving had an added blessing that one member of that family had been missing from the group and now she is back.

Mid November in Michigan is deer hunting season.  This year my husband brought home a big buck with an ugly rack.  As Gene put it, "the buck was a fighter, not a lover".  A tine on each side had been broken off, I was worried that the meat might not be tender but it is.  Hopefully, the removal of this "bully" buck will allow the other bucks a better chance at finding the does.

I am still working at pieces for the annual Allegan Art Hop.  It is only a week away now so most items are ready.  Several of the nuno shawls I've made are fancier party wear, they are so lightweight they will easily be part of the spring and summer wardrobe of their new owners.  My felt pieces will be at Sharon's Quilts & More, 128 Hubbard St.  The horse drawn wagon goes right past her shop on the way to Baker Studios .  I hope you that are in the area will come to see all of us.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Nuno Felt Shawl made for Art Hop sale.

This is one of the Nuno Felt Shawls I made for the Art Hop.  Gift items like this will be available the evening of Dec. 14 from 5 pm to 8pm at Sharon's Quilts in downtown Allegan. 

I'm felting a variety of styles, some more glitzy than others.  This one is perfect for casual attire as well as "dressed up". 

In between dyeing yarn and felting, I have had fun activities, too.  Last night several of us who enjoy author Suzanne Jenkins' novels met with her.  We talked about her books based on the character (and title of the first book in this series) Pam of Babylon. 

Saturday, November 3, 2012

The Arts and Eats Tour was a great success for the Allegan County artists I spoke with.  Our shop had many visitors who had never been here before.  I heard lots of "I have heard about you."  or "I always wanted to stop by."  I hope they all enjoyed their stop as much as I did and will return.

The leaves were in peak color that weekend but began dropping in earnest the following week.  Even though we had already "picked up" several loads of leaves earlier in the month, it took both of us a good two days to have the yards around the house "clean" again.  We have many trees around us and gave up the hand raking a few years ago.  Here is my "picker upper", Gene's is a bit larger.

Then the Superstorm Sandy hit the east coast.  We were glued to the tv and internet sadly watching the tragedy unfold and feeling so helpless.  Thankfully our son and girlfriend had a safe place to stay for a few days and miraculously were able to return home this past Wed.  Our hearts and what little we can do to help are with the stricken still.  I was surprised at how quickly those winds did reach us here in the midwest.  It didn't take long for our temperatures to drop...oh, and those leaves we didn't pick up in the pasture are now in the yards.

I don't mean to downplay the catastrophe the east coast is and will be dealing with for awhile by detailing our annual clean up.  They will remain in our prayers.