Blog Entries


Best News!

          Best News!  no surgery this year.  had an appointment with my favorite surgeon.  he had been called to the hospital so actually saw his PA, Valerie. Seems Michael whent back to what ever country he came from. too bad- he was great eye candy. 

         this is the knee that had a anterior cruciate replaced and tendons repaired about 30 some years ago. it’s been giving me problems for the last year.  had xrays taken and we talked about options for the future.  for now i’m getting cortisone shots. the feeling is this should hold things for while. then she told me i’m a good candidate for a new treatment that’s not quiet ready yet where they inject new fluid between the bones to replace the cartilage.  am feeling much better already. i can stand in the shower and the knee doesn't shift to compensate the sloping floor.  when that happens the pain is immediate and off the chart. right now it’s staying stable on it’s own. plus i’m sleeping better - no pain.  feeling so much better already. 

          I did make a start on warping the gilmore. every little bit of progress counts. 

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          but first i want to show off what Grrr made. he’s back into turning pens. it’s an acrylic of some kind and beautiful. he calls it a rope twist. i much prefer the skinny pens but it’s beautiful. 

          have been working on a written handout for the tapestry class. got it down to one page. Concise and simple. most of the class will be watch this as i do it and explain. the handouts mostly talk about warp and weft relationship. what works best and what doesn’t . still have more samples to make and of course i’ve got way more ideas than time. will post pictures of those at a later time. Spent time with a local couple that weave tapestry and used to teach here. They have amazing Navajo blankets and smaller tapestries all over their walls. they are donating plastic tubs of wool to the class. didn’t take it all. would have needed a truck. picked primarily teals, blues, rusts and oranges and box of browns. more than enough to get started. it’s a different size that what i have been using so that means even more samples. 

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          got this smaller quilt done on Lola.  all batiks and nothing fancy.  this quilt had Louie supervising from the side of Lola’s table. the photo shows him peering over the edge of the extra batting width.           

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          next mounted a huge opportunity raffle quilt for the quilt club and the backing is too short. am waiting for a rescue.  width is perfect. but the backing is exactly the same length as the top. HUGE!.  a very soft outdoor woodsy feel to it. plan on stitching leaf shapes all over. Contacted the owner who is across the country and when she gets back will deal with it. she’s contemplating removing the pale blue border. i disagree, it definately needs a border. (however it’s not my quilt).  we’ll discuss it when she’s back. 



this is why we live here!.

have a good week everyone. 

till next time. 





A Little of Everything this Week

          This week has really gotten away from me. not sure exactly what i’ve managed to accomplish. haven’t touched the un-warped gilmore loom. warp still hanging down the front.  

          have spent an ungodly amount of time on trying to make a clickable calendar to put the on weavers web site. maybe it’s time to contact the Mac club and ask for help.  i know it can be done. one of the clubs has a clickable google calendar but google likes pc’s.  i can create all kinds of calendars but the software turns them into pdf files and those are not clickable. any mac users out there willing to help let me know. 

          have also not been sleeping well. am stressed out over monday’s appointment with Dr Benoit about my knee.  one minute i think it’s not bad enough and the next i know that even thou it’s maybe not that bad it is unstable and it’s a good way to take a fall and hurt other body parts. and i don’t like hearing it grind. plus he’s going to ask me how my shoulders are and right now the left is very painful. got a shingles shot 3 days ago and it hurts a little more each day. grrr got one too and hasn’t even noticed. 

          Wednesday morning the thunder never let up. it like trying to sleep in a busy bowling alley. Grrr said it rained and showed me we still have a small leak in the patio. poor Louie kept trying to crawl inside my body. under the covers just wasn’t close enough. tried laying across my throat. he’s too heavy for that. finally crawled down into the bend behind my knees. i’d stopped his drugs about a week ago and he’d been doing so well. 

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          grrr has been busy in the garage. this is what he came in with. i love mine. but now i’m giving him a hard time about the fact that there is no inscription inside. he’s good but says he’s not THAT good. am also thinking these were his excuse to purchase a new polishing machine. but i still want an inscription.  i can wear this while weaving. my diamond gets hidden away during weaving as it catches and breaks warp threads. 

          have been spending time with Lola since i’ve gotten the electrical fixed. the lighting issue was operator. two switches and a remote all have to be synced. who knew? and the tablet needed a tighter plug. so i’m back in business. 

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          attended a quilt meeting and we’re discussing having a quilt booth at the farmers market in the Bell parking lot. They have a good size group of sellers and the parking lot is alwasy full on Thursdays. the club owns a tent and tables and those of us who wish to sell will be paying the club either a commission or flat fee (to be decided later) for the use of the equipment. after putting 11 pieces on consignment for the fall craft sale i still have a garment rack full of quilts. 

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          spent saturday at a wood show in Phoenix. WOW!  it was an event!  live music and food and some amazing wood art. grrr had entered a piece. don’t think he won any prizes but did get a $50.00 certificate for purchasing more wood. i took photos and nobody stopped me.  don’t know which piece won but we all voted. this was my # 1 favorite. Stunning!  The letter explained that it was originally supposed to be a tool chest for his wood shop but when it was done his wife claimed it.  not everything was furniture. 


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A huge varity of items and imagination. 

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a weaver friend from back home wrote to ask how “ ir Louie” was doing so we’ve changed his name. this cartoon is so accurate. i’ve learned not to shake my finger at him. puts him in instant attack mode. 

later

maggie

 

COLD

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          i’m complaining about being cold. it feels silly but i can’t believe how chilly 70 degrees is when you’ve acclimated to 110.  dug out socks and a jacket and have put an extra blanket on my bed. my bedroom has windows that won’t close and if it’s 45 degrees at night then so is my bedroom.   we know the windows in this house need replacing but i also know we’re going to start with these three.          

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          not much progress on things this week. Have the reed threaded with 600 ends at 24 epic and decided it’s wrong. too dense. will be re-sleying at 18. this is supposed to be a baby blanket not a board. 

          two quilter friends showed up and selected 11 quilts of assorted sizes to go to the fall sale in November. i have a garment rack of completed quilts they sorted thru. they’ve been here long enough to know what will sell and what probably won’t.  several of the choices surprised me but i’m a trusting soul.  i thought i was the only one who loved brown and black together.  they passed on some of the most bright colorful ones.  maybe next year.  so i’ve measured and lowered prices to what the market here will bare. Ouch! but i have so much inventory i need to make room or i need to stop producing. and that’s not likely to happen. 

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          finished the flying geese and passed it on to the group to bind and either sell or donate. ruler work is not my favorite but it seemed to be what this needed. 

          then did a scrap batik top. just did easy loop de loops with a variegated orange and red.  then moved on to a kids quilts of colorful cats.  

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          have a date for the next teacher gig.  january 15. wednesday afternoons will be basic tapestry. not Navajo. it’s a whole different animal. You can do navajo patterns but we will be using small card board or picture frame looms. i don’t own much wool so am begging wool left overs from fellow weavers and spinners. but this gives me time to get some samples made. 

          And Louie says Hi. He knows he’s not supposed to be laying on th guest bed but if he tries to look cute maybe i’ll rub his belly instead of making him move. unfortunately it works. 

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later

maggie

New Patio Floor


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          Louie dealt with being locked out of the patio rather well. moved his food and litter box into the studio and locked his cat door.  showed him where things were and he was ok with it.  was even brave enough to sit on the back of the sofa and watch the guys work - until they turned on the shop vaccuum. spent the rest of the day under the bed. On day 3 we moved his posessions back in and showed him the cat door was open. he’s a little hesitant about stepping on a shiny floor but his food bowl was empty this morning and he’d used the litter box so he’s out there. 

place mats

          The quilters are now meeting in the bowling alley and had asked for Christmas place mats. have 2 done but in posting the photo i noticed the other one is going the opposite direction. will fix it before it gets handed over. they’re small so someone else can quilt them on a domestic machine and find a backing print. have another design in my head that needs graph paper work done before i start cutting. so it’s another possible set. 

          today i’m going to tackle that flying geese quilt top that’s on lola. it’s been there a week and i’m tired of looking at it. just going to do ruler work and grid lines. just ‘get’er done!’  

          also need to sort thru quilting threads. The thread here gets brittle and dry and Lola gets stubborn and i get cranky when the thread breaks every foot or so. time to sort my stash. i’ve talked to people about ways to save it or even if it can be used for piecing and have been shown and told about some awful examples of why you don’t do that. but it just hurts to trash what looks like perfectly good thread. 

          had a weavers meeting and retrieved 5 dish towels i sold off the blog from last week.  got some bath mats from 2 years ago re-qc’d.  have a date set for a teachers meeting next week. have committed to teach a taapestry class come the first of the year. had talked about starting when the beginning classes were done but then we’re into the holidays. so it’ll wait and i can get a couple samples done. had 35 members attend which is an improvement. covered the Christmas party, the arts and crafts fair and even the up coming Spinning Bee. 

          at the meeting one of our members gave a short talk about making baskets.  learned a lot about him.  he was a peace corp volunteer in Ecuador for a couple of years and lived with the indigenous indians who got him started on his basket making. They make double baskets. each basket is lined with a differently woven basket making very strong usable containers. i brought a selection of what i’ve made over the years to add to his show and tell. mine don’t have the good stories to go with them. 

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          and of course i can’t ignore Louie Louie. he tries so hard to fit into his cat perch. usually it’s a hind quarter that’s hanging out, not his head. that just can’t be comfortable but in the day light it does give him the best view of his neighbors. 

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          off to warm up Lola. she’s running like a champ. i’ll show the geese quilt next time. it’s not one of my favorites. 

later

Maggie

Towels are done!

          politics in this country is coming unhinged. makes me think about moving to Canada. now i hear that Russia is grooming someone to become a third party candidate in this coming election. i’ve started not believing anything i hear or read. 

          finally completed that towel warp. total of 17 dish towels!  assorted colors. the photo is of the last batch i removed, got hemmed and washed. took them to the board meeting and they got QC’d on the spot.  now all are up for sale. All are linen in plain weave.  sometimes a person just needs to get into the rhythm and throw the shuttle. not think. just weave. 

          

          Delivered  my last 2 quilts this morning. The quilters are having to evacuate the club room.  Bell recreation center is having major problems with main electrical feed. possibly closed for 6 - 8 weeks.  one member has a good size inclosed patio members will meet at on occasion. and when they need quilts quilted they will be delivering and picking up here at the house.  the group has a shortage of christmas place mats so will squeeze in a couple of sets to use up my holiday prints. 

         currently have a flying geese top mounted and can’t seem to make a decision as to how to stitch on it. Checked with pinterest. no help there. found lots of geese quilts and there is no consistency for quilting patterns. some have feathers, some have waves, some have just an all over stipple.  am thinking will do straight lines with rulers and grid work in the larger white spaces. i just noticed it’s upside down. 

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           almost completed  the weaving of this tencel scarf. the second on the same warp will be much more brown. and the big loom is waiting for more heddles. After doing the math (i actually counted heddles) for the next project of a baby blanket and am short 140 heddles. called Gilmore and they should be here any day.     

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          the temps are currently in the low 90’s. it’s perfect. and i must have acclimated to arizona. yesterday i wished i’d brought a long sleeve shirt. 

          Grrr and i met with a realtor at the condo yesterday. sounds like it’s the perfect time to sell except we have to get the place empty and repaint the large rooms. he recommended off white color.  he’s meeting with an estate sale guy and i’m calling the painter we’ve used before. 

          

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          the floor of the patio is being worked on as i type this.  putting the same acrylic stuff on it that the front patio has. which means Louie will be traumatized - again. his litter box, cat tree, food dishes, etc are all stashed around the studio and all the furniture is now outside and his cat door is locked against him. it’s only for 2 days but he doesn’t understand time. this is going to be hard on both of us. 

          he’s so territorial about the studio space i get tackled and bit every time i enter the room.  it’s a hassle to carry a spray bottle so i’ve started picking him up when he grabs me. (he hates to be picked up.) however it’s not working like i hoped it would. i hold him in my arms belly up and snuggle his stomach and he purrs. that’s not how this was suppose to go.  life is hard when you have a neurotic cat. for both of us. 

later

Maggie


cooling down

          only one doctor appointment with grrr this week. and he was able to pick up his new glasses. i’m scared he’s expecting miracles. after all the surgeries and testing he still has macular so no matter how good the glasses are he’s not going to see like he did years ago. 

          somehow i thought i was going to have several stay home days this week. didn’t turn out that way. thursday morning was a bead meeting at bell.  and then we’re having the patio floor done with the same acrylic stuff we put on th front patio and friday the handyman will be here to take care of a bunch of things:  ceiling fan in guest room, moving the frig from the garage to the patio and fixing the door handle on the front door before it comes off in someone’s hand. Etc. 

          last week’s blog caused some interesting reactions and conversations. heard from people from long ago and received a stack of friend requests from names i’ve never heard of. those got deleted. the surprising thing was that people preferred to contact me either privately or thru email. only a couple used the comments on face book. but now everyone knows what i look like so you won’t be seeing me again. am back to showing every day stuff and Louie. 

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          this photo will be a center piece in a small quilt. i can’t believe how many times i had to rip parts out in order to make it right. am still in the process of cutting parts and pieces out for the blocks that will surround it. those colors are shown below.  the black background was a bad choice.  it has a very subtle pattern that only shows up in one direction. Oh well. didn’t see that problem coming. so i’m ignoring it. 

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          Have 8 more linen towels off the big loom and a gold/yellow tencel scarf started on the small loom. 

          


          Completed another large quilt for the club. It features western cowboys and Indians themes. did the best i could for a design that was appropriate. found lines that looked like they’d make good war paint and used that. Got that done and started a small one of my own. 

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          Ignore the towel on the floor. it’s to keep the machine oil off the carpet. i lay it out all neat and tidy and then Louie comes in and makes his nest. 

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          this is one of Louie’s hiding places. this or on top of the frig. when the vaccuum cleaner is running or when there are strange workmen in the house making loud noises and sudden movements. he supervises from up there. and when he decides to come down you can see just how much dust he’s collected because he spends the next 3 hours cleaning himself. 

till next time. 

Maggie

Selfies

          for years I’ve avoided putting my self on the internet.  have always been terribly self concious so i talk about and publish photos of my pets, my textiles, my living conditions and grrr.  

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          one of the quilting groups i follow has a challenge going about posting photos of your self at least 20 years apart. looking back thru my history i don’t have many photos but have rounded up those that i have. i’m usually on the other side of the camera. 

          but here’s a few each about 20 years apart.  the back of the first photo tells me i’m about 4 years old. 

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          this second photo is what i used for advertising weaving.  this was the front of my business cards.  my face has been super imposed over my glimakra draw loom. taken about the age of 30. 

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          the color photo was an ID card at a place of employment. i cropped out all the information; employee number, security clearance and finger print etc. taken about 40 years old. and maybe because it’s my own pictures i don’t see any relationship between the 4 year old and the 40 year old. 

           this next photo is my favorite of all time,. the one i’m most proud of. it was a huge event in my life. the hospital sent me two of these id cards. one for each shoulder. 



          and last but not least a current pix. this was taken by my Macintosh in low light (bedroom) while i was contemplating what exactly i was going to say on this blog. 

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          lately i’ve seen multiple posts on one of my face book groups about getting old. suppose that’s what got this ‘ 20 year selfie’ thing started.  it’s bad enough my body reminds me every morning.  i’m seeing wrinkles, gray hair, extra pounds. i’m definitely not the cute, wild, skinny 25 year old any longer. 

          i’m not ok with my physical limitations. i have to pay attention to the amount of time i spend on the looms and standing at the long arm.  these are my passions. years ago the doctors warned me that every bone and joint i damaged (and there were a lot of them) would cost me in the future.  they did not warn me about my short attention span, poor memory, and faulty vision.  

          i’m surprised that i’ve actually made it this far. completely unexpected considering. . .   my belief is that it comes from genetics. as much as i did not like my mother i can thank her for this.  i can also thank her for my angry spirit, survival instinct and independent attitude -  but that’s another story.   i have a good and happy life from a bad start. not all of my years have been positive but age mellows decisions and attitudes and i’m proud of who i’ve become.

 I kno in my 70’s and thankful for my many blessings. 

Maggie

Weather

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          this week Phoenix gets heavy rain causing flooding, snow, hale and a tornado. looks like the ski season just might open early this year. and once more the patio roof is still leaking. it’s better than last time but . . . . but living here you know it’s fall because the snow birds are returning and traffic is picking up. 

          so this week i’ve tried to spend time with the looms. finished 2 more towels and still have warp left. i really need to learn to write these things down but it looks to be 2 maybe 3 more towels on that beam. have the baby wolf warped and started on scarf one of two. have several more items for the fall sale i found at the condo. And still have a box of bath mats that have gone missing. 

          got a wellness check with my GP, an ortho referral for my knee,  a referral for a mamogram plus a flu shot. supposed to get a shingles shot but the pharmacy was out. they’ll call me. and the big news is that Benoit will see me. his office called even though he’s not the ortho doctor she referred me to. since i’m an established patient he’ll take me.   and have spent 3 mornings with my friendly chiropractor. and went with grrr to his cataract dr for the last appointment. now he just needs prescription glasses which have been ordered.  so we’re still both up and around. 

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          grrr's glued to the tv watching the politicians yell at each other while the country implodes. i’m fascinated by the 16 year old Greta Thunberg but worried that the rich white men that call the shots are kissing her off and tuning her out. she’s spot on. her generation will see a world like nothing we can imagine.  nothing i can do about any of it besides vote. Am narrowing down my choices but need to wait until the convention. 

          attended a general meeting at the studio. Getting lined up for the fall sale. i know the majority of snow birds aren’t back yet but we only had 22 bodies in attendance. we need to pick a date for a teacher meeting and need to find a program director for planned demo and short events for the up coming meetings.  this next meeting Fred will give a short talk and show off his baskets. we planned a silent auction for the extra spinning wheel and i will be donating my extra warping board, umbrella swift and a ball winder to the event. hated to ask out loud but i’ve only ever been to livestock auctions and had no clue how a silent auction worked. way different than my experience. 

          i believe that today’s trip to the condo will be our last load to bring back to the house. my list for this week end is to make pizzoli for Franko. He’s the husband of a friend who is an absolute ‘cat whisperer’. he shows up monthly and trims Loui’s toe nails. And Louie doesn’t fight him. isn’t please with the procedure but allows it. he won’t let me touch his front feet. ungreatful little beast. 

          not sure what i did that brought on this last pout. (maybe inviting Franko over?) there’s no making him happy. i knew thunder frightened him and during this last storm i tried to coax him out to the patio. the rain on the roof makes so much noise he refuses to cross the threshold. found him in my bed that night even before i got there. 

till next time. 

Maggie


Cooling Down & more rain (478)

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          so we’re going to outlaw vaping but not assult weapons.  what kind of logic is that? Vaping - your only killing your self. with ak47’s or ar15’s you get to kill anyone in the vicinity.  pulled this list up from google and it’s not even current. and since Beto threatened to take people’s assault weapons stores have had sales on these specific guns and have sold out. those are weapons for war.  i’m not going on a rant here, i’m just pointing out how stupid our country is. 


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          Patio company worked on the patio roof again. last time they were here we were told that with the extreme heat this is normal that they have to come out and re-apply the caulking. this last storm flooded the room like there wasn’t a roof up there. so now they're useing a sealer that's currently used on motor homes. no more of just working on the seams, they covered the entire roof. what was entertaining was Louie. we had moved his cat tree because it was in direct line of the water fall. he stepped in the water on the floor and leaped onto the chest high shelf on the cat tree thinking he’d stay dry. fooled him. he sat there - picked up one foot - shook it out, put it down did the same with the other foot. looked at me like it was all my fault, and stalked out of the room shaking each paw as he stepped. 


          we have several small pieces of furniture to bring from the condo and that’s it. have all the boxes that were dumped in the studio sorted and put away. found woven items that can go to the fall sale. just need to get them juried and priced. but all the bead stuff is still stacked in boxes in my bedroom. that’s on todays ‘ todo’ list after my pedicure.  Then grrr gets to contact the auction place and find a painter. however with his attitude of ‘there’s no hurry’  it may take a while. 

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          slow week for getting any thing done. lola is sitting maked and taking a break. didn’t bring back any quilts from the club. time to focus on finishing up a couple of warps. this is the towel warp. doesn’t look like much in the photo but it’s an off white linen weft. (that's my shadow on the towel) hard to work on because it’s so boring. Need to find several other weft colors to hopefully finish the everlasting warp.  there’s an awful lot of warp left so need to step it up. took the scarves off the studio loom. have two of these for sale. 

          took a tour of the house that our friends purchased. easy to get to from here. they were told it’s 1800 square feet but seems smaller. i think because it’s broken up into so many rooms. no open spaces. and of course right now it’s chaos with boxes and stuff piled all over. (i remember being in that position) talked to T about can they add on. he’s thinking about maybe out in front of the garage. personally i’d be taking out a couple interior walls. but that’s just me. i really liked the kitchen and loved their floors. 

          temps are cooling down. it’s now about the same temp inside as outside. supposed to get more rain starting tomorrow. looking forward to it. 

till next time. and Louie says hi to his fans. 

Maggie

I joined a bead group

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          found a group at Bell that spends 2 days a week working and talking beads. they told me there would be more than 5 members when the snow birds return. looking forward to joining them. i do have another couple finishes done.  these are made of much bigger beads than the usual size 11’s i prefer. the advantage is they go much faster. finding this group has gotten me motivated for figuring out a way to carry a project back and forth and be in control of a million tiny beads. 

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          so far i’ve managed to incorporate everything we brought from the condo into the stuff at the house. except we’ve got another load (maybe 2) to go.  depends how many boxes i can fit into my car.  

          then we were contacted about would we be willing to rent for 3 months beginning the first of the year.  asked Grrr and he said yes we were. so after removing the remaining personal stuff we’ll be leaving the linens, towels, dishes etc. instead of contacting the thrift shop. this gives him time to get it painted and other fixes he wants to do before putting it on the market. now we’re waiting for a definate yes or no from the renter. 

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        have another huge quilt on Lola. it’s so sweet it’s hard to work on. very pale pink and a very pale blue. found a verigated pink/blue thread that’s perfect and the background fabric is a small leaf print so am stitching leaf shapes. Boring!  

           talked to the quilters about putting my quilts in the big fall craft sale on consignment and they said yes.  haven’t sold anything on etsy since i re-opened the shop. so will be closing it and have no other outlet to sell thru. will sort and select what gets donated and what gets put up for sale. i counted as i hung them back up while unpacking. total was 63 plus an entire group of place mats size experiments. figure these will be 20.00. nobody needs that many quilts. 

          haven’t touched the loom this week. attended a board meeting at the weavers. Discussed ways to get more folks involved. i know this is normally a social club but we’re thinking it needs to broaden out into other types of textiles.  Looking into demo’s and some educational programs from both members and outsiders. i offered to teach a simple class on tapestry and weaving with beads. if the group considers swedish weaving an actual weaving technique just about any fiber related anything should qualify. to me swedish weaving is damask, brocade, opphamta, draw loom type work.  we do have a secretary for next year and are trying to convince Mary to stay as president for another year. 

          plus we are selling an extra spinning wheel. it’s a Blue Bonnet BumbleBee wheel that students never use. It takes up storage space and needs a home. it will be auctioned off at a silent auction at the November meeting. 


          Louie says Hi. Every time i see his photo he looks so angry. wish i could change that. i’m not asking him to be greatful or even appreciative that i rescued him.. both Grrr and i are pretty optimistic contented people. why isn’t he? i just don’t know how to make it better. 

till next time.

Maggie