Sunday, November 25, 2007
Ah, holiday weekends are the BEST. To make it even better, Mark also had a long weekend. His was Tuesday through Friday and mine was Thursday through Sunday, which meant an entire two-day layover between us! We haven't had two days off together since August. It was so wonderful to go to sleep with him, wake up with him, have breakfast and lunch together and see each other at all before 4 p.m. It's pretty rare that that ever happens. At least one of us is working every day of the week, so we hardly ever get one whole day, let alone two, together. It was heaven! I really hope that one day our schedules change so that we can actually have regular time off together. The one benefit of our current schedule is that it makes us truly appreciate the days we do have. And if there is ever a time for appreciation and gratitude, this was it. I really love Thanksgiving. Gratitude is something that I tend to struggle with on a daily basis, but Thanksgiving is a good reminder to stop and count my blessings. I have so many blessings in my life that I take for granted because I'm always working towards the next "thing" instead of appreciating what I have. I concentrate so much on what "should be" or what I hope for that I tend to miss the now. So, I spent a lot of this weekend being mindful and thankful for what is, instead of wasting time on what will be or should be. And it was a wonderful weekend.
One of the best parts of the weekend (I promise, I'm finally getting to some fiber content :-) was a visit to my new friend Susan's shop. Susan is a regular vendor at my local fiber fest, "A Wool Gathering" in Yellow Springs, Ohio, and carries really lovely fibers (Fleece Artist, Crosspatch Creations, Three Bags Full, Peace of Yarn, etc., drool, etc.). I kept meaning to visit her shop, which is not quite two hours away, but I hadn't made it out there yet. This year at Yellow Springs as I was perusing her booth, I also got to find out what a lovely person Susan is. We got to chatting and I found out that she was going to the retreat portion of SOAR. We got to spend some time together at SOAR (not as much as I would have liked) and this weekend she hosted an open house at her shop. I decided to finally get the lead out and head over to see her. And I'm so glad I went because I had such a great time. Here is where I could show you Susan's beautiful home, her llamas and alpacas, her cozy, shopping-spree inducing shop... that is, if I had remembered to take pictures :-( I got so busy with chatting and shopping and eating goodies dipped in her chocolate fountain (Susan REALLY knows how to throw an open house) that my thoughts never even turned to my camera. Duh. But, now that I'm home, I can at least show you what I got:
From top left moving clockwise: a braid of Fleece Artist merino/silk, a Three Bags Full blend called Pearly White (merino blended with lightly dyed tencel in the most gorgeous opal-y, pearly colors--so much prettier in person), some light brown Mongolian cashmere, a Crosspatch Creations blend called Gaelic Garden (Susan had spun sample of this, it is magnificent), and some Fleece Artist seawool (a blend of superwash and seacell in pencil roving form). So many goodies, so little time. I can't wait to dive into all of these. I also got part of the most incredible Cormo lamb fleece. It is beautiful. I actually couldn't wait to dig into that, so I washed some locks today along with locks of other recent fleece acquisitions:
From left to right: super-duper fine (16 micron) Merino from Margaret Stove's class at SOAR that I won at the silent auction, Cormo lamb from Susan, and Polwarth from Rovings that I bought at SOAR.
So far, without spinning, I'd have to say Margaret's is the best, but if that fleece is a 10, the Cormo is a 9.5. It's not quite as soft, but still incredibly soft, the longer staple is nice and it is the cleanest fleece I've ever seen. Overall, all three are dreamy and I can't wait to play with all of them. I think my next lace project may just have to be worked straight from sheep to shawl.
So, as I said and as you can now see, a very nice weekend. And now, on top of everything else, I have new fibers to be thankful for. I'm a very lucky girl :-)