Monday, January 19, 2009

I know a lot of people ask how we Southern Californians can stand all that traffic, bumper to bumper, hordes of people, etc. etc. ad infinitum.  Well . . . here's why. It's the middle of winter and it was a more than glorious day, so I packed up my husband, my knitting basket and my beach chair and headed down to San Clemente State Park for some relaxing Sunday time at the beach. A glance up the coast to Dana Point.
A glance to the south.  Yes, those girls are in their bikinis.  No subzero temps here. A record apparently has been set; we've had 9 over 80 degree days in a row.

And towards the late afternoon, these delightful little birds were in the surf and I just had to take a picture.  They scurried back and forth looking for dinner.

And here's Monday morning's sunrise around 6:30 a.m. when I went out for the newspaper. Stunning but a bit of a let down as these clouds spell a change in the weather.   

So for all of the above reasons, I feel lucky to be where I am and, for the first time in a long, long time, I have hope that tomorrow's inauguration will lead our great country toward a new beginning.

This morning, I am off to Marion's house (our 80+ friend and fellow guild member). Our spinning group (under Marion's tutelage) is going to process and dye silk mawattas or hankies for use in handspinning.  (I've returned, so here are some pictures.)  These are the little "hotels", as she calls them, that Marion makes where the silk worms go and make their cocoons.

Here is a container of cocoons ready to be processed.  These all have holes in them, as Marion lets the moth break through the cocoon so that they can mate and produce more eggs for the next year.

After cutting open the cocoons and removing the pupa case, we then simmered the cocoons in an Ivory soap solution to soften them.

After they cooled down, we took individual cocoons, rinsed them and stretched them out over a plastic strawberry box.  Each mawatta was a layering of 8 cocoons.  After making a mawatta, we then painted dye on the mawatta, rolled it up in plastic wrap and steamed it in a steamer pot.  

And while some of us were working on our mawattas, others were making spinning batts on the guild drum carder.

This Saturday, I'm going with three of my spinning friends up to Los Angeles to attend a meeting of the Greater Los Angeles Spinning Guild.  This should be fun, because it looks like this is a great group of spinners.

And here's a little teaser.  These are rovings that I have dyed for those attending our guild's spinning workshop on Saturday, Jan. 31st.  Because we don't have a place to meet on Saturdays, I am going to host this workshop at my home.  We are so lucky to have Janel Laidman as the workshop leader.  She'll be showing us how to get the most out of handpainted roving.  Janel has written a wonderful sock book called "The Eclectic Sole" and she is the person behind the website "Spindilicity".  Janel we look forward to seeing you!

And finally, Strands and Stitches in Laguna Beach has just taken delivery of more of my handpainted sock yarn and they are now carrying my handpainted silk boucle and silk/kid mohair scarf kits (my base yarn is from Habu Textiles).  

So, everyone, let's wake up on Tuesday morning with our hearts full of hope for a move in a new direction.


Spindlicity said...

Happy New President Day! Those colors for the workshop look delicious!

Spindlicity said...
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