Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Blog Anniversary!

Happy 1st Anniversary to my Blog.

Here's a look back at my first entry. Boy was it a long one too.

Also, last week I had my Spinning Wheel class at the Michigan Fiber Fest. in Allegan, MI. It was soo interesting to see all the different wheels. There were 11 or 12 attendees. And although there were several common types of wheels, no 2 wheels were the same. There were 3 Ashford Traditionals and they were all set up slightly different. Fran, from OH, was sitting next to me with a very old traditional. Probably one of the first styles. Her scotch tension was different from mine. The other Traditional was set to not even use the scotch tension. The spinning head was reversed so that the drive wheel was running both the bobbin and the spinning head. It was just so interesting to see how all the wheels were so different. There was even a Flax wheel present. The bobbins and spinning head were so tinny, yet the wheel was so huge. The owner (a woman originally from New Zealand) said it had been made by a Dutch furniture company for basically show. It was never supposed to be a working wheel. Just a decoration. However, it does work for lace only. I really learned a lot about my wheel also. The instructor, Amy Tyler, was really great.

I went back up on Saturday with my friend Carly to see all the Vendors. Because of all the class cancelations, because attendance was so low, I was worried that there wouldn't be as many vendors as last year. There were a few less, but not so that you really noticed. I had a few things on my list that I wanted to get (smaller wooden/bamboo cable needles, nitty noddy, lime-ish sock yarn). I got found the cable needles right away. I shopped around for the nitty noddy to get the best price. Of course as soon as I bought it (on our second go thru) I found it in another booth for less. Story of my life. I bought a green and purple sock yarn. Not really lime-ish, but I didn't see any other ones that had lime in them that I liked better. It is Socks that Rock yarn by Blue Moon Fiber Arts. It is a mill end, but so was the one Carly bought. But we didn't see a problem with hers when wound it in a ball. The only thing bad thing about it is that it doesn't have a color name. The owner said it was a "rare gem" because the dyer was fiddling around with new color schemes. Oh, well "rare gem" it is. I also got a new shrug pattern. It is basically a stole with cuffs on the end. I really like the idea of it. Sure wish I could have tried there sample on, but it was too high on the wall. It is called Illuminated Oriels by Zuzana Woods. I would have loved to buy the yarn to go with the pattern, however is was about $150 per hank. You only used 1 hank and had leftovers, but still, that's a little out of my price range. The most exciting find that I bought was a ball of Crystal Palace Panda Cotton Yarn. I had bought 3 skeins last year for the Monkey Sock swap. I only used 2, so I just needed 1 more to be able to do another pair of socks. I had been looking for that colorway (Picnic), I even had friends looking when they went to knitting stores. I had already decided that I would probably use the lone skein that I had for hand warmers or maybe baby socks. But Yeah! now I have options. It's not the same dyelot, the new one is slightly lighter the the original one. But once they are on my feet no one is going to know the difference.

At last year's fiber fest the lunch line was so long (I think we waited for at least 45 minutes for our food after we paid for it), that I recommended we see everything then leave and eat on our way home. Carly was up for that, so we stopped at The Grill House on M40, just south of town. I had always seen it, but never stopped. It is an old farm house style building (whether it was converted or just built that way I don't know) that sits up on a hill. We sat outside under an umbrella. There was a great breeze blowing. If you want to eat inside, you do have the option of cooking your own meat on their grills, but we figured let them do the work :o) I had a Shaved Prime Rib Melt - served on ciabatta bread with bistro sauce, cheeses and au jus. I was a little worried about the bistro sauce that was going to be on it. But oh man was it good. Carly had the Combo Platter - chicken strips and cod with tarter sauce, lemon and choice of dipping sauce. She said it was great too!

On the way home, we also stopped at St. Julian's Winery in Paw Paw Michigan for a little wine tasting. I bought a bottle of their Catawba, which is a sweet blush wine. I don't know about Carly, but I opened my bottle last night to have a glass with my dinner. Not sure if it was appropriate for burgers, but it was good.

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