Taproot Gathering, Taproot Giveaway, and 500 Something or Other

I wish I could share the Everything of my experience at the Taproot Gathering with each and every one of you, but in the words of Inigo Montoya:

“No, there is too much. Let me sum up.”

Really, too much. I must extend my most sincere gratitude to the Taproot and Squam Art Workshops lovelies, especially Elizabeth, Kaitlyn, Amanda and Jason for putting together such a deeply meaningful event, full of creativity, connection, inspiration, and beauty. And amazing food. We were nourished in every way possible.

The sum up:
I arrived at the Rockywold-Deephaven Camps late in the evening, and when I had unpacked from my car into the cabin, the sky, which had been lightening-lit the whole of my drive, finally released a torrent of rain. So, I missed the opening ceremony, affording myself the opportunity to explore the indoors and settle in quietly. I’m a nester like that, so it worked out well.

I hadn’t stalked my roommate ahead of time, so I knew nothing about the person who would be sleeping in the bed one foot away from mine in our cozy little room. It turns out she’s pretty awesome, has excellent taste in chocolate, and doesn’t mind giggling until 2am. She also creates sweet house portraits.


Oh, that? Eh, just my walk to class in the morning.

I took Forage and Ferment, a natural dye workshop with Rachel Bingham. We used powdered natural dyes and then explored in the woods for various materials to experiment with.



Above is from a cochineal dyebath, and below is the pot I pushed for: black eyed susan. These flowers weren’t exactly in the wild, but the landscaping needed a little tidying and so I dead-headed the bushes, clipping only the flowers on their way out. The mordant used was alum and the result is a the loveliest sage green. I have a feeling the susies in my yard will find their way into a dyepot, too, since the frost will take them soon, anyway.



Another favorite was goldenrod, and I’ll share the results once I spin the fiber. It’s nearly exactly my Biohazard blend, but with plant dye. Oh, and there is so very much in the way of goldenrod lurking all about my world right now.

I’m overwhelmed, so I will tell you about day 2 tomorrow. I’m still processing all the emotional Whoa, reigning it all in and absorbing it as I settle back into a daily grind which is different than the one I left behind.

In other news, this funny thing happened. At some point during the Sparkle Stories tutorial posting frenzy, I passed the 500th post mark. Is this significant? Not really, but I thought it might be worth mentioning, and that it’s a nice excuse for a giveaway.


I happen to have an extra copy of the current issue of Taproot (#7: Gather). I also happen to have a piece included in its pages, so if you want to make my Blueberry Pie Sauerkraut, you’d best get your hot little hands on it. How about I send it to you?

How about I also sweeten the deal by sending the winner a skein of my handspun merino, dyed up with cochineal during the class I took at the Taproot Gathering? It’s bulky and squishy and delicious and is pictured above (the skein on the left), dripping with blood beautiful dye.

Leave a comment between now and Sunday, September 22nd, and tell me one of your favorite recipes or crafts that gets you feeling all Autumnal, and a winner will be chosen at random.

Good luck!


In which I also play with fiber…

In the sunshine, even!



It may be a little while before this happens again, as we’re headed into a cooler, wetter spell of weather, but I was pretty darn pleased with the Spring-sweet colors that resulted. In fact, I probably won’t turn on a dye pan again until Fall…why bother when I can have rainbows under glass on the deck railing?

I promised some updates, and they’re coming, throughout the weekend. Here’s one for tonight:


Click on the pic for a link to the listing.

Back to FSF (Five Senses Friday) next week!

Oh, and I am also here today.


Enjoy, and happy Friday!



Some Things

* The shelling peas are getting fat.

* The jarring of the latest batch of kimchi is on the schedule for tomorrow morning. I’ve been listening to it joyfully percolating in the crock. I love you, early cabbage.

* I came home this afternoon to find C tending the hives. He added another super and fiddled with frames, had the stirred up bees swarming around him…all sans suit. He’s feeling a great deal calmer about everything since injury forced him out of work last week. Without carrying all that stress around, he can exude the peaceful confidence required to handle bees without full-body protective gear. He still had his head net and gloves, of course…it’s not as if he’s asking for trouble. Working with the bees is becoming a meditation for him and he approaches them without fear. So far, he has not once been stung and, from what he can tell, the hive is quite happy. Yay bees!

* Road trip this weekend is canceled. The forecast for central Oregon is flippity-flopping back and forth about that “R” word…and I’m not really interested in waking up in a soggy sleeping bag. Hopefully, no rain for the Black Sheep Gathering because we’ll be heading up for that rain or shine.

* There is some Navajo-Churro fleece in my near future. Some for you and some for me. I cannot wait.

* I’m going to bed happy and tired, on account of I’m all “swimmy.” I spent a lot of time in VT in the water, but I realized today that I never actually swam. There was a lot of wading. A lot. With a toddler. Now I have a boy who doesn’t mind hanging out on a noodle with his auntie while I swim some laps. Wow. It sure did bring back some warm, fuzzy childhood memories to come home and feel so tuckered in that way only swimming makes you tuckered and HUNGRY. So hungry! Dinner tasted amazing.

* More yarn going up. I’m stalling on nuno photos…maybe C should start modeling them instead.


*Happy Thursday. xoxoxo


No Market for me today…the hardly-any-sleep schedule I have been maintaining for the last few weeks has landed me in bed with a sinus infection. Bah. My head throbs looking at this screen, but there is only so much sleeping and feeling sorry for myself that I can do…it was time to at least say hello.


Anyway, there is just something so wrong about being sick in the summertime…although, later today we are to have thunderstorms galore, so  I suppose I will have even more reason to stay indoors and take care of myself with copious amounts of tea. A little easy knitting, perhaps. I should stop right there, as I see where this is going…a little knitting…oh, maybe I can handle a little spinning…and oh, there’s that next batch of felting all set up and waiting for me…until I find myself exhausted and feeling worse because the urge to create outweighs the natural instinct to protect the self.

So. Knitting and no more.

Highlights from the past week or so of life and craftiness:

Berry-picking is the grandest, most wonderful thing about summertime, in my opinion. Well, that, and the utter lack of snow.
9 pints of organic blueberries became one pint dried, two quarts frozen and seven jars of blueberry/peach jam. Going for round two this Wednesday, because I WILL be feeling better.

When I wasn’t jamming, I was wooling:

The heart on the cobweb felt in the upper left photo was purely accidental, but totally perfect.
The yarn on the upper right is to celebrate Jacey’s soon-to-be-released art yarn instructional DVD I had the pleasure of participating in earlier this year. It’s my fave technique, so much fun to spin and the resulting yarn just makes me giggle at its cuteness.

More herbs. More tea. Must close eyes for a while.