Category Archives: Gardening


Which Size














Which size?

So, here I am, just happily weaving along, when I reach a length that mathematically speaking is supposed to be pleasing to the human eye. That’s the drawing on the left. It was not pleasing to me, so back to the drawing board. I added enough inches to the drawing to equal a dynamic rectangle size. That one pleased me, but I put it out on Facebook and Instagram. The majority agreed with me, so weaving continued.

By the way, since the first drawing seems to be in the land of the missing, I scanned the photo, increased the canvas size to add the simulated inches, then filled in with color. This solution came to me during my morning walk.

While doing the weaving, I filled my quill and measured to see how much weaving this quill could handle. The piece is 36 inches wide and this filled quill wove three inches. My bobbins for the other shuttle will only weave about an inch, so this is a good thing.

Filled quill

The piece is off the loom, the warp is ready for the next project, a black and white piece. Below is a picture of just a bit of the mess around my loom bench, times three. Why times three? Because this image is representative of the studio clean up that has to happen, if sanity is to stay intact.

The mess


Butterfly Weed

More morning walk

Above is a picture I love, but it was not taken during my morning walk. Below is the morning walk picture. The consensus is that these are puffballs.



Why didn’t I think of that?


Fall on my mother’s hill

Although it’s 95 here, I am sure fall is coming. At least the mornings are cool. And I love fall. It’s also the season for all the grasses. I never really appreciated grasses until I studied the prairie system. The other day I was driving along a neighborhood street and saw one pink muhly plant in the flowerbed. Beautiful! All the grasses are showing off right now.

Pink Muhly

Pink Muhly

Unknown grass

Unknown grass

So, my plan is to get in a bit of outside time in the mornings. After all, I did NOT resist the bag of 100 daffodils at Costco. Funny…I have no volunteers to help me plant them either.

In the why-didn’t-I-think-about-that department–I’ve been doing a bit of spinning and not really enjoying it. In fact I was thinking of selling my wheel and getting another one. As they say, duh! I suddenly remembered that this wheel has three ratios. I switched to the middle one (I was spinning in the largest one), and what a difference it made. That pound of bluish roving may go faster after all. Then I can move on to the burgandy-ish pound. Then I can start on the undyed churro roving. How great is that!

Back in the swing of things, sorta

Air walking

Air walking

Air sitting

Air sitting

I went through pictures from our “vacation.” At the pool, the boys like to create “optical illusions” with their cameras.

The list was made, the week organized…when that happens, you know what happens next. Yep, unplanned events interrupt the carefully planned week. Much on the list remains for next week. I did finish the mowing, picked tomatoes and eggplant in the garden, weeded, and finished what was on the loom. The next project is planned and the yarns labeled for dyeing, along with the dye spreadsheet with formulas. I also did a dye inventory and ordered dyes. What I haven’t done? I have not tackled the envelope of receipts for all the things the boys and I did. I think there is an spotted-fish element of denial working here. Nor did I start cutting the brush on the south. Next week.



Spotted rays

Spotted rays

We went to the World Aquarium in Dallas (no lost child this time, nor a missed train).


For some reason I noticed patterns on the animals this time. Do you do that? I especially liked the rays, shown swimming in the pool above. It’s not very noticeable in the first picture, but the close-up shot shows how some of the spots are surrounded by spots. Kind of interesting.



BotanicalGardens-Petunias Saturday was the annual Herb Festival, something that I haven’t gone to for the last several years. Other times, it’s been hot, humid, and crowded, so I made sure to get there when they opened the doors. Walking to those doors was a real treat. Yards and yards of petunias. Until this little stroll to the door, I had not idea that petunias had a scent, and a pretty darn nice one too! It was wafting over us as we waited for 9:00.

Walk HerbFest-Baskets ing through the door to the sale area, I’m a goner. These baskets are my nemesis! I spotted one right away with perfect colors and a not-so-usual shape. Well, I needed a basket for shopping, didn’t I? Basket

One of the plants I wanted to get is pineapple sage, and a herb festival is certainly the place to find it, plus many others. In the fall, the red blooms from the sage are beautiful and welcoming. At least that is the way I remember them, pulling into my driveway and seeing those plants blooming.

DeBaggio Herbs

DeBaggio Herbs

Driving home, I realized that I’m going to have to do some reconfiguring. The big galvanized trough is not working for me, probably because I didn’t add “real” soil to the mix. I’ve got one more bed outlined, so I’m going to empty that trough of compost into the new bed. Yes, a lot of work, but no more than hauling all those bags around. When the trough is empty, I can put it up on bricks and refill it.

So, what’s in your garden? What’s on the loom?





Botanic Gardens

Botanic-Garden-Butterfly The Botanic Gardens of Fort Worth are a beautiful treat close to downtown in Fort Worth.

Enriching people’s lives since 1934…

The Fort Worth Botanic Garden, the oldest botanic garden in Texas, is a lush 110-acre tapestry of dappled shade and vibrant splashes of color. A peaceful haven nestled in the heart of Fort Worth’s Cultural District, the Garden is home to over 2,500 species of native and exotic plants that flourish in its 23 specialty gardens.

Currently they have a special event, Butterflies in the Garden. Several years ago when I went, the conservatory was filled with beautiful butterflies.  When I drove in last week for my qigong class, the entire road to the gardens was strewn with giant, pansy-covered butterflies. Another treat. Quite a sight with the dead grass below them.

In other news, the outside stuff continues, which means I am feeling the effort by the end of the day. Plus, I have decided what to weave. More about that later.

Habits are hard to change

Entirely understandable because of the events of March, 2011, I slipped into a habit that I don’t like. During that period of time, I zoned out in front of the TV every night as a way of numbing myself (also with the help of a margarita), hiding from my thoughts, who knows. That habit is no longer useful to me, and I am trying to stop it (the margaritas left after the first year). Saturday was Day 1 of no TV. During the day, that’s not a problem, but at night I would start to turn it on almost unconsciously.  Amazing how habits work, isn’t it?Plants

The weather turned on us again, even after I had declared that winter was over. Guess Winter wasn’t listening. I even bought some plants, although I know it’s too early to put them out. Cold, but there was a chance of rain, and we do need it, so I stopped complaining.

Then Sunday arrived, a beautiful day, much warmer, with sunshine. So it was definitely a day for working in the I-will-have-a-garden-this-year spot. It has become much grown over, so I’m doing the down and dirty method. It comes from an article in Mother Earth News about no-till gardening. On their Facebook page, there’s a link for another no-till garden article, but I can’t seem to get Mother to come up today. Maybe they’re having a problem, so here’s the link. My plan is to lay down a layer of newspapers, water them, and cover with mulch. When I get ready to plant, I’ll just plant seeds in the mulch. When putting in plants, just poke a hole through the newspaper layer. At least that’s the theory. With no TV and daylight savings time (grrrrr), I should have time to weave and garden. By the way, the article that I actually read is by Lee Reich. His blog is here. I also like to read A Way to Garden.

Winter treats


Meyer Lemon blossom

Meyer Lemon

Meyer lemon

Not being from California, Florida, or even south Texas, I had no idea how wonderful fruit tree blossoms could smell. Since I am now the proud owner of a Meyer lemon tree, I now have some first-hand experience. The tree is now in the hallway, so every time I walk there, I get that marvelous scent! Makes me smile! Frankly, I know nothing about having fruit trees inside, except that I know it’s done. And I know even less about Meyer Lemons, but it WAS a special price. 🙂 🙂

Another treat for the winter doldrums: fresh flowers. My daughter gave me a gift card to Central Market, which I save just for flowers. These Gerbera Daisies were everywhere yesterday, in many beautiful colors.

You can see from these pictures that I’ve got a red thing going on. What about you? What color draws you in?

La Grange

Quilt-wall3 After returning from Arizona, I got a phone call inviting me to HarvestFest which was being held in Fayetteville, Texas. This is a fund raiser for ART, Arts for Rural Texas. I’ve mentioned this group before. They are dedicated to bringing the arts to rural Texas, not only visual arts, but also opera, ballet, etc. I was in ArtWalk last May and plan to go again.

This time I stayed in La Grange (you may have heard of the “chicken ranch“), and since I arrived before check-in time at the hotel, I decided to find the town square and explore. As I drove by, I spotted a wall of painted quilts. They were amazing! I went around the block and found a parking spot. Quilt-wall2 One whole wall of the building was painted with quilts so that they looked like they were hanging on a line. There were even dark areas so that it appeared to be a shadow behind the quilt. In front of the quilt wall was an enclosed garden, the cottage garden type that may Quilt-wall2 have been in grandmother’s house. Turns out that the quilt wall is on the building that houses the Quilt Museum. Walking down the sidewalk I spotted the sign for Quilted-skein Quilted Skein (clever name, right?). Inside was a treasure of yarns, fabrics, quilting and knitting paraphernalia.  Quilted-skein-inside


The courthouse was a beautiful building and much like other small town La-Grange-courthouse courthouses. I was told later that that the inside is beautiful, right out of To Kill a Mockingbird. They took one of the chairs original to the courtroom and copied it until they had enough chairs to fill the room. Guess that will have to wait for my next trip.





The dyeing blues


Color-aid box

Not the color blue…colors that I want to dye. I’ve got a project on the loom, using the colors I have, although they aren’t totally what I want. So, in an effort to try and match the colors, I took the RGB colors and went on a web search for find color chips. Well, if I’m not going to buy a Pantone set for bunches of money, it’s back to the drawing board. A couple of the skeins that I dyed were tied with an orange yarn. I love the color that resulted from the over dye of turquoise and blue. Maybe that’s where I should start. But as I have been writing this, I remembered the Color Aid papers. Gonna give that a shot. Then some of those skeins of orange and yellow are going to get over dyed.  Oh, and just as an aside, it’s really hot here. My dye room is like a sauna–really.


Color-aid paper practice

Later–I got out my itty bitty set of Color-aid papers and searched for the right colors. I was able to find some that are pretty close. Let me clarify why I wanted to do this. I took my very simple design and added color to it on the computer. The printout did not print the colors as accurately as I wanted, and it is hard to take the computer picture and match it to my yarn samples. That’s why I wanted “chips” to carry around with me. I was able to do that with these colored papers. Here are the matches I came up with, although the photo of these colors is not spot on. Those blues look more purple-y than in the picture. There are 314 color chips in this small set–that makes for a lot of sorting through for just the right color. And these sets are not cheap. This small box of 2 x 3 chips is $34.50.

Goals for the week:

  • studio hours-20
  • clear brush by driveway
  • dye more yarn
  • steam press one more piece

Mostly pictures


Viewers in gallery


Stormies’s bottles

First the pop-up gallery–on the left is a shot of the viewers, a surprisingly nice crowd for a gloomy, cold afternoon. And this space cleaned up well, only needs better lighting. The rabbit in this shot is Stormie Parker’s, as are the bottles below.


another section

Here’s another shot of the space. It cleaned up really well–the space I mean.


stolen garden sign

Now for some good stuff. This neighborhood is being “re-gentrified” and they have built community garden beds.Notice the cute entrance of branches painted blue. You might also notice the sign. The gardens are called Riverside Stolen Garden because the first beds were stolen. They’ve been redone, obviously. The fence to the right of the gate is made with wooden pallets.



These birdhouses adorn the fence. They are all constructed alike, but the painting is different, as are the garden beds themselves.


Garden beds


wall art trailer

And there is the portable pop-up. I want one of those!