Pecan trees

After What happens to pecan trees when you are not around to water them, is that they die. The Texas summers are brutally hot and dry. A few years back, when we were removing the trunks from some trees already cut down, we found evidence of underground irrigation. A very old system. So it is apparent that without the aid of a lot of water, these pecan trees are not surviving well. I think I only have six trees left, of the nineteen that were on the property when I moved in. I am coming up to my ten year anniversary in this home. 
It is going to take some adjusting to the reality of these big gaps. I love trees and am always very sad when they have to go. Yesterday three trees were taken down by safe methods.  I am glad that these trees will never be able to damage our buildings. But I am saddened by their loss. 
Well, on to better news. I am always crafting and teaching about it. Recently I have been helping a couple of gals get going on their rigid heddle weaving…

Mermaids as Home Security

Here is a collection of mermaid art pieces that grace my southern home. I suppose you could look at them as my home security system. It is very high tech. 
Mermaids have a strong spirit. 
 Just today I received this lovely mermaid as a gift. Some great friends thought of me!! Of course she looks just like me . Not! She is at my driveway side door. She will greet visitors.

 This mermangel has been with me a long time. I found her at an Art Gallery in Selkirk Manitoba. She was at the side door but has been moved to the side wall , near the side door and carport.

 This gal is my largest mermaid. I purchased her right after buying this house. I found her in a boutique in Fredericksburg. She hangs at the front wall of the front porch. She is seen from the street.

 This mermaid with the fish is camped out on one side of my huge rock shed. She is also visible from the street. I like how her hair kind of covers her endowments.

 I like the detail on this mermaid. She is on the rock shed but fa…

Loose ends

Much time has passed since I wrote. We had a fun time this fall at camp with plenty of 

visitors and still enough time for crafts. I finished weaving the Clematis vine cloth and have brought it south. It will be installed into a room divider screen.

I used two different wool yarns in the weaving of this monk's belt cloth. I wove it 59 inches wide in the reed. It is mostly constructed now into a fall coat. The main body is the lighter purple and the darker, more tweedy purple was used for cuffs and bottom edge and front opening edges. I did not quite finish the coat and have left it in Canada for now. 

This is the pattern I am following for the coat. Simplicity Coat.  In some places this design is called the Bog Jacket. 

This is a hat I designed and made for a special little guy. It has two very colourful pom poms attached to it now and blocking has been finished. This is a hat and scarf combo. I made it in wool and was using up scraps. The theme is shorelines and creatures of the s…

I have gone and melted!

Jeepers but it has been a very hot spring and summer.  The worst part of it was having all that humidity but no rain!

Recently I participated at the Artisan Fair at the local bass classic fish tournament. Although I was in the shade of a large pavilion, it was a hot day. Not many folks were thinking about wrapping themselves up in wool.  I did sell enough to cover my expenses though! I demonstrated spinning all day long and the children really enjoyed that.

I saw this cross stitch kit and had to have it.  The Black Pearl is a design by The Primitive Hare. This mermaid is being stitched up right now.  At 15 stitches per inch though, it will take awhile.

Inspired by a book about knitting in circles I am using up oddments of spring green yarn.  I hope to make a fun shawl out of this some day.

 Have I shown you my yarn production during this year's Tour de Fleece? All the skeins are two ply. All are wool but different types. The white is the rambouillet fibre which has been a long ru…

The Heat Retreat

Starting off, here is a shot of the Rio Grande Kit Loom with stabilizer feet added to it. Much better! I got all the cords on and the sectional beaming rakes as well.

 So then it was time to test out the loom.   Using knit cotton rag strips I am weaving some twill placemats.  I think the walking of the treadles is fun and easy to get used to.  As I practise I see that some improvements to the cords can be made. And I may have to hit the rollers with sand paper.
 The not-so-elegant tie up of the treadles could definitely be improved.   In my haste to try out the loom I left the white cords in from previous owner's. They seemed too short so I added a jumper cord.  But I will maybe try the tie up without the jumper and see how it goes.  It could be that some knots are catching on one another and preventing the shafts from always rising nicely.
.    In the knitting basket is a project I am calling Kilauea.  Last winter I purchased the three semi-solid wools and on the very same d…

Rio Grande Kit Loom

Here is the Rio Grande Kit Loom that I recently purchased. This is the first time I have set it up. I may add stabilizer feet and also platforms on either side of the treadles
In the uppermost picture you can see the Leclerc Colonial counterbalance loom, to the left.  It has a 60 inch weaving width. The Rio Grande is 45 ". 
Can you see the copper wrapped around the breast and warp beams? Hopefully that will help prevent gouging by warp threads.  

Snickerdoodles Loaf

(Original photo credit: Melissa Brisko)

By popular request here is the recipe for a Snickerdoodle Loaf. I found it in the Texas Co-op Power magazine, issue April 2018. pp. 31-32. Paula Disbrowe is the food editor at that publication.


2 1/2 cups flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
1 1/4 cups sugar
3 eggs, room temperature
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup whole milk yogurt
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp almond extract

Cinnamon Sugar

3 tbsp. light brown sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 cup sliced almonds


1. Batter: preheat oven to 350 deg F. Grease a 9x5 inch loaf pan.

2. In a medium bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder and cinnamon. ( I sifted it in).

3. In a large bowl cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the sour cream, yogurt ( I used my homemade) and extracts and beat until well-combined. Add the dry ingredients and mix until the batter just comes togeth…