Thursday, May 29, 2008

half way home

last night lucy woke crying. when adam went to her she was saying "nana don't go". we hadn't told her that i was leaving today but her little almost 3 year old soul sensed it. happily they're coming for a little corner brook visit in a week. this back and forth is tough for us all. at least they're not in fort mcmurray like so many young newfoundland families.
so today we (craft council members) travel in a convoy to lumsden. 1st stop chapel's cove to pick up linda and see her new sheep and get my spinning wheel from her. prrrr. then a picnic in terra nova park (it is a gorgeous day for it) and arrivng in lumsden (about 1 1/2 hours from gander) around 5:0) meetings start tonight.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

a lucy day

this is my last day in st. john's. aside from my exhibition opening, it's been a very family oriented visit. my daughter is 2 months pregnant (a very lovely thing for all of us) so is feeling all day morning sickness. i've taken over much of the food prep to help her out. today lucy stayed home from daycare and we're spending time together. walked eamon to school and then lucy and i spent an hour in the playground. heading over to devon house now to drop off my shawl. tomorrow morning i'm heading out to lumsden for a weekend of craft council meetings. it's always hard leaving the little family but fortunately they'll be coming out to corner brook for a short visit next week.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

giving over

in st john's i become nana. lucy refuses to accept that i have any other name. "no, you're my nana" so while i'm here, i have 6:00 am camping adventures. i walk back and forth to eamon's school. i watch colourful pinata and rescue heroes on tv. i read "caps for sale" over and over and act out the part of the pedlar. today eamon is ditching
school and we're going to toys 'r us and then to the movies to see prince caspian. tomorrow is lucy and nana's day. and then thurs. i head off for the craft council agm for 4 days in lumsden. i have

managed to knit a shawl that i'll enter into the craft council summer exhibit. tonight i'll finish off the fringe and take it over tomorrow.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

after the show

i can't believe that bob dylan and leonard cohen are in st. john's and i'm not seeing either of them. tickets were impossible to get...
soo... the show went well for me. only 2 of my mats sold at the opening but they were the two largest and most expensive. this means no financial worries this summer! i can go home and learn how to spin, and knit in the garden and stockpile product for the one of a kind show in december. clear...

Friday, May 23, 2008

my birthday

today is my birthday. i always love my birthday. i feel strongly that it's a special day. there is always a light around it. i'm in st.john's this year. missing keith but happy to be spending it with my daughter, her husband and their children. today i dropped off an order at the craft council shop, did a radio interview for my show that opens tomorrow and edith and i spent the rest of the day clothes shopping at 2nd hand stores (i mistakenly gave all my summer clothes to the salvation army last december!). i'm very grateful for value village! we're having takeout chinese food for dinner and then going to a one woman play (at the lspu hall) written and performed by a childhood friend of edith's and directed by another. this morning i was about to walk with my grandson to school and told my grand daughter that i would be back soon. she said "good because i don't want to miss you anymore.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

honest beauty

i'm flying out to st. john's this afternoon. i'll be gone for 10 days. my "honest beauty" hooked mat exhibition opens on saturday. next thursday i drive on to lumsden for 3 days of craft council meetings (i'm looking forward to seeing a part of newfoundland i don't know). today i make decisions about what to take. my knitting has become so complex that it's hard to carry it with me. i have a large hooked mat to do (as an exchange for yarn and roving from whorlingtides). so i'll take that along. and a few tiny mats to finish up for my order. i want to clear the decks so that when i return june 1st with my spinning wheel i can throw myself into spinning and knitting. i think i can continue writing on my blog and keep my etsy shop going while i'm away - just no photos...

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

summer craft fair and pretty toes

yesterday morning barb, rilla and i met with christy at the humber valley resort. we've decided to have a summer craft fair in july to highlight some of the wonderful craft that's being produced on the west coast of the province. it's not been done here before. many of us send our work out all over the world but (aside from the november christmas craft fair) we don't have an outlet here, other than our home studios. the humber valley resort it a perfect venue - access not only to local clientel but also to european customers who own and rent the chalets on the resort, not to mention the most amazing setting. fortunately christy, who organizes the resort's events agreed. it won't be only a sale but also a day of demonstrations, socializing etc.

in the afternoon florence (keith's mum) and i went for our annual pedicures. keith gives us gift certificates for christmas and we wait until the warmer weather before we cash them in. my grand daughter lucy told me to get pink so i went as deeply pink as i could....

Tuesday, May 20, 2008


here is my latest scarf (i'm averaging one every two days ). "pink primrose" is listed in my etsy shop.

we've getting rain now and the garden is singing. rich colours and dark soil.

on thursday i'm heading off to st. john's. my rug hooking exhibition "honest beauty" opens on saturday. i'll spend a week with the little family and then the following weekend is the craft council agm in lumsden (a small outport community). every other year the agm is held somewhere other than st. john's. we always visit studios in the area and attend workshops. this year we'll be learning how to "knit" fish nets and we'll visit a boat builder. my work today is to figure out what to take with me. i can't afford to stop working while i'm away for 10 days. because of the intricacy of these scarves, it will be hard to figure out what yarn to take - the process of knitting them is very spontaneous.

Monday, May 19, 2008

may two four

newfoundlanders are keen outdoorspeople. it's in their dna. even if you live in a small fishing village, you have a cabin to "get away from it all". if you live in town you have a camper. and the "may two four" weekend sees an exodus to camp grounds, gravel
pits, beside trout streams. it doesn't matter what the weather is like - and often this time of year there is snow in the air. this weekend corner brook is a ghost town.

i spent yesterday doing what i love to do almost most - visiting nurseries. i buy my permanent plants from my friend kim at the greenhouse in little rapids and my cheap container plants from the big box stores.

33 years ago today i arrived in newfoundland. for the adventure of going to a new place for a couple of years. i stayed. and stayed...

Sunday, May 18, 2008

wild iris

here is my "wild iris" scarf. i finished it yesterday and will post it in my etsy shop this morning.
the garden grows slowly this spring because we've had so little rain. the flowers are lasting longer. the first tulips are beginning to bloom. catherine and i share this birthday week and today we're doing our annual nursery run. i'm looking for more primulas. they're my passion this year. they remind me of little grand daughters.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

a feed o' lobster

if you live in newfoundland and your birthday falls in may (as mine does), your birthday dinner is lobster. keith's dad celebrated his 78th birthday on thursday and we served lobster. i stopped eating fish about 4 years ago (i've not eaten meat most of my life). i still miss lobster.

Friday, May 16, 2008

alot of knitting to do

last month i applied for the toronto one of a kind christmas show and found out yesterday that i've been accepted. i was there 2 years ago with mats and painted objects ,but this year i'm taking only scarves and shawls. that's a whole lot of knitting.

my local craft council craft fair has about 30 booths. the st. john's fair has 90. toronto has 800.

this is my latest scarf "lilac". i finished it yesterday. the fringe is from kittygrrlz

i almost weep at the beauty of her art yarns...

Thursday, May 15, 2008


to help keep things organized, my mother assigned each of her young children a colour. mine was yellow and yellow has continued to be my favourite colour . at this time of year the garden sings yellow.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008


i'm obsessed with garden nurseries. when i was a child my father owned one. my sisters and i played in the greenhouses, ran through the rows of saplings.

walking into a greenhouse. the moist dirt, the scent of the flowers make me swoon. i can spend hours in a trance inspecting every plant. on the weekend i picked up my first flat of flowers - little geranium cuttings. i take them in at night (we're still getting frost) and put them out in the morning. i've been knitting "flowers" this week.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

studio tidy-up

i have another craft council shop order of small mats to finish up before i go into st. john's on the 22nd. two 6"x10" mats (this is the first of them) and twenty 4" mats. at the same time this week i'm trying to spend a little time each day getting my studio ready for the upcoming season. the studio definitely becomes a work studio during the winter months. this is my opportunity to re-arrange, organize, destash and make it presentable for the public.

Monday, May 12, 2008

yellow sheets

12 years ago last week i left my long marriage (of 26 years). the decision was difficult, the split painful. my friend alice was away for a year and offered me her home to care for. her bedroom was painted cream and her sheets were yellow. i picked daffodils and put them in a vase beside the bed. in the morning the sun filled the bedroom with a soft buttery glow.
ever since, i've had a "thing" about yellow sheets. i saw these on a line as we entered woody point on saturday.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

woody point trip

our monthly craft collective gathering was in woody point yesterday. (woody point is in spectacular gros morne park about a 2 hour drive from corner brook.) molly and joan and susan all live in woody point so it was only fitting that we hold our 1st anniversary meeting outside of the bay of islands. we made a day of it - leaving at 10:00 in 2 cars. we packed a lunch and had a "tailgate picnic" in the cold. we met at joan's shop "hunky dory" (it will open for the season in a couple of weeks). after the meeting we visited molly's studio/shop "molly made". molly is mostly a rug hooker. barb and rilla and i took an extra drive to the tablelands along the trout river road and took a short walk down to the brook. a wonderful "pre-tourist" time of year.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

inspired by

i always need a jumping off point to start a new scarf. lately it's been the garden. it could be a work of art. i could be a designer gown i see in a magazine or on tv. or it could be a skein of yarn.these are a few of my most recent etsy purchases - luscious bamboo from and the softest most gentle green merino wool from (from germany).

Friday, May 9, 2008

little mats

yesterday i finished off the 10 little mats to add to my woody point order. they're 4" square and all summer long they're one of my biggest sellers. i have 20 more to do now for the st. john's craft council shop. i'll pack up the order today and treat myself to some knitting this evening...

Thursday, May 8, 2008

what's left to do...

i've been working on a big order for the past 2 weeks and it's almost finished (1/2 of it went last weekend and i'll take the rest when i go to woody point on saturday). the painted objects are wholesale, the rest is consignment. so today i'll finish painting 2 boxes and hook the last 3 little mats. the shaped pillows are done (yesterday). i'm short 2 scarves (i showed them to marilee yesterday and she bought one) so i'll be taking some from my etsy shop.

in past years i've had work in many shops. some do well and others don't. so this year i've kept only the shops where my work sells consistently. hunky dory in woody point is one of them...

Wednesday, May 7, 2008


most semi-rural homes have a place in the yard where things get dumped. leaves, wood, branches, cracked flower pots etc. ours was already established behind the shed when we moved in 10 years ago and we've continued to add to it. i've always thought it would be a perfect area for a patio. it's private and protected and gets the sun all day long. so yesterday - after much, much discussion - we got a dumpster and cleared it out. now all that's left is some beautiful compost that i'll spread in the gardens, and bit by bit this summer we'll turn it into my oasis.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

more colour in the garden

i'm trying to stay on track and not be lured out to the garden during the day. i have an order to finish up this week (6 small painted boxes, 10 4" square hooked mats, 6 chenille and vintage cotton shaped pillows and 1 more scarf to knit). it can be done. but not if i keep finding reasons to go outside and watch my garden grow...

Monday, May 5, 2008

what a weekend!

it's rare for us to have 2 glorious days in a row. rarely in may and rarely on a weekend.

saturday morning i got an order sent off early and then spent the rest of the day in the garden. raking. weeding. edging. on my knees getting intimate with the plants again. on sunday we went down to the cabin. we actually have 2 acres of land above the beach where our cabin is. we spent the afternoon on the land - the land rests between the blomidon mountains and the atlantic ocean. this time of year, with the snow melting, the roar from the waterfall is louder than the sound of the surf. magic...

Sunday, May 4, 2008

fog depositing ice

we're having an amazing spring on the west coast of newfoundland - day after day of warm sunny weather. not so on the east coast. st. john's has had weeks of "rain, drizzle and fog" and very cool temperatures with
the northerly winds. yesterday the forcast on the radio announced "fog depositing ice" for st. john's. i love the "creativity" of that forcast. my 2 year old granddaughter (who lives in st. john's) asked her auntie the other day "where is the sun?"

Friday, May 2, 2008

the light is back

for months i've been trying to photograph my work indoors. there's never enough natural light in the house. i bought a light box but didn't like the sterile feeling of the objects against the white background. i've been "enhansing" the photos using photoshop so at least the images can be seen. but shooting outdoors is bliss. the light seems to exude from the object intself.

3 - way fibre swap

i've just participated in a 3-way fibre swap with my etsy fibre group. for those interested in participating we were asked what we wanted (fleece, yarn, knitted goods, woven goods etc.). from the list of participants, 3 of us were chosen as a group to do an exchange. rose marie (at sidhechilde.etsy) chose my orient express scarf . cheryl (at lapoli.etsy) chose rose marie's knitted art cat. and i chose an assortment of cheryl's roving ($50.00 worth). we're all delighted with our swap...

Thursday, May 1, 2008

may day

"the fair maid who, the first of may,

goes to the fields at break of day,

and washes in dew from the hawthorn tree,

will ever after handsome be".

i don't remember how it began, but as teenagers, my sister jan and i used to sneak out the back door early on the 1st of may and wash our faces in the morning dew. we both continued the practice with our own children and they continue with theirs.

when i moved to newfoundland in 1975 i discovered may 1st could mean snow, or at the very least dry grass and mud. so it has become a purely symbolic ritual. (in newfoundland snow that falls on may 1st it thought to have medicinal value for your vision . in the past it was often collected and melted and used to bathe your eyes).

yesterday i knit this scarflette in honour of may day and the morning dew.