Friday, March 30, 2012

"Spring Blossoms- In MARCH!"

The earliest of Spring blossoms to some which "normally" aren't blooming until later in April or early May!

All with their beautiful colors against the greening of Spring after the dull grayness of Winter. I say grayness instead of whiteness because not much snow lasted very long this past Winter.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

"New Purchase"

Last week, our 12 year old refrigerator's condenser decided it didn't like working in "full mode" any longer. So things began to defrost in the freezer and warmed up a little in the main part of the refrigerator. We've had the repairman out before, but this time he didn't really suggest fixing it. So weighing the repair bill of $700 against buying something new and more efficient, we went the new route and went shopping last saturday.

Our new stainless steel Maytag, French Door, bottom drawer freezer arrived yesterday. We think it is beautiful!

I'm sure I will be re-arranging things in it for awhile until I come up with the best storage for me. As you can see (beer selection on upper left hand shelf), Don has made sure we are ready to begin our weekly Friday night happy hour, "if" the weather is nice enough tomorrow. We've not begun them yet, as I was sick when we had the unseasonal warm/hot weather.

A freezer drawer. Hopefully, this means no more hidden and unused packages. ;)

Think back to the refrigerators of your youth. Those of us "of a certain age" can attest that things have changed a "wee bit". ;)

Wednesday, March 28, 2012


I guess our "Christmas Cactus", which did have a beautiful flowering display around Christmas, has decided it also wants to be called an "Easter Cactus" this year. I noticed flower buds a few weeks ago and yesterday, the first one opened. As you can see, several more will be following its lead very soon.

The plant isn't as heavily covered in flower buds as it had been at Christmas, but there certainly are enough to make a nice showing.

I'm not sure what I did to help make this happen, but I do hope I'll repeat whatever it was again next year. :)

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

"I'm Still Here......"

Sorry that I haven't posted as of late, but I've been fighting a chest cold/cough. Haven't been weaving, etc.
Hope all are well!!!! ;)

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

"Canoecoppia 2012"

Don and I attended the annual canoe/kayak show, Canoecopia, on Sunday. As expected, it was a great experience. As some of you may remember, I bought Don a Wilderness Tsunami 120 kayak for his 60th birthday (, and myself a Native Watercraft Ultimate 14.5 Solo, but there were a few accessories that we wanted to check out.

Here is Don looking at a teardrop trailer that is manufactured in Wausau, WI. No, this is not one of the accessories we are considering. ;)

Nor is this, but we both find this trailer VERY intriguing. This little and lightweight beauty is manufactured in North Carolina by SylvanSport. We'd seen this before at other Canoecopia's, but it continues to draw us back for another look. ;)

After cranking the top up to its high point, the "tent" is set up using only 3 fiberglass poles, 2 of which are seen in this photo.

The back wall is solid and drops down from underneath the top when it is in it's highest position. The back wall holds the entire tent in place between it and the underside of the top when the trailer is to be pulled.

It has a very open and airy feeling when sitting inside.

This shows the trailer in one of it's pulling positions. Check out their website to see all of its positions/features......."if" I've peaked your interest. ;)

We had a great time and yes, we did purchase a few accessories. We both bought 2 wheeled trailers which will make pulling our boats from the car to the water much easier, and Don also found shoes that he can wear in the water as needed. I held back. ;)

Monday, March 12, 2012

"Remembering a Year Ago......"

It has been a little over a year ago that our new Governor, and many of his party in both houses, outraged many Wisconsin residents with their over reach of power. In memory of those actions, thousands came out again Saturday, to commemorate those protests of last year.

I parked myself at a convenient location (home base, so to speak), giving Don the opportunity to wander around and experience all the event had to offer.

Jim, a co-worker of Don, and wife, Tammye, came to say hello.

Not long afterwards, he ran into more friends of ours, Steve and Cindy, who also came over to say hello.

"Guestimates" of 25, 000- 65,000 (a rather large range between the two, eh?), of participants were reported. We would guess that the number was somewhere in the middle.

Our friend Rory (left in red), a long time bagpiper, helped make the event one to remember.

Sandy (left), another co-worker of Don's, stopped by with husband Rod (3rd from left). Jyothi (between Sandy and Rod), you may remember from our Happy Hour photos? She is a friend from our neighborhood.

Don, as I said, was able to wander around and take numerous photos of the participants. He found these workers from Milwaukee organizing a group photo. How could he resist, eh? ;)

Not only was there a wide variety of signs, but people got quite creative with paper mache, too. :)

We thought this little guy was so cute. The expression of concern on his face.....adorable.

And yes, there were vendors, too. I must admit, he had a thriving business last Saturday!

We were so fortunate to have such a beautiful day for the event. After standing out in the snow and bitter cold of last winters protests, it was VERY nice to have such a wonderfully temperate day to commemorate last years events, the success of gathering more than enough signatures for a Recall (Governor, Lt. Governor, and 4 Senators), and sustain hope for a successful election.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012


Patrick and Julie have a new addition in their family. BB was adopted into the family a few weeks ago.....Abigail is quite taken with her, too, being on the receiving end of BB's many licks and kisses. ;)

Here she is on an outing wearing her new winter coat. :)

Poor Julie is like Don.....always the photographer and rarely in photos.

The kids certainly have been lucky with bright sunny days for beautiful photos!

This is one of my favorites.....

I've not met her yet, but will sometime this Spring.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

"From Don's Walk to Work......."

Don took these photos while walking into work yesterday.

The 1st one was just before he crossed the bridge into Vilas Park, and the other 2 afterwards.....

I think they are simply spectacular!

Monday, March 5, 2012

"Barb's Retirement Party......"

Our friend, Barb, retired from the UW last Friday. Also, on her last day of work, Barb's colleagues organized a very nice retirement party to honor her time with them.

Here is a photo of the beautiful (AND delicious!) cake that they'd ordered for the event.

Here is Barb, happily posing for Don's photo documentary of her party. ;) My small blog post uses only a very small fraction of the photos he took, which was 200+. The man does love photography!

Barb's mother, Shirley, sister Sarah, and brother in law, Rick, also attended Barb's momentous occasion. I'm thinking the woman in the brown sweater behind Shirley, must have been having "retirement envy". ;)

Barb's sons, Nick and Adrian, also were in attendance.

As was Adrian's partner, Marie.

Gwen, Geoff's daughter, came in bearing "a bit of Spring". Spring was sorely needed that afternoon. Madison was in the beginning stage of a repeat of the previous Friday's weather.....another winter storm of heavy, wet snow.

Geoff, Barb, Shirley, and me, in the calm, "after" the party. Barb is very well liked and her party was very well attended.

In this photo, Barb's son, Andrew, who had also attended the party, had left earlier to get ready for a bus trip to LaCrosse, and stopped back to say goodbye once again.

Shirley and Barb, now both retired from state service, leave behind Andrew and Adrian, their families 3rd generation working for the State of Wisconsin. ;)

Best wishes for Barb's new chapter of her life!

Friday, March 2, 2012

"Heavy Snowfall......."

Exactly a week ago today, we woke up to about 4-5" of wet, heavy, beautiful snow. I couldn't resist taking photos of it. This from our front door......

Also from our front door......

And this one from right outside the back slider......

The snow had stuck to every object it touched, right on down to the tiniest tree branch or evergreen needle.

As has happened with most of our snowfalls this year, it soon melted and once again we have no snow cover. I've been comparing our winter this year to living in a more southern state where snowfalls are more rare, and when they do get them, they're soon melted. Quite the strange winter for us.......

Thursday, March 1, 2012

"Warp Stick Catchers For My Ashford........."

I liked how well my new pair of warp stick catchers worked on my Oxaback floor loom, that I decided I wanted something similar on my Ashford table loom, too. Having the warp sticks clatter to the floor is pretty annoying. ;) They aren't available for purchase, so I had to make this for myself.

For my prototype, I used 2 metal book ends, tied to a cross piece of the looms stand, located underneath the warp.

After making sure warp sticks would drop and be caught properly, I took measurements and went shopping. ;)

At the hardware store, I bought some door trim and some thin screws. I wanted to use screws because I thought small nails might work loose too easily. One of my requirements of this warp catcher, was it needed to be easily added and removed when the loom was to be folded for storage.

This is my end product. I also added some felt pads so wood sliding against wood wouldn't scratch the loom stand.

The back of the catcher rests on a cross piece of the loom stand.

While the front pieces rest on one of the main support cross pieces of the loom stand.

I am able to use the catcher to hold all of the extra warp sticks that are not in use, too.

It occurred to me the other day, that there are so many things that I don't know about weaving. Not only in using all 8 shafts for patterns, but just how much there is out there that make weaving easier, like these warp stick catchers. So many accessories that I see when checking out weaving sites, that I have no idea how to use or even what they are used to do. This old dog has many more years (hopefully) of finding out and adding to my weaving equipment and capabilities. Good times to look forward to, eh?