Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Rainy Days

Oh, my yummy shelves! I've been having fun on my dyeing days this summer. These alpaca blend skeins were yet to be labeled as I got ready for the Artist's Garden event last weekend.

The Artist's Garden brings together about 25 artists and artisans from our community onto the gardens of Ash Creek Pottery in Callander, Ontario. For two days, the public comes to see the artists in action. I was there demonstrating hand spinning, not dyeing. The ladies of St. Andrew's Church serve lunch and desserts in a great tea room. Mid-day, a bagpiper plays from across the pond. The resident ducks walk amongst the gardens and glide into the pond. People play a game of trying to count how many frogs reside in the beautiful water garden beside the pottery studio. On a lovely day, you cannot find a more peaceful venue.
Saturday was a perfect day, even with a short 15 minute rain in the morning. I saw many old friends and met many new faces. The artisans are a great, friendly bunch and we have fun while we are there.
Sunday was not a perfect day. The skies turned black, the phone rang with warning from North Bay of high winds and hail. With black, ominous clouds approaching and the winds picking up, we scrambled to cover the tables the best we could. Not even my anti-rain dance in my long skirt and plaid rubber boots could save it. The skies opened up and it rained, and rained, and rained.
I felt quite sick watching from the studio's covered porch and realizing that I had several thousand dollars worth of yarn, hand knit and hand woven articles under the plastic. My poor tent didn't stand up too well. Somebody's market tent completely collapsed.
My fellow artisans thankfully rushed over to help me secure my product as best we could under plastic.
It rained for a very long time.
The best time was had by six year old Sage, who, barefoot and covered with a blue garbage bag ran through the rain and puddles, declaring that 'This is the Best Day Ever"!
When it finally cleared, the hostess found a dry table and tent and people helped me move some of my product to a drier spot.
Like many others, I was soaked to the bone with drip dry hair.
Worse was that when I got home tired, I had to unpack everything to ensure it wasn't wet.
I was happy that I only lost one photo card and some labels.
Sunday night, I was feeling that I might have participated in my last outdoor venue. I was tired and cranky.
But Monday, the emails started flying talking about how next year's event could be even better.
I love this event and the spirit of the people involved in it.
I'm in! (well, assuming I'm invited...)
I just might have to think about a more weather-proof display system.

Here's some fibre blending that I'm working on. White alpaca and a teal blue merino...makes a batt that looks like a waterfall. I'm thinking of adding either some sparkly angelina or some more colourful silk to it....we'll see where it goes.

It hasn't all been work. Lawrence Hill's Book of Negroes has been out on a steady reserved rotation from the library, especially as it has enjoyed such wonderful reviews. I finally got a hold of it when I had time to read it. It's so hard to put this book down. I thoroughly enjoyed Hill's writing style, the story and the character, Aminata Diallo.

You may have been wondering about Lily. She's still doing fine, although she is smaller than she should be. Lily absolutely refuses the bottle, so we are weighing her often to ensure that she is still gaining. So far, so good. She is gaining, ever so slowly. Lily already has a fan base of her own rooting for her continued health.

Thanks for dropping in. I am always pleased to find comments, so please leave one if you feel inclined!


Wooly Knits n Bits said...

I always love to go to the Artists Garden's weekend. Sorry I missed it this year. Our friend is a woodturner and was also there that weekend.
Glad to hear that Lily is still doing well. She is too cute.

Norma from Misty Haven Alpacas said...

Hey Wooly,

Thanks for dropping in.
I have some of his wood turned Christmas ornaments...I am planning for one of his gorgeous bowls, they are truly works of art.
Heads up - I think the Artist Garden will be in July next year.

Yes, Lily is very cute, but very stubborn. It's amazing how strongly she can clamp her mouth shut when she doesn't want the bottle! If she only knew what was good for her.

katkin said...

I was at the event on saturday.It was very nice,didn't get a chance to talk to you,you were busy with a customer.I'm from the textiles in the woods group.Your yarn is very lovely and I hope i get a chance to come to your store.

Norma from Misty Haven Alpacas said...

Hi Kathy,

Sorry that I didn't get to meet you on Saturday. I think I will meet you in September, as I have been invited out to meet your group!
I hope you get a chance to come out to my shop as well.

Val at Newland Ranch said...

hLily is a real sweet heart! You've got great colour sense, lovely colors!

Norma from Misty Haven Alpacas said...

Thanks Val...and yes, she is a sweetie.