Thursday, May 24, 2012

Off my loom and off to school

I've finally finished my curtains for the WGM 75th anniversary book.  It seemed to take forever so I am  looking forward to something new to loom. 

 In other news I am also off to school.  For the next week, I will be participating in an intensive week long course in wheel pottery at John C. Campbell Folk School with my cousin, Kiyoung.  
So until after Memorial Day I will be a bit out of commission. 

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

At home

Although I have been back from the Southwest for a few weeks, I couldn't resist a couple of things from the Arizona airport gift shop.
 I picked up a Giant Saguaro seedling starter kit and was ecstatic to see a sprout poking its way out.  My mom opted for an already established Saguaro of 2 years telling me matter of factly that I would have to wait 50 years for my cactus to even flower.  To which I responded "Really, because 48 years is that much different?"
I also brought a little bit of that dessert home with my potted cacti.  I loved the blooms on this guy and I can't wait to see what the other cacti have in store.  So far everyone is adjusting to the MN climate. 

Friday, May 18, 2012

And thus it begins...

"And thus it begins..." was Emily's response to my discovery of Monarch eggs in my backyard.  I ended the Monarch season with this post last year and the sentiment of "til next summer".  Happily the butterflies are back.
 On Monday I found these,
 On Wednesay I found these,
 On Friday I found these,
And today these.  Trust me, this is holding back. 
I already have enthusiastic friends at work helping out with the butterfly rearing.  Can't wait to share the 2nd installment of the metamorphosis log which is currently being designed by Beth!

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

In the Southwest

I've been back for a couple of weeks, but it has taken me just that much longer to sift through my hundreds of pictures.  The trip was an unabridged version of this and it really was a blast.  I never thought I would love the Southwest as much as I did.  The scenery was spectacular and I kept wondering if I would miss the lushness of MN.  The truth is I did, but I wouldn't mind visiting every year.  In the Southwest we....
Admired the blooming giant saguaros at Saguaro National Park
Stalked the wildlife, 
Stayed in the historic Hotel Congress,
Was awestruck at surreal White Sands National Park,
Checked out ghost town Chloride
Took in the Hot Springs at Sierra Grande Lodge in Truth or Consequence,
Took a drive, 
Visited Taos Pueblo, the only living Native American Community,
Enjoyed historic Santa Fe,
Took a tour of the cliff dwellings at Mesa Verde National Park,
Took a ride on famous Route 66,
Took in the view at Petrified Forest National Park,
 Stood in awe at the Grand Canyon and then took in some drinks at Beaver Street Brewery in Flagstaff,
Took in red rock views of Sedona.

Friday, May 11, 2012

At the Guild: A Silent Auction

A few weeks ago, I went with  Emily and Ashley to one of the WGM's biggest annual fundraisers; the silent auction.  Being there reminded me why I am the best and somehow worst candidate to participate in these kinds of events.  I am sometimes overly competitive and therefore left with everything I had bid on.  In addition to the auction the guild was celebrating Lila Nelson's 90th birthday, her contributions to the fiber arts community and her membership as WGM's longest-time member.  It was an exciting night.  
A grouping of Lila Nelson's tapestries for auction 
A tapestry by Lila Nelson,
and a swatch by Lila Nelson; 2 items I bid and won on.  I also bid on a 3 night stay at a lake house cabin in Itasca and, of course, won.  Can't wait to start planning. 
At the end of the night, as the excitement wore off,  when we each picked up our winning bids and were waiting to pay, I glanced down at my papers and said, "Look, I paid $110 for this tapestry and it's valued as priceless!"  To which Ashley responded, "My yarn is valued at $30 and I paid $40."  

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

In the kitchen: I scream

You know what happens when you get obsessed with French Macarons? Like these and these....
 and these
and these.....
and about 10 other batches that I have concocted and withheld from sharing, well.... end up with a lot of egg yolks.  Usually I try to save them, for, well, something, because I hate wasting food especially spendy organic eggs, but since the yolk, sadly, has a bad rep, most days they get discarded.  Until... I discovered ice cream, or at least how to make it.  And boy I have been makin' it.  And you know what?  It's my new favorite dessert.  In composition it is the perfect pair to the French Macaron.  Therefore where there are Macarons, there is now Ice Cream too.  So far I have made vanilla bean, strawberry (from these), coffee bean and salted caramel from Cannelle et Vanille (which I did revise with a quarter cup of additional granulated sugar in the yolk).  The cookie is from Not So Humble Pie, which is an amazingly easy and excellent recipe.  I embellished the top with indentations made with none other than the most universal tool in the world; the chopstick. :-)  Can't wait to venture out with some new flavors.  Canelle et Vanille has a treasure trove of them along with Macarons.  I highly recommend trying out some of the recipes and exploring the joy of baking in grams.   

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Weekend Fun: In St Croix

A few weekends ago, some good friends and I headed to beautiful Wisconsin along the St. Croix River to a little start up Winery called Chateaux St. Croix.  Danielle had gotten me a groupon for a wine tour, cheese plate and sampler.  It turned out to be a gorgeous day and although the tour was "meh" and the pours small,  the wine was easy drinking and we ended up splitting a bottle in the garden and soaking up the sunshine.  Plus there was a turkey and donuts, so really it was the best day ever. 

Friday, May 4, 2012


I finally got around to grouting my mirror mosaic from this class a few weeks ago.  One day I'll figure out how to hang it. 

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Since discovering Flora Grubb Gardens, I have been obsessed with Tillandsias.  Although this succulent selling air plant stocked plant shop is based out of warm and balmy California, I still find myself sneaking peeks at the blog and longing for an outdoor vertical succulent garden.  Here in Minnesota, that most likely will never happen, so, for now, I will make due with my own little Tillandsia found on a whim on a rainy day a few weeks ago.  Extra bonus?  I didn't know they bloomed.  The flowers are short, sweet and bountiful.