Saturday, May 23, 2009

Get ’Em While They’re Hot

Time is fast approaching when I’ll be heading to Spokane for the ANWG conference “Weaving Waves of Color”. I’ve been trying to get as much done as possible before next Wednesday, chief of which is getting all my seedlings planted in the garden. For that I had a little help:

LittleGardener1 LittleGardener2

Princess Pink (aka Lala, which is what her brother calls her) was a huge help tucking the tomatoes in the soil in the greenhouse, patting them down and sprinkling on some bone meal. Then she helped keep the leaves unbent while I placed the cages over top. Stargazer (aka Baby, which is what he insists his name is!) helped with some of the watering but he mostly wanted to fill the watering can with pebbles from the greenhouse path. Then after he got tired of that he made mud paintings on the granite stepping stones. We had a great time! You can tell T-Man and I spent some time yesterday cleaning the acrylic windows or you wouldn’t be able to see us through the algae and walnut pollen that had been coating them.

I remember helping my dad in the garden too which is where I learned to enjoy getting my hands dirty. Then when our kids were small we always encouraged them to help with our veggie patch. They still recall fondly the one on our rental apartment’s garage roof. You had to walk the plank 10 feet off the ground to get to it! Now they have their own gardens. I’m sure my grandkids will also pick up the green thumb. All it takes is a little…OK, a lot of patience while letting them help you plant and water and weed. Gotta get ‘em hooked while they’re young and impressionable, I say. Works for some things anyway.

So now I’m writing lists and planning the packing for my trip. I need so many items including a spinning wheel and a pillow and at least one or two knitting projects. We also have to bring the items for our guild’s display booth which we will have to set up and take down. With luggage for the three of us plus the wheel and a table loom, the car will be heavily laden. I can picture an oversized 3-D Tetris game trying to fit it all in. Have I mentioned that I’m by far the youngest member of our little trio of grandmothers? This should be quite the adventure.

One thing I’m happy about is that I’ll be able to get a fast Internet connection at the university dorm. That way I’m hoping to be able to at least get some short blog posts out while it’s all going on. However it all depends on how much time I’ll have available and whether or not I can get enough sleep to be functional! It’s like a big pajama party crossed with a high school reunion and all wrapped in an overdose of fibres and inspiration. Luckily I’ve been to enough of these things that I’m not so easily overwhelmed. I’ve learned how to pace myself and to choose what is most important to me rather than to try to take in everything, which is impossible really. I bet I’ll still find something in the vendor hall that I must have, even though you’d think by now I have everything fibre that one could want. The vendor hall is always my favourite part of these things. Well, that and visiting with dear friends old and new.

On another note entirely, I really had a great time watching the videos that XRX have provided of their huge Think Outside the Sox contest. The first one with the judges Cat Bordhi, Lucy Neatby and Sandi Rosner is over 16 minutes and very insightful. On my computer they each segued into the next automatically which made it feel like I was watching a TV show! I think it was very interesting that the Grand Prize winning socks, the ones with leopard spots, used hand-dyed yarns for her carefully charted 2-colour knitting and then the third colour was hand-painted in the centre of each spot. Check out the secret message in the hem! I wasn’t that impressed with these socks until I found out more of the details of Betty Salpekar’s inspiration and techniques. Impressive.

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