Birthday Goodness

Yesterday was my birthday so I had a weekend full of celebrating!  Friday afternoon, I made a trip to Connecticut to go out to dinner with my mom and my sister.  Our birthdays are all within a month of each other so we celebrate with one dinner.  I was having so much fun I forgot to take pictures, except for one of my sister’s cute cat, Nikki:001

We had a great dinner at First and Last Tavern in Avon, chatting, eating good food, and exchanging presents.  (They have the best bread pudding ever.)

Saturday was traveling back home and then the first fire of the season:001

So cozy!

And then, Sunday was the big day – Paul and I went to:026

Yay!  My favorite fiber festival – partly because it is smack in the middle of fall, partly because it is in a nice setting and especially because it falls on or near my birthday every year.  It was a gorgeous fall day and we were so happy to be outside enjoying the sunshine and crisp air:022

The view just inside the gates was so pretty:013

I asked Paul, mostly rehetorically, if there was anything in particular he wanted to see.  It was rhetorical because, let’s face it, he comes to keep me company and spend time with me and to people watch, not to purchase yarn or wool or sheep.  However he immediately said he wanted to “go to that one building where you know that lady near the doorway”:014

Aha.  A pole building.  And this was in order to see:015

…how they poured the concrete.  Our concrete is due to be poured this week, so apparently it’s on his mind!

Then it was on to see some alpacas:016

And do some yarn and wool shopping. I got a little carried away.  But it was my birthday so, seriously, I just couldn’t be stopped.   Pictures of my purchases are at the end of this post.

I also got my favorite snack from the artichoke vendor:018

Fried artichokes and French Artichokes (egg batter dipped, then fried in butter, garlic and wine).

On the way home, we had to sit at the exit for an extra 30 seconds, since Paul saw a Buick coming from way down the street and he wanted to wait for it to drive by us.  Which gave me time to get the camera out to take a picture:024

I couldn’t deny him that when he just spent 3 hours walking around looking at yarn with me and watching me melt the credit card.

We had a beautiful drive home, with pretty view of the mountains:030

I worked on my sweet tomato heel sock and half way home realized something:035(2)

That red section is the portion of the heel I have already completed, coming out nicely from the back of the sock.   That yellow section is the portion of the heel I’m currently working on —- coming zombie-like out of the left side of the sock and not at all in line with the rest of the heel.  Argh!  After putting the sock down and picking it back up mid-heel, I started working on the wrong two needles!  Took a deep breath, put it away and enjoyed the rest of the ride home.

Before heading home, we stopped at Paul’s mom’s house since she made me a birthday cake!:036

Chocolate cake with vanilla and chocolate frosting.   VERY yummy.

So, do you want to see what I bought at the festival?

There was yarn, of course:041

The Periwinkle Sheep Rhinebeck 2013 colorway in pretty fall colors is at the top.  A DK weight merino wool which will likely be some fingerless mitts.

The blue yarn on the bottom is 1266 yards of worsted weight wool – Rainbow Dyed Yarn by Mary Badcock.  Mary was judge of the wool items at the Altamont Fair this year and she remembered my Watermelon socks!  I purchased off-white yarn from her last year and am using it to make my Bloody Mary Cardigan which is almost finished and you will see soon.  I liked the yarn so much I decided to get another sweater’s worth this year.

Then there was wool roving, of course:038

…to later be spun into yarn.  A pretty “Queen’s Red” red, Polwarth/silk blend from Fiber Optic Yarns; a very pretty “Watercolor Sky” blue, merino/tencel blend from Sliver Moon Farm; and a 4 ounce ball of Jacob wool from our newest senator, Cecelia Tcachyk’s farm, purchased at The Spinning Room booth.

And then there was this:039

That contraption with the black tubes on either side of the bobbin (of yarn spun from the Jacob wool I just purchased) and the white gears at the bottom of the bobbin is a Woolee Winder for my spinning wheel.  Oh. My. Gosh.  I LOVE IT!!!!  I’ve been hemming and hawing about buying one for some time since it requires a little more cash that one might be comfortable spending for something like this.  But Paul convinced me to bite the bullet and well, it was my birthday after all….

So, what is a Woolee Winder you ask?  It is a special flyer (which holds the bobbin and guides the yarn onto the bobbin) device that evenly distributes wool that you have just spun onto the bobbin, without the person who is spinning having to stop and manually do so.  Here is what typically is used on a spinning wheel:


See that little metal loop that the purple yarn is going through on the right side?  I would have to stop spinning and move that loop in small increments down the side of the flyer so that the yarn goes onto the bobbin evenly.  You might also see a flyer that has several hooks along the side that you would move the yarn along. Even-ness is important so that you can put the most amount of yarn as possible on the bobbin and so it can come off the bobbin evenly when plying it (twisting it) with another strand of yarn.  Sometimes, when concentrating on the spinning, one forgets to move that metal piece and then too much yarn builds up in one spot and collapses on itself and then it’s a mess and you have to unwind everything.

So, I came right home and put it on my wheel and I just love it.  Stay tuned to see my finished yarn!  Overall a wonderful weekend and most especially a wonderful birthday spent with Paul (and wool).

8 thoughts on “Birthday Goodness

  1. Congratlations, Lizzy – on FINALLY getting your own Wooly Winder! LOL 😀 .. Isn’t that the major advantage the winner of the Spinning Contest [at the Altamont Fair] had this year ? 🙂

    1. it’s just me again, sneeking in one more comment LOL … Thanks for the lovely visit we all had, along with the scrumptious dinner and lively chatter 🙂 … xo, Me

    2. Well, while the WooLee Winder certainly helps (and will help me next year at the Spinning Bee) the major advantage the winner had was MUCH more experience with spinning! And it was not only she, but three others who came in ahead of me in the contest. Hence, my resolve to improve my spinning!

  2. Happy Birthday Liz, It was so great to bump into you and Paul at Rhinebeck. Can’t wait to use my WooLee Winder, have to finish the bobbin that is on my wheel.

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