Aug 31
Moody Blues for a Sunday Night
icon1 basicallybenita | icon2 Uncategorized | icon4 08 31st, 2009| icon32 Comments »

Scott and I do not attend very many concerts, but in the past three years, we have attended one per year. In 2007, we went to see The Who at Conseco Fieldhouse and it was a great concert, but then, of course, I am a huge Who fan and think Roger Daltry’s voice is the best in the bluesy-rock world.

Last year, we went to see Alice Cooper and the less said about that show the better. Let’s just say I didn’t go into the show a fan of Alice Cooper, and I left even less of a fan.

top

Last night, Sandy, Max, Scott and I went to see The Moody Blues. I have always likes the Moody Blues and Scott and I own a couple of their albums (and mind you I said albums, not CDs or even cassettes, we are talking vinyl here), but haven’t listened to them in over 15 years. I had forgotten how well these guys could rock! All I remembered was the cool songs like Nights in White Satin, but rock these guys did and had the audience on their feet, especially for the last three songs.

mb2

Justin Hayward’s voice on Nights in White Satin was rock solid and he sang it for all he was worth. You usually don’t get the best performance, vocal-wise, with live shows, but I don’t see how the performance could have gone any better.

mb1

Edge, the drummer, commented about the weather. It was a very cool low 60’s by the end of the concert last night and he said that in Seattle, they played in 108 degree temps, which was a record for that area. He thought Indiana set another record for the opposite. He was wearing a long-sleeved shirt for the second half of the concert and said he was freezing. Now when a drummer is cold – it’s cold! I had on a turtleneck, a sweater and a hoodie. Scott’s hoodie, actually. That man can wear a T-shirt in a blizzard and still complain how hot it is!

Aug 29
Weaver’s Swap
icon1 basicallybenita | icon2 Work-in-progress | icon4 08 29th, 2009| icon31 Comment »

I have Kathie’s bag done, but I missed getting to the post office with it – hard rain and I had to stop on the way and pay my mortgage. It will go out in Monday’s mail because, I’m taking it on my lunch hour, which is 6 hours before they close. I ought to make it then.

Oh, I can hardly wait for Kathie to get it! I am rather proud of how it came out. It’s hard to give this little bag up and let it go home.

So, until she gets it in the mail, you are left looking at yet another update on my sweater vest.

natutal-Dye-Vest2

Oh. Okay. I’ll give you a little peek at the bag. Here is some of the left over fabric.

wstease

Well, what did you expect? I can’t give you too much information, now can I?

Aug 23
Sweater Vest Update
icon1 basicallybenita | icon2 Work-in-progress | icon4 08 23rd, 2009| icon31 Comment »

Things have been very busy around here, but I thought I’d show you where I am on the newest naturally dyed sweater vest.

natutal-Dye-Vest

Another 3 inches and I can begin the crew neck. I’d love to have this done by the time I give a lecture on natural dyes on September 14th, but with everything else that is coming up, I’m not sure I’m going to make it.

I hope everyone is enjoying the last of the summer. Here, this morning, it is a very cool 57 degrees, and it is supposed to get up into the low 70’s. Sounds like a great day to hang out some more laundry. I have got to get the dryer fixed!

Aug 16
2009 Indiana State Fair Recap
icon1 basicallybenita | icon2 Uncategorized | icon4 08 16th, 2009| icon31 Comment »

It’s funny to note that my friend, co-worker and fiber-buddy, Sandy, is not a morning person, whereas I am. And I am not a late night person, whereas she is. So, whenever we want to do something that takes place in the morning hours, it seems she has to get up VERY eary, and when we do an evening something, she keeps me out VERY late.

Yesterday morning, I picked her up at her house at 5:30 (yes, it was still dark outside) so we could get to the Indiana State Fair for something we have always wanted to see, but never had – and that was the launch of the hot air balloons for the balloon race.

Balloon-1

See it was still dark when we got there although the dawn is just beginning to break to the right of the picture.

Balloon-2

Finally, the balloonists (there were 24 hot air balloons there altogether) started the cold inflation. The next several pictures are of the inflation of the balloons, their take off and the first part of their flight (the part we could see). The “hare” balloon is the one with “Propane” on it and it left 10 minutes earlier than the rest. It would land someplace and mark the spot with a great big “X”. The other balloons then were to drop a soybean-filled bag (guess who sponsored the bags) as close to that X as they could get it. The announcer said that there have been some years where a bag landed inches from the center of that X.

Balloon-3
Balloon-4
Balloon-5
Balloon-6
Balloon-7
Balloon-8
Balloon-9
Balloon-10
Balloon-11
Balloon-12
Balloon-13
Balloon-14
Balloon-15

Seen enough balloons? I haven’t and I have a paid-for balloon ride coming up – should be this fall sometime, although the weather may push it back to the spring. We are counting on a fall ride, though. Watching these balloons only made me that much more anxious to go.

There were also exercising the trotters that morning, and they were beautiful to watch – so smooth and graceful.

trotter

And there were the animals. We saw lots of sheep, but I love Shetland sheep best.

shetland

And there was the reason Sandy and I were there and that was to work in the SWIFT booth in the Pioneer Our Land Pavilion. Mary Ann Carpenter sat and wove for a bit before she went off to do something else. Mary Ann warped the loom and prepared it for the booth. All the scarves being woven on it will be finished and donated to a local homeless shelter. I wove the entire 4 hours I was there on Friday afternoon.

Mary-Ann-Carpenter

And Sandy spun on some fiber from Spunky Eclectic.

Sandy-Spinning

And I wove on the straps to my Weaver’s Swap project – don’t look, Kathie!!!

inkle

People stopped by and talked with us and asked questions. In all, Sandy and I were pleasantly surprised on how knowledgeable people were, for the most part. And we met some wonderfully nice people.

After our shift was over, Sandy and I ate, got some ice cream from the dairy barn, which is run each day by different groups. Yesterday it was the Lincoln Football Team and a Friends Church from I can’t remember where.

cupola

Did I mention that I love cupolas? This one is on top of the ice cream barn.

One of the events Sandy and I particularly wanted to see was the one of raptors – birds of prey. As hot as it was (and it topped 90 degrees while we were there), it was well worth enduring to get up close and personal with some of these magnificent birds.

Red-Tailed Hawk
red-tailed-hawk

Kestrel
kestral

Peregrine Falcon
Peregrin-Falcon

Great Horned Owl
great-horned-owl

And another hawk of which I cannot remember the name, but this one got to fly around loose and it was amazing!
cant-remember-hawk

This is my last trip to the State Fair this year, but as fun as the last day and an afternoon were, that’s okay. Getting to see and experience what we saw and experienced made for a nice day. But, boy-oh-boy, was it HOT!

Aug 14
2009 Indiana State Fair
icon1 basicallybenita | icon2 Support Your Local... | icon4 08 14th, 2009| icon31 Comment »

I will be in the SWIFT booth in the Pioneer Our Land Pavilion building (see map – look for the building next to the big red tomato) from 2 – 6 today with the spinning wheel and from 10 – 2 tomorrow with my inkle loom. Come by and say “hello!”

Aug 13
I love living in the country
icon1 basicallybenita | icon2 Uncategorized | icon4 08 13th, 2009| icon3No Comments »

This fellow along with 5 other bucks and a couple of does wandered through our back yard this evening. The rest went behind the barn and out into the corn field. But this guy came pretty close and stared at us staring at him for the longest time. This is the best picture I could get considering it is so humid here that there is a lot of condensation on the outside of the windows. Also the time of day didn’t help much, but this was just too good to pass up.

deer

How cool is that?

Aug 12

One last item about Chicago Comicon 2009 and you can blame the Yarn Harlot for this.

Lou Ferrigno charges $30 to get his picture – so I kinneared him.

IMG_3393

Aug 11

Scott and I got home from our trip to Chicago to attend the 2009 Chicago Comicon at 4:00 yesterday afternoon. It was a very busy three-and-a-half days and Saturday broke the attendance record. Usually there are between 50,000 and 70,000 visitors to the convention over the weekend, so I don’t know what this year ended up being.

While we were there, I sat at my spinning wheel and plied up the rest of the Targhee indigo and cochineal dyed singles giving me two smaller skeins of the mixed and one skein of just indigo. Since these are spun S and plied Z they cannot be knitted, but would work perfectly for weaving or crochet.

indigo-coch-left-over

Then I spun and navajo plied 4 ounces of Shetland from Spunky Eclectic in her “Selfish” colorway. Since I was rather distracted with the crowds, fans and the intense heat inside the convention center, it is a bit overspun and, therefore, unsellable. I rather like the colors and will find something to do with it.

Here it is in roving form…

selfish-roving

…and here it is spun up. I think the colors remind me of fall chrysanthemums and that is what I’ve decided to call it.

chrysanthemum

There were lots of costumed people at the show, as usual, and most of them were dressed as fairies, manga characters, Star Wars characters and superhero characters of all sorts. This one, though, caught my attention, so I took a picture of her. I just loved her costume.

Chicago Comicon cool costume

And last of all, here is me sitting behind the table doing what I do best at these shows.

2009-CCC

Aug 4
Want to see something gorgeous?
icon1 basicallybenita | icon2 Uncategorized | icon4 08 4th, 2009| icon31 Comment »

Click here. This is what Lynn Harper is sending to her swap partner!

Now, all you who didn’t join in on Weaver’s Swap 2009, don’t you want to join us next year? What talented people we have in the weaving community!

Aug 2
Whoa!
icon1 basicallybenita | icon2 Uncategorized | icon4 08 2nd, 2009| icon31 Comment »

I apologize for just now getting the pictures of the fabric Kathie sent to me for the swap up. The past couple of days have been very busy and the next three will be the same.

kathie-fabric

Here is an overview of both fabrics Kathie sent. Now, anyone who knows me will smile because they know purple is one of my favorite colors.

kathie-Fabric-1

There is more of this piece of fabric and I have been studying the way it is woven. I think she said it is M’s & O’s. I just know I think it is pretty and interesting. And it has such a nice feel to it. It’s hard to keep from reaching over and rubbing it every once in a while.

Kathie-fabric-2

This this fabric has given me many ideas on how to use it as an accent on the bag I will be making from these. I have already gone through and picked out the lining fabric and the yarn to inkle-weave handles. My friend and co-worker, Sandy, and I sat down with the plans I had drawn up and she gave me some great ideas I hadn’t though about, so, Kathie, plan on having something fun with this when you get it back.

Now, I have to get back to work on getting ready for the Chicago comic book convention we will be attending this next weekend (Thursday through Sunday). This year is going to be an odd one, because, for a reason not disclosed to the rest of us, the Big Four comic book companies (Marvel, DC, Dark Horse and Image) are boycotting all the conventions owned by Wizard World, and this is one of those shows. While the floor of the event is still going to be crowded with booths, there will be none of the hype provided by these companies.

Artist Alley has been made bigger, and we are not on the back wall this year. Luckily, we actually have an even better location, just the second booth in from the opening edge, so we aren’t complaining. But this year ought to be very…interesting. Already, there is talk of a new comic book convention coming to Chicago next spring, and Scott and I have preregistered for it.

Depending on how it goes this year, the Wizard World Chicago Comicon may be at an end. It’s too bad, too, because this is a huge event each year bringing in 50,000-70,000 people over the three and a half days. This year is a complete unknown to us and we have no idea what will happen. Still, if you are in the area, stop by. We’d love to see you. Ours will be the booth with the lady spinning at a spinning wheel in it.