Yesterday I had a chance to visit a store I've been wanting to explore for awhile, the Ragfinery.
They sell second hand yarn, fabric and clothing meant to be upcyled rather than become waste. They have a really nice page on their website showing the textile waste generated in the United States. There are also sewing machines and floor looms that can be used.
Although I really didn't need more fabric there was no resisting a few things. The red print is a home-made house dress. I want to combine this fabric with denim (from jeans I've been saving) and make a vest. Hopefully there will be some time to play with this next week.
I also bought a wool/mohair blend scarf:
It's headed for a hot water wash to see if it will felt. Either way it will become a pillow or part of a blanket.
I have a sneaking suspicion I'll be back on a regular basis. It's a wonderful resource and I want to do my part to make sure it stays in business. I also think it might be a wonderful place to volunteer at some time.
After selling my car and starting to ride the bus or walk, I joined a local organization that tracks the stats on my commuting.
Since September of 2006 I've logged 16,910 miles of commuting via bus or walking. Just because I'm curious about these kinds of things, for that amount of miles I could drive from where I live on the West coast to New York city and back twice, plus make it to New York again and about half way home.
I wish I would have tracked projects knitted on the bus or while waiting for the bus...
I'm currently reading Blessing the Hands that Feed Us by Vicki Robin and found the following:
"We can build levees but we cannot control the vehemence of storms. We can, as farmers know, plant and tend and water and watch, but we only work with nature, not command it. Especially now, as we watch the skies and wonder if the storms sweeping in again and again are harbingers of climate change or just-as we hope-El Nino or La Nina."
The weather is always worth considering.
The weather report: Sunny at the moment, but there has been rain and wind and there is supposed to be more heavy rain again soon. It is warmer, probably 50 something.
"Food vulnerability is the last thing any of us wants. In fact, agriculture is our sustained human attempt to control our food supplies. Without predictability of "food income," the energy of a family or culture is necessarily focused on survival. Once those needs are met, we liberate our hands and minds for invention, for the arts, for dreams, for so much of what we identify as human."
Because it is a topic that I care about, I'm familiar with most of the points she's making and the information she's sharing. It's still very worth the reading to me. I read it and think, "this is a community that I belong to."
This video is worth the watching too.
My sour cherry tree. The cold snap we had last week came so quickly many trees still had green leaves. Now they are frost damaged, dead on the tree but still attached.
I wonder how many wind storms it will take for the leaves to detach and go their way?
"I see that the life of this place is always emerging beyond expectation or prediction or typicality, that it is unique, given to the world minute by minute, only once, never to be repeated. And this is where I see that life is a miracle, absolutely worth having, absolutely worth saving. We are alive within mystery, by miracle." Wendell Berry
How it feels at that moment when the clouds clear and the sunlight comes through and creates a moment of light and shadow.
How the making of something can hold love. What it means to make something by hand.
My poncho is 60 inches of cloth. Layers of color and texture; it feels like a hug. It has the capacity to absorb.
It holds gifts from friends and family, memories and reclaims things that might be considered waste. It may shed some of them as time passes. It holds story. And will find more.
It holds time spent being present. Listening (mostly to On Being and to Jude) and thinking. In this way it holds thoughts, dreams, schemes and "what if". And it holds silence, a still mind, something I've come to appreciate more as I've become older.
The casual observer won't know what my story is, but they will be able to create their own..
This morning I woke up thinking about landscapes. How I would define landscape. The landscape I live in is one of growing things and seasons moving through, shaping and sculpting.
(Blossom on my Camelia sinensis, the camelia that is used for tea.)
Thursday night I had been reading Pilgrim at Tinker Creek:
"Landscape consists in the multiple, overlapping intricacies and forms that exist in a given space at a moment in time. Landscape is the texture of intricacy..." Annie Dillard
"Were the earth smooth, our brains would be smooth as well; we would wake, blink, walk two steps to get the whole picture, and lapse into a dreamless sleep. Because we are living people, and because we are on the receiving end of beauty, another element necessarily enters the question. The texture of space is a condition of time. Time is the warp and matter the weft of the woven texture of beauty in space, and death is the hurtling shuttle." Annie Dillard
This is a book I am lingering in.
I've been laying down straw in the chicken run each week to keep things from getting really muddy. Makes for happier chickens.
I have officially started heating the house with the gas fireplace. Briar and I are cold.
Tomorrow I have plans to sew another blanket. What I make is often a response to the landscape I live in... That is probably true for a lot of us.