My blog has continued on my website at SquareSpace. Here is the blog address. There is a sign-up form there if you want to continue to follow the blog. Recent posts: new lambs!
I’ll put out more info later about how to follow the blog, but the new posts are on my new website. The previous posts are still here–all ten years!! But I’ll be adding them to the new site eventually. I’m leaving for Texas in the morning so no more now than this annoucement. Partly because Rusty wants to write a blog post before I quit tonight. His blog is still here for the moment.
What a relief to have the lead-up to “the holidays” over. When you’re in a business that counts on sales during one month and those sales are dependent on 1. how many things you are able to make, and 2. how well you market your business, the pace becomes more and more frenetic. So Christmas Day for me was a relief. Work was over. The house was clean (as clean as it gets) and fixed up (after we’ve lived here for almost twenty years and finally replaced floors and some windows.) We had pretty Christmas lights outside. The weather was beautiful. The food was easy to prepare (don’t peel potatoes this year and see how it goes–it went fine). Best of all family was here (except missing the TX branch).
Here are snapshot photos of the day.Matt brought his drone.The sheep have been in the barn and corral area for the last month because the pasture is soggy and I’m waiting for the grass to get some growth, but I set up the fence to let them out onto part of it for the day.The drone gives us a great view of the property. There is a video taken with the drone on my website.
We opened gifts. I bought Dan a series of used books that are by author Stan Lynde. Our last name is unusual and we had found a book by this author on our most recent road trip. Dan got about half way into it and found that pages 140-180 were repeated and 180 to 120 were missing. When I looked into replacing the book I found that the author was dead, his publishing company no longer existed, and that there were about 7 or 8 books in the series. So I hunted them all down and wrapped up the Stan Lynde books for Dan Lynde.Dan made DIL, Meryl, a marker for her parking spot to reflect her new job as an Orange Theory coach. My daughter sent us all aprons embellished by the grandkids. Time for getting dinner in the oven. Chris, mac and cheese lover that he is, has become a cream sauce expert.While dinner was cooking we went out for another drone session……and a family photo. Dinner on the table.We may have started a new tradition with a game from Santa. It’s a card game based on the old computer game, The Oregon Trail, that my kids loved to play years ago. You can play with up to six players so we created teams so that all 11 of us could play. We may study the rules between now and the next time we play. Our wagon team eventually all died–there may be better strategy than we used. After pies (pumpkin and apple) we moved onto a game my niece has on her phone. Trying to get my brother to guess Valley Girl.A lively time was had by all.And to all a good night.
I was looking in Lightroom for a photo of ewe # 8056 and I typed in 856 by mistake. I saw a selection of photos that were fun to review. Here they are.
This is etched into the barn floor after one of our concrete pours. Papa-San was my father-in-law. Dave is my brother. And speaking of writing on the floor, this was taken Across the Road, not as permanent as the concrete etching except in my photos.My oldest son side job is climbing trees to remove branches or, as in this case, to remove a tree that should no longer be where it is.Sunflowers.Wedge weave rug at Convergence in Reno last summer. Hiking in Arches National Park.Hiking on the PawPaw Trail in Maryland last spring.Taken from our road trip in September on our way back from Washington.The photo I was searching for when I mistakenly typed 856? This is ewe lamb 8056, Meridian Quartz, a 6-horn ewe lamb. People talk about Jacob sheep having six horns but I’ve never seen one that has room for six really distinct big horns.
It’s the season for selling when you’re in the business of making. Now I seem to spend extra time taking photos and then trying to keep track if the items are at The Artery or here, listed on the my website or on the Fibershed Marketplace site . Ideally there were would be three batches–some at the Artery and not on the website, some here and just on my website, and some here and just on the Fibershed site. The goal would be to have everything sold by Christmas and to not double-sell anything…but those lines are crossing. I have to be vigilante. Here are a few examples of what I’ve been weaving.
Chenille scarf using clasped weft.Local yarns dyed with coreopsis and dahlia flowers.More local yarns dyed with mushroom and black walnut.This is the stack of ponchos that I finished in early November just before the Fibershed Wool Symposium. This is how the loom looks from where I sit. The rainbow colors are a result of a prism that hangs in the window behind me. After my mom died a friend gave me the prism and said that it was to remind me of my mom. And it does, as it reminds me of the friend, Sylvia.Coreopsis dyed yarn.The computer that holds the “brains” of the loom. This loom does not weave without me doing everything (for those people who think that having a computer hooked up means I’m not really weaving). It only keeps track of the pattern that I have put in.This is what that pattern looks like. It will be completely different after fulling.A look down through the warp threads to the cloth below.OOPS! I think I have this in an earlier photo and I haven’t told the story yet of what I did about it. That will still come.Some of the finished ponchos.
Talk about a versatile garment. I have grown to love the poncho. It’s really just a blanket with a hole in the middle for your head. Whether you’re at the computer late at night (gee, does that ever happen?), in the car, or trying to stay warm while reading in bed it’s an easy garment to throw on. And it also makes you look young and pretty! Just look at those photos! (Disclaimer–that’s really not me.)
The last blog post about my September trip to Texas was mostly my favorite flower photos. Here are my favorite family photos.Kasen was about 21 months.
Kirby is was four and a little bit.I think that I would have loved to have a trampoline when I was a kid.
We visited the pumpkin patch to choose pumpkins and try to get a family portrait.First, a chicken picture.
I don’t think it was possible to get everyone looking in the same direction at the same time. But a beautiful family nevertheless.
I took a trip to Texas in late September and wrote about that here. I didn’t realize until later that I hadn’t yet downloaded the photos from my camera. I thought I was missing some but things were too hectic back then for me to think straight. Eventually I figured that out but the photos have been waiting for me to review and edit them. It seems lame to go back to “old news” but I like some of these photos and, after all, this is my
scrapbook blog, so I’m going to include them.
The day Kasen stayed home with me while everyone else went to work or school we walked up the road.
We spent over a half hour parked on a bank overlooking the main road and watching cars and trucks go by. That entertained Kasen, but I was more entertained by the diversity of flowers there and on the way back–so many more than I expected in September. Unfortunately I didn’t ID any of these while I was there and I just spent some time on-line looking for them, but I gave up. I’m just going to enjoy the photos and maybe use Katie’s wildflower book next time I’m there.Once Kasen was out of the stroller than I was more involved in keeping him out of trouble than playing with my camera.
I’ve been neglecting my blog. All my computer time has been spent at other things–mostly trying to stay caught up with email, working on my website, and trying to organize and edit photos for items listed on the Fibershed Marketplace and on my website (each of which need differently formatted photos). I’m also trying to figure out the best way to keep track of what is listed where and which items go to the Artery. I really don’t want to take the chance on selling something on the website and find out that I already sold it at the Artery.
The website is up now and, although I haven’t listed a lot of products yet, I’m happy with it. I hope you’ll explore it a bit. I’ve worked most at getting some weaving classes scheduled for January-March and in getting handwoven items listed.
Here are some of the items that I have listed. Don’t judge my photos. I struggle with trying to get decent product shots.
I didn’t list this one because right now I can’t find it. That may mean it is at the Artery. Or did I sell it? This is what I mean be trying to keep track. I’m not doing very well with that.
My niece was nice enough to model for me at Thanksgiving.
Photobombing brother. These are yarns from Lunatic Fringe and all appear in the latest scarf I wove. Hopefully I’ll get to that blog before too long.
Maybe you have wondered where the blog has been. (Or maybe not, except for a very few of you.) November was tough because I had so many commitments and deadlines. I meant to blog about all of them but just didn’t have time. I wanted to write about the weekend in Santa Barbara where I presented the Guild program and then taught a Jacob wool class.I have stories about the weaving I was working on. This one is clasped weft. (With three yarns in each pick it took FOREVER.)I have more clasped weft stories, but based on chenille.Overriding the last half of the month was the Camp Fire, a terribly destructive fire. Even though were not affected here (other than the unhealthy smoke levels) I couldn’t help but think about it most of the time. This fire was destructive on such a massive scale that the population in Butte County still needs help from volunteers. This photo is one of four pieces that I donated to California Fire Help, an artisan-run website to raise funds for the fire victims.While I was trying to squeeze all the weaving that should have happened throughout the year into a month I ran into this problem at the end of a 21 yard warp. Fortunately the other 18 yards were just fine and produced 10 ponchos. I was going to write a blog post about what I did about this.I also finished up my dyeing for the season and put together bundles of yarns for sale. I have lots of pretty flower and yarn photos to share on the blog.I continued to help new weaver’s problem solve even if it was by sharing photos via email. (This one is before and after washing.)Thanksgiving came along the day before the big show (for me) of the season, the Crocker Holiday Artisan Market. I took some of my pieces to my brother’s house so that I could photograph them with a professional model who happens to be my niece. Now I’m self-conscious about using these photos because my niece works with real photographers and I want to do her justice. My brother also helped model. He demonstrated how wool dryer balls could be used for juggling.
The big thing that I was going to announce with this blog post is that over all this time for the last six weeks I’ve been working on a new website to replace the old one. It went LIVE today. I was going to share the link and add links to all of these photos because having outside links to your website is supposed to help with SEO. But NEVER MIND. It was up there an hour ago but when I started this blog post the link http://www.meridianjacobs.com went back to the old site. I have no idea why. Maybe the wind blew the big pointer in the sky back to pointing to the old website. So I’ll have to try again. Hopefully it will be there tomorrow.
I usually like to have photos to go with all that I want to say. This time I have no photos of the main event and some photos to go with my peripheral commentary. I’ve been working hard to have a full complement of items for my table at the 7th annual Fibershed Wool Symposium, held in Pt. Reyes Station every year.I finished these ten ponchos just in time to take them with me. Driving over early Saturday morning, the brown, smoky skies and red sun are a reminder of the tragic fires still burning in California. (The sun looked red in real life.)Our area is impacted by the Camp fire in northern CA.Once at the venue I got my area set up. We are given one table so I bring some grids to put in back and expand my space. I fit a lot of weaving and yarn into one place.Friends stopped by and took photos.Some vendors are outside or in other rooms and have foot traffic throughout the day. I have always wanted to be in the main room where the speakers are presenting. That means the sales opportunities are clustered into a few breaks and the long lunch time.
In most years I have gone home following the Symposium. Now that we have formed the Northern CA Fibershed Ag Coop and I am a Board member I stayed in the area Saturday night to be at a Board meeting on Sunday. A couple of us “camped” at the Olema Campground. In this case it was really a matter of finding the campground after dark and then crawling into the back of the truck to sleep. About 15 minutes after leaving home Saturday morning I realized that I had left my sheepskin behind–the one I sleep on when we camp. I didn’t have time to go back for it. Instead I slept in my sleeping bag with a 1/4″ thick yoga mat on our plywood platform in the truck. Surprisingly I was almost warm enough most of the night if I didn’t put any body parts out of the sleeping bag or move very much, but I must say that there was something lacking in the comfort department. Photo from the inside of the camper shell shows that it was a lot colder than it’s been at home. Fellow camper and Board member, Carol (sleeping in a van next to my truck), went with me as soon as we emerged from our vehicles to go find warmth at a coffee shop while we waited for time to go to our meeting. We were both still dressed in everything we wore to bed.
Saturday’s Symposium was amazing as always. It is exciting when you go somewhere and you think you already know about the topic and then you find out all the stuff that you didn’t know that you don’t know. This year’s speakers and panels discussed the importance of prescribed fire and grazing in restoring ecological systems. The topic of fire was chosen following last year’s devastating fires that occurred right before the 2017 Symposium. It is ironic that the most destructive fire in California began only last Thursday and is still burning. I wouldn’t do the Symposium justice if I tried to summarize all that the speakers spoke about with great passion and the thought and hard work that Rebecca Burgess put into the composition of the speaker line-up. The Symposium was live-streamed on the Fibershed website and soon (I think) you’ll be able to see the video of all these presentations there.
Sunday’s meeting was for the board of the newly formed Northern CA Fibershed Ag Coop, an entity that is separate from Fibershed (non-profit) but working closely with the non-profit. There is a lot of work ahead for the Coop and lots of exciting opportunities but for now we are focusing on getting more members and bringing more goods to the newly launched Fibershed Marketplace where consumers who want to support locally farmers and artisans can buy our goods.
When I go somewhere away from home I often home a newspaper for Dan. He seems to be happy about that. Today I picked up the Sunday edition of the SF Chronicle.This is one of the articles inside. Although they don’t talk about sourcing our clothes from locally grown fibers, they do address the issue of the incredible waste in the textile industry and consumerism. Seems appropriate to end the weekend.