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Category Archives: GoingLocal

Remember, Saturday is Small Business Saturday, a day to celebrate and support your local businesses. Shop locally-owned small businesses and a much higher percentage of your dollars stay in your local community. Shop at a national or international chain, far less money stays in your local community.

Support your local community – and your local yarn shop – Shop Local!

“It is not our abilities that show what we truly are, it is our choices…” – JK Rowling

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Time once again for the local holiday gift fairs. Some were actually last weekend, so I’ve already missed out on some shopping opportunities. Of course, I have shopping done for everyone but mom. Not a clue what to get her. Not clue one.

This shopping ahead isn’t always a good thing. I found a great white elephant gift for the holiday party at work. Now we aren’t having a party. Bought the gift two months ago so now cannot return it. Ah well, live and learn and lose $6.

Boulder Area craft fairs

Jefferson Unitarian Church
Holiday Craft Faire
December 2 and 3rd, 2011

Shining Mountain Waldorf King Winter Faire
Saturday, December 3, 2011

Denver Public Library Holiday Used Book Sale
Doesn’t everyone need at least one book as a holiday gift?
December 8, 9, 10 2011
Central Branch

Denver Christkindl Market
Through December 23, downtown Denver

Currently listening to: On Yoolis Night, Medieval Carols and Motets
Found for $1 at a different library book sale two weeks ago.

“I am mortified to be told that, in the United States of America, the sale of a book can become a subject of inquiry, and of criminal inquiry too.” – Thomas Jefferson

Well, this would be why they call it “Beginning Spinning”

Beginning Spinning

roving or yarn?

I’ve taken the plunge with a 6 week Beginning Spinning class. We received big chunks of unwashed fleece to take home and prepare, as well as the loan of carders, a drop spindle, and a spinning wheel for the duration of the class. Not friendly to my nearly all-black wardrobe, but I’m getting used to having bits of cream-colored fluff everywhere.

No matter how slowly I treadle, things are moving too quickly on the lovely Canadian spinning wheel. What I’m making barely qualifies as roving, much less yarn. If we had to rely on me to spin the yarn for the EcoVillage, we’d all be in serious trouble.

I think I’m going to try doing more drop spindle and see if I can get any better at things if I have even more control over the speed. I did find this helpful video on using a drop spindle, which I’ll combine with what I’ve learned in person in class.

Anybody have any suggestions or helpful tips on any part of this process? Washing, teasing the wool, carding, or spinning itself? Please send those along, because clearly I need the help!

Currently Reading: Crown of Dalemark by Diana Wynne Jones

Recently Viewed: Just watched Nim’s Island based on the book by Wendy Orr and recommend it. Overcoming fears, being courageous in everyday life, and teaching your kid to value nature. Good themes there.

“Patience is the companion of wisdom.” – Saint Augustine

Alpaca Breeders Alliance of Northern Colorado is having their Alpaca Extravaganza this weekend at the Boulder County Fairgrounds in Longmont, Colorado. Saturday February 26 9-5, Sunday the 27th 10-4.

Shopping and hands on opportunities abound, as well as free lectures on alpaca breeding, contract language, marketing, and including alpacas in your sustainable living adventures. Free to the general public.

“The web of our life is of a mingled yarn, good and ill together.” – William Shakespeare

I was just complaining a few posts ago that we needed a Sheep to Shawl event at our annual Stock Show. Now it turns out, there is a new educational event happening tomorrow in Longmont:

From Our Lands to Your Hands Education Event
Thursday, February 3, 2011
Boulder County Fairgrounds

They’ll be teaching kids that food comes from a farm, not a grocery store. In order to have food, we need farms. And in order to have wool yarn, we need sheep! I’m going to try to volunteer for a couple of hours tomorrow in the knitting and weaving booth. Event is for pre-registered classes only from 10-2, open to the general public from 2 – 4pm.

Continuing the farm theme, I was sad to learn of the passing last month of British author Dick King-Smith, who wrote over 100 books about the animals on his farm. One of these, Babe the Sheep Pig, was turned into the movie Babe.

I’ve been making my way through the Philip Reeve list of recommendations, and well, I guess childhood favorites are a very personal choice.

First up I read The Nargun and the Stars by Patricia Wrightson, which takes place on an Australian farm. I hated the ending. Hated it. Found it lacking in compassion for critters that are non-human. I usually enjoy Wrightson’s books, but not this time.

The Owl Service by Alan Garner takes place on a Welsh farm. It was winner of the Guardian Prize for best British book of the year in 1968, and was almost incomprehensible to me. On the other hand, I enjoyed his recommendation of Eagle of the Ninth and will be reading more Rosemary Sutcliff and Dick King-Smith.

Currently Knitting: About to start a second pair of Riesines (wrist warmers), just finished stringing the seed beads onto the yarn and am ready to cast on.

Currently Reading: The Victorian Internet: The Remarkable Story of the Telegraph and the Nineteenth Century’s On-line Pioneers

Currently Listening to: Hound of the Baskervilles

“I think the extent to which I have any balance at all, any mental balance, is because of being a farm kid and being raised in those isolated rural areas.” – James Earl Jones

Support your local independent businesses by shopping with them on Small Business Saturday rather than at a chain store on Black Friday.

If you spend $100 at a locally-owned business, $68 of that $100 stays in your community. Spent at a chain store, only $43 stays in your community. Shop online – nothing for your local economy.

One great way to shop local is with your local craft fairs. If you’re in the Denver Metro Area, there are some good ones coming up.

Nov 27 – Boulder
Joyful Furniture Artist Sale

Dec 3 & 4 – Denver
Holiday Handmade Alternative Craft Fair at Fancy Tiger

Dec 3 & 4 – Applewood/Golden
Jefferson Unitarian Church Holiday Arts and Craft Faire

December 4 – Boulder
Shining Mountain Waldorf School King Winter Faire

Nov 13 – Dec 30 – Golden
Foothills Art Center Holiday Art Market

“A machine has value only as it produces more than it consumes – so check your value to the community.” Martin H. Fischer