Archive for the ‘Orchids’ Category


We have a new crop of orchids and they are fantastic.  These plants are amazing.  They have traveled back and forth across the country stuffed into a moving truck twice over the past 18 months and they just keep blooming.  They were left on a porch in the heat of the summer for two weeks with no attention, and the dendrobium was nearly frozen to death when we forgot to bring it in when the weather turned really cold.  But, undaunted, they have all started blossoming again. 

The dendrobium orchid:


The phalaenopsis orchids:



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Readers of my blog will know that I participated for about half the year in sharon b’s Take It Further Challenge.  However, with the cross-country move and especially being back in the pulpit again, I had to drop out.

Today I found that Sharon has a new challenge for 2009 that I might be able to manage.  It’s called Stitch Explorer and will involve a new stitch or style of stitching each month.  I don’t think I’ll try to do projects per se, although that certainly seems possible.  I think I’ll try to do a sampler instead.  I can’t tell for sure from the rules, but I think that will qualify.  Something to keep my hand in stitching while working, studying, and playing with other fibers and fabrics.  

I’ve been focusing a lot on knitting lately and need something to pull me back out into the wider fiber realm.  This should do the trick.

The picture for today is of some beautiful orchid plants that I gave my staff members for Christmas.  I hope they enjoy them!


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We went for a hike today near Pilar in the Orilla Verde Recreation Area along the Rio Grande south of Taos.  It was our first time on the La Vista Verde Trail that travels about 2.5 miles round trip through amazing outcroppings of basalt and a varying ecosystem.  We did get pretty muddy walking through some areas that looked like there had been waist-high water some time recently.  You could see the water/mud marks on the trees and rocks and much of the vegetation was flattened. 

The 1.25 mile hike culminates at a spectacular overlook of the Rio Grande with two benches placed where you can sit and admire the view.  There are supposed to be petroglyphs throughout the area, but I wasn’t able to identify any.  As we were returning home we could see it snowing in the mountains around Taos.   

Unfortunately I forgot to take my camera so I wasn’t able to get pictures of some beautiful examples of lichen on basalt that I think would be great inspiration for felted scarves.  I just got a new book, Fabulous Felted Scarves, that has some truly “fabulous” ideas in it.  I’m especially anxious to try out felting wool on silk organza.  It sounds strange, but I’ve seen some scarves done that way that I absolutely loved. 

After completely frogging the Self-fringing bias Scarf I was making out of some really nice yarn I got from Brooks Farms at the Taos Wool Festival, I’ve finally decided on another pattern and have made a good start on it since Wednesday.DSCN1608  

I’m a little nervous because I’m using a different yarn than the pattern calls for, I’ve increased the needle size, and don’t have as much yardage as specified. 

But it’s turning out very pretty.  I’m using the Optic Waves Shawl pattern designed by Sheila January in The Knitter’s Book of Yarn.  I think I’ll be ok with my changes, though, because the shawl made with specified yarn is really long, 80 inches, and I don’t want one quite that long.  I’m hoping I’ll be able to get a good length and not have to take this one out to make it narrower and longer.  I took the other one out because I just really didn’t like the diagonal ends of the shawl once it was finished.  This one is much prettier and shows off the yarn better, I think.

John’s orchids are still going strong and are so pretty today that I just had to add some pictures.DSCN1604  The dendrobium has lost all of its blossoms but the phalaenopsis plants will keep theirs for several months yet.


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