It has been almost two weeks since Smoky left us to cross the Bridge, and we’re all still trying to deal with the change. There have been some bad moments, such as the night I needed to run to the bank. After dark, normally Smoky was the one I would take with me on such an errand. She was the watchful one, unlike the other three, who are far too friendly – or submissive, in Mac’s case – to guard anything. The realization that I’d lost my girl hit again and resulted in crying in my hubby’s arms while standing at the front door, ready to leave. I went alone that night, and thought about Smoky the whole way to the bank and back.
The other moment was a typical, everyday moment: the fire department across the street sent trucks screaming, and all the dogs, both inside and out, started howling. Mac and Thor were in the backyard, so their howling wasn’t as ear-shattering, but Bandit, inside because her Houdini-like ways are not to be trusted, about exploded my head. She sounded so much like her sister that it was an easy, knee-jerk response to yell, “Shut up, Smok–” and then break off mid-name because I had just realized I was yelling at someone who was no longer there to make the noise I was yelling about. Of course, this meant more tears while hiding from the kids in the laundry room. The transition from four dogs to three is not proving to be easy.
But life doesn’t stop. There is still homework to be done, children to feed, dogs to groom, a house to clean, and so on. While I can’t bring myself to do much with it yet, even during the few minutes I give myself between assignments and housework, it has been a good month for fiber arts.
The Saturday before Smoky’s departure (sorry, right now life is divided into Before Smoky Left and After Smoky Left), I scored a beautiful Schacht Mighty Wolf floor loom from a very nice lady who is no longer weaving. The loom, now christened the Black Pearl, is fifteen years old and has barely had any use. Other treasures included an entire library of weaving books, some of which I already had; a bobbin winder, extra heddles and shuttles, and a drum carder. I also scored a 14″ triangle loom from Hazel Rose Looms, and the Andean plying tool and Mayan spinner arrived this morning from Straddle Creek Spins.
The drum carder, the plying tool, and the spinner did get tried out. During one of my breaks, I made a batt of Sibe fur with the drum carder. I’m told it looks right, although I didn’t expect it to be as big as it is. I love the Mayan spinner, though I’m still trying to get the hang of it even though the actual use is really easy. As in, “the kids will love this” easy. And the Andean plying tool is a work-in-progress, as I haven’t yet finished winding on the yarn from the spindle. That may take some time. But I love them both and many thanks to John for the beautiful work!
I also forgot to mention the naalbinding needles I got from a friend of mine in the Netherlands. He does awesome and arcane things with ivory. I bought two needles from him, carved from mammoth ivory that is 15,000 years old. Holding them gives me a chill, in a good way. I’d love to post a link for him, but when I last spoke to him, business was brisk and very nearly overwhelming, so I will leave it up to him to post a link in comments if he’d like to!