This week I am doing a TGIF-like post… sort of. I think you will get it once we get started! Some weeks Friday feels like, well… just another day in the week. This week, it feels very much like a Friday… and that, my friends, is a very good thing!
This week saw a changing of the poet… the Poet Laureate, that is. From Joy Harjo to Ada Limón. Two poets I love deeply. I have been spending my mornings in Ada’s The Hurting Kind… one poem each morning to end my meditation time. It is such a lovely place to be… immersed in Ada’s poetry. But this change over has made me want to do the same with Joy’s poems… I had borrowed latest book of poems, Poet Warrior, from my library… but I think it merits some meditation time as well so I will be purchasing a copy for my poetry library. NPR’s Book of the Day podcast shared this lovely interview on Wednesday, it is worth the listen. Likewise, hearing Ada share how she learned that she was selected as the 24th Poet Laureate is an equally inspiring listen (and includes a poem by Joy Harjo!) It makes me a bit sad that Ada will be moving on from The Slow Down, but change is the one constant in life… and so I will embrace her replacement with great joy!
In (case you missed it) —
Change seems to be a common theme most days and there was another big change this week. And the minute I heard of it happening, I knew it was going to be a giant disaster for the City of Pittsburgh. If you are not a Steeler fan, you might have missed the insane news this week that Heinz Field will no longer officially be Heinz Field. Heinz did not renew their Naming Contract. Now, remember what I said about change being constant? Well… all bets are off in Pittsburgh. This is the city that does not do change well! LOL But no one tells it better than the Pittsburgh Dad does!
And for those of you who do not get Pittsburgh, sorry… much of this won’t make much sense to you. However, this Michigan Girl is LOVING that a Michigan company is the new Name Sponsor for Acrisure Stadium!
(in a galaxy) Far, Far Away —
This week had me blown away by the images from the James Webb Space Telescope. Fascinating. Awe. Wonder. These are just some of the adjectives to describe my feelings as I looked at the pictures! However, perhaps the most inspiring is Gregory Robinson… the son of a sharecropper… the man who made all those images possible! (You can hear his interview this morning with NPR’s Steve Inskeep here) Of course, NASA has a blog for The James Webb Space Telescope where they are sharing images and information. It is my new daily check in! Ha!
Okay, maybe not fresco’s per say, but I have signed up for some more watercolor classes which start later this month! This one is an actual class with actual homework. I know! I am so so so geeked! Anyways, I soon will be posting my homework to a private Facebook Class Group for us to see each others work. I am really rather eager for this… as I love learning things from others. This class will go through the end of August. I very much like Rick Surowicz’s style of teaching and I am really looking forward to all the things I am going to learn! (For those interested: I have signed up for the Beginning Landscapes Class)
And there you have my RIFF on TGIF… have a great weekend all! I will see you back here on Monday!
Summer Slow Down continues despite the cooler temps and some really good “soaking” rains we’ve had over the last day. Truthfully, it was a welcome change from 90+ degree days. I understand that our heatwave was nothing compared to what many are experiencing, but still… too hot is too hot and for me temps in the 90’s (and upward) are just too hot! There is no rushing to do anything in the heat but the cooler temps are a very welcome break before we head back to those warm temps next week. All that heat means I have been spending lots of time indoors, but that is okay… I have plenty to keep me occupied inside! (And I don’t mean housework… although, I probably shout! Ha!) But how about some good things to close out the week and welcome in the holiday!
First up, I have had little Wiz K. a week now and wow! There was a very tiny learning curve on how to adjust it but once I figured it out, I was off to the races! I did a bit of trial spinning with some of the leftover fibers from my MDSW classes… I sorted out my “normal” spinning quickly, and once that happened it all just sort of fell into place. So I grabbed a braid of fiber (from my favorite Hipstrings!) divided the braid in thirds and started spinning!
One third of a braid, in process!
The Sparrow is completely silent, which is shocking to me, but I love it! It is easy to adjust tension and take up, and starting and stopping is a breeze! I have only spun with it plugged in and the “start/stop” speed control is genius. It is separate from the e-spinner, so I can have it closer to me for ease of reach. There is a slight delay on starting and stopping so there is not an abrupt yank of the fiber, but rather a smooth start and a smooth stop. I have the “speed” set to 40, but it can go much faster… much faster! Likewise it can go slower as well, so I think this could be an excellent e-spinner for a new spinner! Changing twist direction is as easy as the flip of a little switch, so easy! It comes set up in Scotch Tension, but can easily be switched to Irish Tension, if you needed to. I like that bit of versatility… and I don’t think you’d need an e-spinner to do much more than that.
One genius controller!
Now, let’s talk about one wee draw back, if you can call it that…. the battery. I have yet to spin with the battery because I need to plug something else into the battery to increase the output so it (the battery) stays on. Some people plug their phone in, but I think I will get a little USB light and use that instead. Why is this necessary? Because the Sparrow hardly uses any power – so little that the battery does not register anything using it so it turns itself off! Yep… that is right, it is one efficient little bird! I have not filled a bobbin yet to determine the capacity, but Daedalus says their capacity is 5 oz of fiber, which is larger capacity than anything I currently am using but I will update you once I have a full bobbin.
For the price, I think this is an excellent “starter e-spinner” but it is also would be an excellent addition to your wheel collection… (small foot print, silent, portable, and it spins incredibly!) The price for the e-spinner is $400, which includes the wheel and three bobbins. That price does not include the speed control, which is $110. But!! Once you have the speed control, it is interchangeable with all of the other e-spinners Daedalus makes… so it is a one time investment. The battery pack is an additional $110 and again, it is interchangeable with all the other Daedalus e-spinners.
Now let’s talk more about the footprint, shall we? It is minuscule! The space it takes up on my table is 5″ x 7.5″… yes that is it! So if you are looking for something that can get a good bit of spinning done and not hog up all the space in your room… this is the bird for you! I have two “manual” wheels, lol, a Schacht Matchless and a Schacht Flat Iron. I thought my Matchless took up a reasonably small bit of space, but it now feels like a behemoth in comparison! And as for that Flat Iron… well, I think it is time that it moves on to a new home (so if you know anyone who is interested in a wheel… let me know!)
I am impressed with the quality of the wheel and with the dedication that Dave and Rebecca have to customer support. They have a very active FB Group where questions are answered very quickly. This has rapidly become an invaluable resource for me, because you can search a question… and find an answer quickly without having to ask again. Plus, the community there is incredible! They are a helpful, supportive group! I love watching Daedalus e-spinner owners cheering on those trying to get their first e-spinner. If you are thinking about an e-spinner… a Daedalus product would absolutely be my recommendation!
But… it was not all spinning this week! I have another drawing to share! I was disappointed in last week’s attempt… but I thought I could do better so I tried again. This time I focused on just what I could fit onto my page… and I took my time. This outcome took me all week… I worked on it for probably 30-45 minutes at a time. I kept reminding myself that it was layers… not one and done. I am very happy with the outcome! Is there room for improvement? Yes… but, there is also a great deal of pleasure in my finished drawing! I also added some supplies to my arsenal… I got a box of semi-hard pastels, some charcoal pencils, tortillons and blending stumps! Summer of Art continues!
One happy drawing, which is not really as grainy looking as this image appears.
The other amazing and incredible and very good thing is that my sweet Winston turned one this week.
Cute… but where is the cake???
I know I am entirely prejudiced, but he is just the most beautiful boy! (and he looks so much like his momma!) (Also, what is not to love about a first birthday when no one cares if you have anything on but your diaper! LOL)
And the final good thing this week? Well, it’s all about going from winning at the “Pandemic look” to suddenly public ready… yes, I finally found the courage to make an appointment to get my hair cut… and I could not be happier that I did! (and thank you all for your incredibly kind words on IG… you all are just such wonderful people! XO