Friday, October 17, 2008

It's a Fiber thing!

A couple of weekends ago I visited Taos, New Mexico for my first time that I know of. It was for the Wool Festival. Once Emily told me about it and since I had already gone to one festival in Estes Park, I knew that I had to go to this one. Emily had suggested going through La Vita pass, but I decided to go through Cimmaron instead. It was a gorgeous drive. New Mexico started out flat. There were grassy plains with little groups of deer here and there. About an hour or so into the southern state things started to get a little rockier and the straight highway started to curve. The grass plains turned into hills, rocks, and mountains. The dry grass turned into green pine trees with splashes of yellow and orange from the changing aspen trees. There were times that I just had to pull off when I could to take it all in…along with pictures. The road kept winding and winding and winding. I was starting to think that maybe I was on the wrong highway. Then I was on Kit Carson Road and I saw all of the haciendas. So very cute!

The only thing that I knew about Taos was that it was known for its skiing and other winter sports/activities. I am not a skier or snowboarder so I normally don’t go to towns like this. I had a friend of mine die in a skiing accident when I was in middle school and since then I won’t do it. I’ll take pics of the mountains, but that’s my limit. The town is full of so many art galleries! Since I have driven through parts of the town and outside the town, I know why there is so much art there.

I decided to see what was at the festival and was overwhelmed with all of the booths set up in the park. It was so much to take in all at once. There were a couple of animals, but soooooo much fiber!!!!! By the time I made one round the booths…I was pretty much broke when it came to cash. I started out with about $100. I got 3 oz of an alpaca blend of roving, 4 oz of variegated alpaca, and an 8 oz Interlacements wool braid. The colors were amazing!!! By the time I was done spending money it was time for me to check into my hotel room, so I walked back to my car. On the way, there was a cemetery in the park! A memorial for Civil War Vets named, Kit Carson Park Memorial Cemetery. It is the resting place of Kit Carson, his wife, and mother. Supposedly I’m related to Mr. Carson through marriage. His third wife is the one that is buried next to him, but I’m not sure which wife I am related to. My mom tells me it was the one that was Indian (Apache maybe). From what I’ve seen online he married two Indians, so I’m not sure.

Since Emily, Winnie, and Sandy wouldn’t be in town until later that evening I went to Wal-Mart and got some office supplies, snacks, and more cash for the next day. Lol I spent a good 5-6 hours off and on grading lots of papers that I needed to grade for awhile. They sadly kept piling up and were shouting, “Grade me!!!” There were times that staring at papers got to be too much and I had to stop and watch Night at the Museum. It was nice knowing that those got done and I wouldn’t have to worry about them when I got back in town. I just wished I had a computer so that I could have entered them into the grade book while there. Of course if the computer were with me, the papers wouldn’t have been graded.

The next morning I ate breakfast in the hotel downstairs and wrote a friend of mine a snail mail letter. I was surprised to find out that I was only allowed a 4 oz. glass of orange juice. Yeah, I could have had coffee or tea, but I don’t drink either in the morning so I asked for another orange juice. I was told that there were no substitutions allowed. OMG! It’s just 4 oz.!!! She was nice enough, after all of my complaining, to bring me another 4 oz. It was a little weird, because I was the only person sitting alone. I could have joined the girls but we all had free breakfast at our own hotels. Hmmm…

While waiting for the girls I watched some TV until check out time and then I decided to walk around the area of the park. When I finally met up with the girls it was similar to the same excitement as the day before…but way better! On the first day I was just poking through the booths, but with the girls I was paying more attention to what was really there…which in other words was good and bad. One good deal that I got was my buffalo! My friend Emily had bought two skeins of buffalo a few years ago from the Taos fest and just recently knit up some really nice fingerless gloves. I fell in love with the feel of the buffalo and wanted some of my own. A skein of 200 yds was $65! Emily just happened to have her buffalo gloves with her and showed them to the guy who ran the tent. He was then able to give me a deal on a skein of my own! Yay! I was so happy! I too plan on making myself a pair of fingerless gloves. I just got to find the right pattern!

Continuing to walk around with the girls, they start to point out more things you either hadn’t looked at before or missed. I had to break down and buy myself more alpaca from the same booth I got the variegated alpaca. I got some spruce green alpaca that I couldn’t pass up. Then Winnie gave me the idea of spinning it with some copper angelina! Then while looking at that I found exactly what I was looking for! Rose grey alpaca!!! Cheaper than the dyed alpaca! It was awesome. I was also to meet up a few members of Ravelry! I even got a Ravelry pin to wear around. I also found a cool headband that I wanted, but it was over $100. It’s totally not worth it when you can make your own. I also got a variegated silk blend to make a shawl that was displayed in a booth there. It’s a good thing and a bad thing to have samples and patterns available. Good…but bad. It’s also a bad thing to run out of copies for another cool pattern for a shawl I loved!!! (Skeins seen in pic in above paragraph.)

We had lunch at a local restaurant and then went shopping around at some of the local shops there. It was fun. Then I decided to follow the girls back to Pueblo. I didn’t feel comfortable going through the windy mountain side in the dark, especially since it had rained a little late in the afternoon. The rainbows we saw as we drove home were so bright and colorful. I have to say their route was a lot prettier and less curvy. The hills and mountains in front of the sunset were awesome! I got home a little after 8pm and climbed the stairs to my apartment with a handful of fiber. It was nice!

I haven’t been able to spin or knit anything that I’ve bought. I’m working on some alpaca that I got at the Estes Park Wool Festival this last summer. After that I can’t wait to get my hands and wheel on the green alpaca and angelina. I have no idea what I’ll make out of it, but it’ll be fun!

The temperature here is starting to get cooler and I’m starting to realize that I don’t have a lot of things to wear to keep me warm that I’ve made. Once I’m done with my Christmas presents I need to work on more things from me. I’ve already gotten supplies, I just need the extra time to get the projects done. That’s when I ask again, “Is it Thanksgiving yet?” Sadly I have to say it’s still 4 weeks or so away. Darn it!