Music, Mending, and Lambtown

Even though I remain really reluctant to embrace the season of apples, squash, and soup, October has gotten off to a truly terrific start. The first weekend was full of so much fun that Wyatt skipped school on Friday so we could fit it all in. And then last week, I published my fourth knitting pattern. More about that in next week's post, but meanwhile, YAY ME.

Last weekend was Wyatt's most anticipated annual musical event: Hardly Strictly Bluegrass. We went on Friday before things got too crazy. This is us (actually Wyatt and my knitting, I guess) outside the gates for the concert for middle-schoolers on Friday morning. The music at the festival was great, but the highlight for me this year was watching Wyatt make friends with a four-year old and a three-year old near us at one of the stages—he gave them pony rides on his back, and then they all had a dance party. As if all of that goodness wasn't enough to make a winning Friday, we ended the day on an even higher note after we picked up my friend Debbie at the BART station. We spent the late afternoon and evening with her playing Trouble (which she had brought for Wyatt), making and eating pizzas, and catching up. 

On Saturday, I attended Katrina Rodabaugh's Sashiko Mending Workshop at Handcraft Studio School in El Cerrito. Bonus: Maja came too. I have been waiting for this workshop since June when I found Katrina's work and she promised me in an email that she'd be back in the Bay Area to teach in the fall. True to her word, I got to learn from her in person. She spoke about her journey into slow fashion and the reasons why it's important to disrupt the cycle of fast fashion's trends whenever we can. I loved the books and resources she brought to share. "Sustainable fashion" can be challenging, as I learned in my own little way last year making Wyatt's elephant costume. (Read about that here and here.) During the mending workshop, we hand-stitched a tea quilt (which is thinner and smaller than a potholder, but bigger than a coaster), learned methods of mending, and we witnessed how some simple stitches by our own hands made our patch jobs look beautiful and intentional. Some might even say our embroidery was on-trend. The stack of clothes I need to mend is now one pair of jeans shorter, and I have the confidence and know-how to tackle the rest. Now all I need to do is make the time . . . mending has this way of staying at the bottom of my list of things to do.

Sunday was Lambtown! All three of us went this time, and this year, Lambtown had all the things Wyatt had been looking forward to (music, petting zoo, pony rides, cooking demonstrations), along with a new attractions: a train he could ride on with or without his parents and an interactive farm equipment display. The sheepdog competition was very entertaining, and I learned that Marc knows A LOT about sheepdog trials. (The things a person can hold back in a long-term, committed relationship never fail to surprise me.) We visited with Brooke at the Sincere Sheep booth, where she had displayed my patterns beautifully, and I stopped in to see Kira of Kira K. Designs just next door. Wyatt got to watch carding and blending again at Dreamy Goat Design Studio, and I learned about Shaggy Bear Farms in Scio, Oregon, where they specialize in rare sheep (and their fiber).

I added Gotland and East Friesian roving to the collection of different rovings I have been spinning into yarn. I'm planning to knit all my beginner yarn into a modern, log-cabin style, sampler blanket. My stash of handspun yarn is slowly growing. Here's the stash so far: