I have been messing around with Field Notes. I like the product. The quality is good and I am a fan of vintage style notebooks. I especially like the Ambition series and picked up several. 

But I am returning to my Moleskines. Yes the quality has gone down (although the new ones seem to be made in Vietnam). Yes, they are probably overpriced. I just haven’t found anything that works as well for me. They hold up better. I have been using an old Reporter. I used it for a year but still had a lot of unused pages. And I have a small Evernote Moleskine that was barely used. I’m using those to finish out this year. I have a new Reporter for next year and a larger Classic style that I want to use as a knitting journal. I get tired of digital stuff. 

I don’t have a terribly interesting life but I do want to leave a record. I’ll have to see how this goes. I always love my new system when I start. 

New doggie!

Lon has talked a lot about getting a second dog. He really likes Loretta, but thinks she would like to have another dog to play with. I’ve been hearing this on a regular basis and have my doubts about it. But he came up with an ad for a free Springer Spaniel and asked me if I wanted him. Without thinking about it too much, I said yes. I’ve had two Springers. They have great personalities, but tend to be hard headed. I like the Springer/Golden cross better, since they tend to mind better. (And that’s what Loretta is.)

Anyway, Jake’s owner got in a bad motorcycle wreck that morning and the doctors thought it might be a year before he’d recover. His family put the dog up for adoption. It’s not as heartless as it sounds. He is a high energy dog and loves to bark. When you spend a lot of time in the ICU, you just don’t have time left for an animal like that. So we wound up with Jake. He’s 9 months old, handsome and goofy. He’s extremely people oriented and does not like to be left alone. For the first three weeks, Lon slept in the recliner so that Jake wouldn’t bark all night. (The cats have retreated to the bedroom). We are finally past that stage. We have a large wire crate which has helped with all of this and I am now trying to get him to settle down around the cats. He just gets so worked up! And Loretta hates him. And I’m not talked about irritated–she turns into an ugly snarling dog when he’s around her in the house. She’s better with him outside. So the house is still in an uproar. But we truly like him. He’s a sweet dog and has real potential. He is a much better watch dog than Loretta.

And we discovered that he loves water:


We are having an underbraider discussion at the Treadle On group. I wanted to post the one I received in a puzzle box that I bought. 
It’s interesting that this seems to have been mailed in the packaging. 

   Still haven’t tried it yet, but might be time to play around with it. 

Wedding Day!

Lon and I have talked about getting married for several years. When one of our Coot friends, Jim Ballou died suddenly last year, it seemed like it was time to get married before we lost any more of our friends. We are not getting younger! So we chose June 20th, which is the day we normally hold a Messabout at our place. The wedding planning did not go smoothly. Lon wanted to get married at the river place. We were trying to get things cleaned up from the previous tenant and make the place look presentable. We had a family argument and it seemed like it would never come together. I kept reminding Lon that it was a party and a celebration. That would be what would matter most in the end. I’ll be adding more pictures as they come in. Most of these were taken by Vicki Parker. She and Dan Walker made wood fired pizza for the party.

wedding selfie
Wedding selfie. I used the Folkwear Gibson Girl Blouse, with lace inserts from a nice Ebay seller in Ponca City, OK. I used some lightweight linen and also used the Walking Skirt pattern in heavier linen.
LorettaLoretta was not at all happy with her headband. She was well behaved at the wedding. I did have to feed the two cats at the river to get them to stay away.



Lon on the way

We made a quick stop at the ATM and headed on our way. Andrew, who presided over the wedding, wanted a nautical theme. What could be more nautical than a pirate? I ordered Lon’s vest from Majestic Velvets and they did a rush to get it to us on time.

Wedding Roses

I wanted a few nice flowers, but decided against a bouquet.

Getting the table set up

Getting the tables decorated for the feast.

wood fired pizza
Dan and Vicki made delicious wood fired pizza.

Waiting for the service

We waited while Andrew read the first part of the service. He had helpers.

Nautically inclined

Nautically inclined! Too bad the water was so low at the river.

Waiting for our cue

Time for our entrance.

When this guy marries you, you stay married!

When this guy marries you, you stay married! Thanks, Andrew!

With this ring...

We decided to use my mom’s wedding ring. I’d worn it for a bit, after I’d worn out my original wedding ring, but it wasn’t a ring I used at my first marriage. This time, it’s my wedding ring.

Joined in Matrimony

Hard to believe, but it really did happen!

Share a kiss

Share a kiss and it’s done.

The Happy Couple

Until we get the official pictures, this will do.


And the Coots doing what they do best, telling tales and eating pizza.

relaxing afterwards

And finally time to relax. Thank you to all that attended, especially Cathy from work, Dave and Terry for helping with setup, Jennifer for also helping, Dan and Vicki for the pizza, Quinn and Shanna, and to all the Coots.

More wedding sewing

Good news: I got the Denver Fabric order. Bad news: they were sold out of the cotton lawn. I’d ordered 10 yards and planned to use that for my blouse and maybe a chemise. The blue cotton twill is very nice. I’d thought about doing a wedding skirt out of it, but went with the white linen. It will still make a nice skirt and I will try and cut it out this weekend. I’d gone to Hancock Fabric last night and picked up some lace beading and ribbon for the Edwardian Underthings pieces. The store manager was very nice, gave me 20% off the whole order and asked if I’d take the survey for her. So I did that and got a code for $5 off on an order of $30 or more.

I checked around the house and didn’t find any natural fiber sheer enough for the blouse. So back to Hancock today. I found some 100% linen that is lightweight, maybe even considered handkerchief weight. It was $17.99 a yard,  but they were having a 50% off sale that I didn’t know about. I bought three yards and didn’t have enough for the discount, so picked up another spool of thread. It’s in the dryer now. I like the idea of both pieces being linen. It wrinkles, but it’s the perfect fabric for these pieces.

Here’s another picture of the skirt:




closeup of skirt fabric

Sewing for the wedding

I ordered some fabric for wedding clothes. I wanted something I could wear for other occasions. But, I am still waiting for that fabric. I have some fairly heavy white linen that I bought years ago. I decided to sew it up as a Walking Skirt. And I like it enough I will probably wear it on wedding day. I am sewing this on the 1891 Singer, which deserves to make a wedding dress.

I usually struggle with sewing. I tend to cut things out poorly and I don’t press them as I sew. It comes from working in a sewing factory where I picked up bad habits. But, the Treadle Quilters group on Facebook has helped me tremendously! The first thing was spray starch. I grew up in the era when you starched and ironed clothes, but I haven’t used starch in years. It makes a huge difference in cutting out fabric and in sewing it. I starched it, let it sit and ironed it with my Steam-O-Matic.


I cut it outside, on a freebie table that Lon plans to use in his office. It was a lot easier to cut it there than anything I’ve tried inside. I need to make myself a nice cutting table for my office. The Walking Skirt is pretty straight forward and I’ve made a few. The only tricky part is the placket. And here is where I had fun. I took out one of the binders from my puzzle box. It just turns it over once, which works okay for the edges on the plackets. It was so easy to use and I couldn’t be happier with the results.


In fact, I liked it so much, I used it on the waistband too. Normally, I’d press the edge on the waistband and sew it in. I ran the edge through the binder and then sewed that to the skirt. It worked beautifully. I still need to put in hooks and eyes (and I found a neat way to do that in a 1927 sewing book I just got.) And I need to hem it. I know this skirt will be much too long. I am thinking about hemming it as is, then doing tucks around the bottom. That’s a traditional type embellishment for these skirts and would shorten it. I am really pleased with the skirt so far. It’s linen and will wrinkle, but it’s summer and it’s a traditional fiber. And I finally found a use for it. If I don’t get the fabric for the blouse pretty quick, I may improvise there too. I have the lace I want to use, but I need a light weight fabric. I also have a few other items, cut out from an earlier project, that I will work on this week. They can be used if the fabric order doesn’t show up soon. I like Denver Fabrics, but they take a long time to ship out.

I’m hoping to use the tucker and ruffler on this project. These attachments were used to make the designs of the day. They should work fine for my project.

Den Danske Pioneer, Siegel-Cooper and New Home treadles

UPDATE: I’ve been told, by knowledgeable folks at Treadle On, that this is a National that appears to be a New Home. It has faked out other folks. I will try and pull that information into a new post this week.

I’ve mentioned it before, but my first treadle was a Siegel-Cooper. I owned it way before I was on the internet and I didn’t know a thing about badged machines. We had it in the bus, and then I found a new home for it in Walla Walla. So, when I found a treadle head with the same decals, I bought it. This one said Den Danske Pioneer, which turns out to be the oldest Danish language newspaper in America, still published. I’ve been trying to find out which company made it and had assumed it was National. After investigation today, I believe it was New Home.

Here’s what it looks like:

side view

front plate


side decals

bobbin winder

decal den danske pioneer

another look at the name


center decal is bad

top decal

stitch regulator

shuttle cover

would have serial number here if new home


back of the tensioner

large access plate

Now, take a look at the links to this very nice New Home Light Running treadle. The base is very close to my original treadle. Links here, here, and here. They are very similar.

I managed to get the bobbin cover opened up. I’m using some lubricating spray called Deep Creep and it seems to work well. I am going to give this a spin over the weekend. I have a lot of sewing to do, so really don’t have time to do a lot this time. I’m putting it in the White base for now. That should work well enough for testing.


I’m feeling a lot better, although not completely off prednisone yet. My oxygen levels have been good and I have more energy. And that’s good because we have a lot of stuff to get done before the wedding next month.

I have a new old bicycle. It’s an Allegro, which is Swiss made. It seems to be from the 40s. It will need work:

Allegro bicycle

I’ve made some progress on the White treadle, but still don’t have it sewing yet:
base with some work

newer White head

I have fabric ordered for my wedding dress. I plan to do some sewing over the Memorial Day holiday. I have been trying to finish up some of my old projects. I managed to finish the Gibson Girl blouse and am trying it out today. I didn’t order enough fabric for it and had to improvise. I need a better way to hem skirts. I don’t have any problems sewing them up, but it seems to take forever to hem them. I am really focused on sewing right now. It helped a lot, when quilting, to spray starch the fabric before cutting it out. I”m trying to do that on anything I cut out. I have a major sewing project planned this summer and think it will really improve my sewing skills.

White treadle

I am able to get the head to work on this machine. The problem is the tensioning device. White has a unique tensioning system. All the experienced sewing machine people warn you against messing with it. There is a small loop of spring steel, that the thread runs through, which has rusted off. I can’t just replace this. I had a nice treadler offer me a newer White head, and was able to have the kids pick it up while on the coast. It’s from 1929, I believe, but does look similar. So I tried swapping the faceplate. It actually fits, but the thread tension bar on the old machine is shorter. It bangs on the faceplate. It might work for now, but would probably damage the face plate over time. For now, I am going to hang onto the old head and put the newer one on the treadle base. It will give me a working treadle and I can always try and finish repairing the old head at another time. I plan to tackle work on the base again today. I have been using wood glue to stabilize those drawers. I am not doing a lot of finish work on this. I am going for function.

I am still working on my quilting. I picked up a rotary cutter and board. I remembered to get spray starch. I cut out some blocks and did a bit of sewing, but started to get tired. I’ll try and finish them this week. It’s fun, but I am having to learn new skills and just need to let myself make mistakes while I learn.

On the health issues, I have been fighting another round of Bird Fancier’s. I had some things stored in the office that had been in the garage. I got a reaction when I started moving things around in the office. I finally convinced my pulmonologist to treat this like we did the first round. It seems to be working. My oxygen levels are good and I have energy again. I am starting to taper down, so will see if this holds. But I truly wonder about the medical practice. Prednisone causes bone loss and depletes the adrenals. We have our medical records digitized. There’s no reason why it can’t remind a doctor to schedule a bone density test or prescribe adrenal support. I did the adrenal support on my own. I was given Fosamax. If you read the cautions on this drug, it’s a vile drug that causes things like thigh bone fractures. I took one dose and stopped. I could tell that it was not a healthy thing to take. The good news is that I finally have enough energy to do things. We are going to start taking a Tai Chi class tonight. We need to start moving a bit more and build some muscle. Tai Chi is gentle enough for us and we will be the only folks in the night class for now. Will try it for a month and see. I also want to start setting up a small garden in the back yard. I want to grow a few things. I am tired of eating processed foods and spending so much on groceries. This is a lousy place to garden, as there is too little sun. But I’ve done this before and it’s worth the effort.

Barn treadle

So I have been checking Craigslist again, looking at treadles. I found a post yesterday. The treadle had been stored in a barn and was in rough shape. She thought it might be useful for parts, so offered it up for sale. We went out on it last night. I imagined the worst possible condition, so that I wouldn’t be disappointed. I was happy to see it upright on the irons. And when she said that her husband thought he could turn it into a table, I handed over my fifteen dollars. I am  not ready to give up on it yet.

So here is my new White rotary. This is the first treadle I’ve gotten with an intact belt! The case is fragile, with some of the trim missing. The head was frozen up and dirty. I oiled it a lot last night and did get it to turn. I will be working on this a bit more today. I think it can be made usable again.


White serial  number Serial number. I’m guessing this could be anytime between 1898 and 1910.
backside It’s dirty
front of the head And rusty
treadle base And the case is pretty fragile.
I hope it can be functional again. I think it would be a good choice for free motion quilting. I just want to get these machines in working condition and keep them going as long as I can.

Fun with treadles!

I managed to sew on my treadles this weekend. I am working on the Folkwear Gibson Girl blouse on my fancy treadle (now named Rosebud, because I got tired of trying to talk about the machines without names.) Still need to finish the sleeves and hem it, but it was pretty smooth sewing. I wish I’d had time to play with the attachments.

On the sphinx Singer (now named Cleo), I have been piecing quilt blocks. Now, I am not a quilter. The last time I did anything like this may have been in the late 70s. So I do not have any rotary cutters or any of the new tools quilters now use. I have been going old school with scissors and rulers. I need a working iron and I am going to need those tools. I have joined the Treadle Quilters group on Facebook and I am determined to catch up on the block of the month series. Here’s my attempts, so far, on January:


Rail fence Notice that it’s a bit off where the patches meet in the middle.

second rail fence This was better, but the square is much too small now.

third try Looking better but needs to be pressed!

I am having a lot of fun with this. It turns out that Cleo has a lot more use than Rosebud. It sews much smoother. It’s hard to describe how a well broken in sewing machine feels. The parts just sort of glide past each other. And, I would expect the machine with the worn decals to be the most used. I am happy to have both. And it is still hard to get the cats off of Cleo!

And, now for number 2….

This is not the machine Lon wanted. He wanted a Singer in a parlor cabinet, but it would have required another trip to Seattle. Don’t ask me why we decided to get another treadle, but he’s still fascinated by them. And so am I!

1910 Singer vibrating shuttle #2 with sphinx decals:


sphinx decals

treadle base

seven drawers

The cats love it already!
cat bed

It’s not as pretty as the other machine and the cabinet needs work. (They put an aquarium on top of it and it leaked! I don’t want to comment.) I just felt like it needed to come home with me. I ordered bobbins and a leather belt from Treadle Lady. Installed the belt on my first machine, sorted out some issues with the tension and bobbin, and it now works! I should have a second belt this week for this machine. They still need a good cleaning and I’ve oiled them every day that I’ve had them. That’s what they need most. And I have my Viking 6430 out as I’m trying to finish a new skirt. Didn’t quite get it done in time for Depoe Bay on Saturday. That was a nice trip. Not as many boats as we usually see, but it was sunny.

Depoe Bay

My new toy

A long time ago, I used to have a treadle. I loved it. It was German made, turn of the century. I had it in the schoolbus, but when we moved into the Airstream, there wasn’t room. There was condensation in the trailer and I was afraid it would be ruined. I found a good home for it in Walla Walla.

I’d been talking to Lon about treadles and showing him pictures of them. He likes antiques and was fascinated by the decoration. I had a post from the Vintage Machines group on Ravelry with a link to a Craigslist ad in Seattle. It was the back of the machine and you couldn’t make out a lot. I sent the link to Lon. Then a day later, he told me he’d made the deal for it and she would hold it for us until payday. I used a vacation day yesterday and we went to pick it up.

This is a 1891 Singer VS2. That means is has the vibrating shuttle (long bobbin) instead of the more modern round bobbin. My old machine used a shuttle like this too. Singer calls this the roses and daisies decal. It’s one of the prettiest machines I’ve ever seen. It needs a belt, but she said it sews fine. It also has the “puzzle box”, as folks call these folding attachment boxes.

I’ve ordered a belt for it and will try and do a little work on it over the next couple of weeks. I’m just amazed to own this machine.

1891 Singer treadle en route home

side decals

more decals

treadle base


puzzle box

more puzzle box


attachments in place

stuff I don't recognize

beautiful machine

damaged spot

needs to be cleaned

I love the decals here!

don't use your treadle as a table

more decals

On the river

the river

on the river

Loretta scratching


Spent most of Sunday at the river. It’s nice to have the kids there. Very nice weather and I did some knitting outside. We are cleaning up the old bird room, so I am trying to stay out of the house when the clean up is being done. After washing down the walls, we’re going to do some painting. It should help. I am feeling better after this last round of prednisone and am planning to cancel the bronoscopy my pulmonologist wants. If it means I have to go with another specialist, I will. The only bad thing Sunday was that Loretta knee-capped me while trying to get away from the puppy. I went down and banged up my foot a bit. It’s okay today, but I wish that I’d known she was behind me.

What a week!

Quinn and Shanna have been down all week. They are getting a temporary spot set up, to move down to the river. Shanna plans to go back to school at Clark. We’ve made a couple of trips to the Rebuild it center for windows.

As part of the move, we needed to get George and his girlfriend moved out. George made an agreement to pay the electric bill and to stay in his own trailer. It’s what we agreed on and he violated those both. He’s also been agressive and abusive, when we’ve talked to him about it. The cops made it easy for us, as they were in the process of tracking him down. George winds up in jail because he won’t follow through on the conditions of his release. And so he is back in jail. His girlfriend is in jail, because she told the cops he wasn’t in the trailer. They told her they wold take her in if she was lying and so they did.

Quinn and Shanna are starting to settle in. It’s nice to have Quinn’s friends down there again. It’s extremely nice to think of the Wells family using our own property for a change. You have no idea how frustrating it is to have a nice place on the river, scramble every year to pay the property taxes, then come out and see a bunch of people you don’t know enjoying themselves on your property. It will be nice to clean it up and use it ourselves.

I have been sick the last few weeks and we are trying to do a major house cleaning. Lon wants to paint the old bird room and move most of the things out of the office into that room. I’d like to see better use of it, as I like the French doors. It’s just not a room I’ll feel safe going into without a respirator. I have a sweater that I started from yarn stored in the office. I washed most of the yarn, but started out with a couple of unwashed hanks. I started getting a reaction to it and had to wash my work in progress. Of course, that meant that I ordered more yarn and started a new project.

I have sick kitties. Fanny has an upper respiratory infection. I am treating that and I think Oblio is getting it too. I hope Fanny gets better soon. She looks so pitiful like this.



Here we have a Palm III, Zire 71, Tungsten E2, and a Tungsten C. They all work, although the Palm III doesn’t stay on. I bought the Zire new. The others were thrift store finds. Each one cost several hundred dollars new. Each one is obsolete, even though it still functions. And the purpose of the post is to remind you of this, when you go out to get the latest and greatest computer, phone, tablet, etc.

Back in the day, when we were playing around with our PDAs, there were a couple of analog GTD systems. There were Hipster PDAs, made of index cards, and the PigPog method, which used a Moleskine. And of course, the DIY planner series was another analog system. Are the analog systems obsolete? Did people have to throw out their index cards, planners or Moleskines because they couldn’t sync with their computer or couldn’t upgrade their system? It’s a silly question, but no. Companies deliberately make our electronics obsolete.

I still enjoy these Palms. I liked the operating system the first time I saw it. The Zire has a slider to hide the camera and it was fun to take sneaky snapshots. And I like my iPhone 4S, even though Apple prevents me from syncing it with my old Power PC Mac. Gotta encourage those upgrades, you know. I stopped trusting electronic systems, when Jeffrey got sick and my charging stuff was back at work. An uncharged Palm is a brick. You can’t access it when it’s down and all that information was locked away in it. My iPhone is no different. Think about this, when you consider buying the latest gadget.

New Renoir

This is the latest broach. I’d like to have the gold version, but I think I have enough broaches for now. I did pick up a bracelet, and will post pictures when I get it. It’s always hard to tell yourself that you have enough.

Latest broach

We have a functioning truck again. Picked up a rebuilt tranny and had it put in. Seems to work okay and it’s very nice to have reverse again. Now all we have to do is get past the property taxes.

Quinn is planning to move down, so we are trying to get things cleared out at the river. Will be nice to have him nearby.


This is a new obsession. The company was originally called Renoir and made copper jewelry in the 50s. They added some enameled pieces and called that company Matisse. It has a modern look to it and I can’t say that I like everything they made. But…I do like most of the brooches!  Here’s my collection so far, and I picked up two more this week. I know they are not spindles, but they make great shawl pins. And I’ve worn the green leaf on my new red sweater. (The sweater is not quite ready for a prime time picture.)



Second shot

And there are sewing machines. Since I took pictures of these last week, I’ll post them here too. Am still working on the Singers.

This was one of Lon’s machines. It came through the fire, and was missing an electric cord. I have that, but it’s got tension issues. I’m going to have this one tuned up.
Singer 401A

This is a machine I rescued. It was missing the presser foot and needle holder. I pulled that off my other machine. It seems to work okay.
Singer 99K

And this is my Viking. I have been doing some light sewing. I want to set this up and start sewing for a bit every day. I have some projects in mind.
Viking 6430

Another old cat gone

This time, it’s Chuck. I got Chuck before Petey. I’d had a cat I really loved killed by a car. Jeffrey was at the gas station and they offered him  a kitten. And so I wound up with Chuck. He was always problematic. He peed on things and I couldn’t break him of it. When we moved into the Silver Streak, he started peeing on Jeffrey’s bed. Couldn’t bear to have him put down, so we exiled him to the unheated travel trailer, with the cockatiel. We had them separated by a screen and they did fine while we were there. I tried having him in the house for a long time here, but he continued to be a problem. It started to cause too much friction between me and Lon. I wanted Chuck to be over in the shed, but Lon was sure he’d be okay outside. And he was, for awhile. For whatever reason, he wound up in the front part of the property and was out on the road last night. He couldn’t hear well and as an inside cat, just wasn’t aware of cars.


chuck chuck1

Groundhog Day Resolutions

One of my favorite new blogs does her resolutions on Groundhog Day. I thought it was a great idea!  So here are my fiber resolutions (which I’m going to cross post over on Spinditis.)

  • Knit three cardigans. At least one will be done from handspun
  • Buy yarn only for specific projects. The only exemption is sock yarn.
  • Sew at least three new skirts and tops.
  • Make at least three new pairs of socks.
  • Sell off some knitting books/magazines
  • Use or give away yarn and fiber stash
  • Design one sweater and one shawl
  • Make as much food as possible from scratch
  • Start an herb garden.
  • Do more dyeing.

I want to work in color this year. I love my natural colored fleeces, but I feel the need for more color. I also want to work more intentionally this year. I want to knit sweaters to go with clothes that I make. I don’t know how many more years I will be able to knit and spin. Best to start working with an end in mind.