Tag Archives: longwood gardens

The Stomachalypse, Appreciation and Spring

It feels so good to be blogging, in that it feels so good to be upright! Last week was what I am referring to either as the Exorcist of my Stomach or The Stomachalypse. I somehow contracted a stomach virus that was so entirely violent and icky that it basically took me totally out of reality for all of last week. In six years of working for my company, I have never used a real sick day…but I used two last week. Then stayed home for the rest of the week. At first I was obsessed with the thought that it was some kind of food poisoning but this week as I chat about where I had disappeared to, a lot of people are sharing stories with me about friends and family with the same kind of virus. Not even being able to keep water down is really difficult. I am down 14 lbs. and didn’t eat a real meal all week. It actually took almost 3 days to eat anything at all. However, it’s over! Thank goodness! 

      

I do have to mention how thankful I am to have a really awesome, loyal dog though. Dogs are such a gift of sweet, unconditional love. Poppy was by my side while I stayed up all night between bed and my new friend, the toilet. He sad on the floor beside me looking at me with the expression that ‘It’s going to be fine, you’ll see!’ He is so totally perfect! 

    

 I have been a little surprised, well not really, more perturbed….just about how sometimes the internet tends to put this crummy mask on people. I don’t like when people assume that other people are available 100% of the time – be that by internet, cellphone, whatever. That simply isn’t the case. I have been feeling a lot lately that the e-Life that a lot of people choose to lead impacts my happiness. There is nothing more annoying that receiving a snarky email because someone had emailed you while you were deathly ill in bed, and they find your behaviour ‘rude and unnacceptable’ because you have not returned their email. That just really insets a WOW reaction in me….it’s actually quite mind blowing. This kind of behaviour and the sense of entitlement I see in so many people these days can be so ugly. I think my opinon on this recently got worse because of a documentary I watched that CBC had done…it basically asked the question ‘What’s worse than a nation of ME-FIRSTERS?’. I am yet unable to answer that question, and hopefully I will never have to. Parents, don’t forget to teach your kids that the world doesn’t revolve around them…because it get’s ugly when they get older. Deep breath…  Anyhooo…. 

 This week has been a whirlwind of getting caught up at work but today I am feeling great because I had a really concentrated kind of business day and finished a lot more than I expected. I guess it was also a good mental breather for me to be at home…although it didn’t feel that way at the time. I am also getting geared up to teach an art yarn spinning workshop to a local guild which promises to be a lot of fun. It is being hosted by the Warkwarth guild and The Black Lamb.
I have been really busy also trying to get some yarn spun for the shop because yarns are flying off of the shelves right now. I need to do a lot of dyework and I am hoping that this weekend is a fruitful and busy one. I have booked my ticket for 2010 Maryland Sheep and Wool and I am totally excited. I also need to gear up for the Stitch n Kitsch show in May that will be happening right about the same time. Lastnight was Stich n Bitch and I finished the first pattern repeat of my second Super Mario Bros. sock. I am definitely feeling the second sock syndrome this time and not wanting to finish it. But, I do want to get these socks on my feet and I have been trying to live by the rule of knitting only one pair of socks at a time. Tonight I am going to pack up for the spinning workshop and get that all prepared because tomorrow night is pottery, which I missed due to the stomachalypse, last week. I then want to focus as I get closer to the weekend on recording a couple of things to prepare for Episode 8 of the Muststashyo podcast. It’s in the works – so if you are reading this, dear listeners, bear with me. The craziness of my day job, coupled with my vacation time, and then slammed with this stomach flu has left me sort of reeling in that I am really behind. However, I can’t not be inspired by the beauty of Spring starting to come out. It has been around 10 degrees for the most of this week and it was a lovely weekend. I have been trying to take walks on lunches and breaks to just soak up some of that peeking sun. I definitely have so much more to write about, including some Muststashyo giveaways that are coming up, and some shop update stuff, a new line of yarn, and more Candy Sprinkles sock yarn. But for now, I will leave this post by sharing a few more pretty photos from Longwood gardens, as I blogged about in my last entry. 

  

   

Longwood Gardens, Vacation Recap and Spoils in Winter

I am back from a very fun and restful vacation! Among my journeys was a beautiful visit to a lovely B&B called Sweet Water Farms. I would definitely recommend this B&B – the cottages and the house are so beautiful and they have really awesome dogs, which for me is always a super bonus becuase I love dogs! They also have sheep, fainting goats, horses, whirpools in the cottages, a hot tub, pool, nice breakfasts, etc. etc. etc.

Before arriving at the B&B however, I was treated to a lovely visit to Longwood Gardens, which I cannot begin to gush enough about. What a vision this place is! This is a massive property with a huge indoor and outdoor garden – all sorts of incredible and rare breeds of plant, flower, bonsai, tree, cactus, etc.  Right now they have a show called Orchid Extravaganza running. It’s amazing. Here are a few of the tonnes of photos I took. The whole set is here.

This was one of my favourite flowers:

Some of the orchids:

It was so nice to get inside the greenhouse, the minute you walk in the smell is heavenly. You feel like you are in the garden of Eden or that spring has just injected itself into your soul, right through your nose. I wish I could somehow express the delightful smell of this garden. They had a room with lovely, fragrant citrus trees.

 

I also didn’t know how awesome a nectarine tree is – they grow so interestingly, all spread out very wide. As such, the garden grows them against these gates to support their branches. I am not sure if you will be able to tell how this tree is shaped from the small photo below but worry not – here is the big one.

I was also dumbfounded by the hall of bonsais they have. Some of them are decades old. They looked like diverse forests, in a tiny format, in these little pots. This one has been growing since 1949 but the oldest I recall was 1929 (but that was only when I started to pay attention to the actual dates so there could be some even older).

Next to blow my mind were these great big flowers:



They look like a big fist before they come into bloom.

The entire garden has a romantic, beautiful feel to it and it would be an amazing place for events..they have a lovely ballroom, a giant organ the size of several rooms and you can peer into the back of it at all of the working parts, chimes and knobs.

I definitely have a lot more to talk about form this vacation. It was a lot of fun. I went to an amazing import/antique store, loads of yarn stores…did a little stash enhancement and just generally spent some good time away from the stress of the day to day 9-5. It was much needed and despite falling back in to the crazy schedule, I am still feeling renewed.

One of the nice things about coming home is that I received several packages from Ravelry swaps I have been part of. One of the greatest presents I received was my new Cloak of Ravens that was knitted by my swap partner.

It was from the Mythology swap, in which my partner chose to focus on Freya.
I learned so much about the Norse goddess Freya and wow, what a beautiful mythical being.

Here are a few pictures of my stash enhancement:
Schoppel-Wolle Ambiente (from Lovely Yarns in Hampden)

Claudia Handpainted in colourway ‘Red Wagon’ (from Nangellini in Philidelphia)

Alchemy Juniper (from Loop in Philidelphia)

Since getting back I have been feeling very much like getting lots of things done, prepping for upcoming workshops, etc. and I did manage to get a little shop update done yesterday.
There are a couple new art yarns here: http://www.studioloo.com/handspunartyarn.htm
A couple new sock yarns here: http://www.studioloo.com/yarnpages/bootsie.htm
A load of new spinning fibers here: http://www.studioloo.com/spinningfibers.htm

I am also in the midst of preparing the next Muststashyo podcast and shop update. So, much to do but I’m planning to have fun doing it.