Monday, 26 May 2014

Rafu-Sen

A few weeks ago,  I ordered some yarn,  3 skeins from Morning Bright Yarn in Maine.   Becky Foster, the yarn dyer, is also a knitter on Ravelry, who had knit my pattern River Shannon.  When the yarn arrived, there was a note inside the bag saying the 3 colours I chose coordinated nicely together.     If that was a hint,  I took it, and started imagining what those three skeins of yarn could turn into.

Three skeins are plenty of yarn to make a large shawl.  I wanted a large one, after all the small ones I have knit this spring.  A square shawl drapes nicely, and has plenty of material to cover your arms.  If you are cold, you want your arms covered, not just your shoulders.  If you are cold, you don't want a lot of big lacey holes either.  If you are using 3 different colours, you probably are going to have stripes.  If you are lazy, like me, you want some quick and easy knitting with rows of garter stitch thrown into the mix.

So, with those parameters, I cast on, and after 10 days of working on it, I ended up with this:
Rafu-Sen Shawl - Susan Elizabeth of Crescent Moon Collective
Square, Striped and Textured Shawl - Rafu-Sen

I did not have a name for this shawl yet. Names usually come easily to me, and I tried several that, although were interesting, didn't stick.  Finally, I looked to the names of the colours of the yarn; Wild Plum, Cider, and Aspen.   Ah ha!  Could there be a more clear sign than that?  TREES.  The next step was to do a bit of research into some Tree Goddesses, and that lead me to Rafu-Sen.
Crab Apple Blossoms and Rafu-Sen Shawl
Crab Apple Blossoms and Rafu-Sen Shawl

MayDay blossoms and Rafu-Sen Shawl
MayDay blossoms and Rafu-Sen Shawl
The following is quoted from: http://goddesses-and-gods.blogspot.ca/2009/09/rafu-sen-sh... 

“RAFU-SEN” IS A SHINTO GODDESS AND IMMORTAL BEING WHO LIVES HIGH ON A SACRED MOUNTAIN OF “LOFU” IN JAPAN AND IS SAID TO BE THE SPIRIT OF THE PLUM TREE;

HER NAME MEANS BUOYANT SUBTLETY, SHE REPRESENTS THE CYCLICAL RENEWAL OF SPRING AND IS USUALLY DEPICTED AS A BEAUTIFUL YOUNG MAIDEN. SHE WANDERS ” THROUGH FRAGRANT GROVES OF BLOSSOMING PLUM TREES AT NIGHT, ESPECIALLY IN THE MOONLIGHT.

ACCORDING TO AN OLD JAPANESE LEGEND, A YOUNG MAN BECAME VERY COLD WHILE WALKING “MOUNT LOFU. ” HE STOPPED AT A WINE SHOP TO WARM HIMSELF, AND IN THERE, HE MET A LOVELY YOUNG WOMAN IN A WHITE GOWN WITH WHOM HE DRANK SEVERAL CUPS OF PLUM WINE. EVENTUALLY, HE PASSED OUT, AND WHEN HE WAS AWAKENED BY A COLD DAWN WIND, HE FOUND HIMSELF LYING UNDER A PLUM TREE. HE KNEW THEN THAT IT WAS THE GODDESS HERSELF WHO HAD SAVED HIS LIFE.
“RAFU-SEN” STANDS FOR THE PLUM BLOSSOM, SYMBOL OF SPRING AND BRAVERY, FOR THE PLUM TREE BLOOMS WHILE THE SNOW IS STILL ON THE GROUND. 

 So, Rafu-Sen is a perfect name,  I think,  for my latest shawl pattern.   Now I need some test knitters so I can find all the little 'boo boos' in the pattern.  After that, probably by the middle of July, the pattern will be released.   

 Oh, and here is the nicest surprise of all:   Becky of Morning Bright Yarns is offering a 10% discount to the official pattern testers of Rafu-Sen.    I am delighted!

Rafu-Sen Shawl - by Susan Elizabeth
Rafu-Sen Shawl - by Susan Elizabeth

This picture,  in front of the door to the garage, in my back yard shows the colours the best.  Aren't they pretty?

Rafu-Sen Shawl - by Susan Elizabeth
Rafu-Sen Shawl - by Susan Elizabeth

The background for these shots is a Waterton Mock Orange shrub.  It isn't in bloom yet, but when it does bloom, it has the most incredible scent.  I cannot wait for it.  It has tiny white flowers.

Rafu-Sen Shawl - by Susan Elizabeth
Rafu-Sen Shawl - by Susan Elizabeth

Rafu-Sen Shawl - by Susan Elizabeth
Rafu-Sen Shawl - by Susan Elizabeth
Happy Knitting!
~Feather~

Sunday, 25 May 2014

Clearing Crystals in the Sunlight




Crystals love the light of the sun and moon.  A summer ritual around here is to clear them outside in the bright sunlight and with the wonderful weather we've been experiencing, today was perfect!

Thought I would share the moment.



My new garden box. Planted twice thanks to Mojo the wonderdog and his zest to discover what I had buried there yesterday.




I've found that crystals are cleared and charged in the sunlight where all I have to do is be open to what the crystal brings and recognize that.  Simply put, crystals bring about balance for me. 

As a kid, the day the gravel truck arrived to gravel the farm driveway was the highlight of many summers on the farm.  It was a treasure trove that would take the rest of the summer and then some to investigate as it contained zillions of the most amazing rocks, none exactly the same.  I named my first beloved dog after the man who delivered the gravel.  Doesn't the earth create the most beautiful things ever?

Anyway, crystals hold the universes subtle energy. They assist in the healing process at the root level on the physical, spiritual and emotional plane through subtle energy that IS the crystal.   Crystals are a great way to bring awareness to yourself of the earth's subtle energies.  They clear a home and keep it cleared but occasionally benefit from their own clearing and recharge.  Perhaps we all need to be reminded of the beauty that surrounds us.



Obsidian (root chakra)







Carnelian Agate - (belly or sacral chakra)








Tiger Eye (solar plexis chakra)







Rose Quartz (heart chakra)






Sodalite (throat chakra)






Clear Quartz (third eye chakra)




 Amethyst (crown)






A Herkimer Diamond Quartz, a truly magical stone





Blessed Be

~Beadorh~

Friday, 23 May 2014

The Oak Awakens

It is going to rain, I think. The sky is getting dark and the air is heavy and humid. Today the oak leaves came out. They are tiny little ruffles of green to decorate the rough branches of the little tree in the centre of my backyard.
Bur Oak - Crescent Moon Collective
Bur Oak

Tomorrow I'll have a dandelion salad and then mow the grass. Next it will be time to plant my little container garden and start hoping for a delicious harvest. 

Lady Bug on the Oak Leaves - Crescent Moon Collective
Lady Bug on the Oak Leaves

Dark Skies - Crescent Moon Collective
Dark Skies

Emac and I planted this Bur Oak on Mother's Day several years ago.  Someday I suspect it will outgrow this space.  At that time I hope whoever lives here chooses to take the garage and house down to make room for the mighty tree.  There is plenty of time to worry about that, maybe hundreds of years!  In the meantime I will keep watering it!

Blessings to you all, from under the oak,
~Feather~

Tuesday, 20 May 2014

Soapy Sales



I took the plunge and created (tada) Beadorh's Soaps, handmade soap by yours truly.  My house is filling with soap and my friends are all superclean and moisturized.  Anyway, in an effort to stem my evergrowing soap supply and avoid having my friends think I have a problem with their hygiene,( a person can only hand someone soap so many times!) its time to take action.  
    

Soap For Sale
(over there -------------->...at the CrescentMoonCollective online shop)



Blessed Be
~Beadorh~

Monday, 19 May 2014

A little yarny love...




All is well here,   I hope all is well there, where every you are!

Blessings,
~Feather~

Tuesday, 13 May 2014

Its live: Sixty Bushel Shawlette

I have just released the pattern for the Sixty Bushel Shawlette on Ravelry,
buy now
Sixty Bushels - by Susan Elizabeth - 2 colour variation
Sixty Bushels - by Susan Elizabeth - 2 colour variation

From now until the End of Day, (Alberta Time) May 20th, Sixty Bushels will be a free pattern with the Coupon Code “Sixty” 
There is a Knit Along set up here:http://www.ravelry.com/discuss/crescent-moon-collective/2...Please join in the fun of knitting your shawl with company!
Sixty Bushels - by Susan Elizabeth - 1 skein of fingering weight yarn
Sixty Bushels - by Susan Elizabeth - 1 skein of fingering weight yarn

Sixty Bushels is a long narrow asymmetrical shawlette knit starting at a narrow tip and knit in ever widening rows across the shawl, ending when you run out of yarn, or it is as large as you want it to be. The rows and rows of purl ridges remind me of lines of wheat stocks in the stubble field, after harvest. the various rows of eyelets add interest and a pretty trim, without being overly frilly.
1 skein of fingering weight yarn is enough for the small size, and 2 skeins make a lovely larger sized wrap.. Any weight of yarn may be used, keeping in mind the quantities required and needle size will change. The shawl can be knit with any weight of yarn, keeping in mind adjustments will need to be made to the amount of yarn needed and the needle size you will use. I made the large two coloured striped version using two full skeins of sock yarn. Instructions for the striped version and a lacey version are included in the pattern.
Sixty Bushels is highly textured, warm and squishy, and feels good wrapped around your neck on a chilly day. Solid, tonal, ombre and colour changing yarns will all work nicely for this pattern. Wildly variegated colourways will likely hide the stitch pattern, but I wouldn’t let that stop me!
Sixty Bushels - by Susan Elizabeth - back of 2 colour striped large version
Sixty Bushels - by Susan Elizabeth - back of 2 colour striped large version

Unblocked Sixty Bushels Shawlette
Unblocked Sixty Bushels Shawlette
I hope everyone enjoys this shawl, and joins the knit along!

Wednesday, 7 May 2014

Porcupines and Fruit Salad



Spring has been taking its own sweet time to arrive, again and again. I know that happens every year, but somehow I seem to forget how the game goes.
Every Tuesday evening I walk on Nose Hill with friends. I complain about how steep it is, until I get into the walk, the fresh air and the "scene". Last night was no exception. We were treated to a new sight, a tree top pair of prickly porcupines.  It was really interesting and I   have to do some research now.  They were what looks like in the process of killing the tree, munch munch munch.  Growing up on the prairies instilled a dislike for these tree killers...  
Porcupines up a tree on Nose Hill - by Feather
Porcupines up a tree on Nose Hill 
Porcupines up a tree on Nose Hill - by Feather
The surprisingly tall tree is in a little valley
Porcupines up a tree on Nose Hill - by Feather
Porcupines eating the buds and bark from the tree.
I'll report back what I find out about them 

As usual the knitting never stops.  This is the fourth Sixty Bushels shawl I've knit to date. I call it Fruit Salad and am trying a longer more narrow shape on this one. The pattern will be ready to release in about a week, keep watching, there will be a coupon code for a free download. Three of the testers have finished and the other four are getting close to being finished as well.  So far they are reporting it is an easy knit.

Fruit Salad - Sixty Bushels Shawl - Crescent Moon Collective
Fruit Salad - Sixty Bushels Shawl 
. I am looking forward to getting pictures up of all the finished shawls. Already I have several ideas in the works for the next project.  How about a hat?

~ Feather