Little Hibiscus

I got ambitious tonight and decided to try painting a picture from my garden, taken last year. It’s a cold climate Hibiscus. Yep, you heard right. Cold climate. I found this a couple years ago and just had to try it. It blooms beautifully although the plant itself hasn’t grown a whole lot. In the winter it dies back right to the ground and if you didn’t know it was there, you’d never guess. It does nothing for the first part of spring/summer then suddenly shoots up and puts out the most gorgeous flowers.  I thought I might be able to get the flower looking at least…flowerish, but I think the glass vase was beyond my current skills. It’s a lovely little sky blue translucent vase, but glass proved to be a problem. Well, at least the flower looks… flowerish. lol

Here is the original photo and my painting next to it. This was done with Grumbacher Academy Watercolors on Strathmore Mixed Media paper. I think I really need to just stick with watercolor paper if I’m going to use paint. The paint just doesn’t flow around much on this paper.

garden phloxpainted hibiscus

The Humble Beet’s Guide to Identifying a Fake Spinning Wheel


I thought this article might help somebody else. I’ve seen these decorative ones before and though I’ve never really looked at a real one at least now if I want one I know what to look for.

Originally posted on The Humble Beet:

spinning wheelImage source.

Over the winter I learned how to spin fibre into yarn using a drop spindle. Spinning is one of those gloriously tedious activities you can zone out to for hours on end while you unknowingly bust through Netflix’s entire inventory and/or develop chronic, debilitating tendonitis, or at least some pretty calloused fingertips. It’s seriously awesome.

Almost immediately decided to take my spinning to the next level and buy a wheel. I knew this was the right move for me. I knew it! Knitting runs through my veins! I bleed alpaca fleece and dream about goat-filled meadows at night! Making yarn was about to become a central component of my identity. Barbara: sewer; knitter; spinner; semicolon enthusiast.

A new spinning wheel can cost anywhere from $400 – $1000. Most of them sit around the $800 mark. Pricey, right? Naturally turned to Kijiji, the buy-and-sell underbelly of modern consumerism…

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