Friday, April 18, 2014

Here at the Ritz

Camp Runamuck sits comfortably on 25 acres at elevations ranging from 4100 feet to about 4500 feet
depending where you are on the property. Of those 25 acres about 6 have been truly disturbed for buildings and paddocks. The rest is a mix of forest and mountain meadow land. Most of our trees are conifers. White Fir, Douglas Fir, Incense Cedar, and a few Ponderosa Pine and Oak trees. We are just a little high for them on average. We have some beautiful wild dogwoods around that live in the shadier understory of some of the forest area. There are more plants and ferns and flowers here than I can shake a stick at or name and that goes for the diversity of wildlife too. The monument area we live smack dab in the middle of stretches over 60,000 acres, right into California. We have been blessed to live here and that covers the deer munching my garden, the occasional scorpion and rattlesnake, bear ( I found some scat in the area we are thinning right now) and bobcat. Pick a season and take a walk and you will see something you haven't noticed before. I guarantee it. Often times the wildlife comes to you. So was the case yesterday when we had new arrivals at our bird feeders. A small flock of American Gold Finches.

 Now these may be common in many areas, but for us these beauties are just passing through. Against our dark green forest backdrop they are like little jewels sparking on the branches. At the feeders, they are not shy about bellying up to the bar so to speak. The Cassin's Finches were a bit put out,

as were the Mountain Chickadees!

But they were especially bright and welcome since it was grey and rainy out. Even if they are gone today, I was lucky enough to catch them yesterday.

Up in the not so exciting sewing room this cute little summer tunic was completed.

 I had some fun playing with reverse applique and have used the technique on another tunic in  process.

Big Sal has been busy, I have probably woven about 18 more inches of the runner and considering all that goes on here on a daily basis, getting that much done is pretty darn good. It's a lovely loom to weave on. I like the chair but I think at some point I will have Gene add a riser to each of the two treadles. It is just a bit of stretch for me on longer weaving sessions and this being a jack loom with 16 shafts, I want all the leverage I can get for those throws that have me lifting a large portion of them. It's an easy thing to do and I'll tell him so! ;)

Earlier in the week the weather was fine and warm and I spent a good amount of time outside with goats and horses. Ben

 and Jerry

 are shedding out and looking a little moth eaten.

 The horses too are still floating clouds of loose hair, but it is getting better.

 As you can see, life is pretty relaxed and easy this spring. Each and every one of us is enjoying the warmer weather in our own way.

The garden had a few more additions, a bright and happy perennial corn flower names Amethyst in Snow,

 a Speedwell named Red Fox

 and Black Mondo Grass.

 I'm filling in some holes and as last year, testing to see what likes it here and what doesn't. I am delighted to report the Epimedium (aka Bishop's Hat or Fairy Wings), in the shade garden is showing signs of life and the Black & Blue Salvia is also growing. This plant was questionable as to its hardiness up here, but the heavy mulching in the fall seems to have done the trick, for now at least!

Parting shots: A horse and his goat.....

Step away from the camera, both of you!


  1. Always enjoy your pictures. Lovely spring plants and of course the horses and goats. Today we are having a spring snowstorm. Looks more like Christmas than spring but here in Alberta anything is possible with the weather.

  2. They certainly are NOT camera shy!!! I can only imagine you get a hand full of fur when you brush your cuties!!!

  3. I love that last shot! Lots of projects done, or in process, and some beautiful sewing! I really, really like that tunic. What a cute applique on the back.

  4. You have more spring than we do at this point. I am jealous.

    Love the "Horse and his goat" photo!

  5. So lovely...I enjoy your rambles around your place. Am envious of your garden activity. I want to get out there, but am still a little frozen in place, it will come. Meanwhile I'm enjoying all your 'not in florida' plants. I do get gold finches! they winter here, I've had a returning pair for years now. They arrive after their fall molt, so they are not bright while here. Good company, though. Great bathers.

  6. What a lovely snapshot of spring at Camp Runamuck! Bob put risers on my AVL treadles first thing as the loom bench was fixed to position a person for throwing the shuttle and beating but my legs did not reach the treadles well. It works well and is much more comfortable so go for it!

  7. What is that pattern, Theresa? It's really cute!

  8. What great photos! I can never catch the bluebirds going in and out of their little house they are so quick!

    And I LOVE the summer top! I need no risers, being 6ft has its advantages and its disadvantages. Hope they help!

  9. LOTL, The birds can be tricky, you just have to spend time out there without the camera to get them use to you moving around. Risers are easy enough, now getting shorter or lifting a loom higher, that would be harder.

    Maggie, the top pattern is from Sweet Dresses, a japanese pattern book translated to English.

    RL, thank you for stopping by and letting me know that risers work well. I'm looking for some nice wood to use.

    Coco, Good to see you back! By the time the finches reach here I am assuming they are in breeding plumage. It sure is bright!

    Valerie, Well, it is snowing this morning, so spring has hidden herself for a bit. Dandy and Cooper each love their goats. Horses and goats make a nice mix actually.

    Cindie, Thank you!

    Mary, The applique was fun, easy and it used up the last bit of a fabric I really liked.

    LA, No not camera shy, and usually it's a facefull as the fur is quite light and the wind almost always seems to blow i right back at me.

    Donna, Thank you. I guess you sent some snow down to us. Today we are having snow ourselves!

  10. It sounds like you have a great location to bird watch! I love seeing the American Goldfinches when they come through our area. Stay warm!