And Now I am 60

I had a lovely birthday with my mom, daughter Christina and 4 sweet peas.  I received lovely flowers bouquets and many well wishes from all my loved ones.  What more could anyone wish for?


Such lovely flowers!  And Christina made an amazing vegan dinner followed by the most delicious from scratch carrot cake!  Omg is was amazing and I had left overs to last a few extra servings!


I always love any time I get to spend with my grandchildren.  I love these pictures that the two eldest captured with their cameras.  I think we may have some budding photographers!


Having grown up on a farm I know first hand just how wonderful it is to have a horse of ones own.  I believe it solves a great deal of teenage angst!  A horse and a dog completes and grounds a child equipping them for adulthood!


I took my camera and after seeing the pictures on the phones thought I’d give the kids a go at using my Canon.  They took some great shots and were oh so very serious!


Until I retired I had very little time to visit family.  It was nice to catch up.  This is my older brother, Jim, who I donated a kidney too years and years ago.  The kidney is still going strong as he hits 63 this year and he is in darn good health for a type 1 diabetic!  Such an amazing miracle that still takes my breath away.


While visiting my niece came over with the most exquisite pieces of art that she creates.  I had to have this tree.  Look at the detail…the grasses are amazing!  She also makes jewelry and trees from copper wire and beautiful glass beads.  Her gorgeous jewelry designs can be found on Etsy by FlappyHandsArt.  She is not listing the trees as they are too delicate to ship.  I am having her make me a copper one and mount it on a piece of shale from my family farm.


After a week of visiting I returned home with my middle and a whole troop of sweet peas.  While Erica and I made a quick trip to California, Gramps took them out for hair cuts and to play at the arcade.  I think they look right handsome with those new cuts!


I so enjoy podcasts and one of my favorite is A Wooden Nest.  Lindsey dyes the most amazing yarn using natural products and botanicals.  I just had to jump down that rabbit hole!  My first try was using avocado peels.  I simply washed them up put them in the pot and boiled them.  I added the yarn and some alum for mordant and let it cook and then set for the day.  I did not get much color.  I had hoped for a pink shade but ended up with a creamy linen color.  I will keep on learning and experimenting using different mordants.  Christina gave me the wonderful natural dyeing book for my birthday.  It is amazing and I have already ordered numerous natural dyeing materials.



I seem to be in a sock mood lately.  Well I have also knit several dozen dishcloths which I always find homes for.

I loved knitting on the yarn for these socks so much that I had to have more.  I found it at a company out of the UK.  I order 2 skeins in different color ways.  The yarn is quite soft and lovely and knits up so quick!


Aren’t these color ways lovely?  The yarn is austermann-wolle step.  It is infused with Aloe and Jojoba.


I also completed one of the socks in this gorgeous yarn dyed by my daughter, Becca.  I love how it knits up!  I have gotten where I think my favorite heel is the fish lips kiss by Patti White.  This method is so fast and easy and I never have the feared hole at the turning point.  For these socks I am using my Hiya Hiya Sharps, but I am finding that I actually prefer a pair of karbonz as I find the cord much more flexible and lighter.  I only use circular needles and the magic loop technique.   The bag is a Stitches Plus Purls.  It is  one that I made for myself and did not put in the shop.


I have not made much progress on my sweater.  It is coming along nicely though. The more I work with this yarn the more I love it and that color is awesome!  This is some yarn that I actually nabbed at an estate sale.  It is Galway Highland Heather 100% wool from Plymouth Yarn Company.  I have used it before to knit a child’s cardigan.  It wears nicely without pilling.


I love having two natural grocers just down the street.  They make my shopping experience a pleasure….and we all know grocery shopping is any thing but!  I have a weakness for magazines and find the best ever magazines there!  I love taproot so grabbed the newest and then spotted PlantBased.  It is new to me and looks to interesting.  And I found juniper berries which I will use to dye.


I also received these goodies from Amazon.


That is the best cookbook by far of all the plant based ones that I have reviewed.  Of course Micheal Greger is a favorite of mine.  I am slowly cooking my way through every recipe and have yet to have a dud.  I have been vegan now for almost 3 months.  I have cheated a bit here and there with tiny bits of dairy for my coffee.  And of course that amazing birthday cake was not vegan…..but well worth the cheat.  Becoming Vegan in a family of cattle ranchers is quite interesting.  While visiting everyone wanted to know why I didn’t eat meat.  They had many preconceived ideas.  But for me it was a personal decision for my health.  When I chose the Mind Body Medicine program for my PhD I was already leaning toward a plant based diet.   The nutritional knowledge I have gained through the program has set me firmly on the path to a whole food plant based diet.  In fact most all my research has centered around whole plant based foods and vascular health.  I am pretty sure my dissertation will be exploring if we can avoid or reverse vascular dementia with a raw whole food plant based diet.  Personally I have never felt better nor had more energy.  But I do battle with finding ways to eliminate all dairy.  But I am at minimun 99% plant based.  I also believe in the ethics and environmental benefits, but mainly it is about my health and being the best I can be.


I have managed to find a few estate sales here and there, but I am getting more selective about what I bring home.  I found this darling needlepoint on instagram.  It will make a lovely addition to my living room.  My plan is to frame it.  I seem to be acquiring many beautiful needlepoint pieces, chairs, hangings, cushions.  I love being surrounded by beautiful hand made pieces of art.


And now off to the dye pots to see what I can create with those juniper berries!

Happy Spring!!



2 thoughts on “And Now I am 60

  1. Hi Patricia, just catching up on all your posts. We seem to be following a similar path on the food front and I’m really enjoying being plant based. It’s also so much cheaper to eat like this. Love Michael Gregor. Do you listen to the Rich Roll Podcast? He has some great guests and often features people I think you would be interested in like Dr. Gregor. He and his wife also write vegan cook books which are visually stunning. I’m very impressed by the socks you are knitting! You are a very talented lady. Nice now the weather is getting better and we can get out into the garden. We have just had two gloriously sunny days where you would have thought it was the middle of Summer but normal service has now been resumed after a thunder storm. i hope that’s not the best weather we’ll get all year! Keep doing what you’re doing Patricia. have fun. xx

    1. Janet, I had not heard about Rich Roll Podcast, but it is now on my list to listen to while I knit! Isn’t the nicer weather just the best? I have high hopes for my garden his year now that we dramatically cut back the trees!

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