Sunday, November 30, 2014

I make this look good

I've lost another shawl to Gus.

Well, it is not lost, just on permanent loan to the Big G-man.

What? It looks better on me anyways!

With Gus' illness and age he gets just about anything he wants around here. I even put up a Christmas tree for him today. OK fine I love Christmas trees too. 

Just a reminder to love our furry ones as long as we can. I was reminded of that this weekend. Just know the Yarnkettle household has been sending out sympathy vibes all weekend. Peace and healing. 

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Tea Tour

While we were camping at Rhinebeck we took the opportunity to visit our favorite tea shop. Harney and Sons Fine Tea in Millerton. They are the people that wooed D over to becoming a tea drinker. You know I should probably send them a thank you note.

I came up with the wild idea to visit their tea shop over ten years ago. D went with me for the ride and studied the catalog to find his other true love Lapsong Souchong. I've converted a few people over to the Harney side of tea, although no one loves Lappy like D does. 

This time we had a nice lady refill a couple of tins and we tried a few new ones. We got to chatting and it turned out she was a knitter too. A sock knitter too, although she knits toe up and magic loop. She even laughed knowingly when I told her how I knew a car belonged to a knitter at the grocery store in Rhinebeck. Its license plate was K2 TOG, meaning knit two together in the world of knitting. Poor Hubby and another lady looked like we had started speaking German. We may not have developed a secret hand shake but we know how to read each other's plates.

We talked of Ravelry, sock knitting, knitting in bed and what her proxies were bringing her from Rhinebeck. She had to work the weekend but good knitting friends never leave a knitter yarnless.

D asked her about the big Harney and Sons building we had passed on our way into town. And get this, she asked us if we wanted a tour!? Yes Please! We happily made our purchases and headed back down the road.

Sadly the man who started it all passed away this year.

We were buzzed in and shown by the call center/customer service area. So now if I have to call I can envision what that room looks like. It looked comfortable and had a quite few teapots decorating the area. 

Then it was on to the warehouse where all the orders are packed. Oh the smell! The enchanting smell of so much tea! I am fairly certain Heaven smells like Harney and Sons. OK my heaven would smell slightly of warm kitty fur too, but your's may not.

We walked past the blending tanks. It is true that the cinnamon tea has its own blending pot. I don't remember what they were blending but I know it was not cinnamon.

This is their tea bag packing machine. The big roll on top was the bag material and the lower roll was the tag material. On the bottom you can see the outer wrapping paper in red. We were given a sample of Mint Verbena teabags.

Another view with the tea bags made an wrapped.

A warehouse full of tea!

These machines were making White Christmas tea sachets. Only a few of the machines were in operation because Fridays are off days usually. A kind gentleman chased us down and gave us a sachet samples too. It smells wonderful. My sister will most likely be getting some of this kind this Christmas.

The loose leaf tea is still hand packed. All of these barrels? Loose leaf tea! Barrels and barrels of tea.

I told you it was Heaven.

See isn't quality control at a tea shop just so much classier?

D said I needed to wear the hair net for my picture. See even I-only-brought-camping-clothes Yarnkettle was let into the classiest tea warehouse.

It was the highlight of our weekend. An unexpected tour is so much fun!

Thursday, November 6, 2014


We finally made the decision to camp for Rhinebeck and it could not have worked out better. Which is still a bit of a surprise for us. We're from South Dakota where you never count on outdoor activities unless it is in June, July, August and maybe September. Our snow likes to surprise us. 

Anyways back to beautiful fall in New York state. Our mornings were spent sitting under some beautiful fall foliage. 

Leaves rained down on us from time to time.

And in keeping with Yarnkettle camping tradition we had rain lots of rain our first night out. It was great because it took away the heat. Then it was mostly the temperature D and I like best.

I went to a Ravelry meet up on Friday night but felt a tinge guilty leaving D alone with some of our new RV neighbors. He was perfectly happy talking to someone that hiked NY's high peaks. A nice cold beer and a fire is what he likes best about camping.

On our last night there I pulled out my trusty cast iron dutch oven and put it on a campfire for the first time. I had visions of true campfire cooking since I recieve it so many years ago. We had some lentil stew I'd made a while ago. We fired up an old sauce pan D's Mom had given him and made rice for the first time that way.

I overheard a kid walking by say me food smelled soooooooo good. That is right, my vegetarian cooking is now random kid approved. It tasted as good as it smelled. Lentil stew over rice is mighty fine campfire food. A little Chipotle sauce did not hurt either.

D is now thinking spring and fall camping is our goal. I liked fall camping because I got to toss a few leaves in the fire to light up the evening. Plus there were way less bugs and I put some of my knit items to good cool weather use.

I do so love camping just not as much when the air mattress goes flat on the first night. Good thing our sleeping bag is so squishy and soft. My bones did lodge a "we're not 16 anymore" complaint.