Hopefully my many blog readers noticed that there was not a blog last week. And for a good reason. After three long years of not seeing each other, I made the trip to Texas. We may talk often and text nearly every day, but it was wonderful to set eyes on one another and HUG! It was so therapeutic! The picture was taken at our first stop and I'm sure some of you can relate - my regular glasses were left in the car! LOL. The entire visit was close to just 72 hours long but we were able to fill in every waking moment with good food, craft stores, and a visit to a big cat rescue.
The trip started in the predawn hours from the Ft. Myers airport, which I would like to point out, only serves Pepsi products - UGH. So I want to give a BIG shout out to American Airlines for serving Diet Coke on your planes! It is also worth mentioning that the flight attendants were awesome and there were no incidents on the plane!
As the flight arrived at DFW Airport just in time for a late breakfast, even later according to the time zone my stomach was on, my sister had scoped out a restaurant near the airport that specializes in breakfast foods—Jam and Toast. Everything on the menu looked so good, but I was finally able to decide on a scramble with chorizo. Oh my goodness! As a bonus, we shared an order of their seasonal pumpkin pancakes - YUMMY! Then it was off to start the North Texas Yarn Crawl!
I love supporting small businesses, and small businesses that are women-owned are even nearer to my heart. Each of the shops fell into the latter category. Not only that, those that offered “trunk shows” featured women artisans. The North Texas Yarn Crawl was a well-organized event with so much to offer those familiar with needle yarn arts and those just starting out.
We visited five of the 12 stores in the crawl and enjoyed visiting with everyone. Just like The Golden Needle, these shops carry unique and hard to find products as well as employ knowledgeable people that have a passion for the fine arts. You only have to seek them out.
DMH Fibers was nestled in a strip mall just down the walk from a cute little quilt shop (we visited both). DMH was hosting a trunk show. In the back, they offered a small table in which to conduct classes or to sit around and visit.
Stitches Boutique & Lounge reminded my sister and me of “Friends” Central Perk with its cozy couch and chairs in which to “sit and knit”. The owner’s young son entertained us with his fascination of cardboard box that came to life in his imagination. It was here that I bought some hand dyed yarn in brilliant colors from a BashfulArmadillofibers.com trunk show that I will make hats for my grandkids.
In a small town east of Dallas called Farmersville, there is a treasure trove of yarn artisans and the last of the three shops we visited.
Fancy Fibers differs from the other shops as the emphasis is on weaving and is one of my niece’s most favorite stores. If I had had more time, I would have loved to take a class and try my hand at weaving…like I need more crafting hobbies! Mary Berry, the store’s proprietress, also offers finished products for sale.
Yarn and You is located right next door! These ladies do not compete but thrive in their proximity! Yarn and You proudly states: “We carry an extensive selection (of) Texas hand dyes. Born in Texas, Dyed in Texas!” Again, supporting other small, local businesses.
Fiber Circle was a two story yarn store with some of the most beautiful yarns I have ever seen. It is so well organized that the quantity was not overwhelming. After perusing some magazines for tank top patterns, the owner reviewed the instructions, and showed me the correct yarn for the optimal results. Again, these small specialty stores offer so much in the way of products and customer service! Anyway, I bought some beautiful deep purple yarn to make a no sleeve sweater. Surprisingly, we do not wear many sweaters in Florida. Fiber Circle also offers a number of accessories for knitting and crocheting including a LARGE selection of line markers. I bought some of the cartoon characters, Tom & Jerry. Another interesting product line would be the upcycled yarn bowls. These oversized bowls began life serving salads! A retired man repurposes garage sale finds into yarn vessels that can hold a number of balls. He has perfected the spiral cut out on bowls that are uniquely shaped.
We made a little bend in the Yarn Crawl and went to one of those “shop of shoppes” located in the middle of the Farmersville. I found two cute green Campbell’s soup bowls – my sister has some Quaker Oatmeal bowls I have admired from afar for years. Now my soup bowls match the color of my newly painted walls and are super cute! I also purchased a book, a Christmas version of the “Old Lady that Swallowed a Fly” (to include with the baby quilt that I picked up while there). Tell me you did not hum a few bars of that song! I hope it does not become an earworm.
Probably my favorite part of the trip, besides visiting with family, was the self-guided tour of In-Sync Exotics Wildlife Rescue and Educational Center located in Wylie, TX on Saturday morning. They had Lions, Tigers, Cougars - oh my! But seriously, the work that the center does for the big cats is amazing! I follow In-Sync on Facebook so I am familiar with each of the rescued felines but the size and beauty of the cats in person was incredible. I could not get over the enormity of the lions’ paws—they are huge! The center has also taken in some non-feline rescues and Loki the lemur was Mr. Photogenic. Coincidently, one of my grand dogs is named Loki, so I made sure to take plenty of pictures of the lemur.
Saturday evening we got Mexican food take out and worked a small 500 piece puzzle while we spent time visiting. It was just the warm up for the 2,000 piece puzzle that Kimberly pulled out of the closet. We worked on that one off and on Saturday afternoon in between visiting and doing our African violet leaf swap. Sunday night my niece, nephew and his girlfriend came for a delicious “Hurry Curry” dinner, puzzle building, visiting, and puzzle building. We did not finish the monster puzzle but my sister and her husband have done really well on working to complete it.
I flew home early Monday morning after another yummy breakfast at a different restaurant, Café de Brazil. It was surreal to be in Dallas in the morning and home to work on all my weekend orders in the afternoon. And there were many! Such a good problem!
Now for BloomingDaisiesCrafts news!
Needle Minders: Look for the 4 new ones uploaded just this week!
Mickey Snowman--for all of you Mouse lovers
Pumpkin Filigree Fall/Autumn—although I do not think pumpkins should be limited to fall
Snowman Winter—some assembly required…
Hakuna Moscato Snarky!
QSnap/WIP Project Bags: the “glow in the dark” Jack O Lantern Halloween WIP Bags as well as the Halloween Glow in the Dark Jack-o-Lantern w/ Purple Lining have been posted to the BloomingDaisiesCrafts site. Did you miss the posting of the Halloween/Fall Filigree Candy Corn with Orange Lining or WIP Project Bag Organizer-Candy Corn-Autumn Halloween in all sizes? Check them all out!
Dust Covers/Protectors: the new Butterfly Dust Cover will be a year around favorite. It features a beautiful blue and green print on a white background with a rich, dark green lining. Made with sturdy fabric and interfacing for added stability. BloomingDaisiesCrafts also offers a matching green Scroll Grime Guard that is sold separately.