Hello Peeps, and peepers!  We’re back safe and sound from our little trip to NW Michigan, and it was fantastic as usual.  Beautiful weather apart from one day and stunning locations and scenery, we couldn’t have asked for more.  Pictures at the end for anyone interested, but first up is WOYWW, hosted as ever by the effervescent Julia, head desk honcho.  Head on over to find the start of the linky list.

My desk this week is a mix of neglected stuff (ran out of time before I left for holiday) and yummy new stuff, so here goes:

Commanding lots of attention bottom left is a HUUUGE box of stamped images all the way from Eels (Elaine) in Australia, along with a lovely card.  I was stunned by the size of the box and how many images it contains!  Thank you Elaine, I’ll have a ton of fun with that!!  The rest of the desk is all detritus that I just hadn’t had time to clear away but I have made a start now you’ll be glad to hear!

Last year on our trip up North I managed some brilliant stamping bargains but this year there were none.  So instead, we stopped at a little farm called Maple Ridge that we’d always intended to stop at but never did!  They breed show horses and their Mum has two Alpacas and a little herd of Icelandic sheep from which she spins and dies her own wool from, so with my newly acquired interest in all things fibre we popped in for, ooh, must have been close to an hour as the owner, Betty, was so much fun to talk to!

These two hanks are not her wool.  When she was practising dyeing methods she bought in 100% wool from Rowan and set to having fun with dye mixes.  I loved these two colours and all the different variations within them.  They’re large skeins, the photo doesn’t do them justice and were only $10 each.

This next one though is all her own work and is 50% Black Alpaca and 50% Icelandic Sheep, the sheep was called Celia according to the label!  I didn’t get the name of the Alpaca though, but I did she her, she was bit camera shy unfortunately!!

I love the heathered look and also how textured and nubbly this hank is, it’ll make a great scarf or a hat or something.  Andrew chose the colour and wants me to make something for him!!  Yikes!

And now a few snaps, so those that want to can return to WOYWW and continue down the list…..

You just knew there would be stunning sunsets didn’t you??  Here the sun is setting into the remnants of Hurricane Isaac, which gave us no trouble btw.  This is Lake Michigan you’re looking at.  If you continue across that lake for about 87 miles you’ll run slap dab into Wisconsin eventually.

There was plenty of exercise to be had, taking packed lunches on bikes into beautiful water front towns.  Such a lovely view to have whilst eating lunch.

And a bit of beach time too.  That’s Lake Michigan again and the beach is the one at Petoskey State Park where we were camping.  It’s just gone and got itself voted Best Lake Beach in America by The Weather Channel so I hope it’s still that deserted next time we go!

And along with the beach comes a spot of beach combing!  This area is famous for Petoskey Stones, basically fossilized coral formed by glacial action many millions of years ago.  You can buy them in town, but if you have a spare half hour or so you can turn up quite a few of them along the beach, on farms and in quarries, we were lucky and ended up with a good number which I’ll show you another time, but I’ve linked their name to Wiki if you want a sneak peek, they’re very beautiful.

And naturally there were more extravagant meals cooked over an open flame.  Here we have lamb chops, foil roasted potatoes and also foil packets of fresh veggies from our garden….. along with a glass of red on the side for the cook!

And of course there was the kayaking, lots and lots of time spent messing about on the water….

No matter what the weather!!