Use Dryer Balls and Save $$ and The Environment.


Use Dryer Balls and save $$ and the environment.

I have spent today making drying balls. These little beauties are non polluting  and quiet. They are made from NATURAL, RENEWABLE FLEECE. yes the stuff the sheep grow. They will also break down in your compost after they have served their purpose. They should serve you in your dryer for years if they are treated right.
These are used in you clothes dryer instead of fabric softener and clunky tennis or plastic balls.

 Those plastic alternatives  give off toxic fumes when they are heated in your dryer.
So wool dryer balls keep the indoor air clean and fresh.  If you have small children, pets and birds in your home, this is am important consideration.  Chemical poly-dryer sheets off-gas harmful chemical scents even when they aren’t in use.  When they are added to your dryer the scented chemicals permeate your clothing — increasing the chance of allergens, polluting your home and even outdoor air.  The smell increases the chances that your kids will develop chemical allergies.  Two of my kids did.
Those ugly plastic drier pods will save you money over buying disposable dryer sheets, but they are a toxic alternative.  Being plastic — a petrochemical — they will off gas into your home during the dryer cycle and you may not even be able to smell the danger.
Wool dryer balls are the safer alternative.  Not only do wool dryer balls not give off harmful, toxic fumes in use, they absorb odours from your clothing, making your clothing fresher.
  Wool dryer balls save you money by reducing the energy required to dry your clothes.
The larger your wash load, the more you save.  Using 6 dryer balls the size of a tennis ball will reduce the time it takes to dry your clothes by 30 to 40%.  Heavy loads like work clothes and diapers benefit the most from the use of wool dryer balls.
Wool absorbs 30% of its weight in water without feeling wet. So the more dryer balls you use in your wash load the less time it takes to dry your clothes.  Magic money saver.
Wool dryer balls remove odours and static from your clothing.
Chemical dryer sheets add a chemical scent to your clothing, masking odours and polluting indoor air.  Natural wool dryer balls absorb odours from your clothing, leaving it smelling fresh, without the pollution or chemical risks to your health.  They are naturally anti bacterial.
Wool dryer balls last for years with regular use.
Ugly plastic dryer pods will become brittle and break down with constant use.  As they off gas into your house with their toxic fumes they are breaking down one layer of molecules at a time.
 This will shorten the life of your dryer, too. Wool dryer balls, on the other hand, will stay firmly felted with constant use.  When you want to freshen them, you just add them to a wash load and dry them again in your dryer.  With regular use, you don’t need to worry about moth damage to them, but if you are storing them for the summer, because you’re switching to line drying, you can put them in a cloth bag for storage and firmly close to exclude insects.  They will last for years.
  Wool dryer balls break down static energy in your clothing because wool balances the electrons in your textiles.
Those dryer sheets contain silicone which coats your dryer and your clothing with an invisible film that damages your dryer, and prevents your clothing from naturally absorbing water — a bad thing for diapers, towels, socks, and t-shirts.  The silicone is how they reduce static in your clothes.  Liquid fabric softeners do that same thing using silicone.  The dryer pods are also made from a composite of silicone and plastic — not a healthy alternative to the dryer sheets.
Natural Wool dryer balls break the static energy, naturally, because wool is naturally anti static.  Static in your clothing actually robs you of energy.  Switch to wearing natural clothing — get the polyesters out of your wardrobe — and you will have more energy.
Wool dryer balls are beautiful and make you happy when you take them out of the dryer, with your clean laundry.
If you’re happy, you have more energy to do the mundane tasks, like folding towels or diapers, so its a win -win proposition.  Whether they are made from natural coloured wools or naturally dyed wool, they are attractive, and compel you to touch them, squeeze them and even play with them.  They’re balls, after-all, not ugly, blue thorny pods.
If you do 5 loads of laundry and dry it in the dryer each week, you can save  $20 a month or more by using  safe natural fibre dryer ball instead of chemical alternatives.
Here is how I make mine.
I use snowball size hands-full of fleece, I wrap this like a ball of sting with hand spun yarn. I then put them in a panty hose and tie in between them sort of sausages. These I wash with whites in a hot load ( the only time I use hot water is to make the balls. Then into the dryer they go.
Now they are dry, I take them out of the panty hose, and I needle felt them. They can take about 20 minutes each.
I then hand wash and gently wet felt them, rinse and let dry.
These make attractive tree ornaments, ans can be strong on strong cord as a baby carriage ornament.
If you don’t want to make them, I will do it for you.
For a modest investment of $20 for 4 balls, you can have years of safe clothes friendly drying, and be kind to your home, family, pets, and the universe.
And I know just the place to buy them        

What to do while waiting for Spring.


I hate winter. I do not ski, board, toboggan or skate. My feet are always cold and I get depressed with the dark gloomy days and grey overcast skies.

I do love to read. And by reading I have come across some interesting articles mostly about Frugal Living.By always being short of money makes me embrace anything that is a cheaper way of doing things and avoiding waste.

I have eliminated all cleaning products in my house other that laundry soap and vinegar and dryer ballsSierra Exif JPEG

Vinegar is a magic liquid.

For the office:

Your computer, printer, fax machine, and other home office gear will work better if you keep them clean and dust-free. Before you start cleaning, make sure that all your equipment is shut off. Now mix equal parts white vinegar and water in a bucket. Dampen a clean cloth in the solution — never use a spray bottle; you don’t want to get liquid on the circuits inside — then squeeze it out as hard as you can, and start wiping. Keep a few cotton swabs on hand for getting to the buildups in tight spaces (like around the keys of your keyboard).

Don’t forget the phone and the mouth piece of your cell for a wipe with vinegar.

A person with smelly feet willbenegit from soaking feet in vinegar and water then carefully dry them. It the shoes or boots smell, cut a potato in half and put half in each shoe/boot. It will leave the smelling like new just over night.

I use it for everything from cleaning the kitchens, the windows, the wall, and the fridge. A good link for this is

I use it to clean my fridge. Far more effective that baking soda. Once I clean the fridge I organize.

One wonderful trick I have learned is to keep crisp for 2 weeks of more. Frost free fridges suck the moisture out of produce. Even in a plastic bag.

So after I have water and spun my lettuce, I store it in a large jar in the fridge. I snap the bottom off because metal knives make lettuce go brown. Pop on the lid and safe crisp storageLettuce in jar
Read more:


Another neat trick, is salads. I loves salads, but the limp little puddles in a plastic container does not do it for me.

I get a sealer with lid, put salad dressing in the bottom, then add lettuce, cauliflower, cucumber,tomato, cold boiled egg, nuts. Put the top on and leave in the fridge.

When you want your lunch or dinner, turn upside down a couple of times to distribute the dressing and a lovely fresh cheap salads. The stay cooler than their plastic counter parts and you are more likely to be taken home.

And if yo run lout of glasses this summer, the jars make excellent sturdy drinking glasses.

I will try top get busy with my blog again.

I will talk to you about a lasagna garden


Summer Wedding Trip. July 2013


We went to Smithers  (our final destination) on our summer holidays.

Ewan loaded up the 5th wheel after scrubbing, packing, washing. I just put out what  what I needed and he stowed it away.

We live on an Island and have to take a ferry off.

The sorted jaded look ticketer, look at our unit and said how long? Ewan said 34 ft. She got out her little measuring contraption and said no 44 feet, so charged us $220.

Well that was a bit more than I expected , however we don’t have an option with BC Ferries.

They have offered to look into it if I send the receipts in.

The trip up the Fraser Canyon was interesting. It always amazes me how the Caribou Route was ever achieved in those far back years.

We reached Williams Lake the first night. There the vacant camp site for competitors is used as a camp site for tourists. A good value at $34 for site, water, sewer, electricity and wifi. They have pay showers $1.00 for eight minutes, and a washer dryer.

We arrived at second youngest son Cameron and Deanna Lea’s 160 acre farm in Fort St. John.
They have goats, sheep, horses, chickens, bunnies, and a couple of personality turkeys. Tom will squat in front of you and fluff  his feathers till you scratch his head. Then his wattles go from red to whitish blue.Image


 It is a wonderful

place to raise their children, Saxon and Aurora. Aurora is a real cowgirl.

Looks like her brother will be a singing cowboyImage

We spent a couple of days and had a big supper with the Boys Aunt Marion and her partner Dallas. Later her son Ryan and his fiance came over and a good family gathering was had. It should be mentions, the meat, 4 veggies and potatoes were all raised on the farm.
They have named it Summers End Farm

We left the following day to Journey to Smithers  where the middle son Duncan Lea was marrying the love of his life Corina Brewer.

The trip was not without some excitement. The first 5th wheel tire popped on the steepest hill going out of Fort St John.

All laid too and soon had it changed. The second blow out was a bit more dramatic. We were in the middle of nowhere, 132 km from Prince George.
The 5th wheel was unloaded and Ewan, Marion and Dallas wet to Prince George, purchase a new tire and get it mounted and return to our stranded position. I had the youngest son Chris and my little dog Chelsea.
The trip took most of five hours and we were on the edge of the bank rocking with every passing vehicle.
We were down to just two bottles of water when the bear came out of the bush.
we were now on the side of a busy road locked in a 5th wheel with little water.

I sprayed Chelsea sith my bottle to keep her from stressing. It was with relief when the troops arrived back with the wheel and a new tire.
We stayed at Kerry Lake that night.

I assume it was a logging camp in the 50’s. We found machinery from that era and also a mystery.Image

In the bush, we discovered a First Nations/Catholic marker with either 3 memorials or three graves.


We ended up, after a brief stop in Prince George to purchase another tire and have it mounted.

We ended up in Smithers in the early evening as did some of the other family and guest.

We parked the 5th wheel, hugged, bride to be, grand children and met up with another aunt of the boys from New Zealand. Denise Gerrard.


She was under the weather with a cold, but managed to pull herself together for the wedding and the long drive back to Vancouver Island.

The wedding had been orchestrated to perfection.

The men went to a local hotel and did a bit of partying. The following day the men folk went to the golf links, while the women went to hair appointments, and make-up and dressing. 

In due course, we all arrived at the lovely heritage church in


The wedding was beautiful and was followed by a catered BBQ in the yard where Duncan and Corina live.

Cam lea Several Lea Families the new beginning

Where has my year gone?


I have just read my own blog and I am amazed and embarrassed at how long it has been since I posted.
I apologize for my laziness.

Since I last talked to you , I have developed my knitting business and dryer ball sales. I have 35 fleece at the wool mill being prepped into roving.

I have done a lot on spinnin on my Indian head Spinner and am making very heavy yarn similar to Chiefton and White Buffalo. I have an order for 40 hats in varying natural colour combinations.I think I am around 16 at the moment.Image

The Saanich Historical Artifacts Society project is going well in the Fibre Loft.

I am getting some commercial sites wanting to sell my dryer balls, so I have been busy making those.Sierra Exif JPEG

I have branched out and done a few baby sweaters just for a break of pace.

2013-02-25 14.25.29 2013-04-06 19.33.56I enjoyed selling some of my home dyed yarn. It is so much fun to dye

and see the results of your own imagination.

Sierra Exif JPEG

I Have been working with Chelsea , my little Chi-chon. She has been certified as a diabetes dog ( I am hypoglycemic) . She loves to be challenged, so I think I will take her into agility training this year.


 She is always ready to help with my fibre. What a partner!

I have been experimenting with a type of fascinator. It is a piece of wearable art. You can use if in the hair, around the wrist or on a ribbon around the neck.

It is the type of thing that says, Hay Look At Me!!!

2013-04-07 17.30.31 2013-04-20 15.44.22 2013-04-20 15.45.072013-04-20 15.44.40A few other bits I have tried are2013-04-06 19.33.56 2013-04-06 19.35.14 2013-04-09 13.08.07 Have a good summer and take a look at a couple of video’s from Artifacts

2013-04-17 10.09.09 2013-05-28 10.04.47

On the journey to wellness


I have written about the accident I had in the store on the 27th Oct. I am still fighting to regain my health and mobility.2012-10-27 22.56.22

My leg was  damaged, my finger broken and my back severally injured.

I was in a wheel chair, then a walker and finally a walking stick. I am now walking slowly, but on my own power.dammaged leg

My frustration was coupled by the fact I had bought several fleece and had my loom warped set  to go and I could do neither I hobbled around hand

knitting from my stash of

weft one

hand spun and managed to get through ill Christmas.

The rubber hit the road when My family bought me and my son tickets to Smithers as a Christmas gift. I had a bit of a night mare journey up their and their kindness accommodated to my disability.

2012-12-25 10.16.10

I had heard of the Bowen Therapy and I had a friend who was a practitioner in Duncan, Nanaimo and Chemainus.

I phone her and we set up an appointment.

The movements were so gentle and subtle that wonders how this will ever help a person.

The first thing I notice on the journey, was that the following day. Felt worse than I had before taking the appointment.

The following day, I noticed the pain and stiffness in my legs were slowly getting better, movement was easier  I could do a bit of house work and bath without a helper.
During the following days, nothing really seemed to be happening. However Melayne Walker, the therapist, had mentioned that my hamstrings were tight.

Yesterday, I found they were loose and easy to stretch.

The back is starting to respond   I cannot touch my toes and bend or carry yet, but the pain is less. I have been med free for 3 days now. I noticed when I had the treatment , that my spine was warm up to the area that hurt, there I could feel my pulse quite strongly.
I have another appointment on Monday so stay tuned and join me on my journey. If you want to talk to Melayne and take the first step to wellness look at her website.

Day 6.

Well I pushed the envelope today. I couldn’t sleep last night. I had a raging thirst. ( this will not surprise Melayne)I went to the hockey tournament and was on duty for 4 hours in a hard chair.

I took some dryer balls to needle felt.Sierra Exif JPEG

I may have to take a pain pill tonight.

I have my next appointment on Monday. Stay tuned to hear about the results.

Day 7.

I slept in this  Am. That is until two wet noses decided they had enough of that.

I did another 4 hour shift at CARHA today, but this time I walked around he little press booth  every half hour. This was much better. Not so hard on the back. Each year I do radio support for the tournament and each year it falls on my birthday.
I tease the organizer that they will have to put a candle in the timbits they give me ( They always have a box of timbits in our  station.) They use every ice rink in the greater Victoria Region.

I had told them I could not carry the radio sett up up and down the stairs, so I walked into an operating station.

When Neil came to take my station down  he brought me a cinnamon bun. Complete with candle2013-01-20 16.12.15

Week 2 day 1.

I was really disoriented when I had finished my therapy today. I put my pants on inside out, twice!

Then I straightened out, found myself very thirsty and very hungry.

I have more energy and more ambition than I have had for some time.

The pain in the back is ABSENT when I am sitting. I will see where we go from her.

Three things though: the balls of my feet hurt. I have a medium mild headache, my sinuses are pouring into the back of my throat.

Day 2. No head ache today. clear and feeling well. pain in back a bearable degree so no pain medication. The sinuses  are still draining but more slowly. Still thirsty so drinking water , and most of the night was spent either going to the bathroom or clearing flem from my throat. Seems like my body is ridding toxins.

Great energy today. No pain on standing. I cooked an elegant oyster dinner standing up. Things are getting better by leaps and bounds.

Day 3. Pain in the right kidney area. bearable. The legs are doing well. I have energy and enthusiasm for life. No more dizzy spells’

The thirst has slacken though I am still drinking lots of water. Still optimistic about full recovery.

I will be two weeks before my next appointment.
Later that afternoon. Melayne, you forgot to give me the slow sign. I felt so good, I cleaned, house, made bread, Spun 2 skeins of wool on the spinning wheel, went routing in the shed for fleece. Washed 2 sinks of fleece. Made 30 dryer balls. Washed the dog and made the bed.
Now I am in a bunch of pain. I kind of think I did too much.

Day 4 Did some spinning today. Not as tired. Still have moderate pain in the back. but controlled without pills., slept well last night.

can bend and walk, no dizzy spells.

Day 5. Did not do a lot today other than knit. No pain. I had blocks made for my Chesterfield that raised it 4 inches. It sure make getting up and down easier. But it has confused Chelsea.

Day 6. Felt great so I went all out ripping rags for rugs, crocheting mats, walking dogs, then the Hammer dropped back pain unremitting. I was in bed by 8:30. Did not expect so much pain. Get I should take my time.

Day 7. Pain still there but not so bad. Taking things very carefully today.

I have asked for some help ripping sheets. Sometimes you need to ask for a bit of help. Thanks John .

Day 12 week 2.. no change other than the unremitting back pain.

Best made plans often go astray.


Well things were moving alone pretty good for items for the craft show that comes this weekend. I had my loom beamed for another set of rag rugs, purchased enough rags to make about 8 rugs, T-shirt material for place mats. The knitting machine was oiled and ready to go.

I had slouch hats, toques, finger-less gloves, baby blankets, baby monkey hats.. all sorts of things.

Then disaster fell. I had an accident. I am in a lot of pain and mobility is a serious issue. I also had a broken finger and back injury.2012-10-27 22.56.22

A lady came and just about bought me out so her Christmas Shopping was almost done except for items she has on order.

I even sold items I had knitted for Christmas presents.

I have dryer balls stocked up, and some toques and scarves. Not the beautiful dry felted wearable art, but what can you do Bless her.

So  have been busy doing hand knitting as fast as I can so I have items for sale.

One thing I think is a winner is the thrummbed slippers.

These are a delight to put your feet into on a cold evening, acrylic on the outsider for durability and hand tufted lambs fleece on the inside for warmth. These lovely slippers come in 5-7, 7-9, 9-11

and cost only $20 plus shipping.

Anyway that is why I have been amongst the missing.

dammaged leg

Hello, I am still here


I have been insanely busy this Fall. Not the least opening the Fibre Loft at Saanich Historical Artifact Society, Helping with Both Guilds I belong to.

I am desperately busy trying to get ready for the Juan De Fuca Arts and Craft Fair on Nov 10 and 11th

“Holiday Gifts Galore!”


Live Music!  –  Free Admission!


Saturday, November 10, 2012  –  9:00 AM – 4:00 PM

Sunday, November 11, 2012  –  12:00 Noon – 4:00 PM

St. Joseph’s School Gym

757 West Burnside Road

Saanich, BC

This is the Big Event Of the year. Come and sell your Arts and Crafts. 

I am also being Mentored by Monike Hawk- Frost on the Art of weaving rag rugs and these will soon be for sale through West Coast Wooly Ware or at the Craft show.

The Dryer Balls are all the rage since David Suzuki endorsed them as a green alternative. And some resort villages allow nothing but these economical Eco-Friendly balls in their properties. These are made of Vancouver Island Fleece, each one hand made. They make awesome gifts for Christmas or a baby shower. They are only $10 a pair, $15 for sets of three plus the actual postage.


Another item I have been asked to supply are beard beanies. Come and see them at the craft fair

This is a poor picture of them, but they are something like this picture and protect the face for sports or in cold climates.

And a large assortment of other things. Some one of a kind.

Fibre Art Scarves.. as well as mobius and other types.

I am making Christmas presents this year, and I have a large family and a few close friends I like to gift.



I have just aquired 2 pounds of Shetland fleece, that keeps begging me to spin it, but untill after the show, I don’t have time

I will be back on a more regular basis, when the world slows down a bit.

Seeing is Believing.


I have always loved Fall Fairs. The remind me of the Harvest Fairs in England that are celebrated when all the harvest is safely in.

In Canada they are exhibits of the very best we have in our:  fields, kitchens, gardens, wine cellars, honey hives crafts, need craft and creativity

At the age of 12 , I joined the 4H club and would travel from fair to fair with my calf. If was a happy sad time. As my animal would parade and earn me ribbons and money, we soon would be parting and I would sell my now heifer to a dairyman and after awhile, I would again start to hand raise another calf.

I could never go in a beef club where the parting was much more absolute at the Fat Stock auction.

These days I don’t enter animals, but crafts, hobbies, and creations.Sierra Exif JPEG

I missed the entry date on the Saanich Fail Fair, but I was in time to enter the Sooke Fall Fair.

This is a lovely Fair in a small community where the spirit of neighbors still furnished.

I was pushed for time, so one of the heads of the fair took my work and entered it for me. I late gave him the entry fee and he took care of the business end of my entries.

Earlier today, I was at Metchosin, another close knit community, where I demonstrated spinning to support my Guild.

I also sold some dryer balls. This seems to be my best specialty.

I Sooke I entered 5 categories.  And I am proud to say I got a first in each and every one.DSC01723

DSC01727My first two were spinning Alpaca and plying any fibre.

Then I have 2 needle felt classes. One was a mixed media picture of a Possum in a Gum Tree. Done in 3 dimension on a piece of stick.

The second was a needle felted snow owl.DSC01721

The last one was the best of all. It was a Christening Gown, Booties and Hat I had made for a friend. I hope it will become a heirloom in their family.Sierra Exif JPEG

Chelsea went with me for the day. She had a wonderful time making friends with other dogs and met her first chicken. She was curious but made no effort to chase it.

Where I was spinning, they were having the dog trials, she kept a keen eye on all they did and was just quivering to go and have a try.

After we had our tour of Sooke Fall Fare, she was  so tired, she asked to be picked up and as I help her and she fell asleep in my arms.

Finally we collected our ribbons, money and articles and I brought a tired dog home.

Recovering and |Moving on


Being laid up for 8 days just when spring starts out to tease us is not fun. My might was creating, thinking, plotting and planning.

I finally got up the strength to clean some of my house today. It was either that or put a sign on the door that said Fibre Farm, tread caImagerefully.

At least I had a chance to try more needle felting while I was under the



I started out with a teddy bear made with directions made from an excellent book Ashford’s Book of Needle Felting.

I already sold his little brother.

Then using a picture of a friend’s dog I tried a Boston Terrier.

I made fellow. A  rabibit child pulling a toy sheep with wheels was next . I added a blue


nadian Duck, a powder bowl with a Couple of felted fragrance balls

. I am making a lot of dryer balls. These eco friendly alternatives to fabric softener or horrid blue petro carbon balls.

Then I thought I would knit and felt some bowls and embellish them with needle felting .

.So although I was not fee


ling terrific, I did manage to do a bit of creating.

ImageI took on another project while my feet up, I started the webdesign for Juan De Fuca Arts and Craft Guild. Check it out and leave feedback.

I thought I would include a couple of shots of the raw ,material

Garden and Flu Season


Next year I will not miss my flu shot. Seven days of nearly drowning in my own juices, and even keeping my dog awake all night with my  coughing.

We finally look like we might have Spring.

The little plants in the greenn house are looking happy.

We try and plant around 24 May  so they are in protection for another month.

They were very late in germinating and sprouting. I guess 7, 9, 11 degree temperatures are not conducive to gardening.

While I was off my feet, I experimented with some needle felting.

I found I really enjoy this . I have a few pieces done now and  hope they will be appealing to custom

ers and find new homes.

I got a nice order for dryer balls, so they are all set to go. I have a variety of colours.

Chelsea is getting tires of not having a real mom to play with. She wants the old mom back.

Talking with my daughter in law today, she says she tried to live a year buying only Canadian products.

She was not able to o

it. Even with diligent shopping, a whopper of a garden and doing all her

own bread and baking.  Maybe we should start bringing some jobs back to Canada.

I read two article this morning. One was that some balls, when bitten open by a dog, can ooze a nasty goo that will plug up their mouth and can

choke your pet.

Right I make food and biscuits. Now balls. THEN, I read one about US milk . Well there I draw the line.

I am proud to say that Canada would not allow the milk producing hormone to infiltrate out milk supply. Way to go Canada Island Farms Forever.

I have sadly neglected my blog. Will try better in future.

Product alert! There are tennis balls made by Tretorn called “Tretorn X” that contain an inert substance which presumably helps with the bounce. However, when the dog pops open the tennis type ball while chewing, the substance makes a terrible gooey mess in their mouth and presents an aspiration hazard.. Here is a picture of one exposing the material inside.It seems that the material is non-toxic. However, it still presents a potential injury problem