The last five days have been fantastic, fun, elating, overwhelming and exhausting. What am I talking about? Oh yeah… The Spanish Peaks International Celtic Music Festival.  Every year, we help with the festival. We do Lights and Sound, and a thousand other little bits and pieces. 🙂 Plus we get to hear some of the best Celtic musicians in the world. This year’s theme was Celtic and All That Jazz!

I realized yesterday at the last concert that I didn’t take a single picture. We were just crazy busy. So, Instead of pictures, I will do my best to paint with words. Keep in mind too, that there were other concerts going on that we didn’t work as well as workshops and classes in all sorts of instruments.

Wednesday. The Festival did outreach to the schools. Dancing, music and storytelling. That evening, there was a pot luck in La Veta with many of the festival musicians and workers. It was a blast.

Thursday. First real day of the festival. I didn’t get to help with any of this as I had a school board meeting in the afternoon/evening. Dan and Doug were up in Cuchara, and La Veta most of the day. That evening there was the “Taste of things to come” Ceilidh in Gardner. Dan said it was fantastic.

Friday. My first full day. Wow. We were all over the place providing sound. Best part was at UpTop. We have a free concert up there where all sorts of musicians play. It was cold and it rained/snowed on us, but the music was wonderful.

After that, we drove down to Walsenburg for the 6th Street Hooley. Once again, a free concert outside. Only real issue was the wind! 50mph gusts at times made things difficult. People still had a good time though.

After that, the main concert… The Tannahill Weavers. It was great. Wonderful. Funny and just pure magic. Ah….

Saturday. Busy once more getting sound to various venues. We got to listen to Duncan Wickel, a jazz violinist. Then we were off to get ready for a Celtic Mix of Mairtin De Cogain and the Macdonald sisters, Cassie and Maggie. Following that was a Scottish Dance workshop.

Then we drove up to the Timbers in Cuchara and set up for Leslie Anne Harrison and Frederic Pouille, Folk Ragout. It was a very nice little concert. When we were done, it was a quick trip to Walsenburg and the evening concert at the Fox.

This concert was Irish to the Core. John Doyle, Duncan Wickel, Robbie O’Connell, Adam Agee, Jon Sousa, Sean McComiskey and Ashley Davis. Oh My what a concert. Doyle and Wickel amazed us. Ashley sang sweetly. Robbie charmed us and when they all played, our breath went away. The building shook with the applause. The encore was just as amazing. All I could think of when it was all done was a line out of Much Ado About Nothing where Benedict says…  “Is is not strange that sheeps’ guts should hale souls out of men’s bodies?”

Sunday. Up EARLY. We were in La Veta at the 4H barn by 7:30am. Why? Well, it was an oatcake and tea breakfast with the Tannahill Weavers. I made and served tea. Jack Yule made oatcakes. Yummm! So, for 90 minutes, we ate, drank and listened. They talked about how the Tannahill Weavers evolved and played a bit.

Then we had Cassie and Maggie giving a demo on step dancing. After that we headed off to the La Veta Inn to do sound for Robbie O’Connell. He is a nephew of the Clancy Brothers. He gave a talk about them and his involvement in the music that really started the modern revival of Irish Music. It was wonderful.

Last, but not least… The final concert…  Celtic and All That Jazz. First up were Maire Ni Chathasaigh and Chris Newman. Next was Park Stickney and friends. This year I got to know Park just a little. He is a fantastic musician and a very impish and funny man. I love his warped sense of humor. He also managed something that no other harper has done. I really like his music. To be honest, before harps have always been sort of “Oh, that’s nice.” Park’s playing was so wonderful that I bought a CD. 🙂

The concert was finished off with the Tannies playing Just One More (last) Chorus with everyone singing. It was a good end to a fantastic week.

When we were done, we fed my mom’s cat. (who we’ve been babysitting all week as well) Then we had dinner and crawled into bed by 8:30pm. I think it will take a week to recover. 🙂

Spanish Peaks International Celtic Music Festival!!!

Yes, it is that time of year again. Bagpipes, harps and drums echo in the mountains and towns of Huerfano County. The festival is one of our favourite events. It is also a very hectic time for all of us. Dan and I do lights and sound as well as anything else Barbara Yule has in mind for us.

Dan was off early to pick u sound equipment. Today the festival musicians and performers are in our schools. 🙂 So, Dan will be setting up various venues in Peakview and John Mall. Tonight is the artists pot luck up in La Veta.

Unfortunately,  I will miss the Ceilidh up in Gardner for the first time in years. I have a regional school board meeting up in Pueblo. sigh… pout… However, I am the only member of my board going and so I can’t miss it.

I’ll be posting pictures of the festival. Hope if you’re close enough that you can come and visit. There are some free events that are wonderful. Friday from noon until 2:30pm, there is a free concert up on old La Veta Pass and another one from 3:45 till 5pm, there is a street concert, downtown Walsenburg.

Plus, there are free harp, whistle, and drum classes on various days. In the evenings are the concerts with The Tannahill Weavers, John Doyle, Duncan Wickel & Friends, and many others. I hope you come visit. If you do, stop by the sound and lights and say hello.


Life has been a little crazy since I last posted. Most of the Northern part of Colorado flooded. We had a little of that here too. On the 15th, we drove to La Junta to pick up Morgan and celebrate birthdays. Her’s was on the 10th, and Dan’s was the 16th. We were a little concerned about the weather as most of Colorado was rather wet. We watched the clouds, and didn’t worry too much, and drove to Pueblo.

We took Morgan to the Texas Roadhouse for a steak dinner. She’d never been there, and her face after she bit  into her steak were great. After lunch, we did a bit of shopping and then went to see the movie Elysium. Interesting movie.

Around 7pm, we started to head back to La Junta. It started to rain. 15 miles from Pueblo, we hit an area that had about 8 inches of water on the road. When we got to Fowler, the rain was coming down so hard, it was difficult to see. The rain let up and almost stopped by the time we got to Rocky Ford. It was a long 60 mile drive.

After we got her some groceries, we headed home. La Junta is 73 miles from Walsenburg. It had started raining just as we headed out. About mile marker 40, we saw a vehicle flashing their lights. We stopped and the driver warned us that there was water on the road. We thanked her and drove a bit slower, looking for the water.

Just about the time I said “The ditch is full of water”, we hit the first ‘puddle’. It threw water up on the windscreen, but it wasn’t too bad. Then we started watching the ditches. Keep in mind this area is farmland and the road usually sits up high from the fields. At least 1-2 ft higher.

We hadn’t gone a mile before I saw the ditch was full, and we hit deep water before I could even finish the sentence. This spot had water flowing across the road. Active flooding. It threw water up and over the cab of the truck. That was scary!

We almost had our breath back, when we hit one more place where the road was flooded. We warned drivers as we headed west. 15 miles from home, we hit a fog bank. It misted away just before we got to town.

Dan checked the truck, and we bent the license plate back with all the water. Otherwise we were safe, but just rattled. We’ve had more rain in a week than we have in 3/4ths of the entire year. 9.5 inches.

From there, our week was hectic. Wwe have been working on getting the house ready for winter, which means lots of little DIY projects and trips to Pueblo for bits and pieces. Especially when I cut the cord that supplied electricity to the Wendy House. sigh… I felt so stupid when I did that. However, I now have good wiring. We converted the back porch to a workshop which has helped as well. The drill press, miter saw and other bits and pieces now have a home.

It was cold last night and we woke to snow on the Spanish Peaks… Not bad for the first day of Autumn.

Last, but not least, we went to the Ludlow Memorial. 100 years ago today, the miners went on strike. As usual, the service was a good mix of memories, Union, politicians and history.

Ludlow Memorial1 Ludlow Memorial2

Cool Weather

We have had cool, cloudy, rainy weather for the last three days. Dan puts it down to the fact that I cleared the dam across the sidewalk that we built to keep water out of the house. Plus, I finally got the tent and tarpaulin out to rinse off and dry. It almost got dry. Now it has been rinsed off by at least three or four good rain showers.

My squash plants have been loving the damp weather. I have a couple of zucchini that you could hollow out and use for canoes. 🙂 I foresee zucchini bread in my future.

After our crazy trip up and back to Denver, I went up on Tuesday to interview for a position on the CASB board. I didn’t get it, but asked an interesting question… Why didn’t they have a TECH committee? Matt Cook, the board president just sort of stuttered and said they’d have to look into that. 🙂

I went from that meeting and the drive home to a board workshop where we discussed the upcoming elections. We have two candidates running in one district, and we are trying to move to a district wide representation system. For too many years, we have had issues finding people to run for those seats. We end up appointing people who sometimes run for the seat after they’ve been doing it a few years. Other times, we end up having to appoint some one yet again. If we don’t do this, we will end up having to spend money to reapportion our districts. We’ve lost a lot of the population in some of them while other districts have gained. I just hope we can make the voting public understand.

Well, I’ve got to go find a heavier shirt to put on. It’s cold! 🙂 19C, or about 68F.

And then Denver

No sooner did we get back on our feet from Battlemoor, then we had a trip to Denver. Our computer client needed us. 🙂 So, we went up on Thursday and stayed in a hotel with a huge bed and bigger bathtub. I swear it was as big as our bed at home. It was a lovely soak!

Friday… After we dealt with the client, we headed to the Denver Art Museum and we saw the Spun Exhibits. They were good, but I wish there had been more quilting stuff.

Saturday… We had one last soak in the tub and then headed to IKEA. 🙂 I finally got my rugs for the Wendy House! A big one for the main area and a runner for the side of the bed. No cold floor this winter! We got a bunch of little stuff and a shelf unit for Dan. After that, we headed for Pueblo where we had a few things to pick up. We were home by 8pm, and I was so tired. I think I hit the pillow and the next thing it was Sunday.

Sunday… Dan was sick. Something he ate. ughhhh. So, while he tried to not turn green, I cleaned bits and pieces of the house. Hung the new curtains we got at IKEA for the spare bedroom and I finally had time to air the tent and tarp from Battlemoor. It was still wet from the rain a week before!

Today I caught up on some other bits and pieces and I am off to Denver tomorrow morning for an interview with CASB. I’m interviewing for a place on their board. Region 6.

Battlemoor IV

Ah… back to civilization? Well, maybe. The last two weeks have been nuts. First there was Battlemoor. Dan has been working for the school district as an IT contractor since August. While this has helped the pocketbook, it meant that he had to work the first couple of days of the event. 🙁

So, after sewing a hole in my finger, I packed all of the stuff for the event. Not too bad really. I even figured out how to fill the water butts. I put them in empty and then filled them. I got the last of the groceries and then picked Dan up from work. We got set up, had dinner with the Artisan Lane bunch and then he went home.

Thursday morning, I awoke to a beautiful sunrise. Got dressed, grabbed my fiber tools and after breakfast, went to the Fiber Tent. 🙂 50ft from ‘home’. I had lots of fun. Worked on my socks for the Sock War, visited with friends I hadn’t seen in a year and even managed a few pictures. Dan arrived in time for dinner. It was another pot luck, and we had fun. We went to sleep to the sounds of drums around the bonfire.

Friday was more Fiber stuff. 🙂 Got some pictures of Lothar, aka Dan playing with the forge at the blacksmith’s place. I got lots of comments on my coat and tunic embroidery. We went to Court,had dinner and once again went to sleep to the sound of drums.

Saturday. It was HOT!  Steamy. It rained a tiny bit, but it barely cooled off. Lots of time spent in Merchant’s Row and in the Fiber Tent. Grand Court was awesome. I think there were 8 sets of royalty. Sleep was once again accompanied by drums. (If you’re sensing a theme here, you’re right.)

Sunday. Sock War final. I got one sock and part of another one knit. I was knitting for the Golden West side. We won 87.5 inches to 82. 🙂 Woohoo!!! At one of the Courts,  I got to help hand out ‘largess’. These are things that the Fiber Guild has made and gifts to the Outland Royals.

Just after Court, it began to rain. Rain really Hard! We were stuck in the cook tent on Artisan’s Lane. The ground got muddy really fast as John found out. Dan went to help him and ended up getting his truck to their camping spot. While there was a party that night, there wasn’t a lot of drumming.

Monday morning… Time to pack and return to the 21st century. sigh… We got home by 2pm. I unpacked most of the stuff and we were off to bed early. It was a wonderful time.

By the way… my pictures are so out of order. In amongst them are my coat with the dragon boats I embroidered, the knife that Dan worked on and the pretties he bought me. Brooches, earspoon, pick, tweezers and omega brooch.

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