Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Greetings From Solvang!

We made it to Solvang, CA last night and checked into the loveliest dog friendly hotel. This morning, off we went to downtown Solvang. If you are not familiar with Solvang, it is a fantastic little town about 45 minutes outside of Santa Barbara. It was settled by the Danish in 1911, and maintains the style of a Danish town. There are a multitude of Danish restaurants and little shops with Danish items and souvenirs for sale. I love this town and the people here make me feel right at home. Today it was 104F degrees in Solvang. Oy vey, it was take-your-breath-hot! Liesl and I walked around until about noon then went back to the hotel for a few hours to nap with the air conditioner running in the room.

The shopkeepers here have been so lovely. They come out and chat with me about Liesl when they saw me sitting on a bench with her for a few moments, while I was giving her water. Several saw that she was very well behaved and allowed me to take her into their shops. They were incredibly kind. One of my very favorite shops here is the infamous Thumbelina Needleworks, which specializes in cross stitch items from Scandanavia. Everything is so lovely in there. I asked the nice man there if it would be okay if I went into the shop with Liesl if I carried her. He said it would be okay. He saw that she is well behaved and kindly suggested that she would be much cooler on the floor, instead of in my arms. She laid down on the floor while I went through pretty much every pattern in the store.

I bought the most beautiful patterns at Thumbelina. I was looking at a stitched piece that looked very, very old and beautiful. It looked to be an antique. I thought I was silly to ask, but did ask if by any chance he had a pattern for it. I am so lucky, because he did. I will post a photo tomorrow of it and the rest of my stash. It is a windmill by a stream, just a little picture. He said that it was stitched on silk gauze, and happened to have the silk gauze in stock. I am so excited to stitch this!!! I bought quite a few things that a truly treasures. If you ever have the chance to make it by there, you will be thrilled with the treasures they have. Permin, Eva Rosenstand, Gerda Bentsson, and Oehenschlager, etc. Wonderful, helpful service, out of this world Scandanavian cross stitch items. Truly one of my very favorite shops.
The other treasure I discovered today is The Village Spinning and Weaving Shop. DD dyes her own yarn and is a fantastic knitter. She has been looking for a spindle to spin her own yarn. I text messaged her right before our nap to let her know that this shop was here and asked if she needed anything. She got back to me, and around 4 I ran back to the shop in hopes it would be cooler in town. It was 97, yikes! The lady that runs the spinning shop was absolutely wonderful and gathered up the items for me that she thought DD needed. She had the most beautiful yarns there, too. She even carries the yarn spun from the waterproof fur of the Alaskan Musk Ox. A beautiful selection, extremely helpful and kind, and very knowledgeable. Really a fabulous experience.

We are off to Santa Barbara tomorrow. Word in town was that it was actually quite cold on the coast. Liesl would love to romp on a beach somewhere, especially if it is cooler!

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