Thursday, August 23, 2012

Slipping Out of Summer

The summer is certainly slipping by at an alarming rate.  The children in our town are all going back to school next week.  In the old days, that was always a hard time for me as I loved having them home all day.  It was such fun to shed the rigid schedule that school imposed on us.  And I loved the break, from, of all things, packing lunches everyday!  However, the reality was that by this time we were all ready for the routine again that we were so eager to escape.  Annie was the only one who never wanted to go ---not even to see her friends.  I don't think she ever liked school at all until she reached college.
Annie, where she'd rather be than school

Mama Hen did not produce any chicks.  Shortly after the last post I had to put her back into the cage as another hen was trying to lay her eggs in Mama's nest.  Once in the cage she abandonded the remaining egg and after two days of sitting on nothing at the back of the enclosure she was ready to rejoin the flock.  My next dilemma in the chicken world is that I have discovered that "Baby", who always is hanging around the nest boxes, yet never apparently laying, has actually been eating the eggs she finds. So!  As this Will Not Do, the only recourse is The Pot.  She never appears to lay, avoids the rooster like crazy and is the lowest in the peck order, consequently, The Pot seems my only option.  Or clipping her beak, which I do not intend to try.

Had a quiet day at East Poultney Day.  The rain held off until the afternoon, but it was so hot and sultry that not many people were out and about.  The good part of the day was that I was contacted by a young woman about doing a spinning demonstation at a two day sheep dog trial.  This will be September 8 and 9 at Merck Forrest.  It's exciting to me as I love to talk about the craft, its importance in the past and its place in the future.  I have never done a solo thing before this.  It is an exciting challenge.  Fortuately I am almost done spinning my warp for the wedding present and will be able to concentrate on getting ready for Merck.

Jeff's garden 
Now comes the lull before the storm of tomatoes and garden produce.  It has been dry enough that things were slow coming.  Just enough to keep eating fresh.  Soon, very soon, all that will change and I will be busy canning and freezing.  Which is another whole creative process I enjoy.  Eat  your veggies!

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Once More, With Feeling

I don't know what it is, but my poor Mama Hen has it badly.  She is broody yet again.  I guess she just wants babies!  The first indication I had was Friday afternoon when I went to check that the coop was set for the night.  There she was, in the nest box.  I removed her, took the egg, and since all the other girls were outside, put her out and shut the door.  When I opened it again to let everyone in for the night, she went on the roost, but in the morning was in the box again.  Well, Saturday we were hosting a big Bash for my niece and her fiance, so I knew I couldn't be fussing with her.  I left her to her own devices, taking the egg that Goldie laid that morning into the house, keeping it at room temperature until I could decide what to do with Mama.
What she must be longing for
Sunday, after the festivities were over, I had Jeff help me put the big cage that I use for chicks into the barn, outfitting it with a nest box and then I put the Goldie egg in it.  After putting Mama on the nest I was glad to see her settle right down on it.  However, I left the door open and, next thing I know, there she is, back in the coop on "her" nest.  I put her back in the cage, shut the door, check on her later and she is at the back of the cage with the poor egg sitting forlornly all by itself.  Good Grief!!!  That was when I gave up entirely.  She is now happily enthroned in her nest, with the egg and one more she has added since Sunday.  I sure the heck hope she gets a baby out of one of them.
The Big Bash
Now, as to the Bash.  This was a party that was a Bridal Shower at heart, but more like an engagement party as couples and children were invited.  It was a nice cook out with lots of good food brought by the bride and groom's folks and other helpful relations.  In the end there were about 30 people here.  It was great.
The gift I was working on for this occasion I can now show you. It was on the loom for a very short time.  I can't remember  ever having to weave so quickly in my life!   The great part about it for me was the realization that everything came back to me that was needed to weave with so many fine threads.  When it was at the stage of looking like a tangled mass on the loom, I knew that it wasn't and that shortly order would be restored.  It was.  Here are the finished dish towels before they got their final pressing.
Cotton tea towels
I thought they came out pretty well, and I only noticed two treadling mistakes.  As it was just a 2/2 twill straight treadling, it isn't a very noticeable mistake.
And here is the shawl off the needles.  Just in time as Saturday is East Poultney Day.  Gloria and I will be there with our wares and our wheels.  It usually is such an interesting day even if nothing sells for me as many, many people stop to chat and watch us spin.  However, they are predicting rain for it.  We need rain so badly I can hardly feel justified in complaining.  The best hope is for only a little, or maybe some late in the day.  At least our tent has sides.  And there will be people who come regardless of the weather.  We shall see!  Maybe I will even have some sales.  
Finished shawl