Thursday, January 31, 2013

Windy Day

When the three were children they had a comic routine that they would do for me every time it was a windy day.  I would say "It's windy today" and they would take right off:

"No it's not, it's Thursday"
"I'm thirsty, too.  Let's go get a cup of coffee."
"Waiter! This coffee tastes like mud."
"Well, sir, it should.  It was ground this morning."

They were so easy to amuse back then!
Chickens investigate the pond

It is very windy, though.  I let the chickens out to run around as the ground is all bare again.  They had a great time and went down to the swamp to check out my new pond.  I have always wanted a pond.  The idea is so appealing.  Ponds draw all sorts of wildlife and water is so soothing.  Most of the time.  I must admit that there are the occasional bad water scenarios, but mostly, in our neck of the woods, water is peaceful.  We have a large swamp which can not be dammed as it contains cattails, which makes it wetland which makes it protected.  However, for reasons unknown to myself, the swamp is rising this winter, and I have a pond!  I will enjoy it as long as possible.  We got a beaver pond across the road a few years back, and although the town has had the beavers trapped and the dams broken, the beaver are still there, the water is still there and all the attendant wildlife.  So I feel certain the town will eventually notice water backing up and take care of it.  But until then, I will enjoy!!!!

Tool tray for loom

While Jeff was not out ice fishing, due to lack of ice, he made a lovely tool tray for my loom.  I have been wanting one for a very long time as I knew it would be just the thing to make my life so much easier.  Harrisville markets one for my loom and that is the one I have been coveting.  Well, I told Jeff about how I wanted one and did he think perhaps one could be made?  Say no more!  He conjured up bits of lovely birch from our kitchen remake (10 years ago) and a piece of cherry from a tree that once stood on our property, and voila!  A beautiful tool tray.  He even was able to mount it without drilling any holes into the loom by using steel pegs that keep it from shifting.  It is just perfect.
Next on my "to do" list is washing fleece.  I have a lovely blue face leicester/border leiscester cross to wash first.  Then two alpaca fleece.  Winter is really a good time to have at them.  So, off I go.  Hoping that we don't lose electricity in this wind.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

January Thaw

The girls getting some exercise in
Our lovely 16 inches of snow has been reduced to about 4 inches, where it still exists.  There is so much bare ground showing that the chickens are happily running all over.  They were not impressed with the snow.  In fact, they would come to the door of the coop, stick their heads out, see that the ground was white, and retreat.   You can imagine how they are in favor of this January thaw!  Lots of places where the ground is Not White.  I am sure it feels good to them to run around and get some exercise.  Wonder if they were worried about getting flabby when they were "cooped up".   Hens must be talking about something with all that low murmuring they do.
Cooking and visiting

As the snow was trying to disappear this weekend we had a chance to do our annual Winter Picnic.  It was so much nicer to do in the snow than it was last year on bare ground.  Although the snow was awfully wet, which made the sledding a little iffy.  The day was very foggy and the temperature was in the high 30's and that made the picnic part nice.

Skip-it and Dodge-it #2

I finally got pictures of the scarves I have made.  Well, not all of them, but two for the shop.  It is very hard to get the colors to be true on the monitor.  Or maybe I just am a poor photographer.  Probably the last as I get tired of fooling around with all the props, lights, etc pretty easily.  Maybe I can find someone who would do it for me!  At a reasonable cost.  Or maybe a trade.  At any rate, it was good to get two more things into the shop to replace things that had sold.  I then tried to put the "mini etsy" widget onto this blog site, but for some reason I just can not do it.  The site keeps having an "error".  Oh well, eventually maybe I will get it to work.   I think it will be a nice addition.
Wool and silk from commercial yarn

The maroon, or crimson scarf is the first thing I have offered in the shop which is Not my handspun yarn.  I had this lovely wool and silk blended yarn in these great colors that I wanted to do something special with.  The scarf was a great weave--I did a variation on twill for the threading and I loved the result.  It is a weft faced project and I thought that is what I wanted.  Now I wonder if maybe a better balanced weaving, not so weft heavy, would have made it more of a plaid pattern.  However, I think it looks very manly and hope that some gentleman gets to wear it someday.  And the drape is really lovely.

Next I am determined to finish spinning some alpaca that I am going to ply with some wool to over dye in green.  The two fibers are grey, so I am hoping for a dark heathery green.  This is for a shawl project that I hope to do for a woman who has been longing for a green shawl for ages.  Color, being a very personal thing, is tricky to do for someone else.  That is why when I show her the yarn I will have three shades of green for her to choose from.  The ones she rejects are going to be woven into a stunning shawl.  You just wait and see!