It’s my day off!

Most Fridays I take the day off from work.  I’ve done this for several years now, and have no intention of stopping the weekly treat unless life forces me to.  Today was not a “forced to stop” day, so I enjoyed it.

After a trip into town, and a little more info on why my arm has been bothering me so much, I took myself off to do some shopping.  Not the fun stuff, but the necessary things, like groceries.  And although a pair or two of denim capris may have made it into my shopping bag, the torture of trying on bathing suits was enough to temper the fun of shopping.  Which, by the way, leaves me wondering WHY is it only the end of March and the stores are almost sold OUT of a selection of bathing suits?  It’s not even warm enough to swim yet!  Aw, but that’s the way retail seems to work.

When I returned home, I found a package in my mailbox that had me giggling like a little kid.  (take that bathing suit shopping!) It was from my friend Kim and contained the Angora fiber that I plan to spin with the Lambswool I received from Janet last week.

Isn’t it GORGEOUS!  There’s 1.5 oz of the Satin Angora, 1.23 oz of the Red English Angora, and 4.5 oz of the lambswool.  My plan is to wash/process the lambswool, then card them together and spin a fingering weight to make myself a pair of fingerless mitts.  Hey, if I’m going to all that work, the end product is going to keep my hands warm and snuggly next winter!

After I quit giggling, I took a walk around the yard.  First up, check on the coop and see if I needed to open a window.  It was debatable, but I did anyways.  And the girls are always willing to oblige for a picture.  They are so funny when they see the camera, they just have to come investigate!

They’ve grown quite a bit since they came home, and their individual coloring is starting to really show.  I’m still not sure exactly what they are, and whether or not there’s a roo in there (I think there might be 2 of the 8 that are potentially roos).

And of course when we leave the coop, Miss Cocoa Puff just MUST, absolutely MUST make a pest of herself with every step I take back down to the house as I was paying attention to something Other. Than. Her!

And then run down to the house and hide in the garden that needs weeded.

See the brown arrow pointing to her.  I know she does this just to draw my attention to all the digging work I need to do that she would be “oh so happy” to help me with!

And when you live in my world, occasionally you take really strange pictures:

The above picture is apparently what happens when you bump the button to take a picture as you’re moving the camera to insert the USB cord to download pictures.  LOL  Only in my world!  LOL

A little walk, a little spindling

Cocoa and I took a little walk around the property for our afternoon break to survey the damage and new growth since the storm earlier this week.  She’s doing much better walking on the leash, she no longer panics that I’m taking her away and actually wiggles when she goes out the door.  A major improvement in confidence, but we still haven’t gotten to where she doesn’t try to walk between my feet, yet.

We started our walk by heading to the front of the property where I thought I saw the Lilac blooming when I came home from town this morning.  And I was right, it is blooming, in it’s protected spot between the Silver King Maple and the hollies.

I was advised when we moved here that due to the climate I could either have an Old Fashioned Lilac or a Persian Lilac.  The difference being, as I was told, that the Old Fashioned Lilac may not blossom every year as we don’t get cold winters every year, but the Persian Lilac is not supposed to have any scent.  I chose the Persian Lilac as it was going in the far front corner of the property so the visual was more important to me than the aroma at that distance.  And it has blossomed every year, the bonus being that this year it also has that wonderful lilac aroma.  Although it is so faint you have to literally put your nose into the blossoms to smell it….. and yes, I did.

Coming back along the front of the property, I stopped to examine the Redbuds.  They were in full blossom when the hail storm hit and now they look very dilapidated and brown.  On close inspection I can see why, the blossoms are shredded, and I hope the tree will leaf out okay.

As I looked up to the house I noticed Snowy watching.  I’d like to think he was watching me, but I know he was watching every step of where his Little Miss Cocoa Puff was going without him.  Silly dog.

So being the rather mean mommy I am, we detoured by the garden to inspect the damage instead of my bringing her directly back to him.  My Swiss Chard isn’t looking very good after the storm and I’m hoping it will come back as well, this was one of the least damaged plants.

 

We ended our walk coming into the studio porch where I moved the blueberry bushes to shelter as the storm was coming in, and as I was able to do that they still have the hope of ripening blueberries on them.  Although I don’t know how well these will survive the transplant into their permanent positions (I have no prior blueberry experience).

 

Finally entering the studio where Cocoa had her leash removed and she immediately ran out the back door with Snowy to play.  And I sat down here at the computer to transfer my pictures from my camera and was distracted by my spindling.  This is the new spindle and I love how thin I’m able to spin with it.  I’ve put a nickel in the photo for size reference.

 

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have some more quilting (pantograph) to do yet today and some little chickens to check on.

A little hand carding

Slowly I’ve been processing some fiber in preparation for spinning.  Earlier this spring I purchased some unwashed Merino locks from Janet at  Catawampus Farms and under the guidance of some friends washed and dried them.

Although at the time I was CONVINCED I had felted them in the washing process, Susan reminded me I’ve got enough experience with fiber to relax and let them dry.  LOL  She was right, I didn’t felt them and they dried just fine.

Now I’m starting the hand carding process with them and some dyed Soy Silk that I purchased at SAFF last October:

With the end result of this stage being some really pretty blending in the rolags:

They aren’t perfect rolags by far, but they’ll work for my purposes.

Lessons learned in the process so far:

1.  Washing locks isn’t that scary and I enjoy the process.

2.  Have patience while they dry.

3.  12 oz of Merino and 4 oz of Soy Silk is a LOT of hand carding.

4.  I really want a drum carder as I’m the impatient/instant gratification type; but hand carding has it’s own calming soothing rewards too!