Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Latest Animal Pictures

I forgot to post the latest pictures of Pooh, Hanna, Tiger, and Megan. The one with Pooh is the front, was actually taken last. He had to get in there and see what I was doing.

Hanna, Tiger and Pooh Hanna Tiger and Megan

In this one, Hanna seems to be asking "What am I? A hassock?"

Hanna and Tiger relaxing
Dye Workshop, Re-Evaluating Things

The weekend of June 13th and 14 were spent with 25 wonderful people learning new ways to dye fiber and yarn. The Painted Sheep generously shared her techniques with us. We ranged from first time dyers to seasoned ones who dye fibers and yarns on a more regular basis. I fell into the occasional area myself. It was a fabulous two days and we all came away with new ideas as well as gorgeous fiber and yarns to play with. Here are some pictures of some of the fibers:

Dye Workshop 5 Dye Workshop 2 Dye Workshop 4 Dye Workshop

I also managed to finish plying up my "Envious Eyes" fiber from CJ Kopec. It was one of the May SAL fibers, but I was slow about getting it finished. Here's a picture of the fiber and singles on the bobbin. I haven't taken a picture of the finished yarn yet.
CJ Kopec Envious Eyes CJ Kopec Envious Eyes on the bobbin 2

I also managed to re-ply my batt from ShadyFibers which I've named "Pink Eeyore" in honor of the Coopworth sheep the fiber comes from. One ply is Coopworth, mohair locks, silk, firestar and some other fibers. The other is the same Coopworth dyed a light pretty pink. I got 308 yards from 3 ounces of fiber.

Shady Fibers Pink Eeyore 2 Shady Fibers Pink Eeyore

Some other news is that my container garden is growing like crazy thanks to all the rain we have had here. I'm thinking of moving the containers under the canopy tomorrow to give them a day to dry out a bit, though. Too much rain can be just as bad as not enough.

After much thought and deliberation, I decided to trim all my activities a bit. My reasons are personal, so I won't go into them here. Due to this, one of the things I've decided to do is resign as the treasurer of the Spinners Guild. I made the announcement at the meeting last Saturday. I hope to transfer the treasury to the new person at the next guild meeting in July. The sooner the better for me.

Pat is home for a while due to an arm and shoulder injury which needs surgery. It's going to be a long summer for him since he won't be able to do much with the arm. I will have find some things for us to do to keep him occupied a bit.

Friday, June 05, 2009

Fiber Festivals, Veggie Pots, A Rainy Day Makes For Snoring Dogs and Cats

The festival season for New England is just about finished with the exception of Maine this weekend. I will not be attending. In May I skipped the NH Sheep and Wool Festival. I did participate in the RI Festival Fleece to Shawl demo and some shopping was done. Amy's Alpaca's had beautiful fiber, as did the Biltmore Mill Barn. Judy, BallandSkein, was there as well and I bought my only yarn purchase of the festival from her. I also found my friend Gerry from Mar Ger Farms was there with his alpaca fiber. Had to have that one. :)

No plans were made to go to the MA Sheep and Wool Festival. Until my husband offered to take me to it as a day out together. This was especially sweet since it was his birthday. And I got the gift. :) We had a wonderful day together with me coming home with oodles and oodles of more fiber. Spunky Eclectic, Spinner's Hill, Foxfire Fibers, The Wool Peddler and Touch of Twist were some of the vendors I visited with that day. After walking around a few hours,and making two trips to the car to leave fiber bundles, and to eat lunch as the excuse for one of them, I decided I had enough and we came home.

This past Sunday found us at the flea market in Mansfield, CT. This is one of my favorite ones to go to. I didn't buy a thing, and had to go rest in the car. My back has been causing me severe pains for the last few months and I have trouble standing or walking for very long lately. The doctor thinks it's just arthritis and a bit of strained muscle. Anyway, I had noticed Safe Haven Alpacas was open when we drove by it on the way to the flea market. On the way home, Pat stopped and waited in the car. This was good and bad. I came out of the store with a huge plastic bag full of alpaca fiber batts. The total was 46 ounces, - 24 cream, and 22 dark gray.

My loom has moved into the craft room since Pat has almost finished putting my sink and counter together in the basement craft room. The majority of the bins are down there now. I'm getting excited about this room now. It's going to be the dye studio and fiber prep room. My drum carder and picker are also going to be in there along with the bags to wash the fleece and my drying racks. I picked up a drying system with a fan attached and 4 shelves. That will eliminate the need for a separate fan for drying fleece/fiber.

Now, I'm ready for this Sunday for the spin in at Sandi's farm. It's the official start of the Happy Handspinners Group. I also can't wait to see how big the lambs have grown.

I managed to leave part of my Sonata wheel at Sue's last Saturday after the spin in and didn't realize it until Monday night when I wanted to finish the fiber on the bobbin. As I went to pull the wheel out of the bag, I noticed I was missing the MOA pouch which fits into the wheel base when the wheel is folded. I was going up on Tuesday for knit night anyway, so I just got it then. I finally sat down with it last night and this morning and finished it. I'll start a fresh bobbin later tonight and try to get the rest done before tomorrow night so I can spin a different fiber for Sunday at Sandi's.

My veggies are growing in leaps and bounds with blossoms on the cherry tomatoes and peppers already. My first lettuce will be ready for picking soon. The carrots and cucumbers are sprouting new green growth as well. My friend, Monet, gave me a couple of tomato plants, but, one didn't make it. The other is hanging in there and about twice the size it was. When I pulled some weeds from the pots yesterday, I noticed a separate tomato plant in that pot. I need to pick up a small bag of soil and get it into it's own pot. Maybe tomorrow would be good for that. On Tuesday, my friend Sue sent me home with some Lemon Thyme. It's the first herb in the garden. At least thanks to Mother Nature, I don't have to worry about watering anything today. It's been a steady rain all day. It's been a dark, dreary, good napping kind of day. The dogs have succumbed to this and are snoring away on the sofa as I type. The cats are all snuggled on their chair or favorite spot snoozing away as well. I think I'm going to take their advice and catch a bit of a nap myself......