Friday, December 25, 2009

Meet my grand puppies

Merry Christmas everyone!

Last night I got to meet my new grand puppies. Stonewall is on the left. He belongs to my oldest grandson. The female does not have a name yet. There is something wonderful about puppies. They are so cute and cuddly. Puppies smell good. (most of the time) It is even better when you can send them home and do not have to be involved in training. My family said that I came *this close* to having one of my own for Christmas. Thanks, kids, but I am happy with my other gifts. Had a wonderful time with the little ones. (two legged).
I am about partied out. Have attended and hosted several this season. One more to go. What wonderful memories are swirling in my head.
I am looking forward to a new year filled with promise.
Wishing you and yours all the best for 2010.

Monday, December 14, 2009


When I bought my Suzie Pro from Lisa Souza, I received four ounces of Tropical Mist. 90% superfine Merino and 10% Tencel. I weighed the fiber, dividing it into three and spun it on the Suzie Pro. I plied it on my Rappard Mitzi and got one 366 yard skein. I managed to come pretty close to ending all three bobbins at once. I two plied what was left on the last bobbin and made a small sample skein. It was a fun self-challenge. I usually two ply, but I think I will start doing more three ply. Maybe with more practice I can come out closer at the end.

I got the book!

I received Respect the Spindle, Abby Franquemont's book just out from my Secret Santa. My local group had the annual Christmas party Thursday evening. Great foods, fine friends and lots of fun.

Christmas Knitting

I have been knitting for Christmas gifts. Over two dozen pair of mitts and a scarf or two. This shows part of them. Some have been given and everyone loves them. The pattern is Baby Fan Mitts by Morgan Wolf.

Thursday, November 12, 2009


Last weekend was wonderful! First ever fiber retreat held locally. Three level Victorian home with a great wrap around porch. Spinners and knitters everywhere. Wonderful food and lots of laughs. It was a mega fun weekend and no one wanted to see it end. At one point I was challenged (triple dog dared in fact) to a blindfolded spinning contest. We both spun well with no breaks or problems so it wound up being a tie. I think everyone's stomach hurt from so much laughing. If you have a chance to do a weekend with a bunch of crazy and wonderful it! We are already thinking about the next one. My daughter in law is massage therapist and was kept busy most of the time. Massage, spinning, knitting, laughs, what better way to spend a weekend?
Don't you think the pillowcase rather looks like a giant sheep head?

Thursday, October 22, 2009

The boys have names

I sat with the sheep this morning while they were having breakfast. For better or worse, some names came to me. Jeremiah, Seth and Timothy.

In June I bought a Majacraft Suzie Pro. I love this wheel. I have added the high speed head. Did some trading for the lace kit, so I can spin a vast range of yarns and fibers. The wheel had been making some noise and I noticed some *play* in the drive wheel. Not a good thing. Upon investigation it was discovered that the shaft bearing was bad. I called the dealer (wheel is under warranty) and sent pictures of the problem. My dealer is Lisa Souza. WWW.LISAKNIT.COM. Lisa's husband was great. He and I discussed the issues and he called Majacraft which resulted in my being shipped a new drive wheel. Great service! I am a happy spinner. I do have other wheels and spindles, so it was not a total hardship being without Suzie for a few days. But you know how it is when you have a project going.............

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Comings and Goings

Yesterday I said goodbye to the twins, Slate and Nubbin. They went to live with a guy that raises Scottish Blackface and trains working dogs. His ram was the one that had his way with Sequoia and that resulted in the birth of the cross bred twin boys.
In their place are triplet wethers that were born this spring. They are Coopworth. I need to name them. Any suggestions?

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

This and That

RAIN! I emptied FOUR inches of liquid sunshine this morning from last night's storm. I do hope this is a start of a wet winter. I harvested the cotton bolls a couple of weeks ago. (a bit early) I got about 140 bolls from five plants. I have a large zip loc bag full of brown cotton with seeds. I may gin it or just spin from the seed. That is a fun thing to do.

This is a bit of a catch up post. I just cannot seem to find the time to sit down and write often like a lot of you do.

September 26th was National Alpaca day. Four spinners from my group went to an alpaca farm about an hour away.

We had lovely weather and a lot of people came to see the alpacas and things that were offered for sale. I came home with two bags of alpaca wool. One is a lovely almost black and the other is cinnamon. This is the sire just before he broke out of the pen. He wanted to be back with his girls so he put his head under the rail and lifted the side of the pen and then went to the barn! Good thing that there were other alpaca on display. You cannot believe how black this guy is. One gal said that he looks like negative space. It was the first time that we visited the farm and I think we will go again next year. The alpacas are such lovely creatures and those large liquid eyes.............oh my, I am in love.

The first Saturday of the month was the annual Art and Craft in the Park. It is sponsored by the local garden club. There are many vendors with handcrafted items and some really good foods. There is music and dancing too. And of course there are all of the plants for sale by the garden club. One of the gals in our group has a bear that she used as a knitting bear for display. Her son carved some knitting needles for the bear. It did get a lot of attention and kids had their picture taken with the bear. It was a fun day.

Sunday, September 13, 2009


The cotton is coming along.............

Sunday, August 16, 2009

I just came in from watering my cotton plants. Planted brown/rust this year and five came up. They have been blooming and setting bolls for a while now. I thought this second day bloom was pretty. Too bad that the blooms do not last longer. First day it is creamy white and the second day it is pink and then it falls off. I love the little *hands* that the plant makes. They hold the boll that forms. I do not, however like them when they are dried up and I am picking the cotton. One has to be very careful not to have them crumble and get all over the fibers.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Okay, so it is not exactly like making a silk purse out of a sows ear.......but.. I have twin CoopworthXScottish Blackface wethers. The wool is not next to the skin soft, so what are my choices? I thought maybe something felted would work well. Yesterday I whipped out a Mesa bowl. Took no time at all to knit. This morning I felted it. Washing machine, hot wash/cold rinse/extra rinse. I did two cycles with old jeans and towels. I like the results. I am thinking that some embellishment is in order. Beads maybe. I think there is enough yarn for at least one more bowl, perhaps two. This is the ball of yarn that was in a previous post about dyeing. I like the shape of the bowl and the name. Mesa. Also that it looks like turquoise. All came together happily. I love it when that happens.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Bobbin Lace

Thought I would show a bit of bobbin lace. Really hard to photograph when it is behind plastic.That is why it only shows part of the ruler. (reflected flash) This is a book mark that I elongated to fit into a ruler. I have been making bobbin lace since 2000. Not a lot of experience yet. I really enjoy exploring it when I have the time. So far, I have only done Torchon and a bit of Bedfordshire. There are so many laces to try and so little time!

As I said, Christmas is coming. This year a lot of people will be getting something to keep their hands cozy. Wonder how many I can finish before December 24th? They are hand spun. Left to right, silk plied with angora rabbit, Merino, Merino and the one in progress is BFL. I have started another pair with mohair. Pictures later if I remember or someone reminds me. ;-)

I have been busy making things for the annual sale/trade day. I will be adding earrings this year that look like drop spindles and have used hand spun on them. Mostly silk. Sale/trade day is a lot of fun. This is an annual event and people come for the day. We spin and knit, shop, eat, and have a lot of laughs. The local group is very talented. Fiber, yarns, soaps and lotions, jewelry and all manner of spinning, knitting and weaving related things are available. If you belong to a group this is a wonderful way to trade or sell things that you have created or no longer use.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Gifts for Sheep Mommies

The hat is two ply ColumbiaXSufflok. Here name is Spreckles. This is a gift for her owner who does not spin, so I got the fleece. I also got a Dorset fleece from another friend called Honey. The ewe, not the friend, although I do not know what her husband calls her. ;-) I dyed the yarn with koolade. I had it on hand for dyeing with kids. Needed something in a hurry and no stock solutions made up. Pink lemonade for the mitts and cherry/black raspberry for the hat.

It has been a while...

Sorry Blog..............
It has been a lo-o-o-ng time. I have been so very busy. Keep thinking everyday that today is the day to update. So TODAY is the day. Will try to do better,really I will.
Now on to a small update. The group had a dye day recently and the few of us that were there had success with dyeing in skeins, roving and balls. It was fun to inject the balls and see the results when after dyeing they were wound into skeins to dry. It was about 108 degrees that day so they dried quickly! The lower picture is of the yarns after drying and rewinding into balls. Two are hand spun and two are KnitPicks Bare sock yarn. The dye did not penetrate well into the interior of the Bare so the insides of the balls are lighter. When I divided the dyed balls for sock knitting you could see the difference. I will have to knit socks two at a time from the inside and outside of a ball going as far as it will and then use the lighter ball to finish the socks, A bit of a pain to do it that way, but it can be done. The ball of greens in the lower picture is Nubbin, one of my CoopworthXScottish Blackface twins. They are a surprise as we did not know that Sequoia was bred when I bought her.
The balls below it are hand spun BFL with nylon that I had blended at the mill especially for socks. It is three ply. I used lavender/purple/emerald and injected the ball. We used Jacquard dyes.