Friday, October 31, 2008

That candidate!

Sitting here with CNN on listening to the senior candidate spout the same old crap, over and over. Injecting falsehoods into every line he speaks. Yadda yadda yadda. Having worked w/geriatrics, and taking care of a grandmother for over 13 years I know how fast the mind warps. We do NOT need this man governing our country. We need the 'youth' and change offered by the other candidate. This country has been living with colonial values for far too long. We need to step into the 21st century and bring things into a new direction.

That's the only political statement I'll be posting to this blog. If the old regime is elected next Tuesday we're going to be in for many more years of misery. If the new regime gets in, things will still be difficult until the country gets back on a different track, but the time and wait will be well worth it in the end.

Thursday, October 30, 2008


Since DD loves crazy socks, I'm going to make her several pair for Christmas. She found the Garden Gate socks on Knitty and really likes those. She asked for purple & green as the colors for them and rather than use solids I found variegated sock yarn on Etsy and will try those. If they don't work for that particular pattern I'm sure I'll find others that will.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Ahhh . . . go away snow.

. . . and come back NEVER! Honestly, I can do without snow. Usually I enjoy the first *BIG* storm. Makes everything so beautiful and here in the woods you can hear the flakes as they fall and meet their destination. . . along with the not too distant sounds of the river and occasional bird or animal expressing their opinions, it's heaven!

Then, the plows rumble through churning up the fresh blanket of white and mixing it up with old leaves, dirt and other debris; a few days pass and as shovels, blowers and autos do their thing a grayish tinge appears - the once pure white blanket starts to turn gray and dirty and the joy of the first cleansing snow disappears. I then wish winter to be banished and begin to long the fresh greens of spring. *sigh*

ANYWAY! ! ! I think that getting through this winter will be easier since I now have so much to keep me occupied. I have lots and lots of wool in many forms to spin, felt, and knit with. I could probably keep myself busy through 2010!

I've been lazy in getting photos taken and really need to get myself moving and get it done. Spotty sunshine today - but still bright enough for photos, I think. I'd also like to give the needle felting a try to see what I might be able to accomplish.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Once every 15 years . . .

The weather professionals say that a snowstorm of this nature hits the northeast in October once every 15 years. What was supposed to be two inches of snow has turned into over 14 inches in some areas here in western Sullivan county. Interstate was closed this morning due to multiple accidents, people were totally unprepared.

DH had to swap cars with DD after work this evening to assure that he'd be able to make it home. A snow plow got stuck on our hill, just below our driveway this morning and had to back itself down the road. For the remainder of the day it seemed that all plows came down the road instead.

We're at 700 feet here - MIL, up the road, is at 1200+ feet. Our snow was heavy & wet and has melted away rather quickly - hers accumulated and she had to have her rear porch shoveled off twice today and will probably have to have it done again tomorrow since even more snow is forecast!

I found out today that I won a contest that I had entered and totally forgot about. Easy to forget since I absolutely NEVER win anything. :) I correctly guessed (within a few ounces) the weight of a batch of wool that had been sent to a processor and as the winner I'll be receiving 8oz of Shetland wool! How cool is that? Having never spun Shetland before, I'm looking forward to receiving it.

My needle felting kit arrived today. I'm going to have to see about getting books from the library to get myself started with this new (to me) craft. I'm hoping to be able to felt something into the gloves that I'm designing for Helene. Probably just something simple to start. I do have the Folk Knitting book and I know there are needle felted items in that. I'll have to get it out and see.

Another shawl is on the needles. Bulky/thick/thin yarn for this one. Simple stitches, Faroese style. Seems to be working up as a quick knit as well. It'll be easy to chart and I hope to have a pattern available soon. I still need to get shawl #1 published. I just need photos to add to the documents.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Ass dragging . . .

I've had a very slow week. Weather is changing and I feel it more so this year than ever before. It's really hard getting old!

I started spinning for the online Guild's project #1. I chose some roving that I had purchased from the Sheep Shed Studio that is a wool/mohair blend. I kettle dyed it - it was actually roving that came at the very end of a long dye session and I used a bunch of dyes up that were in such small amounts they weren't worth saving. Well, the dyes took very well and I have a very nice blend of autumn like colors. My idea for this spin took shape as I started drafting some of the wool. I spun about half of it thick & thin and I'll be plying it up with metallic thread. Spinning the remainder as a thin single which I'll either do up as a 2 ply or a Navajo ply. I then plan to work it all up into a hat. No pattern, just an image in my mind. ;-)

I love spinning! And since our Etsy sales have been so, so slow I've been grabbing roving that I had listed and spinning it. I love the yarns that have come off of my wheels and it's hard to consider parting with any of them but I will take photos and eventually list them for sale. DH worked on my home made drum carder - I had been having difficulty with the drum turning really hard at times. Well, it was my fault! Wool had gotten twisted up on the ends and he got it all off. Turns really well now and I'd like to card some stuff.

The BL wool mentioned in an earlier post is done. What a difference! WOW! It wasn't looking too pretty before hitting the washer - it's 5lbs of beautifully white, soft & glossy fiber. Haven't spun any yet since I enjoy just looking at it! I'll get pix soon. Still have that small batch of Cormo soaking and really need to get to it. I'll be washing that by hand since its so delicate. I won't card it - it'll be hand flicked and spun from the locks. I'll probably dye a small batch as well. Since I have over 7lbs still needing processing it will definitely be around for a while.

I also have an old project that I really need to get going on. Its from the Novelty and Art Yarn Spinners group, project/swap #2. The inspirational photo seems to be subtle and smooth and I'd like the resulting yarn to reflect that.

*Just tried to add a photo to the post but I've been having problems with FireFox crashing A LOT! Seems that anything I try to save or post w/java does the deed. Have to see if I can rip it all out and do a clean install to get this fixed. I definitely prefer the FF browser over IE.

ETA: I disabled all add-ons in FireFox and this seemed to solve the crashing issue. . .
That's it for now.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

More bamboo

Since I'd like to get this scarf worked up ASAP, I found some tropical colored top and have started spinning it with a gold metallic thread.


Damn, it's cold this morning! I told DH (he started his shift rotation today) to leave the pellet stove on the LOWEST settings when he left for work and he did. Needless to say, I crawled out of bed at 9am and it was chilly in here. Brrrr!! I pushed the stove settings up by 1 and its getting nice in here now. I also have 2 stock pots on the stove warming because I"ll need additional hot water for the washer today when I give the BL its second washing. That's helping to bring the temp. up too.

Got in touch w/my fav test knitter and asked if she'd like to give the RB scarf a run. Hopefully she's not too busy and will be able to give me her thoughts on it. I may offer this one for sale since I do like the way the pattern is working.

Spun a bunch of white bamboo up last night. I also found some great dyed bamboo from The Fiber Lady that I had purchased many months ago. Gonna spin that, too. Greens, gold, blue - pretty stuff! A plus is that it's bamboo top, makes drafting easier and will be a quick spin as compared to the white, raw bamboo.

Dogs are hungry - must give Miz Loonie her pill. Also need to get lots of yarn & fiber photos taken today to list w/Etsy.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Still soaking

Still have the Cormo and BL soaking away. I'll probably start working the BL again tomorrow. It'll need a second wash, so I'll do that and then check to see if I should go ahead and rinse then dry. I have lots of netting to put it in and will most likely put it on the clothes line.

I wanted to work a scarf for a friend in a warm climate and started with bombyx silk that I had dyed and spun. . . I have to say, I don't like it for a scarf. I think it will work better as trim on something knitted, so I frogged the thing. DH suggested that I use bamboo fiber for the scarf since it's headed for Florida. Good idea since bamboo is anti-bacterial and has many other attractive benefits. I thought about all of the dyed bamboo that I have and then remembered that I have almost a pound of raw bamboo, pure white. I'm going to spin it up and then hand paint it -- not sure if I'll hand paint the yarn, or wait and paint the scarf once it's complete. As for the scarf pattern, this is my own design and I'll be asking permission from the recipient to use her name on it. :)

Photo of raw bamboo fiber:

Friday, October 17, 2008


We're up extra early to take MIL to her eye specialist down in Middletown. Even though we have to travel, we'll accomplish quite a bit. Since Anda lives there, we have to pick up the receipt for her address change from motor vehicle and take it to our auto insurer - we're expecting a substantial drop in our premium - I'm hoping for at least a $1500 cut. I'll also hit the bakery (my favorite bakery on earth, DeFillippi's) for their fabulous seeded Italian bread & more. DH needs new work boots, so we'll get them on the way back, and I need to get stuff to make cream puffs for lunch with BIL & SIL tomorrow.

Decided to start processing the Border Leicester last evening. A blogger had posted how she did hers up in the washer; since I have 5lbs of it I figured I'd give it a try. So - its in the washer, still. Been through one scalding hot wash and is now soaking for a few days to loosen dirty tips up.

We also took some of the Cormo and put it in a clear plastic storage container w/room temp water and it'll soak for at least a week before I use soap to wash it up. Spin Off magazine had a great article on washing fleece and this long soak was one of the methods outlined. Though not specific to Cormo it seemed like the most gentle way to process this delicate fleece.

Went for eye exams yesterday. Sumbich! - $690 for 2 pair -one for each of us. Frames & lenses for me, $270, JUST lenses for DH, $420!!! He needs bifocals and they talked him into progressive lenses, something that I just couldn't get used to. I hope that he can adapt to them better than I did! (I returned mine, got regular bifocals. Ain't it a bitch to get old?!?) Last time I got glasses I went to freakin' W-Mrt. Lousy frame fit - no help in choosing anything, and I've really never been able to comfortably wear the damn things. Plus, the right lens kept popping out. This time, frame stylist, woman in her late 50's, chose a selection of frames for me and had me try them all on. One pair was deep purple with faux gem stones and I actually liked them! I did settle for a burnished metal with fancy sides that sat well and were so lightweight. I can hardly wait to get the damn things - it'll be nice to be able to see well again!!!

Thinking about what I plan to work on today once we get back home. I'd like to do some carding but my right arm is kind of achy so maybe not... I have "Porthos" almost finished. Just have to do that insert on the front and then seam it. Of course I STILL have to seam "Currer" - that one has been off of the needles for quite some time now! I guess that's what I'll do today then. Work on finishing both of those pieces off.

. . . later!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008


Andrea came up yesterday and helped me out by going to the market and post office. She spent the night and left this morning around 11am. It was so good to have her home, even though it was such a short visit.

Feeling a bit tired so I think its time for a nap -- even though I slept 13 hours last night. *sigh*

Tuesday, October 14, 2008


Awakened with a little snoring Luna curled up against me . . . and tachycardia. It was 7:45am. Still having the very rapid heartbeat - I hope it stops soon otherwise this will be a wasted day.

Got a whole lot of "Porthos" done yesterday. I do expect to finish it up this afternoon. Hope so! Andrea called last evening to say that she was coming up to visit, either today or Thursday. Kind of hoping for Thursday when DH is off from work, then we can have dinner together. Anda didn't say if she'd be staying overnight or not. I'll assume not. . . I'd love to have the top ready for her. Also need to get "Currer" steam pressed and assembled.

Robyn sent her address so I have the hat packed up and ready to go with today's mail. I hope that her daughter likes it.

Started designing a pair of gloves yesterday with a twisted rib cuff. I'm using a forest green color and these gloves will be for Helene since that is her favorite hue.

News showing the same old same old. Damn politics! I'll be so glad when this election is over and I hope to never have to see McCain's face again. As for Sarah Palin - I feel that McCain's campaign has a hand up her back and are feeding her all of the stuff she's been spewing. Damn shame; she may have made it big as a shady republican in the future. At this point I truly believe that the Dems will take over in 2009. Of course there IS the ELECTORAL COLLEGE. That, in my opinion, should be abolished and popular vote should be the determining factor in ALL elections. Whoever came up with that system was a blithering idiot -- and probably a freakin' republican.

Screw 'em all! I'm going to retreat to my fiber arts and become oblivious; at least for today. ;-)

Monday, October 13, 2008


Achy, sore morning. . . just researched Crestor and I'm not sure that I'm having symptoms related to the drug - I think it's just the cooler weather setting in as per usual. Took an extra half of a vicodin and two ibuprofen to get me going. Cool in the house this morning but I'm not going to turn the pellet stove on. Sun will probably be out later and once it starts to hit the house it does warm up quickly in here.

Working on another Norah Gaughan top for Drea - this one is called "Porthos" and I have the back complete, just starting decreases on the front. I'm using a rayon type of yarn in an interesting color blend. Photos soon.

. . . more later

Sunday, October 12, 2008


Happy Sunday! Another day home alone -- well, except for my little kidz, Caesar, Roo, Jack & Luna. Sitting here enjoying coffee and watching CNN report on oil/gas, the economy and the horrible state of the presidential campaigns. I don't understand that other party. They're all so narrow minded.... only think along one track, refuse to see facts that are put right in front of their faces. THESE are the people that have run this country into the ground over the past eight years - why can't the people of this country see that? Selective brainwashing? I think something is going on - maybe they spike the water in the red parts of the country, I dunno. Voting BLUE here!

Nuff bout that stuff... I have Aella, the taller of the two electric spinners, out and in use. I'm spinning up some brown roving, dyed by CarolLee, that I've blended with fire-star (nylon) in multiple colors that I dyed here at home. Spinning it thin and will ply it when I have all of it finished up. Will it be 2 or 3 ply? Yet to be determined! I'm betting on 2 ply since I have a sock pattern that uses a sock weight yarn and may just work this sparkly stuff up into toe socks for Drea.

Doesn't look like our electric spinners are going to sell any time soon so I figured I may as well put them to use. I was looking through the latest issue of Spin-Off last evening and came across a photo of a flyer with the Delta Orifice. I had heard those mentioned before but didn't know what they might look like. Pretty simple set up. I'm going to show them to hubby to see if he might be able to design something similar. All kinds and thicknesses of wool & fibers could be fed through one of them. Gotta have one!;)

He's also looking into motorizing my drum carder since the interferon will cause issues due to hep C treatment. I probably wouldn't be able to use it as it is - it can be difficult to turn with the handle - so motorizing it would be excellent! I'd get tons of fiber processed.
I finished - well almost - the devil cap for a friend's daughter. I need to put a bit of stuffing into the horns to keep them upright and run loose ends and it'll be complete. I hope to get it in the mail tomorrow if the postal site is working. It was down last week and I couldn't print paid postage. They (USPS) still owe me over $23 for failed prints. I hope they refund soon. Of course, I can put the package in the mailbox with a pre-printed label and send cash to the post office... I guess I'll do that if necessary. Rural area - we have a pretty good relationship with the postal workers since we send so much stuff out week to week, so I know I can trust them if I do have to send cash.

OK - time to have a bit more coffee. . . promised hubby banana bread so I do need to get that made at some point today.