Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Yarn Along - Are You Ready To Make Some Yarn?

Other than taking care of the "live" fiber, there has been very little "fiber" work done here lately. Am I just not good at prioritizing my time?  Probably.  Is there really just not enough time in the day? Surely I could Find Five somewhere.  Am I just lacking some inspiration?  Uh, I'm surrounded by inspiration every day :-o.  

Well, guess what!  It's Tour de Fleece time...again...seriously...it is almost July and the Tour de France already...again?!?   Time to prioritize my time, Find Five (why do I have to keep fighting the same battle over and over?!?) and get ready to be inspired.  Hopefully this will be just the kick in the pants I've been needing.

I did actually finish skirting all the spring fleeces the other day.  Well, almost all the fleeces.  Right after I took down the skirting table, put away all the sheets and bags, cleaned up the discarded wool...I found two huge bags of wool from Baaxter's cousins at Foxglove Farm.  Sigh...

As I was skirting, I started washing fleeces headed to the mill next month.  Boudreaux was his usually messy mess, Ford is so old and frail that I wasn't sure his fleece would even be salvageable, and Graham...  I'd taken some fleece off him before I took him to the diagnostic lab.  I'd not saved any of his adult fleeces, assuming he'd live forever :-(.

My dear old guys...  Three of my fanciest and favorite-est fleeces over the years.  How did it get to be so many years.  I knew Graham would be okay.  Ohio Valley Natural Fibers always does an amazing job cleaning up Boudreaux.  Ford...I wasn't so sure.  I decided to dig out my wool combs and see what I had.  


Gray - Ford    White - Graham     Dark gray - Boudreaux


Beautiful, as I knew it would be.  I'm not sure how I'm going to spin this or what I'm going to make, but I'd like something to have and to hold from one of the funniest, most irritating, Why you little...! wanted to strangle half the time, dearest sheep ever.


Ford.  You can almost tell by looking this is a bit iffy.  Not only is the fiber maybe not as sound as it used to be, but he has some skin scurf in there that would be gross not be fun to work around. Combing is always the best bet for fleeces like this.


The combs will catch most of the VM and it did take out almost all of the little stuff.  And yes, it does look like a lot of waste...


...but what is left is classic silky soft Ford :-).

Sheepmom - don't look at this next picture!


Boudreaux came from Nistock Farms and should have stayed there and been the superstar of the wool world that he could have been if he'd lived the life of luxury, wearing a protective coat and been meticulously maintained.  That's what it would have taken. Missing something?  Boudreaux probably has it stuck in his fleece somewhere ;-).


Luckily the big machines at Ohio Valley do a great job cleaning most of his yearly collection. Combs would be my choice if I wanted to process it all at home.


Ooh!  Ahh!  Sort of...

This picture looks horrible here now that it's uploaded and that's because blogger "auto enhanced" it. There is a way to turn that off, but it's 71 degrees this morning and I have better things to do than sit in front of a computer.  Sigh...


And yes, I'm still using my trusty beer cheese container lid diz.  Boudreaux and I are classy if nothing else ;-D.


Boudreaux's "bird nest" - an actual spinning term, not just a reflection on his (lack of) cleanliness ;-).


Have you ever tried to take a picture of dark wool or yarn (or other dark items) and had this happen? The color is correct on the pictures above this one.  Would you like to know why your camera does this and what to do about it?


A tiny gift basket, ready to kick off the Tour de Fleece Saturday.  

Once again we have a Punkin's Patch/My Favorite Sheep team started on Ravelry.  This is open to anyone!  You do not have to be a good spinner.  You could even use this event to LEARN to spin. It's just for fun and to challenge ourselves to make yarn, maybe lots of yarn, maybe just a little each day, learn something new...actually get a wheel out, dust it off and see if you remember how to spin.  

Not to worry, it's just like riding a bike! ;-D

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I have no books to share this week.  I started three different (very popular) ones and haven't loved any of them enough to keep listening.  Wait, I did listen to the latest Stephanie Plum mystery, Tricky Twenty-Two, and Bullwinkle and I powered through that.  

Any recommendations for something silly like that?

Joining in with Ginny...




Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Hmmmm...


"Hmmmm..."


"I wonder why I'm locked in here."


"Hmmmm..."


"I wonder why I'm locked out of there."


"I sure wish I could get in there, I mean, you could get out of there."


Monday, June 27, 2016

Impeccable Character


Even though this is what we all feel like doing, this is Not Funny, B. Willard!


"What?  I was just sleeping.  It's too hot to do anything else."


"I get by with that sort of stuff, kid, because I'm a sheep of "Impeccable Character".  Remember that."


"Impeccable Character.  Got it."


Sunday, June 26, 2016

And Stood There Amazed

I witnessed one of the most amazing sunrises yesterday.  It had cooled down a bit over night and a nice fog rolled in.  I took a couple iPhone pictures of the horses and the early riser sheep, posted them to Instagram (which I'm actually finding quite fun!), grabbed a cup of coffee and headed out to give Bullwinkle his "cereal" (but No Baba :-o).

The sun began peaking over the hill as I hit the driveway.  Wow, that's pretty I thought.  Really pretty. Wow, I've never seen the fog look pink under those trees like that.  Wish I had my big camera.  Wonder if I can catch it at all with the phone.  Click click.  

The blazing red sun climbed higher and the beams of rose colored sunlight washed over the sheep. Yikes.  This is just stunning.  Wonder if I should run get the big camera.  Yikes!  You know if you leave, by the time you get back, this will be over.  Just watch.  Enjoy.  

When the sun hit about mid crest, everything exploded in color.  Exploded. I took a couple quick phone pics even though I knew they would in no way convey the incredibleness. I was glad I didn't have my big camera because a. I'd have missed actually seeing the sunrise by trying to take pictures and b. they, too, would not have done it justice.

Only when the sun completely broke the horizon did I allow myself to run for the Wool House for my camera.


Renny, as a not quite as early riser, missed being in the sunrise, but I think enjoyed the view.


Woody


I couldn't decide which of these I liked better.



Maisie, looking angelic in a ray of sunlight.  Or more like a tractor beam was getting ready to beam her back up ;-).


Following are my iPhone shots.






The black dots at the bottom of the "explosion" are sheep.

Amen.


Friday, June 24, 2016

Assigned Seats

When I peaked in on everyone this afternoon, Boudreaux was cashed out, eyes closed.  He was so cute I had to go get the camera.  Of course he was wide awake when I got back.


"I wasn't sound asleep, I swear!"


"That's right, because no one sleeps sound when I'm around hee hee hee ;-).


As I was reviewing the pictures I noticed Boudreaux was in his spot, Maisie in hers.  Beanie Baby and Andy were in the old hay mangers, right on cue.


Ewen's sleeping in his spot.


And Keebs...the first one not in his assigned seat.  Surely it's not cooler in this stall (?).


"Nope, it's hot both places." 


Bullwinkle provided a little distraction for Baaxter...who is, yep, in his assigned seat.  If I had the time I'd go back and pull out all the old posts that show everyone in these same seats year after year. I think that's interesting.

Stay cool!


Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Yarn Along - A Summer Yarn Swap

I've been doing some spring cleaning.  Well...wait...I've been thinking about doing some spring cleaning.  Yeah, that's a little more correct honest :-/.  Mostly I've just been (still) trying to catch up the spring yard and fleece work.  And trying to get Bullwinkle off to college.  

 


Mostly he's good out there, but the afternoons and evenings are still a bit of a challenge. He's old enough now that I could let him cry it out a bit except it's been in the 90s and So Humid almost every day and that in itself is stressful enough without adding in additional stress of weaning.

I either go sit in the shade with him for awhile so he can relax and graze or let him come out in the yard and barn with me.  Saint Tim babysat him the other night so I could ride for a few minutes. Boys are harder to wean than girls, but they'll be your baby for the rest of their lives.

So back to the Summer Yard Yarn Sale!  



On Saturday July 9th from 10:00 until 3:00ish we are going to have an 
Open Farm Day/Swap Meet 

Come hang out with the sheep, dogs, cats, chickens, 20, other spinners, knitters, crocheters, weavers, felters...AND, bring any stash you'd like to sell or trade with something in someone else's stash.  Let's keep it all fiber related - yarn, spinning fibers, fleeces, tools and equipment...  

We can all "set up" in the barn aisle, under shady trees, on the Wool House porch, in the tack room, garage...  Plenty of cool(ish) spots.  No fancy set ups - card table, chair, big plastic bag... Keep it light and easy.  And bring something fun to work on or for show and tell.  

If you don't have a SABLE (Stash Accumulation Beyond Life Expectancy) or just want to give spinning/knitting...a try (also known as Just Don't Have A SABLE Started YET ;-D)? There will be plenty of good enablers on hand to help you out.  Don't be shy!

If your stash is all organized and under control please don't come just bring a chair and something fun to work on and enjoy the public shaming fellowship ;-).

Just want to come out and hug some sheep?  That's fine, too.  Their favorite summertime treat is tortilla chips (wink wink, nod nod).

There may be a local Girl Scout Troop here selling lemonade and Girl Scout cookies (fingers crossed).  Other than that, if you would like/need to eat something other than peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and ice water, I'd pack a lunch.  Just sayin'... 

Feel free to leave a comment telling everyone what you'll be bringing (aka free advertising in a peanut butter and jelly sandwich sort of way ;-).  I'll do a couple more posts leading up to the 9th, so don't panic that you really don't know exactly what is in your SABLE.  

I'll have all the usual Punkin's Patch stuff, plus some used equipment, books, yarns that I know I'll never find time to use and someone should be enjoying...

We've also timed this to coincide with a visit from Sheepmom from Nistock Farms (no, she's not bringing any lambs this year :-/).  If you are interested in a fancy butt scratcher or some beautiful fleeces, roving or yarn, let her know and she'll be happy to bring it along.  If you are interested in one of their awesome skein winders, I'd let her know ASAP in case That Andy has to make an extra.

Sound fun?  Any questions?


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In All The Knitting News That's Fit To Print, I haven't started the Renny sweater yet :-/.  Still stewing over a yardage issue (and working in the yard and barn too much and it's way too hot and humid to knit outside :-o).  It will all work out though and mostly what I wanted to share is if you haven't listened to The Martian, it's outstanding!

Joining in with Ginny...




Monday, June 20, 2016

Everyone's Flying The Coop...Or Nest


"What do you think?"


"Looks pretty far down there."


"You go first."


"No, YOU go first!"


"Ain't nobody going nowhere just yet, so y'all just pipe it back down."

They are close though!  This is the first year we've had barn swallows.  I have to say, between the martins, the bats and the swallows, we are pretty happy with our (lack of) bug situation and they are all fun to watch as well :-).


Sunday, June 19, 2016

Sunday Stillness

We got up this morning, well, Bullwinkle got up this morning, went out to graze with Baba in the barely light, came back in and woke me up at 6:00, we went to the house for babas (small 'b' is bottle, big 'B' is Blossom, plural babas means I got coffee ;-) and cereal and then happily went back out to the barn.  I took these pictures on the quiet, lonely walk back to the house.  

The light was perfect so I grabbed my camera from the barn.  I missed the best of the light (the sun rises quickly), but these are not too bad.  Early mornings are about the only thing I enjoy about summer.  Well, lightning bugs.  And purple martins.  Barn swallows and bats.  Lavender blooming.

....I thought I was on a roll there, but that seems to be the end of my list ;-).





Billy Belly


Spud



Burrnie, Chocula, Baaxter


Hank came out to make a yard loop this morning, but stopped when I stopped, but never took his eyes off his sheep.


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