Sunday, June 29, 2008

Photo's at last

Quisha's first knitted item, a bag with I cord handles
The finished praying hands blanket, not blocked.

The title was going to be "free at last" in reference to my life after being saved by Jesus, divorce and Job-less -ness. Now I get to spend my time figuring out with all this freedom and options in front of me..what now? I think the reason freedom is scary to people is because there are so many options. But there really aren't. When you are a kid, your heart tugs you to what you were created to do. The problem is finding that again and having the courage to pursue it.
Wish me luck!

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Friday, June 27, 2008

Good morning!

I am now on Ravelry. So there may not be anymore blogposts here.
I was looking through the older posts and noticed the one from Cali and remembered the pink yarn I bought and thought it would be perfect to go with the brown CVM handspun I have. I may wind up knitting a throw after all.

I've been doing a lot of spinning, some Border Leisester lamb in black good for weaving. Some Angora needed plying. The latest is I have been processing the chocolate Corriedale. I tried handcarding it but the rolags weren't great. I may have to drum card it and try again.

I dyed the grey and white Angora a light blue for a smoke ring. I still have a lot of blue dye left so maybe a good sized batch of wool will go in the pot today.

I'm knitting the tulip cardigan and doing the stitching for the baby blanket.

Here is somethings I have learned about working dog problems:
Old English sheep dogs are OCD
Great Pyrs drool and bark at night..A LOT!
Welsh Corgis bark to herd livestock
Australian shepherds are always looking to be the boss.
Border collies are hyperactive (bred for 16 hour workdays)

I think I'll use a different method to herd my sheep. At least till I have too many to move myself.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Consistent heat

Over the course of my fiber life I have washed many a fleece. Different breeds and categories, longwools medium wools and fine wools. I always shied away from fine wools because I could never get the grease out. Longwools are easier mediums are not so much but still not impossible.
You see I was using the method that goes like this: hot water soap and sit. So many warnings about felting the fleece and not letting the water cool and the grease re deposit. The washer machine made plenty of hot water and could keep it hot for quite a while. Still I had a bit of trouble with my finer medium wools, I would have to wash them several times, rinse and dry them, only to have to wash them again later on. Worse I sometimes just spun the yarn in the grease.YUCK! I tried using more soap, less wool, less sitting times and hotter water to no avail.
So I tried washing some on the stove, (thank you Stephanie) with a fine wool. It turned out ok. By ok I mean it had as much grease left over after 2 washes as one of the medium wools after 1 wash. Ok, so why did that turn out better than the washer machine? I think it's because of the constant heat.

With constant heat the grease never has a chance to resettle. The water temp never cools down, if anything it will increase a bit over time. There is a chance for it to cool off when you drain it and refill the pot but this can be eliminated by a double pot system. (Two pots of water on the stove, one is washing while the other heats water to the same temp, ready for the next stage. When the second pot is in use, the first pot gets dumped, refilled, and heated.)
Some points to remember are that you still need to use enough soap, you may have to open the lock tips in that first wash while the water is still cool, and you can only do so much wool at a time even in a large stock pot. If you plan on dying the wool this a great method because you can go right from washing/rinsing to dying and only have to dry the wool once!

Just a tip.

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Tuesday, June 17, 2008

MY 2007 VW Jetta

Ok, now I know most of you have seen my blue 2006 V Dub and it was a cool car. Plenty of room, cruise, horses, and safety. There were some soft interior features I didn't like and the stereo was not too hot but it accommodated the whole family comfortably. The seats adjusted, the trunk was deep and long and the seats came down if I needed more room. In fact I moved my stuff and furniture out of my house into my 2 bed apt using just the car.

Not 3 months ago I got a red 2007 with leather interior, sun roof, 6 CD changer, I- pod adapter, satellite radio, as well as all the previous cool stuff from the other car.( Did I mention plenty of horses?) SOMEone asked why I would get this car again when the published gas mileage was so bad. I get 30 MPG on my girl even though what they published was more like mid to high 20's. There is a road stability feature on the car that is kind of like cruise control, in that it keeps the car in the middle of the road in windy times but it sucks more gas! When you turn it off, it greatly improves the gas mileage.(Of course they don't tell you this but...ya know)

Now there are are some downsides to the car. My 2007 would make odd noises when it hit 60 mph for the first time, and if it was cold it was sluggish. My 2008 however doesn't do any of these things. The brakes do get a little grabby and noisy when they are wet. The maintenance can be a little pricey, almost 60.00 per oil change but it only needs 1-2 a year so that's really not an issue.

The biggest reason I got this car and keep getting them is the safety. Go to and look at the accidents people have walked away from with only a bruise. I have 2 (long legged) children who ride with me and every safety feature ever created is in that car. So there you go!


Sunday, June 15, 2008

I'm still here!

Sorry for the long delay but SO much has been going on. I'm still here, knitting spinning and ...several other things that don't need mentioning.
Safe to say I'm good!

Praying hands wash cloth/baby blanket- baby shower is on the 29th , baby is due in Aug and I'm at 2 ft.Guess which deadline I'm shooting for?

Spinning-spinning corridale wool on the Joy, along with occasional forays into Bunny fur.

Kids-fine, a bit bored with summer, but knitting up a storm, Quisha is making a felted bag and Heather is just knitting. Her stitches are coming along though.

Personal life- still interesting, moved into a 3 bed apt, lost my job, still going to church, knit night and singing in the choir. I have a wedding to go to this weekend and Habitat for humanity starts next weekend. Cool huh?

Movies- I got to see Golden compass, Bee movie, Enchanted, and will soon be seeing The water horse, 300, and my kids are seeing Kung fu panda and spending fathers day with their children. Me? I get A Day!

Well Happy Fathers Day everyone! Enjoy.