Archive for June, 2008

Saturday, June 28th, 2008

Health Group- Year 4, week 50

Good morning.

I’m in the process of working out a plan. I need to plan dinners better and keep healthy food around to snack on.

I’m gaining weight and it’s bugging me. I’m spending too much time playing, and not enough time on my health. So I’m also thinking that I need to exercise in the morning so I can get it out of the way and done.

And I’m dehydrated again.

How are you doing?

Wednesday, June 25th, 2008

Black Sheep

We’re back from a fantastic and busy weekend away.

We went to the Black Sheep Gathering for a few hours on Friday.

Everyone loved the sheep, but most especially it seemed, my 26 year old brother.

I bought my first spindle (It would be my ONLY spindle, if I didn’t hope to acquire a Moosie at some point)

It’s a Spindlewood mini, and it’s very cool. So’s the sweet Spindlewood lady, Connie

I also bought a pound of beautifully dyed and picked mohair locks

I ended up with most of the bag. (Second shelf from the bottom, middle).

Then we were off to Bend to visit my mom, where we packed more into three days than I would have thought possible.

Today, I have another dyepot going. It isn’t doing what I thought it would. Again. BUT, I’m not done with it yet. I started off by doubling the dye I used last week, but I think I had too much vinegar in there and it struck too fast and unevenly. So, I’m adding another half cup of dye, doubling it again.

We’ll see.

I’m ready to move on to another color though. It’s all been the same reddish pink so far.

Friday, June 20th, 2008

Hey, check me out!

I saw this over at Maggie’s blog and took the test.


As a 1930s wife, I am

Take the test!

And here I thought I was going to be bad. I cook in my pajamas, and “wear soiled dresses or aprons around the house”…. I thought I would fail for sure.

I wonder what Nate is?

So, Making progress on the house.

Here it was before I started

and here it is today.

The little roof in the center of the picture, over the front porch is coming down, which will help it to look even more tidy.

It’s really hard to see the magnitude of difference with that messy crap right in front, (the two yellow bushes, and everything in between). That will go too, at some point. I’ve mostly been working along the foundation to clear a path for the painter. Which brings us to the next thing.

Love it? Hate it?

It’s the exact color of a terra-cotta pot.

We’ve had the MOST difficult time coming up with a color scheme for the house. I think we’ll like this one. I don’t want to be obnoxious, but I don’t want to be drab, either. It’s still shocking, but I figure, anything’s better than dirty white and purple. Since we’re so ugly to begin with, the neighbors can’t complain too much. And not a single one of them that I’ve talked to so far has denied that it’s currently ugly.

I dyed more yesterday. Still having trouble. I’m taking some locks with me to Black Sheep to see if I can get help.

Thursday, June 19th, 2008

What’s this about?

So, I finally dyed some fleece yesterday, and it didn’t work the way it was supposed to. I don’t know what happened, but if any of you have any input, I’d love to hear it.

I presoaked 4 ounces of Romney for an hour.

I put 2 1/2 gallons of water in my pot, with 10 Tblsp of vinegar and 1/4 cup of 1% dye solution. (My understanding is that full saturation of dye would be 1 cup of dye to 4 ounces of fiber).

I put the wool in, brought it to a boil, turned it off, and let it sit for two hours, at which point there was still a lot of dye in the water,

and the locks were pink at the tips and light yellow at the tops. So I doubled the vinegar and brought it to a boil again. Let it cool all the way, and it was the same, just a little more dye was absorbed.

So I dumped a bunch of vinegar in, straight from the bottle, and brought it to a boil again. It boiled much faster this time, so it was already boiling when I came to check it. I don’t know how long it boiled before I turned it off.

It sat overnight, and while more dye was absorbed, there was still pink in the dyebath, and the locks are still very unevenly dyed.

It’s pretty, sure, but not what I was going for, and I don’t know why it didn’t dye evenly.

SO, right now, I’m soaking 4 ounces of wool again. I’m soaking it in soapy water this time to ensure it’s thoroughly wet before it’s dyed. I’m going to use vinegar from a different bottle, and I’m going to use less water and a little more dye.

I should probably only change one or two things, but I’m not that patient right now. Theoretically, the amount of water shouldn’t matter, as long as the appropriate amount of vinegar is added.

I have to run, now, but there is something else I want to show you. We’ve done more to the outside of the house. I’m going to photograph it later today and post it for tomorrow, when I’m going to be at the Black Sheep Gathering (most likely) in Eugene, OR, before heading over to Bend to visit my mom. I’ll have the kids and my brother with me, so we’ll see how much time I actually get at Black Sheep. But I’m very excited. I’ll proabably see you Tuesday, but look for a post on my house tomorrow. I will be seeking opinions on paint colors.

Wednesday, June 18th, 2008

What the freak-in’ heck?



For heaven’s sake.


I cried in the car on the way home last night, Hayden.

Aaand, I’m crying now.

Monday, June 16th, 2008

Another step towards dyeing

I’m finally making my dye stocks.

It’s taking awhile, because I only have one pot to do it in,

and it isn’t great. (There’s space under the rim that dye gets into when I pour it into its container, and then it leaks back out, slowly, over several minutes). So I’m going to buy a new pot after this batch is done.

I’m so excited. One more step closer to actually dyeing. It’s been, what, a year now? Maybe more?

On Friday night, we took the kids up to the drive-in to watch Kung Fu Panda.

It was really cold, and really fun.

Saturday, June 14th, 2008

Health Group- Year 4, week 48

So, I bit the bullet and weighed and measured myself this morning.

Ugh. It’s bad.

So, as usual, I’m going to try to eat healthy, drink a lot of water, and exercise this week.

I need to do some stretching. I feel stiff and swollen and pretty much bad all over. It’s getting old. I’m getting old.

Next Saturday, I’m going to be in Oregon, so I may not post Health Group until I get back.

Wednesday, June 11th, 2008

Mother MacKenzie

Not that I’m surprised, but there’s a reason she’s “Mother MacKenzie”. She’s brilliant, of course.

I had a wonderful time. Mostly, it was fine tuning what I knew, but there were a few earth moving lessons learned.

Firstly, how to change yarn diameter without changing anything but tension.

I never use tension. I always spin with as little tension as I can possibly get on my wheel. I had no idea it was a tool.

I learned how to blend mohair locks with silk and spin it laceweight incredibly easily.

I spun a yarn that I think would make great socks, for the first time ever, (the pink one), along with yak, yak and silk, yak and merino, bison, cashmere and silk…

revisited cabled yarns (the blue/green above), and then there was Judith’s “wolf” yarn.

Fascinating. Plus, her drum carder can card wool without being teased, and is reportedly (I haven’t heard an official price yet) less expensive than the Pat Green Supercard I’ve had my eye on.

I’m happy my first class with Judith was in such a small, intimate grouping of friends. I love my little spinning group.

SO, back to the real world. I haven’t cleaned up from Veronica’s Saturday birthday party yet.

Well, we’ve cleaned the table and done the dishes, but the art project is still set up in the living room and is an absolute mess.

I have lots to do. And tomorrow is an all day field trip/BBQ for the 3rd through 6th graders on a beach an hour or so north, and right now it’s a toasty 47 degrees and as dark and wet as you could imagine. And has been all week.

I think I’m going to look into bringing supplies for BBQ hot chocolate. I only have two dutch ovens, though, and there will be 50 kids (between A and O’s classes) plus their accompanying adults and young siblings. How is this going to work?

Monday, June 9th, 2008

Off to spin

I can’t believe how many big things are on the calendar this week. The girls are out of school in a week and two days, softball will be over about that time, and my entire life is going to open up tremendously.

Today and tomorrow, I’m off to spin with Judith (grin). I’m dying to get back out into the yard, but it’ll just have to wait.

The Colinette hexagon is getting bigger. I’m on row 70 out of the 100 rows in the first section.

I’m not sure if I’m going to end up having enough yarn, so I’m planning to ask Marie if she’d be willing to spare some of hers if needed. I’m planning to do the whole thing with the same color, except for the flower insert in the middle. That will be some sort of contrasting stripe. Lavendar? That peachy-pink color? A soft black if I can find one? I don’t know.

Saturday, June 7th, 2008

Health Group- Year 4, week 47

This week has been hampered by the rotten weather and a zillion things to do. But, I did get some yard work in, and I hope to do more this week. However, Monday and Tuesday I’m going to be in a comprehensive spinning class with Judith Mackenzie! I’m so excited. I haven’t managed to get into one of her classes yet, this is my first time.

I totally need to clear my bobbins.

How was your week?