Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Life After the Tour

 I am always at loose ends on the days following the Tour but it didn't take long for me to turn my attention elsewhere this year.

 I got a shipment of new to me fragrances and colors.

 Honeycrisp. I could eat it.

 Farmhouse Cider. It took me three times last year to get this one right. I think I nailed on the first try this year. It is a scary fragrance to work with but it smells so good it's worth the trouble.

 Fairy Garden. This smells just like what you would think a fairy garden would smell. I love it. I mucked up the top trying to get too fancy but I'll just pretend I don't see it.

Porridge is such a delicious fragrance that I put some in my tart warmer so I could smell it all day.

 I also talked The Mister into helping me make some graduation cards for his niece and nephew who will be celebrating this weekend. He grumbles about it and then totally gets into it. He designed these and did all the coloring. I think they turned out adorable.

Yesterday I managed to find the time to finish up the towel that was on the loom. The new warp is ready to go. Once again I have a big one and a small one.  I really have to figure out this measuring thing.

Finally I made two twiddle mitts to send off to Kathy B. They helped me work off the stress I was feeling after the health care vote. You know how much this means to Daddio who needs help paying his $10,000 a month nursing home bill-and that's just room and board. He also pays for medications, doctor visits and therapy just like the rest of us. Your hard earned assets don't go very far. Daddio's didn't. Everyone in need of care that can no longer be provided at home will need government assistance at some time. In a perfect world Daddio would still be home and I would still be cooking and cleaning for him but for his safety-and mine it was not to be.  I hope you let your congressmen know how you feel about seniors and the disabled being put out of nursing homes due to the Medicaid cuts. 40% of us who make it to 65 will end up in one someday. Think about your loved ones and how their lives will be affected when YOU become that burden. I do. It keeps me up at night.

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Hap Happy

 The Hap was finished before the end of the Tour but I hated it. It looked like Clown Barf and Unicorn Barf had a baby. All the colors made it fun to knit but I knew I would never wear anything so ugly.

So....I dipped it. I stuck it in the dyeing crockpot overnight with some black dye.

In the morning it was splotchy gray. Uh, I soaked it again with a wee bit more dye and this time it came out black. It exhausted all the dye and it's plenty black so I'm happy.

 I've always wanted a black shawl but there is no way I can see well enough to knit one anymore. Now I have one and it was pretty painless. I might have to do this again. I've always wanted a black sweater.

Monday, July 24, 2017

The End of the Road

The Tour didn't start until 10:30 yesterday morning so I had time to play before the trip to Paris.

 The last of the Cormo locks were a sticky mess so they got another washing. It was one of the first fleeces I ever washed and I did not do a very good job the first time around.

 Before the stage began all my projects were done. I sailed through this year's fiber with time to spare. The Hap is done too but that's a story for tomorrow.

Instead of spinning along I used another wheel-the drum carder. I thought I could get through all the remaining Shetland fleece. I wasn't even close. I've still got two bags left to do.

 Here are all the finished Polwarth locks that I washed. They will keep me busy for a while too.

When the bell rang for the last roundabout I was working on the cotton. I get so sad when it's all over. Tomorrow morning will seem so blah...

It had been raining in Paris and it was raining here when it was time to climb up on the podium. I love a rainy day but not when I am trying to take photos.

 Ta dah time for the Manx/Flax blend and the pretty Polwarth.

Ta dah time for the Mahogany Polwarth and the Cormo singles. Both of these have been in the works for several Tours. It is good to have them gone.

Ta dah time for the Shetland skein. I spun this fiber last year so it's joining the other two Shetland skeins until next year when I'll probably still be spinning the Shetland.  Even so, I can't wait. 

Sunday, July 23, 2017

One Day More

 Can you stand just a few more fiber posts? I realize that for my non spinning readers this past week must have been a yawn.

 The Tour is a really big deal for me because I give myself permission to wallow in it pretty much all day. Yesterday, in spite of a horrible migraine I combed the leftover Cormo locks to put something on the now empty Ladybug.

I finished one skein of Shetland and I've decided to continue on with it after the Tour since I have so much of it leftover. That's a fleece that just keeps on giving.

The Merino won't be finished anytime soon but it's become something to look forward to. I'll work on it as we ride into Paris. Vive le Tour!

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Sew Simple

 The blankety blank welcome quilt is done. Almost.  When I threw it in the wash a few seams popped so I've got to go applique some patches on it to hide the frayed edges while I keep repeating "done is better than perfect". I hate 1/4 inch seams. Hate. Them. Never again. It's 1/2 inch or nothing for me.

 I am happy about the back. That sticky batting is just what you need for machine quilting. Not a pucker in sight. Hallelujah.

 I am continuing my free motion adventure with some panels from clearance quilting collections. Thanks for the idea Cindy. It's just what I need.  I got them for about $2 a piece so ruining them is not a problem-though that red and white folksy one is awfully pretty.

While I was out scouting for panels I found this sewing themed material on clearance also.

 It is going to be this apron. It better be sew simple. I am not in the mood for drama. If this heat waves doesn't break soon I surely will go mad. Cabin fever has set in with a vengeance. Even being cranky isn't helping.

I also need to get back to work on what I hope isn't to become a permanent fixture of the dining room table. It's pretty but it needs to be done, done, done.

Friday, July 21, 2017

Running Out of Road

 There is not much time left in this year's Tour so ouchies or not, I'm still riding the wheel every morning.

The Cormo singles have been a real pain to ply. They are very thin from being drop spindle spun and keep breaking but I keep fixing them and going on.

 I moved the pink drop spindle project to an empty wheel.

 This is the nasty fiber that was not playing nice. It's very odd as you can see. It's "shreddy" and is full of little neps and noils that snarl everything up.

 It's looking pretty good on the wheel though.

 It's also terribly bouncy so the tension the wheel puts on it is helping. This may work.

I also took all the singles from the Russian spindle that I was bored with and wound them on a bobbin to ply on the ladybug. I finished up the last of the fiber on the wheel so the difference in thickness should be interesting when I get there.

Finally, I've gotten my second wind with the cotton. So much so that my head is telling me to pick up some more at the SVFF if I get there this year.  I'll be spinning this forever but all the same, I think I want a cotton stash, right?

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Little Ouchies

 I mentioned yesterday that I was not happy about the cut I got on my thumb on Monday. I've got spinning to do and boo boos slow you down. Here is the culprit. I was making soap when I cut myself on the broken lid of a fragrance oil. I must also mention that I got a giant papercut on the pinkie on the same hand last night. AND that I stuck a pair of scissors into the side of the same thumb trying to open a package yesterday. Am I a klutz or what?

 I'll forgive the bottle because it's one of my favorites. Witches Brew.

 I love this fragrance. I did a happy dance in Yankee Candle last year when I realized this was a knock off of one of their Halloween scents.

Twigs and Berries is another fall favorite of mine but it was a messy pour. You have to let the batter rest long enough to thicken to get a nice definition of color but I got impatient and it shows. Lesson learned. Slow it down.

Now they sit until the last week of August when I will start testing them. I've got lots more fall scents to make so I hope you are using up your bits and pieces for the fall giveaway in late September. I can't wait!

Wednesday, July 19, 2017


We had a day that was forecast as not going all the way to 90 so we decided to get up at 5:30,  pack up the dogs and head to the beach. That's iced coffee btw. I'm a new convert. That's a bandaid on my thumb. Of course I got a nasty cut on the last few days of the Tour. Of course.

It sounded like a good idea but we didn't factor in the sun. It was coming up over the water and it felt like we were under a magnifying glass.

 We haven't been down to the water since the dog days descended upon us.

 Everything looked overgrown.

It was a jungle out there.

 This is the mermaid sculpture in Sunrise Park. The Big Grand is scared of it. Me too.

 Back at home I have a few blooms to show off.

My impatiens all rotted from the stem last year by this time. I hope this year they are keepers. It's nice to have a bit of color here and there.