Thursday, April 30, 2015

Ah Ha....

This has been the easiest threading job ever.

I'm dragging my feet because I almost don't want it to end.

I hated adding all those white ends after the fact but they act as little markers so you always know where you are. No mix ups so far. I also learned that when you warp 2 ends at a time it makes the whole threading thing less complicated as the threads can't tangle or criss cross they way they do when you warp one end at a time. This was strongly suggested by my Craftsy instructor but I was always too lazy to make up two cones to wind from. Never again.

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Closing In

 That's my little house surrounded by all those big trees.

Soon the leaves will fill in and we will be pretty much in the shade until fall.

Very little blooms in all that shade so my world is slowly turning to green.

 The hostas do nicely until the deers eat them.

 Ferns are everywhere.

 I love the Jack in the Pulpits. I look forward to their appearance every spring.

 My path through the woods is covered in Mayapples at the moment. They don't last long, thank goodness.

The Mister brought these crazy looking things home from the MDSW a few years ago and they have taken over the place. I think they are alien plants. They are really scary looking.

My favorite is the moss. It is like a soft green carpet that covers everything once the grass dies out from lack of sun. Who needs grass anyway?

Tuesday, April 28, 2015


I've got three fun spinning projects going at the moment.

I usually have something I'm not crazy about on at least one wheel but right now there are no complaints.

They should all be more than done when this year's Tour de Fleece rolls around on July 4th. This year the big start will be in the Netherlands. Hoera! That's yippie in Dutch.

Monday, April 27, 2015


 Notice anything?

 No band aid. It's been 134 days since I had a naked thumb. It's not pretty but it works. I cried big ole tears when the last of the dead nail fell off. It was such a relief.

After the tears was jubilation. I could use both hands again. I washed my hair. I washed the dogs. I washed the dishes. I cleaned up my messy room. I cleaned up everything. I slept all night without something weird going on. I could use a q-tip to itch my ears. Try using one in your left hand. It's dangerous.

I can do lots of things I couldn't do before but there is still one thing I can't do yet. I need a few weeks of nail growth before me and Miss Luna get reacquainted. It's going to be awful for my poor left hand. I had just gotten over the sore fingers deal and now I have to start over. It's always something.

Sunday, April 26, 2015

No Sweat

Uh, oh. Warm humid weather is upon us and my pretty soap is starting to sweat. See those tiny little beads on the white bottom? That's glycerin escaping.

Melt and pour soap bases have lots of glycerin and glycerin pulls moisture from the air. It makes you soft and silky but it can make your soap feel slimy unless you keep it as airtight as possible.

The slime is actually only all the yummy things you add into your recipe seeping to the surface so it's still okay to use. In fact, that extra slickness makes a more creamy lather. I'm so soft from trying out all these recipes I am afraid I might melt.

Speaking of working yourself up into a lather, I got some new toys and decided to get to work making a bar or two for the dogs.

It's itch season for them so I tried to concoct somthing to give them some relief with my new tiny Ikea mixer.

 I came up with a coconut oil, olive oil, peppermint oil, tea tree oil and lemongrass bar. I added some activated charcoal, tomato powder and chamomile powder for good measure. I made a mini bar for me. I itch too-sometimes.

 To try and protect my little bars from dampness, I wrapped them in plastic wrap and sealed the ends down with a quick pass by the stove top burner. Don't tell The Mister I did this. I'm pretty sure he would have a fit.

It actually works very well without melting the soap. Now let's see if this keeps out the damp. I'm putting one bar in the hall closet and one in the steamy bathroom. All I need now is a three panel backboard and I have a science experiment.

Saturday, April 25, 2015

A Daily Dose of FIber

I found these orphan balls of Jacob in the handspun stash and decided they need to be a vest.

It's not nearly enough but I have more of where it came from.

The weather's been nice enough to drag the carder on the deck.

 It's been a long time since I made a batt.

I made three.

Then I cast on another Crepidula. It's a simple top down, one piece construction with lots of yarnovers for fun that looks great in wonky handspun.

This one is going to be a heavier weight than the one I have lived in for the past two ridiculously cold winters. I hope that's not a bad omen for winters to come.

I used the same fleece to dye these mini skeins during the London Olympics so I decided to add some simple colorwork to the yoke area. It felt good to get this old stuff out of the stash and put it to some use.

I am really loving how this is working out.

Friday, April 24, 2015

New Toys Put to Use

 You know those little soap shapes I made last week? Look what happened to them.

This is just awesome. I am beyond happy with them. I am not taking credit for the technique. I learned it here. I love her tutorials.

I used some curls with the square shapes and came up with these lemongrass bars that smell like summer. I went a little heavy on the olive oil. They are a bit sticky but feel great in the tub.

 The Mister came up with this design. I need to make a bar like this for Grandson.

All our latest experiments were for a friend of The Mister who had a 70th birthday party on Saturday.  A bag of smelly soap and a Home Depot gift certificate-what else could a guy want?

Thursday, April 23, 2015

It's About Time

 Finally. I can pick up the Tracery vest again and use both hands for the colorwork.

Look at that. Mr. Thumb is back to bandaid land. The new nail still looks pretty gruesome but the dead nail is almost history so I can sort of use it like a real appendage again. It's been a loooong time coming. I couldn't be happier.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Perfect Timing

 Pup was not happy that my knitting bag was empty. We have a daily routine of knit walking but since I ran out of walking projects she has been getting shortchanged in the exercise department.

Look at that sad face.

I went sock stash diving but nothing was ringing my bell. I always buy fall colors and I wanted something springy and fun.

 Then The Mister came in with the mail.

 I had a package from Wandering Cat Yarns. Talk about perfect timing. That's sock yarn on the right and lace on the left. I don't have a yellow shawl yet-but I will real soon.

 Not only did I get the yarn, I got a new project bag. How great is this? No cat is going to figure out how to get that open to steal my precious project. There are even little pockets inside. I love it.

I even have the perfect yarn to go with the bag. I'm funny that way.

The new sock yarn in Ride to the Moon colorway is already wound-and truth be told, I already have started the ribbing of one sock with it. Pup is going to get plenty of walking time tomorrow. I've got socks on the needles again!