Sunday, November 27, 2022

Oh, Snap


Every weaver knows that when you see an old film canister filled with coins hanging on the back of the loom something's gone wrong... I've got TWO.

Everything was going along fine until I noticed that the end threads were not being caught up. This draft did not call for a floating selvage but it seems it needed one. Translated that means that the weaving pattern was not catching the end threads so they were hanging loose. So loose that a pair of them snapped off from the friction of the beater. I had to needle weave the replacement thread  in and then tie them off with a tee pin. Not a catastrophe but it didn't solve my problem of those un-captured ends.

I couldn't figure out the directions for fixing this issue so I just have to hand wrap that last thread each time I throw the shuttle-which is a real pain. The good news is that I don't have much further to go. I was planning on weaving this pattern again in different colors from the stash and this time I WILL be including a floating selvage. When you lose the weaving rhythm it really turns out to be a slog. A very slow slog. 

Saturday, November 26, 2022



 One day it's Thanksgiving and the next it was Christmas. The Mister and I spent yesterday getting a head start on the cards.

I took over his man cave so we could watch the World Cup matches while we worked. He colored and I cut. By the time the USA finished its second tie match we had 12 done. We need 24 so we are halfway there.

We also had to go to the town tree lighting. The parks and the boardwalk were already lit. 

There were trees on the beach. That's new. 

There was a bonfire and marshmallows to roast for the kiddies. 

There was a chorus singing every holiday song you could think of while we counted down was lit exactly at 6 o'clock.

In spite of having all the stuff I need to make a Thanksgiving dinner at home we opted for Subway. The dinner can wait. The weather was too nice and the night too beautiful to rush home. 

Friday, November 25, 2022

Gobble, Gobble


I had a lot of good knitting time on the almost two hour drive up to Daughter's yesterday morning. Musselburgh got some serious inches while we listened to World Cup action on the radio. Other than the 4 am games, I've seen most of the matches this week. 

Daughter had the house decked out in fall splendor inside and out. 

The men in our family love to cook. Son and Daughter made quick work of the vegetables while I worked on the potatoes. Daughter and I both ended up with band-aids on our fingers from cuts thanks to her new and very sharp set of knives. 

Son in law manned the grill and produced an amazing bird or so I'm told. I don't eat it but I do enjoy how good it smells. 

While all the cooking was going on three of the five Grands amused themselves. You wouldn't even have known we had kids in the house. We are so blessed with this bunch. Their parents were never so well behaved when they were this

Right after dessert we had to scoot on down the road before it got too dark. Our nasty rural roads are too much for us oldies especially this time of year when the deer are everywhere. We made it home just before sunset without incident. It was a wonderful day.

Thursday, November 24, 2022

Happy Turkey Day!

You would never know it was Thanksgiving in my kitchen because we're driving up to Daughter's this morning for an early brunch since us oldies don't drive in the dark anymore. I may or may not make our own dinner tomorrow. As much as I miss big family dinners, I have to admit it's kind of nice to have the freedom to do pretty much anything you want with the holidays.
Happy Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 23, 2022

Soap Week: Day 4


I hope you're not tired of soap posts because I'm not tired of making soap. Yesterday's adventure was pine. It was the same old, same old recipe with a bit of the pine fragrance oil The Mister favors. I made the dark green with some french green clay. The olive green is mica.

I forgot all about that less is more thing again but I'm feeling more comfortable being adventurous....

.....because my ugly ducklings aren't so bad after all. Here is the blackberry/charcoal soap from Day 2 that I thought would be a disaster. Not so bad, right? 

As for Pup, she's still a bit limpy. We took her out for a walk in her stroller and she was NOT happy. We let her walk up the driveway to get the mail the day before and it was too much. We were back to square one so we're back to being extra careful-much to her dismay. 

Tuesday, November 22, 2022

Soap Week: Day 3


Yesterday's soaping adventure included honey and oatmeal. I'm still working with the goat's milk and I added just a touch of a honey fragrance oil that I love. 

I had too much fun with the cosmetic grade micas with this one. I need to keep telling myself that less is more when it comes to soap. 

I think I went overboard. We'll just have to wait and see.

The good news is that the Plain Ole Goat and Oatmeal soap was a success. I had added some white kaolin clay to part of the batter and got a bit of a pretty swirl out of it. 

I wish that making soap was the only thing I had to do all day. There is still this. That stair molding won't put itself down as much as The Mister and I wish it would.

Monday, November 21, 2022

Soap Week: Day 2


It looks like soap #1 survived the night. It's a bit soft-not worrisome soft, just maybe it needed a bit of a water discount soft, so I won't cut it until tomorrow. I usually cut back on the liquids so it gets hard faster but I didn't on this first go around. 

Yesterday's soap was a bit trickier. I wanted to use up the little bit left in a jar of activated charcoal along with the goat's milk so I made a lightly scented blackberry soap. I added some purple mica to part of the batter but it turned gray. 

I did a simple in the pot pour and it, uh...interesting. 

It's not the prettiest. I gave it a little half hearted sprinkle of glitter but it didn't help. I'll reserve judgement until I cut it. Sometimes these ugly ducklings can surprise you. 

The most important sign of progress yesterday was my clean up game. The first day was a mess but yesterday I was ready and it went much smoother. It's a messy business but so much fun-even when you get it wrong.

Sunday, November 20, 2022

Soap Week


And so it begins.....for the next five days I'll be on a soap making adventure.

I was actually nervous getting started yesterday morning. It's been a long time. I even got The Mister to help me with the lye part. He opened the doors and cleared the path from critters as I moved from inside to out and back again. I really, really, really didn't want to drop the steaming hot mess on my new laminate floors. I can only imagine how bad that would be. 

I was relieved to see it trace up nicely. It's a recipe using fresh goat's milk. The only thing I added to it was some colloidal oatmeal. This first batch is as plain as can be. No fragrance, no colors, no additives at all. I soaped at around 100 degrees in hopes of keeping it creamy white.

Then I tucked it into a pre-heated cooler I use as an incubator when it's cold. Now comes the hard part. I've got to wait until tomorrow to see if it was a success. A lot can happen between now and then. 

And...Pup is doing a bit better today. Still limping but putting some weight on her bad leg. We are keeping her as quiet and calm as possible which means a lot of couch sitting for me. No complaints there. 

Saturday, November 19, 2022

We Should Have Known Better


We were supposed to be working on the foyer molding all week but found the up and down of it was wearing on old bones. We did a little, took a day off and did a little more. It's going to be slow going but it was going....

...until yesterday. We had taken Pup out for a walk in our woods on Thursday and was marveling at how well she was doing after her surgery. She was running and jumping all over the place. We should have known better because yesterday she could barely use her bad leg. I spent the day sitting with her and doing her doggy PT which she was NOT happy about. I am hoping today is a better day for her because I really don't want to think of what may be in store if it's not. Poor thing. She's been through so much. We should have known better.

Friday, November 18, 2022

Friday Fluff


How it started.

How it ended. 
I picked up this fiber at the 2014 MDSW and it's been marinating in the stash ever since. I suppose it's destined to end up in the Garter Squish but I may have to think about that for a while. It's really pretty. 

Now that it's off the Ladybug I'm spinning the rest of the green fiber on it. The bobbin on the Ashford is so full that it isn't spinning well and I can finish it faster on the Ladybug. When it's done I'll splice it together with the rest of the singles and wind it all on the Ladybug bobbin for plying. Then I get to figure out what gets spun next...which is always the fun part. 

Thursday, November 17, 2022

Chim Chim Cher-ee


They are calling for a big freeze this weekend so we couldn't put off cleaning the chimney any longer. The Mister's been dragging his feet about it even though he's been freezing in the lower level at night. Truth be told, this will be his last year doing it. He's just too old. I'll be calling a chimney cleaner from now on. He scared me to death up there and even he admits it was a bit much. 

There's a lot to the upkeep, inside and out. Like everything else around here, it takes teamwork. He's on the roof and I'm down below dealing with the soot. 

It's dirty work for both of us. We look like chimney sweeps when we are done. 

It doesn't look very clean but it's better than it was. It still needs a good polish but we can now have a fire if we need one. 

Cleaning the stove is one thing. Bringing up wood is another. We've had a lot of wet weather lately so finding dry wood and kindling wasn't easy. Lucky for us I had a stash put away in the fleece shed all summer that I was going to use in my fire pit but never did. It should last us until the sun dries out the wood we pulled out of the stacks to dry.

After the day's work we took Pup for a short walk and found this waiting for us on the boardwalk. I couldn't believe my eyes until I realized next week is Thanksgiving and they light the dang thing the day after. Where does the time go?

Wednesday, November 16, 2022

Wednesday WIPs


Number 14 will be joined together soon. This week Arne and Carlos are here in my general vicinity teaching classes and giving lectures at a LYS but I couldn't get a spot in any of it. By the time I saw the post everything was sold out. I even got on the waiting list but....nope. I'll have to continue my fangirl journey through YouTube and working on their little Christmas sweaters. So close...but so far away, sigh. 

On a happier note, Chestnut is finally past its difficult stage. I just started the first pattern row. It's been a very long time coming.

I've got two more rows to do and BonAmie wil have completed it's first pattern cycle. Now I won't have to worry over picking colors and ripping out ones I don't like. From here on in this will be it. I'll just repeat the chart over and over until I get the length I want. 

It doesn't look like it but the Musselburgh hat got a few more inches on it when we went for our grocery pick up. There's still a long way to go. You knit the hat and lining all in one and then stuff it inside itself. 

On that grocery trip I managed to score a quart of fresh goat's milk for making soap with. I usually use the powder form but when I went to order it I almost fell off my chair from the price of it. I don't know what's going on with the goat's but I'm sure glad I don't need much of this stuff or need it very often. I am also happy to say the new lye is here so as soon as I can get The Mister to busy himself elsewhere, I'm back in business.