14 July, 2009

Tour de Fleece, Days 3-11

This week, I have two things to do in which to earn my paycheck:

1) Go to my boss's house and water the outside plants that aren't on the drip line, and
2) bring the Kids over on Saturday for swimming, a movie, and pizza while the Parents have a Grown-Up Party.

I gotta tell ya, this job I have is The Bomb and I'm going to be sad to leave it in August.

In the time off, I've made a list of things I need to do while I'm at home. A large portion of the list consists of "clean out 5 boxes from storage" over and over again; the smaller amount makes me feel all productive when I get to cross it off the list. I'm down to only two check marks to go, although I think there will still be a few more than 10 boxes left. So far, I've tagged probably 85% of the stuff for either donation or trash. It's dirty work and some of it is hard; I found a newspaper article wrapped around a bunch of pictures of a smiling blond teenaged boy, my friend Brian Rudolph. The newspaper article was about his death at sea while on a crab boat a la The Deadliest Catch, and it stopped me full in my tracks. Brian has been dead for nearly half my life, and I hardly think about him anymore. But he was a bright and shining soul despite his troubled past, and I wonder what would have become of my friend if he'd lived.

There were other pictures of people who never made it past their teens, or twenties. Smart, good kids who didn't deserve to be hit by drunk drivers or shot by stray gunfire. When asked, I will claim that I didn't go to my 10-year reunion because I didn't want to explain over and over again why I am not married, pregnant, a mother, graduated, or famous; but a smaller part of me was loathe to go to a gathering of people I've known since kindergarden - my graduating class wasn't tiny but it was tight - and see the empty spaces where my friends used to be.

Anyway, now that my chest is all tight and I'm uncharacteristically emotional, let's move on to some pictures of spinning, shall we?

"Asti" 2-ply cormo/corriedale from Black Bunny Fiber Club 2
313 yds.

This yarn got a LOT softer than the roving was after I washed and whacked it. It smells all sheepy and wonderful, so there must still be plenty of lanolin left in the wool; it'll probably soften up more along the way. If I'd thought about it properly before I started spinning, I would have split the roving down the center and tried to maintain the color progression a bit better, but I like the barberpole effect as well. It looks like beads, doesn't it?

Currently I'm working on this:

"Harvest" BFL from Pigeonroof Studios

It will grow up to be a 2-ply lace. I got this at the spring Color Fiber Festival in Berkeley last May, and originally I was going to ply it with a similar amount of "Autumn Cherry" BLF; however, it's so pretty on the bobbin that I think I'm just going to ply it against itself.

While I was up at Mom's this weekend, I indulged in a little experimentation for my Cherry Matchless. Here is the finished product:

What is that, you might ask. THAT, my friends, is a set of totally removable and washable treadle covers so that this barefoot spinner doesn't sully her new spinning wheel with footprints!

Needless to say, I'm thoroughly pleased with myself.

I'm also pleased because Mom and I went up to her LYS and I came away with one (1) skein of yarn:
Noro Silk Garden Sock

I have a thing for VM in my yarn, and that thing is loathing. I've never really tried using Noro because of the VM, but this skein was very pretty and I couldn't find any twigs with my eyes or my fingers and I figured I should give the (very pretty) yarn a try. It's for sheer scientific research, I assure you.

So I have a story about being at Mom's this weekend:

ManCandy and I slept in THB's old room at the end of the house. This particular end of the house has rhododendron bushes right up against the windows that provide some shade all day long but also have a tendency to house wee birdie beasties. Not a big deal for me as I don't mind birds, BUT. On Friday night we didn't realize that Mom had taken the curtains down, so the room got light pretty early. I can usually put my head down and sleep through the dawn, but I was slowly roused by an incessant TWANGing sound above my head and occasionally at the other window by my feet. Eventually I emerged from the covers to discover a beady red eye looking at me from about 6 inches away. This bird then launched himself at the window screen, TWANG!!, clung for a second or two, then hopped back to his branch. A few moments later, he did it again. And again. Andagainandagainandagain. Every once in awhile for variety (I can only imagine it was for variety) he would fly around to the other window and TWANG on it as well. He had no care for tapping on the window, the presence of the very intrigued cats, or the flailing of my arms as I tried to get him to Go. Away. I finally got up at the indecent hour of 6am and wandered into the living room to watch the Tour de France with my stepdad.

Later that morning when the rest of the family was up, I heard the TWANGing again and summoned the adults in to see the phenomenon. They duly agreed that it was annoying, and then Mom started to laugh. It seems that she caught sight of the DevilBird's actually red eyes. She thought I was exaggerating.

This excitement occurred again the next morning, but I am s-m-r-t and resorted to opening the window about 6 inches. Waffles immediately went and sat on the windowsill, and that was the end of the DevilBird - at least until after I got up.


  1. Pretty spinning, sad thoughts, and annoying bird!

  2. Beautiful spinning. I so need to get back to my wheel. What a fabulous idea to make treadle covers! I must try this.

  3. our south-facing living room window gets one crazed bird per spring. First year it was a cardinal, following year an oriole, this year a robin. We think they see their reflection, deem it another male and thus a threat to their mating grounds or whatever, and commence the attack. Loud as hell.