Monday, June 30, 2008

Meet My Bunny

First work day of unemployment (or at least from my full time job) and how do I spend it? Picking up my angora bunny.
Meet Mr Mocha S Bunny. He is a satin angora that I got from Chickasaw Farm in Chase, in the northern corner of the county. As you can see he is a lovely bunny--I guess the color is called fawn. Ithink he looks like a Siamese cat with long ears and long wool. As you can see below, the oldest crop of this year's barn kitties felt that they were the welcoming committee and were checking out the new neighbor. Curosity may not kill these kitties but if they don't watch out, it could loose them a toe or two.
I decided to bed Mr Mocha down and let his rest tonight. I will need to be able to start handling him soon to comb him out. I already discovered I may have a problem with a 24 inch X 24 inch cage but only about 20 inch arms.
I love the neighborhood where I got Mr Mocha. I took advantage of the trip to stop at the cemetery that holds 3 generations of grandparents, beginning with Great Grandpa, who I knew, and going back to Great Grandma's parents and Grandparents. There were a couple new stones for 2 of them since the list time I was there so I wanted to be able to get some pictures of them as well see if my Great Grandpa Armenus had a flag on his grave. When I first discovered the family plot, there was none, even though he was a veteran of the Civil War. I always felt a special spot for him as he is the first ancestor I discovered on my own. (Much of my genealogy has been verifying what was know on my fathers side and already researched by my aunt and cousin.) The graves were especially tricky to find, even now because the stones are all flat and becoming overgrown by sod around the edges. And the family stone faces the north, while the vast majority there face north or south. After some searching, while Mr Mocha sat in his carrier in the shady car, I managed to finally find them. This time the flag was there, although the grass overgrown there. I may have to make a return trip one of these days to snip grass and I would like to plant a perenniel or two around there. But it is quite dry, so not sure if it would be worth the hassel if I can't get there to water them.
Anyway, Mr Mocha is safe in his cage and so far, the kitties still have all their toes.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Progress on Church Addition

Where only a few weeks ago our new mission center/parish hall looked like the first picture with buckets of paint, scaffolds and plastic covered walls; a few weeks ago we were finally able to move our service there.
This picture was taken a couple weeks ago, but what an improvement. And last week, the plastic was gone from the windows and the walls were freshly painted. Here is the same corner of the rooom. This picture was taken just a couple weeks ago.
Even last week the change was impressive and looks great.
I brought along the Cinnamon Wave Wrap to get a concensus of how much longer to make it. The skinny people there felt about another 6 inches would be fine. I may go a few more, since I have decided no fringe is necessary. Everyone seems to like it so hopefully it will bring in some money. Not sure how we will sell it--as a silent auction, or raffle or how.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

This and That--Catching Up

Since I had not been able to get pictures to post recently--My own dumb fault I have since discovered. I want to catch up on a few little items and add the pictures now that I am over my "duh" moment.

Here is the silk cap I was spinning. I finished those last few drafts and set out to ply it. What a disaster. I used my plying tool but then had a mess. I think because of the sticky tendency of the silk, it was hard to pull it out to ply. I managed to spin up a couple yards on my Joy. But that was all. That was last weekend and I was practically in tears. It had such a lovely sheen, that I really wanted to be able to use it for something. Finally last night, while watching Singing In the Rain, I set my plying tool in the stand on the table, thus freeing up both hands. I eased and teased the yarn out. Thankfully, silk is a very strong fiber and it never broke, despite some rough handling and some very thin areas. Now I am trying to decide if I want to perhaps put it on the ball winder to make a center pull ball and try to ply it that way. Keep in mind I have never had much luck in avoiding knots that way either. I have a ball of single ply silk now and am going to meditate on it for awhile.

What else, ahhh yes. I had haying pictures to share. At least pre-baling. Here is Hubby. He did get all his hay cut, right on schedule. Not as many bales as he had hoped, but the neighbor who baled it had tightened up his settings so they were more solid. We still have more than enough, and hopefully enough to sell next spring. You can see how high our hay was in this example behind the barn.

We got it all baled before the rain came mid week. These good tight bales should be in good shape. Monday I had to help Hubby bring in the bales from the field that is just past the picture above where he is cutting the hay. I had to back the big pickup into the shallow ditch while he pushed 2 bales on with the spear. Then he speared another and brought it back by the barn. Those bales are heavy and are very difficult to push off. A year or two ago he discovered how to slide them off easily. He backs up at a good speed and then slams on the brakes. They then tumble right off. He was having way too much fun loading them. I even did one. Unfortunately after a few trips, the brake line broke so no more fun and he had to spear them and bring them one by one on the tractor.

All that rain the previous few weeks brought out some flowers in addition to exploding the growth in the hay.
Just from the side of the barn we have clover, daisys and some stray trefoil from the hayfield.
Sure wish we had that sheep to help keep down the grass. But Monday I plan to go get my bunnie--the Satin angora. I can hardly wait. Farm dog and barn cat don't seem to be very impressed though do they?

One Job Done

Busy week at work, --the former job--despite the fact that I had no computer access at all. All week was weird stuff. Shredding old reports that had confidential info as I emptied my desk. then making copies of new stuff. All in all, quite boring and nary a chance to knit like I though I would have. Yesterday I only had to come in for the exit interview.
Exit interviews are a silly concept. We all could have been there at once, for all the difference it made. The only individual info was the amount of severance pay we were getting. And we all could really figure it out ourselves. But we all had to come in separately and wait our turn. At least we didn't have to stay all day. I only had my 20 minutes and was gone. I managed to get in a full day at the library.
Fun stuff there. Sorting through musty newspapers may sound boring but I had a lot of fun, reading old ads, and gossipy items. Including a 1922 article about a woman who vomited up a 4 inch lizard. I almost wet myself laughing with Sandy over that one.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Haying Time-part 2

Well, with a minimum of breakage, Hubby has got about half the hay down. You know how those things go, when you are in a hurry. He had to replace a pin, and unjam something. So he was still working on the west fields when I got home from work. But because he was in a hurry, he and my fierce watch dog already had the brats grilled when I got home. YEA! As soon as supper was done he was out in the fields. I filled water tanks, and then went back inside while he finished the west fields. His plans are to finish cutting the east field, known as the Swamp, today.
Dang, I finally got to the library and ready to post pictures, but its not working,. not sure if the fault is library connection, or blogger. Oh well. I will try again later

Friday, June 20, 2008

Haying Time

The sweet smell of freshly baled hay is heavy in the air, and almost every hay field around here is decorated with small square bales, big round bales and even some oversized big square bales. Those seem to be new additions this year. Apparently someone in the neighborhood got a new baler.
Hubby is making plans to knock down all of our hay today and tomorrow. IF he can get in touch with the neighbor who is going to put it up in big round bales. He wants to make sure he will be available when everything is dry and ready. Weather sounds promising after tomorrow.
I am tryng to figure out how to raise up my rabbit hutch, in preparation for my satin angora that I am going to get. I figure if I can't get a sheep, I'm at least getting a little fiber animal. I may just try to get some blocks to raise it up a couple feet (Thanks for the suggestion, Angie.)

Monday, June 16, 2008

Sunny Days Again

Finally have some sunny weather. Hubby has been out in the hay fields trying to clear the ditch so the water drains. At least we didn't get hit like the counties to the north--a US highway washed out there. He went so far as to string 6 extension cords across one field out to a sub-pump.There he plans to pump the water around a tree that grew on the edge of the ditch and is blocking water from draining. He is hoping to bale (not bail!) this next week.
Although today is cool it was too hot this past week for the woolly Cinnamon Wave Wrap. So I happily knit away on the Shapely Tee. I am past the short rows on the bottom and inching my way slowly to the bust shaping. I am pleased so far and hop it will fit well. So far I am still on gauge.
While watching the race yesterday (Junior finally won and Kyle was no where in sight--YEA!) I separated and drafted out the rest of some silk caps I bought over a year ago at Knit Michigan. I also spun up quite a bit. It will be a bit lumpy bumpy when plied, but I need to think of a project for it. Won't be much yardage so will have to be something small. Pictures will follow when I get the camera cranked and a chance to blog from the laptop again.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Thought for the Day

While rummaging for things for Older Son's place, I came across an old file box with a Bible verse that seemed appropriate for my present work situation. Now that we have a date for our job to move out (June 27) and seeing as how the customers seem so difficult, as well as our own stress levels just made this really seem to hit home.
“Now we exhort you brethren
Warn them that are unruly,
Comfort the feebleminded,
Support the weak,
Be patient toward all men”
I Thessalonians 5:14

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Knitting/Spinning Updates

I have been doing very well on the Cinnamon Wave Wrap. Or at least I was before it got so hot and humid. In consideration of the heat and the fact that it makes knitting wool very unattractive, I cast on and started the Shapely Tee. (See swatch a couple posts ago.) Cooler yarn, DK weight. small needles, my kind of knitting.
I also dug out some silk caps I bought a couple years ago. I was inspired by something I read on an early column at I spun up some of the silk I had already separated and drafted and it spun nicely. I want to get that split, drafted and spun now. I'll have to get some pictures soon.
I think I will sign off and get working.

Farm Life and Crops

We have had some wet weather lately. Nothing severe, but the hay fields, that only a week or so ago were so pathetically short, Hubby was in despair that we would get enough and not be able to sell the 2nd cutting as he planned. But now, after the 5 inches last weekend, we have thick lush timothy, brome and canary grasses well past my waist. Granted, I’m not that call, but still, its looking good. Of course now we have to wait for the ground to dry back out. There was deep standing water in the far hayfield we call the swamp—for obvious reasons.Younger Son has been making plans to move in with a friend. My goodness, they are moving in droves. The friend is about 3 years old and has his own house. YS has been working for him since Spring Break, feeding calves, mending fences and general grunt work. Once we clean out the soon to be former boys room, Hubby plans to insulate the ceiling and re-surface it. All ready for my bunny.
I didn't mention that yet. Since Hubby is making noises against sheep after building up my hopes, when my friend Jane went to pick up a new blue French Angora, I was ready to get one too. My sensible side prevailed for once and I decided to wait till I have room for it. But I did get a cage for my bunny to be. Then Hubby can't talk me out of it.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Still Transitioning

Well, as I mentioned, this has been a week of big changes. I have managed to sort out some appropriate pictures as well.

Younger Son graduated, and putting in more hours on the two farms he works for. Such a relief to get him through school. And he seems delighted as well. He even managed to sort of shave for the occasion. I see we have proof that Older Son did show up, that's his truck I just noticed in the background.

Older Son has pretty much moved into his house. He has been straggling back to get odds and ends. I asked him if he had any plates, knowing that somewhere in the attic I had some I could donate. He proudly announced he had 240 paper plates. He was good to go. I mentioned he may want some sturdier ones, but he said hen he would just have to wash them. True. He still needs to pick up the kitchen table, and some other items, but his kitchen is still big enough to hold a dance party.

I started working Thursday at the library. Since that is when I was doing my best blogging, I guess that will be slowed down some, at least until my other job ends. Which we have finally been told will be on June 27. After that the library plans on using me more, as much as they can sneak me in. Of course I will also then more free time for the blog and knitting, so it all works out. Uhhh--except for the money angle of course.

And speaking of more time to knit, I am hoping to get more done on the Shapely Tee. I really want to finish the Cinnamon Wave Wrap, but its getting a little steamy for large wool projects. I have swatched and think I am ready to roll.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Transitions of Life

I wanted to be able to post earlier than this. But life happens. Oh, how it happens. What is the Nationwide commercial? Life comes at you fast.
After much pushing, and prodding, and a complete change in attitude, Younger Son is now a high school graduate. To fully appreciate this you must know that it took 2 years of being a senior. And with the fact that he had a year of developmental kindergarten, he will be 20 this July. (pictures will be posted--I'm on the PC and pics are on the laptop.) These past two years he moved out for most of the first year, dropped out, switched to the alternative high school, decided a diploma from the regular high school was better and switched back. He got in legal trouble and is straightening that out. And, although I held my breath the last trimester he seemed to be confident. And now, as of last Sunday, he is a Graduate!!
Ceremony was held on a beautiful sunny day on the football field. Drat, I was hoping for rain so it would be in the gym because I am not a "sit in the sun" type of person. I am just now recovering from a painful sunburn on shoulder and back of the neck. There was a gentle breeze, enough to furl the flags. And a wonderful keynote speaker in John Berry, who gave an inspiring talk and sang a song for the graduates.
After that Younger Son had barely time for pictures..before dashing off to go to the farm and milk. Keep in mind he also had the 3am shift again. Of the three guys who work for his farm, all were graduating, and it was John's rotation. But I got lots of pictures during the ceremony and a few after, amid grumbling. Then off he went.
Hubby and I were on the way home when Older son called and wanted help getting the bedroom set he was purchasing from a friend. So we changed, helped him pack up and unpack the bed and dressers. And after a rainy Monday and dreary Tuesday, he packed up some of his belongings yesterday and moved. We have to get the kitchen table and a few pots and pans and such. Odds and ends like a lamp and some chairs, microwave and such, and he should be settled. Oh yeah, somewhere I may have some plates. I know I have glassware from Dad he can take. I don't know what he has over there in the kitchen. But "my baby" is on his own.
One down, one to go.
Isn't that a parents job, help them stand on their own?
I'm glad he is only a few miles away.