Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Water, Water Everywhere

But not a drop to drink.

After a great day Saturday, I came home and added more chili powder to the crock pot.

After supper, I rinsed out the chili pot and Hubby went out to fill cattle water tanks.

A little later, in he came. "What did you do to the water?"

ME? I did nothing. But lo and behold, no water. None in the kitchen, none in the tub, and none, (Yikes!) in the toilet.

Lots of water in the pasture, lots in the ditch out back of the hay field. Lots by the tube under the road. None in our faucets.

Hubby called plumber, left message.

I take my pills with V8 juice. While its good alone, not great with metformin. I decided to pass on brushing my teeth with V8.

Next day, missed church. Still no water. Later Hubby and I head to friends farm. I got 2 gallons of water for consumption. He got a couple big (about 20 gallon?) tanks of water for animals and bathroom.

Ahhhhh, no more fuzzy teeth. Minty fresh. After a sponge bath, I feel almost human.

Monday at 8:00 plumber calls. Finally at noon yesterday, we got water. The cause? A bug (critter, not electronic type) in the switch.

Ain't mother nature wonderful?

Monday, March 29, 2010

Spin In-Knit In

Saturday Sue Ann from our Wooly Friends Spinning Guild organized a gettogether for spinning, knitting and just having fun.
We had a goodly crowd. And quite a variety of spindles and wheels. Several Louets, a couple Kiwi's, a Traveler...
A couple Joys, a Ladybug and more. Christine's granddaughter stopped for a visit. We even had our personal "sherpa" James who worked for the hotel and fetched and carried, directed traffic and was generally amazed at the whole fibery craziness. I can just imagine what he would think about SOAR or even the Allegan Fiber Festival.
While some of us were just there to spin and visit, we also had some vendors like Sue Ann with fiber and handspun yarn. We also had some of the handdyed/handspun of Angie, and Sheila's handspun and fibers. I got some of that green/gold sock yarn of Angies, some of Sue Ann's blended handdyed fiber and some light gray shetland from Sheila.
Amongst the general din there was much showing off of hand knits. Here Evonne models her linen sweater. Lovely.
Mary had another of her handknit, hand spun items. Angie is showing her punched/hooked project.
There was some serious coveting going on.
Just ask Evelyn about her love affair with Tito. Mmmmmmmmm.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

What a Great Book!

I find it amazing that I should for the second time in about a year be touting a cook book, but this is great. If you have ever stumbled upon the Pioneer Woman blog you know what I am talking about. She is a sushi loving city girl who fell in love with the Marlboro Man and before she knew it she was riding horses, and cooking beef and feeding cowboys.
I had to wait over a month for the book to become available at my local library, and now that I have it in my hands, I can see why. The pictures are mouthwatering and show every step.
Her blog is also wonderful. If you like pictures, cooking, basset hounds, kids and life in the country, you really need to check it out.
And the book too. I may need to buy this one.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Michigan at Her Finest

Temps hit a low of 15.4 before I left for work this morning, just as the sun was coming up. Back in the winter coat and stuffed mittens! Chilly at 1 when I took a run to the credit union on my lunch--although I cracked open the windows when I came in, because the sun IS shining brightly.
And next week they are calling for 68 degrees at the end of the 7 day forecast. And I've heard rumors of 70 or higher for Easter.
Ahhhh Michigan. Never a dull moment.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Purple Yoke Sweater

Time for an updated picture of the purple yoke raglan sweater. There has been a lot of side knitting, with Angela's shawl, but now I can concentrate on this. Maybe I can finish another sweater before the snow birds venture back home. I think I have at least a month.
I haven't had time to come up with a fancy name for it yet. Maybe marl yoke sweater, how does that sound?

I have about 9 inches knit so far. The stripe is 4 rows of my handspun marl yarn. When I get to about 11 inches from bottom, I plan on adding pocket stitches in waste yarn. Then when all is done, (or when I feel like a challenge.) I can unravel the waste yarn, pick up stitches and knit a couple pockets.
I put on my Old Jeans blue sweater and measured the perfect pocket position on that and will just carry over to this.

Two Weeks and Done

The June Nursing Shawl, aka Angela's shawl was finished during the race Sunday. Weaving in ends a little later, but fairly early in the evening. Lately that doesn't seem to be too much of a chore.

Knit in Knit Picks Shine Worsted, colorway Ebony, size six needles, and 7 for the ruffle. It is sooooo sooooft. I love it. The ruffles at the bottom are especially nice.

Gertrude modeled for pictures. It does look small on me, but my sister-in-law tried it on when I dropped it off. The shawl fits her wonderfully, better than on Gertie. Angela is even narrower in the sholders so it should work fine for her. She should be up for Easter to get it.

And speaking of Gertrude. I have been asked by my friend Sheila (one of my friends with sheep) to do a Make Your Own Gertrude workshop some weekend at her shop. You may remember when I first made Gertrude, November of 2008. We will compare calendars this Saturday at a Knit In/Spin In in Big Rapids so we can set a date.

It did take a while for me to be able to look at her comfortably, but Gertrude is the best for making sweaters and shawls. Easy to try on for size. I can see it better on her than on me.

Plus she doesn't complain when I take her picture.

Monday, March 22, 2010

A Spring Rescue, by Gilbert the Wonder Dog

"Hey Mom! That cold white stuff is back, all over the ground. "
"Hey what is that? Someone got my fuzzy toy? Beat it you old barn cat. Leave my baby alone!"
"Mew--I didn't touch your baby. Stinky old thing. Don't leave it lying in the path if you don't want any one messing with it. Yeow."
" Rowlf. Don't you get lippy with me, Cat. "
Just another day on the farm. Sigh.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Hey Snowbirds!

Temps are up to mid 60's for highs.
Flowers are coming up.
Don't you wish you were back here?
Oh--did I mention 90% chance of snow on Saturday. ;-)

Monday, March 15, 2010

If I'm Not Posting, I Must be Knitting

Not even time for many pictutres.

And of course there is the lack of sleep issue from the dratted "Time Change."

But I have been making a lot of progress on the Nursing Shawl. The top measures not quite 40 inches at this point, but I still have several skeins before I start the ruffle. I have the tips on a 40 inch cable so I can stretch it out some to look at it. The live stitches are the two short sides. Right now it is about 19 inches from center seam to end along the top edge.
I am making this in Knit Picks Shine worsted weight. I love the way the yarn handles and the stitch definitition is marvelous.
I hope my niece likes it.
Cuz if she doesn't, I may keep it myself.


That time of year has rolled around again. The first of two times when the government in its blessed little interferring way, once agains wreaks havoc on us by messing with our minds, body and, yes, even our health by playing with the clocks.


I refurse to call it Daylight Savings Time because it doesn't save daylight, merely shifts it around. When I was a growing farmgirl, I know dairy farmers were greatly inconvienced by this time shifting business. People may know enough to get up early, but try talking to Momma Cow. Gets her off her schedule and decreases production (and hence, profitability) for several days. When I was teaching, you had a week or so of cranky kids who were not adjusting. And in my later years as an office worker it had the same consequence with co-workers.

I may have mentioned it before, but I HATE the whole concept of Daylight Savings Time. When the sun isn't even overhead until 2pm or later, it is just too out of sync.

My feelings are--if those East Coast folks want to have more daylight to play around after work, just change their work hours, not everyone's lives.

At the risk of sounding redundant---I HATE THE TIME CHANGE!!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

SHHHH--Don't Tell Anyone

You know how sometimes you can be cruising along, thinking life is good?
Or if not good, (what with under-employment, the economy and a boom-a-rang child among other joys of life) at least fairly tolerable?
That was me last week. I'm bopping along, knitting, spinning, playing with dog and bunny when out of the blue it hit me.
I'm going to be 59 years old this year. Holy Crap!
Now you got to realize that, all along, I never minded turning 30, 40, or even 50. It was 29, 39, 49 that bugged me. (It always sounds like you're lying about your age.)
Especially 49. On the same day, my 49th birthday, I got an invite in the mail to join AARP ( I was too young to be eligible!) And asked at the grocery store if I qualified for the Senior Discount. (I was honest, I didn't want to be carded.). AND worse off all, a coupon for Depends. (Never mind whether or not I need them--it's the thought here.)
Talk about a depressing birthday.
And now this year, here comes another one of those loser Niner years.
Life is the pits.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Some Bunny Loves Me

Frankie was excited when I came home from the Rabbit show with a new home for him.
He was even more excited with what was on the other side of the blue wall.Frankie, meet Joni. Another Jersey Wooly. I had so much fun but managed to refrain from buying a bunny, only because Christine offered this doe to me. Now if I can just manage to convince Hubby NOT to let them visit each other.
I really enjoyed myself, I may even go again sometime. After all, I do have one travel cage. Hmmmmm. Joni has longer fur, but he is a rarer color. And when I had them in to groom, Frankie does sit up in a more compact stance.

Anyway, on a related note, I started my niece's nursing shawl, in Knit Picks Shine, in Ebony, which is a pretty soft black. It isn't even too hard to knit that color in the evening, and so soft.

Friday, March 5, 2010

The Trials and Joys of Farm Life

Last week was not a great week at the farm.
When I arrived home, Hubby was trying to reach Older Son. Our one older cow was off her feed, and symptoms looked she had lost the unborn calf. Older Son commandeered his buddy Henry and they and Hubby tried to "pull the calf." Calf was indeed dead, and when they were done, so was cow. There went the property taxes.
This week, things were looking brighter. Hubby counted our big round 800 pound bales of hay. After putting an ad in the local buyers guide, we got a couple calls, and before you knew it, we had sold 30 bales of hay.
Hubby is smiling and life was looking up.
But he still won't take me to dinner tonight.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Sweater Tales

Pink Lady in all her glory:

Analysis: I started the sweater back when I still didn't believe that if I swatched carefully and added just a couple inches, that it would fit. This is big, but comfy. I added an extra 7 stitches under each sleeve, and I believe that was after adding ease when I was increasing the yoke. But like I said it is comfy. If I make another, It will be smaller sleeves for sure. Possibly even sleeveless. I saw one on Ravelry that was made into a vest and it looked very nice.

And on the new project front, here is the yarn I am using for the new sweater I mentioned. It is one piece and I have four inches already, after casting on Tuesday. Remember that it takes a bunch of stitches to get around me. This time though, I think I have the ease thing under more control.

The multicolor is my handspun falklands and Cherry Tree Hill top in the cool colorway. I split it multiple times when spinning to preserve multiple color changes. One of them match the heather yarn perfectly.
And it is the perfect thing to work on while I wait for the worsted weight Knit Picks Shine to come that I am using to make my niece a nursing shaw.
Like I need an excuse to start something new.

FarmMom Gets Hopping

A new experience for FarmMom this Saturday.
I have been the the big agricultural arena at Michigan State University called the Pavilion several times. Hubby and I have attended the Beef Expo, and brought home some animals for our herd. I have also visited there when my sons and some of their friends were there for Dairy Days. We don't have dairy cattle ourselves, but we have "hung out" with dairy farmers a lot.
But this weekend, I will be attending a Rabbit show there.
No, Frankie will be staying home but I will be riding down with Christine, one of my fellow Spin Guilder members. She has horses, alpacas, sheep, one rescue llama, and bunnies--several varieties--both eating and showing. I know she has Satin Angoras, which are my favorite.
She is showing and I am tagging along. And keeping her awake.
I have to be at her house (about a half hour drive or so) at (Lord help me!!) 4:45 AM.
On related note, I will try to post a picture of me in the Pink Lady, as well as show some pictures of my new sweater I've started. I have knit past the 4 row stripe above the ribbing and I love it.