Thursday, June 30, 2016

Live, Going at Full Tilt

I had my usual Grammy day yesterday. Toddlers like going nonstop don't they?

The toy of the day was his blue shovel, but we had time to read all of his books too. Of course, he turned pages so fast that I hadn't much chance to read, but he was enjoying it. I think he has every board book about tractors ever written.

I am steaming along on the Baby Hap. It still looks like a big sack. The last of the gray is done and I have started the pink section. Still doesn't take a good picture. Did I mention I am going to the the final lace border in purple? I found plenty of purple yarn. I was sure I had a bunch.

I did need to take a break from knitting tonight to help Hubby split firewood. We got the winter's fuel delivered this past week.

This is two or three loads. We got six all together. Most shouldn't need further splitting, but it helps to have a few that I can manage. We also run the water heater through the outside boiler, so we burn a bit all year long.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

The Garden Grows

Remember the 60 potato plants that Hubby planted. They are thriving and not a one lost so far.

Thick and blossoming, he has already been mounding the soil beneath each plant.

We cut back on the tomatoes this year, only six plants. Our plants al way too heavy for those tomato cages. Instead, Hubby puts a tire around each plant to raise them just a bit.

In addition we have five squash that can be seen above, behind the potatoes. And we also have a half dozen bush cucumber plants. There are blossoming nicely and I hope I can make a batch of refrigerator cakes very soon. Yum.

I can hardly wait for some fresh produce again.

Monday, June 27, 2016

Plodding Along

The knitting continues on the Baby Hap.

I finished the last row of yellow and am on the first Gray row, the color pattern is now reversed, with the gray to be followed by pink and then the dark purple and more white. I rummaged in the stash and found four more skeins of the Eggplant (purple), so I have plenty to use for the sideways lace bind off around the perimeter.

I have been greatly enjoying knitting this hap shawl/blanket. I finally broke down and bought The Book of Haps.

Haps are traditional everyday workhorse type of shawls from the Shetland Islands. I love the style. And even though the hard copy will be coming from overseas, I was able to also download the book files as well. I decided the book is definitely a winner.

Because the hap is knit in the round after the center square, it gets bunched up and hard to take pictures. However, it makes a handy built in sack that I can throw the ball of yarn into as I knit.

If it wasn't for the lace pattern, it would be quite portable.


Thursday, June 23, 2016

Back Again

Well, look, I haven't fallen off the face of the earth.  But it was a hot and busy weekend.
The Open House with Dances With Wool at Chickasaw Farm was fun.  It helped that before I got there I was able to get myself chilled completely.
In spite of the heat, I had a great time. I even wove a few rows on the huge tri-loom.  I put in a raffle ticket but I guess I didn't win.  I haven't heard from my friends that I had the winning ticket.
There were demo's of different crafts, and some vendors.  I didn't take my spinning wheel, but I did get one row of knitting done on my Tapestry Hitchhiker.  After all it was World Wide Knit in Public Day.  I got some wonderful wool for a shawl, and a nifty and inexpensive needle sizer.  Some people lose tape measures.  I lose needle sizers.  I also bought a white Shetland fleece to be layered with a rose gray alpaca I had found in my wool room and sent them off for processing at Stonehenge Mills.
I had to leave early from there, in time to get home for Mass, and then went on to the wedding reception with Hubby.
Friends of the family, the groom was the younger of our matching sets of boys.  Some of the groomsmen were familiar faces from the younger years. 
In spite of the heat, a great time was had. 
We even got a wagon ride back to the pond, where the wedding was held.  We saw a bald eagle fly off from a log when we interrupted his fishing in the pond.

Friday, June 17, 2016

Knitting Update

I was so flustered by my (so far) two roosters, that I forgot to post a picture of the Baby Hap yesterday, as I promised.

The actual waves or shell pattern will open up as I go along. Here, I was only on row 12 out of 50 rows of the shell lace. Two more colors to go: gray and yellow, followed by some more white, then the whole color pattern is inverted. I am trying to decide on white for the outside lace, or the purple. The pattern calls for the creamy white, but this IS for the Purple Princess after all.

I may need to see where the rest of the purple yarn is hiding.

Thursday, June 16, 2016

The Jig is Up

This morning, at feeding time, Rocky slipped up.

He, yes I said he, opened his mouth and crowed. And then, later in the day, so did Mumps. Rocky is the black and white Barred Rock shown in back right above in this picture taken about a month ago.

Mumps is the dark one shown above again on the right. Cinder Ella is photo bombing him in the lower right, see his eye ball?

In case you were wondering about the name Mumps, remember the ear poufs I mentioned before? Below is a better picture of Cinder's. They don't show up well in photos. About half the chickens have them, but Mumps and Measles both have them and both needed names. Since Measles has spots, the dark one became Mumps.

So far, Rita is not crowing at all. And she better not.


Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Farming, Hidden Knitting

The knitting on the Baby Hap is progressing nicely. I finished the purple stripe and am nearly half done with the pink. No pictures yet, it is hard to photograph all scrunched up on a circular needle. But I will try to at least get get a picture soon of a section of the edging.

I mentioned that after the baling was done, the boys wanted to get a coat of manure (AKA brown gold) on the fields.

The coat isn't as thick as the five coats sprayed on a year ago, but it is a start.

Today was my day with Little Farmer. His sister was there for most of the day now that school is out. I had taken a couple machinery catalogs that come periodically in Older Son's name and Little Farmer was fascinated.

Studying farm equipment is hard work.

"I guess I'll just take one of each Grammy."


Sunday, June 12, 2016

Keeping Busy

Hubby was busy yesterday, gathering up all the bales from the farthest field, ready for pickup.

Notice this is a green and white tractor.

Oldest Son and his Best Bud have since loaded the bales out. Now we wait for a possible spray of "brown gold" and then second cutting.

Like a crazy person, after Mass yesterday, I cleaned out the girls coop. It must have been that the heat weakened my senses. I should have waited a day, because the humidity is way down today and it is almost pleasant out. At times yesterday I could hardly see, with the sweat running in my eyes.

But today, while watching the race at the Michigan speedway, I managed some knitting.

Since the picture was taken, I have rounded the next corner. I like that I can easily see if I forgot to slip a stitch and go back to correct it. A very fun pattern too, The Ten Stitch Blanket.

In my off times I have also gotten back to my Baby Hap Shawl, started for the Purple Princess last October. I would like to finish it by her birthday.

The hardest thing was picking up the stitches AND getting the correct stitch count. But that has been done and I have started the 50 rows of colored Old Shale lace. I will be using purple, a rose pink, gray, and a pop of yellow. It will finish up with a sideways lace border, probably in white. The lace is easily memorized but I do still have the Tapestry Shawl for brainless knitting when needed.

Friday, June 10, 2016

Fun on the Farm

First cutting is finished and Hubby has been busily moving bales.

Even though the tractor was the "wrong" color, it still made quick work of baling all the fields. And yes, I know our tractor (an Oliver) is green, but it is green and white, not green and yellow. This year Hubby let Oldest Son and his Best Bud handle the crop. They arranged the cutting, raking, and baling and will be able to get another cutting off yet this summer.

The girls were interested in the commotion.

I say "girls" with reservations, as there has been some definite crowing going on.

Lacey says it isn't her. Actually I suspect Rocky and Rita. And possibly Measels. Rita is the dark red one shown above and on the right below.

I am going by their combs mostly, and attitude. But when I am in sight, they are keeping mum.

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Beautiful and the Ugly

There are two sides to every knitting project. And some are worse than others.

The Tulips Baby Cardigan is finished.

With just that wee bit of teal, I didn't even try to do the I-cord ties and neck with it. I went to an alternate color. Now that I am finished, I almost wish I had gone with the purple, but instead I chose the pink. It is a bit too matchy matchy, but I guess it will do.

And the ugly side?

A bajillion ends that need to be woven in.

I guess I best get at it.

Monday, June 6, 2016

Knitting Weather

So nice to have some cooler weather again. It is good knitting weather.

Work has been progressing on the Tulips Cardigan. The second sleeve is farther than shown here, all the way to the light blue row now. Looking at the leftover turquoise, I will definitely need to substitute another color for the ties and collar I-cord. Probably the pink will work best.

Even with the better weather, there are still some obstacles in my knitting.

Lewie figures why sleep on a pillow when he can find handknitting to interfere with. Luckily, he has a short attention span, and moved quickly.

Friday, June 3, 2016

Garden Anticipation

I know I haven't been on the blog as much in the past month.

Heat will do that to a person.

But the garden is in good shape. No pictures, but Hubby has 60 potato plants up and seemingly flourishing. After last night we had three squash plants in the ground plus what appears to be two more voluntary plants. (Apparently we missed a squash last year.) We also planted twelve tomatoes, three cells of violas and six bush pickle plants. We didn't get many last year. I hope we do better this year. And of course a lengthy row of beans.

And tonight, we finished with two rows of corn.

I wouldn't put it past Hubby to put in more beans and potatoes when I have my back turned though.

And so from now till after harvest, the girls need to stay in their coop. They are big enough to fend off the cats I think, but we want to keep them out of the garden.


Thursday, June 2, 2016

Remember the Tulip Cardigan?

I have returned to knitting the Colorful Tulip Cardi and have made much progress from this. There is now I-cord around both fronts and bottom. And the first sleeve is started. I hope there will be enough of the teal for both sleeves, and the edging there.

If it looks tight, I decided I can always use the pink for the I-cord ties and neck finishing. After all this is for a girl this time. Either way, I should be able to finish this soon.

And remember the yarn I accidently may have ordered? It is turning into the 10 Stitch Blankie.

A mere 10 stitches spiral around, with metered corners, creating a square blanket. I did need to watch a tutorial on YouTube a couple times but it is going fairly smoothly now, and has grown a bit from this picture.

I am glad the temps have gone down for a while. It makes knitting much easier.