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September 2008

August 2008

goings on..

It's hard to believe that Labor Day and the start of the fall season is only a week away.  When I was a kid, this meant that school started the following day and that it was time to put our white shoes and purses back in the closet for another year.  Now it means one more thing, that the fall fiber festivals are gearing up.  If any of you are planning on visiting the Vermont Sheep & Wool Festival, there is a coupon for $1.00 off the admission price at the festival website.  Nothing big but it is the only show I know that gives you anything off.  Vermont's show is held just outside Burlington at the Champlain Valley Exposition in Essex Junction.  Though still a small regional show, like so many other Sheep & Wool Festivals,it has grown considerably in the past few years. Ball and Skein will be there, in the "State" building, booth S-20 (I think). 


Last night at dinner, Dave Paul told me that his new jumbo flyers for the Hitchhiker are ready to go. With all the last minute shop stuff to finish and preparation for the first day of school (today) he had left behind the one he'd set aside for me.  I'll blog about it after I see him tomorrow. Tuesday night is pizza night around here.  Check it out for yourself, The Merlin Tree will also be at the VT S&W, same building.   

Books..  I'm re-reading "Rebecca".  Last week, while doing a speed run through one of the wholesale clubs, I found a new book "Rebecca's Tale" by Sally Beauman.  Instead of jumping right into it, "Rebecca" is coming first.  It has been a long time since the last time I read du Maurier.  I'm looking forward to this in the way you would a large bar of good chocolate,  wanting to devour and savor it at the same time.  Have any of you read it yet?

10 minutes a day

How's your 10 minutes a day going?  Have you been able to keep up with your expectations? maybe exceeded them? or has it been just one more of those plans that fell apart under the pace of a busy summer? 

With a few exceptions, I've kept to my plans and found that 10 minutes usually becomes at least 10 minutes more.  I've used it to spindle more than spin on a wheel.  Occasionally, if I am very busy and I know that the only time I'll get is the time I'll have as a passenger, I'll whip out my knitting. 

Here's what's up:

The second half of the cashmere / silk..  the first half plus a bit was spun and plied.


What's next on the list:  silk!


I divided 4 oz. into two parts, hopefully somewhat equal.  The color bands are long and by spinning a lace wt. I should have very long bands of color with a bit of transition between.  That's the plan.  Should I spin it on a wheel or a spindle...hmmm?

winding down

Monday afternoon, I clicked my heels (drove south into stop dead on the highway for an hour and a half kind of traffic) and ended up back in the city for the rest of the week.  The calm of the farm dissolved into the frenetic pace of a busy work week.  By the time I finished up my job and all the piled up office work, I found myself unwilling to fight rush hour traffic and the moose hours of dusk  further north.  What to do.  A walk in the woods, of course.  Puts me back on track every time.  Let's me know I'm one with the world. 


walk with me wednesday..




A summer of wet WET weather has left everything sodden, including the roads.  For most of July and August I /we walked and worked in the rain.  The old adage says, "make hay while the sun shines".  So it goes that the past week of mostly sunny days has forced everyone out and into production.  The hills nearly vibrate with activity.  And, noise.  The road to my house, usually a beautiful serene track has become a muddy hole.  We've got road work ahead.  Don't worry, there will be no tar or cement, just truck loads of gravel and a big new culvert or two.  (see them waiting down there?)


It is a bit unsettling, having everything dug up.  There is a huge piece of excavation equipment ready to go.  This work has to be done.  Summer is scary enough driving over an old narrow culvert with a fifteen foot drop, but an icy winter, blowing that is enough to get us and finally the town to agree to some changes.  When the excavation is finished I'll plant the road again, scattering grass and wildflower seeds.  A planted road holds up so much better. 

That work is for the road crew, not us.  We've got other things going. 


Like a sink full of Romano beans, broccoli, and snap peas.  There's a winter's worth of wood to be put up.   aahhhhh... summer!


Best of all... are the evenings.  Knitting, if my wrists hold out.


She grows.

comin' home

one evening last week..

It was a dark,  rainy evening.  Sounds like the start of a mystery.  Sorry, it's the explanation for the blurry pictures.  They were taken handheld at 1/2 sec.  I'm lucky to have them at all.  I have no idea why the hundred or so sheep were running single file, in a long line stretching as far as I could see, down the road to my neighbor's farm.  


They were definitely in a hurry to get somewhere.  Probably, like lemmings, they were simply following a leader with no  idea why they were going or where.  Maybe not. 


Rumor around here has it that several weeks ago my neighbor "lost" nearly 30 sheep one night to a mountain lion. The official line here in Vermont is that mountain lions, also called catamounts are extinct, the last one having been killed in 1881. If there were any here, they would now be a protected species.  Extinct or not, something slaughtered the sheep.  For the last fifteen years, we (the collective "we" around here) have seen them, filmed them, and collected scat in an effort to have the state correct itself.  I myself have seen prints in the snow of one tracking a deer.  If you are interested,click here.

No worry this night.  Whatever the reason, they were a sight to see. 


*In the distance you can see a car approaching, lights on.  I doctored the pictures to make them more readable.

ps. I agree that it seems unlikely that one animal would kill that many sheep.  It IS the local rumor.

walk with me wednesday.. the tea party

or... a belated Blogiversary to me!


Summer, family vacation, no phone service and six weeks of trying to fit in as much outdoor stuff as possible into the short bursts of time between heavy downpours and electrical storms, left me without celebrating five years of smatterings.  August 1st. came and went phoneless and therefore without internet.  I imagined my post and have forgotten it in the succeeding slip slide days of walking in a soggy woods, dragging logs that must be this year's fire wood.  As I sit here this morning, I can hear the road crew digging, replacing the culvert with a new and bigger one that can carry away the torrents that we have been having more and more of this summer.  The weather is hard the garden.  Green plants love it, fruits and veggies, not so.  Even the trees seem confused by it all.  The hills are dotted with maples already showing color.  Too little light, too much water, and very cool temps.  I haven't had the down comforter off the bed in two months.  Summer is summer, whatever the weather and tradition has it that we have high tea in a beautiful garden during vacation, even if it is in the rain.  I swear that these plants are real, I was not eating mushrooms, just scones and cream.  Here's proof that Mother Nature is one step ahead of our imaginations.