Sunday, April 24, 2011

Mission Complete

This was the scene at the Sunset Fibers booth at my spinner guild's March 2010 Spin-In.

Faced with so much yummy lushness, my eyes always glaze over and my hand immediately reaches for my check book.

"My Pretty - My pretty" - I sound like Gollum in The Lord of the Rings!

I decided that I absolutely needed to purchase enough wool to make sweaters for my bosses impending twins.

I chose a colorful rainbow mix for one.

It ended up that I didn't get as much as I should have (12 ounces instead of 16 that I really needed), so I blended some of the rainbow with a white Shetland wool single (and some of the lavender pastel with grey Shetland single - )

And a lavender pastel mix for the other -

Little did I know that they planned to name one of the girls "Violet"

If you have been following my blog for a while, you'll remember that I told you about my first BIG mistake HERE (ahh - the first round through - they were too small)

Could I have "revised" the sweaters so they would have fit? Maybe. But I wanted them to be better than that.

So, after all the frogging (rippit, rippit, rippit) I finally got them re-crocheted and finished - washed, blocked and buttons sewed on -

Can you see this adorable lavender rose button?
(click on the picture to biggify it)

Here is Annie's "coat of many colors" - on the "re-do" I was actually able to make the pattern of the colors from the sleeves match the pattern of the colors on the hood. I thought I was very clever for that...

And I found these sweet little heart shaped buttons for her coat.

And here are none other than the recipients themselves.

Probably the cutest babies I've ever seen.

And the sweaters fit! Their grandma Mel said that she thought they'd be able to wear them for a while.

Spring and summer in the Pacific NW is often chilly, so I'm hoping that they will get a lot of use out of them before they outgrow them. The hazards of making a sweater for a baby...

But it was a fun project and I actually enjoyed myself.

Thank you to Mommy Rachel for the lovely pictures of the girls.

The end...

Happy Easter - Looking Back Sunday

This is a combined post to wish you all a very Happy Easter and to look back a few years ago when it was a much warmer and nicer spring!

Our choir is singing for church this morning - some special cheery spring songs. We've been singing a lot this month, and had our annual "Choir Service" on the 3rd. We've been doing some new and challenging songs this year.

Won't you come hunting for Easter eggs with me?

I think Mother Nature gives us daffodils so we'll know that she hasn't forgotten about us.

Even though we've had the coldest and wettest April on record, there are still bright yellow dafs and big clouds of pink flowering cherries and plums everywhere.

The Shepherd & I are having a nice spiral cut Easter Ham for our Easter dinner. It's my favorite!

I think I'll surprise him and make a pumpkin pie for dessert since it's been too cold for the rhubarb to get much size yet.

I hope you and your family have a great day and find all kinds of fun things in your Easter Baskets.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

New Socks

Some gifts really come from the heart. My friend Yvonne (and the host of the Farm Sale that we were involved in last weekend) made me a pair of wool socks!

Wow - they are really cool. (or, as the case may be, really warm)

OK, I know my leg looks kind of like a tree trunk, but things are what they are.

Anyhow, I've never had a pair of handmade socks. I do know she's been working on them since my birthday (in January) What a neat present!

Thank you Yvonne!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Wonderful Woolies Fleece & Fiber Sale

Last weekend our friends Yvonne & Doug of Spinner's Eden Farm had a fleece & fiber sale at their farm here in the county.

We had about ten farms participating providing everything from CVM, mohair, Shetland (ours and our friend Nancy's), Alpaca, Llama, Corriedale, and a huge luscious colorful mountain of combed top and potluck roving from Kathy Green's Ferndale Fiber (that's Kathy on the left).

We had many discerning customers who were willing to brave the windy COLD (in the low 40's) day to come out, feed their fleece habit and get bargains right off the farm.

A happy customer with two bumps of Ferndale Fiber and a beautiful big bump of Yvonne's CVM.

And YES, did I mention it was cold?

Here I am in my "little nest" - I had two shirts, a fleece vest, a winter coat (fleece lined and a wind breaker outer skin) - I was sitting on a fleece blanket that had been doubled up AND I had a down coverlet over my lap. Oh, and my new cowl/hood that I made from a blend of merino, alpaca and mohair.

I forgot to bring my fingerless mittens home from work, so I tried to wear my gloves, but I was cashiering and it was difficult to write with gloves on - I was also working on a crochet project in the down time (which there wasn't much of, it was really pretty busy!) and that really didn't work with gloves on.

OK, I know that I don't need any more fiber, but I just couldn't help getting these three bumps of Kathy's combed top. The colors will work really well for a crochet project I'm working on for a arts & crafts sale I've been invited to be in this fall.

Tables and tables of fiber - I'm sorry that I only took pictures of what I could see from the cashier table - It was a really fun day.

We got to know some very nice new "fiber farmers" and my ulterior motive for being cashier was that I got to meet and greet every single person who came to the sale. Many were folks on my spinner guild email newsletter list who don't come to meetings so I got to meet all those people too.

Yup, it was a really fun day!

Can you guess?

What is it?

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Oh, it's - Lunchtime

The lambs grow so fast - this was a week ago and now the "Olambpics" have started

Ptooey - this straw stuff is just blechy -

Blanco, straw is for bedding, not for eating - why don't you go check out what your mom has to offer...

Hmmm - don't mind if I do...

Monday, April 18, 2011

I hate to complain, but

This was the scene in our front yard last Thursday, and this was after it had almost all melted -

The 14th of April and it snowed.

OK, the earth is not shaking,

The wind is not switching,

The house is not pitching,

and the hinges are not unhitching -

But it is the middle of April, and it's snowing!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Cutting it just a little too close...

Those of you who are seasoned knitters or crocheters have probably been following my baby sweater project with a fair amount of amusement (to say the least) - I don't think swatching would have made any difference (but getting a measurement on the babies sure would have) -

Well, they are done - still have to wash and block them, but all the little ends are tied in etc.

And this is what I had left of the two ply Corriedale that I was using - one itty bitty ball of each colorway. Well, I still have a small ball of each of the Corriedale/Shetland mix, but I really didn't want to use any more of that yarn as it wasn't as vibrant as the plain Corriedale.

This is the sweater for Violet.

I actually picked out the wool way before they had chosen names, but it couldn't have ended up a more perfect yarn for her sweater.

The darker band around the middle and the yoke is plied with some gray Shetland wool from one of our sheep.

If you click on the pictures to biggafy them, you can really see the colors better.

And this is the sweater for Annie. They are actually pretty much the same size, I'm not sure why this one looks smaller... The lighter band around the middle of this sweater is Corriedale plied with a cream colored Shetland single.

I was pretty pleased with how the remakes came out actually. I was able to monitor the colorways a little more than I realized I'd be able to - the only thing missing on this sweater is a little more red on the left sleeve.

I'll get some pearl buttons tomorrow when I go to town (I have today and tomorrow off to get ready for a wool sale that The Shepherd and I are participating in this weekend) I hope I can find some red ones for Annie's.

Washing and blocking is my LEAST favorite thing to do - but I will get them done so they will have them before Easter (and before they get any bigger!)

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Out into the big wide world

HI! My name is Eva!

I am The Shepherd's favorite. I know this because he whispered it in my ear this afternoon.

He says I'm going to have pretty wool - what ever that is...

This is not a very lady like pose you guys...

HI! My name is Blanco - I'm hard to get a picture of - the lady says I'm something called a "whirling dervish", what ever that is....

HI! My name is Rita, put me down NOW!

Eva & Blanco here - we heard the lady say that our mom was being kind of a b**ch because she won't let that other sheep family into the little barn with us. We hope she chills out, because it is going to be kind of rainy and windy tomorrow, and we wouldn't like our new friends to get wet and cold.

HI, My name is Wendy.

The Shepherd man says I'm going to turn grey because I have white around my mouth and little white hairs on my butt. I'm going to have a pretty coat though.

Come back and see us soon - all the neighbors have been stopping by. They keep asking where somebody named Wicket is...

Saturday, April 09, 2011

We light a candle for our friend Al

It is a bitter sweet weekend here at the farm - we welcome new life and say good bye to our good friend and neighbor, Al..

This picture was taken in June 2007 at his 60th birthday party

A life cut way too short by the big C.

Rest in peace Al.

Thursday, April 07, 2011

Four on the floor - so to speak...

These two little ladies arrived yesterday afternoon - Wendy, in the little black suit, and Lovely Rita on the right.

They came out into a COLD night - it got down to 31 degrees here last night!!!

Their momma is Violet.

This evening, Luna's taking a breather after popping out (actually The Shepherd had to do a little bit of pulling on that one) Blanco - Ram lamb, white head and black body - and Little Eva - the grey & white & mousey brown mottled one - already The Shepherd's favorite.

Blanco gets a ride on the floating scale - one of the best presents I've ever given The Shepherd -

And the rest of the disgruntled flock - "Let us in! We want our hay! Who cares about those little pipsqueaks!" (Actually we're going to have to keep an eye on Pearl - always a very good mom, but she didn't get bred this year - guess she kept her legs crossed??? - but she's been eyeballing those babies with fond looks...)

That's the news from the farm tonight - I'm still crocheting like crazy on those sweaters - gotta get them finished before those baby girls get any bigger!

Saturday, April 02, 2011

Maybe I should have measured FIRST....

In last Tuesday's post I showed you some pictures of the baby sweaters that I am making for my bosses twin daughters.

I got the first one finished on Sunday.

I thought to myself "Self, maybe you should try this sweater ON one of the girls before you finish it off, weave in all the ends and stuff..."

I guess I just had that feeling.

On Wednesday, his wife was "out and about" with the girls (who are about 8 months old now) - so she stopped by the office. I had the sweater in my car so I ran out to get it.


In the words of Goldilocks - "Oh my, this sweater is just TOO SMALL"

I might note here that most of my previous projects have been square/rectangle/round, etc. - no defining "size' - other than length and width - who cares how big or small an afghan or scarf is?

And I did check the gauge - I just made them a size too small.

So, no tears, no screaming, just a lot of mumbling under my breath and a little gnashing of teeth as I ripped out and wound all the yarn into new balls - see - I've even started the new one - and this time, it is in the 12-18 month size - let them grow out of that before I get it finished.

Next time, I'll measure FIRST.