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Friday, July 30, 2010

Yays and Boos

Yay the DVD player is finally fixed!   It went in on the first week of the school holidays under its extended warranty and was finally done yesterday afternoon.  The laser unit needed replacing and there were none in the country so we had to wait for the slow boat from Japan.  Currently watching City of Ember with Ian, it's his first movie for a bit.  He's been really good this week so I decided to let him watch, that and he's sneezing stringies (boo) atm so we can't go anywhere, have cancelled his horseriding this afternoon and may have to cancel the gym as well.  Don't want movies over the weekend though as George has lost his Xbox, Movie and Computer privileges for the weekend. 
I'll be getting some work done today, but probably not a heck of a lot else.  Hoping to cast on for my Bug Off socks this afternoon if we do get to the gym though, really looking forward to them as it's my first colourwork item ever and I think I can manage continental knitting now.   Here's the yarn for it
I'm also partway through my Spiral Birdies, the yarn is Handmaiden Casbah sock which is lovely.  I've had a compliment from the pattern designer about my choice of yarn; the pattern came with yarn from Vintage Purls, but I could see the yarn in lace whereas the pattern said it wanted a more variagated yarn so I went with this yarn.   It is fluffing a little, probably from the Cashmere component, but it fits perfectly!   I'm just starting on the gusset increases atm.

I'm also starting to reduce clutter a bit, selling some of the kids toys that don't get played with; any money from that will be saved towards giving Ian a new booster seat for the car.  Will also be going through all my stuff in the sewing room and hopefully reducing that slightly.  Have already donated a little fabric to school for their wearable arts program; looks like I'll be doing some sewing for that too, they need some balaclava type things for the kids.

Speaking of sewing I've finally finished the boys pj's and one set for me.  Still 2 more to go for me and then I can do something a little more interesting; I want a long skirt with petticoats to keep warmth in, probably something from one of my period patterns I think.  Here's Ian's pj's, he hasn't worn the other pair yet so I'll post a photo of them once he has.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Duck Free!

Girl duck is currently on her way to her new home where she'll spend the first week in the barn in sight, sound and smell of the other ducks, but not in with them.   Her food, oyster grit etc has gone with her so she should be well served and happy (assuming she doesn't die of shock).  She didn't want to be caught but cornered herself after escaping into the larger enclosure so I had to carry her over 2 fences to get her into the cat carry.  The moment she was in there she calmed down though which was good, considering she was calling for her brother quite a lot last night  My boss will keep me posted on how she goes; she's a good healthy duck so should be fine.
Both boys have said goodbye and know she's being rehomed (not killed and eaten); Ian went to visit her when he got home today and said in a sad voice "you destroyed a duck".   George asked when we'd be getting more ducks; the response was "never".  Now I can get started on rescuing our section.  
Now, back to our normal broadcast....

My next post will have some spinning and maybe some knitting; got to get dinner on now so not just yet.  I'm partway through my final bobbin for a 3-ply Merino/Nylon sock yarn and am really looking forward to seeing that finished.   I gave away a skein of my handspun earlier today too, it's going to a lady on TNN who's just recently adopted a wee Downs baby.  2-ply BFL light fingering in browns and pink; should be well received, but I can't be there for the party so a friend is taking it for me.  It was very hard to give up, but I couldn't give away an inferior yarn and no doubt it'll get knitted or crocheted rather quicker there than it would here.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Duck rehoming and giveaway site

My boss rang back and she's picking up girl duck tomorrow; I'll give her the rest of the food too and she'll borrow our cat cage to transport her.  Phew, glad that's sorted.

Now the giveaway I did earlier this week was noticed by Giveaway Scout ( who are a giveaway search engine. Their users subscribe to receive updates on the latest giveaways on the web. Add your blog and your giveaways will be exposed to thier large network or users.  I'm going to be joining, I won't be doing a huge amount of giveaways but I figure if I go down the selling of hand-dyed yarn/fibre trail at a later date it's a good way to introduce my work; that and I like the feeling I get when I give stuff away.

1 duck down...

That was harder than either of us expected. I did thank him for his sacrifice before we killed him. Boy duck is now all sorted; the killing part was harder to do than we had thought it would be.  DH did the killing, but the duck didn't want to die; apparently he was likely dead pretty quickly but he didn't look dead, those automatic reaction things are rather disconcerting.  Was a bit traumatic for our eldest boy who was in tears; we've let them go on the Wii this afternoon while I finished so they didn't watch anything else going on.  Hoping that he won't have any ongoing worries about the duck.  He knows we're going to find a home for the girl, probably a friend (my boss) who has a farm and runs ducks on it already.  I definitely don't want her to suffer and she'll have a good home there.  No way we can kill again when we know we're not as good as we need to be; although I know practice makes perfect it's not something I see a need to perfect atm.  If she can't take her then I'll put her on Trademe for someone else to add to their flock.
No photo's I'm afraid, didn't want to take any when the children could possibly end up seeing them.
Plucked him as I wanted to keep the feathers, but there's still lots floating around the yard; that took ages.  Some stuff I'd read said 10 minutes to pluck, took me an hour with DH's help.  Couldn't get all the lungs out so ended up removing the legs, thighs, breast and wings to cook and disposed of the carcass.   I was quite surprised at how little meat is left on a duck when you're done; lots of fat though and a huge amount of feather.  I was rather pleased at how I managed to get the rest of the innards out without breaking the bile duct or anything though.

End result; I am not a killer, though at least now I can say that I could kill to eat, but I'd rather not.

Going to do some work now I think and maybe some spinning later.   Hope there's a good movie on tonight.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Just a quick post

Webfrau has contacted me so her yarn will be on its way on Monday, got some more spinning done today too; course is finished aside from the paperwork so I can send that off on Monday as well.

Tomorrow, hmm.  It's hopefully D-day for the ducks.   They're handsome birds, but gosh are they messy!   Our lawn looks like a swamp and it's getting hard to find a suitable spot for the guinea pigs to snack on with the poo and damage they've done.   I think we're going to break their necks; he's going first and I'm keeping his feathers.  Will have to set up a big pot to dunk him in so I can pluck him easily; wish me luck cos it's the first time I've ever killed anything and I really don't want to come out of this with nothing.  A duck dinner would be at least some return.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

No TV for children

It's day 6 of no TV till 6pm for the children and I think it's starting to be accepted by George at least; he didn't mention it today.  Ian's still presenting me with DVD's but is getting better about putting them back when I say.
They will probably get some TV on Saturday, though the likelihood of console games is fairly low.  Ian's lost Wii for kicking George in the face; George has lost Wii and Xbox for continuous eating of cat biscuits despite being warned.
They did both help me with tidying the house this afternoon though.  George emptied the dishwasher and put the washing away while Ian helped me put the toys away from the lounge and get the floor clear so I could vacuum. Afterwards Ian played with his marble run game (I put it together for him under his direction) and then played racing games with his marbles, very cute.  George is busy reading Asterix books atm; his favourite books.
Ian is doing really well at school atm, was a little distracted today but other than that he's fine.  His first full Thursday at school tomorrow; yippee!

Oh, and while I remember, our ducks will definitely be dinner soon, just need a Saturday evening where it's fine and we'll be getting started with the help of a  couple of websites.  Thomas will help, but I'll be doing the killing and plucking, not sure what the boys will think but it'll be up to them if they want to help or not.

And the winner is...

Webfrau after my eldest George did this
That was the prep work of writing out all the numbers ready to make the draw; and then he did this:
Congratulations and Webfrau I need you to contact me on (I'll remove this link as soon as contact is made) so I can post you your lovely skein of Vintage Purls sock yarn.
Thank you everyone for participating and I'm sorry I couldnt' give away 51 skeins, but there's just no way I could make myself do that even if I had that many.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

The boys and I made

Originally uploaded by sewsable
butter! Started in a jar, but it expanded a bit too much so we shifted it to the food processor and they found it fascinating!
There was absolutely no tv today so they had to find other things to do; we made waffles after this but I need to find a better recipe; this one was a little stodgy. Thomas liked it though.

Good spinning done this morning, but I haven't figured out how to do more than one photo from flickr so I'll post that later for you. Got to go to bed now, maybe get in a couple of rows before I go to sleep (don't tell DH)

Friday, July 16, 2010

Vintage Purls Giveaway

Well I've been saying I'll do a yarn giveaway and after some stash diving I've come up with this lovely skein
 It's "In the Navy" and is a nice deep dusty navy semi-solid yarn.  Would make lovely socks for a man or woman and I'm finding it really hard to give it away!
In order to enter you need to leave a comment on this post; I'd love it if you followed my blog as well but you're still in if you don't.   I will send anywhere, but it will take a little longer if you're not in NZ.
ETA:  I will be closing this off on Wednesday 9am NZ time.

Oh, and here's a gratuitous kitty photo, the cage is around the fire, not a bird luckily, but isn't she gorgeous?

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Little Birdie Fly Away Home

and luckily she did, leaving a few momento's behind though.
The little birdie in question was our kitten's 2nd catch of the day (1st day of successful hunting).   The first one she brought in yesterday morning wasn't moving so I chucked kitten and prey outside.  I'm pretty sure that was a sparrow so no huge loss.   Last night however she got a silvereye which she hadn't killed.  He was pretty shocky though after I'd removed him and couldn't hold onto a branch outside so I popped him in the above box with some facecloths to keep him warm, closed the box and put it in the hot water cupboard for the night with a towel on top so he couldn't get loose.  No food or water as I didn't want him choking or drowning and I just prayed he'd be ok this morning.   First thing I did this morning while still in my pj's was to check the box and he was just fine!   I kept it shut until we got outside, opened it up and off he flew up to the silk tree.  Unfortunately I didn't get any photo's of him, last night he was shocky so flashes would have made things worse and this morning there was no way he was hanging around for photography!   He left a few feathers behind as a momento though as you can see.

Before all this happened though I got some spinning done while watching Riddick on DVD with Thomas; the boys are away at Grandma's for last night and tonight so we've got some free time.   Thomas was off sick yesterday, but is back at work today.  He did quite a bit of work from home and then we spent the afternoon playing Halo 3 together.  It was very nice.
Here's the spinning I got done.  The fibre is pin drafted roving from Fiber Optics on Etsy and I'm spinning it for socks, so it's been split into 3 roughly equal parts.   I worked on that while I was waiting for a response from an email I sent to Margaret Stove to check how long my skeins should be for the course.  Now I know, 25m so I'll be working on that tonight. 

Today, I'm going to get some work done on the pj's that have been sitting around for ages, but I think I might light  the fire first as I'm feeling a little chilled and my fingers are fighting me even to type!
I'm also going to do some stash diving and pull out a skein of something yummy to give away as well as some fibre to send off for a scrappy fibre swap.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Hope tomorrow improves

Tis the season for colds, coughs etc and I'm coughing and running, at least it's not a chesty cough, just a bark; but gosh is it annoying (and painful). Throwing back the garlic and vitamin C and drinking heaps.
Hoping I'll be better tomorrow as MIL will have the boys so I want to get some sewing done rotfl.

Today I've been working, partially frogging my One Sided vest after discovering the cable instructions are back to front and starting on it again.  Will be doing some more spinning tonight, but on my last session I finished my Perendale, 530m of DK weight after washing
Isn't she pretty?  I'm planning on turning her into no-heel bed socks; yum.

In the meantime I'm working on my course Merino spinning, it's the final part so I'll get to ply this lot.  Have to spin about 3 skeins worth, including one in the grease which will be interesting as I never spin in the grease.  I want to get that finished so I can get back to my other spinning and knitting.

I've also cast on the socks from the Vintage Purls winter sock club (Spiral Bound), but I'm doing them in an alternative yarn which is Handmaiden Casbah.   I'm really happy with them so far, all 20 rows.

I also need to cast on for Cinnamon Grace using this yarn
It's Purewool Merino in fingering weight, I was a little surprised by the number of knots in it (3) plus a lot of slightly nubbly bits but it will still do a good job on the shawl.

Tuesday, July 06, 2010

Yarnie goodness

 This was my first yarn in the Tour de Fleece 2010.  It's 187.5m, 45g and approximately sport weight.  I've called it Tulips and Lobelia.  It's going to Germany as the handmade component of my yarn swap.  Although I'd love to keep it the colours fit in really well with my swappees colours of green, blue and autumn shades.

This was my second one, it's called Blue Barf.   It's an art yarn of alpaca (the prep was horrible), it became art yarn as the other option was to throw it out.   Love the colours, hated spinning it but it's all done now, 75.5m of super bulky yarn with feathers and down in it.  I'm thinking a hat trim for this one; will be nice and warm at least.
This is my third; it's not finished yet, I've got about 185gm to go.  It's Vintage Purls NZ Perendale and I'm spinning with the aim of worsted weight finished yarn.  It's lovely to spin and I'm hoping to get it finished by the end of the week.   I have to say it's nice that I can still spin various weights of yarn, in a few days I've gone from what would have been light fingering if it'd been 2-ply to bulky to worsted.

Knitting, hmm well that's been sort of on hold a bit while the Tour de Fleece is on, but I've finished the ribbing band on my One Sided and started the main body and I've also determined which shawl I'm doing next.  Thanks to the generosity of a lovely Raveller I now own the Evenstar shawl pattern; I've just got to determine if I'm using a cone of Cashmere or a cone of Merino to knit it up with.  The cashmere is the recommended weight, the Merino is slightly lighter so would come out smaller.  Either would be beautiful.   Also have to cast on a smaller shawlette in some Purewool for a SIL.

It's school holidays now too, yesterday was a rest day, the boys got to watch Disney channel most of the day while I worked, today will probably be similar except we will be doing some baking and also some reading of the homework list from school.  Ian's full of cold so I don't really want to go out today if I can avoid it.
Tomorrow is the first activity.  George will be going into the guild at 1pm and learning to spin and knit there; I'll take Ian out for a wander around town and the Art Centre while he's there.  Afterwards I'm planning on going to Southern Encounter so the boys can look at the fish there.  They've got a holiday deal where you pay for an adult and 2 children get in free which makes it affordable.
We're also planning on going to the Antarctic Centre at some point which is currently half price for residents and Liz (MIL) is taking them for a night or two next week (I'm hoping for 2).  She'll probably take them to the movies, I can't do that as I usually need to go to the loo halfway through and I couldn't leave Ian without supervision even for that short time in a public place.  I'd probably come out to find he'd gone out the emergency exit and disappeared!

Saturday, July 03, 2010

Legs pedalling, wheels going around

It's the Tour de France, and the Tour de Fleece as well.  We're able to start the Tour de Fleece on Saturday (today) no matter our timezone so I started this morning at the guild.  I've finished my first bobbin of singles and will Navajo ply it tonight (photo will be posted then).  Started on the second lot but the prep for it was horrible!    It's alpaca dyed in the most marvelous teal and blue but because of the prep I can't get an even single.  I had 2 options.  1 was to biff it, the second was to spin it thick'n'thin which is what I'm going for.  50g will be plain thick'n'thin, the second I'm planning on adding some feathers to so at the end I'll have an art yarn.
Then I can get started on something a bit more pleasant to work with, maybe some Perendale by Vintage Purls. This finishes I believe on the 25th, I will spin for my Merino course as well, but probably very little knitting for the time that this covers.
School holidays are in here too so I won't be spinning all the time, lots to do with the boys.

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