Wednesday, June 30, 2021

Wednesday WIPs: TdF Edition

 

I thought I was going to be able to spend the mornings spinning along with the Tour but my old body has other ideas. About an hour into the race my upper body and hands are screaming to stop so I spend the rest of the morning knitting with my handspun. This is the Polwarth/Silk I just finished plying. It's going to be another Thermal Mitt.


When I am bored with the mitt I switch over to the thrummed mittens. It's not spinning but it is playing with fiber so it counts, right?




I even drug out Altheda. She's a very woolly wool sweater being made of unspun Lopi so she's perfect for Tour knitting. 



In the afternoons I've been working on Festive Doodle while watching the Euro Cup. I should have had a finished sleeve to show off today but after trying it on I had to rip it out and add more length. I guess I should have tried it on sooner but those Round of 16 games have been so exciting it's a wonder I could remember to do anything right. 






Tuesday, June 29, 2021

Tiny Needle Tuesday

 

Most of my stitching energy this week went to working on the top rope of the nautical sampler. It's not much fun but it needs doing. 



I did finish the row of lawn I was working on. One more green row to go and this one is a done deal. I can't wait. I need my big lap frame. 




I need the frame for the Village Quaker. I've stitched myself into a corner with my little Q Snap. I need more working room so until I get all that lawn finished I am putting this one in time out. 




I'm thinking about pulling this one back out and finishing it up in the meantime since I've already got it stretched out on a big frame. What's stopping me is all that green grass and little sheep at the top that needs finishing and I don't think I have the will to stitch even more green grass and little sheep at the moment. We'll see. 






Monday, June 28, 2021

Thanks!


I was overwhelmed yesterday with the response I got from the giveaway. I wondered if anyone was still out there listening and apparently there is. 



It was so good to hear from my old soap buddies again. What adventures you've had since the last time we spoke. 




It was nice to meet some new friends too. They find it hard to believe that I just give it away but I do. The shipping cost is factored into my hobby budget which has been hard to deplete lately since I haven't been out of the house for over a year.




The more I get rid of the more I can make so it's win win. 




I have two new fragrances waiting to be tried out and no place to cure it until you all kindly take the last batches off my hands. 





Then there are the cards. I get hours of fun making them. I'd rather make 20 then make one. There is something about the assembly line process that I really like. I probably would have made a great factory worker. 



Thanks again everyone for helping me prevent my bathtub from looking like this... 




...and my soap table from looking like this ...and it's not too late to sign up!




Sunday, June 27, 2021

Summer Giveaway!

 

It's time to help me re-home some soap. I've got 98 (!) full sized bars of it to get rid of. Fourteen of each of the seven big batches that I had so much fun making six weeks ago. 



This giveaway will be a little bit different than the others. I don't have a printer anymore so I am not wrapping the soap up in a fancy little outfit. It's coming in a bag with this cobbled together label stuck on it so you will know which scent is which. 




If it doesn't have a little outfit on it also won't be wearing it's official ingredient list either so here it is:

Water, lye, olive oil, coconut oil, palm oil, rice bran oil, canola oil, castor oil, apricot kernel oil, sesame oil, grapeseed oil, safflower oil, avocado oil,  hemp oil, coco butter, shea butter, palm kernel flakes, goat's milk powder, yogurt powder, kaolin clay and sodium lactate. For those that have color and fragrance: mica and fragrance oils. 


As lovely as it is-it is soap. Keep it out of your eyes, rinse well and remember it's slippery. Discontinue use if it causes any irritation. When it arrives remove it from its bag and store it in a dry, cool place if you are not using it right away. It should last a year or so and will grow milder as it ages. When you do use it remember it will last longer if it gets to dry off in between uses. I sit mine on a cotton dishcloth and they last forever. Too long imho. I can't get rid of them.

So now...let's meet the soap:


I've got one batch of unscented, uncolored goat's milk soap. I keep it away from all the other curing soap so it truly is unscented. When my allergies are bad this is the one I reach for. 




On the left I have my botched batch of Lemon scented soap. It smells divine but it's not particularly pretty. This was the first of the batches and I forgot to add the scent so I had to mix all my pretty colors together to add the fragrance. 

On the right I have some lightly scented Pine soap. I've got a thing about pine soap right now. It reminds me of summer camp even though I've never been to summer camp. I love it. 




On the left I have some "Olive" scented soap which doesn't smell like olive but has a nice herbal scent to it. It reminds me of rosemary. This one has a two kinds of olive oil, regular and pomace. 

On the right I have the old favorite Milk and Honey. I added real honey to this one. 



Finally on the left I have Violet scented soap. Florals heat up so it has pretty glycerin crackles running through it. It's the strongest scent of all of the batches. It's not overwhelming but it's not exactly subtle either. 

On the right I have the crazy botched batch which is incredibly conditioning and smells a bit medicinal. It's all natural with tiny bit of herbal essential oils and colored clay. It's nothing to look at but I loved it. It's a true luxury bar that should be used right away. All those free oils won't last as long as a regular bar. 



This is a rather low key event but riding along with the soap will be this card-more or less. The background papers will all be different because I am running out of what I have and paper crafting supplies are hard to come by online at the moment I've discovered. I don't sign it or write in it so you can send it off to someone else. 
So.....

You know what to do.
Message me your address and three favorites on either Ravelry or at [email protected] and sometime this summer I'll see that you get two of them-no strings attached.
Thanks!











Saturday, June 26, 2021

Le Grand Depart

 

This year the Tour is starting with a finish. Remember this pretty Polwarth/Silk?



The singles were done on Tuesday.



I chain plied them on Wednesday but had mechanical difficulties. The string that I subbed out for the broken band must have stretched out and nothing was doing what it should. I have no idea what this little doo hicky is that's on the wheel but it held the string out nicely so I could get the bobbin to spin again. I've got so much to learn about this spinning thing. Sigh....




I've also got to learn NOT to ply when I am watching an exciting Euro Cup match. There was a lot of energy in this yarn fresh off the wheel.



It did settle down nicely after a long hot bath and good beating. I am going to cake it up and turn it into mitts during the Tour. I'll put my other projects on hiatus for a bit while I use up some handspun. There's just too much of it to store away anymore. 





But....now the Ladybug is empty and the Tour has begun. I'll have to go stash diving today to figure out a new project since this was supposed to be it. 






Friday, June 25, 2021

Testing, Testing.....

 

Look at all my pretty little babies lined up. It's been soap testing time around here and so far so good. 




I started with the ugly botched batch and I have to say I like it. Not putting enough lye in the batter wasn't the big disaster I had expected. I'm happy now I didn't toss it all. 



I've also been working on cards to accompany the soap for the Summer Giveaway. 
Details Sunday.
Stay tuned. 



Thursday, June 24, 2021

Kitchen Update

 

Since we have not gotten another delay notice on the cabinets I took advantage of a rainy day and started cleaning out the remaining old ones. I filled two trash bags with expired junk I had accumulated just since last year's lockdown. 



Then I attacked the drawers.  I've got way too much junk. Most of this stuff needs to go. I don't even know what half of it does. 




It felt good to actually be moving forward again with the remodel but then The Mister decided he wanted to replace the screen in the sliding doors. That was a disaster. It was like a comedy of errors with us both barely able to crawl around on the floor to get the job done and then...just as we finished he cut the new screen while trying to trim off the excess and we had to start all over again. Argh.... This does not bode well for the new kitchen. There's a lot of heavy work to do and no one but us old, broken and possibly senile folks to do it. Father Time did not just tap us on the shoulder over this past year-he hit us right over the head. Ouch.






Wednesday, June 23, 2021

Wednesday WIPs

 

Even though they have been getting attention my knitting projects don't look much different than last week but I do have six more Audun blocks finished. 



The bin I keep them in is getting full. I have 34 of them now.




I learned the hard way this week that it takes a lot more yarn to crochet around a square than it does to knit around one. I had to pull out a whole row when I lost a game of yarn chicken. Since I am down to small balls this is going to have to take some figuring from now on. 



I still have this many mini skeins of the colors I am not wild about but I think I am being too picky. Arne and Carlos said they just reach in the yarn bin and pull out a color as they work-no thought of coordination. As much as that does not feel right to me it may just be what I will have to do. As much as I love those little skeins I am not sure I want to commit another $30 for another pack of them. 






Tuesday, June 22, 2021

Tiny Needle Tuesday

 

My biggest stitching accomplishment this week was getting all that floss wound. It took forever. That big pile doesn't look so big once it's on a bobbin. 



Our weekend was pretty quiet because of The Mister's gruesome tooth extraction on Friday so I got some actual stitching done. The inside village is finished and I am starting on the floating motifs that surround it. 




Row number three on the Pins and Needles sampler is almost done. I finished one more sheep and have one more to do on this row. Then I get to start the LAST row. It's been a lot of real estate to stitch but I love the way it looks.

Monday, June 21, 2021

Some Father's Day Excitement

 

My vacuum cleaner blew up and caught fire yesterday morning when I was vacuuming the down stairs. It looked like a roman candle and filled the area with smoke. It scared the beejeezus out of me. The Mister was still asleep as it was Father's Day and he had a tooth pulled on Friday so he was trying to sleep in. He had a pretty rude awakening. Needless to say it was not the best of days for the old guy but it was the most excitement we've had around here in a long while....lol. 

Sunday, June 20, 2021

Ripe

 

Look what is happening to my cherry tomatoes! 



If they all ripen I figure I'll have about a pint of them when all is said and done. It only cost me a $100 cart, $30 worth of fancy soil, $10 worth of critter netting and $20 worth of plants but that first ripe tomato....priceless!


Saturday, June 19, 2021

Fiber Tales

 

Couch quilting isn't the only thing I am doing during the Euro Cup. I spin during the first game of the day. Pup hates it. She gives me the stink eye and barks at me for the first half hour or so and then plops down in a royal pout. None of this bodes well for the Tour. I've forgotten what a pain she is. She hates the wheel for some reason. 


My Tour project is almost ready to be plied. I only meant to sample the fiber but the wheel has been calling my name. It is so relaxing it's like meditation. It's a great way to start the day.



I even cleared out one side of my dining room cabinet which is now in my living room for the remodel and filled it with my spinning doo dads. I am so ready for the Tour. I need my daily dose of Phil Liggett.  Let the spin begin!