Thursday, January 28, 2010

In a word...

...inconsistent. I spun this yarn from a lovely braid of Pigeonroof Studios sw merino in the Circus colorway -over a period of 2 months. This yarn is proof that spacing out a spinning project over two months (with little to no practice in between) isn't a great idea. At least not for me. This is by far the most inconsistent yarn I've spun in a long, long time.

approx. 4oz and 392yds
circus colorway

Though I wouldn't want to list this yarn in my shop, I know it will still be perfectly knit-able, so I'm going to turn it into a pair of socks as soon as I get my new needles in the mail. (I've ordered a pair of US1 24" circular needles to try two toe-up socks at once. I'm very excited about trying out that method of sock knitting.)

As for the fiber, this one was nice to spin. This was the first time I've spun Pigeonroof sw merino, and it was very silky-feeling. It's amazing how much the fibers vary from seller to seller. Some feel silky, others waxy and some have a much more fuzzy quality. I'm sure it has a lot to do with where the sellers are purchasing their materials from, but I also wonder how much of it has to do with the way each seller handles and processes the fiber as they dye it.

Now that our move is over I've begun discussing with my husband the possibility of getting a second wheel. I've been thinking that since there is very little to do here in the new town I may want to get involved with a guild after all, and while the Minstrel has been a very good wheel for me, I would love to have something that travels better. He really surprised me by telling me to just go ahead and "go for it". I think I've narrowed it down to getting a Lendrum DT (probably with a woolee winder, too).

Back when I bough my Minstrel, I was trying to get away from the travel wheels. I wanted something that looked more traditional, spun nicely and was within a certain price range. This time around, I'm not as concerned about traditional appearances, but much more in performance (and cost, too). From what I've read, it seems that the Lendrum DT will probably be my best choice for a second wheel. I'm going to keep reading and considering for a while before making my final decision, though I'm looking forward to ordering that second wheel soon. =)

Sunday, January 24, 2010


After months and months of hard work, waiting and nail-biting stress... we finally sold our house. And if you've ever heard anyone talk about how things always get really, really bad right before you break through to the end of it -they were so not kidding.

In the last two weeks before closing we had to get new windows installed, get a new dishwasher, get a new wood stove for the fireplace and have lots of expensive work done on the chimney, have stress-inducing (and smelly) inspections and work done with our septic tank & drain field, all while cleaning, packing and battling with morning sickness. As if all this wouldn't be enough to push a sound, stable person to the breaking point, the Tuesday morning of our last week in the old house, I got a call from the school...

Another girl from Paige's class fell on her during a game of tunnel tag in P.E. After an ambulance ride to the hospital and a tear-filled visit to the emergency room, we found out that her lower-right leg was badly broken. Both bones, clean through. If you've never been around a young child with a severe injury like this, I can tell you it's heartbreaking. The first week was like a nightmare. Every time we had to move her (which unfortunately, because of our situation, was a lot) she'd scream. Every trip to the bathroom was filled with sobbing and tears. Every time we went over a bump in the car it was a small agony. Now, thankfully, her bones are starting to mend and she's not in quite so much pain. She's scheduled to get her leg casted this next Tuesday. It's still likely to be several weeks before she can return to school, but we're holding on to hope that at some point during her recovery she might be able to switch to a walking cast, which would surely make her life (as well as ours) much, much easier. Right now we're not really able to go out, and we use one of the rolling chairs from the kitchen table to move her around the house. It's taken a while, but we're getting pretty good at it.

Here at the new house (a rental) we're still unpacking, catching up on laundry and getting acquainted with the area. My husband knows his way around quite well as he's been working in this town for the last 5 years or so, but I'm still trying to figure out where everything is. One of the pluses of living in a small town is that figuring out where things are usually doesn't take very long. I've only been out of the house on my own once in the week that we've been here and I was able to find out where Paige's new school is, as well as the location of the grocery store, post office and public library. Those are probably the only places I'll need to go, so I'm probably set.

One of the downsides of being in the smaller town is that there really aren't any great places to go out to eat, but the plus side of that is that we'll probably eat much healthier (I'm still holding on to hope that it will be easier to not put so much weight on during the pregnancy because of this). We'll certainly save a lot more money not going out to eat.

Besides, home-cooked foods really are so much better. They can taste so much better, too. To help get in the spirit of cooking at home, I started out with a freshly baked loaf of cinnamon-raisin bread. This took a long time to prepare, but it ended up being so worth the effort. The recipe is from the Martha Stewart Baking Handbook. I don't really follow Martha Stewart, and I've experienced a handful of Martha Stewart recipes that were pretty terrible, however a friend gifted the book to me a few years ago and so far, every recipe I've tried from it has been a winner. The recipe for this cinnamon-raisin bread was no exception.

I'm also happy to report that my morning sickness is beginning to taper off. Now, it's just morning sickness most of the time, rather than feeling sick all day long. This new improvement is helping me to get a lot more done during the day. I've even been feeling like knitting and spinning again. I've managed to finally finish the Pigeonroof fiber I've been slowly working at for the last couple of months. It's resting on the bobbin, and as soon as I get the motivation to sit for a prolonged period of time I'm going to chain ply it.

It's amazing how after going through so much you appreciate just having things become... normal again.