It has been a little while since I blogged. Life happens..I am really glad I am such an avid photographer though because otherwise I would forget half of what I do in life. So, here goes…the photo memories of the last couple of weeks. I have erected a bird feeder in my backyard that has become a constant source of entertainment, and well, dismal panic. It all started about a month ago, where for two weeks the sole purpose of the feeder was to fatten up squirrels.
Being the lover all of things fuzzy and feathered, I am not one of those people who obsesses with keeping squirrels out of my bird feeder. For about two weeks though, no birds. But I think my complete lack of caring about what the squirrels did caused much gossip in the wildlife community and the birds finally overheard there was a shangri-la in my backyard. So, now I am overcome with mourning doves, sparrows, starlings and from time to time cardinals, crows, and yellow finches. How can this cause dismal panic you ask? Well, the other day I came out to check out the bird feeder and possibly refill it when I found…..a dead bird….a little house sparrow, in the bird bath. My face dropped and I was immediately consumed by the wonder of how this happened, and more like me, how did I cause this? Arg….Everyone around me has assured me that birds just die sometimes and it was nothing to do with the construct of my bird feeder, however, I have decided to remove the birdbath portion. No water equals no possibility of drowning. So I am slowly mentally recuperating from that. Not nice.
In the world of knitting, I finished a lacy cabled cape I had been working on and I am now on the fourth section of the Citron Shawl. I am planning on trying to make some progress on it tonight at Stitch n Pitch.
I think I have developed a distaste for working on really large straight needles. It is just not easy to manipulate and kind of makes my small hands confused and clumsy.
A couple of weekends ago, it was the summer spin-in day at The Black Lamb and we had a lot of fun. It was lovely sitting in the garden and spinning with great friends. We had a potluck and it was really yummy.I am always happy to marvel at the beautiful garden that Laurie and Steven have.
I feel like I have my spinning mojo back. It was gone for a while, perhaps just because I have a really big list of things to do, work is really stressful and the weather has been quite scorching for the last while. But, I have been spinning like a fiend since returning from spin day. I think it’s so therapeutic to be around people in a group doing something they enjoy. It’s hard not to be inspired. This is my completed haul of yarns for Tour de Fleece. There are times where I think I really could have gotten so much more done, but I am happy to have finished what I have.
I am also really into corespinning wire right now. It’s a really nice and fun, functional technique. The fibers are spun around a wire and yarn core in a round horizontal motion. The finished yarn is moldable, sculptural, can be bent into shapes and used for art pieces, or for making baskets, jewellery, decor, or really what your creative spirit desires. Here is one that I just finished. I call it ‘Blue Moon Festival’ as inspired recently by an event in a book I just finished reading titled ‘Spinning Forward’ by Teri Dulong. I agreed with the reviews on the book which stated it was really predictable. This is true, but it is also the kind of heartwarming happy ending story you need to read sometimes to rekindle your sense of humanity. The only complaint I had was that the main character was a whiny, spoiled brat – but that is no reflection on the writer. Dulong’s writing has a lot of flow; makes you want to keep the book in your hands, and has a lot of charm, with the perfect amount of descriptive elements.
If you are interested in learning more about corespun wire, I started the August spin-along in the Novelty and Art Yarns group on Ravelry with a focus on this style of yarn. So, jump right in!
I have also been doing a bit of baking. I made banana bread and a dark chocolate bundt cake, which tasted much like a whoopee pie, last week. The cake is now a distant memory but there are a couple slices of banana bread still left, assuming it wasn’t snatched up for today’s office brown bagged lunch.
I have also been able to do a bit of hiking and taking some walks in nature now that the heat wave seems to be over for a bit. I learned something really interesting about young male mallards. I saw this duck and initially thought he was some kind of hermaphrodite or something because he looked very female but had the coloration, sort of, of a male.
As it turns out, and as most people know, when ducks are born, they all pretty much look the same. But, it takes quite some time, a few months, for a male duck to reach the level of maturity that his iridescent head feathers grow in. So, this duck is likely only a few months old and he is still undergoing his path to maturity. I thought that was really neat. It was also kind of funny to watch this herd of different birds swimming along the promenade, following a little girl with a bag of bread crumbs she was tossing out to them.
I am also growing poppies. I have no flowers yet but I do have some adorable leaves popping up. I have never grown potted poppies before so I am not sure what to expect.
I went to Michael’s yesterday and was pleasantly surprised to find out they are now carrying the Stitch Nation (Debbie Stoller) line of yarns. They were originally only at Joann’s in the US. But, alas we now have them. I picked up a couple of skeins of Alpaca Love in the colourway Cobblestone to make something lacy. It’s nice to see some more natural fibers at a big box store which don’t feel like a yak’s guard hair against your skin.
Alas, it is time to get to work…but I will leave this post with a couple of lovely things…I spun this yarn called ‘Secret of the Walnut’ with some beautiful walnut halves I picked up on one of my walks.
And, I received this lovely package from the Odd Ducks Swaps on Ravelry – the Element theme. Just look at the amazing cowl!