Tuesday, October 27, 2009
Sorting clean socks from the laundry has never been a favorite job of mine. It is a thankless and perplexing task. I could swear I threw 4 pairs of matching socks into the washer. But when they are fluffy, hot and soft from the dryer, there is only one to be found of each pair. For years this has been a puzzle. Many of my own pairs have been lost into the depths of sock land. Not too long ago, Taima's favorite green plaid socks, worn only 4 or 5 times, went into the laundry and....poof! One has disappeared. The pair have never since been reunited.
It was not until today that I discovered the truth behind this enigma. As I was sorting the recycling for disposal, I noticed one of Noah's. I had not realized it was even missing. And yet, there it was among the papers and cardboard boxes.
How it got there I will never know. But I am glad to think that next time my blue ski socks have been separated I have a place to check.
Wednesday, October 21, 2009
The past few weeks have been busy with collecting materials for dye baths and then dyeing wool in beautiful, natural colors. We started last weekend and spent an entire day mordanting and dyeing in large pots. We gathered black walnut husks, onion skins, and poke berries.
The picture above is the result of our work.
The yellow hues are from onion skins. The greenish yarn is onion skin with a top dye of iron.
The pink skein is poke berry. The browns are black walnut. The lighter brown is yarn that was mordanted in 10% alum and 5% tartar. The rich, darker brown yarn was left overnight in the dye bath and was mordanted in 20% alum and 10% tartar. I cannot wait to knit with these fabulous yarns.
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
About 200 crows decided to roost on top of trees in our farm. Their behavior is fascinating to watch - playing, fighting, and doing all sort of acrobatic air-maneuvers like little black kites played by hyperactive kids. The smart part is that, after they settle in a group of trees noisily, they wait after dark then slowly and quietly move to a different bunch of trees to conceal their final roosting location.
Monday, October 19, 2009
Noah has been entertaining the goats by crawling around on the ground and imitating their actions. Juliette is not at all sure what he trying to accomplish and remains reluctant to join in. Nana Ana, however, is enjoying the companionship. He and I were supposed to be working. We had been shoveling rocks and moving them via the gator to the outdoor shelters to prevent erosion around the structures during rain. He decided to take a break and since the goats were following us around and jumping up into the gator, I guess he thought it would be fun to "play" with them. Nana and Noah were head to head. Noah would push harder and Nana would back off. Then Noah mimicked rearing. After watching Noah a few times display his dominance, Nana began to rear and push Noah back. She even went so far as to try to climb on him and she tried to eat a mouthful of his hair! Juliette was having nothing to do with this and as you can see from the photo, she maintained her distance and observed.
Wednesday, October 7, 2009
The days are turning brisk and the leaves are changing. Their psychedelic colors contrast with the remains of green pasture. The crias are sensing the changes and trot joyfully around the paddock. This evening as I filled water buckets, Floreanna led the pack of babies in a whirlwind of activity. She literally bounced as she made loops around the paddock with the boys in tow. Floreanna is by far the fastest of the crias. No matter how hard the boys ran, they were not a match for her. As Taima aptly put it "She Peppy Le Pewed it." I thought I could hear "boing, boing" as she made her way weaving among the trees and around the shed. When she halted to a stop in front of me at the water bucket, her nostrils were flared and she gazed at me confidently. She is a quite the girl.