Saturday, July 28, 2007

A BIG Birthday!

Happy 50th Birthday to Michigan's own Mackinac Bridge!

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(Photo taken under trees on the sandy shores)

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(In her full glory)

Our Big Bridge is currently the world's third longest suspension bridge (it is five miles long). You can read lots of interesting facts about the bridge at this website
Mackinac Bridge

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(Its hard to explain the lump in the throat you get staring up at this bridge, over these waters, under this flag)

I took this photo last year on a trip up to take delivery of some sheep ;)

Monday, July 23, 2007

One Last Look

Before this (my MS3 Stole at the end of Clue 1):

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became this (a pile of twisty, curly yarn needing to be re-knit):

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My confidence and comfort level, flying in the face of danger....LOL - knitting lace without a lifeline - and my mistakes became to numerous for even me to ignore! (Often, if it is a mistake here and there....I don't rip out or go back to find the mistake, just continue on) But in this case, I either got off track on a stitch count or on a row count, because I ended up being WAY off course. I let the piece of lace sit quietly in a knitting basket for nearly a week before I picked it up again and decided I couldn't live with it the way it was. So out she goes!

Now I will think for a few more days, deciding if I want to restart the project. For me, usually when these kinds of set backs occur, it is tainted for me and I don't care to pick it back up. We'll see. The yarn is so delicious, that I could happily knit several other things with it (I have no shortage of projects I would like to do ;) As well as other projects that need to be finished!) The pattern and the Knit A Long are also great!!! I especially want to say that my current dislike is in NO WAY a reflection of the MS3 pattern and project!!! It was 100% my mistakes, but I just know myself well enough to know that I may not have much enthusiasm for the same pattern if I have to start it over. So, like I said - we'll see.

How about if I end on a happier note? Would you like to see a very sweet picture of a very beautiful Corriedale who contributed in part to the roving I was spinning for this project? Well, of course you do! Who doesn't love to see beautiful sheep (grin) Here is Abby (twin to Amanda, daughter of old Hannah), posing for the camera (okay, so she was really looking for cookies, but the effect is good)

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As I think I mentioned before, I took all of the "skirtings" of my very best white sheep and had them washed and carded into my current favorite roving, that which I was spinning for the MS3. Isn't she a beauty? Full of so much Corriedale breed character! You might notice that she is not wearing a of the chores that Alex and I had this past week was pulling coats off the girls and getting them all washed and repaired if they needed it. The ewes are all out on pasture (take a peek at the new photo across the top of this page for a picture in pasture taken the same night) and not receiving any hay, so their wool won't get full of chaff, though it will get a little dirty till we get the coats back on. You can see how clean she is across her back. Each adult sheep will usually go through three different sizes of coat in a years time, each one larger than the last as their fleece grows. I am so happy that my customers all seem to appreciate how much work it is to produce those nice, clean coated fleeces! I love them, too ;)

Anyway, that is my knitting update for today as well as a little sheep fleece management 101. Other good news? Second cutting hay is going into the big barn today and while not as plentiful as years past I am still happy and grateful and thankful for what we have!

Thursday, July 19, 2007

A Collection of Friday Flowers

Brought to you on a Thursday ;)

We have had some stormy weather lately, which always results in slower than usual dial up internet service...making it nearly impossible to post pictures on the blog. So, some of my Friday Flowers have been laying idly by on my camera. Today, the computer seems to be cooperating - so here is a collection to catch me up!

Can you guess what this beautiful flower (complete with busy bee) is? I will give you a smells heavenly and is cherished by butterflies:

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It is a common milkweed! Below is an old fashioned, ruffly hollyhock with such dainty flowers, though the plant itself is a real iron horse:

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The old fashioned petunias are so often overlooked now that the new "wave" varieties have gotten popular. But this old, very fragrant purple is still my favorite:

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The daylily below is one of the few that I have ever purchased and of course, I lost the tag for the name. Isn't it stunning? I would love to try dyeing some roving in these colors:

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And finally, I had to include some fiber! This one is called Silver Lining and spins up interestingly textured (it is a mix of white and silver Corriedale and pygora). Notice that there ARE some flowers in the background of this photo (those purple petunias again)!

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I'm actually very glad that I had these photos (along with others) because the hail from last nights storms shredded much of what was in my garden....including my burgeoning Brandywine tomatoes! WAAAAAAH!