SPINNING AND KNITTING FOR A PROJECT-BOOKS I AM READING-IRELAND IS CALLING-NEW LIFE ON THE FARM

21 09 2017

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

GREETINGS

We had a bout of cool days and cooler nights now its very humid.  The leaves are changing so fall weather approaches.

SPINNING AND KNITTING FOR A PROJECT

Usually I just spin and don’t really care what I am spinning.  I have such a supply of wool that I want to get spun that it doesn’t really matter.  This year I skirted Carol K and Maude’s fleeces and threw the skirting’s into a bag.  I usually throw away the really messy stuff and keep the rest for a small project.  But this year there was a lot.  I decided to dye it and use some one old dye and another dye that I had plenty of.  They were both Pro Chemical dyes, Mallard Green and mustard. I love the way the colored blended together.

Well then  this Debbie Bliss pattern book, which I bought a long time ago surfaced and I found a pattern that was simple and I liked .  So this is what I am spinning and knitting..  I want to get the sweater finished and make an outfit to wear on my November trip.  I am not a good finisher I have loads of started projects around and am determined to finish a lot of them this winter and get the sweater done by mid October.   I am working on it every day.

 

THE FRANKLIN COUNTY FAIR

I do love doing this fair, meeting old friends and new customers.  People love to stop and chat while I am spinning and I do enjoy answering their questions about spinning.  It was a lovely two days.

BOOKS I AM READING

Rag Rugs of England and AMerica

I was able to purchase this book online and am so glad that I did

.Rag Rugs of England and Americait has wonderful stories and pictures of old rugs.   The two people who influenced my rug hooking most were Heather Richie and Deanne Fitzpatrick.  Both of them in totally different ways inspire me to do things in a different way.   To breathe while rug hooking and not worry about straight lines . This book reminds me of Heather as it has a story which she told in class and the same picture that is in the book she showed us.  The print is called Geordie ha’ ad a Bairn by Ralph Hedley around 1890.    In the picture is a clippie rug which Heather showed us how to make.

 

Geordie Haa'd the Bairn

Lots of pictures of old rugs with interesting information about them.  A must read for rug hookers and historians..

IRELAND IS CALLING

My daughter Cindy, grandson Chris and I are heading back to IRELAND in November.  Its been 4 years since we went last.  A hiatus for Cindy to attend Law School.    We are heading to Cork to show Chris that beautiful county with side trips to Kerry and a few other counties.   We rented a beautiful stone cottage and I know there will be at least a day of fishing for Chris.  I can’t wait to get there I have always felt at home in Ireland.  We may take a trip to Tipperary to see an odd breed of sheep called Zwartbles, they look like badgers!  We got wonderful prices on Norwegian Air and will fly from Providence directly to Cork.  Counting the days.

DOT AND HATTIE

This week I picked up two hens from the Chicken Man.  It is hard for people and chickens to adjust to new living situations but they are adjusting,

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Dot has ventured out once and I see her getting accumulated to the flock soon. Hattie is living with the Bantam’s and is now sleeping with them.  Morticia treats her like her daughter, bossing her around.  She is young and probably won’t start laying till the end of November.

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Dot is really a rescue.  She is a two-year old bird who the chicken man said is spent. What he means by that is worthless, she probably won’t lay anymore and is sent with another 25 or so birds to the auction (an awful and terrifying place).  He is of the mentality, which is old school, that hens lay very few eggs after their second year.  Well I have never found that true..  My  13-year-old hen laid  beautiful blue eggs almost every day of the summer before she passed as most of my other old hens do.  Change in animal care comes slow here in the states but in other countries like England it is way ahead of us.   I am so glad to see new farmers give animals loving care and a chance  to live on green grass and fresh air the way their suppose to live. (My rant for the day.)

Many thank for reading my blog on this cloudy fall day.  Leaves are slowing  changing.  Carole





PICKING LEAVES-IRELAND-WORK ON THE KITCHEN

17 10 2015

GREETINGS

It’s  very cool morning here with temps just rising to the mid fifty’s today.  It will be  cold weekend with some frosts coming.

PICKING LEAVES

This has been  tradition since I was a child.  I have been out twice and will go out today looking for more.  I especially am waiting for the oak leaves which offer an array of colors.  They aren’t quite ready yet.  It’s a wonderful thing to do with children, that is how I learned to tell a maple from an oak.

My Mom would put a square of wax in an old pan and put the pan in simmering water so the wax would melt slowly.  We would have  cookie sheet lined with waxed paper at the ready and I would hand her the leaves.  She would carefully dip them into the wax and  hand them to me.  I would let them drip and lay them on the sheet. These leaves would be used in decorations around the house .  Years later I would send her waxed leaves when she lived in Florida  and missed the fall.

Another method of preserving leaves is with glycerin.  I have used this method to preserving the leaves right on the branches.  Happy leaf hunting.IMG_5974

GIFTS FROM IRELAND

Cindy often sends me things from my beloved Ireland.  This time it was the cherished items that we loaded our suitcases with .  Fairy Liquid and Radox.  Since we have rented houses in Ireland for the past 20 years we have to supply the simple things such as dish detergent and groceries.   When I smell the above two products it just sends me back to the place I love.  Thanks Cindy.  Now to light up a brick of turf and I am happy.

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KITCHEN RENOVATION

My kitchen has needed renovation for years.  There has always been more important things to fix in this old farmhouse.  I have bought a double Soapstone sink for $75. many years ago and it sits in the downstairs barn area waiting to be installed.  Maybe next year that will happen and it will make , canning, dyeing wool and making soap so much easier.  But for now I am fixing up some of the walls with beadboard.  I am inspired by Kristen Nicholas with her colorful farmhouse and using colors that I would not ordinarily use. 

The kitchen  was made by combining two areas many years ago.  A wood shed  and the original kitchen.  Both have no cellar and are only a foot or so above the dirt which is why pipes freeze so easily in the winter.  My neighbor , Pat redid most of the wood shed portion some years ago, insulating the walls and adding a new window.  I love how that looks   

Chris and I started this project while he was here.  Neither of us are carpenters but we forged ahead and got it done with .  One wall done and painted.  I hope to get another wall started today.  It will probably take most of the winter to get all the walls done and painted.  Some of the  walls will have beadboard only half way up and the upper walls painted another color.  I am going to paint some sunflowers on the walls , thank to you Kristen for the wonderful ideas of color and design.  Look for more pictures of my progress in the future.

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The small window comes from my Great-Grandmother’s house i Maryland.  When they were tearing it down I saved some of the windows.

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Hope you have a wonderful day and many thanks for reading my blog.  Carole

 





WEATHER NEWS FROM IRELAND-FUTURE HEATING PLANS-SHEEP TO SHAWL

29 12 2013

Hello

Chris is here helping me, we cleaned some in the barn today and he is working on some computer projects for me.

I have heard from some friends in Ireland who live in the Northwest area and they indeed had 90 mile per hour winds.  SOme damage was done but they are safe.  The worst I guess hit the Southwest.

Heating Plans,

My friend Anne from Ireland has a house that is the about the same size as mine and heats her whole house and hot water with a Stanley Stove.  I am going to look into it, because there is wood on my property and I can also buy green wood  and let it sit of 6 months.  It would be wonderful to be off the oil chain and be in charge of my heating and hot water using local resources for it.  Anne has a wonderful blog which I follow, check it out its anirishalterative.blogspot.

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A CALL FROM A FRIEND

Friday night my friend Louise called from Montreal.    We had a wonderful conversation and she wanted to also tell me of a book that she is getting.  Its called “Dear Everyone” A woman’s journey from Park Avenue to a Labrador Trap line.    She ends up being a Volunteer to the Grenfell Mission,

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 Last summer one of the members of the Green Mountain Rug Hooking , Stephanie Krauss gave a  program on the Grenfell Mission and she and her husband’s tour of Labrador.  I was so intrigued by this and Louise remembered that and wanted to share  this book with me.  I ordered it and can’t wait to read it.   I am  not keen on trapping animals so I will skip quickly over those parts but her stories about the mission will be wonderful to read.  Someday I would like to visit  the Grenfell Mission.

Sheep to Shawl,

I brought more things down to Sheep and Shawl.  There are more and more lovely things in the store each time I come.  I will be bringing down red and white roving for needle felting and some locks of white wool also.

I have been recovering from several bouts of gout so I have been watching tv more than usual.  On CNN this morning Sanju Gupta was doing a piece on Dementia patients in the Netherlands.  I didn’t get to see all of the piece but what I did see was so interesting.   They have approximately 152 patients in this village enclosed by a wall..  Almost 2 workers for every patient.  The patients live  longer than in other facilities and are more joyful.  There are on much less medication, get to exercise, take walks and basically live like they were before although they are watched at all time.   I don’t think that there is anything like it here in the states.  You can see clips of this show online.

I hope you are having a wonderful day and many thanks for reading my blog.  Carole

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MORE SNOW-IRELAND-NOVA SCOTIA-HAZEL AND MRS.BROWN

12 12 2013

HELLO,

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More snow is arriving Saturday into SUnday.  They are saying 8-10 inches but they have  said that for the past two storm and we haven’t got much.  Its gotten very cold and yesterday the wind went right through you.

WORKMAN

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They finished the chimney yesterday and did a beautiful job,  It looks so much better than the last chimney that was just put up helter skelter, not even tied into the house at all.  They are craftsmen who take great pride in their work.

Ireland

My fellow blogger Colette recently wrote a blog about the high prices of electricity in Ireland.  Electricity and oil prices are soaring these days.  Lots of people heat with electricity there now and I asked her about the program that was in place many years  ago where peat/turf would be delivered to elderly and poor people.  I thought what a wonder thing for the country to do but not surprising to me as Ireland is known for taking care of her own everywhere in the world.   Well when they got in with the EU that stopped.  They cited pollution as once of the causes .  They discourage people who have turf on their properties from cutting it. Well I am sure turf fires causes pollution but so does wood stoves,   The air in Ireland is much cleaner than it is here.  My cousin Gary saw an article about all the pollution which comes to us on the eastern seaboard from the mid west which don’t have very good regulations on controlling pollution on their coal-fired plants.  Its amazing to me that they can continue to pollute and not care enough about other American citizens to do anything about it.  Its becoming the American way, take care of yourself and forget about everyone else. 

As the gap between the rich and poor widens I wonder what will happen in 20 years.  WIll it become like mid-evil times or worse.

NOVA SCOTIA

I have been thinking of my trip to Nova Scotia this summer.  The ship from Portland will be running again.  I may drive up to  Amherst and then take the Ferry back.    Planning adventures is so much fun.  SInce the class is only one day I think we will spend just two days in the Amherst area and then go down by the sea.   The ferry leaves from Halifax .  Nova Scotia is such a wonderful place with so many things to see, it will take careful planning to make it an exciting trip.  I really enjoyed the 13 hour drive there,which was surprising to me as I really can’t see how a 13 hour drive could be anything but boring.  We didn’t take the super highway there we got off the Maine turnpike and  went the coastal route.  By beautiful ocean views, evergreen covered highways and many blueberry plains.  We stopped here and there along the way.  I am looking forward to the class and the trip with CHris.

HAZEL AND MRS.BROWN

They are both doing well and are enjoying being inside.  They have fallen in love with the frozen rice and veggie mix and have both put back their lost weight.  I think that Hazel has improved since the new medication and hope this will be the one that gets rid of his problems.  

I hope your day is wonderful and I appreciate that you are taking the time to ready my blog.   Carole

 





AT BEALTINE COTTAGE IN IRELAND IN SPIRIT-RUNNER BEANS-DREAMING OF SCOTLAND- KNITTING

7 09 2013

Hello,

In spirit I am at Beataine Cottage in Ireland.  Today and tomorrow my blogger friend Colette is having an open house to benefit the Leitrim Animal Sanctuary.  Tea and cakes will be served among other things.  Cost is 10 euros.  A great opportunity to meet Colette and her cats and dogs and to be able to see what one person has accomplished with a derelict cottage and some barren land.   If you can’t come please check out her blog at Bealtaine Cottage at word press.

sept pictures 013RUNNER BEANS

I have long since misplaced the package of these runner bean seeds so I can’t tell you what the name of them are.  I love the color of the flowers and the leaves.

sept pictures 010  Quite a difference from the Scarlet Runner bean.   I must say though that its September and they have just begun to bloom.  It could have been the place they were planted but I think I will go back to the Scarlet Runner Bean next year.  I started these inside late spring, by now the scarlet ones would have formed seed pods, I hope these have a chance to do that but I would rather doubt it.

DREAMING OF SHETLAND

The second installment of this wonderful e-book arrived in my in-box.  I printed it out and was dazzled by the patterns in this section.  I especially love Beth Brown-Reinsel’s Gansey Mitts.

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As much as I love them they are made with very small needles  and I just can’t knit with small needles anymore.   The story and pattern about DAGS the traditional mitten worn by Shetland fisherman is wonderful.    This is a pattern I can make and they will be very useful in the barn.  This e-book is a gem and is teaching me some interesting facts about The Shetland Isles.   I am looking forward to the third installment and the information from Deb’s studies of Shetland Sheep..  Check out the site Dreaming of Shetland

ANGORA RABBIT HANDSPUN YARN

This handspun is from one of my Angora Rabbits which I owned many years ago.  I am hoping to make this neck warmer with it.  I have started knitting a gage swatch.

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Many thanks for reading my blog today and I hope you have a wonderful day.    Carole

 





GOOD HAY-G-8- MAKING BEE’S WAX CANDLES

15 06 2013

Hello

Good Hay

It can be hard to find good. hay.  My sheep over the past  few months have been eating okay hay.  It the first time that particular field was cut.   I have been talking to Joe Hilman about hay for a month now.  He has plenty of last years and will be cutting  this years crop if it ever stops raining.  The fields where he cuts are at my friend Lynn’s house.  This is where my sheep used to summer pasture.  Joe takes tender, loving care of the fields so the hay is excellent.   I can get it right off the field.  Last night the sheep and Elliott had their first taste of the good hay, they ate it with vigor.  I hope to get my whole years supply from Joe.  He and his wife have a thriving goat cheese business but are not milking as many goats as they once did .

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The Shop

Today I am making bee’s wax candles and 1 ounce pieces of bees-wax.  Yesterday was a soft opening and  3 of my things were sold and Christa said it was a great day.  I am anxious to go down and  see how it looks all set up..Look for pictures tomorrow

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I make a lot of the 1 ounce  of the bee’s wax.  They come in handy for so many things.  Bee’s wax is used in a lot of salves and things like that, people who spin use it, people who sew. it can be quite helpful if your drawers stick, so many uses.

Rain

The rain has stopped for a few days.  The sun was beautiful yesterday and clothes will finally be hung out today.  It will take weeks of dry weather to dry up the back.  I think though I won’t have to have anyone in to do more heavy equipment work.  It’s just a matter of getting in the muck and redirecting the path of the water.  It worked yesterday and the water was diverted to the side of the barn.  Deeper ditches need to be dug and dirt moved away.  Hopefully tomorrow I will be able to do some of that work.

G-8 Summit

The G-8 summit is going to be held soon, all signs of opposition have been taken down on roadways in Ireland.  Only signs on private land are left up.  We certainly wouldn’t want any of the members to have hurt feelings!!!!!!  Those summits are a waste of taxpayers money  and certainly they don’t care about the common person. In  Ireland now they have  a carbon tax which will be a $.75 tax on a bag of coal, who buys coal anyway, only people who cannot afford oil and kerosene.  Isn’t that an insult.  We do the same or worse in the U.S.   My fondest wish is that there would be more honesty and humanity in governments everywhere.  We have to put the people first not big business.

Thank you for reading my blog and I hope you have a lovely day.     Carole





EASTER LILIES-DROP SPINDLE CLASS-POSTCARD-IRELAND

4 04 2013

Hello

Easter Lillies and Lilac’s are my favorite flowers.   Their different scents are enchanting.   Now when I walk by my wood stove into the hallway the sweet scent of the lily beckons me to linger there for a few minutes.  Yesterday we had snow showers!

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POST CARDS

For many years now I have been sending out these whimsical post cards with each new arrival at the farm.  Chickens, sheep and cats were all on postcards.  My family and friends enjoy getting them.  Here is Minnie Bisbee’s.

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DROP SPINDLE CLASS AT METAPHOR YARNS

For the next two Friday mornings I am teaching a drop spindle class at Metaphor Yarns in Shelburne.  I will be working on getting ready for the class tomorrow.

My fondest memories of my drop spindle is when Cindy and I went to Dursey Island  in Ireland and she would pick the wool off the fence and I would spin it as we merrily walked the Island.    If you visit Ireland the only way to get to the island is to take a cable car ride( the only cable car in Ireland) high over tumultuous waters.   You may have the company of the mailman or some sheep, its always an adventure.   The Island is lovely and we enjoyed our visits there.

Many thanks for reading my blog and I hope you have a wonderful day.                 Carole