Sheepwalks

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My Sheepwalk & Fences is done. It looks better on the hanger then it does on me though!

Here is one of the gifts I’m giving to my sis for her birthday….she gets two. One for each foot! I love these Stroll yarns from Knit Picks. This is Sprinkle Heather.

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And since October is known as Socktober in the knitting world….I’m off to knit more socks…. mittens, scarves, sweaters…… if I have yarn, I will knit.  Oh and by the way, IF you ever like something about Knit Picks.DO NOT LEAVE A COMMENT WITH YOUR ORDER! They will backorder your order and you will only receive it once they have caught up with their comments.  Oh man I’ve been waiting three weeks and I thought something was out of stock!  Thank goodness it’s in the mail!  Oh I’m getting yarn giddiness at the thought of opening that package.  Of course I’ll let you see!  I would never deprive you of my yarnaholicism or any of my other isms.

Knitting Madness

I think I have to knit to stay sane. With the madness raging all about, knitting grounds me. I’m not sure why, but it does. Some might think it monotonous with all the k1 p1 k1 p1 k1 p1 k1 p1 k1 p1…….but for me it’s a quiet rhythm. I suppose I could be reading and I do, but I have to have something to do with my hands besides turning pages. I guess it’s the ADD coming out in one form or another.

I’ve just committed to a few projects…..I invested in a new yarn stash. I guess some like the coziness of piles of yarn. Not me. If I don’t use what I have I feel wasteful. It’s such an investment. Sweet Girl saw the total of my yarn order since she was hanging over my shoulder picking out a yarn for a request she made. She gasped. But if you figure paying for each of these items that are handmade….well…you’d pay a whole lot more! Trust me, I know the hours that go into these things and you could never pay me to knit for you.  Well, ok, maybe you could….I do have knitted items for sale at Butterflies & Bumble Bees!

Here’s what’s on my agenda.

Sweet Girl has requested a scarf….so I asked if she’d like this neat shawl that I’d already purchased the pattern for. I love it…so now I’ll be making two, one for her and one for me!

Aestlight by Shetland Trader

Oh yeah!

Then Honey picked out a Charcoal Heather called Cobblestone for this…

The Ladder Front Gansey

The Ladder Front Gansey

I finished the Sheepwalk & Fence Vest from Autumn House Farm. I need to block it and it will be finished.

Socks, socks and more socks!

Then Honey picked out two colors for me. He loves to see me in an Autumn Orangie color….my old best friend (old sweater I wear all the time) has all the Autumn tones and he loves that sweater.

This yarn for the Aestlight Shawl by Shetland Trader.

This one for the Fiona Sweater below from Autumn House Farm.

Oh, and I do love that name. Fiona. That will be the name of my next female animal and speaking of animals…..I’m twisting Honey’s arm for this little guy.

Isn’t he the cutest….he is an LGD…Livestock Guard Dog! I’m not going to link him, cause I really want him. Sorry. You’re on your own.

A Sweet Taste of Autumn

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6:30 AM DST in Maryland

I really should of grabbed a jacket when I went out early this morning to tend the animals. I love this time of year. I’m not sure who doesn’t. And I know Josie is happy to see cooler temperatures. I know. I too was at the end of my first pregnancy, 25 years ago.

I too was looking large, feeling off balance and wanting nothing more than a cool drink and a place to prop my feet! I’m not sure I could of stood on one foot….she’s quite talented, being able to scratch her behind on three legs!

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Sweet Girls 25th birthday is on Friday. 25 years ago my water broke on Labor Day, how appropriate! It was hotter than…. But Sweet Girl showed signs of who she would be and didn’t want to come out and only did so with a lot of prodding! She was born the next day after much convincing that it was a good thing. Way back when, they used to keep us in the hospital for a few days….I really can’t remember how many it was. What I do remember is that the day she came home, we had our first taste of Autumn.

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I didn’t accomplish much this weekend, at least not physically. I did work on my Sheepwalk & Fences Vest by Autumn House Farm and I really like it. I’m not sure what’s going on with me…..I think it’s just a combination of Menopause and Babesia. I didn’t sleep much last night and I’m not sure why. I usually sleep like a rock. It could of been the frequent hot flashes and the fact that my mind was racing all night. My doc told me that hot flashes are a sign that the adrenals are stressed. Yeah, that sounds about right. So, now my job is trying to eliminate that stressor in my life. Not so easy, but I have to let it go.

So, it’s time to up my Cod Liver Oil again and watch my diet. In the mean time I won’t stress out over the little things like the grass and pasture need cutting (4 hr job), the garden needs weeding (3 hr job), the house needs cleaning, the manure needs hauling (1 hr job). It’s pretty hard to accomplish a lot when my energy reserve is only 3-4 hours! I guess I should be thankful that it’s overcast and looks like rain and go unload the dishwasher. But that’s been part of the problem….so much rain and everything is growing and makes my work load greater.

Here’s my vest….maybe I’ll finish it today and spit my tongue out at the yardwork!

Heck, it will be there tomorrow….I know my yardwork fairy isn’t comin!

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Nice foot too!

It’s In The Mail

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I finished my B-day gift for my sister yesterday. They turned out great! This was a wonderful pattern from Favorite Socks. It was the basic 64 cast on sock with a simple knit and purl ribbing. They look lacy but they aren’t….don’t worry M! They also have a lot of stretch and are machine wash and dry Merino Wool.

Here’s what I’m working on now….

Sheepwalk & Fence Vest by Autumn House Farm

I’m using the City Tweed from Knit Picks.

And…

Fiona

Fiona

I love working Aran….aren’t they lovely!

And not to forget my younger sis Jackie….it’s her birthday on Halloween….and I think I have just the right gift picked out to knit for her.  She lives in southern California, so it can’t be tooooo woolly!  I do love this new Stroll finger weight yarn from Knit Picks….the heathers are so sweet!

Now to figure out her favorite color???

Stroll

Stroll Sprinkle Heather

Stroll Firecracker Heather

Stroll Firecracker Heather

Stroll Tidepool Heather

Stroll Tidepool Heather

The Odds & Ends of My Life

I downloaded a bunch of pictures today and called it “odds and ends”. So today, you get the odds & ends of my life.

I’m tired and haven’t been sleeping well. Sleep is so important. I guess I ought to go swig some Cod Liver Oil! That ought to perk me up. 😉

My days are really consumed with life right here; gardening, tending the animals, knitting, avoiding cleaning house, laundry….you know the routine. I do have my pottery time now and that gives me an out. And speaking of pottery….dada

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My very first mug and bowl. Not bad. I’ve finally found a glaze that I’m willing to live with…New Jade and Creamy Rust. All of my pieces are done from slabs.

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My colander that I painted with under glazes.

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My batter bowl and somewhere is my little teapot that matches the set above.

Now that we’ve covered the pottery….onto the farm.

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Rockie…..I fried him the other night. The white meat was good. He wasn’t a meat bird so he was a bit tough. Our carbon footprint that night was nearly around 0. We had taters from the garden, beets and Rockie! Nothing like home grown food.

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My garden is situated right next to the cow barn….convenient for tossing cow pies in the garden….however I don’t. I haul it to the back of the field for composting. But as I walk back and forth checking on the cows, I hanker my neck into the garden and I noticed my green beans were ready. I picked 2.5 lbs! Plus a beautiful Cauliflower. It’s the only one that survived. The other one is tiny. I’ve never grown Cauliflower before. I didn’t care for it. But when I was in India, everything tasted better and I loved how they fixed Cauliflower with potatoes and mustard seed. So the other night I fixed pastured pork chops, fresh green beans, Indian Dahl (lentil soup) and potatoes with cauliflower. Mmmm it was so good.

On to the cows.

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Josie is really potting out. I’m almost 100% sure she will calve near August 5.

A lady on a cow forum that I’m a member of had a really funny story…..her post was called “When Should I Worry? Calving?”. Her vet told her at the end of June that her cow was only 6 months pregnant and that the calf was very small. But she said on July 6 that her girl was having a discharge and she was “springing” (that’s when her udder swells with milk). She thought she should get a second opinion. So, some of the other members suggested she get some pictures for them to make a judgment on her condition. When she went out on July 8 to take a few pictures…..she got more than that…..boy did she get pictures. If you could see them….her cow was giving birth at that moment. First a pic of the water sac and then the hooves and nose and then the head….and her little 3 yr old daughter said, “mommy Lilly has a baby stuck in her butt.” 😀 😀 Then there’s a calf on the ground.

Boy was that vet ever so wrong!!!!!!!  Let’s just say, the cow knows when it’s time and her body will tell you.  Hopefully I’ll be around and get some great pics!!!  But in the mean time, I’m brushing up on Calving 101…by reading Essential Guide To Calving by Heather Smith Thomas and Homeopathy for the Herd by Dr C. Edgar Sheaffer, V.M.D. Both are excellent reads.

I’ve been trying to get pictures of Josie every week so I can compare them. Last evening, I brought her into the barn and tied her. I wanted to show her some cow love so I brushed her and talked all sweet to her. She nearly goes right to sleep while I do this….her head hangs down and she doesn’t move an inch. Then she gave me a cow kiss on my leg. Eww boy does that feel good.

She was standing just right for another good rear picture…so I ran into the house for my camera (when will I learn to carry it with me). By the time I came back out she’d moved. She was sooooo relaxed I didn’t want to bother her. But here she is last evening.

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Cow babies are on the right side. The baby was really moving a lot last night. I bumped it and it kicked me!

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After I untie her she doesn’t realize it and she continues to stand there for a long time before she realizes she’s free to move about. She was probably asleep. She was content chewing her cud with eyes half open.

I’ve also decided NOT to sell Joy. I’ve invested so much time into training her and I’d really like to see what kind of a milk cow Josie will make. I already know that Josie is going to be great mama cow, but I don’t know how she’ll produce with only 3 quarters working. I’m still praying over that 4th quarter, hoping it will spring up soon.

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I took the weaning ring out of Joy’s nose. She became frightened of me after we put it in and I didn’t want that. She’s now snuggling up to me and handing out more cow kisses than I’d like in a days time.

NOTE: cow kisses are when they lick with their long scratchy tongue and try to eat my clothes. Cow’s don’t have top front teeth so the just chew and suck. You can spot me when I’ve had my cow kisses for the day. I’m pretty wet. 😀 But I do love them!!!!

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Here’s a cow kiss sent your way.

Have lovely weekend.

Tweedy Mendocino Vest

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Mendocino Vest by Old Mill Farm

I chose the Cottontail City Tweed Heavy Worsted yarn from Knit Picks to make the Mendocino Vest as seen in Shear Spirit.  It was a rough start, but as I struggled threw, I’ve now got the pattern in my head.  I’d really like to try and rework this pattern with a cable.

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Mendocino Vest

I just love this picture of tweedy yarn from Knit Picks.  If I could, and maybe I might….make a Mendocino Vest in each colorway.  But at the rate of $24.00 for each vest….well, maybe I’ll do one and see how much I love it.  For now, I think I’m going to go with the Cajun or Cottonball tweedy color…or maybe the Tabby.  I think I’ll order one of each and knit up some swatches to see which will work the best for the pattern and for me.

I also love the pattern Sheepwalk & Fences at Autumn House Farm.  I almost bought it at the Maryland Sheep & Wool Festival, but I think something that buttons up is better for me in case the internal fire begins to burn again!

I’ve finished my Cable & Ladders Sweater (I’ll show you after I get it blocked) from Shear Spirit and since I love knitting cables, my next project will probably be the Mendocino Vest on page 151 from Old Mill Farm also published in Shear Spirit.