FO: cosmopolitan.

Quick post today, because my parents will be here in an hour to keep working! (Today is their last full day here, and we still have so many things on the list: swap out more storm windows for screens, clear off a few inches of compressed leaves from what I think is a stone patio out the back door, hang prints, decide about curtains/curtain rods, wash the outsides of the windows…) I’m excited to show you all of our progress very soon.

These pictures are of my finished skein and change of some SCF organic merino in cosmopolitan. I split the fiber lengthwise and was aiming for long repeats, and while there is more barberpoling than I was aiming for, I’m happy with the result. This is 230 yards (205 + mini-skein of 25) of squishy light worsted weight wonderfulness. I’m so excited to check out all the patterns you suggested for my Rhinebeck-cauldron. Any thoughts on this? It is super soft organic merino, so I’m thinking hat, cowl, or super simple fingerless mitts.

Time to pour the coffee and gear up for another day of home improvements!

FO: rhinebeck cauldron part 2.

This is the second half of my Rhinebeck/Cauldron experiment, 188 yards of squishy 2-ply (in 150 and 38 yard skeins). My initial plan was to make this into another eternity scarf, and while I’m not sure if I’m going to to follow that pattern exactly, I think this yarn still wants to become a big squishy ’round the neck sort of thing. I’ve got 400 or so yards total to work with, which gives me lots of options. What would you make with this? (Boh clearly has no opinion, as evidenced by these photos.)

Did you see the curry recipe Andrea posted last week? I made it on Sunday night, using tofu that I browned in butter instead of the seitan meatballs. Mine is a very different color (due, I think, to my use of a can of coconut milk instead of coconut flakes rehydrated in water), but I’m guessing it was the same level of deliciousness. Oh my. So good, so easy, so going into my kitchen recipe binder.

They are hard to see, but I’m pretty sure that this is a mother Merganser and a whole slew of ducklings. A few are riding on her back, and the commotion you see here is all the rest hurrying to keep up!

And here is Boh, happily lounging on the dock next to the picnic table. It is supposed to be HOT today, so I’m guessing we’ll find ourselves out by the lake this afternoon, though not until after we do a lot of work around the house. My parents brought a truck full of furniture yesterday — things from their basement and from my grandmother’s house (she just moved into a smaller apartment in an assisted living facility), and they’ll be here for a few days to work and play. We have plans to plant some containers full of herbs, replace the shower head, decide about a dehumidifier for the basement…things like that. I’ll have lots more lake house pictures soon!

cauldrons and cosmos.

Or, more spinning.

This is the second skein of cauldron/Rhinebeck, pre-soak.


And here it is, hanging to dry. (This strikes me as a temporary fix, as it probably isn’t a good idea to hang things on heating pipes when the heat is actually on…)

Boh and I spent more time on the porch yesterday: he surveyed the scene, ears twitching at every squirrel and chipmunk he spotted, while I picked out more fiber to spin. I managed to spin up both bobbins of Cosmopolitan, a Southern Cross Fibre Club organic merino.

Here’s the first bobbin. I’m aiming for a light dk-ish 2-ply that preserves the color progression. I split the fiber lengthwise, and weighed the two parts to make sure I was in the range of equal bobbins. The test will be whether my spinning is consistent enough. This felt really good in my fingers, but I am noticing that there is a bit of all those “getting back on the bike/horse/whatever” feelings, since it has been several months since I spent any serious time at my wheel. This morning my right thumb is a little sore from gripping the fiber too tightly. Part of my summer routine will be to get back into a comfortable rhythm with my spinning. And pretty soon I’m going to have to find that rhythm with my academic work, too. (I’m guessing I won’t have to readjust to avoid a death grip on the books I’m reading…)

I’ll probably post a whole cluster of photos once I feel like I’m mostly settled here, but today I’ll share this shot of the guest room. My mom is bringing me her old sewing machine, and I’m planning to put that in the corner underneath the windows. I like the idea of finding ways to use this room and enjoy it, even when I don’t have guests!

I snapped this picture of Boh right after I got out of bed — much later than usual — this morning. I’m still feeling a bit under the weather, and I’m hoping another day of porch spinning and lazing about the house will help me to shake this combination of head cold/seasonal allergies that’s had me feeling less than 100% this week. Sweet, sweet dog. Somebody has earned a stroll in the woods behind our house today.

porch spinning.

Yesterday I brought my wheel to the porch and spun the singles for my second skein of my Cauldron/Rhinebeck mash-up yarn.

This one is Hello Yarn Cauldron.

And this one is SCF Rhinebeck. I was having so much fun that I plyed them together as the sky grew dark. (Dark = no pictures of the 2-ply. I’ll take a few tomorrow.) Porch spinning might be my new favorite thing. Lots more of that to come.

FO: rhinebeck cauldron handspun.

My rhinebeck-cauldron polwarth puffed up after a nice long bath, and now I love it even more. I even accidentally skipped the part where I count the strands and do the math because I just couldn’t wait to see it in squishy skein form. I’m going to conservatively estimate that this is about 150 yards of 2-ply worsted weight. And maybe I’ll be allowed to cast on if I can finish a book on postcolonial Vietnam today?

Last night I made this butternut squash lasagna. Which means I have delicious leftovers that should last much of the weekend. I didn’t have any mushrooms handy, so I upped the greens (used kale instead of chard) and sauteed them with onion and a carrot.

I think somebody is glad that it’s Friday.

a cauldron of rhinebeck?

Okay. You guys were totally right. All of my concerns about the way these two colorways (Rhinebeck, from SCF, and Cauldron, from Hello Yarn) went out the window when I wound this onto my niddy noddy and got to see it all together. Now it is hanging above the sink, and I can’t wait for it to be dry. The question of the day: do I have the patience to spin the other half of this, ply it together, and use it all for another eternity scarf or some kind of doubled over cowl? (Option B being to cast on for something NOW.) We’ll see…

together?

A few days ago, I decided I need another eternity scarf. The thing is, the pattern calls for the kind of yardage I can get out of two bumps of handspun, not one. After digging through my (more accessible) fiber bin, I surfaced with Southern Cross Fibres polwarth in the Rhinebeck colorway (Oct 2010 club fiber) and Hello Yarn polwarth in Cauldron (April 2010 club fiber). And then I opened up the bags on my already very full desk, and snapped this picture. So far so good.

Here’s the first bobbin of the SCF polwarth in Rhinebeck. This stuff spun super smoothly. I really can’t wait to spin the second bobbin’s worth.

And here’s an almost full bobbin of Cauldron. These colors are slightly more muted than the SCF (well, except for the super awesome bright green). Putting the bobbins side by side, I’m less sure of my pairing, but since the fibers themselves looked fantastic together, I’m going to start plying (maybe today?) and see what happens. Fiber experiment!

Okay, time to pour the coffee. This rooster is so ready for daylight savings to kick in, and not just because of the extra hour of sleep I’ll get tomorrow morning before yoga.