Sunday, February 28, 2010

Sad Goodbyes

This is just a short post. I've been horribly sick all week. And sadly, early friday morning my mother-in-laws husband passed away. All of us are so concerned for her. She's lost her husband in the middle of moving house. Today was fits of cleaning interrupted with emails from Brent's uncle who was writing a very touching obituary.

Luane, we all love you.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Puppy Love

Brent never ceases to surprise me. He was all for me getting some sheep. And I was SO worried he would be unhappy about it. And then he suggested instead of fencing the whole place, we should just make the sheep and goats their own pasture. That was a bit surprising. Right now, I am waiting to find out how much the sheep are going to be. I could get some wethers right now if I want. But I might want to wait until summer and get some youngsters. It kind of depends on when we can fence a pasture and how much they are going to cost.

It is a week into the Olympics and I realized I had knit like half an inch of my project. I predict that I will not finish it in time. Right now it is at my MIL’s house. We went over this afternoon to help her and check on my SIL, Cherie. She is Brent’s older sister. They came over yesterday and Cherie woke up really sick this morning. She spent the day throwing up and having the dry heaves. They went to the ER late this afternoon and they gave her some things to help. The tests were inconclusive. Brent is convinced his mother gave her food poisoning. She is feeling better now and was able to eat dinner with us.

Cherie has the cutest toy Schnauzer. He is chocolatey brown with a bit of silver and is really tall for a toy Schnauzer. He isn’t much more than a puppy, so he is very fun. Scout decided we could be friends after I took him for a walk and then pulled all of the stickers out of his beard. We’ve had OLD dogs for so long, I’d forgotten how fun dogs are when they are young. My dog is very energetic, but he is also blind. Sam has tons of bounce, gets excited easily, and then runs into everything in the house on his way to the back door. His hearing is not what it once was, either. But it isn’t bad. He depends completely on his hearing to locate us, so it is very important. Considering Sam’s age, he is in incredible condition. He will be 15 this summer if I remember right. If I am wrong, he will only be 14.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

My Day Off

Today is a kitchen day. I need to make cookies or buy snacks. And the yogurt was begging me to be made. There’s no sun today, so going outside isn’t as fun. Of course, there is always the spinning wheel…



I filled this up finally and now I have a new, empty one on the wheel. When I fill the third one up, I will have to buy more. OR. I could do something with it. There’s always that.

Here is the second valentine dress, free of yogurt:



I really like how both of them turned out, but I still want to fix the sleeves on the second dress.

I’m tired of not seeing the sun. This dreary weather is the pits. I’ll have my fill of sun this summer, but a few hours now would be nice. That nice weather last weekend made a spoiled girl of me.

I’ve been talking to my husband about building fence and getting steers. It is my feeling that he is probably not going to be keen on buying an animal that he doesn’t get eat or drink of. Of course, I am sure he’s probably not going to be so annoyed that I have to not get any sheep. It is just another conversation that I somehow dread having. He’s been pretty grumpy about everything lately. He can’t do much outside and being out of work this long isn’t fun. But I think what really is bothering him is his mom’s pending move to the country. I love my mother in law, but she can be a royal pain in anyone’s behind. She always wants Brent to do something for her. Up until now, the house they have here has been a weekend place for them. They live in Boise, about 80 miles from here. They can’t really afford to live there anymore and her husband’s health is failing quickly. So, while she can be a horrible pain, we also feel for her. She has to get rid of a lot of stuff since 2 houses do not easily become one. Especially when the 2 houses are decorated in different styles. This morning he asked me to call and I think it was because he couldn’t take it if his mother cried again. The whole family is stressing over this.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Goaty Cuteness

I just wanted to share some goaty cuteness today:



I don’t understand how anyone could not love goats. To know them is to love them. They have so much personality. My life was so boring before and I just didn’t know it. As born farm girl, I find that I need livestock to be happy. I am thinking about getting some Shetland sheep so I can have a diversified flock. Once on Ravelry I read that chickens are gateway livestock. First you get chickens, then other birds, which leads things like pigs, goats, and sheep. And the next thing you know, you have a horse and 3 cows, too. I thought it was very funny, but it is also quite true. I think I will stick with the smaller animals. I like animals that can’t hurt me that much. I was kicked in the chest by a Holstein once.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Happy Valentine's Day!

I got both of the valentine dresses finished. They are both cute, but I only have pictures of the first one. The second one has yogurt on the front of it.



With this dress, I discovered the wonders of elastic thread. And with the second one, I discovered the troubles of elastic thread. It worked wonderfully with the first dress and not at all with the second one. I did everything the same. I suspect the difference is the weight of the fabric. I need to look it up online so I can finish the sleeves on the second dress.

Now I am considering what to do next sewing-wise. January is over, so I am free of my no yarn and no fabric buying diet. I have a vintage pattern that I started cutting out last summer. And I have a peasant dress for the girls that I cut out late last summer. I am leaning towards my dress so I can get all the fabric put to use. There is a lot of fabric with it. I can’t wait to wear it. It is definitely a warm weather dress. It is a poofy skirted halter dress from the 50’s. There is a little jacket you can make to go with it.

With my knitting, I am still working toward separating front from back on Soria. It seems to be taking forever. I haven’t had a lot of knitting time this past week. I starting making knitting time for myself yesterday. I also cast on for the Bonsai Tunic that was in the spring 2007 IK. It is my Ravelympics project. I am still casting on because I didn’t leave a long enough tail and I had to start all over. The Bonsai is knit in pieces, but of course, I am knitting it in one piece. I expect to have lots of vests to wear for next winter.

All the warm, sunny weather here has me anticipating spring. Spring fever has really set in. I ordered my garden seeds the other day from Southern Exposure and Territorial. I order more from Southern Exposure because they tend to have more drought hardy and heat tolerant varieties than Territorial does. That is very important around here.

The girls keep saying they want it to be summer. Right now it is hard to imagine it being so hot outside we won’t want to go outside after 10 am. I long for weather warm enough to wear tank tops and capris or shorts, too. When the heat finally comes, I will long for the short, cold days of December when the solstice comes. People are so fickle.

Have a nice, handmade Valentine’s Day. Make a valentine for your Valentine!

Monday, February 08, 2010

Thinking of Spring

Yesterday was such a nice day to be outdoors. It was warm enough to go out without an actual coat, the snow is all gone, and the sun felt so good. I know that this weather isn’t going to last, but it felt so much like spring. In fact, it felt like a day in late March, but without the wind we almost always have at that time. And today looks like more of the same.

Last night I spent some time looking some stuff up on goat care at Fiasco Farm and found their gestation calculator. It looks like I’ll be getting baby goats for my birthday. I’ve been making a list of things I need to get. Like tattoo pliers and hoof trimmers. I’ve been such a slacker because I know I need to have this stuff on hand for when I need it. I was born and raised on a ranch. That’s probably why I didn’t think about getting it, actually. We always had the stuff.

I got started with the Valentine’s dresses yesterday afternoon. I got all the parts cut out for the first dress. I’m not going to cut out the second one until the first one is done. That way if I want to change something, I can. The girls pretty much wear the same size, Knitter #2 just needs things longer than Knitter #3. I need to sew the first dress today if I am going to get them both done by Thursday. Their parties are on Thursday and Friday.

Wednesday is Brent’s birthday. He told me the girls could get him presents, but I didn’t need to. So I bought him some fish for our tank. He’s been taking care of them and has complained that our Plecostamus doesn’t keep it clean. So I bought another one, some neons, and a couple Mickey Mouse Platys. By the time I got home, there were baby Platys. I don’t know if they snuck in with the water or if one of the fish had them on the way home. I put in some plastic grass for them to hide in. We have a 55 gallon tank that had less than a dozen fish in before I bought fish on Saturday. About once a year, I go buy a bunch of cool fish for our tank and usually most of them die. It is very annoying to spend $50 on fish to have only 5 or 6 fish a month later. And last year I went to a lot of trouble to make sure our tank was healthy before I went and bought fish. If these guys all thrive, I will go back for more fish. I love Mollies and Swordtails, but they didn’t do well for me last year. Heck, if we have a tank full of fish, I might be inspired to buy a new hood for our tank. I love watching fish.

Saturday, February 06, 2010

Valentine's Sewing

Yesterday, when I was looking at patterns online, I decided the girls need Valentine’s dresses. I knew the V-day fabrics would be on sale, and I had found the perfect pattern that was on sale. Sadly, they were all out of that pattern. Fortunately, I have tons of dress patterns. I looked one up in the book and found it in the drawer to get the yardage off the back of the envelope. I’m going to add an underskirt with an eyelet ruffle to make them super girly. Not just regular girly.



I’ve used this pattern before. I made a dress for Knitter #2 when she was in preschool. It was WAY too big for her then, so I haven’t used the pattern again until now. She loved the dress, but I had to take it away because it developed a tear at the top. Every dress that I’ve made them that called for you to stay stitch from each side has done that unless I overlapped the stay stitching. Nothing is more off putting than to have a dress be worn 3 or 4 times and then it rips. I don’t buy cheap fabric for their clothes. I want the clothes to last. I’d like to see their kids wear the stuff, too. Providing they have girls to wear the dresses…

Gardening season will be upon us soon. It would behoove me to see if I even have any tomato seeds. If I don’t, I really need to order some. You can’t assume that just because you bought Brandywines and Mortgage Lifters last year that you will be able to get them this year. 2 years ago I bought them to augment our tomato patch and last year they were not to be had at any point in the garden planting season. And this year I have promised myself I won’t kill my baby plants like I did last year and 3 years ago. Hopefully this year the garden will thrive. I bought a book on drip systems to help with that problem. And if we have a bumper crop of grass hoppers, I think I will herd some chickens into the garden. They can’t harm it more than the grasshoppers did last year. I’ve never had chickens devour my entire garden.

Friday, February 05, 2010

A Bagel-y Day

Today I made bagels. Yummy. Knitter #2 will be very happy. She loves to have half a bagel for breakfast. I’m worried my yeast is starting to get old, so I used a bit more than I usually do. Since my bagels came out fine, I have to draw the conclusion that it IS getting old. I like to buy it in large quantities because it is cheaper, but then I slack off on baking and it doesn’t get used up fast enough. This means I need to bake more, obviously. Or start buying in smaller quantities.

For the past few months, I’ve been thinking about doing different things with my hair. I love my hair, but I also want to change it. I think it was back in November that I had highlights put in. I don’t think I will do that again. They look nice, but I like the darkness of my hair. I rather like having my hair match my nearly black eyes. Now I am thinking about adding some bangs. I haven’t had bangs in something like 15 years. I’ve spent the last 3 months looking for pictures of people with hair like mine. There is no point in getting my hair cut to look like something it just isn’t. Like straight as a rail. My hair is wavy, and I have always loved really straight hair. I never used to understand what people meant when they talk about how important a woman’s hair was to her. When I was young, I would regularly cut it all off. Now it doesn’t grow so fast and I worry about even having some bangs cut. Oh, to be 20 again. But just for the hair.

A few days ago, I told my cousin I would pick her up on my way to JoAnn’s because they have Butterick patterns on sale this weekend. Well, probably all week. Anyway, I keep a list of patterns I want. Today I checked my list and there weren’t any Butterick patterns on it. Ha ha, joke’s on me. I am so desperate to be away from my kids and Brent, that I spent the morning looking for Butterick patterns that I might want. I did find some Vogue patterns I want, so it’s all good now.

Thursday, February 04, 2010

So Long Chester

Yesterday we took Chester home and did a dance. He’s a nice enough goat, but he doesn’t smell very pretty. Not that he smells really bad. And once the fun part of visiting the girls was over, he started treating them the way bucks treat other goats. One of the girls was afraid of him by the time he left. Right after he came, I made a decision about how things are going to be set up when we have a buck. The buck pen is going to be well away from the girls’ barn and they will go visit him. I don’t want that smell in my milking area. Milk is sensitive to odors. Anyway, happiness and girliness reigns in the goat barn once again.

My Soria vest is coming along nicely. I’m starting to get impatient to wear it. I have mere inches to go before I get to divide for the front and back. If it hadn’t been so gloomy today, I would have pictures.

A while back, Heather of The A.D.D. Knitter said something about doing the Autumn Rose Pullover for the Ravelympics. I not only dared her, I double dog dared her to do it in 2 weeks. An entire sweater on size 2’s in 2 weeks? I think she is crazy, but I will be so in awe of her if she actually pulls it off.