Sunday, February 28, 2010

Sunday Stills - Fruit....And An Olympic Chocolate Medal

I did it! I completed the Pretty Thing cowl for the Knitting Olympics with plenty of time to spare to relax and watch Neil Young perform in tonight's closing ceremonies. And, along with whatever Franklin is cooking up, I earned a chocolate medal! Thanks, Alice :-).



In celebration (and because Saint Tim is a smart xxx mouth), team No-bake-istan decided to actually bake something (that Saint Tim doesn't like). With fruit! This is my favorite holiday dessert - Gingerbread made with fresh ginger, topped with poached cranberries - from my favorite cookbook, Fields of Greens.



Trying to photograph a baked good - with fruit - was about as much fun as the actual baking. I finally took it outside, for natural light, and decided...once again...to stick with knitting. By the way, if you look closely, you can see my reflection in a cranberry. If the cowl had shown up better, I'd have skipped this next shot ;-).



Okay, these next two pictures are mostly just reference.



Before blocking.



Pinned out after a soak in warm water with a touch of Fibre Wash and Rinse. I just love the smell of lavender. By the way, both pictures were taken in the same room, under basically the same light. Can someone explain why one is gray and the other brown?

In conclusion, I am very pleased with my first lace project. I am happy I completed it in the allotted time. I am actually happy I ripped it back three times to fix minor errors....and I'm proud my handspun held up for that many rip backs. Qiviut is apparently not only super, super soft, but strong as well. And there's still some left ;-).

For more fruity Sunday Stills...

To check out the other 4055 participants in the 2010 Knitting Olympics...

Friday, February 26, 2010

Make Up Day

Yes, I stooped to letting Keebler run around the yard for a bit this morning and then up on the porch for some "house" vanilla wafers. The pouting was too much. I am weak.



She does still love me :-D.



I'm still kinda sad though. Maybe you should give me another cookie.



And Eli says he'd like some extra food in his bowl, too.

That wasn't exactly what Eli was saying, but this is a family friendly blog...



I can sweep up the mess, but the door might be too far gone.

Maybe Saint Tim won't notice.

And don't worry. Graham and Hank got to run around a little while as well They all snuck out as I was trying to drive the truck into the field. Graham got greedy and went on an unsuccessful chicken food hunt. Keebs knew where to find the good stuff ;-).

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

A Hint Of Progress?



Well, well, well. Are those some of our stupid sheep letting Hank the Hated hang out with them? Or is it just close enough to dinner time that they don't want to take any chances...



Petunia: I can't get into the picture 'cause Peabody's big butt is in the way!

Buddy: Is someone there?



Woolliam: Yeah, she's got the camera again, but I don't see Hank anywhere (snicker, snicker, snicker).

Friends like Woolliam (the seeing eye sheep) and you sure don't need any enemies.



Buddy was way overdue for a trim, but he's just so darn cute I kept putting it off. When he has to sniff the air to figure out where he is... He has some stylish eye holes now.



Allie, Elizabeth's (the smartest sheep in the world) daughter. One of our nicest fleeces - getting close to spring shearing :-).



Okay, I am not making this up. Keebler got his feelings hurt when I was taking pictures of Graham for Sunday Stills. Seriously. Now he's again been "slighted" by my taking group pictures which, I will have to admit, he doesn't show up in. He's walking away right at feeding time. By himself. All the way out to the front.

I'm sorry, Keebs.



Almost everyone: Now what's he mad about?!?

Speaking of (negative) progress, I messed up something again on the cowl and had to rip back to my lifeline, SEVEN rows back. Then, I apparently had missed a stitch with the thread, but was able to figure that mistake out. I got three rows back on last night - 14 rows to go.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Ice Capades

Saturday afternoon Saint Tim and I headed to the river. There is an otter family over there and I was hoping they'd be out and willing to work a photo shoot. No such luck, but it was a nice afternoon regardless.



Yes, he's wearing waders, but apparently it was still pretty cold.



I tried to catch some interesting pictures. I like the "conflict" between the still water and where it turns to riffles.



Little fairy houses?









Hobbit houses?



And a little good news for those of you jonesing for spring. These geese were actually flying north. They've been flying east (?). I'm trying not to think about it.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Bee Party

On a warm enough winter day (around 50 degrees), especially if it's sunny, bees will make a break for it. They come out of the hive to go to the bathroom, do some house cleaning and look for something to eat.



Yesterday was such a day, so we put out some sugar syrup and sat back and watched the party.



Stella's tiny hive is alive and well (due to her dedicated care) and mine appear to be in good shape as well.





It's just amazing how fast they can find a sweet treat.



I like the reflection in the syrup. I also like these wood feeders much better than the plastic holders.



I wish I'd thought to carry my tripod. I apologize for the shaky video, but in case you'd like to pull up a lawn chair...

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Sunday Stills - The Letter G



Graham (not a) Lamb (anymore)



Grass (and Petunia)



Green



Gato



Glowing Graham

For more Great Sunday Stills...

Observations

If you see one horse looking intently at something, there's a pretty good chance it's nothing too exciting. If you see two horses looking at the same thing, something's up.

As I headed out the door yesterday I saw T-Bone and Gato together, up on the hill, staring intently...at Stella's house. I was pretty sure I knew what this was about. Sometimes peppermint candies come out of Stella's house.



Sure enough, if you click to biggify, there's she is.



This stark, yet beautiful landscape is actually one of my flower boxes, right outside the door.



Some people make snow ice cream. We are apparently more of a Springerle cookie crowd.



As the snow rapidly deteriorated throughout the day, it melted into intricate lace patterns. Speaking of lace, I'm just over halfway through the Pretty Thing.



Poor Keebs, who's observations during the day left him a bit confused.

"Why are you taking so many pictures of Graham? I thought I was your number one picture sheep."

You are, baby, but your name doesn't start with the right letter this week ;-).

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Night Lights

The other night I experimented with long exposure to try to capture the shadows cast by one of the solar lights onto the snow outside the wool house. I had so much fun I decided to try to get some barn shots last night.



I left the shutter open around three seconds on this picture. If you click to biggify, guess who you'll see watching me?

Yep, the sentinel.



This shot was exposed for five seconds. I tried some shorter and some longer. This is the one I liked the best and looks the most accurate. Solar lights are such a nice accent.



Our front door. I'm so glad I hadn't taken our lights down yet. So pretty with the snow.



I didn't even notice the tracks around the orchard tree until I saw the pictures. Isn't snow just the best :-).



Hank and I frequently sit out here and watch the sheep for awhile after the night feeding is done. Even in the winter. I have a great set of coveralls and I don't mind sitting out in the snow one bit. I love to listen to the sheep rustle around finishing up their hay and I think Hank enjoys the company. After the last sheep heads inside, we get up and walk to the barn.

"Everybody take care of each other."

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Pretty Things



We are still buried in snow (it's awesome :-D)...



...so I thought I'd share a little Valentine's Day spring green (aren't these miniature daffodils awesome?).



Plenty of blooms still to come (Saint Tim's pretty awesome, too ;-).



Hmmm - the Pretty Thing still looks about the same as it did the other day. Except if you look close, you'll see the green thread lifeline I threaded through before I started the "easy" part of the pattern so I'm don't have to worry about another frogging (ripping it back - rip it, rip it - not so awesome).

I re-knit most of it yesterday during the biathalon. I decided that was the perfect sport for a brutal re-knit. I felt like one of the cross country skiers, slogging along, albeit through some beautiful scenery, carrying a gun.

You never know when a gun might come in handy while knitting.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Animal Matter



Rebecca Boone knows she has cool hair. And she ain't afraid to accessorize!



Um, you know, most fiber folks only need to worry about vegetable matter.



"I know I'm the most bee-u-tee-ful sheep in the whole world...just the way I am."

She knows because I tell her so almost every day. Petunia still loves to have her chubby woolly cheeks scritched and if you tell her how beautiful she is (Saint Tim thinks she looks like a buffalo and I don't want her to have a complex ;-) while doing so, her eyes get all dreamy and close and she just smiles and smiles...and then burbs in your face.

Major wipeout during men's snowboard cross yesterday. Here, not in Vancouver. I don't really know what happened, but had nightmares about it all night. I spent several hours trying to cypher out how to fix it (stupid yarn overs) and couldn't and finally bit the bullet and frogged the cowl back to nearly the start.

Getting back on the board and continuing down the hill.

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