Thursday, September 12, 2019

Tuesday, September 10, 2019

Work In Progress

Sadly not new pictures of my only knitting WIP...which is a basically just a work with no progress :-/.

Just a pretty fleece and a bunch of drop spindles on the porch.  Yep, it's that time of year.  Time to be getting ready for the fall fiber festivals.  I have two coming up - the Millersburg Chautauqua Days festival this weekend and the big Kentucky Wool Festival the first weekend of October...which isn't far away...but it sure feels like it today.  96 degrees this afternoon. 

'Nuff said.

Happy thoughts, happy thoughts...this is Hershey.  Remember when Hershey was...Hershey colored2013 :-o.  How did this happen?  

He's a beautiful silver now.  This is only 1/3 of his fleece.  It was too big to wash all together.

It sure looks pretty and cool and relaxing on the porch this afternoon...  Luckily now that "August" is finally here (after two months of July apparently) the evenings cool off pretty nicely.  The Wool House Crafters meeting tonight shouldn't be too awful.  Auntie Reg made chocolate cake so that will make it all better...until tomorrow...when it's 96...again.  No break until at least next week. 

'Nuff said.

Wednesday, September 4, 2019

Butterfly Birthday

The first porch butterfly hatched this morning.  I knew he (watch for the two black dots on the lower wings) was close to hatching so I hurried with the barn chores and came back to the house to watch.  While I was killing time I decided to wash the dishes...and missed the first 30 or so seconds.  Housework...

While the weather is just as ugly as it could possibly be (way too hot and humid for a September morning!), it's perfect for a newly hatched butterfly and his wings were dry and he was ready to release in just a couple of hours.  

I carried him out to the zinnias and carefully turned the hamper over so the top was open, gently set it on the bench, grabbed my camera...and zip, he was gone!  This was the only "release" picture I got.

He immediately got to drinking...probably because he was dehydrated because it's 9 million degrees...well, 90 degrees...

He had lots of company.  I thought this delicate butterfly (moth?) was very pretty.

And a swallowtail!  I usually don't see many of those, but I'm hoping after all the caterpillars I found this summer there will be a big influx in the next week or so.  I need to look up their hatch schedule.

Better than tv!

Monday, September 2, 2019

The 2019 August Snow Report

It sounds like the Farmer's Almanac is predicting a colder and snowier winter than normal this year.  It will be fun or interesting (depending on which camp you are in regarding winter ;-) to compare their forecast with our August fog forecast.  

We really didn't have a lot of big fog this year.  There were several that I counted that were probably a bit questionable, but I figured flurries were better than nothing and maybe those light fog days were forecasting light snow.  The pictures below, taken August 24th, were pretty standard for the month.

Interestingly, as happened last year, on the very last day of August I woke to a big fog.  And on September 1st as well.  Maybe that means the snow will be late again this year...just in time for the Iknitarod.


Sunday, August 25, 2019

Back To School Photos

I've been submitting photos for the cover of the Kentucky Wool Festival program for many years now.  Some years I have a photo ready early in the year.  Many years I don't and find myself out in the field at the end of August taking pictures, hoping for that perfect head shot.  I think of this as taking my "back to [the wool festival] photos".  Here are a few favorites.



Ah, the innocent kindergartner, Big Moose.

PPPP (Popcorn PeePee Pants), the grand dame.  

The ever enduring Renny.

Handsome Andy.

Spud...the sofa ;-).

Thursday, August 22, 2019

Those Too Good Mommas

I should have done this weeks ago...but they were so darn cute together and it was so darn hot and I was so darn sure she'd eventually get the boy weaned herself...but she just couldn't bring herself to do it and it's a sure bet he was never going to step up.  Boys... 

Boys who are taller than their mothers!

At least they can still sleep together at the gate between Easy Breezy and the outside stall.  I'm sure she'll be a little upset when it's time to wake up and gather her boys to go out to graze this afternoon the way she likes them to, but everyone will get over it.  

Time to move outta the kitchen, Big Moose ;-).

Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Caterpillar Camp

The nursery is back open for business.  Sigh...

I planted a bunch of milkweed seeds and plants this spring in hopes that the caterpillars could all grow up out in the "wild" this year and I could just walk out and enjoy them without all the set up and care...and what I think I did was plant a flashing neon sign that says "ALL YOU CAN EAT CATERPILLAR SMORGASBORD!" :-(

This is mostly what I see.  There was obviously a caterpillar here not too long ago.  The leaf has been eaten and the green balls on the next leaf down are caterpillar poop...but there is no longer a caterpillar.

My first thought was birds, but I think a bigger culprit is wasps.  I see them swooping in and around the plants all day long.  There are apparently several that are known to eat caterpillars.  While I am a firm believer in live and let live in situations like this and that maybe surely wasps have a productive purpose in life, my fun trips to the milkweed gardens...have not been fun.

Frequently I see this - a baby caterpillar happily eating away on a fresh leaf, just the way nature intended.  I have yet to see one make it to maturity.  They are now coming in to the nursery where they are probably not as happy...but they have a much better chance of staying alive and turning into beautiful monarch butterflies.

In order to put the cut stems down in a water bottle or container, I have to pull off the two lowest leaves.  I almost missed this super tiny baby on one of the discarded leaves.  Into the nursery he goes!  At least I'll have easy access to plenty of fresh leaves this year.

Thursday, August 15, 2019

The Most Loved Sunflower

I was hoping to get some Peep and Peep-squeaks pictures this morning, but...wait, have I talked about Peep on the blog?  Peep is my cardinal friend who yells at me when the feeder is empty...and has taught all his kids how to train me as well.  Two batches of kids so far this summer and I'm wondering if he's got a third on the way.  

Anyway, the sunflower next to the bird feeder is a volunteer, growing up between the cracks in the sidewalk.  It's been one of my favorites this summer.  Click to biggify and look at all the blooms!  And all the birds.   I'm not sure if it will produce seeds this fall, but it's been a favorite flower perch for everyone waiting their turn at the feeder.

Tuesday, August 13, 2019

The Coveted Spot

You would think sleeping across a wooden door step would be the least coveted spot in the barn...but you would be wrong.  I'm not sure if it's the slight elevation or the door post pillow or maybe the breeze hits there best.  Big Moose won the spot today.  That won't last long ;-).

Monday, August 12, 2019


It's been a week since I last posted...and it's been a week.  We're all okay, basically, but the summer has taken a toll on everyone around here...except maybe Saint Tim...who's a summer loving freak...and that's all I'm saying about that...freak ;-).

Hank has had issues with the heat and also has an ulcerated lesion on an elbow that doesn't want to heal.  Salt ended up with an abscess on a foot that is slowly healing.  Tilly still has her ongoing band aid butt.  Renny got an infected hair follicle on a foot that had to be lanced.  Big Moose got a cough that needed doctoring and now Frankie's got a hitch in his get-along.  I'm getting a hitch in my get-along just trying to doctor on everyone :-o.

So it's raining AND pouring...but not actually rain...which we could use.  How about some pictures of some of my birds, bees and butterfly plants?


Pink buckwheat.

White buckwheat - flowers and grains.

Milkweed mixed in with the white and pink buckwheat with some phlox from a friend in the background.

These are the short sunflowers.  Somehow I got some packets that were supposed to grow to 12' and 15' feet tall.  These are the 12's, but they are probably only 10' tall.

The 15's are probably only 12' but that's still a pretty darn tall plant and kind of fun.

I planted milkweed, dill and parsley for monarchs and swallowtails this year.  The birds and the wasps are getting all the caterpillars :-(.

I guess I should start bringing them in to the safety of the porch when I find them, but honestly...I am mentally and physically maxed out right now...and I feel bad about that...on top of everything else.  Maybe things will settle down this week and operation caterpillar rescue can commence.

A friend posted on IG that every day there is "one less day of summer".  We (except Saint Tim) are feebly counting it down to ZERO.

Monday, August 5, 2019

There Is Never Enough Time To Do All The Fun Stuff

But Robin, Julie and I gave it a good shot again this year!  One of the most fun things we did was take Frankie for a couple drives :-D.  There are too many pictures here, but Julie took so many good ones that it was hard to pick just a few.

The reason Frankie looks like Batman is because he has really been having trouble with biting flies this summer.  We lost three weeks of training because of them.  I stumbled across this "Bug Armor" suit from Cashel and it's working like a charm.  

Go Frankie!  He's still learning how to pull up hills, but he's getting better every drive.

Kate got a good workout both days as well.

This was Frankie's first trip through a "bridge". I didn't let him look at it ahead of time at a walk. I just asked him to trot on through. He didn't bat an eye.  I am very impressed with this horse.

Photographer's turn!  Frankie stood like a gentleman while we switched passengers and he added another member to the Frankie fan club :-).


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