Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Chicks, Seed Starting and Spin Ins

Yesterday, as we walked into TSC, I could tell the air in there was different. Gone (or at least clearance priced) were the electric heaters and warm clothes (coveralls, hats and mittens) - making way for...Chick Days! Poultry feed, feeders, heat lamps, incubators etc. were being set up for the Spring chick season. See!?!?!? Spring is coming - sitting here in the teens it doesn't FEEL like Spring, although yesterday, when it was in the 50's it certainly did. Hopefully our days of buying heating oil for this season are numbered.It makes me want our chicks so bad. I know that we have a specific order to everything. Chicks come AFTER Spring Break - this will allow us the time we need to fix up the coop and save up some money to properly care for them. Still...I want them and I want them NOW! LOL
We had quite the eventful remainder of our weekend. On Sunday, I attended the "Spin In" at Tippecanoe Weavers. Essentially, anyone that wants to can bring their spinning wheel and some fiber and chat and spin and sit with like minded people. The owner invited me (after a FB post on her page) - she said that sometimes several people would attend, and others it would just be her. Fortunately/unfortunately - it was just her that day. Fortunately because I was able to get undivided guidance from an experienced spinner (10 years - you should see how tiny she can spin!)...unfortunately, because I didn't get to reach into the spinning community too much...but that's ok, it'll come. I was getting so frustrated with spinning. My wheel and I were just out of sync or something. My sitting down and spinning usually meant lots of curse words...not anymore. Kay over there is some kind of voodoo miracle worker. She sat down with my wheel - made a couple of adjustments (mainly, removing the rubber belt and replacing it with heavy weight cotton thread) and in no time at all, she had me spinning...wait for it...YARN! I actually was smiling and spinning and acting like I kinda knew what I was doing.
My supplies - carders, roving, cleaned fiber...
Seriously!? I spun THAT!?
There is my beautiful two-ply yarn. I can't believe it! No curses or anything!
I know that I have a lot of tweaking and practicing in front of me - but at least I know that I can do it....and to think that for a brief moment I was getting ready to throw in the towel. Soon, I think spinning will be the beautiful, relaxing experience that I thought it would be.
Since the Spin In - this is what I created, at home...
Love the color scheme of this roving.
I think I'm nearly done with this bobbin - I'll fill another with the same colors and then ply them back onto each other. Walaaa - YARN!
While I was at the Spin In - Mark took the kids to "Tech Fest", an event at a local community college that includes speakers from Lockheed Martin and NASA, lots of hands-on experiments based on the STEM (Science - Technology - Engineering - Math) fields. They learned a lot - pet a tarantula - got some cool posters about clouds etc.
Yesterday - after work, we set up two seeds starts. One of them was a pre-made kind that comes with the "just add water" peat tablets - it has 72 seed holes and we fill approximately 3/4 of them with asparagus seeds and the remaining 1/4 was filled with celery seeds. The other container was the one that I already posted about with the toilet paper rolls - we filled 26 rolls with the compost/rabbit poo/alpaca poo that we've been "cooking" for the past week or so - added our packet of artichoke seeds and covered them with more poo.
We cleaned off one of the 1/2 walls in our basement - it was filled with some junk and paint from the previous owners (just one thing we hadn't checked off our list yet) - lots of dust and rock pieces. So we cleaned and swept everything off, added a few lamps with daylight bulbs and are hoping that this makes a nice, comfy spot for our seedlings to grow (without feline interference...Ahem! Looking at all you cats that take the term "garden bed" literally and want to lay down ON TOP OF my seed beds). I didn't take photos - but I've created a seed diary of sorts - in there, I've added our planting calendar and will be taking notes about what we actually planted/when and if we should make changes for next season etc...
You hear that?? Spring is coming...


  1. Oh Gosh Shelby, im very proud of you. Spinning Yarn! Wow. I just want to get on a plane and come spend Spring with you for all you have going on. Not possible but keep up the post. Lovely start to the day.

  2. Thanks!! I'm really really excited about it! ...And you should totally come to the US sometime!!