Tuesday, July 28, 2009


Okay it is hot outside.even for me the perpetually cold human...104 degrees yesterday! Only down to the mid 60's last night...our hottest weather of the summer so far. Fire danger a concern..
Meanwhile back at the farm this weekend it was business as usual. My Monday morning post was delayed until today due to the arrival of 4 tiny kittens at 6am, we are repopulating our barn kitties. Janie and father unknown are the proud parents of 3 girls and one little boy! SO CUTE.

Alex has been busy dyeing roving for her felted soaps that she will be selling at shaniko. They are going to be very beautiful as you can see.

Jon completed pasture number one with the new fence with some help from Dave-now Bree and Grace are on the Job. Well they both were for one night. Gracie leaked out into the other pasture and we have not found the leak yet..we are sure it is through the not totally finished barn remodel..lol that will be okay once the other exterior fences are secure but not yet. So for now it is just Bree. If you look close you can see they are sporting a poodle look. They have had their bellies and legs/feet shaved to keep the foxtails at bay. Foot and body check every evening will hopefully keep those nasty weeds at bay. We have been doing some serious eradication procedures with irrigation and the population seems to be going down.

This is a really nice girl from this years breeding season
And Dani's girl Angel has a marvelous fleece~
The new sheep door
Well it is going to be 107 today, I have already got everything good and watered the girls are out applying fertilizer to the corn and hanging baskets, I am off to shower and head to work....

Monday, July 20, 2009

It was a Productive weekend

And it was really hot~we actually turned on the air conditioning.
I worked the drum carder and Alex worked on some dyes and this is what we came up with!~
We are getting our wares ready for the Shaniko Wool Gathering

It is going to be a great weekend!

Here is some of the yarn from Pippa's fleece that we dyed. I call this blend summer sunrise
And we call this blend Victorian Christmas
Our Gloxinia is in full bloom! Isn't is just the greatest color?
Jon got the pasture he has been working on ready to fence-burying the existing irrigation pipes that had just been laid out on the surface of the pasture (now we can use the harrow and tiller to rejuvenate) We are just about ready to stretch fence over there...yippee! finally a secure pasture over there....I will sleep easier. Though someone opened the gate and left it open for the sheep to walk out-we had to padlock it. It is just crazy when you live out in the country and have to padlock your gates against a crazy people who want to cause you harm-and are harming the animals to do that....Thank goodness for security cameras. That footage is going to come in handy sometime.......

Saturday night is game night and we played our new favorite game-Liverpool Rummy-In the company of good friends~

I took a break from carding and color blending on Sunday and had an extreme zucchini baking moment! I made Zucchini Bread, Zucchini-carrot cake with cream cheese frosting, zucchini cheddar biscuits to go with our baked goat-loaf stuffed zucchini and some really healthy breakfast muffins with zucchini, carrots, apples, coconut, raisins and walnuts. It was a magnus sized mess in the kitchen~although the end result was yummy.......I did manage to use up most of the current zucchini's and delivered a bunch of the yummies to Dave and Ellie-but came home with a fresh blueberry pie!

So we watched this interesting tidbit on felting a yurt a while ago- and we love to felt
and it stuck in our heads

so when we had 4 of the ram fleeces that missed a shearing because it was raining and by the time we had gotten to them they had started to felt making them unusable for my fiber process the girls thought they should try making a yurt-the traditional way!!!!
I did not take pictures at first....first they laid all four fleeces out with a little soap and h2o and worked it in with their feet-then we flipped half over onto the other half. It is starting to really felt. Now they got serious with the soap and water ad feet. The fleeces came really clean (surprising to us)

There was some help from Rivers feet though I think he was more interested in herding the water~
Next we rolled it onto a piece of schedule 40 pvc with a metal rod inside
And of course instead of a horse we hooked it up to the farm helper.........
except it didn't roll right. Jon is working it out...to finish tonight. I will let you know if it worked or if we had to scrap the experiment.
A great productive weekend!

Monday, July 13, 2009

Sewing Sunday in July

Sewing Sunday in July arrived~ And we dyed sock blocks, yarn and roving! While those were steaming various projects were going on inside the house. Barb is knitting a beautiful scarf, Ellie was spinning the roving that we dyed last month, Teal was knitting a scarf with this really cool bulky loopy yarn, Kathy was knitting a handle for my felted purse, Cindie was spinning on her drop spindle and giving me lessons and the other Karen that is new to the group (welcome!) was knitting a beautiful child's sock out of her hand spun! Here are some pictures of the group contemplating the colors that they will use. I went first and showed them on my sock block how to put the color on. Then Paula gave it a try:

Julie went for it-I don't think we got the lightest pink that she wanted (hey I am still kind of new at the dye process!)
Add ImageKathy went for some traditional stripes
Teal really thought about her color combinations-and if you notice the bottom of the picture
Sam the cat was her assistant.

Here are the finished sock Blocks! Now we will knit them all into socks and then take a picture of all of our feet with the socks on.....That will be fun~
I dyed some yarn and Ellie dyed some of her roving after the blocks were done using the same method. You will see the Yarn on my Etsy shop soon! Next month we go to Julie's House~

Thursday, July 9, 2009

The Garden is coming In!

We have been eating Zucchini for two weeks, and the cucumbers and artichokes are in!

Yesterday we picked three of the cabbages that were ready and started them on the road to sauerkraut! Nice tight heads-22 pounds of cabbage~
shredded and salt added to start the wilt process
tightly packed into pint jars and covered loosely with sanitized lids then it Placed on a tray for it's fermentation period-anywhere from 14-21 days. Can you believe that 21 pounds of cabbage wilts and packs into 13 pint jars......Did I mention how stinky it is to make sauerkruat....lol...and we have 14 more heads of cabbage to go!
Petunias are looking beautiful
I added a new rooster to the Etsy shop....
Here are some shots of the new felting paper project that I did. It is this great product that you flat felt on, saturate with water, roll it up in plastic, place in a nylon and throw in the dryer-then dip it in hot water and the paper dissolves...viola! what you get is a piece of felt that you can do whatever project you like. I happened to make
mine into a small clutch sized bag..I lined the bag with this cute cat and handbag fabric...It is absolutely adorable
I am looking for just the right clasp, and am having a handle made.
Isn't that the cutest lining fabric?
Here is a shot of a roving that dyed and blended we named the blend river.
This one is ocean
This one is called twilight
Our funky frizzle chickens are growing(rear of picture) and so are the polish! I love that breed they are the bravest little chickens. Luckily, living in the coop with its reinforced bottom and wire top there is no danger of them disappearing to a predator or a stray bullet that happens to mysteriously fall out of the sky. (Either that or there are some silly, desperate hungry people around here) Great thing about security cameras is that they capture everything....from real predators that hunt to eat and stupid predators that hunt to kill for no reason at all.

Jon has been working on the fence any time he can squeeze in a minute! It is very exciting~ Now we just have to decide if we are going to bury the irrigation....probably. Depends on how much excess cost we will run into. Have a great end of the week.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Happy 4th of July!

Happy Birthday America!
We started our celebration with the arrival of Mindi from Colorado on Jon's Birthday!
Boy was he surprised! This is the first time since the girls were very small that they were all here to celebrate with him~ Of course we girls are all feeling rather proud of having pulled off the surprise!

On Thursday I caught up on a bunch of gardening chores. Corn was weeded, hilled and fertilized and new drip system was put in-much more efficient than the sprinkler method. And then I puttered around in the other flower and vegetable gardens pausing of course to wash and rinse fleece~making sure everything was watered.

Yesterday was fleece day. Jon worked on the fence. It has been so warm (90 degrees plus) that it makes a short day for him!
It is fleece and more fleece processing time. Pippa was very generous with her fleece this year and her fleece has produce some beautiful Roving
meanwhile, My trusty assistants, were in the "lab" creating all sorts of wonderful colors playing around with the kool-aid dye method.
Alex is preparing some fiber for the dye process in the sink and Mindi is moving an extremely hot jar of Roving from the microwave to the stove

The Finished product! Look for fun felting fiber kits on my ETSY shop at www.liongte.etsy.com
The felting kit has 9 .25 ounce colors and 1 ounce of core wool.

Today...well more fleece...lol you will here that a lot this month~ and we are going to host a BBQ for the fourth! It is domino and Liverpool rummy time~