Wednesday, February 3, 2016

The Quest for Mitts

Last year I had a crazy daydream that I would knit and wear some finger-less mitts before winter had passed. It seemed like every other blog post yearned for them.

Last weekend I finally finished a pair that I wanted to give my mother for Christmas. Quest for mitts becomes a success! Ravelry link here.

Yarn: The Alpaca Yarn Co, Classic Lite
I can't wait to knit up another pair in our home-grown yarn in a few weeks! Only a short while left to wait before our first batch of yarn comes back from the mill!

It's almost too warm for any sort of knits this winter. Temperatures expected in the 50's this week.

But that warmer weather is great for putting our new set of chickens outside for an inaugural trial of outdoor living. As you can see, they still have a few things to figure out. There are 75 square feet in which to run around in, yet they choose to lay all over each other in the tiniest corner.

Finally, a little pig update. Couldn't resist making a purple one in honor of my favorite restaurant. Yum!

The three dark pink ones went to live with my work siblings as late Christmas gifts. A few jars of homemade gooseberry jam accompanied them to their new homes.

Finally, "reading" some Harry Potter on CD these days. I'm almost through book three already. What are you crafting and reading? Join the fun at Ginny's for more fun posts and ideas!

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Game of Pig - Yarn Along

I don't know why, but tiny knit pigs make me so happy! Recently there were leftover yarn scraps from another project that were the right color for little pigs, so I added to the collection. 

The first little pig joined the pig that scurries around our house in a game of chess.

Making more moves. They are better players than I! 

The second pig materialized at my friend's house. Snow on the roads kept me at my friend's house an extra night.

So I raided her yarn stash and made her an ornament for her tree, which she keeps up well after Christmas. Just like my family used to. 

Yarn pig friends. The variegated pig can almost pass as a cat, very plump and fuzzy!

The pattern is Chichester and is available free here:

Joining Ginny for knitting inspiration here today:

Saturday, January 9, 2016

2015 Gift Reveal: Bunnies + Carrots

A few years ago, my sister-in-law gave me a book of knitting patterns that exclusively feature animal hats. She pointed out how great the rabbit hat is. Hint taken.

Fast forward two years and nephew #8, her son, is at a perfect rabbit hat age, three years old. I couldn't resist making him one! And of course every bunny needs a carrot to munch.

However, nephew #8 was in no mood to model the cuteness, so I took over that job for him... 

There was great lobbying for the second rabbit hat (why, yes, one is not enough!) to stay at our house, as you can see from the glee of our second model.

Nephew #7 (also three years old) loves bunnies above most other items.

It went right on his head with no questions asked! 

Soft lining sewn inside.

The knit carrot got eaten by his new stuffed bunny on Christmas Eve.

It was yummy, I hear!

(Pigs are known to feast on carrots as well. Bad piggy! No snacking!) 

Pattern: Animal Hats by Vanessa Mooncie - Rabbit
Yarn: handspun yarn held double from a Copworth Gray sheep named Norman
Carrot Pattern found here: 
I modified the greenery. 
Yarns: Malabrigo sock (green) and Elsbeth Lavold Hempathy (orange)

Happy New Year! While not the year of the rabbit, I predict bunny hats will nonetheless have a big impact this winter!

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

No Reveal - Yarn Along

It's been a while since I participated in a yarn along. I'm not quite ready to do my holiday reveal, since a few gifts are still in progress and others haven't been received yet, so we'll look around at a few other things in the works.

First, we have my mindless project, the Done by Monday afghan that has been so soothing to work on. One more set of skeins to go and it should be ready!

And I'm working on some hand warmers (pattern: Gimme Some Love Fingerless Mitts) and reading All the Light We Cannot See. It's a great book for people with tiny attention spans. Each chapter is 2-3 pages long, but it is a page turner because each new chapter is about the other story line. So you can't stop. 

It's also new score study time! I ordered it yesterday and it arrived this afternoon. I'll admit that I already numbered all the measures! And listenend to the piece about 20 times. I might be excited!

Find other yarn along and book posts here and enjoy!

Saturday, December 19, 2015

Circle of Life

The great turkey raising of 2015 did come to a close Thanksgiving week.

The birds produced 7 and 4.5 pounds of meat, and were thus roasted together with a topping of thyme from the garden.

Our dinner guests enjoyed the feast. I leave you with a picture of my friend's pardoned bird sitting in her stairway:

There are 6 new Astrolorp chicks (AKA Peepers) growing up in the garage. 
I'm lobbying to keep them around for their egg laying and nurturing skills, but with our luck, their feistiness may be foreshadowing a flock of roosters.

It's Christmas soon, which will finally give me a chance to show you some secret knitting projects that are the works. Can't wait! 

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Snow Bird

These are some cold turkeys today: first snow!

This turkey needs some straw...

Looking to get to Florida...
OK, probably not. Thursday is Thanksgiving. Gobble, gobble!

Monday, November 9, 2015

Less Shady, Less Grove

Sadly, the Emerald Ash Borer has laid waste to a majority of trees in the back section at Shady Grove Alpacas. We were afraid that some of these trees would topple over onto the barn and animals, so we hired some heavy duty equipment and people to help us remove all of this dead wood.

End of Day 1: lots of work remains.

Less woodsy.

Day 2: trees all down. View from back fence toward house and road.
The barn looks a little out of place now that all the trees are gone...

Fortunately, there are some live trees on the property line, but it is a much thinner look.

Many of the neighbors are helping haul the wood. Some have wood burning stoves, others want sawmill lumber to rebuild their cute historic wagons. All of them have antique tractors. So quaint and charming! 

Looking toward one of the brush burn piles and imaging a fun party soon! Also pondering how long it will be before we have a beautiful pasture here.
Let us know what inspiring ideas you have for land usage. We have a few ideas up our sleeves too...

I can't sign off without a great picture of a puffed up turkey!
Happy November!