Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Random Wednesday

I tried to find a cohesive theme or story for today but nothing stood out.  A very nice day because of sun every moment but just a typical work-a-day, do-a-bunch-of-things day.

I'm working on accumulating enough Cotswold wool for a batch of yarn.  Last time I sent just shy of 100 pounds which was 8-10 raw fleeces.  I've gone through three so far, taking out the nicest and most uniform length locks and putting the remainder in bags designated for wash/dye/roving or quilt batting.  There will be less loss in processing if all the wool handles the same in the equipment.  Today I paused in that and skirted Cotswold lamb fleece for a lady who makes designer yarn.  The fiber is so darn pretty I have to keep reminding myself to stop fiddling with it and hurry up.

Some of the locks are wavy/less curly - this usually comes from the sides of the lamb where gravity pulls some of the curl out of the lock.

Then there are the locks that lay along the back and don't have any stress.  Those usually hold the curl better.  Still, the locks are soft and supple - after all, it's baby wool.

Holly really enjoyed the sun and spent as much time as she could on the side porch letting herself bake.  She'd get up panting, get a drink and beg snacks see what we were doing and then go back and lay down again.  I would have been right there too if I had time ;-)

Andy drew a load of hay down to the lower barn and we put it up in the mow.  This wagon holds about 90 bales comfortably and that lasts the flock about 4 days.  It sounds like a huge amount but we don't make the bales very heavy because neither of us want to handle them!  A thirty pound bale is enough, a fifty pounder just isn't necessary.  You can buy a lot of baler twine for what steady visits to the chiropractor would cost.

The first order of business was to clean off the elevator which had accumulated our share (about 6 inches) of the big blizzard that ended up not affecting NY much at all.  (Note the pale moon at the top of the picture).

This wouldn't normally be an exciting job but for the hard soled shoes plus dry snow on tilted metal!

Once we had the load of hay off he still had to bring some blocks of wood nearer the boiler to split for tonight.

The hydraulic splitter is acting up due to the cold - likely some water somewhere it shouldn't be has frozen - so he's doing a few blocks a day on an as-needed basis until we get a warmer day... whenever that will be.  Ash splits easily and on a cold sunny day like this it's not a bad task.

And finally, a bit of Kittin-sheepy love.

Next time, some fiber progress!


  1. Brrr! Looks lovely and warm in the barn, though. Or maybe it looks that way to me because I'm admiring those fine, curly fleeces. I think that's what Kittin is doing.

  2. What beautiful, beautiful fleece! I can take the snow, but these frigid temps are what get to me. It makes everything slow down, me included!

  3. The fleece [fleeces] are so beautiful! The chores about the farm make me even more anxious for our land purchase to come it its conclusion. Ralph says he wants to retire to the farm so he can get to work!