Sunday, September 24, 2006
Autumn Is Here!
One of my favorite things about Fall weather is the misty foggy mornings. I was running out the door on my way to work the other day and saw this...I had to come back in and get the camera....batteries dead...ran back into house... replaced said batteries.....back outside....snap, snap, snap. This one came out the best. The whole neighborhood was swirling with fog much like you see in a Hollywood movie and these fine rays of sun managed to make it through the trees across the driveway. It was so cool to look at I just had to post it.
Another sign of Autumn is the animals all sleeping in the patches of sunshine from the window on the floor. It's too chilly to go out....but this is a warm spot. Not too long ago she was looking for a draft to lay in! Now she's starting to look for her lap time in the evenings again. Ah, love the change of weather!
Last weekend I pickled green tomatoes as the tomato plants were covered with them and they were no longer changing colors. Our weather changed overnight and I was worried that they would all rot on the vine. I've never pickled anything but I figured hey, if they came out bad it couldn't be any worse than rotting on the vines! A friend did some last fall and I liked how they came out so I figured I'd give it a try. All but two of our jars are pints (the two quarts are pictured) and along with the green tomatoes there are baby carrots, garlic and in some cases green peppers. The pickling spice mix made the house smell really good while it was simmering on the stove so I hope these come out good. They have to sit for 2-3 weeks before we can try them. I was really good and didn't try any immersion dyeing last week....even though I had the jars......and the big pots out....and the vinegar....oh my. It was tough!
This is a project I've been working on for a bit. I bought a wonderful sweater at the second hand store for the yarn it was made of alone. The sweater didn't fit well, was a stitch I hated and pattern I hated but OH MY....so soft....and.....WHITE!!!! Ok, so the most work has gone into unraveling the sweater and balling up the yarn. The lable lists the yarn as Lambswool and Angora (rabbit) and the yarn itself consisted of several threadlike singles with hardly any twist to ply them together. It caught on everything and the yarn was large enough that I just decided to split it in half and run it through the wheel to put some twist into it. I'm loving how it's coming out and cannot decided what I will do with it. If there is enough, I'll dye it and make a sweater. (I hope, I hope, I hope!) If not....don't know yet. This is the first skein of it measuring in at 377 yards. I have some more on the skeinwinder and the last bits to spin up tonight. I'm trying to get it done so I will focus on the Melissa yarn. I'll have to do some dye testing on a small bit of it to determine what I'll do with it, but once it's skeined, washed and blocked I can put it aside for awhile.
Yesterday I managed to get the shed cleaned out and started on the aquariums. I ended up painting the stand as it was looking pretty rough. I only had black paint so black it is again. (It's an iron metal stand that was black originally but I had painted it hunter green.) I don't know if I've said anything about the fish tanks before and I'm too lazy to pull a copy of the blog and check. I've a 29 gallon tank and a 20 gallon long tank that both fit on the stand. They're both the same length and width...the 29 is taller. I used to have these set up and used to have beautiful tanks. Something terrible went wrong with a plant/fish that I brought into the tank and before I knew it I had a black blanketing growth over everything. It did not respond to any types of treatment, spread like the plague and choked off all life in the tanks. I was so disgusted that I tore everything down and put it all away. (Yes, I know. If I can't have it my way than NO WAY!lol) Anyhoo....I've been wanting to set them back up for ages but it can be an expensive hobby so I've put it off. I've really wanted to in the last year as I'm back working where I can order in the supplies at a discount. hehehehe. So that being said...stuffs been ordered....tanks and supplies are being sterilized......set up should commence. I must be getting older because I'm taking my time with this one. Using 2-3 days to sterilize, a day air dry, then set up starts with the substrate, water and filtration systems. I will add plants slowly and cycle the tank on it's time frame. Eventually I will add some fish. (a couple can be added; and may be needed, during tank cycling) but the whole aquarium to me is about the planting of it and the balancing of it all; water condition, plant health and fish health. It's a fun ride and I've got some strategic changes that I'm making this time, so it will be fun to watch the progress. I'm not posting pictures of it right now as it's pretty boring to photograph the cleaning phase. "yeah, empty tank, yeah....clear water. goodie." As I start setting up I'll start picture taking.
For todays final picture I give you this:
This is part of the stack of fleece, cleaned and awaiting packaging. Last night I weighed up 8 oz packets of the stuff so today I could just make the bags and vacuum pack to my hearts delight. (The other two stacks are across the room in boxes.) I need to get this done asap as I have a wet clean fleece in the washer that needs to be bagged in those bags so they can hang to dry. So this must be done before any spinning or knitting. And there will be knitting today, I promise it! And spinning for that matter!