Yesterday was the 38th anniversary of my marriage to my first husband. I can only imagine how much resentment I would have inside of me if we were still married. I still have resentments against him even though we divorced in 1991, and I want to meet him in person and tell him what an ass he was and how he hurt me and I can't believe he actually did that and blah blah blah. I know it's a useless and futile fantasy, but still, a girl can dream.
I just recently celebrated 21 years of marriage to my latest husband, and I say "latest" as joke. I sometimes wonder how much longer this one will last. That's not a joke.
Anyway, I have been making yarn. Lots of yarn. Dyeing wool lots of brilliant colors and spinning it into 1, 2, and 3 ply yarns.
I also won a couple of ribbons at the county fair.
Well, I went to the wedding reception this evening and it was just as uncomfortable as I expected - but it wasn't embarrassing. I mean, it was small and nicely done and not too tacky and it looked as though people were having a good time. Or what passes for a good time in Monkey City.
This upcoming week seems like way too much, but then there is the next week with the teaching and the classes. Any day that I wake up and there is not a meeting or a doctor's appointment, I wake up relieved and happy.
Since I took this picture a couple of weeks ago, the fence has been removed.
Bunny Booboo is now the neighborhood bunny, but as far as I know, I am the only person that feeds her bananas. Her range has increased to 10 or so houses and she crosses streets to get there. She is very leery, though, of cars and trucks so my fingers are crossed for her. She's 2.5 years old.
I've begun walking morning and evening, after the usual dog walk - maybe a half mile, maybe more. I see Booboo some mornings but most evenings and I take a banana for her.
I have also begun taking photos on my walks and I will post them to backroadsandbywaysofmontgomerycounty.blogspot.com soon.
I had a friend from my costume shop who was very good at pleating yards of fabric to fit a small waist. We told her she should set up shop next to the "I can guess your weight" and the "I can guess your age" booths at 6 Flags Over Georgia. "I can guess your pleat depth."
Me? I am fairly good at guessing music, a la Name That Tune, but I'm better at some eras and genres than others. All this to say that I have been watching episodes of House, all 8 seasons now on Netflix, and they sometimes use bits of nice music to set or enhance a mood. In the last episode of season 1, I heard a bit of old time blues - and I knew at once that it was Blind Willie McTell. But I wanted proof. Here's the song.
I have been spinning. And washing fleece. And weaving. And sewing a tiny little bit.
As for spinning, I had gravitated to something between fine and very fine. Laceweight. Then I bought The Spinner's Book of Yarn Designs by Sarah Anderson, and the newly revived spinning group is inspiring me to experiment and take me out of my comfort zone. So, I have been spinning a spiral yarn, page 112. Thick single plyed with a thin single. See?
The white yarn was spun from a filthy, nasty and free Shetland fleece that I found at Carol Leigh's studio. (I also found indigo and spun linen, for which I paid.)
I learned one good thing about cleaning a dirty fleece, and I'll be damned if I can remember where. The trick is to place the fleece in a large bucket/tub of cold water, no soap, and leave it for several hours or overnight. A lot of the dirt will be extracted, and the water is great for plants. This can be repeated if necessary, then continue with whatever cleaning method you prefer.
Cold and snowy here, as it is all over the midwest. Today is expected to reach 32º for the first time in over a week. Bunny Boo Boo and Brownie have put in appearances at the back porch Pellet Depot, and I was glad to see them. Daylight is lengthening.
We are having car woes - one won’t start and the other won’t go in reverse. We go to buy a temporary car today and hope to repair the transmission in the one. The streets are slippery but passable, but still, I haven’t driven in weeks. I will try to take the dogs out for a walk today; I need the exercise, too. And the fresh air. Being cooped up inside with dry and warm air has not helped my sinuses. Yes, I have house plants and pans of water set around.
Finished two pair of socks for Sweetie. Yay me! One pair had been on the needles since June of last year but once those were finished the second pair only took a week. I used the Strong heel for both pair. This is the fourth or fifth pair where I have used this heel, and I may never go back to the heel flap style again.
Now I’m knitting a little scarf and weaving another with red cotton warp and black cotton chenille weft. Also trying to spin, but the static electricity makes isn’t making that easy. I spritz the wool with water but still.
Revived the Spinners’ portion of the Columbia Weavers’ and Spinners’ Guild with our first meeting last month. Five spinners and one knitter attended; not a bad turn out.
It rained buckets for a half hour this morning. Which would have been ok if it had been warmer than 27º but it was below freezing and that rain turned into ice. It won’t be above freezing all week.
And so here’s the thing with our cars. We had a very cold spell here last month; about three weeks ago. One car wouldn’t start, and the other one decided that it didn’t want to shift into reverse. And Sweetie rode his bicycle into work one morning when it was 4º. Now, one car will start but is iced over and the other car is iced over and I bet it still won’t shift into reverse.
I try to put the best face on it - at least we have two cars that start and go forward and stop. Could be worse. But Sweetie is tired and depressed and worried about money and not at all good company. He wants to fix the problems now. Today. At least by Monday. Me, I can do without a car much of the time, and when it is icy, I am perfectly content to watch Netflix and spin and knit. Sweetie could, in fact, ride his bike to work every day if need be; it’s about a mile away. His boss even lent him a car, ‘just in case,’ and it is parked on the street, probably iced over, but Sweetie is loathe to use it.
That’s enough of a rant for public consumption. However, the committee in my head want me to yell and scream and point and shout but I tell them it would do more harm than good. Have I finally matured or is it just the medz?
I have finished knitting one pair of socks that had been on the needles since last May, and I straight away cast on another pair. I have been using the Strong Heel and liking it. I spun over a thousand yards of warp, in a dyed reddish-brown, and then decided not to use it. I am now spinning over a thousand yards of warp in a white Lincoln cross, same as last yardage. I have spun one skein of singles so far for weft; it’s a white corriedale cross. I have this idea to weave plain white fabric, then natural dye it next fall. We’ll see. I do want to get something on the rigid heddle, though, before I start that.
Had a fun day, and it’s about time, too. Leslie, the flesh and blood one, came over and we made earrings and repaired jewelry this afternoon and listened to Outlaw Country. (pronounced outlaaaaawwwww)
I had resigned my heart to sadness, that Brownie had succumbed to the frozen sleep. Boo Boo was sighted on Tuesday at the end of a culvert that must have been her shelter. She was hungry but otherwise, none the worse for wear. She’s been coming to the porch to eat.
But Brownie. Where was my Brown Baby? (And why do I do this to myself? No more bunnies!) And tonight, there he was, in the back yard. I think I squealed just a little bit. He’s on the back porch with Boo Boo, munching on oats and pellets. The worst of the cold has moved back north and tomorrow should reach 45º. One day, was it Monday?, the high was 0º and the low was -11º. As Rainman would say, "Very cold. Very cold. Yes, very cold."
So. Jewelry and Bunnies. And Weaving. I love the Kromski Harp rigid heddle loom. It’s a thing of beauty and well-designed and a joy to work on.
My woven fabric from handspun wool filled to 11" wide and about 2.5 yards long. I want to make a medieval hood from it, perhaps lined with linen.
This is the harp in action. In the upper left, you can see a bag of chenille yarn, scraps that I have been toting around forfuckingever. This little bit on the loom is enough for a small pillow or bag.
Corky loves the cold weather. We've had about 8" of snow and the first day he bulldozed a slug trail right through it that the other two dogs are still using. He's doing great, as well he ought with what his meds cost. What a pretty face.
As usual, I am glad for the holidays to be over. The long stretch between mid-November, with its pilgrims and turkeys, through Solstice/Christmas, into the New Year, with its parties, designated drivers and resolutions. This season, the holidays were on Wednesdays and that disrupted the week and weekend separateness.
I have learned to stay away from family, especially at Christmas. It’s as though I have subconscious memories of some war that haunts me. I tried to recall some happy memories, talking to Sweetie a couple of weeks ago; some present received, anything, that happened at past Christmases. After about two minutes, the few things I was able to recall were replaced with feelings of anxiety and disappointment, and I cried for just a moment. No happy holidays live in my head.
So. Therapy has been good for me, helping me accept and move on and do things that are good for me. I’m sure my brothers don’t understand, and I know I would be welcomed if I visited them November or December. What I want is for mid-January to arrive, to get back to my routine.
On a happier note, the temperature is -10ºF this morning, and the high is forecast to be a chipper zero. We received 6” of snow, and the winds have made drifts a foot high against fences. This little piece of polar weather scoots out of here tomorrow, and I will hope to see signs of Boo Boo and Brownie and know they survived. Like most outdoor animals, I imagine that they have found a safe place to hunker down to wait it out. I see the two of them together, or separately, almost every day. Almost every day that I walk the dogs, I mean. Their range is the back or side yard of five houses, and while Brownie’s brown coat is a quiet whisper, Boo Boo’s whiteness is like a shout. They are not at all like tame rabbits, but neither are they wild - all look and no touch out there. I keep rabbit pellets on the back porch for them, mixed with oats and sunflower seeds, and they come to nibble and both will let me greet and rub their heads, but that’s where it ends.