Field Trip!

Today I headed south with my knitterly friends from work to visit with one of us who recently retired and moved down to Seattle’s east side.

And since we were (kind of) in the neighborhood, we planned to make a stop at Tolt Yarn and Wool in Carnation, WA.

I can’t remember when I first heard of Tolt, but I’d long known that I really wanted to check it out. And I’m so glad we did!

It doesn’t look like much from the street- but the sheep on the sign is all you need to know.

Inside, a world of wool awaits. Seriously- yarn from Denmark, Iceland, Portugal, Finland, Italy, Scotland, and also lots of local- Abundant Earth, Spincycle, Snoqualmie Valley and more. It was so much fun checking out all their wonderful inventory.

In the end, I fell for the Biches et Buches Le Petit lambswool (light fingerling).

No project plan yet, but will be fun to see these lovely skeins shape up to be in the months to come. It is really neat blend of rustic and refined- beautiful heathered colors, very light and lofty, with a soft finish but fairly hard-wearing. Stranded mittens? Possibilities abound. Here is the whole range of colors that they carry (for future reference).

And here is a nice comfy little spot in the shop for hanging out and knitting

A mighty good time was had by all. 🙂

Passing the Torch

I really didn’t want the blog to be about death two weeks in a row, but sometimes that’s just how it goes. 🙁

Today I laid to rest my good friend Bertrand, our 4 (?) year old Amerucana rooster.

He’d been in decline for the last 6 months or so, and I’d been trying hard to get him back on his feet, but I finally came to terms with the fact that he wasn’t getting better, and wouldn’t ever be able to hold his own out in the shed with the general population.

Bertrand was a handsome, well mannered rooster. Here he is as a cute little chickie back in 2015 (I think)

And here he is all grown up and free-ranging in the yard with some girlfriends-

This is my favorite portrait of him- enjoying a bit of shade under one of our rhodies

But this is probably the photo that best shows the colors of his plumage

He was buried with full pasture honors next to Peep. Two of the older hens came over to pay their respects.

And over near the shed, his offspring are coming into their own. Of five chicks that Welsie hatched out in May, it appears that all five are roosters. (Geesh)

Four of them look very much like their dad, which is kind of cool. I really hope that they have inherited some of his sweet disposition.

Requiem for a Peep

Our Ever Vigilant Guinea Hen

Peep came to us in via Craigslist back in 2013 with her sister (also “Peep”) as little 8 or so week old chicks.

Baby Peep

She and her sister were completely inseparable, patrolling the pasture every day side by side.

The Peep Team

They were quite the security team, sounding the alarm at the slightest indication of suspicious activity, until Peep2 passed away unexpectedly in 2014 or thereabouts.

After that, Peep was on her own, and I think she came to kind of identify as a chicken, but she maintained her lookout, and more than one bird in the shed owes their continued existence to Peep’s high-pitched alarm.

I hope that the chickens learned from her example and will honor her memory by keeping their little heads on swivels as they roam and graze, being mindful of the ever-present threats from above (eagles, ravens, hawks).

Rest in Peace, Peep.

Apple Time

The Man took this photo of our big apple tree the other day, all heavy with fruit

She’s an old King tree, and never fails to produce a ton of apples. A couple days later the Schoonovers came over and harvested most of them- and now they are on their way to being pressed for cider 🙂 So glad that they are going to good use- as it is way more than the sheep and I could deal with!

Making ok progress on The Shepherd’s vest – working just on the front goes a little slower than knitting in the round. Managed to get one side of the front finished up during the Hawks game today.

So at least something good came out of the afternoon.

And I’m doing a little bit of puppet decorating when I can find little chunks of time- this little Dottie-wool lamb is shaping up pretty nicely-

Out in the shed, this spring’s chicks are getting big- and I’m becoming increasingly convinced that they are almost all roosters. Just figures, eh?