F Words

Last week I shared the story of getting Frank and Felix sheared with a co-worker. A few days later, she presented me with this poem, which I think is sweet and hilarious

Since then I’ve been getting fleece sorted and washed, and couldn’t help but notice that Frank and Felix have added to their alliterative accomplishments one very unfortunate F word: Flakes.

It’s hard to get a good picture of it against the white wool,, but there, my friends, is the dreaded Scurf. Ugh

So prepping their wool for spinning has gotten a little more labor-intensive.

I’ve decided that the most efficient way to get it out is to just cut it out. So once the fleece is washed and dried, I’m examining the cut side, and using scissors to trim about 1/8 to 1/4 inch off the butt ends of the locks where the scurf is located, before it is disturbed and gets jumbled up in the fleece.

Once it’s mostly out, I pick the heck out of it, and drum card it a few times, which will fling out a little bit of debris, and spin it fairly finely, hopefully letting any remaining crud fall out while fibers are fanned out in the drafting zone. I have done this pretty successfully in a smallish sample skein-

I think I’m going to prep and spin the best of F&F all this way and reserve it for a sweater project for this fall.

In other news, I got inspired by some folks on instagram yesterday to do something with my rhubarb this year! (last couple years it has gone to flower before I got around to harvesting) I’d not ever made rhubarb syrup, but it looked so pretty and sounded so tasty I decided I had to try. And it turns out it’s super easy.

4 parts rhubarb, 1 part water, 1 part sugar. Cook it down, bring to boiling, let simmer until slightly thickened (20, 30 minutes?)

Then drain it through a cheesecloth, and you have rhubarb syrup

now, you might be thinking, “Gee, the syrup looks pinker than the cooked rhubarb…” and you’d be right. 🙂 My rhubarb isn’t the really red variety, so I added about a half a cup of frozen raspberries to the rhubarb mixture for extra pink color. I’m thinking that it would be awesome drizzled over poundcake, in lemonade- or would make some amazing cocktails.

And I had all that partially drained rhubarb pulp left (which still tasted amazing), so I pulled the frozen raspberries back out and baked it into a pie with them.

And last but not least, the baby chicken update-

Welsie seems to be a pretty attentive mama, and they are growing fast- I’ve taken to calling them my little “poppers”, because of the way they pop around. Have a great week!

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