Wednesday, November 29, 2006

To Spin or Not To Spin?

I thought our last huskies had the softest fur. I remember hearing people talk about making sweaters and scarves out of their fur. At first I thought they were a little crazy, but later I did think it would be neat to have a husky hat. I didn't really know the whole process. Over 15 years and two huskies I'm sure I they shed pounds of fur. Now that I am a knitter I feel like we wasted a very valuable commodity. Two times a year a husky blows their coat. In the summer they blow their dense winter undercoat, in the winter it's their fluffy summer coat. You'd know it was time when you'd see what looked like cotton balls growing out of their fur and dropping on the floor. We would to take them to a park or the woods and use a horse shedder and rake out clumps and clumps of downy fiber and let it blow away. I never wanted to throw it in the trash because I knew small animals and birds would use it for their nests and burrows. I guess I really wouldn't have known what to do with it back then.

But now, what do I do? I don't know how to spin, and I don't own a wheel. I don't even know how husky fiber compares to others on the ease of spinning scale. Is it a difficult fiber to spin? Are the hairs too short? Too slippery? Now that the long puppy fur has dropped and his thick winter coat is coming in I've started collecting the fiber from his brushes and keeping it. I know that I don't want to loose it, and his fur is so much softer than any other husky that I have ever felt. I know I can find a place to send it out to be spun into yarn. But there is a certain part of me calling out, not wanting to pass on the biggest step of the fiber process. I don't know how long it will take me to get enough fiber to start with. But I'm thinking I need to start looking into learning. I'm wondering about the whole washing and carding process too. He doesn't have oily fur. I know for sure that I would not dye this fiber it would be just natural. It just seems wrong to mess with a coat as beautiful as this.

Only 78%

Your Stress Level is: 78%
You are prone to stress, and you're probably even pretty stressed right now.Life's problems seem to pile up on you, and this often makes you feel depressed and burned out.Learn to take time to relax and enjoy life, even if things are stressful. It's the only wa you'll get through the bad times.

Things have been tense in paradise. It doesn't feel much like paradise these days. My sink has litterally been full of dishes for a month. I finally did a load last night, I will get caught up tonight. But they aren't the problem. They are just a side effect of my stress/depression. The husband and I are sludging through some tough times. I can't even concentrate on knitting. Which is a whole other stress since I do have a couple Christmas gifts I'm working on!

Monday, November 27, 2006


This is what I see outside my front door. My ocean view. I look out often. I can also stand in the kitchen at the stove and look out and see the sunset through the French doors. It's funny because as I look at this picture, I realize that I don't really see the houses on the sides or that ugly telephone pole and wires. I just look past them or through them. Like I mentally block their existence. Looking at the picture they kind of irritate me. Maybe it's the intoxicating briny air that I inhale deeply as I search for peace and calm in those fluffy white clouds and the deep blue sea that erases the obstructions.

When we lived in Arizona I was tormented by the fact that there were no large bodies of water near me. Like I was out of balance. When ever I really needed to think or relax I used to go for a walk on the beach, find a quite spot to listen to the waves, and feel the ocean breeze on my face, basically meditate. We've lived near the beach for a long time. But until we moved here we had never lived so close. I feel so grounded here. It's so comforting to know that I am literally less than a tenth of a mile from dashing down to the waters edge and digging my toes in the sand.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006


There is something so liberating yet so intensely nerve wracking about purposely dropping a stitch. When I saw Clapotis, I recognized the dropped stitches, then I read the entire pattern before I cast on. I knew they were coming, but it was so hard to do it. Cast On. Set Up Rows. Increase Rows. Straight Rows. Row 8 ... I stopped, re-read the entire pattern...just to confirm. I didn't want to try and fix that kind of a mistake! Then I did it, and was afraid, but it did what it was supposed to. It stopped at the bottom, it didn't completely unravel. I was worried. I kept knitting, I got to the second dropped stitch. This time not so afraid, but still apprehensive. I didn't re-read the pattern, I'm making progress. I figured by the time I was finished I would be comfortable with the drop stitch, but suddenly I find myself knitting faster and faster, to get to that next one. I have to slow down, I'm making mistakes. I just have to take it easy. But I want to do it again, I want to drop another stitch and another on PURPOSE! Is there something wrong with me??

This is a Christmas present for some one on my list. I don't think that person reads the blog so I will post an updated picture, or at least and FO. The yarn is Andean Silk in Hyacinth. I like the variegated colors, but this yarn is amazing and will look lovely knit as Clapotis. Very elegant, yet warm.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Did you vote today?

If not, there is still time. It's important to go out and make sure your voice is heard. For those of you in California, it's even more important because we have to get the Terminator out of office ASAP! He is destroying California and our schools.

I've always wondered why people always feel like its a burden to go vote. Have we forgotten that it is a right and a privilege? That our ancestors fought for it, they came to this country to start a new society where they had choices and impact on how they lived. That today soldiers are still fighting and dying in the name of freedom. That freedom is a right to be heard to have your say. Even if you have to stand in line, maybe it's an hour or two out of your life. But at least it's for the greater good. Who hasn't stood in line for hours for concert tickets? Or even to go to opening night of a movie?

I've never understood why it is a burden. When I was young my grandparents used to host polling for their neighborhood. So we'd spend all day there watching people vote. Watching the whole process at work. Later I remember my grandfather telling a story about why he is a democrat. It was Roosevelt that allowed him to save his farm and his family. They literally didn't have food on the table, and had told us how ashamed he felt when he had to accept charity from a neighbor just to feed his family. Soon after a bill was passed that funded farming. My grandfather was able to buy the equipment and live stock he needed to run a successful dairy farm. I was already registered democrat at the time, but that sealed the deal for me. Today when I went to the polls, as always, it brought back fond memories of my grandparents and sitting in there garage running the polls. I miss them so much, and I am so proud of them and their contribution to society. And they put in the time and effort to make this a great place to live for me and our future generations.

I'll get off my soap box, after one last comment. I hope that you vote in support of the same candidates and issues as I. However, it is most important that you just get out there and vote, even if it opposes my views.

God Bless America.