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Wednesday in April

This is the manchild, waiting for the school bus. He only has about a month of school left. Okay, 5 weeks.

I sent him off this morning with a slip filled out saying I’d totally be willing to share a little bit about my job for his class’ career day type thing. Those of you who know me will probably not be surprised if I tell you the slip’s “Any additional info?” space was entirely filled with sentences like “I can spend more time if you like and with some advance notice, bring cheap materials which I’d donate and teach the kids to spin real quick.” I’ve been thinking of changing my job description or title from “Production Fiber Artist” to “Compulsive Yarn Evangelist.” I’m not sure that works to describe it to fourth graders, though. The lad has an image in his mind of what I’ll do for a demo, based on a short movie they saw about “turning wool into yarn in a factory, with machines,” as he put it somewhat scornfully. He suggests showing things with spindles, as he’s not sure a spinning wheel can fit into the classroom, because it just has normal doors. Ever since he said that, I’ve been wondering what he’s been doing every time I have moved a wheel around the house. Or taken it outside, or brought one home, or… Anyway. His description of what he’s like me to cover is “Take some wool that’s right off a sheep, then explain you can wash it and stuff, and card it, then spin it, with two kinds of spindles. And bring wool and yarn and cloth to pass around.”

That’s my boy.

It is definitely spring, finally! If it snows again, I’ll be surprised and angry. Yesterday was shorts weather; today might be too. Chad has mowed the grass for the first time (mowing becomes a very routine, twice-weekly thing in this neck of the woods), and we’ve pronounced three of the baby trees, plus all the lilacs and a pair of holly bushes, dead from last summer’s drought. One small maple made it, and the larger cherry and magnolia trees did as well. But I’m thwarted yet again with the lilacs. It’s so unfair. Lilacs were among the first things I thought of when we decided to move back east. Surely I deserve lilacs for my springs. I guess we’ll try again.

This is Kaylee.

She’s really not a kitten anymore, but I still call her one. Of that, she is forgiving — but the glare should tell you she’s less enthused about other things lately, as I’ve been locked in the yarn room with Cardzilla.

This stuff is red.

Yep, red.

Brick red. I probably should have kept some. But, you know, I have plenty of work to do spinning as it is.

This is a bit of sampling. It got done on the car ride over to pick the manchild up from spending the night with grandparents, and back (something like an hour). Now it’s in a 2-stranded ball and needs plying. I’m lucky that I can get stuff done while riding in the car. I have lots to do. I’ll tell you about this blend when I ply it and measure it and so on. It’s dyed blue Corriedale and some Sea Silk — that new chitin-derived synthetic.

This is Tiramisu.

You know, because it’s got all these layers of creamy and chocolatey and coffee-y frothiness. I probably should have kept some of this too, but I didn’t.

I didn’t keep any Tropic, either.

It’s Falkland/silk/alpaca.

No, I kept none of these things. They are all — along with many friends — headed for The Spunky Eclectic, where the delightful Amy (you might call her Boogie) will be making them available to you.

Now that I have those things out the door, and now that I’ve indulged in a third cup of coffee to tell you about ’em (and surreptitiously hope spring is here to stay — risky a thought as that is to ever speak aloud, and all), my nose has to hit the grindstone again on the writing stuff front, so there may be a bit of a blog silence coming up, and it’ll probably be 2-3 days to answer lots of email, because if I let myself get sidetracked with any of that stuff, these other things won’t happen, and they need to. Because, you see, if they don’t happen, I won’t get to that space where I get to clean up my studio and office; and if that doesn’t happen before school’s out, I’ll… I’ll… probably have a total tantrum, which is really poor form for somebody’s mom, not to mention generally a waste of time and energy.

13 thoughts on “Wednesday in April

  1. Take the charkha…it demos well.

  2. Dude. So, wait; you’re saying I can ride up to Maine in a few weeks and buy fiber from you that has sea silk in it?

    And it’s blue, some of it?

    I wonder if I can hack a french press into a drop spindle.

  3. (Well, some iteration of “from” involving a middlewoman and some iteration of “some is blue and some is silky and these sets do not necessarily overlap”. More coffee.)

  4. That stuff looks delicious. I’m working up the guts to do those sock batts I bought from you a hundred million years ago. AND, last weekend I was spinning and had a little pile of scrap fiber off to the side. The Bug picked it up and I told him it was soft, and he rubbed it on his cheek and then handed it to me. I told him it was his, and his face lit up and he spent the next half hour alternately hugging it and drafting it. I will convert this kid yet.

  5. Good for you! I used to take all kindso fthings in from the farm to show and tell and educate my peers. Yes, I took wool too, we had 400 sheep after all. lol

  6. If “Compulsive Yarn Evangelist” is a bit much for 4th graders, how about “Yarn Missionary?”
    “Textile Pusher?”
    “Neighborhood Corner Yarn Dealer?”
    Or, less descriptive, but probably more memorable
    “Yarny lady?”

  7. I wrote lessonplans up as an assignment about demonstrating how clothing is made from raw wool on up. I then presented the lesson to my class and videotaped it. They think I’m weird.

  8. I wrote a note to you on your winter snow-in yarn below – see if you can spot me.


  9. The red stuff is gorgeous and yes, too bad you didn’t keep some it.

    I’d just take a couple of spindles so the kids can play with them..much easier to transport, too.

  10. I wish someone like you had come to my school!

  11. Hey Abby! The brilliant Denny hatched a plan for me to bring you up here to the shop. In her brilliant, brilliant, semi-evil way — let’s talk.

    I love SeaCell yarns — wait til you see Sivia Harding’s SeaCell shawl in my next book, it’s astounding.

  12. You never told me you had a Burmese! Aren’t they just so much “fun”?

  13. Wow, the fiber is gorgeous!

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