Monday, July 21, 2008

Holidays...dealing with irritating wool...and I'm being stalked!

Quick note before I get into the post: Leanne is out of hospital! She and her gallbladder are officially "over". She is definitely on the mend and happy to be back home. Thanks again for leaving her comments on her blog.


Happy Monday everyone! Why is it happy? Why because I just started my holidays of course. Today I am "sans enfants" (without children) - so I am enjoying a lovely day of sweet sweet quiet and little to bother me...except for my stalker and the construction workers on my roof.

It appears that a local honey bee hive have decided that there might be some good stuff at my house. Here is my theory:

1. At some point last week, a bee (let's call him Bob) came to my house and thought he found something he liked.
2. Bob went back to his hive and told his friends about it (note bee using vector calculus to indicate where I live).
3. I am put on some kind of list where fly-bys become part of regular daily routine.

Every day for the past week I have had at least one bee check out my balcony every fifteen minutes or so. They hover around the balcony, check out the gazebo cover and if the patio door is open, they fly in to check it out. I have used the cup and cardboard technique to facilitate the exit a few times now. I'm trying to figure out how to tag one of these suckers to see if its always the same one (i.e. Bob - which, if it is, means that Bob might need some intervention therapy of some kind - or I need a bee restraining order).

At least its honey bees - a few years ago I had a wasps nest in the box that hangs over my balcony - there is a whole story about a really cute, super muscly exterminator who was also, it turns out, afraid of bees. Kind of emasculating if you ask me.

Stuff I'm up to

Tour de Fleece is on and while I haven't been spinning as much as I would like, I did do something really cool - I almost got all lace!!! This ranges from cobweb in spots to lace to light fingering. I've already cast it on as a Swallowtail Shawl - and I can only say it was probably meant to be because I opted for 3.5 mm needles and it was perfect first try!

The roving is BFL from Fleece Artist that I don't have a picture of - blues, purples and greens. Its overspun in spots, underspun in other and you know what? I don't care! I just love it.

I picked up another Fleece Artist roving at Yarn Forward last week - very oddly dyed - there was red and red-violet, lots of white, patches of blue and pink. When I undid the braids there was no actual pattern to the dyeing which left me in a bit of a pickle about how to spin it up. At first I thought about lashing it all on the hackles but I kind of want a slubby but substantial sock yarn and though I like playing with the hackles, you lose a lot of fibre in the process (the stuff stuck to the hackles after you pull off the top is too short to use).

So I pulled each bit of colour out and ended up with four piles - dark red, light red, violet, and white mixed with blue/pink/yellow/green. I ended up with this:

So I've been taking one of each colour and drafting it out just like this:

Ending up with would bits of pre-drafted top like this:

Which is spinning up like this:

Once I fill the bobbin I will navajo ply it which will hopefully even it all out into predominately shades of red and red-violet with hints of white and specks of the other colours. I promise pics when it is all done.

What I'm knitting

Besides the Swallowtail, there are some socks on the needles I can't show you as this is Christmas knitting although the ravelers can check them out on my projects page - the recipients aren't knitters. Otherwise, a few things are hanging out waiting for me to be interested in them again, and that's about it.

What I Read

...or rather what I threw down in disgust: One Ball. Thankfully I got this from the library and didn't buy it sight unseen ... oh Mr. Bee is back ... My pet peeves were all in this book - sparkly yarn, icky colours and stuff I would never knit. YMMV of course - someone liked it or it wouldn't be a book right? There was a nice enough moebius (but moebius patterns are kind of a dime a dozen) and an okay shrug. That about sums it up. Not a fan. I encourage you to check it out as I wouldn't want to keep you from knitting something that you really might like. I do think the photos left something to be desired. About halfway through they adopt this kind of creepy wire dress form that makes me think about cobwebby attics and serial killers.

Damn bee still outside. I would like to go and rescue some roving from out there but he needs to leave!

The irony is that I don't have any plants in my house, a basil plant with a few flowers out on the balcony (which he doesn't seem interested in at all).




bockstark.knits said...

What a great idea for mixing up the roving! I likey! And the bees...yeah, no fun. You must have some sweet roving out there! ;)

Chriss said...

The shawl looks gorgeous and congrats on the spinning too!

Great idea for spinning that roving. The colours are interesting.

Can't help you with the bee problem. Although I'm not afraid of them, I'm severly allergic.

If you've got some spare time while on your holidays, I can probably be talked into coffee or carding/hackling or even a road trip :)

Marie said...

Wow, that roving is stunning. I can't wait to see how it looks once it's plyed.
I would keep an eye on the area that the bee is investigating. You wouldn't want him setting up house. Otherwise, he's harmless.

Jeanne said...

The shawl is going to be gorgeous - love the yarn. I love how you split the roving up - it is going to be gorgeous. Hope the bee is gone! Have a wonderful holiday...

Leanne said...

Thanks for sending people my way - it was nice to come home to well wishes on my blog! And thanks for being so awesome while I was in the hospital. You rock!

Maybe the bee just wants to be your friend?

betseydoodle said...

buzz buzz buzz..I wonder what he doezz

Shawl is looking very pretty...

I'm thinking of a moebius cowl for that sweet pinkie stuff I gots from you a few weeks ago...

T said...

Get thee to Crappy Tire and get thee a Waspinator - they come packaged two for 9.99$ and look like those paper patio lights. They're shaped like a hive and everyone I know who has one swears by them.

p.s. Thanks again for the cat grass; it's a huge hit. Even Dexter has been seen gnawing on it!

Five Ferns Fibreholic said...

If a bee can do calculus, I'm sure that it could find away around a restraining order. Looks like you're stuck until Fall.

However...drastic measures could be in an ugly, puny and very geeky exterminator who is not afraid bees....but where's the fun in that....