Thursday, December 3, 2015

Mild Weather Continues into December

A culvert down near the beaver pond got washed out and they brought in gravel to repair it and closed the road for a few days.  Not long ago, Rowdy would have been right up here beside Grover, but despite everything we do, he is just painful most of the time.  He still enjoys life, just at a slower pace.

Since last I posted we have managed to stay busy.  Grover and I attended a 3 day trial in Zanesville last weekend, right before Thanksgiving.  This marked our one year anniversary of trialing.  Grover earned his Open Jumpers With Weaves title on Friday, so we moved up to Excellent in Jumpers.  We did not get any other Q's that weekend, but I considered all our runs to be successful.  The weave poles were done perfectly 50% of the time, which is ok, but we still need to work on that.  We have no classes in December, but I went to the building to practice anyway when we normally would have had class this week and plan to go once a week if weather permits the rest of the month.  It has been rather wet to practice outside.  We have another trial, a 2 day trial, the 19th and 20th  of December.

Sam got a very large 8 point buck on the evening of the 16th with his crossbow.  The deer was large but definitely not a trophy rack.  Sam got over 100 pounds of meat off the deer which has been frozen and canned and shared with Sam's mom and dad.  We had decided earlier this year that we would like to learn to tan a hide with the brains of the deer.  So Sam saved the hide, which is huge, and worked on it and we now have a tanned hide, though it is stiffer than we would like.  Sam's brother says he should have started with a smaller hide.  But this is what we have.  Sam is already planning better ways of doing the next one.

And this week is gun season for deer in Ohio, so I have come to the office an extra day so far so that Sam can hunt with the local "gang".  We would like one more deer for the freezer and I know Sam's mom and dad would like some more venison as well.

Thanksgiving was last week.  We drove to Dayton with the dogs on Thanksgiving morning.  I baked pies and bread the day before, including a pumpkin pie with my homegrown pumpkin.  It was yummy.  I also took along the finished runner that Mom had commissioned for her entryway.  It looks wonderful on her new hardwood floors.  I was so pleased when I took it off the loom and the finished measurement was 9'4" X 30".  There is math involved in weaving and things like take-up (once the rug is no longer under tension on the loom, it can lose up to 20% of its length) to consider.  I was going for a 9' runner and I can be mathematically challenged, but I checked and re-checked and was really quite pleased with the finished rug.


I also finished the last of the warp on my small loom.  This was supposed to be a sample, but came out as a full towel, though smaller than the other 2 more colorful towels.  I have to say this one is my favorite of the 3 I did.

I also finished a quick gift knit, which I will post a photo of next time and another final pair of mitts for sale at this week's Christmas Festival in 2 days.

This pair of mitts is from some more really old handspun.  The first time Tari and I went to the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival was in 2003 and I bought a lovely jacob fleece there.  Jacob Sheep   (click for photo) are interesting as they are 2 colored, being white with big spots of black or varying shades of brown.  They can also have up to 6 horns!  This was a lovely fleece, soft and crimpy, and I blended it with alpaca and spun it.  I have a pair of socks from this blend as does Sam.  I came across a nice ball of leftover yarn and the mitts are very nice.  That makes 5 pairs I have ready for sale at the festival.

A really cool thing:  Sam and I have had salad and also pizza with arugula from greens that are under our little hoop cold frame!  It has been so nice to go out and cut fresh lettuce in late November.  We may finish it up tonight because while it is not freezing, it is not really growing much anymore.  But to have fresh lettuce from the garden in December in Ohio is a treat!  A salad should go nicely with marinated seared venison loin.  


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