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Archive for April 15th, 2006

A Little of Everything, a Lot of Maintenance, and Sunshine

Saturday, April 15th, 2006

First DaffodilIt’s Saturday on a weekend most Americans call a holiday weekend. That means no classes for me to teach.

On top of that, we have had beautiful weather this week. The daffodils came out on Tuesday, and yesterday I think it was that I saw the first forsythia bushes in bloom.

sun with hailSo what did I do today? I started with a lot of paperwork, especially entering things into my Quicken program. (Did I ever mention how much I like Quicken? That is, other than its budgeting feature…) My business runs quite a bit on cash, so I have to enter business cash receipts into a cash register (like a check register) if I want them to show up on my year end reports for tax time. It’s good to get those entered as soon as they accumulate, but sometimes I fall behind and end up data-entry queen. I did that this morning.

This afternoon I actually got out my spinning wheel. I love spinning on the front porch with good music playing. I put on my Seth Bernard and Daisy May CD and started back spinning on some roving I have not touched in months. Now I have an overfull bobbin (and I have a Louet which has large bobbins) with lumpy-bumpy single-ply washable merino. From my friend Tracy Bunkers of Bonkers! Fiber. In raspberries and related dark/light pinks/purples. It’s pretty lovely, I’d say.

Huge melting pile of snow with cartThen I took the bag of three other colors of the same superwash (darkish purples, spring green, and turquoise with green/purple accents) and divided it into small bundles. I put the bundles back into the plastic bag. It looks like very large candy or something! Now I plan to spin a second single-ply, also lumpy-bumpy, by pulling out random colors from the bag one at a time and spinning them into one multicolor. I’m hoping I have about the same amount of fiber in the bag as I do on the bobbin I’ve already spun. Then I can ply the two together and make some pretty fat lumpy-bumpy handspun in irregular fun colors, tied together with the berry strand.

My dream is that I’ll have enough multicolored yarn for a pair of legwarmers. I’m not sure if that will play out, but I really hope it will.

It was good to be back on that porch today. I wasn’t out there very long, but it was great. Yesterday it was really warm, summerlike at 69F degrees. Today, it was more like 60F, still sunny but slightly breezy and on the porch I had to wrap up to be comfy. It was still worth the time out there. I sooo needed to have it warm up outside! I was so done with winter!

early-blooming violetsWhat else did I do? I’m not really done yet, but I re-coded my patterns web pages. My old paypal buttons had ceased to function. I put new buttons in, and tested the main pattern page but I still need to test each individual page and see if the buttons work right. In fact, I just got an email from Thalea letting me know of one “hiccup” I programmed in. Aaargh! I did fix it fairly simply but I really need to doublecheck everything, and soon!

I’m going to sleep earlier tonight than last, and hope that nothing on my website confuses anyone too much while I’m sleeping!

Photos: Images of the last few weeks, the end of winter and start of something warm. 1) First mini-daffodil, bloomed about a week ago in the side yard, in a protected spot on the south side. I love these for being so early! 2) Over a week ago this was the view out my side/back door. It was hailing, you can not see that, but as I stood in the doorway there were small bits of ice bouncing off the ground into my back entry. Notice that at the same time, there was incredibly bright sun just about a block away, with shadows in the middle of a hailstorm. Brian saw a rainbow but none could be found from my yard, I definitely looked.

3) The last remaining snow pile on my side of town, maybe ten days ago. It is the back parking lot behind Sears at the Frandor Shopping Center on the east side of Lansing. You can see that when they plowed the parking lot, a shopping cart got in the middle of the pile and became frozen inside. A few days after I took this photo I went by, and the pile was still there but the cart had fallen to the bottom of the heap. Yes, for those of you who live where there is no snow… this is the nasty side of that pristeen white stuff you see in art photos. Snow forms itself around imperfections in the air. That means that when the water melts, the dirt/dust/smog remains and the pile of snow looks black. Sad, but true. By the way, this pile has been gone almost a week now.

4) Finally… my favorite view each spring. Our side yard, full of blooming violets. They are wild. If we put weed killer on the yard, we would not have this riot of purple blooms before anything else blossomed. They usually bloom a week before the daffodils. Pretty, aren’t they?