Sunday, March 27, 2011

Great Expectations

There's a special little boy coming into my extended family.  My nephew, Kris and his partner, Kate are expecting a baby boy to arrive in April.  I'm going to be a great-Auntie!  I am the world's slowest knitter, but I did manage to get the blanket done in time for the shower.  I hope the little guy feels all the "Auntie" love when he gets wrapped up in it.

I don't think there will be any more baby blanket knitting done in this house.  This was knit on 3.25mm needles.  That's a lot of knitting by hand.

However, I did sign up for a machine knitting workshop in May.  Yes, I have a knitting machine..supposedly a quality one...bought used...still in the box under my bed.  It's been a "One day..." project on my list for a few years.

By the calendar, spring has arrived. There is not much evidence of it here yet. March has been blustery and cold. I still have my studded snow tires on. April is always a gamble, we are sure to get one last blizzard. Hubby did drag his motorcycle out of the shed in a wishful moment.  I think his optimism will be dealt a blow when it's sitting out in the driveway in a blizzard.

I am excitedly waiting my first mill order shipment of the year to arrive next week from Wilton Road Mill.  This order is all white yarns and rovings, so I'll be starting to dye as soon as my sunroom warms up enough.
My shop is looking a little bare and I'll be happy to get some new stock in.

Spring will be busy here.  Dyeing yarn, halter training the weanlings from last year, shearing alpacas, scheduled breedings and waiting for two cria to be born.

Something else that I am planning to do this year is grow vegetables.  You heard it right.  This farmer is going to grow vegetables.  I grow primarily alpaca fibre here.  I do sell registered breeding stock.  I also raise chickens and produce eggs for farmgate.  I've typically had a half-baked garden (usually at the prodding of my daughter and her grandmother) that I've planted, neglected and then taken a few beans and zucchinis out of.  I say, quite ashamedly, I have a farm and don't know how to grow vegetables.  I thought gardening was something that you either knew how to do instinctively or didn't.  I also used to live too fast to appreciate good, slow food for what it was and only now have begun to appreciate how growing my own food can help the planet.

This year will be different.  I have the desire, I have the start of a plan and I have two secret weapons.

More on that later...


Sherri said...

Looking forward to the new goodies! Are you doing any different blends this year? Give me a shout when you get the fibres in.

Wooly Knits n Bits said...

Your blanket is done and it's beautiful...lucky little baby!
I'm not much of a gardener myself, unless you count the pots on the deck with tomatoes and herbs. I love flowers but hate the snakes that hide in them, so my flowers have to be very low maintenance.
I've been searching kijiji and ebay for a used knitting machine for a few weeks now. I want one for very plain knitting so nothing fancy. Your course is a good idea to get familiar with it.

Look forward to hearing

Azure Islands Designs said...

Darn...I wrote out a comment and pushed the wrong button and lost the whole thing! :0( the blanket, I can almost feel how soft it is!!!

Just think it will be like a second Christmas when your shipment will be so much fun choosing the colors you want for the yarn!

A garden? You have the will succeed...after all you told the world, now you have to succeed!

Have a great week Norma...

Norma from Misty Haven Alpacas said...

Sherri - the yarns I expect in this batch are a-100% alpaca, 85/15 silk blended, 70/30 wool blended.
I'll have some 70/30 wool blended fibre. This shipment all white.
Wooly - I'm not afraid of snakes, but I had a big, fat gopher that lived in my garden last year. I hope he isn't back.
Heather - yes, getting my yarn back is so exciting, it is such an effort to raise it, shear it, sort it and then wait 5 months in the mill queue. might remember my post of my 2010 New Year's Resolutions? Posting it apparently doesn't pressure me to succeed. however, I am determined to eat from my garden this summer!

Val said...

Lovely blanket Norma.

I also have my motorcycle out...and am waiting patiently.