Monday, March 16, 2015

Gearing up for faire

Things are flat out around here as usual. It's a couple of days before Canterbury Faire and I'm off work already, cooking things, doing enormous shopping trips and generally trying to feel like I have a handle on things. 

Christmas was lovely but despite having a full two weeks off I went back to work feeling as tired as I had left. Everything out here is incredibly dry and we made zero progress on the garden, but then the earth is like concrete so not really conducive to being levelled and raked.

I got a little weaving done and am past the half way point on the rugs. I am pretty pleased with how it's looking but terrified that I will cut it off the loom and find that nothing matches up. Maybe if that happens I'll just make them two small throws instead of one larger blanket thing. We will see said Kanga.

One thing that I did manage to do on the holidays was to make contact with the Christchurch Guild of spinners and Weavers and I am now a paid up member. I won't be able to go to a meeting for another few weeks but they were so lovely that I'm really thrilled to have taken the leap. It will be great to have people to talk fibre arts with and have some people so knowledgeable to add questions of.

Anyway, must feed the dog before she wears my arm off...

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Pushpa vs the great outdoors

Pushpa (Molly) has just returned from her first venture into the outside. After four weeks she and kiwi have settled into a detente, not exactly friends, but accepting of each other's presence in the house. 

Pushpa has decided that the back of my loom is her spot in the living room as it has many advantages: it's on the opposite side of the room from kiwi's beanbag, is elevated and when the curtains are pulled has a great view out the bay window. I've put the dining room table insert across the warps at the back so that that's is a solid platform for her and no pressure on the warp itself.

She's had her last anti-feline aids shot so now she's allowed outside and has just spent a couple of hours exploring before returning for a late breakfast. Now we just have to get the cat door installed and we're pretty much sorted.

Kiwi also has just finished her course of shots for arthritis and they seem to have been effective.

Monday, November 03, 2014

A new tail

It's been a lovely spring and made that much nicer by a new arrival in the house. For several years now I've been talking about getting a cat, but a bit of an issue how Kiwi would deal with it. My plan was to get a cat at the beginning of a holiday period so that we'd be home to supervise their integration. But the opportunity just never seemed to arrive, until it did.

A bit out of the blue a friend offered us a cat. Molly is a seven year old Bengal, used to living with a dog, but not really getting on with the other cats at home. She's been with us for three weeks now and while she and Kiwi are not exactly matey matey they are getting used to each other's presence.

She's a real character, quite likes water, at least she's very interested in the bath, sinks and dishwasher! She's found a few good hiding spots including our wardrobe, and more recently on the beam side of my loom. I have had to place a board there so she isn't stretching my warps. So long as she doesn't try to get up there while I am weaving that's ok.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Dancing in the kitchen

It's been a busy month for us, full of new beginnings for me which is really exciting. 

First off I, fairly successfully I think, taught a two hour class at Collegium introducing people to the process of making medievalish turn shoes. This is going to progress into a series of practical workshops getting people actually making some, probably at the new location for joint Southron Gaard practices on Sundays. I've done this before of course but before I was sick and I know a lot more about actual medieval shoemaking practice now thanks to Al. 

Next I have actually started winding and warping the new loom. It was a bit stumped at first because I had an unknown amount of carpet wool for the warp and the normal method of warping a sectional beam loom is to first wind the warp onto bobbins of X number per section, on this case 16. But I had no way of winding those to a specific measurement and was concerned that I'd end up with not enough. Anyway I've been doing it just by measuring onto the warping mill as normal and warping each section from that and it seems to be going ok.

We applied for and have secured a house sitter who will take care of Kiwi and the horses so that we can go to Fimbulwinter in Dunedin next month which is very exciting. We're taking a couple of days and driving down ourselves which will be just lovely. If all goes well that will make CF a lot easier on Kiwi and us.

I'm on the stewarding team for Canterbury Faire next year, and I've recently had an idea about an event that I'd like to run in early summer or maybe spring but as that's still very much in the works I'll not go into details yet. 

And I've been sorting out my armour to get back into SCA combat. Mostly it's fine but there's a bit of wear and tear, the bluing on the steel needs re doing and some of the leather, straps etc need upgrading. Nick's made me a practice sword and has been coaching me in doing blow drills in the dining rom while he cooks. I am feeling it a little in my wrist and shoulder but that will go away as everything gets stronger. So hopefully by the time we head down to Dunedin I will be able to start training.

Finally, we've had the landscaping guys here the last couple of days levelling the ground outside the bedroom windows for the new garden and lawn which is REALLY exciting as I've been planning that space for years. Now it's all go and soon I'll be buying plants which is amazing.