Monthly Archives: October 2015

Owlet: 49 and 50 Months!

I lost another month. Thanks, insane work rush. So you get the September and October posts combined into one.

We’ve reversed the order in which we pick the kids up, so I collect Owlet first, and then we go get Sparky together. Every day she races toward him, arms outstretched, and throws them around him, laughing. Sparky’s not as thrilled — he has begun to enter the ‘must not look dorky in front of my friends’ stage — but it’s sweet to watch. She blows him kisses through her window every morning when we drop him off, too.

Owlet went apple picking for the first time this year. It was terribly exciting (albeit quick; turns out it doesn’t take long to fill two 20-ish-pound bags of apples when you have four people picking). We went back again about three weeks later, because this house is pretty nuts about apples and the first round was gone.

Back with all her friends at school, everyone has leveled up after the summer. Owlet’s new interest in writing actual letters (thanks, new glasses!) means that she is the first of her age group at school to voluntarily write her name on her art. Other things we can attribute to the glasses include a dramatic improvement in the fine motor control required to colour inside lines.

I’m loving how she can draw expressive faces on things all of a sudden, too.

Her current favourite movies are Bolt and The Nightmare before Christmas. I recently surprised them with Ponyo, one of the lesser-known Miyazaki movies, and she adores it. (Big surprise, I know.)

In music, she’s very into the soundtrack to The Nightmare before Christmas, which she calls “Christmas Halloween” (and that’s as good a descriptive name as any). She can also sing the Game of Thrones theme, which is HRH’s ring tone and alert. It’s a bit disconcerting to hear her humming it while she plays with her Playmobil in her room. (Exactly what is going on in that storyline, one wonders.)

A newly acquired skill is the ability to twist open Oreos, a triumph after asking me to do it for her since she started eating them. It’s the little things. Another impressive skill she has recently demonstrated is how she has an argument. Instead of just yelling or screaming over someone else, she actually discusses how she feels and listens to the other person in order to work things out. Her friend Audrey has been raised in a very similar way, so to hear the two of them have an argument is adorable. One will say, “I feel like this when you do that,” and the other will say, “Well, I feel like this,” and they talk it out, sometimes with parental input regarding solving the problem. It’s the politest argument ever.

Her grasp of French is improving, too, thanks to a new francophone girl at school. The kids have been learning the basics to speak to her — bonjour, merci, au revoir — which are adorable to hear chirped by Owlet. The other day I taught her how to say ‘cookie’ in French, and the way she pronounces it is both hilarious and appropriate if you love cookies: “Biskwhee!”

I’ve given up on the matching and laying out of outfits. One morning a couple of weeks ago she stuffed the two choices we put out for her back into the drawers and chose her purple skirt with the multicoloured hearts on it, a black and white striped top with a flower on the shoulder, and a pair of red leggings. I’m pretty sure her educators figured out preschooler fashion sense years and years ago. (Dresses are where it’s at. There is minimal unmatchyness with a dress.)

Summer Spinning Update

After ages of waffling about whether I’d do it this year or not, I just registered for Spinzilla. It may not be in the best interests of my sanity, but I’m in, for better or for worse. Every yard counts, right?

I wasn’t going to, because Spinzilla is basically a week-long marathon of spinning as much as you can because the yardage is how you’re graded/judged/scored. It’s a fundraiser for the TNNA in the United States for raising awareness of the fibre arts, though people from all over the world participate. I have a work project due in the middle, and a trip at the end of it. But I dragged the Mazurka with me last Thanksgiving during Spinzilla and managed to spin while I was away, and this year my mother tells me she has roving waiting there to be spun into sock yarn, so that’s practically enabling me, right?

My team last year was the inaugural team for Kromski, but I was ehn about it this year because of a change in how it was handled. Also, schedule, etc. But I succumbed at the eleventh hour and joined the new team being hosted by one of my LYSes, Espace Tricot. (The Kromski team was full up by then, so I didn’t have to angst about duty and loyalty.)

No, I have no idea what I’ll be spinning for it yet. But I’ll have to get this finished and off my wheel before things kick off on Monday:

That’s some New Zealand Romney, dyed by an online friend about six years ago. I figure I’ve waited long enough to spin it, right? I spun it end to end, no stripping, and am chain-plying it to preserve the colour shifts. So far, it’s gorgeous, isn’t it? I love the subtle silvers, plums, and ashes-of-roses happening.

And I see that I never posted the last bit of my Tour de Fleece spinning in July, so here:

The finished Pink Rainbow singles yarn (538 yards, singles, 4 oz; I have no idea what I’m going to do with this, it’s so bright):

The Heavy Traffic superwash BFL from SweetGeorgia 4 oz, 3-ply, can’t remember yardage, isn’t that awful — 390-something, I think? 375?):

And the 2 oz of Sunset Stormclouds merino (409 yards, 3-ply, 2 oz, that yardage is nuts):

And I tried spinning cotton again, something I haven’t done since I tried and failed spectacularly with my Louet S15 six years ago. There’s still a learning curve, but I did much better with it this time than I did back then. Overall, I was very happy with my TDF performance this year. I haven’t added up yardage, so I have no idea how much I ended up with; I was just enjoying myself.

In mid-September, before the Romney that’s currently on the bobbins, I spun some plain old BFL into a three-ply sock yarn, to be dyed some interesting colour at some point in the future when I decide I need more handknit socks. (No picture, because it’s boring, undyed sock yarn.) But that will have to happen after I knit socks from this fun yarn, spun in early September from unidentified wool (maybe a coarse-ish BFL? maybe Falkland? maybe a soft Corriedale?)

This summer I also spun 400ish yards of some lovely Polwarth/Tencel sock yarn for Ceri, which she calls her Ravenclaw yarn (because the House colours are bronze and blue, right, Ravenclaws? RIGHT??):

I spun that yarn as a fractal three-ply after I spun a first braid of the same colourway (it’s actually called ‘Dalek,’ from Southern Cross Fibre, and I am in love with it) and plied it with a ply of plum merino, which matched the colours but turned the whole thing plummier than I really wanted it to. I also did it to stretch the fibre further, thinking that I wouldn’t be able to get 400 yards from 100 g, but this summer has really confirmed that I can spin that no problem now, so I don’t need to try to stretch it with a bonus ply of something else. Now I have 744 yards of this purply Polwarth/Tencel, which may become a light shawl at some point.

So yes, lots of spinning has been happening. And it looks like more will happen this coming week! Last year I broke a mile; I’m aiming to do at least that this year as well.