In which I come back to the world of blogging (again)

Hello patient readers (even if you are just the Great Void of the interwebs) –

I have decided to try to come back to the internet writing thingamajigggie. We’ll see what happens.

It’s Tuesday evening. Traditionally, it is Too Cute Tuesday, but, do to allergies, school work, and brewing storms, it’s just Patty and me tonight. Which has given me time to catch up on some fiber reading.

Wait, you haven’t met Patty? She is a marmalade cat who loves open windows, tummy rubs, and sleeping in. Not to mention long naps on my too-still spinning wheel and trying to catch knitting needles.

So, what’s been going on with me?Well, we’ll start with fibers of wool (and other delicious things)…

In an effort to actually update this, I’m only going to give you a run-down of what is to come. Tantalizing, yes?

Where my fibers are:
– my fleece is washed, bundled, and waiting for cards.

– my green-yellow silk blend is spun up, between sock and lace weight — really lovely and textured.
– the purply-red mohair-wool heavenly stuff ended up being a wonderful (and EVEN!) plied worsted-weight.

– the bamboo I haven’t quite sorted out…it’s a difficult fiber length and mostly just falls apart. And when I card it, it seems to pill. More practice is certainly needed.

The Stash:
– the rest of the bamboo (and I have a TON!)
– my lovely heather gray
– some dyed wool, mostly jewel colors – I’m not quite sure what I was thinking when I dyed it. I will probably try some wet felting with it.
– dark gray churro
– jacob
– red churro
– Bag Of Caspar — my brother-in-law sent me his and my sister’s dog’s winter coat!
– misc cream/white wool-in-the-grease

In good news re: The Stash, I’ve (finally) figured out a good way to store everything in my bookcases while allowing all my wool to breathe, using a combination of pillowcases, canvas bags, and cloth drawers.

Skills learned:

– how to make worsted weight yarn (at least with prepared fiber) – it’s all about drafting and faith
– how to make a proper center pull ball using nothing but an extra knitting needle – it’s all about winding and faith
– how to Not Feel Guilty about letting my wheel sit idle while I tackle this graduate school thing.

In other fiber news, I’ve come back to the world of knitting!

I’ve left my of Boring Rectangle Projects, at least for a little while, and have completed an apple baby hat for a good friend’s baby, and am working on a pair of mittens designed after a child’s mitten from the sixteenth century. It’s perfect seminar knitting.

I’ve also chosen a pattern for my first sweater – it will be a lovely wrap sweater. I’ll keep you updated.
And in OTHER fiber news, I’ve picked up needle felting…and I’m in love!

What’s up next for fibers?

Well, unfortunately, my knitting is taking a back-seat to my perling. So, for right now, my fibers will stay where they are, at least until my qualifying exam at the end of May. I get frustrated at the wheel because I can’t spin harder stuff, and need the time to really devote time to it on a regular basis.

In the meantime, though, I will plow ahead on my seminar-mittens and maybe try my hand at some creative carding.


In terms of fibers of life, the semester will be wrapping up in about two months and I can’t WAIT! I’m going to take two weeks off – the first few days here at my flat in St. Louis, cleaning and organizing and sleeping and spinning, then off to Chicago for a few days (I think), then home to Raleigh-home for a few days, a quick day trip to New Bern, then up to Maine for a week. whew.

Closer to home, I’m working on staying calmer and getting less wound up. As you know, that’s a bit difficult for me. Yoga classes are helping though (searching for contentment and flexibility), I’m mostly enjoying my lab (learning about ostoblast and ostoclast signaling and playing with mice), and I was offered the TAship for the required 1st year genetics class. I’ve also started a wee container garden and am riding (and may be showing in the near future) So all in all doing well. At least as well as things can go for a crazy first year genetics student.

What is done:
– midterm for Genomics
– 3 rotations
– 1 rotation talk
– journal club
– NSF GRF news (I didn’t get it – maybe next year!)
– Markey application
– TAship for next year

What is left to do:
– finish up my 4th rotation
– write a 20 page grant (due at the end of the month! yikes!)
– 3 more perl assignments
– 1 more genetics assignment
– Genomics final exam (at the end of the month! double yikes!)
– written qualifying exam (in two months! a bajillion yikes!)

Now I’m off to get some perling done!

Happy spinning!


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