Wednesday, 29 July 2015

Day Dreaming about Sheep

So as I toil away day in and day out in the lab to finish my PhD studies, I often find myself day dreaming about sheep.

And how could I not? They are practically clouds.

So maybe I shouldn't be encouraging these day dreams, but I certainly am.


Well I've just finished reading One Woman Farm by Jenna Woginrich. An adorable, and beautifully illustrated diary in which Jenna shares her first year, by herself I might add, on a 6.5 acre farm in upstate New York. Although I guess she's not really by herself, she does have her flock of sheep, an assortment of chickens, geese and rabbits, her ponies Merlin and Jasper, her goat and her dogs.....and I think there might have been a cat..... also some bees. This little book draws the reader in to Jenna's love affair with her farm, and if you want to read more, she's written a number of other books (Barnheart, Chick Days, Made From Scratch, Cold Antler Farm), or you can head on over to her daily blog, . Don't feel like reading? she's got a vlog on YouTube, which I have dutifully watched in full and subscribed too.

And as soon as I put down Jenna's book, I picked up another one.

Adventures in Yarn Farming, by Barbara Parry, takes us to the other end of the spectrum, rather than 6.5 acres, she has over 200, and rather than just one woman going it along, so far (I haven't finished reading it) it seems that Barbara has a number of farm assistants and some serious start up funds (her husband was the CEO of Yankee Candle). However, what is clear from the start is like Woginrich, both woman have a deep bond with their animals and an affection for farm life. Throw in the beautiful full colour photography on just about every page of this book, and a few beautiful knitting patterns to boot, and this is a book I will dream over for years to come. Barbara has the fibres from her flocks available through FoxFire Fiber and Designs and also runs a blog, (it hasn't been updated in over a year, but there are tonnes of posts for back reading).

Finally one last thing. If everything above sounds like too much reading, or if you're just looking for a quick sheep dream fix. Watch this youtube video produced by Etsy, featuring Susan Gibbs on her farm in Martha's Vineyard. And yep, she's another gal like Jenna and Barbara, who left the 'real world' behind to go chasing Sheep Dreams.

And for my Mother, who I know is reading this and shaking her head at her strange daughter's crazy ideas.... don't worry, Kevin knows all about my Sheep Dreams. (I love you mom!)

Friday, 10 July 2015

Tour De Fleece and Vlogging!

Hey Ya'll! (for some reason I want to say Ya'll lately, please forgive me for that).

It's July, which means a few things.

1) Knitting in the heat makes me sweat.
2) Crochet in the heat makes me sweat.
3) The Calgary Stampede is in full force.
4) The Tour de France is in full force (which I of course care so very much about).
5) The Tour de Fleece is in full force! (which, you know, not sarcasm!)

For those of you who don't know what this is, it's a sister event to the tour de France made by spinners for spinners. Essentially, you join up with a team of Ravelry and spin every day that the tour rides.

And spinning I have been!

Every single day, in fact I've gone through 300g of fibre already. 

But even more exciting, I've been vlogging the process.

What's vlogging you say? Video-blogging.

That's right, I've been putting short, 3-10 minute, videos up, detailing my daily spinning. Some of the videos even include how tos for the techniques I've been using.

So here's the first video:

And if you like that video, please click on over to my YouTube channel, and subscribe for more great content.

The full Tour de Fleece playlist can be found here.

Thanks for watching! and happy spinning.....ya'll!

(it must be because it's stampede, I swear they put something in the water).