Shop at Spinner's End Farm

Tuesday, August 31, 2010


Last summer our dear friends daughter was married and at each table setting there was a packet of sunflower seeds.  Since all five of us went, be recieved five packets.
Not long after the wedding, we had a swim at their house and were gifted with about 20 more packets.
They spent the fall and winter snuggled up together in a drawer in the china hutch (doesn't everyone keep seed packets there?)
This spring another couple of friends let us borrow their roto-tiller.  Will quadrupled our garden space and tilled a long narrow strip along the edge of the front pasture.
They look quite pretty from the road and the goats look longingly at them...they are just our of head reach no matter how they contort themselves!
View from the road including the not quite finished barn.
Some of the gang having their morning fiber.

CSA yarn Share

I've been working on some yarn from Cameo's fleece for a few weeks...getting in a half hour here and there spinning and plying.  The boys are always pestering asking me if they can have a turn so they were in charge of taking the plied yarn off of the wheel and onto the skein winder.
I realized, however, that I usually count rotations so I can figure out how much yarn is in the skein.  Oh well. They were having lots of fun!
So I decided that I'd just tediously count the each strand after they were done.
I did have to remind Sam (go figure) that it wasn't a race and the zoomy zoom noises and going really fast weren't necessary.  He gave me the look.
I've noticed that many boys and men are interested in the mechanics of spinning; both mine and the fellas I've run across at spinning demonstrations.  I once brought my drum carder to a demo and had to explain it over and over to lots of guys who all said "hey, that looks easy to make"! 
One skein of many...the finished product is light worsted weight and a pale fawn/oatmeal color of pure Shetland.  This yarn is destined for Washington D.C.
More to ply when I get home!

Saturday, August 21, 2010

When I sayth like thith it soundth very thththththth....

"It'th fun having my tooth'th like having a dithguithe...a voithe dithguithe!"

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Back Home and Photos from the Trip

We had great fun in New Hampshire but it is always a relief to pull in the driveway and unpack your stuff and see that all is well with the world when you get home!
The annual photo in Mattawa at the Ottawa river.  Ontario to the left and Quebec to the right.
Will and the Wee Wren
Sam and my wheel on the deck of the Llama barn
This is the lovely Llama barn where we slept and spun.
Tidepooling on the Atlantic Ocean
Hamming it up at the Ocean at low tide
I found this wee pool on the top of a large rock.  Evidently it is mostly exposed at high tide and the water that splashes into it dries out under the sun....creating those white salt crystals at the bottom!  We couldn't resist tasting them.
Inuksuk with ocean stones.
Much swimming was done during the hot weather and great progress made by all three kids.  Lila was jumping off the diving board and swimming in the deep end by the time we left.

Child throwing was considered great fun and Sam only lost his suit once.

...and then there was the bag party on the eve of our departure.  The main idea is that you call out a number when asked by the bag party ring master (Aunt Alis) and you get a prize.  However, if you call the WRONG number there are consequences....
A pie in the face.  I'm not sure who called the wrong number for Will.
Now it is RARE for the wrong number to be called at a bag party.  Having a wrong number TWICE in the same bag party is unprecedented.
Not impossible however.  Poor Aunt Bonnie got a pie in the face because Duncan called a negative Seven.  The universe doesn't appear to like negative seven.
Duncan was a bit suprised but quite relieved that HE didn't get the pie in the face!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Spinning at the llama barn

One of my favorite things to do since we've been on vacation has been to set up my Ashford Joy on the llama barn porch and spend some morning time spinning.  I didn't have much time before leaving to card fleece which stressed me out to no end since it is silly to cart a wheel across 1,000 miles with nothing to spin on it.  Will convinced me that we had plenty of room to bring the drum carder and some fleece so I did.  I spent a morning carding up some of Cameo's fleece which is long and soft and fluffy!  I had brought some angora to blend with it but it was soft enough already and I really just wanted to feel that long silky fleece slip through my fingers.  I think she is classified as an intermediate fleeced shetland and she is the largest sheep in our flock (her picture is on the sidebar).  She has a white background with very large patches of fawn and it blends into a nice dark oatmeal/pale taupe color.  She has a rather shy personality.

The llama barn actually WAS a llama barn before it was converted into guest quarters.  Seems fitting.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Shaker Village

Yesterday we went to the Canterbury Shaker Village in Canterbury NH.  The village was originally 3000 acres with 300 members at the height of their movement, and is currently at 600 acres with one remaining sister (not on site) who is 91.  It is a lovely timepiece and testimony to the incredible ingenuity that the Shakers had and the furnishings left me drooling after leaving each house in the village.  Will enjoyed looking at all the post and beam construction in the barns and houses and shared my enthusiasm for the beautiful, labor intensive and simple furnishings.  We left the gift shop a few dollars lighter with some gifts, though I resisted the siren call that a shaker sewing box was singing to me (not hard at $165.00).  There was a very sweet lady spinning on an Ashford Traveller at the gift shop and we had a nice conversation with her.

Spent last evening, sans children, with the Wheelers, Pouilliots and Johnsons around a campfire overeating some wonderful Maine corn and listening to tunes from the fellows playing guitar, pennywhistle and mandolin.  Dear friends and very enlightened people whose company we always look forward too.  It is always interesting hearing stories about your husband being naughty when he was in college....  The Wheelers have a feed and grain business and I was able to hold a few bunnies, pat some goats and horses and stroke some kitties....I didn't realize how homesick I was for the animals until then.

Evidently the kids had a great time with Aunt Bonnie yesterday at the amusement park.  We spoke with them all on the phone and Sam said "this is the best vacation I ever had!"  Aunt Bonnie sounded pretty beat though!  :)  They will be home this morning and Aunt Mary will be arriving sometime today for a visit.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

We have arrived..

Well, we've actually been here a couple of days.  Nothing too eventful on the long drive except the nasty traffic jam just east of Montreal due to construction.  Had we known that we would have taken route 89 south into Vertmont...  Stopped in Vertmont Monday afternoon at a welcome center for some Green Mountain Roaster coffee and pressed south to Lee, NH.  Spent the first evening in Arnprior Ontario at a hotel on the edge of a hydroelectric dam that has a nice view of an artificial waterfall and enjoyed (some of us) Chinese takeout at a picnic table in the park.  It is a beautiful drive along route 17 from Sault Ste. Marie to about North Bay.  The smell of cow is pretty darn strong once you head east of Montreal.  And the city of Montreal itself is rather stunning if you can bear the sprawl outwards with all the walmarts and other non-canadian cultural influence.

It is WARM bloody hot here!  Yesterday it was in the high 80's and will hit 90 today.  We are not used to the heat and high humidity.  Spent yesterday at Odiorne Point State Park and the Seacoast Science Center (Otherwise known as the Starfish Museum) and the kids had fun playing in the touch tank with sea urchins, starfish, marine snails, mussells and crabs.  We went down the beach a bit to the seacoast and did some tidepooling.  I have photos but I don't think I have a way to transfer them to the pewter.

Today will be spent primarily in the pool!  We bought six ladderback shaker styled chairs that we will be picking up today from a local antique shop.  I think we can get at least four of them back to Michigan on the roof of the will look most interesting I'm sure!  The kids are going to Aunt Bonnies this evening to spend the nite and then tomorrow during the day she is taking them to something akin to an amusement park for the day and Will and I will be going to Canterbury Village (a shaker village).  I have hopes of getting to the Harrisville Loom Company while we are here too.  They have a curriculum book on spinning that one of the teachers at the school will be using this fall and she agreed to teach it if I would help.  SO I NEED THE BOOK RIGHT???  :)

More updates later....