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Monday, September 30, 2013

Dyeing skeins in the microwave.......I did have good intentions!!

I have never dyed any yarn in the Microwave...I always rainbo dye in large pots on the stove but now we have the extra MW oven as in this place the MW had to be over the stove and had a special exhaust system, I had an oven I could use. It is in a cabinet downstairs in the work room and although I have no water down there as yet I could just carry some down as I was going to experiment on just a couple of skeins. So O.K. I soaked the skeins in some vinegar water and set about getting a work area set up, I thought I better plug the MW in and make sure it worked....well the light came on....but....I had forgotten how everything worked so off to find the instructions...got the clock going and after reading instructions I remembered how things work so off to color the skein of wool. I had blue and red dye already mixed up, so got it ready to go and noticed a small amount of some purple mixed up so took that with me...was just going to wing it as it was just an experiment. Got the first skein laid out on the plastic wrap and applied the red and blue dye and got it rolled up and in the dish I was using and put it in the MW and got it turned on and going...but...nothing was heating up....I would set the time to cook and away it would go...but it was not cooking!!&^&*(&^% O.K.!! I got a pot out and ran it upstairs and put it on the stove and got the steamer rack in it and turned the burner on and went back downstairs to put dye on the other skein and get it wrapped up in the plastic wrap, I had seen somewhere that you could put your jelly rolled skein into a large freezer bag before putting it in the MW....but how would that work in a steamer...sitting on a metal rack...I thought what do I have to lose...nothing is going to plan anyway!! So got the skeins in the large ziplock freezer bags leaving the top open a bit so steam could get out...put the lid on and set the timer. When time was up I took the lid off the kettle and let the yarn cool in the bags then filled the sink with warm water about the same temp of the skeins adding some salt to set the color.....I had left too much water in the skeins before I put the dye on them so they were a bit sloppy....I mean what else could I do wrong!! So gave the skeins a couple of washes until the color was not coming out and really....they looked pretty good. so hung them to dry overnight and reskeined them this morning. This is how they came out..
So here they are, after all the juggling around they did not turn out too bad, I added a bit of the purple to the second skein and really like it. RH went down and had a look at the MW this morning...and found out what the problem was....it was set on demo....so would go through the motions but would not heat up...he remembered the problem that we had with a demo TV monitor we got a few years ago...so now it is ready to go. Will have to get some more dye solution mixed up and try this MW dyeing another day. It is so fall out here right now..wind and more wind during the night last night, I lay in bed trying to think if everything was tucked away that could blow around. It has calmed down right now but the forecast is for the wind to blow again tonight. The farmer behind us was out at dusk combining his crop that he had cut down a few days ago and the dust blowing into our yard was terrible, made sure all the windows were closed tight but it still sifts in, hopefully he got it all finished. well it is after midnight here so better get off to bed...a new week starting tomorrow!!

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Thought I was Lost Last Post......Am Hoping I Have Found Myself!!

Well here I am again...hoping I have found myself and will be posting again. I had moved my laptop down to my work room for the summer as I thought it would be cooler and also would not have any interruptions when I wanted to use the laptop...as you see it did not work out, just never seemed to get to the computer when it was out of sight. So have just moved it back upstairs and have spent a couple of hours trying to get it working properly. We have the big computer upstairs but for some reason the photo thingy is just not behaving...will not downsize the pictures so I can send them on. So here goes...the summer was so busy...tornado warnings....bad hail storms...getting flowers beds up and going.....on going knitting for farmers markets..shearing llamas and alpacas...processing the fibre.....baby alpacas and llamas being born...and landscaping...landscaping...and more landscaping. So will just have to start at the beginning where I left off and skim through the summer as it is fall already. First came the threat of the tornado, I had been working down in the workroom with no radio going and RH came home from town and said have you not been listening to the radio....so off we went around the yard putting everything that could blow around away thinking we could get some strong winds and I gathered up all my potted plants on the front deck and put them in reach of the front door....just incase and then stood at the window and watched the big black cloud coming over us.....
It looked like it was going to touch down a couple of time but then it would move back up......it had just moved over the house and I could see blue sky and white clouds behind it...and the hail hit!! We ran to the front door and pulled all the potted plants into the house...then all we could so was watch the hail come down and think about the gardens and our animals in the barnyard hoping they had gone to the barns and shelters.
This is what was left when the hail quit and the sun started to come out, RH went out to the barnyard and came back saying everyone looked o.k. most of them had gone to the barns and the others were fine. We were so thankful that we did not have any windows facing that direction, animals were o.k. and it was hail instead of the tornado that hit us...but I just could not bring myself to go out and look at the garden and flowerbeds yet, all the plants that were in moveable pots were safe in the house. The next day I went out and checked, there were leaves, pine cones and branches all over the yard, eves-troughs were full of of debris so had to be cleaned out, the damage was not as bad as I thought it would be, plants were damaged...not totally gone like I thought they would be, the flowerbeds had mainly perennials in them so they would always come back, I thought the veg. garden would be done for but the surprising thing was the garden mesh we had over the raised beds had deflected alot of the hail as it came so hard. Then later that day...we had another hail storm which came from the other direction hitting whatever was not touched the day before but was not as bad as the day before. Now after all the destruction we had those two days most of my veg garden did come back so we had our fresh veggies and pretty well all the perennials slowly came back and put on quite a show over the summer, only thing I lost were the blooms off all the reg. lilies but the later blooming plants all bloomed. Will post some of my flower pic's in the next post.....yes there will be regular posts....