Sunday, 30 March 2014

Spring is on it's way, but Winter refuses to leave!

The grey hairy one and I are both enjoying the warmth of my kitchen. I am lucky enough to have an Aga cooker, which warms the house (especially the kitchen) and in turn keeps us cosy. On days, such as today where the weather is wild and windy, I can spend the majority of the day happily in the kitchen with the grey hairy one curled up on his bed and me spinning away. It's time for a tea break and here is a photo of my new spotty cup that I was given at Christmas.

I can sit spinning and see the bird table through the kitchen window with it's visitors. I have filled the table with lots of goodies to attract the birds and we have a steady stream of birds each day. Regulars include a Robin, Blue Tit, Great Tit, pair of Blackbirds, Dunnock, Hedge Sparrow, several noisy Starlings, Woodpigeon, but the most regular of all is a Collared Dove who coos at us if the table is low on supplies, it will even peck indignantly at the kitchen window to remind me to fill the table. This dove has almost become tame and sits on the roof of bird table whilst I put out the food, inches away from me, not seeming in the least bit frightened of me. When not on the bird table this Dove sits in the branches of the cherry tree. Last year it built what can only be described as the most feeble looking nest I have ever seen within the tree just above our heads and the pathway under the tree. It sat there weeks and eventually hatched an egg. After a few weeks the young dove vanished, I don't know what happened to it but hope that it made it to adulthood. Meanwhile it's parent (it's such a regular visitor that I have named this bird Selena, on the assumption it is a female) continues to live in my garden, cooing at us.

Whilst on the subject of the flowering cherry tree in  the garden, I can see the sign of buds on the branches, added to which there are now snowdrops and crocus flowering on the village green,  definitely give an clear indication that spring is on the way, despite to continuing bad weather. No snow yet this year in East Anglia but that often arrives in February. Never mind, the flowers and buds are a happy sight and certainly cheered me up to see them.

I have finished the Cherry Blossom yarn and it is ready to go on my Etsy shop. I had to thread the freshwater pearls onto linen thread and ply that with the Mawatta and Throwsters silk. Here are some photos of the yarn through it's preparation of making rovings of the pink mawatta silk and punies of the throwsters silk. Following on from that, they were spun separately, using the worsted technique, on my Victoria wheel and plied together with the freshwater pearls threaded onto the linen thread. Once plied I wound the yarn onto a niddy noddy to make a skein. The skein was hand washed to set the twist and remove any excess dye from the mawatta silk. Once dried  I measured and weighed the skein and now it is finished. An interesting project which was enjoyable to do. I think it would make a nice light crocheted wrap for a special occasion. I will certainly spin more like this one. Here are a couple of photos taken of my cherry tree in blossom last year which was the inspiration for the yarn along with fond memories of a trip to Japan.