Saturday, October 17, 2009

Hummmm -- do I feel a blog coming on?

The Spin-List is a fun and fascinating place. Always an interesting discussion, lots of ideas, suggestions, stories and tidbits of information. Frequently I save little items that tempt a response, like this one:
"I've gotten a lot of names of places [for processing] as well as information that I was not aware of (skirting the fleece). Boy it's not as easy as I thought. Perhaps I will hire my children to help skirt the fleece, or I will just buy roving. "
I wonder if this person also complains about how expensive "real" roving is. I sure hope not.

Another person opined:
"Vegans are not *supposed* to use ANY animal produce
which includes wool so we should stick to plant/ manmade fibers......."
Man-made -- as in petroleum based? Really? And do you know what is required to manufacture some of the newer fibers from trees, corn, milk, bananas, bamboo and seaweed?

While someone else proclaimed:
I'm a Christian; under grace, all things are for my use; therefore, without let or hindrance, I use all things."

Now that scares the spit out of me.

Discussions involving so-called "vegan" spinning", tend to push my buttons on many levels.
While it helps to be informed (where does my fiber come from? How is it raised? How is it processed?) it seems to me that it is also vital to be pro-active instead of reactive. Instead of vetoing something that you don't like, take that extra step and make the effort to support those things that you feel are right and good. Know where your dollars go, and make choices that will help to keep local and sustainable businesses alive. (Notice I didn't use the words "natural" or "organic." That's a lecture for another day. (ggg)) Without your support, they may not be around for long, and then no one will have a choice.

There are definitely as many opinions out there as there are spinners, but it all comes down to a great quote that I saw on a bumper sticker in Tucson:
Everyone is entitled to his own opinion, but not his own facts.
Daniel Patrick Moynihan, March 16, 1927 - March 26, 2003)

Thursday, October 15, 2009

cogKNITive Fun and More

Holy cow, this year is simply ZOOOMing by.

In late September, our Kangal "teenager" Tank (2.5 years old now) blew his cruciate ligament, and so went under the knife just as Yollie had done twice in 2007. He was not a happy camper:
Buzzy Tank on the way home (top) and Staples galore

Resting the hated collar on a chair.

Despite a variety of no-chew collars, he ended up having his cast removed after less than a week. It is hard to keep a 155-pound dog immobilized and entertained. Staples were taken out a little later, but we are still going through the rehab process. He is walking well now, and we're up to a mile twice a day, hoping all the while that the other knee stays strong, and that mine don't go in the meantime.

Our little rig in front of a Tehachipe art train

Shortly after surgery, we were invited to attend the first ever cogKNITive sock event in Tehachapi, CA, so we loaded trailer, dog and kennel and off we went. It was a great weekend, with wonderful people and a dedicated staff.

Their logo and our "Sock Sheep."

We attended as vendors, but the class offerings were wonderfully tempting, and so inspiring that folks literally filled the hallways and common areas spinning and knitting for the entire day. Lots of people tried out the Navajo spindle for the first time, while Tank kept a watchful eye on the proceedings from his spot in our "booth."

This month we drove up to WeFF (Western Fiber Festival) in Torrance - sans dog - and had an even busier day. Whew, what a stimulating and busy place!

A good chance to practice keeping my head attached. Thanks to all of the patient people who waited for me to find stuff, show stuff, and write stuff up. And especially to those people who were good enough to tell me what and how much they bought afterward when I realized that I had not put any numbers on their credit card receipts!

Well, the shearer has come and gone again, another 100 pounds of wool and llama have been delivered to Shari at Morro Fleece Works for processing, and summer is AT LAST pretty much behind us. Cool and crisp days give hope that we may yet see some fall - maybe even winter? - weather.