Of Rats and Jen (Inactive)

Tales of a Perpetual
Work In Progress

Life at the Speed of Chaos

Filed under: Daily Life,Shopping Adventures,Spinning — folkcat at 3:18 pm on Monday, July 2, 2007

First, let me tell you that I’m much better now. The old meds have worked out of my system, and the new meds are starting to take effect.

Many thanks to all who wished me well and expressed concern for my wellbeing this weekend. It was a scary thing to get sick from a medicine I was taking, especially when it was for an infection I didn’t even know I had. Knowing that you were all out there thinking good thoughts helped.

It feels like I say those things a lot lately. Yes, I have health issues, and they sometimes take over life more than I’d like. I really appreciate all of you for sticking with me “through sickness, and in health.” Thank you!

I knew I must be feeling better when, by Saturday afternoon, I was itching to get out of the house, at least a little bit. I suggested to Gryphon a couple of small errands we could run that wouldn’t wear me out too badly, and he agreed it seemed like a good idea to get me out in the nice sunshine we had that day.

As we turned the corner and headed down Main Street, Gryphon said, “Oh! You know, there’s been something I’ve been meaning to tell you for a while now!”

The something was this:

Telltale Sign

This sign is at the other end of the street we live on. Gryphon had noticed it a week and a half earlier, and had managed not to remember to tell me about it until this Saturday.

Of course, I insisted that we stop there immediately! Had to find out what the deal was!

What we’re looking at is a small home farm. Actually, a woman I found to be very like-minded, and doing things I’d do if I had the resources. Liisa Palance is a spinner, and clearly an animal lover. When we knocked on the door to inquire about the wool, there was a cage on the floor right there with a lovely angora bunny in it, and across the room were cages with parakeets, a cockatiel, and a chinchilla.

In previous months, I had already observed this pair in their pen alongside the house:

Emma and Maggie

That’s Maggie in the back, and Emma in the front. You can see there isn’t much wool hanging off them right now. There’s a reason for that.

Here’s Emma’s fleece, in this bag. I know, you can’t see it.

Bag o' Emma Fleece

Is this better?

Inside the Bag: Emma's Fleece

And yes, that bag is sitting in my kitchen now.

You know, life has been moving at the speed of chaos lately. If you’ve been keeping up with my blog, you’ve seen that for yourself. Saturday morning, if you’d said to me, “Want to buy a whole, skirted, raw fleece?” I’d have said, “Heck, no! No space, no time, haven’t been spinning much!”

And then, that afternoon, I learn that I have a local source for both Romney and Angora bunny. Closer than my nearest supermarket. Closer than the closest gas station. Nearer than anyplace we have to buy clothing or housewares.

Closer, mind you, than my Local Yarn Store.

Emma and Maggie were sheared in May, so the fleece isn’t perfectly just-cut fresh, but it’s been well kept. The staple is about 4 inches, and the crimp! Just take a look at this crimp!

Emma Fleece - Crimp Detail

Gorgeous, isn’t it? So here I was, just recovering from illness, not in the market for a fleece, and confronted with 7 pounds, 4 ounces of a really lovely, skirted Romney. We talked a bit together about it, Liisa, Gryphon, and I, and I used my tiny bit of training to evaluate it – pulled the fiber near my ear, didn’t hear a single pop! Felt through the bag a little, found nice, even staple length throughout.

A price was quoted, I said, “Can you do any better if I take the whole thing?” She could, and I did.

I believe in messages from the universe, and clearly I’m being sent a big one here. Anything that the universe makes this easy, that it practically dumps in your lap, is to be paid attention to.

I found good instructions for scouring a whole fleece in the washing machine, and Gryphon and I are going to tackle that this week, while he’s on holiday from at least the one job.

Then, I guess, I’m going to want to get back to spinning more. I think I have to – I don’t think I want to know what the universe would do next to get through to me!

BTW, if anyone living within the sound of this blog is interested, Liisa doesn’t have a website, but she does still have Maggie’s fleece. Lovely, mostly charcoal gray with some hints of black and brown. And the eggs are free range, antibiotic- and hormone-free.

Free-range Chickens

If you’re interested in either eggs or fleece, or in the Angora bunny fiber, you can either visit Maplehaven Farm at 19 Maple St., Milford, NH, or give Liisa a call at 603-654-9204.

Life is funny sometimes, isn’t it?



Comment by Carrie K

July 2, 2007 @ 11:20 pm

How very cool to have a neighor like that!


Comment by JessaLu

July 3, 2007 @ 9:07 am

Glad you are feeling better – congrats on your first fleece!


Comment by Kali

July 3, 2007 @ 10:04 am

Oh My Goodness! Practically next door! I could go up and see how it is all done and consider whether I am content to watch it being done, or if I itch to do it myself.

Thank you, thank you, thank you for sharing!


p.s. I am very glad to hear you are feeling better!


Comment by Carol

July 3, 2007 @ 1:09 pm

Glad to hear you are feeling better! Clearly you are feeligng better, since you found the closest possible source for fibre art…..I think I’m jealous…

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