Thursday, July 22, 2010

This heat has got to go!!

Living in Kansas you learn to live with the extremes that summer and winter can bring. And this year is worst than normal I think. Well, maybe it is because we had several rather mild summers the last 2-3 years. But With temperatures in the mid-90's and dew points in the upper 70's that makes for a very high heat index. 105-115 degrees is what it feels like in the shade the past couple of weeks.

Here is what the dogs have decided is the best choice on these hot days!

And then sometimes it is just too hot to even do that. So white dogs have to dream of 25 degrees and snow.

So what have I been doing in this heat? Sweating by the bucket fulls. (lovely image) I think I am drinking about a gallon and a half of water a day and a half gallon of Gatorade.

But this is perfect weather for barberpole worms in sheep and goats. And they can be deadly. So it is VERY important to keep a close I on them. So last Sunday I did a FAMACHA check on all the sheep and goats. The FAMACHA basicly is checking the eye lids of the sheep and goats. Since the barberpole worms can cause anemic conditions, if the eye lids are nice and red then the sheep or goat is dealing with any worms it has on its own. If the eye lid is pale pink or white than you must deworm the animal to kill the worms. It is not a fail proof solution because there are other things that can cause anemic conditions.
So Sunday I checked eye lids. Only a couple of the angora goats needed to be dewormed. None of  the shetland sheep needed to be dewormed ( they are such tough little sheep). But almost all of the icelandic sheep needed to be dewormed. But I kinda expected that. They had a lot of stress in a week and a half. Being moved in a trailer for over 500 miles and being introduced to the rest of the herd. So I am hopeful that they will have much better results toward the end of the summer. But I will continue to monitor their eye lids weekly.

Ok, so what else have I done in this hot weather?
Well, I started using my drop spindle again. It is so relaxing I am not sure why I quit using it! I tried doing it a little different this time though. Since my borrowed drum carder got returned to its owner, I had no way of making a batt to spin from. So I thought I would try 'spinning in the grease' Which is basicly taking the wool from the fleece that I sheared this spring and spinnig directly from it without washing it first.

I was pleasantly surprised at the results. I even started to make a nice thin yarn but then decided I really wanted something a little bulkier so I could weave with it. So here is the result.

Now I just need to learn to ply with the spindle and then have the time to weave!

Have a wonderful evening and stay cool!!


  1. Plying is the same as spindling, once you make a center-pull ball with your single (I have a ball winder that is one of the best -used- fiber-tool investments I've made). Just put a little knot in the two ends, hook through it to start your twist, and spin the opposite direction you used to spin your single! (I spin clockwise, ply counter-clockwise.)

  2. Thanks Michelle! A ball winder is on my wish list. I took a class last winter but don't remember now. But I am going to give it a try.

  3. You can make a center-pull ball just winding your single on your fingers; I've seen demos online. Try googling it!

  4. Thanks! I will look it up. Course, at the rate I spin, it might be October before I am ready to ply! :)