Friday, July 8, 2011

What am I up to?

Well many things really, and at the same time not that many. But for simplicities sake I think I'll talk today about my most favorite current activity: TDF!

TDF is both the Tour de France and the Tour de Fleece.

The Tour de France is pretty self explanatory. I like biking and having taken to watching races. It's a great companion to crafting although gets tricky to watch and work during especially exciting places and or sometimes I miss stuff happening. But I like to cheer on pretty much anyone who isn't Alberto Contador (go Schleck and Kloden!). And secondarily to that I have a preference for anyone who speaks English (Allez Team Radio Shack, Horner, Leivheimer, Wiggins, Evans, and more that don't come immediately to mind!)

As for the Tour de Fleece I'm spinning lots o' yarn this year! On ravelry I ended up on a good number of teams: Trindle, Team of Wonder, Sweater Spin, Spindlers, and Sprinters. I think all of that explanation will have to be a post in and of itself. I set a goal of 1500 yards of lace weight alpaca (Max) hand processed by me from Carolyn's pets and 300 yards of fingering weight alpaca purchased from Dunn Spun Yarn at the Knitters Day Out last year. All of my tour preparation really should get a post of its own as well.

The tour started last Saturday and here's been my daily accomplishments:

Stage 1: 0.6oz laceweight Max
image titleI started the day in beautiful Ocean City MD watching the cyclists on my laptop while starting my spinning. I had already planed and prepped my fiber so that I had my day one ‘goal’ baggie ready to go. All too soon however I had to pack up to drive back home :-/ However I had great fun doing some spinning in the car. And then it was a simple matter of finishing off the rest of the fiber that was my goal.

Then I even ended up taking a spindle and some fiber out to the ballpark as the Symphony was performing one of our outdoor concerts and I figured I should attend at least one. The setting really was quite awesome and I had a good time although I didn't get through that much spinning there. The whole working/looking half professional gets in the way.

Stage 2: 1 oz Dunn Alpaca + bonus Max
Spun up the 1 oz in that bag using my fun Spinatude TDF spindle (yarn destined to become mittens) and added more to the trindle (my sweater yarn) as well above and beyond my initial goal.


Stage 3: 0.75 laceweight Max + some extra
My cumulative tour spinning by Day 3:
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Doesn’t look like all that much but I’m quite happy with it. I decided that I’ll wind off onto my “bobbins” after each ounce-ish. That way when I ply the cops/weight will never get too ridiculous. All the stuff on the trindle and some of the stuff on the brown bobbin were today’s progress.
Also rock on Farrar for today’s sprint finish victory in France!

Stage 4:
I think I’m getting faster. I already had a light day of only .6 oz planned and it went by in no time.
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It was also super helpful that I got my targeted ounce on one trindle then I could easily just take off the beads and pack up them with my second shaft and remaining fleece to take out to knitting group to spin while there. At least two little girls were watching me for quite a bit. Hooray for easy transport.

Stage 5: .5
I had a (planned) easy day today of only .5 oz of lace singles.
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Not the most exciting but it made me definitely realize that I am much faster as I completed everything in less than 1.5 hours. W00t

I was feeling entirely tired of my very bland colors so after I had completed my daily goal I grabbed a bit of Sheep Shed Studio roving, white with some brown streaks, and decided to play around. I dunked it in some water and sprinkled on some pink lemonade kool aid. Microwaved for a bit. And hung it out to dry while I went to rehearsal. When I got home it was try and I spun it all up. I wasn’t sure how I would like it based on the roving form, but I like it quite a bit as it is spun up.
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I may very well end up adding in another TDF goal :-)

Stage 6: 0.6 oz of Max and 0.6oz of Dunn

Today it was back to my regularly scheduled programming. In honor of the longest stage on the road (140 miles) I had my largest volume of spinning .6 oz of Max and .6oz of Dunn Alpaca (It’s not the most difficult however as I’m saving that for a mountain stage).
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Everything went quite smoothly. Although there was a bit of a pause when someone decided that he needed to nap in my lap in the midst of the spinning.

1 comment:

A Gamer's Wife said...

I really like your blog's design too btw (love the fishbowls). Hope you keep on blogging!