Friday, May 18, 2012

...a thread by any other name.... you ask....what's new in this neck of the woods...?  Funny you should ask, because I have been spending a fair amount of time in the woods lately, hiking for the most part.  I started hiking through the trails around my area with a spindle in hand -- hubster doesn't feel that I am getting any healthful benefits out of my hikes because he doesn't feel I am walking fast enough...I tend to look at it in terms of I am moving, up and down hills, crossing over rocky brooks, going off trail to get around a tree limb that came down, enjoying the quiet meditation of bird calls, and getting lung-fulls of fresh air !  According to the tracking system I have been recording my hikes on, my hikes and/or cross-country hikes have all been in the range of 2 to 4.5 miles, with my speed between 3.5-4.5 miles per hour -- not bad considering all the roots I need to avoid traversing the hills....  In any case, since May 1st, I have hiked a little over 25 miles (nope, not training to do any marathon, just enjoying myself).  I am working my way through a fleece I purchased this spring (see precious post with the wash bucket), but with a small wooden spindle it does not accumulate very far according to my records, I am averaging slightly more than 17 yards per mile.  I eventually plan to ply this wool before knitting with it, and even so the plied version is going to be a heavy fingering weight.  Haven't found what I want to knit with it yet, though there will be at least one pair of socks, so have time to continue my spinning hikes......

Tuesday, May 1, 2012 now what ??

Can it really be since January when I last posted?...and I seem to recall in teh back of my mind having made a mental note/New Year's resolution to be more active in my blogging life.....well, we see where THAT resolution So, where to start, again, because the beginning is much to far back to travel to, so perhaps start from now, today, and work backwards for a bit. First the good news on the homefront...I am working again, so that is great -- the hours are different than what I used to work but still with enough time to get the things done that need to be done, spend time with those I love, and hopefully even get around to exercising a little more (this half-century-old+ bod really needs to get in shape). To this last item, my employers are running a weight loss challenge that begins today, May 1st, and will run through the next 3 months, with some poretty sweet incentives offered for losing the biggest percentage. In any case, with starting work later in the day now, figured I could get into the habit of going for walks (aka, cross-country hike thru the back '40) several days a week. I did this okay, it's a little on the cold and rainy side but that just means you have to be more motivated to do the distance planned and get home where you can take a shower to warm up. Yup, that's what I did, chugging along at a good clip, still noticing all the green sprouting everywhere, seeing trash that others have left behind (and while I normally bring a trashbag with me to pick up returnables/trash, I did not today), and listening to the sounds of assorted birds hiding in the canopy as well as the music of the rain falling overhead. The hiking trail goes through the woods, comes out behind the grade school in their ball field, and drops off onto the road so actual street walking is maybe about 2 blocks worth. The fitness app on my phone says I did 1.99 miles in 33 minutes, averaging about a 17-minute mile. This is considerably better than my time last week, but then the circumstances were different -- this week is to get-out-of-the-rain, last week was a spinning hike for a little over 2 miles averaging about 26-minutes/mile. (I wonder what the wildlife along that trail was thinking watching me stride past swinging a piece of wood on a Part of what I have been doing is doing my usual summer routine of setting out buckets to wash fleece, so started with this
and let it soak for the day (since we haven't hooked up the outdoor hose yet, carrying pitchers of water in-and-out of the house means I need to set aside a bit more time to accomplish the same amout. Plus, while the daytime temps may have been hovering anywhere between 50s to almost-80, the nighttime temps were dippling close to freezing (one such bucket had a coat of ice on it one morning). Then to add-insult-to-injury, it rained/poured for several days...well, at least that bucket got a good rinsing. And this is what I wound up with
As an fyi...this is the fleece I went hiking with last week as well. Previous to that, had gone out for a walk with the hubster (we discovered an area on the far edge of the property where some timber trespass had occured, so we were out counting-stumpage). While we were out, verifying where the property line runs, I mentally "blogged" about what I was seeing and hearing -- funny thing that, mental blogs don't translate very well especially when you try to physically recreate them. The gist of it revolved around a phrase, granted the phrase comes from a holiday medley featuring the 'dance of teh sugarplum fairy' early spring it is more of a whispering dance of tree limbs as they gently sway to and fro....looking up is like looking through a veil with scattered puffs of white chasing each other behind the lacework....the music is not Tchaikoschy (?sp) but more of "hee-hoo" and "chik-a-dee-dee-dee" of songbirds passing messages to each other of the intruders (hey wait, that's us!) in their midst....then Surprise !.. a startled turkey hurries up the hill to finish his meal in peace, and so I let him be.