Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Bunny run....

I just know I will be early for my own funeral.  The arrangement was the Bunny Lady was gonna call me when she got to Oklahoma City.  That way, we are both approximately 2.5 hours away from the meeting spot.  In my attempt to not run into the non-existent traffic through Ft Worth, armed with a full tank of gas and a triple Red Bull, I left Waco at 3:00pm knowing I would have cool my heels for a little while.  SO, get to the Super WalMart in Denton at 5:30pm not knowing exactly where the Bunny Lady was currently on her trek. 

Realize, that even I can't goof off in WalMart for hours on end.  Especially when I don't have any "extra" spending money.  Denny's was down the road, and it was my BD... Can we say free dinner?  The waitress was so nice.  When I was being seated, I warned her that I was gonna be there a while, so she gave me one of her tables.  Called the Bunny Lady.  She and her daughter, who were coming from Colorado to visit friends, were still a hour north of Oklahoma City.  Uhm... gonna be a long evening.  Sat the next 2 hours knitting on Bill's hunting vest, the ongoing project from hell.  Coffee cup was refilled numerous times, and yes, ate my free Grand Slam.  Finally after several trips to ladies' room, started to get antsy.  Decided to go check out the Clearance racks at WallyWorld.  Paid my bill with a generous tip, and off to WalMart. 

First, the WalMart in Denton is WAY cooler and better stuff than Waco's WalMarts.  Tons of stuff marked way down.  I EXERCISED GREAT CONTROL, and did not spend a dime.  Still had at least an hour.  Wait, I have an iPhone with Netflix.  Saved by the mini-screen movie.   Moved truck to near empty part of extensive parking lot and stationed myself across from where the semi's parked.  9:15pm, mysterious car pulls up beside me.  Excited guy  gets out.  Ah, the other guy who is also picking up bunnies from the Bunny Lady.  We exchange pleasantries and the Bunny Lady arrives. 

So, the three of us are parked in a near empty parking lot late at night.  Obviously doing some kind of money exchange.  Kept looking over my shoulder waiting for Denton's finest to pull up.  Finally got my two bunny girls loaded up and the spare cage I bought, and headed home.  11:45ish, pulled into drive way very glad to be home.  Got girls settled.  Took Delsum and crashed.

Meet Puff and Truffles...... 

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Bunnies are coming.....

IT IS MY BIRTHDAY, and what am I gonna do I do to celebrate???  I gonna drive to Denton, TX to meet up with a lady at a WalMart parking lot to buy two English Angora bunnies.... lol  She is coming to TX to visit friends delivering bunnies along the way.  She probably won't get to Denton till late, and a 3 hour one way trip for me...  hmmm...  I sometimes think I am not too bright.  Oh well. 

Reggie (see "The Bunnie Has Landed" post) need girlfriends.  Hope to make pretty bunnies.  With this said, the does I am buying are very young.  There IS a possibility the Sex Change Fairy could come visit.  I hope not.  Stay posted.  If everything work out, will be posting pics of very cute fuzz puffs....

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Help, a Llama Yakked in My Tub!!!!

Ok, was playing with my newly built wool picker (see previous post).  I has been given a large white trash bag of raw llama fleece.  I decided to try in picker, but fleece was quite dirty.  So, now for adventure of washing my first fleece.  First I will say that it should not be anywhere as bad as a sheep fleece.  Sheep have lanolin which makes for a greasy mess if not done properly.  Not a problem with goats, alpaca, llamas, etc.  For those of you who have washed and processed fiber, sit back and have a laugh and nod knowingly.  If any of  you, in the peanut gallery, have any suggestions for the next time, PLEASE chime in... lol
One advantage to living in an old plank farm house is the large claw foot tub. We don't use it since we have a separate shower.  It makes a perfect place for these impromptu projects.  So, I ran a tub of warm water with mild shampoo.  Dumped the whole bag and and carefully moved it around with my fingers.  Even the suds were filthy.  Let it sit for while to soak.  Just imagine the smell of your wet dog.  Now magnify this to the size of a wet llama.  Yea.......  

The fur has some debris  in it.  While carefully swishing it around in the water, pulled hay and larger pieces of grass.  Hopefully, any remaining trash will be teased out at the picking stage.  After carefully draining the tub, monitoring the drain as not to plug up the plumbing with fuzz, I ran more rinses, till...

...the water started to appear clearer.  I was lucky in that this fleece only took 4 rinses/soaks.

Kids are laughing at me.  Looks like a llama yakked a giant hair ball in our tub.  I just told them not to make any sudden movements or noises.... It might attack... lol

Now, to let it dry so I can play with the picker. 

Friday, December 16, 2011

Not Bad for Afternoon Work....

I have been wanting a wool picker for a while.  I have been given/bought several bags of unprocessed fiber to play with... alpaca and llama.  In order to spin fibers, usually you need to: 1.  Pick it to open up the fiber getting rid of the all the little clumps and mats and hopefully get rid of all the small pieces of litter contained in the fleece.  2.  Card it to get all the fibers aligned so you can draft it when spinning.  Alas a wool picker has been financially out of my grasp... till today.  Got the ok from hubby to go buy materials.  Most people would maybe (oh I don't know) draw out a design prior to going to Lowes.  But no, I take my trusty tape measure and jump right in.  My picker is, for the most part, a Medival box full of nails, with a additional set of spikes attached to a slider. 

After getting all my goodies home, I sat on my living room floor assembling away.  Took most of the afternoon, but it was worth it.... WORKS GREAT!!!!!

Yes, nails are sharp... Ouch!

 Looks pretty evil.

All closed up:

Monday, December 5, 2011

There's a reason 12 year olds don't vote or drive cars....

Sometimes..... aghhhh....  My 12 year old daughter allowed my 9 year old son to clean out her ear with a cotton swab.  Her excuse, "He's done it lots of times and always was very carefull."  WELL, this time he went throught the eardrum.

Sunday night, rush trip to ER so they can tell us that, "Yep, it's ruptured.".....  As if the blood coming from her ear was not the first clue.  Oh well....  There is a reason that 12 year olds don't vote or drive cars.

p.s.  Her ear should heal on its own with, we hope, no loss of hearing (as if 12 year olds listen anyway)... :)

The Bunny has landed....

In my continuing quest to have fiber to spin, I have purchased my first English Angora Bunny.  Sir Reginald (Reggie) has joined our zoo of 3 Bassets, 1 mutt, 2 cats, and a guinea pig.  He was born on Sept. 28, 2011, so is still quite young.  I am very happy to say he is of Shelba Lasseter's bunny stock (Lewisville, TX).  The plan is to also get two does from her when they come available.  

I have always had a knack for raising champion dust-bunnies... lol  Now will see how I do raising fuzz bunnies. 

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Now for the "Fuzz"....

When Mom died in September, I was not doing very well.  I am a stay at home Mom, so was not like I could emerse myself in the workplace to distract me.  It was just too easy to stay in bed and feel sorry for myself.  Before Mom got sick, I was already trying to find an outlet to get me out of the house just to be around other adults.  Yes, we would probably just talk about the kids, but at least the kids wouldn't be physically be there.... lol  I am not the bar type, and living out in the sticks does not help when finding groups to join.  SO....

When I was in college, I took some Summer courses at the extension Junction, TX campus of Texas Tech.  I took several textile courses.  On of which was weaviing on a floor loom.  I still remember how much I loved it.  I have decided that I am going to work toward purchasing a floor loom.  Due to the expense, yes, it will take a while.  In the meantime, I have learned to spin yarn and to knit.  I have joined the Heart of Texas Spinners and Weavers Guild in Waco, TX.   Most of all, I am getting out of the house and having adult conversations, and am engaged in an activity that produces a product for my family.

Am loving working with different fibers to produce yarn.  Thus far I have knitted two scarves.  Hubby asked for a wool "hunting" vest.  So, I ordered 2lb of wool, dyed it, spun it, and am now knitting my first vest.   Stay tuned to see how it turns out. 

Why "Ears Fuzz and Recovery"???

Lets cover the ears part first.  I raise AKC registered Basset Hounds.  That should at least explain the ears part.... lol.  When I moved back to China Spring, TX in 2004, I bought my first Basset Hound.  I had raised different dog breeds before, just not Bassets.  I love the temperment and easy going personalities.  Sadie Joe Baker has been the BEST momma dog and all around great girl.  I bred her when when she was almost 3 years old.  She had 12 puppies.  All seemed healthy, but lost one due to cord being pulled too hard at birth.  Of that litter, we kept one female, Bessie Boo Baker.  In 2011, I adopted a registered tan/white male, and bred both females.  Well, I should say that I bred Sadie, and when she had her pups, Bessie's hormones went wild and she came into heat again.  Needless to say, Buddy got to her also. 

Sadie went on to have 13 puppies in March of this year.  All were healthy.  6 Tricolors, 6 Lemon/Tans, and 1 rare Blue.  All sold.  I was afraid if I let Sadie have one final litter, she would suicide by puppy.  She is now spayed and living the life of luxury as a pampered pet (and Grand Dame). 

On to Bessie...  In May 2011, she snuck behind the house to have her first two puppies.  Thus, one female pup is missing an ear.  Bessie nipped the ear when cleaning her up.  We had the vet sew it back on, but Bessie licked it loose.  Just finally had vet amputate the ear.  We still have Little Dot and she is growing fast.  Bessie ended up with 10 puppies.  All tricolor.  We sold the remaining 9, but one came back to us.  We also still have Emma May (M&M).  Since I was not as pleased with Bessie's puppy raising skills, and with my Mom's Cancer, I wanted to only have dogs that can be house dogs if needed, I sent Buddy and Bessie to a wonderful breeder in Sulpher Springs, TX. 

SO, still have net three Bassets.  A very contented Sadie Joe and  her 6 month old Granddaughters, Emma and Dot.  For the record, our zoo consist of the three Bassets, Bill mutt-pup Jack, two indoor cats, and a Guinea Pig, two kids (12 and 9), and a husband.