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Chock full of Wonderwool

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I know, I know, I’m massively late in the game to offer my thoughts on Wonderwool, but you know what they say; better late than never!

I managed to take my surprisingly enthusiastic fiancé along this year and we both found it a haven of inspiration, craftsmanship and encouragement. The calibre of stall was high, as it is every year, and it was a treat to show someone who’d never been before the sights and sounds. It also gave me an excuse to try a wealth of cakes that in the past I had somehow always missed. (He had a strawberry tart, I had a delectable brownie).

The wall of colour!

The wall of colour!

It was very hard not to be involved from start to finish this year, and walking away from Mum to go home in the evening was something I found incredibly difficult. It’s funny how much you can get used to a place, to seeing the same people, being in the same spot, watching the same things. Waking up on Sunday in my nice warm bed, knowing that I wouldn’t be greeted by the traders’ warm faces and a hot cup of Welsh coffee was something that I don’t think I’ll be able to cope with next year. I’ll have to get my act together and help out properly.

A busy moment....

A busy moment….

However, we did manage to have a good look around, see old favourites and discover some new ones. I loved having a nose around the new hall, and it’s so nice to see such a range of dynamic stalls.

It encouraged me to pick up my spindle, and almost every evening I’ve been home since, I’ve enjoyed continuing to learn. It’s something I’m looking forward to carrying on with it when it gets too hot to carry on with my chunky jumper. Yes it will get hot, one day soon! I’m holding out hope…

At a quieter moment...

At a quieter moment 🙂

Busy Easter

This has been a gorgeous Easter!  Apart from Easter day when the rain fell earnestly, it has been gorgeous!  I have been very busy.  I had a long awaited clear out.  I had to clear out a lot of things which were still damp from the flooding.  I had to tidy up and sort things out.  One of my daughters helped me which is such a supportive thing to do!  Clearing out can be emotional and very tiring.  We worked all day and had an enormous bonfire which was very cleansing in an odd sort of way. 

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The dogs decided that all this busyness was infectious and they decided to start improving the garden.  So they got together and decided that what the garden really needed was a pond.

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So they dug one.  This has the advantage of doubling up as a useful hole or a pond when it rains!!  Result!

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Then 2 of them thought they could plant something in the hole, but they could not decide which way up it should go.  This took some time and resulted in many little options!!  The ‘pond’ is now big enough to place the terrier in without being noticed.  Work in progress..

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I have been dying.  LOTS!!  Now I am trying to dry!  The cottage is FULL of wet wool in various forms!  The smell is not as good as the appearance!

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Looking forward to seeing everyone at Wonderwool next weekend!

Wonderful Wonderwool

We had a fab weekend! I am still hanging, but gathering strength slowly. The weather was perfect, a little cold but sunny with showers. 100% improvement on last year!! We met lots of lovely people who believe in our product and what we are trying to do. We met lots of lovely people willing to try our new spin and give feedback. Plus we met lots of our lovely trader friends who we always look forward to meeting at the shows. A huge vote of thanks to all.

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In the meantime the pups have grown SO much! They are in to absolutely everything absolutely all of the time! They are so much fun and I am going to miss them dreadfully. Everyday I have to discipline myself regarding keeping more than one. The one we are keeping for sure is this little girl (darkest Brindle, bottom pup in photo on right). Her name is Tweed.

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Also the hedgerows did not wait for me and my camera. There are Bluebells and Pink Campions and Stitchwort out alongside the Primroses and Violets and Cowslips. The Cowparsley is also almost there. All stunning adornment for the tracks.

When I have organized the yarns I will show some here, but I am just sorting out the paperwork and organizing another spin and so on. And, of course, trying to regain some energy.

We’re off to see the wizard…

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… The wonderful wizard of Wonderwool.

Things are all packed, puppies are suitably misbehaving, yarn is EVERYWHERE, but I think we’re very nearly ready to go.

And, joy of all joys, the SUN IS SHINING! And long may it do so.

Do come and say hello if you’re heading up to Builth Wells this lovely weekend, we’d love to meet you.

If not, we shall be back blogging next week, and our shop will reopen soon after that.

Peace,

MJ x

Five Minutes Peace.

Lull after the storm? These pups are robust healthy bouncing terrorists now. They devise ways to get out and explore everything. They are the cutest, most gorgeous babies ever (well in my book), but starting the day is a challenge. Looking on the bright side, I have two starts to my day now. The first start involves lots of noise and madness. The pups all yelling at the top pitch of their voices demanding everything NOW, and the other dogs wanting to rush out to the garden to get away from the chaos and noise. Just trying to put out 6 pups, two at a time without letting them back in takes skill and strategy which is not always present at 6 in the morning. Then they need mucking out (always a delightful task) and their food preparing and cooling. You would have thought that once in the garden the noise would disperse to a degree, but absolutely not!

 

After the clean bed and warm yummy breakfast they have a bit of mummy and finally peace is restored. The older dogs and I just flop on my newly clean kitchen floor and take a note of silence. Silence is indeed golden I have to tell you! Maybe it needs a bit of contrast (like a full on hurrican of activity and noise) to be appreciated to the extent that I am coming to appreciate it. The big dog (father of this litter) usually gives a huge sigh followed by a long low groan while stretching out (this activity covers half the kitchen floor) and he then shuts his eyes and sleeps. Mum is resigned and both delighted and appalled by her ever growing offspring. She just curls up (not an option with the babies) and waits for me to grab a coffee and then take them out for a walk in the valley.

 

Yesterday I took them down by the stream and let them mooch around in the water enjoying the smells and puppy free zone. The noise is different and not our problem so the birds filling the sky with celebration and sex seems quite nice really. A sort of symphony to spring and new life.

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The banks are full of primroses and violets . The cowslips are bursting out too and I even saw Stitchwort in bloom yesterday. Wood anemones are in flowering and wont last long in this spring rush. Its almost as if the doors were shut for ages and then when they opened everything wanted to get out and be seen first! Catkins came and went, the new leaves pushing them out of the way. The Hawthorne is out and the May is rivalling for position in the hedges . There has been a silent explosion in the valley which astonishes me everyday with its intensity. The dogs are somewhat less impressed I have to say.

 

 

Meanwhile back at the ranch so to speak, the labelling is going at full pelt now for the show. My world is full of dogs and wool (cant think of anything better really). Skeining up my new creations and doing the final dry. Then the labelling (endlessly) and finishing off of samples. Remembering everything I need to take to the show without the wrench of leaving the puppies in capable hands takes some concentration.

 

Then here comes my big sigh……………………………. Five minutes peace………………………….. And then my second start to the day………………….

Growing Pains and Falling in Love

 

I have been remiss. It was my birthday last week and I had the most fabulous day. I worked the morning and then my youngest daughter and I had a great afternoon in Frome. We went in loads of shops we had not been in before and I bought a horse, and here he is!

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I am over the moon with him. He was hanging in the middle of the shop calling to me and I fell in love in an instant. I now believe in love at first sight! It happened to me which is proof enough in my mind.

 

I also went a little bit crazy in that week and acquired a rocking chair which is ugly and gorgeous and now much loved. I am going to attempt to crochet a cover for said chair. This may be a non event for most people but believe me crochet is the most excruciating event for me. I am a knitter through and through and through. Crochet is painfully slow to grow and a skill which does not come easily to me. But I want a granny square blanket for a granny chair for a granny, so I consider this motivation enough to persevere.

 

Talking of growing pains…………………….

 

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These characters are exhausting and delightful in equal quantities! I LOVE LOVE LOVE them (mostly!!) and they are growing every minute and growing in confidence and in the scale of experiments they attempt. Lush puppies!!

 

 

Meanwhile back at the ranch I am dyeing for Wales, WONDERWOOL!! Come and see me there next weekend, with all my new goodies.

Busy!

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Hello! I am currently in ‘granny’ mode, hence the lack of blogs. The reason lies in the photos. Mum and Dad, expecting this weekend!! So exciting! I have to admit that this has taken up most of my mind space the last week.

That aside I have been dyeing for a new and exciting spin to launch at Wonderwool in April. Also very exciting. AND I have commissioned a new laceweight spin with Shetland, Jacob and Alpaca, yummmmmmm!!

Also I finished lots of kids knits which are in Up to Seven in Bath, and I am very pleased with these too. All my designs!

Talking of which I am currently working on some gorgeous new designs which I will get published as patterns when they are totally done and test knitted.

WOW!! All sounds very busy and indeed it has been, but all exciting and new. With spring comes new life and new starts and better weather one hopes! Well 2 out of 3 ain’t bad!