Wednesday, September 25, 2013

"Let's see if Miss Kitty laid any eggs."

Believe it or not, the title of this post, what Kenneth said to his sister Violet, really does make sense.

Their parents, my friends, helped me shear one and 3/4 sheep on Sunday. (That's a tale for another time.) Anyway, while we were shearing, my lone surviving hen (see the post from 8/12/13 for that story) decided to perch on the open window sill of the chicken coop.

Violet quietly approached her and started stroking her feathers. The hen stayed put. Violet petted her some more. The hen seemed to really enjoy it. She remained sitting, facing into the chicken coop, with her tail to the world -- just like a cat wanting its rear end petted, according to Violet and Kenneth.

They asked what the hen was called. I said I hadn't named this bunch as they all looked pretty much the same, and I couldn't really tell them apart. However, now that only one chick remained, we decided it was fitting for her to have a name. So the kids dubbed her "Miss Kitty," since she wanted to be petted just like a cat.

"Let's see if Miss Kitty laid any eggs." Kenneth and Violet hurried into the barn and scrambled up a low partition to reach the rafters where Miss Kitty roosts. Now, you must understand that this hen has an avian form of OCD, what I call OED, Obsessive Egg Disorder. She insists on trying to hatch her eggs, despite the absence of a rooster.

When she indulged her obsession in the laying box, I was able to remove the eggs daily. Since she started laying them in the rafters of the barn, I've been remiss about collecting them. The kids discovered 13 eggs up there. Kenneth tested them and found, unfortunately, that they had all gone bad.

Not wanting them to go to waste, though, the kids created works of art. The masterpieces below include a dog, Pikachu, Bulbasaur, and Lilo and Stitch.

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Dierdre Sporting Her New Accessory

I didn't attach the leash because I didn't want Dierdre to think we were going somewhere. She was amazingly patient for the photo shoot.

Tablet-woven Dog Leash Add-On

A few weeks ago I mentioned I had learned to tablet weave (or card weave). I'm really enjoying it.

I work on an inkle loom.

This system has several advantages over the traditional method of tying one end of the warp to a stationary object, such as a doorknob, and one end to your belt, making you one of the warp anchors. An inkle loom is portable, you can get up and walk away at any time, you can take the loom outside and run in if it starts raining, which has happened to me, to name a few benefits of not being literally tied to your work.

I've been weaving a variety of items, including this dog leash add-on for Dierdre. One end attaches to the end of her leash, the other end to her collar. Blue is a great color for her! Do you think she approves of my work?

For a demonstration of tablet weaving on an inkle loom, check out this youtube video: offers a brief written introduction to card weaving.

For some history of the craft, go to and