After the porch was painted and the new screening put in, we needed a new screen door. No problem, right? Go to the store, get a nice white vinyl screen door, and hang it. Except that the door opening was not standard size--we'd have to cut it wider, or build it in narrower, and make it a wee bit higher. Sigh. So we start taking the screen off the old door to repaint it--and discover wood rot. Yet again back to Home Depot (projects are described by how many trips to the hardware store it takes to do them) to buy a wooden door that we can cut down to size. Do that, paint it, hang it . . . maybe we should have cut it just a wee tad narrower . . . take it down, plane it down a bit, repaint, and hang. At least the front door was easier--and we even had a nice, low-humidity day to do it. Here's the before and after porch
And it feels more open now--the contractor said that the middle supports weren't really necessary so out they came. Now the porch isn't quite done--the old storage units aren't going back in and what we want is a bench or two with storage but haven't found them yet.
Meanwhile while all this was going on I taught two more workshops. First one was handspinning (again, no photos, but I carded up all that pretty dyed wool from the last post that we didn't use for felting and used that for the spinning). Then a workshop on making worbla--a mixture of thermoplastic and sawdust. It's much used by cosplayers, but I've never experimented with it because it's *way* expensive. Then I saw a video on how to make it. I figured that other makers would be interested. It's fun stuff to use--I've started on a bird mask.
Despite the fact that I have enough spinning fiber on hand to last most of the rest of my life, and that I had a few other things I should have been doing (like paint the back deck) I found out that a farmer in Quincy had babydoll sheep and fleece available. I've never worked with this breed before, and every now and then I get the urge to work with a raw fleece rather than wool that's been processed and ready to spin. And it was a lovely day for a drive, and the people were great, and the sheep adorable.
I came home with 12 pounds of fleece. Apache and Wilhelm helped me sort through the first batch.
The second batch will have to wait--we lost our excuse for not working on the back deck. We didn't have the painters do it because, well, honestly, we have a lot of stuff (I really want to say crap) back there, and chickens living there (special need chickens) and the living room is already full of the stuff from the front porch. And besides--we had a wren nest with babies out there. So obviously we couldn't paint until the babies left the nest.
But, alas--it happened. And we were lucky enough to see the fledging. This grand moment is exactly that--a moment. It takes only a few minutes for the parents to coax the young out and into the trees, so it's something we rarely get to witness.
With the excuse having flown the coop, I've spent the last three days sweeping down cobwebs and painting. It's been gratifying to see a transformation but not much fun--the temps are in the 90's and the biting flies are out (the mosquitoes I can ignore, but those damned flies . . .) I still need to do the trim and ceilings. I was going to start with that--and I did--but ran out of the first can of paint and when I went to open the next found that we had accidently bought interior rather than exterior paint. We went back today to exchange it and their power had been out--no computers means no sales transactions. Fortunately it came back on.
This will drag on a bit more--I'm working the next three days and getting a crown on Monday so not much painting will be done. And then, of course, all the crap has to be organized (trust me--much of it is going away)
But still reading. Finished American Gods--complex and convoluted and thought provoking. Then read one of Gaimen's "Dr. Who" children's stories, which was simple and straightforward and fluffy. The guy is amazing--he can write in all formats (including poetry and "graphic novels" which we used to call comic books)
Now I've started W.H. Hudson's "Far Away and Long Ago." This month's Smithsonian had an article on him and praised his beautiful and evocative writing. Ah--the joys of the e-book--I thought it would be interesting, pulled it up, downloaded it, and started reading. While it's not the same as holding a real book, I have to admit it's convenient and doesn't take up any shelf space.