Knitting Pipeline is sponsored by my Longaberger home businessn and Quince & Co.

Knitting Pipeline is sponsored by Quince & Co. and Knitcircus Yarns

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Episode 134 Deep in the Frog Pond

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This episode is sponsored by my Longaberger Home Business and Quince & Co.

Chickadee is a little darling—soft, plump, springy, and eager to loop into intricate color patterns or delicate textures. Its three plies, spun from softest American wool, are twisted together firmly enough
to be sturdy, yet gently enough to be soft and cushiony.  41 beautiful colors to choose from and at just a little over $7 per 181 yd/50g skeins…you will find Chickadee a great value for your sport weight knitting. 
 Find Chickadee and the other Quince fibers at

You can find my Longaberger Home Business at  Please send me a personal message or visit my web site to sign up for my customer email list.


I am still working on two fall retreats.  Sometimes the people I need to talk to are not around for a week or so and that makes it tricky.

Nature Notes

Today, June 19, the birds are busy at all of the feeders.  Goldfinches are eating at the platform feeder this year and we don’t know why. Normally they prefer the niger thistle seed over black sunflower seed.  They are still eating thistle seed but have broadened their food choice.  I just saw 6 goldfinches (5 males one female) on the platform feeder at the same time. Normally we don’t see 6 birds on that feeder at the same time and definitely not Goldfinches.  Other birds at the feeders as I’ve been sitting here are tufted titmouse, nuthatch, downy woodpeckers, the show and territorial male Rose-breasted Grosbeak, house finches and a cowbirds.  Our Eastern Phoebe has landed nearby but you won’t see this bird at the feeders as it is primarily an insect eater. I’ve seen the white cabbage butterflies a lot lately but not much else in the butterfly world yet. The cowbird I mentioned is not my favorite bird.  I doubt it is anyone’s favorite bird but after reading an article in a bird magazine which I cannot quote at the momen, I try to understand them.  The cowbird is generally despised because they are parasites in that they lay their eggs in the nests of other birds.  The female bird will lay only lay one egg at a time in the nest of another species.  They don’t even build nests of their own. Usually the cowbird egg will hatch first and the baby bird will be bigger than the other birds so it gets more foods.  As humans we think this is deplorable behavior but actually the bird can’t help it.  For some reason it has evolved this way and through no fault of its own the cowbird has a very hard life of trying to maintain its species in this way.  All of their eggs do not survive as sometimes the host bird will realize it is different and destroy the egg or the baby.  The cowbird has to lay more eggs than the average bird just to maintain the species.  They are not pretty birds either so generally speaking the cowbird is at the bottom of the heap on any birder’s lists of favorites. 

Hummingbirds are frequently darting to the nectar feeder.  The Ruby Throated Hummingbird is the only hummingbird that is normally seen in our area.  Last week I was at a friends house and she had her hummingbird feeders under her eaves up within a foot or two of the big windows.  The birds were so close with that arrangement but we can’t figure out a similar placement.  The areas with eaves are not accessible for Bob to refill the feeders with ease.  So for now our feeder will probably stay on the wrought iron arm that suspends it from the deck railing.

Barred Owls are calling back and forth in the woods as I write today. It is 11:30 am.  They seem to become active midday and again in the evening and early morning.  It seems we have more Barred Owls this year than ever before and that makes me happy.  I am never tired of hearing them.  Sometimes one will call out and another starts in before the first one has finished.

I’m still on my James Whitcomb Riley binge. 

A Fruit-Piece

The afternoon of summer folds
Its warm arms round the marigolds,
And with its gleaming fingers, pets
The watered pinks and violets
That from the casement vases spill,
Over the cottage window-sill,
Their fragrance down the garden walks
Where droop the dry-mouthed holly-hocks….

--James Whitcomb Riley

Needle Notes

At First Sight by Laura Linneman/LaLa Knits  $2.00 download.

My project page is here.
The Perfect Fit Crazy Lace Seamles Cardigan Craftsy Class by Myra Wood.
Malabrigo Worsted Polar Morn.  I did not alternate skeins.  Bad idea.

The body of the sweater didn't look too bad...

...but oh dear!  The sleeves were terrible!

I use my ball winder to unravel the garment.  Gravity works well or use your swift to hold the garment and wind from there.

These are the yarn cakes after unraveling the sweater. 

I use a quilters ruler for winding the kinky yarn into a skein.  I tie it off with baker's twine and its own ends.  Usually 4 ties per skein.
Look how kinky these skeins are!  That has to be fixed.

See what I mean?  Not so good to knit with this.

Wash the wool as you would the garment. I use a wool wash such as Kookaburra, Soak, or Euclan. Fill the basin with tepid water and let the wool sink in.  It takes a while.  Usually I lose patience and give it a poke to help it along.

I use my spin dryer to get the yarn fairly dry.  A highly absorbent towel such as Sham-Wow works well too.

I hang the hanks out to dry.  You can weight them down with clothespins to get any remaining kinks out.

The Blethering Room

Shawl Week at Quince & Co starts Monday June 24

Lullaby Rain by Paula Emons-Fuessle

Thank you to test knitters Lu, Charr, Kathy, Mimi, Louise, Jane, and Bronwyn!

3 skeins of Chickadee. Easily enlarged.

Product Note
A point and shoot camera that really delivers!

42x optical zoom


Susanna/Funky said...

My mom and I always enjoy listening to your podcast in the morning while we do crafts.
We have been noticing the goldfinches are at the sunflower feeders also! We haven't had any birds at our thistle feeders, even though we keep them full.
I must admit, I have always deeply hated cowbirds, but you're right. They can't help it. That's just the way God made them!
We saw a pair of red-headed woodpeckers today-the first time this year.
Keep the nature and knitting notes coming!


Martha said...

Lovely episode. Great tips on frogging. Enjoying many goldfinches at my feeders this year. They won't eat safflower seeds,but like the hulled sunflower seeds. Did you ever get any Baltimore Orioles? One nested in a tree outside of my living room last year, but not this year.

Thanks for putting out the podcast.


About Me

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I play the Great Highland Pipes, knit, observe nature, and read. My name on Ravelry is PrairiePiper. Find me on Instagram as KnittingPipeline.