2 days ago
Home made Soda Ash. Made by low temp baking Baking Soda to dehydrate it. The resulting Soda Ash (washing soda) can be an irritant, so safety gear used to transfer final product to its own container.
Baking Soda is one thing I didn't have to purchase for my course as I already had a large supply. I buy it at the farm supply in 25 lb bags.
My sheep pastures are 'low bloating' - low percent plants like alfalfa and clovers that can cause a sheep to bloat. Bloat occurs when the fermentation of rich feed basically foams up in the rumen in sufficient quantity to block digested material moving to the next stomach, causing the rumen to blow up like a balloon and, if not caught and treated, they die.
But my hay fields have rich legumes (that are non bloating when dried as hay) and if I graze those fields I set a container of free choice Baking Soda beside the usual offerings of salt and mineral. Sheep (mostly) will lick at the baking soda which reduces the amount of frothing that occurs in their rumen.
Tums for sheep. ... See MoreSee Less
4 days ago
Abby figured out my course has to do with chemistry, and Jackie put it in the basket that I'm taking a course in Natural Dyeing.
When I started doing my own dye work many years ago I looked into Natural Dye work but was scared off - much of what I read told of toxic byproducts that would have to be disposed of from the process. I chose Washfast Acid Dyes instead as at the end of the process there is only plain water left.
I've 'sort of' revisited a few times over the years, usually after conversation with a fibre person at the market or other craft venue. I even bought a couple of (used books). But the info was either too simplified, too advanced, too geographically suited, or unable to speak to my fears of toxic by products.
A few months ago I stumbled on an online course being offered by www.mamiesschoolhouse.com - I forget if it was either an ad in my feed or a post on one of my Facebook groups. It ticked the right boxes for me and I decided to give it a shot.
The course deals with different fibres, including wool, and I will be excited to try some things with my own yarn and fleece.
Pictured are the fabric samples I procured for the lessons. The samples on the left I got, along with chemicals and a couple of good books, from my new favourite store - Maiwa.com in Vancouver. ... See MoreSee Less
1 week ago
It's not unusual to spend periods of time in isolation on the farm, so dealing with the pandemic is probably easier for me than for many.
Today I am beginning a new diversion, partly for a change of pace and partly to keep my brain working, which at my age is important.
I've started Part One of an online course that will run for 8 weeks (once per week + homework) and then following a brief break Part Two will begin.
I spent much of March gathering materials needed for the course. Luckily I had a few things already at the farm, but most I had to search out.
This box contains some of the supplies and came in from Vancouver. ... See MoreSee Less