Still Here, Still Obsessed with Yarn (and Cats!)

Hello, fine bloggie friends! It’s (past) time for another missive from Sandi’s YarnLand and Cat Worship Facility.

This month has been Cat Appreciation Month at my vet’s, and August 8 was International Cat Day. So, in the spirit of the all this, here is a pic of the whole Fab Five all in the same place at the same time.

all 5 edited blog

Do you have any idea how many pictures I had to take to get one, just ONE decent photo of all Five of my Fab Furbits together? That’s actually the reason that this post is going out a bit late: I was combing through my gigabytes of cat photos (don’t judge, let those amongst you without disk space filled with cat or dog pictures toss the first catnip mouse), and I didn’t find that one until a few days ago. (There was also the fact that I hadn’t organized my photos in a while. That was painful.) I do know that it took me at least a year of trying to get that one, taken in February of 2017. Clockwise from upper right corner: Dusty (male), then age 13; Tessa, then age 1; Zoë, then age 13 (Dusty’s littermate); Tim, then age 7; and Ben, then age 1.

And yes, Tessa does have ginormo paws. That one paw right there on Zoë’s shoulder has eight toes. Well, to be accurate: Five toes and three thumbs; each toe/thumb has its own pad and is completely functional. Her other front paw has the same number of toes/thumbs, although one of the thumbs has an atrophied muscle and thus is not functional, and thus is for display purposes only. Back feet have six digits each.

Yes, we are keeping an eye on her. If she shows any hint of being able to actually use those thumbs, any of them, well then, I guess we’ll be in a whack of trouble, won’t we? We’ll cross that bridge when we come to it.

Tour d’ Flail

The Fibre

The project I chose for this year’s Tour d’ Fleece was to turn 4 0z of gorgeous hand-dyed Finn fibre plus a similar amount of shiny silk into Yarn. Preferably nice yarn, but we all know how fibre is…has a woolly mind of its own.

I started with this.

Silk and Finn fibres

Top to bottom, above: (1) Green and blue hand-dyed Tussah silk, source lost in space and time; (2) lovely (if somewhat compressed) 100% Finn wool, hand-dyed by Dan Brewer of Gnomespun (note that the compression happened on my watch, not on Dan’s; I may have been a little overenthusiastic about packing my bins of fibre for the move into this house); and (3) some bits and bobs of the same batch of Finn, recaptured from its hidey hole under the sofa where I suspect it was re-appropriated to the lovely Ms. Zoe’s own stash.

my pretty girl Zoe


Ahhh….Ms. Zoë. She is gorgeous, but she is also a fellow Fibre-Hoar if ever there was one. I have to be very careful to make sure she is closed out of the room when I am drumcarding, otherwise, I will turn around to find her laying on her back right in the middle of a newly made batt, rolling around on it, purring as if it were a pile of México’s Finest. (Catnip, you sillies, what did you think I was going to say?).

The Tour Begins

Let me start off by saying that I have been a bit out of the loop this year, what with my father’s death, re-connecting with relatives after several years (which meant becoming a semi-active Facebook user, oh-my-dog, the wormhole that is social media!), eye surgery, new glasses, new braces, working on our Canadian citizenship papers, and the inevitable new homeowner’s first real round of Home Improvement, Canadian Style. (I’ll get to these breathtakingly exciting topics sooner or later, but Not Today.) (Tease, tease, tease.)

This meant that I actually had No Idea when the Tour itself started. I randomly picked a Saturday to begin, got in a lovely couple of hours doing fibre prep, and only afterward went on Rav to discover that it was actually the first day of the Tour d’ Fleece in truth! The rhythms of the fibre seasons, they are in my blood.

I originally started off just playing with the Finn (above), a new-to-me sheep breed. Then I found the green and blue silk fibre in my stash, so of course, that meant dragging out my scale, my bobbin winder, and my trusty drumcarder. (Let the fun begin!)

Over the next few days, I spent happy hours blending the silk and Finn, making happy batts, and spinning some samples.


I think I may have something here.

Pretty Batts Pretty Paws

Tessa and her Mighty Twinkle Toes seem to think so.

About sandi

Knitter. Spinner. Quilter. UFO Wrangler. Sometime bead artist and weaver. Two toddler-age kittens, 1 permakitten, 2 grownup cats, 1 beloved dog angel, 1 spouse, 1 crazy life. I suppose that the 5 cats make me 1 crazy cat lady; OTOH, apparently, yes, I do need that much feline supervision.
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8 Responses to Still Here, Still Obsessed with Yarn (and Cats!)

  1. Tamara says:

    I am breathlessly awaiting your yarn (hah) about the Home Improvements. Being a homeowner I can truly imagine the horror…hem..splendor of your journey! Also, Surgery?? New Braces?? I’m not sure I knew about your old braces..? Your yarn is hardly a flail–it’s gorgeous, and I’m wondering what weight it is?

    Always good to hear from you!!


  2. Lee says:

    Lovely (in all senses) post, so glad to hear from you and learn that you are persevering despite all. Losing and reconnecting with family is always difficult but I have faith in your ability to do so gracefully and to inspire others in the doing.

    And the yarn!!! I’m with Ms. Zoe, I just want to roll in that gorgeous blue-green wonderland.


  3. Deb says:

    Happy to hear from you. Boy, are you right about social meadia wormhole. But gotta say I have learned a lot from fiber groups. Not so much from relative groups….haha.
    Keep us up to date on your remodel and stay healthy.


  4. Karen Thorneycroft says:

    LOVE that yarn! The colour is fantastic! Glad to hear from you. Is becoming a Canadian citizen as horrendous as becoming a US citizen?


  5. Robin Ashley says:

    Such colour and life. More please. So glad to have your words and pictures, and know you are feeling well. Cat and fiber therapy!


  6. Barbara says:

    Always happy to see your name in my mailbox! Beautiful yarn – and in my colors too! Do you want my address to send your handspun skein? Don’t make it so long between blogs! We miss you.


  7. Joan says:

    Beautiful yarn glad to “hear” form you!!


  8. marta says:

    I LOVE that photo!!! We’re down to just one cat to cuddle and three out back who give me loving looks but won’t let me within five feet. I would love to add a an indoor friend.
    Let’s just have Tour de Fleece for an entire year? I have SO much to spin and really need to get through it. My problem is what to do with all the yarn? I really don’t have the knitting time to use it all.
    Take care!!!


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