Days Off

Days Off

Yesterday was Steve’s day off.  For some, a day off means leisure time, but around here it means playing catch-up!

Steve and the boys harvested the potatoes and rototilled the soil.  We’re hoping to have some success with a winter garden–we will be using hoop houses to extend the growing season in three of our boxes, and will be planting cabbage, carrots, spinach, and garlic (although the garlic is a fall bulb that won’t be ready until next year).

While he worked on that, I used some pallets and leftover wood from the boys’ treehouse to make a duck house.  Seeing as how they were messy and annoyed the goats, we recently divided the fencing to give the poultry a separate space. Within their yard, the chickens have a little coop, and the turkeys prefer to roost up high at night. But all the ducks have is a little tarp-covered ‘tractor’ that isn’t particularly cozy. Ducks don’t really need much for a shelter, and in fact, last winter our ducks preferred to be outside even in the worst weather. But we’re wondering if part of the reason that they haven’t been laying is they don’t have adequate space to call ‘their own.’

In the near future, I will be adding a drop-down front (so it can be cleaned out) with a smaller duck door.  Hopefully feeling more secure at night will help resolve the lack of egg production!

The final project of the day: the bobbins for my spinning wheel keep breaking. Because the wood wasn’t finished, the slight temperature and humidity variations caused minor expansion and contraction of the wood, which led to the glue coming apart.  I only have two intact ones left, and I really need at least three!  New wooden bobbins average about $15, which is pretty pricey for something that might not last.  I’ve experimented with making my own with marginal success, but really need something better.

I had seen some lovely, fancy 3-D printed bobbins on a facebook group for spinners, and then last month discovered that a few of the libraries near us actually have groups of 3-D printers available for use.  It only took a quick google search to come up with a file that had a ready-made template for bobbins that fit my wheel, and less than 10 minutes on the computer in the library’s lab to get it printing!

While the boys imagined printing dinosaur skeletons and bath tub boats, Steve wondered if there was any way to print a cream separator on one of these things.

Because the printing itself takes so long (my little circles were estimated to take more than 3 hours!), the library allows you to leave the printer working and return for your item later in the week.  So hopefully, in just a few days I will have some lovely new bobbins to share with you!

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