Sunday, 1 July 2012

Tour de Fleece 2012

The 'Tour de Fleece' on Ravlery kicked off yesterday! If you don't know what it is, then it's a big Spin-along which coincides with the Tour de France. All the spinners on Ravelry join in and aim to spin a bit of wool each day. You can set your own goals and there are lots of different groups / categories you can join.
I am in the Rookies team - for beginner spinners or first time Tour de Fleecers. I am in the Breakaway group for people having a go at art yarns. I plan to spin some Wensleydale curls when I get back home. And I am also in Lantern Rouge - for those who don't think they will be able to spin every day. I am going to give it a good go!
Here is my Day 1 effort:
I have had this bit of Wensleydale sitting at the bottom of my bag for ages. It's a bit compacted and needs a lot of drafting out but it spins up quite well.
I have created a new page on my blog for the Tour de Fleece, so if I don't get to blog every day I can upload photos there!

Tuesday, 26 June 2012

Arde Lucus

So, this weekend just gone was one of the main fiestas in Lugo - 'Arde Lvcvs'. Lugo is a Roman city founded by Lucus Augusti. This fiesta is the celebrate the Roman history and foundations of the city. It was a really good weekend - there were Centurions marching about, Gladiators, Romans in chariots, a Roman senate, street theatre, slave market, a Celtic and Roman encampment, Celtic weddings and baptisms and lots of stalls on the market to look at. I didn't get to see it all as there was so much going on!
I liked the soldiers most of all. You could be just wandering around town and an army would come marching past or just 3 or 4 on their way somewhere! It was brilliant! The outfits were amazing too. About 80% of people who come to visit Lugo for this fiesta dress up as Romans or Celts.

I have playing about with and I have made some collages of the photos I took. If you haven'y used Picmonkey before, go and give it a try. It's really easy to use and there are loads of effects to try!

Saturday, 16 June 2012

No more teaching + Around Lugo Part 2

I'm here! I've not been able to post on my blog for the last week or so. I have been busy with the last week of work and sorting stuff out.
So, I've finished! I did it! I made it to the end of my first year of teaching English as a foreign language! Phew! I am very proud of both myself and my boyfriend for doing it. It's an acheivement. And to top it off, all but one of my Trinity exam students passed! So I can say that I have a 99% Trinity exam pass rate now! I don't think that's too bad considering it's the  first time I have prepared students for an exam like that.

Now comes the epic task of cleaning the flat from top to bottom before we leave. We have got just over two weeks left. There is loads to do, but I like to think that we will leave the flat nice and clean and tidy so that the next people - maybe even two more English teachers! - can enjoy it as we did when we moved in.

I am getting excited for next weekend - it's 'Arde Lucus'. It's one of the main fiestas in Lugo to celebrate the Roman roots of the city. Everyone gets dressed up as Romans and Celts and the whole place goes back in time apparently. It should be great fun!

Before I go, I have 'Around Lugo part 2'. Some more photos from the wall:
The bus station - where we arrived and where we will depart Lugo!
Bispo Aguirre and the bottom of the Plaza Mayor

Plaza de Ferrol

Avenida de A Coruna - the longest straighest road I have seen. Surely it must have been a Roman Road.

Thursday, 7 June 2012

Decisions, decisions...

I have made a decision! I really don't like making decisions but I have done it!

I have been living and working in Lugo now since September last year. At first, we didn't think that English teaching was really for us and hardly made it till the end of the first term. But, we have stuck it out and we are now nearly at the end of our first year. We finish next Friday - big high fives coming up!!

We have decided not to stay a second year - we have a whole year of experience now and some money saved up. We have told the director of the school who was okay about it and he said to keep in touch. There is a possibility that we could come back in a years time if we wanted to.

So, my Spanish adventure is coming to an end! The plan is to go back home to the UK for a couple of months - completely veg out for two weeks and watch the whole of the Olympics! - then maybe go on another adventure. It could be a Polish adventure next...!

Wednesday, 6 June 2012

Wooly on Wednesday!

I don't always have time to post every single day on my blog, so I thought I would devote a specific post on Wednesdays to share the wooliness! It will be a sort of round up of the week's wool stuff - felting, spinning and dyeing (if any!)

So, to start with - to add to my fibre fix I treated myself to as I am going to miss Woolfest for the third year in a row, I ordered some BFL from ThreeWatersFarm on etsy. It came a couple of days ago. It's called 'First Bloom' and as well as being sooooooooooooo soft and squishy, the colours are lovely!
Here it is still in its braid

And here it is unraveled waiting to be spun!

I love the colours in it. It goes from a chocolate brown, to a rich plum colour. Then through pinks and lilacs and several shades of green. I am trying so hard not to just dive in and start spinning, but I have other stuff I need to do first!

I want to have more of a go at plying. I have done Andean plying once before, so here are the two candidates for plying practice:

Just some dark blue and varigated purple waiting to be plied!

The other thing I have been trying to get to grips with is the difference between spinning worsted and woolen yarn. A worsted yarn is smoother and more kind of 'compacted', and a woolen yarn is more airy and lofty and springy. What type of yarn you make depends on how you spin the fibres. I had a go at spinning woolen and this was the result:

This is the same fibre spun in two different ways. The one on the right is one of my earliest spinning efforts and is a worsted, chunky single. The one on the left has been spun much finer and as a woolen yarn. I think I prefer spinning woolen yarn - it comes out so soft and squishy, light and bouncy!

And just to finish off, here are all the mini skeins I have done so far:

Well, I hoped you enjoyed 'Wooly on Wednesday'. If you have any wooly things to share, leave me a comment on this post!

Monday, 4 June 2012

Jubilee Celebrations

Morning! I hope all that watched the river pageant yesterday  - either on TV or were actually there - enjoyed it! I was glued to the laptop for a good 2 and a half hours watching! It was very good and very well organised I thought. I'm looking forward to watching the rest of the celebrations. It's the concert and beacon lighting tonight.

I'm just popping into my blog to post about a giveaway happening at Artwork by Angie. There are some lovely themed prizes on offer - perfect for a Jubilee weekend. To enter, follow the link to her blog and all the info is there. It closes at 10pm GMT Wednesday 6th June.

Saturday, 2 June 2012


Hello again! Much cooler today and it's Galician raining - which means non stop raining!
I want to mention Podcasts today. One of which I have just downloaded and am going to watch shortly. It's the 'Dreaming in Fibre' video podcast from Saras Texture Crafts. I bought wool from here when I was in the UK! Saras podcast is a good mix of personal projects and shop update information. The latest episode is all about the Devon County show. You can download the podcast from itunes. But, if you don't have itunes then all the info will be on the podcast blog -

There is also a list of other wooly podcasts on there which Sara has put up! So, go and check it out! Who knows, it may inspire you to do a podcast. It's got me thinking!

Looking forward to watching the Diamond Jubilee celebrations tomorrow - it will get me away from the Olympic torchcam at least! Enjoy it!