Monday, November 25, 2013

Daily Routine

Now that I've finished the most important setup tasks, my days are starting to take on a recognizable structure:

1. Exercise. Hike, do yoga, or both.
2. Weave. The light on the loom is best in the morning.
3. Work on homestead projects. They're never-ending, but I can make good progress if I put in a few hours a day.
4. Chop wood. I burn little pieces to keep the yurt from getting too hot.
5. Make dinner. I never make anything too complicated so it's pretty quick.
6. Relax by the fire. Read by bright candle light. It's wintertime. Darkness comes early and my personal energy is low.

On my morning hikes I get to see some beautiful patterns created by the nightly freezes.

Here's another snapshot of my weaving setup, this time with a fisheye lens. It's a pretty amazing place to work.

Today's homestead project is to widen the curb around the yurt. This will do a better job of waterproofing the floor and give a nice wide surface to seal up the air leaks around the bottom.

Here is the current narrow curb.

And here's a 6" strip of 3/8" plywood being attached to the other strip.

The new curb runs around the whole bottom edge. Tomorrow it will get sealed against the deck with exterior-grade silicone caulking. If this doesn't work, I'll add a high-powered flexible flashing to the mix next week.

Once the caulking has cured, the curb will be painted with linseed oil, too, to keep it from wicking water up to the wool. This new curb will give a surface to which I could attach it.

As you can see, the wool and lattice will go on the inside. The house wrap and canvas go on the outside.

My next task today was to start dealing with the indigo.

The goal with the indigo this year was to watch its life cycle and see if it could go to seed here. Unfortunately, it went in the ground so late that I don't know for sure if it would have. I think it was quite close to producing seed when the cold weather came. Next year it'll go in the ground earlier and have a greenhouse over it by the time winter comes.

Here's what it looks like when the ice melts. It's one frost-bitten and wet mess.

So I got out the pruners and harvested one bed of it today. I'm going to put straw over those little stumps to see if it'll act like a perennial in this climate.

And here's where it all went. I've got the stove fired up kind of hot and a little fan pushing the heat into the moist jungle to get it dried as quickly as possible. It'll probably end up spread onto a screen in a day or two once the outer leaves are dry.

I still don't know exactly how I'm going to process this, but I know that the leaves can be stored once they're dry while I learn how to ferment them and start a dye vat.

Having all this moisture in the house will definitely help my sinuses. The air has been very dry with the stove going. It smells nice, just fresh and faintly green.

4 comments:

Theresa said...

Besides higher curbing, I am wondering if some well placed drainage holes/grates would be beneficial to allowing some runoff to drain before it comes up against the curbs...

Kyla Mucci said...

I can give you instructions on how to make an indigo fruit vat once you have fermented your leaves...all you need is fruit scraps and slacked lime. I just wrote an article for the handeye mag blog about weaving denim...

BloggerPlus App said...

Thanks, Kyla. It's still way early to think about that part of the process. When I get there, probably next Summer, I'll hit you up for that recipe.

BloggerPlus App said...

Theresa, you were one of several people who pointed me in this direction. It's not ideal in the long run because I want that water for my garden eventually. But this year I don't have the rest of the catchment system in place so I did drill the holes you suggested. They seem to be working very well.