Friday, November 13, 2020

What A Time To Be Alive!

Not only do I have all the works of literature and science at my fingertips through various computronic devices, I also have access to the genius of lots and lots of people who have blogged, recorded and shared their knowledge.

For those of you only now beginning to discover the wisdom contained in this blog and who have missed the past 14 years of writing, this summer, I raised cotton from seeds. I have now harvested the bolls and pulled the plants, save for a single Mississippi Brown which is still out in the garden with a couple of bolls shut tight.

My Mississippi Brown is a classic, lazy Southerner, you see. For that reason alone, it was my favorite and always made me smile when I went out to visit my crop.

Anyway, when I started this adventure, I hadn't planned on making anything with the cotton. I just wanted to see the life cycle of the plant. Now that I've grown them, I want to at least make some yarn, using techniques you might have found in the Antebellum South. That's where gratitude comes into play. There are many YouTube videos explaining how to make drop spindles and spinning wheels and how to spin raw fiber into yarn. Some of the content is excellent, like the video below.

I think my favorite part is how to make a notched bobbin by cutting three wooden disks, two with a larger diameter than the third, which will be the inner notch.

Had I been a young apprentice in 1850 Alabama, this would have been the kind of thing I would have learned at the feet of an experienced carpenter. Today, I can learn it as an older man at the feet of a young prodigy. How wonderful!

Now that I see how it's done, I'll keep my eyes open for components. I have other things to do before I get to my spinning project, so there's time to forage for pieces. This young man also has a video on converting the base of an old, Singer, treadle sewing machine into a spinner. I'd love to try that, which means I now have a reason to visit antique shops.

What a time to be alive!

Bonus Summary: You Can't Be Happy Without Gratitude

I learned that from Dennis Prager.


tim eisele said...

Wow. That is beautiful, especially the "flyer" part.

I like the way that he described exactly what sort of scrap pieces he used to make everything. It was almost a tutorial in what kinds of things to look for when you scavenge through a dump (or, I suppose, post-apocalyptic ruins) to find useful parts.

K T Cat said...

One of my favorite and most formative books was Taran Wanderer by Lloyd Alexander. It's part of his Prydain Chronicles series. In it, the young hero visits various homesteads in the country, working as an apprentice at all kinds of things. One of the homes is led by a young father whose gift is seeing ways to use various odds and ends he finds. I loved the same thing you did and it made me think of that character.

Foxfier said...

The sheer amount of awesome stuff that can be found, if you look, is just a delight.
I was able to replace the cabin air filter for one of our vehicles-- a $120 job, minimum-- for the price of "sit there ten minutes with a video running."

Upgraded computers the same way. Replaced the screen on my husband's old laptop-- a job that would've cost more than buying a new one, before parts or driving.

I've got mom's old home repair books...but what I usually check, first, is Bing.

ligneus said...

If the only prayer you say in the whole of your life is Thankyou, that will suffice.
Meister Eckhart.

The old wisdom never gets old.