Bright Days of Spring

garden spring 2020_geverettstudio

I’ve finally been able to step outside to commence work on the vegetable garden. Our weather is warming with nights no longer dipping into the freezing zone. The grass growing season is well upon us (and the riding mower is broken)! Picture about 2-3ft of grass height surrounding the veg boxes. Thank goodness for string trimmers! The plants that overwintered in place were lavender, chives, cat nip, sage, and rosemary.



I keep picking off the end growth on the catnip to bring inside for the girls. They all enjoy chewing on the fresh leaves.

Two weeks ago I started my first batch of fermented wool. This process uses natural bacteria to decompose out all the bad bits stuck in the fleece with minimal amount of effort or water. One of my friends has been using this method with all her fleece and swears by it. She did mention that you can leave the wool in for too long and other creatures will lay eggs and hatch! Yuck! I can’t imagine how anything could survive the caustic sulfur created in the fermenting.

fermenting wool_geverettstudio

wool drying after removal from the stinky tub and rinsed.

fermenting setup_geverettstudio

The process goes as such: Fill a large tub with water (preferably rainwater for a neutral pH). Add a dirty fleece. Cover and wait 2 weeks. Uncover and pull out the rotten egg smelling fleece and plop onto a wire rack (use gloves!!!). Rinse with water. Take to the garage sink for a hot wash with detergent. Rinse and lay out to dry.

Don’t dump out the dirty water in the tub! Just add your next fleece into the muck and let nature work out the bad stuff.

I’m still waiting for the fleece to dry. The detergent wash didn’t remove much of the stink, but my friend swears the scent goes away once fully dry. We shall see…

On a totally different note: The vultures are loving the electrical tower out back

vulture pair_geverettstudio

vulture trio_geverettstudio

Straight through his nares

Turkey vultures migrate into our area in February and head south in October. During winter months, the tower is visible from our main living space because of the bare trees. In February, when the vultures rejoin our bird community, the leaves haven’t even started sprouting yet. The open visibility of large birds perching close to our house creates Cockatoo screaming mayhem indoors! I probably have hearing loss from that bird! I’m just grateful that the leaves are back and he can’t see the vultures soaring in quite as easily.

Vulture watching hasn’t been a big part of daily life until this year. I typically note their migration time north and south. It’s only been in the past couple of years that they started using the electrical tower as a resting zone multiple times a day (especially in the late afternoon).


Next posting will be about the latest room remodel that absorbed all my energy for the past several weeks. Nothing like doing a small remodel during “stay at home pandemic time”! It made me super grumpy because everything was stashed in the studio zone and other places while the remodel happened. I’m still not quite through my grumpiness, but it’s getting better.


Published by paperstew

I'm an artist in Albany Oregon focusing on paper and natural objects for inspiration.

2 thoughts on “Bright Days of Spring

  1. Maybe the vultures are attracted to the rotten egg smell, best they don’t fly off with it.
    I think grumpy comes from being in with the sameness, day after day. Remodeling should change that . Be well, Jean

    1. Too funny!
      Yes, sameness does create grumpy feelings. However, I’ve not been keeping my fingers in my artwork and that really changes mental states. Art saves brain health! 🙂

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