Yesterday I finally cleared some bobbins by plying the singles that had been languishing on them. Their sister skein is two years old now. It was time.
All was going well until the plying reached the lower levels of the spinning, the part that was spun a long time ago, many turns and twists before I was a consistently adequate spinner. Though the strands were precious to me, we began to drift apart; the spinning was weak, it would not hold up to the untwist of the plying.
I did get a bobbin nearly filled with solid, good yarn, yarn that nicely matches the first skein. Together they will be enough to knit something cozy. But the bobbins still held the weak, unstable singles. I need my bobbins. I'm never going to use that weak yarn. It was the product of my learning and practice and while I appreciate it for that, it has taught me all it could. It then occurred to me that learning to spin feels a lot like learning to bake, and I certainly didn't keep every burnt cookie. My bobbins were full of woolly, burnt cookies. Crumble those cookies. Free the bobbins.
With the help of my trusty, "I can cut anything with these", scissors, I managed to remove the unstable load with nary a scratch or gouge to the wood. It actually felt good, letting my old spinning go, knowing these bobbins would soon be filled with newer, stronger, and better strands.
Come spring, the robins that return each year to the studio garden will no doubt enjoy the blessing of hand-spun nesting materials. I'll be happy to share with them. It's good to find a constructive use for burnt cookies, woolly or otherwise.