Thursday, March 20, 2014

Celebrate a New Season

 I just finished Emily's new shawl design, Matryoshka for my Babushka out of Sweet Fiber Yarns Sweet Merino Lite.  I love it. Test knitting is a little more stressful than knitting for yourself, because you have to actually count every section and every row to verify the pattern. But it was well written and very enjoyable. See the nesting dolls?
 Tis the season of hot crossed buns. This makes me incredibly happy.
 The sun has barely shone this first day of spring, but the ducks are excited.
 Two days ago, the path on my walk was so inviting. Very chilly, though. Yesterday was the raining of the end of days. Today is kind of in between. I got a little wet and a little cold, but the big black dog was in heaven.
 Had a heavenly visit to Fort Langley with some knitting/ piping friends. So good to just take time to be with them. Lunch at Wendel's Book Store is especially nice when they snag a table.
 Liz brought me some goodies I had ordered. Autumn coloured stripy sock yarn. It looks like a lot, but some is to give away to the knitters who I am joining on an Autumn trip. More on that later.
 I bought some vintage sock blockers at one of the antique stores. They are from the 1940's and my (big) size. The books are from local designers and I'm stoked about the hip knitting, especially for my young friends.
 Celebrated Pi day with pie from the Chilliwack Airport Cafe where "We fly for pie". I had Bumble Berry and D had Bing Cherry. See the special price of $3.14? Cracks me up!
 Actually got some sewing done! This is a baby blanket that I quilted on the machine. Now I'm ready for friends to bring their babies to crawl on my floor. I love to celebrate babies!
 The creek has risen because of the deluge of rain, plus the snow melt. We have had some weather! Pretty soon we will see salmon coming through.
 But now the field is green and the trees are budding. I love the layers of green. We are going down to Mexico tomorrow for 5 days to build a house and work with our foster kids. I look forward to the warmer weather, getting out from under the schedule, spending time with D and our Calgary friends, and just playing with the kids. But I will miss our mountains and trees.
For St. Patrick's Day, the pipe bands had a pub night. This was the most successful one I've ever been to. Is it because I'm not practicing with and travelling with these people? Is it because there were 5 bands playing together which meant new people to meet and old friends to say hi to? This is not a competition band, and D is doing a great job of bringing people together to play music, improve their techniques, and just get along. Well done. Happy special days!

Tuesday, March 11, 2014


 We had crazy snow. I was coughing and nursing my cold, so it didn't affect me that much. Plus I had my knitting. On my Antler cardigan, I worked to make my stitches tighter and more uniform. It seems to have worked.
 This is my second sock of the year, February. It is much tighter than the first one which fit beautifully. Even after blocking and wearing, it pulled tight at my heel and ankle. I thought about it for a while and then, because I was feeling crappy and had all this time, I ripped it out. That's a knitting lesson from a knitting lesson.
 Frogging away.
 I had two balls left from the original knitting, so I didn't have to reuse the kinky, once-knit yarn. But I did skein it and soak and hang it. The reformed sock is much better.
 On to March sock. Hanmaiden Casbah Merino, cashmere, nylon in the Twilight colorway. Knit on 2.0mm needles (one size up because of tighter stitches) and my new Addi Sock Rockets. I used Paton's Kroy, a work horse sock wool for the toe and maybe the heel. Socks On a Plane pattern by Lala.
 The Hitch Hiker shawl, by Martina Behm is really what got me through this cold. It was difficult and easy enough to keep me interested. And the gradient yarn from my sister for my birthday was delightful.
 Then the sun came out. And I started to feel better.
 My front door smells delightful with this viburnum and the crocuses.
 And I was well enough to go to church with my Hitch Hiker.
 But what's this? Another craft?
I finished the Go Falcon's Scarf for the grad auction. It's a donation for one of my youth group girls. I decided to put tassels on it and didn't think much about it, but when I started goofing around, I realized I have always done crafts like this. As a small child, my older sisters were always making things and I don't even remember learning how to do stuff.
I decided how long I wanted the tassels (about the length of a stripe) and cast my hands for the first object I could use to wrap around. This address book was right there. 10 wraps, make a cut.
 Grab a big crochet hook from the vase on the window sill (this is my lab) and pull through two of the cast off strands.
 Pull the tail through the loop.
 Voila. Pull it tight. Make sure you have a generous fringe. I hate miserly fringe. But it is a big wool suck.

 Here's the one by one ribbed scarf. It's even longer when blocked. I put it in a soak bath, drained and spun in the washer and then dried it in the dryer with towels. It's superwash Cascade 220, and whoever bids on it will need to be able to clean it.
Next up: Emily's new design. I am test knitting my daughter's shawl pattern in the lovely Bloom shade of Sweet Fiber Yarn's Sweet Merino Lite. Yum!
It is so sweet to enjoy the success of getting projects off the needles. And just as sweet to successfully start the next dream.