Working the Weekend

Lovingthenewbrightroom

Saturday was a busy day around here. Smith finished painting the guest/fiber/junque room and helped me put everything back in its place. The job wasn't just a paint job, as he had to patch where the 1970s intercom speaker had been and a crack in the wall. He did a great job and the room looks fresh, bright and new. In the next couple of years I hope to replace some of the furniture and make it a cozy place to read, knit, and comtemplate.


Happiness is February

I'm going to employ the age old blog trick of randomly rambling. However, if I reveal too much I may have nothing more to say the rest of the week.

February is not January and you have an idea of how happy I am about that. The longass month is gone and it won't be back for 11 more months and with that thought comes relief!

Spot-of-mail1

February has so much good packed into a short period of time. There are two things I'm going to keep an eye on this month...the length of the day and the mailbox. So far I have mailed 3 letters for "A Month of Letters" and plan on, at least, 20 more. I will send another today and may even send multiples some days.

The inversion is still with us during the morning hours, but the arc of the sun is higher in the sky, which means there is a good chance sunshine will break through leaving us with a sunny afternoon and the orange hazy glow of a setting sun. It is better than being socked in all day through.

As per usual, I made a silly mistake in my knitting and had to take out several inches of the back of my (future) sweater. Quill languishes, but only because I do not have 4 hands (nor hours and hours to knit. I still love her.) A new, finished sweater is the carrot that keeps me knitting, although knitting is still about the process. I'm loving the yarn and the ease of stockinette.

I just finished a very good book, an intense story, written in a unique style. The Colour of Milk is the tale of a young woman growing up on a farm in 1830s England. It is a heart-wrenching story, which has stayed in my thoughts, and at 160 pages you can read it in a day. Yes, Carole, I read many sad books, but they're SO good! 

Ran out of time to take pictures, as the days are just not long enough (as yet), so all you get today is my rambles.


Ramblings

Bullet points might be the best way to get through a post, as it's been a long time since I've had time to share with you.  It's easy to get out of the habit of thinking "in blog" when living "in the moment".  For so many years I looked at the world around me as "blogable", but now, that feeling is slipping away.  Thinking "in blog" is fine and, honestly, I was very aware of the world around me and how beautiful it was, but it was always in blog context.  It's not that any part of that has changed, it's just my mindset has reset, and I do not think "in blog" any longer.  I'm enjoying my moments and do not think to pick up the camera and share, but I miss my friends, my blog pals, as we've been hanging out together for a long time!

BUT this month, I've decided to start taking pictures again:

Before the beginning of March I saw on Maryse's blog the "March Photo a Day" and thought it would be fun to join (not officially, but in practice) and I have been taking a picture daily. Some days I remember just in the nick of time. This challenge has been a challenge.

ItsUPandaway
This is March 1st and the picture meant to signify "UP". I've taken other daily pictures, but haven't bothered to put them into a mosaic, so I'll get back to you on that. Oh, and this was the last time we had snow. Yesterday was near 70!

Redpeasisabeauty

There has been (a little) knitting going on and the pattern, Snow Drops and Snap Peas by Kirsten Kapur, has found a perfect mate in this yarn. Tart is my favorite color of MadelineTosh and the soft Pashmina is a bit of heaven.  The pattern is fairly easy, albeit, not as easy as I'd thought.  Every row of stockinette is written out with a different count and I must keep track, which has been easy enough, and the project, so far, looks amazing. I expect it will be a gorgeous wrap.

Margaretsgiftofpansies

Wednesday I planted a large pot (we're talking huge!) of pansies, but the little  beauties shown here are in a smaller pot, which was a gift from a friend.  Pansies have beautiful happy faces and their smiles are contagious. Right?

Well, I could go on (and on), but it's time I had a post to print, so I'll end here.  I'll be back next week and, hopefully, will have more tales to tell!   Happy Weekend, everyone!!


Watching

Amyisgrowingquickly
If I had enough presence, time, or interest (or you had enough interest) I post a daily picture and the growth would be very evident. It's been delightful to watch the amaryllis plants as they venture towards the light. The red amaryllis has decided to put up a second stalk, which is not as big, and has a very small bud, but it still growing in height and girth. This picture was taken Monday or Tuesday, but you should see them now!  I promise new pictures before the weekend is over. 

Happy New Year one and all!!


(Not) Smitten by Mittens

Allmymittensarepretty

If only I liked mittens more. I've knit several pair, but only occasionally wear them. (The purple Latvian pair were a gift.) I do realize that mittens are warmer than gloves, for the most part, and they are certainly easier (and faster) to knit. In a snowball fight I'd much rather be wearing a pair of mittens for comfort, ease in forming the snowball and staying warm and dryer longer. But, when it comes right down to it, my fingers cry to be free, love the freedom to wiggle, and need to feel useful. Mittens seem a hindrance to all of that. Maybe I just haven't acquired the ability to wear them. Is it an acquired taste or do you like them (or not) from the get go?

There are so many beautiful patterns and one of my favorite books to thumb through, and drool over, is Selbuvotter by Terri Shea. I dream of knitting any one of the mitten patterns (and gloves, too) and have even purchased yarn. Hopefully when Terri is here next month for classes she can help me acquire a taste for mittens. Lately, Kirsten has also designed some great mittens and I love the look of them, but alas and alack I feel they wouldn't be worn. Perhaps you can share your thoughts on what it is that draws you to wearing mittens to help me see the light. Just why they are so popular?

Acerbuttonforblog

Acer is now sporting buttons and made her debut on Tuesday. After I saw the way Lene attached buttons to her Kingscot, with a smaller button on the backside,I had to follow suit. This elegant dress making technique adds stability and longevity to the button area.  I've fallen head over heels (again) for Beaverslide yarn. It's amazingly soft and feels good against the skin, but it has the rugged, worsted look of a warm winter sweater.  I might make another Acer, but it's certain I'll be buying more Beaverslide.


Ruminating Again

There isn't any more knitting to show or talk about…you know it all as far as the knitting goes. Acer may be finished this weekend, but it's unlikely it would dry fast enough for a photo shoot.

TeresaC made the comment that she'd be trying to knit all 12 sweaters for MoDo in six months. I admit this crossed my mind as they'd all be done and I'd be free to do as I wished, plus have 12 new sweaters to wear. What's not to love?! However, (I keep reminding myself), this is about having fun (FUN!), not (necessarily) being competitive with anyone (including myself) and enjoying the process. Besides, Gray Mist alone could take a year.

The weather has been all over the place, bitter cold, then snow, then warm air and blue skies. So far, other than ice (which caused me to fall and bump my knee), the winter hasn't been too hard. There is a bit of haze and inversion coming in next week, but it remains to be seen if it will clamp down and stay. 

Georgiagreenandbluemusic

I must admit that my aversion to green has changed ever so slightly. It's not as strong as it once was and there are more greens I actually like. Not enough to wear, mind you (I'd look putrid in green), but enough that I don't recoil at the sight. Having a blog has opened my color horizons and just as you changed my mind about orange tones, you have been instrumental in advocating for green. The colors and textures of this Georgia O'Keeffe picture speak to me. She named it Blue and Green Music (love that!). Wouldn't it be a beautiful colorway for yarn or fiber?

Speaking of color, when I started this blog the color theme was pink (you're not surprised?). A couple of years later Kim made a fabulous new banner in a purple color theme and I've loved it. However, over the last year, my taste for purple has waned. It was never at the very top of my favorite colors list (red and blue take turns), but it was in my top 4, and now, it's relegated to "meh" status. I've been talking to Kim for quite awhile now about a new look for the blog. I love the red umbrella and didn't want that to change, but I did want something new and different, a fresher look. I'll be working my way through the color changes this weekend and adding the new banner Kim designed. It's going to be SO cool!


Friday This and That

The FO parade is over and now it's back to slogging away at WIPs and trying to get one UFO to mind its manners.  In other words, I seem to have run out of steam, nothing left to show or say on this Friday. This post will likely be disjointed and full of all the things I wanted to say all week but never had the chance.   First of all, THANK YOU for your lovely kudos, both here and on Ravelry, on the finishing flurry of scarves and the lovely Lady Day. The mornings have been very cool this week and the sweaters knit this past summer have now all had their work debut.  It's officially sweater weather. 

Typepad's email notification of comments stopped working on Wednesday and has been working sporadically since then. I'm not the best when it comes to answering comments, but it was disconcerting to find out there were comments on the post that did not come through and to be unable to answer or acknowledge them.  Thank you for taking time to comment on this blog. I appreciate it SO much.

The flowers are fading for the most part, but isn't this, the last of the hollyhocks, a great specimen?  You can click to see how iridescent it looks.

Flowerfridayhollyhockforkim

Did you realize that Carole has a new URL? She's moved her blog host so make sure you update your Bloglines or other RSS reader. It was Carole's idea to start the "10 Minutes A Day" spinning group.  My Spinning Mojo took a short trip with the Sock Mojo, but unlike the Sock Mojo the Spinning Mojo has returned.  The goal is to have my fingers ready for the spinning class with Judith MacKenzie McCuin at Rhinebeck.  This week I've spun for at least 10 minutes a day and hope to do more spinning this weekend.

Susan is having an Unbirthday Sale on all her lace patterns, including her new Heat Wave. Ever wonder what to do with that ONE skein of Brooks Farm you've had for years?  Well, Heat Wave is the answer. You must purchase on the blog post to get your 50% discount. How generous is that!?

Terry is running in the Race for the Cure tomorrow.  She could use a little help with fund raising, so go ahead and give her a dollar or two, please?

I sat down with the second Knotty Glove last night and look how much was accomplished!  This may be a glovely weekend with a full pair showing up by the time the weekend is over.

Knottyglovecontinuestogrow

Woohoo!  Knit on!


Random Bits Instead of Lists

Saturday morning was a bit hazy, but as I drove past the school parking lot I saw white blossoming trees framing Mt. Olympus. I thought you'd like to see it, too.

Whitetreesliningthepathwaytomyoly_2   click

Littleegginanestoffiber The wind is oft a precursor of a pending storm and this time of year it causes the flower petals to float from the trees like snowflakes.  This little egg was sitting in the dirt near my front door and it is proof the wind also causes havoc for the newly nesting birds.  From what information I could gather, the egg is from a house finch nest...poor little thing. They sing so beautifully and frequently from nearby trees, but yesterday morning they were loudly protesting the new snow.

Maydayisasnowday Yes, new snow fell overnight.  Snowbird had 14" in 24 hours which necessitated the closing of Little Cottonwood Canyon for avalanche control.  Spring in Utah is crazy and this isn't unusual, but it is rather cruel of Mother Nature to send us this May Day "gift".  We can only hope this storm was daweena, the last snow of the year. The weekend ahead looks drrrreearrry (that's me grimacing as I type) and yes, I did say I wouldn't complain about the weather, but I didn't realize it would be this cold again.

Since the Sock Mojo has not seen fit to return (and why should it when it's likely in a warm and sunny place) I'm knitting scarves.  This is the Japanese Vines in Artyarn Ultra Merino 4 and I love both the pattern and the yarn.  The scarf is destined to be a gift which means it will now be my main knitting, side by side with the Tinkerbell Blue.

Japaneselacescarf

Cookie has been blamed by many for roping them into the Summer of Socks.  How crazy is it that I joined too and I'm not even knitting socks, don't want to knit socks?  The hope is that warmer weather (if we ever have any) will bring the Mojo home in time for the start of summer sock knitting, June 21st.

Last but not least, I have the honor of wishing CherylS a very Happy Birthday!


Make It So

When the world around you remains gray and dreary... Whentheworldisdeterminedtobegray

...it is time to create your own world of color.

This is what it looked like Saturday morning as I left the house.  The world was black, white and gray, no color anywhere. Only a few lone flowers have come out of the ground as the heat hasn't been enough to bring out a profusion.  A few violets dot the landscape, and a daffodil has come forth here and there...it's sad to see so much gray and the week ahead looks as if it will continue.  The only thing to do is create my own world of color...time to take matters into my own hands and shop, knit and play in full living color.

Manossilkwoolblend3010 A trip to the Three Wishes was the first thing on Saturday's agenda and it was the perfect place to start my color search.   Manos Silk Blend in a colorful and brilliant color combination caught my eye right away and it will become a shawl to brighten a gray day of next winter. The colors include a gray green and burnished gold that are out of my usual comfort zone.  I'm trying to step outside of that comfortable place more often as it can be interesting and enlightening.

Pinktulipsarepurespring Lovelydaffodilsinmykitchen The tulips bulbs that have been growing in my kitchen started to bloom at just at the right time, and the daffodils from the market brought in more color, the color of the missing sun, into my studio.  One must do what one can to create a happy, joyous world of color. Since the spring bulbs aren't coming as quickly as I'd like, I'll bring them in artificially..it's better than nothing.

Silkmerinorovingforsinglesshawl_2 The weekend fiber pursuits were spent in colorful ways, too.  This  beautiful silk/merino roving from Chasing Rainbows was predrafted and readied for spinning.  The colors are deep, luscious and rich and the hope is to create a single yarn that will show off that beauty.  Last, but certainly not least, the vibrant colors of spring really come through in the colors of the Zetor Koigu Shawl.  I have been completely obsessed by this project and color may be the real reason it's been my one and only.  The colors of spring flowers will soon be gracing my shoulders.

Zflowersinmygardenofzetorshawl_2