Freed from the mittens, my mind whirls with ideas

Good morning!  The sun is shining, the plumber came yesterday so we are warm and I am clean.  🙂

It is an all round good day – I sold a card yesterday!!! (Thank you, Auntie P!)  I went to mail it off today, and found a bonus check from work!  Completely unexpected, I have to say. And welcome.  Some will undoubtedly go toward yarn and other crafting materials (Yes, Crimson Crow, I hear you.) I think I will divide it into thirds – 1/3 each for A and I to buy hobby stuff with, and 1/3 for a nice Valentine’s dinner or something. (Did I mention we had one of our anniversaries yesterday?  We have been together 13 years!)

I learned of a knitting retreat from One Lupine, a local yarn shop, that will be held nearby this year, but in the Orkneys, Scotland next year. Immediately I began calculating how to get enough money to go and how not to feel guilty about spending all that money on something A could care less about.  It will come to me, I hope.  I have long wanted to go there.  My mom and sister have been, and I have a painting hanging in my living room which my sister painted from her trip there.


It seems like a good opportunity to get there, and knit as well.  We will see, I guess.  It is more than a year away.

I strung the beads for four necklaces, which I hope to work on this weekend. Three are to give away, one is to sell.  The three (black, blue, and purple) are for a coworker and her two daughters.  I had to load printer drivers and do security updates on 5 tax computers yesterday, so while I waited to click “Next” I strung beads.  All set now.

jan 29

I also mapped out a scarf I want to make from some linen in the “Nancy” stash.  I kept it because I have always wanted to try knitting with linen but never had a project in mind.  I have had this in my stash for a long time now, and the other day, a project came to me.  Not sure how it will work, but I want to knit a fairly narrow (24 stitches?) linen stitch scarf with a beaded Greek key design along the two short edges.  I have no idea if this will work or not, but I wound one of the skeins into a ball this morning, and found some beads that will work, so I can cast that on soon.  But before that happens…

I am swatching some Baby Ull for this pattern, Charleston Baby sweater and hat set which was a generous gift to me from the designer, Maryanne Holm, better known to me as Slipped Stitches.  I loved this little set the moment I saw it (and still want to figure out how to make it in my size!) but didn’t know who it would be for, and didn’t have any Tosh Light to make it in.  The other day I was up in the craft room digging through the yarn stash, and came across two skeins of Baby Ull in a dark reddish-orange.  Immediately, I thought of this pattern, I think it will work, but I am being a good girl and swatching to be sure.  Who it is for is still unknown – it might go in the “future present” pile, or it might get sent off to one of the charities I knit for, but I MUST make it.  🙂

Meanwhile, I keep knitting on the blue sleeves, they are officially 8 inches long (un-blocked) so I AM getting there. I do have to figure out, at some point, how long I really want them.  They are quite open at the cuff, so I think I will make them a tad shorter than longer, so I don’t get hung up in them when I wear the sweater.

I told you my mind was whirling!

What else I am up to today:

Shoveling.  Lots still to do to get cleaned up in preparation for another foot of snow coming tomorrow and Saturday.

Sort out tax stuff, pack my boxes in preparation for Monday’s first day.

Clean something.  Almost anything would do at this point.  We have tracked in so much muck this week.

Fill the bird feeders. the little guys are quite hungry in this cold weather.

Start reading. I got three books from the library today – one is Orphan Train by Christina Baker Kline which is our next book group selection (for March 2.  Can you believe how ahead I am?) The other two are Still Alice  by Lisa Genova and Lila by Marilynne Robinson.  Of course, I should first finish the one I am reading now, The Gods of Guilt, by Michael Connelly.

I am not sure I have time to work next week. 🙂

10 thoughts on “Freed from the mittens, my mind whirls with ideas”

  1. Sounds like you’re having a brilliant time! Yay for surprise cheques and anniversaries. D and I are coming up to our 11 years together! Oh and I’m totally up for a knitting retreat in the Orkneys if you don’t want to go alone! If you are anywhere in the British Isles you must let me know so we can hang out 🙂

    1. ooh ooh ooh! THAT would be SO fun! I MUST win the lottery soon. Yes, of course, I will let you know if I am ever over there. Meeting you would be a main reason for going. 🙂

        1. Sounds good to me! I asked them to keep me posted as they develop plans for the knitting retreat. Right now they are busy planning the one for 2015, so not sure we will see much progress on the 2016 one for a while, but I will keep asking them. And YES, please do plan to come to Maine! Or, if that turns out to be too onerous, come somewhere on the east coast! I will willingly drive many hours to meet you.

          1. I have advised D I wish to visit Maine. He didn’t even ask why 😉
            We have been thinking about a trip to the U.S. in 2016. We’ll see. Maybe 2017 if we have a Scottish knitting retreat to attend!

  2. Wow, you do keep busy! 🙂
    I love your home, that sofa is beautiful and the painting compliments it perfectly. I love having artists in the family, you always get the coolest gifts.

    1. Thank you! That is an older photo, but we still have the couch and painting, even though I rearrange periodically so they are not always together. I love having my artistic sister – she is lots of fun, can really SEE things, and does give the best presents!

  3. Thank you for mentioning my design. Wow, I’m kind of speechless. The baby Ull should work well and the color sounds delicious. That is the cool part of designing, when people make the pattern their own and seeing the results. You come from an artistic family. The picture is beautiful and dramatic. The scarf with the Greek Key borders sounds beautiful.

    1. Gosh, you are welcome! I will keep mentioning it as I knit along. I hope it generates interest (and sales!) for your design work. The Baby Ull is working fine. 🙂 As for the color – it isn’t a color I would normally use for anything, but it is a color I think my sister would like, and I originally bought it to make her new baby daughter something. Little E is now a long lean 8 year old, so I know she doesn’t need a baby sweater. 🙂 Anyway, I think it is a cheerful sweater, I like the color far better than I expected, and I do love the pattern.
      I do have artistic family members – and musical ones, too. I am the least in both areas, but I think I am one of the best crafters. 🙂

  4. The happiness of retirement is evident in this post. I’m yawning from the energetic, hustle and bustle of yours. Ho’omaka’i on shipping out your first card. I’ve worked with Baby Ull in the stranded, baby giraffe hat. It’s wonderfully soft.

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