Made it through THAT week!

Like a good chunk of North America, the weather here this week was abominable. Normally I would look forward to work and the AC, but it was a bad week at work, and I dreaded going in. My merry band of coworker friends was reduced by one a week ago and it is sad and unsettling.

Saw a great t shirt the other day, on a fellow being interviewed on the news. “Sorry I’m late, I didn’t want to come.” That pretty much describes it.

I know things will settle down there a bit, but not yet.

Anyway. At home it was too hot to do anything BUT sit in front of and under a fan and knit, so that’s what I did.

I fixed the cuff on the last pair of socks, and wove in the ends, so they are officially finished.

I finished sock #1 of my current pair, and wove those ends in while I was at it.

Cast on the second sock, so that is going.

They don’t look like a pair, do they? The yarn is a from Knit Circus in Wisconsin, two small balls packaged as a chromatic pair. This one starts as navy and gets gradually lighter, similar to the shading on the first one.

Cast on and knit a few rows of the next Durrow square. Sure looks like a blob right now! But those cable will begin to show soon. Loving using the medium color, can’t wait to see this one in place

And then while in the throes of all that casting on, I cast on the frieze cowl that I have been it hing to do since I saw it come to life on the needles of Nothingbutknit quite some time ago.

Which I already am addicted to! It’s so fun to watch the design evolve.

And this morning it was so much drier that I finally put my cardigan in to soak! It should be able to dry over the next few days.

But knitting must take second fiddle, because today starts the Tour de Fleece (TDF). I have no great ambitions this year, unlike last year when I started my epic sweater spin. This year I just want to try to spin as much as I can each day. So knitting will happen at lunch and on Saturday afternoons and otherwise just here and there.

This is what my bobbin looked like this morning, let’s see what it looks like at the end of the month!

And tomorrow J and his crew of parents return for finishing up the walkway. So not much fiber will be touched then.

Hope your week was better than mine! What are you doing this weekend?

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Suddenly HOT!

What the heck? We go from April to August over night? Yesterday the cool rains pulled out and the sun came up and suddenly we were in the 80’s, and HUMID. I was glad that the family wasn’t here working out in the sun!

I had to space out my chores with long knitting bouts in between to make it comfortable, but I did get the bulk of the outdoor chores done.

Trees cut out of the roses, cherry tree pruned back away from the deck a bit, some blackberries cut back where they were creeping into the area mom cleared last summer.

Tied back the weigela, so it can grow straight and tall. Pleasantly surprised to find that I can easily walk under the string to get into the back of the garden.

After a long break with knitting, I put up the trellises. Sadly by then I was standing in hot sun, and just tying strings to them nearly killed me, it was so hot!!

Still had the pool to do, but decided to wait until later, as during mid-day it is in the sun.

Back to lunch and the knitting.

Just as I was getting ready to get in the pool, I noticed it was growing unexpectedly dark. And then I heard rumbles. Sure enough, a thunderstorm rolled through! So, no pool last night, but the thunderstorm cleared the air so sleeping wasn’t impossible.

Progress on the knitting? I would say so! All that is left is 23 rows of one sleeve. I will finish that this morning. Then blocking and weaving in ends, which will wait until the weather changes. Almost there! I think I can call this one done. And in June! Days before TDF starts again!

That’s all I did. No laundry, no cleaning up. It was enough.

Today looks less productive. I will knit the sleeve, start the laundry, head to the dump with A. We have a new transfer station, only open Tuesday and Saturday. We thought we would go together to get the lay of the land.

Then I am off to Whorls and Purls for the afternoon, and we will have our annual dinner gathering right afterwards.

That’s it for a hot Saturday!

How I did with that list

It nearly killed me, but I got it all, I think.

The hardest one was the pool. I really didn’t want to get in it and stir up all the muck, but it had to be done. The water was quite warm, which was pleasant. That was the only pleasant part.

The only thing I didn’t get back to was the shelf painting. But I can start that evenings this week. Then A can install them next weekend.

So. What J did. We talked about several things, but what he wanted most to do was keep working in the front. So his dad did some more edging, and he cleared and leveled for a walk way. It was a lot of work, but he was right, clearing that out and fixing it up really does make a difference. We are going to keep the loose stone edging the rest of the way around, as it gets mangled by the plow every winter.

His dad also cut down some small trees to open up the front, and to make it easier for me to clear the side by the cars. Hard for you to see a difference, but the maple tree is thrilled that the cherries are out of its way. We left the big cherries near the deck to shade it.

While they were doing that, I planted this birch tree. For our commitment ceremony back in 2009, we gave out tree seed starter kits as favors. At some point after that, we asked Mom, who has a very green thumb, to start us a white birch. She did, and it has been living in its container in the backyard for a few years. We weren’t sure in the grand scheme of things where we wanted it. But the roots were growing out the drainage hole, so I had to take action.

It turned out to be a major project. Digging a hole is hard in our yard with all the rocks. But cutting the pot away from around the root was the hardest part. By the time I did that, hauling dirt from the pile in the front yard was easy!

Other than that, I put a few things in the raised beds, planted the third planting of mom’s pink poppy seeds in the raised bed (third time is a charm, right?) and did some watering of everything (thus ensuring monsoon rains overnight). I did not put up the trellises.

One of the things I put in the raised bed was this volunteer that was growing in the dirt pile. I am not sure what it is, I hope it survives and then thrives, it is so pretty!

Lest you think she was a slacker, A vacuumed the whole house before they arrived, then made a couple of trips to the dump with truckloads of junk from the yard and her workshop.

They wouldn’t let us take them out to supper, so after they left we showered off and settled in for naps. A slept until morning! I slept until supper time, ate, watched one show and knit a row before going back to bed. No doubt we were exhausted!

And he is coming back next weekend to finish the walkway and a swathe of garden on the other side of it. At least the house is pretty clean…

And there WILL be knitting today.

Feeling better, thank you!

It was a rough start to the weekend, but I followed everyone’s advice, did little more than I had to, slept, kept the fluid coming, took the OTC meds doc always recommends, as well as some magical elderberry elixir my SiL made me and I think it is working. Still coughing and congested (its likely another sinus infection, they seem inevitable when I get a cold) but I FEEL 100 times better.

I managed to do the grocery shopping Saturday, barely. Actually left the store without running the card… checkout girl caught me before I finished unloading. AWKWARD! But I blame the cold induced fog for that.

A caught the cold, so we have been hacking and sniffling our way through the last few days. Good there is an extra day!

I did do a lot of spinning the last few days. We had a virtual spin in on the Friends of Knitting Sarah ravelry group, and it got my spinning mojo going. I finished up the Shipwreck spin I have had going since March 25 (ravelry helps keep us honest on how long things really take!) it looks like it is about 263 yards before its bath.

And I started an finished this bfl crepe ply spin. I really wanted to work on perfecting my crepe ply (not there yet) and I wanted to experiment with bit of color drafted in. This is about 90 yards, again, pre bath.

Other than this I literally have done nothing in nearly 5 days. I think I need to go clean something.

Almost back

Knitting hard on the Fine Sand cardigan all week got me back to the point of dividing the sleeves from the body last night. Yeah!

Thankfully still loving this project!

On other knitting fronts, I spent Saturday afternoon at Whorls and Purls making this

A paper bag full of brown yarn balls! Why, you might ask?

Well, years ago, Mom bought this yarn, and a few years after that, I knit her a cardigan from it, which she loved. Then she lost a ton of weight and the sweater no longer fit her at all. She was very sad about that, so I offered to rip it out and reknit it on her size. The ripping out took three hours! So this will be my next sweater project. Luckily the pattern was my old standby top down cardi, I can knit those in my sleep almost!

Here are a couple of progress shots of other things I am working on. Spinning is progressing slowly because I knit the sweater so monogamously, but the second bobbin is done.

And the second sock is moving along more quickly now that I am around the heel.

I didn’t just knit this weekend, I also did a small amount of gardening. Very small! I planted carrot and lettuce in among the garlic, in the hopes of fooling the resident wild bunny. I suspected he survived the winter because my tulips were leveled, and we had confirmation of that with a sighting yesterday.

I also planted some cosmos and zinnias in various places, if they grow, we will finally have some color around the place!

And we had two meals so far with our own asparagus! I think there will be a few more this week. I planted 5 plants about 4 or 5 years ago, having no idea what the yield would be. That is enough for us to enjoy in season, but not enough to put any by for the rest of the year. If I ever get another good spot for it, I will put in a whole lot more. I really love it picked fresh for dinner!

Other than that, my limited time out in bright sunshine was spent continuing to fish debris from the pool. I am trying to figure out how to reach the middle without getting into it. Even with the long handled rake, I can’t reach the middle. So I scoop what I can reach, and stir it all up so the filter can do its job, and progress is as slow as every other year. Sigh.

This week is looking reasonably normal. One late day meeting that I can’t knit through, but otherwise a normal work week, I think.

Next weekend we are off to Pennsylvania to see niece C the younger graduate from college! Seems like she was just born! It will be good to see her and her sister B, whom we haven’t seen since a year ago when she graduated and returned home to Pennsylvania. I miss the days when these girls would come have nice long visits with us in the summer. But I guess grown up kids have to work and want to be with their friends, not their two old aunts. Such is life.

Well, let me leave you with two shots of other parts of my world.

The ugly curtains were proclaimed to be perfect and wonderful, and they do the job of cutting glare on the computer screen.

The quince in the front yard started blooming in the nick of time, just as the first hummingbird arrived.

Hope you had a good weekend and that your week ahead is better than you expect!

Keeping you in the loop

Or, what a difference a month or so makes! The real spring is here!

Remember when I posted here about the family heirloom primroses, and how sad they looked in the garden with the rocks and the snow?

Here is what greeted me this morning when I left the house –

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I shared them on Instagram with the hashtag #notdeadyet  🙂

 

I also found this as I was getting into take that photo – some little volunteer violets. I think I will leave them be and hope they spread.

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And now I see there are some wee weeds in this photo, I will get them out tonight.

 

I also saw several volunteer lupines in the garden, and I will leave them be, I adore lupines, even though I know they are technically invasive.  They grow in the gravel we call soil, so I have to love them.  I doubt that these seedlings will bloom this year, but you never know.  And I have some more mature plants that will bloom this year and scatter their seeds to the wind for me.

I also have asparagus up! I counted about 16 stalks this morning.  Of course, seeing no sign of them on Saturday, I bought some asparagus at the grocery store.  We will be well fed on asparagus this week!

 

Frog pond

I finished the sleeves and tried on the sweater.

It fit, but just wasn’t roomy enough. Ripped out the whole thing and will cast on today in the larger size.

I went to all the trouble to spin this yarn, and I love it and the cloth it makes, I love this pattern, so it is worth the work to make it fit.

For those of you unfamiliar with the term, frogging is to rip it out. Rip it, rip it. Ribbit ribbit…get it?