A bit of an update

I haven’t written in a while, I see. I was busy reading and commenting and deleting old or redundant photos. So I have room for a few more.

First news, Mom loved the sweater and it fit as is – yea! No photos as it still needs buttons, etc. I will try to get one someday.

Last weekend was spent with Mom and her two sisters and all of their daughters. That made 8 of us. My aunt found an air bnb that was midway between her house and mine, so it was way down in southern Maine, in Biddeford Pool. The house was perfect for what we wanted, enough beds and bathrooms, good gathering space, and a great kitchen. And near the beach, so we went for walks, and sat around gabbing and knitting a lot, too. And eating. There was plenty of food on hand, I will be eating leftovers for a month!

I started my Alaska hat as a reward for finishing big brown. 😉

And I finished a pair of socks

So it was a very good weekend!

Seriously though, it was nice to spend enough time with my family to get to talk to people and hear how they are. It’s been ages since we had time like that.

What did you do last weekend?

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My least favorite weekend is over

Or:

WHY do we keep changing time?  It accomplishes nothing and creates havoc with mind and spirit.

I hate this weekend, the shortest of the year.  It was made shorter still by a complete change to my regular schedule – I missed knitting group on Saturday, because as yet I haven’t been able to figure out how to be in more than one place at a time.  There were three places I should have been on Saturday at 3.  I decided (and thankfully my boss agreed) that the most important one was at a memorial “reception” for one of my wonderful tax volunteers.  He had been sick a long time, and finally passed away in February.  His personality was SO big and kind and funny that it feels like an empty world without him in it.  The place was packed with people eating and drinking and telling stories, which is just exactly how he would have liked it.  He loved food and people and stories, and he dedicated his life to service in one form or another.

And I will admit that going to that event got me out of one of my least favorite things, attending a town meeting to ask for money.  Technically, I ask for lots of money from towns, it is my job, but that final appearance at the meeting, not knowing WHAT is going to be asked is the toughest part. There were two meetings on Saturday at three that needed coverage, and my boss kindly took one, and recruited someone else to take the other so I could be free to attend the reception.

In other words, no matter what, there was no way I would have been able to go to knitting on Saturday.

So instead, I spent the morning doing a few chores around the house, and I also managed to get my hair cut.  What a chore!  My normal place shut down unexpectedly a couple of weeks ago and me over due for a cut!  I knew there was another shop in town, so I headed there a week ago.  It was mobbed, and I had a time crunch.  He said he was open until 6 Monday and Thursday, so I did other things, and went there Monday.

He was closed. Something about a snow storm?  I don’t blame him but I was still disappointed.

I went there Thursday after work.  He was full up and not taking any more clients that day.

I was there by 8:45 on Saturday, and I was the first one in the door.  He cut my hair.  I realized it has been close to 15 years since I had to tell someone how I like to wear my hair.  By the time I sat in that chair, it was so shaggy that there was no way he could tell by looking. Together we worked it out, and though it is quite a bit shorter than I prefer, I know it will grow, and it is a very good haircut.  There was some sticker shock, though.  No more $8 haircuts, I guess.

While I was waiting for him I discovered that there is a salon down the hall from him.  She doesn’t take walk ins, but I got her card.  I think my next haircut will be an appointment with her.  She said it would be a little bit cheaper than what he will charge.  That is great, especially if she is good.

That event over with, I went home and did some spinning and watched Victoria.  Do you watch it? No spoilers from me, but I have been waiting for the event that happened at the end to happen, knowing it was coming eventually.  Now what will the show be like?  I can’t wait for next season! 🙂

Sunday morning saw us up at a fairly late hour, thanks to the above mentioned stupid time change, and I headed off to the grocery store before the predicted snow storm started.  See?  Messed up schedule – the groceries are fetched on the way home from knitting.  Always.  I don’t go to knitting, there is no food in the house.  Actually, the store was nice and quiet – if I didn’t hate leaving home so much, I might shift my regular shopping day to Sunday.

When I got home, A was almost done doing the last of the laundry, and we both headed upstairs – she to work in her office and me to work in the craft room.  I finally finished untangling the threads and warping the loom. A helped me wind the warp onto the loom, and I actually got settled in and did some weaving!  At this point, it is all experimental, I am not sure if this will work out as planned, but I think I am weaving placemats and perhaps napkins, too.  They might be plaid.  They definitely are royal blue, white, periwinkle, and teal cotton.

After having such a nightmare with the warp this time, I decided not to do anything fancy with my pickup sticks.  I will practice with those on a smaller project. I am not enjoying being a novice at this, but know I have to put in my time to get the results I dream of.

When I had done all that my back could stand, I worked on a jigsaw puzzle until supper time.  Which seemed to come in mid-afternoon!  Have I mentioned I hate the time change?

Bed time arrived too early as well, and so did the alarm this morning.  I am so glad that this weekend is behind us.

And yes, it snowed, it did not rain as originally predicted, though it might have rained on top of the snow.  Certainly, it is a heavy wet snow.  And we got enough that the driveway got plowed. Again.  Just a few more weeks…

Spinning to start the day

Purple Fleece’s Amaranth, on finn.

This will be a 2 ply 1:4 fractal, and I am nearly done with this bobbin, the 4 piece of that ratio.

I expect to wind up with a lovely variegated, barber pole yarn that will knit up into amazing stripes.

Frosted Daybreak

The perfect name for this fiber, it has all the colors of a winter sunrise. This is from Three Waters Farm, the fiber is merino, tussah silk, and bamboo blend.

I wasn’t going to buy it, I have enough to spin this year. And a goal to spin more than I acquire, thereby reducing stash. But As I saw the finished skeins being posted on Ravelry, I knew I wanted to spin this fiber, and I knew just how I wanted to spin it.

I wanted to spin a gradient. I wanted to spin a dk weight; I want to be able to use this yarn with some dk weight I got at the Whorls and Purls destash gathering to knit

Alaska . I wanted to do a two ply for a few reasons, mainly because I wanted to control the color runs and because I haven’t mastered chain ply yet.

So how did I do?

All split up by color.

Going on the bobbin, one color at a time.

Soaking after plying:

And completed:

It’s a trifle lighter weight than I intended, but I think it will work just fine.

Snow Day!

The best part of winter is a storm that times itself perfectly for a day off.  This one did all it could.  5-10 inches, followed by sleet and freezing rain, started last evening and lasting all day long today.

Now, technically, it isn’t a snow day – we only delayed opening.  But I have to work on Saturday, so instead of leaving early on Friday to make up those hours, i am staying home today.  I did about an hour’s worth of work, and am calling it a day.  I think that will fill my week’s hours.

Which is good, because work has just been overwhelmingly crazy the past few weeks. so busy that I haven’t been able to face getting on the computer to write to you.  I hope it changes soon.  I think it will, because we are going to be hiring someone to work with me!  Ad goes in the paper in a week or two.  That will mean a bit more work at first, but then it should all be easier.

So even though work has kept me busy and tired, I have managed to spin most days for a few minutes.  I was able to finish the Oliver Twist yarn, and am happy with the result.

Though it isn’t my favorite color, it goes so beautifully with the Aegean I spun earlier that I know I am going to love working with it.

Plus, I had this amazing win with it!  I have never before split my fiber so perfectly and spun it so evenly that the two bobbins came out this close.  I was pretty happy.  Almost excited, even.

Of course, that means I have nothing on the frankenbobbin yet for this year.  I did cast on a cowl with last year’s frankenyarn, and I think I will be able to make something like mitts with the thinner second skein of yarn from that experiment.

Finished knitting the Nymphalidae, but that is soaking so I can’t show that to you yet.  Maybe next month when I post again.  🙂  Hopefully it won’t be that long.

The Japanese Sampler Scarf MKAL started, and I am about halfway through the first clue.  I really love the yarn, the pattern and the resulting scarf.  The next clue comes out in April, so I have time to finish this one.

Still working on Durrow, but the progress is almost imperceptible, so I will spare you et another photo of a half done square.

 

And Mom’s brown cardigan continues to move slowly along.  Almost to the body ribbing, then there will be sleeves and button bands to do. I don’t give it the love it deserves, because well, it’s brown.  It doesn’t excite me.  But she does love brown, and I love her, so I keep plugging away at it.

I did finish my blue socks!  Yea, I finished something!  And immediately cast on the next pair, so there are still socks on the needles.  No photo yet of the new ones, but the foot of the first one is almost done.  I have worn the new blues a few times, and they are really soft and warm, I love them.  They are a new to me yarn, in BFL wool and nylon.  I think they will wear well.

The only other new thing is what’s on the wheel now.  It is a bag of polwarth and “soffsilk” that I got at the Whorls and Purls party destash.  I have never spun fiber with colored bits in it before, it is quite fun.

In other news, the truck is in the shop getting a face lift, and they gave A a beautiful BLUE 2018 Tacoma.  Just like her red one, but no snow tires.  EEK.  So she is home today, too.  We are having a quiet day in front of the fire.  Later I will go upstairs and block that shawl, work on warping the loom.  The day will fly.