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…

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Quick weekend report

The weekend went much as planned. The weather was absolutely perfect for all the things I had on my plate.

Saturday was sunny and very breezy, so I was able to work in the yard in the early morning without being tortured by black flies and mosquitoes. I got lots of weeding done, and planted the last of the seeds I wanted to. Likely too late to be really effective, but better to try than not! I also planted a six pack of zinnias that one of A’s co-workers gave me. She has a green house and is growing flowers to sell. I was hoping she had some tomato plants for sale but she doesn’t. She did suggest where I could get some, though. Maybe this weekend I will track some down. Need to get them in the ground if I am going to. Last year I didn’t even try. The previous year, for the first time here, we had those big ugly caterpillars. I am hoping by not growing them any food last year they went away again. So I am willing to try again.

Anyway, after standing on my head in the yard for a couple of hours, I cleaned up and went off to Whorls and Purls, which was fun and productive as always. Still plugging away on the body of my sweater, and did a few rounds on my sock.

Sunday morning I was back over at the Purple Fleece before 8 to meet a couple of the ladies to head off to Fiber Frolic. We gathered up another along the way, and got there a little after 9.

It was an absolutely perfect day again! Less windy, but sunny and very dry and cool. And the crowds were very small compared to Saturdays in the past, so we were able to walk around and talk to vendors without being crushed. It did feel like there were fewer vendors there, but there were plenty of them, and most of my favorites were there. I only noticed I was missing one in particular.

My budget was just the right size, letting me get a few things here and there, but not going wild and dreaming crazy dreams of future projects.

I got (from the top) some sock yarn from String Theory Hand Dyed on the bluestocking base, which is BFL with a touch of nylon. I usually get her merino cashmere base, but I thought I would branch out. And I need more dark blue socks.

Then some lace weight yarn from PineStar Studio. I love her colors and can never resist a skein of her lace yarn. She also packages up gorgeous kits of yarn for patterns that don’t require full skeins of a few colors, like a linen stitch scarf or a fade style cowl. And this year she had mini skein bundles as well. I could literally spend thousands in her booth. I still haven’t knit up last year’s purchase (a skein of a silk blend destined to be a Reyna shawl) but that didn’t stop me from adding to the collection.

Next is a ball of blended colors on a silk and merino base. Last year I missed a super deal on this stuff by running out of cash before I found her. This year I went there first. 😊 She didn’t have quite the same super deals, but I got 5 ounces of this. It is very similar to some I got in Wisconsin, so I think I will spin them all together, someday, and have enough for something fun like a vest or something.

Last up are some pretty little handmade brass buttons. Not sure what they will go one, but I will think of something. The booth that had these is one I visit every year to drool. It is an LYS shop in the Portland area that I haven’t visited yet, but intend to someday. She always has this lovely camel and silk, yak and silk, merino and silk, blended fiber for sale. It is all gorgeous! I love touching and ogling it. But my wallet has kept me from trying it out. One day I will. I found the button rack and had a hard time choosing among the selections, they were all so beautiful.

So with these purchases, the gate fee, lunch, lemonade, and an ice cream, I came home with 18 cents to get me through the week! Luckily I have a full tank of gas and a pot of chili for lunches. 😉

We finished the day at the festival by watching some sheep shearing before heading for home.

When we dropped of one of the ladies, we got out for a visit at her wonderful house. She has a perfectly sized house on a lake, so it was fun to see the place she is always talking about , and see her fiber den. It is very cozy and lovely, complete with a friendly cat.

On the whole it was an excellent fibery weekend!

How was your weekend? Did it go as planned, or were there surprises?

A lovely pre-holiday weekend behind us and a busy fun week ahead

A and I are trying to do a lower key Christmas this year, since our finances are different. Not bad, just not as reliable in a steady stream as previously.  But what that means?  We aren’t really sure.  A wanted a monitor and keyboard, which are for her business, so are tax deductible.  Not a Christmas gift, but she knows they took a chunk out of the Christmas budget, so she won’t tell me what else she wants.  I asked for an ott light, and she got it, then saw me struggling to make cards in the dimness, and gave it to me then.  So Christmas morning will have little under the tree, I think!

Both of our families do Yankee Swaps, and we are making things for those, so that is easy.

The end result is NOT MUCH SHOPPING!

LOTS OF CRAFTING AND BAKING!

More focus on visiting with people!

This weekend was all of that – Saturday morning we got our tree and wreath, and then A took them home while I went over to Whorls and Purls for knitting.  I was working on the legwarmers, which are not as awful as I had dreaded. Knitting with two fingering weight yarns held together goes ever so much faster than one fingering weight.  And makes a fun garment, too. You can’t see it here, but the lighter yarn has sparkles in it. Ooh la la!

I even worked on my chain mail shawl – probably about half way done with that.  And I wound the yarn for a sweater I will start in January.  It was productive, but it also was fun to sit and knit with the ladies again.

When I got home we got the tree up and into it’s stand.  We will decorate it sometime.  Maybe.  There have been years where all we did was put on the lights, then add any ornaments we were given.  This year, though, A has asked if we could really decorate it.  So, we will.

Sunday we had brunch out with A’s nephew and family from PA, and her niece and two “children” who are more local.  It was so much fun!  All the great nephews and niece are in college now, and growing up so nicely! The niece and nephew (who are close in age to us) are fun and interesting people, so it was a great meal.  From there we went grocery shopping since the big store was right in the same parking lot, and then home again to make cards, bake cookies, and knit.

I will get the holiday knitting done on  time, but maybe not the cards, unless I change up how I am doing them. But I really like how they are coming out, so I am just not sure about this.

A made three different kinds of cookies this weekend.  Some to keep and some to give, and she plans more before the week is through.  WOW!  We diet for sure on the first of the year.  But in the meantime, we are enjoying it all very much!

This week is a short one for me – I am off after work on Wednesday.  I have a lot to do, and a training to give on Wednesday afternoon, but then I am off until 1/2/18.  Another WOW! Wednesday is also our holiday potluck, for which I will bake some more cookies, but which I will have to miss most of for the training.  😦

Thursday I am planning to drive down to the Boston area to meet up with a fellow Raveller who could not make the trip to Wisconsin last summer.  That should be loads of fun! Friday is about recovering from the trip and doing housework while A works. And making cards.  Lots of cards!

So, a different kind of busy week this week!

A semblance of order

After the big bang, we have settled down into something of a routine, and we have managed to recapture bits of our old routine that we liked or needed.

The ankles seem to be doing well, a trip to the surgeon on today will confirm this, we all hope.  There is not much pain now, so boredom is setting in – fewer pain pills to help sleep the days and nights away!

A is doing the lion’s share of responding to beck and call, and that is diminishing as time goes on.  But none of the three of us can wait until she can use the walker by herself, so we don’t all need to attend every change of position or room, if you know what I mean.

I did feel like I could and should go to Whorls and Purls on Saturday, it was good for everyone involved, lol.  So I had a long afternoon of knitting and chatting and there was apple pie and chocolate.  Just what the doctor ordered for THIS patient.  🙂

I managed a little spinning early both weekend mornings.  Still plugging away on that 36 ounces of a spin I started in July.  I took about 6 weeks off, but now am back into it. I would like to get this set of bobbins done by Saturday, not sure I will make it, but it will be close.  Then I think I will only need to fill the bobbins one more time and it will be done.


My reason for wanting to clear this section off the wheel is that we are starting a spinning/knitting challenge at the Purple Fleece, and we get our fiber on Saturday, which is a few weeks earlier than I had planned.  🙂 The challenge is to take a 4 ounce braid of Purple Fleece Roving of the month for October, and spin it in a way that is new to us, or that we haven’t done in a while – ie, not our usual spin. Then, bring that yarn in January, and have it pose for a glamour shot. Next step is to then knit something with that yarn, and have that done by April for a big reveal.  There are no prizes, other than a new skill and something pretty all made up.  But we are doing it as a community, and one of the members will see if she can pull it all into an article that gets published.  So it will be sort of fun.  It was the idea of a different member as a challenge to us, and it rapidly grew from there.  It will be fun to see how it all comes out.

But to participate, I need to empty the wheel first.  🙂

Knitting wise, I feel like I have lots going on and not much got done this week.  🙂  I did knit almost all of a pair of booties, but lost at yarn chicken.  So I ripped them out and will start over.  At least now I know exactly the yardage I need for those. 😦  I have a hat and a shawl on the needles as well.  And I started the October sock (which will match the September sock.) I finished the Rainbow Warrior shawl – well, the knitting.  It hasn’t been blocked yet, but when I have time to do that I will, and will share it – it is really bright and cheerful!  But it will take a long time to pin out all the picots on the edge, and I am not sure when I will have that kind of time all in one chunk again. So loads of little projects on the needles to be picked up and dropped as necessary. And it is necessary. That quiet little voice could call for help at any time.

 

Weekend update, photo-free again

It isn’t that I don’t want to share photos with you, it’s that I don’t have any to share! The knitting moves along steadily, especially since I went to Whorls and Purls on Saturday and did a couple of rows (I am over 400 stitches per row now) but is not photo-worthy.  It will be, soon, though!  Only 4 more rows to go, then the bind off, then the blocking and you will get to see the Moon and Sky shawl complete!  I should have that ready for camera by the weekend.

I did some spinning!  A few hours total, about half a bobbin full.  It looks just like the bobbins I bored you with in July as it is still that same spin.  I think when I finish filling these three bobbins I will be more than half way done with the spin.

I did the last big step of the secret fiber project, just one small step left, and it is done.  I have taken loads of photos of this project, so will be able to share with you later in all its glory.

I moved three wagon loads of dirt, and that finished filling the raised bed garden box that will house the garlic for next year.  I pulled this year’s garlic – the bulbs are smaller this year than last, not sure why, but I hope that fresh dirt will help.  It’s drying now.  Some will be saved for fall planting, the rest will be eaten.  Yum. I also ripped out the strawberry plants.  They likely will be back as I doubt very much I got all the roots, but I did enough that I could add some dirt to that box and plant the rhubarb mom gave me.  I think I will call that the pie box.  🙂

And I cleaned up the box that housed the garlic this year, got it ready to plant some seeds.  I am going to scatter some poppy seeds and wildflower seeds.  This is when Ma Nature would plant them, so this is when I will plant them.

I planted my newest heirloom primrose in the front yard near the rock.  I hope it will be happy there, it will get a lot of sun morning and midday, but then it will get nice shade.  So it likely will go dormant in the summer, but I am hopeful that it will love being by that warm rock in the spring.  The last one Mom gave me did not survive in the back yard, I don’t think ( unless it went dormant in May!) so I hope this one likes this spot.  Glad Mom is able to keep hers growing and thriving so that it constantly needs dividing.  I have to check with her whether it was her grandmother or great grandmother who brought the original plant over from England, but I know it was a LONG time ago, and the women of our family have been cultivating and dividing and sharing the plant ever since.  I would hate to be the one who can’t grow it.  🙂

I have less than half the dirt pile left to move, but now I have filled all the boxes, I have to figure out what to do with it all!  I know I want some to go on the lilacs out back, that might be two more loads.  Then what?  I could have A build me another box or two, and expand my gardening out into the back yard, but that would have to happen pretty fast or the crabgrass will win the war for the dirt.  I also could build the garden I know I want along the west side of the house, but that would be another major undertaking like the front was. And it would mean relocating a kayak, which I guess I could do if I had to.  🙂  I should start collecting newspapers again, I guess. If nothing else, I could move the dirt out back, cover it with newspapers, weight them down and leave it until spring.  That might be it.

This is the really big event of the weekend, though – I VACUMMED the screened porch.  A made some new cat perches so the cats can hop up and down to the rafters from almost anywhere in the room.  Then she asked me if I would vacuum when she was done.  She knows that this was a major request.  I foolishly sweetly agreed and it was down right awful.  I think this is partly because I don’t just vacuum the floors, I vacuum all the nooks and crannies where cat hair gathers, and I vacuum the furniture.  It was sunny, hot, and humid out there.  It took two sessions, with lemonade and knitting in between, but I got it done, got the furniture back where it goes and it looks lovely.  I rewarded myself with a nice swim.

The cats love their new perches.  Now they can more easily traverse the room at ceiling height.  They always could go from one end to the other, but crossing was tricky due to the way the rafters and supports are constructed.  They have some boards A put up there to help, but the sillies hop along next to those.  These perches are staggered throughout the porch, and so they can be anywhere, look out any window.  I told them if they don’t use them, I am putting plants and candles on them, so Allie immediately hopped her way up and around, rubbing every corner she came to.  that meant Zumba had to do the same.  No plants and candles there!

And A said that while I am away, she will work on her storage closet shelving upstairs, and THE BOOKCASE in the loft!  It will have been worth it to vacuum the porch if those things happen. She is doing it to get her office FINALLY cleaned up and sorted out so she can use it.  That might inspire me to really work on the craft room when I return.  Or it might not.  🙂

It was a busy weekend, but I still feel rested and like I had enough down time.

 

 

 

 

Monday morning blues

We had such a nice weekend, it seems a shame it has to end.

Not only did I get to see cousins on Saturday, but it actually rained Saturday night!  The last time I remember it raining was back at the end of June.  It might have rained since, but it sure hasn’t in weeks.  Pool and plants and trees seem very happy. And I haven’t seen the cousins since last winter, so that was very nice!

Sunday was a quiet day – breakfast and some Home Depot shopping in the morning, then puttering about in the afternoon.  It was cool and dry and lovely.

Now it is Monday and I have to go to work.  Seems like we should get longer weekend in the summer.

What I accomplished this weekend:

  • Fixed the wheel of the garden wagon.
  • Finished the last details of the hand knit vest, and soaked and blocked it.
  • Cast on a hat with my very first handspun.  I think it will be a “for sale” hat, but we will see.

And of course, we did all the household chores that needed doing, and none that could wait.  It was that sort of weekend.

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There’s the vest.  If you are very good, when it is dry I will put it on and let A take my photo to share with you.  I did have to modify the pattern a bit in the shoulders – they were way to wide, so I took up some pleats, and made a note to adjust that measurement when I knit it again, which I think is likely, though not any time soon.

Did you have a good weekend?  Are you finding it hard to get going this beautiful Monday morning?

Another weekend come and gone

And it was a lovely one!  The weather was absolutely perfect!  We did some visiting with A’s sister on Saturday , and got the cars serviced, chores done haphazardly between outings.

I did some knitting at the Toyota dealership, but they were so quick on both cars that I didn’t get as much done as normal.  🙂 I did get lots done at Whorls and Purls in the afternoon Saturday – finished all the knitting on my vest, and wove in the ends!  The shoulders are a little wider than I would like, but I can fix that – either with a small pleat or some shirring along the seam.  Have to do that, put on the two little buttons, and then block it.  Once I do that, I will take photos for you.

When that was done, I immediately focused on my Moon and Sky shawl – have about 40 rows left on that, so I expect it will move along now.

Sunday we visited A’s other sister, the one with the new house.  It looks amazingly better than the first time we saw it!  She has been painting and cleaning, and had plumbers and carpenters in. She is living there now, and not quite settled, but certainly settled enough!  I think the house will be perfect for her, it is small but not tiny, and it has loads of storage and a huge yard.

When we got home from that visit, I changed into my new gardening outfit, and went out , determined to finish the front garden, then go for a swim.  Sadly, because I was so much earlier than normal, the front was in the hot sun, and I did almost nothing before I decided that if I was going to be out in the sun,  it should be in the pool.  So I left the gardening for this evening, and hopped into the pool, which was delightful!  I am not supposed to be out in the sun at all, so I was swimming in long sleeves and a hat, but I still loved it.

The rest of the afternoon was spent working on the secret fiber project (in about a month, I can share with you what it is!) and knitting the shawl and plotting what to make for the craft fair.  I will have to really get that organized this week so that I can churn out things for that!  Debbie at the Purple Fleece loaned me a couple of great display pieces – things that lift the inventory up off the flat table – always a challenge for me to do.  If I was doing lots of these shows, I would design something elegant for this purpose, but as I only do about one every year or two, it hardly seems worth it.  But she is nice enough to share, since she no longer does shows. It got my juices flowing to think about how I would display things, and what those things should be.  🙂

The weather continues to be wonderful today, a little warm, but I am ok with a LITTLE warm.  🙂 So I intend to get that garden in the front completely done, and then figure out where I will put all the left over dirt.  As my mother said , the whole yard needs dirt, so I could really put it anywhere, lol.  I have a few plants that would love the help, and a few raised beds I want to move, so I might do that this week, and start hauling that dirt around to the back where I want more things to grow.  We will see how motivated I feel.  After I finish the front and have my swim, of course.  🙂