Sunday, May 31, 2009


...I may never be inclined to feel bad, guilty or at all self-conscious about the size of MY stash ever again! Check this one out!

Friday, May 29, 2009

Lace? What lace?

It's been a slow progress week on my two lace projects -- the Caracia shawl and the second DIC Shrug. I'm having attention issues. Maybe it has to do with it being the last week of school?* I don't know, but each time I've sat down to work on either lace project, a much higher than usual amount of tinking has been necessary because my mind has been wandering too much. A wandering mind + lace charts? Does not equal anything good.

So! What do you do when your mind won't cooperate? You knit simple shit. LOL In my case, I started putting together my afghan swap squares!

I cropped this picture so weirdly so as to spare you the sight of
my carpet that is in dire need of being swept. Ack. :P

I got the first strip of five squares done pretty quickly last night, which is a happy thing, because instead of simply seaming them, I had the brilliant inspiration to knit garter stitch borders between each square to give it a quilt-ish look. So, I'm starting at the end of one square, picking up stitches in random colors that will (hopefully) coordinate with some other part of the afghan, knitting eight rows of garter stitch and then connecting that to the next block in the strip with what I'm calling my own bastardized mattress stitch/kitchener stitch hybrid seaming method. (Who knows? Maybe it is a legitimate way of seaming something wonky like this, though I can't say I've seen it anywhere before.)

Yes, this is adding more work to the whole project than just seaming and being done with it, but I've had this vision for this afghan since the very beginning, and so this is how I'm going to do it. Once done, I'll put a border around the whole thing, and then I'll block the whole afghan...which I was realizing as I was trying to lay this strip out for a photo will likely require me to move furniture in my living room. LOL But I'll cross that bridge when I come to it.

At any rate, this garter stitch border knitting is the perfect mindless project. I can do it while I watch TV. My mind can wander all it wants. Just what the doctor ordered. I'm harboring a secret hope that I might actually get to finish this whole project this weekend. We'll see how that goes.

*For the record, we JUST FINISHED this morning! The kids just took their last test of the year, and we are now DONE! WOOHOO! Another successful homeschooling year comes to a close! And it has been a really good year. Color me thrilled! =)

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Epiphanies! Breakthroughs! Ah-ha moments!

Whatever you want to call 'em, I've been having 'em lately!

First, drop spindling. Seriously. I've been trying to learn to spin with a drop spindle for a couple of years now, and I have had very limited success. I do more dropping than spinning, and what gets spun isn't pretty. Still, I keep a spindle sitting in plain sight in my bedroom, and a little bump of fiber nearby, and every once in a while, I pick it up and give it a try, usually yielding the same old disappointing results.

Yesterday? I looked at it, and even before I picked it up, I just KNEW I had figured out what I was doing wrong. No idea how I knew that, and I'm not sure I can even put it in words, but I was right. I spun the loveliest, finest (think lace weight!), most consistent singles I've ever spun with a spindle. Incredible!

The only thing I can credit this epiphany to is something Amy said to me about spindling when I got to talk to her at MS&W, and then something Cosy said to me on Saturday when we were walking around the fiber show in Ohio. I can't even remember what their comments were exactly, but the essense of them must have been working on my subconscious, though if I had to categorize what I'm doing differently, I'd have to say it has to do with how I'm drafting the fiber, but I really can't explain it more than that. Whatever it is, I'm happy about it, and I am finally starting to see what makes people so happy about drop spindles even though they've got perfectly good spinning wheels sitting there. It's nice to have options.

My second breakthrough is pretty has to do with my clotheslines. Yes. Clotheslines. See, I love hanging my sheets out to dry, and to this end we've always had clothesline poles in the small, flat area of our backyard (as opposed to the rest of our back yard, which is pretty much a hill). One end of the clothesline attaches to the pole, and the other end attaches to the house. The thing is, when my husband has one of the larger tractors here for some sort of destruction home improvement project, he needs to drive the tractors through this narrow, flat area, and he always takes my clotheslines down to do so (which is, admittedly, preferable to him garotting himself on them). But once they're down, they rarely go back up, and thus ends my open-air sheet drying for the summer.

But this year, I had an epiphany! Bungee cords!

See them there at the pole ends? I tied the clotheslines to the bungee cords, and now any time he needs to take them down, it will be easy-peasy, and I can put them back up again with no hassle. (And see the orange foot sticking out from under the yellow tarp to the left of the clotheslines? That would be the current tractor that is residing here, which is responsible for doing this to the lower part of our driveway...

This mess is brought to us by the intention of improving the drainage at the bottom of the driveway so the rain doesn't bring a river of mud down it and onto the back porch.

...because, seriously, it just wouldn't be summertime here at Chez Beamer unless some segment of our property was dug up and muddy. At least it isn't a grassy area this year. Yet. :::sigh:::)

Anyway...bungee corded clotheslines. A huge breakthrough in my, smell-good, energy-saving, sheet-drying efforts.

Lastly, a gardening "ah-ha!" moment. (You knew I'd sneak gardening in here, didn't you?) Upon reflecting about how much more I'm enjoying my gardening efforts this year than I have in years past, it occurred to me that one of the things I like least about gardening is that it usually makes me hot and sweaty. And I have always really, really hated the feeling of sweat trickling down my hot body, making my clothes stick to me, and gluing to my skin anything that is flying around -- dirt, bugs...whatever. Ick.

The whole "hate to sweat" thing is also largely responsible for why I've always hated exercising. However! Now that I've been going to the gym for the past six months, and I do nothing BUT sweat there, I seem to have gotten over my sweat phobia! Sure, sweat still feels icky, but I seem to have learned to transcend the sweat in order to reach other goals...such as learning to kickbox, and now, to be a better gardener! So, in essence, going to the gym has improved my willingness to garden! Isn't that interesting? Ok, never mind, maybe not...just look at the pretty flowers and forget I brought it up! ;)

The front corner of my flower bed...prolific lilies abounding, hostas that even God probably can't kill, the transplanted rhododendron from last year that my husband claims is looking healthier than it ever has (I'm not convinced, but it isn't dead, so we'll go with it)...and on the right, coral bells, which I didn't know actually flower because these didn't last year, but they are this year. And in front of the rhodo I added two dianthus (dianthii?) plants to take the place of the two hibiscus (hibiscii?) that did not survive the winter. (I chose the dianthus not only because they should be the right size for this spot, but also in honor of the quirky, half-demon character in Charlaine Harris's southern vampire novels that is named after them...I know, I'm a dork.) And in front of the dianthus are some annuals I bought just to fill in and have color. I can't wait until all this stuff starts to really flourish! :)

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Gardening, knitting and spinning...

...seems to be all I talk about anymore, doesn't it? Well, there are worse things I could be talking about...war...economic tragedies...kidnappings (pray for these people, please! I don't know them personally, but they are neighbors of someone I know, and even if they weren't, it's freakin' horrifying!), yeah. Gardening, knitting and spinning? Let's stick with these for now, shall we?

First with the gardening. I'm still totally enamored with my surprise irises...

and all of these flowers...

...are now in the flower bed (except for the two lily plants...I ran out of daylight and didn't get them in). And for once, I miraculously did NOT over buy plants! Usually I over-estimate how many flowers I can fit in my beds, especially now that I've got perennials that like to take up more space than the previous annuals used to. But this year? These all fit perfectly! Can't wait until they start to grow and fill things in.

And then there is the salad garden...we have achieved germination! Woohoo!

Lettuce, tomatillo (which were technically already sprouted, obviously, but look at the flowers on the plant already!), and onions (which kind of just looks like dirt in this shot, but honest, there are onions shooting up there...bad lighting!).

Everything in the salad garden has started to sprout, at least a little bit. I'm so excited. This is definitely a good sign for something I've planted. I've got some flower seeds I also planted, which have not done diddly yet, but I'm holding out hope they might come through eventually. We'll see.

Kevin planted the rest of the vegetables in the big garden over the weekend, too...

The tall green things behind him are mostly garlic, which he plants every fall. We always have a bumper crop of it. He's got all kinds off veggie goodness in the garden this year...onions, tomatoes, peppers, eggplant (which we've had iffy luck with in the past), cabbage, peas, broccoli (another iffy crop...hate those little green worms it tends to get...ick), potatoes, zucchini, sweet potatoes (a new experiment for us this year) and corn. And probably other things I'm not remembering right now. 

There is some space left for me to put in the melon and acorn squash seeds I didn't have room for in my little patch up by the house. If it stops raining this week, I'll put those in. And once it is all in, then comes the chore of trying to keep up with it all. I am really, really going to try and be good at this this year. I really am. I really WANT to be a good gardener and enjoy the fruits of all this labor! That has to count for something, right?

The girlie was enlisted to help her dad as he was spreading straw (to help keep moisture in the ground and the weeds at bay) daughter on the back of the pick up with the hay turned out to be a great photo opportunity!

I know I'm biased, but...

...she is such a pretty girl -- inside and out. I can't believe I helped create this being. :)

Here she is with her dad, who was less enthused about my picture-taking...he was hot and tired after a long day in the yard and garden, and he wasn't really in the mood for me going, "Stand next to, NEXT to her, not in FRONT of her..." LOL Oh's still a cute picture, even if he looks grumpy. ;) on to the knitting!

This is my May charity hat...a couple of different shades of gray...I'm trying to aim for more manly hats than last year. Not sure why I think there are more homeless men who could use hats than women, but I felt like I had more girly-looking hats last year, so I'm trying to be more balanced this year.

And here is the progress I've made so far on my brown shrug. It's the same DIC pattern I used for the girlie's shrug a while back...very easy, quick knit. If I was only knitting it, I'd be further along by now. (Always the issue, isn't it?) But I've been sharing my lace-knitting time with Caracia, which is now up to eight repeats (woo!), so it isn't getting my full attention. I'm liking how it is turning out, though...the Elsbeth Lavold Summer Tweed is much drapier than the merino/alpaca I made the first one from. 

And then there has been some spinning. I'm still spinning the raspberry BFL, but I took a break to spin up this...

This was one of Cosy's Subtle Striping kits. These kits include 2 oz. of a main color (in this case, pink), and then four 1/2 oz. contrasting colors. You spin the main color on one bobbin, then you spin the four other colors together on a second bobbin (I split mine into 1/4 oz. sections and repeated the series twice), then you ply them together. These came out so cool! It's very soft and the colors are so happy. I ended up with leftover contrast singles, so I plied it with itself and I figure it will make a fun stripe or something. All told, I got just under 300 yards of a worsted weight yarn. This may end up being a baby sweater (but only for someone who would be ok with handwashing) or a pair of mittens. We'll see.

That's it! I've caught you up on all my fun from the long weekend. And can I just say how HAPPY I am to be finishing up our school year this week? I am totally ready for summer break, and so are the kids! Bring it on! :)

Monday, May 25, 2009

Great day at GLFS...

The Great Lakes Fiber Show on Saturday? Awesome! What a nice event that was! Granted, I really only have Maryland to compare it to, and it certainly was nowhere as large as that, but it was big enough to provide a day's enjoyment! Less crowded and decidedly lower prices are just a couple of the good things about smaller shows in general. Cosy went with me -- it was so much fun to have someone along this time! It was a perfectly beautiful, sunny, hot day to walk around and inhale the fresh country air and fiber fumes. (Thank goodness, though, most of the vendors were indoors out of the sun, otherwise we may have melted!)

I managed to lug my good camera around with me all day and not take one picture. I'm pathetic. But I did take pictures of my goodies once I got home, so we'll go with those, 'kay?

After going to Maryland and being overwhelmed pretty quickly, I set two goals for my shopping at this fair: one, to buy fiber that I've not yet spun, and two, to buy fiber I could dye. (Dyeing is my next step into this world of fiber madness.) I met both of those goals. Yeay!

First the fibers I haven't spun yet...

Silk...oooooh! ahhhhh! Look at these colors!

Cashmere! I'm going to spin freakin' cashmere!

Camel!! This is soooo incredibly soft! I just want to pet it.

And then the fibers I'm planning to dye...

These are one pound bags of roving! One pound! On the left is a Sheltand/Romney cross and on the right, alpaca. (Which I've also never spun, so it meets two goals!) While they are both colored fibers, I've been assured they will overdye nicely. I also bought some smaller bundles of white wool for dyeing...not recalling what they are at the moment, but just imagine white piles of fluff. That's them.

I can't wait to learn how to dye. I have a goal to eventually (maybe?) open an Etsy shop with hand-dyed fiber and possibly my handspun yarn, too. We'll see. It's a distant dream. Must go one step at a time.

Aside from meeting these two goals, I also got to meet Chris from Briar Rose Fibers! That was very exciting...she's such a lovely lady. I've purchased fiber from her online shop several times now, and the fact that she was going to be at this show was one of the reasons I decided to go. So, of course, having all her goodies in front of me, I had to buy some!

These two balls are Cormo...(which I've also not spun yet, so, goal!)...

...and these two are merino. Part of my rationalization for buying these is that Chris doesn't carry either of them in her online shop. She only carries BFL online. So this was a show-only chance to get some other wools in her beautiful colorways. Happiness! :)

Have you noticed how well I did in not buying any yarn at this show? I was sooooo good. No yarn! None! That yarn until I came to the booth that had a little basket of this by the register...

Qiviut!!! I've never found qiviut anywhere before! I should have put something in the picture with it to give you an idea of scale, because baby, this is one small ball of yarn! It's a little over 200 yards, but it is only the size of a small apple. Or a tennis ball. It's a luxury yarn, that's for sure. This isn't pure qiviut, but a blend with merino and silk (45%/45%/10%). It is incredibly soft and cost more than I'd ever spend on 200 yards of yarn on any other day. But I couldn't pass it up because who knows when I might find it again? I see a lovely qiviut cowl in my future for next winter.

Lastly, these...

...I'm a sucker for pewter buttons. Love 'em!

Ok...that's it for the GLFS round up! I have more I was going to post -- some spinning stuff and knitting stuff and gardening stuff -- but I'll save that for tomorrow. I'll just leave you with this...

Nigel hopes everyone had a happy and safe Memorial Day weekend, and he thanks those who gave their lives defending our freedom.

(And he wanted me to add that the dead thing in front of him? It is actually gone now! He's so relieved!)

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Things are growing here...

Yesterday I promised you flowers, and today I deliver!

I must first admit that the flowers I'm about to show you? I can't take much credit for. I put them in the ground at some point, and by the grace of God (and no skill or know-how of my own), they've managed to survive and flourish. If you know how much of a gardener I am NOT, you'd understand just how miraculous this is.

Anyhoo...the rhododendron on the east side of our house is just all agog with purply goodness...

...and now that I think about it, I can't even take credit for planting this bush. It was here when we moved in 15+ years ago. But I haven't killed it! And neither has my husband, a.k.a. The Mad Pruner. This is actually two rather large rhododendrons, and as beautiful as they are, it is sad that they are where they are because we are in this area of our yard the least. It is right by the stoop at our kitchen side door, a door we never use because the stoop has no steps coming down from it. I'm hoping Kevin is going to remedy that this summer. He's actually talking about moving the one bush down near the bottom of our driveway to fill in a spot on a bank that is a bugger for him to mow. He successfully moved another large rhodo last summer without killing it (though it hasn't bloomed this year), so I've given my blessing on this project.

And speaking of purple...

...check it out! I have Siberian Irises! And yes, I say that with a bit of surprise because I didn't know I had Siberian Irises! LOL A couple of years ago, a friend gave me a bunch of perennials that she'd thinned out of her gorgeous flower beds, and these were among them. But last year, the first full year they were in my flower bed, they did not flower, so I assumed they were just greenery. This year...purple blooms galore! I am so, so happy! You have no idea how much I love these flowers.

Then there is my lily corner...

...holy lilies, Batman! These suckers really proliferated, and as usual, I've missed my window of opportunity to divide them and move them around, so they're just going to be a big mass of bunched up lilies this year. They'll be pretty, though. I've got little Stella D'Oros that bloom all pretty and yellow all year, and then there are tall orange ones (Asiatic? I have no idea. I just know I love them.) And then there are some shorter orange ones, and one white one that my oldest son gave me for Mother's Day (or maybe Easter?) one year. And I just picked up two more lilies tonight when I was flower shopping...they're a pretty burgundy shade I've not seen before. I totally heart lilies.

Then I've got these things...

I put them in last year, they survived the winter, but I have no idea what they are. My friend Peggy told me what she thought they were, but she said they bloom, and these did not bloom at all last year. Maybe because I just planted them? Not sure. Anyway. I'm happy they're alive, and they seem to be getting bigger, so that works for me!

What doesn't work for me are these #@$! things...

...again, I don't know what they are, but they are a prolific, spiky, nasty, f***ing pain in the arse and they have popped up EVERYWHERE in my flower beds the past few years. They are nigh impossible to kill. Kevin has resorted to all kinds of noxious weed killers (all while trying not to damage the plants I WANT), and it kills of the leaves, but they grow right back. This year, he got out early and sprayed them. Ordinarily, I'd go out and pull them as soon as they'd start to turn brown, but I didn't get out there this year. By the time I got around to the first batch he's sprayed, they were gone. They'd shriveled to nothing. So I'm thinking maybe that is the key? Don't pull them after they're sprayed, but let them be until the roots (hopefully) die off from the poison too? We'll see. I've been waiting to yank these guys to see if it makes a difference. HATE THEM.

Back to the happy things. It was a gorgeous -- GORGEOUS -- day out today, and I got myself out and planted my little salad garden...

...yeah, I just looks like dirt now, but there are SEEDS planted in that dirt! There are two types of lettuce, spinach, onions, radishes, beets, and cucumbers (I'm into planting small amounts of a lot of things in this garden...we've got a bigger veggie garden down in the back yard with larger quantities of fewer all balances out). At the far end are a couple of cherry tomato and tomatillo plants. Around the corner are herbs...

...there were already chives (which I planted years ago and they come up every year without fair...probably my biggest gardening coup ever) and mint (which I'd transplanted a couple of sprigs from my in-laws' house a few years ago, and it took off and kept going, and going, and going...I regularly rip it out because it just takes over). These are my seemingly unkillable crops, so I love them muchly. To them, I added parsley, basil and dill.

Oh, and the other thing that is growing around here?

Caricia! I think I finished repeat #7 today, though now looking at the picture, it looks like there are only six. Hm. Will have to go look at it and count. It's too big to lay out flat on the 24" needle now, so it's hard to get a good shot.

ETA: Just counted. Seven! Whew! Would have been rough to have to have reversed my count on this project! I'm enjoying it, to be sure, but never really want to go backward when you knit! LOL

Lastly, Nigel says...

"Would someone please remove these hideous weeds from my view? They are quite offensive!"

I couldn't agree more, Nigel. Hm...Nigel's been a little cranky lately. Maybe I need to find him a friend?

Sunny, with a chance of yarn...and flowers!

And let's face it, here in my world, there is always a good chance of yarn! ;) Flowers? Not so much, but I seem to be getting lucky right now.

Let's start with yarn, because that is always a very good place to start, no? Yes! There's been some spinning happening. First, this...

This the second half of some Yarn Love top I bought at Spring Fling (this colorway is Jewels of Autumn, but it doesn't seem to be in stock at TLE right now). It was dyed with beautiful, big color segments (I kept meaning to take a picture of the roving before it was spun, but I forgot). After spinning the first half, I tried to Navajo ply it (which is a 3-ply technique using only one strand of singles...I think it is also referred to as "chain plying" because it resembles the chain stitch in crochet).

Because of the big color blocks, I thought it would yield a lovely yarn with gently changing colors. As it turned out, I'd somewhat overspun it (having just come off spinning all that yellow merino/bamboo, which needed way more twist than this wool), and ended up wasting several yards in a big tangled mess trying to N-ply, so I opted for Plan B - my usual 2-ply. I intentionally spun the second half with less twist so I could give the N-plying another try. While this plying technique still didn't come easily to me, I had a better time of it and managed to do it that way. Here is the result...

The two skeins on the right are the original skeins done as a 2-ply. The two on the left are the latest skeins, Navajo-plied. See the difference? The N-plied skeins have larger segments of color, whereas in the 2-ply, the colors are much more mixed up and slightly murky. (Sorry, there is bad lighting in this picture, but you can see the general difference I'm talking about.) And now I'm just not sure which I like better! I thought I'd like the N-plies better than the 2-plies, but they are so different, that I just don't know. Since this turned into a major experiment anyway, I've decided to knit two hats out of of N-ply, one of 2-ply, just to see how different they will look.

Seriously, this is the the fun part (and sometimes the frustrating part) of can start with fiber that has colors that look one way -- bright or vibrant or heavy on a certain color -- and end up with yarn that looks completely different. It's an adventure, to be sure. ;)

I've moved on to a new spinning project. I was organizing my roving stash (which is growing...oh is growing) the other day and happened upon a box with about 14 ounces of BFL in a raspberry-ish colorway from Briar Rose Fibers. Since I'm heading to the Great Lakes Fiber Show in OH this weekend, where Chris from BRF will have a booth, I thought I'd spin this in honor of finally getting to meet this wonderfully talented dyer. It started off looking like this...

And the singles on the bobbin is now looking like this...

Pretty, no? But isn't it amazing how much it changes from the original form to the spun form? And then when it is plied, it changes again? Or maybe I'm just easily amused. LOL I don't makes me very happy.

Well, this post is already pretty long, so I think I'll save the flower portion for tomorrow! I'll just leave you with this...

Sunday, May 17, 2009


I need a break. I don't know if the crazy month+ of hardly being home has finally taken its toll, or if it's been some family drama I've been dealing with, or maybe it's the end-of-school-year anticipation with its associated work...or all of the above?...but I can feel myself shutting down, going inward. Not in a huge, chronic, pathological way. Just in the way that I'm prone to when my body and mind are in desperate need of a time-out to recharge. Right now? I'm there. Oh yeah. 

Whether it is symptom or cure or maybe a bit of both, my turning inward often starts in the kitchen. I crave comfort food. Like cheese bread (bread + sliced cheddar cheese + salt & pepper...into toaster oven until cheese is melty...mmmm), or grits for breakfast. Or macaroni & cheese with tuna and cream of mushroom soup mixed in. Ok, I know it maybe sounds gross, but it actually used to be a recipe on the side of the box, and my dad used to make it for dinner sometimes, and I loved it...warm, squishy goodness. (Come to think of it, my dad used to make me cheese bread and grits, too...must ponder the significance of my favorite comfort foods being dad-oriented! Interesting!) 

Anyway, I rarely eat boxed mac & cheese, but this particular recipe just isn't the same with homemade mac & cheese. No one else in my family likes this version, so on Friday? I made it just for me. And it was good. So good. Mmmmm.

I'm continuing the theme of comfort today. I decided last night that I was skipping church today. That is probably a counterintuitive measure when craving comfort, and I know had I gone, it would have been good. But some Sundays? I just need to be home. I just need the comfort of my house and my family around me, without the need to rush and shower and dress and get out the door. My thought is that God is here as well as at church, and I've always been taught that God meets us where we are (I take that both literally and figuratively). So, here I am, at home, seeking comfort and just being here and still without great expectations on me. And this is good, too.

Since we were staying home, I promised the family that I'd make my special pancakes for them. Breakfasts together as a family are so rare for us, that when it happens, it has it's own comforting effect. Anyway, the pancakes...I've mentioned them before, and they remain noteworthy because they are both healthy and everyone in the house loves them. When I find a recipe like that,* it's a keeper, you know? LOL And weird as it is, I love that this recipe starts out with the toasting of nuts and seeds for a topping (I use sunflower seeds, sesame seeds and slivered almonds). Something about the smell of these things as they heat up in the skillet is just, well, comforting.

So now here I isn't even noon. I was up before nine today, a good hour and a half earlier than most days (it is so odd to me that I'm often up earlier on weekend days than I am during the week...doesn't that seem backwards?), so it feels like it should be much later. But it's nice that it's not. I'm dressed in a pair of sweats and a t-shirt, a favorite hoodie and a pair of hand-knit socks for warmth (it's sunny but chilly today!). I'm enjoying my second (or is it my third?) cup of coffee. I have no plans for the day, which is glorious. I'm sure there will be knitting involved, though. Or spinning. ;)

Speaking of are some photos of what I've been working on. Made my April charity hat this week (was a little behind!), modeled reluctantly by the boy...

...doesn't he look enthused? LOL But hey...he's 14...he's supposed to look like that, right?

I'm half done with the first of two afghan squares I need to make for myself for the afghan swap afghan...

...being addicted to mitred squares as I am at the moment, it was a no-brainer that I'd make one for myself. 

And of course, there is Caricia...

I am still utterly smitten with both the pattern and the yarn. I'm on my second ball of the handspun now. I love how there is that swath of a deeper golden yellow going through it...that was the start of the new ball, which then faded back to an even lighter yellow than the first section. These color changes make me so happy. I'm through five repeats of the main pattern now. And while it is taking longer to get through each repeat, it is still moving along pretty well. I've only had a couple of small setbacks at this point, and I'm hoping that will be a continuing trend.

As you can see by my progress bars, I've only got six projects in the works right now (amazing!), and two of them are afghans. The Ribbon Lace Scarf and the Cosima sweater are reaching the point of being considered "languishing" projects, but I'm not ready to relegate either to hibernation status just yet. I still need to make the second bamboo sock, but I'm not in a sock mood right now, plus I really want to make that same pattern in a solid colored yarn, which I may do before finishing that particular pair. I am trying to stay focused on the swap afghan and Caricia for right now, because I really want to see both of them finished. Thus, I'm resisting the urge to cast on anything else at the moment. We'll see how that goes.

And with that, I think I'm going to go knit a little. Hope you are having a relaxing, comforting weekend of your own!

*Just a note on the recipe, in case you check it out. I follow the basic pancake recipe as written, but without the apples. Also, I don't use buttermilk, just usually skim or 2%, whatever I have on hand. And I usually add in 1/4 c. of wheat germ to the batter. Total yumminess all around!

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Mostly pictures...

...Caricia is coming along...

...this is after the second repeat of Chart B. I've since added one more. Nine more to go! The color and softness of the yarn still make me irrationally happy every time I'm near it. I have to wonder just what Cheryl added to that fiber when she dyed it! ;)

Got my mini-sock swap package from my partner in one of my Ravelry groups...

Is that not the cutest little, tiny sock you've ever seen? I've had the sock blocker key chain for ages but never got around to making the it isn't naked anymore! Woo! :)

And then there's been family time...our four-year-old grandson (four! how did he get to be four??) has visited a few times in the past month, and we've had lots of fun with him...

~A. with Uncle Christopher~

~Papa with his little buddy~


~A. with Aunt Emma~

~Playing the piano...he loves playing with the piano!~

~Gratuitous shot of my girlie, just because I think she's preeeetty!~