Monday, April 30, 2012

Cloudy With A Chance of Rain

Since Thursday we have had muggy, warm days with a chance of rain, but no rain.  This morning I woke up around 6 am with the wind blowing the trees sideways and whipping things around in the yard.  I was sound asleep, and I was jarred awake with a fear of a tornado.  It was very loud.  I grabbed my sweat pants and ran into the living room to turn on the t.v.  There was the cute young weatherman telling us where the heaviest rain was, etc.  No threats, according to him.  I lay down on top of the bed with all my clothes on, you know, just in case.  But I fell asleep again with the heavy, heavy rainfall.

So today is one of those freaky Spring days with all senses alert.  It appears the major storm has blown over.  Not much rain, but enough to calm the pollen for the morning.

I finished spinning the singles of the luxury yarn I wanted for a project.  The batts were 50% alpaca, 25% milk, 15% silk, and 10% camel.  Wow!  It was great to spin.  Very, very soft and easy to spin.  I bought what the lady had at the show last year, and it was only close to 6 ozs.  Not enough to do a lot, but combined with another yarn it will be just fine.  It was very expensive, but "I am worth it".

It takes me two days to mow with the riding mower, mow with the push mower to trim edges and tight spots, and then weedeat.  I get very tired, but I have to keep up or it will be a jungle.  So I am not knitting much or doing much of anything but yard work.  I am watering the potted plants already, and hopefully they will survive the drought when it comes. 

My friend from north of Wichita had open-heart surgery last Monday.  She went home on Saturday.  I talked to her briefly in the afternoon, and she was hurting and not doing as well as she would like to be doing.  I think she pushed them to release her too soon.  I left her a message yesterday, but have not talked to her since Saturday.

My nephew has finally set a wedding date.  It is too complicated to go into, but he and M. fought to have the wedding they wanted.  The two mothers fought them and each other over what they wanted.  I think he and M. won from the sounds of it.  This is another couple in their mid-30's, and I think they should do what they want.  I don't like the date, but it is not my choice.  I just have to figure out if I can get there.  It will be really expensive to fly, rent a car, and get a hotel room.  We will see.

So not much is new.  I haven't been sewing either, and so not much to report.  I have to close the spare room, because Noodles has been sleeping on the quilt top I spread out on the bed.  I am going to finish the backing and get that off to the quilter. 

Have a good week.  It is going to be another hot week here.  Enjoy the pollen and Spring gifts in your bounty.

Monday, April 23, 2012

The Last Week of April!

It so very hard to believe this is the beginning of the last week of April.  My cousin came to visit for our annual visit.  He always signs up to go to a convention in this area, and we spend as much time as we can around that schedule.  He always arranges one free day to go to Grove to take care of family business and to visit the cemetery.

Today one of my close friends had a mitral valve replacement surgery.  I am waiting to hear from her husband.  The longer I wait, the more nervous I get.  I certainly hope it went well.

My neighbors have gone away for a brief visit with friends.  So I am watching their house, getting the paper and mail, and the usual routine.  I think they lucked out when they got me as a neighbor.

I finished my scarf that was on the loom.   I didn't get the yardage I wanted, because I ran out of my blue yarn in the weft.  Oh, well!  It is still long enough to throw around the neck.  I think it is really pretty, and I like the pattern.

After our brief cool spell, we are heading for 70's tomorrow.  Back to warm weather.  I have two appointments this week, but will have to mow somewhere in there.  The grass is growing well.

So not a lot of news.  Just a few little items, and a brief catch-up.  Have a good week.

Friday, April 13, 2012

The Tale of Twin Sockies!

 The first sockie that was born is on the left in both pictures.  It is a plain-ole sock pattern with the goat's eye pattern by Nancy Bush.  I worked really hard on this sock.  When it was finished, I hastily tried to put it on.  Like Cinderella's slipper, the damn thing would not go over my heel.  I got really, really mad, and I threw it in the knitting bowl and cursed.

After a long, long time (maybe a month), I picked it up and examined it.  I was still mad, but I wasn't as angry as before.  I would lay in bed at night and think about this sock.  I finally got the brilliant idea to soak this sock for a very long time, and stretch it as much as I could.  I got up at midnight and started doing just that.  I finally was able to get it over the sock blocker.  When it was dried, I could get it on my foot.  It was very snug.

In the meantime, I took the yarn that I used for the background and warped my loom for a scarf.  I had dyed this yarn, so there is no match for it in the universe.

Then some time later, I picked up the nasty little sock and stared at it and thought about it.  I hate to admit failure in any knitting project.  If I don't like something, I will frog it all the way or at least until I like the way it looks.  This was a completed sock, and I hated it.  Then I started thinking again about how to make this right.

I thought-Maybe I could make a puppet.  Maybe I could make a coin purse.  Everyone called it a giraffe sock.  Maybe I could make a giraffe toy.
Of course, I will knit another sock, and it will fit.  Somehow I was going to make this one work.  I decided to knit it toe-up with an afterthought heel.  I did make a little glitch in the pattern work, but I was going to make this one work.  The other problem is what to do about the background color.  I used another skein of yarn from the same dye bath as the first, but it was much darker.  Was I going to be picky, picky, or was I going to finish this pair of socks?

So last night I finished the other sock.  I soaked them both again and put them on the sock blockers.  The second one did fit over the blocker much easier than the first sock. 

So now I have finished the awful pair of fraternal twins.  Right now I am just happy I finished this pair of awful socks.  I know there is a lesson here, but right now I just want to enjoy the view of finished socks.  And I have not tried them on.  No, I am not going to spoil my mood right now.

The End. 

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Happy Easter!

 This is documentation that it is done and finished!  And it fits!

 Before I wrapped it up in the tissue, I got a picture of the inspiration picture.
So this journey is over!  Thank goodness!  And I made it in plenty of time of my self-imposed deadline.  As always, Easter is always a chilly day.  We had a little bitty cool-down, and a little bit of rain yesterday.  But it is still too warm to wear wool.  I did talk to my friend Friday night, and he had it on at a meeting to show everyone his new sweater!  It was too warm to have on this sweater.

So believe it or not, I got back to my sewing project.  I wanted to show how this pattern works.  First you sew three squares together to make a strip.  Then you make a nine-patch with three strips.
 Then you cut the nine-patch in half, and then cut the half into halves to get 4 squares that look like you really pieced the heck out of it.  And it was easy to do.  After all the squares are finished you can do all kinds of patterns.
 This is the fabric I am using-Terrain by Moda.
And am I knitting?  I did not do any knitting for two days, and a friend came to visit for those two days.  Good excuse to not knit.  We went to Goodwill instead, drank tea, and got caught up on all we have been doing.

And Friday I sat down and picked up my UFO de jour-the giraffe socks.  Man!  After that vest, this pattern seems so simple.  It is really quick to knit around one row.  I am now doing the afterthought heel.  The end is in site.  A finished UFO-what a novel thought.

And that's the week's news.  I spent a little time yesterday trying to do some more genealogy.  My friend that visits has been trying to find her family for 19 years, so I felt badly that I had given up finding mine.  I did find the names of siblings of my great-grandfather.  I found out that one of his sisters never married and lived in Washington, D.C. at one point.  That was interesting.  I wonder what she did.  I had found her picture once in a pile of photos that were in my grandmother's chest.  On the back it just said-Aunt Gertie.  She looked like a lot of women in the 30's with that waved hairstyle and girdled body.  Now I know a little more about her.

I saw my woodchuck yesterday during the rain.  Every time it thundered it would run back to a safe place.  Then it would run out and grab something to eat while standing up and watching for whatever it was that was making that loud noise!

My bachelor buttons have taken over the world.  But the color of blue is wonderful!  It looks really pretty with the pink of the weigelia and the coral of the red buckeyes.  The weeds are really happy with the rain we have had.  Sigh!

I want to finish with this quote that was on The Yarn Harlot's calendar a coupla years ago.  It is a great motto for any knitter, especially those of us that are crazy enough to put deadlines on stranded work:

"Never give up. And never, under any circumstances, face the facts."  -Ruth Gordon

Have a great week!