Rules for Feeding the Stash

Friday, May 22, 2020

Day Seventy


I can't believe it's been ten weeks! The pandemic has really changed a lot very quickly, and it's hard to comprehend that I've been isolating in my apartment for so long.

Anyway. Let's talk knitting! I finished the sleeves for my unicorn sweater and got them attached to the body, and I'm currently ten rows into the 26-row intarsia chart. I very rarely knit yoke sweaters from the bottom-up, and that first inch after attaching the sleeves is so hard! I'd love to get the intarsia finished this weekend so I can zip through the yoke decreases and get started on finishing, but it took over five hours to knit the first twelve rounds of the yoke (two rounds in the MC followed by ten rows of intarsia), so we'll see how I do.

I went back and forth up until about three minutes before I started the yoke about whether I wanted to knit the yoke flat and do the colorwork in intarsia, as written, or if I wanted to knit it in the round and duplicate stitch my unicorns on later. Obviously, I decided to go with intarsia, and now I have a confusing, tangled mess to deal with. It'll all be worth it, though.

I'll go more into details about mods when the sweater is finished, but it's pretty heavily modified, just for my own preferences. It's made following some parts of the pattern challenging, as I have to remember what I've changed and how it affects the instructions, but that's all my own fault for making half-assed notes on the pattern (and using water-soluble ink and then spilling beverages on it, so quite a few of my notes are now just a blob...).

As always, I love you. You are each very special to me, and the world is better for you being in it. 

Monday, May 18, 2020

Day Sixty-Six

No photo today. I've been too lazy to come up with something to photograph, which is telling, as I've actually made quite a bit of progress on a couple different knits. The second sleeve of my unicorn sweater is moving along—it's not quite halfway done yet, but still, that's good progress—and I've passed the halfway point on the body of my tank top sample.

This weekend was mostly pretty quiet. Saturday morning my mum and I got up early to drive to the next big town near us to see if their Walmart had dog food, as ours has been out. My car hasn't gotten to go on the highway since early March, so it was nice to get her out for a drive. Alas, we didn't have any luck finding dog food, but my sister managed to score some in the city later in the weekend, so we're set for a while now.

When we got back, I pretty much went straight back to bed. When I finally woke up again, I read in bed, until late afternoon, when I went to mum's for egg rolls and special rice for dinner. Then I had a bubble bath and afterwards I watched some cartoons and knit a bit. And that was Saturday.

Yesterday was also fairly nap-heavy, but I managed to get a pan of brownies made and two dozen chocolate cupcakes. I had the idea a couple weeks ago to make chocolate cupcakes with cream cheese frosting and keeping them in the freezer so I could grab a quick piece of cake when I wanted. Today I'll make the frosting, and I'm also hoping to bake bread, as it's been a while since I've done that.

Overall, not a bad weekend. This week I'm starting a time-consuming, detail-oriented, somewhat boring work project, which, while not as interesting as some of what I do, is very important, and will give me a chance to catch up on some podcasts.

Hang in there. You're doing your best, and that's enough. We are all trying to be patient and generous, even though it's hard sometimes. I love you all, specially and individually. 

Monday, May 11, 2020

Day Fifty-Nine


Happy Monday! Is it Monday? Time is meaningless. Anyway.

It feels like it's been a hot minute since I've shared my unicorn sweater on the blog, but quarantine has me making some major progress. I finally finished the lower body, which should not have taken the better part of a year and a half to get through, but that's what I get for starting projects willy nilly and then abandoning them in strange corners of my apartment.

I'm even almost finished the first sleeve! It's amazing how much more quickly half sleeves knit up than full sleeves. I think there's about ten more rounds on this before I can attach it to the body and start the second sleeve. I binged the podcast The Dream last week, and that was the perfect background to knit to (except when I had to pause it to call my mum to relay a particularly horrifying story).

I'd like to get both sleeves finished and attached this week, and I think that's a reasonable goal. I still have my tank sample to work on, and that cabled sweater I've only briefly mentioned here but haven't actually shown you all yet, but for some reason some mindless stockinette sounds like just the ticket right now.

It was a quiet weekend here at Casa Wayward. I made a blueberry coffee cake on Saturday afternoon for my mum for Mother's Day—I have a thing about most cooked fruit, so I never make coffee cake with blueberries, but for her I can make an exception.

My town is talking about starting to open up, which makes me nervous. We haven't hit our peak here yet, and aren't due to until next month. I don't know what's going to happen with my town or with my work, but I'm definitely not planning to leave my apartment for more than safe bike rides or weekly grocery trips for a while. It's a strange, strange world we're living in right now.

Friday, May 8, 2020

Day Fifty-Six


I've been working from home for eight weeks now. It feels simultaneously like I just started two weeks ago and that I've been doing this forever. The university is supposed to start opening up after next week, at least for staff and faculty. I don't know what that means for me, yet. I don't know what anything means right now.

I started this My Little Secret Crop Top back in March, right when the pattern was initially released. I banged out most of the body pretty quickly, and then it sat for a while while I dithered on how much length to add. In the past couple days, I've finished the body and the first strap. I hate knitting straps, but I know I can finish this in less than an hour if I just sit down and make myself do it. 

I could probably do a lot of things right now, if I just sat down and made myself do them.

Yesterday I made bagels. My stand mixer arrived on Wednesday, and she is the brightest gem in my life. Today I plan to make eggs so I can turn some of the bagels into breakfast sandwiches to keep in the freezer for days when I just really need a breakfast sandwich. 

I've been poking at some housework this week. I made a list in my phone of housekeeping projects I want to get done during quarantine. Some are bigger than others; I don't know if I'll get them all done. 

Lee Lee has arthritis, and her bad leg has really been bothering her for a couple weeks. This week we got a hold of some pain meds for her, and she's starting to improve. I find myself gauging my mood based on how she's feeling: if she isn't walking, it'll be a quiet, slow day, and if she's happy to wake up and ready to try running, then it will be a good day. My own moods lately feel at once unchanging and wildly unpredictable, leaving me feeling like nothing is changing but also exhausted from the work of existing as a person. It's no wonder I'm trying to outsource my own feelings to my dog's recovery.

Hang in there, kittens. The first wave hasn't even peaked here, yet, but I know some of you are already gearing up to prepare for the second wave. You are beautiful, and you are strong, and you're doing great so far. I know it doesn't always feel like it, but you're doing enough. 

Monday, May 4, 2020

Day Fifty-Two


Hello, Kittens! I hope you all had a good weekend, whatever that means for you.

The tank top sample I cast on last week is progressing nicely—I'm a few rounds away from starting the waist shaping, and I'm maybe having a little bit of a wobble because I'm knitting this from the bottom up and I'm not used to waist shaping from this direction. But! It will be fine! I have done math and I have checked it multiple times and everything is going to work out GREAT.

Yesterday my mum and I went to the greenhouse in town so mum could get some stuff for her garden and I maybe tripped a little bit and bought some new plants myself. This prompted me to reorganize my succulent/cactus aquarium, which I've been wanting to do for a couple weeks now. I turned it on it's side, which gives me more surface area inside as well as the ability to put things on top of the tank as well. It blocks less of the window this way, and it'll be much easier for me to water the plants inside now (as opposed to having to stand on my tiptoes to reach down inside the tank to water them before). I'm very pleased with the final result.

My new stand mixer is due to arrive anytime between tomorrow and Saturday. I am, of course, crossing my fingers for an earlier delivery, but as long as it gets here safe and in one piece I will be a very happy baker. I worked on tidying up my kitchen yesterday so I have a space on my counter ready for my new addition, whenever it arrives.

Friday, May 1, 2020

Day Forty-Nine


Is it depressing seeing how many days I've been home in the post titles? I started it as a way to keep track, but I can change it up if it is.

This week I made bagels! I've been wanting to make bagels for a long time, and these came out GREAT. The recipe only makes four bagels though, and since I only have a hand mixer right now I had to mimic a dough hook with my spatula at the end of mixing to get the dough ready. It'd be tough to do that if I multiplied the recipe.

So I ordered a Kitchen Aid stand mixer.

I've been wanting one for a while, but they are EXPENSIVE, but also they last a long time, and I'd use it every week, probably multiple times a week, but they cost SO MANY DOLLARS...and back and forth and back and forth. For years.

I ended up ordering a refurbished one, because they're just as good and quite a bit cheaper. It'll be here sometime next week and then I will be able to bake ALL THE THINGS.

Back to bagels: these are so good. Since being diagnosed with celiac disease ten years ago I've only had one really good bagel, and the rest have been "better than no bagels, but not great." These bagels are great. I almost cried when I ate the first one, it was so good. The other night I made eggs Benedict on one of my homemade bagels and it was the most delicious and satisfying thing I've ever eaten.

I'm hoping to be able to make some big batches when my stand mixer comes so I can share bagels with my mum and also make some breakfast sandwiches to keep in the freezer. I want to get better about meal prepping on the weekends (for reasons) and having a stand mixer so my hands don't get worn out doing all the baking with a hand mixer is really going to help! 

Monday, April 27, 2020

Day Forty-Five


Look, a photo!

I think I'm going to scale back to blogging twice a week, probably on Mondays and Fridays. This is something I've been thinking about since last summer, and there's enough going on in my life even without all this Covid nonsense that I think twice a week is a good move.

Anyway, updates: the new sweater I mentioned last week and STILL HAVEN'T SHOWN YOU is doing good. I think I'm about halfway through the sleeves? This sweater is knit flat and seamed and starts with the sleeves (no sleeve island later!), so I'm doing them two at a time because wow, I hate being stuck on sleeve island.

I spent several days this week working on my vest sample before realizing last night that it is absolutely not working as I'd hoped and needs to be ripped back to before the underarms. I also realized that it's going to need four skeins instead of three, so that's a problem. I reached out to the one person on Ravelry who has a skein in this colorway in their stash, and if I hear back, great. If not, I have another idea I could use this yarn for, and this vest will just get shuffled off to next summer's list. I'll survive.

After all the wailing and gnashing of teeth over the vest, I cast on what was supposed to be my second summer pattern, a tank with some lace around the bottom. It has only half of a round so far, as I cast it on at eleven last night, but I'm hopeful that I can catch up on my Netflix queue and start banging it out.

I didn't do too much baking last week, other than a coffee cake on Saturday. I'm hoping to do bagels this week—I've never done bagels before, but I've also only had one really, really good bagel since being diagnosed with celiac disease, so they've been high on my baking list for a while. I've also been craving Eggs Benedict like crazy, so once I get a batch of bagels done, I can make that as well!

I love you all. Your skin's looking great, and whatever you've been doing to your hair is really working for you. You are a beacon of loveliness in a world of uncertainty. Your houseplants are thriving. Your pets are so glad you're home. Remember that I cherish each one of you individually.

Monday, April 20, 2020

Day Thirty-Eight

1. Yeah, no photo today. My house isn't the best place to take WIP photos? And also I've been forgetting until there's been no natural light. I mean, there's a pandemic going on, I'll take photos later.

2. I have started a new sweater with some yarn that's been in my stash for ages. I tried knitting it up twice, but each time I was wrong about what it wanted to be. I think I'm right this time, though.

3. I've read six romance novels in the past two days.

4. I successfully made my first loaf of sourdough last week! It doesn't have any nice bubbles, but it's hard to get bubbles without gluten. I'll experiment more later with adding xantham gum to try to encourage bubbles. I've been studying and trying for sourdough on and off for years, so this success is really gratifying.

5. I think that's all I have for now? Sorry for not blogging for two weeks. I promise I meant to, and I kept forgetting because time is meaningless. But I want to do better. So. Hope you're all doing well, whatever that means for you. Please be gentle with yourselves and your loved ones. Maybe make cookies? I did that last week and it made me feel pretty good. 

Monday, April 6, 2020

Day Twenty-Four: Numbers

1. No photo today. I'm sure I could have found something to take a photo of, but I was tired.

2. Yesterday was hard. I ended up having to scream into a pillow. We're all struggling. We'll be okay.

3. I made cookies this weekend and didn't put enough flour in. I have been using this cookie recipe for over twenty years. This is the second bake I've messed up so far during this pandemic. I suppose if all I'm doing is making some funny-looking but still delicious bakes, I'm doing okay.

4. My sourdough starter might be ready to start baking today. Yesterday it was close, and I decided to give it another day. I mean, I have the time

5. I have been out of chips for four days and it's really hard. Tomorrow morning is the hour at the store for elderly and at-risk people, so I'll be able to stock up for the next week.

6. I also need to get some puzzles. I mean, I have puzzles. But my current puzzle is a 1000-piece Chagall, and my other puzzles are a 1500-piece Van Gogh, a 1000-piece Frida Kahlo, and a 500-piece puzzle that's all black and white. I really need an easy puzzle (well, a few easy puzzles). I'm going to check the store when I go tomorrow for some 300-piece ones or some 500-piece ones that aren't black and white and therefore needlessly complicated. (Also, Puzzle Warehouse is still shipping, just FYI).

I think that's it for today. Please keep taking care of yourselves, kittens. We're all doing our best. We're doing great. I love you all specially and individually. 

Friday, April 3, 2020

Day Twenty-One


Well, I've made it to the end of the third week of isolation. I don't know how long you all have been isolating, but we're doing great. I had a bit of a wobble at the beginning of the week because apparently Pandemic Stress wants to give me new nightmares, but I'm doing better now.

Last week I started knitting Wild Sky, which has been in my queue since Cory released it, and I thought I had the perfect yarn for it in the form of this mystery skein my friend Annika sent me when she destashed a bunch of her yarn. The color is great, it's got great bounce, and I really thought this was going to be an easy project.

Except, of course, there's not enough yarn. I'm three repeats in, of the written four, and that little ball that's left isn't even enough for all the crown decreases, never mind a whole extra repeat before that. I'm super bummed, because I've been looking forward to this project and now I'll have to find another yarn that ticks all the same boxes this skein did.

Looking forward to this project so much and having it not work out because of factors beyond my control feels a bit on the nose right now.

Yesterday I made cinnamon rolls for my sister, who has taken over doing my laundry during the pandemic so I don't have to be exposed to the laundromat. She's also a CNA at our town's nursing home, so she's a champ on many, many fronts, and she absolutely deserves her favorite baked goods.

You all look great. Whatever you're doing with your hair? Is working for you. Sending all my love, etc. 

Wednesday, April 1, 2020

Day Nineteen


Well, we've made it to April. 

I finally got hit with a big wave of loneliness yesterday—it felt ridiculous, since I've been on the phone with my mum every day, and we've visited each other outside the past several days, but I just got another wave of how different everything is and it was too much. 

On one of my most recent runs to the store I picked up a big bag of birdseed for the feeder outside my living room window. I figure if Lee Lee and I are stuck at home all the time, at least we can have something fun to look at. Not all of the neighborhood birds have realized it's full yet, but we've had a couple finches visit. 

I've been baking a lot. Baking is always soothing for me, and now I have the time and flexibility in my day to bake a lot. It's a concrete way of remembering that I have an effect on the world around me—I can't really do anything to stop Covid-19 (yes, I know that staying home is the most important thing I can do), but I can make a cake. I can make bread. I can do things. I matter.

It's not just baking, either: I can pull the dead leaves off my plants. I can knit a row on my sweater. I can put birdseed in my feeder so the finches get nice and fat. It's those small but still tangible things that are going to help us get through this.

We're all in this together. We are so strong and creative and resilient. We're doing our best. We're superstars, every one of us. I love you all.

Monday, March 30, 2020

A Pile of FOs

Do I have lots of pretty photos of finished knits to share with you? Yup. I washed my hair and put on a bra and everything. It's a photo-heavy post, but if there's anything we all have, it's time to scroll through and look at lots of pretty knitting pictures. Here we go:


Up first is my Old Harry, which is FINALLY finished after spending way too long on the needles. It came out exactly how I wanted it too, and I even got Lee Lee in for some pictures!




Pattern: Old Harry by Kat Riddell
Yarn: Knit Picks Preciosa Tonal Fingering,"Anemone" and "Boysenberry" 


Next is this cowl I made with a bunch of my Malabrigo Rios scraps. I love this so much. It came out exactly how I pictured it. I can't believe it took almost four years for me to actually finish it, but it's great. It's just moss stitch, changing colors when I ran out of one. I just magic knotted the yarns together, and changed them wherever the old yarn ran out, even in the middle of rows.




Ravelry Page: Rios Scraps Cowl
Pattern: None, I made it up IN MY BRAIN
Yarn: Malabrigo Yarn Rios, various


My first "Quick Win" project of Quarantine is my Purl Soho Bandana Cowl. I originally had another pattern in mind for this yarn, but I had thought I had two skeins instead of one, so the other pattern wouldn't have worked. I got this skein from my friend Annika, and I don't know what colorway it is and I'm too lazy to scroll through all of Malabrigo's colorways to check. It's a great color for me, though, and a great little cowl. Mine is a bit shorter than the sample as I only did three sets of decreases instead of the five that were written, because I ran out of yarn. I also had to knit it twice because I forgot how to read patterns. It's okay, I had the time.



Ravelry Page: Bandana Cowl
Pattern: Bandana Cowl by Purl Soho
Yarn: Malabrigo Yarn Chunky, unknown


When I first designed Breony, I knew the original sample was going to go live with Tara. About a year after sending the sample to her, I grabbed this skein from her to knit a Breony of my own. And then I let it sit in my stash for years. I knew this hat would take only a few hours to knit, but I never cast it on. I'm thrilled with it. I made the brim a little deeper on this one than is written BECAUSE I COULD. I love the soft pinks in this yarn, and I'm super happy with how it knit up.



Ravelry Page: Breony
Pattern: Breony by Kat Riddell
Yarn: The Dyeing Arts Rogue, "Bermuda" 

As always, much love to you all. Every one of you individually is my best friend. You're doing great. 

Friday, March 27, 2020

Day Fourteen


So, clearly I'm still trying to adjust to whatever my new schedule is. It's weird. It's all weird. I love being home, and I love being by myself, and even I'm struggling with this new normal. My heart goes out to everyone who's really missing being around people and being in public places. This sucks, but we're tough.

I've pretty much stopped sample knitting. I don't know if I'm still mad at my vest for having the wrong increases, or if I don't love the concept, or if the weight of *gestures widely* makes the thought of "work knitting" just too much.

I very nearly cast on a laceweight sweater last week, but I reigned myself in and decided instead to focus on some quick projects that have been in my queue for an age and a half. Let me tell you, if you have the stash for some quick projects, they are GREAT right now. In just a day or two, you go from "a skein of yarn" to "new cowl!" or "new hat!" and that feeling is incredible. It's an easy win, and it's a sign of progress in a time when time itself feels meaningless.

So far I've knit a Purl Soho Bandana Cowl, a Breony (which I've been meaning to do since the original sample went to live with Tara YEARS AGO), and most of an Arikaa Cowl (it just needs a seam and fringe). I also finished my Rios Scraps Cowl, which has been on the needles since 2016 and came out EXACTLY how I wanted. I'm also doing Jessie Mae's MKAL, which I'm really loving right now—ribbing in the round forever and ever with medium-weight yarn? That's exactly what the doctor ordered right now.

Wednesday, March 18, 2020

Numbers On a Wednesday

1. No photo today. Sorry. Things are just weird right now and I promise I'll try to get better/figure something out as I adjust to this new routine.

2. I'm on leave from work this week, and don't know what the next few weeks holds. I don't like uncertainty, but I'm trying to be chill and not worry too much.

3. Yup, I'm isolating. Because I'm diabetic, I'm high-risk if I get COVID-19. I don't want to get it. That would be very bad.

4. I had to rip out like six inches from my vest sample last night because I figured the rate of increases for the v-neck wrong. It is now in time-out, because how dare I mess up math.

5. I finally finished my marled Old Harry! I don't know when I'll do a photoshoot for it (I mean, I have the time, clearly, but I'm also very invested in not doing my hair this week, so we'll have to see if I can find any motivation to make myself presentable).

6. I have already eaten through most of my stash of Quarantine Chips, which is kind of a bummer, but also to be expected when I am alone with a bunch of chips and no supervision.

7. Please be safe, kittens. Wash your hands, avoid large groups, and know that I love each and every one of you.

Monday, March 16, 2020

Operation: SJW

I’m participating in Operation: Social Justice, and 20% of the purchase price of all my patterns and collections sold from March 15th through March 31st will be donated to Transformation Project SD, an organization that provides education and resources to trans youth and young adults and their families in South Dakota.

Check out #OperationSJW on social media to see what other businesses are participating and what organizations we’re supporting during this project.

Friday, March 13, 2020

New Pattern: Cervid


I love wearing triangular shawls, but sometimes that much fabric is too warm, or sometimes I don’t want to worry about trailing extra ends through my food, or sometimes I want something that I don’t have to worry about coming loose or falling off while I’m out and about.


Cervid fills all my stylistic desires without any of the hangups that can come with my beloved shawls. The triangular front of the cowl grows out of staghorn cables, one of my favorite motifs.


Cervid is worked flat from the bottom point, then additional stitches are cast on for the back neck and the cowl is worked in the round to finish.


Cervid is available on Ravelry and is 20% off through Monday, March 16th, with code CROWN.



Monday, March 9, 2020

Back in the Saddle


Has it really been two weeks?? I'm sorry for the prolonged absence, but in an effort to clear up this tendinitis flareup I've been strictly no-knitting since the last time I posted. I finally let myself try knitting a little bit yesterday, and I'm feeling all right. Not quite 100% yet, but it felt really good to get a few rows in.

I wish I could say I've been using the time I would have spent knitting the past two weeks wisely, but mostly I've been messing around online and wishing I could knit. I did manage to read a few books and get ahead on my goal for the year (here's my Goodreads profile, if you want to be friends).

My plan is to keep taking it slow on the knitting front for this week—two weeks is a long break, and while I'm eager to get back into some long knitting sessions, I know my thumbs are still a bit weak and inflamed and need to be treated gently. 

Monday, February 24, 2020

Weekends


Back on Friday, when I started planning my weekend, I thought I'd spend two long days getting a bunch of knitting done. I have a pattern to finish writing up, a couple of samples on the needles, a sweater that only needs half a sleeve left to go, and I really thought I had a good chance of getting a bunch of stuff caught up on.

Well, Saturday morning I had to admit to myself that I'd let my apartment get into A State, and it really needed some love. So I spent all day Saturday cleaning and WOW my apartment is so much better now. I even finally repotted my orchids after having that on my to-do list for months!

So I didn't get any knitting done on Saturday, but yesterday I sat down in front of Netflix with my vest sample and banged out a few inches. As you can see, the fronts and backs are joined and it's finally starting to look like an actual garment. This is my favorite stage of a project, right when everything comes together. Obviously, there's still a ton of knitting left to go, but cruising along through the body of a garment is one of my favorite things to do.

Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Back to Routine


That long weekend was just the thing I needed—I spent most of a day in bed and finally kicked the end of a cold that I've been fighting for a couple weeks. I got a pile of costume alterations done for the dance studio as well, and I've only got three more to do now, which shouldn't take too long. I also finished the upper back of this vest sample and am on the second upper front now. It's at that stage where it looks a bit strange and twisted, but it'll even out and start looking like an actual garment pretty soon.

It feels good to be back to my regular routine after a couple of different weeks. I'm definitely a creature of habit! Last night I spent several hours in the kitchen, which I haven't been able to do for a hot minute, and I made brownies and a coffee cake and a sweet potato and chickpea skillet that I'll probably have for dinner tonight. It was great to know that I had time to cook without worrying about having to get somewhere, and it's so nice to finally have cake in the house again, I really missed it!

Friday, February 14, 2020

Color Shawl


It's been kind of a slow week here. I took a few days off from knitting because I've been having a tendinitis flareup, and I'm definitely missing it. I gave in and knit a little bit last night and felt okay, and I'm really looking forward to getting back into my usual groove.

(Unlike other problems with my hands, my tendinitis doesn't necessarily make it so I can't knit, and knitting doesn't tend to bother my thumbs at all, but the only real treatment for it is total rest.)

A couple weeks ago I pulled out these two skeins from The Dyeing Arts that I've been holding on to for a couple of years now and cast on a new shawl. I've been thinking about what to do with these skeins for a while, and now that I'm finally working with them I'm really enjoying seeing how all these colors work up.

Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Astrateia


Astrateia is a generously-sized lightweight shawl with a simple lace pattern. Featuring a garter border and a picot bind off, this shawl is perfect for draping over your shoulders or wearing around your neck. Designed to work with both solid and variegated yarns, Astrateia is both a portable project and a wardrobe staple.


Astrateia measures 61.5in/156cm wide and 27in/68.5cm deep and is currently 20% off on Ravelry with code HUNTRESS.


Friday, February 7, 2020

Updates on the Crud Front


Gosh, it feels like it's been FOREVER since I've spoken to you all, and I'VE MISSED YOU, KITTENS. It's been kind of crazy since my last post, so let's catch up:

-Saturday my mum and my sister and I went to Omaha for the day. It was tons of fun—we ate at our favorite sandwich/salad place, we went to a huge used book sale, and we stocked up at Trader Joe's—and even the long drives were enjoyable. Between the drive there and the drive back (about two hours each way) we saw twenty-three hawks (!!) and three bald eagles (!!!).

-Sunday I was exhausted and starting to feel a little crummy. I spent pretty much the whole day at home, did the bare minimum of housekeeping, and spent lots of time in bed with Lee Lee.

-Monday I felt like a colony of fire ants had moved into my throat. The doctor said it wasn't strep, probably a cold, and I tried resting and drinking fluids. Monday night I also had to go back into the dance studio to fit some costumes.

-Tuesday the cough and sinus congestion kicked in, and they've been holding pretty steady ever since. I don't know what this crud is, but there's a lot of crud going around this town (small town with four schools AND a major university = a petri dish of weird viruses that we all just keep passing around forever and ever).

So that's pretty much been me. I skipped choir and dance this week in favor of trying to get more rest, but I still don't feel like I'm on the upswing yet. In one tiny flash of good news, I did finally manage to get all the math and construction notes done for a new pattern for summer and have cast on the sample, which I'm so far finding ridiculously charming.

Wednesday, January 29, 2020

Short on a Wednesday


I yoinked this picture from Instagram because it's fitting week at the dance studio and I've had no time to take real photos, or even do much knitting! Monday was my night off, so I decided to do absolutely no work and just watch GBBO and work on my marled Old Harry. I finished the first sleeve and got the short rows finished on the second sleeve, and I'm pretty pleased with where it's sitting right now.


Monday, January 27, 2020

Monday


Happy Monday, kittens! I hope you all had a refreshing weekend! I spent Friday evening clearing out my storage closet and I threw away SO MUCH STUFF. It's crazy how much stuff I've been carrying around (and how much stuff my parents have been carrying around for me!). I still need to organize the things I'm keeping, but that space was really weighing on me and it's great to have that done.

I had a lot of swatching to do this weekend, and I managed to get it all done despite distracting myself at every turn with other things. I finished the shawl sample and it's blocking on the futon now, and I started this new cowl sample that I'm already completely charmed by. I initially cast this on as a way to avoid swatching, but I finally forced myself to set it aside just long enough to get the swatches for a couple of summer patterns done.

Linking up with Crafting On

Friday, January 24, 2020

Bordering Along


Here we are, Friday once again, and I have finally reached the border of this shawl sample. There's a part of me that would like to get the rest of it banged out this weekend, but I have quite a bit of swatching and grading to do, and that's going to take precedence right now. My goal is to finish the shawl up over the next week so I can get it written up next weekend, and I think I'm well on track to do that.

Like I mentioned earlier this month, January's always weird for me. I think my plan of just rolling with it and not trying to get lots of stuff done has worked, and I'm feeling pretty good about how this month has gone. I have a lot of big projects and goals I'm working on this year, and I think this sort of gentle start was the right way to go about this month.

I have finally started the most recent season of Great British Bake Off, and I'm looking forward to watching more of it this weekend while I catch up on some swatches. I'm also really close to finishing the first sleeve of my marled Old Harry. I'd hoped to finish that sweater this month, but that's looking a bit ambitious right now. It's not a big deal, though—even a February finish will leave me with plenty of winter to wear it! 

Wednesday, January 22, 2020

A Pair of FOs



Today I have not one, but TWO shiny new knits to share with you! Over the weekend I finally got around to photographing these, which have been waiting for me to take photos since the first week of January (I know, I know). Before we get into my first official FO of 2020, let's catch up on an unblogged one from last year.


You might remember this CYOA Tee that I wanted to knit for the OAL last year. I finally managed to finish the top in November and, well, this happened. I'd tried swapping out the ribbed collar for an i-cord one, and while it looked GREAT, it didn't actually fit over my head. So I threw the whole thing on my dining room table and didn't fix it until after New Year's. It took half an hour to fix.


I didn't swatch for this because I am a rebel, so it's a bit tighter than I'd planned, but it still looks great. I wish the shoulders were a touch wider, but that's all my fault, and only other people who make clothes or really care about fit will notice, so it's all fine.


Ravelry Page: Villainous CYOAT
Pattern: Choose Your Own Adventure Tee by Allyson Dykhuizen
Yarn: Cloud 9 Fiberworks Cumulonimbus, "Dr. Seuss Villain"


Now for my first official FO of 2020! I finished my Arachne on New Year's Day, so maybe I'm cheating a bit to say that I've already finished a sweater this year, but I don't care! I'm absolutely in love with this. My row gauge was off, so the whole thing is longer than written, but I'm really pleased with the finished length. I also love a deep yoke, so I'm not bothered by the extra length there as well. The black and the speckled green work as well together as I planned, and the whole thing is pretty close to my idea of a perfect sweater.


I alternated green skeins throughout, because I was using four skeins from three different dye lots. Overall, I think they blended wonderfully, although you might notice that brighter green band right underneath the colorwork. I have no idea how that happened. I didn't introduce a new skein there, I was doing the same thing I'd been doing in the rounds previous, and as you can see, it stops after a couple inches. It's a mystery.


Ravelry Page: Arachne
Pattern: Arachne by Andi Satterlund

Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Midweek


I did some thinking, and I weighed my remaining yarn, and I decided that yes, I can squeeze another repeat of the main body in before starting on the border.

I'm not really knitting a whole lot right now, which feels kind of weird. I probably could bang the rest of this shawl out in a couple of marathon sessions, but for whatever reason I haven't felt the urge to just sit down in front of Netflix and knit for three or four hours. And that's fine! It just always feels a little weird when I'm in the "ebb" part of the ebb and flow of knitting.

Last night I did a couple of quick sewing jobs for a friend and made one of the best fry ups I've ever eaten. Tonight, choir starts back up again, but I still have a few weeks before bell choir starts up and my Wednesdays get really crazy. 

Monday, January 13, 2020

Plagues and Socks


Hello from the land of ear infections! I came down with some awful plague last week that made the skin start peeling off the roof of my mouth (I know, I know, it's disgusting), but after a few days in bed I am back to 100%...except for an ear infection that turned out to NOT be part of the plague. Apparently my ear is so swollen that the doctor couldn't even see the membrane without using the baby-sized ear speculum, so that's fun.

In my effort to knit more socks this year, I banged out a few rounds on this pair that I started after finishing xmas knitting last month. I've had the pattern and yarn for these socks since I was still in college (!!!!), so it's nice getting them finally knit up. My only issue with these is that I need to knit these on US1 needles, and that's just too small for me. I can handle US2 okay (they're not my favorite, and I need to take plenty of breaks), but my hands go numb pretty fast on anything smaller, so I'm trying to be real gentle with myself as I work on these. 

Wednesday, January 8, 2020

January-ing


January's always a funny month for me. It feels almost like liminal time, and many years I've struggled with wanting to start new things and having them crash and burn. This year I'm trying to take the weird sort of in-between-ness of the month and roll with it, and I'm trying to resist the temptation to cast on any new projects in favor of finishing up some WIPs.

I set this shawl sample aside in December (and, in fact, for quite a bit of November as well), and it's been my lunch knitting this week. It'd probably go a bit faster if I made myself sit down with it in front of Netflix, but so far I'm content with carrying it around. I'm  ready to start thinking about the border—I want just a garter stitch border, but I'm trying to decide if I should start it in a few rows or try to eke out one more set of lace repeats.

Saturday was my eleventh diabetes anniversary, and there's still a couple pieces of chocolate cake on my counter. I may or may not do some more baking this week. I really want this year to be the year that I maintain a sourdough starter, and I've been dreaming of sourdough biscuits, so maybe I'll try for those—assuming I can get a starter to maturity!