Lately I have been so consumed by life (much like the mother in the book you got from Jeanne) that I have utterly failed as a partner in this blog. Oh wait, that’s right, I’m a partner, and that means I have someone who helps carry the load when I can’t. I guess I performed the needing someone to help part of partnership pretty darned well, so I’m not an utter failure! Thanks so much for being there and keeping the conversation going while I’ve been under the weather and overwhelmed.
For those not in our out-of-channel communications, here’s what’s been up in the last month.
- Worst head cold ever (in bed for 3 days, but no fever, so not flu). I was home but so tired I didn’t even keep up with e-mail, much less feel like blogging.
- Traveled to Millington, TN twice for Navy business
- Traveled to Pennsylvania to work on and walk on Fair Winds
- Labyrinthitis (extreme vertigo) that put me back in bed for another 3+ days — I couldn’t concentrate on the computer screen without feeling nauseous…It’s now minor, but still troubling — I see the doctor again Monday.
- Marie broke her left ankle badly…I drove to New Jersey to stay with her in the hospital post-surgery. She went home after 4 days and is healing slowly — will need a second surgery in several weeks. She did get permission from her doctor for car travel, so Dale is picking her up right now and will bring her down here for 5 days. It will be a good change of scenery for her and a good break for Heidi who has been heroic through it all.
- Long, long hours at work while we struggle with resource allocation and strategy in the Middle East.
On Monday I head to Europe for the week, so will probably go fairly silent again, but this time I expect it will be for a far shorter period. At least I surely hope so!
On the knitting front, I have clung to opportunities to click my needles together and say, “There’s no place like knitting! There’s no place like knitting!” It has really helped me keep my sanity. I have concluded that I am absolutely a process knitter as it was so evident that just having 10 minutes to focus on the creation of stitches would slow my heart rate and give me a tiny escape in which I blocked out thoughts of the craze going on in my life. I found it very rewarding to have a tangible product — proof that I was moving forward on something! And move forward I did.
I finished the Fractured Fairytale Socks. And they are awesome. They have about an inch of negative ease lengthwise and I now know the perfect length for me. Working a simple gusset toe-up sock, if I start the gusset just when the sock reaches the crease of my thumb when slipped over my hand, the sock turns out at the perfect length. This will prove very helpful on airplanes when trying to check the size of a sock in progress. I wonder if it’s true for most people? The lattice is made with simple twist-left and twist-right stitch work and was fun to watch grow. I can tell you I was under more stress while knitting the second one and it is ever so slightly smaller than the first. And with the last pair that did this, I was under more stress for the first sock — also the ever more slightly smaller of the two. Do we see a pattern? It works out okay for me as my ankles are different sizes from abuse I’ve heaped on them over the years, but I will now think about breathing more as I knit. That seems to “even me out.”
I also made some real headway on the Cinnamon Tee that I started at the beginning of the summer. I am loving this fabric. The yarn is Elann Nilo and it is perfect for summer sweaters and tanks, though it doesn’t have much spring as there’s no wool in it. There’s cotton, linen and viscose — the latter adds a nice bit of sheen and some interest as it picks up the dye with a bit of a different intensity.
A Stitch Away From Genius is also making progress. I expect to even be able to wear it this year. I’ve knit it on the short side, expecting the bulky alpaca to stretch a bit. How about that, I’m actually planning in accommodations for my yarn choices. It seems so unlike me to plan ahead. Hmmm….
Midnight Moth is very nearly complete. I have 2 rows and the bind-off to go. Of course, these are at the hem edge, so they are very, very long rows. This is done in Elann Soie Bamboo, which I think they’ve discontinued. A shame really, the fabric is soft, as I’d expected, but is also quite warm. I didn’t expect that. I am guessing it’s the silk that adds that characteristic. I found the yarn to be quite splitty, but after adjusting to it, it was fine and I love how the pattern is turning out. I hope to have it blocked in time ot travel to Europe with me. Just the thing to add a dash of fashion to my garb.
I’ve chosen yarn to test knit your gansey cap, which I’m going to name Winter Sky…400 yds of fingering weight that is Tempted Good Grrl in the Helena colorway, a variegation in greys and light blues that makes me think of those winter days that want to be bright, but still have snow clouds hanging there. I know gansey is traditionally a solid, but this appealed to me and I wanted to see how it would work. Stop me now if you think this is wrong. I would have wound the yarn and cast on for this two weeks ago had it not been for Marie’s accident. It’s hard to use a swift while driving on the New Jersey turnpike. I’ll be taking it with me to Europe.
I hope to get it started tomorrow, but first I have to finish a project for Marie…a cast cozy. I’m making it out of Dream in Color Starry in the Gold Experience colorway. The stitch pattern is a variation on the broken rib stitch. I’m calling it the broken ankle stitch. I’m sure it already exists as something like “interrupted seed” or “broken seed,” but I’m claiming unvention rights regardless. It looks like a pretty cool Christmas Stocking, so maybe she can re-purpose it by then. I hope she’ll launder it first. In the meantime it should keep her toes warm and her leg dressed up a bit.