Wednesday, March 17, 2021

SPRING SNOW IN THE ROCKIES and some KNITTING.


Best Pecan Bar I have had in years.
(as you can see, I ate most of it before I thought to take a picture)


Little Oaks Sweater
the girl loves it, though I need to get some buttons.


Autumn Blocks Cardigan was a fun knit till I got to the sleeves. Then pattern reads; increase 2st 
 every 5/8'. Oh , and stay in pattern---but no info where to start 10st repeat pattern so everything meets up 'in line' for the yoke. After several attempts and grafting out pattern, not to mention hair pulling and messaging a knitting podcaster in Norway for advice. She messaged me right back, which I appreciated and said ' I had to imagine it in my head and go from there.' What????
 I think I figured it out and off I went, so far I think it will work, but the proof will be when I get to the yoke. 
I love European patterns because they give minimal information, unlike some American patterns that can be 20 pages long, with way TMI,  that only confuses the knitter....me.  But, I would have appreciated a little more info on the sleeves for this pattern. I do feel a little like I can now do any pattern or I will when -and if the yoke works! 

Scandinavian Sweater Book


Another small top finished that has been sitting on the shelf for to many long....years. 
I have one more finished top that has been hanging around for years that I hope to have done next month. My hope is to get through these finished tops and start making more NEW tops. I have a thing for running fabric through a sewing machine.....so relaxing.


Snow pictures taken early Sunday morning before the Blizzard really turned up the snow dial.






 We survived the Spring  Blizzard here on the Front Range. When it was all said and done I believe we got around 30" of wet heavy snow. The blizzard ended Sunday night and by Monday afternoon already so much had melted, being sunny and in the low 40's. The above picture is Tuesday morning and the snow is melting fast. The city did come through and plow our street Tuesday morning at zero dark thirty, plowing frozen snow/ice into our truck, as well as blocking our driveway with a wall of ice snow. We dug that out early on Tuesday wearing t-shirts, again sun out and temps rising. We have more snow, (so they are saying) coming in tonight and then again early next week, nothing big, just an inch or so......
I do love the fickleness of Colorado Spring weather and find it entertaining listening to all the folks that have spent little time in this great state complain about the late season snows. Ha, wait till they experience a blizzard in the middle of May, and yes I have been through a couple of those too. These snows is what fills our rivers and reservoirs, water that will be much needed during the summer. 
I hope to see a couple more snow drops, measurable snows come through before summer turns on the heat.

Wednesday, March 10, 2021

A GREAT WEEK AHEAD FOR ME





 Things here the past week has been happening in the kitchen. Artisan Breads have been made, and the Mr.states 'it's the best he has ever had'. Wow, now that is an endorsement! Also yesterday, made a total of nine quarts of chicken bone broth, we were dangerously low, maybe only one quart on the shelf...yikes. Just for fun, I made bacon date wraps and we ate them for a lunch. 

Little Oaks Sweater is finished, (except for buttons) but no picks yet ;-]  

Reading: Dark Sky.  C J Box is always a great escape read.
Shadow Box By Luanne Rice.  A 3 star, didn't hold many surprises for me, I finished it in a day to see if I was correct as to who the murderer was, I was correct.

Now for the exciting news:  I have my first vaccine scheduled for this morning! I could hardly sleep last night knowing the end of this pandemic is within sight.
Second great news of the week; we have a snow storm coming. A real Rocky Mountain, upslope March snow......which means a prediction of 2-4 FEET of snow. Those totals will get more accurate by Thursday night but this storm is working up to be a whopper. I love a good RM Spring storm! Today, we will run errands ahead of the storm, gas for the snow blower, googles for the Mr. so he can clear all the snow. Due to the pandemic we don't need to stock up on food items, our pantry will due fine.

Wednesday, March 3, 2021

SEEING THE LIGHT


As we are all aware of-it's been a long year! The anxiety of COVID, of a loved one being stricken with the virus and worse, the economy, financial issues, family separations and the ISOLATION.
I am a serious homebody and thought I was doing well the first 11.5 months of this crazy stay at home thing. Heck, I have been practicing this isolation thing most of my life! But, these past few weeks I have really been struggling, not sure if I'm just over it all, (not a good enough excuse to give up now), am I experiencing the end of winter blues, or do I see the light at the end of the tunnel , (my name goes on the vaccine call up list Friday.) I think its all the above! 

Tuesday, I said to Eric; "lets go up the mountain and get lunch by the river." Oh my gosh, it was glorious, 60 degrees, up in the mountains, pine trees, snow, sun, the river, fresh air, very few people and lunch...out, not made byEric or myself, and a beer... from a tap!  Everyone keeping their distance, masks on when not eating! It felt like getting off a space ship vacation, ( no, I have never been on such a trip, remember I am a homebody),  back to earth and normal living. 

I hope to be vaccinated within the next two weeks, then Eric and I can breath a bit easier.









I re-soaked some skeins of yarn to get more 'pig tails' out of the skeins. A class I took said to 'whack' the skeins wet on a hard surface. I thought, yeah right. It worked beautifully! 4 skeins out drying in the sun this afternoon. I often wonder what my new neighbors think of me, whacking making for a very loud noice and then seeing hanging skeins. I tell myself, they will get use to me.....haha.


I see spring popping up through the ground.


Friends I visit out walking.



Mountain Quilt finished and to be donated.


Altheda done and even worn once. Only change I made - was short sleeves! Much more practical for Colorado weather. This is a fun and easy knit, I will probably make another or three for my girls.


READING: 
The Power Worshippers, by Kathrine Steward.
This book is well worth the time to read and understand how the 80% of American White Christians are working within the GOP political framework to control the politics and laws of this country. It is eye opening and very frighting. 

 Mary Lincoln: by Ruth Painter Randal
Excellent book about Mary  Todd Lincoln. So different from other books about her, but then those have been written by men. This book is written by a women who spent endless hours reading Mary's correspondence to her family, friends as well as her enemies.  Also are the letters to Mary from Abraham, who was so very much in love with his wife!


Friday, February 19, 2021

QUILTS, PETS, SNOW


Another UFO quilt finished this past week. This half square triangle quilt was a bear to machine quilt. I had debated if it needed borders to square up the quilt, decided against it.... much to my dismay while machine quilting this monster. Half square triangles are cut on bias (something that should of been glaringly obvious to me) and anything sewn on bias MOVES, a lot. Lordy, quilting this quilt was like trying to herd cats to stay in a straight line. I could only quilt a couple of rows then remove the quilt , re-stretch and pin, repeat and repeat for two-three days. Finally ready for the binding....first few stitches and the machine broke big time. Took over an hour to release fabric that was jammed between needle and bobbin case. Next day machine went to the Chet, my machine fix it man! Binding was put on using one of my Bernina machines. All done and quilt is beautiful draped over the back of a couch.



We have been cold and getting snow as of late and loving it. Well, maybe not Sadie, our mini doxie. She does not enjoy any kind of cold weather. Presently she is under a quilt on the couch snoring away where she will be the remainder of the day.

It's been a rough week here. My daughter's beloved's dog will be put down Saturday morning, he has CA and nothing is to be done for Wendell. 
This is the part about having animals, (dogs), that I hate!!! We have had to put down 3 well loved pets and it is always so painful.  Now, to watch the pain my children are experiencing putting down their beloved animals is almost too much ;-[


 

Wednesday, February 17, 2021

KNITTING







I had spun this red merino/alpaca yarn last week and just love the color, but what to do with it since I only have about 5.5oz, (sport weight). After spending far too much time going down the Raverly rabbit hole , I chose Corners Edges Strip Shawl. This shawl will have 4 colors in it, (it's a BIG shawl) and I have LOTS of stash yarn to choose colors from, including a merino/silk blend. I am in no hurry to finish this project, just so it's done by the fall. Will we still be in a pandemic and in the house? I will say again, I have gotten done lots of projects in my year at pandemic home! 


Hot Pink or some might say Magenta...yarn for a Little Oaks sweater picked out by little B(gd). She does like her colors! This is a Cloudborn DK weight yarn and surprisingly it knits a beautiful fabric and very soft to the touch. Little Oaks is a bottom up sweater and I am currently on sleeve island of the second sleeve. Sweater knitting for my littles went much faster when they were babies, soon they will be in full size adult sweaters....better buy more yarn;-]

'Almost' over the finish line is a machine quilted, half square triangle quilt. As I was sewing on the binding my machine jammed and jammed good. Took me an hour to release the fabric from under the needle that was caught in the feed dogs. After getting everything freed up, the needle kept hitting the bobbin case and in a very bad way. Above my pay grade, so off to the sewing machine man! Ugg.

Reading is very slow on this end, just can't find much to keep my interest. I guess this would be called a 'dry spell.'

I went upstairs to get some water and carried my knitting with me, why I don't know. E noticed this and asked if I was carrying my knitting around with me so I could report at my soon to be physical that I was doing weight bearing exercise now. Hah, at first I was offended, then thought, that's great, yes, I will tell them about my (yarn) weight bearing exercise routines so I don't have to listen to any blah blah blah. 

It has been cold here, like really cold and SNOW! Expecting more snow tonight and tomorrow--
Happy Dancing.

Get on over to 

Wednesday, February 10, 2021

ALL THINGS SPINNING



100% Merino 


50% Merino 50% Alpaca
(on the wheel now)


Merino and Silk


 I am slightly obsessed with spinning at the moment. Every spare moment is spent at my wheel trying to perfect the consistency of the yarn I am trying to produce (spin.) It is a wonderful thing that I have so much fiber to practice on, mostly natural white merino. Any skeins that I like after spinning up the merino, I will dye, (another favorite 'thing' I love to do, but dying takes place in the summer.)
Spinning, I forgot, is meditative! Doing the same hand/feet movement over and over again is calming to my mind. Sometimes I spin in silence and other times I may watch a spinning class on Craftsy or a knitting podcast on You Tube, anything but news/TV. Life doesn't feel so out of control and angry at my wheel! 
The reading front in my life is....rather dry! I'm sure it's just a phase and hoping it passes soon. In the mean time, I'll be at the wheel!

Wednesday, February 3, 2021

DEAD OF WINTER---NOPE, NOT HERE


Altheda Sweater is coming along so well that I put it aside for the week. This is a wonderful knit, but I'm questioning the yarn choice. I bought this as a kit from Woolly Thistle and their yarn choice is Plotulopi,
a lovely and interesting yarn to work with but oh so WARM and our winter is more acutely described as 
Little Summer! I've decided this will be knitted with short sleeves, more like a vest and then I 'll wear one of those little fans around my neck as a necklace.


Deciding if I should put a border on thisHalf SquareTriangle quilt to 'square' it up. 
HST quilt was pieced together several years ago and this is my year to finish 12 UFO quilts. HST is the 3rd quilt, (quilts 1 and 2 here.) to be finished in 2021. I am finishing the easier least time consuming quilts first, over the summer I will (hopefully) be able to finish a few of the hand piecing quilts. Sure hope we will be able to camp this summer, I get a lot of quilting done on camping trips.


Antarktis Shawl, this will be the 5th  time I have knitted the Antarktis Shawl. I must admit that I now knit this shawl not as the pattern is written word for word. I have no idea the name of the yarn, I frogged it from a shawl I was knitting about 12 years ago. 


Saturday afternoon a little spinning group has formed, and I am over the moon with this group! So much to learn - not to mention bringing out my wheel after a LONG hiatus. I wasn't aware that the way I draft has a name, I'm a 'back drafter.' Thought that was important for you to know.


First skein completely done! Im really smitten with this skein of red merino.
Of course now I want to know all things spinning. I am watching every spinning class on Craftsy,
who knew, so much to learn and so fun! When I bought my wheel 35 years ago I was left to my own devices, with the exception of one friend who was a spinner and she learned from ONE friend. Not really a broad base of info! Plus, their wasn't a lot of info out there, you know the internet and all. Now I can't believe all the info I can get my hands on....almost overwhelming, though exciting.



Wish I had put that border on this HST quilt. Started machine quilting and I already have to re-pin the dang thing. Of course it needed a border to square up---2" inch squares cut on the bias means: 
MOVEMENT/STRETCH/PULL MY HAIR OUT
I can quilt this------ I'll just take more blood pressure meds and spin when I can't take it any longer!

 Please visit Kat today, lots of good stuff over there.

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