Fiber Friday the Thirteenth

Fiber Friday the Thirteenth

Apparently, Mother Nature has decided that we will go directly from winter to summer… yep, temps in the upper 70’s around here this weekend. But, never fear… winter returns on Monday. Really, I can’t make this stuff up as you can see from my Dark Sky™ forecast…

It looks like I need to pull out some warm weather clothes…pronto!

Friday the Thirteenth should have some unusual links, should it not?

Starting with some motivating links:

Sometimes inspiration comes in an email: Santa Clara was spotlighted in Gauge Dye Works newsletter where I saw her Santa Clara and wow. I love it!

Or perhaps we should all do a little Knit Along of Bateaux Mouches from Churchmouse Yarns & Teas

Báirbre is really lovely as well!

Or maybe Fading Point?? Oh, and Miss Babs has oodles of Fading Point Sets…just saying.

Moving to the What am I getting myself into? links:

You know you might have lost your mind when you are contemplating knitting the Gansey sweater that Daniel Day-Lewis is wearing….

Or Jana Huck’s Dot Dot Dot…. Because we all need one more shawl and especially one with intarsia, right? (But, the colors in Strickwittchen’s test knit are AWESOME!)

Svetlana Gordon always has me saying wow, but then I see the hashtags… #icord #in-the-round #mosaic #phototutorial

Perle royale might seem like a good idea when you start, but this is lots of knitting and only in French….

Finally, the batshit crazy, you have gone off the deep end and need a knitting intervention links:

Ballerina Tea Cosy (hmmm, maybe Genevieve needs one of these for her IKEA kitchen…)

Clever felt and leaf One case where free is not necessarily good or using the adjective clever make it so…

If you are knitting for Barbie and Ken just put the needles down and step away from the knitting…

Or Textured Dresses with this bit of instruction: “The PDF pattern has 26 pages including an individual page for each of the 19 skirt designs, an index indicating level of difficulty and 4 pages detailing the knitted bodice with plenty of step-by-step pictures.” I mean really, just commit me already!

Sock Monkey Golf Club Covers? Ummm….no, just no.

Baby Cat with Baby Carriage… Craziest part? It’s not free.

Raccoon Slippers…for adults no less!

At Your Service Knit Cloth… in Sugar’n Cream and seed stitch. And, yes, I am strongly considering them… Oy vey, send help, would you?

Why jumbo yarn should never be used to knit a sweater…

For the “I never knit a gauge swatch knitter” (I think the designer did but I have no clue why, lol)

The Penultimate Boyfriend Sweater – knit this for the one you want to get away…

That is all I have for the week, Gentle Reader! FriYAY the Thirteenth might be a double martini happy hour, non? Have a good weekend, see you back here on Monday!

P.S. All these links were recently uploaded to Ravelry! That’s right, for some designers, it is always Friday the Thirteenth!

P.P.S. I have no idea what those darling little yellow flowers are! We saw them on our walks this week along the pathways.

Three on Thursday, Poetry

Three on Thursday, Poetry

April is National Poetry Month and today I am sharing with you three poems that I frequently think of or read. Poems that were introduced to me by my grandfather, poems I discovered on my own, and poems that I discovered through you…

Poem One:
Purple Martins by Carl Sandburg
If we were such and so, the same as these,
maybe we too would be slingers and sliders,
tumbling half over the water mirrors,
tumbling half over at the horse heads of the sun,
tumbling our purple numbers.

Twirl on, you and your satin blue.
Be water birds, be air birds.
Be these purple tumblers you are.

Dip and get away
From loops into slip-knots,
Write your own ciphers and figure eights.
It is your wooded island here in Lincoln park.
Everybody knows this belongs to you.

Five fat geese
Eat grass on a sod bank
And never count your slinging ciphers,
your sliding figure eights,

A man on a green paint iron bench,
Slouches his feet and sniffs in a book,
And looks at you and your loops and slip-knots,
And looks at you and your sheaths of satin blue,
And slouches again and sniffs in the book,
And mumbles: It is an idle and a doctrinaire exploit.
Go on tumbling half over in the water mirrors.
Go on tumbling half over at the horse heads of the sun.
Be water birds, be air birds.
Be these purple tumblers you are.

Poem Two:
Ode To Ironing by Pablo Neruda
Poetry is white:
it comes from water swathed in drops,
it wrinkles and gathers,
this planet’s skin has to spread out,
the sea’s whiteness has to be ironed out,
and the hands keep moving,
the sacred surfaces get smoothed,
and things are done this way:
the hands make the world every day,
fire conjoins with steel,
linen, canvas, and cotton arrive
from the scuffles in the laundries,
and from light a dove is born:
chastity returns out of the foam.
Poem Three:
The Journey by Mary Oliver
One day you finally knew
what you had to do, and began,
though the voices around you
kept shouting
their bad advice—
though the whole house
began to tremble
and you felt the old tug
at your ankles.
“Mend my life!”
each voice cried.
But you didn’t stop.
You knew what you had to do,
though the wind pried
with its stiff fingers
at the very foundations,
though their melancholy
was terrible.
It was already late
enough, and a wild night,
and the road full of fallen
branches and stones.
But little by little,
as you left their voices behind,
the stars began to burn
through the sheets of clouds,
and there was a new voice
which you slowly recognized as your own,
that kept you company
as you strode deeper and deeper
into the world,
determined to do
the only thing you could do—
determined to save
the only life you could save.

And, there you have my Three on Thursday contribution… want to see more? Head on over to Carole’s!

Unraveled Wednesday | 4.11.18

Unraveled Wednesday | 4.11.18

One of my absolute favorite things about any knitting project is the final step…blocking. From the yarn blooming, to the stitches evening out, to the wonder that happens when you pin out a garment – for me this is the magic of knitting.

I have been secretly working on my Lunar Phases MKAL – I have clues 1 and 2 done. Blocking of each piece was required before the final clue, so I thought it the perfect time to share the images of the first 2 parts. How this will all come together is still a complete mystery to me, but I must tell you – I just love how the colors I picked are working together. I achieved the exact water color effect I was hoping for, and my “pop” of color is so fun!

But, the pièce de résistance is my finished Cluaranach. Yes, I blocked it gently and I am entirely in love with her! She will be my new Clapotis, which I wore everywhere for years. I wish you could feel this yarn. Sadly, Lanas Puras Meloso Fingering is discontinued, but if you look on Ravelry there are some skeins available for trade or sale… just saying! You can see my modifications on Ravelry.

I am back to knitting sleeves for my Strokkur, and this freaking weather has had me wearing a warm sweater every day. While, I long for spring, Mother Nature seems to have different ideas. I am hoping that if I finish this blasted sweater I won’t be able to wear it until late next fall! Ha!

Now the reading… oh, my!

I finished The Beautiful Mystery. SO.Much.Good! 5-stars and I highly recommend it (and all of the Inspector Gamache series)!

I also finished Dan Smith’s The Child Thief. Dan Smith does not disappoint, and I highly recommend any of his books if you have not yet discovered him. The twists and turns in this book were unexpected and the ending has me wondering if there will be another book coming! I also finished I am, I am, I am: Seventeen Brushes with Death, which I found interesting, but there are parts that are more than a bit unbelievable. Both of these books had a short due date from the library and I could not renew them, so they perked to the top of the list.

I am also engrossed in listening to Jason Matthews Red Sparrow. I am more than half way through this riveting novel.

What are you making or reading (or both!) this week? If you wrote a post today, please leave the link to the post in your comment! And, thank you!

Tiny Moment Tuesday | 4.10.18

Tiny Moment Tuesday | 4.10.18

Sometimes, those tiny moments all add up to an overwhelming moment that makes you stop and contemplate how you got there…

Last week was one of those weeks.

It all began with this very simple devotion from Henri Nouwen. Simple, but impactful…Giving and Receiving. I am good at one and horrible at the other. I love Henri Nouwen’s picture of giving and receiving in a yin-yang image. I spent much of the week considering why I struggle with the “receiving” portion of this symbiotic relationship. In every aspect of receiving… truly. Steve could tell you a million times of me getting upset with his help in the kitchen. I am very much of the mindset that it is much better to give than to receive. Yet, these simple words were like an arrow to my heart. I need to work on being a cheerful receiver. It is not easy, and it feels very uncomfortable to be on “the receiving end” of the equation.

Then, on Friday, Kym ushered in Poetry Month with this beautiful poem from Derek Walcott. And with those simple words, another spate of arrows struck my heart. I have printed the poem out and it is hanging at my desk. I have read it multiple times since Kym posted it and each time it overwhelms me with raw emotion and, yes, tears. On the heels of Michelle’s 5-day Self-Portrait Challenge where she pushed us to look at ourselves in new ways. As usual, she pushed me towards those uncomfortable edges of myself, but I managed to steer clear of them and superficially participate in each day’s assignment. This poem, however, brought that discomfort front and center.

So, this week, my tiny moment is me.

I am not writing this post to garner well wishes from you, Gentle Reader – in fact, I seriously debated turning off comments for this post.

However, what I am closing with is a question or two for you; how you deal with those laid bare moments – whatever they might be. Do you push the difficulty back in the corner and ignore it? Or do you take a more pro-active approach?

How is it Monday already…

How is it Monday already…

…and why is it snowing again???

At 5PM last night, Steve said to me how is it Sunday night already? Where did the weekend go?

I could have used at least one more weekend day, or maybe two! Doesn’t a 3-day work week sound amazing?

Good things about the weekend:

  • The snow did not stick!!
  • There was a glorious amount of sunshine!
  • The forsythia and lilacs are holding their own against some bitterly cold nights.
  • There was knitting time, and reading time, and some other entirely mundane things (i.e. housework)

People asked on Instagram about the Friday cocktails… you can find the recipe here. Mod’s I made: we used Hendrick’s, no raspberry infused ice cubes, and no club soda. It is a very interesting flavor combination and I would absolutely make it again. Also, Steve thought that the raspberry-maple syrup would be a great addition to a beer! Ha!

Outside of all that, it was a very low-key weekend here. And, after last weekend it was most welcome!

My agenda for today? I have two library books due this week – so my plan is to get at least one done today! Monday’s are for reading, yes?

Now, when is the next 3-day weekend? Amirite?

P.S. A huge congratulations to Carole on her win on Saturday! I am so proud of her!

A Nebby Fiber Friday

A Nebby Fiber Friday

There is so much to share today, I don’t know where to begin!

First up… Cluaranach, she is finished! Now begins this great internal debate about blocking her. I am of the mindset this morning that I really don’t want to lose all the glorious texture. She needs a bit of a Soak™ wash, but maybe I will just lay her gently out to preserve the texture. TBH, I have never tried to do this before – preserve the unblocked knitting – and I am uncertain that it will work. But, maybe she will be just as wonderful all blocked out to show off the glory of all her stitches… What would you do?

Cluaranach: To Block, or Not to Block...

And!! One cleaned up hair cut FTW!! However, I am not likely to be able to “recreate” how my hairdresser styled it did on my own. In all honesty, I possess zero “doing hair” talent at all and I was very torn on what to do with my hair… cut it off or stay the course on growing it a bit longer. But, I am happy to report that I am staying the course! Ponytails (which are not beyond my skills!!) are on the horizon!

Next, my favorite Pittsburgher has some more Nebby-ness in the works. I am especially excited for Nebby #3, which is all about “People Who’ve Written Books Around Here”!! I can’t wait…and have added a few more books to my ever growing “Nebby Reading List”!

Did you see that Brooklyn Tweed has a new yarn coming later this month? The wool comes from Bare Ranch and their Climate Beneficial American Rambouillet wool and I am very excited as the wool is being dyed here in Pennsylvania!

MDK is hosting the “mother of all knitalongs“…

All the Facebook uproar over the past few weeks has me seriously considering my use of the platform, and thanks to Kym’s post I realized just how many things I use that I login to via FB. It is a bit daunting but, this post helped me unlink it from Spotify. Note…this worked, but not as seamlessly as Callie spells it out in her post. Pro-tip if you try this when you need to create a new Spotify account for them to transfer the data from your old account, open a new browser window to do it.

Today’s links are all about the sweater:

Isabell Kraemer’s Jaycee

Katrine’s Froya

Kirsten Kapur’s Cherry Lane and Foxhall Studio

Elizabeth Smith’s Stevie

Caitlin Hunter’s Tegna (which is not new, but showed up this morning in the “Ravelry Hot Right Now” queue…this would be the perfect summer sweater, just sayin’)

That is all I have for this week! Have a wonderful weekend and I will see you back here on Monday!

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