Intermission

In between making the socks and starting the next larger knitting project, I chose to go for instant (well, as instant as knitting gets!) gratification. These baby booties are for my goddaughter’s unborn child. I knew I would miss her baby shower last Saturday, so I started these that day, and finished them last night. The rainbow yarn was worsted weight from stash, the pattern made up as I went along.

Completed Knitted Socks

This is the pair of socks I finished yesterday, a requested Christmas gift for middle granddaughter. The yarn is Cascade Heritage Sock, and was a delight to work with, soft on the hands (and hopefully on the feet!), and it didn’t split even with sharp pointy needles. The pattern is Intersections, by Marceline Smith, from 52 Weeks of Socks, Beautiful patterns for year-round knitting. The book was one gifted me when I knew I was going to be making this pair, but had not yet found the yarn; one of the other knitters at 6 Loose Ladies has decided she’s done with knitting socks. Well, she’s right – I will definitely use this book! I’ve already marked a dozen or so of the patterns.

I did these socks two at a time on a circular needle; especially with the patterned leg, it made it much easier to keep track of what I was doing and make them both come out the same. Changes to pattern: I did not put the texture on the foot, as these will be boot socks, and I didn’t want to imprint the tops of her feet with a texture no one would see anyway. I also changed the heel, as I like the slip stitched heel for durability. I used a US size 1 needle for the feet, and went up to a size 2 for the legs, for a more gentle pleating affect from the cables, balancing softer cables with durability. I haven’t yet blocked them – and I may not; socks get blocked quickly enough in the wearing.

Good News, (Not Very)Bad News

I finally had a window of opportunity to borrow a 4WD SUV large enough to transport the new washer, and was able to drive up my hill, and a neighbor was available to wrestle it into the house, and I got the old one loaded and off-loaded at the transfer station. The good news: IT WORKS! The first load of laundry was run through it on Friday. It has more capacity than my last washer, but doesn’t do quite as good a job of spinning out the water – although that could be operator inexperience.

What’s wrong with this picture?

If you’re not a knitter, you won’t see it – but should be the same number of stitches on the needles right and left, but there are 8 on one, and 11 on the other! Knit group was spent knitting back to where I started the back of the heel of that sock, and starting it again. Second time was fine. Guess that’s the problem with knitting in company while watching British cooking shows!

Nothing Much

The above pretty sailboat was the one owned by my parents when I was born, and until my twin brothers came along a year and two months later. The Indian was a Herreshoff designed sloop, and Dad did well racing her when the wind was up. Three in diapers on a boat was more than my mother was willing to contemplate, though! But sailing was something my parents both encouraged, giving us the opportunity to learn in small boats on the local lake, and chartering larger craft on the Chesapeake Bay and the coast of Maine. This photo of a photo is the only picture I’ve taken since New Years, and it’s been that long since I’ve posted anything! Nothing much happening, nothing catching my eye, no completed knitting…

Speaking of knitting, I sat down to organize my thoughts about what I want to complete in the coming months? year? period of time?? I knew there was a lot on the list. Here’s what you all have to look forward to, in order (maybe):

pair of socks for middle granddaughter, the current project (late Christmas request)

a bumblebee pillow/toy for youngest granddaughter (to go with the tiny one I finished at Christmas, late Christmas request)

a pair of baby booties or two for the infant due to my goddaughter, due in February

pair of socks for one of the Quaker Knitting Goddesses, already started and #1 up past the heel (request)

some washcloths/dishcloths for a friend who likes using them

another cousin sweater, for the fourth cousin; he’s requested a mosaic knit colorwork sweater

hat for a friend who saw the Christmas stockings with colorwork trees on them, and wants that design as a hat

I have the yarn set aside for three sweaters for me; I’d like to do at least one this year; I also have yarn put aside for the Andrea Mowry Nightshift shawl, also for me, with yarn that was gifted. I probably will fit one of those in between knitting for others.

And then there are the UFOs. Things unfinished that I’d like to get off the needles include a linen stitch baby blanket that doesn’t have a designated baby for it; a prayer shawl, lace, but the intended recipient died before I could finish it; a sweater from homespun spun by a friend who requested a brioche sweater, and then dropped off the face of the earth; a very plain, warm and utilitarian sweater I am reknitting for myself, reusing yarn from one I knit decades ago and wore out.

ALL of the above I should be able to complete from stash. Most is already contained in discrete bags, with patterns if patterns exist.

 

 

 

 

What I Did in 2022

I traveled, although not as much as previous years – no trip to Florida, New Mexico, Texas, Canada – but much through New England (the above photo Portland, Maine), and down the eastern seaboard to Maryland, Virginia, South Carolina. I usually travel with at least one kayak; I paddled in Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont (of course; I live here!), Connecticut, New York State, Maryland, and South Carolina, usually twice a week or so through the season. The most open water was on a bay on the coast of Maine; most of the rest was rivers and lakes and ponds, and the northern reaches of the Chesapeake Bay. There were a few outings to pull invasive water chestnut in New Hampshire and Connecticut, and I helped out with the Great Northern Canoe Trail Peddle/Paddle event on the Missisquoi River.

And of course, there is knitting, always – scarf and shawl:

Sweaters for cousins, and one dog:

Fingerless mitts and mittens:

Hats – one for me, the rest gifts or donations; three adult, two for children:

A couple of pairs of socks, these for me:

Two sets of Christmas stockings:

And a couple of toys:

I have requests to start off my knitting for this new year – there are a couple of outstanding Christmas gifts to granddaughters (a pair of socks, and a large bee to go with the little one), another monster for an infant to be born in March (and baby booties and socks, but they are so small they hardly count!), another cousin sweater – and then maybe I’ll get to one of the three sweaters for me for which I have yarn set aside. 

It’s less than an hour until the new year turns over here. Wishing you all safe, healthy, rewarding and productive lives in 2023!

A Hat Knitted for ME!!

As you may have noticed, most of what I knit is for other people. I took time between other projects (I still have two promised Christmas gifts for granddaughters to complete) to make myself a warm hat – one that fits better than my other warm hat, which is always trying to crawl off my head. This was completed last night, at 6 Loose Ladies Knit Night. Yarn: someone had given me that very nice heathered gray wool singles, and a novelty yarn (Filatura Di Crosa, Missoni Bombay, a wool/acrylic blend), and another single spun soft orange wool which I ran with the Missoni for the colorwork. All in stash, of course. The pattern was made up – figure out how many stitches for the ribbing, figure out what kind of pattern fits into that, knit until I ran out of one of the yarns.

I read through the next pattern for socks for middle granddaughter, but didn’t actually start them. This weekend, I am back at my sister’s and will get them started – a New Year to start a new project! Not that it was uneventful getting here – I went down my driveway to load up the car, and it had a flat tire. I am fortunate to have helpful and competent neighbors; I took it next door, and the neighbor put air in it, was not confident it would hold, and put on the spare for me. Thank you, thank you!

May all of you have a peaceful and joyous 2023 –

Christmas in Northern Vermont

The house here has very frilly flowers – the cyclamen above is in the middle of the dining table. And on the kitchen island is this amaryllis:

With several layers of petals, and two stalks of flower heads, it is the most exuberant I’ve ever seen! I added the bee; my youngest granddaughter requested a knitted bee for Christmas. I’ll make her another, larger one, but this one is very cute – and provided all the biologists here with a pollinator for their plants. And, being so tiny, it was a very quick knit. The black was from my aunt’s stash, and the yellow and white from mine. I slightly modified the pattern from http://www.chemknits.com/2009/11/bzzzzzzz-knit-bumble-bee.html

However you celebrate this season of the year, and the turning of the calendar to the new one, I hope you and yours are healthy, safe, warm and fed.

Starry Hat

I finished this hat Friday evening, just before leaving to come to Connecticut. I delivered it today, as a first birthday gift for the great-grandson, having missed his party yesterday – it was a good choice, as it turns out he needs a hat. It is only a little big for him, and should last a couple of years, if it doesn’t get lost first! The red yarn is Caron Simply Soft, left over from knitting this same granddaughter a pair of colorwork mittens several years ago; the white is a couple of unlabeled yarns from stash. The pattern is adapted from one I found in a library book – I don’t have it with me, but if any of you knitters really want to know, I can get that information. I was pretty liberal with the directions – different yarn, different striping, I-cord added at the top, knitted edge instead of crochet…

I also delivered that set of three Christmas stockings with trees to that family, so there’s now about one pound less in my stash! Not that anyone can tell by looking!

Tomorrow I expect to spend with a friend for a knitting play date; I’ve not seen her for a while and it’s a chance to catch up. I’m not sure what I’ll work on; I’m not really ready to start the bumblebees that should be one of the next projects, and I don’t yet have the yarn for socks requested by the middle granddaughter. Dishcloths for a friend, maybe? I’ll figure it out in the morning.

Feline Knitting Help

Smudge decided I could knit better with a warmer lap, and settled in to help me knit the last of this set of three Christmas stockings.

And here they are, completed except for embroidering on the names; another knitting project took precedence as it’s for a birthday party tomorrow! If I am able to get out my driveway and through the snow to drive to Connecticut, that is – I’m not counting on it. The stockings are for the oldest granddaughter; the birthday gift for her one year old son, so I’ll be handing off a pile of knitting.

For the stockings, I used every bit of the oatmeal colored yarn left over from the sweater I knit for this granddaughter a few years ago, and all of the yarn left over from knitting the last green cousin sweater – I even BOUGHT YARN!! Gasp. I didn’t have anything in stash that was close to the color of the softer green. I also used a ball of a mohair/acrylic blend (the blue-green), and oatmeal I had left from a sweater of mine, and a random donated ball of a darker oatmealy color. I should weigh the stockings and see how much yarn I eliminated from stash – but not tonight! And now I have a request from a neighbor for a hat using those colors and trees; I can do that, but not until after I finish Christmas knitting and the sweater for the next cousin! And maybe a hat for me; I need a warm hat that is a little larger than the one I’ve been wearing. Either I knit it too tight, or my head has swelled… But I blather on, and should get to bed!

Knitting With Dogs

Yesterday I had a play date with a knitting friend, and ended up playing with Honey a good bit of the time. It was pouring rain, and she was bored – and hasn’t learned to knit yet! Then today, at Six Loose Ladies knit group, we saw the solution if your hands tend to fly up into the air –