Monthly Archives: March 2013

Today

Today has been a strange day. It felt as if I’d done nothing at all, really, but when I stop to look back on the day, I realize that I’d actually done a fair bit more than I’d thought.

First thing this morning, I made the chocolate chip cookies I wanted to bake yesterday but didn’t get around to. No pictures. Sorry. Didn’t think about the camera. Trust me, they’re good! I used my new cookie sheets, which I absolutely love!

I took a bag of frozen, shredded zucchini out of the freezer and made a batch of zucchini soup. I’ve posted the recipe before. If you’re interested, you can find it here. I can heartily recommend this soup; it has never failed to please and can be eaten hot or cold.

Then, this afternoon, I decided to try some gluten free baking, thanks to my daughter. I made whole grain gluten free muffins and, once again, they were really good! I blogged about them here.

And, we gardened.

garden 2013 007See all those dark spots? That’s where we planted tulip bulbs.

And John planted stuff in the garden, too.

garden 2013 003The garlic is coming up beautifully! I’m so pleased! Hopefully, we’ll get slightly larger heads of garlic than we did last year but even if we don’t, it’s so rewarding to see that it’s growing so well already.

John also planted the Walla Walla onions we picked up yesterday.

garden 2013 002He’s also planted some peas, with some sweet peas (the flower variety) mixed in. It’s definitely spring around here!

garden 2013 004My sympathies to those of you who are still dealing with winter.

Categories: Blogging, Garden, No Knitting, The Weather | 1 Comment

Knitting That Isn’t

Today’s post is about knitting but it isn’t. Or, I could say that it isn’t about knitting but it is. Oh, let’s just get on with it.

You probably know, because I’m sure I’ve mentioned it a few times, that I’m involved with Postcrossing, a world wide postcard exchange. If you’re not familiar with it, do check it out; it’s a lot of fun! Anyway, this week I received the perfect postcard, from one knitter to another. I just had to share here, because even though I’ve already posted about it on my Postcrossing blog (It Only Takes a Stamp), it’s about knitting.

FI mittensIs this not the perfect card for one knitter to send another? The mittens, according to Pirkko, the sender, are “provincial mittens from Finland”. Pirkko has four grandchildren and both knits and crochets. She also makes bobbin lace and tats, neither of which I know how to do.

Check out the inside out mitten in the second column from the left! Threads have been left hanging; I assume that would provide a little more warmth. Isn’t this the perfect inspirational card for any knitter? I can definitely see myself referring to this postcard for inspiration for a long time to come.

I’ve been trying to decide which pair of mittens I like the most but I just can’t. I really like the one at the top right but I also like the  mate of the inside out mitten; and then there’s the subtle colour work of the one at the bottom left. What about you? Is there one that particularly jumps out at you?

Speaking of knitting, there’s been absolutely none happening around here this past week. It’s been a busy one around here. John’s boss was here for a few nights, then my daughter arrived for two nights. I won’t say much about her visit at this point except to say that it was wonderful to be able to spend some mother/daughter time with her, short as her visit was.

Now that things have settled down again, though, I’m hoping to get those needles clicking furiously!

 

Categories: Just stuff, Knitting, No Knitting | Tags: , , , , , , | 3 Comments

A Brief Note

This is just a quick, brief note to let you know that I’ve made a few small changes to the blog. They may not be obvious at first, but I’ve updated the menu a bit and added a few more of my videos. There are no new videos; I’ve just incorporated them in one place and given each its own page. They’re all available under the “My Videos” tab, in a drop-down menu.

In addition to giving each video its own page, each page is dedicated solely to one video. There are no sidebars on any of the video pages and, also, no sidebar on the Links page.

And speaking of the Links page, I’ve added a few links to some of my favourite techniques and/or websites. If you have any good technique sites you think deserve to be included, feel free to recommend them. I’d love to check out your favourites and, perhaps, add them to the list.

Categories: Blogging, No Knitting | Leave a comment

Progress Made

It felt good to make a little progress on the Lowtide Cardi this week. I’d like to have made more, but I did have to wait for the blocked pieces to dry. Now that they’re dry, I’m hoping to make some serious progress this weekend.

The first photo shows all three of the bodice pieces and the second shows the back bodice. The next step is to join the garter stitch shoulder “seams” and then to pick up stitches all along the lower edge. Extra stitches are cast on at the underarms and the body of the cardigan is knit down until the desired length. Picking up all those hundreds of stitches will be the fun part… not! Once the body of the sweater is done, the live stitches are picked up at the armholes with more picked up at the underarm; the sleeves are then worked downward to the desired length as well. That’s one of the nice things about this little cardi. You can make the sleeves, and the body, as long or as short as you wish and, I must admit, I haven’t quite decided what length I’d like the sleeves.

Then, as I’ve said before, I’ve decided to keep a pair of socks on the needles for TV knitting and, simply, because John can use all the socks I can make him (I might have to cast on a pair for myself, too… mine are all starting to wear at the heels). I showed you the pair currently on the needles in the last post; it’s seen some progress as well.

moresocks2

I’m almost to the toe shaping on the first sock but I want John to try it on first; I’m a little concerned that the foot might be a bit too wide. I’m not terribly concerned but I do want to be sure it will fit properly. Once I’ve been reassured, it will be full steam ahead and the second sock will be cast on shortly after this one comes off the needles.

What’s the weather doing in your neck of the woods? Here, it’s a gorgeous sunny day and it has revealed some very grungy looking windows. I’ll be taking care of that little issue in a few minutes and a little later this morning, John and I will be heading over to the college where they’re, apparently, having a heritage seed exchange. We don’t have any seeds to exchange but it will be interesting to see what’s available.

It is definitely time to start thinking about the garden (too early to get out there as yet, but we can think about it).

Categories: Blogging, Cardigan, Garden, Knitting, Socks | Tags: , , , | 1 Comment

In Like A Lamb

Well, March certainly hasn’t come in like a lion; John keeps hoping it will but yesterday was definitely a “lamb” day. The daytime high was into double digits (12ºC) and it was sunny. Today looks like it will be heading the same way. I am not complaining! I love it!

yard0302_1

 

Most of the snow is gone now. All that remains is the snow that was piled up beside the driveway. Before long, the guys will be out in the garden. That reminds me; I should check on my garlic. It could be poking out of the ground soon.

yard0302_2

 

And the birds! When I took these pictures (about half an hour ago), it was absolutely noisy out there! I don’t mind that kind of noise, though. Outside my back door, spring is definitely showing as well.

spring flowers

 

It won’t be long  before there are flowers. Spring really is my favourite time of year!

There has been knitting, too. I’ve almost been a bit annoyed that I had to work this week. All I really wanted to do was work on the Lowtide cardigan. I had hoped to be a little further along than I am but sometimes you just have to put the needles down, you know?

Lowtide2

 

At this point, one of the lace panels for the front is finished and the second is more than half done. Then the back lace panel will be knitted and stitches picked up around the bottom edge of the lace panel and worked downward. Lastly, stitches will be picked up for the sleeves and they’ll be worked to the desired length. Sounds simple enough. I’m pretty sure that, once the stitches are picked up for the body of the cardigan, it will knit up quickly.

When I showed John the pattern, he couldn’t understand why anyone would want a sweater that doesn’t close at the front (apart from buttons at the lacy section). I tried to explain that this isn’t a cold weather sweater to keep one warm but that it will be perfect to wear over a short sleeved t-shirt at work but he just didn’t get it. Sweaters are for warmth, after all. I shall persevere!

Lastly, as I commented before, I think I shall keep a pair of socks for John on the go at all times. Socks are, after all, the perfect mindless knitting project, something I can almost knit in my sleep!

moresocks

 

John’s sweater is stalled in the design process at the moment. Even though I’m itching to get started on his sweater, I need to take the time to measure him and get some ideas and numbers down on paper. I’ve done a swatch and shown it to a few people for input. That was an interesting exercise.

I cast on 30 stitches on 4.5 mm needles for the swatch. After about 20 rows, I switched to 5.0 mm needles. I then showed the swatch to three men and three women, not by design; it just worked out that way. All of the women preferred the look and feel of the knitting on the 5. 0 mm needles while the men all preferred the tighter knit.

John and I discussed the merits of each gauge and I’ve decided to knit his sweater at the tighter gauge. I think the fabric will be more stable, with less stretching out and because it is slightly denser, it may be a little more durable and perhaps even a little warmer. Incidentally, there’s only one stitch difference over 4″ but I’m quite surprised at the difference that one stitch makes.

Categories: Blogging, Knitting, Socks, The Weather | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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