Big green thing

The olive roots sweater is no longer the greenest thing around, nature has taken over!

The cables are my constant friends. Cables forever. (I’m starting to get tired of them)

At least both sleeves are finished! But these yoke rows are long. Looooong. I’ve been making slow progress:

But now? I have a sweater design due later this summer. So I’ve got to tuck this aside and power through that!

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More plants!

This space is still nominally a knitting blog. And I actually have some to show you. But I keep forgetting to take pictures. Why? Because it is spring! And spring is much more exciting than an olive green sweater that still isn’t finished.

I may be unreasonably excited about that big black cube. But it is going to turn my compost heap into a compost factory. And that’s exciting, in my world.

The peas, beets, radishes, and lettuce seedlings are up.

No parsnips though. Actually, that’s not true. There are 3 parsnips in the bed where I planted them last year.

I know the seeds need to be planted early, maybe I’m missing that window? Maybe I should plant parsnips in the fall and let them overwinter as seeds?

While weeding the bed that will hold broccoli and brussel sprouts (it’s next to the fence, the neighbors’ grass always tries to move in) I found strawberry seedlings! So now I have a strawberry basket. We’ll see if I can remember to water it all summer…

And I highly suggest artisanal ice cubes for your next project.

Violets and mint are both edible. I will have the prettiest lemonade this summer!

Reggie

Dear Reggie:

old boy

You were “three or four” when we adopted you, and you’d never been inside a house before. We had just bought our first house and were so excited to welcome you to our family. You went on ALL the hikes and walks. 30-45 minutes twice a day. It was wonderful.

sleepy boy

We’ve moved a couple of times. Been through some epic winters and gorgeous summers. Sure you ate the butter off the counter more times than I could count. But you were always a Good Boy.

snow dogs

Your brother Jake loved you. Moxie-cat would have loved you too if you’d just sit still for her. But when the babies joined our family you were so, SO gentle with them.

good boy

And so patient.

patient boy

It’s been a long time, you lived with us for 12 years. Your muzzle went white, you clearly couldn’t hear anymore (which was really just as well when the thunderstorms rolled through.) It was so sad to say goodbye this weekend. Not a day goes by that I don’t miss you.

16 years

Signs of Spring

It’s been a very cold April. Fourth coldest on record in some parts of Vermont. But in the last two weekends we’ve finally had some sunshine. There’s been family time in the garden:

I’ve planted radishes (rainbow radishes, Windsor will always add), peas, parsnips, beets, and lettuce. Plus volunteer garlic, as you can see from the photo. I’m also doing a garden bed of annual flowers from seed, and some of those go in before the last frost too.

I also have a resident in the rhodedendron this year. Can you spot her?

According to the Internet it takes 11 to 13 days for cardinal eggs to hatch.

Succulent love

My collection of succulents just keeps growing. I love them so much.

The newest teacup resident is named Rosetta. The first one I got, Willow, is starting to grow some offshoots, which is super exciting for me. I’ve never had a succulent happy enough to propagate that way before. The next one back (Gwen) had her offshoot when I bought her.

I call these little babies the Pleiades, even though there aren’t 7 of them. But there could be, I mean, there’s more space in that bowl! And another very happy succulent lives here:

But again, he was beginning to bloom before I brought him home.

Then there’s my home-grown succulent kinder-garden (thanks to Karin for that name!)

I got 5 out of 5 leaves to root! I’ve added another 6 to the plate recently. We’ll see how my success rate holds up.

This sweet one is too big for a teacup. So for now he’s still in a plastic pot, and nameless. (and apparently you can see my dirty sink in that photo too. Hooray?)

Palette cleanser

The big, green sweater continues to be big and green. Pretty boring to photograph, and honestly pretty boring to knit right now. What I needed was a palette cleanser.

I found and awesome garter stitch hat featuring a cool block of CC yarn. The problem was, I found it on a baby’s head at daycare. But I snapped a quick photo of the hat and posed my quest on Instagram. I needed to find the pattern.

Lucky for me knitters have good memory for this sort of thing and someone figured out it was the bicolor hat before I had a chance to search Ravelry myself. I bought that pattern and learned the whole thing is actually knit flat! Very cool construction.

The infant hat needed 45 and 16 yards of yarn. So I pulled some good choices from stash, and with a little help

I got the whole thing knit up over the weekend. It really was a perfect palette cleanser.

Now I’m back on the big green sweater, and making great progress.

Dryer balls

If you’re like me you’ve got a lot of little yarn balls around. They’re too big to just throw away. Maybe you’ll use them in a colorwork project someday? But let’s be honest, they’re different weights, brands, textures, fibers…

They’d make a nice Snippet scarf, but eventually you get bored of knitting rectangles. (I have three gallon bags of these scraps)

If you’re like me again, you hate dryer sheets. But just can’t bare to spend $10-20 on felted wool balls.

So here’s my solution, wrap those wool scraps up into pretty balls. Make sure they’re loosely wound, and about the size of a large navel orange.

Carefully (so they don’t come unwound) stuff them into a cotton sock or some pantyhose or something.

And toss them into the washer and dryer with your clothes. Depending on how vigorous your laundry routine is you might need to put them through a couple of times. Eventually they felt and shrink down a bit.

Although you can see I wasn’t paying attention and got some superwash blends mixed in there. Still, they’re felted enough they won’t come apart!

Like your laundry scented? Add some essential oils. It’s noticeable and refreshing but not too strong.

If you’re like me, you’ll get carried away. And end up running out of dirty laundry for all those felting loads before you run out of yarn scraps.

This week, on the needles

What am I knitting this week, you ask? More olive roots sweater. It’s big, it’s dusty green, and it’s still in progress. These days I’m on a sleeve!

But, it’s only the first sleeve.

The other thing in this photo is a swatch. And actual swatch for a garment in a gorgeous marled yarn that’s not quite available yet.

You know what that means? It’s a potential new design! Yippee!

WIP

It feels like this sweater has been a WIP forever. Which is kind of ironic since I started it in 2018 and I totally have at least one sweater that’s been “in progress” for a decade.

 

But I’m finally finished with the body and have started on the sleeve! It’s just a tiny cuff right now, but at 48sts around it goes so much faster than the body did. Once I knit both sleeves they get joined to the body and I will just have the yoke and the collar.

Slow progress, but I’m getting there.

Simplest Necklace

Does this technically even count as a project? I’m going to say it does, since it involved about 100% more crochet hook than my usual crafts. Crochet hooks are tricky little things! And of COURSE I insist on using the tiny one and the fingering weight yarn. But since this is just a crochet chain, it still didn’t take long.

This necklace may be simple, but it fills a very important role. It gives Willow something to grab while she nurses. Otherwise she’s distracted, looking around, and grabbing everything else she can reach.

The beads are silicone, I rescued them from a very ugly commercial nursing necklace that was too long to be functional. The yarn is handspun, it has sparkle in it which seemed appropriate for a necklace. It also has alpaca in it, and the halo may be a bit itchy. Time will tell if I can tolerate it or not. If I can’t, I can always rescue the beads again.