Tuesday, March 31, 2015


is our Reading Tree.  When Briton and Hannah began reading in earnest, she and I painted this on one of the hallway walls.  Each time one of us would finish a book, we'd put its name and our initials on a construction paper leaf, and put the leaf on the tree.

I have decided to re-purpose the tree;  I'm going to turn it into a Knitting Tree.  Each time I finish a project, I'll write it down on a piece of construction paper (shape yet to be determined), and put it on the "new" tree.

It's going to be a little sad taking these leaves down, though I know some of them will be saved.  I'll try to keep you updated as the "leaves" "bloom."

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Days Passed

I don't know if any of you have opened accounts on ello.co, but I have.  I'm using it to release my darkest words.  I've been busy there lately.

Finished the Mother Bear bear:
I plan to make one or two more to send in this shipment.

Saw this somewhere yesterday --- I wish I could remember where.  How clever and pretty, huh?

Friday, March 27, 2015


That may, or may not, be a word, but it describes how I've felt yesterday and today.  Just no energy, no interest.  And not the usual Depression lacks, but a physical "blah."

Currently, I'm working on a bear for the Mother Bear Project.  I've made a couple of bears for them in the past, and it's a fun way to use leftover yarns.*  Plus, you know that somewhere, some child might have a new friend one day, and a reason to smile a little.

For some reason, Madeleine wants to curl up in my lap all the time lately.  This picture was taken a while ago, but this is what I'm dealing with, even as I type this:
This makes knitting a leeeetle complicated, as either the yarn or the needles moving trip her swat alarm.  She particularly likes chewing on bamboo needles.

The other day, I came across this photo on the Web somewhere.  This horse looks precisely like my horse, Star, when she was pregnant.  In fact, I sort of had to make sure that it wasn't a picture of her.  It makes me miss those days around the barn.

*Although they will provide yarn for you, if you'd like.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Bon Voyage

The Travelling Scarf starts its journey tomorrow!  The first leg of the trip is around 2040 miles, as the crow flies: Georgia to Nevada.  There's a note inside this envelope for each participant;  hopefully each knitter will post photos of her progress.  There's no time limit, and each of you is invited to make your stripes your own.  Stash-busting, away!

I found this in the front yard this afternoon --- there's a new bird in the world somewhere.

Monday, March 23, 2015

Starting Line

Here it is, the beginning of the Travelling Scarf:
There are two or three more colors I'm going to add before I send it to Nevada.  It will arrive on my size 4 square needles, ready for whatever the knitters waiting for it have in mind.  We're working with sock yarn; the scarf is 36 stitches wide, and each color is added for 18 rows.  To keep a nice edge, the first stitch on each row is slipped purlwise, and the last stitch is knit. 

Quiet days around here lately.  Knitting, reading, rain and naps.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Art From String

This has been one of those days where I feel like I've been busy all day, but there's nothing around to show for it.  Ever had one of those?  Exasperating.

It's mostly all been about yarn, as I've knit a little, then gone through my sock yarns trying to find out what I want to use to start the Travelling Scarf.  Then, since all the yarn was out anyway, I started making Magic Balls --- you know, tying strands of yarn together for a surprise future project.  In a few of them, I'm putting little gifts and goodies throughout.  It will be good to have something on hand for a swap, or just to send to a friend out of the blue.

Speaking of friends, I delivered some baby items to Miss Tamale's (the one who asked for the Boot Count) niece yesterday.

She had specifically asked for the hat, and I added the diaper cover.  She posted this on facebook after she got home:

How much cuter could a baby look in this?  The cat has it going on.

Thursday, March 19, 2015

And, We're Almost Off

So, this is the scarf we'll be making, out of sock yarns:
I'll get going on it over the weekend, and pass the particulars on to all the participants.  The route will be Georgia to Nevada to Oregon to Wisconsin to Illinois to Georgia.  You are invited to add as much, or as little, as you like to the scarf when it comes your way.  I'm hoping for some fun, and some stash-busting with this.

One thing, though.  What are your tips for keeping edges from rolling in on a stockinette scarf?  'Cause we'll want to keep this as flat as we can.

In other news, there isn't any other news.


Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Reservations for Five

So, knitters willing to contribute to the travelling scarf are in Nevada, Illinois, Oregon, Wisconsin and Georgia.  Did I miss anyone?  If I did, let me know via the comments section.  Also in the comments section, let me know which of these patterns you would like to use for the scarf:




 Then, let me know which weight you would prefer we use:: sock or worsted.  From which do you have most leftovers?

Here's a quick project I made up over the weekend.  DMC has a series of hats called Top This, and when I saw that there was a pink unicorn available, I had a surprise gift for Hannah!  There is a lion, too, which I would love to have, but the dominant color is orange.  I don't like orange.  I lose a chance at a silly hat.

I used my Color Grid to decide on what to use in a two-color pullover, and got this combination:
Wisteria/violet and a soft dove grey.  This is the front.  Knitting on 11s makes things go pretty quickly.

Saturday, March 14, 2015


I finished the Whipped Cream Sweater, but have already delivered it to the wearer, so I don't have any pictures.  Does anyone else have a problem putting together garments made in garter stich?  It's embarrassing --- I get the sides confused and have to rip seams out again and again.

I have a mini-elliptical that fits under the coffee table. which makes it possible for me to cycle while knitting or watching movies.  Somehow, I've overdone it --- my knees (bad to begin with) are killing me today.  One or the other will catch as I'm walking. . .  As Daddy would say, I've got a hitch in my getalong.  

Yes, I hurt myself while sitting.

Friday, March 13, 2015

Anything But

Substitute "blocking" for "Christmas" in this song, and my issue is perfectly stated.  This very moment, I have 3 scarves and 2 sweaters that are all finished except for being blocked.  Not that the weather necessitates finishing them quickly, but still. . .  I'm sure there's one part of the whole knitting process that everyone dislikes.  My mother hated putting things together.  My albatross is blocking.

What's yours?

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

So, Here's the Thing*

The travelling scarf idea is this:
X number of people agree to participate, and each contributes a length of knitting to a scarf when she receives it.  I'll start things here, then send what I've done on to The Next Person.  Next Person adds what she wants, sends to Next Next Person.  And so on.
  The scarf would almost have to be striped;  not everyone might feel comfortable doing some patterns --- for instance, yours truly with cables.  But all would certainly be given free rein to be creative within your stripes: Fair Isle or patterned stitch. . .  Or knit a length of solid color.  Do what makes your needles sing.

The issues to be resolved are:
The weight of yarn to use.
Whether to use a pattern, or just freestyle it.
What the final length of the scarf should be (someone needs to be The Finisher.)
What to do with the finished scarf --- donate?  Give it to someone who contributed to it?
Should we make more than one?  Let it be a sort of ongoing project all year --- with several scarves to donate or sell in November/December?
Cost.  The longer the scarf gets, the more it is going to weigh.  Which means The Finisher will have to pay more getting the scarf back to me than I, The Starter, did at the beginning.  Would everyone be willing to pay their shipping, whatever that may be?

 Reactions?  Suggestions?  Participation?

*OF COURSE, someone has already done this: http://www.ravelry.com/groups/traveling-scarves.  I like the idea of everyone in the group getting a scarf.  .  .

Monday, March 9, 2015


I am thoroughly engrossed in a book called The Map of Time.

I'm working on
the Whipped Sweater from we are knitters.  I suspect this will be the year of kits for me, which is one reason I'm thinning out my stash.

A couple of people have asked again about the Travelling Scarf idea.  Could you let me know, in the comments, whether you'd be on board?  If enough of you are interested, we'll vote on the design and the type of yarn to use.

That idea I had a while back about flying somewhere, spending some time in an airport, then flying back, has begun to appeal to me again.  Please tell me if you know of any airports that would be fun to spend several hours in.  Or, if you're willing to meet me at an airport for lunch or something before I fly back.  Strictly a one day adventure.

And, if any of you are going to Stitches South in Nashville next month, please let me know.  We'll try to find each other.

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

A Light at the End

Kathy has a son named Zach, who has recently begun selling some of his photographs online.  I fell head over heels for one, and placed an order.  This was about a week and a half ago.

Those intervening days have been achingly awful for me --- I've been low and weepy and my therapy session today was really hard.  I thought some take-out from a good Chinese restaurant might lift me up a bit.

Several weeks ago, I began keeping bottles of water and individually packaged snacks in my car.  It seemed to me I was seeing a lot more people standing on corners and at intersections with cardboard "Please help" signs, and I thought, if I kept things on hand, I could help them out a little.

This afternoon, after my tough session, and on my way to get my food, I saw an older man sitting on a curb with a sign that said, "Homeless.  Anything would help."  I got into a parking lot, got some water and snacks for him from the car, but when I got to him, he said, "Miss Ma'am, I got something to eat.  I need money."

I was stunned.  I walked back to my car, shaking.  What had just happened?  WHAT HAD JUST HAPPENED?

I managed not to cry until after I got my food.  I was just trying to do a good thing.  Even that turned to woe.

When I pulled into my driveway, I saw a package on my front porch.  It was the picture I ordered from Zach:

At the end of this miserable day, there was a light.

Thank you, Zach.  More than you can know.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015


More often than not, the final exam in my Intro to Sociology classes was
"You can invite any 7 beings* to a dinner party.  Who are they, and what do your choices say about your social rearing and expectations?"  I would always answer, too.

Today's Ten on Tuesday, then, isn't a stretch for me:
"What 10 Fictional Characters Would You Invite to Dinner?"
1.  Yoda 
2.  Hershel Greene ("The Walking Dead")
3.  Atticus Finch
4.  Hobbes ("Calvin and Hobbes")
5.  Colonel Brandon (Sense and Sensibility)
6.  Frank Wheatley ("Sling Blade")
7.  Crow T. Robot ("Mystery Science Theater 3000")
8.  Mrs. Tonitini ("Weekenders")
9.  Bennet Drake ("Ripper Street")
10.  Christina Drayton ("Guess Who's Coming to Dinner")

Charlotte (Charlotte's Web) will greet each guest with a personalized web.  Dr. Gregory House will provide piano entertainment.

*Fictional or not, human or not (Secretariat is always on my list.)

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Yesterday, I did a bit of driving around in the country, and at one point, came across a funeral procession.  It was pulling out of the fun...