Sunday, January 06, 2008

YEARS END AND WINTER STORMS


There has been some downright interesting weather around California these last few days. Unlike over a million residents we've managed to keep from losing our electricity. We have a very nice generator wired into the house "just in case" but haven't had to use it. We did have three oak trees topple. All three came down around the same time and amazingly hit nothing of interest. It's always sad to lose trees. The wildlife use them so much and they can't be replaced within one's lifetime; they take too long to grow. We don't like to replant with pines though they are very pretty and grow rapidly. I like oaks. They don't use much water once their taproot is established and they make acorns which feed so many. Heck, I figure if we got desperate, say holed up during a pandemic, I'd be out collecting them myself. Hopefully, this will not come to pass. I like my lattes and other delights far too much.



I have been busy knitting away. I finished my felted boot slippers with mixed results. I, for some unknown reason, perhaps brain death, knitted them a size larger. One also escaped from the pillowcase I had put them in for felting. That one felted down fast and somewhat close to my foot size. The other one? I spent FOUR hours making multiple trips down to the washing machine carrying kettle after kettle full of hot water and resetting the machine. It finally felted close to the first one but they are both a bit big. With socks though they are perfectly wearable and I do like them a lot. I plan to knit myself another pair and duh, in my size. Hubby has expressed an interest so perhaps a manly pair done in browns and greys will be knit up sometime soon.




Sharon and I have started meeting "halfway" between our houses to spend a few hours each Sat. (when possible) knitting and I must say, It Is Very Nice and we're getting a heck of a lot of knitting accomplished. The ethereal Kim Hargreaves arrived in the mail and I've ordered my yarn. Sharon, who is in Ravelry, logged on and we found two people knitting "Storm". Sharon has expressed a desired to knit along with me which will be great fun. I'm hoping that another friend will also join us but that's more iffy. Feel free to join in! It should be a fast and fun knit. I'm eager for my Sheep Shop Yarn 2 to arrive so I can start swatching. I cut out a muslin this afternoon for a coat pattern and I'd like to get that done first. I also have my "to do" list that never seems to get shorter that my mother keeps adding to.



Sharon and her husband came over for New Year's Day. The men watched football and I assume moved now and again because the collection of dirty dishes in front of them changed. They would occasionally let out yells so I think things went well. Sharon and I holed up in my studio and knit. Sharon was a little cold but a quick pop into the hot tub helped cure that. She taught me the beginning of how to do toe up socks. I'm using a much heavier yarn, a superwash merino that was dyed locally. I think they will make good boot socks. I believe I am using size 2 dpn's. I declined the double circulars. It's just too much trouble with the cats pouncing on dangling ends. The magic loop cast-on seemed very complicated then things just clicked. I think I might like this a lot. I also made myself knit in the continental manner in the hopes I will eventually switch over entirely and stop my "throwing" ways. I've reknit the heel on the other pair of socks (done in a luscious Sundara yarn called "Dahlia) and finally worked out what I needed to have a snug heel. I think that my heels are "normal" but I do have rather wide feet. I spend most of my childhood barefoot. I tried the continental approach though I had done the cuff and leg throwing. My gauge was much looser so I frogged that back.



We took a look at another new book, Knitting Classic Style by Veronik Avery which didn't speak to me at all. I had mistaken it for another book so I am returning it to Amazon. It seemed like a nice book and I can't speak for how well the patterns are written. I just didn't thrill to any of the designs. Not every book is suitable to my tastes.

Speaking of mothers mine turned 84 today. She had requested a fruitcake with marzipan, she's from Wales after all, and I complied. Do you have any idea how hard it is to have a cake sitting around for a month and NOT eat it? It turned out very well and I sent large hunks of it home with her and my brother and S-I-L. Life has been very interesting and a bit crazed since my mother got wedged next to her bed for a few days. It started a series of events that have changed my life, and hers, in many ways. My oldest brother (I have four) has pointed out that I am now the parent and he's quite right. None of us have been very close to either my mother or to each other for most of our adult lives and this seems to have opened the flood gates. Frankly, at times I am pretty tired of it all but things are calming down and it feels right and good to me. My mother has shifted from confused and disoriented to being back to her feisty and sharp little self. She's finally adjusting to living in a facility with less autonomy (something that most people dread) but still very free with her opinions and very good at getting what she wants. It's been quite an interesting year. There was the ending of a very old friendship that took me by surprise. It had been ailing for a very long time but I had hoped that we could rebuild or somehow restructure. It had some glorious moments and some rather down times but it has always been so very precious to me. Other friendships have shifted as things in life tend to do and in one case started to rebloom in a most delightful way. I do love and appreciate my girlfriends.

EYE CANDY TODAY


In between storm fronts and around sunset there was some lovely light across the valley.



A totally gratuitous "Awwww" photo. I'm surprised they still have fur, they lick each other so much.






2 Comments:

At 8:47 AM, Anonymous Suzy said...

Elves! Elves! She has elf feets! Quite a feat of knitting, to be worn to a feet fete, don't you think? Now, for some bells on the toes, maybe, or fringe on the cuff? Or you could get into another hobby and needle felt flowers on them!

Sad about the oaks - they are so lovely.

 
At 3:31 PM, Blogger Elinoire said...

I for one am happy to be starting a new year. 2007 was too... something. Here's hoping we both get a little less excitement :-)

 

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