Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Our Adirondack Lake

Just back from Memorial Day weekend in the country. E is the fourth generation to summer (and fall, sometimes) at our little brown camp on the lake, and the third generation of girls--my mother and her sister Abby, me and my sissy, and now Hedgehog--to hold memories of this lake from birth, or as far back as a person can remember...

Once, sixty years ago, there was a white cabin with a stone porch:

peopled with our dear ones, and their dear ones:

We're all there now, my mother alone from her generation, and the rest of us from ours, in the white and brown camps next door to each other. The pine trees around the house immeasurably tall, the water very cold, the weather wildly changeable, my grandmother's hydrangeas and her low stone walls and paths all still there, and the creaky dock, and the stubbornly peeling white boat house...

Sissy and I were joking that every night there we get the weeping whoo-hoos...it's hard to adjust to the quiet there. But after dark falls, we lock what we only semi-jokingly refer to as Bear Door and get out the craft projects. For that alone can stave off the whoo-hoos--it is cozy as can be to sit up with Sissy late into the night, knitting and crocheting, gossiping and laughing uproariously over our needles...

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Busy Crafters

The first beaded bracelet knit up quickly on size 0000 needles...although I have eyestrain from knitting with what are essentially sewing needles...I hope the colors aren't too frou-frou for E's teachers; they are rather pastelly and glittery-pinky...fey (as in fairy-like), just E's taste...

I do like the dragonfly clasp:

And while I've been dealing with beads, A was finishing his Imperial Walker. He used the spray booth that E and I got him for Father's Day last year for the first coats, then did the weathering and faux-dirtying. Plus the joke. I think it's great:

Pippin snoozes through it all, as usual, oblivious until food is in the offing...

And sweet to my ears...my mother, who swears she's a total wash in the needle arts, looked at our Ripples and commented casually..."I wonder if I could learn to do that..." I'm treading lightly, but I have very high hopes for her ultimate indoctrination...perhaps at our next Ripple Clinic (which, I believe, is tomorrow).

Monday, May 21, 2007

Heaven's in the Beads

Remember when Laura and Mary and Pa find the sparkling Indian beads left along the creek banks, in "Little House on the Prairie"? Such treasure, beads are. My little package came today from Earthfaire, and I must begin stringing for E's teacher's gifts, tonight if not sooner. How tantalizing, as good as food:

I also mentioned the finished scarf pal scarf, in cashmere:

I'm pleased, although I certainly did see some fancy footwork out there on the scarf pal website. But this one is soft as soft can ever be and pretty, I think, although maybe not the most elaborate...it smells good, too, because I like to pack my works-in-progress with sweet-smelling soap in ziploc bags. I try to get a scent by theme. This was Burt's Bee's orange, because my pal said she was fond of fruits but not florals.

Then there's dear heart Rowan Ripple. I think I'll just call her Rowan from now on. She's almost done, alack alas:

Here's my fave color run:

And here's a cozy moment: me, my Sissy, E, and our three blankies--finished giant Lion Brand granny, Rowan, and Sissy's worsted Ripple:

Friday, May 18, 2007

I Have Finished a Scarf

Yes, it's true. I have completed a project. I used to be a consummate completer, but lately my lust for newer and better projects, more and more of them, has left me with with an inundation of works-in-progress...but, yes, I have a full-on scarf for my scarf pal. This has galvanized me to complete two afghans tonight. They are so very very near to graduation. One is Rowan Ripple, and I shall be sad to see her go out into the world. She is like a daughter to me. Okay, don't tell E I said that.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

The Trees are in Leaf

It happened so suddenly! I mean, not suddenly at all--I watched closely as the knobs showed themselves, and the buds, and the flowers burst, and the pollen drifted, and the little green baby leaves appeared...and then suddenly yesterday, after a really fierce windstorm left foliage and debris all over our street, I looked around and all the trees were thick with their summer finery.

And I am in a literal storm of projects. They consume my every waking thought, and all my spare moments. I have become completely obsessed with yarn. I mean, obviously I'm obsessed. But I'm at a new level of obsession. I have five, count 'em, afghans on the needles--two ripples, Lizard Ridge, two granny 'ghans one of which is just one giant square, from a Lion Brand kit. I must say that their color combo is quite ingenious--when I unpacked the yarn, I wasn't totally thrilled, but all together it has a very nice effect. I'm also still working on gifts for all the teachers--knit beaded bracelets for some, lacy scarves for others. And several pairs of socks, still. And my International Scarf Exchange pal's scarf, a narrow lacy cashmere confection.

Sissy and I showed our friend how to ripple. She is beginning a baby ripple in a beautiful shiny twisted yarn in colors I love. Just spreading the joy a little...

Thursday, May 3, 2007

Spring Beads

I've begun work on a little end-of-school-year project, knit beaded bracelets for E's kindergarten teachers (there are four of them!!) and head-of-school. She's leaving her cozy little church nursery, my alma mater, for first grade at my other alma mater a few blocks away. If she ends up at our college, we'll be three for three! I am really haunting my old stomping grounds with a vengeance...

The beaded bracelets are based on a wonderful kit, Bead Soup, from Earthfaire, a website chock full o' lovely, lovely beads. I've ordered a few times from them, and my orders have come lovingly packed with pretty ribbon and tissue, and generous samples of extra beads besides. I'm a big fan of their particular brand of customer TLC. Their bead mixes are inspired. And I adore working with the teeny weeny little knitting needles, from size 0 to 000! It's easier than one might imagine.

In honor of my newest endeavor (as per my mania, the ninth current work-in-progress on the needles!!!), I purchased an inexpensive little pale blue china dish to hold the beads--I like pretty containers for beadwork, so that I can admire the little sparklies as I go.