Sunday, June 24, 2007


My blog will be going on vacation with me for two weeks. I'll be in the mountains, no internet access, just me and sissy and E and pets and craft projects...

I have finished Rowan Ripple and will post photos when I return!

Wednesday, June 20, 2007


Firebird, my new love, moved in with me Sock Club package for June arrived today, from Blue Moon Fiber Arts. I think this colorway may be my favorite I've ever seen in variegated yarns, and that includes the often hauntingly beautiful Koigu colorways.

I also loved the April colorway, but wasn't too partial to the sock pattern that came with. Someone commented that the colors got lost in the shading created by the pattern's mesh sections, and I agree totally. So, I'm going to use that yarn to make a plain-Jane pair of socks from Nancy Bush's "Knitting Vintage Socks", which I cannot recommend highly enough for a good understanding of sock-making, toes, heel-turning, kitchener stitch and all...for sure, this beautiful yarn can be shown off to great advantage in simple stitches. That said, I do love the fancy June pattern that came with the Firebird yarn, and will use it.

Monday, June 18, 2007

"It is the sweet, simple things of life which are the real ones after all"*

I received my package from Gina, my delightful scarf pal from ISE4. How I love my sweet pink ripply scarf. I wonder if she made a ripple pattern on purpose, because of my ripple obsession. Well, it is divine. A true, cheery pink alternated with a beautiful pink variegated yarn, so soft, the stitches so pretty, the scalloped edging so true...there is something unbelievably touching about receiving a bit of coziness from a total stranger! And handmade just for me!

My new scarf posed for some glamour shots. As you can see, it has many moods.





My pal sent along as well the generous amount of leftover yarn (I can't wait to see what it becomes), some dainty stitch markers, a terrific little knitter's reference to tuck in my workbag, and some calling cards she ordered from, which came to me all the way from England. These cards are so magical--tiny little fairy calling cards--with a picture of my ripple afghan on one side, and my info on the other, with a quote from Laura Ingalls Wilder*. But the really nice thing about this gift is the reason for it: my pal noticed my love of Laura, and because she herself is a fan, remembered the bit in "Little Town on the Prairie" when Laura's ma and pa allow her to buy "name cards"--costing a whole quarter, they were truly a luxury item for the Ingalls family--so that she can have the things of other girls her age. So my lovely pal found me my very own name cards!!! But how could she have known that this is probably my favorite part in all of the Little House books? I am so incredibly touched. I often muse on the differences between my modern life and Laura's old-fashioned one--and compare them unfavorably--maybe I romanticize the past, but our world is so noisy and fast and somehow corrupt...yet, my new calling cards are the way I want my life to be--of necessity, modern ("new-fangled," Pa Ingalls would say), but like my knitting and crochet, rooted in the good things of the past.

Here are the special gifts:

Thank you so much, Gina.

Thursday, June 7, 2007

Vive L'Enfance!

As we near E's Goodbye Day at her little local kindergarten, I'm definitely melancholy. I've come to realize recently, more and more, how much I like things to stay the same, at least in their trappings. I live in the neighborhood where I grew up, in the house of my adolescence; E goes to my old preschool, and will move on next year to the school I attended for 12 years, along with my sissy. She spends summers in the very houses where my mother herself was once a child. I've brought A and E along with me on my quest for continuity; and, largely, it's worked out for all of us. E is going to have a mostly sweet growing up in this neighborhood--she's already known the daily walk through the calm streets, through the iron gate, down the church walkway under the overhanging trees and past the blooming roses, up the marble steps to her classrooms full of kind children and lined with casement windows. I took that walk, and sat in those classrooms, when I was five. I know, I know, it won't always be perfect, I romanticize, but as long as I can recognize my surroundings, and recognize myself there, how well it fits! And childhood, although we are moving tomorrow out of one phase, can last as long for E as it rightfully should.

E has a little corsage for Goodbye Day, orchids for her refinement and innocence, and rosemary for remembrance:

Long live childhood!

Monday, June 4, 2007

A New Afghan and Some Random Yarn

I've almost completed the second scarf for E's head teachers--the first a red feather-and-fan pattern from "Scarf Styles," and the current one in moss green, a simple lace pattern from Knitty. This is the one I used for my scarf pal's scarf. I'm using the other recommended yarn, a silk-wool mix, a little more warm-weatherish than cashmere.

In the meantime, have begun a vintage striped blanket in a relatively inexpensive Paton's pure merino. Anyone reading this, you really should check out this link. Her blanket is so evocative and appealing. Plus, there's a very clear picture-tutorial. I love my palette, but as crochet can do, the wool is working up into a sort of rough, unyielding fabric. I remember some of Grandma Eva's afghans having this texture, and I guess I'm willing in this case to forgo the tactile for the aesthetic...

I'm also wondering what to do with two balls of VERY cheery cotton twist given to me by Megan--who ultimately rejected her first ripple in favor of more subtle hues. I still can't help but love these, and I really want them to become something:

Any suggestions?

Also, a word on dinner. I must air my grief. How to please everyone all the time, expediently and even healthfully? It just doesn't seem possible. How many times has E rejected my offerings and made herself waffles for dinner...tonight, however, I've been inspired by Faycat, whose lovely blog always has incredibly appetizing food pics as well as great recipes. So, I'm now off to concoct my version of her latest pasta dish and accompanying salad. I really believe that tonight, we'll all be eating the same food. Thanks, Faycat!