last night.

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Last night this happened. Really. I almost hesitate to share because I don’t want to jinx anything. I got out my wheel, and spun a little bag of leftover Hello Yarn Targhee in the Sprout colorway. I listened to a podcast, drank some tea, and watched the sunset.

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And then I went inside, curled up on the couch, and pulled out my Snowbird. It actually smelled sort of damp and musty, probably from being shoved in a bag at the base of my fiber closet since at least December 2012. The “hard” part of this sweater is done — now there’s only knitting the body and adding the pockets. (Okay, and seaming the collar to the body. That might be hard.) I have a growing list of baby and wedding gifts to knit, but I might just cut myself some slack and try to finish the stuff that I both love and have let languish. Let’s see if I can keep this up.

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In other news, I spent Saturday night with my parents, and after we celebrated my grandmother’s birthday, we enjoyed a fire in the pit that’s built into the brick patio behind their house. Boh normally has to stay in his box for family gatherings (he is not very good with larger groups, especially if they include strangers), but when there were only a few folks remaining, I brought him outside to enjoy the fire.

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I think he liked it. I know I did.

Thanks, you guys, for all of your kind comments on my last post and my unintended absence. It means a lot to know you’re still here.

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FO(s): lucy socks and shaking leaves handspun.

First, thank you all for your kind blogiversary comments. I can’t believe it has been four years, and I hope I’m still finding joy in this space four years from now.

Yesterday I finished my Lucy handspun socks. I had a lot going on this week, and it shows in these socks: one of them seems a bit tighter than the other. I’m sure with a bit of wear the snug sock will loosen up. I’m fascinated by the way my emotions find their way into my knitting, by the physical (and often, subconscious) expression of things often kept inside, and by the porousness of boundaries. Stress in one area leads to tighter stitches in another. So it goes.

Also, I love these socks. So much. (And for future reference, they were 64 stitch socks, loosely based on the deeper heel flap option of the Knitmore Girls Vanilla Sock.) I did a less than perfect job of splitting my yarn, and I bet I could have added another inch to the leg of each sock. I tucked the leftovers into a bag of lots of colorful handspun bits and pieces. Looking forward to doing something fun with those.

Speaking of handspun, this gorgeous stuff has been patiently awaiting FO photos and a blog post. It is Hello Yarn Finn in the Shaking Leaves colorway, and I spun it as a 2-ply squishy worsted. I’m not sure what this wants to be: a hat? a squishy, simple cowl? It has been sitting here on the coffee table so long that I accidentally recycled the envelope I used to make my notes on the yardage. I think I’ve got somewhere between 140 and 180 yards.

Also, it has become fully fall here, which means I’ve been wearing my handknits. See?

The unfancy socks and terra. At the same time. Life is good.

Today, after a bit of reading, I’m picking up my dear friend H. and her son, and we’re heading to the orchard for cider doughnuts and maybe some apple picking. Later, I’ll be packing, as my last scheduled research trip starts tomorrow — back next weekend. I’m bringing both knitting and handknits with me, so I’ll aim to at least document them both in the wild.

porch spinning.

Yesterday I brought my wheel to the porch and spun the singles for my second skein of my Cauldron/Rhinebeck mash-up yarn.

This one is Hello Yarn Cauldron.

And this one is SCF Rhinebeck. I was having so much fun that I plyed them together as the sky grew dark. (Dark = no pictures of the 2-ply. I’ll take a few tomorrow.) Porch spinning might be my new favorite thing. Lots more of that to come.

FO: rhinebeck cauldron handspun.

My rhinebeck-cauldron polwarth puffed up after a nice long bath, and now I love it even more. I even accidentally skipped the part where I count the strands and do the math because I just couldn’t wait to see it in squishy skein form. I’m going to conservatively estimate that this is about 150 yards of 2-ply worsted weight. And maybe I’ll be allowed to cast on if I can finish a book on postcolonial Vietnam today?

Last night I made this butternut squash lasagna. Which means I have delicious leftovers that should last much of the weekend. I didn’t have any mushrooms handy, so I upped the greens (used kale instead of chard) and sauteed them with onion and a carrot.

I think somebody is glad that it’s Friday.

a cauldron of rhinebeck?

Okay. You guys were totally right. All of my concerns about the way these two colorways (Rhinebeck, from SCF, and Cauldron, from Hello Yarn) went out the window when I wound this onto my niddy noddy and got to see it all together. Now it is hanging above the sink, and I can’t wait for it to be dry. The question of the day: do I have the patience to spin the other half of this, ply it together, and use it all for another eternity scarf or some kind of doubled over cowl? (Option B being to cast on for something NOW.) We’ll see…

FO: garland.

This is 268 yards of dk-weight navajo-plied Hello Yarn targhee in garland. This isn’t the whole four ounces — more like 3.25, I think. I filled a bobbin, let it rest, and started plying, and I’m not sure if I’ll make another mini-skein just like this, or save the fraction of an ounce for an all-mixed-up leftovers skein. I love this, and I’m starting to feel like I’m getting the hang of navajo-plying! Hooray! (Also, I’m still getting to know my camera, and these definitely don’t do the skein justice.)

Look! A reorganized spinning corner! I walked by this desk on Monday — it was about two blocks from my house. And then I backed up, picked it up, and carried it home. It fits perfectly into this little nook between the door and the heater, and now there is more storage space and work space in my apartment.

This is Spunky Eclectic Fiber Club corriedale in the New Day colorway. When I finished the garland, I just had to get something else started on the wheel…and suddenly I had two bobbins of this stuff. Planning to sit down and ply right after I finishing posting!

Yesterday was farm share pick-up day, and I gathered a whole bag of flowers in the fields. I love being able to fill my apartment with flowers I’ve picked myself.

And I’m knitting something new! More on this project next time.

red.

Enter my new camera. The old one, which, for the record, I’ve had to alternately shake/smack to get it to turn on for the last two years, up and died yesterday. I thought maybe it was the heat, but I tried every trick last night and this morning, and still, nothing. We’ve had a good run. Unfortunately, my life has become a money pit lately, and this didn’t help. (I may have spent the first hour of my day at the Honda service center in order to determine if the check engine light refers to something that impacts the overall drive-ability of my car. It doesn’t, so my plans for a weekend road trip are still on, which is good. The not-so-good? I will have to replace an oxygen sensor before my car’s next inspection. Oh, and I have a strut that should be replaced eventually. Can I apply for a fellowship to help with that? Ha.)

Anyway, it wasn’t until I opened the box that I realized my new camera is red! And I like it! Basically, I was looking for something that has a solid lens, wasn’t super expensive, had macro-capabilities, and used as much of the stuff from my old camera as possible, so I stuck with Sony. I can use the same memory cards, which is nice, but the battery for this baby is about half the thickness of the old ones.

Here’s where I was on Day 5 of the tour with my garland targhee singles. I’m going to try to spin a bit more tonight before Boh and I hit the road in the morning.

My textured shawl. I’m taking this with me — we’re off to see the friend who gifted me this fiber!

And a gratuitous zinnia shot to kick off the weekend!