foliage.

oct six mile1

oct six mile2

I stand in pretty much the same place to take my pictures of the reservoir near my house, so you can really see how much the leaves have changed over the last few weeks. Yesterday was the perfect day for a walk through the falling leaves.

bread inside

bread marmalade

We baked a loaf of no-knead bread, and enjoyed it with delicious marmalade brought home from a friend’s summer in France (thanks, K!) as our dessert last night.

joshandboh

Also, I thought you all might enjoy a picture of Boh’s “Um, can you wake up now?” technique. He has certainly made a new friend this weekend!

More knitting soon, I promise.

hiyahiya.

hiyahiya1

Whoa. Yesterday I felt compelled to do something about those needles with the other-than-smooth join. They were driving me crazy! The internets told me that a LYS is having a sale on everything this week, so I dropped by to look ONLY at needles. I was debating between 12 and 16 inch addis, and the (super nice) salesgirl asked if I’d seen the 9 inch hiyahiyas. I didn’t quite understand at the time that 9 inches was short enough to work them on circs the way I’d knit a hat, but at half the price of addis, I grabbed 2, as the join looked so so so smooth.

After one round with the hiyahiyas, I was ready to write this off as a failed experiment and give these needles away. And then I went to ravelry, stalked these needles in forum posts, and realized that it takes time to get used to knitting with needles that have a less-than-2-inch tip.

hiyahiya2

So I tried again, focusing on keeping my hands relaxed, and boy does this speed up the sock knitting! I’m not sure if I’ll use these on all of my socks, but I’m going to try to complete at least this plain-vanilla-sock with my new 9 inch hiyahiya as part of a “get-to-know-you” experiment. As you (and I) can see from this picture, I was getting a bit of laddering with the annoying needles. Not so with the hiyahiya.

sockprogress

Have you guys tried these needles? What do you think?

Other things occurring around chez rooster:

bread

I let this no-knead loaf to rise extra long (about 18 hours for the first rise) and I think that is the trick. One of my best loaves in recent memory.

soulwindows thirdbob

I did A LOT of spinning yesterday, and finished the third bobbin of Soul Windows just before bed last night. This last one has more green and brown than the other two bobbins, and I am interested to see how it will look all plyed up. Still keeping my fingers crossed for enough yardage for socks. I may start that tonight.

bohandbone

Also, Boh asked me to tell you that he did A LOT of work on his bone collection while I was spinning. They all know now who’s boss. (Boh.)

On today’s list: making pickles, plying, prepping for a meeting with my advisor, practicing some rusty language skills, and all sorts of other things that may or may not begin with p.

taste-testing, peas, pesto.

jaminaction

Strawberry-balsamic jam on a slice of fresh-from-the-oven homemade bread. Not a bad start to Sunday morning.

compoteinaction

Strawberry-rhubarb-fresh mint compote over plain, local yogurt. A mid-Sunday morning snack.

pickled sugar snap peas

Deb does it again — saw this recipe for pickled sugar snap peas over at smitten kitchen, and had to mix up a batch. I can start eating them this evening…

pesto

More green in a jar. In the spirit of eating everything in my share, I chopped up the remaining garlic scapes, picked my basil stems clean, tossed a few walnuts and a generous helping of olive oil into my mini-cuisinart and began blending, adding more olive oil and some salt and pepper to taste to get it right. My new favorite sandwich, courtesy of the folks up at P’s farm, is toasted bread (in a cast-iron skillet), cheese, pesto and as many greens as you can fit into a sandwich — fried egg optional. Yum!

But where are you, you may be wondering, on that sock? Is there a chance you’ll make the KAL deadline? I don’t even want to show you what Boh looks like this morning. He’s concerned. Very concerned. He thought the weekend’s canning adventures were over, and then yesterday he watched as I left for about an hour, Border’s coupon in hand, and returned with 2 more books on pickling and preserving…

sock2gusset

I did get a few solid hours of work on sock number 2 in yesterday, thanks to the very last episode of Season 2 of The Wire, and some knitting podcasts. I’m in the midst of the gusset increases, and if I can turn the heel and get an inch or two of the leg done today, I just might be able to eek out a full pair before it becomes July.

break-up pancakes.

breakup pancake

The lines between real life and blog-life are hard, and I’ve been ignoring this space this week in part because I just don’t know how to write this post. You all know the boy through this space — his hands are in the food photos of the last 8 months, our adventures are pictured here, I’ve grown comfortable writing posts full of “we’s” and “usses,” and now…

Now I will miss those traces of him here. No anger, just sadness to work through. Sometimes the fit just isn’t quite right, and no amount of wishing or wanting on either side can fix that. I’ve never cared this much for someone in this way, and thus, I hurt more than I thought possible.  We’ve had a week of tears, quiet walks in the woods, long talks, and, moments ago, a physical goodbye dictated by a research project. I thought it would be horrible for him to be away so long. Now, it seems a good thing, as time and space are probably what we both need in order to heal and transition to friendship.

I’ve never done this part before — the hurting that comes after something so meaningful — and I’m at a loss. Also, I never make pancakes. I like savory breakfast food. But today, I had half a cup of buttermilk in the fridge and saw a link to a recipe over at smitten kitchen that seemed just the thing.

castironpancake

breakuppancake2

These are the best pancakes I’ve ever made, and I’m not going to lie: I think they helped a little bit.

Last night I made some granola for the week:

granola

And last week, in the immediate aftermath, the most beautiful bread came out of my oven. See?

pretty bread

The boy and I have each received some TERRIBLE break up advice that we are choosing to ignore as we work through this, but I got something really good from a dear friend yesterday on a long walk in the rain: do something for someone else.

I’ve had a really hard time knitting or spinning this week — too meditative for the way I feel — but this bit of advice has helped me to pick up the needles today. I kitchenered the first sock of the pair of thuja I am working on for my uncle. I’m heading home for a few days next week, and I would really love to give these to him. I worked a few inches of the cuff of the second sock today, and the squish of this cascade 220 superwash felt really good in my hands. Here’s a picture of my progress — socks in the foreground, dear snuggling companion in the back.

bohandthuja

Thanks for being here, dear readers. I know this is a lot to lay on you, but it feels good for me to write it down here. I imagine there will be a narrative of recovery, of hopefulness, and of willingness to do this all over again buried somewhere in the subtext of this summer’s knitting and spinning progress. I’m lucky to have good people in my world to take care of me right now, and I know it will get better. It has to, right?

inching along…

I didn’t post this weekend because I felt like I had nothing new to tell you — slowly making progress on my pinwheel (which NEEDS to be done this week), reading a lot of books, occasionally chuckling at the dog and his pouting, baking bread. You know, the usual. And then, I figured that while you might not enjoy me explaining these things in infinite detail, you might want to see the pictures. So that’s what I’ve got for you today.

jam-ming?

Yesterday, while in the grocery store oohing and ahhhing over the strawberries, I decided to make jam. I love those little Ball jars, and they were on sale. Done and done. Once I arrived at this point (see photo) — the “bubbling mass”, as The Joy calls it, I reached a bit of a conundrum. The recipe directs you to set a timer and leave the berries alone until the beep. Then, you are to tip the pot so you can see the bottom to determine whether the liquid on the bottom is demonstrating a “tendency to set”. I ended up allowing my bubbling mass to simmer for double the allotted time, after which I think I talked myself into the presence of said “tendency”. It seemed awfully runny when I spooned the mixture into jars, but a few hours later, after a full cooling and some refrigeration, it seems that I have jam (even if it is not quite as sticky as I’d like). I made some more bandwagon bread to serve as a delivery system.

Time for a bit of knitting content — my BSJ is off the needles, and is patiently awaiting seams and buttons. I love the colors in this sweater, and I think it will be absolutely perfect for a fall baby. I seem to know several folks expecting an arrival this fall, so it is quite possible that there will be a few more of these adorable sweaters in my knitting future.

Also, it appears that you guys like pork! I had more visits to my blog yesterday than ever before — and there wasn’t any knitting content to be found. I’m glad you’re here.

who, me? wagon?

Yep, that’s right. Years later, I’m finally baking that no-knead bread everyone made such a big deal over. I always intended to make it, but never seemed to have availability when the recipe requires it. You’ve heard it before, I know, but this is awesome. It requires maybe ten minutes of your life over a period of about 20 hours, and the result is this:

Can’t think of a better way to inaugurate my use of the apartment’s oven. Almost done with sassymmetrical!