still ripening.

As you can see, I’m making good progress on my ripe bananas lap blanket. (I’m aiming to finish it this weekend!) I wrapped up the lace section with the red and taupe shetland singles, and then switched to some Cascade 220 in a heathered, rusty red to keep the darkening gradient going. (In case anyone is wondering, 1.4 oz of Cascade 220 is pretty much exactly how much yarn you need to knit 1.5 inches of this blanket on 7s when the stitch count is in the 450 st range and increasing. Phew!)

Next up, more handspun. As soon as I get this Spunky Club corriedale in the New Day colorway wound into a ball, I’ll be on my way.

And here are the veggies I roasted for dinner last night: potatoes, fennel, and beets, all from the farm. Yum.

ripening bananas.

Here you can see the darker orange handspun I transitioned to when I headed back to the beginning of the lace chart. (This is actually CVM farm wool, purchased from Cosy, so of course it had to go into my testknit of her fabulous ripe bananas lap blanket pattern.)

And here’s the blanket with about eight rows of lace and increases to go. I wasn’t sure how far I’d be able to knit with the orange CVM farm wool, and as you can see, I finished a row with about 5 yards left — perhaps not enough to get all the way around again. So I went back to the pile of handspun I set aside for this project, and wound a smallish skein of shetland singles in reds and taupes into a ball. I think this will be perfect for the rest of the lace section, and it will complete the lighter to darker gradient I’m going for.

I am planning to knit knit knit on this over the weekend!

yo.

Yep. That was the problem. I accidentally yarn-overed at the start of a lace row, when I wasn’t supposed to. And then, in my uncaffeinated stupor, I proceeded to attempt to account for the fact that my stitch count was off, all the way through each section. I know better than to do that, at least when I’ve had my coffee.

I realize that to the untrained eye, these pictures look pretty much like what I posted yesterday. The knitter, however, will notice a key difference: yesterday’s photo has lots of extra yarn in it, suggesting the un-knitting that has just occurred; today’s photos have no such excess yardage, suggesting that things are moving along as intended. And they are. I re-knit the offending row — AFTER a full cup of coffee.

And now I’m off to campus. But since it’s Friday, I’ll leave you with a dose of sweetness:

I thought Friday would never get here. Happy weekend!

repeat after me.

I will not knit anything that isn’t garter or stockinette before finishing my first cup of coffee. I will not knit anything that isn’t garter or stockinette before finishing my first cup of coffee. I will not knit anything that isn’t garter or stockinette before finishing my first cup of coffee. I will not knit anything that isn’t garter or stockinette before finishing my first cup of coffee. I will not knit anything that isn’t garter or stockinette before finishing my first cup of coffee. I will not knit anything that isn’t garter or stockinette before finishing my first cup of coffee. I will not knit anything that isn’t garter or stockinette before finishing my first cup of coffee. I will not knit anything that isn’t garter or stockinette before finishing my first cup of coffee. I will not knit anything that isn’t garter or stockinette before finishing my first cup of coffee. I will not knit…

Sigh. I’ve been un-knitting this morning for almost twice as long as I knit. And I know better. Is it Friday yet?

happy lace.

Isn’t it, though? Last night I proctored a prelim. I brought reading to do, but I was up and down to answer questions every ten minutes or so, and just couldn’t focus on my work. Luckily, I had tucked the lap blanket I’m test-knitting for Cosy into my bag, and as the students worked, I got through another repeat or two. I love the slight variegation in this orangey handspun.

Also, I wore my garter yoke cardigan on Wednesday, and snapped a photo before dashing off to lecture. There’s something not-quite-right with the fit/style of this for me. I think the sleeves are a bit too wide to be 3/4 length, and buttoned up, I feel sort of matronly. (This might just have to do with the fact that I spend most of my time on a college campus.) Anyway, I decided to wear it over a super bright mustard-yellow shirt, and I think that worked. Thus concludes this edition of “knits-in-action.”

I’m off to the land of my bright college years for the weekend. Not looking forward to the drive, but so happy that it is finally Friday.

three.

Hard to believe it has been three years since I jumped (fell?) into blogland, and without getting too mushy on y’all, allow me to just say that doing this, here, with you, has been more rewarding than I was even capable of imagining three Octobers ago.

One of the things I talked about in that very first post was how much I had learned from the online knitting community, and so it seems only fitting that as I celebrate my blogiversary, I am working on a testknit for someone whose blog was part of inspiring me to start blogging. (And she’s still teaching me new things!)

Here’s what I’ve got so far on my ripe bananas lap blanket testknit for Cosy. I was struggling with getting the lace to line up, and she helped me to see that I was knitting right, but reading wrong. (I was reading the chart as if it covered all the stitches, rather than exactly the number of stitches in each quadrant, despite all sorts of evidence on said chart suggesting how to understand it properly.)

Anyway, this morning I put the reading aside, and powered through a full lace repeat, happy to be “getting it” after lots of puzzling, unknitting, and re-knitting.

Thank you all for reading the blog, sharing your thoughts, and teaching me in so many ways. Here’s to another year!

just what i needed.

That song by The Cars always makes me smile. Back in 2004, I found myself road-tripping across the country with a new colleague, en route to our new jobs as part of a youth voting initiative. Things that stand out from the drive? My first experiences with ‘driving’ stick (think me doing the driving, and my friend P. doing the shifting), and a lot of time spent trying to figure out what The Cars are actually saying after the line, “I guess you’re just what I needed.”

“I needed someone to –eed.” (The answer is that it alternates: feed and bleed.)

Anyway, I bring all of this up because Mary, a ravelry friend of mine, seemed to know just what I needed this week:

On Thursday, I returned home from campus to discover that she’d gifted me the pattern for Terra, a gorgeous shawl by Jared Flood designed to highlight his new yarn line, SHELTER.

After making it through what I absolutely needed to get done this week, I came home yesterday and spent some time indulging in a little daydreaming about what yarn to use for this absolutely stunning shawl, and I settled on some seafoamy green, tweedy Peace Fleece. And I can’t wait to cast on.

Mary, this was just what I needed this week. Thank you.

I also finally got around to winding yarn for the next sections of my ripe bananas lap blanket testknit (say that five times fast). Note that one of these balls is hand-wound — I think it took me awhile to get the rhythm of the niddy-noddy down, and some of my early skeins are twisted. I did some intense handspun wrangling to get all of this untangled and into a tidy ball. This kind of mindless task was also what I needed yesterday. So it’s cool.

Lastly, another action shot of my textured shawl recipe shawl. I do wish it was a little bigger, but it really is perfect for when I just need a little extra warmth on my walk to campus in the morning.

Alright, time to earn some more knitting and outside time by finishing off another book in the pile. Happy weekend!