knitting in class.

I was knitting on my Buttercup when I took this picture. (And we were on a break. Don’t worry; I don’t play with my phone during class.)

And here I am today, also knitting in our lecture hall. (Also on a break.)

And here’s the gin and tonic I made on Monday night. I’ve got a great bunch of students in the intensive summer session for rising high school seniors I’m TAing, but the schedule is exhausting. Yoga, a drink, and a front-row seat for sunset was exactly what I needed last night.

Look at my pretty swatch! It’s for a testknit for foxflat — a summer-weight, super sweet beret called Joyride. The yarn is a merino-tencel blend from back when I was a member of the Yarn Pirate Booty Club, with a bit of shine and lovely colors. In a sock pattern, it would be stripey, but in a slightly larger project, the first few rows are suggesting to me that it might look a bit colorblocked. I need to knit a little bit more to see what I think. If it’s too busy for the lacework, I’ve got a solid yarn that I think would be lovely in this pattern. More soon!

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slow and steady.

pure and simple 13

I’m test-knitting this adorable short-sleeved pullover for veera, over at 100% rain. The stockinette portion is taking me forever, which makes me feel like a super slow, and thus, ineffective test-knitter. (I have actually found myself wondering if Boh is ripping out inches of knitting while I am asleep.)

The good news is that I’ve got thirteen solid inches of the body, and I only need a few more. The other test-knitters have been posting pictures of their projects on ravelry, and the results are absolutely lovely.

sauerkraut!

kraut1

kraut2

kraut3

It is delicious. Victory! I let this sit on the counter in my one-gallon pickling crock for 5 weeks (7/18-8/25), occasionally skimming off anything that formed on the surface, and rinsing the cheesecloth and brine bag weighting down the cabbage.

It might be time to go looking for really good reuben recipes!

farmflowers

Here are some of the flowers I picked at the farm yesterday, along with my haul of tomatoes, red peppers, hot peppers, cucumbers, eggplant, A LOT of beets (to be pickled?!), lettuce, onions, dill, mint, basil, cilantro, 1 precious cup of blackberries picked from the fields, and, of course, zucchini.

And, lest you think that I am not knitting:

plainsimpleupdate

Another inch or so of my plain and simple pullover test-knit has appeared.

Happy Wednesday!

plain and simple progress.

pureandsimple 7 inc

I am now seven inches into the body of my plain and simple pullover, a test-knit for veera over at 100% rain. I reach for this sweater whenever I need mindless knitting, and while I normally prefer my knitpicks harmony needles, I am really loving the slipperiness and the soft clicking sounds of these hot pink metal needles (courtesy of the Yarn Pirate, from when I was in the sock club).

Happy weekend! (Classes start next week, so these are my final days of summer.)

Classes

the silent undergrowth.

plantations1

Boh and I took a walk through the campus arboretum yesterday, accompanied only by the sound of the wind and the hum of bees conducting their business.

plantations2

plantations3

plantations4

plantations5

plantations6

plantations7

A collection of nut trees lines the road to the central part of the sprawling, manicured landscape. Tucked into a string of walnut trees, this particular cluster caught my eye. This tree, like the others, had a small tin tag pegged to its trunk: Japanese heartnut. The name made me smile.

fiberinbowl

When we returned home (our muscles sufficiently stretched), it was time to start a new spinning project, and this fiber seemed appropriate to the moment: The Silent Undergrowth, 3 oz. of Falklands from AVFKW. The colors are hard to capture on camera, but there is a lovely depth to the range of browns and greens in this fiber.

falklandsbob1

Also, here’s an update on my alpaca test-knitting:

pureandsimple1

pureandsimplemacro

I’m approaching four inches on the body, and while this will not be a quick knit, I love how this feels in my hands.

Also:

lovethisdog.

I love this dog.

Happy weekend, all.

dilly beans and diamonds.

dillybeans

I’ve been meaning to try my hand at dilly beans every day this week, so this morning, I got right to it. I even filled up the canning pot and put it on the stove alongside the water intended for my french press. The lids have been going “ping” — a good sign — so we’ll see how these turn out once they’ve had a few weeks to pickle themselves. (I learned that head-space can be a little tricky when you’re packing something into a pint jar and then pouring boiling liquid over it…)

lsd bob1

And for the “diamonds” portion of the post, I present bobbin numero uno of the CMF SW Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds merino. I’d abbreviate the song title, but I’m not sure I want to generate that kind of blog traffic…

I absolutely adore how this is spinning up, and I’m interested to see what the yarn will look like when it has been plyed and finished. I’ve read that this particular roving will plump up quite nicely, and I’m aiming for a squishier, slightly thicker sock yarn than last time.

Other goings-on around here:

zucchini bread

The first zucchini bread of the season!

pure and simple ribbing

The ribbing at the bottom of the pure and simple test-knit I’m working on!

That’s all for now! Boh and I have plans to take a long walk and stick our paws/feet in the creek, and I’m looking forward to a quiet, productive August (holy cow!) weekend.

ribbing.

mara rib1

Lest you were beginning to think that I had crossed entirely over to the dark side of the spinning wheel, I present some serious progress on Mara. After reading lots of posts over at the Mara KAL in the backwards loop group on ravelry, I decided to modify the ribbing slightly, opting for a k3p2 rib instead of a k2p2.

mara rib2

The pattern calls for 4 inches of ribbing after the inch of transitional rib to finish off the shawl. I don’t have enough of this luscious beaverslide to do that, so I’m pretty much ribbing until I run out. I’ll be happy if I can get 2 inches or so, and I’m hoping to finish this tonight at a new knit night (say that five times fast) I’ve been attending!

The urge to finish this despite warmer temps that are not so conducive to the wearing of squishy wool shawls comes in part from even more new projects on (or soon to be on) the needles.

swatch alpaca

Veera, of 100% rain, put out the call for test- knitters for her plain and simple pullover, and since her sweater is already in my ravelry favorites, I couldn’t help but volunteer. The sweater is knit in fingering weight yarn on smaller needles, and when I looked at the specs/yarn requirements, I realized that this is the perfect sweater for 2 fat skeins of local alpaca in my stash that have long been searching for a pattern to partner with.

local alpaca skeins

I think this is a perfect match — the drapeyness of the alpaca will complement the pattern’s minimal shaping, the foldover collar will hang beautifully, and I will get a short-sleeved, super-soft alpaca sweater that won’t be so warm that I can’t wear it indoors! More on this soon,

Silk update:

shinytussah

I spun most of the orange section of my sunburst tussah silk. It shines like this picture, but at this point, the color is more orangey than red:

orange tussah

I’m really enjoying the process of spinning this — a totally different feeling than wool. I’m hoping my singles will be strong and even enough to stand on their own in a brightly colored shawl for fall.

Alright, time to get to work!