Friday, August 13, 2010

Mostly knitting, actually...

It has been a long, long, hot summer. Spring started out kind of late after a long, long, cold winter. I love spring. All the plants coming up, grass getting green, and of course the milder temperatures. The first time I can leave the windows open all day in spring is one of my favorite days of the year. There is nothing quite like the smell of your house as you lay down to sleep after a whole day of airing out after a long winter.

But something happened. It got hot. Really hot. And it stayed hot. And humid. And there was no rain. I watched all the plants I had just put in shrivel and die. There'd be a small break in the heat and they'd push a little new growth only to bake again as soon as the next heat wave hit. Now everything that survived is stunted and tiny. The leaves, flowers, everything. I hate hot summers.

But recently, whether it was the promise of this current break in the heat, or the realization that August was almost halfway over and that this stuff couldn't last forever, I started knitting more. I have several projects going on right now, all in various stages of completion and I find myself wanting to do little else but play with yarn.

I have this shawl that is only a little farther along than when we took this picture, which is a shame as I had hoped to wear it this fall.

shawl progress

There's the poncho that may go on forever, which is a shame as I had hoped to wear it this winter. But even with the air conditioner on, it is way too hot to have a pile of wool in my lap.

poncho closeup

I have one and a quarter fingerless mitts. Not exactly useful.

mitt top

At least one hand is warm...

I have this sweater that I started an embarrassingly long time ago and forgot about. It got stuffed in a knitting bag and crammed in a box for so long it is actually wrinkled.

neglected sweater

So what do I do? I start a new project. And this one has to be done in time for a friend's baby shower at the end of September. Right.

new project

To my credit though, I have several more inches done now...

But before I started that, I decided I needed to make a loom. It was one of those things, you know? The kids were napping, the internet connection was so bad I couldn't get anything done online and I had already done the dishes. So I took an 18 x 18 canvas, cut the canvas off and hammered a bunch of nails into it, as evenly spaced as I could get them without measuring. I ended up with 86 nails in that puppy.

so I built a loom...

I wanted to practice with something cheap, so I used some of the Wool Ease super bulky yarn I seem to have an endless supply of. (What? It was a REALLY good sale last year!)


I ended up with quite the pukey retro color scheme...

retro colors

And got it off the loom and it shrank down to a nice, tight-enough-for-a-blanket fabric.

a square!

I'm thinking of making a bunch of squares (in less offensive colors perhaps) and seaming them all together to make a throw. Or they'd be a good size for pillows. I dunno...

So that's my knitting tangent.

I would like to briefly enter back into reality and share a few gardening pictures.

First off, I harvested my first "Reliant" red seedless grapes.

my first grapes

It popped out this little bunch right after I planted it and that's all I got this year. With the way they took off (and the "King of the North") I am hoping for a big load next year!

Also, I washed and froze a bunch of tomatoes, mostly from the Grow Indie garden.

washing tomatoes

And I pulled everything but the herbs out of my own garden to get ready for a fall planting.

These little guys were not mature, but I was getting impatient.

purple carrots!

They were delicious. :)

Gonna do some lettuce and maybe some more carrots. Who knows? I have a lot to choose from. When I started blogging for Grow Indie, I received this amazing pile of seeds!


There are so many different things in there!

Oh and I had another garden surprise! I certainly wasn't expecting anything this late in the season, but I ended up with some periwinkle coming up in the front and back beds and this:


When it first started coming up, there were two stalks, side by side, with a weird, tight cluster of buds at the tops. No foliage. I was kind of freaked out. When the buds started to open, I was like, "Oh! Amaryllis?" But I thought bulb plants all bloomed early in the year. This link set me straight. Who knew?

Anyway, I think that's all for now. Time to make lunch and get some of those seeds planted. Oh, and maybe some knitting?


Staceyvee said...

Those tomatoes are gorgeous! It's funny how when gardens in other states are showing off ours are frying. Love the loom idea, I bet a bath rug would cool and easy. Lovely garden pics as usual.

Sudstolove said...

The tomatoes and carrots are just lovely colors!

skepticgal said...

Good freakin' gawd, woman...I had just picked myself up and dusted my knees off from kneeling in worship of Your Awesomeness, and you make me drop down on my knees again. You know what i do when the kids are quiet, the internet is down and the dishes are done? Run around in circles panicking about all the things I haven't done yet. Whipping a loom from a canvas lying around would not happen in my house. Good thing for us you're not a villainess or you'd whip up WMDs with used dental floss and duct tape, McGyver-style.

KellyAnne said...

I want a pair of fingerless gloves and a scarf!!!! They are awesome! And I want a sweater but I won't push it... just the gloves and scarf will do for now. :)

Maven said...

How do you get the swatch of fabric off the loom when you're ready? My great-grandmother used to make little afghans with her Weavette loom (very similar to what you made). I'd like to get into that, too.

Also, if you haven't finished your recycled sari silk shawl and have run out of yarn, I have some which might be put to good use in that project. Hit me up on Rav re: the deets.

Amber said...

Well, I just slipped it off, "stitch" by stitch, and threaded each one through the next like a knitted bind off, knotting the last one.

I am on my last(?) ball of sari yarn, or maybe second to last, but if I think I'm not going to make it, I will definitely let you know! :D