Now that I have had the time to relax at home for a bit I am slowly getting back into my routine and learning to just relax and enjoy the peace and solitude. Although I miss the crazy busyness of the grandkids more that ever. But not to worry this week end I head back to more visits as I head to my home town for a week! I cannot wait!!
I have slowly began to collect kitchen gadgets once again. This last year I acquired a kitchen aid mixer, a vitamix, and most recently a bread machine. I had a bread machine years ago and just loved the versatility of it. Although I rarely used the bake cycle but instead just used it to mix the dough….I know, I know…why do I need that with a kitchen aid?!. But nonetheless I wanted one and when I saw a new in box on the yard sale site for only $10 I jumped at it. So far I’ve only made cinnamon raisin bread and whole wheat bread. You see, I am the only one eating it. So after throwing out half loaves of each that I made, well it ended up on the shelf. But I have a granddaughter who would love it….soooo it was not a waste at all!
I shared on the last blog how much I have enjoyed Breath magazine. It is so lovely and I look forward to each issue. I love to curl up by the fire, cuppa in hand, and read the latest issue. So many article about slowing down, finding a sense of place and self in this crazy world. I have found 4 issues to date and not one has been disappointing!
Speaking of magazines….there are so many many lovely crafting/knitting magazines on the market at this time; Taproot, Laine, Making these are the few I can think of off the top of my head. But I know there are so many more. The quality of these magazines is topnotch and most are ad free. I have always had a weakness for magazines. But the mainstream magazines have lost all appeal as they have become cheap and ad filled. I am so delighted to see so many independent presses releasing beautiful lovely magazine filled with things that matter and things that one would desire to make.
Slowly I have been purchasing the ones that I are keepers and full of practical and meaningful articles or crafts. That said I recently ordered all past issues of Making. Oh my…..so many many lovely projects inside each issue with stunning photography (isn’t that one of the greatest appeals of a magazine…beautiful breathtaking photos?).
January was such a mild and beautiful month…and thank God for that as there was much mountain travel and moving of children here and there. So imagine the surprise when at the closing of February we were all hit with some lasting snow storms! Now that I am no longer working, I want snow and lots of it. We did get a bit but sadly it did not stick. But how lovely those huge heavy flakes!
One of the things I have sorely missed since moving to the city is a garden. I did plant last year, but had not noticed the lack of sun due to all the trees surrounding and in my yard. Sadly my garden was a huge flop….a massive waste. So this year in the hopes of having at least some square footage of sun, I hired a crew to come cut down as many branches as possible. I have high hopes for at least a half dozen raised beds…but we shall see. Had I been aware that my entire back yard was encompassed in shade I’m not so sure I would have bought this house.
Don’t get me wrong, I love trees….but a bit of a garden would be nice and a bit less over growth of trees blocking every bit of sunshine!
I have had a few yarn acquisitions this past few months. I am a fan of IG and through that forum find so many designers and indie dyers that are just outstanding. Barnyard Knits was one such indie dyer that has had me drooling over every single stinking skein she dyes! Come Christmas and she released a color way called Poinsettia. I drooled, I dreamed, I obsessed…but I never got around to ordering it. Then I sulked and pouted and finally asked her if she was dyeing more. Sadly she replied no…but she happened to have a skein on her lovely cashmere blend sock weight! How could I resist?! And look at that adorable little campfire stitch marker!
I an always count on my daughter Becca to tag me and alert me to things that I “need.” Well this Hedgehog Fibre in the color way Piggy Bank was one such item. Another that I had long admired but just never ordered and then it was gone. But not this time…I pounced on this beauty! No one can speckle quite like Hedgehog Fibre and I do adore a good speckling!!
Projects completed…I do have a few. My knitting mojo has been strong. I did go on a dishcloth kick…and luckily we all need dishcloths as I have knitted well over 2 dozen. They are simple and I can complete one in the time of a good movie.
I also completed two pair of socks. These ones were knit out of some yarn that my granddaughter Milsie dyed. I love the color and I just felt she needed a pair of socks out of her own hand dyed yarn. Luckily she loves them!
There are a few designers that I just love and know that knitting one of their projects will always produce amazing results. Helen of Curious Hand Made designs the most gorgeous shawls and her instructions are amazing! I have made a few of her designs and fell in love with her Amulet Shawl. I have long been afraid of lace as I prefer a mindless knit….thus why my socks are always simple vanilla socks. But Helen’s directions are so easy to follow that I never felt intimidated or overwhelmed. The yarn I chose of this was dyed by my daughter Becca just for this shawl. I added a bit of mohair in one area just to give more texture. I cannot wait to get this blocked!
My knitting skills and speed have increased quite some since retiring. Not sure if its due to knitting more or just being more relaxed. But at any rate I decided that I was ready to tackle a cardigan. See the idea of knitting an adult sweater always puts me off….I mean it is sooooo much knitting for miles and miles. But I had this beautiful mauve wool in a sweater cardigan….so away I went. I am knitting the Antler Cardigan by Tin Can Knits…another of my all time favorite designers. It is coming along quite nicely!
I always keep some socks on my needles. The top are another hand dyed by Becca. I love working on hand dyed yarn as it is always such a surprise to knit it up and watch the pattern emerge. You just never quite know what will be. I think this is absolutely beautiful!
For my second pair, I went stash diving. I have no idea when and where this yarn came from…but I love it. It had Aloe Vera and Jojoba Oil infused and knits up so quickly. I am a slow knitter, yet I completed one sock from this yarn in 3 days of evening knitting! I loved it so much I did an online search and ordered 2 more skeins in various color ways. I had to order from the UK as I could not find a US shop. I believe these may be my favorite sock needles currently. They are Carbonz. I just like the feel of them in my hands. I do love my Hiya Hiya sharps but for socks I just really enjoy knitting on these needles.
After a bit of a spell, once again the bag making has begun. Stitches Plus Purls knitting bags will be available once again in the Etsy shop in a week. Hopefully I can be more consistent in the bag making department…but no guarantees!
With the coming of spring a few estate and yard sales are popping up. Last week end I happened upon quite a gigantic one at a local church. There was so much stuff and so many many people shopping. I did find some very practical items that had been needed; rake, weeder, kitchen utensils, a medium sized suitcase…and also some lovely items that I just had to bring home. These two mugs for .25 each still with tags on them. Aren’t they just adorable!
And this lovely picture. I know it is very dated…but I adore the artwork of D. Morgan and have for years. I have two cross stitch samplers I did for each of my parents years ago and which my mom passed back to me after my father’s passing. I have them framed and hanging on my hallway walls. I so enjoy looking at them. When I saw this picture, I just could not resist. It was a whole $3 and is a good 20×36 inches. It is now hanging in my sewing room.
Below are the D. Morgan cross stitch pieces I did for my parents. They were originally pillows but I framed them.
In all my travels, I sure did miss my two sweet babies. Since returning they keep close by my side. I just cannot imagine my life without a boxer or two to sweeten it up!