Wednesday, May 25, 2016

In which I share photos

First, we have photos of the finished Nattrojer, which if I were on an Apple product, would be spelled with a slash through the 'o'. Since I am not, just pretend one is there.  I blocked the sweater at the point of 'body+sleeve' to make sure that I could live with the sleeve opening - which is largish, but definitely livable.  Then I knit the second sleeve, and snapped a photo to answer the question 'does blocking make any difference in how my sweater will look?' 
One sleeve blocked, one sleeve not.

Then I got the sweater nice and wet, let it soak, spun it to dampness in the washer, and popped it on my wooly board.  (Thanks, mom!)   It was so nice outside that I stuck the board under a tree and got some more photos. Now I can look forward to fall, when it will be sweater-wearing season once more!  Yesterday was 85 degrees .... not sweater-wearing season.

Next, I bring you some mitten photos. (Disclaimer: I didn't knit them)  These mittens were found in the bottom of a box of non-descript things at an auction.  They're quite felted, well-worn, personalized, and have absolutely no provenance. 

A few things struck me about them.
  • The ribbing is k1tbl, p1, rather than the more typical k1, p1. Once I get my bookshelf, I will have to fish out my Norwegian books to see if this is a common thing that I just haven't met before.
  • The numbers and initials were worked so that they are upside down, with respect to the wrist.  Sanquhar gloves and just about all the writing that I've seen on knitting is worked so that the bottom of the number/letter is closest to the hem/cuff, not the fingertips/top.  
  • The decreases at the top were all worked k2tog, AND there is a decent swatch of speckled pattern between them.  
I may have to chart these out and/or knit them up one of these days.

With the arrival of springsummer, reseeding work on The Construction Zone has begun.  We're still waiting to have our miniature 'ravine' filled in.  Word has it that it will happen shortly -- the thunderstorms today kind of nixed a 'today' date, but it shouldn't be long.  Yesterday, the truck with dirt parked right in front of our ravine and we watched them tote tractor-fulls of dirt to other parts of town all day. 

I snapped a few pictures in the rain of my wee little perennial beds, which are to either side of the sidewalk out to the street.  With the steps in there, it's just not an easily mowable area, so I'm converting it to flowers.  (The landscaping guys reseeded one section of it with grass, hours after I pulled the grass out.  Argh.  But they haven't driven a tractor over it, so I count my blessings.)

It'll be fun to see what these areas look like in the fall, and next year.  I have daylilies, purple coneflowers, lupine, comfrey, and dutch iris tucked in there.  Someone in our area must have had lupine last year, as I've found 3 lupine growing randomly in the post-construction weed-bedecked lawn.  As I find them, I dig them up and move them to my little perennial bed. 
The garden is just about complete now.  I may replant some squash -- there's a nice tennis ball-sized hole where I think I had stuck the seeds.  Everything else is in, though, and most everything else is up.  We're enjoying fresh radishes daily (and radish leaf smoothies!), and chives, and should have peas in about a month.  The sage is behaving so bountifully that I may yet move a plant out of the herb bed and stick it somewhere else ... it's dwarfing the swiss chard.  Asparagus, kale, and rhubarb are also on the menu already. 

Until next week!

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

In which I write briefly, because today has great scope for industry

Today's blog post will be quick and succinct. I hope. I'm not always good as being succinct, though.

A friend of mine is trying to resolve some GI by eliminating a whole host of foods to which she may be sensitive ... no eggs, dairy, grains, sugar, fruits, almonds, and a few other things.  What's a person to do when it's fellowship time at church and one wants to have a snack?

Coconut Cookies!  3 T coconut flour, 2 T coconut oil, and 1 T of honey (unless one is having no sugar, in which case one makes a substitute of 1 T water, 1 t chia, and a few dashes of stevia.)  Filia and I made a test batch, with varied cooking times, and pronounced them all delicious.  The 15 minute cooking time won the 'tastiest' title.  
Canis the Patient finally has his cone off.  He is MUCH happier, and settles to sleep easily now.  No more tossing and turning to try and get comfy. As a result, his humans are sleeping better as well.  No more waking up to tossing and turning pooch. 
My sliced thumb is all better, the Nattrojer is finished (no photos yet), and I am merrily working on the 1st of a pair of Livii's Stockings, in a leftover color scheme centered around blue (blue, blue, and green). 

All my tomatoes died in a frost that I was too lazy (and warm) to go out and cover them before.  Drat. 

Filius is home from college and is being a great help in turning over bits of yard that will become gardeny bits.  Today's project is to make a circle of daylilies around our honeylocust.  There are a gazillion other projects for today, too.  We'll see which ones get done. 


Wednesday, May 11, 2016

In which is it raining.

At this time of year, rain means that I do not need to water my garden.  And that I can hibernate inside (although that hibernation usually looks more like spring cleaning, overhauling various bits and pieces of my domain, or sitting down with a stack of papers and books to see about acquiring some wisdom.)  All the garden is planted, save for basil, onion sets (acquired this morning) and my new pole bean patch. (Oh, and my watermelon.  I haven't repurposed their bed for them yet.)  We're regularly dining on rhubarb, radish thinnings, chives, asparagus, sage, and snippets of other green things from the yard and garden. 

Today's weed of the week is White Campion.  And there is no medicinal use listed for it!  I was crushed. Mildly.  For about a half-second.  There's always next week. 

Our front walk now has two very nice steps, and I replanted the lupine which would have been seriously crushed in the remodeling.  Next up is to get a strong son home from college and move a lot of daylilies to places hither and thither (the unplanted side of the steps and around a tree or two) so that I can put my little watermelon plants in their Jiffy pellets into the ground. 

The dog's leg is healing well, and he should get the last of the stitches out tomorrow AND get the cone off his head.  Poor pooch - he's had it on, save for a 2 minute trial of 'does he really need this on?' (yes!) and surgery, since April 26th.  On the plus side, he has figured out how to go up and down stairs without coming to grief, so he can go up and down freely.  (That translates to going upstairs when I go upstairs, and heading back down when I do.) 

Monday was a lovely home day, and rainy, so after quickly putting bean and cucumber and squash seeds into the ground around 7 AM, to beat the rain, I decided to clean the bathroom floor.  And sliced my thumb open, mildly, on one of the bolts holding the toilet to the floor.  I popped a bandaid on it and all went well until I went to knit later in the day.  YEOWCH!  The split wasn't deep enough to bleed, but it was deep enough to heartily dislike pressure on the pad of the thumb, making its dislike known by shooting nerve pain that hung around for several seconds after the pressure was relieved.  I think it's better enough to try knitting again today.  I hope. 

I actually had to read a book in my spare time on Monday.  It's been AGES since I've done recreational reading without sitting on a bicycle, or knitting.  I discovered "Habits of Grace" by David Mathis (free download) plus a study guide (also free as a download).  I think I will save it for Augustish, when we take a month off of our Monday night Bible Study.  In the meantime, I'm working on A Peculiar Glory (John Piper) and getting nowhere fast on Middlemarch (free audiobook).

There is so much scope for organization in life.  How can anyone be bored?

Until next week ...

Wednesday, May 04, 2016

In which we visit the veterinarian again, and memorize the after-hours phone number

This hasn't been a week for the ages, but it has certainly been one - and continues to be one - in which I am reminded how much I enjoy being at home, and how precious 'home days' are to me.  Today is a home day.  My only home day this week.  I am taking serious, inordinate delight in it.

I have no clue what all has been going on since last Wednesday.  Most of my brainpower has been directed towards being where I need to be, and keeping tabs on the dog.  His recovery went well until Friday, when the wound started draining ... and the pain meds expired ... and he began favoring the leg ... and then it swelled up POOF.  So, Monday morning at 8 AM, we were at the vet's, and he had a second surgery to figure out what was up.  He came home Monday afternoon with 4 medications and a drain.  And the washer broke (I'm pretty sure it's the pump ... the hose connections are all fine, but it leaks as soon as the pump starts up) 

Bandit is now again on the road to recovery.  We've got at least 2 more vet visits in the next little while - one to remove the drain, and another to remove the sutures.  There were around 8 from the original gash, and he collected another 7 or so from the second surgery.  In the 'counting our blessings' scheme of things, the skin of the wound flap is healthy and no one is thinking a graft will be necessary, or even open healing.  Yay! 

Knitting is also keeping me busy, and the garden is flourishing, and it seems to be the season for concrete repair as well.  I will leave you with some pictures ...

Post-Op Recovery Unit

Ski Ramp of Unlawful Steepness

No more ski ramp.