Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Dirty Thirty and One

It's been a crazy few weeks in the Good For Ewe house, and an extra crazy Memorial Day Weekend, but mostly the good kind of crazy.

Firstly, we had a couple birthdays.  Tia turned 1 this past Wednesday, and I turned 30 on Saturday.  I said goodbye to my 20's (especially to 29- the hardest year of my life) watching Deadpool 2 and then going to a dive bar with friends and having a far too much bourbon.  The next day we had the family birthday party at my parents' house and that was huge and a great time too. Tia and I were both spoiled rotten.

I've actually gotten a bit of knitting done lately- I worked on Le Sock for a couple hours this weekend and finished the leg, made the heel flap, turned the heel and am into the gusset.  I made the first sleeve of my Breathing Space sweater last week, and I'm not stressing out about July 14th "we'll all wear our Breathing Space" date.  We have a family wedding in KY this weekend, and I'm hoping there will be enough daylight time in the car that I'll be able to finish the second sleeve, or Le Sock, part deux.

I've also been in the dye dungeon quite a bit working on a new really deep purple which is named Plummy Fortescue.  I had really high hopes on it being a good Colorful Cause yarn, because I made a batch of 15 for Pittsburgh and sold out in about 2 hours.  I dyed up about 50 and put it up for sale with $10 from each skein going to Operation Smile, but have only sold 5.  I'll probably pull it soon and make my donation and then just hang on to it for my next show and try to raise money there. I absolutely love how it turned out though, and I might put 6 aside for myself for a nice cardigan. 

I've also done a tiny bit of weaving (it's not portable, so it doesn't happen very often).  I've been telling weavers at shows for years how awesome my lace yarn is for weaving, but I don't have any woven samples to prove it.  So I bought a stand for my loom so I can comfortably use it, and I'm about halfway through a scarf.  I had really high hopes of this going quickly and I had visions of handing all my friends gorgeous woven scarves for Christmas, but those hopes are fizzling out.  I'll try to weave more soon with a nice audiobook.  The reality is this: I'm really bad at weaving.  I know practice makes perfect, and my edges will look nicer with time and experience, but I hate being bad at things.  I know in order to be really good at something, you have to be willing to suck at it, but that doesn't make it easier.  I'm also not loving my current audiobook, so I'm hoping a change of story will change the fate of my scarf. Yarn is Mirrorball by Good For Ewe, color is "Toil & Trouble". 

And lastly, I've been landscaping.  A lot.  So much digging.  At least I was until it started hitting 98 degrees every day, now I'm mostly just watering.  One of the things I love most about our yard is it's potential, which means "it's currently a mess but I'm determined". I spent a few weeks digging up and pulling ivy and vinca to free up some flower beds, and then I amended the soil after that with peat and gypsum.  I have a garden now, and it looks really good but I'll be fighting the weeds for a long time since that's what that flower bed was last year. I've also planted some shrubs to grow into a nice flowering hedge along the side of the house, and wrapping around the back yard I'm planting edible shrubs.  So far I've got 6 lingonberries, 3 kinds of currant, 1 blackberry and 2 raspberries. The lingonberries came as small shrubs but the currants, raspberries and blackberry came as bare root plants.  Currants came from a proper nursery, and it has been magical to watch them spring into life and start shooting out leaves.  They are new enough that you can literally see progress every day after watering a bare stick for a couple weeks. This is a picture of the Pink Champagne currant, which was planted about a week before the other currants and 3 weeks before the raspberries, so it's the most excited to be here. The raspberries and blackberry came from a freeze dried package at Lowe's, so my hopes aren't quite as high, but neither was my investment. I know that I'm at least 3 years away from a respectable berry crop (ie enough for pies and jams) and I'll need to purchase some nets to keep the critters out, but I'm excited regardless.  The idea of just going to the back yard and picking berries is very exciting to me. I remember picking berries with my mom when I was little and I want Tia to have that memory too. Plus I really love pie. 

And lastly, I've been job hunting.  I've been a work-from-home mom with Good For Ewe now for a year, and it's been hard.  I knew it would be hard, but I didn't think I'd have such a hard time with the isolation of working from home.  I know there's people who thrive in this environment, but I'm just not one of them. It's like trying to grow a sunflower in the shade- doable, but there's better plants for that spot and better places for the sunflower. Anyhow, Tia is one, and I need to get a better job and make more money so that I can put more aside for her future and mine.  I need better insurance so Gavin breaking a leg doesn't set us back 3 years again. And I need to have something that's mine again. So I'm going back to work.  I've applied for a couple things, but haven't heard back yet.  My goal is to be employed and insured by November so we can drop the Marketplace insurance, which is so expensive and really very worthless. But until I hear back, I'm going to tackle as many home and yard improvement projects as I can, because once I go back to work full time it probably just won't happen.  (Really, we've had a half painted wall over a year because I went into labor the day we were going to finish it.  It's time for it to be done.)

Monday, April 16, 2018

Spring Shows Without the Spring

The calendar says that Spring is here, and the daffodils are optimistic (as are the snow peas, spinach, and rhubarb) but it keeps freaking snowing.  It was 85 degrees on Friday as I left town and 43 as I got back last night, and sure enough, it's snowing again right now.

My return home last night actually marked the end of Spring show season for me.  It only had a few shows in it- I applied for many but didn't make it in (seriously, if you have to pay a jury fee to apply, they can have the decency to let you know for sure if you didn't make it). The last two weekends I've been to Pittsburgh and Ann Arbor, and both were good shows for me.  I was able to make my Roth IRA deposit for 2017 after Pittsburgh, and I can pay my property taxes after Ann Arbor, neither of which is very fun, but hey- I had a goal and I met it. Future Paige had better be damned happy about how hard I've worked this month for her.

Here's my April highlight: 
Last year I attended Pittsburgh and had my favorite sweater worked into the booth, since I was way too pregnant to wear it. This woman (Chris) saw it, and had to have it in green.  This sweater gets a lot of attention, but this was the first time I've seen someone follow through with it.  She and I both wore our sweaters on Saturday, and she totally made my show.  She also brought some of her friends to buy my yarn, which also is nice. 

The shows are hard work for me, but also a really nice break.  Tia stays home with hubby and I get to go be an adult and have adult conversations about things other than "did the baby poop today?".  I went out to dinner with new friends, went to a bar with some on Saturday night, and then went to the shows and made my share of our family income for a while.  They're exhausting, and I miss my baby, but they're such a great feeling.  Especially when someone shows up in a matching sweater.  

Here's Tia working on the boat with her dad while I was gone.

I've been feeling better (more on that later) and crafting a bit more, so here's my project update.

Le Socks: zero progress. Maybe a row or 2 but I don't think I've worked on them for a while.

Breathing Space (on Ravelry called Wheezing Space): is slow going, but going well.  I've made it past all the waist shaping and finished the striping on the body.  A few inches of plain blue stockinette stitch and then 1x1 twisted ribbing to go.  It's on size 4's and it's just not the most exciting knit ever, and I only ever seem to work on it in the booth.  I'll try to keep it going now that I'm home for a while. 

Commission Quilt:  is going well.  Had to stop working on it for a while since my sewing machine was doing funny things, but I'm back at it and hoping to finish it this week so I can have it off my plate and get paid for it.  It's not much money, but it will be nice to have it finished.  I also have 3 other baby quilts to crank out and this one is in the way.

Oh! I actually did a little shopping at my yarn festivals! Over 2 shows I bought 3 things.

1. Black currant jam from a lady in Ann Arbor.  It was $4. I have been redoing all of our landscaping and am seriously considering putting in black currants on the side of the house where we ripped out some holly bushes.  I talked to the currant lady for a good long time about her fruit, and I think it was a sign from the gardening gods that she was there.  I bought some jam and if Gavin likes it, I will definitely plant some currant bushes.  If he doesn't like it, I'll probably plant them anyway and buy grape jelly for him at Trader Joe's. No picture, it's a jar of jam.

2. A Kromski Harp (rigid heddle loom) Stand.  Not a completely random purchase. I've had a Harp loom for several years and have barely used it because it's not comfortable to use it on the floor, and when it's on the table it slides awkwardly.  So it sits unused in the basement.  I decided a couple months ago to just buy a stand next time I saw a Kromski dealer at a festival, and lo and behold I was next to one all weekend in Ann Arbor, and they were really nice ladies.  I paid for my stand, it will be here Friday (probably).  I will weave some lace weight scarves.  Everyone might be getting merino scarves for Christmas. Eventually, I will work my way up to a tartan, and I have had the yarn for it (also sitting in the basement) for about 5 years now, but my skills need to be a little more built up before I attempt it. I am most excited about this purchase. 

3.  I bought some yarn. That's 2 projects' worth this year! I did go about 3 years without buying yarn though, so no guilt here.  It's by Destination Yarns, the dyer is now one of my new trade show dinner and bourbon buddies. 

I didn't tell Jeanne (the dyer) this, but I feel like this yarn has been my mood for the past year.  Gray, with bursts of extreme color and emotion.  I'm also just really into gray right now. Anyhow, I like it, and I might make socks out of this next if I ever finish Le Socks.  

Speaking of mood, I have been doing really well.  I started taking CBD oil, which is hemp but without the THC so there's no high.  Perfectly legal, just hard to buy because I live in a super conservative state.  I've also been busy with yarn shows, and now that that's over for a bit (I am teaching a class in 2 weeks but that's minimal busyness) I really need to find something meaningful for the summer months- and hopefully generate a bit of income from that. Gotta stay busy.  But things have been so much better on the CBD oil, and unlike anything else I've ever tried, there's no side effects.  Better mood, more energy, and I'm a believer.

Baby is up, gotta run. 

Thursday, March 29, 2018


I think one of the biggest issues I keep bumping into since having Tia is my identity.

For years, I've identified as an artist or art teacher, an entrepreneur or small business owner, a "Software Development Liaison", whatever. When I introduced myself to someone new, it ultimately depended on how much I felt like talking.  Artist or Entrepreneur generally meant more talking, and sometimes I just want to listen and enjoy a bourbon so I would say "I work in software development".

When I had Tia, I gave up my office job.  I loved the people I worked with, and the company I worked for, but honestly wasn't passionate about the position.  Plus returning to "work" after having Tia would mean that someone else was raising my child during the day and I was handing over about 85% of my paycheck for them to do so.  So working from home on yarn sales and knitwear design while raising Tia seemed like an obvious choice. I still attend yarn shows, I still dye yarn and run Good For Ewe, admittedly mostly during nap time.  I thought I would like it more than I do.  It turns out I need people.  That's another thing.

So a few days ago, on Instagram, another user messaged me and wanted to do a little post-sharing shout out kind of thing to promote each other.  Not normally my thing, since I just enjoy posting on my personal page and I don't really care if people enjoy the content.  I just feel the need to show people what I'm working on.  I like sharing my arts and crafts, and I like it when others share their projects with me.  Anyhow, I agreed to the post-sharing.  She posted a picture of a lace shawl I finished the other day (pictures coming...eventually) and I shared a picture of a pie she had recently posted.  It was a very pretty pie.  And she did a shout out to a "fellow SAHM and crafty lady".  SAHM is Stay At Home Mom.  And she couldn't have possibly known this, and I definitely know that she didn't mean any offense by it, but I didn't like being called that.  And I feel like a giant jerk for saying it- and I might regret this post ultimately, but I've had a couple glasses of wine so I'm going to keep going- but that's not how I identify myself.  It's not that being a SAHM isn't "enough" - quite the contrary.  I feel like it's at times harder than being a Work From Home Mom.  Because right now I'm a mom, until Tia is napping, and then I get to go be me again for a couple hours. I need those breaks to remember who I used to be, and I hope I'll be that person again when Tia is more independent.  Some women were born to be a mom.  Love every minute of being a mom.  And I'm not one of them.  I get frustrated.  I get lonely.  And I live for trunk show Saturdays when my husband takes Tia and I get to drive to another state and go teach and talk about yarn all day, get paid, and then come home.

I still identify as a provider.  Moms provide, but I still need that validation in the form of a paycheck. I know there's tons of ways to provide and none of them are less or more than others, only different. I need something on paper saying that I matter, because being home all the time with my tiny human isn't fulfilling every part of me. Mom life is so quiet and I need the noise and chaos of being a an artist and small business owner.

I intend to return to an office position when Tia is in school.  But we're still 5 years away from that, so I need to make my peace with life as it is, and figure out what I need to do to feel more fulfilled.

Other news:

I finished Rachel's wedding shawl.  I love how it turned out, and I gave it to her today.  We'll try to get pictures soon.

I'm still working on Le Socks.  I have only gotten an inch or so farther than the last picture.

I started a Knit-Together of the Breathing Space Sweater.  It's using the other sock yarn I bought in Paris, and 2 skeins of Sultry Steps in a royal blue color.  I like it very much, but I need to get a good picture of it now that I've added the second color (this picture is a couple days old).  I'm knitting together with 2 good friends in Southern Indiana- the owner of Serendipity Fibers (Melissa) and Amanda, who I met at Wooly Workshop 3 years ago and took to London with me in October.  I'm a little obsessed with the sweater, and I'm making much more progress than I thought I would.  In related news, my house is in desperate need of a dusting and bathroom cleaning.

I started CBD oil for my post-partum depression. CBD is a cannabis extract.  It has no THC, which is the chemical that gets you high.  I've been hearing good things for a while for the treatment of everything from migraines to fibromialgia to anxiety and insomnia and depression. I have the last 3, and chronic shoulder pain from muscle knots from anxiety and depression. It might be placebo effect at this point, but I am sleeping a little better. I have more energy, and I'm in a much better mood overall.  I've still gotten angry a few times this week, but the anger passed quickly, which is a huge improvement. The shoulder is less tight.  Most importantly for me, there have been no side effects whatsoever. I'm really sensitive to medication and had terrible side effects with the last 3 things I've been prescribed for my depression. This is better.  It's not something I want to be on forever, but I need something more than me to get me through this year.

I read A Wrinkle In Time.  The protagonist drove me crazy.

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

California Knitting

This past weekend was Stitches West, and I didn't go.  (I missed it a little when I looked at Instagram to see my yarn friends there but all in all, I'm glad I didn't make the trip this year)  Husband the Engineer, Tia and I were in California though, just the other end.  We were visiting Gavin's aunt in her nursing home who has been placed on hospice care.  My MIL was relentlessly insistent that she take Tia out to CA to meet her sister.  Gavin and I were not comfortable with her taking our baby to CA (she's almost 80 and to be honest, I wouldn't trust anyone to take my baby across the country without me) so we all went to Mission Viejo this past weekend.  It was fairly uneventful.  Lots of time in a nursing home with his aunt and mom (some of it knitting, when Tia permitted).  Very wiggly baby on 4 flights over 3 days (we missed our connection in Houston and ended up making it 3 days of flying instead of 2), and Gavin did ask if I wanted to go to a yarn shop or quilt shop while I was out there- and you don't have to ask me twice!

I got on my phone and found Orange Quilt Bee, which is in Orange and not Mission Viejo, but very worth the 30 minute drive.  I totally lucked out on some projects including a vintage travel baby quilt (which someone has commissioned and I've been struggling to find fabric) and lots of rainbow colors- bright color but low volume.  I plan on making a big gay wedding quilt for Gavin's cousin Lillian (his aunt's daughter) who introduced us to her lovely fiancee while we were out there.  I'll probably just do a simple half-square-triangle pattern because it's quick but extremely versatile.  I still have 2 more baby quilts that are now late because my sewing machine had to go in for repair, so after I finish those 2 quilts, I can start working on the vintage travel and big gay wedding quilt.

So I seem to be stuck here at my desk for a bit because the cat has crawled into my lap and has no intention of moving.  So here are my knitting projects:

Rachel's Getting Married Shawl:  Pattern is High Desert by Romi Hill, yarn is Mirrorball by me! I dyed I think 10 skeins of darker blues before Rachel liked this color (which totally isn't a big deal at all since I will just sell the other attempts at festivals this Spring).  There are 6 charts in this semi-circular shawl and since it starts at the smallest point and goes out, each chart is exponentially more work than the previous one.  I am on the biggest (5th) part of the shawl, and the pattern calls for 2 repeats of this chart for a medium size, and 4 repeats for a tall size.  My gauge is small and the bride is tall, so I am shooting for 3 repeats- the math doesn't change so it doesn't matter if there's an even number of repeats. My goal was to finish the first of the the 3 repeats on the trip and I made that by the skin of my teeth- I finished the WS row literally after landing but before we got to the gate.
The unfortunate thing about lace is that the whole time you're working on it, it doesn't look like anything.  Well, maybe wadded up panties.  The magic is in the blocking, and I'm probably 30 more hours of work away from that. It is coming along very well though.  I am thinking that I can maybe just maybe do 1 chart a week (which is bold) and possibly be done in 3 weeks and move on to the next wedding or baby shower project.  It's just one of those years- the brides and moms are keeping me busy.

Le Socks. 
The yarn is French, the pattern is plain.  It is perfect knitting to stash in your purse.  I put in a couple inches at the nursing home this weekend.  The socks have these really weird creases in them which are quite impossible to photograph.  I don't know if it's because the yarn is weird, or because it was maybe wet while I knitted it? (Baby drool).  Hoping they come out with a washing.  The yarn ball surely is getting smaller but it doesn't appear to have shrunken at all since the cast on of the first sock. So the plan is to finish these, wash them and wear them a couple times, and if I like them, knit a little pair of socks for Tia with the extra and put a little puffy paint on the bottom so they have little grippy bits.  She's not walking quite yet and we have hardwood floors, and I feel like it would just be evil to put her in non-grippy socks at this stage.

And since the cat is still not moving, here's a couple pictures of my office/sewing room.  It's kind of the "dump it" room of the house, and I would like to change that.  What that means is when we're about to have company and have things on the kitchen counter that we're working on, it gets dumped in the office.  So essentially every piece of clutter is part of a massive to-do list.  There's paperwork to switch my Roth IRA over to a new firm.  There's a pattern that needs edited and published, and 2 pieces of paper with email addresses for people waiting on that pattern.  There's yarn festival stuff that really should be in the basement but isn't.  There's fabric that people have given me that is slowly being worked into tote bags to be given away at these yarn festivals. There's things that need listed on eBay or Craigslist. There's shirts that developed a hole 2 years ago and have been waiting very patiently for a patch.  Checkbooks waiting to be balanced, memo boards to be hung...you get the point.  I'm hoping that posting these pictures will shame me into getting this room sorted out.

But honestly?  This room is too messy for Tia to come in and that really bothers me the most.  I like her hanging out with me when I'm working on something.  I just can't have her finding scissors on the floor and putting cords in her mouth.

And very lastly....seeds!
I had someone coming in and watering them every day while we were gone and turning the grow light on in the morning and off at night, but a bunch of them dried out and died.  Damn. But we have hot peppers, columbine, cherry tomatoes, bleeding hearts that refuse to germinate, sunset flowers, and campanulas.  I really want to add a ton of perennial flowers to the yard this year, but they're so expensive to buy in bulk so seeds it is! Wish me luck! 

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Valentine's Day

This past weekend was my very favorite yarn event of the year- Winter Wooly Weekend in Ferdinand, IN.  It was my 5th year attending and first year co-organizing and I think it went really well.  I certainly enjoyed myself and I had several people make a point to tell me that they enjoyed it.  So, a win.  A great weekend with old friends and some new, lots of knitting, a little drinking, but a great break from life.

So the downside to getting out of the house and going to a retreat and working and being needed, is that you have to come home eventually.  And I've been a special sort of hell since I got back. I know that the path of recovery from PPD isn't always linear, but I really felt that I've been better.  And overall I have.  There have been fewer days of just crying for hours, there's been a sharp decrease on the bourbon intake, and I've been making things again, and I felt like things were getting better.  But this week has thrown me right back to where I was before I had my D&C and that rotten piece of placenta removed. 

I have been so lonely since I got back and feeling so positively worthless. I've been sad and so irrationally angry.  I slipped in baby puke yesterday and broke my favorite tea cup on the way down and I sobbed for 3 hours.  Then my mom posted some Obama-hate on Facebook over his new portrait and I just freaking lost it.  I didn't even like Obama that much, I just really hate the new guy and every time I see his smug expression as he dictates who gets disaster relief or takes away from food stamps, I just want to throat punch someone.  And this has been every day since the inauguration.

Sorry, I try not to get political, but the news has been a major source of my rage. The fact that my family (with exception of my husband) is entirely Pro-Trump makes it incredibly difficult because every time I try to talk about my feelings I'm told how irritating I am and then my cousin shows up wearing a "Don't be a snowflake" shirt to Christmas and going on about those fucking liberals. I seriously don't even want to go to family events anymore.  It's just not worth the anger that I feel the entire time I'm there. Luckily nobody in my family reads this blog, and if they do, it's nothing new. 

Anyhow.  I've been dealing with a lot of hatred issues lately.  And I'm trying to do all the things we talk about in group therapy like letting things go and being kinder to ourselves but I can see that I was getting better and now I'm slipping into a downward spiral and I can see it happening but I can't do anything about it.  I used to be a loving person and I just hate who I am now.  It's days like this that make me feel like the world would genuinely be better off without me, but then I wonder what would happen to my daughter and my cat and my houseplants, and I know that I just have to grin and bear it and hope that someday I won't feel like this.

I bought some yarn this weekend to make a sweater, but my computer is having issues and isn't talking to my phone (where the pictures are).  So hopefully I'll remember to tell you about breaking my 3 year yarn diet in the next post. Until then, here's a song called "I Hate" by Passenger and it makes me smile a bit on days like this.It has some language, but nothing worse than I already say.  Link

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

The Power of Rainbows

I kept on with the rainbow theme and made a headband.  I wouldn't normally make a steeked headband but it's actually the perfect size for a steeking sample. I should also be able to put together kits really easily for classes, so that's a plus.  I'll do another one soon in 2 colors for the more traditional crowd.  It's drying now, and it needs buttons but it should be ready to go to Greenwood in time for Roving Indiana as a shop sample.  Huzzah!  I also had a shop in Ohio contact me about a trunk show and a Fair Isle class because I had posted this on Instagram in several stages of completion- so Huzzah again!
Below the rainbow headband you might recognize....another sock. I did finish the second highly ribbed sock and have already worn it several times.  It's in the wash now with it's friends.  I assure, it looks just like a sock.  This particular sock yarn is more of the stash that's growing vintage. The brand is called Cheval Blanc and it's 75% superwash merino, 25% nylon.  It is a lovely melange of blues and I picked it up on my most recent trip to Paris, which wasn't recent at all (Maybe 5 years? 6?).  Anyhow, it's working up a lot like Regia and I look forward to my new blue workhorse socks. I mostly casted them on because I needed a small project for....

My trip to Florida!!! Tomorrow afternoon Bike Boy, the Spawn and I are jumping on an airplane here and debarking in warmer weather. My parents live in Sarasota so it's a wonderfully low-key trip and the only real planning is the plane ticket purchase. Hubster is actually coming back a few days earlier than I am since I work remotely and he doesn't, but the baby will stay with me in FL for the extra time where she will be spoiled rotten by my parents.

My other Florida project is this!  The picture isn't ideal.  It's a handpainted (by me) navy blue lace yarn and the pattern is called High Desert or something- it's a Romi Hill design.  My bestie picked it out as her wedding gift, which is in October but I'd feel better finishing the shawl closer to April. I have several other big wedding gifts to do this year, and probably several big baby shower gifts to do next year since that seems to be the pattern lately.

I really don't have a lot else going on.  I'm working a lot.  Bike Boy is working a lot.  Tia is drooling excessively and has started pulling up on the storage ottoman and kind of walking around it a bit.  I dread the day that she discovers that it opens, and I will find my good quilting fabrics all over the living room.  Oh well, as long as it's fabric and not bleach or something, it's really not that bad.

Oh! Part of my "working a lot" is finishing up some old patterns that are stuck somewhere in the editing and documentation process.  The first is Tormund, named after one of my very favorite Game of Thrones characters since he's redheaded and always covered in snowflakes. Here it is!

And if you want more information or would like the pattern, you can find that here.

I have a cowl and hat kit that was designed for Wooly Workshop, and that will be available after Wooly Workshop is finished (the week of Feb 12th).  I have a shawl in 2 colors that's in the final stages of test-knitting, and I'm extremely excited about that one, and I have a colorwork baby cardigan called Wee Celt that needs a tiny bit of tweaking on the yoke math and then a nice photo session, but that should be available too sometime soonish.  It will be so nice to have these off my desk and out in the world!

Ciao for now! 

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

The Dawning of the Gauge of Aquarius

Ask, and you shall receive. 

Two days ago I had a minor heart flutter as I realized I was about 2 inches of sock away from having 1 knitting project.  I have so much respect for monogamous knitters (only one project at a time), but guys- I just can't do it myself.  I need to feel needed by the masses. 

Okay, it's more like having a project for every situation.  There's a purse project.  A low light project.  A brain tickling project.  Those back burner projects. And I'm down to 1 back burner sweater and a nearly finished second sock.  But there's nothing I love enough to start right now.

So I asked the interwebz what I should make.  I had several legitimate suggestions, but still no inspiration.  

The next day I got a call from a yarn shop here in town asking if I would teach another fair isle + steeking class.  And that got the wheels turning.

I won't give too many specifics, but I swatched.  I've had this concept bumping around in my brain for about a year now, but I always envisioned it as a sweater.  Last night, it spoke to me in a shawl form.  Well, a very small swatch, but if the shop owner is on board, then I'll make it a shawl.

If she's not on board, I'll make a shawl anyway but not teach in her shop. I think it would be super fun to have as a kit for sale at yarn shows.

At this point in time, it is called the Gauge Of Aquarius and it is rainbow fabulous.

And socks.... nearly there!

I took today's Tia nap opportunity to finally weave in those whopping 3 ends on Brooke's shawl and take it outside for some glamour shots.  It's not -10 like it was all last week, but I wasn't hanging out too long, so there's only a couple decent pictures.  But it's done, and I will give it to her tomorrow or Thursday and have it off my plate forever. 

Do you remember those stretchy bands that came in potholder kits?  I believe those were my very first craft obsession and they paved the way for life as a capital K Knitter. I was at a yarn show last year or the year before- I think it was somewhere in Texas- and they were selling the metal potholder frames and wool bands that had been dyed by hand.  I must have been feeling nostalgic, because I bought enough to make 5 potholders. I made 1 right away and was kind of over it- the wool bands are much thicker than the acrylic ones and it was a bit of a struggle to get those last few rows in there. But I made one.  And then Gavin made one when he was in the hospital for ACL surgery. And then the other 3 kits got thrown in with the sock stash for some reason.

Then I was snooping around on Ravelry and I saw someone making potholders with the Sugar & Cream cotton on a potholder frame.  And then I remembered that I now own a nice metal frame.  And then those 3 kits were hanging out with it...and I made a potholder.  And then I made a second potholder, but the yellow bands keep breaking and I'm highly annoyed with the second.  There is one more kit, but I'm just really annoyed that I paid $8 for a potholder's worth of wool bands and they keep breaking. Argh! But here's the one I made the other day before things started snapping mid-weave.  Kind of cute, huh?

All for now.  I have a knitter in England who keeps e-mailing me asking about an unpublished pattern.  So I should probably work on that....