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.)