Thursday, September 3, 2015

End of Summer Posting

Summer is quickly winding down and the leaves are starting to change. The garden has been taken over by volunteer pumpkins from last year's compost heap and the tomatoes are slowing down for the year. I've been so busy with both jobs lately, I didn't bother planting a row of radishes or turnips for my fall garden.

Our next door neighbor is a very nice man, but doesn't take care of his lawn. His back yard is some kind of invasive plant sanctuary- thistles 20 feet high, poke weed, poison oak and honeysuckle and it's all coming over the fence and into my garden. It's a losing battle I just don't have the time for, so after I pull the sweet potatoes we'll be laying out some flagstone to create a buffer for a few feet that will hopefully slow the weeds down. I wish he would move out and someone would come and take care of that poor house and yard. But he isn't, so I need to do what I can to protect my garden from his mess. I'm also worried about how it could hurt our home's value when we try to sell our house (not in the foreseeable future, but it's a small house and we might need something bigger someday).

Anyhow, there is an abundance of pumpkins, tomatoes and peppers now. BFF Rachel and I are going to be making a big batch of pepper jelly next week and I'll start pulling up the plants, spreading this summer's compost and tilling under for the fall in the week or so after that. I'd love to get a bunch of it done over Labor Day weekend, but Tall/Dark & Handsome is set on boating in KY, which is also nice, just not overly helpful for taking care of the to-do list.

I've been knitting on two projects lately, a purple baby cardigan called "Wee Liesl"- a Ysolda pattern for a pregnant friend at work. I used an Opal handpainted sock yarn I've had stashed for a few years. It's superwash, so I figured I'd save it for gift knitting. I've had the pattern and yarn picked out for a while, I've just been waiting for someone to have a girl. I don't know that this friend is having a girl yet, I just had a feeling so I cast on. It's finished now with exception of the buttons, but I'll wait until it's finished blocking before I put those on. I found silvery-gray shell buttons that bring out the plum color.  As you can see, Madeline the wool snob is a big fan.

I'm still chugging along (with a lot less momentum) on the green fitted February Lady Sweater. I think I'll need to find another hank of this yarn for it, and I'm dreading that and that's probably the anchor in the progress. That and I've been working on wedding things instead. I never actually knit at home anymore and progress on bigger projects (that don't fit in my purse) is slow-going. I also realized that Christmas is only a few months away now, and I should probably start with Christmas crafting. I've been working on a smaller quilt for Gavin's parents as a gift at some point- I was hoping to give it to them at the wedding as a thank you for paying for the rehearsal dinner. I had a really good weekend on it and thought I could give it to them for Christmas but now I'm not as sure. But I do want to knit a pair of socks for a friend, a couple hats or scarves for co-workers and a couple potholder/dried herb sets for a few foodie-friends as well. Extended family will probably have another year of jellies and dried herbs from the garden. So far I have 2 jars of dried peppers and a Rastafarian potholder.

I have also been working on a baby quilt for a friend due on the 14th. I meant to finish it and give it to her a couple months ago, but I didn't even turn on my sewing machine all through July and August. I made another blue and yellow quilt like I made for Mary Jane, but I ran out of fabric and had to go a tiny bit smaller on one side. I had some really cool Dr. Seuss fabric that I used on the back- it's such an awesome print and I didn't want to cut any of it and risk beheading some of my favorite characters, so I just made the entire quilt back all one Dr. Seuss print.  I managed to get the top done last night and quilt it, but it still needs bound. Madeline is very involved in the quilting process and I can't seem to get any pictures without her flopping down in the middle of "her" quilt. I'll make her one soon with scraps for her window seat.

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