Saturday 31 December 2022

And here it is.  Time for a round up of everything that has gone before.  

And then reading back I ask myself why.  

I did have one really great knit in January.  I wear it all the time.  It is one of the nicest things I have knit.

It seems I never did take a completed photo.  Best knit of the year by far.

I could go through all of the year but honestly, it was just so awful.  The sewing was great, some of the knitting was okay and spending time with Luda has been wonderful, but the vast majority is not time I want to do again.  Ever.  My heart breaks knowing that my grandchildren understand war and what it does.  They are happy little people because Grandma Luda is here and safe and they feel safe here, but they know it.  That is just something that was not in my bailiwick and something I was not prepared for.  The health stuff is something I am glad to understand but hope to never have to face that again.  Losing dad and the other losses that happened to people I care about have been hard, but there it is.  I have kind of had enough of this stuff.

The best thing by far is wee Everett. He is a such a sweet wee boy and I am going to call him blessed simply because his being born made the whole year better.  He is redemption and for now, that is enough.

Perhaps this New Year will be redemption too.

I can only live today, right now this moment in time, and I am going to take the few good things in the year, having kids visit, the good knitting, the sewing, the waking up feeling wide awake, the friendships old and new and I am just going to be content that I have such a good life.

Friday 30 December 2022

More little things.

I never quite got around to playing with the kitchen things yesterday.  Playing with little things takes time.  What I did do was work on flooring for the kitchen and the parlor.  Yes the Parlor.  When I was little, my maternal grandma referred to her livingroom as a parlor, so in my house, I shall have a parlor, not a livingroom. 

I have had a long debate about what to do for flooring.  You can create some truly lovely floors with popsicle sticks and a wash of colour to make the floors be what you want.  I didn't want to go that route, not right now.  I was looking for a quicker, less time consuming option.  I went with a floor that I found as a free printable on the internet. 

There were five different wood tones and I went with the darkest. I messed up the back a bit, by not properly lining up the board lines, but it won't really be noticed once the furniture is in place.  Otherwise I am pretty pleased with the way it turned out.  I did debate varnishing or shellacking it but I am not sure how the inkjet printing will survive. It is on a backing of sturdier card stock and I am going to hold that in place on the cabinet shelf with museum wax, particularly along the front edge.  Some day, the room will have a rug for the open floor areas too.

I did debate about using a pickled looking finish print for the kitchen, but I have a different look in mind for my kitchen.  I want a floor of blue and white tiles.

I got the floor tiles prepped by measuring and scoring the tile lines and then had difficulty getting the paint tubes out of the drawer.  I got some colours, but couldn't find the blue that I needed.  It took Keith's tall vantage to get everything out of the drawer.  Things were pretty jammed in there. At one time, I had planned to put my garden there, but the garden is going to go on the table surrounding the cabinet I am using for my house.  It will be right outside the kitchen door as it would be in any real house.  

The vegetable patch is large and is set away from the house a bit.  There will be a sign to direct you there.  After all, vegetable patches large enough to feed a family through a whole winter without having to buy any vegetables at all take up a fair bit of space, and a potato patch, even more.  Sustainability requires room and a lot of effort.  The garden at the door is going to be a place where you can sit and enjoy the scent of flowers and enjoy the warmth of a sunny morning.  I want it to be a kind of protected corner, where the wind doesn't creep in and you can have a whole cup of coffee in peace and tranquility.

Which brings me to the other adventures I had yesterday. I reacquainted myself with the little things that were collected and made so long ago.

The tiny rocker that was made by Anthony, Keith and Scott.  Mostly by Anthony, I think because he was the oldest and most observant of the boys.  The seat and rockers were carved from of paint stir sticks that you could get from building supply stores even if you weren't buying paint, and the legs were from round toothpicks.  They ever so carefully stained it (I never saw any messes so they must have been watching when Brian or I stained something) and then put it together.  It is fragile because the glue didn't hold on the stained ends.  I think I did some repairs with hot glue at some point so I could have it sitting with my other things when they were younger, but it came apart years ago.  I mean to put it together after sanding the glue points and giving it just a wee bit more stability this time.  It will have a place of pride in my kitchen right near the stove where there will be a sewing basket table near by, so the householder has a comfy spot to sit and do her hand work in.

These came back with me from Mexico, not our last trip there, but the second one.  We found this lovely little shop with baskets of little things at the back for those of us so inclined and jewellery at the front to tempt a more average consumer.  You know where I was in that shop. Of note, and completely forgotten by myself, was the food plates and the filled jars of veggies.  I have a head start on canned peas, beans and carrots.  They are the beginning of a well stocked larder.

I came across this bag of almost forgotten treasures.  I played a bit with making tiny food some years ago.  I have always remembered making the cauliflower, but had completely forgotten the cookies and the hamburgers.  I could have a picnic right now by the look of things. Some things have not held their colour over time.  The bananas are a funky brown, but then, just as in real life, maybe they are over ripe?  Easily painted.  There are some tiny strawberries and grapes and  apples with stems and teeny leaves.

There is also a bag with the taco makings.  I still have to make the tiny tortillas though chips are there (tiny pepper seeds).

There are a bunch of little things that need putting, though there are also extra pieces.  I have 4 rolling pins because that is how they came.  There are a bunch of tiny jars and containers that I bought to fill with veggies.  Somewhere in my kitchen, in a cool corner, there has to be a spot for the larder, where produce can be kept and the extra butter and cream and eggs can safely stay and where the crock for making sauerkraut can sit.  Yes, I know, I never used to eat it, but in my mind, my little house has always had a crock.  It wouldn't be right without it.  In real life, here on the prairies we had basements and basements had cold rooms of course, though in my house, the closest I will get to a basement is a faux trapdoor in the floor.

Today, I will concentrate on getting the floors done.  It might be a bit fussy.  The tiles are not faux tiles and need to be carefully cut and set on a backing paper before installation.  It needs careful work so that the floor looks just right and so everything stays straight.  Wish me precision.

Thursday 29 December 2022

It Is In the Little Things

I pulled out one of my presents from last Christmas and played with that for the morning since I need to avoid knitting right now.  

I gave myself this nifty miniature book making kit last year and decided it was high time I did something with it.  

I knew right from the start that it wasn't going to be quite the thing I was looking for.  It is scaled more towards Barbie sized miniatures than the 1/12 scale I like to work with.  Still, the techniques are valuable and it is interesting seeing the possibilities.  Plus, there are a couple of the books that will be just right as is.  

First thing is to gather tools.  I did consider trying out my paper cutter.  In the end, I opted for plain scissors, because they are quicker to use and you can control the cut easily.  

The other obvious to me tool was something to score the fold lines with.  I used the end of a small file that I had, but you could use almost anything to get the fold lines to fold right where you want them to.

Cut out the pages into strips, fold them, add a dab of glue to glue the page sets together and then, glue the book to the inside of the cardstock cover.

Voila.  We have miniature books that are reasonably nice looking which are actually very pretty and are quite readable.  The story of Thumbelina is a short but complete version of the story that could be used for kiddies bedtimes. The art work is really quite nice and I am pleased overall.  

In my dollhouse, the World Atlas and the books on birds and butterflies are going to be well used.  The scale of them can be larger because in my home, full scale, books like that were outsized so details could be better viewed.  And so it will be in my dollhouse.

The box with this little kit comes with a kind of bonus.

The box could be used as the foundation for your miniature room if you wished.  It did include a book case punched out from cardboard for the books to be kept in and the ox itself has pretty walls and really nice floors.  It only lacks a fireplace, a rug and a cozy chair and side table to make a perfectly neat little retreat. I will hang on to the box for a bit.  Who knows if I might need them for something or other.

The kit wasn't a ten for me, but I did learn some things that will be of great value when I fill my bookcases in my miniature house.  For that, I call it money well spent.

Today, I am going to play in the kitchen.  I found some museum wax a while ago.  Museum wax is used to hold things in place but not permanently.  It is clear and will help keep the bits and pieces around the kitchen from falling off shelves every time any of the kids look into my wee house or I knock it as I go past it.  

I am also going to install the lights.  I have led lights that operate using battery power.  It is a very simple solution to the quandry of wiring which just seemed like such a monumental task to me.  I want to get the first lights up so that I can see what other fixtures I might need to really light the rooms well.  I am particularly concnerned with the kitchen.  In my mind, I want it to be a place from early in the twentieth century, like something I might have found here on the prairies.  My house will have electricity, but would only be used sparingly and always backed up with lanterns, kerosene or otherwise.  

So play today.  Why ever not.  These days between Christmas and New Years are precious.  The holiday isn't quite over.  Real life need not resume.  So I shall play and make some things happen that I never seem to make time for otherwise.   

Wednesday 28 December 2022

Oh no....


That really irks me because some of the little fingerless mitts were really sweet.

Yes I did knit a pair of fingerless mitts for all the rest of my kiddies.  I bought a pair of good gloves for Isaac.  He is old enough to take care of good gloves, and I debated knitting him some mitts for over the top, but I just ran out of time and hand power.  

Cassie and Marcus and Carter and Emmett all got some.  Emmett's were pure red and Cassies were done with a sport weight from a Socks That Rock of old in the Farmhouse colourway full of violets and teals and golds.  They were very very pretty and she liked them a lot.  Marcus was impressed with his and confirmed that yes, he needs a yellow sweater.  

Isaac, Carter, Emmett and Owen haven't been here yet for their Christmas visit.  The plan was to come on Saturday.  However, they got a way better present than any gloves I might knit. 

They got a baby brother.  This is wee Everett John who was born just past Christmas and whose birth has not been formally announced yet by his mummy and daddy, though I know that the twelve of us can keep it close and quiet among ourselves.  

We will figure out another time for everybody to come visit.  Maybe when mommy has been home a bit, and needs a good sleep, dad will bring the boys over for an afternoon.  We shall see.

No matter how many visitors I have, Christmas is always special.  I have good friends.  I have a wonderful family who support me so well.  And I have peace in my nation, which these days is no small thing.  I am going to play with miniatures or set a puzzle or something like that today.  My hand needs a good rest so I am going to give it to it.

Friday 23 December 2022

Here is the thing about plans

Here is the thing.  I have 'big eyes'  as in my mom always said I took too much of my favourite food on my plate.  She is right but more so, 'big eyes' speaks to the way I make plans too.

After finishing the body of the sweater for Luda, I decided that I would have time to knit the fingerless mittens that Carter and Marcus asked for in summer.  I also had to work hard to restrain myself from planning to knit something for all the grandkids before Christmas too.  And the reality is that it is not possible.

The reality is even the sweater won't quite get done.  I am going to knit on it and will try but I am pretty sure that there are just not enough hours to finish finish it.  My planning eyes were too big for the time I had left and did not allow for things related to my the realities of health and getting the house ready for visitors and napping and laundry and so on.

And then there is this.  It is the biggest problem with fingerless gloves.  On a fingerless mitt all you have to do is close up one longer bind off and then  weave in a start end, a finish end and a thumb beginning and end.  It is easy and takes only a few minutes.  But on a finger less glove, it is like this.

All those ends.  Instead of knitting yesterday, I wrapped gifts.  I meant to weave in ends, but after a late afternoon dietitian consult, I found my gumption had deserted me.  This morning it is the thing l have to do, and no getting around that.  

I am here, writing this post though, so I am not sure what that says...

Thursday 22 December 2022


Last summer, I found my feet were warm enough and I did not always wear socks.  I thought that was a good thing and just enjoyed it.  


There is only one thing that can cause this kind of trouble and sadly, this isn't the only pair to have damage.  I do have the Aexeron pheromone traps out, I always do, but one is going into the drawer right now till I can get the whole drawer assessed, and sorted to see how many socks are done for. Then the drawers is going to get a pretty heavy duty wash with borax, as well as having borax in powder form dusted into the corners.   

This pair done for.  I ought to have thought of the results of wool in a quiet undisturbed place for a long period of time.  Moths really don't like being disturbed and it is the number one thing you can do to prevent an infestation.  Stir the stash!  The really odd thing is that I did not see any moths, not more than the occasional one or two early in spring.  They can pop in your house through an open summer and it is not a measure of your house keeping abilities at all. They are around as part of natures food chain and this is proof positive that you can be very unaware of an infestation in a dark quiet corner.

I guess the socks will be going into bags now just like finished garments, shawls and all the yarn.  Everything here is stored with an eye to moth proofing.   And post holiday knitting is clear.  All socks, all the time, till my drawer is renewed and refilled.

Meanwhile eeeep.  My feet are cold and I hope I have enough good ones to get through till New Years.

Wednesday 21 December 2022

For crying out loud.

I did a whole bunch of knitting yesterday. I made good progress on the sleeves of the sweater.  And there is going to have to be a repeat of it this afternoon.   

I made good progress on the pairs of fingerless gloves too.  This was at the start of my afternoon before my IVKN (International Virtual Knit Night) afternoon.  

And this was after.


And this morning, I have been up since 3:30 and just could not go back to sleep.  I am not tired at all.  It is entirely possible that , like an infant, I have my days and nights switched around or I am just slept out.  There were two nights of ten hours of good solid sleeping and a third night with seven hours.  That is a lot of sleep when my normal all my life has been six to seven hours.  I felt a bit beside myself and was a wee bit annoyed.  I did not know what to do.  

So I cleaned my bathroom from top to bottom.  Yeah.  I know, but it has a door that I can close and it is well insulated from Keith's sleeping space downstairs.  If the door is closed he has to struggle to hear anything from there.  And now my bathroom is clean and I still have all kinds of energy to spare.  

Might need a nap today.  We shall see.

Monday 19 December 2022

Moving Forward

It's been a long tough week and I hope it does not need to be repeated.  As much as my last post still had me trying, that was before it got bad.  In the end and YES, there was an end, I have a new and better suited to me machine and I had two good nights sleep, and I am feeling much better.  Not where I was but better.

I did heeps of knitting on the gloves.  The red ones are done and the first of the blue gloves has two fingers and a thumb left to knit.

That will be done before you know it and glove two will be cast on and will be my end of the day knitting.  I need a simple sort of porject for end of day knitting right now.  Even if it looks like a torture device full of sharp pokey bits.  

Most of my day is going to be devoted to sweater knitting though.

It's  going much faster now that I have the right needles and am approaching the striping the right way.  For me that is.

One of the really cool things about knitting has always been that this works for me but may not be right for you and yet another technique might work better for someone else.  So many ways to get the same result is one of the best things of all.    I love to knit and I am constantly in awe of all there is yet to discover.

Friday 16 December 2022

Learning to Set My Sails

Today's quote on the sidebar of my blog is this:  'It is the set of the sails, not the direction of the wind, which determines which way we will go.'  Jim Rohn.

After yesterday, I needed to read that.  I need to reset my brain and needed to stop my little struggling party, be it pity, anxiety or whatever fear it is and just get on with things.  There is little I can do to change the direction of my life and what I can change, I am already working on. I must accept this tribulation and learn to live with the way my wind is going to blow.  And that is what I am doing today.  I have my mask on to take a better scope on me with the machine, so I am sitting here, writing with the machine on my face, learning to understand what is happening between its settings and myself.  Wish me luck.

In the meantime, I did knit and that makes me wonderfully happy.

First up, the sweater.  Right now I have it on a magic loop technique, but even so, I have had to accept that I must cut the yarns for the sleeves rather than carrying them.  I just could not manage it keeping them attached on the much smaller circumference of the sleeve.  

I will most likely switch out to dpns again because honestly, I really hate magic loop.  I know, I must be one among thousands who feel that way, but it is just so defeating to do.  DPNS forever.  Without the strands getting in the way and sticking where they ought not to be sticking to, I am going home to my much favoured way of knitting small circumferences.

My fun for the day though was knitting a second red fingerless mitt.  DPNS.

I didn't knit heaps, but I did knit some.  Enough to keep my soul from screeching in anguish from all the other hard things of the day.  

The plan is the knit two blue and two red and then two of the little boys are done.  Then I just need a pair for Cassie and a pair for Isaac.  I am still wavering about Emmett.  I think his little hands and fingers are too short for fingerless ones.  Maybe one without the fingers?  I shall see. He is playing games when he is stuck in the car, and that is what the my two big little boys want them for. I do predict a lot of growth for his hands and fingers before next winter.  He is just that age and size.

And guess what?  My little Owen is walking now.  Yesterday he took steps between the big chair on the far side of the room all the way across to the TV.  Till now he was only doing a few steps here and there but everything comes to him who goes the direction the wind is blowing.  His brothers show him you can go faster on your feet.

Taking a lesson that lesson from my wee Owen, I am just going to run with it, learn to set my sails properly and sort out this darn machine.  Keep your fingers crossed for me.

Thursday 15 December 2022


I had a long post prepared for today about choosing needles for sleeves and how I really ought to write down the needle size I am using or at the very least, keep the needles or even the tips in the bag with the project rather than putting them anywhere else while I am still working on the project.  Or how I even could leave myself a note so I could remember what tip size I was using for the garment.  And then there is the whole dealing with switching yarns every four rows and the struggle to carry the yarn along as I did on the body and should I be using shorts, dpns, or go magic loop to knit the sleeves...

Lets just say this step is interesting.  Or challenging.  Or driving me batty.

Part of feeling batty with my knitting at the moment is that my sleep machines are not working right and I am not getting the sleep I ought to and honestly, it is making me cry in the middle of the night in fear and anger and exhaustion. My blood gases are all wonky and that means nothing else is working properly either so I feel foggy and just oh so frustrated.  This is the third machine I have had since I left hospital and I want to know why I keep getting the duds?  

I am going to knit easy thing today like the sleeve I have started, which by now is just round and round, with my solution in place for all the troubles I had with needles and yarns, or the start of wristwarmers right up to the fingers part where it get just a little fussier.  

If I had time or brainpower, I would do more but this is all I have for today.

Monday 12 December 2022

The Little Palate Cleanser.

After knitting a lot yesterday, I knit only a little today and only on little things too.

But fingerless mitten one is complete.  Just for fun I will knit the other red glove to make it a complete pair and then I will knit an entire blue pair before I wrap them up for the boys as a 'pair' of one red and one blue.  

Tomorrow I am going to work on sleeves. I didn't today because I had a middle of the day appointment and I just can't seem to wrap my head around appointments and knitting something really important.  I want to be fresh when I knit important things.  Tomorrow is a free day for me so sleeves it is.

The mitten is a really nifty little palate cleanser.  It's kind of like a sweet treat between courses.  It set me up just right for the next step on the sweater.

Sunday 11 December 2022

It's the Little Things.

And then, just like that, the body of the sweater was done.  

I am delighted with how it looks and am looking forward to knitting sleeves and neck and button bands and then blocking it.  It is the prettiest thing I have ever made.  So far.

I am considering knitting the sleeves using only the Adam and Eve, the non mohair yarn.  I have a feeling that sleeves might get pushed up by the wearer and I am pretty sure that the simpler yarn will stay up better.  Though the mohair is lovely, I am not quite so sure about it's long term performance either.  It is so airy and delicate and sleeves do get more wear than the body of a garment.  I want to think it over a wee bit but time is not on my side.  I have to make a choice asap. 

In the meantime, I pulled out another little thing that was asked for by my boys.  When they were here in summer, they requested some fingerless mittens.  At the time, one hand had to be blue and the other red, so...

I am using the basic mitten pattern from Ann Budd's A Knitter's Handy Book of Patterns. I am making the ladies small with a twist.  The mitt cuff looked great and then I knit in stockinette to the point where I was just past the thumb gusset and about to start going up the hand.  The stockinette part looked too wide for a boys hand, and though these boys are growing rapidly, I just wasn't happy with it. 

I know that the ones I really enjoy wearing to bed are a little ribbed pair.  The ribbing makes it fit around my hand so comfortably and closely.  A close fit will work better for the boys, so I pulled it all back and voila, ribbed all the way up and I am back to where I was before I pulled it out.  The boys wanted fingers on the gloves, and that means things will get a bit fussier, but for now, it was a wonderfully easy speedy little knit.  

It was so speedy that I caught myself thinking maybe I could make a set for Isaac too.  And I might.  It will depend how the fingers go and how the sleeves of the sweater go.  However, if I make something for Isaac, then I must make something for Cassie and what about Emmett and Owen and so on.  

Before I bite off a bigger chunk of the pie, I am going to finish these two projects, the sweater and mitts for Carter and Marcus.  Then and only then will I think about a few more little things.

Friday 9 December 2022

Sweater Games.

My book is done.  Most tragically in a way.  I had hoped for redemption for one of the characters, in a way that he could go home to where he was loved, yet I knew from reading one of the books out of order, that he did not make it home.  Still, there was redemption for him.  His death and what he died doing was just that.  I am speaking of Louise Penny's Inspector Gamache novels and as to what character I speak of, well, you shall have to read them yourself.  Finishing Penny's novels make me wish I had another to read right now. 

Till I sort out what I will read next, I will watch some shows on TV which will give me ample time to knit. That is going to be the focus of my day.


This sweater is tricky.  The yarn has gone all static and clings everywhere.  I have never had that happen before but I suspect that it is the mohair leading the wool astray.  It is making me a bit batty.  And to top it off, when I measured a couple weeks ago, I had only an inch to knit till my optimal length.  I measured again this morning and I now have two inches to go to my optimal length.  

Sigh.  Knitting.  I love it so.  

Sweater games are being played.  All I can do is to keep on knitting my heart out.  Here is hoping that I get to the bottom today.

Thursday 8 December 2022


There was no knitting yesterday.  I don't honestly know what I did other than a few house chores, but it just was not a good day to knit.  My hands ached and it wasn't a good day for it.  Looking for better today.

I spent the day pondering.  I am not sure what I was pondering but it wasn't anything important or large or anything else, and yet, I kept myself occupied all day.  I thought a lot about books.  I thought a lot about my grandkids and Christmas and all sorts of things like that.  

I read more than anything else yesterday and may do that again.  It is a good book.  There will be knitting to go with it today.  For a while anyway.  I am certain of that.  

Tuesday 6 December 2022

Sweater like

Everyday it looks more sweater like.  You can see the wonderful way that Joji starts the shoulders

and the delicate slope and slant of the neck

and you can see I am getting to the point where it has a real sweater length.  If it was for a smaller busted person, I could call it good right now, but Luda is larger busted and carries her weight through her midriff.  The sweater needs to be a bit longer so that it hangs nicely to her hips.

So a few more sets of stripes.   I seem to be able to do a set a day on a good day.  After that my eyes give out and I start dropping stitches on this fine lace yarn.  Some days, what with our changeable weather, and the shifts we have right now from really mild to beastly cold, and the stiffness that it brings to my hands, I can only get one.  Today was a one stripe day.  It is what it is.  

But it is a sweater and it looks really fine and I am pretty darn proud of how it is turning out.

Monday 5 December 2022


There has been knitting happening here.  It struck me that I am going to have to really work my buns off to get even one Elton done before Christmas, much less two.  I am doing better, but focus on one thing at a time has been hard when there are so many things to stress over.  Sigh.  So I will put all my energies into working on the blue River colourway  Elton for Luda.  I did some serious inches yesterday and today, but particularly today.  I did a lot of knitting today.  It was great. The River Elton really did get knit on but it looks exactly the same as the last picture I showed you.  It is just rows and rows alternating two lovely yarns.  Very good for where my ability to focus is at right now.

 At least someone will have a pretty thing this year.  As to the rest of the WIPs?  They aren't going anywhere.

I have watched them (the WIPs).  Seriously and just like dirty dishes, stuff piles up.  They might eventually be way more fun than dirty dishes but you know what I mean.  There are always WIPs around and they spill out and climb up of their own volition till I am surrounded.

The the left side of me.

WIP bin shot one.

WIP bin shot two.  See, caught in the act of climbing out of there to join me on the loveseat.

WIP under the embroidery topped off by a bag with a pair of socks ongoing.

The knitting.  It's everywhere, It's everywhere.  And that is a very good thing.  

Friday 2 December 2022

I have it!

I have it!!!!  

It is a while now since I spoke of the beautiful yarn I bought a while ago from Midknit Cravings.  It is their Comfort Sport base in a colourway called Pesto, a marvelous tweed looking green based multi speckled colour that I fell in love with.   I started a sweater with it and just could not seem to get the right fit at the neckline.  I frogged it some time ago and it has been waiting ever since for inspiration to strike.

It struck.  

Joji Locatelli released Arco Iris this week and it is the perfect thing.  Here is a link on Joji's website in case you can't see the pattern at Ravelry.   It is a simple pattern that lets the yarn do the talking, something I think is really important with this seriously fine yarn.  

I really cannot wait to finish up the Eltons so I can knit this.  I am so excited!

Living with the world as it is.

Once again, I seem to have not knitted yesterday. Morning appointments and discussions seem to have taken the entire day.  Add in a nap and there was not time to accomplish anything more than a few household errands.  But it did give me time to think.

My dad was a really special person.  He taught us so many things mostly by example.  One of the things he taught us was to try to see and understand all sides of an issue.  He tried to see all sides and he did not believe in cutting out what he wasn't really comfortable with.  He tried to live with things as they were rather than how he felt they ought to be.  He always tried to find a way to work with and find the good even in the most impossible people and the really hard situations. He found solutions for little things for anyone who asked for his help and he took pride in it.  He took responsibility for the things he did in this world and tried to act with a thought for how the little things he did would ripple out there in the big wide world.   

I am thinking a lot about him as is natural, and those good memories are helping to heal the hole his passing has left in my world.  But it is a very different thing than before.  I was prepared for the difference, but knowing it and living it is such a different thing.  I am seeing a different side of grief.   All the colours of grief are kind of amazing to me.  I never really wanted to know this, but here it is, and I will live with things as they are rather than how I wish them to be.  

Now it is time to go write a letter to my mom.  One of the things I learned through all of this has been just how nice it is to sit down and write a letter, a real letter.  A letter allows you to think about the words you use, and mull over the way you say things.  You can cut to the heart of a story in a way I really can't when I speak.  It allows you to edit which is lovely.  

So off to write a letter to my mom because there are so many things I appreciate about her, so many things I remember.  I love my mom. I wish she did not have to know these differences I know.  

**In case this strikes you as so sad, it really isn't.  I find comfort in all those memories with my family and times with dad.  It fills me with love. I know how lucky I have been in my family.

Thursday 1 December 2022

On the River Blue Elton

TI did get a bit of knitting done over the last few days.  In some ways the two Elton sweaters feel as if they are growing by leaps and bounds and as if it is all going to come crashing to the sleeve part before I know it.  

This lovely blue one is showing itself to need only four or five more inches.  Each set of striped rows is just over an inch and a half of length.  So not too much to go.

They may just be done by Christmas time. Maybe.  Which would be a real delight.

Tuesday 29 November 2022

On Volcanos

Just one thing remains.  I have only to make a ghost like outline of that far away volcano and it is done.  I may have to do a little bit of something on the ash coming out of the volcano.  The stitches are long and straight and in service as a pillow cover, those long stitches will catch and eventually tear.  He is only 8 after all.  My goodness time flies.  Once the top is done, I have to pull out the stuffing and make a pillow to fit and then sew this top to some very smooth soft backing fabric I have in the fabric piles.

This means I get to start Carter's volcano picture and I am really looking forward to it.  They interpreted volcanoes very differently, according to their personalities I think.  As a subject for a grandmother's needlework, they are even more interesting.   

I did manage some knitting too.  The green Elton, my preferred sweater choice for weekends, is looking positively long.  Not finished long but it is getting to where it would look excellent as a cropped garment.  On someone else.  I have lots of yarn and I mean to make it a sweater that works for me, which means long enough to give my lower back some warmth.  

Weekdays are for knitting the Blue Elton.  The two sweaters were about the same length so if I can manage to get in a good sit of knitting time on it this week, I will feel very happy.  I almost would make it my goal to finish the body, but I am not sure I am quite up to that. You know how it is with me and goals.  If I say it, it becomes the last thing I want to work on and these sweaters, I really do want to get both done asap.  I want it to be the first thing I want to work on so mum is the word.  

It is chilly outside, -16C with a gusty bitter sort of wind.  Full winter in so many ways.  I am here snuggled inside warmth and comfort and coziness, and not for a moment do I forget how very privileged I am. Not for a moment.  

Thursday 24 November 2022

Two Eltons.

Nov 24 is a special day for me.  I usually remember it.  2007,  2008,  2009,  2010,  and after that, my Anniversary posts get sketchier.   It is my wedding anniversary and this year, would be forty three years.  Sigh.  It was the best day of my life.  There are reasons it is not such a good day too, but life happens all around you no matter what else is on your plate.  

The two men associated with today in my life, my dad and my husband have taught me to enjoy what you have in front of you.  So that is what I am focusing on. Happy wonderful things we did and all the good in my life now.

That lovely mohair takes longer to knit than the fingering multi colour in the other Elton sweater I am making.  This is a delicate dainty pretty knit.  The other, even using Fleece Artist yarns, is a more sweater like sweater, more robust.  Mine is the green, and Luda's is the blue.  

For now I must get back to work.  I want hers done asap so she has it for Christmas at least.  Time is all I have and I will happily share it with her.

Tuesday 22 November 2022

A Sock. A Sock.

One of the things that I have missed all fall was talking with and general hanging out with knitters. Virtual or live, it made no difference to me. I was taking some very easy courses but I felt overwhelmed by them and stopped the visiting with knitters so I could concentrate on the material in front of me.  Now that all is said and done, I realize that being overwhelmed was connected to not being well for most of the fall.  I have missed my people and my contact with the joy that other people who knit have brought into my life.

Keith pointed out that some of my issues the last few days, could be alleviated if I just went back to my knitting groups, that 'maybe it was time, mama'.  I took his sage advice and I joined the International Virtual Knit Nights group today.  It was a lot of fun because if pineapple pizza day.  I can't explain it but it really was fun.  I haven't giggled so much in a long time.

I wanted to knit something simple and pulled out this barely started pair of socks.  The yarn is one of my very pretty Opal's, the Claude Monet colour.  I love how the artist colours come out in this whole series.  There was not a dud among them.  I only wish I had the Vincent Van Gogh Starry Night one.

I did spend most of the morning working on my embroidery things too.  Marcus' volcano is so close to finishing.  I have the smoke at the top and a few bits near the bottom to do.  Another day or two and it will be done.  Then comes Carter's volcano, a very different look, but really interesting to play with.  

As it is, this blog is written at my bed time.  I am tired but am feeling really good about my day and the general state of things.   I may learn to love Bob Vader** yet.  I need my sleep.

**Bob Vader, Darth's cousin, who wasn't evil like Darth, but wasn't entirely good either.

Monday 21 November 2022

Actual Knitting

The way back to knitting has been rather strange.  It feels as if it has been a very long time since I really knit and did it with the sense of joy that I found today.  It felt so very very nice to feel like I was back in my right place.

I had been looking for something different to knit for a few days. I had my heart set on this sweater but that WIP bin of mine is large and deep and it holds a lot of things.  It defeated me for a day or two.  I had to empty the whole chest to find it. I was overjoyed when I found it this morning and I sat down and knit on it on and off for the whole day.  

It is plain knitting just like the Elton out of the lovely yarn from River City Yarns, but this is such a different combination of yarns and it is such a different experience to work on it.  I love both projects but it is nice to have something to switch to as I work through both sweaters very long middle of the torso sections.

Not sure what will be tomorrow, but there will be knitting and there will be joy.  That will be enough.

Friday 18 November 2022

Onward ho.

And as things so very well must, they go on.  It has been this way through all human history and will remain long after I am done.  So I will go on.

Besides all the things going on with my dad, I have been ill.  Very ill.  I did not recognize it but it ended with me being utterly undignified in a place where they deal with sick people for a much longer period than I ever want to be there again.  I came home with Bob Vader and his Deathstar.  Every time I wander down my hall, my hands are full and I find I need something for my phone.

Do you remember this sock?

It is one of the many I have on the go and it was the right place to turn into a nice little bag.  

I thought about knitting an icord strap, but honestly, there are a hundred things I want to knit more than miles of icord.  And not nearly enough time in the world to do them all. 

Later today I will hit the embroidery bag.  I have volcanos to finish.  

Thursday 17 November 2022

My dad

My dad passed away yesterday at the grand age of 93.  

There is so much I want to say about him and yet words fail me.  He was such fun.  He was kind.  He was a tinkerer and inventor of solutions to whatever little thing stood in his way.  He built a house.  He made a home. He loved us most of all and made sure we knew that.  I am going to miss his laughter and his care and his being in this world.  He had a long life and his passing was peaceful and quiet and really, that is all any of us can ask for, isn't it.

 My dad at his 90th birthday.  Photo by Olga Renneberg

I am going to miss you so very much.

Wednesday 16 November 2022


I am here.  Still planning on blogging and will update next week.  Happy to be able tp pop in.

Wednesday 2 November 2022

Here and knitting

I am here.  There is knitting but very plebeians knitting. 

Still, even plebeians needed socks.

Just restarting a garter stitch heel.  The first time around I was suffering from a lack of clarity and the heel was a mess such as I have not made since heel number 1 on that fateful may afternoon.  

But it's a busy couple days and will be a busy couple more so I may or may not get posting tomorrow.  

Friday 28 October 2022

Six is Not Enough

No pictures today.  Most of yesterday was sewing and not the inspiring kind.  There is a bit more to do of that sort today, but then,..

I have a few other errands to do as well as go through some material for some classes I am taking and then, before i know it, it will be time for The practise sessions at the Grand Prix in Mexico.  The day will be full and busy and interesting.  

And there will be knitting.  i have a blanket to work on that I have been forgetting for far too long and it would be great to get that out of my way.  

Sock Monkey Cabin Blanket, you are calling my name.  Six is really not enough.

Thursday 27 October 2022

Any Day Now

After being energised by the ghost costume, I sat down and did a bunch of household sewing yesterday.  There is more to do.  there is always more, but still, it filled a need and I am happy to have that done.  There is a bit more on that pile for today, but after that, sewing will get interesting again for me, if not for you.

When the sewing was completed, I wanted something simple but interesting to knit.  The lovely striped sweaters were not it.  I wanted socks.  I really could use them too.  This is always the time of year when socks die and the sock drawer assumes I have some new socks waiting in the wings.  Usually I do, but not right now.  Right now, I have nine different sock events on the go, but only one has a single sock complete.  

I dug through the depths of the sock project bags, but couldn't find the one I was thinking to work on.  I settled for this one, which was ready for a heel.

Unfortunately for this sock, I was looking for a second end from the sock ball so I could double strand the heel and before you know it, half the ball was out on the floor.

I thought I was working with the inner end, but no, contrary to common practise, the ball had both inner and outer ends coming from the center, all mashed up together.  The ball had obviously been looked at somewhere along the way to me, and it took half the day to sort it out.  I ended up cutting the  sock off the ball with a good long tail, and rewinding a good socks worth.  Then with two ends coming from places I understood, I started the heel.  

It will be fine, better than.  I just need to get some socks done.  Winter will be here any day now.

Wednesday 26 October 2022

In Defense of Old Books

I know what to knit next, and yes, it is the things for Carter and Marcus.  But I have to wait for a budgetary opening to be able to get the material required.  sigh.  Life happens and sometimes the knitting does indeed have to wait.

In the meantime, it isn't like there isn't plenty to knit.

I pulled out this pretty thing and worked on that most of the afternoon.  It is now over nine inches long so I am just over halfway on the body.  This is thrilling because with the very lacey mohair, its a slower knit than most.  Still, it is a gift and I can't wait to see Luda wear it.  Christmas maybe?

I am also thinking hard about the next thing I really want to work on, and surprisingly, it may very well be one that is already in the stream of WIPS.  

It is the Scandinavian Star Vest from Chryl Oberle's Folk Vests.  This was one of the first books I bought when I started knitting.  It was a bit 'old' even then, but it is filled with timeless things.  My fingers are looking forward!

Do take a look  at these older project books.  There are some really wonderful pieces in them and I hate the thought of them going missing for a generation till the knitter's of the future find them on some dusty shelf in an abandoned library.  Find them now.  Enjoy them now.  Get the word out.  

Tuesday 25 October 2022

Today's idea

One of the very few things I can do for mom and dad , living far away as I do is to try to keep up their spirits with the weirdness and silliness of the world.  So every time I think of something they might enjoy, I am off, writing a letter to my dad.  I have been doing this for a while now, so if the blog is spare and odd, that is why.  They are getting the best stuff (if I have best stuff that is).

But writing letters takes time.  I am surprised at how much time.  When you watch characters in Jane Austen write to their loved ones, it seems there is always stuff to write and it is done on an elegant afternoon, in front of a sunny window with a good view and ones hair curling effortlessly over ones shoulder, dressed to the nines in a simple but stylish garment.  If you read any decent biographies of people of the day, you will find letters often took days and it was something that was done quite carefully.  Austen has several samples of such things in her books as well as in her letters as collected.

I tend to write once a week, though sometimes, subject matter fails me.  Keith is a not too bad source of things, but the kids, the kids are a treasure trove of good stuff to write about.

There is always some one doing something goofy or weird.  Or worse!  But finding the subject matter is something I try to do with great care.  

This next week and a bit is going to be a treasure with Halloween coming up so soon.  And fast as ever things follow along, Christmas.  So much to tell before those days.

Sadly, this does leave the blog with not a lot to write about.  Take today, for instance.  Zip.  Nada.  I haven't knit in three days nor done anything else remotely craftlike.  What I have done is cut some fabric for an around the house project and sewn the sides of some old white curtains for a ghost costume.  

What I can tell you today is that this tiny venture into the sewing room is making me hunger to do some more work in there.  As ever pants!  T-shirts!  Sleepwear! More dresses!!! I still have a long list on my list of things I could really use to dress properly.  

Still I will save that for tomorrow.  If I wrote about that today, I would have little to say then and I wouldn't have gotten anything done today but writing.  

Not that that is a bad idea.  It just isn't today's idea.

Friday 21 October 2022

Better but is it Done?

And done.

It's such a small difference and yet, it is so much better.  

Now the question is Do I make it longer?  It is cropped, and looks good but it still needs to be a sweater and keep me warm..I'm not a hundred percent sure if it does that.  

I will wear it today and then I will decide.