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And maybe gauge.

I might be buying a house. It is beautiful and shiny. The owners mentioned the asbestos pipes in the condition report, and now I have to move small mountains to get financing. I am superstitious, and think that things that take huge effort and stress to get are probably going to suck, once I get them. But the kitchen! And the windows! And the sun porch! And the town!

And now, because of this sense of doom, I am looking at other houses in this town which is very scary and maybe I’m focusing too much on the negative, but I’m also realizing what level of apprehension I’m at whenever I’m out of the house. But the houses I’m looking at are in better condition and are cheaper, but nowhere’s near as romantic.

I did a couple of small trips today, and flipped off three drivers. I posted and then deleted things on Facebook that were too intense! At which point I decided I might be cooked. But! I also went into a yarn store to buy bamboo needles for a futzy project (mini-mittens for xmas decorations), and walked out with only one random skein of yarn. Balance is everything.

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And I don’t know why.

I do know that I like drawing flowers, because here is another one.Scan 2017-5-7 19.00.54

I was practicing drawing circles and ellipses, and drawing with a loose grip, and all of a sudden there was an almost-a-sunflower. Weird, how that happens. (Too much like a chrysanthemum, no sense of the meaty disc that is a sunflower, no green – bracts? hanging out behind the petals. I got the sawtooth leaf on one side, so there; sunflower.)

In other flowers, I pulled a bunch of geraniums last year and stuck them upside-down in paper bags. They started sprouting, so I stuck seven of them into a pail of water, and then one bright day in April, I planted them out. Of course it snowed the next day, so I nailed plastic over the box they’re planted in, and they seem to be about ready to go nuts – if we get two days nice weather in a row. I’m wondering if this will be a year when we get snow in July. Photos to come.

I’m knitting a sock, la dee da, and a boring one at that, and thinking about a sweater, because The Cat has taken over my thrift store Fair Isle, and this would be perfect weather for such a thing. And of course, none of the ones I’m seeing appeal to me, and so of course I’ll design my own, and so of course I will curse myself for it because it is so much easier to follow someone else’s pattern. Sigh.

In less pleasant news, the Cat pooped on my bed. I know, it’s a message, what with her not speaking english, and actually has nothing to do with me except that I’m in charge, and I should get the staff to do better. I don’t know, it’s put a damper on my feelings towards her.

I think my plan of getting her a puppy is a good one.

 

There is a book in the world called “2312” by Kim Stanley Robinson. I checked it out of the library several years ago, and while I admired it, I was off-put by the austerity of the writing. A couple of years ago, I was at a bookstore and saw this book by one of my favorite authors, called “2312,” and snatched it up. I read for a while, and was kind of off-put by the austerity of the writing, and then realized I had read it before. But I finished it, and then donated it to the library up here. And have been thinking I should buy it again and read it again. Again.

The book is set well into the future, and people move all the time, from one planet to another to a moon to a spacecraft to somewhere else. One of the main characters, to combat the sense of dislocation establishes what are called psuedo-iterations, intentionally developed routines. I think about this, often.

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I drink hot water with lemon, most nights. The cup is from a trip out West to see a friend. The cutting board is from my grandmother’s kitchen.

However, I’ve given myself permission to slack. Or do other things.

To be honest, the incoming administration rattled me severely, and I’ve been surviving on junk and denial. Words in particular have seemed trite, with a greasy overlay of deceit. I’ve been loads of fun. Except for the part where I’ve been occasionally harassing elected officials.

But! there is good news, for me anyway. Daughter discovered melatonin, and has been sleeping well for the first time in ten years. She has to double-check with her doctor, before she continues taking it (drug interactions and all that). But she’s been waking up with energy and sunniness. A big shift of gears.

In Knitting! I’ve started Bedragonned. It looks so innocent. To get a workable gauge, I had to knit fairly tight. I call it the Belgian Death Grip, for no reason. So I’m doing the Death Grip, and then I get to the part where I have to retrieve 128 stitches from a provisional cast-on using a slightly splitty yarn with another slightly more splitty yarn. I’ve gotten about halfway through retrieving the stitches, about an eighth of the way through knitting two stitches together in an awkward way. I’m reminding myself how proud I should be for persevering.

And for dinner I had Oreo cookies, the white ones, with potato chips for the main course, and a nice green salad for dessert.

Have a kitteh picture;

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When she sleeps like this, with her face buried, she is out like a light, won’t wake or twitch her ears until you touch her rather firmly. I try to leave her be, but it’s hard, knowing how warm and soft that fur is.

 

To avoid a heart attack, I have been limiting my time on the computer, because “news” = “stress.” So I’ve been busy doing things.


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Teeny baby petunias. There are many more now, maybe 2 1/2 times as many, but they aren’t much bigger. And while the cold and the snow have been fairly unwelcome, they are at least causing the furnace to run, and because the seedlings are living down by the furnace, they’re staying warm.

 

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I finished a mini-shawl, maybe 40″ across. The pattern started out as “Multnomah” on Ravelry, but I changed the garter stitch to stockinette, and changed yarn for the ripples on the bottom. The pattern calls for fingering weight, but I made it in lace-weight. And of course, the colors in the photo were way off, but I’ve brought them in close enough. However, my house is now spotted.  I wish I hadn’t blocked this one. It was all soft and wavy at the bottom, and now it’s just got the feather-and-fan ripples. But guys, I was so stunned at how nice this came out. I made a pretty thing!

And also, I did this maybe-not-pretty thing.

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I’m torn between “delicate organic form and texture” and “dead spider”, although “sitting zazen octopus” works just as well. It was actually a prototype, a quick mock-up. I don’t like version 2 at all, and I’m wondering about version 3. This idea was taken from an image lost in the Great Cat Erasing of 2014, so I can’t refer back to the Bronze Age original. Also, Kirsten: you are better at joins than this. Get back to invisible solder, please.

 

And now I have officially replaced every photo in this post, because that’s just how much I care. Have a good weekend, people.

So, I’m working on The Aeolian Shawl. I have set a deadline for completion by October 2nd, so I can block it and wear it over the weekend up to Apple Fest, so 11 days. I’m on the road for two days of that, and work two days, also, which leaves me with 7 days, and 13 to 15 rows left to go. I don’t like leaving it the middle of a lace row, and now it’s getting so goofy that I like to finish the purl row that comes after, so I can check for mistakes while the pattern is fresh in my mind (and oh by the way THANK YOU UNIVERSE that it is a symmetrical pattern).

And I want to insert here a note of admiration and respect for anyone who can write lace patterns, and an especial thank you to the person who designed this shawl, because I am sure it will be absolutely stunningly beautiful when it is done. Saying this is important because –

WHOEVER WROTE THIS PATTERN IS A PSYCHO FREAK!!!!

The last row I knitted went like this;

(a certain amount of preamble, then) *K2T, YO, k1, NUPP (k1,yo,k1,yo,k1,yo,k1) k1, yo, K3T (slip one, knit one, pass knitted one back to left needle, pass next stitch over, pass knitted stitch back to right needle, pass slipped stitch over) yo, k1, NUPP (k1,yo,k1,yo,k1,yo,k1), k1, yo, K3T (slip one, knit one, pass knitted one back to left needle, pass next stitch over, pass knitted stitch back to right needle, pass slipped stitch over) yo, SSK, k4, yo, K3T (slip one, knit one, pass knitted one back to left needle, pass next stitch over, pass knitted stitch back to right needle, pass slipped stitch over) yo, k4.*

And then repeat. (Am I on the first nupp or the second? Is that K3T over a nupp or over that decrease? DID I REMEMBER TO YARN OVER? WHICH YARN OVER AM I ON????)

One of the things I admire about lace knit pattern writers is their ability to graph things. Which in this case involves many many open spaces, because the writer has realized that there is a certain amount of WHAT THE HELL?!?? going on in this pattern, and tries to give you visual cues as to what you might be trying to accomplish. This particular row has three separate clumps of three, followed by a fairly long clump. Plus the beginning and end of the main pattern. Plus the two separate edge charts and the separate center chart.

I am getting afraid of what the next row might bring. Also, I’ve only used about half the beads I ordered for the project. And the rows are taking close to 45 minutes each.

October 2nd, here I come.

obviously I'm crazy

http://madamedefargeknits.tumblr.com/post/96838335512/knits-withallthecolorsofthewind-this-is-my-next

It’s available on Ravelry. Go see it, and the 20 other drop-dead gorgeous versions of it. Like this one;

yes obviously.

I hope this explains why I have been putting off joining Ravelry.

1.) I have no idea how much money this is – “kr.40.00 SEK”. 2.) I am stuck on Row 21 of the 45-row edging on the Aeolian Shawl. 3.) Exactly how many beaded shawls do I actually need in my life? 4.) I need socks way more than I need to spend another 6 months on a shawl. 5.) What about that Fair Isle Sweater I have been craving? 6.) Do I really think this is a good idea?

There. I’ve almost talked myself out of it.

Or at least into finishing the Aeolian.

eta: It’s less than $6. I am doomed.

So, the summer barely existed. Apple trees didn’t bloom until June for the second year in a row. We had maybe three days over 90 (which is fine!), maybe three days in the 80’s. Temperature was mainly in the low 70’s during the day, and below 65 at night. My cherry tomato plants are covered with tomatoes – hanging at the “just ready to start ripening” stage.

But it’s a beautiful day. The thought that dragged me out of bed this morning was that it’s a perfect day for hanging clothes on the line. And while I was hanging my sheets out, a bit of a breeze came up, just enough to billow them out like sails –

With a thin, thin hint of ice.

And yet again, I’m ready.

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I’m working on the Aeolian shawl.

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It was actually part of the motivation to get through my last term, that when I was done I would use all that free brain space to knit lace. I’m on row 15 of the edge chart – only 30 rows left. (I think I’m in those V-shapes of openwork.) And each row takes about 20 minutes now.

So the last worked row was K5, (YO, SSK) x 3, K7, (K2T, YO) x 3. This last row was K7, (YO, SSK) x3, K5, (KST, YO) x 3. To make it harder, I think of those SSK’s as being “knit two together,” and open a subfile in my brain to decide which way it’s supposed to slant. Daughter was talking about XBOX 360 and some game that came out in 2001. I made it half-way before I decided it wasn’t going to happen.

I’ll finish the row today, once I get up from my nap.

I finished these socks today – just now, in fact, and ran out to take pictures.

Product shots;

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And while I was out there, I had a visitor;

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Black-bottomed bumble bee.

I haven’t been out standing looking at my sunflowers this summer, so I haven’t seen many bees, so I am excited.

All these photos look dark to me; am I right?