Saturday, March 08, 2014

a few little knits and a wish for spring

Why hello there! It's just on the edge of spring, around here - that is to say, we've been enjoying our typical Georgia weather pattern of 40's>50's>60's>a day of gloriously 70 degrees, then back down to 40's and 50's again. But the daffodils are popping, and birds are singing their early spring courting songs, so I'm calling it spring.

Will I ever get back to regular blogging? I'm trying to play catch up in all aspects of my life right now. Somehow, a daily (or even weekly) blog post seems like an insurmountable task, but I do feel the jones to do more writing right now. I feel the jones to do many things, these days, and after the most difficult SAD-ly winter in recent memory, it's a welcome thing, believe me. Longer day length is making me very happy. I have tried very hard, this coldest winter, to embrace the cold, forcing myself outside for walks, wearing all my knitwear, buying a cheerful new red coat, and the effort has kept me getting out of bed, I do believe. I'm calling this winter done, and my project of surviving it a  success.

Right now, I'm trying to drop a few pounds (well many, actually) by changing my eating a bit. I've broken up with bread and sugar for the most part, and am hitting the gym 2 - 3 times a week. I haven't lost much, but I've found more energy, and acquired a wee bit of waist definition, and my clothes are fitting a bit better. I was really having a crisis about what to wear, a couple of months ago, as it seemed the plumpness was taking its toll on the closet, and work clothes. I'm doing a lot of yoga, back to the Vinyasa style, and it feels so great. I joined the YMCA in my area, and the new yoga teacher is good. I miss Iyengar in some ways, mostly my matter-of-fact, no-nonsense teacher, but I wanted access to weights, elliptical trainers, and a pool, and so I had to sacrifice the Iyengar studio class. Gym yoga IS different from studio yoga, though, and the background in Iyengar is helping me to remember alignment, prop use, and just being safer in poses that the teacher sort of tosses out without much prep. I'm not a bendy 25 year old anymore...

I finished Fylingdales, finally. Did I blog this before? No. Here's a rundown of the knits of the last few months. I'm telling you how long it took me to knit them, to show you how erratic my knitting really is. Slow and binge-y, all at once.
Fylingdales, by Lisa Lloyd. 6 skeins of Bovidae Farms 2 ply worsted, mostly Corriedale, in the colorway Chicory. I have my complaints about this sweater, but warmth is not one of them. The yarn was fabulous to knit. If I did it again, I'd change the button band, and add more buttons, as it's a little gappy. This sweater was on the needles for about 16 months, which is ridiculous, given the ease of the pattern and the deliciousness of the yarn. I guess I was savoring it.
Osmena, a laceweight beret, knit on #2 needles, of Lang Baby Alpaca Grande. It is the perfect cozy hat, in a screaming orange, which keeps me from getting shot by deer hunters, as I ramble through the woods. I found the yarn in the sale room at Cast On Cottage last summer, and fell in love with the punchy orange popsicle color. It's soft, and yummy, and elevates my red coat into something loud and crazy. Which I kind of like. On the needles for 6 months. Again, could have been a quick knit, but I stretched it out. 
Mapes, a shawl knit for my mom from Malabrigo worsted, in the Applewood colorway. Mapes is a Barbara Benson design. Barbara is in my knit group, and is pretty brilliant. I've had this pattern for a few years, and finally got around to knitting one. It's a good marriage, Mapes and Malabrigo, and I'm thinking it might happen again. My mom loves it! She is knitworthy in the extreme. This was on the needles for about 10 days, which is unusual for me to knit something that fast. 
The Leafed Hat, from an old issue of Interweave. Malabrigo Chunky, in the Sealing Wax colorway. Yummy, squishy and fun. On the needles for a week. Fun and easy. I'm thinking Malabrigo is directly correlated to my finishing projects quickly. 

I'm knitting other things, right now, a combo of desperate effort on my WIPs, and secret swap knitting. There's also the spinning: 
Fibercharmer merino-bamboo, in the Giant Clam colorway. Sleek and beautiful. It's taking me a long time to get through this 4oz braid, due in part to busyness, and partly because my treadling knee (NOT the knee I dislocated 2 years ago) is acting up. I'm trying to coddle it, whilst maintaining a normal life, which may not be working - I might need to resort to full on coddling for a while. 

I might add that there's a stash diet going on. I am not buying spinning fiber nor yarn this year, in an attempt to reduce the existing backlog, and to just safe a little money. I am not making any hard and fast rules, though. Stitches South is coming up in April, and my sis is coming up. She is on a similar austerity measure for fiber and yarn, but we both agreed that a giant yarnmarket in our backyard is perhaps not something to avoid. Stitches' new location is accessible by MARTA light rail, though, so we won't drive. This means that we won't be able to carry tons of purchases around, thus keeping us modest in our expenditures. Unless we buy quiviut. Quiviut isn't very heavy...

Today's agenda includes some housecleaning, the writing of lesson plans, a trip to Snellville to see the movie "August Osage County", the purchase of Cricket food, and some knitting and spinning. I've been up for a few hours already - since 6:30, without the help of the alarm clock(!) and have finally watched the season finale of Downton Abbey that was marinating on my dvr. Wow. I don't quite know how to let the Crawley family go for the next few months. As much as I enjoy Game of Thrones and Vikings, I have to say that Downton Abbey is my great television love. Well and truly. 

I have some perennials to plant; bleeding hearts, hostas, and astilbes, and some grass seed to put into my patchy lawn. I think I'm going to save that task for tomorrow, though, which is supposed to be 70. Here's to spring! Please come, I've been waiting!


Reya Mellicker said...

I love it when you post.

This winter, now DONE (I hope) was a sociopath. So mean! I tried to enjoy it but was not able to.

I'm against weight loss in general. It's very hard on heart muscle, kidneys and liver. However, eschewing sugar and wheat for awhile never hurt anyone.

xx Shalom sis-star!

kbrow said...

I love it when you read! Oh my own version of weight loss is a slow return to my actual healthy size. I am showing and feeling waaay too many cookies and cocktails. Fear not. No extreme diets or crazed exercise regimes here.

Acornbud said...

Wow look at all those projects! The orange hat on #2s looks very nice. I'll have to check my stash.