Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Another Orange Post... Shocker!

Hi! Look, I'm making this pretty cushion cover out of my special Williamsburg yarn... I think it'll be perfect to bring the color in my curtains onto the couch without trying to get back the giant burnt orange velveteen couch that my husband's grandparents passed down to us and that I used to hate, but now wish I had again. I've been dreaming of recovering my couch, well, since I bought it for $75 at a garage sale, but I can't decide what color to cover it with. Charcoal? Navy denim? Brown? I can't decide. Whatever it is, it has to be washable, because my kids can be easily compared to hurricanes.

Anyway, the fabric is a little experiment by me... I checked out Barbara Walker's stitch encyclopedia and first tried the wool in a gorgeous, intricate ogee lace pattern... not good. The wool is just too slubby and variable in gauge to look pretty... then I thought of a beautiful fabric knitted in silk I saw once, and I turned to the section on twisted stitch patterns, found the twisted purl stitch, and came up with this:

I cast on 70 stitches, and just started up. The stitch is a good for a mindless knitting project. It would make a really nice pair of gloves in a very fine gauge, or a coat in a nice worsted... as the fabric is dense and firm... I think this stich is perfect for the varied tonality of this yarn, and see, it's gonna look great with my curtains!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

More Laundry!

Is it just too weird that I get such a kick out of my laundry? Of course, these are all socks I've knitted, too, and all my favorite colors as well, so no wonder it hit my eye... but still, it's a little kooky.
Posted by Picasa

Snow Play

Wow! Being in VA was a little like being in North Dakota there for a little while! Doesn't this look like fun snow? Daddy took these pictures outside while playing with the boys. The girls mostly used the snow day as an excuse to bake and make cocoa!

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Merry Christmas, Y'all

Um, I'm a Texan by marriage, in case you wondered about the "y'all"! It's the day after Christmas and I didn't go shopping. No, I stayed home and made Christmas dinner! Yeah, I should have made it last night, but about noon yesterday I started dinner, or asked my hubby to make the marinade and put the beef roast in it, and he did... then at 2pm I pulled out my new copy of "Mastering the Art of French Cooking" (it was a Christmas gift from my hubby!) and the recipe for Braised Beef was never gonna be done before 10pm, so we made omelets instead, per Julia's instructions... which I mastered by the way... I can make a really good omelet now in about one minute, literally! Thank you, Julia! OK, anyway, I started again today, with a beef roast that was fork tender before I even started braising it thanks to the 24 hour marinade in 5 cups of burgundy and so so many other good things! We had the braised beef, turnips, and Brussels sprouts, and it was all divine! Divine, I tell you!!! I can't even describe the wonderfulness of it, but wow, prep time was killer! I'm trying to decide if all the prep time is worth it or not! So, I'm not really a foodie, OK?! I know someone who is, though, and I'm trying to get her to blog here with me... it would be nice to have more posts, no?

Knitting continues; what a blessing it is to me! It has become this exercise in productive rest for me: active meditation, physical prayer, and mental Sabbath... My life's stresses are mostly emotional and mental, and the meditative nature of knitting is a good palliative for a weary mind and heart... like prayer or sleep. When my life is physically rigorous, the knitting falls to the wayside.

I wonder if I'll stop knitting if I start working out?! See, Joy, I can't work out, my fiber pursuits might suffer! Maybe I'll just give up the French food instead! So, I don't want to work out! I'm not an active person by nature. Read: Lazy... Projects on the needles right now (too many!): jaquard vest, lace stole, orange cushion cover, sweater for Jeremy, socks for Jeremy... That's it, I think!

In the sewing arena: One grey wool skirt... cut but not begun, need thread. After it's finished, the sewing machine and paraphanalia are going into storage till we're moved into the new house and new window coverings are required!

Upcoming in my life: packing, packing, and more packing... No word yet on the house, but since we don't want to close on it till March, it's OK... It's an exercise in faith... if we get it, Hallelujah, if we don't, well, Hallelujah, too! I'm waaaaay too blessed to complain! We are all hoping for that house. My children are already debating about bedrooms, my husband is envisioning a garage woodworking shop and fencing, and I'm thinking about window coverings and space; glorious, wonderful space.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Christmas Knitting

I've been knitting my fingers to little nubs this month... in late October, everyone asked for mittens for Christmas, hand knit mittens. Actually, my husband requested his in November. No pressure. Anyway, I have managed to knit all but one pair of mittens and a pretty hat for my youngest girl. And most of a sweater for the Dauphin. I don't really mind! You know I love it!

Bird in Hand stranded mittens in KnitPicks Palette and some leftover XXL Trekking, size 2 DPNs
Chevalier Mitts, Patons Classic Wool, Size 6 DPN's

Classic Mittens, Stash superwash Leftovers, size 5 DPN's, above, and Cascade Superwash in Scarlet and Size 5 DPN's below:

Elephant Tam, child Size by Kathleen Taylor, size 5 circular, stash leftovers, turned out beautifully.