The Saturday Update: Week 1

Have you ever gotten to the end of a week and wondered what you had accomplished? Yep. Me, too. As a New Year’s resolution I’m going to try to do a weekly update every Saturday about all the little things that were going on that week. You know, all the stuff that has to do with yarn, books and my garden. Here’s the first update.

Knitting

I just made the best socks in the world! I’m not kidding, these babies are just great! I’m talking about the Snowshoe Socks by Emily Foden that I knit this week. What is nice about them, you ask? I’m so glad you wanted to know: they are heavier socks that are knit by holding two fingering strands together. One strand needs to have nylon in it, but the other can be a softer yarn like 100% superwash merino or maybe something with cashmere. I have a lot of yarns that I bought to feed the stash thinking that they would be great shawls or whatever someday. Right. Those yarns are still lurking in the stash laughing at me. I can now use them to make socks when combined with a tough sock yarn. Together the two fingering yarns make a marled DK yarn that blends through the sock as you swap in different fingering yarns. This can be a stash buster or you can just use 2 yarns that you love marled together. The pattern is simple and pretty easy to adapt if you need to. My project notes for this sock are here.

The navy and gold are yarns that I had left over from previous sweater projects. I hate yarn chicken, so I always have an extra skein of yarn. The light blue mix is yarn that I bought to feed the stash. A year later I’m still wondering what to use it with. Since it went with the other two yarns I decided to use it as the main yarn with the other two jumping in and out.

The gold yarn has some cashmere and both the navy and the gold contain nylon. The light blue multi is 100% superwash merino and could never survive as a sock on its own. This strategy allows it to become a sock by hanging out with the other two yarns. It’s kind of mysterious, but the resulting fabric is much better than a sock just knit from DK yarn. I think that the twisting of the two sock yarns plus the added nylon makes the difference as you knit.

Look at the cool fabric that is being produced by these three yarns in combo.
Here they are all finished up: hearty socks that are amazingly warm, soft and kind to my feet right when I need a little help to get through the winter.
In spite of gloves with mittens over them I lost circulation in my hands and feet while trying to get into the grocery store… this is Raynaud’s.

What’s up with my feet? Ugh. Where to start. I haven’t made too big a deal about it, but I’ve been struggling to walk for a year now and finally have transitioned from limping, to using crutches, to mastering a snazzy purple cane. The opposite foot to the bad hip has developed a slew of problems of its own and now needs to be babied also. My toes hurt and need to be cushioned. The fat  that people usually have on the bottoms of their feet is now gone on mine (thanks, scleroderma) and I’m walking on the bones of the outer side of my foot and they are not happy campers at all. I’m developing benign tumors in the big tendon on the bottom of my foot (the plantar fascia), and to top it all off I struggle with loss of circulation in my toes because of the cold. Not to worry, people, I am a knitter and these socks are going to be big helps for me in the weeks and months of cold weather to come. Bring it, winter, I am ready for you!! Note to self: knit more of these socks!!

Garden
The first orchid plant has started blooming! This is a plant that puts out lots of smaller blooms. Four more orchid plants have growing stems and those flowers will be larger. I can’t wait to see what the color of the blooms will be: you’d think I’d keep notes, but no, this is going to be an adventure. I’m pretty sure I’m in for purples and rosy gold blooms.

All of the orchids are thriving under the indoor growth lights that I bought for them last winter and I gave them more fertilizer and a spritz of Neem oil this week. I felt sorry for a couple of little roses that were still in the garage and brought them into the indoor garden. To thank me for taking pity on them they gifted me with white fly: those brats!! Everyone got sprayed with Neem and we’ll see if that does the trick.

Books
This is why my socks were completed in three days flat!!

I’m trying to listen to audiobooks more while knitting, and I started this one early in the week while knitting in bed with MacKenzie. Good lord! Don’t start this book if you don’t have time to put your life on hold while obsessively reading (or listening) it from cover to cover. It’s compelling. It’s horrifying. It’s best described as a psychological thriller that involves a cult-like psychopath, abused and abandoned children, a murder mystery, lies, poisons, inheritances, families lost and found, or a take home lesson to not let strangers come live with you. Okay, this is flat out unbelievable and more than a little disturbing, and the characters aren’t all that likable, but you can’t help feeling like, maybe, this could actually happen… I read this book for my book club and I can’t wait to go talk to some other people about it.

I’ve been thinking of Australia this week. If you are there, please stay safe. I feel awful complaining about cold while you are suffering through extreme heat and fire behavior. Hugs to all of you.

Author: Midnight Knitter

I weave, knit and read in Aurora, Colorado where my garden lives. I have 2 sons, a knitting daughter-in-law, a grandson and an exceptionally spoiled kitten.

17 thoughts on “The Saturday Update: Week 1”

  1. Sounds like the socks are worth the expensive price of the pattern. The marled look is lovely and glad they are cosy. I’ll add this book to my ‘to read’ queue on Goodreads, as I love a psychological thriller.

    1. I am making several things from the book so the expense worked out; I was lucky to find a hard copy of the book to look through before I bought it.

      You know, you can knit any DK weight sock pattern with two fingerings if you like the concept. These soks were 52 stitches on size 4 needles.

  2. Your socks are fantastic! I love the idea of the 100% merino marrying with a nylon blended merino. Because of past mishaps (holes on a first wearing!!) I am very careful about buying sock yarn with nylon.
    Your orchids are stunning! The roses were jealous hence the white flies:(

    1. I have had some sock disasters too and now I’m really careful about the sock yarns. I always look for tight spun with nylon these days. I also loved the idea of putting the puny yarns with a tough one so I could use more colors.

      I have some yarns that I love that I don’t know what to do with because of their crazy colors. I’m going to marl them with a sedate yarn to tone them down.

  3. Your orchid is lovely and the socks are tempting. Your raynauds doesnt look too good though. Thanks for thoughts on our poor country. I was in the Snowy mountains a week ago but its burnt out now. Hard to digest. Air quality where I was staying in Canberra is worst in the world. Having our present prime minister and his views on climate change is making us look very foolish. However most of us aren’t!

    1. I’m going to email my doctor to see if there is a medication we can add to help with the Raynaud’s.

      We have had terrible fires here in the western US and the smoke is just awful, but I think you are dealing with so much more. It is heartbreaking, and just maddening when leaders are dismissive of the science. The evidence is just overwhelming, but they still are disparaging of the data. I hear what you’re ssying: we have the Trump administration here.

      Hugs!

  4. Those socks are really cool, and I might be buying the pattern to make them happen. That book sounds really good, and I’ll be adding it to my pile to read when I’m in the mood for a good thriller.

    1. You can make the socks while listening to the book like I did! 🙂

      Now that I have the concept of knitting with doubled fingering yarns I’m going to check out other stock patterns for DK weight yarn to see if I can just adapt them. Also, hats and mittens. Suddenly there are endless possibilities to use up the stash.

  5. Your new socks look wonderful and cozy! I hope they help your feet stay warm and comfortable. Thanks for the book review – it sounds interesting. I will have to check that out!

    1. They are very warm. I’m surprised by how elastic the knit is and how well they hug my feet. Huge plus since they are knit at a heavier weight and I have experienced saggy socks in the past. My feet are soooo happy and I’m hunting in the stash the yarn for a second pair.

  6. Wonderful post, Marilyn! So much good stuff. I am especially impressed with your blooming orchids. I have NEVER had one rebloom. But you give me hope. 🙂 Book and socks sound interesting too. Thank you for the recommendations!

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