I am on drug holiday from methotrexate (the drug that was given to me to treat my systemic sclerosis) right now and I feel great. I have energy, my joints and muscles are happy, and there isn’t even a hint of dizziness. OK, my ribs are still sore and I have to be careful moving around, but still… Wow! It’s been more than a year since I’ve felt this good. It is now obvious that, even though there were side effects and some of them forced me to quit methotrexate, it was working. My goodness it made a difference. I am gardening, cleaning house, cooking up a storm, and rocking the knitting. Happy, happy, happy.
In the middle of upbeat gardening yesterday I remember that it is also August. Time to cast on the New Year Resolution socks for the month. I dug through the sock books again, found a happy looking pattern and hit the yarn stash to search for a cheerful yarn dyed with long color sequences. Here’s what I came up with. Say hello to the August Socks:
As much as I like the seafoam stitch I think that I won’t continue it down the top of the foot of the sock. I will be wearing these socks inside of shoes all winter and I’m wanting the socks to be really warm and long wearing. If the colors pool badly in the foot it won’t matter that much to me at that point. With cute tops like these, nothing can happen in the foot that will spoil things. 🙂
When I dug through the stash I also found this yarn that I bought on a whim but still hadn’t knitted up because it is really busy in the colors. I’ve been waiting for the right pattern.
These two projects have kept me pretty busy but I have also been out in the garden. I sewed on the garden chair a little more and started attaching the sides to the frame. It is stretching out just right but the midpoint is refusing to slide on the frame; it still hasn’t expanded to the correct proportion. I soaked the stiff area with the hose this afternoon and left it to think about what it was doing for awhile. Let’s hope that does the trick as I’m afraid to tug on it too hard because my ribs are still sore.
I’m on drug holiday until I see the rheumatologist on the 20th. Let’s hope that I stay symptom free until then because I am totally focused on happy right now.
I’ve been working out in the garden all week except for when the afternoon thunderstorms roll in. Then it is knitting time! I worked on the June 2015 socks all week and got them done yesterday with a few days to spare.
I am really happy with these socks. The pattern come with complete charts for three different sizes. I made the medium size (66 stitches on size 1.5 needles) and they fit really well (which is something that I always worry a little about in a lace sock). I used double pointed needles in the leg portion of the sock, but switched to two 16″ cable needles as soon as the sock divided to make the heel and that made the lace panel on the top of the foot much easier to manage. The yarn (Becoming Art Cielo) was kind of elastic which I think helped.
I’ve also been making some progress on my second Joker and the Thief shawl. I was not happy with the colors at one point, but I am liking it a little more now that the color pattern is easier to see.
That it for the week. The clouds are really rolling in again for our afternoon soaking, so I think it’s time for me to fire up the knitting needles for the afternoon. Orange is the New Black, here I come!
I am really trying to keep up on my New Year’s resolutions this year. If you’re not keeping track of them (what, you have a life?), one of the big resolutions this year was to knit a pair of socks each month using a pattern from one of my (many, many) sock books and stash yarn. Sadly the end of May came and I only had one sock done for the month and the start of another. It’s not my fault. There are so many cute patterns and yarns out there that I keep getting distracted by a shawl or knitted hat. I guess I could stay off Ravelry and out of the yarn stores, but that is so not going to happen. Let’s be realistic here!
So I have a few projects lined up. I seem to be spending time in the craft room playing with yarn, beads, fabric, and organizing different projects. Lots of ideas; not enough time to get them done. Yesterday I ignored the craft room, settled down by the television and binge knitted on the May socks for most of the afternoon. I was approaching the toe when I ran out of steam, so this morning it was pretty easy to get them done before lunch. Here they are!
So, I went into overtime a little on this one, but I am ready to dive into the June socks. I thought the Rachel Coopey sock was so cute that I selected another pattern by her (from a different book!) and matched it with a blue-ish yarn. Here it is.
I have several little (excessively cute) projects to get done before I start on these socks. More knitting!! Must knit faster!!
It’s done, it’s done, it’s done! OK, this shawl has been going on for weeks. I worried and worried about the colors choices, finally got started knitting a couple of weeks ago, and have been just consumed with knitting on this Joker and the Thief shawl by Melanie Berg for the last 10 days or so. I finally finished the knitting early Monday morning, blocked it yesterday, and today I did the finishing and took it out for pictures.
Wow! I am happy, happy, happy with this! I have been wearing it around the house all day and even took a little nap wearing it. The yarns that I used are Madelinetosh Tosh Merino Light and colors from two packs of Wonderland Yarns Cheshire Cat. Here are the project notes on Ravelry.
While working on the Joker I also finished up another shawl (3S Shawl by Amy Meade) that was easy take-along knitting to wear with a new green top that I bought this winter. Here are the Ravelry project notes and finished shawl:
Two shawls finished this month; I’ve been a knitting ball of fire! Actually it has been raining almost every day this month (it has rained 20 of the last 24 days) so it has been cool temperatures and prime knitting weather. My poor yard is suffering as it has been two wet to weed the gardens and to make things worse there was a killing frost two weeks ago that froze all the leaves on two of my trees.
Today was a good day, however. After getting the pictures of the Joker shawl I took a good look at my sad little tree. There, on the ends of the branches, were new leaf buds and even a few leaves had burst out. Yeah! Looks like the tree may make it after all.
This afternoon there should be more thunderstorms. That’s OK. I really didn’t want to weed the gardens today anyway. I still have to get the May sock finished and I am running out of month. More knitting!
I just love this new pattern on Ravelry that was published a few weeks ago. It is just fabulous!! It’s called The Joker and the Thief (by Melanie Berg), and it required 6 yarns that form a color gradient (this would be the Joker…) that is anchored by one color that is the Thief. I immediately went on the hunt for color gradients in my yarn stash, ended up making two trips to my favorite LYS, and moved yarns around and around until I finally settled on TWO color combinations for this shawl. Yeah! They are both fabulous and I have finally decided to make both of the shawls. Why do something if you can’t overdo it? See, this is a motto that all knitters can get behind. 🙂
I’m all ready to get started on the shawls except… I already have three projects going and one of them is on the needles that I need to use to knit the Joker. I thought about going to buy more needles. (No way! Who would do something like that???) I considered taking the shawl-in-progress off the needles so it could hibernate for a few weeks while I knitted the Jokers. Yeah, we all know what would have happened to that shawl. It would have hibernated in a corner somewhere for a few years. Nope! I decided to suck it up and knit like the wind until it was done. This shawl is beautiful, and I will commit to finishing it in a timely manner! Feeling very self-righteous I began working on this shawl (Sidere by Hilary Smith Callis) again.
So there we are. I’ve got two more projects all lined up and I’m dying to get started on them. I’ve been knitting as fast as I can for over a week, and I still haven’t gotten anything finished. The weather is warming up and I need to start tending to the lawn and gardens outside.
Stay tuned folks! I think that it may rain this weekend, and I’m hopeful to get at least one of these off the needles. 🙂
I am definitely in a shawl knitting phase. I just finished Edith’s Secret, and now I am cranking out two more shawls using bright yarns. This is fun! Here is what I’m working on:
That’s it. There has been a lot of midnight knitting going on with these babies. 🙂 I need to get them out of the way so that I can get going on the next sock of the month (since it is April 1st and all…) I’m really having trouble deciding on one sock as I found a lot of cool yarn when I went stash diving earlier this week. Then there were the patterns in one of my sock books. How to pick just one?
I have been knitting all week on my Edith’s Secret shawl by Kristin Ashbaugh-Helmreich. Finally, at 2am on Wednesday night (I’m the Midnight Knitter, remember…) I was approaching the end of the bind-off when I paused to look back at all of my fabulous knitting and saw <gasp!> a double picot where there should only be one. NNNOOOOOOO!!! That was that. I stuffed Edith into her project bag and went to bed.
Yesterday in the sunshine I frogged back through the binding, reknitted it with the correct number of picots (one at the tip of each leaf detail in the final lace section) and cut the yarn at last. Blocking happened overnight (with my cat MacKenzie sleeping on top of the towel-covered shawl all night…) and here Edith is in all her glory.
Here’s my project notes on Ravelry in case you would like more details.
I am so glad that Edith is done, but now I am in a slump for sure. I even did my taxes today as I wasn’t quite sure what project to start knitting next.
I’ve placed the likely yarn candidates on the dining room table, and each time I head upstairs I kind of pat different skeins of yarn and consider the projects that they might be used for. So hard to make these decisions… Such beautiful color, and half of the skeins contain cashmere and silk too. I may have to start several projects all at once.