Planning Makes My Brain Happy

I have my planner and my go to crock pot cookbook….I’m ready to take on this busy week. I am really liking the meal planner insert and I’m using the pages to keep of what I accomplish instead of what I have to get done. It’s been empowering in a time of high stress. I am really enjoying my planner and color coding so far in 2020.

Tonight’s recipe is meatloaf and mashed potatoes magically all cooked in my instant pot and waiting for me when the family gets home tonight. It takes some prep time the night before but really the Instant Pot does all the heavy lifting. And bonus, if I call it “Meatloaf Cake” then my kids gobble it up.

Now I need to plan out the rest of the week! Happy Cooking!!

Habitation Throw Halfway

My Habitation Throw is over halfway now. I finally got to where it looked good enough for me and I started decreasing.This thing is really screaming through my scraps! I have gone through a good amount of my coned solid white yarn and I had to pull some bigger used skeins out of my stash as I was working the long middle sections.

My widest point is the peachy/pink section. I am now having to strategize with my remaining scraps. I want to make sure the colors look good adjacent to one another but that I will also have roughly enough to do an entire repeat of garter and eyelets. That’s just my personal brand of crazy.

I still have a ton scraps in my bag. And I’ve pulled some DEEP stash skeins of sock blanks and Joann’s sock yarn just in case I need some longer sections. This blanket has literally consumed all my knitting time. I don’t want to work on anything else right now.

Do you have a project obsession?

Knitty McPurly Just Up And Sucked Me In

I tried a new to me knitting good purveyor. Knitty McPurly was an audio podcaster turned video podcaster that I have followed for quite a while. Devon Ventry is a work at home mother who has found a way to incorporate a successful online knitting business. Now, she is a well established pattern designer but she has branched out to add crafting jewelry, crafty tools and project bags.

She had a sale in January and I got sucked right in. I picked up a necklace that doubles as a stitch marker holder and a cute Alice in Wonderland notions pouch. I also got a vinyl Knitty McPurly sticker for my water bottle. But currently Jellybean is using the water bottle as his go to cup so I don’t have a photo.

I’ve already been wearing the necklace and received many compliments. It is a bit fiddly to open and use stitch markers though. Since it swings up and there is very little ridge to the edges it is easy to spill….ask me how I know! But I still love it just for the aesthetics. And the pouch has been living in my tote bag holding extra ear buds and other miscellaneous stuff that used to roll around in the bottom of my bag.

All in all, I think I like her style and these were good investments!

Happy Knitting!!

Can’t Stop Won’t Stop

My favorite project right now is still my Hibernation Throw. It’s just so fun to watch the colors develop as I add new scraps. Plus it’s extra satisfying when one of these section uses up every last bit of yarn. It makes this knitters heart happy!

I’m still increasing in the pattern and since I’m heavily modifying the pattern I’m not sure when to stop. I might see how many larger sized scrap balls I have left so I can work until I have enough to get to a middle point and then have enough to account for the larger decrease sections as I work down.

I have been kind of monitoring my colors and changing every eyelet row if I haven’t already run out of yarn. This has made my color blocks uniform-ish in size and makes the fabric look intentionally scrappy. My symmetry loving brain really likes this. Though it does mean that some of scraps are used up and I still have little balls leftover.

Happy Knitting!!

Skeining Up For Hibernation

My Hibernation Throw is continuing to grow and grow. I have almost exhausted the first skein of the Valley Yarns coned sock yarn I had previously done up.  I am holding my sock scraps double with this undyed/coned sock yarn for my blanket. So last night I dug out my cone and wound up more yarn. I still have my hand made yarn swift that my husband’s family made me. (The cone is only set on the center for photography purposes…it doesn’t function that way.) I wound off two same-ish sized skeins and tied them off with random scrap yarn.

My husband asked me why I just didn’t work from the cone. Well, this coned yarn has quite a bit of spinning grease left in it and it really plumps up when I wash it. So as not to distort my fabric of my finished blanket when I was it, I really prefer for the plumping to happen before the knitting. It’s extra time and extra steps but I really hope it prevents future heartbreak.

I tried a sample of the Pineapple Grove soak wash. The scent was fine but I didn’t really get a wiff of it on the finished yarn. But it smelled nice in my sink.

Now I just have to wait for these two skeins to dry! I called my main hall bathroom curtain rings into service to hold these skeins out of reach of grubby kid hands. Fingers crossed!

Happy Knitting!!

New To Me Spinning Wheel

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I present to you a HitchHiker single treadle spinning wheel by The Merlin Tree. I was gifted this wheel by mother after she procured it in a trade with her quilt shop coworker. I have been doing my best to research this wheel as it’s a little different than most. It’s a direct drive wheel which means the flyer is turned directly by the wheel as you treadle. Honestly, its kind of an obscure wheel and it doesn’t have a lot resources either from the manufacturer or on YouTube. It has been a little frustrating but I shall persevere.

I have been practicing just treadling on the empty wheel because it is going to take some learned muscle movement to keep the wheel going in the same direction as I start and stop. That is just the ups and down of a direct drive wheel. Just putting your foot on the treadle can move the wheel in a direction you didn’t intend. The brake band also needs some TLC to be snugged up which I am hoping my woodworking father can assist with. I think I may also have to try to fall upon the mercy of the local spinners group for assistance/lessons. Time will tell…

With the wheel I also inherited the spinner fiber stash. In the bin in addition to a knitty knoddy and spare wheel parts was a TON of fiber. I dig through and found llama blends, alpaca blends, romney wool, merino blends and several unidentified fibers. This spinner clearly had good taste.

This all came from a rural farm, so right now it’s living my sub zero garage just in case it has anything other than fiber in there. I’m hoping to zap this with some heat somehow before bringing into the house with my other stash.

I’m interested to if I can become a spinner?

My Current State

Hey guess what? The laundry from yesterday is still there. I decided it was a good idea to delegate the folding to my hubby since I washed and dried it all. But he has a different world view on how quickly these kinds of things should be done. I’m curious to see how long it will take to get put away? For now, I’m just dressing Jellybean and PB from the baskets, lol.

But for now I have comfy yoga pants and my Weekender Sweater. The ladders are still there no matter what I try so I’m hoping that the blog advice that they will block out and even out when its done is true. So far I’m really pleased with the even colors I’m getting with the helical knitting. I have almost put one complete ball of the Malabrigo Rios into this sweater. Here’s hoping the next balls fades in nicely as well!

Happy Knitting!!

Blocking Arya

Welcome to my newest creative blocking solution. And forgive the three baskets of clean laundry to fold. I honestly said screw it and picked up my knitting instead! The Arya shawl did not disappoint when it came to blocking. I would say it opened up nicely…I mean it covers the entire back of my sofa!

I didn’t use any pins or wires on this one. Honestly, it was 9 pm and night and I just wanted to be done. But also, it grew just fine by pulling and stretching it by hand that I didn’t really need it any bigger. And my couches are scotch guarded (hello two small kids) and it dried over night just fine!

I just need to clip the last of the ends and take some FO shots of this beauty! Happy Knitting!!

Ready for Blocking

My memory was better than we thought. I was correct in assuming I was in the decrease section of the Arya shawl last we spoke. And I have since zoomed through the last of the pattern. The pattern was really nicely done by Ambah O’brien as it always was giving me stitch counts on either side of the CDD. This really helped me from letting my spine wander back and forth when I inevitably made errors.

All my ends are woven in and she’s ready for her bath. It looks quite small just scrunched up on my floor. But based on how I can stretch and pull the fabric I can really see this growing with wet blocking. I may have to get creative with blocking mats with as long as skinny as this is…

Happy Knitting!!

A Purple Present

I have been mum about this but I recently received a promotion at my job. It’s been in the works for a couple of months and I didn’t want to count my chickens until they hatched but its official now. I went from a staff level accounting to a manager of accounting operations. I have four direct reports and new boss who is….challenging…to say the least. It’s been a ton of work and I have a lot to learn. But I’m excited to have gotten this opportunity. I’m 35 years old and this is my first promotion ever.

My husband decided to get me a little congratulatory gift. He asked for yarn suggestions and I said anything from KnitCircus. So he and Jellybean made an order. And shocker, since Jellybean helped its ALL PURPLES. That is Jellybean’s go to color. I don’t mind because they made beautiful choices.

The top skein is a Trampoline base in the Dream a Little Dream colorway. It’s 440 yards of a light fingering weight and the same kind of yarn I made my Sherwood Forest Wrap with. The bottom two skeins are the Greatest of Ease base in two matching 25 gram gradient sock skeins in the Knit Sky colorway.

My favorite part of these yarns? They are already wound up and ready to use! I like when that less than fun part is done for me. KnitCircus may be in my top five favorite dyers. Do you have a favorite dyer?