Tuesday, August 30, 2011

good things lately

lucky horseshoes.

quiet trails.

i had the campfire tea!

picking yarn for a new project. yellow won.

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i'd love to hear what good things you've found in your life lately. 

Saturday, August 27, 2011

baby red sweater

I finally got a couple of packages shipped off to far away friends, so now this baby red sweater is on its way to Japan. I really should wait to post about this sweater until after it is received, since I know that my friend occasionally stops by this space, but I just can't wait any longer!

I knitted this sweater using the Springtime Baby Cardi pattern and yarn left over from my Strawberry sweater. Most of this sweater was completed on my daily commute and short lunch breaks, so the process took longer than I expected.

This was the first pattern I've used that gave me leeway on counting rows--the instructions stated generally how long each part of the cardigan should be. I enjoyed knitting freely and measuring later more than the usual knit a row, write it down method I've been using.

I tried to give some perspective on how tiny this sweater is. It's hard to imagine a person small enough to wear it. I hope it will fit my friend's baby!

Saturday, August 20, 2011

you can never have too much yarn

My yarn basket is overflowing these days, helped along by a recent trip to Knit On in Newport, Kentucky. This is the basket of yarn for projects I plan to make in the very near future. Isn't it pretty? I can't wait to have my hands busy with all of that wool.

This striped number has been my constant companion for a couple of weeks. The pattern is easily memorized, so I've been able to knit wherever I happen to be. I've found myself pulling out the knitting needles as I stand at the bus stop, while riding the bus, during my lunch break at work, and of course while curled up on the couch in the evenings. The stripes make progress visible and the changing colors of Noro keep the project feeling fresh. And what is this project, you may ask? Just wait and see, I say.

I'm looking forward to autumn. I've got plans to spend my fall nights making Christmas presents, but I also want to make a Levenwick cardigan for myself. When I spied the pattern last week it jumped right to the top of my Ravelry queue. Such gorgeous texture. Wonderful scallops. Now I just need to find the perfect yarn. Oh yeah, and finish the sweater I'm currently making for myself--only one more sleeve, button bands, and edging to go!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

weekend snippets: storm

power outage



K and I returned from a day trip on Saturday to find the streets in Louisville dark. We had no idea what had happened, but found out that a wild storm with high winds had ripped through the city. Nearly 120,000 homes and businesses were without power, and public schools ended up being canceled for two days. 

We spent our power-less night with the windows open and candles burning. On Sunday morning we walked around the neighborhood to survey the storm's damage. In our area there were some big trees down. We saw this smashed car, but no heavily damaged houses like in other parts of the city. Despite the loss of beautiful old trees, we're feeling pretty lucky. Hope you're having better weather where you are.

Monday, August 8, 2011

picnic blanket

breakfast picnic/photo shoot

After eyeing Amanda's blanket for ages, I finally got around to sewing a vintage sheet picnic blanket of my own. The bright colors and crazy floral patterns make for a festive summer outing. K and I have been enjoying the heck out of it and inviting our friends and family to come share it with us. I'm looking forward to using this blanket even more when the weather cools off in September and October (fingers crossed--it will eventually cool down, right?).

Our friend Christine relaxed on the blanket while listening to a concert by the river.

K rested while my sister and I played gin rummy.

Mom, K, Julie, and I all squeezed on the blanket to play one of our favorite new card games, No Thanks!

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For my next picnic blanket, I'd like to use a thicker backing and make the whole thing a block or two bigger. The chenille I used to back this blanket is on the thin side, so we layer another blanket underneath for cushioning and to sop up any moisture from the grass. 

(Photos by Christine, me, and my mom)

Sunday, August 7, 2011

woodcarving class

K and his dad using a froe and mallet to split cedar

David, my father-in-law, gave K and I a woodcarving class this weekend. He started off by introducing us to the tools we'd be using--these were all old-fashioned handtools. Some of the tools have been in David's family for 130 years or more. These bear the initials NM for Nathaniel Morgan, David's great-great-grandfather, who used the tools to make furniture in the 1880s. Others belonged to David's grandfather, Homer Morgan, who was a tobacco farmer and ran a saw mill. 

Using the drawknife

We began with a cedar fencepost and the goal of making a little cedar cross. David recently taught a woodcarving class at his church, so the first step of sawing the cedar was already done for us. We skipped ahead to using a froe and mallet to split the wood, then used a brace with an auger bit to make a hole for the wood to intersect. Next was one of my favorite parts. We used a drawknife to square up the wood and shave it down to the right size. Then we used a miter saw, miter box, plane, rasp, eggbeater drill, and a mythbuster, which is a tool that David invented to create round pegs from square pieces of wood. (In case you're wondering, I aced the tool quiz at the end of the class.)

Using a rasp to smooth the edges

Two hours went by so quickly as David demonstrated each step and then K and I took our turns. My mother-in-law, Phyllis, snapped photos of the whole process.

Cedar crosses

Soon we had handmade, cedar crosses of our own (they smell so good!). And the best part? Coming up with ideas for the next project...

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Thanks for sharing your talents with us, David. And thanks Phyllis for keeping us company and taking great photos.


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