Monday, August 31, 2009

Now It's Serious

Tabby Brown (sorry I don't have a blog link here, but blogger didn't give me one) has double-dog dared me to get down to 10 WIPS.

Anyone who has grown up on American playgrounds in the last 50 years knows the seriousness of this. A dare one can walk away from...maybe even a double-dare, but the double-dog-dare is as close as kids can get to a binding legal contract. It calls into question your bravery, your strength....even your very "kid-dom."

So being the mature adult that I am, this is a binding contract. Down to 10 WIPs it is! Wish I had known that before I caved last night and......cast on a new baby sweater. I was staying strong and resisting, but my fingering yarn is in a clear rubbermade container, and it was just staring at me needing to be used, and in a moment of weakness...I caved. So I have 18 WIPS instead of 17, but at least it's better than 28 or whatever I had last year. AND last year I managed 14 in a row, which would take me down to SINGLE DIGITS!!! That would truly be amazing.

There will have to be one small exception for whatever is in the Project of the Month bags, though as I don't remember what is in them so I'm not positive that any of them contain knitting, but just in case--that will be the only exception.


Saturday, August 29, 2009

Saturday Night

So, my big accomplishments for today are:

* actually getting in a few rows on the sleeves

* not casting on a new project.

Today I really REALLY wanted to cast on something new because I felt so light and so free being down to ONLY 17 WIPS. How crazy is that? Do you realize I'm more used to having over 20 projects than less than 20 projects? Not too many years ago, I actually did one knitting project at a time! I think discovering lace did me in. I know there are stronger knitters than I, but I just can't face the thought of buckling down and knitting a shawl straight through. I have a shawl in progress on size 0 needles. Think of the horror of having that as one's only knitting project! I might be driven to attempt tatting again and THAT was an experience best entirely forgotten. A knitter just probably isn't going to understand a craft where knots are really a good thing.

Thanks to 6 quarts of pickles, 2 trays of drying peppers, and starting a new mustard recipe, I really ran out of time to start anything new, so I'm safe at 17 WIPs for now. If I'm lucky, the tomatoes will keep me busy until I can finish the sleeves and be down to 16 WIPS.

I wonder if I could ever get down to 10.........

Friday, August 28, 2009

Finishing Friday Number 3

So I had planned to work on the Christmas quilt today, but I struggle with quilting on the best of days. On days like today when I am seriously short on sleep it is best to just step away from the quilt.

Why, might you ask, am I short on sleep?Why else?

Ever since the kitty water torture therapy, Theo has been coughing pretty regularly. Initially I assumed this was due to hairballs caused by his continual licking inbetween water sessions. So, we regularly smeared him with a hairball goo that he absolutely hates and which he managed to fling onto every surface in the house. A tube and a half of goo and a lot of scrubbing later, we concluded it wasn't hairballs. The last trip to the vet revealed that my little sidekick had gained 3 pounds since his surgery and the vet really seemed to peg me as a big sap and sold me some pain killers and arthritis medicine to see if he could become more active which might theoretically help his breathing. One day of the pain killers gave me a comatose kitty, so we dropped that and just spent a lot more time playing. But he still coughed. So, Wednesday I took him to a different vet--one who had helped us during the entire cast ripping-off episode.

Theo has asthma (and has lost two and a half pounds--yay!).

In general, the asthma wouldn't be so bad, but ever since we have curtailed his outside privileges, he has been using litter boxes more, and of course the clumping litter we have been buying creates a lot of dust & has made his mild asthma much more noticeable--and has covered every upstairs surface with grey dust. The doctor gave him a shot that will clear up his symptoms for 6 weeks and told me to switch cat litter.

A normally easy-going cat, Theo has learned to HATE vets, and spent all of yesterday hiding and sulking. I spent all of yesterday groveling. At 3:00 this morning, Theo was ready to forgive me and was really insistent about it, so that was the end of sleep for me.

Going on 5 hours of sleep, I decided knitting with big needles was my best bet today, so I finished the front of the yoke sweater
(and why they pattern isn't just done as a normal raglan is anyone's guess. Maybe someone at Vogue thinks seams are fun?), and I started the sleeves:I was hoping to be able to say I had used up one more ball of yarn today, but I'm not quite there. But I am really jazzed about perhaps finishing two projects in a row, so maybe I could finally be contracting a little case of "finishitis".....

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Ta Da!!!!!

Okay--I think this is my favorite BSJ ever!I don't know--maybe it's the color or the variation in stripes...or maybe because I've finished so few projects this year.....

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

The BSJ Moving Along

I love the Baby Surprise Jacket! It is so clever and such a leap of faith. Who would ever believe that this:
is actually a sweater?

For those who are BSJ veterans, I'm on the 10-ridge insert, so I'm ALMOST done! I decided to shake up the stripe pattern just a little--which coincided nicely with the cast off for the neck shaping which would lead to the need to weave in ends for stripes (funny how these things work out)--but I picked up the stripes again in the inset. The great thing about the BSJ is you can pretty much do anything you want to with the stripes because it's automatically happening on both sides. You can just throw in a few stripes here or there, make an actual pattern--whatever. And babies aren't going to complain about stripes making their butt look big, so it's a win-win all the way around.

Monday, August 24, 2009

My Knitting And I Had A "Date" Today

So I am knitting less and less all the time as I find more & more stuff to do around the house, so today I made a date with wool. After canning & before going to the gym I promised myself one hour of uninterrupted knitting time. It was tough, and I almost got distracted by a bed that needed sheets changed, but I actually did it and this poor little shawl:
which was started on June 2 and promptly abandoned, now has 9 more rows! It's really more hunter green than blue-grey, and there isn't a full pattern repeat there yet, but I am quite proud of myself. Really, I wanted to cast on something new to work on--and had even flirted with the idea--but when I finally sat down I didn't want to be bothered with gauge or size or anything new, so a WIP WON OUT!!!!! Whoo hoo!!! Call Ripley's!

I have a new theory--if I can manage one hour of uninterrupted knitting time per day that would pretty much double my knitting output for this year as it's been a bit pathetic, and then this fall when canning season is over......? Might I get to 20,000 yards yet?????? Or this poor little shawl might at least be finished

Sunday, August 23, 2009

4 Months To Go

There's just a little over 4 months left in my second Year of the Stash, and I'm not even halfway to my goals. I'm not even halfway to where I was last year. How is this possible? I'm not working this year, I had a 6-week surgery recovery period where almost all I could do was knit--and I have used about 45 skeins of yarn. Do you realize I could replace that in 1.2 minutes if left alone with the internet and my credit card?????


I had it figured up last year that if I knit approximately 20,000 yards per year (last year I managed 19,000 but I'm taking advantage of my knitterly optimism) I could use up my stash in about 9-10 years. And be able to get the sewing room closet doors closed in about 3. HOWEVER, if I'm currently on target to only do 15,000 yards then I might have a 15-year stash which is a bit depressing as I had visions of going on a yarn-shopping bender in 2018 that would leave my credit card whimpering in pain.

I have 4 months left--what are the odds of racking up another 10,000 yards by the end of the year????? And why am I not knitting right now????????

Thursday, August 20, 2009

My Gift Bin Failed Me

In the garage, I have a big Rubbermade tub where I stockpile knitted baby gifts. I used to try to go baby by baby, but then a few of my friends had TWINS, and that just destroyed that theory and put me behind for about 2 years. So, I started making them ahead of time--generally going with 2-year-old sweaters as it's too hard to figure out what size & at what time of year to intercept a baby. Sure the 3-month or 6-month sweaters are cute, but what if it's a big baby and instead of being the right size in the fall, that puts it into the right size smack in July? Occasionally I still do 12 month & 18 month sweaters, but rarely anything younger.

My Grandmother called me to see if I had a sweater for an upcoming baby boy. She has been a crafter all her life, but now her eyesight has almost gone, so now she only quilts, but she loves homemade things and gifts, so for the price of the yarn, I can provide her with baby sweaters. Works great on both ends, and it's a rather cool connection to have. So, I went to the gift bin, opened it up to see what blue sweaters I might have (she's a traditionalist and I don't think purple or teal is going to fly) and.....


I have three or four pink BSJs--plus a few other pink sweaters--but little boy sweaters? Zilch! This is a bad sign, because there is nothing that will bring on a slew of new babies like falling behind in gifts. So,I cast on for a new BSJ yesterday. I love stripes on them, and I've gotten a lot of questions about how to stripe the jacket and have it look okay, so I thought this would be a good time to explain. In garter stitch, to stripe and have it look like normal stripes (like in the picture above), you need to do an even number of rows. 2, 4, 8--it doesn't matter, but you need to start the strip on the RIGHT SIDE row, like in the picture above. This is the wrong side of the sweater:
which is the row I do the decreases on (you can see my little safety pin marker). I am doing 2 rows in each color, and the edge where I'm carrying the yarn is going to be sewn anyway, so I am not cutting the yarn after every stripe--I just leave it free & grab the other yarn. Simple, and no ends to weave in.

And since today is Finishing Friday and I don't start anything new on Fridays, last night I cut outred napkins. Since we have at least one party every month--and sometimes several--I do a lot of seasonal decorating--fall, spring, winter, summer and Christmas. To make things easier to store & to take advantage of leftover wedding decorations, both summer & Christmas use red & roses, so some red napkins with white trim will tie in nicely to each. Then they can also come out for Valentine's Day, which I would generally not decorate for except for Soup Night. For parties, it's cute. For every day....that might be a little nauseatingly cute. :)

Theo was of course right on-hand for the sewing:

The Mystique....

So, I've been enjoying my new reputation as the Queen of Productivity, but thought it only fair to admit the truth: The embroidery machine can work all by itself.

I program the machine, hoop the towel, thread the machine, press start AND I CAN WALK AWAY. When it wants a new thread color, it stops and waits for me. So....while the machine was merrily spitting out towels, I was doing other things. So....not quite as impressive, but at least I didn't get part of the towel accidentally folded underneath the hoop and embroider a towel sleeve around the hoop that would have to be cut away in order to get it off the hoop--an achievement I mercifully did BEFORE starting this blog. There are always reasons to be thankful for being slow on the technology front.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Okay, Nine Towels

Somehow I miscounted (which could explain some gauge issues), and I actually have 9 embroidered towels--not ten. Oh well. I have plenty more blank towels and nine is still a respectable amount. After washing out the stabilizer:There are some duplicates, so I didn't photograph all 9, but I'm generally pleased with the results. In the future I think I'd center better so the words aren't on the color stripes, and I'd do a different color thread on the green towel, but I'm learning. I've had my sewing/embroidery machine for 3 years now, and am just starting to get comfortable with the embroidery part. The instruction book made it QUITE complicated, and to be honest I've eliminated a few steps because they made it so difficult I would never had embroidered anything if I followed their advice. Now, if I ever endeavor to do embroidered buttonholes on anything, I will dig out their fussy instructions and follow them to the letter, but as I have only recently stopped loathing doing normal buttonholes, I don't see it happening in the near future.

In knitting news, the August scarf is doneand awaiting the weaving in of ends & a little blocking, and even better, I have resisted the urge to cast on something new and did several rows on the yoke sweaterwhile enjoying some sunshine with my little sidekickthough I just don't appreciate tummy rubs like he does.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

10 Towels and a Finished Book!!!!

And almost a finished scarf. To what do I owe this abnormal display of crafting dedication?

* A tragically delayed tomato crop that has yet to cooperate with my visions of a weekend of salsa canning.

* The true "stocking up" of towels to embroider on, without any idea at all where to store them until needed, and the final admission that there is more room in the "gift bin" than in the entire sewing room--a truly sad state of affairs...

* An audio book causing me so much stress that it was either finish the darn thing this weekend or start taking sleeping pills at night.

* Being perhaps caught up with cucumber harvest enough to delay the next batch of pickles until perhaps Tuesday.

* Deciding that taking a weekend break from any elaborate cooking would be a really good idea...unless we wanted a week of peanut butter & jelly sandwiches next week.

* After the socializing & entertaining marathon of last month, being burned out enough to schedule NO parties outside of Soup Night for one entire month.

* The realization that a knitting blog actually should have some knitting on it.....

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Today's Project

I had decided early in the week to make today a crafting day--meaning no gardening or cleaning or anything that "had" to be done--and had a long list, starting with embroidering some towels.

About a week ago I found kitchen towel packs on sale at Shopko (and tablecloths on clearance for $2.99 each, which has nothing at all to do with this story but SCORE!!!!) and they were ones I could embroider on, so I stocked up. As you may have guessed, we're pretty social people and always need hostess gifts or prizes of some sort, so I set up my sewing machine to embroider, thinking I would knit while the machine worked....

....and promptly scalded my right hand while making lunch. Nothing serious--not even enough to cause blistering, but enough to render me with only a left hand for the day. (The soup, by the way, turned out quite well, but I still wouldn't say that it was worth it.) So, no knitting, butand one more in the machine as I write. The white stuff is a water-soluble stabilizer that will wash out in the laundry but keep the stitches from sinking in to the terry cloth loops. I cut off the excess to keep for blocking any knitted lace I want a bit stiff. It's really great stuff. I keep thinking I'll dissolve some in a bottle of water and use it as a spray starch for ironing, but I try to avoid all activities that encourage ironing in general, so it hasn't happened.

I won't make it through all the towels tonight--and frankly, I'll want to save a few projects like this for next year's 100 project challenge, but I'll have to decide a fair way to count them. I don't think one towel should count as one project, but 30 towels shouldn't be one project either. Maybe every 2? Every 3? Or maybe it should be based on the number of thread changes, as that takes SO much more time......Decisions. Decisions.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Finishing Friday Number 2!

To be honest, I'm so proud that I remembered this. I get distracted so easily by things that "need" to be done and I get going on other projects and forget about my resolution to take some time for hobbies. But I am proud to announce that I DID NOT CAN ANYTHING TODAY!!! Shocking, I know. So, I spent most of the day in the sewing room.

First the August scarf got a few rows:but I thought it had a pretty good chance of some knitting tonight before bed, so I moved on to.....
The Christmas quilt top I started back in January! (And if you're wondering how long it took for there to be a cat on it, 23 seconds tops.) Thistook as much time as it took me to walk downstairs for more coffee, locate a new bottle of distilled water for the iron, fill the iron, and get back to the sewing room. Makes you wonder what the state of affairs might have been had I decided to throw in a load of laundry as well, doesn't it?

I knew I wanted to do a one-inch sash followed by a wider stash, though I thought I had planned a small red stripefollowed by a wide green, which actually is the opposite of what I originally laid out, but I think it's okay. There are strips cut out for a second one of these, so I'll reverse them on that one.

I got all sides of the red done and two of the green. Now I need two more sides in green and it will be ready to layer for quilting. Maybe two more Finishing Fridays to go on it????

And the dratted audio book is 22 hours long--not 18! I still have 8 hours to go and I had my first nightmare last night. I am going to be the only person in history to be treated for stress-related disorders caused by Book Club!!!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Aha! There Has Been Knitting Today!

OK, I had my to-do list all lined up for the day......and most of it didn't happen. Want to know what did happen? KNITTING! That's right--I actually sat down with sticks and strings and added some length to the August scarf while TOTALLY IGNORING my list.

Which is all my book club's fault.

I have been a member of a book club for around 10 years. At first we were quite diligent & even did some research on the books or came to meetings with printed discussion questions. Then as we grew closer & started experiencing more life events together, the book discussions grew shorter, the meetings moved to evenings in order to accommodate wine, and personal life discussions took center stage. Then for several years we became "The Group Formerly Known As Book Club," which was perhaps more appropriately named but less diligent about getting together. I think it struck us as odd to have regular bi-monthly meetings to NOT discuss books. This summer, however, we have revived with a new-found vigor and are attempting MONTHLY books--a feat never before attempted by this group. We are on our second book, and I have sworn to get it read by our meeting in 10 days because I actually like this book--Pat Conroy's Lords of Discipline--though I feel it is about to start giving me nightmares, and after suffering through the first book, The Shack, which I did not care for, I want to make sure I read this one. Of course, being the avid knitter, I immediately obtained the audio book so I could knit as well, and was a bit stunned to discover it's an 18-hour audio book. I think I have about 10 hours left, so I planned to set aside an hour a day, but then today the foreshadowing started, and I know something bad is going to happen, and since I don't have the actual printed book I can't flip ahead to find out what it is (which I often have to break down and do when my stress level starts causing me to grind my teeth and give up sleep to finish reading--being incapable of moderation in anything), I have been glued to this darn book most of the day. On the knitting front, I'm about 60% finished on the scarf. On the book front--I still don't know what the BAD THING is and may be staying up to an insane hour knitting and worrying about these characters.

Am I the only one that gets this obsessed about books? I had to give up reading before bed because it was causing me to consistently stay up much too late and be too anxious to fall asleep. I love James Michener books, but can only read them about every two years because his books generally span hundreds of years, so his main characters can and DO die, and this causes me so much stress that I am a quivering, neurotic mess by the end of the book. I don't think this is normal behavior. Of course, I don't think having 64,000 yards of laceweight yarn is exactly "normal" either, so perhaps I need to lower my standards just a bit.......

....and turn my audio book back on......

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Andy Has a Shirt!!!!

Which is in the dryer right now, so you'll have to take my word for it, but I got the clothes done under the one-month-late deadline (the ON TIME gift idea being completely foreign to me) and now 4 more yards of fabric are out of the sewing room. Yippee!!! That one still can't even see the floor is a topic for another day....

[And incidentally, due to the differences in language usages between English-speaking countries, if you logged on yesterday to find that I had announced that my loving spouse had underwear, I apologize. He does, of course, but this isn't really that sort of blog.....]

I also finished up the second skein of yarn on the August scarf, so I got to move ALL the tallies today--a big day for me indeed. Still, I'm missing a bit of the crafting drive I had last year, which I think is because I don't have a goal for the number of projects to finish this year. So, in my normal this-sounds-like-a-good-idea-right-now sort of spirit, my crafting goal for next year is:


That's right--100 in 365 days (and too bad next year isn't a Leap Year as I could probably use it). They can be sewing or knitting projects--though let's not be stupid. There will be no cross-stitch projects because I'm on more of a 5-year plan with each of those. If I stick to my yarn diet and some version of a fabric diet, I might finally move enough projects out of the craft room to make a visible dent.

Maybe having all those projects in the Project Time Out Bin will finally come in handy......

Monday, August 10, 2009

Not Sure if You've Noticed....

....but I don't knit as much as I used to. I use to do it on lunch breaks from work--and in the last year at my job, it was basically to break up the misery of trying to sell large phone systems in an economy where no companies could get credit, no one was sure what the future would bring, and the contacts I had at companies were disappearing on a regular basis. Knitting brought me sanity.

Now I'm not working, I have planted a garden TWICE the size of last year's garden, and I don't seem to be as stressed. Either that or with this much garden, sanity is not really welcome around here right now........

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Andy Has Pants!!!!

Finishing Friday worked!!!! The pants are done and the shirt is past the collar!!!!

Shirt collars are perhaps my least favorite part of sewing. It's a close race between zippers of any sort and shirt collars. Luckily, women's clothes rarely have them. Unluckily, Andy positively refuses to wear women's clothes, so I am stuck with shirt collars.

I don't know why they bother me so much. Maybe it's that whole trying-to-get-pointy-collars thing, or that they are always two-part unless your spouse is more tolerant of Mandarin collars than mine is. Maybe it's that they are so tricky, and unlike zippers, are extremely noticeable, so all errors really must be fixed. At any rate, forcing myself to sit down at the sewing machine for two hours got me through it. And the threat of dragging out the silky blouse-that-must-not-be-named if I gave up on it didn't hurt any. Now I just have the sleeves to attach, buttonholes to make, and a shirt hem to do. Yay!

And a quick follow up--I made the chili pepper napkins 11 inches square and serged the edges with a rolled edge using "wooly nylon" thread. It's a nice cocktail size. I made some once with an actual hem--something not to be repeated in this lifetime--that ended up being about 10 inches square, and they've always been just a bit too small. For dinner napkins I generally to to 19 or 20-inch squares with a serged edge. On onee set I particularly liked, I serged the edges with embroidery thread and a metallic thread. It was a nice effect, and made them a bit stiff, which would make them better for folding if one does that sort of thing. We try, but so far we know exactly two folds. I am trying to learn a few more, but I can't help thinking that if I serged a bit of wire into the edges, I might finally be able to get that dang fleur-de-lis fold correct. Oh sure, it might impale the guests at dinner, but it would look nice......

Friday, August 7, 2009

Finishing Friday

If you've been following this blog, you might have noticed that there have been projects that got a lot of attention for a while, then just disappeared, never to be mentioned again. I know there are 18 current knitting projects counting the new scarf. The number of sewing projects....well, I don't think I'm at the point when I am truly ready to face that number, but a small sample....

is the quilt top from a quilting class I took TWO YEARS ago. I think it needs one more sash attached, then to be quilted.

This was cut out to be a dress and a skirt. The skirt is done (and even worn) but the dress.....

Thisis to be a summer tablecloth that got set aside when I ran out of material & stayed set aside because I had other projects I wanted to work on.

Thisis a Christmas lap quilt that was set aside for no good reason.

Thiswas set aside for its own protection as it was in danger of being shoved into the blender.

Thiswas set aside when we decided not to host a Halloween party two years ago

and thiswas set aside because Nancy Zieman's instructions really only worked on the non-stretchy side of the fleece. It created a big mess on the stretchy side.

There are LOTS more, but you get the idea. I seem to have some commitment problems or crafting ADD. So in a fit of maturity--and because the WIPS are demanding their own living space now--I have decided to do FINISHING FRIDAYS through teh rest of the year. Every Friday (garden & canning permitting), I'm going to spend 2-3 hours working on a project that is at least a month old. Right now it's mostly sewing because that is the most out-of-control group right now, but I'll be including knitting as well.

Today's project is....Andy's birthday clothes. If I hurry, they'll be just barely one month late. But that's pretty good in my world. Ask my bridesmaids about their quilts if you don't believe me......

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

The Ham

After getting all the attention yesterday, Theo was in place early today and just begging for some tummy rubsThe ham.

The napkins are trimmed, washed, and ironed, and three sets of six napkins each are ready for Monday's "Soup Night" salsa tasting
and I have used my "Martha" quotient for the month. Too bad, as Andy's birthday present clothes still aren't done.....

The scarf, however, being intended for no one in particular and having no deadline at all is getting lots of attention
and may be done before the month is half over.

I'm using some yarn that I have had in my stash for several years, and after I used up the first skein, I went to the bag and pulled out this
I have had yarn break in a few places because I wound it too tightly, but this wasn't tight. It's a Patons superwash & it has been discontinued for a while & maybe this is why it was discontinued. I noticed on the first skein that there were some places where strands had broken, but I have never seen anything this bad. What dreadful stuff!

So the big question is, do I get credit toward my total this year for crappy yarn that I throw away?

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

A Finished Project!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

And it doesn't bother me in the slightest that it was a brand new one and that all the ones "in progress" are still "in progress."

Did I mention that I leapt off the fabric wagon many months ago? It's one thing to buy no yarn for a year, but fabric is a bit harder as things come up and I've only been stashing fabric for a few years. Anyway, the August Soup Night is on Monday, and it was originally going to be a salsa tasting as I assumed I would have had time to make a few new salsas by August. I failed to discuss this plan with the tomatoes however, and I am now just hoping to harvest our first tomato by Monday. So I have changed the event to a salsa cook-off, and decided salsa cocktail napkins to give as prizes were in order, so today I made 18 napkins:
The problem now is that they are so cute that we want some for ourselves, so I'll be headed back to Joanns soon.

I am still counting the 2 yards of fabric used in my stash tally--even though the 2 yards were never technically IN the stash as I bought the material yesterday and used it today, but it could have been in the stash and who am I to deny material its full potential???

Theo was thrilled to be sewing of courseand could hardly contain his excitement......

Monday, August 3, 2009

It's Not Lace!!!! It's Not Lace!!!!

OK, normally I love lace. I adore lace. Lace is wonderful.

But lace is really, really s l o w. . . .

Meet the August Project of the Month:
a WORSTED weight scarf made with tiny 116-yard skeins that might finally move that darn stash tally AND from a pattern that does not require the continual consultation of charts. It even fit easily in my purse when I went out to run errands today. I think I'm in love......

But lest you think I've been spending all my time with the new scarf, Theo and I played a rousing game of sheets today:So what is it like to have sheets that aren't covered in cat hair?

Saturday, August 1, 2009

It's August 1!!!!!

And WIP Wrestlemania is over!!!! Last year I managed to contract a severe case of "finishitis" when I went on my WIP-finishing binge. No such luck this year. I did get one WIP done and made astounding progress on the Kimono Shawl, but enough is enough.

It's time for the new Porject of the Month bag........
and it's a knitted scarf in worsted weight yarn! Excellent--I needed a good portable project. Now I just need to decide what sort of pattern to use. I think I'll make it a cable or waffle pattern--something that could be considered "manly" as the "gift bin," like all the stores, has a whole bunch of gifts for women and one for men. So it's time for a nice "manly" scarf.

And, having already canned 4 quarts of pickles early this morning, I am devoting the rest of the day to crafting. Andy has gone on a motorcycle ride, we have no social engagements today, and no one is coming to visit.

Theo has nabbed the favorite morning kitty spot in the sewing room
and will probably hang out with me until it gets too hot and I have to close all the windows in favor of the air conditioner. He's a bit fickle sometimes.