Thursday, January 31, 2008

Cautious Optimism

Yeah, I probably shouldn’t even mention it — but I might actually be feeling a little better today. For the first time in months I’ve had enough energy to change the bed, do 4 loads of laundry and even take down the bedroom curtains for a very-much-needed wash. They’re handwoven white cottolin in a Bronson lace pattern that I designed. At least they’re supposed to be white. Right now they’re kind of yellow and dusty. Ick. I’m washing them in very hot water and lots of soap and hopefully that will help. I can’t use bleach because I’m really sensitive to the smell and we don’t have any in the house at the moment anyway. I plan to do my usual ironing while damp and will get them back on the window to finish drying. Can’t get ready for bed without curtains! Our bedroom is on the main floor at the front of the house facing the street. Can you say “fish tank”?

Breaking news — they are finally putting gutters on the house next door after a year of listening to it dripping! I haven’t mentioned recently how the renovations were going because they pretty much weren’t going at all. Now there seems to be somewhat more of a push to get it finished. They only started back in September of 2006! It’s been a long haul. There are lots of things that we are unhappy about. For instance they don’t seem to want to replace the fence between our properties. There is only a partial length left and it is beginning to fall over. It belonged to their side! They put up a couple of lengths of high blank fencing across the back but it’s not complete. And they planted trees that will grow very large (a “peeling” white birch and a sweetgum) right next to the property line where they will interfere with the power and phone lines to both houses and will overshadow our vegetable garden. Pooh. The one good thing they did (and it was at our direct request) was to gravel between the houses right up to our siding. They destroyed the flowers and ferns we had there before but at least now the mud they left doesn’t splash up onto our basement windows. Without the fence and plants there we get more light on that side but it’s also more open to public view. No wandering around the basement in my netherstocks!

So back to things crafty. I haven’t gotten much farther than my last photo of the Twilight Queen. It turned out that I’d missed several of the yarn-overs while putting on the beads. The yo’s escape so need to be done after placing the bead and before knitting the stitch it’s on. Plus I need to check that they’re all there before going on to 3 rows of garter stitch. I didn’t discover they were awol until I tried to do the next fancy row, necessitating frogging back to the last bead row, fixing it and knitting back up again.

I have started the Nana Socks and are they cute! My reduced cable is adorable, see?

I’m using a broken piece of bamboo needle that I sanded a new point on the broken end for a cable needle and it’s working well. Here it is in action:

It’s about 3” long. I know everyone has their favourite cable needle shape but I prefer a wooden or bamboo one that is straight, not too short or too long, and either the same size or a little smaller than the needles used for the rest of the knitting. None of those fancy ones with a WOW or a U in them for me! And although I’ve tried cabling without a cable needle, cabling with one is actually faster, at least for me. I can do simple one-over-one twisted stitches without a cable needle but everything else needs one. I just poke it securely into the body of the knitting when I’m not using it.

I’m hoping to get Nana’s socks done by her birthday because B-Bil is throwing her a party for her 80th. The Auntie whom I made the gloves for awhile ago decided she did not want in any way to have a big party to celebrate her 90th birthday (right before the invitations were sent out) so we’ll be sneaking in some cards and prezzies for her during Nana’s party. Nice try, hon’ but you can’t escape us that easy! You’d think she’d be proud of her age instead of trying to avoid thinking about it. It seems to be a big year for birthdays ending with a zero: Auntie 90, Nana 80, O-Bil (yes, that’s Older Brother-in-law) 60, and my DIL (aka The White Lady, mother of Princess KiKi and Stargazer and wife of The Ninja) 30. The rest of us are just regular numbers. Heh.

Well, it’s the last day of January and the lovely snow we had is melting into the usual soggy goop. The sun is out but I don’t think it’s going to stay that way. We need to go get some groceries later because Mother Hubbard’s Cupboard is pretty darn bare. I’m getting tired of trying to figure out what to cook for dinner using 2 freezer-burned pork chops and a limp stick of celery. (Oh wait — I had the celery for lunch with peanut butter on it.) Though we haven’t starved to death really and it was a great excuse to use stuff up. Plus I always have lots of condiments. Condiments can make boring food yummy. And I’m not just talking about ketchup.

Off to put my bedroom back together before I run out of steam.


Asylim said...

You forgot to mention O-Bil's wife is also turning 60 this year. :)

Louisa said...

Yo Mama, Big Red! LOL!!

I forgot she's nearly the same age as he is. A little over 2 years older than me! Heh. Thanks for the reminder.

Sharon in Surrey said...

Hey, I like the cable socks!! I usually don't bother with anything fawncy myself, just the same old mindless crap in front of the tube but I like the simple cable. Might give that one a go!! Aunty will love them.