Belated Yarn Along (and other things)

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I missed the Yarn Along with Ginny and Keep Calm and Craft On with Nicole yesterday. As usual, our house came down with the plague last week. I thought I was going to be spared but sure enough I was the last one to catch it and I was a miserable coughing and sneezing mess on the couch for four days straight. Luckily my parents were able to drive Sam to his gymnastics class and Gabe did his part by bringing take-out food home every night after work. I just despise being sick. I couldn’t even knit because my eyes kept watering and my head was pounding. Yes, it was that bad.

But…I’m better now and back to my old self. Which means knitting. Lots of knitting. I am working on my test knit (Wellington Worksock Shawl) by Sam Lamb and I hope to have it blocked by this weekend. I am having second thoughts about my color choices. I thought the cream body of the shawl would contrast nicely (but not too starkly) with the mustard colored border and the blue accent stripe, but now I think perhaps I should have chosen the blue as the border color and the mustard as the accent stripe. We shall see. It’s only ten or fifteen rows that I would have to rip out if I don’t like it but I would like to avoid ripping anything out as much as possible.

It’s been raining non-stop here for the past three days and I am looking forward to the sunny days that have appeared in our ten day forecast. Green shoots from my strawberry plants are starting to poke out from amongst the brown dead leaves of last year’s plants and I want to take some time this weekend to clear out the dead parts so the new growth can thrive and (hopefully) produce lots of strawberries this summer! My garlic shoots have sprouted and a few of my herbs, like my mint and chives are slowly starting to grow as the days become longer and a few degrees warmer.

I can’t believe how quickly this winter season has flown by. Gabe and I were talking about how surreal it is that we’re already planning our new orchard and determining the location of our new raised beds. I swear I just put my garden to bed last week! Pretty soon I’ll be in full gardening mode…right around the time our new baby arrives. I have a feeling that our garden won’t receive as much attention as it did last year. That’s okay. I’m going to take it one day at a time and do what I can. It might not be the garden I want but it will be better than nothing.

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*Joining Ginny and Nicole.

I know. Only one photo and its already been posted on Instagram. Please forgive me. This week has been non-stop, or at least it feels that way. This was my week to host our preschool co-op and we decided that we were going to start meeting every Friday as opposed to every other week. We are going to alternate lesson plans every week, focusing on letters and numbers for one lesson and stories and crafts for the other lesson. I volunteered to research a few curriculums for the parents to review and hopefully choose one to follow as a group. So far, I like Easy Peasy Homeschooling but I can’t figure out how to combine one week’s worth of lessons into one day, especially without creating homework for the parents and kids. They are only preschoolers after all.  Any recommendations? Ideally the program would be online and free. Other than that, I am pretty open to suggestions.

I’m plugging away on my Wellington Shawl, the test knit I’ve been working on for Sam Lamb. I have to confess, I’m a little behind, and I’ve had to drop my cup of tea socks completely to ensure that I finish the shawl by the deadline. I don’t mind, though. The shawl is a fun knit and I think I’m going to love wearing it once it’s finished.

Gabe and I hired an arborist to help us plan and plant our new orchard this spring. We fenced off about an acre a few years ago, leaving plenty of room for raised beds, berry bushes and fruit trees. So far, all we’ve managed to accomplish are the raised beds. But now that Gabe is retired from the Army, we finally have the time (and the finances) to start our orchard. Walking through the new orchard site with the arborist, we discussed which trees and berry bushes we wanted to plant and then chose varieties that thrive here in the Pacific Northwest climate. I won’t be getting my much coveted avocado tree (too cold) but lo and behold there is a persimmon tree that can grow this far north. Isn’t that exciting? (Gabe does not think it’s exciting. He and the children don’t like persimmons, and I’m basically planting a tree that will bear fruit that only I will eat. Whatever, it’s worth it.)

Besides that, it’s just the usual happenings around here: our days are filled with children’s activities, grocery shopping, laundry, folding clothes, wiping tears, handing out snacks, cleaning up toys, pulling Smartwool socks out of the potty (thanks, Eddie), playing trucks, story time, changing diapers, giving kisses and drawing pictures. In other words, life is good. Full. And good.

Oh! I must include a baby update: I’m 23 weeks along, so only 17 more to go! He or she is moving around a lot more and seems to really respond to music. Whenever I am listening to the radio or people begin singing in synagogue during services, the movement always increases.  I don’t know why, but that makes me happy.

I hope everyone is enjoying their week. Happy knitting, my friends.

my cup of tea socks

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It’s been raining for two days straight and there are no signs of it letting up anytime soon. It is dark outside and my kids are sleeping in an extra hour in the morning because of the lack of light. I’m not complaining. Our roads and driveways are flooded and I’ve seen two car wrecks and a few felled trees today on the road, all before noon. It’s a good excuse to hibernate indoors.

My Cup of Tea socks are coming along nicely. I’m decreasing on the foot right now and I anticipate finishing the first one by the end of the week. I’m very happy with the crocus motif on the front side, but I feel like the photo doesn’t do it justice. I may buy sock blockers (something I have always thought of as frivolous) because I think blocking will really make the pattern stand out when I’m done.

I have yet to cast on for my Wellington Cowl, the test knit I am (supposed to be) working on. It’s not that I don’t want to. I just haven’t had time. Come to think of it, the kids are napping. I think I’m going to do it right now.

Or not. We shall see. What are you working on, my friends?

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