Just a pair of socks

Not much has happened in my little knitting world as of late. Temperatures here in central Texas are in the high nineties to low one hundreds and it’s just been too warm to comfortably knit any larger garments. My Opteka has been pushed to the side for now…at least until I can knit on it without serious thigh sweating (TMI? Perhaps). I finished my Two at a Time Sock class last week and I am now the proud owner of a pair of Speckled Space socks! I finished these socks in three weeks! That’s honestly a miracle (at least for me). I NEVER finish socks that quickly. I’m so done with a pattern by the time I finish the first sock that I never get around to knitting the second socks till about, oh, six months later, give or take a few months. The patterns really shows off the speckled yarn and I think they are so comfy. This yarn was so delightfully squishy. I have plenty leftover, so I will probably make a few shortie socks to use up whatever I have left. I included pictures of the caked up yarn because I think it is just so beautiful in both the knitted and unknitted states. Perhaps I will just sit the leftover caked yarn  on my dresser and stare at it…

The sock class also covered knitting from the toe up and the fish lips kiss heel. I’ve heard Molly from A Homespun House talk about the fish lips kiss heel on her podcast but this was the first time I’d ever tried it and I really like it. It’s a fun way of doing short rows, and I never liked picking up stitches for the gusset so the fact that I can omit this step using this method is definitely a plus in my book, but I am a bit concerned that the heel isn’t reinforced like it is when you knit a regular heel. I’m worried that the socks will wear through faster. I suppose only time will tell.

I treated myself to a little knitting notion splurge last month and I purchased some needle stoppers WHICH ARE AMAZING and these absolutely adorable progress keepers from a UK based Etsy store. This particular set is called Afternoon Tea and they include little tea pots, cups, saucers and tiny cakes and crumpets. I’m obsessed. If you follow me on Instagram then you’ve already seen some of the progress keepers but I’ll include their info below again along with the pattern and yarn info for this post.

Joining Ginny for her monthly Yarn Along. I missed participating in this. I love seeing what other makers are putting out into the world!

Pattern: Speckled Space Socks by Amanda Stephens

Yarn: Biscotte Yarns Lumos in Granite Rose (75% superwash merino, 20% nylon, and 5% stelina)

Progress Keepers: Afternoon Tea Stitch Markers by KoPoUK

Stitch Stoppers: Stitch Stoppers by CocoKnits

Fish lips Kiss tutorial found here

a slow return

School is done for the summer. Max is nearly five months. I’m getting (almost) a full night’s sleep. The house is staked out and the permits have been submitted to the county for approval. I have designated this summer “Operation Sarah Knits.” I feel as though this is the summer where I slowly begin easing into my new/old life, if that makes sense. More knitting. More garden/orchard planning. Chickens. Bees. Perhaps even a goat or two…All the things I have desperately missed since leaving Washington. Our house is scheduled to be finished by next spring. I’m hoping that we can slowly establish our urban homestead while the building process is going on, as opposed to after we move in. Once the concrete is poured and the brush is cleared, Gabe is considering setting up a few bee hives on the far end of the property. We are hoping he will be able to care for the bees without getting in the way of the builders and vice versa.

Now that I’m not waking up three times a night to feed the baby or doing lesson plans every week, I find myself with more knitting time in the evenings. I’m currently working on the Opteka sweater by Isabel Kraemer, and I am SO in love with this pattern. The body is done, and the only thing left to tackle are the sleeves. It’s supposed to have a looser fit, but the cables on the bottom half pull the sweater in quite a bit. However, I think this will be easily remedied with wet blocking. I’ve always enjoyed Isabel’s designs and I love it when a pattern calls for a technique that I’ve never tried before. I learned how to do German short rows while shaping the neckline and I have to say German short rows are THE way to go when it comes to short row shaping. I’m using this gorgeous silk-alpaca blend that I dyed with madder. If you follow me on Instagram, you already know the story behind the yarn. I was going for a deep red but ended up with this peachy pink instead. Oh well. It’s knitting up beautifully.

Side note: Does anyone else not realize how filthy their mirrors are until they try taking a selfie? Dear God, can you see all those tiny fingerprints? Ugh.

This month I am taking a Knitting Two Socks At Once class at my LYS. It covers magic loop, two socks at once, and fish lips kiss heels. I’m really enjoying the process so far and if this doesn’t cure my Second Sock Syndrome then I don’t know what will. I currently have four different socks on the needles, which is probably a little ridiculous. I can’t say this process is any faster than knitting one sock at a time, at least for me, but if I can get a pair of socks out of this process as opposed to knitting one sock and then waiting six months to knit the other, than I think it will be worth it.

The short socks are called the Rose City Rollers. My mother has made a few pairs and I thought they were cute. The toe is knit up in a 2-ply fingering merino super wash that I dyed with madder, and the blue spacey looking yarn is a hand painted yarn that I bought at a little shop in Friday Harbor on San Juan Island. Gabe and I stayed there for a few days for our one year anniversary, SEVEN years ago. I fondly refer to them as my “Anniversary Socks.”

Pattern and Yarn info below:

Sock Pattern: Rose City Rollers by Mara Catherine Bryner 

Yarn: My own 2 ply fingering superwash merino dyed with madder and Whimsical Colors Hand Painted Yarns 2-ply sock yarn in Lavender Ocean

Sweater Pattern: Opteka by Isabell Kraemer

Yarn: My own sport weight alpaca-silk blend dyed with madder

little things

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Last Monday I posted about the importance of finding happiness and joy in the little things in life, no matter how insignificant they may seem. I shared a few things that brought me joy over the weekend and received such positive responses from you readers that I decided to make it a regular occurrence. Every Monday I will share something(s) that made me happy over the weekend, no matter how small or insignificant. A freshly wound skein of yarn, a particularly fragrant flower in my garden or a pudgy toddler hand with dirt under the nails clasped within my own. These are the “little things” that make life beautiful.

Her: Three months ago, she was my baby. Always on my hip, a cuddly barnacle in my daily life. Now she is a walking, talking individual entity and I just can’t deal. Her vocabulary increases by the minute and her sense of humor and enthusiasm for life and all things Sam related make this house a happier place. Yesterday she insisted on dressing herself and this is what she chose. I have to say, while it certainly wasn’t what I would have chosen for her (pink top with purple spandex shorts? Please.) I was quite flattered that she chose to wear the socks I knit her a few weeks ago, and insisted that they made her feel “like a pin-sess.” (She meant princess.)

Oh. And that hair. I heart it.

Food for the soul: We don’t eat pork in our house (on account of the whole being Jewish thing) which often stumps guests when they are tasked with bringing over an appetizer for dinner. Most people don’t realize how many appetizers have pork in them until they have to omit it. Bacon-wrapped something or other? Nope. Cocktail weinies? Sorry. Potato skins? I don’t think so. On Saturday we had friends come over and they had the ingenious idea to make jalapeño poppers (which typically have bacon in them) and instead used smoked salmon. They. Were. Amazing.

In the garden: Despite my lack of attention, our garden seems to be thriving, and we have had artichokes and tiny pole bean blossoms pop up in the last week. We have had steamed artichokes every night for the past few nights and hopefully in the next two weeks we will have fresh green beans for dinner.

If anyone else wants to share their weekend with us, please do so. It doesn’t have to be anything major. Maybe a particularly delicious dinner or a new yarn purchase. Whatever it may be, if it brought you joy, it’s worth sharing.  Provide a link to your blog or just a quick blurb in the comments below. Whatever you prefer.

Have a good Monday, friends.

 

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