Sunday, August 22, 2010

Do You Want to Know A Secret?

Well, I can finally unveil Secret Project IV, Parts A and B to all and sundry. We presented Sarah A with the afghan on Thursday night at Alison M's home. When a member of our group gets pregnant, we normally do a group project. We all knit a square and usually I'm idiot enough to volunteer to put the thing together. My square is shown before the assembly. We also had enough squares this time to do a pillow too.

Thanks to Mary T, Mary S, Donna D, Angi F, Mary Kate R, Tracy B, Alison M, Ellen R, Lora K, Sally H-D, Paula M, Stephie S, Linda D, and Nancy B. I had to take several pictures to get them all in and they are not the greatest, but they were the best I could get.

I think Sarah A was pleased, if not surprised.  It's kind of hard to be surprised, when she got one a year and a half ago or so for Gabriel, Sally H-D got one two months ago, and we asked her to pick out the color. I can't believe that the time has gone so quickly and that she'll be having the little munchkin in three weeks or less.
(If you click on the pictures, they get bigger so that you can see the individual squares) Now I only have two more secret projects to unveil on the blog once the recipients have received them.  

This past week I helped a friend make these handkerchief bonnets for her niece's christening, as she doesn't sew. Which would have been a piece of cake, if (a) we had actually just used a handkerchief, instead of cutting them from material and (b) if we had used a lace edging rather than using the all over lace sleeves from her mother's wedding dress for the sake of sentimentality. I get the sentimentality but it was a royal pain in the neck. They did turn out beautifully though, given all of the above hassle. You're supposed to just be able to cut a couple of stitches and then it turns back into a handkerchief that a boy can give to his future wife for something old at their wedding and a girl can use for her something old at her wedding. We made two, one for her niece and one for her nephew.  Remind me that the next time someone asks me to help them sew something, I'm supposed to say no. I'm really not the greatest seamstress as it is too exacting for me and I can't fudge things or make them work the way I can with knitting.

I did manage to finish the fingerless mitts this week at Alison's which I would have finished on Sunday, had I knit at all after coming home from guild last week.  I like them, but there were a one size fits all pattern, and I don't think it actually does.  I had to cut off one of the cable repeats to insure that it would still fit, and I think I'd have been happier overall if I'd gone up a needle size to compensate for my fat little hands.  I do think that I'll make another pair of them in a slightly less screaming color and in a finer yarn for the office, and I'll leave these ones at home.  Not the same pattern though. I love, love the yarn though.  It's Malabrigo merino worsted and it's just yummy soft.  It's one of those yarns that I could just roll in.

I've started another "not for me" project for a friend that should be quick.  Once that's done, I need to find my next complicated wacky project for me.  I'm thinking about a lace stole, but we'll see.  I have three hundred or so patterns faved on and I finally finished tagging them so I can easily search them for things I can do next.  Yes, I know that I'm compulsive, thank you for your concern, moving on.  I really want to work on stash reduction, and be serious about it.  (I say this as I have one knitting convention to go to at the end of October and a knitting retreat at the beginning of November. My inner knitter says HA!)  But in fairness to me, I did do the mitts with stash and the project for my friend is stash yarn too. So every bit is progress.  On second thought though, lace yarn does not take up much space, so maybe I should do a sweater for me.  Hmmm. 

This week I also managed to write some as I was hosting the writing group at my house this week. I made a chocolate toasted walnut wheat bread using Ghiradelli chocolate chips (dairy free) which was good, it was sort of like the bread and chocolate at Bread and Chocolate in Concord. Which is good, because I can't have that any more. So now I can make this instead.  Writing group went well I think.  Mary S's haikus were hilarious, and Mary Kate and I are slogging forward.  I did sort through my timeline issue, but I still don't think it's right.  I need to add more stuff.  So that's the goal for next month.  I also need to do the re-writes that have been suggested, but that I haven't managed in slogging through the time lines.  But I now have 125 pages and 37,191 words. 

I hesitate to mention this in a blog entry that has been focused on rambling about the little things we do in our lives, as I don't want to offend anyone, but I think that's part of what life is about, the little things, the big good things, and the bad, terribly, painful things.  So it seems appropriate to me to include it, but I apologize in advance if anyone thinks it is insensitive.  In the last few weeks, three of my friends have had someone special in their lives die.  There are no words of comfort that are sufficient, and nothing that makes it easier but time.  The intensity of pain will recede like a tide, but it resurges every now again for years, and some tides are stronger than others.  But over time the good memories and the joy in having had the person in your life and in having had them influence who you have become, grows stronger than the pain, and we can remember them and take joy in who they were without the pain.  Remember that you are not alone and you have friends who love you and will be there for you as much as you need, while we're waiting for the tide to go out. 

On that somber note, that concludes our broadcast for this week.  Stay tuned for further updates.

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