Friday, August 22, 2014

Going Bananas

 I purchased some fiber called Banana Silk and dyed it , well, banana color!  I think a pretty little scarf will result from this eventually!
 On the way out to take one of my daily excursions, I realized I've never photographed this flower Bill planted by the gopher turtle hole where he doesn't mow.  It is called a Candelabra Cassia and it stands almost 5' tall.
 The flowers are very pretty and you can see why this is named candelabra...
 This is the second grove of banana trees Bill has started.  Hoping to have fruit on them next year.
 Another member of the banana family-a Banana Spider!  I met her down a side path!  I did stop before I ran into her rather large and strong web!  She is a bane to lawn mowers because her web is so strong and sticky .  I tried to capture the color of the web-also a very bright yellow like her!  She is about 4" in size, non-poisonous but might cause a heart attack from the fright!
 You can see her elaborate web work-it covers a 6' by 4' area.
 When I took Bill back to see what I had discovered, we saw her with a yellow moth!  She had made a good job of cocooning him for a snack later on.
I am glad they do not like peoples.........!

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Eyelet Lattice Sock Pattern

The first sock is finished with this pretty KnitPicks Stroll Queen Anne Tonal yarn.  I used a free stitch pattern from NewStitchADay and used it to add a strip up the otherwise plain toe-up sock with a short row heel.  I am very pleased with the results and cast on the mate immediately!
If you are not a knitter, you will want to stop reading now!  For those who might like to perk up a plain pair of socks-read on!

The stitch pattern is easily memorized so no charts or having to mark your place.   You make three  yarn overs and the next time two-very easy to keep track of what you are doing!

Here is the pattern highlights if you want to try it yourself:

Judy's Magic cast on-12 stitches each needle (24 total) with a #2 circular needle

TOE-Increase to 30 stitches each needle.
Begin pattern insert over 12 stitches-round 1-k1, (p2, k1, ( k2tog, yo) 3x , k1, p2) knit  around.
                                                     round 2 k1, (p2, k8, p2) knit around.
                                                     round 3 k1, (p2, k2, (k2tog, yo) 2x, k2, p2) knit around.
                                                     round 4 repeat round 2
Measure the distance from your cast on to the place where you have increased to the 30 stitches.  Measure the length of your foot (or the recipient of the socks!)  , subtract the distance of the toe from this overall length and then subtract another 1/2" so the sock will have negative ease-this is how you will always have a sock that fits snugly and is not saggy!
Work a short row heel.  (check out YouTube for instructions here-I always work over 1/2 of the total sock stitches and decrease until the heel is the same as the toe-until I have only 12 stitches left just like on the cast on.)
The pattern continues up until you do the ribbing at the top in k1p1 in a length that is pleasing to you.  I generally work until the leg of the sock (folded on itself ) is the length of the foot to the toe and then I do ribbing until the two halves match.  Bind off with a needle that is at least an #8.  It might look a bit loose while you are doing the bind off, but when you stretch it to wear it, the ribbing edge looks great!

Reverse the pattern area to the other side of the front for the second sock so the patterning will go up the outside of each foot so you have a pair!   (For example, the beginning of round 1 will be K17 , pattern, and end with k1 , knit around)

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Cindy-1 MS - 0

 I haven't been able to walk all around our 11 acres in a long time.  Weakness, clumsiness, pain just kept me close to home and the front porch and flowers.  But look what Bill had delivered this afternoon!   I am mobile again!!!
 It has seats on the back for company and grandchildren and parents and friends.......!
 It has a roof for keeping the sun or rain from beating down on my head!
 Yes, I can see some very pleasant times ahead!  I feel like I did when I got my driver's license at 17!
This is the view you will have of me-taking off for a bit of outdoors!
I took a ride to our neighbors first, I've missed chatting with them and dropping in!
And then we took a ride around the property to see my banana grove again!
 I have 4 major bunches of bananas growing right now!
 One still has the flower on the end of the stalk which has 38 bananas growing on it!
 I heard this guy behind me while taking pics of the pond area-see him?
 He was keeping his eye on me as I was trying to get his picture!   He did not like that camera pointed in his direction!  (Red Shouldered Hawk)
 The Georgia Pampas Grass is just beautiful in the setting sun.
My big dead tree lost his height-I love dead trees for two reasons-they provide a good place for so many birds and they are also very visually pleasing to me!

It did me good to be out and about this early evening!  Thank you for the wheels, Bill!

Monday, August 18, 2014

Lovin' Monday's

 Monday's are good for cleaning first thing in the morning and then rewarding yourself with a bit of creative time!  I wanted to make some more of the disappearing pinwheel blocks.   It is so ingenious to sew two blocks together all around the outside!   It is so not following the sewing rules and that makes it fun!
 And then you cut this square apart on the diagonals.  This is the part that thrills quilters and confuses the uninitiated; the repetition of sewing fabric together and cutting it apart.......over and over.
 After you have a big pinwheel, you cut the blog into thirds horizontally and vertically.
 And rearrange a few of the pieces to your liking.
And sew them back together...........!  Here is another finished block!  I am getting quite a few just a few minutes at a time and they are adding up!

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Saturday Starts

 This is how I will wear the Geology Shawl when it is not so warm out.......soon I will be able to bring out my shawls again!
 I puttered on the Disappearing Pinwheel I learned to make at Mom's.  I have a pile of the 10" co-ordinating fabric blocks to turn into a quilt!  I have the bugs worked out of my system now so I will be able to make a block or two each day and will have the top pieced in a reasonable time!
 My neighbor brought over a quilt for the frame!  She is enjoying sewing time again.  Life does get in the way sometimes but she has been loving her sewing room time again and it shows-
 In fact, she brought over two quilts for quilting!  These are blocks that were started in her sister's stash and she is figuring out what to do to give them life!  I like that idea!  Isn't it great to tackle a conundrum and then solve it!
 I did get a dress done for Aria-I have had it cut out for a while now, it went together like a charm this morning!  I will send this off in the mail so it will get to her in time for her birthday!
Bruce and Marsel shared their Artisan Bread recipe and I have been using it to make dough for pizzas for Bill and I.  We are enthralled with the taste!  Delicious.

I make us supremes , deluxe-whatever you call it, hmmmm, it is wonderful!  Dinner is ready!

Friday, August 15, 2014

FO Friday

 I present the Geology Shawl all knitted and off the needles!  I would have finished it earlier in the day but I decided to add another repeat and some more garter rows and that was a lot of stitches more and in my slower mode it took considerably longer but I am happy with this shawl.
 As usual , magic happens when you block it!  The whole thing just blooms!  It measures 50" long and 18" deep after blocking.
 There are 6 layers of texture to knit through;  I highly recommend this shawl.
There is a lot of room to play with this in relation to size and yarn, etc.  Well worth your purchase price for a very good knit!
(I used KnitPicks Stroll Kindling Tonal yarn on size 6 needles)

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Sweet Endings

Bill made it to the Adirondacks for a climb to the top Bald Mountain-where he met someone he knew...couldn't have planned it better!  
Mom and I made a quilt for my Aunt who is in the grip of Alzheimer's.  This is a tactile textile because she likes to pick at things so there are lots of things to pick at in this quilt!
When you go to camp as a kid, they have a bonfire to mark the last night-we did just that and had a wonderful gathering at my sister's for our end-of-trip visit!
Flight knitting-the shawl had gotten too large and complicated for on-board knitting, so I started a toe-up sock with a lacy panel up the side.  (KnitPicks Stroll Tonal Queen Anne sock yarn)
I have finished the fifth segment of this shawl and am entering the deepest and final layer!  It is good to snuggle the kitties when I am missing the NY family all over again!