Aahhh . . . the magic of blocking lace.  Before:


And after:


As tedious as this project was toward the end, I am very, very happy with it.  It’s a stunning pattern.

Forest Path Stole by Faina Letoutchaia
Jaegger-Spun Silk Wool
Size 3 needles
Started February 2007, finished October 2007.

Now that this project is finished, I decided I could look at starting a new project.  Our knitting group is doing a group project this year and chose the Modern Quilt Wrap, a free pattern from Interweave Knits.  Of course, none of us can afford to make it out of the Kid Silk Haze it calls for.  It requires 9 different colors.  So, I chose a dk weight yarn and went through the color cards and found my color palette.  I bought the 5 colors my LYS had and special ordered the other 4.  Yesterday I went down to the shop to see if they had come in.  Indeed they had.  However, the shop lady had neglected to put my name on them and they had been sold!  Well, drat!!  To tell the truth, my enthusiasm for the project has now waned.  So, what’s a girl to do?  Why, console herself with lace yarn, that’s what!


I had been eyeing this lovely color for a while and decided the time was right.  So it jumped in my bag and came home with me.  This will be transformed into The Garden Shawl by Dorothy Siemens.  l started this last night and I had forgotten how difficult it can be to start laceweight shawls from the center out.  Trying to knit on dpn’s with two stitches on each needle with lace yarn is an exercise in frustration.  It took me about 10 tries to get started, but I finally succeeded and now have enough to go with a 16" circular.  Photo will have to wait until I can spread it out on a 24".

Yesterday I was sitting in my living room studying and I heard a bird call that was very unusual.  I had never heard it before, although it sounded eerily familiar.  I decided to go investigate later, but my husband came and got me to see this wonderful sight in our front yard:


I wonder if they were house hunting!

Who are these young people?

Who are these young people?


And how did they get here?


Lots of love, hard work, and a healthy dose of commitment!  Happy 35th Anniversary hubby.  I love you more each day.

When not out celebrating, I was working hard on Forest Path and it paid off:


All the tiers are done and the border has commenced:


I thought the border was going to be a little fiddly, but once you get going, it’s pretty mindless and is going much faster than anticipated.  After only two evenings I am over halfway on the right border.  School work is really interfering with this project (to say nothing of working), but with any luck next week will bring FO status.  Hooray, hooray!

And just to show you that shopping at our local base commissary can be an enlightening experience:



Rock Stars of Knitting

The class with Elsebeth Lavold was outstanding, as expected!  Elsebeth is a lovely person and a very patient teacher:


Can you see that stunning afghan in the background?  Accompanying her was her gracious husband Anders Rydell (who, by the way, does all of her photography and the narratives in her books):


We were all agog over his stunning sweater.  He said that he read in a newspaper article that Elsebeth was one of the "rocks stars of knitting."  He was quite impressed that he was married to a rock star!

The first part of the class dealt with lifted increases and the basics of Viking cables.  I had done the increases before, but wasn’t sure I was doing them quite right and she really clarified the mechanics of it.  She also taught us a technique for cabling without a needle.  I’ve tried it before, but always struggled so much that it wasn’t worth the effort.  She showed us a nifty trick and now I’m anxious to do a cabled project to try it out some more.

The second half of the class we learned to miter a corner with cables:


Pretty cool, eh?  We did learn how to make the cables at the corner with spaces that more accurately match the rest of the piece, but I was anxious to turn the corner and didn’t want to do the two extra rows required. 

After class we were invited to accompany Elsebeth and Anders to dinner:


What a wonderful opportunity.  We had a lovely time talking about yarn, knitting, music, politics and myriad other subjects.  One thing that I found strange – she said that her books don’t really have a market in Sweden.  She said that she is really not appreciated over there.  We all made sure that she knew she was appreciated here and can come back any time!  I’m really anxious now to start one of her designs with the Silky Wool that I have, but I’m trying to be very disciplined and finish a project or two first. 

Right now I’m concentrating on Forest Path.  I’m up to tier 22!!  Woo hoo!!!  Two more tiers to go and then what I’m sure will be the boring part of knitting up the edges.  I’ll post some progress pictures next time.  Also up – pictures of our road construction.  Not at all going as we would have wished!

Home again

Home safe and sound!  As much as it was hard leaving the Florida family, there was Washington family eagerly awaiting my return.  And as hubby reminded me, this is where I belong.  Just wish the two branches of the family tree were closer.  The trip home was uneventful, but reminded me again how much I hate flying.

I’m still reeling a little from jet lag and although I was really looking forward to the cool weather and I still absolutely love it, I can’t seem to get warm today.  I think my blood thinned out!  After catching up with mail and unpacking the bags, I took a look at my projects.  Three weeks of plain stockinette stitch left me wanting something a little more challenging.  So, I picked up the Forest Path Stole and have been working on that.  I just finished tier 18 and flirted with the idea of stopping soon.  But I’ve come this far and I need to not bail at this point!  No sense posting a picture, because it looks just the same as last time, only a tad longer.  If you want a look, go on over to Ravelry – my user name is MissouriStar.  I had started out with a different user name and then had a "duh" moment wondering why I didn’t use my blog name.  Bless Casey’s heart – I emailed Ravelry and he changed it!  And I’m trying so, so hard to refrain from casting on something new although there seem to be several different projects calling to me.  I don’t think it’s the projects themselves, but just the lure of something new.

Back to work on Monday and then off on Tuesday (pretty tacky, huh?) for the Elsebeth Lavold class.  I’ll be sure to give you a complete report.

And, since once again there are no knitting progress reports – more granddaughters.  Did you every wonder what wardrobe accessories go with red wool socks?  Wonder no longer:


Pajamas and a yellow tutu!  And here’s a picture of Ivy wearing the sweater set that I knitted for her Daddy 32 years ago:


I guess that was technically my first lace project!

He’s baaaaack!

Ok, I was SO not kidding:


We’ve driven by several times and he’s been hanging about.  Abby dropped me off and drove around the block (busy street) and I clambered down the bank for this shot.  The gator, apparently in a fit of rage at being stalked by the paparazzi, dove into the water and headed straight toward me.  I dashed back up on the bank with visions of being chased down the sidewalk by an irate alligator, but apparently he was more interested in cooling off in the water than coming after me.  Good thing because there was absolutely nothing but a little patch of grass between me and the pond.  In fact, here is a view of the pond and the neighboring house:


This was taken from the sidewalk, and as you can see, there are no fences or barriers anywhere.  It would certainly freak me out living that close to a gator!

Just a few days left, so I’m soaking up all the loving I can:


We sat like this for two hours!  Izzy, of course, doesn’t sit still for two minutes, but today we went to story time at the library and had a great time.  Then we picked up Abby and Ivy and went to Cracker Barrel for lunch.  Yum, yum!  Wish they had those in Washington State.

And in the interests of equal opportunity blogging:


Who needs toys when you’ve got an empty diaper box?  This will probably be my last post from sunny Florida.  I’ll catch up when I return to wonderful fall weather in Washington!