Life Goes On

While the who’s who of the knitting & spinning world met at Rhinebeck over the weekend, the timing just happened to work out and my little family stole away for a quick couple of days up at my parents’ house to have an early birthday celebration for my daughter. She joyfully got to make her own cake (which was pink, of course) with my mom and then we let her decorate it.

img_4861This what we get for setting a nearly 9-year-old up with an entire tube of pink frosting and letting her go at it. The most ironic part: she does not really care for frosting. It’s on her own personal “warning list” of things that are too sweet and should either be avoided or eaten in extreme moderation. The rest of us, not wanting to disappoint her, ate it. The sugar coma that followed was almost fatal.

Thankfully, we could escape afterward to recover with a walk along the big water.

img_4829As you well know, it’s a favorite past time of mine. And thankfully, unlike last time there was enough beach to walk along.

img_4838And the fall colors along the shore were a beautiful backdrop, too.

img_4832And as the beach was loaded with tons of beautifully flat rocks, I may have left a few little rock piles behind. They are so good for the soul.

When we got back, the kiddos opted for some biking and running off their sugar high. And then my dad broke out his leaf blower and I pitched in with the old-fashioned rake and we created the most incredible leaf pile in the history of leaf piles.

img_4860It was… enjoyed.

(That is the understatement of the century.)

My girl got to open a couple gifts from my parents…

img_4876Including this placemat sized Stash Blaster Loom from Purl & Loop. She has such a phenomenal love for her Wee Weaver, we thought graduating to a bigger loom would be a hit. I’d contemplated a small rigid heddle, but I thought the warping might be frustrating as she wouldn’t be able to do it herself right out of the gate. If I hadn’t mentioned it, she’s a tiny bit independent. As you can see from the smile on her face, I think we chose wisely.

In between all the fun, I managed to knit away on my handspun Featherweight Cardigan…

img_4874I think I’m around 5″ past the armholes now. If the yarn holds out, I’d like to aim for about 10 or 11″ before I start the ribbing. I may have to cut that short though… we shall see. I suppose I can always go with shorter sleeves… or order more fiber…

When we got home, I plied up those mini art batts I’d spun for my daughter to weave with. They are currently in the bath or I’d share a photo of them as well. Instead, how about a picture of my next wheel spin?

img_4879Three Waters Farm’s “Black Pansies” on a merino/silk base. It’s not currently available on the merino/silk base, but you can find it in the shop on a polwarth/silk base. I grabbed it at random a couple weeks ago and started pulling it apart as an example to explain to a friend how I prep my fiber, so when it came time to pick a new spin I figured I might as well go with this since I’d already broke into it. And now I’m thoroughly excited to dig into this spin — can you blame me?!

All in all, it was just a fantastic weekend doing all the things I love to do with the people I love.

img_4839And life goes on in the most spectacular way.

12 thoughts on “Life Goes On”

  1. Oh Sarah, what a delightfully joyful weekend you experienced! Happy Birthday to your lovely, exuberantly beautiful daughter (her smile lights up my screen! ) 🙂

    I would like to ask you from a spinning perspective, how many pounds or yards of hand spun, do you need to knit a sweater? I would like to make my first out of my spun wool. Let me know when you get a chance…


    1. Thank you for the kind words!

      It’s going to depend on how heavy your handspun is and what sweater/pattern you want to knit OR you just spin the yarn and then find a sweater that fits the bill. Generally speaking, you could check out this link for ball park ideas as to size & weight. It’s very general, but it’s a good place to start. And, of course, it never hurts to spin extra just in case (I actually just ordered 2 extra braids so I don’t have to worry about running short). I hope that helps!

  2. That giant grin on your daughter’s face is PRICELESS! Doesn’t it just give you goosies when you choose the perfect gift and someone loves that much? Love all of the icing – too funny! And the black pansy fiber speaks to my soul – YUM!

  3. What a nice weekend! I didn’t go to Rhinebeck either. I actually live not terribly far away, but it just didn’t work out. My dad and I were supposed to go together but he’s had health problems this year so we decided against it. But I had a nice weekend at home with my roommate and got a bit of knitting done, so it all worked out!

    The yarn for your sweater looks awesome! I’ve always wanted to spin but I’m a bit afraid of starting. I have a Turkish spindle but I haven’t used it much. Do you have any tips for an absolute newbie?

    1. Hmm… I’ve been thinking about this! In the beginning for me, I just had a lot of patience and a huge amount of trial and error. In that regard I would say don’t be afraid to make mistakes. We all do and I still do.

      If you can find a local or online group that can help you troubleshoot as you go and give you encouragement, it’ll help a lot, too.

      Also, I would recommend spending a bit more on good fiber. I think the biggest hurdle getting started sometimes is that we try to skimp on materials and that can make the learning curve steeper. Not impossible, but if you get a fiber that isn’t as well prepared it can make learning the basic harder. You can get really good fibers in the $15-25 for 4oz and when you’re spindle spinning, that’ll last a good long while.

      And finally, if you’re really struggling, try mixing up your materials — maybe try a top whorl spindle or a different breed or blend of fiber. In the beginning, sometimes just getting the right combination *for you* can help things click.

      And ask questions if you have them! I — and so many others — are always happy to help!

  4. Love you daughter’s smile! I am glad she had such a fantastic birthday. I am with her when it comes to eating frosting but I love her pink cake! She went all out ☺. Beautiful photos of our lovely state! The heart-shaped rock made me smile. On every hike, I look for them and add them to my collection.

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