Hazy Summer Ramblings

Well, my friends, we did it. We finished up with our school year. While it’s true that at our house we do keep working year-round, finishing our math curriculum generally marks the end to our more regimented schedule and a start to a more relaxed few weeks. I’ll admit that as soon as that last test was finished, there was a collective relief. It’s been a long, busy first half of the year here and we are all just ready for a break, I think.

To celebrate the end of the school year, we decided to plant some trees together as a family. We’ve been contemplating what to do with our yard for the past year and we finally landed on re-foresting for more bird habitat and less grass. I thought this would mean adding maybe 5 trees in various spots becuase our yard is already encircled with big beautiful trees, but in true Mr. Knitting Sarah fashion, we planted not 5, but 25. I know, right?! His rationale being that some would not make it and if too many survived then we could always remove them as neccessary. The majority of these trees are very small spruce saplings, so it’ll be years before crowding is an issue. Still we painstakingly planted and mulched around them and I’ve spent an inordinate amount of time standing in the yard, staring at all our new trees imploring them to explain exactly how much water they need. You see, almost as soon as they were in the ground, the weather shifted into this…

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This isn’t totally unheard of for around here now and then in the summer, but it’s also not exactly normal. Anyways, the waters issue has been an interesting puzzle considering we have very dense clay that holds water very effectively and we mulched, too which will hold the water in, but the trees are new and it’s been hot. So. Many. Variables. In short, there’s a high likelihood I’m quickly gaining a reputation as “that lady who stands in her backyard staring” in my neighborhood. So be it if it means I can keep these trees alive!

In any case, I think you get the picture. When you roll all this together the result has been me, kind of glassy-eyed and tired and largely checked-out of all the online haunts I usually frequent, including here. So today I thought I’d ramble through some WIPs and just get reacquainted while I try to organize my FOs enough to get proper photos because of course that hasn’t happened yet! One step at a time here, right?!

First, I started and finished this project…

 

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It’s a Simple Yet Effective Cowl from Tin Can Knits knit in my own singles handspun. And I just realized I never shared this yarn or took proper photos of it before knitting! Here’s the one image I have…

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It was a low twist single I spun with Three Waters Farm Merino/Superwash Merino/Silk in the Bright & Distant colorway. I’m not going to lie, this was super fun to spin and knit. I am totally smitten with this yarn and the simplicity of the project — I did a slightly narrower-than-called-for longer version of this cowl, just because I ran out of yarn at somewhere between 6-7″ where the pattern called for 9.5″. Doubled up around my neck it’s going to be just perfect, I think. It’s blocked and drying as we speak so we’ll know soon enough!

I also started spinning the rolags I got at Shepherd’s Harvest from Bumblebee Acres Farm. You’ll remember these are the rolags…

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And these are the bobbins. The finished pink/grey brown pack…

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And I’m about halfway through the orange/grey/brown pack (I’ll get their proper names here the next time they appear — I just don’t have them nearby at the moment!).

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Since they’re rolags, I thought I’d try long draw with them. They’re made of multiple types of blended fibers and I’m relatively new to long draw, so this won’t be a consistent spin in both weight and how I’m drafting, but it will definitely be fun. And sometimes fun has to take center stage over consistent, especially when you’re learning! As a side note, Bumblebee Acres has their Themed Mini Skein Advent Calendars up for sale right now, if you’re like me and kind of regretted not getting one last year now’s your chance!

Somewhere during the last week we set up our new-to-us telescope and I played with taking pictures through it.

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This is taken hand-holding my phone to the eyepiece, so it’s not perfect crisp clarity, but it was a fun experiment!

Moose helped me with my upstairs spinning project…

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And thanks to his support I managed to finish up the singles of this Three Waters Farm Merry Poppies spin…

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Don’t you just love the on-board storage of my beautiful Jensen wheel?! Moose approves of the wheel and the spinning.

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And possibly the snack I was eating when I snapped this photo!

 

I also finished another batch of singles, but this time it’s a spinning project I started last year so VERY EXCITING!

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These singles were entirely done on spindles — I have acquired a flock of Bosworth, Golding, and Jenkins spindlesthat are all around .8oz that are just my jam. Most of these singles are already wound onto storage bobbins and I’ll likely ply with the wheel directly from them, but I’m just so excited to have finished. This spin — Three Waters Farm Giant Celosia — was definitely achieved via bits and spurts of spinning over the past 11 months.

And last, but not least, I’ve been working on the socks I started for Mr. Knitting Sarah back at the end of March.

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This is sock #2, so slowly but surely I’m getting there.  I’m within about an inch of turning the heel and once I’m around that bend they’re as good as done.

I’ve been flirting with a number of bigger projects to work on, but so far nothing has stuck. Sometimes, especially in the glassy-eyed, hazy ramblings of early summer it just takes a little extra time to find the hook that inspires you to take on a new big project. Who knows? Maybe inspiration will strike me while I’m standing in the backyard, staring at the trees!

 

17 thoughts on “Hazy Summer Ramblings

  1. Glad you have a little bit of breathing room now that all that math is done. Let the knitting and spinning continue. Good for you with the trees. We lost two this year because they had grown too close to the house. And as always, I love your shots of Moose!

    1. Thanks, Pris! Actually part of our planting is the knowledge that most of our trees are mature and they lost a couple the year before we bought the house. We love the privacy and the feel of the wooded lot, so planting now should hopefully ensure continuity of that feeling!

  2. Sounds like a perfect summer, spinning, knitting, staring at trees and the moon! I hope it cools down a little bit for you and the trees. A forest in your back yard is a lovely thing, I know. It always feels a little bit cool.

    1. We love it. We like to think of the second floor like a treehouse — there’s actually a blue jay nest right outside my daughter’s window, but when the tree bloomed now we can’t see it very easily!

      1. I feel the same way about our second floor. We noticed a new sapling growing pretty close to the deck off the bedroom, and we decided to leave it. It will make too much shade on the beach roses, but I think it will be so nice when it grows up and shades the bedroom!

  3. It must feel wonderful for school to be ‘out’! As the teacher AND the mom, time never stops for you. It will be wonderful when the trees are bigger and you can just go SIT and absorb. I know Moose will help!

    1. Moose is excellent at sitting and absorbing! XD

      But yes! We’re hoping to gain a little more privacy along with the habitat. A huge reason we bought this how is the mature trees. We have got some wonderful bird life hanging around!

  4. Oh dear, that’s much too hot for you! It’s even too hot yet for us but you’re never supposed to get that weather. I don’t know who doesn’t believe the climate is changing at this point.
    I admire all the spinning you get done. I just have fallen off. Maybe I need to get some three waters farm fiber!

    Thanks for your public posting!

    1. Three Waters Farm Fiber is *always* a great solution to the spinning doldrums! I can’t recommend it enough! If you like 100% wool, the BFL cannot be beat and for a silk blend I love the BFL + Tussah Silk! ❤

  5. I love your spindle spinning and your singles. They are two things that I want to try but keep putting off through fear. Seeing your progress really inspires me to take the plunge and have a go. Love your posts and hope you enjoy your less hectic pace and watching your trees grow!

    1. I was in the same boat and I can tell you with certainty that you just have to go for it & learn as you go! There will be mistakes and yarns that might not turn out, but as someone very wise once told me, “Success is not a great teacher!” Just go for it and have fun learning!

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