Knitting Sarah Goes Fishing

Someone recently commented that I could rename this space, “The Adventures of Knitting Sarah” and really that’s not a half-bad idea. While I primarily write about knitting and spinning and fiber arts, I also fill this space with my adventures. Adventure for me is usually pretty small scale. I mean, I really do love the macro lens on a camera and there’s a reason — I find the simple things in this world most extraordinary. A salamander in the woods. The call of a northern saw-whet owl on a country road. The toads I find in my backyard. It makes sense. Why else would I be endlessly fascinated by adding twist to fluff to make string which I then knit with two sticks into stuff I can wear?

This week’s adventure was on a slightly grander scale than usual. As many of you know, my son loves to go fishing. He turned 12 last week and for his birthday my parents treated him (and me and Mr Knitting Sarah) to a chartered fishing trip with my dad out onto Lake Michigan. We went with a charter that my dad had used in the past, Big Water Charters out of Algoma and I’d highly recommend them to anyone looking for some Lake Michigan fishing. For us, Algoma is close enough to my parents’ house that we can make the 3:30am departure with only a 2am wake-up call. My husband likes to tease that I’m not really a morning person or a night owl, but more of a middle of the day kind of person so I totally wowed everyone with my speedy and good-natured roll out that morning. I was kind of excited and nervous at the same time. Excited because I like fishing, too, and I love the big water, but nervous because I knew the weather was going to be touch and go. The Captain gave us the option to delay our trip until we had better conditions, but it was the only day we could all be there. So we went and we were at the dock by about 3:15 though and ready to go.

The weather started out decently. It was a little “lumpy” as they say and as we sped out to the fishing spot my son was kind white-knuckling his seat. He’s never really been on this kind of boat and I think especially at 3:30, in the dark it was a little intimidating.

The lines were in the water before the sun was even touching the tops of the clouds.

And we enjoyed a beautiful, very red sunrise over the lake.And you know the old saying,

“Red sky at night, sailor’s delight.

Red Sky at morning, sailors take warning.”

Well, it’s true and accurate.

This is my husband and son reeling in a salmon in the pounding rain. We fished through three rounds of rain and thunderstorms, in varying degrees on lumpy seas. It wasn’t smooth and easy fishing and the weather definitely dampened the willingness of the fish to bite, but at the end of the morning we rode back to the dock with a half dozen awesome fish in the cooler.

And that’s when the skies cleared and sun came out. What an experience though, what memories we made! My son got to reel in the most fish (of course), and my dad took one, and I took two. My hubby helped my son and I get the tension on the rod correct.  It was especially helpful with the MASSIVE fish on the far left. That was mine and it weighed in at 19.11lbs. For those wondering, no, I never plan to let anyone ever forget this MASSIVE fish.

I mean… this is the fillet that came from it with my hand for scale.

The charter took care of all the cleaning and when we got back to my parents’ house my mom and I got them all vacuum sealed and into the freezer. All in all, we’re thinking we got maybe about 35lbs of hard-won fish to feast upon. Maybe a little more or less — I didn’t bother to weigh it.

I didn’t knit a stitch while fishing and only got in a few rounds of a super secret project after the fish was in the freezer and my parents’ lawn was mowed. What can I say? Some days the adventures of Knitting Sarah just don’t involve knitting or spinning or fiber arts at all.

And sometimes they don’t require a macro lens, but instead are measured in slightly grander scales.

Up North

Last year our son really got into fishing so over the winter we decided to plan a fishing vacation during our boy’s birthday week. We found a very old-school looking family-owned resort in Northern Wisconsin that had everything we were looking for — a dog-friendly cabin that would fit our family plus my parents, a dock to fish from & where we could tie-up my dad’s fishing boat, and a lake with fish in it. And last week we packed up our little car and made the 5hour trek north to Lost Land Lake.

Reserving these types of places online sight-unseen is always a bit of a gamble because you really never know what a place is like. A couple photos online and testimonials help, but you never really know until you get there. After a quick stop for groceries in Hayward, the nearest town, we  made the 30minute drive out of all cell service to the very end of a dead-end road on which the Northland Lodge is situated. When I walked into the lodge, I was greeted with a smile and a handshake by an extremely kind lady who let me know that my parents had just arrived and then gave me a run-down of activities and amenities.

We made our way to our neat & tidy little cabin and spent the evening getting settled in. It was quite literally just steps away from the water…

img_3499And although the cabins did not have a ton of space between them, I found the resort to be very quiet and peaceful.  Despite the early morning that would surely be coming from us, that didn’t stop a certain little lady from getting her hook in the water that very night…

img_3507When you have fish at your doorstep, why wait? As the last of the light faded, we all made our way to bed for the night. Falling asleep to loons calling out on the lake, I definitely had a good feeling about the week.

And then I awoke the next morning to this…

img_3400Does it get any more picturesque?

I spent the next day and a good portion of every day doing this… img_3505I learned a lot on the boat during this trip. First, that my re-spooling of our fishing poles was a drastic improvement over the mess we had at the end of last year. Second, I am now a wizard with the palomar knot and I’m working on getting better with the uni knot. And third, the fisherman’s gloves that I have really help me get over the issues I have handling fish. I’m not proud to admit that handling them totally weirds me out, but it totally does. It totally, totally does. And these gloves actually really helped me get over that to the point that I can get in there and take hooks out all by myself. Sure, as I’m doing it I’m usually talking the fish through it — “Hey guy, I’m sorry I hooked you, but if you hold still I’ll get it out quickly and put you right back in the water, OK?” The main thing, though, is that I can actually help the kids as well as myself when we’re out and that makes the whole experience a lot better for everyone. In any case, the fish were biting like gangbusters — we caught loads of small fish, most of which we released except for just enough for a little fish fry for my son’s birthday party on Friday night.

We also brought along one of our kayaks which the kids loved getting acquainted with and Moose…

img_3501Well, he insisted on having a turn, too. He’s such a weird dog.

We also discovered something new about Moose…

img_3435We are well aware that he sometimes doesn’t understand the difference between shouts of joy & shouts of distress, so when my daughter was whew-hooing away with kayaking glee, Moose did what he thought needed to be done.

img_3443He chased her down…

img_3456Grabbed the strap on the front of the boat…

img_3457Towed her into shore…

img_3453Got himself some sure footing on land and held her there.

We’re not sure how he figured this all out since we didn’t show him how to do any of it, but I’ll admit my heart melted a little to know what great lengths my sweet pup will go to keep my kiddos safe. The downside, of course, is that once he put it all together he seemed kind of frustrated that after all his hard work both kids always wanted to instantly turn back around and go back out. He kept trying to grab them and tow them back in before they passed the end of the dock. As you can imagine, this made for a very tired Moose.

img_3490Silly, sweet Moose.

While Mr. Knitting Sarah took charge of the kayaking lessons with both kids, I stole a little time for crafting. I had packed up my spinning wheel and a couple projects when at the last minute we discovered that my spinning wheel would not fit in the car. I won’t lie, I was so sad!  Thinking on my feet because we were literally headed out the door, I grabbed a simple knitting project and my spindle spinning project to take its place. And the weirdest thing happened…

img_3504It was perfect!

I kept catching my husband watching me as I spun and then he would start chuckling to himself. Thinking he was laughing at me, after a couple days I called him out on it to which he responded, “No! I’m not laughing at you! I’m laughing at me. It’s just so hypnotic I can’t stop staring at it!” And it was — very soothing and relaxing and dare I say I actually really increased not only my comfort level with the spindles, but also my speed which was fantastic.

img_3494I managed to get through most of what remained of this 2oz of fiber and officially finished it up last night at home. This is one of my 1+1+1 projects that I thought was hopeless, that I would never finish on time. Now… there’s a chance. I’ve got the contrast color I’ll be plying with it left to go and I’m optimistic that the singles will be done by the end of the month.

I’ve been working on a lace knitting project which I knew would not fly in this type of environment, so instead I started yet another of my 1+1+1 projects…

img_2232My Hamlin Peak Cardi in Quince & Co Kestrel. It’s a very simple knit that I’ve really been enjoying. In the interest of full disclosure, I had to start over a couple times because I wasn’t being very careful about increases, but I’m on the straight-and-narrow now. I really love how simple the design is and I’m finding it a super fun knit. It turned out being a great fit for the fishing trip, too, because my hands were so incredibly dry from being in the water and worm dirt and what-have-you all day that there were times the wool of my spinning project was sticking to my hands like velcro. The linen posed no such problems. Hooray!

The birthday boy, of course, was spoiled appropriately. He picked a double chocolate cake along with some cookies & cream ice cream to follow his fish fry birthday dinner and mac n’ cheese birthday dinner. I added the trick candles because I knew his trickster nature would appreciate it. He was showered with a few new books, including a D&D Monster Manual that he read non-stop in his non-fishing time — he loves to create monsters!

img_3496He also got a couple Tin-Tin books as well as a couple new Wii games to indulge in at home. But mostly, he was happy to have loads of time for this…

img_3506And we were delighted to spend that time with him.

All in all, we had beautiful weather, excellent fishing, and many good times. The only thing missing was catching a glimpse of a black bear out in the wild which was on my husband’s wishlist. We even went for a hike through the woods thick with mosquitoes to try to see one but to no avail. Next time, I guess. Next time.

We’re home now, tanned and tired and only driven slightly mad by our share of mosquito bites. The bags are mostly unpacked. The Laundry (yes, with a capital L) is being tackled slowly, but surely. The kayak is put away in the boathouse. And the kids are sleeping in. And I’m going to sip my coffee and exist in this moment for just a little while longer…

img_3500It doesn’t get a whole lot better than this.

Oh, What a Week!

As so often happens in my little world, my week did not unfold according to plan. Like so many, Mr Knitting Sarah works long hours in the lead-up to and during the holidays and because our schedule can revolve around his, it does just that. Our family time is a priority so when it makes sense for the mister to change his schedule at the last minute and he winds up with two weekdays off and that he’ll work the weekend, we shift our plans accordingly. Homeschooling is flexible that way and that’s part of the reason it suits us so well as a family.

In any case, this week it just so happened that our family days coincided with some beautiful weather.

IMG_1278The first day started a little cloudy and chilly and the fish unfortunately weren’t biting, but the goldfinches and blue jays were singing all the same. We went home for some lunch and a some studying and then in the mid-afternoon with the sun out, we went out to a local park for some more fresh air. This time of year around here you just have to take advantage of beautiful weather when it presents itself.

IMG_1280My boy & I went for a nice long hike while my girl & hubby made a campfire. My girl loves to saw wood & tend a fire (no joke!) and my son… he is never happier & more at peace than when he’s walking in the woods. I’m a slow walker, so he splits his time between walking & talking with me and walking ahead of me on his own.

On the way back, we found a garter snake just off the trail and Mr Knitting Sarah managed to get a hold of him so the kids could examine him.

 IMG_1290I know some are a little freaked out by snakes, but we are fans of snakes in our house. I always view seeing them on the trail as a good omen.

And my daughter…

IMG_1303She loved this little guy. As long as he was held properly, he was very docile and content to be in her hands. She raised more than a few eyebrows as this little girl clad in bright pink showed her little friend to passing hikers. After not too much, but not too little time we released him back where we found him, occupied ourselves with a somewhat uncoordinated game of frisbee and as the sun began to get low in the sky we headed home.

The following day we headed to a new spot to fish…

IMG_1319It was sunny and beautiful.

IMG_1322And we had more luck with the actual catching of fish. We just caught and released, but it was still a very fun morning. Fishing is such a good way to teach patience and how to just be, quietly in nature.

When not gallivanting, of course I did manage to finish my Miya Shawl earlier this week.

IMG_1276As I mentioned, I finished with just enough yarn thanks to my inattentive gauge, but I got there and am totally smitten with the yarn and shawl. I hope to wash and block it later today or tomorrow.

With this finished, I started back at my Miss Grace Shawl.

IMG_1329And I have to admit, I’m kind of addicted to it. Now that it’s the center of my knitting focus, I’m able to knit away with much less of a tether to the instructions which always helps things move along more quickly. I’m really looking forward to using this piece… a fact that also helps things move along more quickly!

I also started a new pair of socks.

IMG_1330I fully intended to begin a pair for my MIL, but as I was looking for a free project bag I found I had this skein wound, waiting to be knitted. It was a skein I’d started and then frogged and since it was a gift skein that is long overdue in finding its way onto my feet, I decided to whip these up quickly first.

I haven’t touched my wheel much this week — there’s just been too much on-the-go time and my legs and back sometimes need a good rest after such days. That’ll be changing shortly, though I promise. I found out earlier this week that I’d won a coupon code to Three Waters Farm for posting and tagging photos of current TWF projects on Instagram, so I’m using the code and the promise of some fiber treats as a carrot to motivate me to spin through my current project which is proving to move a bit slowly for my attention span these days.

Well, the sun is shining once again and although I fully intend to slow down a bit after a busy week, we definitely have a full weekend ahead of us. I hope yours is beautiful, too, and that you find some time for your craft, as well!

A Forest, A Lake, A Spindle

We headed out of town on Tuesday as Mr Knitting Sarah had some meetings located conveniently close to where my parents live. It’s always nice to save a little on hotel costs and I think he likes coming home to family instead of an empty hotel room on long days of meetings like that. I had decided to leave my wheel at home and just take my Turkish spindle so it was a mad dash to wrap up the super bright singles I was spinning up on my wheel, but I managed to get them done so they could rest while we were away.

IMG_0073

They are going to make one bright/intense/vibrant skein of yarn one day soon!

On the way up, we stopped at a neat little campground/park just a short distance from where I grew up. Hard to believe I’d never visited before as it’s such a pretty little spot.

IMG_0079Complete with a little river and falls in which you can play.

I’m not sure who was happier, my girl…

IMG_0083or my Moose…

IMG_0104I lingered a bit in the woods hoping to see a snake, but was treated instead to a small flock of Cedar Waxwings. I love that flash of yellow on their tails and their distinct whistle-like call. It’s always amazing how restorative a walk through nature can be, calming the soul and quieting all the ‘noise’ that exists in the world.

My dad’s birthday just happens to be Saturday so we were able to celebrate with him, too, which was nice. I upheld the tradition of mowing the lawn for my parents which I like to do — it’s nice to give back and lighten their load when I can. My son and I were also spoiled with two days fishing with my dad on his boat. On day 1 we caught just a couple fish — we got a later start and it got hot in the sun pretty fast and not a whole lot was biting. The second day was beautiful though. We got an early start and enjoyed cooler temps, a light breeze, and a pretty little lake all to ourselves.

IMG_0116We had the pleasure of hearing loads of Sandhill Cranes greet the morning in the distance, watching what I think were a pair of Caspian terns fishing — so impressive!, and a close fly-by by a very beautiful Kingfisher.

Of course there were also fish. I’ve mentioned here before that our son is really inspired by Jeremy Wade & his show River Monsters. We like to tease that we would be the perfect hosts for a show the complete opposite of Jeremy Wade’s River Monsters. We refer to our little fishing trips as episodes of River Midgets and joke — often in horrible British accents — about how we “try” to catch the smallest fish possible.

IMG_0114While it’s true that we’ve caught some decent sized bass from time to time, the Pumpkinseed in this photo is pretty average for us if not a little big. You can’t tell from the photo, but these guys are actually really beautiful with this crazy light teal coloring on them. My son doesn’t care as long as he’s catching something and my dad & I are pretty happy as long as the boy is happy. It’s fun to catch, but mostly we’re happy to be together, on the boat, and with a hook in the water. Catching fish is just a bonus.

In the moments I wasn’t fishing or mowing or visiting, I finished up the mohair singles on my Turkish spindle.

IMG_0100-0I knew I wanted to go with a simple 2-ply for these 2oz, but I wasn’t sure how exactly to actually do the plying. I read a few horror stories online about the ‘turtle’ (the little ball of yarn you make when you use a Turkish spindle) turning into a giant disastrous knot when you try to ply from the inside & outside of it, so I had planned to wind it into a enter-pull ball. But… at the last minute I decided to just give it a try.

IMG_0121And it’s working fine! There have been a few snarls and less than perfect moments, but all in all it’s not too bad and definitely not a horror story. My plying may leave a little something to be desired, but for my first time I think it’s going pretty darn well.

Only a couple days remain in the Tour de Fleece, so I think I’ll be squeezing in one last quick spin before plying my brights and then it’ll be a quick dash to finish up my July shorties for the Summer Sock KAL. What a good mix of taking things slowly and getting things done July has been — here’s hoping August brings more of the same!

Adventure Boundary Waters: When Life Happens

Last week my son turned ten. He’s crazy tall and adventurous. He loves Calvin & Hobbes and the TV show River Monsters. He’s the most empathetic person I know and he would do anything for family and friends. And he loves fishing. For his ‘golden birthday’ we’d planned a trip to the Boundary Waters area of very northern Minnesota — we’re talking a couple miles from the border with Canada — so that we could hike and fish and do all the things that our boy loves.

Life happens though.

About a week before our departure, my husband injured his back. With our son so excited to go fishing ‘up north’ we didn’t have the heart to cancel, so we just decided that we’d leave our canoe which is heavy and not real practical to move or get into for someone with a back injury. If Mr Knitting Sarah was up for it, we’d rent a boat from one of the lodges and meanwhile the boy & I could fish from shore. Not ideal, but it would be ok. I did most of the packing and all of the lifting and off we went, Mr Knitting Sarah being a true trooper throughout.

The mosquitoes were… substantial. We’d brought along our taller tent so that if we were hanging at camp we could do so with comfy camp chairs in the tent and safe from the bloodthirsty bugs. Less than 50feet from the lake, we went to sleep listening to loons calling and awoke to them calling and racing maniacally up and down the lake at dawn. It was beautiful.

My son and I spent a fair bit of time using our campsites’ little lake access…

To explore with eyes and ears the water & surrounding forest. We were lucky in this trip in that we saw a black bear (the first ever for the kids & me), a moose and her calf, 3 baby foxes, loads of bald eagles, and a pair of peregrine falcons, among other wonders of the natural world.

With the mosquitoes taking over at camp, we took time to drive up to Grand Portage State Park for a hike up to the High Falls. The hike was short, but through a beautiful, thick forest…

IMG_9666With amazing lichen and moss…

IMG_9678And, of course, the crown jewel — the High Falls…

IMG_9674The other side of the gorge is Canada — the kids were almost as impressed by that as they were by the huge waterfall (really, the scale isn’t great here, that’s 120ft drop you’re looking at).

While on the North Shore we had a tip in Grand Marais from a local that we could catch trout and salmon in a couple hot spots…

We had no luck, but it sure was a great place to just hang out fishing. I could seriously live in this spot forever.

In fact, we found so many picturesque places…

IMG_9689Mostly with me and my boy throwing a line in the water while Mr Knitting Sarah rested his back and our girl played in the water with Moose. We decided to rent a boat Thursday to try to break the fishing shut-out for the birthday boy, but lo & behold on Wednesday night…

A northern pike — our boy’s trip dream fish — took the bait. We snapped this photo in a cloud of black flies and almost immediately after  Moose, the beloved wonderpup, started to freak out, rubbing his face all over. We got him into the car and piled in after him only to find his whole face ballooning to about twice its normal size in the most pronounced and severe allergic reaction I’ve ever seen. We were 30minutes from the nearest store to which we raced for benadryl. As we cruised toward town and got within cell range we discovered we were 3hours from the nearest ‘will definitely be there in the morning’ vet. We got Moose his benadryl which immediately calmed him and slowly but surely the swelling started to go down. Concerned with his history of allergies and worried that camping would not allow for a great recovery (not to mention the potential to encounter more black flies) we hurried back to camp, frantically broke everything back into the car, and started the long journey toward help should we need it and a clean hotel to allow our pup to recover.

The disappointment at cutting the fishing portion of the trip short was as palpable as the fear for our poor Moose.

The following morning, the majority of his head and face and returned to normal, but his jowls were still considerably swollen and he was exhausted from the meds and stress. It’s all how you choose to look at it though. Yes, it was terrifying to see Moose so sick. Yes, we had to give up the loons and the day on the boat and fishing. We traded it, though, for a two night hotel stay in Duluth including a trip to the very neat aquarium in town and some other sight-seeing as well as the reassurance that we’d have emergency vet care nearby should we need it. Moose got to go to a couple dog-friendly restaurants where he was appropriately babied and loved on and rested. Despite the unfortunate excitement that caused our return to civilization, we really did have a great time in Duluth. It wasn’t the vacation we’d envisioned by any means, but it was still grand. Life, after all, is always about perspectives and trade-offs and just making the most of the hand you are dealt.

We even made time for a quick stop at Yarn Harbor, the local LYS, in its new location. Yarn Harbor has a an exclusive line of colorways dyed by local dyers Three Irish Girls  that are inspired by the Duluth area and it’s somehow become a little tradition for me to pick one up when I’m in the area. This time I chose ‘Land of the Loon’…

IMG_9744Quite appropriate, I thought.

(This exclusive Duluth-inspired collection of yarns is also available online through Yarn Harbor, just so you know)

On the drive home, partly to give my hubby a chance to stretch his legs and back (which still hadn’t recovered as we’d hoped) and partly just because he’s sweet and he knew the dog being sick had been very stressful for me, we managed to find two other yarn shops along the way.

Kunert Kreations is right along highway in Gordon, WI and quite literally has a little bit of everything. We’d visited years ago on the way home from our last Boundary Waters trip and it was fun to pop in and see it again. Here, the kids each picked something for me to make for them.

My son picked this ‘northern pike colored’ yarn for a hat…

IMG_9745I’m thinking maybe a wurm, but haven’t decided yet.

And my daughter found this hot pink merino/silk from Louet…

IMG_9746I just finished spinning this fiber blend from the Louet June Spinzilla Pack before we left for vacation and was very impressed (more on that soon), so when my girl picked this and wouldn’t stop hugging it I knew it was coming home with us. She held onto it pretty much the whole 5+ hour drive home while she read.

Just south in downtown Spooner, Wisconsin is Northwind Book & Fiber. Now, just the fact that it’s a book and yarn/fiber store tugged at my heartstrings as a kind of a dream shop, especially if you throw in coffee or wine. To find a really good selection of both yarn and books when we entered was phenomenal. Thankfully, I managed to have some self control and picked just one item…

IMG_9748Three Feet of Sheep from Frabjous Fibers in a Merino Rainbow. I fully intend to turn these 8oz of fiber into one long rainbow striped yarn which will undoubtedly be beyond awesome. Oh, and both kids found books as well — win-win!

We arrived home and I immediately got Moose in the bath to make sure he was completely cleaned up and comfortable and the strangest thing happened — he made a very miraculous recovery. When I say ‘very miraculous’ I mean it — past allergic outbreaks with him have taken months to clear up and by the time we got home and he got his proper bath he was 100% fine. Phew.

Unfortunately, this happy ending did not hold true for poor Mr Knitting Sarah’s back. Over the weekend it took a severe turn for the worse and he awoke in the wee hours of Sunday morning with such severe pain that he was unable to move. Thanks to our tiny house which cannot accommodate a stretcher, 2 EMTs and 3 cops very kindy hoisted Mr Knitting Sarah out to an ambulance at around 4am yesterday morning and took him to the hospital. A few hours and a hefty dose of medication later, he was up and gingerly walking and we got to bring him home. It sounds like rest and physical therapy should help him heal and prevent this from happening again soon, but for the next few days I’ll be adding nurse to my daily duties to help get him rest up and ready to return to work.

I suppose with a less sunny attitude I could really view our family trips as being a bit cursed. The last trip to the Badlands our tent was obliterated by high winds and it ended up rainy, kind of cold, and with our son being sick most of the time, but we had an amazing time and strangely our memories of that trip are all good. This trip we had epic bugs, the dog’s extreme allergic reaction, and poor Mr Knitting Sarah’s back drama. Things kind of always go wrong. At the end of the day though, it’s the unexpected mishaps that make memories and while there were certainly some standout traumas, there were a lot of great times, too.

Playing in Lake Superior…

Hiking through the northern forests…

Incredible views…

IMG_9660And a very memorable 10th birthday for this young man…

  I’ve finally started to relax into a ‘this is just life’ mentality instead of dreading what’s going to go wrong next. Life happens and plans change and that’s ok. This is just life. And despite apparent setbacks and all the things that go wrong, a whole lot goes right. And we are making incredible memories along the way.

Loads of Great Things

Well, we spent a very harmonious morning back at the water’s edge yesterday with much better results. I managed to reel in this monster catch…

IMG_9171As a special treat, I even broke out my very best Jeremy Wade impression for my family as I narrated the unhooking, photographing, and release of this true 4 or 5inch lake monster. I’m pretty sure said impression comes out more like a cross between Jeremy Wade and Arnold Schwarzenegger, so it’s probably less of a treat and more an embarrassment for my family and additional evidence that I’m pretty easily entertained.

In any case, my son was more successful.

IMG_9178He managed to reel in this 15″ smallmouth bass. None of us could really believe it because this is the biggest fish any of us have ever caught, but we were so excited for my boy who could not have been more proud. For Mr Knitting Sarah and I, it was a huge relief as we were a little worried that the kids would lose interest before we could get any results on the fishing front. So far, 2 fishing expeditions, 0 humans hooked despite two children casting, and 1 perfectly respectable fish successfully landed. I’m going to call this an early season win.

On the spinning front I also have a win to share. Two months ago I started spinning 3 batts from Spun Right Round

https://igcdn-photos-c-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-xpf1/t51.2885-15/10995077_1405636306409858_1720656856_n.jpg

And this morning, I finally finished the singles.

IMG_9216I ended up sort of kind of marling (is that a word?) these fibers together to try to get the colors really blended. There were parts of these batts that looked a little crazy together and the marling seemed to help even it all out. The finished singles almost max out a jumbo/plying bobbin on my Lendrum DT and the plan is to n-ply this bobbin in a nice round slightly crazy colorful 3-ply. I’m definitely hoping to get this skein finished in the next week as I think I’ll be getting in some new fiber to review soon. I have some summer spinning plans, too, that will include an invitation for you, but I’ll share details once I figure them out soonish.

After the troubled beginning to the leg portion of my Paper Moon socks, I’m happy to report it’s been smooth & happy sailing.

IMG_9218I’m not quite sure how tall these socks will wind up being as I went a little long in the foot to accommodate the bit of shrink that comes with knitting a cotton, but I’ll likely keep on keeping on until I start to stress about running out of yarn for the cuff. As you can see, this yarn is absolutely amazing with this pattern. I’m terribly tempted at the prospect of the hand-dyed sock yarn club for the coming summer. Remember to sign-up for the newsletter to get the news on this club, other Feel Good Yarn Company news, as well as free pattern delivered right to your inbox. Don’t forget that the FREE SHIPPING offer on orders $42 and up for SilverSpun yarn from Feel Good Yarn Company is still available, too — just enter the discount code SARAHKNITS at checkout to claim this special offer!

If just wearing these beauties isn’t motivation enough to finish, I got a little extra incentive in the mail a couple days ago…

IMG_9220-0 A stronger person would have waited and taken a picture of the seal pristine & unbroken, but you had better believe I tore right into this baby. I’ll have more on this fun club & this month’s beautiful project in the next couple of weeks as well as another fantastic giveaway for you, so keep your eyes peeled!

In addition to the short-term goodies, I’m happy to share that plans are in the works for a little bit of spinning fun this summer as well as a 2016 knitalong that I could not be more excited about if I tried. Loads of great things on my wheel, on my needles, and on the horizon, so stay tuned!