Tuesday, August 14, 2012

HtH: Death and Destruction

The moving in is done, but the unpacking is just beginning.

Currently, our new garage is not being used for its primary purpose.  At present, it is a storage space for our stuff, a labyrinth of boxes and containers that rivals the warehouse the US government placed the ark of the covenant in at the end of the first Indiana Jones movie.  Quite frankly, I am comfortable with the amount of stuff we have in the house now, and could probably live without the metric ton of crap I still have to sort through.  Oh, there are a few missing items... MY KNITTING NEEDLES, for example.  I have a few pairs I can access, (the ones in my current works in progress, of course) but not the shiny daytimer filled with interchangeable tips and cables that make up the rest of my set.

This is what happens when you leave the packing to husbands.  I would have placed items in indexed boxes, color coded with dots for each room, and a spreadsheet listing each box's contents.  He takes everything and throws it all into plastic totes and garbage bags.  "We'll find it all when we go through it."  Ha!  Granted, it took us right up to our time limit to get everything out of the old apartment, and my way would be much slower, but at least I would have known for certain that nothing would be lost in the shuffle.  I'm still kicking myself over $300 worth of DMC embroidery floss I accidentally donated to Goodwill twenty-five years ago when I moved out of Utah... how do you think I'm going to feel if we accidentally throw away two sets of KnitPicks interchangeables (Harmony and metal) and a set of WEBS bamboo interchangeables?  My collection of fixed circulars has, fortunately for my husband, already been located, but were all my books containing my needles together in the same container?  Heck no.

It's quite maddening.

Also, the pea plants did not make it.  I don't know if it was the soil quality, the heat, or a combination of the two, but they were looking pretty ragged.  So I tore them out.  I'm still holding out hope for the cucumbers, but they're not thriving as I'd hoped.  The scarlet runner bean and the Three Sisters garden are doing really well... proof to me that the bag garden system does NOT work very well.  Oh, it keeps the weeds down, but the soil in the bags has to be very, very good.  You cannot rely on the roots making their way through the drainage holes if they need further sustenance.  Also, the rank amateur planting the garden needs to read the soil labels much more carefully.  It may say "garden soil" on it, but you have to really look for the fine print that says "must be mixed with equal amounts of local soil".  I'm about this close to tearing it all up, redigging, and calling it a day until next spring.  Arg.

So how's your week been?

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Knitting: What schedule?

Ever since we moved, I have been letting my blog schedule slide... a lot.  It's partly legitimate, and partly procrastination (the roots for which I'm still trying to figure out, I mean, it's not like I don't enjoy posting... I do.)  I think it's misguided perfectionism... don't want to post when the pictures/subject/situation isn't perfect.

So even though this isn't the day I normally post about knitting, we're going to give it a go and try to get out of this non-productive rut I'm in.

Before the move, I had five knitting projects in progress.  Since the move, I have only been working on two of them, and have now started a completely new project (although it was *seriously* not my idea, but when your kid actually ASKS you to knit something for them, you kinda have to do it).

The two prior projects are the Bohemian sweater from a booklet written by Berrocco (in their super-expensive yarn, naturally) and a pair of plain ribbed socks I was making up as I went along.  I was nearly done with my socks (since they were toe-up socks, and I'd already turned the heel, I was just knitting the cuffs until the yarn ran out) when the spudlet asked for her own pair of socks in the somewhat bizarre combination of blue and orange, specifically a sky-blue kettle-dyed Stroll yarn, and Knit Picks Gloss yarn in Marsala.  She wanted a pedicure toe, which is to say no toe at all, but ribbing where the toes should be.  The child pattern I'm following claims that a 7" circumference foot should be 64 stitches.  Since most adult patterns are the exact same number of stitches, and are large on me, these claims fill me with skepticism.  I have four inches done and am building up the stitches for the gusset.  She's tried them on while on the needles, and they seem to fit, although loosely, so I'm forging ahead.  If she wants to wear big floppy socks, that's her business... especially ones that can be seen from space.

The Bohemian I am taking a break from, as the Berrocco yarn is so splitty it makes me crazy.  I am also angry with myself that I splurged and bought the yarn exactly as specified in the pattern, because while half of it (Borealis) is soft, silky and lovely, the other half (Campus) is nasty and scratchy.  When I got sample skeins of both yarns, I should have gone with my gut and gotten alternate skeins of the Borealis to replace the Campus yarns.  Since this is a very large, oversized cardigan, I'm hoping I won't be able to notice the fluctuations in texture while I'm wearing it.  We'll see, especially since each piece starts with the scratchy yarn, and means that the cuffs will be horrifyingly coarse right at the wrist.  Maybe I'll pick up and knit some facings in Borealis that I can turn inside.

It's like the designer just picked the yarns off a list, and never actually felt them, the difference is so striking.  Or this might be my Asperger's sensitivity to texture again.  If there were  a career that called for sensing texture changes in fabric or yarn, like a wine taster or coffee roaster judges changes in their products, I'd be a natural.