Saturday, March 31, 2012

Farewell to an Uncle

Last evening, family and friends met to say goodbye to my Uncle Art. Baby Brother and Sis-in-Law were there, talking to our last uncle.

Cousins were there. I had to confess, while I knew they were Uncle Howard's daughters, aside from Kelly, on the left, I wasn't sure which ones the other two were. I had to ask later. (Kelly, Renee, and Michelle--from the slim sophisticated side of the family.)
Uncle Art was a farm boy through and through. A shy boy who grew into a shy farmer. Not until Grandma was gone, did he even talk on the telephone, let alone go into a grocery store! And while he still rarely spoke to women, unless related, he did manage to become a bit more outgoing. Once the farm was sold, he went on many hunting trips, large and small game. He visited Alaska, flying into the back country to hunt and fish.
He helped friends in Montana repair old homestead buildings, and hunted there as well. He worked for another area farm, only coming off the tractor when it was 5pm. After all, my mom had supper ready for him. He even traveled to Belize with friends from our neighborhood, and spend some winters there, working and farming there as well.
Not too shabby for a shy farm boy.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Bits and Pieces

The barn kitties were greatly enjoying the heat wave we had.
I was delighted to see such full buds on my lilac. Of course that was before this past weeks low of 26 degrees one night.
I later found out that on branch, with 8 sets of buds are the only ones on the entire bush. Sigh. I rarely get any lilacs. And with the return of seasonable temps, I may not even get these. I wonder if I need to dead-head lilacs.
But then again, the ones that grow wild along the roads never have that done.
These were just some of the church courtyard's many flowers.
Even these survived the frost. I love hyacinths.
I am not sure if I shared that I have spent time working on Hubby's re-soleable socks. I needed something portable, and on larger needles than regular socks, that I could work on when I got my eye exam. I don't like working with size ones after getting those drops in my eyes.
And work does continue on the Misty Blue cardi. I am just a few inches from the shoulder decreases, well past the underarm shaping. Then the cabled section continues for a few more inches, to help form the collar.
I'm making progress. I already have projects lined up for the future: baby sweater for a granny to be (again), and a Hagen original shawl.
I better get cracking.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Still Cabling Along

With the return of reasonable (if not seasonable) temperatures, I am able to pick  up the needles.  At 85 degrees, wool/mohair blend tends to loose its appeal.  And while the mid 60s is still above normal, it is much more comfortable than it was.
I am still shaking my head over wearing shorts, and bare feet in sandals the past couple days. And still drooping with heat. In March, in Michigan!  And I am still wishing for winter.  (Not a very popular stance, I will grant.)
But as I said, cooler temperatures means more knitting.  As you can see, progress continues.  Before long, another 2 or 3 inches or so, I will be able to cast off over half the stitches.  It should grow much faster then.
This picture shows me ready for another cable. 
I love cables.  Non-knitters are always so impressed with them.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Lost in Austen

I have been a little slow  in the knitting department this last half week.  Of course Wednesday evening was when I was sick.  I didn't want to infect the yarn you know.  Thursday I didn't work, but still felt sketchy. (Sandy and I decided to cut back our hours some at the history center, since we still aren't bring paid.)
Anyway, I had started re-reading Pride and Prejudice on my Nook.  I was so "in the mood" that I dived into one of the many P & P alternatives I had purchased when they were on sale.  I read one variation where Elizabeth and Darcy marry after the first proposal (Mr. Fitzwilliam Darcy - the Last Man in the World). And now I am buried in "Mr. Darcy's Diary". 
I am indeed lost in Austen.
And loving it.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Cabling Along

Much progress has been made on the Misty Blue cardigan, especially when you consider I was too ill with the creeping crude to knit yesterday.
I love the cables in the front of this sweater.
I did discover that they show up better when captured without flash on my phone's camera than with my regular camera's flash.  The extra light washes them out.
The addition of the garter stitch edges, as well as the cable help keep the knitting interesting.  I'm going to enjoy this project.
Especially since the deal was that the receipent is going to do the sewing up.

Monday, March 12, 2012

One Down

One piece, I mean.   Four more to go.
One advantage of knitting for a short rotund person (me for example) is that while the rows may be long, you don't have so many of them.
While knitting for a tall slender person (let's say like Evelyn), while the rows may be short, the number of them go on and on.  Particularly if it is a long style of sweater.
That just may be why that "almost finished" back took until today to finish.  Just now in fact.
And since it is way too long to fit on my handy footstool, and it is way too long and skinny for Gertrude all I have is this bunched up shot to prove it is indeed off the needles.
Now to cast on the interesting shaped side number 1.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Stupid Time Change

No secret here that I am not a fan of Daylight Savings Time.  With my local community being on the western edge of the time zone, we already are waiting till nearly 1pm for the sun to be overhead.  And with sun up at 8am, and sun down shortly before 8pm, that gives us sun overhead about 2pm.  Yuck. 
Not to mention this mucking around with the time totally messes with my mind and body.  I'll be practically worthless for most of the week.
But on a brighter note, despite the wonderful snow and cold last weekend, look below to see what I found in the yard of the old rectory, next to church.  Crocus!
And....I almost have the back done on the Misty Blue Cardigan.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Lake Hagen Visitors

Just like the swallows that return to Capistrano, Lake Hagen gets its own visitors each spring. And last week, the geese returned to Lake Hagen.
If you look very closely they are on the far side of the" Lake." They are quite vocal about taking possession of the lake, which you may remember is a located near the house and garden, snaking through the pasture to the property line to the neighbors.
They didn't stay long however. This past weekend we were dumped on with rain, snow, slop and then temps down to 10. The lake became a ice skating pond, and the geese moved on. Now that the temps, just five days later are in the 50's, we will have to wait and see if they come back again.
An aside for those who have been interested in my employment situation. With the opening of the Terry Wantz Historical Research Center in Fremont, I am at least semi-employed. We will be having the Grand Opening later, in April but in the meantime, I have posted pictures and some information on the Cemetery Divas, my other blog which will be able to make a resurgence.
I am so happy to be back to working, doing the kind of work I love. I may not have as much knitting time in my future, but I will have cash for stash enhancement. Its all in how you look at it.

Monday, March 5, 2012


It's cold! And not just outside either. We are having our second power outage in 3 days. It was out 8 hours the first time, with the restoration being 4 hours later than promised. I didn't hear it go out this morning, but was out when my alarm (battery powered) went off. But the house hadn't cooled too much by then. Right now it is thirty minutes from the estimated restoral time. And the heat is 9 degrees below normal in this old farmhouse.
I repeat, brrrrr! I'm sure glad I have lots of wool. And that Sporto is finished.
Update: just checked on the restoration. It is scheduled for 12 (!) hours and thirty minutes from now. I'm going to look for more wool.

Friday, March 2, 2012

We're Back

Some readers may know that the end of December I was hit with a double whammy in the employment side of my life.
The lawyer I had worked for the previous two years had finally decided to retire. And at the library, where I worked in the local history room, I and my co-worker were let go the same day. There it wasn't a surprise, but rather a bitter disappointment. We knew it was coming after the director and board voted to reject the grant offered to them that was tied to our department and wages. (They had voted to accept the grant if the restriction was removed, but the Foundation wanted the restriction, so the grant offer was removed.)
But good things happen to those who wait. And yesterday the Terry Wantz Historical Research Center opened, just down Main Street from the library. My former co-worker is again my supervisor/director here and we are happily engaged in preserving history and assisting our patrons in the research of their genealogy.
I hope to soon reactivate the blog we had before, The Cemetery Divas, which was a celebration of history, cemeteries and obituaries. There's is nothing like a good obituary for raising questions and learning about our early citizens.
Now that I am back working, my blogging may be more sporadic again, and my knitting time has been cut back some. But maybe I can again afford to enhance my stash.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Back and Forth

As I told Evelyn, I have been working on her Misty Blue Cardi.  However, after I knit a ways past what is shown in the picture below, I frogged/tinked back about 2 inches.  It was unavoidable.
In the great inch/centimeter transposition, I "transposed away" about an inch.  I decreased to soon.  If it had been for me, I would have fudged it.  But since it is Evelyn's, (the final payment for the sporto handspun) I decided to go back and correct it.
I'm almost back to where I was.