Saturday, May 25, 2013

Trouble Coming

As they say, Michigan really only has two seasons, winter and road construction. And that certainly holds true for my town. No sooner than the streets cleared of snow, during our first of several false springs, than the city workers started tearing up the streets. And it looks like they are at it again.

Outside our front door at work Friday was a note stating the alley would be closed starting Tuesday. Then when I left, out the back as usual, these were parked along the alley, in our handicapped parking area.

And I can't really say it was a surprise. There has been paint markings all along the alley in the last couple weeks. And the sidewalk is somewhat uneven. But it is already hard to get from one end of town to the other with all the construction already going on.

The note promised the construction would be done by the middle of July, when the National Baby Food Festival begins. They said that last year when the other end of the alley was torn up. They were still messing around there this spring.

It may be a long summer.

Friday, May 24, 2013

Starting is a Good Thing

I am trying to ignore the WIPs gathered around my knitting chair. The Duchess of Cambridge sweater will not be ready to face the birth of a new princeling. I have a pair of socks waiting the second half. And in this year of sweaters, I also have a gansey cardigan ready for me, just waiting for me to get back to it. Plus several shawls. But those have been banned this year. (Year of Sweaters, remember?)

Instead, I am starting something new. With my birthday discount at The New Ewe, I got a huge skein and a pattern called the Hapi Wrap. It is a large swath of Old Shale Lace. It looks like a ruana style wrap, but since the sides are sewn up, I can consider it a vest, and a vest is a type of sweater. Right? Like I said before, I can make my own rules for my Year of Sweaters. And I say it qualifies!

I would tell you more about the yarn but the labeled is wrapped inside the 1200 yard ball. Which the labeled said to handwind. So I did. I think it is a rayon yarn. Great shine.

I didn't want to waste time or yarn with a too long or too short tail. So I browsed my copy Cast On Bind Off.

The 54 method book.

And I found this.

The book called it a Double-Twist Loop Cast on. Firm but elastic. And no tail required. Now to cast on over 200 stitches. I should have it down pat by the time I'm done.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Sweater Number Five

It looks like I may just be able to hit my goal of six sweaters for the year. Thanks to all the babies to knit for, I have hit the five sweater mark. And that is in spite of the lack of progress on my black cotton tee. I may not make a lot of progress on that for a while. The thought of those size 2 needles doesn't help me want to pick the needles

I was rather dismayed to survey the pile of knitting yesterday awaiting the ends to be woven in.

What a mess! But it really wasn't that bad. Before long, they were tucked away and the sweater was ready for buttons.

Those will follow soon. Then on to the next project.

I have some pretty yarn and a lightweight vest pattern calling my name.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Thankful To Be In Michigan

With the horrific tornadoes in the Central Plains recently I am so thankful to live in the true Midwest--Michigan.
True, we get storms. We may have some drought. Frosts. Blizzards. Heat. Ice storms and power outages. But with moderation.
Thanks to Lake Michigan, we largely miss tornadoes bigger than EF0 or EF1. Earthquakes? I've never felt one. Droughts aren't too terrible, again thanks to the big lake. Hurricanes are just heavy rain by the time they reach us. We may have high unemployment and car insurance, (my bill was just paid.) but few major natural disasters.
My thoughts and prayers are with the people in the Central Plains in the face of this terrible tragedy.

Monday, May 20, 2013

He Walked Away

The big news in our area this past weekend was the single engine plane that crashed near the municipal airport. And the pilot walked away after crawling out. All weekend it sat there, waiting the FAA, under the watchful eyes of the county sheriff's department.

Can you see it? Upside down in the newly planted corn field. Since it was only a cellphone picture, it isn't as zoomed as I would like.

The word hasn't hit the rumor mill yet as far as the cause. Weather was fine. And he didn't just "miss" the runway. The plane is quite a way from both the north-south and the east-west runways. When I came by there this afternoon there were two trucks and a four-wheeler out in the field next the the righted plane.

That poor corn crop.

And by the way. Now that I can blog from home on my iPad, I am still working out the logistics of pictures. Thanks to another update, my phone is having problems uploadingd pictures to my private Picasa albums.


This and That

As you can see, my lilac bush survived last week's hard freeze. The one side is a little wilted, where the sprinkler didn't cover as well. But all in all it looks fine. And the fragrance is wonderful.

I also have made more progress since this picture of the latest baby cardigan was taken. The back has been grafted, no task for the faint of heart in itself.

Long stretched out cat included for scale.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Second Part, Just Like the First

I have finished the second half of the babies and bears cardigan.  Although I probably should not call them halves.  There is still a bit of knitting to be done.
The back panel is next.  Then hood and edging all around.  Easy peasy.
Well, except for the back panel that has to be grafted to the other side.
But on the brighter, non-knitting front, I hope to soon be off dial-up and on wireless.  NCATS, the county technology services is coming to s3e if we can get a signal on Monday.  They say I should be able to get a signal, so here's hoping.  Maybe I can start blogging via laptop again, or at least with the iPad.
And now, back to knitting and NASCAR.  It is the All-star race tonight.

Monday, May 13, 2013


Even I am beginning to think it is time for a bit warmer weather.  Yeah, I know.  But yesterday's snow was a bit much for May.  And let's not even talk about last night.
With a projected "hard freeze" from the local weatherman, I was resigned to once again having no or at least few lilacs.  I love lilacs but my bush is jinxed. 
Having moved to one of the few lilac-less farms in west Michigan, I planted one early on.  The first never survived Older Son learning to drive the lawn mower.  The second has survived, despite having the same son's friends driving and parking over it.  And Hubby came very close to it while pushing back the snow from the driveway.  Several times.
And there is the Michigan springtime weather.  It was fooled last year, along with area fruit trees, by the hot March, followed by a cold April.  But this year it was loaded with buds.
Buds on the verge of popping into full bloom.
Then, last night we got down to 21.2 degrees.  Yikes.
But hopefully my lilacs may have a chance.
Hubby set up a sprinkler on it for a while last night.  We are hoping it works like the ice that can save oranges in Florida.
I'll keep you posted.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Babies, Babies and More Babies

It's a good thing that I named this my year of sweaters.  Because babies are coming fast and furious.  And they need sweaters.
The previously featured Lil Sparty Fan Wallaby was sweater number three for the year.  There will be another similar wallaby coming up for another baby.
The cabled cardigan is shown below in all the glory entitled for sweater number four.  I am quite proud of how it turned out. 
And now, before the second Lil Sparty, I have another baby to knit for.
Was it something in the water?