26 July 2010

gardening by candlelight

The green beans are coming in out in the garden, as well as the cucumbers, beets, broccoli, basil, swiss chard and tomatoes. My zinnias are blooming.

I spent a lot of time out in the garden this weekend, tying up my wayward tomato plants and clearing out the pea plants to make way for a row of carrots that should be plump and sweet in time for an autumn harvest.

We've been trying to keep up with all our ripening vegetables by eating something fresh from the garden at every meal. But, wouldn't you know it, we still can't keep up.

Late Friday night I found myself out in the garden checking on my tomato plants. Some candles were still burning on the table out on the terrace and the flicker of candlelight was cast into the garden.

I guess I'm kinda weird, because I found the atmosphere very appealing and would have stayed out longer had the mosquitoes not discovered my ankles. Sometimes, even though my garden is located in south Minneapolis, when I'm out in it I feel like I'm far away from everything else.

Here's to hoping I find more time to garden by candlelight.

15 July 2010

footware malfunctions and other hazzards

Yesterday, on my trek into the library, I stumbled on a crack in the sidewalk and my flip flop broke. Those of you who wear flip flips will immediately realize my predicament: I then had to hobble home with one flip flop on and one flip flop off.

This wasn't very fun on the dirty sidewalks around campus which are littered with broken glass and garbage. I tried not to think about all of the times I'd seen other disgusting things on the sidewalk over the course of my stay in this neighborhood called Dinkytown.

Imagine the evidence that could be left on the sidewalk after a throng of undergrads gets let out of the bar at one in the morning.

Believe me, I tried not to.

But on to less stomach troubling thoughts, as hoped for, my toasty twist socks are complete. Here's a pair of socks that can be worn with some trendy shoes with no worries of a wardrobe malfunction that will leave one hobbling home trough debris.

Here in Minnesota we are experiencing the dog days of summer, a stretch of time when I for one can't help dreaming about chillier sidewalks, colder breezes and the call for sturdy shoes and cleverly knit socks.

Cheers, everyone!

11 July 2010

a busy weekend

My feather and fan throw is finally finished. It's going to stay at my mom and dad's house so that everyone can enjoy it. I think it makes sense, since so many people had a hand in making it.

My mom and my cousin Ashley spun some of the colored yarn, I spun all of the dark brown yarn. And best of all, most of the yarn used in this project comes from our sheep.

10 July 2010

some loose ends

This weekend is all about tying up some loose ends. I have a few projects that are nearing completion and I intend to get them done. How this is going to happen with all the work that needs to be done in the garden and all of the baking I want to do is another question.

The image above is of my first finished toasty twist sock. I'm about to turn the heel of the second, so I'm nearing home plate on that project.

I'm up at my parents' farm this weekend. There's a lot of weeds that need to be pulled in the garden and the carrots need to be thinned out. I'm thinking roast carrot soup with rosemary and homemade croutons. Plus some stuffed peppers from the stash that I froze last fall.

I don't know what I was thinking, but I actually didn't bring my spinning wheel out to the farm this weekend. I already miss it. Here's some fiber I found in my mom's stash that I'm just dying to spin right now: our One Red Hen colorway.

I like the subtle transition of colors in this fiber. From orange, coral, russet, brown to tan, saffron and pale turquoise--should be fun to spin.

Here's the gals that inspired it. This photo was taken by my cousin Ashely. She and her fiance spent a week "barn sitting" for my parents' recently and she captured a lot of great photos of the animals.

My mom has been spinning a lot of yarn this summer. She discovered books on cd and now she's listening to murder mysteries as she spins away.

Here's something she plied together last night. Our Coral Forest colorway. She's thinking about combining it with natural solid color and knitting a striped cap.

Now I want to do the same thing. Sheesh, this is why knitters always have half-a-dozen half finished projects on their needles.

Catch you all later.

02 July 2010

three's a charm (working on it)

I can't believe that I've been spinning for a little over two years and I've never attempted to make a triple ply yarn. Here's a picture of my first attempt. I want to make a chunky yarn, something that will knit up quite nicely on size 10 or 11 needles, and I'm not there yet.

The singles that go into this triple ply are going to have to be a bit fatter. Here's an occasion where a little bit of extra plump is a good thing!

This yarn will have to wait though, because this weekend I'm going on a camping trip to a cabin up north, and unfortunately there's no room in the car for my spinning wheel.

I do have some small knitting projects packed, through. It wouldn't be a vacation without my knitting.

Happy independence day everyone!

P.S. the background for this picture is a quilt my sister made for me this past fall and the fiber I used for this yarn is available for purchase . . . just check out the sidebar links to Crosby Hill Farm on this blog.
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