18 December 2015

gift of a lifetime

Our son arrived on November 24, 2015 and I'm finally in a place where I can post this great news. It's hard to believe that he's already been here for over three weeks. It seems like just yesterday that I was holding him for the first time and trying to figure out how in the world we were going to care for this little guy all by ourselves!

It's the most terrifying and exhilarating feeling in the world - holding your child and understanding that you are responsible for him! Every day I love him one hundred times more. I can't believe how much effort it takes to care for him. My husband and I look up and suddenly the sun is setting and it seems like we just watched it rise with the baby squirming in our arms. Each day is getting easier, though.

I started the sock last week. The yarn is from Fame Trend. I'm knitting my "go-to" toe up sock pattern alternating every four rows from the beginning and the end of the skein to get the stripe effect. Mindless, easy and addicting. Something simple to pick up while baby is nursing.

The first, third and last photo in this blog are from First Day Photos. We had a mini photo session on the last day of our hospital stay. I love all the photos we got that day.

Well, I'm slowly getting back on my feet and hope to blog more as I'm out on maternity leave until April. I can't wait to try out more patterns for baby and to try all of the knits I made during my pregnancy on baby.

Love to you all this holiday season!

xo Jill

19 October 2015


Busy this weekend, running errands and crossing items off our fall to-do list. Sunday afternoon we were both beat, but the weather was so beautiful Bree and I both begged Garrett for one more visit to the dog park before it closes its gates for winter. This off leash dog park is right on the Mississippi and dogs can chase each other to their heart's content along the sandy shore. The leaves in this place have turned yellow and gold.

Bree's not much on socializing with other dogs. She's friendly and curious, but she's always more interested in other people. She'll let all the dogs sniff her, but she'll approach most people on the trail with kind eyes and a curious nose. Garrett and I looked back a few times to find her trailing along another group of people. As soon as we called her she turned round and raced back to us. Silly girl!

Here's my September hand spun sweater. Love every bit of this little number. I really made myself think as I was spinning this yarn and I spun it loose with as much loft as I could. Triple ply! It took ages to spin. Then, when I plied it back, I was careful to keep my tension in check and not over-spin it. The results were a soft, glossy, pliable yarn. Not too heavy. This is a CVM wool and romeldale blend from my parent's farm. We pot-dyed it ourselves a few years ago now. My mom had it in her etsy shop for ages and when no one was snagging it up, I snagged it myself.

Love the golds and the russets. If I could have changed anything about this project, I would have added more contrasting color to the top, I like it when it stripes a bit. Always room for experimentation and improvement!

xo Jill

15 October 2015


I knit this little cap in a few days. It's a modified version of this pattern. I just added some stripes and purled each first row of new color.  I like how at each color join there's a thin strip of contrasting color. The hat looks good inside out too, but the i-cord and tassel don't show.

The nest above was built by a cardinal couple that we watched all summer. They hatched some baby cardinals a flew away late in the summer, leaving their handiwork behind.

I've been nesting lately as well - only six more weeks until baby arrives! We set up the nursery last weekend, but we still have piles of baby things to organize before we can call it complete. Last night I made a double batch of enchiladas and froze one pan for later.

I'm happy we're waking up to Friday tomorrow :)

xo Jill

08 October 2015


Socks socks socks and a sweater.

I found the sock pattern here - and I've already knit three pairs of these socks.  They're really easy, fast and intuitive - if you're familiar with knitting socks. I can finish one sock in an evening. My husband and I are huge Survivor fans and I knit half a sock each episode.

The sweater is a special project that used up all of a skein of hand spun that I'd been saving for over three years. It's a bit bulky, but it should keep our little guy nice and warm.

Well, I hope you are all surviving the work week. Steady as she goes, I'm plowing through. This weekend I have my first baby shower and my husband has promised to help set up the nursery and put the crib together.

Should be fun.

Hang in there everyone!

xo Jill

30 September 2015

capturing september

Another sweater for the baby.

I spun some triple-ply yarn a few weeks ago and decided to try out a new pattern.  I've seen so many great versions of this sweater - all with hand spun yarn.

October starts tomorrow. Happy autumn, everyone!

xo Jill

15 August 2015

some finishing touches

The weekend is here! It feels so good to take the time to relax and move slowly. Both my husband and I had a busy work week, so it was nice to snuggle in bed for an extra hour. Look who jumped into bed with my husband after I got up to make the coffee this morning. Bree usually sticks pretty close to me, but she took advantage of this open spot as soon as I vacated it.

August is for tomatoes, this I know. I've been making bruschetta, salsa, BLTs and omelets. This week I tried my hand as some homemade tomato and basil soup. It was good, but I definitely have some ideas about how I can improve my recipe next time. I think I need a sieve to get the tomato seeds out. That was my only complaint. It sure smelled good as it simmered on the stove.

Lots of caps and booties flying off the needles. I think it's because I have so many bits and odds and ends of yarn. I love that none of it is going to waste - the yardage is perfect for baby-sized hand knits. 

Hope you are all enjoying the weekend.


09 August 2015

handspun yarn

Here are a few of the projects that I've been working on with the assortment of hand spun yarn that I've been saving over the years. I got the cap pattern here. I got the bootie pattern from a friend at work. She said they're good because they stay on. We'll have to wait and see.

Hope you all are having a good weekend.


03 August 2015

wool + zinnias

Lots of wool around here - and flowers. 

I picked up a hank of some hand spun yarn that I made a few years ago and knit a pair of ankle socks. I Navajo plied this yarn so it was a bit twisty in some places. I also noticed that the size of the yarn changed from sport weight on the first sock to worsted/chunky on the second. The extra twist in this yarn should make the socks I made more durable, that's why I chose to make socks with this yarn. I only had a few yards left over when I cast off the last stitches. I will enjoy wearing these socks this winter.

You will be seeing a lot of blue yarn in my upcoming posts because we found out we're having a boy. I couldn't be more excited and I've already got a small mountain of boy appropriate yarn in my knitting basket. The little sweater I posted above has been a real stash buster. I need to find the perfect buttons.

This summer has been a dream come true. I feel so grateful to get the chance to knit a sweater for the baby that I'm carrying. I really didn't know if I would ever get this opportunity. I may be going a bit overboard, but I don't care. There has been a lot of wool piling up around here over the years, also a lot of hopes that have finally been answered.

Thanks for reading.

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