Thanks, Arachne!


One of the reasons my posts have been a bit thin on the ground lately is that I've been without a camera since August.  Visual creature that I am, I haven't had much to show you that inspired me.  Yes, there is a camera in my phone, but for some reason I have been slow to learn how to control it. Today, however, I fired up a my new camera for the first time (Nikon D3200, for those interested - thanks, Black Friday!).  And as if to celebrate, some arachnid friend decorated my front porch rail.  A fog bank rolled in, froze, and voila: Spider chandeliers! The camera is so far a lot smarter than I am, but I have high aspirations.  Here's hoping the scenery keeps improving, here on the blog.

And by the way, don't we just love bugs who can make their own string? 

I'm up to my ankles in slippers, and I'm chasing a deadline (or I should say, it's chasing me).  I have multiple yarn complications:

1.    Some yarn is not here.  Blame the season, or Mercury in retrograde, but lots of the yarn I need is just not coming here any time soon.  No fewer than 4 (four!) stringmakers have had to postpone sending me their stuff this month.

2.    Some yarn that IS here is not what I expected.  I thought I'd branch out and work a project using super-heavy yarn.  But oh man, is it ever huge.  The ball band calls for size 15 needles!  How did I miss that little detail when I ordered it?  I'm gonna press on, but I am really in the (super-bulky) weeds with it at the moment.

3.    A tiny little ball of yarn beat me up and stole my lunch money.  I like to think that I have experienced a lot of different and challenging kinds of yarn, but this one blew my mind. And kicked my butt.  It exploded off the skein (the fact that it had a cardboard core should have served as a warning) into my lap when I tried to cast on.  From there is twisted around itself forming hard knots, before my very eyes.  Not helped by the fact that I was riding in the car at the time, it snagged with every single stitch.  I was so flummoxed by the hellscape in my lap that I somehow lost a DPN in the car.  It was the single most difficult knitting experience of my life so far, which you know I would not say lightly.  But no, I'm not going to mention the yarn by name, because I requested it specifically and its manufacturer was kind enough to send it to me.  I would be a serious ingrate if I were to turn you all against it by badmouthing it here.  I'll just tell you that my solution to the problem was to limit my use of it to 2 10-inch knitted cords of 5 sts each.  Which was still enough to make a believer of me.

Other than that, it's business as usual, here at MSH Hand Knitter HQ.  The northern latitude here has shortened our daylight hours, which would be a good excuse to knock off early under other circumstances.  But instead, the early darkness
has pointed up how blind I've become.  I actually broke down and ordered a new lamp to work by.  And not a crappy bargain one (like I would normally go for), but a fancy-pants "natural spectrum" deal, purported to reduce eye strain.  I'll review it for you as soon as it gets here.  Here's hoping it lives up to expectations.

One really great thing: I am, for the first time in my knitting career, knitting projects that are suited to the season in which they are being made.  I am finally living my
dream of sitting under a pile of wool in December, instead of August.  Yay, Knitting!  Nothing dampens my enthusiasm for a project (and my armpits) like knitting during a heatwave.  It's such a treat not to have to plan my construction schedule around the weather report.

Other things I'm grateful for include Lindsay's hard-won A in math, and Campbell's first ever band concert (tonight!), which I will be proudly playing hooky from knitting to attend.

Stay warm friends, and knit on.