Eve of June

Early June in the magical land of Merlin on the Western Shore of the great Atlantic – especially around Old Ellicott  – emits its own green calm of grace and peace of an evening. I began this blogpost on the eve of June and therefore the beginnings of this fairylike time between the end of a long day and the beginning of evening – also the season between the end of spring and grimmer aspects of summer.

 Anyway, I like it. Even on hotter days, like today, the evening treats us to a gentle breeze, a sun that has forgotten its harshness and the gentler sounds of insects, birds and other wildlife trying to live with us in relative harmony. And it doesn’t hurt that it’s the end of the work day and the beginning of a weekend, too:)!

This week has been a short one, but that didn’t stop it from being an exhausting one. Of course I didn’t help much by staying up way past my bedtime on a number of occasions! And I’m doing it again now.

I’m finally starting to either get over a cold  – you know, the real kind when you go through a box of tissues because your nose has become a faucet and your eyes look like you’ve broken up with the Love of your Life, only you haven’t.  Either that or it’s moved to more southern regions of my anatomy.  We’ll see.  I prefer to think that it got bored with me.

Since last we met, dear 2.5, life has been a round of client visits and court. Today I got off the rollercoaster ride and delivered paperwork to the office after the morning docket and a very interesting conversation with one of the Sheriff’s deputies at the courthouse who with his wife, also happens to be a ghost hunter!  As my brother-in-law used to say, “Rah!” But there is something lovely about that ride home from work on a Friday evening that just cools the fevered brow.

John is on the mend, even though we had a bit of a scare yesterday when he tripped and fell, thankfully forward onto his left knee! It took paramedics to get him back up, but they were very kind about it and he was smart in calling them to get the appropriate help.  Luckily he was scheduled to go to the surgeon’s office for a followup visit that morning.  The doc told him he was doing fine and that he shouldn’t feel badly about needing to sleep, that it was part of the healing process. He does need to walk more, though, so it looks like a little exercise will be in both our futures! Thankfully now he can do it with far less pain!

On the knitting front, I am still working on the Norwegian Rose cardigan, and am finished with the first “statement” of the bottom floral motif,  and to give myself a little bit of distraction, Wendy Johnson’s Summer Mystery Shawl just cam out with clue #1. so of course, I had to start it. I’m knitting it with Brooklyn Tweed’s Loft in Soot, so not much color in this picture and obviously not much progress. Yet.

Rather than showing you another picture only a few rows advanced on the Norwegian Rose Cardigan, let me show you three lovely knitting books I have in my library.

First up is Blueprint Crochet Sweaters, Techniques for Custom Construction by Robyn Chachula.  I am not a very expert crocheter.  My experience has been limited to hats, scarves, one shawl and a few afghans. Robyn Chachula, whom many of you of the fiber persuasion have seen on a variety of knitting and crochet-related television shows, is a very talented creative woman.  I was intrigued with this book. I am hoping it will demystify the whole crocheted sweater thing for me:) I cannot wait to give one of these a try..  Some of the items in the book are really meant for much younger women, but there are patterns in this book that even and old fart like me can wear:) and even the ones I wouldn’t wear, they are easily modified.

The other book is one I can honestly say I wish I could knit every single sweater in the book.  They are all just gorgeous and I think I could wear each of them. The fun thing is now I actually can fit into at least one of the already existing sizes without having to modify. The book is Essesntially Feminine Knits – by Lene Holme Samsøe.

 The book explores all types of stitch patterns and their use in a variety of sweater types taking some typically sporty and “masculine” looks into something basically pretty. I don’t believe one has to look as good as the models in this book to look halfway decent in a number of these designs.

Lately, I don’t buy many knitting books, although I do pick up the occasional knitting magazine. In fact, unless I can find at least three patterns in a knitting book that I would love to knit and cannot find anything similar elsewhere, I usually don’t buy it – even if I do have the cash.  This is because (1) I have more knitting patterns than I could ever hope to knit up in my lifetime and (2) I’m starting to think that once I get some of the basics down, I prefer to design my own knitted things.  At best I start with a pattern and then modify it out the window.  But this book is really something.  Although it does have a number of patterns, it is not a pattern book per se.  Knitting Pattern Essentials by the inimitable Sally Melville looks like it’s going to be a great resource for me as I branch out into developing my own sweater patterns. The table of contents alone are inspiring:)!

Finally, I have been watching Lily Chin videos -I suppose the old lady equivalent of dirty movies – watching knitting and crochet videos while her family sleeps or is away from home.  All kidding aside though, both her knitting and crochet tips are really cool.

Speaking of videos and learning experiences? Have any of you tried Craftsy? It’s truly worth your time to take a look over there!

Today was sort of a strange Saturday.  I slept in until 11 this morning, got up, helped John with a (very) few things, then went to lunch with my fellow EfM graduates. Afterwards, I played flute with a friend from that group who is a very good pianist.  We played a piece by Ernest Bloch – a very beautiful modal type of piece.  Hopefully I only moderately butchered it.  We had a lot of fun, but the ride home took far too long due to an accident not far from my home. This kept me away from home for far too long – not fair to John who was probably going stir crazy by the time I got there!

We did have a few small adventures this evening – got out for a bit to the mall and enjoyed what was left of the cooler summer evening.

Well, I am up far too late again.  Happily, I can sleep in a little bit in the morning.

Well, dear readers, God (however you understand Him/Her/It) be with you ’til we meet again+


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