Monday, January 17, 2011

Is it too soon to play catch up?

Seriously, it's only mid-January, and while I'm feeling quite on top of some things, there are other areas where I feel behind. I've been mentally composing a blog post for days now. Too bad that doesn't automatically get it up here. ;)

So, we're home from our third and final trip to North Carolina. We spent two 14 hour days in the car with two days of time with our son and grandson sandwiched in between. It was an interesting visit, as we were based out of our hotel room the whole time we were there, and we were driving a vehicle that seats five, only we had six people. So anywhere we went with the whole crew, it involved me driving everyone there in shifts. As it turned out, a major snow and ice storm came through Jacksonville the Monday we were there, making everything a grand mess. Many businesses and restaurants shut down that day because they get that kind of weather so infrequently that they aren't prepared for it.

The weather made it necessary to say our goodbyes to him earlier Monday than we'd planned so I could get him back to base (which was also closed to all non-essential personnel) before the next wave of ice came through. I'd had my major emotional meltdown the week before when I'd returned him after New Years, but it was still hard to say good bye again. What was harder, though, was having to watch him say goodbye to his five year old son. I'm not sure how much our grandson understands about where his dad is going, he just knows he'll be in first grade before Daddy's back home again.

Our drive home Tuesday was nerve-wracking due to the bad roads and continued snow and ice. I was so thankful Kevin was driving and not me, but even I was tense. It feels so good to be home. I spent the rest of last week taking the Christmas stuff down (finally) and trying to catch up on laundry and cleaning as well as getting us all back in the swing of our school routine.

In the midst of all the crazy, I have been knitting and spinning! During the ride down to NC and the first day there, I made a pair of worsted weight socks for our son to take with him...he won't be able to wear them in uniform, but they'll keep his feet warm when he sleeps!

Yarn: Gedifra Fashion Trend Color; Generic toe-up sock

I started this Moody Kerchief shawl while we were in NC, and it was my drive home knitting, during which time I got most of it finished.

Moody Kerchief by Kirsten Kapur; Yarn: Three Irish Girls Springvale Super Merino, Ginger Honey colorway.

I ended up modifying the pattern a good bit. I was using two sets of color gradient mini-skeins from Three Irish Girls that I got in the Pick of the Knitter club a couple years ago. That gave me far more yarn than the pattern called for, and I wanted to use as much of it up as I could. I added a lot of extra rows to the straight knitting sections, and then I ended up adding some extra sections as well.

I'd envisioned the color changes happening at section changes, but that didn't work out completely. Still, I'm really happy with how it turned out. I finished it the day after we got home.

And right now, I'm in several swaps. I try not to do swaps too often because the pressure of getting the right things for my swap partners tends to stress me out. LOL But somehow, I managed to sign up for three swaps going on simultaneously, two of which involve the requirement of a knitted item. I've never done that kind of swap before, so...extra pressure! Ahh! I do have my first knitted item finished, but I won't post pictures of it until after it is received. I will say I'm happy with how it turned out. I hope its recipient likes it too!

For one of the other swaps I'm doing, I decided to spin my own yarn for one of the yarn requirements. I must say, I am totally loving this yarn...

The fiber itself looks good enough to eat...

It's BamHuey, a bamboo/merino blend dyed by NewHueHandspuns. I've worked with this fiber before, spinning the Sun Beams colorway for my Caricia shawl. It spins like butter, seriously. It is fabulous! And I think the color will be perfect for it's recipient.

Oh, and just another note about our deployed son to bookend this post. He actually called us last night...from Afghanistan! Seriously? I was tickled to hear his voice (and he seems to be doing just fine), but do you know how surreal that is? I mean, I know technology has changed the face of war in so many ways, but I can't help but think how in the not too distant past, families waited weeks or months just for a letter home from their loved one who was off fighting. Now, they're just a phone call or e-mail away. I'm having a lot of philosophical thoughts about that, but I'll spare you. Because honestly? I'm having a lot of philosophical thoughts about many things lately. My brain is working overtime, and it's all I can do to keep up.


Anonymous said...

First, I love that shawl! So pretty! Second, that fiber is to-die-for gorgeous. And third, I totally know what you mean about getting in touch with your son like that. Pretty soon they'll have us to beam over to see people... we can only hope! ;)

Lisa B. said...

Thanks! And yes, I am a huge proponent of increased funding for transporter technology research. :)

MsLindz said...

The shawl is beautiful! I wasn't at all interested in the pattern until I saw yours. The color changes look fantastic with the pattern! I love the fiber, too. Such a pretty fun color. I'm sure your swap partner will love the shawl :)

Lisa B. said...

When I first saw the pattern, Lindz, I wasn't sure about it. I liked it, but the different colored ruffle kind of threw me. I wanted to make it, but I figured I'd just do it all one color. Then I remembered I had this yarn and it worked out well! I like it with multiple shade changes instead of an outright color change, but that's just me. I've seen some really pretty ones with the contrasting edging lately. :)