Sunday, August 29, 2004

As the weather hints of cooler temperatures and the onset of Fall, my knitting calls to me more insistently. I've been sewing and sewing on the old quilt blocks and have completed half of the log cabin blocks, thanks to the help of my sewing machine. But the voice of my knitting gets more insistent and the quilt blocks are starting to give way.

With memories of extremely cold feet last winter haunting me, I have been working on a pair of wool socks for me. I love sailboats and when I saw this sock kit at Blackberry Ridge, I knew my feet would be safe from the cold this upcoming winter.

Additionally, with the start of homeschool this past week, I've managed to add a few more rounds to Kurt's Dale sweater.

Even though it is longer than specified in the pattern, Kurt is 6'2" and so I am making it longer. I measured it on him yesterday and I think one more inch ought to do it. That will leave the neck and sleeves to go.

I've already been thinking about a wool sweater for me. I have two fleeces, a Gulf Coast Native Improved and a Corriedale. I thought I'd spin yarn from these different color fleeces and knit myself a sweater. I've already been carding and spinning the GCNI.

(Click on picture for closer view)

I've managed to take my Legends of the Shetland Seas stole into Chart C and have almost finished my first repeat of this chart.

One and a half more repeats of Chart C and I will be where I was in the pattern last year when I decided to "frog" the whole thing and start over. This really does feel like the "never-ending project."

We haven't quite given up on summer even with a couple of weeks of Fall like weather. After all, we do live in Florida.

After 3 years, the old blow up pool was shot. However, I managed to find another giant blow up pool online. It was so nice not to have to add air every 30 minutes! AND Gabrielle learned to snorkel in the new pool. Unfortunately when I told her I wanted to take a picture of "you snorkeling" she responded by ripping off her snorkel and showing it to me. She must have thought I said I wanted to take a picture of "your snorkel." Mom, if you are reading this, do you see the Yates' genes? (Unfortunately, our family is proof positive that there is a link between blond hair and "dingy". Despite that my children ended up on the dark end of the blond spectrum, the "dingy" is alive and strong in my daughter despite her IQ being in the gifted range. Sigh.)

Sunday, August 15, 2004

In my house, quilts are the most likely projects to never get finished. They are the life-long WIPs.

When Gregory was a baby and we still lived in Las Vegas, I took a quilting class. We were taught to hand piece. At this time I started a log cabin quilt. I cut out about a million pieces and started to stitch together blocks. This was probably 1997. I pulled out that quilt project yesterday to assess my status. I had completed 3 full squares and part of the fourth.

This was going to be a quilt for my baby's bed. Now my baby is almost 8 years old. Unfortunately, these pieces were cut for hand piecing with the sewing lines drawn in pencil. Seam allowances are not precise so converting it to machine piecing does not avoid the painstaking job of pinning pieces together. I don't know if this WIP will ever get finished.

After moving to Gulf Breeze, Florida, I took another quilting class where we learned to machine piece. We were supposed to completely finish a lap size quilt. Unfortunately, we ran out of time.

Here is the quilt top I assembled in class. We were supposed to learn how to sandwich it with a back and with batting. We never got there so all I have is a top. . . and no knowledge of how to complete the quilt. I sewed this quilt top in probably 2001 or 2002.

While the class was ongoing (we met once a month over two months), I started two others for my two children made from children's prints.

All these tops need are the border to be completed quilt tops. And then they too will be ready for sandwiching and quilting, which I have never learned to do. Pretty soon my children will be too old for these and then I will be able to wait for grandchildren to come along.

I presently have many WIPs (works in progress) that are not stalled. However, I have recently started a newly stalled project.

I started a tri-loom shawl for my sister, Mary. I warped the loom per Margrett's instructions (Running Moon Farm) and now need only to weave it. Mary decided she wanted black merino weft and a bold pattern. I've never made such a shawl and so fear has the project stalled. In the lower left corner of the picture is a spool of the black merino I spun for the project. It is only the weaving that has me avoiding my sister's shawl.

Is there any hope for recovering and completing long term WIPs?

Tuesday, August 10, 2004

My sister Mary and her family moved into their own home yesterday. The house sure seems quite after a month and a half with four children and four adults living in it. I miss my sister and her family, but the peace and quiet sure is nice.

While they were here, Mary and I made matching night-gowns for our three girls.

They were a big hit. We picked sea shell fabric for Florida.

Mary did most of the decorative work and I sewed them together. We finished Gabrielle's and Savannah's gowns first.

But that nearly broke little Summer's heart. She wanted her night-gown like the big girls. We wrapped the fabric around her for pictures and then I quickly assembled her gown the following day.

The girls sure loved flitting around the house in their matching night gowns. They were quite adorable.