oh, my

Posted on Posted in food and garden, lace/shawls, projects

the LOVe just goes on and on. i saw the first lily of the valley blooms on 4/27, and since then a veritable sea of them has bloomed just outside the back door. they are so thick and pretty this year . . . and the scent over in that part of the yard is a hovering cloud of pleasantness. they are just about past their prime now and the flowers will soon die back, but what a spectaculor impression they leave me with.

i dunno if you can tell from the photos, but it’s been a little gloomy and chilly this week. which has made me slip into a time warp or something . . . whole days have dissolved here unnoticed and whoa—this morning i realized that more days than i intended have passed since i posted (sorry).
i wish i could say it was because i was getting my garden in the ground, but no; i’m behind on that, too (although i am enjoying the progress of the perennials quite a bit).

someone asked me about the lady’s mantle that appeared in the background behind something else i photographed last week. here it is in all it’s pre-blooming glory; i love how the leaves emerge so sharply-pleated, then open and soften into larger, more rounded shapes. with that stiff new leaf sticking up straight behind the bud of a face, which sits above the swirling skirt of the more mature foliage, it really does look like flamenco regalia.

and look at these volunteer lettuces that sprang up in one of the beds (must be from seeds that didn’t germinate last year?)

we have about six clumps of them, but sadly, they will probably not survive the shuffling of the beds we are doing out there. fortunately, the asparagus patch is finally showing signs of life so we have some other new exciting growth to distract us. i don’t know if all the asparagus will come back yet, but just in the last few days we have sprouts in about six of the seemingly dead plants. they will probably all offer up new growth just about the time i finally buy some replacements.

part of my doldrums is that i have been a very distracted knitter, so i feel that i have nothing to talk about. i’ve been doing a lot of swatching for new items that are a bit out of season, and that’s weird; i’m having trouble accessing the spirit of fall/winter knits.

this yarn is truly scaring me now—i have swatched it countless different ways and nothing is looking good. i abandoned my original idea of a lace pattern based on shooting stars and have now gone all cable-y . . . i’m sure it’s just a speed bump and that soon i will hit the right note with it (i don’t wanna scare anne, who concocted the luscious stuff). it’s gorgeous and i begged to knit something with it, so i am determined to make it work.

speaking of scary, last night i was knitting on this and hoping to finish it off, because
i am. so. close.

but i had to stop. we were watching a movie that made me so anxious my hands were sweating uncontrollably, and i was afraid i was going to felt the delicate lace yarn. and then i couldn’t sleep afterwards . . . why did i do that?
normally i am SO in touch with my sensitivity limits about this kind of thing.
i’ll tell you why—catherine keener and ellen page. go read about it. or see it.
be warned though—it’s horrible.

i don’t have a big project going right now and—obviously—i need one, stat.
(i think that problem is solved now, though; i just need to get it on the needles).

i need something to immerse myself in that calms me with its continuity. how did i get so dependent on having a big whack of knitting attached to my hip for weeks at a time? i find i’m seriously pining for a big heavy weight hanging from my wrists.

however, i did start a new mitt that i do like a lot. this one really tests the limits of yarn variegation vs stitch pattern (not that it’s a contest or anything, but i’ve been playing with limits lately).

the stitch pattern here is pretty strong and very defined; i adore the overlapping leaf pattern. it will, of course, look awesome in a solid, or nearly-solid yarn. but it really has the spirit of a flower garden in this yarn i think, too. and with a matching hat? i intended to knit a full mitten, but when i put it on last night i dunno if i’d like that. it fits more like a fingerless mitt.

the yarn is another one of catherine’s new colors, sicily, this time featured in her worsted weight merino classic. it is de-lect-able to knit with . . . smooth, soft, and beautifully dyed (well, you can see that). the hand of the fabric is pure buttah.

(oh gosh, i just realized that for someone who thought she didn’t have anything to say, i am running on and on and on. and i didn’t even show you the sock progress yet. oh well, so sue me.)

i really like this pattern in this yarn . . . and it saved my night—i was able to keep knitting while watching the rest of the movie; i don’t think i could have if i wasn’t.
so, i know meg’s yarn is really scarce, and she doesn’t have any for sale on her site right now, but can i extoll its virtues just a little anyway?

omg—it’s sex in a skein. and i mean good sex. i won’t go into detail; it’s bound to get pornographic.

just look at the way the stripes work out—see there at the heel and gusset, where most self-striping yarns give you nothing but sass? this one stripes in a way that makes the stripes look even with the ones on the cuff AND in a way that makes it look like the stripe goes around the back of the heel and over the top of the foot. genius, i tell you.
(ok, possibly that’s a fluke . . . we’ll see on the second sock. but i’m still impressed.)

all right. i think i really better stop now before your boss catches you still reading this.
one last photo.

on mother’s day evening, i discovered a bird nesting up in a nook on our porch. i had to take that photo through the bathroom window in order not to scare her away. i’m trying to find out what’s in the nest (birdies or eggs), but so far, have not been successful.

i’ll keep you posted.

26 thoughts on “oh, my

  1. I read about that on wikipedia, and there is nothing that would make me watch that movie. Even knowing such a sick thing happened (and still happens) haunts me.

  2. Please do keep us updated on the birdie progress! Robins are such good parents. I used to love feeding the babies at the wild animal rehab I volunteered at in CA – they are so lively and stretch every last mm to get their gape up at you!

  3. Oh lord, I remember hearing about that crime a while ago. It put me on the edge of my seat just reading about it. I don’t think I could even watch the movie. Movies like that make me very uncomfortable and I’m just way too sensitive to sit through that without crying! So I just stick to Leslie Nielson and Monty Python movies.

    Your knitting is gorgeous by the way. My husband just bought me three of your patterns for mother’s day. I’m excited to start knitting them. I just take a long time on finding the right yarn. 😀

  4. I hope someday the shooting stars idea works out because I love that idea. But the yarn will tell you what it wants eventually right? I love all the other knits. I can see that my rate of pattern acquisition is unlikely to decrease anytime soon. So I better get back to work.

  5. Our trees have finally gotten big enough that we have a tiny shady corner, so I can plant some Lily of the Valley this fall. It’s hands down my favorite spring flower. And I’m laughing about your yarn choices because I just picked up a skein of Catherine’s Sicily colorway last night to make your Boing scarf 🙂

  6. I don’t think I could see that film at all; what a horrific crime… I’m sorry to hear you’ve been in a funk; I hope the robin maybe helps a bit? Something about birds and nests just makes me happy every time. The new little nothing is looking amazing!

  7. For someone that doesn’t have a lot of knitting to show, you sure have a lot of knitting pictures! They are beautiful and thank you so much for a shot of my favorite flowers on my birthday (lily of the valley)!

  8. Movie wuss here, and I don’t get out much, so probably no danger of me seeing that movie. (shivers).

    Had to laugh when I got to ‘your boss’ because, yes, guess where I am!

    Our lilies of the valley should bloom next week; they’re one of my favorites; they were in my wedding bouquet (16th anniversary this month!). That fragrance is intoxicating.

    I keep seeing dance motifs in your knitting, and now they’re in your garden too, with the lady’s mantle/flamenco! : )

    That Twisted sock is looking so awesome. I said that before, but I’m loving the heel turn, just like you.

  9. Oh don’t you just love Lady’s Mantle? I am especially fond of how it looks with raindrops captured in the little cup of the leaf. Mine is finally starting to come to life, it’s in a north facing location and it has been darned chilly here in MN.

  10. Are you using one of Barbara Walker’s patterns for the scarf, or one of your own design?

    It’s a wonderful pattern!

  11. Do you do anything special to encourage the lilies of the valley? I’ve been trying to grow them in our front patio, but they put out leaves,then wither and die. This year, one that was left in a pot for a year sent up a flower shoot (now gone), and followed up with leaves when the flower was beginning to die. I’m now wondering whether I can propate more from this single plant.

  12. Yep, no way I’d watch that either. THAT is exactly the reason I can’t even watch the news anymore. I’m overly sensitive, especially about kids, and I’ll just cry about it for weeks.

    Anywho, you’re killin me with the lily of the valley! God I miss those flowers. Where’s the smell-o-vision when you need it?

    And I LOVE the glove pattern, although I think I’d rather do it in a fingering weight. 😉

  13. What a sweet mama bird. The shots of the flowers and sprouts are fun! I hope you get beyond your slight bump in the road with your knitting to show us. Gee, you never show us anything!!! HA!

  14. Oh, I’m one of those who doesn’t even own a television, much less watch the news. We can watch movies at home, but I’m pretty selective about input. I appreciate intensity and dense subject matter, but I don’t like a movie that is one long stomach ache.

    I really like the overlapping leaves mitt pattern. I love the challenge of handpaints vs. pattern – and the excitement when the balance is good.

  15. mmmm, I had noticed back in April that first photo of lily of the valley blooming and could.not.believe.it.
    I transplanted some of my dad’s here to the new house and I have quite a few up but no flowers… he grew his just for me, and they loved him, he’d bring me tiny little bouquets while they were blooming, seeing yours I have that joy/sorrow thing in my heart going on, seriously, thank you for those photos. I KNOW just how good they smell :^) (yes, I’m bringin’ a tent :^)

  16. beautiful new mitt, but then I think I am a sucker for all your fingerless mitt patterns… Really love the leafy-ness! Oh, and the Lilies of the Valley, so very very precious.

  17. As a sociology major, that movie sounds fascinating to me, if incredibly difficult to watch.

    My little heart leaped at the idea of a shooting star shawl! I hope that the idea makes it onto the needles at some point. It would be a true pattern dream come true. 🙂

    Those mitts/mittens are really beautiful. The yarn and stitch pattern really DO go great together.

  18. love the Lilies of the Valley. They were my grandmother’s favorite flower – and tend to make me quite nostalgic for her.
    that movie sounds too much for me – life is horrific at times, and the mob mentality is totally real. I see it in my office. I doubt I could sit through it (knitting or not) I tend to leave the room during that kind of show. such a difficult topic, yet important to bring to public awareness of just how often it happens.

    love your sock projects. that yarn looks very addictive.

  19. Your Lilies of the Valley are lovely, the scent must be heaven !
    You will find a perfect pattern for the yarn, I’m sure. It will speak to you sooner or later 🙂
    I don’t know if I could stand to watch that movie having a daughter in that same age. Just thinking of how things like that still happen makes me sad.

  20. Why did I click that link? Why? I knew better, but I did it anyway.

    I don’t think I’ve seen Lilies of the Valley since we lived in Wisconsin. I wonder if they’d be happy in the little, overfull shady spot behind the house here?

    All that knitting you’re not doing sure is lovely!

  21. Hi Anne, I’m sorry I just had to click on the link to the movie and I’m glad I didn’t know anything about this film. It is just so sad and horrible to even comprehend such a tragedy.
    Anyway, I loved your shots of the lily of the valley flowers, my birthday flowers, and I love the smell. Hope you were not too allergic to their wonderful smell!! Grandmother would bring me a beautiful arrangement of these on my birthday, picked especially for me, from her wonderful garden.
    I love the birds. I hope they learn how to knit while they’re growing up 🙂 What a wonderful life experience. Love your knits, of course, am ordering some patterns and can’t wait!!!

  22. Sex in a skein? That’s probably the best description of luscious yarn I’ve ever come across. *Snicker*

  23. Wow, sex in a skein. That comparison really cracked me up. I thought you were, um, enjoying that yarn a bit much. haha!

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