Thursday, November 29, 2007

powering through

the stressful situation, alas, continues. i won't go into all the details here - suffice it to say that it's a family crisis involving folk far away, and there's nothing practical that i can do to help out. i can, however, worry - and i'm doing that in abundance.
there seems to be a tendency in my family towards motion as a way of dealing with stress - that is to say, as long as we just keep moving (we believe), everything will be ok. so i've been powering through things over here.
there's 500 grams of handspun natural bluefaced leicester, destined for hat kits for K1 Yarns in Glasgow, drying in front of the radiator:

bluefaced leicester drying


600 grams of merino dyed & dried ready to spin, also for hat kits for K1 Yarns:

dyed merino for hat kits


and two skeins of laceweight & five skeins of sock yarn dyed & drying in the bath:

sock & lace yarn drying


i've also been powering through some knitting - the chunky cabled raglan for the RSA is done, as is my lovely, lovely malabrigo gretel (i don't have pictures yet, so you'll just have to take my word for it). and the cadenza sweater-in-the-round is up to the yoke (although i still don't know what i'm doing with the neckline, so i'll have to figure that out fairly soon).
the only downside to all this motion is the sheer exhaustion it induces - it's in direct conflict with my other natural tendency this time of year, which is complete & total winter-related lethargy. at least there's a couple of small things to keep me happy when i finally grind to a halt - a big slab of delicious homemade cake (the last piece!) & some strong coffee:


and, of course, a kitten:

kitten & pup hugs


& yes, that is a dog's paw that she's cuddling - she & finn have become great friends, and the other cats even seem to be able to put up with her!

Monday, November 12, 2007

soft as a kitten

it's been a trying few days over here, what with one thing & another. i won't go into it at the moment, but things have been pretty exhausting, & i've been relying heavily on the small pleasures in life to get me through the day.
unfortunately for my WIP basket, this has meant starting yet another knitting project!! it's turned cold here, literally overnight, and it occurred to me that i don't actually have a winter hat (my old noro hat was chewed by the pup the winter before last, and i still haven't replaced it!). so i cast on for this:

gretel hat


it's the gretel hat, designed by ysolda, in malabrigo merino worsted, colourway "velvet grapes". i've never knitted with malabrigo before but it has a lot of fans & i've seen a lot of online hype about it. & now, i understand why - it's probably one of the nicest yarns i've used, & is as soft as a kitten!
there's only one other thing in the house at the moment that is as soft as the malabrigo...

nyx
(right, a skein of malabrigo; left, an actual kitten)

yes, the kitten has arrived! she's 10 weeks old & her name is nyx. she's been here since the end of last week, and she's going to be a handful - she's pretty clever, and very brave! she's still getting used to the whole knitting thing'but is learning fairly quickly that yarn & needles are not toys, even if they're waving about enticingly. she's getting on fairly well with the rest of the menagerie, & has decided that her favourite place to sit is up on the back of my armchair, with her bum on the chair back & her front paws on my shoulder (which is pretty cute at the moment as she weighs next to nothing, but may become less cute once she gets bigger!).
luckily i have these small things to entertain me while i wait for everything else to get less stressful - it really is the little things that make life worthwhile.