Wednesday, January 11, 2017

eowyn ivey, knitting failures, and so much snow

The snow is piled up.  We have over a foot of snow on the ground and it's lovely and we're stuck inside and can't get the car to move either.  The roads are slick and Jesse is working from home so far this week.  So I plan for another day hibernating and doing school and trying not to drive each other nuts in 600 square feet together.  Chicken chili in the crockpot and math and books and maybe we'll make cookies today.  

 I have just finished reading To The Bright Edge of the World, Eowyn Ivey's second book that came out recently, set in historic Alaska just like The Snow Child.  But it is a different book for sure.  I love how she treats her characters with such beauty and dignity.  Bad and hard things happen but there is always a steadiness and some kind of healing that happens for each one.  The Snow Child is probably in my top five modern books, which hopefully tells you that even though I didn't like this second book quite as much as I loved her first, I still really loved this one.  I've been puzzling over why and I think it's because this one is in epistolary form so I think I felt one step removed from the characters; the events are always seen through what they find important to put on the page in a journal or letter and I also was not in the middle of the action.  That's just a literature form preference, but as far as that style goes, this one is well done and I think very worth my time.  I'll definitely keep reading whatever Eowyn Ivey writes next as quickly as she writes it.  She's masterful.

Now I'm back to reading the third Harry Potter and the sixth volume of Charlotte Mason's series.  We are about to close on our new house !!!  maybe Friday and so I doubt I will have a lot of time for reading in the next few weeks as we begin to get ready to move in.  We are very excited and can't believe the Lord has done this for us.  We never expected to find something that so matches our desires and He just laid it in our laps.  We didn't even find it, but He found it for us.  We are so thankful and eager and nervous and joyful.  Thank you for those of you who have been so encouraging in our long journey of home selling and buying.  Eventually I will write a long post about the whole story in one place that may encourage others who are walking through similar experiences.  

Oh knitting.  Knitting.  I've been struggling with my knitting which explains my lack of knitting posts.  I had made a small mistake in my Buds and Bumbles shawl (pictured above) that was very easy to fix but I'd lost steam and put it aside.  Lyddie had also picked out a cute yarn for a hat (pink with silver thread running through it) so after starting and ripping out this pattern because it was turning out too big even though I had achieved gauge, I instead picked out THIS adorable hat.  Then the saga really began. The actual pattern is great, but she has you cast on with a 2x2 tubular cast on which took forever to figure out and execute and didn't even look that different to me from a long tail cast on - just stretchier.  Then once I had figured out a tutorial (knit purl hunter has a good one, not that you need it because don't use tubular cast on EVER if you can help it) and got in five more rows, I realized my yarn was twisted in the round despite my careful attempt to join. How did I miss that for so long?  Oh yeah, because the cast on obscured it and I didn't know what was going on.  Rip, rip, rip.  Then I decided to try another take on a tubular cast on (the alternate cable cast on) that didn't require a provisional cast on, and at the moment I can't remember why but had to rip that one out after a few rows.  Rip, rip, rip.  Decided to go back to the original pattern recommendation and bit the bullet and did the tubular cast on.  Got about an inch into the actual knitting of the hat and realized it was going to be way too big... guess I should have done a gauge swatch.  I usually do swatches if I am doing a big project like a sweater, but for a hat or mitts and other small projects I hate swatching and don't usually think it's worth it.  But this child's size hat was definitely almost too big for me and would have been more a cowl for my seven year old.  RIP RIP RIP.  My new plan:  Cast on using the German Twisted Cast on that I used when making the Wheaten hat I did for Jesse over Christmas and then knit the pattern as written.  Instead of figuring it out last night I decided to work on the shawl instead.  And vegged out in front of the show Justified.  Ha!

I've also been cross-stitching a lot and you can see a few pictures of my finished stitching on Rosie's Shepherds Bush stocking on Instagram here!  More will be coming on my blog.  

So -  happy yarn along, I finally made it back, although our school schedule will be thrown off now ;)  I hope I get a chance to visit some of your blogs, leave me a comment so I am sure to hop over to see your projects... I'm so out of the loop at the moment and haven't been able to keep up because of, well, life.  I hope January is treating you well.     


  1. Anonymous9:25 AM

    That is a beautiful yarn! Will have to check out your instagram!

  2. I, too am reading Harry Potter and enjoying a return to my old literary stomping ground of Hogwarts.

    I've started and stopped The Snow Child several times, I need to pull it back out and put it top of my queue. It comes highly recommended by so many.

  3. I got about half way through "To the bright edge of the world," before i had to return it to the library. I hope to ck it out again and finish but too much going on currently to have the brain space for that kind of reading. I haven't read snow child but I didn't find myself terribly hooked to "to the bright edge of the world." So it was interesting to read your thoughts! Can't wait to read the whole story on your home saga.. it does encourage me as we face our uncertain future. I've done a bit with the tubular cast on/bind off on noah's Wyatt sweater and it is way more complicated but it is fantastic, I think, in the way it looks and feels! But it does require more focus/time. Anyway.. keep knitting! :) And blogging!

  4. I bought that book on kindle! I can't wait to read it, after I read all the other must read books... Lovely knitting!