Saturday, 29 September 2012

The kernel of love

"How do you know I am capable of love?" she asked . . . "Steady affection perhaps."
"If by steady you mean faithful, there you have it; the kernel of love.  I imagine men long for God because of that unchanging faithfulness.  The rock under the quicksands.  The psalms are full of it."

Elizabeth Goudge, from The Scent of Water

Tuesday, 18 September 2012

Almost

Autumn is so close.  I can smell it!  Rain all weekend and then today an afternoon of glorious, chilly sunshine.  Sunlight is always extra-golden in the fall.


I'm celebrating with a mug of apple cider and a new knitting project.

Saturday, 15 September 2012

Opera and Knitting

What better way to spend a slightly gloomy Saturday?


Last week the Metropolitan Opera aired their productions of Wagner's entire Ring Cycle on PBS stations across the country.  Pretty cool!  Unfortunately I couldn't watch them at the times they were aired, but *fortunately* I have access to a tv with DVR capabilities, so I recorded all four operas.  Today I finally got the chance to watch the first one, Das Rheingold.

Bad photo of the tv screen.  This was Loge (Loki!) explaining one of his schemes to Fricka and a sceptical Fasolt. (Also to Wotan, Freia, Fafner, and Donner and Froh, but they didn't all fit on the screen at one time.)

I've decided Wagner really has to be watched.  I've listened to portions of this opera (and other music by Wagner) before and really didn't care for it, but with the addition of visuals - good actors, and really fantastic sets and lighting effects - I really enjoyed this.  (He's still not my favourite, and I'm still not sorry that I do not and will never have a voice capable of singing Wagner.  But this was fun to watch, and I'm looking forward to the next time I have three spare hours when no one else needs the tv!)

Conrad kept me company for most of it (thought he didn't look terribly impressed) and I got a lot of knitting done.

Thursday, 13 September 2012

Sunset over Clarksville


This was the sky last night.


I almost missed it, walking from children's choir to church choir rehearsal.  I'm so glad something prompted me to look out the window!  And I just happened to have my camera in my bag.


(In knitting news, I'm doing some sample knitting so I can't show you pictures of the actual project for quite a while, but you can see a bit of the yarn.  Isn't it gorgeous?)

I sang in voice lab today.  It went pretty well, although there was a certain amount of improvised French in one of the songs... However, no one said I looked like I was reading the phonebook this time (a comment my teacher made about it last lesson) so that's good!  I think we're at 3 learned, 18 to go on the recital count.

Wednesday, 12 September 2012

Tropical Storm


I finished this lovely thing last weekend as well.


The colourway is called "Caribbean" and suits the yarn well.  I chose a sea-shell lace pattern with a simple garter-stitch border and just knit and knit and knit until I'd used up two hanks of the stuff.  (There's one more left but I didn't want to knit another mammoth!)  It's a lovely lofty 100% merino wool, giving a lot of warmth but hardly any weight at all.


I love these colours but I can't wear them, so Tropical Storm is in my Etsy shop.  I hope it finds a home soon!


This is the last finished-project post for a little while.  I have to make some more things first!  And, you know, memorize music for Opera Workshop and my graduate recital.  School.  Whose idea was school?

Tuesday, 11 September 2012

The Doctor's Scarf


It is finished!  All 12+ feet of stripy garter stitch wonderfulness.


As with the Phoenix socks, the knitting has been finished since July.  But then I got stuck.  There were about eleventy-trillion ends to work in and I just couldn't face it.  However last Saturday I sat down and made an effort and got it finished.  (And there turned out to be only a hundred and seventeen, not a whole eleventy-trillion.  So that's good.)



It's quite difficult to figure out how to photograph a twelve-foot-long scarf.  Somehow if you manage to fit it all into the frame it looks a bit small and doesn't really convey the scope of the scarf!  However I think I managed it.  The best part was definitely climbing up the lamp-post to tie the scarf on!  I got a few odd looks but the photos came out and that's all that matters.


This one is listed in the shop, both as itself - ready to wear - and as a custom order.  I certainly hope people want more of these, (because they're fun!) but I'm not prepared to commit the time and money to making lots if there is no demand.  Hence the custom listing.  Photos of what you will get, but I'll knit it just for you!


And guys -- this thing is warm.  Yesterday was a nice breezy 80 or so and I couldn't keep it on long.  But for a crisp autumn day or a chilly winter it would be perfect!

Monday, 10 September 2012

Phoenix


The Phoenix Socks, they who went to the Schermerhorn and observed the performance of good music, have been finished for over at month now.  I grafted up the second toe on my birthday, back in July.  Then they languished in a basket for a few weeks until I snatched a few minutes to weave in the ends.  And then more languishing, as I waited for an opportunity to take photos of them.


Sunday, finally, was that opportunity.  I took them down to the riverside and struggled with the challenge of being both model and photographer for something worn on my feet.  (Answer: the timer feature on my camera, and very long arms.)  Other challenges included the litter of discarded cans, bottles, and random scraps.  Also the fish: very dead, slightly disintegrated and rather malodorous, floating in the shallows.


This just my basic sock recipe, with Barbara Walker's "Wave and Shield" pattern worked on the leg and top of the foot.  It stretches out nicely when worn, though it looks bunchy and confused by itself.


I haven't decided what the fate of these socks will be, yet.  They're a wee bit on the small side for my feet, so I can't really keep them for myself.  But I don't want to sell them, either - I like them too much for that, and anyway the yarn was a bit of a splurge, so I'd have to charge more than probably anyone would want to pay in order to make it worth my while.


They'll probably go in the gift bin until I decide on a worthy recipient.

Sunday, 9 September 2012

Rest

I did almost everything I wanted to this weekend, with the result that I managed to be both extremely productive and extremely relaxed.  Just what I needed!
Saturday: banana bread, split pea soup, and tea with yarn trimmings.
I finished all three of the projects I had hoped to, I sat outside and reveled in the sudden almost-Autumn weather, I drank lots of tea, I baked banana bread, I made comfort food to celebrate the return of reasonable temperatures.  (Which have departed again, today, but I have hope that they are not far away now!)
Beautiful sky, wrangling a shawl, and yes, that is a scarf on a lamp-post.
After church today I went down to the riverside and had one enormous photo shoot.  Let me tell you it is rather difficult to be both model and photographer when the thing you are photographing is socks.  But I ended up with some decent shots, I think.
Tropical Storm scarf, Phoenix socks, enormous wooly Doctor Who scarf on a rather hot day.
More photos will follow soon as I do a feature post on each of these projects!  But I wanted to give you a glimpse of my weekend.  After the stress and fatigue of this past week of school, I couldn't have asked for a better rest.
Cumberland River, new quilt blocks, and a really big hat.

Friday, 7 September 2012

Empty Weekend

Due to a slight error on my part (I turned in a request-off form at work when I thought I'd be spending this weekend in Nashville singing Mahler, and forgot to rescind the request when I decided not to do the concert) I find myself suddenly in possession of a completely empty weekend.  Nothing scheduled for this evening, or tomorrow, or Sunday after church.  (Sunday at church I'm singing, but that's a different matter!)

Knowing me, I'm sure it won't stay empty for long.  I have a couple knitting projects I want to finish up and photograph, there's a quilt top in need of piecing calling my name, operas to watch, and I might bike a couple miles up the road to get produce from the Amish farm if it doesn't rain tomorrow.  But none of it will involve being at work or at school, so I'm happy!

Quilt supplies.  With rotary cutter prominently displayed... the photo is from last summer when it was brand new.  Yes, I cut the initial strips last summer and haven't touched them since.... 

Tuesday, 4 September 2012

Cabled Mitts


I finished these yesterday for an Etsy customer.




Natural wool in a pretty cable pattern (Wavy Cable Fingerless Gloves from Ceradka on Etsy).  Off to their new owner this week.