Saturday, 30 May 2015

Ice Princess

Knitting time lately has been pretty limited, but I did finish a pair of gloves for myself back in February!

The pattern is Annemor #1 by Terri Shea from the book Selbuvotter: Biography of a Knitting Tradition.  This book is really interesting - all the patterns are taken directly from original gloves and mittens, but this means they have some strange fitting quirks.  I am not sure if my hands are just very differently proportioned than the standard Scandinavian model but I find I have to heavily modify this proportions, even when my gauge matches that of the pattern.  (For these, I added about half a dozen stitches to the width and an entire extra repeat of the pattern for the palm and fingers.)  The patterns are gorgeous and if you're willing to put in a little extra work to get the fit right they're definitely worth it, but I certainly wouldn't recommend them to a beginning two-colour knitter or someone with little experience in altering patterns.

Yarn is KnitPicks Gloss fingering - a merino/silk blend which is one of my favourites; warm, strong, and very soft!  These gloves got a lot of wear during the second half of the winter, and I'm looking forward to wearing them again next year.

Thursday, 21 May 2015

mostly about work

I can't recall if I've ever mentioned on the blog that I work at a coffee shop now - have done for the past eight months or so.  But since today I managed both to bring my camera to work and have the battery charged (things I've been intending to do since last September), I took some photos and thought I'd share.

It's a little independently owned and operated place, and it's quite a fun place to work, most of the time.  I remember when I first started being completely overwhelmed and impressed at how everyone seemed to know all the regulars and their orders - and now I'm one of those people.  It makes me wonder what we'd do if one of the regulars changed up his order.  It would throw everyone completely off balance!  Busy, fast-paced days are more fun than slow ones, but even those can be nice; there is rarely a boring day.  (Though being an introvert working for the most extroverted woman on the face of the planet occasionally becomes... challenging.  Especially early in the morning before I am fully caffeinated!)

One of the best things is that we roast all our own coffee in-house, so you'll never drink coffee from beans roasted more than about 48 hours ago.  I would never have called myself a coffee snob or imagined myself becoming one; but a few months here and I can barely swallow typical restaurant coffee anymore.  This is not always a good thing, especially when travelling! 

Sometimes there is a pretty little flower or star left in the grounds after brewing a pot of coffee.  (These turn out to be difficult to photograph, since if the grounds are fresh enough for the flower still to show up, they're hot enough to be steaming, and steamed-up camera lenses do not clear photos take.)

And sometimes, quite by accident, I manage to make pretty pictures in my lattes.  (Always by accident.  If I try to make "latte art" I'll end up with a strange blobby mess.  But if I'm not thinking about it much I end up with lovely, slightly abstract leafy patterns or, as today, something suggesting a bird.)

But don't worry.  Even if your latte isn't particularly pretty, or your sandwich proves somewhat messy -- I promise they'll taste good!

Tuesday, 19 May 2015

In which I recall that I have a blog

So, the blogging thing.  Clearly I'm very good at doing things regularly and consistently!  I'm not sure why but I always seem to lose track of the blog during the winter.  But now it's spring and things are blooming and the garden is getting started and I may, possibly, manage to make posting here a more-than-biannual event.

Obviously, tea is a necessary part of garden planning.

Work and nannying are still taking up much of my life, but we're almost past the chance of frost around here and so I've been spending time planning, prepping, and planting my garden.  We're putting in some larger perennials this year and I haven't begun to tackle those yet, but the kitchen garden is half-way in!

I hope to be back sooner than Thanksgiving, with more garden photos, or maybe some finished-object posts!