Joyknits!

Knitting, spinning, pets, food and other thoughts


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TBT – Away back!

Looking away back – to my first published design, which appeared on the cover of the first issue of Knitting World (succeeded first by Knitting Digest, then Creative Knitting). The sweater is still here somewhere.KW_1278 copy

Meanwhile, back at home, it looks like spring has finally made it, after several hiccups. Lots of things in bloom, and I’m really wanting to get going on the garden.

Redbud by the house.

Redbud by the house.

Passing through.

Passing through.

And saving the best for last πŸ˜‰

High speed dog!

High speed dog!

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Peeking around the corner …

hope someone’s here – things have stayed busy and the poor blog has been seriously neglected for much too long! The garden’s long gone, though some of it (mostly green & wax beans, and roasted tomato sauce) lingers on in the freezer, knitting projects have come and gone, and of course more’s on the needles.

The most recent one I can talk about, Tangerine Leaves can be found in Knitter’s K113, and was lovely to knit!

We got a pretty good snow (for us – probably 6-8″) starting on Thursday, and it’s been Bird Central, with cardinals, juncos, chickadees, titmice, canaries, some rather unexpected robins, bluebirds, yellow-rumped warblers, a couple of pileated woodpeckers and swarms of cedar waxwings, which are going after the berries on the cedars, and the year’s bumper crop of persimmons.

Cedar waxwings feasting on persimmons

Cedar waxwings feasting on persimmons

IMG_8145 copy

IMG_8186 copyToby’s been loving the snow, in fact it’s been hard to get him to come in, even when it’s been in the teens & 20’s, and he comes in with snow sticking everywhere, including ice balls in his feet Toby 1

Toby 2Maggie’s more into cozy spots – here’s why it’s hard to get the bed made around here πŸ˜‰Β MaggieWe’re trying to get ready for the holidays, but there’s always something more to do! wreath


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Catching up is hard to do!

The Knitting Camp trip was great as always. In addition to all the usual wonderfulness, after some years of blog and email virtual visiting, Angie and I were able to arrange a real meet-up in Cedarburg WI for lunch at Cream & Crepes (yum!) and some visiting after lunch. Fingers crossed that we can do it again! πŸ™‚

Meet-up in Cedarburg WI.

Meet-up in Cedarburg.

A friend at Camp had made the Scallops & Ribs top (Knitter’s K110) and brought it for Show & Tell, so of course she was also part of my Show & Tell. I love her choice of color!

Natascha's Scallops & Ribs.

Natascha’s Scallops & Ribs.

I had a wonderful time, but of course the downside of trips is catching up when you get home. The garden (especially the beans!) kept growing while I was gone, and I’ve frozen quite a few beans to be enjoyed next winter. They’re still coming in at a pretty good rate, and the little French fillet beans (Calima) are definitely on the do-again list, in fact, probably more of them and a bit less of some of the other varieties. harvest

Except for a very few here & there, we’re still waiting for the tomatoes, but the squash and cucumbers are coming in at a manageable pace.

My new rose bush had a tiny, but nice surprise for me – I wanted red, and this is a lovely red.

Prairie Clogger (Griffin Buck rose).

Prairie Clogger (Griffin Buck rose).

If anyone’s looking for me, I’ll probably either be in the garden, or in the kitchen dealing with the veggies πŸ˜‰


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Meanwhile …

There’s another shawl pattern, Ripples on the Shore, up on Ravelry. The sample used Crazy Zauberball; I had to keep going just to see what the colors were going to do next πŸ˜‰

Ripples on the Shore

Ripples on the Shore

These 2 geraniums were very small when I got them – they’re starting to fill the larger pots quite nicely! geraniums

The beans have really taken off; I picked the first ones on Wednesday, then even more yesterday, and we had the first ones (just plain with a little salt & butter – yum!!!) for dinner last night. At the rate they’re going, I’ll be putting lots in the freezer, which will be lovely next winter! I’m still waiting for the wax beans to be ready, but some are starting to show color.bean rows

No ripe tomatoes yet, but there are quite a few green ones out there. I imagine the trick will be to get them before the squirrels do. tomatoesThe now huge volunteer squash plant in the compost looks like it’s likely to be a butternut, so it will be a while before any of them are ripe, but it’s really spreading … squashand I thought the dill almost looked like little yellow bursts of fireworks πŸ™‚ dill


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Off & running …

or at least sort of πŸ˜‰ This weekend is the 250th anniversary of the founding of our nearest town, and I’ll be KIPing (in costume) at the Courthouse both Saturday and Sunday. I’ve packed a variety of projects – a lace edging, facecloth, sock and a mitten. I’ll try to get some photos.

All the yarns in the basket have been worked up, and they were all lovely. Here are a couple of the yarn doodlings

Panda Silk

Panda Silk

Sweet Georgia Cashsilk

Sweet Georgia Cashsilk

Yesterday I was looking for some straight needles (well-hidden as they so rarely get used!); Look what I found while digging in a box of old knitting stuff – wow!!!pastThe shaded sweater actually caught my eye first, but the 2nd one is also an Elizabeth Zimmermann design, though in 1960, Woman’s Day obviously wasn’t into giving designers credit. Mom must have ordered the booklet, and also saved the pictures from the magazine. There are more goodies in the box that I need to investigate later.

Found this in the yard this afternoon (right before it was mowed) – there was 1 small clump/plant that was mostly 5-leafed ones, though I never saw one quite like this before. cloverAnd this was the first thing I saw when I went out on the deck yesterday morning – big surprise! I’d prefer it stay off the deck, but I’m happy to have it doing rodent patrol in the yard.

Black rat snake; usually just called a black snake

Black rat snake; usually just called a black snake

Guess I need to quit procrastinating and finish packing!


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Long ago …

and it seems like far away, we used to go fly fishing, mostly on the Meramec River between Steelville and St. James MO. Because my mother-in-law lived with us, we were able to leave 3 then fairly small kids with her for the occasional weekend float trip. The original method was to put in downstream and motor upstream to where we planned to camp & fish. That way, if anything went wrong, the truck was downstream, so we didn’t have to paddle a loaded 19′ aluminum canoe up the river. We often went in the off-season, and woke up 1 morning I remember to temps in the 20’s, and a pretty good layer of frost on the sleeping bags πŸ˜‰ Unfortunately, life eventually got in the way and those trips are only fond memories.

This clump of Amsonia/Dogbane is one enduring souvenir from those trips, in spite the construction project, in which a number of plants were lost. In looking it up, I discovered that it’s closely related to the milkweeds, oleanders and also vinca or periwinkle. In fall, it’s a lovely golden color.

Amsonia illustris.

Amsonia illustris.

amsonia flowersThe yellow rose has more flowers open practically every day.

rose0516

Today we planted 2 new shrubs, after taking out a couple ofΒ  pretty, but extremely invasive honeysuckle bushes. The witchhazel (l) and the winterberry holly (r) will fill in the space nicely, once they get going. shrubs

Vine Lace Set is now up on Patternfish – please take a look!

Vine Lace Set

Vine Lace Set


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May, and still with the showers!

It’s raining again today – about 2Β½” when I looked earlier, and no signs of stopping for a day or 2. The creeks and rivers are up again (some of the low water bridges were covered), though it’s not nearly as deep as a couple of weeks ago. I just hope it doesn’t quit entirely like it did last summer! Things have gotten so green it’s amazingly beautiful.

Red buckeye in full bloom.

Red buckeye in full bloom.

Kitchen herbs.

Kitchen herbs.

I decided to add more cooking herbs in the end of the bed closest to the door, so I planted more chives, cilantro, 2 Italian parsley, and dill next to the first clump of chives and the thyme on the right. There’s also more thyme, oregano and mint in another bed even closer to the door πŸ™‚

I had a supervisor while I was working with the plants.

Toby0513

On the knitting front, I’ve added a jacket and tank set, Chesapeake Twinset, to Patternfish – please take a look!

We still have lots of birds on the feeders – the grosbeaks and orioles are still around, along with all the “usual suspects” (cardinals, goldfinches, chickadees, titmice, nuthatches and small woodpeckers). orioles

Also most or all of the wren houses seem to have been claimed.

wren 2

House wren.

Β wren 1

Phoebe feeding Brood #1.

Phoebe feeding Brood #1 under the deck.