Knitting, spinning, pets, food and other thoughts


“Ships and shoes

and sealing wax…” somehow, socks and seeds and chicken soup doesn’t have quite the same ring, but I thought of that line from Lewis Carroll’s The Walrus and The Carpenter when I was trying to come up with a title this morning. Usually I love the odd bits of stuff that pop into my mind, except when I can’t remember the rest of it, or the source, or … well you get the idea πŸ˜‰

The socks: Lana Grossa Meilenweit Cotton Fantasy (45% cotton/42% wool/13% polyamide), color #817. I will definitely look for this yarn again!

The soup: Chicken broth, maitake mushrooms, onion, carrots, green peas, little bowtie pasta, part of a rotisserie chicken and whatever seasonings jumped off the shelf. Very tasty.

The seeds: A couple of goldenrods that lasted long enough to go to seed. I couldn’t resist the way the light was shining through them.

And then there’s Amber, who’s discovered the sill of the bow window in my office (I was outside, looking in). πŸ˜‰


Socks, stew & salamanders

I recently stumbled upon The Reluctant Entertainer’s blog – she and 3 other bloggers were invited to a chili tasting at the Culinary Institute in Napa (how cool is that … sigh) by Bush’s Beans. She shared one of the recipes they prepared, Bush’s Chicken and Kidney Bean Spanish Stew, which was very tasty and will definitely be repeated!

Served with Daisy's Yellow Rice.

In addition to some extremely loud spring peepers in the ponds, it’s the season for salamanders to be on the move. A couple of them took a wrong turn the other night and ended up in the shop. H called me on the intercom, then popped a can over this visitor until I could get out there with a camera. When I was relocating the first one, a 2nd one was about to come in too.

Spotted salamander.

I’ve noticed that some of my more experienced socks are starting to wear out, so the pair I just finished can go right into the rotation πŸ˜‰

Mistake Stitch Rib; Zitron Trekking XXL, color #104.



Lovely Thanksgiving, lots of good company (2 of 3 kids, 4 of 6 grandkids, oldest grandkid’s new fiancΓ©, 2 grand-poodles), food (lots of leftovers) and a great time. Only down side is coming down with a dad-gummed cold. I’m hoping it won’t stick around for too long!

My current best friends!

H brought the clean socks up from the drying rack and neatly arranged them into a cat bed, which Maggie returned to several times until the spoil-sport (me) decided I just had to go to bed πŸ˜‰


Enough already!

I’ve got some actual knitting (don’t faint!) that I can blog. Since I finished the dark blue socks, I went for some variety – admittedly still blue, but several shades, as in Trekking XXL (#104 – darker than shown). As I’m between deadline projects, the first sock has been moving right along.

Trekking Sock

I was also playing with a cable I saw – after 1 whole repeat πŸ˜‰ (indicated by the black line), I decided to see what would happen if I flipped it over, and it makes sort of riff on the Hugs & Kisses Cable, which is one of my favorites. I need to play with this one some more!


View from the deck.

The view from the deck.

Given that this is already the wettest October on record and it’s still raining, I think our song for the month should be Johnny Cash’s Five Feet High and Risin’


Another pair …

of socks; nothing fancy, just my default ribbed socks in dark blue, but I’ll enjoy wearing them. Details: Regia plus Cotton, color #50; 68 stiches on size 1 bamboo double-points. I did appreciate my Ott Light when it came to picking up stitches along the edges of the flap πŸ˜‰

The weather hasn’t been construction-friendly – last week the rain and cold slowed things to a virtual crawl, but this week they’re back making good time with the siding. Otherwise progress is slowβ€”2 doors came in hinged on the wrong side, another one has a bad spot, so we’re waiting for replacements for those. The shower stall hasn’t come in, so the entry doors that are sitting here can’t be installed.

On a cheerier note, we’re getting some nice spots of color – these are just a few.


Noah, where are you?

It’s been raining pretty much all day, and it’s not supposed to stop until sometime tomorrow. I know the rain gauge already had 2″ in it several hours ago – at times like this, I’m really glad we’re on top of a hill! As you can see, Amber’s not too worried. (ETA: Rainfall came to 4-7/8″ by Friday afternoon.)

The current pair of socks is back on track β€” Regia with Cotton is nice to knit πŸ™‚

The sky was really pretty a couple of evenings ago.


Very Red Socks

My current pair of socks-in-progressβ€”just the default ribbed sock, but I think it’s about a sock and a quarter at the moment. The yarn is GGH Marathon (#726 – 2 plies red + 1 ply that shades through red, yellow and a couple of blues). I’m not sure how long it’s been aging in the stash, so it might not be a current color. I’ll have enough left for heels and maybe toes on another pair.

The Very Red Socks

The Very Red Socks

My other knitting had an Oh Drat today, and I had to rip back an inch +, having missed a couple of yo’s – NOT a happy camper here! It definitely doesn’t help with the deadline, but it’s back on track again, and given that NCIS and The Mentalist are on tonight, there should be some good knitting time πŸ˜‰

One cold night down, and one more predicted – so far it looks like things didn’t fare too badly. This is a spot of indoor brightness I couldn’t resist while Himself was researching plumbing fittings at Lowes yesterday.

Crescendo Golden Primula

Crescendo Golden Primula


Thanksgiving Week

I very much enjoyed reading Ireland by Frank Delaney! It’s a big book (556 pgs), but I found it hard to put down. He has a 2nd Irish novel out, which I’ll look for, and a 3rd coming next year. From the dust jacket:

Ireland travels through the centuries, interweaving Ronan’s quest for the Storyteller with a richly evocative unfolding of the great moments in Irish history, ranging from the savage grip of the Ice Age to the green and troubled land of tourist brochures and political unrest.

The first Trekking sock is nearly a sock – just another decrease round, and the toe will be ready to be grafted. The UPS truck dropped off yarn for another deadline project today, so the 2nd sock may not go as quickly as the first.

Trekking XXL #175

Trekking XXL #175

More progress in the Construction Zone, including waterproofing on the outside of the walls. It’s coming along, and plans are to work every day this week except Thursday, with the ever-present qualifier “weather permitting.” Some of it has had to be worked out on the fly, due to some of the unique construction features



of the existing house.

Wednesday evening, we’re expecting one of our daughters & her family, so we’ll have 2 adults, 3 kids and 2 standard poodles added to the mix. Given that most of our “yard” currently looks like the photo, it’s going to be interesting, to say the least πŸ˜‰

The Saturday evening sky was pretty – with the traffic and lights, it was a little different from my usual view. It was chilly, so we got our frozen custard and sat in the car to eat it.

Saturday evening sky from Ted Drewes

Saturday evening sky from Ted Drewes