Joyknits!

Knitting, spinning, pets, food and other thoughts


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Not just beans …

there are other things growing here too, like the Disco Belle hibiscus hibiscusand cucumbers, which are just starting to come in. These are a pickling variety, but they’re also very good to snack on πŸ˜‰ cukesBut there are plenty of beans – I’ve already put some in the freezer to enjoy next winter, and I fixed some of the little French fillet beans (Calima) with shallots, diced tomato, toasted pine nuts and fresh herbs (thyme, parsley & basil) the other night – yum! These beans are producing very well and are definitely on my plant-again list. beans


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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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KIPing, gardening and catching up

I was actually KIPing* at the end of the appropriate week for once. Potosi (originally Mine au Breton) celebrated the 250th anniversary of its founding with a big parade, pageant and all sorts of activities, including heritage crafters. We were pretty lucky with our location on the porch of the courthouse, which provided shade as well as shelter from rain – we needed both! I ended up working on a pair of mittens, which is mostly finished, but I suppose I really should go back and finish the 2nd thumb πŸ˜‰knittingThe following weekend was TNNA, which is always both hectic and interesting with all the new yarns to pet. All in all, a good trip (though I’m still catching up with details from it), and I was lucky to leave ahead of the later weather delays!

The garden is coming along nicely, and we have actual teeny-tiny beans on 3 of the 4 varieties I planted; the other variety is blooming, just no beans yet. If they all do well, we could have beans like all the bad zucchini jokes πŸ˜‰beansThe Italian Roma beans are labeled as bush beans, but the more they grow, the more I think they’re not bush, so I recycled an old gate as a trellis for them, just in case.

Supposed-to-be-bush beans

Supposed-to-be-bush beans

And more … I can hardly wait for the fresh veggies πŸ˜›

Sweet Italian peppers

Sweet Italian peppers

Tomatoes

Tomatoes

Volunteer tomato plants and mystery squash/melon in the old compost pile

Volunteer tomato plants and mystery squash/melon in the old compost pile

Salvia by the deck

Salvia by the deck

*Knitting In Public


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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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Yarn, garden and other bits

I received some interesting yarns to doodle with,

yarn

Seeds are coming up in the garden …bean row

Roma Italian beans.

Roma Italian beans.

Squash.

Squash.

and the planters are looking good planters

In a moment of possible insanity, I said I’d participate in the 250th anniversary celebration for our county seat, which meant digging out a craft show wardrobe that hasn’t been used in forever. We won’t discuss the fact that some alterations are needed, but if I do say so, I’m still rather proud of some of the trim details I did so many years ago!

Craft show clothes

Craft show clothes

Apron pocket detail.

Apron pocket detail.

Apron lace

Apron lace (yes, it needs to be ironed)


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Out & about …

We’ve had lots of birds and critters in the yard, including this wren, who was exploring below the deck yesterday,

Wren (again)

Wren (bug hunting)

(the rock “mulch” is the only way I’ve found to keep the chipmunks from digging up my plants)

Wren

Wren

and one of the pair of phoebes that’s nesting down under again (closer than usual – I snuck this shot over the railing)

Phoebe

Phoebe

and more of the local wildlife – I’m glad I’ve got a rabbit-proof fence around the veggies!

How many bunnies?

How many bunnies (trick question)?

and even caterpillars – since they’re Swallowtail caterpillars (actually 5 of them), I just picked up another dill plant πŸ˜‰

Swallowtail caterpillar

Swallowtail caterpillar

Prairie Sunrise has been spectacular, though the rains have made it a bit droopy. I counted 24 flowers and buds on it.

Rose bush

Rose bush

Prairie Sunrise bud.

Prairie Sunrise bud.

Just a little ways over, the hollyhocks are getting ready to bloom – can’t wait to see what color(s) are there.

Hollynocks

Hollyhocks

This was the sky last evening, and it’s supposed to be more of the same, which makes Toby one unhappy dog, even with his ThunderShirt!

Stormy sky

Stormy sky


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Garden and a little knitting

Lots of things in bloom now, with more to come. The peonies are right on time for Memorial Day. I’m wishing I’d put supports around them earlier, especially Festiva Maxima, which is so loaded it’s drooping badly, but it’s gorgeous!

Peony White Sands

Peony White Sands

Pink Peony

Pink Peony

Peony Festiva Maxima

Peony Festiva Maxima

I’ve made progress in the vegetable garden. There’s now a tomato plant next to each of the stakes but 1 – I’m still chasing a black/purple tomato plant for that spot. I had a Black Krim last year, but haven’t had any luck finding a plant this year. The asparagus (extreme right; planted last year) is doing nicely, and we should be able to pick more from it next year. There’s 1 row of okra in (blue tag, left) and a couple of rows of beans yet to plant – I get hungry just thinking about them πŸ˜‰garden0525

And here’s the gratuitous knitting picture – I finished a pair of socks in Lang JaWolle from stash (!); there’s another pair already on the needles. socks 0526Hope everyone has a lovely holiday!


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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