Happy Thanksgiving everyone! Well I guess at this point it's belated Thanksgiving but the feeling is still the same. I'm hoping that in the hustle and bustle of a busy weekend that you all managed to steal a few moments of quiet reflection. Sometimes this weekend feels like an endless preparation of a meal and then rushing off to a meal somewhere else.
I have to admit that Ashley and I are pretty lucky. We have one of the chillest Thanksgiving weekends a person can hope for. Usually it’s just Ashley’s fam, her parents, one of mine and the siblings which means never more than ten of us. This year we were even short a couple of hung over siblings. Since my Mom was around, she spent the most time in the kitchen, launching into a six hour baking frenzy first thing Sunday morning. She did Pinterest proud with apple pie and buns from scratch and then topped the lot off with bake - one of my fave West Indian foods. If you’ve never had it before it’s sort of like a Jamaican Festival but if you haven’t heard of that the easiest explanation is that it’s a slightly sweet, deep fried bun type thing. It’s usually served stuffed with something like cheese, or saltfish and scrambled eggs or balogna. My mom makes the best bake in the world. That’s not my bias speaking. Other than that Thanksgiving dinner is the standard fare: Turkey, potatoes, cran sauce and a few extra dishes. Ashley, myself and the moms are all pretty handy in the kitchen so we're rarely disappointed in a meal.
I did try to take some time to privately reflect on things that I’m thankful for. This last year has been a year of pretty incredible transformation for me and as I continue to evolve I find myself grateful for so many things. First, I’m grateful that I finally found the courage to embrace change and while I haven’t learned that lesson perfectly I’m finding that it’s one I’m increasingly eager to practice. I’m grateful for my own sense of curiosity. I don’t think its something I’ve ever appreciated before but in the last year I’ve found myself exploring my own curiosity - curiosity about myself and my own nature and curiosity about the world around me, and trying to do it, as much as possible, without judgment. I’ve learned so much in such a short span of time and I feel like curiosity has propelled my evolution further and faster than any other impetus could. I’m also grateful for all of the people in my life, the people who challenged me to do better and be better and the people who were safe harbour when I needed that reprieve as well. Finally I’m so grateful for all of the life lessons that have brought me to this point. While my curiosity will always cause me to wonder what life would have been like if I had chosen a different path I can honestly say that I’m happy where I am on this path. I might not have been able to say the same thing if I’d chosen a different direction at any point in the past.
So that was Thanksgiving. We ate lots, had lots of family time and did some knitting. I cast on two new projects: a colour work test knit that failed epically and a new set of Hermione’s Fingerless Gloves (designed by Annalisa Dione) in our new MCN Sport weight. Ash decided to test out the new base herself with Stitch Mischief’s (Jade Prosser) new Simply Socks DK pattern that was just released October 5th. Both of us used the excuse that we needed samples for the Woodstock Fleece Festival but really we just wanted to get our hands on that our MCN. It is FAAABULOUS!! I can’t get enough of it. I had one glove finished for the show and managed to churn out the other one yesterday, parked on the couch and marathoning through the Die Hard series. Hermione’s Fingerless Gloves have been my go to for years. They make the perfect quick gift and they look like you’ve got mad knitting skills. If you’re new to cable work they’re definitely a good place to start. The cable is very simple but super pretty. They’re also a free pattern on Ravelry and like my fave teacher loves to say, free is always in the budget.
(Forgot my sewing kit at home and had to fashion a "needle" with a paperclip)
You can’t really tell in the picture but the glove on the left is ever so slightly smaller than the one on the right. That's because I managed to make it all the way through the left mitten knitting with one size 3 needle and one size 4. I can’t even call it a rookie move. It’s just ridiculous.
I also managed to finish my Pint Sized So Faded sweater! Isn’t she beautiful? I loved how she turned out. Didn’t I tell you that I would have her finished by the next blog post? In all honesty, I bound off in the truck on the way to Woodstock and I was weaving in ends until Saturday night. I knit the size 6 with on of our Gradient Adventures and still had tons of yarn leftover. I had 27 grams of the Chartreuse, 23 grams of Storm 10 grams of Tide Pool and 8 grams of Teal. I technically could have gone up to the size 8 but I think the yarn chicken anxiety would have killed me. As it was I was pretty sure that I would run out of the Tide Pool skein and I came pretty close. If I try it again maybe what I’ll do is knit the sleeves first just so I don’t have to worry about running out of yarn and then knit until I run out of yarn on the body. I do have one more niece that I haven’t had a chance to knit for in awhile.
This time around I actually took the time to gauge swatch. I didn’t plod headlong into it like I did at Christmas which is why this sweater only took me six weeks rather than five months to finish. Remarkably my gauge was equal to that of the pattern. This almost never happens. If I could modify it at all I would lengthen the body to have more of the Storm colourway. The challenge with long distance knitting is that I can’t try it on the little monsters so I have to trust the pattern. Since I knit the size 6 and Paige is three, I thought I should follow the pattern more closely, not taking into account that Paige is almost as tall as her five year old sister and I could totally have given her that extra inch.
The first time I looked at the math to calculate the fade my first response was, “HUH?!?!” but after paying a bit more attention I figured it out. I want to be super careful of Andrea Mowry’s copyright so I won’t go into too much detail but if you have purchased the pattern and you’re having trouble with the math, definitely shoot me a line and I’ll help you out.
Finally.... WOOLSTOCK!!!!!!! It was AMAZING!!! Catherine, her family and her volunteers always take care of us. This year Ash and I unpacked our truck in record time. Two trolleys, six volunteers and we were unpacked in under fifteen minutes. Crazy efficient. Our booth was a little further inside the arena this year and we were lucky to have some pretty great neighbours including Rosehaven Yarn from Prince Edward County. (If you guys remember we were there in the spring and we had a BLAST!!) We talked about Prince Edward County Fibre Fest 2018 and I CAN`T WAIT. May 2018 can`t get here fast enough. Ash`s prep game was on point for Woolstock and for this show our tree was completely covered in sock kits. We even had overflow! That has never happened before! We know you love those though so Ash definitely provided. Ash still has a bunch left so if you couldn`t make it out to see us check out the store over the next few days.
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT: Ash had an awesome time with the ladies of Wabi Sabi Yarn in Ottawa for their trunk show. She even sat down for a lovely interview. Take a look below if you didn't get a chance to see it!
That's it folks! Ash and I are chatting about a few cool things over the next little while so keep coming back and definitely follow us on social media. Until next time PEACE to you and yours and happy knitting!