Like The Queen
Whatever happens to strike my fancy, but surely some sort of fiber content.


It is so good to hear you sounding more like your old self! Yay, too, for birthday cameras - a whole new realm of learning experiences for you. I know as I recently bought a new camera and still have heaps to learn about it.

I don't know how you are set up for chart knitting but when I knitted a lace shawl last year I did't have a magnetic board and markers to help me keep my place. Instead I used a line of post-it notes and placed them right across the page ABOVE the row I was working on. Above, because it is more important to see where you have been than where you are going. This really helped to block out the confusion of seeing all of the rows at once. I know that you can do it, though, and can't wait to see pictures of your progress!

By Blogger KathyR, at 6:39 PM  

So happy you are finally feeling better and up to your regular schedule. The pictures are lovely, and especially the castle!

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 10:21 AM  

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Sunday, August 30, 2009  

Wide Open Sunday

That's just what today is - open and free and delightfully cool. We had rain like God's faucet was turned on Friday night - so heavy it made the view of the fields a blank white screen. Yesterday dawned hot and hotter and humid and humid-er (humidier?) and altogether beastly. Every spider in 4 counties had spun a cobweb between any two points they could find in my house. I was determined. This was turning out to be the first weekend I've felt well enough to clean house in weeks and weeks and by golly, I was going to do it.

Happily, BD was out of the house all day helping the New Boat Owner and his friends pack up the sailboat. Happier still, my birthday camera ( Oh didn't I tell you? A new Panasonic Lumix ZS1 with a fast shutter and a 12x zoom) was on a FedEx truck coming from Ashland. I had no idea they delivered on Saturdays or I might have put my home address down for them to bring it to. But staff was on duty and had instructions to sign for it and call me when it came in. So. With everything set, I began with broom and mini-vac (for the window sills) and vacuum and static cloths and soap and water ... in my bedroom, which is at one corner of the house... and scrubbed, swept, vacuumed, and cleaned all the way to the den ... which is the diagonal corner. Of course, I will always be finding More Cobwebs ... in fact, I see one now, between the back of the printer and the back of the computer ... but I got 80% of 'em and that is enough to fool people, including me, into thinking the house is clean.

It started out wickedly hot and damp and I'd decided to eek out the last of my clean underwear and do laundry in the middle of the week, when suddenly a dry cool breeze wafted through the house. Whoa! Brought me up short and before I could begin to doubt, the clouds broke up and the breeze grew stronger and within an hour the whole world had been transformed into a bright blue day with puffy clouds and playful breezes. Into the washer when the dank stuff that didn't get dry last Saturday. Eventually three loads made it to the clothes line, by which time the sky was pure celestial blue with nary a cloud in sight. What a transformation! What pleasure! as if the gods had decided to reward me for Doing My Doooty.

Of course, all this took all day - at least, I wasn't ready to go to town to pick up my Brand New Birthday Camera till about 2:30 and while I was at it I slipped across the river to get some good fruits and vegetables from the folk who have a stand in Warsaw. I had not bothered to clean up after the sweaty Saturday chores and sure enough, a friend was at the fruit stand - but since she is a friend, not just somebody who recognizes the library director in all her scruffiness, she just laughed when I pulled a plastic bag over my head...too late to protect my identity but not too late to be silly.

So you are all thinking, well and good, but what about the shawl and the wide border and knitting? And I am getting there, I promise. Because you are not to think that I was using housecleaning as an avoidance technique. TheCastle really was in desperate condition. But - and there always is that but, no?

You see, a 51 stitch lace border pattern is a lot harder to knit than a 48 stitch pattern that has built up slowly and is easy to read. I actually cast on the border on Friday night - about 6 times - using provisional cast ons - first the ones in the book and then my own, which is a long tail cast on with waste yarn. Maybe not the most elegant, but surely the one that gives you the most stable foundation. Of course I was thinking I would want to knit with the needle that is already holding the shawl so that as I came back in from the outer point I would pick up the shawl stitch hanging on that left needle and K2Tog.

Well - that is as clumsy as it can be. I may learn, after a while, to do it with ease but I haven't done so yet.

So I cast onto a #5 double point and knit the first row.

Ugh! It took me forever to knit those 51 stitches. I kept losing my place on the chart and having to count stitches and graph paper boxes and I am sure I started that row over at least twice. and then it was time to knit back. And that's when I realized that there are shaping stitches on the purl side too.

Now - I can shape in knit and in purl and on front and on back - but not when it's a dank Friday night after my first full week back at work after a fried fish supper. No. That is just asking TheQueen to do Too Much. I set everything aside, promised myself I would enlarge the pattern (which I did on the library copy machine yesterday) and wait until I could be in a calm, tidy, clean pretty comfortable setting - in other words - after the house was clean, on Sunday.

And so - today I have the whole long day in front of me with no other demands on my time but to eat delicious fruit and knit delicious cashmere. It is my intention to have Border Lace Photos tomorrow, taken with a Birthday Camera - but for today - here are the first experimental pictures, taken on the automatic setting, from the Birthday Camera.

First off - here is the true King of the Castle - Captain Jack Haile.

"What do you mean I'm covered with seed ticks?"

Here is TheCastle on a misty Sunday morning.

This is a close-up using the macro button but still on automatic.

This is a close-up using the marco-zoom function. I'm standing maybe 20 feet away from these Four-O'clocks who's inner timepeace is way off. They're not supposed to bloom in the morning!

And here is the lace border pattern - enlarged so I can follow it more easily.

Off I go right now - to knit border to shawl. Happy Wide Open Sunday to you all.

posted by Bess | 8:08 AM