Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Friday, January 26, 2007


When the snowmobile, the new one, was bought and brought to us, I was upstairs doing something that I consider as important household chores. It was a Friday. The moment the toy came, my husband was off with it. Half an hour later or so, he opened the front door and I heard him calling me. I dropped everything I was doing and thought that something urgent had turned up. So I practically run down and was greeted by a very happy looking man. I was told to come to the window to look at how fast he was driving on the ice of the lake in front of the house. There I was, looking out of the window, waiting for this shuttle to pass my house. (I see snowmobiles on the ice quite frequently driving very fast, and frankly I could not see a big difference…) Then he drives up to the house and sincerely seeks for my opinion of the speed he was doing. “Did I look fast?” I realized that this was one of these important moments in our marriage and that there was only one possible answer. My whole being was radiating admiration.

Yesterday we were out again with the snowmobiles and met two men from the village. And they wanted to have a test drive with our new toy. So I jumped off the mobile to let each of them to have a drive and sort of was looking away to see something that had caught my attention, but I was brought back to the scene with the words “look how fast he is driving!” There I was in the man world, not only as a spectator but I had stepped right inside. This brief, almost sacred plain moment among these three men was quite refreshing.

I know I made someone very happy. I got a big bouquet of roses. And later last night when I was knitting my Koigu socks, he got very poetic.

His box of crayons has only green, blue, brown, yellow, red and black of course. Then there are bunch of colours that leave him puzzled like violet, turquoise and orange. Orange is always red. Violet and turquoise can be anything from the above list. I have tried to make him see more, like if he talks about e.g. green I have asked, green like olives or green like fresh birch leaves. He looks very puzzled and will say, after some serious consideration, like green as green.

But last night was different, he called my socks cranberry-pudding-red.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Arctic Wednesday

The temperature is down close to -30 degrees. Here see survivors of the Arctic Winter... These two, actually there were three, but could not get them into the same picture, were seen from the kitchen window and the picture was taken from the inside. The weather is a bit too cold for me to wander around taking pictures but these three seemed to be doing fine. It is so cold outside that it is very easy to get frost bites. I'm a bit too concerned of them maybe (children would say here definitely) but I cannot stress enough of the importance of having plenty of wool (this is where I stress on wool and wool only and talk against those modern man made fibres) on plus a mandatory scarf to cover your face. (Can you here my tone of voice here? I try to sound very convincing even now... I'm very convincing.) For rosy cheeks I could thank frost bites few winters ago... And believe me, it is no fun either when your nose is similar to these guys' cousin Rudolph's.
This was Tina's doing... So the visit was cut short.
The fire is on nonstop. Tina comes in ever so often to warm herself and seems to be hungry all the time.
I had this lovely pale pink Koigu pegging to be knit into Embossed Leaves Socks. So once again this entertaining pattern from Interweave Knits Winter 2005. What can I say about the pattern that has not been said many times before? It is a beautiful pattern. This is my third pair.And finally, finally got around knitting the Victorian Lace Shawl out of Kidsilk Haze.

Monday, January 22, 2007

A convert

Since last time I have dealt with a broken car (fixed now!), discovered a new hobby, taken care of a sick child (flu) and made a small trip. All that affected my computer time.

Thank you for your nice comments of the scarf. The small pompon's in the ends are crocheted. I kept changing the pompon pattern every time I made a new one because the shape would not come out perfect. Started with a very small circle, increased a lot on the first few rounds and then again decreased, it is only few stitches, so if you try and the shape is off, just rip and try again. They are so small so to try out does not take long.

Now when I think about the scarf it seems like I knit it eons ago. Or more like if someone else did it. I’m so off to the lace and have knit all the patterns from the Victorian Lace Today book in my mind that it seems like all I have ever done is lace, all I ever do is lace. (Trying to explain here how much I love lace.) I was reminded that I can feel this way until a next new book comes along and that I’m not held responsible for these words…

The decision what to choose was a tough one. I was off to further north this weekend (me and dh only) and I wanted something simple to take along, simple but beautiful. So I took some kidsilk haze along and a copy of a pattern for Lace Rectangle (p. 20). I did not have time to knit one stitch though. But I don’t think I will change my mind. I have to start somewhere and this seems like a good one to start with. I will probably knit with a smaller needle size. I don’t enjoy needles bigger than 4 mm (US5,5) and I don’t care for speed here

…because for speed I have this. You did not think I would take this route, I did not think I would take this route either. But I did. And I love it. My husband has three girls and teenage girls will not drive around with their father nor are they impressed with the speed he is driving. Their boyfriends won’t drive around with the father either. So this is where I step into the picture. I get to play the boy part now. I’m there to listen to all the machinery details and horse powers and be astonished of the vehicle's abilities to push through difficult snow conditions. I must be lacking something essential here … I have listened and listened –really have– but all I can say here is that this new piece of machinery is not as smelly and loud as the old one and this I can tell by using my senses. Tina does not want anything to do with these but old Miina is happy to sit in front of dh when he goes for a drive.

I did not have my camera when we went for a drive today. We saw some reindeer that let us come very close. I’m sure they thought that we were there to feed them (sometimes hay is taken out to the woods for the reindeer) because they were not one bit afraid of us. I almost could have touched one of them. Next time we go out, I’ll bring the camera.

Definitely I will have a shawl on the needles later on today but hopefully also socks. I’m drawn to the sock yarn stash again… This new hobby calls for warm wool and I will do just about anything to promote wool.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Meaning of life

I received a new book yesterday.
Forget everything I ever said about anything.
I was so wrong saying that I have enough lace.
I did not know what I was talking about.
I must have meant that if I ever need anything it is lace.
Victorian Lace Today is now the center of my universe, the reason I live. I will never knit anything else but lace from now on. I kept looking at the pictures until one in the morning and the first thing I remembered when the alarm clock went at 0530 was the book. It is all so clear now, the meaning of my life is to knit lace.

So it is really a good thing I finished the STR scarf yesterday before the mail came otherwise she would be collecting dust in the UFO basket. Compared to the beauties in the book I cannot understand the reason to be showing this to you. What made me to spend so many hours doing this simple pattern

41 stitches with 3,5 mm (US4) needles;
four rows of knit stitches,
then alternating these two rows:
first row - slip the first stitch as if to purl yarn in front, then knit one, *purl 2, knit 3* until the last four when again purl 2, knit 1 and the last stitch knit through back loop,
second row - slip the first stitch as if to purl yarn in front again, knit one, purl the whole row until the last two, knit 1, knit the last through the back loop,
until desired length
and four rows of knit only and cast off... (I have blocked the scarf and she is flat and nice now but I suspect that when I start to wear her, the sides will curl inwards a bit, probably not very much, but definately some.)
The little bird motif is embroidered there in the middle.

And a little bit of yellow, red and blues.

The yarn is Lightweight Socks that Rock in Falcon's Eye colourway. Soft and lovely yarn. I used up almost two skeins. I'm so happy the table is cleared and I can cast on for some lace.

If only I can decide which one I will knit first form the book...

PS. Tina can come into the house whenever she pleases but she loves to be out in her little house. Every night before I go to bed, I go out to check on her for the last time. She won't even come out of her little house, I will go to her and peek inside the house to see that she is warm and fine. And if she happens to bark in the middle of the night, even once, I get up and let her in but she does that very rarely. Old Miina would not even dream of spending the night outside, nor the cat in winter time.

Sunday, January 14, 2007


Thank you for your concern. All your good wishes have worked. Since the last time I have seen the sun twice. There were two days in a row with the sun. First I saw a shadow and then realized that if there was a shadow there had to be the sun somewhere. She was very close to the horizon and I had to take the boots and walk through the snow down to the lake to be able to see her, but there she was. Very shy and timid and only for a short period of time, but she was there and the light was delicious. Not bright and untamed like in March when the rays keep bouncing from the snow all over but delicate and tender and lovely. Now I'll have to send the snow around...

I have done very little knitting. The STR scarf is almost done, she is blocking at the moment and then I’ll add some embellishment. But I don’t know what to knit next. And since I have not heard any special calls from the yarn stash (I think it is this family to blame for. They are too noisy for me to pick up the calls from the stash... ) I have been spinning. I took up again the silk and merino blend that I started in the fall and have been spinning very thin singles. It is time consuming but the wool is so well prepared that it glides through my hands...

Today when I was out with the dogs I realized that Tina has a problem. A serious one. I suspect she has invaders in her house. She stands in front of the house and listens, you can see her ears moving back and forth and her head tilting from one side to another. Occasionally she turns and runs to the backside the house and listens there.Maybe there are mice under the floor of her house. Mr Cat has promised to help her out, but not before the spring. It has been quite cold, - 18 C today outside, and that is too cold for an old man.

I wish I could help the poor girl. But I did tell her to be happy that at least her company does not play music too loud, or talk on the phone all the time or keep leaving clothes or dishes all around or ask for food or money. Then on the other hand, what do I know about the mice and their annoying ways.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Have you seen the sun lately?

What is there to tell of an ordinary Tuesday? The children left to school very early in the morning. By 0710 all three of them were gone.
Quiet house.
Few loads of laundry.
Some cleaning.
Little bit of cooking.
Had my first cup of coffee early in the morning in total darkness. Before noon had my second cup in dim daylight. At three in the afternoon my third cup in the blue moments. At five in the afternoon the fourth cup again in total darkness. Just had my fifth one, again in total darkness.

It was raining the whole day turning every single surface into slippery ice so daily walk was limited going to the mailbox and back. I have one bruise on my knee but no broken bones.
I drove to town and had my eyes checked. For some time I have felt that I can't see very well. The news, my eye sight is not that bad. It is this long dark winter...

January is the month when the whole forest seems to be dead, or if you don’t want to sound too gloomy, let’s just say that it is sound asleep. It is the deepest winter and my thoughts don’t even reach as far as spring yet. It is January and a Tuesday.

Midwinter Tuesday.
This all feels a bit like I was knitting the second long stocking. Seems endless and the excitement of (seasons changing) a new project is gone and the toe decreases are not in the vicinity. Or is this like another sleeve? Or rather even just starting the first sleeve and knowing that I have to knit this all over again? What would be the best way to tackle the sleeves? What would be the best way to survive the long and dark January? One a rainy January Tuesday I would just like to make this sweater sleeveless and hibernate until spring, but I guess that it is not really an option here. The moment I would go and lie down would give the children/dogs/a cat in the house a signal, that mother has nothing to do and they would start thinking up ways to entertain me…

Should one be knitting summer things? Should one start one endless project and tackle it one stitch at a time, one minute, one hour and one day at a time? Should I cast on for a big cardigan, and divide the process into little steps? First the back, by the time the back is done, January should be gone too. Then fronts February. In March there would be lots of light, one day nice and warm but then the other like winter again, two sleeves like two different kind of spring days… In April the sewing and finishing and then finally when the spring, May, is here the days might be warm enough to wear it outside. Is that what I should do?

Long, endless dark winter knit into a cardigan.

There is this voice in the back of my mind saying that it takes awfully long time to knit a cardigan… and that this winter is long, long enough to knit half a dozen cardigans with 2 mm (US0) needles.

Could somebody please turn on the big lamp in the sky? I would be happy with 20 minutes. Or even with 10.

You want pictures? What pictures? Pull a paper bag over your head and close your eyes, and there you have a picture.

Sunday, January 07, 2007

This scarf

has been concerned of the amount of snow we have been having lately. Remember how I was wondering if we would need to use upstairs windows to get out of the house.
She is taking this all very seriously.

She is not there yet. With 3,5 mm (US4) needles and 41 stitches on a needle her speed is not that great. And she was slowed down a bit since after 130 cm (52") she had to call another skein.

Thank you again for all your supportive comments! I will try to add some text to the photoalbums in the future.

Friday, January 05, 2007


I was trying to add some pictures of my creatures to the sidebar and am not quite sure yet if I managed to do it, but will keep trying...

I'm sorry if you all don't enjoy this new colour. I was not sure of it either ...and for a few seconds yesterday thought that I would go to the blue template...but then decided that since this is going to be a year of colour for me, I would get myself used to this colour... eventually... and if I would change the template that would again mean some extra work... and...

I just quote something I heard on TV yesterday which makes sense (poor translation I know...)
" You can't always win. You can always lose. And you can keep explaining away endlessly..."

Green it is. As is my new scarf to be. I'm almost done with the first skein but it is not long enough. Will tell you then how much you can get out of one skein.

I will get back outside now. I have changed the needles to a shovel. (The shovel is so much better for the figure. I had a large piece of cake just recently. Did I tell you that I'm having a non-chocolate January.) The sky does not know when to stop. If this goes on, soon we will have to start using the upstairs windows if we want to leave the house.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007


We had some snow. Shoveling scheduled for tomorrow but that is fine. The day gets longer about 3 minutes a day at this time of the year - I have been told.

And I found myself a new winter coat. I don't like shopping. I try to be quick - Laurie, I think I made myself a new record today!

And I got my little hands on Socks that Rock yarn that has been praised highly around the knitting blogs. The colour is beautiful, it is Falcon's Eye. This is lightweight but it felt a bit too thick for socks. So I cast on for a scarf. I knit for a while but was not sure of the feel until I blocked it. But now can see and feel the beauty.

Easy, yes, but I did say I would add colour to my knits this year and that might not be easy here because I have only one colourway of this yarn. (If you look closely you can see one stitch in the middle of the picture that is sort of red - there was a little fleck in the yarn - but I don't think that would count...) January 3rd and already being tested on the resolution...

Monday, January 01, 2007

Happy New Year to You!

It is good to look at cats all the other times of the year but not the first thing on a new year. If you want to have a hardworking and productive year, you should set your eyes first on a horse.

Then it is okey to look at cats. If cat was the first thing you saw today, you might end up having a lazy year. I'm not sure if this old tale can be a fact anymore if you look at the list of knitting in 2006 at Wendyknits. It must be just the opposite, I'm sure Miss Lucy's presence works wonders. So here for all of us a picture of Lucy. I will have her picture on my wall during this year, let's hope her picture has the same or at least almost the same effect than her presence on my knitting.

Tina insists that seeing a dog just brings you lots of joy, so here is to you from her, stay well and be happily tucked in your cosy little hay beds (as she is here in her little house)!I completed the Qiviuk muffatees.
Added the little bird motif, it is embroidered on a little knit label that can be folded inside.
To give the muffatees some extra colour I beaded few green beads to the yarn. The other one looks the same as in the last post. I did not have any volunteers for pictures today.

There has been some changes in blogger and when the need to uppgrade the template came, I changed it. But it needs some more work which I hope I have time for some other day. I was not sure whether to have a blue or a green template but then chose the green. Have to go and see what is said about the colour green and its impact...