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July 2014
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September 2014


Abstract Cowl

Day before yesterday I sat down to try again to knit with circular needles. I've done this off and on for four years, since I had my stroke, and finally, finally, my thumb and forefinger have gained enough strength to secure a circular needle firmly enough to work with, and I can ungrip them relatively easily to move the work along when needed. It's just one stupid thumb and a finger, but getting them to grip anything has been the bane of my existance. Now I can do it, and I cannot tell you how happy I am to add another thing that I used to be able to do without thinking to my daily life again! I can also carry small things in my hand too, like my cell phone, a light-weight bag, anything that can grip between my thumb and finger. 

You might think that I have slowed down a lot from the picture above. Really, I have had two whole days, surely I should be able to knit 125 stitches for more than three rows in three days, especially considering how excited I was to use my hand again! Actually, I had a needle malfunction. Apparently the size 4 needle I was using has a little divot between the cable and the needle, so my stitches catch aggravatingly. So, I'm waiting to get my needles.


Such a little thing; such a big problem. Sorta like having a thumb and forefinger able to pinch together on demand. It's a little thing, but it makes a world of difference in my knitting!


I have been knitting a little.

I knit a pair of socks when my sister died; I had to have a small, portable project to keep my mind focused, to give me something to do, something to keep from crying all the time, and socks seemed to fit the bill. These socks are from Done Roving's "Tapping Tootsies", a heavy fingering weight made from 60% superwash merino, 30% bamboo, and 10% nylon, in the color "Tangerine Twist". "Tangerine" by Jimmy Dorsey and his orchestra was the number 1 hit the day that Rachel was born. It seems fitting, somehow. 

I have been working on the pink lacy cardigan out of some of Rachel's yarn. I fixed the tangling problem, but I was still struggling. There were so many stitches, the back and both fronts  (including the button bands) are knit together, and I don't have the luxury of using a circular needle, so all those stitches were crammed onto one 14" needle. I left it languishing on the table a lot (on the up side, I got a lot of reading done!). However, as soon as the lace border was completed, the stockinette portion was a little easier, and it is going along well now. 

Lacy cardi

It seem like an eternity of knitting, but I will be up to the underarm soon, and I'll be done the whole body of work; that's equivalent to the back and half a front done. The tops and sleeves should go quickly! I really like this pattern -- if it wasn't in mohair, it would be easier to handle. I would knit this cardigan again.

I am slowly coming out of my fog. It's hard to lose a sister as wonderful as Rachel was. Recently I looked through Ravelry at patterns and found a lot of projects I'd like to make, for Christmas, for myself, and just for fun. It's a good sign. I used to always knit Rachel something special for Christmas. Now I can knit for other people, with her spirit just over my shoulder, laughing at my many mistakes! 


Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens

Lynne and I gave each other flowers last week -- we visited the Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens in Boothbay. It was a great day in the sunshine! We picked the right day too; it rained Siamese and Saint Bernards the following day. Here are some pictures from the gardens:

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CMBG11    CMBG26   

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CMBG30    CMBG31

There were some interesting sculptures every now and then, too:

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And there is a lot more to see! The gardens cover 248 acres. Admission to the Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens from April 15 throuch October 31 is $14.00 for non-members, free for members; $12.00 for Seniors over 64; $6.00 for children 3 - 17 (under 3 they are free). November 1 through April 14 admission is free. They are open daily 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. year round. I'd like to go in November to see it without the tourists -- without as many flowers too, but there you go. They have lots of fabulous trees, evergreens, that I think would be highlighted without all those showy flowers around. They have lots of places to sit and knit, too! It's a good place to spend the day. If I lived closer and wasn't handicapped and joined the Coastal Maine Botanical Society, you can bet I'd be there almost every day!