Two Left Needles

Knitting, spinning and dyeing
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Hooboy, it's been so long I don't know where to begin. Let's keep it short and manageable, shall we?

We're alive and well!

Lily is thriving and a real trip to watch. She's got such personality!

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Though most people don't see it because she's become very reserved with strangers. She's learning and growing so fast; loves to dance,

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tells stories, crazy curious about everything, and just started walking across the room.

Walking!
wearing papa's hat

It still amazes me that we all started this way, that we all had to learn to crawl, and walk, and eat.

Motherhood is really hard, harder than I expected (and I expected hard). I think the hardest part has to do with having another person around all the time, someone who needs constant interaction and care. Scott and I are both introverts, and cherish our quiet time. We need downtime to recharge from the day. Learning to be around and interact with someone (almost) 24/7 was exhausting. We're getting used to it, and she doesn't need the same constant interaction now, so it's getting better. But when she goes to sleep, man, do I need my knitting/spinning time!

I wouldn't trade it for anything, though.

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sock shenanigans

There has been a good bit of spinning

Hello Yarn shetland - 2-ply
Hello Yarn Shetland in browns and greens, spun 2-ply

Indigo Moon Merino/Alpaca/Silk - 2-ply
Indigo Moon Merino/Alpaca/Silk, spun 2-ply

and knitting going on (and the usual stash enhancing),

November socks - in progress
November Socks; yarn is Zen String Serendipity Fingering in November

Monkey socks - in progress
Monkey socks; yarn is Shibui Knits Socks in Orchid

even a bit of drum carding.

Drumcarded merino/silk
carded merino and silk

I finished my Skater's Undertop (and wore it to Spa!),

Skater's Undertop - in progress
last pic I took

and Scott's Cobblestone (the week before it got too warm to wear), and I'm in the midst of the ZephyrStyle Tree Jacket in Tess' Designer Yarns Cultivated Silk & Wool.

Tree Trunk: in progress

After seeing Julia's finished sweater, I immediately cast on. The yarn is softalicious, but catches on any scruffy bits on my hands. Now that it's too warm to wear, I'm not as motivated to finish...

I'd like to have some gorgeous finished object photos like Cheryl, but I tell you, finding an afternoon with Scott and I both free and me freshly showered and baby okay on her own is not so frequent. Nevermind the fact that I am in serious need of a haircut. (Lily gets almost twice as many baths as I do showers. I'm beginning to envy her.)

We're heading to MDSW next week, can't wait! I'll be volunteering at the Fleece Show again (guess how many fleeces I'll walk away with?). Lily turns 1 the day we leave. She doesn't know it yet, but she'll finally get to eat some of that ice cream she keeps seeing us eat (I've been able to eat a lot of ice cream while nursing, it will be a hard habit to break).

Hmm, not so short or manageable, but good to be back.

I'm still super-motivated to knit the Skater's Undertop. The yarn is Debbie Bliss wool/cotton that I bought at Webs two years ago. Only slightly marinated (I have things much older in the stash). It feels very cotton-y, but at 50% wool, it's the most wool I've been knitting with lately, so it feels like r-e-l-i-e-f to my hands.

I'm to the armpits on the body:

Skater's Undertop - in progress

and have started sleeve one:

Skater's Undertop - in progress

I love the simple cable detail, and how it carries up over the shoulder to the neck. I also appreciate the in-the-round construction. I like the shape/fit and know this is something that will become part of my wardrobe, even with the wool content (I just won't wear it at home). And the mostly-stockinette knitting is perfect for my current state-of-mind. Ah yes, and the anticipation of the first sweater post-pregnancy. All these keep me going at a good clip.

I know I won't be comfortable with a belly-baring top or 3/4 sleeves so I'm adding length to the body and the sleeves. I've been trying it on as I go, too. I really want this to fit well.

I must be desperate for contact with wool because I picked up Trellis this weekend and doubled my progress:

Trellis - in progress

Sorry for the crappy photo.

I'm getting used to the 7-into-5 stitches, which require knitting the same 7 stitches together 3 times. Addi Lace needles come in handy for these manoevers. But I'm not digging the short rows (I took out a repeat because of my limited yardage. Who buys only 1 ounce of laceweight? Who??). It's hard to get into a rhythm before the row ends and then I have to figure out how to start the next one. Somehow I can't memorize the first few stitches of each row, but I'm golden after that. I feel like this is a project I'm finishing to finish, because I want to use the yarn. Which is fine. It will be beautiful. I just wish I could enjoy the process more.

I've made some progress on Scott's Cobblestone. This is an older picture:

Cobblestone - in progress

I'm almost to the armpits now. The cotton/silk is hard on my hands so I work on it in spurts. Wanting to get this done for Scott keeps me going. Also, occasionally, guilt.

I started Honeymoon Cami in April 2006, lost steam, then got pregnant and wasn't sure I'd be able to wear it afterwards, so it sat. After I got a question on it on Ravelry, I pulled it out to check gauge. I realized I didn't have that much more to go, and that it seemed like it not only would still fit, but would also be flattering. And the colors are great. But perhaps most importantly, I'd be able to quickly reduce my WIP count to squeeze in another project. So I finished it. More non-wool: SWTC Bamboo. Everything is sewn up, just needs a quick block.

Honeymoon Cami - in progress

That Cute Flirty Skirt is knit, washed and blocked. Before:

That Cute Flirty Skirt - in progress

After:

That Cute Flirty Skirt

Look how much darker it got!

Just kidding. I almost wore this at Rhinebeck. In the hotel room, with Scott's help, I cable-plied some yarn to make the waist-tie. I even remembered to bring a slip. The only problem was... shoes. Picture the above with slip-on cloggy mocs and handknit ankle socks. Dor-kay.

I finished it to have something handknit to wear to Rhinebeck, and to show Anne. But after I realized I couldn't wear it, I forgot to even mention it to her.  :(

And Cheeky never got a "started" or "in progress" post before all the pieces were knitted up:

Cheeky - in progress

My first time working with Mission Falls 1824 cotton and I find it quite nice. For cotton. This is the 12 month size so I hope Lily will be able to wear it for more than a month or two. Motivation: something cute for her to wear. Lack of motivation (for sewing it up): knowing it's too big for her anyway.

Different projects, different motivations. What motivates you?