amazing picture yarn






Hi!  I don't have an April Fools joke for you but I do have something amazing to show you.  I shared this on my Knitionary Facebook page today and most people thought this was a joke.  It's not. These projects are made with one skein of dyed yarn!  The yarn is not inexpensive as you would imagine for something that must be so labor intensive, but I thought my blog readers who don't go on FB would like to see this amazing yarn too.  You can find Artistic Yarn by Abi right here.  Stroll through her site.  You just won't believe your eyes!  The stripes and pictures are best when you knit in the round with 60 stitches--think socks or mittens, but some people have knit tube scarves and they have come out very cute too.


















Hi!  I don't have an April Fools joke for you but I do have something amazing to show you.  I shared this on my Knitionary Facebook page today and most people thought this was a joke.  It's not. These projects are made with one skein of dyed yarn!  The yarn is not inexpensive as you would imagine for something that must be so labor intensive, but I thought my blog readers who don't go on FB would like to see this amazing yarn too.  You can find Artistic Yarn by Abi right here.  Stroll through her site.  You just won't believe your eyes!  The stripes and pictures are best when you knit in the round with 60 stitches--think socks or mittens, but some people have knit tube scarves and they have come out very cute too.

We're running out the door--heading to the beach with our visiting granddaughter for a visit to the goat farm and then lunch.  I hope to get some good pictures to share.  Have a great weekend and don't get tricked by too many April Foolers!

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baby quilt progress





We've made progress on the baby quilt for my grandson who will be born early this summer.  My girlfriends and I have a tradition of making a baby quilt for each of our children when they are expecting their first baby.  We've been doing this for 16 years, the first one being for Annie, and this one for my son's child may be the last one. We've got it down to a science: the mother-to-be picks the embroidery pattern from my iron-on transfer collection.  Next we head to the fabric shop where she chooses the embroidery floss colors and the fabrics to match the nursery.  When the transfers have been ironed onto the white squares, they are distributed to the six friends with each person embroidering two.  Next, the lattice strips and connecting squares are cut and pieced, then the quilt sandwich is basted (I used basting pins), then the quilt visits each girl for a week each of hand quilting. I've done my quilting part and handed it off with the schedule, a hoop, the quilting thread, a thimble and some needles. I should have it back in 5 weeks completely quilted and ready for the binding!

It's a bit of a secret for the kids.  They obviously know we are making a quilt, but its progress is kept under wraps. They won't see it until closer to the due date at the baby shower my girlfriends are throwing. It's a tradition of which we are all pretty proud. We've made more than a dozen quilts over these last 16 years--all different and all adorable.  This is our first charcoal gray and blue quilt and I absolutely love it!  I know my son, who has seen me be a part of so many group quilts over the years, is quite touched that this one is for his baby.  Sigh.



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a patch of blue































Spring is beautiful with it's bright blue above and bright green below, but I can't help but think it's a good thing it comes only once a year. We've been hard at work in the garden and I've got some achy muscles! The first spring clean-up and planting is always a lot of work, but soon that will slow down to summer maintenance, which is another kind of work altogether. The veggie garden is a work in progress and still a bit of a mess, but all the beds have been worked over with compost and sown with the seeds that don't mind cold soil: Purple Sun Carrots, leeks, dill, and spring onions.  The green beans will go in later as they like it to be a bit warmer. We've weeded most of the rose beds and paths and made each one a water well, and with over 50 roses it's quite a job. The brick paths that are not in full sun are covered with moss, and it's my job every year to get on my hands and knees and scrape each one clean.  I know there are chemical sprays that can do this sort of job, but we are chemical free, so it's doing it the hard way around here or not at all.  I'm not even half done, but I try to work about 5-10 feet a day. Our Valencia juice orange tree is the most prolific it's ever been.  My husband picks a basketful a few times a week then I juice them and put the excess in the freezer. This Juiceman is by far the best electric juicer on the market. I love candied citrus peel and made some yesterday following this recipe exactly.  It will stay in the refrigerator for months if we don't eat it sooner. I didn't plant all that much in the greenhouse this year. My husband wanted to purchase tomato plants since our nursery center carries all the heirlooms we love.  That just left me with planting the summer squashes and cucumbers. They will be up in no time and I'll be transplanting them around Easter.  I'm super excited about my Zinnia Queen Lime Red Heart seeds that I found at the Seed Bank last month.  They are sprouting and I'll be setting those out much later because they too like the warmer weather.  The peonies and wisteria are budding beautifully and should make a good Easter show.  The pear tree has blossomed and the apple doesn't look too far behind.  My herbs look fantastic and we've been having herb salads using half spring mint leaves and half spring lettuce leaves, similar to a Vietnamese style salad.  When the dill and basil appears, I'll be adding them to our herb salads. My favorite spring lunch is a baked potato covered with a mass of chopped, mixed, spring herbs, salt, and pepper. Before long, the warm weather will make the herbs too strong for this, so it's a short seasonal treat. Try it! On the knitting front, I've started Puntilla by Joji Locatelli using some very lovely Sincere Sheep 100% Cormo Wool fingering yarn I found at Stitches West.  The yarn has a lovely minimally-processed, lanoliny feel and is so very soft.  It's swoonworthy and one of those "special treat" yarns I give myself occasionally!

PS:  I know many of you are still buried under snow, but hang in there!

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