Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Rewards of the risk, fruits of the labour

You'll be glad to know I got out of there sting-free, and I ended up with this bowl of goodiesI played around with them for a while -- you know, squished them, added oodles of sugar, boiled the heck out of the mixture, threw in some good ol' Certo, and ladled it all into some jars, many of which are recycled (if you're curious, I use new [flat] seal lids on the recycled jars if they're the right size. But I've also used the lids they come with, and have never had a problem. I often choose these ones to give away, recommending they either be kept in the fridge or used right away -- I've kept a number through the years, though, for a control check, and haven't yet seen spoilage). Here's my first batch of blackberry jam 2007. I hope there'll be several more.

Besides making jam, I've been making course outlines and assignment handouts. September 4th is looming and while it may have given me an excuse for back-to-school shopping, it also means my days of knitting, gardening, running, jam-making, shopping when I want are coming to a close again. Yesterday I picked up my copy of the latest edition of a short story collection the publisher has annoyingly helpfully replaced the edition on my course outline with. Four stories I've chosen are no longer in the anthology and I don't really like any four others quite as much, but it's too late to order something else. Luckily, our bookstore gave me a heads-up in time to beg the publisher's rep to rush me the new version -- I'm thanking heaven for a very small favour here! So today I'm going to adjust the course outline to include the new readings, and I think I'll probably also try to get my first few assignment handouts written. I'm also preparing for teaching Toni Morrison's Jazz which is probably too difficult a novel for first-years, but which I'm excited enough about (after re-reading early this summer) that I want to try -- that means getting myself better acquainted with black American history, especially the migration to the North and to the cities in the post-slavery period through to the Second World War. And of course, I'm also reviewing a selection of the critical responses to the novel.

But being the stubborn soul that I am, I'm going to keep on knitting 'til they pull the needles from me, and school hasn't started yet. I finished these yoga socks for my daughter, using leftover sock yarn (Sisu, I'm pretty sure). If I make them again, I'll make the foot a bit shorter, 'cause I'm a bit worried about whether there'll be enough traction at the ball of the foot. And I'm not sure if I'd bother with stripes another time, altho' that's the best way to use up small leftovers. It's just such a pain having to work the ends in (I'm going to do that on my next ferry trip, but since the photo shoot won't happen there (!), thought I'd better take the picture now). She saw them in progress a few weeks ago and claims to love the idea, saying she's sure her yoga classmates will be covetous, so that's good -- I love giving knitted gifts that are really appreciated and used.

I'm still working on the Icarus shawl, and it's growing, but oh, there's really way too much stocking stitch in this beast -- although it's the calmness of that expanse of stocking stitch that attracted me to the pattern and that really sets off the lace edging. I'm now on the last full chart of the stocking stitch pattern and then there's another half-chart after that -- about 30 more rows, roughly -- at 350+ stitches each! Here it is now

And because I need some variety (and some bigger needles, even if they're only 4mms), I've started the cabled vest from the latest KnitSimple. I'm a bit nervous about the pattern -- love what I can see in the magazine, but I'm nervous that it's never shown except under a jacket and with the model sitting.

The measurements are really large, even for a slouchy, easy, vest. Plus I'm substituting some Rowan Scottish Tweed DK for the Naturally Tussock 10-ply called for in the pattern. If it were grey, I'd just give it to one of my guys if it turns out way too big, but purple -- not so much, they're a conservative crew. Right now, though, I'm just enjoying the cable-knitting and the tweedy wool.

But if I want to have time for all this knitting, and even a bit to work on course preparation, I'd better leave you now -- this blogging is addictive!


  1. Camiseta PersonalizadaAugust 14, 2007 at 8:42 AM

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  2. Camiseta PersonalizadaAugust 14, 2007 at 8:44 AM

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  3. can't wait to wear my yoga socks! seriously, i bet I could take them to class and sell them for you :)

  4. maybe we should auction a few pair -- see how high a price we could get! It's not like I don't have tons of free time, right? ;-)

  5. put my name on the list for those socks! I love them! I see a future fashion tread!

    I'll make bread when I come over next week, and we can feast on that delicious blackberry jam.

  7. yes, homemade bread and blackberry jam -- can't be beat!
    and you can pick some for blackberry muffins, and cobbler, and pie, and my freezer . . .


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