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Francine's Blog

February in a flurry

There was snow. Lots and lots of snow.

February's Snows Photo by Thom Ryng

Here in the Northwest, we usually go through February in the rain. Not so much in 2011.

We had snow all the way up until the last day of February. This was, to me, the oddest February I’ve experienced since moving here nearly thirty years ago.

February also marks what would have been my 27th wedding anniversary had I stayed married to husband 1 and marks the divorce initiation to husband 2. I’m sticking with number 3. He’s a gem and entirely too tolerant of my gazelle brain.

First, onto the Fiber of February:

As part of my 12 Months of Socks (a pair a month) I give you the next installment: February. Ok, they don’t match but it’s a pair and that counts.

February's Pair of Socks "Leyburn" and self striping "Puzzle"

February's Pair of Socks "Leyburn" and self striping "Puzzle"

I also ripped the rainbow one out completely this morning. The toe was funky and the whole thing did not fit properly. The whole purpose of making myself socks is so that they’ll actually fit. The purpose of knitting toe up socks is to ensure they fit exactly to your foot as you knit. Neither of these things happened. I could barely get it over my foot from the wacky “sewn” bind off.

I have had a spinning bug so I look back on my resolve for the year and realize this is going to come in spurts and not some lovely even weekly thing. If I want that to work, I need to involve ritual.

Here’s 4.25 ounces of handpainted Mongolian Cashmere and Mulberry silk (from Blue Moon Fibert Arts) and the Bombyx Merino dyed in Moonstone by Chasing Rainbows Dyeworks that I spun and plied last week:

Handspun Blue

Blue Moon Fiber Arts "Blue"

Bombyx & Merino in "Moonstone"

Next on the wheel is some Spunky Eclectic Wensleydale in “The Perfect Storm” that Thom picked out. I used to belong to the Spunky Eclectic fiber club but realized that if I kept getting someone else’s hand dyed fiber that I’d never get around to dyeing the fiber in my own stash.

There’s a LOT of UFO’s around here and some I’m actually working on. These are actually worked up further than I have a photo for because of the phone meltdown.

My niece’s sweater:

Stella Mira's Peapod

This is being done in Debbie Bliss Prima. Prima’s got that lovely shine from the bamboo that’s in the blend with merino. I usually hate working with bamboo — straight bamboo yarn is nasty and splitty and braid plied so it’s harsh on the hands when you knit. This has the softness of the merino and the shine of the bamboo or cotton yet is soft and yummy. It looks like cotton yet is plied like merino and doesn’t split. I like it immensely.

My Merope Shawl:

Merope by Romi

and a hat and gaiter combo I’m doing up in Toots LeBlanc’s yummy merino / angora for Jason who is freezing his ass off in South Carolina and having a hard time as his mother is in hospice. Except no piccies for that…no peeks.

Garden Feats and some Cat Tawk

There was also a lot of weirdness. Things like Bake Sales that went wrong and my Blackberry that fried and then unfried itself. There was Madrona and more fiber and a general malaise. I’ve been a lazy butt. But that, in general, is usually my February. I’m way behind on my seed starting but I do feel pretty good about the garlic that’s all over my garden because I actually planted it in the Fall, for the first time… ever. Six varieties of garlic for me and my kitchen which I will be happy to gloat over later in the season when I pull and braid them.

I had all kinds of hopes for February. It was supposed to be my month of writing, exercise and a trip to San Francisco. But then… Abiu got a major ear melanoma and $450 dollars later…

Abiu in momma's arms

Abiu and the Cone of Shame

He is very unhappy with Mommy. It may LOOK like he wants to snuggle but he’s got a pretty darn good grip on me there. Ow!

The issue mostly was that he scratched his ear so hard he gave himself a floppy ear which needed surgery. Let that be a lesson to anyone with cats, if they aren’t behaving normally, get a doc to look at it before it costs you ten times as much as the visit and meds for whatever ails them. Very expensive lesson learned.

That being said… I’m off to make some yummies for tomorrow night’s potluck at Evergreen Tacoma where I shall be Feisty

and to tell you all about delicious Tomato Soup!