Yarnalong: Galentine’s Edition

Hi friends, and happy Wednesday!

Did you know Yarn Along is back?  That’s right, in January, Ginny announced the return of Yarnalong, in a monthly format — she posts the first Wednesday of every month.  Obviously, today is not the first Wednesday of February (apparently, this month I’ll be doing everything one week late) but in the spirit of getting back to normal blogging, I figured better late than never.

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Knitting: For me, it’s been all sweater knitting, all the time of late. My EYF Stasis is so close to being done, I can almost taste it.  I also started a Carbeth sweater last week, and that’s been flying off the needles in bulky yarn.  In fact, I thought I’d have both of these jumpers finished Monday or Tuesday, but a case of the flu has slowed me down a bit (hence those cough drops).  I’m happy to report that, in the end, it seems I’ll have plenty of yarn to finish my Stasis (I had been a bit worried at the beginning).  Carbeth, on the other hand, is another story … I’m just shy of the neckline and have run out of yarn! I think my lovely mom is going to come to the rescue though, and send me a ball or two as she has some in stash (thanks Mom!)

Reading: Completely by chance, my books this week seem particularly apt given it’s Galentine’s Day.

I’ve just finished up Mary Beard’s Women and Power.  It was a very quick (like read in two sittings) and cogent read.  It’s based on lectures Beard gave, and I like that the book has maintained the conversational tone of a talk given by someone at the top of their game.  There are issues surrounding women, power, race, and class that I think could have been given a bit more space, but on the whole, Beard gives us a good reminder to think about how authority remains gendered in the modern world.  Who do we think sounds authoritative? Who do we think looks authoritative and why?  For me, there was nothing particularly revelatory, but it was good food for thought, and Beard does of course an excellent job of tracing back some of women’s disempowerment in the public sphere to the classical era.  I do recommend giving it a read!

I’m also slowly making my way through Beatrix Potter: A Life in Nature by Linda Lear.  I learned a bit about Potter’s life in and love of the Lakes District (not far from where I now live) when I read James Rebanks’s A Shepherd’s Life.  Ever since we moved here, I wanted to learn more about her life. I’m still not too far into the book (Beatrix is just reaching adulthood), but so far I’m really enjoying reading about Potter and her love of art and nature.  It’s also got me thinking a lot about how historians write successful biographies.  So far, so good!

What are you reading and knitting this week?  Head over to the original Yarnalong to see what people around the world are up to this month.

Planes, trains, and …. well mostly planes and trains

Hi friends and happy …. day whatever today is.  Just kidding, I know it’s Wednesday,  Thursday.  We arrived back to our little stone house Tuesday late afternoon, and boy, have I had a major case of the jet lags.  I’ve done enough long-ish haul travel that I’ve developed some pretty strict rules from for myself (all stemming from one disastrous trip to Copenhagen many years ago, in which I managed to pretty much sleep through the vacation because of poorly managed jet lag).  Overnight flight? Sleep as much as you can.  Arrive.  Stay up as long as humanly possible.  Never go to bed before 7 pm local time.  Never take naps.

Continue reading “Planes, trains, and …. well mostly planes and trains”

Unraveled Wednesday, October 25

Hi friends and happy Wednesday!

What are you working on this week?  I’m still trucking along with my Arctic Intentions — I’m down to the rib cuff on sleeve number one:

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One more sleeve, a bit of knitted pocket lining, and then it’ll be ready to roll!  Have I ever told you how much I love button bands that are knit as you go?  I don’t know what it is, but picking up button bands at the end of a project always seems like such a task. But not on this sweater — that garter stitch button band was knit alongside the body of the sweater, woo hoo! I think this knitted cardigan-verging-on-jacket is going to serve me quite well over the coming months!

With the onset of fall, I’ve really wanted to cast on all the things, but I’m trying to exercise a bit of restraint and focus on finishing projects before starting new ones (revolutionary, right?).  But I’d been feeling a bit stressed last week, so as a little treat, I gave myself permission to cast on something new Sunday. It took some doing to decide just what out of my massive mental queue of things to knit I wanted to start next, but I finally settled on Melodia, by Janina Kallio:

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Do you see that? The yarn sparkles!  I’d heard Louise of KnitBritish’s great review of this sparkly Knitting Goddess 4-ply a few weeks back and was intrigued — she described it as a yarn that even people who don’t normally go for sparkly yarn would love (that’s me).  When I saw this skein in the flesh (er, wool?) at Northern Yarn, I knew I had to have it. I love the unexpected combination of a sheepy, breed specific wool (the yarn is a blend of British BFL and Masham) in a natural color with that subtle strand of sparkle.  I’ve found it so incredibly pleasant and soothing to knit with, and it makes a delightfully light but still eminently squishable fabric on US size 6 needles. I think it’ll be a perfect shawl for the holidays!

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On the reading front, I’ve just started Counting Sheep, which I’m pretty excited to get into — a history of different sheep breeds in the UK. I’ve only just begun, but so far, it’s a much rosier history from that described in Love of Country,  which I just finished and highly recommend — so I was a bit of a resisting reader for the first few pages.  But I’m looking forward to seeing what’s to come — maybe I’ll do a paired review of the two when I’ve finished!

Linking up with As Kat Knit’s Unraveled Wednesday — go see what others are up to this week!  And as always, I love to hear what you’re working on (or reading!) in the comments.

xo K