My precious

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Late last night, after an eternal bind off and way past my bedtime, the shawl was finally finished. It’s amazing and beautiful and I love it. It was the last I thought of before I went to sleep and the first on my mind when I woke up. The bind off was very difficult and I know a few bobbles are in the wrong place but I don’t care. It’s finished and it’s  gorgeous. This weeked I will block it and then I’ll wear it every single day (or not). I can’t stop thinking about it and I don’t think I’ve ever felt this way about a shawl before. I must be love.

The lawn mystery

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Because I understand that looking at an unfinished pink knitting isn’t all that fun that many days in a row, I’ll give you some proof of spring today instead. While I knit on the pink shawl you can watch what I cannot (due to keeping my eyes on the knitting and the pattern. Mostly the pattern), som lovely greenery and green grass. Every year I say to myself “this year I will pay attention to the lawns, when do they go from yellow to green?” As soon as the snow has melted the lawns are looking quite miserable, dirty and muddy with yellow grass. Then all of a sudden they are green and happy and I always wonder what happened and mostly, when did it happen? This year I have been looking at the lawns but it still snuck up on me although I know that a little sun and a little rain – all of which we had this weekend – was all it took for the grass to grow. I still wonder where all the yellow grass go though. I think it does a lot for the spring feeling when the lawns are becoming green, it’s one of those little details you (or at least I) don’t think much about but is essential to make it feel like spring. It amazes me to no end every single year.

Somewhat unexpected

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No pink wristwarmers yet but I’ve gotten a couple of unexpected free evenings so I’m knitting the snot out of my pink shawl. Twelve rows tonight and I think I have twelve rows left for tomorrow. With a little bit of luck this shawl might be bound off by this time tomorrow evening. It won’t take three skeins of yarn though but it’s a nice color and I can always come up with something else for the last skein. Keep your fingers crossed and I’ll keep you updated on the progress.

The project found me

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Sometimes things just works out perfectly. As you remember I had a hard time coming up with my side project – the blue mitts – and I wished it would take a long time for them to get finished because I didn’t want to have to come up with a new project again soon and then the other day I started to think it was time for them to be finished. This morning as I was biking to work I looked at my hands and saw that the cuffs on my cardigan was showing below the sleeves on my jacket and it wasn’t harmonious with my purplish mitts and I realized with all clarity that I need a pair of pink fingerless mitts. It’s absolutely essential that I get a pair of pink fingerless mitts. This afternoon I finished the blue ones and I have plans to make cuffs from the left over yarn which is perfect because while I do that I have plenty of time to search the stash for yarn and search the web for a pattern. I’m thinking something close to the yellow ones in the model but I haven’t decided yet. There are so many possibilities but at least I know they will be pink and that they will be mitts. That’s a good start.

Story continued

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Well, very much as in the story I told you about yesterday – where the bus drives finally gets tired of Paris and Monte Carlo and drives back home to continue his bus route – once the pressure of having to do something was removed, it was okay to do it anyway. Since I knit so much on my pink shawl yesterday it felt okay to do this weeks clue on my current MKAL. I wasn’t feeling it with the MKAL but after this clue I think it’s starting to turn out better than expected. At my book club meeting this evening I was also able to knit a bit on the mitts so all my knittings has gotten attention this weekend which makes me feel very pleased. I’m making progress. I also managed to do some other stuff that I put off yesterday. This only prooves that a little break is necessary sometimes and that can be good to remember. Happiness is important after all and if you’re not feeling it, maybe there is something you can do about it. It’s getting clearer that this spring is cathing up on me and I should be a little careful and listen to the signs my body and mind are giving me. Knitting is usually the answer to most questions and knitting is what I’m going to do. Now, one last row and then I’m going to bed.

What the heck

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There is a Swedish story called The Story About the Bus Driver Who Thought “What the Heck” (Sagan om busschauffören som tänkte att va fan), written by Tage Danielsson in 1969. It’s about a bus driver who one day gets tired of his life as a bus driver and just drives off into the sunset. When he needs money he just drives his bus around in a town for a little while and eventually he ends up in Paris with a bunch of passengers. This is what I’ve done today. I had a lot of things I had to do but I realized I didn’t want to do them and they didn’t make me happy.

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So I thought “what the heck” and left the house with only my purse and and my pink shawl. I didn’t return until 12 hours later and then my shawl was considerably bigger than it was this morning. It is now bigger than the first attempt by several rows and the first yarn ball is finished. I’m thinking I will continue to think “What the heck” tomorrow as well and it will be just fine.

Freeze #2

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I have talked about it before, how I wish life could sometimes be as in the theatre improvisation exercise Freeze. It usually happens when I know I’m quite close to finish a project but there still isn’t enough time ahead. (Also, “quite close to finish” can mean a few hours, it’s all relative to the size of the project. When I knit the Princess Shawl I thought I was close to finishing when I only had about 19 repeats of the final top lace left, something that took me close to 13 hours to finish). To see the finish line means to soon be able to cast on something new and there is no better motivation to finish something. Right now I have one pattern repeat and a cuff and a thumb left on the blue mitts and I just want to freeze time a little so that I can get it done. I know I’ve said that I want it not to be finished too quickly but I cast on Sunday almost two weeks ago and today if Friday and considering it took me three days to finish the yellow mitts I’d say this has dragged out quite a lot. It’s time to move on. The next step, if I have enough yarn, is to make a pair of cuffs in the same pattern. Since the mitts are my on-the-go project and I have a whole lot of knitting and reading to do at home this weekend chances are that I won’t be able to finish the blue mitts until next week. That would be sad. A new project on the needles might be just what I need right now. I might even know what to make. So I need to freeze time (people are annoyingly reluctant to do this for me, perhaps because in order for me to feel that a moment has frozen, I need everybody else to be completely motionless while I knit, and that is hard to do (I know, I’ve tried it on stage) and since time doesn’t really stop unfortunately, their time is lost on standing still which sure, I can understand would be a waste of their time (not mine though, I would be knitting while everyone else pretends they don’t see it)) but I can’t see how unless I steal some knitting moments where normally there shouldn’t be any. If you figure out any ways to freeze time for me, please let me know. I could really use it.

Put your mitts around your kitts and away we go

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I am making progress on my blue fingerless mitts. They work fine but I haven’t really developed a love for them yet. They are pretty but I’d rather knit on my pink shawl and considering how hard it was to come up with the mitts project in the first place I’d rather not do that again soon. On the other hand, not all shawls are as complex as the pink one which means I can cast on a new shawl as soon as these are finished. I have made some modifications and usually I don’t write these things down until I’m done with the entire project but these mitts are taking so long to make that I might have forgotten what mods I made on the first mitt. I think it’ll be ok though. I mean, how wrong could it go?

An evening bike ride

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It has been a few sunny days, we really need that after last week’s rain, and last night was such a lovely, lovely spring evening. One of those where it’s still light but not many people out in the streets and you are biking on quiet streets with no cars and there are no hills and you are smelling the lovely air and listen to the birds singing and maybe you are singing too.

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I miss biking. Don’t get me wrong, I use my bike almost every day but when I was younger I lived more outside the city center than I do now and I had quite a long way to get to my high school and I rode the bus in the Winter but in the fall and in the summer I took the bike. It was such a nice way to get to be by myself for a little while, 45 minutes bike ride after school and you had shook off the day and cleared out your head. I don’t often get that anymore. My bike rides aren’t that long and the streets are busier.

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I love biking in the spring and summer evenings. Everything is still and I get to sing summer songs to myself while listening to the birds. In a few weeks I will also be able to smell the lilacs (they bloom for such a limited time that it is important to stop and smell every lilac that you pass).

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My yellow mitts (or I suppose any fingerless mitts) are perfect for evening bike rides. They are warm and protect you a bit from the wind but you still get to feel the air and you can easily take them off and put in your bicycle basket if you get too warm. I wish for more evening bike rides this season.

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Pattern: Qwist Mitts by Melanie Berg. Yarn: kolorLOVE from Magicloop, color Słońcem w twarz (Sun in the face). Mods: The pattern called for needle size 3,5 mm but I moved down several sizes to 2,5 mm for a more snug fit. I added 8 sts for the gusset (total of 21 sts) and one extra pattern repeat (I increased every other row till had 21 sts and then I knit straight till the third pattern repeat was completed) before putting thumb sts on hold. Worked like a charm!

Back by popular demand

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Today someone asked me about my pink shawl, if it’s not finished soon, so I figure I’ll show you. The one to the right is my current attempt, decidedly bigger than the first, perhaps not as big as the pattern stated, but I’m happy. Now I’m going to knit on to make it even bigger.