FO Friday 1/14/22

I have not been knitting much, mostly because of my new spinning obsession. I’ve spun two skeins recently, both of which I’m really proud of. The first is a blue gradient from Frabjous Fibers – it is 5 ounces of top in the Soles & Eels colorway. This had five different colors that I spun as a gradient. I had so much fun spinning this. I’m thrilled that I have a pink gradient to spin in my stash. The second skein is from my breed of the month club from Long Way Homestead. It is 4 oz of Shropshire Roving. I had never heard of Shropshire before, but it was a delight to spin.

I’m planting a dye garden next summer, and plan to dye to Shropshire with what I’ve grown. I’m going to call it a homeschool learning experience. My kids are already weird among public school kids because they are homeschooled and among homeschoolers because we are secular homeschoolers (in Iowa), so they might as well be weirder by dying homespun yarn and knitting it into clothes. I think weird is good.

I have the luxury of more time at my wheel than most spinners. For that I am thankful. I have been spinning for less than two months and I am already making yarn I can’t wait to use.

I haven’t finished any knitting, but I did finish this beer while talking to most of my WI Sheep and Wool Festival Friends. It was a really good beer with fun artwork. I don’t drink much, so finishing a beer apparently warrants a blog photo.

Did you finish anything this week? If you have any extra knitting mojo can you please send it my way?

Warm Winter Fun

The past few days have felt spring like here in Iowa. Instead of knitting or homeschooling we have spent lots of time outside enjoying the weather. We went on a hike today, which I needed. It had been far too long since I spent some time in the woods. The kids had a picnic lunch (not a normal occasion in January).

Winter will return soon, but for now we are enjoying the warmer weather.

If you are experiencing lovely weather I hope you are able to get out and enjoy it.

November and December Reads

I’ve been reading more than I’ve been blogging, which doesn’t say much lately. However, I’m determined to get back in the swing of things. In November I read eight books. In December I read three books.

November

Christmas at the Island Hotel by Jenny Colgan. This novel takes us back to Mure and the characters I enjoyed in the first three books. There are so many loose ends in this book I’m frustrated I have to wait for the next book. That being said, it’s Jenny Colgan, so I’m pretty sure the couple that hates each other but secretly finds the other incredibly attractive will end up together. I give this book three out of five stars.

The Close Knit Circle by Kerry Wills. If you are writing a book on the culture of knitting from the perspective of a knitter I feel like you should have knit more than a dozen projects. This book is about knitting communities and blogging. Can I tell if the book is bad or just outdated? No. Am I sending it to Marilee in the hopes that she will read it and tell me? No comment. I give this book one out of five stars.

Banana by Dan Koeppel. It’s bananas how good this book is. You may think I’m fruity, as the book might not seem appealing to you, but this sordid tail about a sweet fruit is eye opening. If you eat bananas you should read this book. It is fascinating. It is horrifying. It is so incredibly good. I realize it is hard to convince people to read a book about a fruit, but you really should read this one. I give this book five out of five stars.

How to Marry Keanu Reeves in 90 Days by K. M. Jackson. Oh, how I wanted to like this book. A protagonist in her forties in a romance novel! But it was just not believable. She never noticed her best friend is an attractive man? She is a smart grown ass woman. I give this book two out of five stars.

Lessons from Lucy by Dave Barry. This is a very nice book filled with lessons on aging and the wisdom of dogs. It was very enjoyable. I give this book four out of five stars.

Finding Yourself in the Kitchen by Dana Velden. Kitchen meditations from a Zen priest? Sign me up! I found this book very engaging. I give this book four out of five stars.

Seasonal Slow Knitting by Hannah Theissen. Nice patterns and yarn choices (some of my favorites are used). The essays? Not so much. I assumed the book was more for experienced knitters, but it was not. Have you ever been waiting for friends at a bar and a creepy guy keeps talking to you so eventually you just start droning on and on about anything so they will get bored and wander off? That’s what the essays felt like. She romanticizes Iowa winters and seems to insinuate we heat our homes though wood fireplaces and stoves (we have central heating here, BTW). I really wanted to like this book. I did not. I give this book one out of five stars.

The Christmas Bookshop by Jenny Colgan. Well isn’t this the cutest predictable book by Jenny Colgan. This book gets extra love because she writes about how great Rainbow Rowell is. I give this book four out of five stars.

December

The Storyteller by Dave Grohl. I love Dave Grohl. I was not expecting much from this book. I was wrong. It is so interesting to read about his musical history. I like him so much more than I did before I read his book. It can be a bit rambley in parts, but that just makes me feel like I’m drinking beers and listening to him tell stories. I give this book five out of five stars.

The Holiday Swap by Maggie Knox. Have you ever found yourself wondering “what if you took the movie the Parent Trap and a romance novel and smashed them into a Christmas book”? If so, this book is your answer. I give this book three out of four stars.

Life Will be the Death of Me by Chelsea Handler. I’ve read all of Chelsea Handler’s books, and was worried a book about her experience with therapy would be too serious to be laugh out loud funny. I was wrong. I give this book four out of five vodkas (Yes, I’m changing the rating scale for Ms. Handler).

This year I hope to reduce the number in my to read pile to something that doesn’t make me panic. My book stash is worse than my yarn stash. Or better. I suppose it all depends on your perspective.