I've managed to get everyone out the door on their various errands this morning, which gives me a few brief moments to post before I need to start all of the cooking that's to be done today.
I sat down yesterday to work on the first sleeve of Rick's sweater, but when I measured it, I realized that I'd gotten to the recommended 17 inches before starting the cuff. I thought I'd better get him to try it on before committing to finishing it up, which meant that I had time to knit up a swatch for the Dofuku kimono. I duly knitted it up: stockinette, then the garter ridge of the handspun trim yarn, then about an inch of the ribbing. I washed and blocked it, and then I took a couple of pictures to show you (as well as a few pictures of the Christmas tree), and I settled in to download the pictures and post. But my computer and my camera had taken agin' each other, and wouldn't talk, so that didn't work. I decided that any picture was better than none, so this morning I went for a photobooth shot, and here it is.
The colors are all wrong; the base there is more of a blue spruce color, but I think it gives a good sense of the way the yarns work together. I'm pretty happy with the results, so I think I'll go ahead with this. I'm using a needle one size larger than that recommended on the label, but I like the way the fabric feels; with that needle I'm getting about 5 1/2 stitches to the inch, instead of the recommended 5, but I did the math, and if I knit the larger of the two sizes in the pattern I'll end up with the measurements for the smaller size which is what I wanted, so that's going to be fine.
I also finished the first sleeve of Rick's sweater and am most of the way done with the sleeve cap on the second sleeve. Once that's done, the sleeve should go fairly quickly, and then it's just a few rows on the neck and I'm done. There's a small part of me that has hopes of finishing it for Christmas; we'll see. Does anyone out there have much experience working with cotton? Can I just wash it in the machine and dry it to finish it, or will it need a thorough blocking the way wool would?
The plan for today is to do most of the cooking for tomorrow night's get-together. That means two pork pies, pickled cabbage, cucumber salad, and rod grod (a berry pudding that doesn't translate well; imagine umlauts over those o's). Once those are done, tomorrow's work is mostly getting things heated up and put on the table, plus making the cardamom bread for Christmas morning, so getting most of it done today takes the pressure off.
This just in: we've just (as in, it's still getting loaded onto the tow truck) donated our (very) old car to the San Diego Rescue Mission. I can't watch them tow it away. It's an '87. I bought it from my dad after college, and I brought both my girls home from the hospital in that car (went to the hospital in labor twice in the back seat of that car, too). Before that, it was the car that I brought my carsick puppy home in almost fourteen years ago. I loaded our pets and plants into it when we moved down here. I got that car stuck in creeks (literally, and that's a story and a half), drove it on hundreds of miles of dirt washboard roads, drove it through blizzards and freezing fog on all kinds of adventures, took it to do fieldwork, and got more speeding tickets in it than I care to count. I've owned that car longer than any of my homes. It was freedom and speed and the open road when I most needed all of those things. It was road trips and loud music and adventures. It's time to let it go, and it's to the right people, but I can't watch them tow it away.