• Knitting

    The Summer of Socks

    Nine Pairs of Handknit Socks

    If ever there was a summer during which to knit all the socks, this has been it. I generally love the lazy days of summer for tackling lace shawls and more involved projects, but this year? Not so much. Instead, I joined the #socksonvacay knitalong (or #socksonstaycay as it ended up being since I went absolutely nowhere) — which I love for its ridiculously loose guidelines. Seriously, the only rules are to knit socks using Shannon Squire‘s patterns and yarn from Knitted Wit between May 1 and the extended deadline of September 13. That’s the kind of knitalong that I can handle. And so I knit! Thirteen pairs, in fact. (The photo at the top shows nine of the them — one pair was a birthday gift for a dear friend, two pairs are in the laundry, and one is MIA at the moment.) This summer I mostly opted for…

  • Knitting

    The Designer Knows Best

    Lintilla

    When Wingspan fever hit last year, like so many other knitters, I jumped to order a skein of gradient yarn from The Blue Brick. Unfortunately, sometime between placing and receiving my order, my interest in the shawl itself waned (mostly because I wasn’t sure I’d actually wear it). No matter, though! I knew that this saturated colourway was destined for something amazing, and I tucked it aside until inspiration struck. A little over a month ago, while I was looking for something else, I stumbled upon my skein and knew immediately that I wanted to knit something fairly mindless that would show off the gradual colour changes. Enter Lintilla. This was exactly the project I was looking for: mostly garter stitch with occasional short rows to create the ruffled edge. The pattern indicated that holding back 25% of the skein for the final edging was necessary, but I figured that…

  • Birthday

    Happy 15th Birthday to Adam!

    Happy 15th Birthday to Adam

    The good thing about the kids’ birthdays being so close together is that I can take a single trip down memory lane and feel old just once each year. It’s hard to believe that I’m the parent of a fifteen-year-old. Really, how did that even happen? I look at him and all the vestiges of childhood are gone, a process slow enough that I didn’t notice it happening until I blinked and discovered the face looking back at me was that of a young man rather than a little boy. But what a young man he is! I’m constantly impressed with his ability to know exactly what people need at a particular time (of course, whether he follows through on that knowledge depends on the day — hello, moody teenager!) and his sharp sense of humour regularly leaves me in stitches. Today his plans involve hanging out with friends (outdoors!)…

  • Knitting

    Take Note: These Socks Are Super-Fun

    Take Note Socks

    It’s too hot to contemplate wearing hand-knit socks for any length of time these days, but it’s never too hot to knit them! For the third summer in a row, I’m participating in the Socks on Vacay sock-knitting frenzy, and while I’m knitting far fewer pairs than usual this year, I’m (mostly) okay with that. Let’s be real: my sock drawer is pretty full and I’m not bothering to knit for the kids and their ever-growing feet until the sock-wearing season is upon us. This latest pair is a new-to-me pattern from Shannon Squire: Take Note Socks. The pattern actually calls for DK-weight yarn, which is probably why I’ve never knit them, but I was able to easily modify the stitch pattern for sock-weight yarn. I love the zig-zag eyelet pattern that works its way across the socks, but while I was intrigued by the unique gusset construction, I couldn’t…

  • Birthday

    And Then She Was Twelve

    Lounging at the amphitheatre

    With each year that passes, Leah gets more and more excited in the weeks leading up to her birthday. This year, with little else to occupy her thoughts, Leah has been obsessing about her birthday for months. What will we eat? What kind of cake? What about presents? It’s been the longest period of birthday anticipation ever and I think it’s exhausted everyone. (I know I’m ready for a slice of cake and then a nap at this point.) But it’s finally here and I’m so thrilled with the person Leah is growing into. She continues to exercise perseverance in spades and her sense of compassion for others is second to none. And as Leah keeps reminding me, this is her last year of being a kid… so she plans on packing lots of childlike fun into the next 365 days. Our low-key birthday plans involve sushi for lunch, cake…

  • Out and About

    Making the Most of Things

    Hanging out at the playground

    It’s been a weird summer, which is quite the understatement. No camps, no vacations, no kids running in and out of the house. Instead, there’s been a quiet monotony to our days that has been, if I’m completely honest, fine. Not great but not horrible, either. What it has meant is that each slight easing of restrictions is met with unmitigated joy, whether that’s getting to ever-so-slightly expand our social circle, or today’s reopening of playgrounds. The thought of getting to slide and swing for the first time this year was so exciting that Leah had trouble falling asleep last night. Truly, I feel like the last few months have encouraged (or more likely, forced) us to find contentment in whatever the circumstances, so even small outings now seem over-the-top amazing. Much to her delight, Leah found the playground completely empty this morning, so she had full run of all…