Saturday, February 4, 2012


    The much-ballyhooed January storm didn't arrive, but we did get one on February first. It was my first day of work at the fabric store, and I was allowed to leave a few minutes early, although I didn't actually get *home* early as I had to wait for Fred's car pool to arrive... we ended up at home by 6. However, the power was out, so we couldn't cook, and the house was cool-ish. We lighted all the candles we could find, and got the wood furnace going, with the gravity-feed panel open at the back. I'm thinking of putting it on a hinge, it gets opened so often.
    Anyway, we ate cheese and crackers and dip, and went to bed to keep warm, and shortly after the power company came and we had power again. It is amazing how quiet the house is without the mechanical hum of the fridge, the furnace fan, and so on. It's also amazing how much warmer the furnace makes the house *with* the fan! Anyway, we now have a nice amount of snow, no more than 20 centimetres, but nicely piled up in places. I was out for a walk today, but the wind was bitter - fine when it was at my back, but excruciating in my face on the way back. It's a gorgeous day, though - bright and clear, with a few big flakes every now and then. I wouldn't be surprised if there was quite a bit of solar gain.
  Knitting continues apace, with another pair of Cloisonee mittens in the pile for next year's Christmas presents. It's so nice to make something that takes two days, rather than two weeks (like socks).
    I invested in a few skeins of Patons Classic Wool - went to M*chaels first, as they had a sale on - 2 skeins for $10 - but they had very few colours. I bought black and orange there, and then went to Owl's Hollow, and got a lime yellow and magenta - for their regular price of $8.99. Eeek. Anyway, they are nice big skeins, over 200 metres each. Good for a couple of pairs each, almost.
     The current pair use the black and magenta, and the blue and the white are Aran yarns I have in abundance. (I tried out a pair in Briggs & Little but they are so scratchy I don't think anyone would wear them. I'll wash them and see if there's any improvement.) Once the ends of this pair are darned in I will have a look at another colour combo. I made these in size small, and they really are tiny. I'll have to think about whom they will fit.
    Speaking of tiny, I made a 'selbu' pair of mittens in sock yarn - a fairly dreadful self-stripe from S. R. Kertzer in pinks and turquoise - with which I had tried to make Jaywalker socks long ago. I discovered that the Jaywalker pattern made the leg so un-stretchy that I couldn't get my foot through, so they were frogged, and the yarn's been in time-out city ever since.
    This pattern starts out with 40 stitches, so the mittens are really, truly tiny, but the stripes are set off quite well with the white, I think. Or perhaps it's just cute because  it's so tiny? Anyway, everyone else on Ravelry who made this pattern used worsted or DK weight and made mittens to fit adults, so I may try that myself at some point. It's quite an easy pattern.  I liked the stripes so much that I may have to find some stripey DK! Another time I might make a corrugated rib or a braided edge, as, again, I'm not keen on the stripe by itself.
   I managed to get my deck table grouted, despite the frustration of only finding grout in large boxes, so I ended up with much more than I really wanted. I mixed it up in a yogurt tub, and underestimated twice, so had to mix three batches in all. On the up side, I didn't have to throw out much.
      I suppose that the spaces were quite wide between the marbles, compared to the granite tiles which were our last grouting project, so I needed more than I thought. However, it's finished now, and I have enough of the charcoal-coloured grout to do a couple more projects.
     I have a book on mosaics home from the library, so everything that isn't moving should look out!

     The table will have to be sealed before it goes outside, of course, and I'm looking for a small amount of grout sealer - Home Depot seems to think that we all want a big $40 jug of the stuff.


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