April and the tortoises

It’s the last day of April and I’ve sunk into the couch after a full day outside prepping soil and planting and weeding and tending and even harvesting. The dryer is full of lemon balm for future tea, and my attention span for writing is likely about as long as the bake time on my rhubarb muffins. It’s a relief to have finally filled a day with all the things I’ve been hoping to do for the last month, and at the same time it’s taking all my strength to resist the pull into complete overwhelm from all the things that need doing.

One thing our very rainy April was good for was sitting inside and knitting. I finally finished this little baby blanket

The simple pattern was the best kind of mindless knitting, so I really expected it to be a quick knit, but I failed to account for the cotton factor. After swearing off superwash wool, I opted to make this one out of 100% cotton yarn, and it was tough on my hands. I have had that experience with non-elastic fibers in the past, and I think the weight of this as it grew exacerbated the hand fatigue. So needless to say, it was more of a tortoise than a hare. That said, I washed and dried the finished blanket and it does have that lovely soft hand and comforting weight of cotton, so I’m satisfied with the end result.

Predictably, a couple of bigger (or longer, really) recent knitting projects had me hankering for something small and gratifying. To my complete surprise, it came in the form of a scrap blanket project. I’ve seen several versions of these around for years and have never been tempted, but a few weeks ago I fell down the rabbit hole and have been happily churning out mitered squares during any moments of social or desk or otherwise mindless knitting time.

I bought some new yarn that is a long color shift in the natural to gold spectrum and am holding it double with fingering weight (mostly sock yarn) scraps. This means both that I am using up my most abundant scraps pile, leftover sock yarn, and that I’m knitting with something approximately worsted weight, which is very good for the sanity when approaching something blanket-sized. I can already tell that the seaming is going to be hell, but in the meantime I’m mesmerized by seeing all my leftover scraps coming back to life. I haven’t calculated how many squares I need yet, I just know that it feels endless at this point.

And finally, the ultimate in tortoise projects, our braided wool rug continues on. I can see an end in sight on the braiding, I’m not sure if Dean feels the same about the lacing yet.

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