Thursday, March 29, 2012

Still Sockin' Away

Just because I haven't been blogging, doesn't mean I've just been kicking back and doing nothing. There's always a little sock project going on, and I carry my knitting just about everywhere with me. 

Socks for me (Kertzer On Your Toes, Color #3823)

A knitting moment here or there--in the car, or in an auditorium while waiting for the lecture to begin--adds up to a heel or a bit of ribbing or the shaping of a toe. 

... more socks for me  
Before I know it, another pair of socks is off the needles, and the next ones are ready to be started.

and more for me (Kertzer On Your Toes, Color #3801)

A pair for my sister, not too matchy, but all from the
same skein of Wisdom Poems Sock Yarn in Cold Fire ...

and another for her (Heart and Sole Black Jack)...
As you can see, I am still in love with self-striping yarn. It packs a lot of entertainment into every round of stitches. Yes, I am easily entertained, as other knitters have said before me.

This pair went to my son, Ben, in New York City.
Pretty rustic stuff for a city boy, I know (Mini Mochi Autumn Rainbow).

A work in progress. My sister and I really love this yarn (Heart and Sole Green Envy),
and have discovered that 3 skeins will make two pairs of socks, one for me and one for her. She buys, I knit. 

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Gold, Dust

While the rest of the country is experiencing Spring in unusual ways--more snowfall in the Northwest, and lack of snow and early summer-like temps in the Northeast--we are having the usual early Spring weather here in southern New Mexico.
The Organ Mountains still have bits of snow on the eastern side. 

Fields of poppies are in bloom.

These poppies were blooming at the site of one of last summer's wildfires. You can see the scorched yucca trunks here.

Click to enlarge
In this last photo, you can see the beginning of another springtime tradition here: Dust storms. The dust here in the distance is gathering along the floor of the Tularosa Basin. Later that day, back in Las Cruces, we experienced howling winds and "brown-out" conditions all day. As we paced around uneasily inside the house, listening to the shrieking outside and watching as dust made its way inside through every crack and under all the doors, we couldn't help thinking that the Dust Bowl of the 1930s never really came to an end. And I thought of the long-ago settlers out on the prairie quietly going mad in their earthen dugouts, as the unmerciful dirt-filled wind scoured and tore at everything they had worked so hard to build.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Memories at the Window

I'm having a little trouble blogging lately, mainly because we are doing so many bloggable things! Painting, exploring, reading, knitting, hiking, digging in the desert, gardening, playing with the chickens, and going to lectures and art walks and museums and craft shows and plays and concerts.

For now, I will share my new kitchen curtains, made of vintage handkerchiefs I've been collecting for a while. Some were embellished by hand, and some by machine. Some belonged to my mother and were kept in her cedar chest, which is now mine. Some were from Goodwill and the Salvation Army stores, stapled together in bundles with a "ten cents" sticker. And one was a real find!

After making the these curtains, I was so pleased with it that I put together another for the front door. The photos below show details from that curtain. I was surprised to see that one of the hankies, obviously embroidered by a child, showed the same initials--JLH--as my sister's name. It had gotten into the pile of thrift store hankies, but turned out to be actually done by our own Auntie Bucksnort and lovingly preserved by my mother for many decades.

Anonymous work from the cedar chest

More lovely work by unknown hands

Baby Bucksnort's needlework triumph

And just to show that early needlework practice pays off, here is a much later example of Auntie Bucksnort's embroidery. You can see this and other examples of her pieces, shown on this blog before in the posts Handmade (first two photos) and More Bucksnort Art Around the House.