Wednesday, January 15, 2020

January Magic

We have had a few foggy nights and frosty January mornings, the ones when the moisture forms soft hoar frost. These mornings carry a bit of magic. Monday the frost was visible until early afternoon. Speaking of magic, my new iPhone phone arrived on January 9, one month, six days, and four phone calls after Apple agreed to send a replacement. Automation may be efficient but it is hard to correct. Thank you for your kind words. I continue to receive an email every weekday stating my order has been delayed by another day. I called one more time to report this but am now done waiting "on hold for the next available Apple advisor." "Egad and little fishhooks," as my grandmother used to say.

I prefer to play with the color and yarn in this shawl. I try a color and then think another combination would be better so I rip out a few rows and try something else. Colors in skeins take on a different appearance when knitted next to each other. This shawl has given me new respect for pattern designers who knit and reknit many stitches to arrive at designs. Jonah and I are enjoying this version of The Mitten by Jim Aylesworth. After the little boy loses his mitten and the animals explode it into red spaghetti in the snow, the grandmother knits him another, because she loves him. One cold fall day, Jonah told his Mom "it is time to order my Grammy mittens." Love is the true magic in knitted stitches. 

My nephew and his partner are expecting a new baby so I cast on a baby sweater. My gauge is different from the one suggested in both the pattern and the yarn label so I knit a small swatch. If you ask me, the sizing in baby sweaters is not like magic. It varies quite a bit from pattern to pattern. Looking at the neck ribbing, I wonder if it will stretch over the head of a six - twelve month old. I may start over with the next bigger size - at least for ribbing. Babies have big heads.

I am reading Educated by Tara Westover. This tough story is well written but hard to read. I will finish it because I want to know how this woman survived her growing up. I read The Madwoman Upstairs by Catherine Lowell. This madcap literary adventure is a light enjoyable read. The heroine, a descendent of the Brontes, is funny and irreverent with some interesting opinions about the Bronte family. It may not be for everyone but it was a nice contrast with Educated and other heavy fiction now available.  

The wind has pushed away the gray skies. The sun is out and the walks are dry. I am linking to Kat and the Unravelers. Then I am going out to walk before the ice and bitter cold return. May your making, whatever it is, bring you a little bit of magic.  


  1. babyknitting is the best because it is fast. I haven't read Educated yet but it's on my radar. We have unusual warm weather but there's a chance for a snow storm this weekend. Fingers crossed!

  2. I love the way frost makes everything look magical! Your shawl is so pretty. It must be fun to experiment with different colors. I'm plodding away on my head/ear band and the (never ending) Canary Blanket. I may cast on some socks tonight. Hope your walk was enjoyable!

  3. Great images. I have to look up that book . Thanks! Will have to ask AL if she has read Madwoman Upstairs.

  4. We are having freaky spring-like weather here - I hope you got outside to enjoy a walk before winter arrives. for real. Also oh boy - yes, babies do have big heads. I think the pullover I knit for Charlie for Christmas (he's five!) is the first "plain pullover" I've knit's been only cardigans and placket fronts so far! and (finally) have you seen/do you have Too Many Mittens (I blogged it here and yikes nearly $1,000 for a hardcopy!!)

  5. In Pittsburgh, we are in some alternate universe where Spring has arrived in January - literally, I am wearing capri's and sandals.

    And, YAY for baby knitting! (I was excited to learn that I have a new grandbaby to knit for so thank you for the big head reminder!)

  6. It is funny how yarn is. Sometimes the knit up swatch looks SO different from what you expected when you looked at the skein. Sometimes it is a happy surprise. Sometimes .........not so much. LOL

    With baby knits ....I think bigger (a bit) is better. They can always "grow into it".

  7. Your Apple story (kind of) made me laugh. They do find endless ways to annoy us, don't they?! The boys and I loved reading Jan Brett's version of The Mitten. I always thought she paid special attention to knitting in her illustrations. I know Jonah will get his Grammy mittens, knit with much love.