It's been some time since I have written so let me say I'm sorry and thank you for visiting after my absence. Here's a quick note on what's been going on: We've had the typical things that keep us busy over the summer, like catching up on dental appointments, sports, etc. Then, there came news of an open position at my job for a supervisor. It so happens I need more hours at work, and I would love to work on positive changes in our department, so I applied for the position. I didn't think too many other people would have an interest. It turns out they did. After two panel interviews, two weeks of waiting, and applying, studying, and taking a four hour credentialing exam so I could increase my chances, I did not get the job. I did however pass my examination, so I have a new credential that will help me get the next job I'm interested in and I did get an offer this week, so that is very good news.
During this time, I lost my knitting mojo after I found I was knitting at a speed parallel to whatever little stress I was under at the time. One morning, I was knitting fast and hard (haha) as if I was in a race and I had to laugh at myself when I realized it, and that put the job thing in perspective too. I decided then that if it wasn't relaxing to knit, I wouldn't do it for a while and decided to work on some sewing instead. I've started back knitting at normal speeds again now. This is my Nurmilintu shawl taking shape. The yarn is hand dyed by me in Forest.
I am working on a bible study by Angela Thomas, who I totally recommend, and reading The Tale of Hill Top Farm, by Susan Wittig Albert. It's a mystery entwined with the story of Beatrix Potter's life at her Hill Top Farm. It's an enchanting read with animals that talk, and there are descriptions of sheep, cottages, and the like...
"I've no great yearning for society, and quiet and peace have a many charms, at least for me."
Hooray for fresh grown vegetables!
I had a couple charm packs (pre-cut five inch squares), in a pack called Bandana Florals, and ordered one more I found on line, to make a basic square quilt top for a throw. I'm thinking about backing it with cozy flannel. I like cotton on the back because I think it lasts longer, but my son likes something warm on the back. So I'll take a look at the fabric store to see what they have. I like these bandana and calico patterns which remind me of the fabrics from when I was a child.
Early one morning, a hike resulted in me asking my husband to take me back home for a basket. We hiked back to pick some wild black berries and I decided to dye a skein of yarn with them. I love dyeing yarn, but dyeing with nature is exceptionally fun.
The 2019 graduating class of PCHS. Isn't it great to see their joy? Have a wonderful weekend and happy knitting! Jeannine
Hello! How have you been? It has been very busy here with end of the school year activities. Some of which have definitely pulled at my heartstrings; especially my son’s last orchestra concert. Having raised two children before him, I know that if music isn’t the major of study in college, there probably won’t be much time for it. But what an exciting time for him. High school graduation is tonight! I am so happy that he gets to experience a new and exciting chapter in his life. He is so very dear to me. There were times he suffered with illness in his childhood, so just thinking of his joys makes me well up. He will be studying Engineering, and bonus, he won’t be too far from home.
I went to a neighborhood knit-in Tuesday (we call them that here, do you call knitting groups that where you are?) and I really enjoyed the short time I was there. While I visited, I started a Nurmilintu Shawl. The ladies are fun to knit with, and a few of them I used to knit with long ago until the bookstore where we met closed. Back then, in the big glassed window corner of Borders, we sat in cozy chairs, talked about life, drank big mugs of coffee, laughed, watched it rain, snow, and change from one season to another. Pat would sometimes speak of the handsome men that came in during their lunch break, and unexpectedly and jokingly of course, asked a couple to join us. Virginia would pass around homemade chocolates. Faye was as kind as she could be, and Lynette always had something funny to say. Knitters are the best! I hope to join this new group again soon.
I’ve been enjoying the book, Hygge - The Danish Art of Happiness. It's full of sweet stories, ideas, and photographs to celebrate the quiet pleasures of home, family, and table. It is perfect timing since my husband just put down a new floor in our family room. I am taking this opportunity to add some new homemade decorations to our home. I'll share them as I go.
Today I sewed some cotton slips to wear with dresses. It is almost impossible to find 100% cotton slips in the store and honestly it's the only way to go in the summer. New to me, was sewing elastic right to the waistband while pulling and it gathers as you sew. It worked perfectly!
Last summer my dear friend showed me some adorable socks she was knitting that were yellow and pink, I told her it reminded me of the raspberry lemon cake I had just made. A little more chitchat and we decided we should both knit our own version of raspberry lemon cake socks. The other day, I pulled out my unfinished pair and finished them.
This summer, that same sweet friend, who I met right here while writing at Stone Cottage is planning to visit me! How exciting! Yay!
I hope you have a peaceful rest of the week and that you sail right into a Hygge kind of weekend. Jeannine
…”minutes with nature, unless you’re busy, then you should spend an hour.”
Hello! How is your week going? I had no idea when I wrote this journal entry that I would be sharing it, so please pardon the incomplete sentences. I am always surprised how peaceful life becomes when I step into nature. The feeling really never gets old and if I look close enough, I always see something I haven’t seen before. What I could work on, is remembering to head there when life gets hectic, because no doubt, it will.
I finished my Antarktis Shawl and a pair of socks that are currently being blocked. I’ll share them on my next post. I’ll be looking through my yarn this afternoon to choose a skein for a new project. I’m curious, do you typically find yourself thinking of a project and then choosing a yarn, or choosing a yarn and finding a project? Either way, it’s all a delightful process:) Have a lovely rest of the week! Jeannine
I’ve been thinking lately that the next time I am invited to a “little black dress,” party, as they say, or a dress up event, I will be prepared. I have found myself in the past, not prepared at all, feeling as though I am showing too much shoulder, cleavage (oh my, no please), being chilled, or downright cold running back to my car…and even all of these combined. Well, this can all put a real damper on an evening.
The reason why I have been thinking of this is because I don’t love the cropped black cardigans I see in the stores, often too short, with too short of sleeves (hitting the elbow or higher), and made out of nylon, acrylic knit, or polyester, that feels like fine netting and is a cold sort of fabric. Do you know the cropped cardigans I’m talking about? Because really, I think they are all the same. Not that they are bad looking really, but just sort of not enough there.
By being prepared next time, I mean I will have a hand knit, waist length cardigan made of a wool, silk, and bamboo blend, with sleeves the perfect length, to be determined by me. When it’s chilly outside, or inside, or I am feeling a bit too exposed (honestly I don’t wear those kind of dresses anymore, but it could happen I suppose), my cardigan won’t be too little, or too scratchy, or the fabric too cold, but instead will feel more like a soft hug. Oh, if you don’t knit, this is why we do!
However, as knitters know, that means I have to knit with black yarn, which was a deterrent for getting started for a while, but I kept thinking I need to get this done before the next event, whatever that may be. So I cast on the Honeyflower Cardi, by Hannah Fettig, found in Making magazine, issue number 3, DOTS, and it really hasn’t been too bad because the yarn is soft, doesn’t split, and is smooth on the needles. My yarn is a thicker weight, probably sport weight, so even though this sweater is gorgeous in fingering weight, (I need to watch my gauge which could be bad in this case), this will be more of a cold weather sweater. I would love to make a fingering weight version as well. The yarn is from my stash, Yin, by SWTC.
I have several new yarns made and have added a few to the shop and will add a few more by tomorrow morning. I don’t want to send out lip balms after it gets too hot outside, so the next 20 people who order yarn will get a free organic lip balm with their order, if ordered before May 12th:)
It is almost graduation time for our senior and there is a lot going on, including a final orchestra concert, a speech tonight downtown, and prom for two young men here At Stone Cottage.
I hope you have a lovely rest of the week! Jeannine
Hello and welcome to a new week! I finished my Forever and Always Socks! Even though I said I don’t actually love knitting socks, I adore a hand knitted pair of socks as much as the next knitter, and I think each pair are really a small treasure. Do you think so? The pattern was very nice to knit, well written, and easy to follow.
I have additional pairs of socks on needles (at least three), waiting to be finished. I wish I had patience to knit a drawer full, but for now I’ll work on some shawls and other knits that I look forward to sharing. When it’s time for hot summer knitting, I’ll pull the socks out to finish.
I made some progress on my Antarktis shawl. (It was less of a knitting week, and more of a make chicken soup and Zuppa Toscana, with Kale, not spinach, for loved ones kind of week.) Antarktis is a fun and also a familiar pattern in the knitting community. It’s very easy to knit if attention is given to keeping track of the rows. It will be a perfect shawl for summer and especially for those times when air conditioning is too much, when I’m out in restaurants and such.
I hope you have a lovely week! Jeannine
P.S. I will be adding items to my shop this Friday. Happy Knitting!
Hello! I hope you had a relaxing weekend! Ahh Spring! Isn’t it just wonderful?
This past week I finished up the first of my Forever and Always socks and cast on the second. I’m always happy when I get a new pair of socks made, and knitting them doesn’t feel awkward anymore, like it can when first learning to knit socks, but I still can’t say sock knitting is my favorite type of knitting. So best to get that second one going ASAP don’t you know? I do like the sock a lot though :)
Friday night I cast on an Antarktis Shawl. I have a thing for yellow. Yellow has been described as the color of sunshine, hope, friendship and happiness. I really like it, but never choose it to knit with for some reason. I had some golden yellow yarn, (dyed by me using marigold flowers last fall), and I wanted to make something with it since. I’ve picked it up several times over the past months, thought about what to make, and each time ended up placing it back in my stash. This time though, I had already picked out the pattern and the yarn just seemed to fit. I am happy that I decided to knit with it after all. Do you have a color that you like, but aren’t sure about knitting with?
I’ve started a list of blogs I like to read on the right side of this page. Some I visit all the time and others are new to me. I’ll be adding more as I enjoy more blog visiting.
In shop news, I am almost done with a second ring pillow design, I have a few more skeins of yarn to dye this week, and I have a knitter’s balm bar coming soon! Thank you so much for visiting. Jeannine
Welcome to the new At Stone Cottage. A while back when I took a break from blogging, I took time to plan and write goals for what I wanted to do next. If you have visited here before, you may remember I mentioned wanting to have an online store. I realize now why I didn't get it done at the time. It's a lot of work! A few months ago, however I put those goals in place and took one step at a time towards opening a shop. I started hand dyeing yarn, working on hand embroidery projects, organic lip balms, and candles, so that when I came back here, I'd finally have the shop, and something to share with you.
I started dyeing yarn last fall using natural plants such as goldenrod, purple sage, onion skins, and teas, I enjoy natural dyeing and will likely do it again this summer for some new projects I have in mind. I think gathering for dyeing is a hobby all its own and is quite fun, but can be hard if it is not the time of year to gather. I then spent time reading books about dyeing, watching videos, and learning dyeing techniques using commercial dyes until I got the colors I desired. Dyeing is relaxing and gives me the same peaceful and meditative feeling most of us experience when knitting.
I'll be finishing up some computer work this afternoon and then will be opening my online "market" this evening or tomorrow morning! Thank you for allowing me to share a little bit about the process with you here:) Now let's talk about a little knitting shall we...
I couldn't help but cast on a pair of Forever and Always Socks after seeing Andi's pair. It's a nice pattern with a ribbed cuff, (knit through the back loop) and an alternating knit/purl cable to keep things interesting.
It's raining here today as you can see by the wet Primrose and the shadows. (The yarn is dyed by me. Color: Sprinkle Jar.)
I still adore nature and photography. Bluebirds stop by often and it is usually a split-second decision to race and find my camera vs. just sitting and enjoying them. Aren't they just perfectly made?
Thank you so much for stopping by today. I hope you have a lovely week ahead. Now that I am caught up on work here, I will be enjoying visits to the knitty blog community this week and starting a list of my favorites. I'll talk to you soon! Jeannine xo