Springtime, feels like summer

I asked for a new fridge sentence to replace my post road-trip one, which was boringly ‘Over a thousand miles later home’. I know it wasn’t exciting but it was current. Oh, but I’ve really truly been trounced now. It’s poetry which describes the view from the window. What’s my next move going to be?

I finished my Edenvale cowl last week. I know it will look better as the lace work will open out and show it off when it’s blocked. I’ll show you afterwards. I did fewer repeats than specified in the pattern, so I could stop at one skein of WYS Shetland Tweed. Hurray for John Lewis refunds on wool. That’s a cowl which is plenty long enough and I get £8.50 back in my account. I did try it on, in its as yet unblocked state and had comments along the lines of ‘You’ve knitted a neck sock!’ As you know I just ignore these and calmly carry on. I do the cooking so caution would be warranted…This week I added to my garter stitch blanket. I like the look of the navy with the lavender a lot. As I did another 6 rows (250 stitches each) I reflected on how much I’m enjoying knitting. It’s as meditative as crochet when easy, good to have two hands in motion, I like the feel and look of the fabric. I’ve also added a few more colour blocks to my patchwork blanket. Also satisfying once I get into a rhythm, but a bit boring to contemplate doing masses of linen stitch which is why this has been very slow in the making. I much prefer the swoop and flow of trebles to doubles.

Ah this week’s weather has been a delight. On saturday it was gorgeously warm at around 21-22 degrees. My friend and I wandered in Regents park, London wearing t-shirts, coats bundled up in bags. We admired the cherry and almond blossom, the lines of tulips and noticed how many people were also enjoying being outdoors. There are some pics on my Instagram. As you’ll see I took something a little unseasonal and different to do while we were there. My friend was knitting, and said an elderly lady with a stick walked by and gave us a broad smile. I guess others were mostly using the pedalos, reading, picnicing or just sunbathing. We probably looked quite incongruous.

This magnolia tree is not far from home. It was a gorgeous surprise on Wednesday to see it in full bloom.

Yesterday it was 25 degrees! This isn’t so much spring as a full-on English summer day. It can all change in a week so we are all poised as a nation. At the first sign of a warm day: we rush out to stock up on salad, charcoal and steaks, we go through our drawers and wardrobes looking for anything vaguely summery to wear, if we’re in a morning-time rush (ahem) we merely shave from our ankles up 6″ so we can wear shorter length trousers and sandals for the day and fill a jug with cucumber/raspberry/lime/lemon water in the fridge. We are prepared.

The next day we inspect our red patches of sunburn because we didn’t apply sun-cream, forgetting that even though it’s England we can still burn. (Ahem.)A host of golden daffodils. They’re probably all dried and crinkly now. I’m glad I saw them looking so lush.

So in the last week and a half I’ve knitted; ‘that’ sock, the garter stitch blanket and finished my lace cowl using chunky needles, crocheted and done the other craft which requires very fine motor skills. And my point? My hands hurt. My arms hurt. My elbows are stiff. The side of my hands are tingling. (I should probably not be typing this, but dictating.) That is a big warning sign isn’t it? I think I might have done too much knitting with the chunky 5mm needles, the lace pattern required lots of different manipulative movements and then there were hours of sock knitting. I’ve been disciplined at only doing one set of repeats max with the cowl, but got carried away one day with the sock. I unravelled and reknitted for far too long. In all these years of crocheting I’ve never experienced this, I’m in a sulk with knitting. Stupid chunky needles, stupid tiny circulars, stupid lace, stupid sock. I think this means a total ban on craft for a month. I’ve put a note that I can try again on 19th May….unless they feel magically better sooner. Sniff.

I’ll blog what I’m reading and bore you with photos of flowers and places I’ve been to, in the meantime. When I’ve blocked the cowl I’ll show it too. It’s the darning that’s holding it up right now, but with this warm weather it’s not in a hurry to be worn.

Without craft what do you do in the evenings, apart from read and stare at the goggle box?!

(JILL don’t be crude!)

12 thoughts on “Springtime, feels like summer

  1. I recognise and identify with the aching hands, wrists, arms… all the way up! But for me, it usually happens in the winter and comes about from far, far too much crocheting! As well as that, the skin starts splitting at my cuticles from passing the yarn… oh, but I love crocheting! (My ‘knitting’ amounts to a few rows and then thinking “this is why I crochet instead.”)

    I love your stripey, multicoloured garter stitch blanket. I’m not usually a fan of things done just in garter stitch but yours is a revelation! So nice. :)

    This weather’s glorious, isn’t it? The next time you see a magnolia, gently pull a branch toward you (if you can reach, some are very high) and sniff a flower. Some are unscented but the scented ones are heavenly. We have a couple of magnolias one of which has a scent like the best-perfumed rose.

  2. I love your garter stitch blanket. The colours are great and it looks so cozy. It might be simple but garter is my favourite knitting stitch.
    How are you joining your linen stitch crochet blanket? It looks lovely and I was thinking of doing a linen stitch blanket soon but never thought of doing blocks as don’t like the idea of seaming them all (again). Are you stitching in rows and seaming the rows or is there a way to do it all without seaming anything?

    • Thank you.

      I haven’t made any seams yet at all; I just change colour and carry on crocheting so I make a strip of 7 vertical blocks each time. As for how I’m going to join the strips together at the end – I have not decided yet. I’ve left the ends long in case I need them. But to be strong and less chance of unravelling one day, I should probably crochet or sew them together using one colour yarn and a continuous type of join. We’ll see. I can’t do either the crochet or sewing at the moment due to my sore hands….

  3. I LOVE your photos of blooming flowers and trees!!! In Central Europe, we also enjoyed this summery weather last weekend. I was in Munich, Germany, and all the fruit trees – cherry, apple, pear trees – were in full bloom. Amazing! It was very similar in Prague (apple trees just starting, though). This spring glory just fills one’s heart with such joy, doesn’t it?

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