2020 The Year of the Rat

Hello 2020!

Time sure does fly. I’ve told more than one friend and/or family member that I thought life would slow down and change after my kids were little and life was so busy-active. Once they grew up and had homes of their own, I imagined that time would slow and life would be less busy. Turns out that I was totally wrong. The time seems to only go by more quickly.

So, with that said, this is my first post of the new year and new decade. The year of the rat according to the Chinese calendar. I think it’s going to be another wonderful healthy year full of fun and lots of good knitting!

We have started 2020 with a Sock Challenge. Twelve pairs of socks, one each month. Two pairs can be little socks for children or “peds”, two need to be something you’ve never done before. I have finished two pairs of socks so far this year and am up to the heel on the first sock of the third pair.

January pair number one is for my granddaughter, Rose. Her name explains the color choice, n’est ce pas? Pattern is Yankee Knitter’s Classic Socks for the Whole Family. I did a 3 x 1 rib down the leg and on the top of the foot. Knitting for children, who grow too quickly, I like to build in a little bit of wiggle room. I measured their feet in May so I gave them an extra half-inch in foot length and made the large child size. This Cascade Heritage wool is nice and soft.

February pair number two is my DH’s Christmas socks. I’ve begun to give him a ball of yarn in his Christmas stocking (also hand-knit, not by me) because we all know that Christmas knitting leaves little time for selfish knitting and it’s the old cobbler’s children philosophy: no hand knit socks for my DH until after the paid knitting is finished. Anyway, this pair is also Yankee Knitter’s Classic Sock pattern and it’s a sport weight yarn by KFI with a touch of cashmere. They’re very soft and felt good on my knitting hands! That said, there are spots where it seemed like the dye hadn’t completely saturated the yarn but I hope that doesn’t reflect on the socks themselves. I have two more balls of this yarn because it feels so good. Another blue and a grey.

I’ve been wearing and loving wearing my Love Note sweater by Tin Can Knits. I love the yarn, the weight, the color and the fit. This may be my very most favorite sweater of the year and decade (so far!) I have a couple of other sweaters coming up on my queue and it’ll be interesting to see if I like them as well as I like my Love Note!

Today we had a visitor in our yard. I am so privileged to live on the edge of a lake in Central Maine. The Belgrade Lakes area is a well-known summer spot but it’s also a fun place to live in the winter. I know, many of you are wondering if my mental health is stable but I have to say, I love the snow and I love watching the different seasons and the way the lake and life changes. Today has been a relatively warm winter day for Maine and the lake was crawling with ice fishermen (and women), snow machines, and birds. I was thrilled when I returned from lunching with a girlfriend and saw a Bald Eagle on the lake about three quarters of a mile from our front porch. Later this afternoon, as I was sitting at my desk working, another (or maybe the same) eagle left the ice and flew straight toward our house and landed in our tree. I’ve said it before and I will say it again, “it doesn’t get old”! What a thrill watching these birds! I do have to watch the little dogs very carefully in the winter – an eagle or a big owl or hawk would love a shitzu feast.

Not a great photograph but he or she flew off just after I snapped this photo!

My philosophy for the next year is to be kind. Truthful and kind. Accepting and kind. Healthy and kind. Happy and kind. Loving and kind. Simply put I want to bee happy … and kind.

Gone knitting!

You can read more about my projects and yarns on my Ravelry project page. My Ravelry name is Lindar. You can also find Queen Bee Knits on Facebook and @QueenBeeKnits on Instagram.

2017! Happy New Year!

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I feel fortunate that 2016 was a wonderful year for me and for my family. One daughter bought a new home, another daughter became engaged, I married the love of my life and we had all of our children in our house at the same time (for the first time). Our children are gainfully employed, healthy and happy. We are both working at jobs we love and are paying the bills, we have food on our table, a warm home and we are healthy. What more can you ask for?

I am eager to see what 2017 brings and what opportunities in the fiber world I will become involved with. I am excited to continue teaching knitting and creating in my every-improving atelier! This year’s goal is to add some serious shelving to my studio for fabric and yarn storage. I am already realizing that my “cheap fix” is not going to work long-term … fabric and yarn multiply when packed into small spaces and despite working hard to knit from my stash, it’s only minimally smaller.

img_7778We had a quiet New Year’s Eve at our house. A summer camp (childhood) friend and his son joined us for a lobster feast and a glass or two of sparkling wine prior to midnight. The guys all stayed awake after the power went out but I claimed the black-out as an opportunity to go to bed “early”. This is our photograph, grainy though it may be, from around 10:30pm. I love selfies with this guy and can’t wait to see what 2017 brings to add to our life together.

My goals for the year are to attend and help with, perhaps, the fiber week at my old summer camp. I’m looking forward to Maryland Sheep & Wool, too. I want to do more in my community – attend events, help my neighbors, life my best life and speak from my heart (not usually a problem). I want to floss more often and remember to listen to myself and speak my truth. Having lost my voice a long time ago, it feels wonderful when I speak out and speak up and feel heard. I’ll keep working on that piece.

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Wishing you blessings in 2017. I’m hoping that it’s the best year yet for all of us!

Gone knitting.

Happy New Year! Welcome 2013

It was a low key New Year’s Eve at our house last night. We welcomed in the New Year with a couple of friends, some food, drinks, games and lots of laughs.

2012 was a full year – a mixture of blessings and sorrow but without the sorrow, how can you appreciate the blessings. We said farewell to a beloved mother and an adored Cocker Spaniel. We welcomed a new great-nephew and a new niece. Celebrated birthdays and anniversaries. Entertained guests and family in Florida and Maine. Watched two children graduate from college and enter the “grown-up” world with new jobs. Joyously celebrated my big brother’s new liver and improving health. Enjoyed comfort and good health.

And now ahead to 2013! We entered the new year with a clean house, clean sheets, clean laundry and (most) projects finished. “Out with the old and in with the new!” I am looking forward to growing my business this year. To teaching more. To improving my website. To designing … or publishing some designs that I’ve created. To reaching a second level of certification.

Gone knitting!

New Year, New Look

I’m sporting new hair today after going to visit Stephanie to “fix” it, I decided to take of several inches of length (I’m never sure going in what I’ll do) and I feel lighter and ready to kick some New Year bootay! I’m ready now with a stylin’ new hairdo!

I’ve also given my website/blog a new look featuring some of my knitting in the banner and the wonderful beachy sea glass blue-green, martha stewart-esque color that is now the background. I love cables and featured the cable comes from my knitted coat. One of these days I’ll post a picture of it here with me wearing it but for today, here it is flat on the floor (thank God I’m not in it!)

I knitted this sweater over the course of a couple of years and love it (although I don’t have many opportunities to wear it in Central Florida!) The pattern is Jo Sharp‘s “Uptown” cabled coat from the Jo Sharp Village Hand Knitting Collection Book Number Six. (I’ve just visited the Jo Sharp Website and it must be out of print now!) Anyway, I bought the book and yarn at a LYS in Cincinnati that was going out of business and everything was 50% off! Yippee! So the Jo Sharp Silkroad Ultra Yarn (all 31 balls of it!) was not as awfully expensive as it might have been. I love the coat’s mustardy color and, of course, the cables. BTW, I love knitting with Jo Sharp yarn and at the Website, the prices are not bad! Special discounts apply for purchasing 10 balls of yarn … and it’s quite a savings!

So, with that … I and my new hair are gone knitting!

Thinking Ahead

Happier 2012

I’m thinking ahead to the New Year. 2011 was a tough one – and it’s not over yet. I still have one thing to deal with … deals with the devil have a habit of spreading negativity and destruction in a very wide swath. I’m facing it, though, with grace.

The holidays were tough but 2011 hasn’t been all bad – I got to see all three kids in Maine this summer and the oldest one came back for more and brought her sweetie and dog for several days. I think those were the highlights of the year. My business has grown and I’m clearer about what I will (and won’t) accept in my life.

In 2012 I want to be happier. I want to continue to block out the negativity of others – even if it means cutting them out of my life. I want to eat clean food and feed clean food to my darling doggers. I will continue to find alternatives to having chemical cleaners in my home. I have to do something about these sore knees that don’t like to bend more than 90 degrees. I want to exercise more and drink less. I need to seek more abundance – not only monetary abundance but abundance of all good things … love, fun, travel, acceptance, health, family … and yarn! 😛

I’m working toward being a Master Knitter with the Knitting Guild and have signed up for classes with Annie Modesitt. I’d like to find a graduate level class in social work or counseling – only one for the time being. In lieu of that, maybe an Art History or pottery (wheel). I need to find some opportunities to get out and meet people – starting with volunteering at our local elementary school as a mentor (after the official training, of course!).

2012 is going to be a much better year! I can feel it!

Gone knitting.