Tuesday, April 5, 2016



Sunny and snowy, and cold, cold, cold. I hear the songbirds twittering away, confused. I want to sit beside an open window and walk barefoot in the mossy grass, but I think it's going to be awhile, because this is New York, and even when our season is a blessedly mild one, winter is long, and it is not over just because April is here. We are over it now, though, and we say sarcastic things at the dump and at the bank about payback and not quite true things about comparable snow quantities and we wear our sweaters (okay, there's the silver lining) and we carry around hot coffee just to keep our hands warm (I just discovered the Flat White, ohmygoodness, life-changing) and watch the icicles fail to melt. Catdog just stands there, one foot poised above the ice, looking and sniffing at the middle distance. Telegraphing confusion and wrinkling her forehead, which is how she expresses her extreme annoyance. A wrinkled brow. Serious. She is not into this weather anymore. I can't get her to sit for a polite greeting--she won't put her backside down into the snow, and I can't say I blame her.

But Doc painted the kitchen, and he very cleverly made me a lampshade out of a pillar candle holder we found at Target, and I am so happy to sit here in this clean and orderly room, in a little pool of deceptive sunshine, looking out at the garden, at the squabbling birds and animal tracks, and at the brave and burgeoning daffodils. They are under there somewhere, I know it.

I'm so absorbed by the new project, the stranded knitting in an assortment of yarn colors I have come to realize are strange choices. That mustard-ish yellow is a color that comes up for me a lot and has found its way into many of my projects--I know it looks a lot like baby poo, but I am inexplicably drawn to it. Hand-dyed brownish-pinks, khakis, muddy things. Ish colors. Muted. Those are the ones I like. I have been very uncharacteristically monogamous with this project, even though it has become large and unwieldy, with it's many different little balls of color, all of which want to roll away from me all the time. I am designing as I go, measuring myself and measuring the work and hoping for the best, and totally winging it at every turn. I'm trying to write down what I did, and I'm thinking about working this one up again when I'm done, in another colorway, because choosing a palette is so much fun, and because it would also be fun to know if I could. Can I follow my own tracks? I don't know, let's find out!


  1. Yes, winter needs to go....I'm in Connecticut....cool lampshades...good luck on the pattern...today I played a video for my students of Navajo rug weavers....they never follow patterns...just believe in it as they go along....it was pretty cool...

  2. Yes, it's odd to already have some teasing tastes of summer-worthy wamrth, and then the wind blows, and we might get snow, but surely do get temps diving below the freezing point.

    I was glad for my down-filled coat this afternoon, when the wind subsided enough to yield a welcoming sunny blue sky. Over to Central Park I walked taking along some more of my yarn clippings to drape here and there along some shrubs' branches, in hopes of giving nest-building birds a bit of unexpected decor.

    Back home I returned to my current book, Tessa Hadley's "The Past" and a bit more work on my current fair isle project. Yes, Kristen, it's fun to play with color changes, and if I make a wrong turn at a crossroads, not too difficult to unravel a row or three.

    Now, I get serious as I tune into tv coverage of the Wisconsin primary results. I'm sure to be yelling at the tv before long.

    Knitting can be a salve.


  3. I am a fellow New Yorker and while I'm pretty much over winter, it does give a little more knitting time. (I'm not a summer knitter.) As long as the sun shines I can deal with the cold, but if spring doesn't arrive by May I just might not be so tolerant of Mother Nature.

  4. The knitting looks lovely. So does all the rest. Hope spring arrives soon for you. I'm in SoCal(ifornia). We're not out of the woods concerning the drought here in spite of El Nino. It's going to be 95 tomorrow...

  5. The knitting looks lovely. So does all the rest. Hope spring arrives soon for you. I'm in SoCal(ifornia). We're not out of the woods concerning the drought here in spite of El Nino. It's going to be 95 tomorrow...

  6. I'm reading about your springtime snow on several blogs today. Such a strange winter we had here in the northwest. Barely any snow and lots of rain. More like Seattle than our normal several feet of snow. But that was okay with me. No shoveling rain! :-). I do hope it warms up for you soon as I agree with Catdog. Spring should be here. It does make nice and cozy knitting time and I enjoyed seeing your project. Beautiful kitchen too!

  7. We have had such a mild here on the East coast of England no snow at all, Mother Nature was so confused the spring bulbs mainly daffodils starting poking though in January. Love the lampshade and the beautiful muted colours of your knitting. Good luck with retracing your steps.

  8. That's a serious amount of snow for April but better than last year I think when you were literally snowed under for months. Winter 2014/2015 was my first alone with no parents or children to care for and your blog and rediscovering knitting kept me sane during the witching hours between 4.00pm and 7.00pm. What a talented Doc to paint your kitchen. Was it natural wood before and now it is a very lovely grey.

  9. I LOVE mustard yellow! And all colors that are "ish."

  10. Clever! To use a pillar candle shade to make a lampshade! I love your kitchen! Could you share the paint color of the cabinets???

    1. It is Benjamin Moore "Sparrow", and the walls are Benjamin Moore "Classic Gray". :)

  11. The colours in this post have a kind of 70s vibe, don't you think? I just finished a little soaker with a mustardy trim because I like the colour. Then I realised the true genius of my choice!