~ Two of my favorite things are knitting and reading, and the evidence of this often shows up in my photographs. I love seeing what other people are knitting and reading as well. So, what are you knitting or crocheting right now? What are you reading? Take a photo and share it either on your blog or on Flickr. Leave a link below to share your photo with the rest of us! ~ Ginny at small things

Yarn Along: August 28, 2013

Yarn Along: August 28, 2013

Good morning!

It’s slated to be rather muggy and stormy today … but in the Old Dominion, who knows? So we just keep on schedule and adjust as necessary – hopefully, Kit will be able to have her second-to-last archery lesson today, an activity she has really enjoyed all summer.

The “real schoolers” have started this week — which has been a major transition in our house. Making sure they have enough food for the day … space to study when they get home … and keeping the two still homeschooled from feeling left out has been fairly exhausting. Both Bunny and HamBone seem to be thriving at JPtheGreat, and have their first extracurricular this Friday — football and karoke (which dh will help judge). Good times … good times.

A great benefit of homeschooling is the ability to adjust to family needs: the start of St. Athanasius Academy 2013-14 school year has been put on hold this week as we help the highschoolers get off the ground. It’s also on hold for us to help Kotch transition from Tennessee to Northern Virignia — she has accepted a job as nanny for a family while she preps for grad school. This has meant a “quick” road trip for Kit, HotRod and me down to Pigeon Forge to collect said daughter … today will be spent at the laundromat ensuring the mustiness of living in a non-climate-controlled cabin all summer goes away (any tips anyone?) … and generally getting ready to send her off to NoVA tomorrow. Looks like we’ll follow the “Kings Dominion Rule” of not starting till after Labor Day …

But when we do start school, one of the aspects I want to really focus on this year is the beauty of the natural world … and recording that through our journals (both pictorially and verbally). To this end, David Attenborough’s book, Amazing Rare Things: The Art of Natural History in the Age of Discovery fits quite well with our overall theme of the Middle Ages and journaling and art and different styles of remembering what things look like. This is a beautiful book that covers the art of the natural world through the eyes of DaVinci, Marshall, Merian and others … from the ideas of the late Middle Ages of dragons and sea serpents to the “sophisticated” early 1700s. All of these artists and their works are retained in the Royal Library in Windsor (England) … field trip anyone?

I’ve also really enjoyed reading Lace Collection for Knitting: Intricate Shawls, Simple Accessories, Cozy Sweaters and More STylish Designs for Every Season, edited by the folks at The Knitter (a British publication). This book has a great explanation of lace knitting (with lots of tips and tricks) and the designs are really “outside the box” for using knitted lace — yes, there are the requisite shawls, but there are also some really elegant lace tops, sensual sweaters and amazing accessories that are also quite doable (even for the novice lace knitter). This is definitely a keeper!

On my knitting needles? A poncho in cashmere/silk/merino that I am calling “Helen’s Choice” … here’s a close-up of this dark-violet beauty:

Helen's Choice ... a WIP

Helen’s Choice … a WIP

I love using this blend from Spring Gate … and starting this year, the merino in the blend is from Jane’s own sheep. The richness of the colors that this yarn comes in … wow! I’ve done lots of designs in this blend, including one of my favorites … Spring is Sprung poncho!

I also posted my latest shawl pattern, Spirit of the Southwest shawl. This is the one you’ve been seeing in progress for a few weeks:

Spirit of the Southwest shawl

Spirit of the Southwest shawl … lovely from the front

Spirit of the Southwest shawl ... just as pretty from the back

Spirit of the Southwest shawl … just as pretty from the back

So what are you reading and knitting? Wanna come play over at Ginny’s?

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