That said, it is not without its challenges, not the least of which is scheduling. Tess likes to walk. A lot. Several times a day. This is not so much compatible with a workaholic who travels frequently. I took off two weeks at Christmas for us to settle in and get used to each other, and I am happy to say both of us did a lot of walking and a lot of napping during that time. It helped that we had a streak of very nice weather, with little or no snow and atypically high temperatures for New England in January. Next to walking, Tess's favorite thing is looking at the ducks on the river. Every day she rushes to this spot, and I practically have to drag her away.
I am embarrassed to say I have not walked outside this much since I moved here, and I have loved reconnecting with the area. I have also found my "backyard" to be rife with inspiration. If I were putting together a "what inspires me" page in my design notebook, here are some of the images I would include:
I actually live in a refurbished mill building that was originally built in 1830 and housed a very large cotton spinning and weaving factory.
There are reminders of the industrial age everywhere, and I have always found this to be a source of inspiration for my knitting.
- Lace Cardigan #10, from Vogue Knitting Spring 2007. All the knitting was done in 2 weeks. This was the project on which I discovered the joy of airplane knitting, and all but sleeves were done in 2 cross-country flights. Status: You guessed it--stuck in seaming. Reason: See #1 above. Sad, I know as I have seamed many a project before and since without this type of time lag. Goal: Let's just say by spring. That gives me a nice, wide, 3-month window.
- Lily of the Valley Opera Gloves. I fell head over heels for this pattern, and celebrated my love with an indulgent purchase of a luxury silk-cashmere lace-weight for the project. Status: Middle of glove one. Reason: I discovered two very important things. One, I hate bobbles. Two, cashmere lace weight breaks very easily. You see, I knit lots of socks. Most of my socks are made of wool. Wool is strong. I pull the wool really tight at the end of each needle to avoid ladders. That poor cashmere never had a chance. After 3 breaks in 5 rows, I put them down in frustration, with a vision of starting over and using knupps instead of bobbles. Goal: I am going to give myself a lot of lattitude with this one. Let's say by Dec 31 2012...
- Map of the World sweater. Ah, this one is a true blast from the past. I ordered the kit complete with Reynolds Saucy cotton back in the early 90's when I was primarily a crocheter who knitted occasionally. It was my first intarsia project, and what a doozy! (Though I have to say, I am quite pleased with the work my teen-aged self did on it) The colors are reminiscent of what I wore in the 80's (teal, hot pink and orange!), and it is an over-sized, drop-shoulder design with no shaping whatsoever. But, hey, it is a map of the world, and how cool is that! Status: North and south America, Australia, most of the Pacific, and half of Africa completed. Russia and China still looming. Bits and pieces of Europe scattered about. Reason: I was flaky back then and never stayed loyal to a project for long. Goal: Sometime after the Rocky Coast Cardigan and in all likelihood before I get around to seaming set-in sleeves made of lace. Not needed for any particular season because let's face it--I am not going to wear this thing in public! It is more about making a personal statement (to myself, natch) about finishing long-standing UFOs. And I want to be able to say I knit a map of the world, because really, how cool is that!
Bye for now.