June 23, 2004

Nobody Panic.

I don't want to alarm anyone, please...continue sitting quietly at your computer. Panicking now is not going to help anyone. It is not going to be easier if we all lose our heads. I've been strategically ignoring it myself. You know when something is sneaking up on you, and you try not to think about it because whether you think about it or not, there's nothing you can do about it so you might as well not think about it and try to be happy until it happens anyway?
This is like that. This is a harrowing time, and only the wily are going to get out of it unscathed. If I let my fear show, I'm going down for sure. I need my wits about me, my inventiveness unleashed and my good humour fortified. I'm just going to stay calm, make extra coffee and plan to make the most of my morning...for tomorrow...tomorrow...everything changes. Tomorrow, I will be tested.

Today, my friends and comrades, is the last day of school.

Let's speak no more of this, but hold me and all the other mothers you know in your hearts tomorrow, and wish them patience. Especially wish strength for mothers like me, who work from home and are going to have annoying, demanding, whiney people who want more from you than you can give in their offices for the next few months....just like all you people who have to drive to work.

Tuesdays are for spinning, and day one of the Great Gargantuan Gansey Gambol (hereafter referred to as "G4") began with...well, a realization that even though I am acutely aware that this is a very big project, I had no idea that it was going to be this big. So far, I've washed some fleece, (2 hours, because lock washing is stupid slow...anybody got a better way that preserves lock structure and doesn't involve a crockpot? Or...anybody got a crockpot?) but not enough fleece that I've made a dent in the rubbermaid container the fleece is in. (It's bottomless. I take fleece out...nothing changes. It's some sort of perpetual bin of fleece). I dragged the fleece out to the backyard to dry, then brought my carding stuff out.


I had to sit with my laptop and work in the backyard because the fleece stealing grey squirrel is back. I was hoping that maybe he was dead. (Before you get all harsh on me, I'm not wishing the squirrel ill. I'm just saying that if he were very, very old, and had lived a happy, happy squirrel life of bird chasing and fleece stealing and had passed away...you know, out of old age, that I would be ok with that.) I sat in the back defending the fleece from said vicious squirrel, who has redoubled his efforts. I really think that the fact that he and the fleece are almost the same colour is driving him out of his mind. I maintain that he believes that he is not "stealing" the fleece, but "rescuing" a family member.


I carded (1 hour, defending fleece 2 hours ), and used all that I carded spinning. This raises a point, I think I need a friend with a drum carder, or I need to work with the children on their carding skills. Yeah man, maybe that's what we do with the summer vacation, Mommies little sweat shop. (Hey Girls... who wants some M&Ms?)


I also spun a quick sample and navajo plied it, so that I could see what I thought.
What I thought was that I could spin a little thicker, or accept in my heart that I will be knitting this sweater until long after Joe is dead. The sample is fingering weight. There's just no way I can do that, that's beyond love. This sample figures out to about 8 stitches to the inch, so a gansey for Joe would come in with me casting at least 400 stitches around, not allowing for whatever pattern I settle on. That's ... well, let's just say that I think I'd be a few jalapenos short of a zippy salsa by the time I finished it. I need thicker yarn or a smaller husband. I'm going to aim for a DK weight. (spinning the sample, setting the twist and washing it, measuring the WPI, as well as contemplating the possibilities that this yarn offers: 1 hour)

From the sample I also decided that it's definitely going to be a 3 ply. I desperately wanted a two ply, since it's easier to make, but there's no point in doing this unless I'm going to do it right, and a three ply shows up patterned stitches better. Somewhere, everyone from my spinning class just fell of their chairs. Yes, I know I've said in the past that I'd rather quietly lick my kitchen floor clean than make 3 ply. I know. I'm trying to demonstrate some freakin' personal growth here.

Finally, I spun. (2 hours)


This is almost one bobbin full, I'll spin three of these before I begin to ply. I have absolutely no idea how much this is, or how much I will need. (Might want to start figuring that out eh? Information gleaned from this site suggests that I am far from done. I am not actually going to write the number here, since demoralizing myself this early in the process helps no one.

Number of hours spent making G4: 8

Off I go. I'm going to go to the bathroom by myself and finish a whole cup of coffee without having to re-warm it, and I might even haul off and have an uninterrupted phone conversation. After all, there's 75 days until the first day of School.

Posted by Stephanie at June 23, 2004 11:35 AM