kitty companiona

kitty companiona

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Catching Up

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The summer is flying by!
What have we been doing???
Some days are busy and then there were the very lazy days during that heat wave in July.

Some of us sat in front of the fan with our water bottle and a good book.

 Others got a funky haircut.  Much cooler!  And Reggie is the only cat in town with a Mohawk.

Some helped Mom with her knitting.

We had special visitors.

These guys landed on our ratty old tractor shed  early one morning.  They paraded up and down the slope of the roof and spread their wings to dry them in the warm sunlight.

These birds are turkey vultures.  They are huge with a wingspan of up to six feet.  I know a lot of people don't like them because they are nature's clean-up crew, but I find them fascinating.
I wish the pictures were clearer.  I took them through the screen on the kitchen window with the zoom so as not to have to open the door and disturb them. 

 Unfortunately they only stopped by that one morning, stayed for about 20 minutes, and went on their way, soaring up into the sky once again.

Even in the heat we managed to go a few places.  Since we don't have a/c in our home it was nice to get into the car and take an occasional drive.
One place we went was the Country Market between Carlisle and Mount Holly Springs on route 34.

They have an outside flea market on weekends.  We didn't spend too much time there because it was in the high 90's that day.

 Inside it was nice and cool so we didn't mind lingering.  There are several booths with crafts and decorative items.  I especially liked the work of this local photographer.

 And being a farmers' market, there are produce stands with local as well as shipped-in fruits and veggies.

 The meat counter has really nice quality at reasonable prices.  We can personally recommend the filet mignons.

 My favorite stand is the Vietnamese food vendor.  They make the most yummy raw spring rolls, which they offer with chicken, beef, or vegetarian.  They have different entrees and sides each week depending on the choice of the cook.  I've tried most of their food and it has all been good.

 Raw spring rolls, corn-on-the-cob and zucchini sticks.  A good lunch or dinner on a hot day.

 While the weather was at it's hottest I did a lot of sitting, listening to books on CD and knitting.
I finished this lace rib top.

 Then I started on the fun project of the summer.
I was seduced into a class on Craftsy, the Fair Isle Vest- Stranded and Steeked by Mary Jane Mucklestone.

What a fun project!!!
There were two yarn kits offered for the class.  One was an expensive Shetland wool from Jamieson's and the other was a much more reasonable Cascade 220 sport yarn.  Well, you know I'm a yarn tightwad!  I opted for the Cascade, which to my dismay were the brightest colors imaginable!
The yarn almost blinded me!  ha-ha!

Yikes, bright orange, hot-hot pink, fluorescent yellow! 

So I decided to dull the colors with a little dip in the dyepot.

 So much better!

Fair Isle is a type of color knitting that looks complicated but is really very simple.  It is knit from charted patterns and the beauty is that there are only ever two colors in each row, making it one of the easier types of color stranded knitting.
The body of the vest in progress...

The whole vest is knit in the round on circular needles, even up past the armholes and the v-neck.  Then it is steeked.  The knitting is carefully reinforced with along the armholes and neck with either hand or machine stitching.  The knitting is then cut open and the ribbing bands are added to finish the edges.
Wish I would have taken pictures of the whole process, but I was so enthralled with the colors and the fun of knitting with the two strands of yarn that I didn't even think of it.

The finished vest!

Hope all of you are having a fantastic summer!
Thanks for stopping by!

p.s. Next time I will give instructions for how to make the spring rolls at home.