Wednesday, June 23, 2010

The Saga Continues…

So, a few days ago I wrote about how my three flower baskets had been stolen off my front porch in broad daylight (as best as I can figure—I’m sure I’d have noticed them missing when I checked the mail that morning).  Knowing how upset I was, my sweet and thoughtful husband brought home a bouquet of flowers that evening in an attempt to cheer me up.  It helped but I still felt ripped off every time I went and in and out the front door and saw the empty hooks.

Last night we decided to go for a walk and as we passed a rental duplex a few doors down from us I spotted what could have been one of my baskets hanging from their front porch.  There were people out front and we were across the street so I couldn’t get a really good look but we made sure to pass by it more closely on the way home.  While I couldn’t swear it was my basket I had a strong suspicion that it was.  We even went into our backyard to see if we could see the other two baskets but their back porch was out of sight. 

This experience left me feeling frustrated.  I was pretty sure I knew who had stolen my baskets but I couldn’t prove it.  I was tempted to go in the dark of night and steal the one back but then what would we be opening ourselves to?  Empty hooks seemed preferable to slashed tires or smashed windows.  I ranted a bit then resigned myself to the fact that it was only flowers and I still had some beautiful baskets out back that I could enjoy.  Time to get over it. 

Then I went out to run an errand this afternoon and found this hanging from one of the hooks:

June 2010 006        

It was definitely not there when I went to check the mail this morning.

All I could do was laugh--a wee bit hysterically if truth be told.

Now, this is not one of my baskets but it is a basket and I have no idea who put it there.  A good Samaritan who heard my tale of woe (a handful of friends and close family members) or the thief trying to appease their conscience?  Chances are I’ll never know but I’ll be sure to tell you if I find out.  Meanwhile, I’m just going to accept the new flowers at face value and enjoy their colour and scent as the summer progresses.        

Update:  I wondered if the mysterious donor could have been my sister.  I had bought the original baskets at her school fundraiser and had told her of their theft when she dropped by the other night.  I guessed correctly—she reluctantly admitted to it when I asked her about it.  She said she did it secretly so that I might think the thief had had a fit of conscience.  I will treasure the new flowers even more now, knowing they were given with such love and thoughtfulness.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Trying to Get a Grip

Tell me.  What kind of person walks up to an occupied house in broad daylight and takes the hanging baskets off the front porch?  I suppose it’s the same sort of person who takes Christmas lights off the windows and lawn ornaments off the grass. 

I’m normally a glass-half-full kind of girl who thinks that the vast majority of people are kind and good and I suppose that deep down I still believe this but this afternoon my opinion of the human race went down a notch. 

This summer, instead of admiring the colours and fragrance of flowering baskets every time I check the mail or return home from errands I will instead be reminded by the empty hooks that the world we live in is not the place I thought it was when I woke up this morning.

My only hope is that the ill-begotten flowers bring no joy to their new owner, just a stab of conscience with each new bloom.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Cueing Beethoven’s 5th

Done Done Done Done!

GAAA 044

Done Done Done Done!

GAAA 052 

done done done done

GAAA 051

done done done done

 GAAA 050

done done done done done done

GAAA 047

done done done done done done

 GAAA 048


 GAAA 049

Done Done Done!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Saving the Best for Last?

I’ve been away from Blogland for a long time.  No excuses, no real explanations—I just haven’t felt like writing.  In the meantime, the days have gone by with lightening speed.  There’s always something going on, including, of course, plenty of knitting.

The most exciting thing to happen in these past few months is learning that Cameron and I are going to be grandparents for the first time in November.  I envy Jessica her relatively nausea-free pregnancy so far and it’s been fun—and a little strange—to see her body change as the baby grows.  Of course I’ve been giving some thought to baby knitting but don’t look for updates here or on Ravelry—it’s hard to keep a secret when you have a knitter for a daughter!

Another special occasion this year is my parents’ 50th wedding anniversary on July 1st.  Since March I have been working diligently to finish up the remaining twelve squares of the Great American Aran Afghan so that I can assemble the blocks and knit the border in time for the big day.  This morning, with a great sense of relief, I put the finishing touches on the final square.

Knitting 1633  

This miniature Aran sweater took first place in the GAAA contest and I’d been looking forward to knitting this block since the beginning.  So that I wouldn’t be tempted to knit all the “fun” squares first I’d made myself start from the beginning of the book and methodically work my way through, page by page.  Perhaps I was just tired of working with plain, ivory yarn or maybe I was simply anxious for this phase of the afghan to be over; whatever the case, I did not enjoy this block as much as I’d anticipated.  The stockinette base was boring to knit, while the tight gauge of the sweater hurt my hands.  But once it all came together I was pleased with how it turned out and eagerly moved onto the next step: deciding on the layout.

First things first—was it going to be a 4x6-block configuration or was I going to have to knit an extra square and make it 5x5?  I was worried that 4x6 would be too disproportionate (the book suggests 4x5, with four squares left over for cushions) but once I laid the blocks out on my bed I was satisfied that it would be just fine.  Phew--I really didn’t want to knit another square! 

Next, I divided the blocks into three main categories: vertical patterning, “pictures”, and circular construction.  I found that just over half of the squares featured vertical lines so I alternated them with the others, evenly distributing the pictures and the circular designs among them.  Then I spent well over an hour arranging and rearranging the various blocks, trying to balance highly textured squares with those with less prominent stitchwork.  Finally, I achieved a layout that I was happy with and took careful notes and photos to assist in the assembly process.

Knitting 1639       

Next up: Miles and miles of sewing, followed by miles and miles of afghan border.  Wish me well.