Friday, June 15, 2007

Still knitting

I haven't posted for a few days, but I'm still here, still knitting, and still hanging out in my garden. The flowers are doing reasonably good considering we're having a horrific drought and I have to water every day to keep my transplants from dying. New acquisitions this week included a huge red and white columbine, a couple of blue salvias, and several smaller confetti lantana to fill in the space now accessible since I did a badly needed major pruning job on my Climbing Queen Elizabeth rose. The poor girl was very overgrown and not blooming much. What buds she did produce were pretty much wiped out by the Easter freeze. But the good news is shot up lots of huge new canes so I could whack away without fear of Lizzie dying on me.

I've been rather occupied with family things too, like playing "limo driver" for my dear father who finally came to the sad realization that he was no longer a safe driver anymore. Getting old and having your health fails is awful, but volunteering to give up the car keys was the hardest thing he's had to do thus far (Daddy has always had a thing for cars and took great pride in driving Mom and the rest of us everywhere). So I'm driving him to cardiac rehab 3x/week and running errands like going to the pharmacy and to the public library so he can check out tons of books.

I've been working on my jaywalker socks while waiting for daddy to finish his exercises as they are my most portable project at present. I'm still on the cuff of the 2nd sock, but should be ready to knit the heel in a few more days. When I'm at home I've been working on one of my various lace shawl projects. I showed the bugs pi shawl to a lady the other day while I was waiting to have my care serviced. That's when I had a terrible moment of clarity. You know, that sinking pit at the bottom of your stomach feeling? As I was talking with this nice lady I heard myself telling her that it was a good thing I was using such pretty yarn, because I really didn't like the design of the shawl. The night before I had been knitting on clue 4 and hissing at every twisted stitch (I'm sure there's an easier way to knit them, but I haven't looked it up yet). I finally stopped knitting and took the time to spread the monster out some and *look* at the thing--really LOOK AT IT! That's when I had my first inclination, affirmed the following day while talking to the lady at the service department--I don't like this shawl (aka "this looks ugly to me")
It was almost serendipity--and I felt guilty for even thinking such an awful thing about this design that my friend Mindy and the gang as EZasPI worked so hard to develop. But it's true, I don't like it.

I thought about frogging just the last clue, but I couldn't find a suitable lace design to sub in that would look compatible with the previous clues. And given the colors of the yarn (beautiful handpainted yarn that wasn't exactly cheap, but is sentimental since it was a graduation gift), it's hard to identify the flowers and insects. the dragonflies are sort of lost and the sideways butterfly, well, it doesn't look much like a butterfly in my version of the shawl. AAACK! Now what do I do?

One thing I have learned not to do is to frog based on a initial gut reaction. There's no sense wasting a perfectly nice project with many (MANY!!!) hours invested in it simply because I'm in a mood and looking at everything cross-eyed. No, I just left the thing alone for a few days and knit on other WIPs. But it's been 4 days now, and I still don't like the look of my shawl. I mentioned this to mother, whose sometime practical advice was "isn't it a good thing knitting can be ripped out and the yarn used for something else?" Yes, Mom. But there's something about the 2400 yds. of this yarn, all in one piece, that's makes frogging back about 80g of laceweight merino a bit intimidating. This may have to wait a little longer since I have my niece(almost 8yo)spending all of next week with me. Guess I'll be knitting on jaywalkers!

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