Exhaustion has hit a new level this week. We had busy week followed by a weekend away (having little kids, there’s no reason to bother calling it a “vacation”) followed by another busy week ending with giving a sermon. Maybe baby’s having a growth spurt too, since I fall asleep at 9, wake up at 7, and still feel beat all day. Add to that, these last few days have finally jumped the fence into Actually Cold. Like, I turn on the space heater in our room to motivate myself to get dressed in the morning. Add to that how impossibly overcast it’s been for the last forty-eight hours, and the fact that the fall colors have gone from riotous to mournful, and I should probably be congratulating myself on getting out of bed at all.
I should say, Naomi is loving this. I am actually so tired that my attention span is… longer. I can actually just sit there on the floor and play blocks for half an hour. That is the exact speed of my brain. And, when five times a day she stumps over to the door and says “wa’?” At least once a day she is likely to get a “… sure why not!” Just because I don’t remember / am avoiding all the other things we should try to get done.
I’ve been coping admirably, by sneaking Halloween candy, and by being very strategic about my to-do list. The thing gets very long, but my new technique is this: find the things on the list that, if they don’t get done, the earth will stop turning. Then cut down that list to just 2 or 3 things. (Things of that sort are usually like “practice sermon 2x” and “do last week’s laundry.” I must live on a very fragile planet.)
All that to say, blogging never makes the short list. Despite the fact that I am never short on words.
But tonight, the sermon is really and truly written and is starting to be well-practiced (I’m actually really excited to be sharing this one; I might even post it here), so it’s high time for an infusion of color:
I finished binding off the colorful weaver’s wool shawl right before we left for the Poconos, but didn’t get around to weaving in the ends ’till we got back. And unlike any other project I have finished, when I finally did weave in the ends, its first stop was not the sink… but the oven.
(Imagine here that I remembered to take a picture of a shawl in the oven. It looked like a shawl. In an oven.)
As I mentioned once before, the last of the six balls of Unique Sheep Gradience (colorway “Wildflowers”, don’t think it’s made anymore) was plagued with weak spots and breaks. That says one thing to me: moths. Yes, the dreaded M-word.
The situation was a bit of a mystery. There were a few similar breaks at the end of the second-to-last ball, but the last one was the only one really affected. There didn’t seem to be any moth eggs or larvae still in the ball (at least, when I shook the ball over a plastic bag, I didn’t hear any tell-tale objects making contact). But, it was clearly only the outer layer of the ball that had been affected; once I pulled off the shredded outer layer, there were almost no breaks. Clearly, Watson, this means that the moth invasion occurred after the yarn was wound into a ball. Of course, that happened probably a year and a half ago. So much for Elementary.
From persistence and/or idiocy, I couldn’t let it go. I couldn’t just chuck all those miles and miles of garter stitch. So I spliced and sorted and used it anyway. I tried halfheartedly to keep the project quarantined from the rest of the wool in the house, though I definitely need to bake everything else in the main project basket, and clean that thing thoroughly, and the same goes for my purse. (I should really bake the whole stash and check for eggs, but this is unlikely. See above about my to-do list. Moths may be knitter enemy #1, but they do not stop the earth’s rotation.)
Baking my woolies at 260 degrees (as low as my oven will go) for about 45 minutes (which is when I remembered the oven was on) should more than take care of any stowaways. But an ongoing issue to look out for is that I may have still missed weak points in the yarn that will become breaks. I found one already when I blocked the shawl.
Yipes! Nothing I couldn’t fix, and at this point it’s just one more end to weave in on a finished project. But if it keeps happening… there will be regrets.
For now, no regrets. Just a sorely-needed infusion of color into a very drab season and a very drab mood.
I look exactly as grouchy as I feel.
During this whole project, I wondered and wondered if it would be too ridiculously bright, too over-the-top loud for me. I worried about the pooling that happened around ball three that made blobs of even-brighter yellow.
Turns out all such concerns were completely allayed by finishing the thing at the end of October.