It hadn't rained since Big Night. I have enjoyed the weather, even some of the unseasonably warm days (although not last Wednesday, when it was 88 outside and Really Unpleasant in the car); and I have sunburned feet. I have planted nearly everything from Home Depot, everything from the garden center in Amherst, MA (where there were toads in the stream singing right in front of me, in plain view), and the tree peony I bought yesterday at the local nursery. Since I am discussing major overhauling of the driveway (Paul-the-carpenter is gleeful when he discusses what kind of earth-moving machine he will rent) I am trying to hold off on getting a magnolia, though it isn't easy since I noticed star magnolias are hardy in NH and also have a nice spicy scent. I need Paul to finish messing around with the roof so I can play with the space outside the New Room.
Oh, you mean the one I'm varnishing...? well, I did get a first coat on nearly all the windows. Sanding and two more coats in the offing.
So rather than varnish the other day, I bought some fabric for Sarah and Doug and me to make a quilt for our friend who is getting married (in an effort to surprise her, I won't say that she is a fellow-digger who has failed to respond to any question about what colors she would like. She had a chance. I think royal purple and neon orange will be stylish in any bedroom. Or maybe neon green and orange. And it isn't going to be Double Wedding Ring, sadly).
I peeled Twilly off of my rug-hooking frame and have been playing with that for two evenings. I had a handful of very lovely jewel-toned thrums whose origin I cannot imagine, and I have been doing essentially hooked multi-colored doodling. Maybe it will be the back of a pillow or a bag; it's messy but bright. The doodling has given me many ideas for more disciplined designs (many more than anyone needs rugs or bags). I went to Northampton (via the garden center in Amherst and picking up Doug's wheel in Orange) and picked up my twined knitting, and I have two lacy scarves in progress, but I haven't touched them. I did start working again on the rather lovely raspberry sweater in cables and seed stitch (God help me. Lots of seed stitch)that Doug gave me half the yarn (via gift certificate) for Christmas of 2003. I have the back and most of the front done, and I am busy frogging the sleeve I had done because I had not done a good job. The directions were stupid, anyway. I will get the back and the front together and knit the sleeves down and get the decreases in better places.
Weaving class proceeds: I finished my sampler and it is not going to be one of the ones optioned by the Victoria and Albert. In an effort to start my Final Project on time, I decided not to dye my warp myself. I have wound a snazzy rayon hand-painted job the color of a stylish parrot. I am not sure whether a rayon shawl will keep me warm on anything but a slightly drafty summer night, but I will get a chance to get better at twill and appreciate the effect of a solid woof with a painted warp.
I hate teal blue-green. I OD'ed on teal in the 80's. I love this (teal-free) warp. I was going to weave it with a murky green that matched one of the colors, and it would have been fine. Then I held a teal up to it and all the colors said WOW!, so I guess a teal woof it is. A similar thing happened when I was trying to get a fourth color for the quilt fabrics-- I finally said to myself, "Go look for a wishywashy (neon black) you don't like much and see how it looks." I found a completely characterless whiny (neon black) and it made the other colors sit up and wave.
Meanwhile we have cowbirds, a species I detest for laying their eggs in the nests of much smaller birds (the cowbird nestlings kick their foster-siblings out of the nest, contributing to the hard life many species of warbler already have); and much more pleasantly, evening grosbeaks, and chipping sparrows. I append a shot of Sarah's new alarm clock, a truly gorgeous yellow-bellied sapsucker who has found a great way to advertise his territory. Note the dent in the ladder.