Yes, I'm still here though I probably don't have many followers or readers left!
My life is full of crafting -- there are quilts to make and knitted blankets to complete.
Most of you would know that my mum, who has dementia, came to live with us in March. She can still remember how to do garter stitch but not how to cast on, cast off, change colour, count rows, or fix any problems that may arise during knitting (like dropped or split stitches). Therefore I have to do all those things for her. Consequently my days are filled with the usual household chores and attending to her needs for food, drink and entertainment (largely knitting) while also trying to make some quilts myself (more about that in another post but don't' hold your breath!)
Afternoons, when WM is home from work, are filled with gardening (oh, you want to hear about that too, do you? Again, don't hold your breath). We are slowly turning what used to be a jungle into a cottage garden on one side of the house and a native garden on the other side -- closer to the bush. Gardening is both our shared time and our therapy time.
Evenings, after dinner, are mostly spent in front of the television with WM and mum, while joining together the strips that mum knits,. Man! she can turn them out faster than I can turn them into blankets! I had to stop knitting borders in short rows of six to ten stitches, all that turning of a heavy blanket was slowing me down too much so I had to teach myself how to make mitred corners so I could knit the borders long-wise. None of those blankets are in these pictures – you’ll have to wait for the next time I write about blankets to see those!
In this post (written in July, I can hardly believe it), I showed you the first of mum's two blankets. The first was knitted in squares which I had to sew together (Never again, I like hand-sewing but joining squares that are not square is painful!) The second blanket was made of strips that went crosswise on the blanket.
The third blanket was also knitted crosswise but this one, unlike the previous, was knitted in cool colours in left over yarns from other projects.
By the time we got to the fourth blanket, I pushed it a little harder and managed to get longer strips – but not quite long enough to make a full length blanket so, no only did I have to knit the strips together, I also had to knit other strips on each end to get the blanket to a reasonable length.
By now, mum was on a roll with the knitting and seemed to be progressing quite comfortably with longer strips so I had her knit strips that are fifty stitches wide by 300 garter ridges long (in 8ply/DK acrylic – wool would be too heavy on metal straight needles; she doesn’t understand how to use circulars which she used to handle quite easily). And thus we have blankets #5 and #6. (I know, they look like the same blanket but they’re not; they are, however, made from the same yarns).
Blanket #7 is on the floor on one side of my knitting chair. Blanket #8 is on the table between my chair and WM’s chair. Blanket #9 is in progress but we’re back to crosswise strips. I bought a different brand of yarn and, although it is still ostensibly 8ply acrylic, it is much thicker and harsher to work with than the yarn in the previous three blankets. Thinking of the weight on mum’s wrists on those stiff metal straight needles, I have reverted to crosswise strips; of which five are needed – strips #3 and #4 are on the needles at the moment (she always has two strips in progress so she can be knitting one while she waits for me to deal with the other).
As you can see, there is no time for my own personal knitting. I have knitted one sock in eight months – yes, one sock; not one pair, one sock!
But it’s still knitting and some (unknown) people will be blessed by the blankets which WM works to buy the yarn and mum and I craft in a joint project.
See you sometime with my works in progress! And in the meantime, may your stitching bring you joy.