Yes, I know that weevils and moths are different critters, but my attempts at an amusing blog title with MOTHer left me with several “mother” expressions that are not in keeping with the tone of my family-friendly blog. (Ed claims I’d make a sailor blush when I utter knitting-related expletives, and this was one such occasion.)
Thora has been working out so well, that it has propelled me
back to near project monogamy.
Despite my halting attempts to add some rows each night to my Rustic
Silk jacket and swatch for additional sweaters, it is Thora that has captivated
me. There is the issue of having
enough yarn to complete the project, and the possible problem with sizing. Being
somewhat compulsive about
problem-solving, I needed to satisfy my desire to know how each would work
out—and both seemed resolved around midweek. I had started my fourth skein of Zara after completing the
Viking knot cable, and the body width will end up being the 40 inches (total
circumference) that I have decided would be perfect for this sweater. And I seemed to be getting 6 vertical
inches for a skein, and so it would leave me 5 skeins for the back, 5 skeins
for the front, and 5 skeins for both sleeves. I just envisioned the blog post with a picture of me beaming
as I held up the tiny bit of leftover yarn while wearing my FO.
Here is my WIP after four skeins, and that fourth skein will take me past the armholes, which will be shaped tonight:
And after I added side markers to the Rustic Silk jacket, it began to take on a “normal” shape. It stretches a lot when blocked, and right now in its unblocked form the back is 20 inches and each front is 10 inches. This yarn is hard on my hands and I’m only managing about 4 rows a night.
Then it happened. Just as I was completing skein #3 on Thora, I saw a tiny bit of white, sticky stuff about the size of a grain of rice attached to the yarn. I’m knitting from the inside of the ball out, and so this was on the outside. When I looked closely, I saw that one of the twists of the multi-ply Zara merino was broken. In denial, I just thought it was a flaw in the yarn, and I then selected skein #4. It had lots of sticky, white, rice-sized bits on its outside. So I balled it up, taking out the bad yarn lengths, and realized that this probably was a moth infestation. I lost 10 grams from that 50-gram ball. And now I’m worried.
I bought the yarn from WEBS, and I am sure the problem is me and not them, since I’ve had the yarn for two years and it arrived in pristine shape. Ten of the 15 skeins were packaged separately in a plastic bag, and I stored them in that bag, in a plastic box, with a bar of Irish Spring soap. All those skeins are fine. The other 5 skeins were near my knitting chair, in an open box where I keep the yarn I want to swatch, acting as an engraved invitation to a moth, I guess. The odd thing, though, is that none of the other wool yarns in that box seem to be affected, and some are lovely, fuzzy yarns that ought to be just as enticing to any moth worth its salt. (And in the case of the other yarns, I have more than enough for any possible garment.) In fact, other yarns in that box are Zara too, for the Devonshire Jacket UFO that I hope to get to shortly, and they are untouched. I guess I should consider myself lucky that not more yarn is damaged, but now I have only 14 skeins to use for the Thora, if I want to avoid knitting with the damaged skein (now languishing in my freezer). And because I’m compulsive about more things than problem solving, I will go back to all my plastic boxes this weekend and check to see if those yarns are safe.
On a more satisfying note, and the main reason my blogging has been so pathetically erratic, is that my garden has been using up my morning time usually earmarked for photos and blog writing. I have been rewarded for my efforts. Until this year, I thought I did not like beets. I discovered that I didn’t like the way my mother cooked beets (and almost anything else that was supposed to be edible). Ed wanted me to try growing beets, and I planted a row largely to please him. But the variety called Chiogga is unbelievably delicious, and this weekend, I’ll be harvesting the current crop (alas, just 7 beets) and planting a second row. My broccoli is plump and luscious. When I took the row cover off after yet another storm, the droplets of water looked like diamonds on a field of green.
We’re big broccoli fans here--even the birds:
I doubt if my 44 plants will go as far as I’d like, but right now we have at least three solid weeks of serious broccoli eating ahead of us. A second batch of broccoli is now in peat pots, which I hope to plant in the garden by August 1. I have transplanted my Swiss chard into one of the spinach rows, and will be replacing the second spinach row with summer lettuce tomorrow.
And even with all the gloom and rain, the warm weather plants (peppers, zucchini, tomatoes, eggplant, bush and pole beans, and cucumbers) are looking pretty good: