Finally! The sweater pieces and the shawls are blocked. I also washed the Romney skeins since the spinning and plying are finished. I have just under 100 yards of a worsted weight 3 ply yarn. Not sure yet about the use, but something will come to me. I was surprised to be able to get the shawls dried (mostly) outside yesterday. I thought we'd have rain all day. I got 2 loads of laundry hung on the line, too, but had to finish them in the drier - too much humidity in the air. 15 minutes is better than 45 minutes of drier time, so it's still a help.
There was a discussion going on Ravelry recently regarding superwash wool and whether it felts. (Apparently sometimes it does). The mention of driers brought out the fact that a lot of European households don't have driers, and those people were surprised to hear that most American homes do, and a lot of Americans couldn't imagine life without a clothes drier. That went on to a discussion about Home Owner Associations and how a lot of HOAs don't allow clothes lines (and a lot of other things). Health issues were mentioned (one person said that her kids allergies were much worse when she dried linens on the line) and energy conservation as well as the difficulties (or near impossibility, in some cases) of using a clothes line. For instance, if you live where there is 4 feet of snow on the ground or the humidity would keep clothes from drying totally at all. Very interesting.
I hope to get at least one seam per evening sewed on my sweater. Wearability is in sight!
Pogona is finished. Very interesting construction and I am pretty sure I'll knit another of West's designs. I'm not sure whether I'll keep this one or gift it.
Cladonia is finished and I love it. I might gift this one, too, but I am not sure I can part with it. OTOH, I can knit another .....
It's time to start planning vacation knitting. I can't decide whether I want to take a few smaller projects along or start a sweater. If I decide to start the sweater, I have to settle on which one, swatch, block, measure, etc. so that I'm prepared with the appropriate supplies before leaving. If I choose several smaller projects, I have to gather those and all of the necessary needles and markers, etc. too, so planning is important. There used to be a knitting shop in Montauk, which gave me a safety net, but it's closed now so it would be a considerable drive to get to another one if I forgot something important. Planning is the key. I always have my knitting and spinning projects packed before my clothes. One must have priorities. ; )
There's been a lot of rain here just recently, which we can use but the Midwest needs desperately. I can't even imagine what they are going through. July here was difficult enough. They had it harder and are still dealing with the drought and high temps.
I judged knitting at the Montgomery County Fair on Saturday. This was my third year doing it, and in general, I enjoy it. I like to give feedback to the knitters so they know their strengths and weaknesses, especially since I really appreciate those comments when I enter a competition. It can sometimes be hard to work with another person who has different criteria that you do, but it also widens your outlook on things. We were judging for over 6 hours, though, and that was a long day (without lunch). It was tough near the end when the really big decisions had to be made. I think we made the right one, though, on the Grand Champion.
Speaking of competition, I am going to try to get myself and my projects to gather this week and see about entering some in the state fair. Usually we are on vacation at the end of the fair, so I have no way to get my projects back, which prevents me from entering. This year we'll still be here on the day the projects have to be picked up. I have a few things that I feel are appropriate to enter, though I suspect none will win ribbons. It's hard to win ribbons at the state fair. I'll get the input on them and be happy.
Cucumbers. We are producing cukes like crazy! Fortunately I have been able to give them away. I am not a kitchen person, so the idea of pickling or something does not interest me at all. I might freeze a few tomatoes, though, for additions to sauce. The tomatoes are finally doing better and we are able to pick and eat some of them. We ate the 3 ears of corn that were produced in the garden. It was very tasty and tender. It's a shame no more seeds sprouted, despite re-seeding. I am ready to give up the garden and turn it back into grass, but Bob wants to try again next year. I don't think we've gotten enough out of it to justify our work and $$$. We'll see. He really does the hard work, so if he just wants me to plant seeds and plants and then harvest, I'll go for that. We'll try bush beans instead of pole beans next year. Our green beans have been very stringy and tough, no matter if I pick them early or not. The tomatoes are yummy this year, though - an improvement over last year.