A Case of the Februaries Demands More Knitting

I do have a finished project post to show you, but I also keep procrastinating driving to the post office and actually mailing it off to its intended recipient, so…I could spin it to sound like the USPS is sucking at its job, but it would be an absolute lie because it’s really just me.

Although, the USPS is taking its sweet time getting a package of yarny goodness to me that was supposed to be delivered last Monday, but then it disappeared from their radar for a couple of days, and magically popped up at a regional distribution center yesterday. Hmph.

As predicted, February has cast a grayish pallor on everything in sight, and I’m feeling it, hard. I keep telling myself that it is a temporary feeling, that life really isn’t just cold and dreariness, and that spring will be here soon with sunshine and birds twittering and flowers, but then you have to stop thinking about spring and re-focus on what’s in front of you and…it’s February. Usually there’s some crazy weather going on to distract me, but not this year. Just cold and drizzly rain, and a lot of fog, which is just unsettling. There’s not supposed to be fog when you’re driving to the school to pick up your kids in the afternoon. It gives me the heebie jeebies.

We are having a couple of nice days right now, but I absolutely do not trust them at all and I refuse to allow them to get my optimism engaged, only to have it crushed and ground into the asphalt next week. No. This is fake spring. I’ll try to get outside and soak up some desperately needed sun, but I’m not going to let my heart get carried away. It would be a great time to do some clean-up in the garden, though…

I think the fabric and yarn companies have figured out this February sloggy feeling, because geez, the sales and deals coming out of ’em right now are incessant. It’s been bad, people. But oh so good. But I may need to set up a temporary email filter on any incoming messages from the crafty stores because this past week has shown that I have no known defenses against their February sales. Dear goodness. Cara, it doesn’t count for much if you’re trying to reduce your stash and UFOs, only to then gorge yourself and bring in more stash.

The Yarn Harlot wrote up a blog post in recent days that echoes my sentiments about February, and she admitted that she’s just giving in to every “start a new project” impulse that rises in her heart. And I kinda sorta love that idea, because I am in desperate need of dopamine hits at the moment and indulging in some Startitis to achieve the effect is far friendlier to my bank account than retail therapy.

So I’ve started making wild promises to my kids about knitting them things and I will probably regret it in a month’s time, but whatevs. Michael’s socks are finished, and I was looking through my Ravelry project page to figure out which family member has gone the longest without receiving a handknit from me, and it turns out I’ve not knit a thing for my boy since he was in the first grade. (That’s five years for those of you who are also experiencing the Februaries and don’t want to do the math.) I called him over and we perused the Ravelry pattern database, and he finally decided that what he wanted his dear ol’ mum to knit him was a pig hat. Because he’s sad that his monkey hat doesn’t fit anymore.

ca. 2010

Guys, I knit that monkey hat for his first winter of his life. He’s worn it ever since, and would probably still be wearing it except that I outlawed it because it’s simply too small. I don’t care that he can technically stretch it over his noggin…it’s too small. The boy is knitworthy, to say the least…but only if it’s an animal hat, apparently, because I made him a fair isle hat in the first grade, and he dutifully wore it that year, but then reverted back to the monkey hat in the second grade and I don’t think I’ve seen the fair isle hat on his head ever since.

ca. 2015

The pink yarn listed in the pattern for the pig hat? I ALREADY OWNED IT. Can the Universe be any more clear on what a great idea this project was?!?!

Except, when I went to go unearth it from the stash, I couldn’t find it. I scoured the stash from top to bottom three times, went through the knitting UFO bin twice, and then looked around in every other UFO bin just in case it randomly got put in them when we moved, but alas, none of the perfect pink yarn could be found. I think I got rid of it when we moved? It’d been sitting in a partially-knitted state for years because I bought it to make a vest for Nathaniel when he was little, but it turns out that he gets heat rashes from wearing vests, so I never finished it, and I was trying to cull crafty supplies and it wasn’t a shade of pink I particularly liked to begin with…so, I think I got rid of it. There’s no notes in my stash listing on Ravelry, but I can’t find the stuff, so I’ve now marked it as “given away.” But I honestly have no idea what I did with it.

Undaunted, I hunted down various shades of pink bulky-weight yarn, screenshotted them all and cropped them into a grid, then texted the image to Nathaniel and asked him to pick one, and he picked one of the most brightest shades of bubble gum pink and he is thrilled that it will be adorning his head in a few weeks’ time. I love it that he loves pink, it’s adorable.

Since I was paying for shipping anyways, I figured I’d throw in some more yarn to my order and looked up which family member was next due for a handknit, and it turned out it was Renaissance, who I last crafted for three years ago. She wasn’t terribly interested in anything, but then I had a bold flash of inspiration and reminded her that football season will be back all-too-soon, and wouldn’t a pair of fingerless gloves with fold-over tops just be amazing during the outdoors flute-playing season? She immediately agreed, and I added in some maroon superwash merino to my order. I did also add two more projects’ worth of yarn for things for myself, but then got rid of them because knitting season will inevitably wind down come spring and gardening and English paper piecing time, and most of my stash is comprised of these kinds of orders–the extra skeins I buy because I was paying for shipping anyway. If I’m still interested in the projects for myself come autumn, I’ll buy the yarn for them then.

Sooo…not exactly “knitting from the stash,” but I am excited about two new projects. And while I was rifling through the stash, trying to find the perfect pink yarn, I noticed that I had a lot of blue & green sock yarn leftovers in the yarn scrap bin, and I thought they’d probably go together fabulously in a linen stitch scarf. And since my yarny goodness package fell off the radar for half a week and I finished Michael’s socks and I think I may have knit them on the wrong size needles but won’t know until he finally tries them on but it’s a busy week and we’ve really only seen each other as we turn off the light to go to sleep, that hasn’t happened yet…and I don’t want to start another pair of socks for him from the stash because I don’t know what size needle to use anymore, but it’s February and darn it I need a project, so I cast on for a linen stitch scarf with those sock yarn scraps:

I think the scraps go together a little too well, actually, so it will lack that fun contrast that I like in this pattern when you use colorways that don’t match perfectly, but it’ll still be a pretty, analogous scarf. It took me a year to knit the last linen stitch scarf I made, so I’m not expecting a quick finish with this. I think it will be my couch knitting project.

And, just for fun, I’ll finish with another picture of the Monkey Hat of Yore:

Hopefully he’ll love his pig hat just as much, minus the yarn-chewing. Good luck surviving the rest of February, however you choose to do it.

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