Saturday, August 08, 2020

It's been too long

While I've been away, making--doing a lot of making, it seems... blogger's gone and changed my ancient interface.  So I am going to throw up a lot of photos here, give you some quick updates, and hope it all comes out ok on the interwebs.  

It's been my habit recently to update everybody about what's been published lately.  Alas, between managing twins home for the summer (without camp, as we thought social distancing would be too hard) and the state of things during a pandemic, I haven't gotten to write or sell much.  Here's a link to my column over at the Jewish Independent, my only steady gig right now.
To keep myself sane, I'm fitting in sewing, spinning, knitting, and more.  I'm washing fleece and canning dilly beans, raspberry jam, gooseberry golden name it, we're considering making it.  Fancy desserts and all sorts of other projects, some with kid help,... and some despite it!

Every weekday morning, I help my kids do some learning.  We're in a reading group together.  We practice cursive, typing, math, and do some art and design.  We've done science, some sewing, and a variety of other stuff.  It keeps their brains busy and hopefully means they aren't falling too far behind...sometimes it's fun.  Sometimes, there is a lot of yelling.
We've gone on berry picking outings (social distancing is easy on farms!) and once to Delta Beach (it's big and was pretty empty).  We go to the wading pool right when it opens in the morning, and leave as soon as it gets crowded.  We play in the sprinkler, pick cucumbers from our small garden, and focus on keeping things close to home.

We make strawberry trifle, plum apple rustic tart, or whatever else I throw together really fast...
I do a lot of spinning in bits of time while kids do two pages of cursive, a page of math problems, or practice measuring parts of the furniture....whatever today's effort may be.
I have ended up with two new free fleeces lately, one Suffolk and one Texel/crossbred.  The effort to wash these as resulted in the rediscovery of several, much older fleeces that also need to be washed.  It seems that since 2010, when I got pregnant with twins, I've accumulated some wool...and haven't done a great job keeping up in processing it.  So, you know, I think I have at least three more fleeces in the queue and I hope the warm weather lasts that long!  It is a lot easier to dry a fleece quickly outside than in the basement!
I'm baking challah.  I do a batch nearly every week and share a loaf with some good friends who are both over 80.  The professor and the kids bike over there, drop off a loaf, and have a socially distanced chat in the yard every Friday.  It's a good routine.
A new "McStrippit" sweater design is in progress.  I also have a mitten design waiting to be written up.  That said, since Ravelry has rolled out its new reformat, I've been somewhat involved in discussions around accessibility and how to make my designs available elsewhere.  Why?

Seizures and migraines are no joke...and people with vision impairment are also struggling with the new design.  I spent the first several months of this year reformatting about a third of my patterns to be accessible for those with low vision needs.  Now?  Many of those people can't access the site easily, even with the toggle switch to 'Classic' Rav.  Their screen readers don't work on the new site.  It's hard to navigate even with all sorts of 'fixes.'  It's been weeks now, and it's been made much worse for many with disabilities--it's not a good look for Rav.  I used to be such a fan of the site.

I've witnessed someone having a seizure....and my dad had migraines as a young man.  I know how debilitating this is.  I take this seriously.  So, I'm still knitting, but I'm not pushing out designs at quite the rate that I used to.  My designs are all also available on   If you're having problems and need me to email you a Low Vision Accessible pattern, please let me know.  I'm happy to help.
In the meanwhile, spending lots of time in the sunshine or dappled shade of our yard is a curative.  The world is out of control these I'm making jam...cause if you want the best jam?  You've got to make  your own...

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