Test knitting was so much fun that I decided to try something else new from the world of knitting: a Mystery Knitalong! It helped that Annie was hosting, and that her design was inspired by Hole & Sons wool, and that I had some hand-dyed yarn on hand from Annie's friend Ashley...so really, there was no resisting. And again, it was a fantastic experience that I will gladly try again.
The pattern turned out to be a shawl and it's probably the largest lace project I've tackled yet. Breaking the chart into 4 clues kept my fear of big charts in check, and it was a very easy, straightforward lace design (even if I had to re-do multiple rows while at Squam - but that's because I clearly can't knit lace and talk at the same time!). Now that I've blocked the shawl, the lace is quite dreamy and I can't quite believe it's the result of such simple stitches. But that is exactly the magic of lace, and knitting in general, right?
The yarn is pretty scrumptious too. I used Beaverslide Dry Goods Merino, hand-dyed by Ashley of Woolful as part of her Spring Natural Dye Club. The soft yellow immediately reminded me of a longtime friend whose childhood home was painted this very colour, and she's turning 40 in a few days so this shawl felt destined to be hers the moment I started it.
As for reading, I TOTALLY failed on my Canadian Book Challenge this year. I was supposed to have read 13 Canadian novels by July 1st, and even with the two above I only managed 8. Mme Proust and the Kosher Kitchen was interesting, but slow moving. I wouldn't rush to recommend it, yet there are moments, characters and places that have stuck with me. But All My Puny Sorrows was entirely captivating and it didn't take long to devour. There's something about Miriam Toews writing that just hooks me, even though the struggles she explores are usually far from my own experiences. I appreciate the honesty with which she writes about mental health and I love her depictions of family dynamics. It's a tough, heartfelt story but oh-so-worth the read.
For more tales of knitting and reading, don't forget to visit today's Yarnalong.