I was kind of expecting #1 daughter to come to lunch with me at work yesterday, but instead she and Son-in-law went to my house and cleaned. They scrubbed the kitchen and bathroom, mopped the floors, left White Linen candles burning… It was wonderful. Son-in-law pruned the jungle on our walkway, too. What great kids!

My sister used to complain that her mother-in-law came over and cleaned. She didn’t know what to say, she complained — I suggested “You missed a spot.” I think it is lovely to have someone clean your house. I don’t believe I have ever done that for my mother (since I was a kid and it was my job, I mean), but perhaps I will some day.

At left is the view from my front porch (in the rain) as of Sunday.

 

 

 

And here, on Monday, after pruning.

It looks more welcoming, I think.

A great start to week 1 of the HGP. The cleaning for this week is the front porch. I will be doing that at some point this week — maybe even this morning, once it gets light.

The other thing we are supposed to do is make lists: the things we plan to bake, the meals we plan to put in the freezer, all the ingredients for the holiday meals, the gifts we want to make and buy, the people we plan to send cards to.

In some ways, this is the hard part, because we don’t feel like thinking about Christmas right now. Netflix happened to send me a holiday movie I had put on my list last November, and Booksfree happened to send me a holiday book (No Clue at the Inn, book two for the final week of the Summer Reading Challenge), and these serendipitous bits of Christmas helped. Then I had to get up at 4:00 a.m. to see my husband off to work, so I seized the opportunity. I sat down with a cup of tea and a stack of cookbooks and craft books and made my lists.

Yesterday, MLweaving said “I’m curious too as to why you are dropping stitches off Addis but not knitpicks? They’re both metal.” Quite right, but the Addis are not normal metal.

I should mention that I usually use metal needles, mostly Boye or Susan Bates, and many of the needles in my collection are older than I am.

Gaze upon this sad picture. One sleeve of this sweater is sitting politely on a Knitpicks sleeve needle, waiting to be knitted. The other, on an Addi sleeve needle, is being knitted, and still dropping off the stitches every time I set it down. The body is also on an Addi circular needle. I have taped the ends, because otherwise the stitches fall off. I have never had to to do this before. And here is the other striking thing about these needles: perhaps you can see that the left side, still in the sweater, is straight as it should be. The tape at the end draws the eye to it, and there it is, with stitches on it, straight. The right end I have pulled out of the stitches so that you can see how hideously deformed it is. In the course of normal knitting, it curls up. I straighten it out, and it curls up again. By now it has excitingly wavy contours, and I am afraid to keep straightening it for fear that it will just break before I finish the sweater.

These needles are very popular, and cost about three times as much as your average metal circular needle. I have not seen in any knitting blog any mention of their tendency to change shape. I may be the only knitter in the world who has had this experience. But Addi Turbos are clearly not for me. Unfortunately, my LYS only stocks these, and the Big Box craft store doesn’t stock anything smaller than a 6, so I had perforce to buy these needles when I had a sudden need for small needles.

The sudden need arose because my old #1 needles are still stuck in a lace shawl I started a year ago. This is embarrassing, but there it is. I needed new ones.

Today and tomorrow #1 daughter and Son-in-law are spending with his parents, and #2 daughter will not be home till Friday, so normal life rather than celebration is the order of the day. I will be meeting with Book Club today, though, which is always a lot of fun.

And speaking of books, Master of None was a good book, with many thought-provoking bits about music and art and men and women and crime and stuff like that. There was a happy ending stuck on in the form of an epilogue, following an ending that read to me as though the author had a lot of leftover unpleasant stuff he or she wanted to get into the story, but had tired of writing the book. It just all got thrown into a sort of courtroom scene, and then the happy bit was tacked on. Still worth reading.