Published on Tuesday June 24th, 2008

Thank you, each and every one of you, for your comforting words about Selkie. It’s so hard to believe she’s gone when I’m still vacuuming her fur out from under the table. My parents brought her down for a visit just a week ago when they came to collect another truckload of my grandmother’s furniture from my garage. I’m glad I got to see her so recently, to give her love and pats and praise.

During the effort to move the furniture, my father spent hours breaking down the excess packaging, and the wind blew some heavy cardboard over to squash the tender young lupines I planted in the patch of soil by the garage. I put them out in homage to a favorite book from my childhood, Barbara Cooney’s Miss Rumphius. (I loved saying Rumphius. What a name. Someday I’m going to design a comfy cardigan and call it after that character. I just had the thought that if the book were coming to print today, surely the marketing department would insist on a different title – The Lupine Lady, perhaps. Miss Rumphius isn’t a very enticing and obvious sell to grown-ups.) Anyway, the foliage on one side was all busted, but the main stalk seemed to be bent rather than broken, so we propped it up with a sturdy stick and hoped for the best. Here’s the same plant, ten days later:

Isn’t it marvelous how things grow back?

In an effort to jolly myself out of the glummery of the past week, I finished cutting my Leafy Snowball fabric and laid it all out.

Never mind the little seafoam-green squares; they’re not staying. I’ll find either a more olive-ish green or a grey-blue of similar value. But here’s the thing: I have LOTS of squares left over. I could make this quilt twice as big, and I just might. I’ll need more of the border fabric, which I think I can get; the calico for the back I think is all gone at the store, but I might be able to hunt it down somewhere else. Or I could just have the back be half something else. Here’s a medium-large cat for scale:

I is teh most helpfulest kitteh.

You’ll be glad to know I didn’t think about the layout for this quilt for more than the three minutes it took me to crawl around setting down squares willy-nilly. I wish it had more large-print fabrics, but I’m not going to worry about it too much. It seems I’m helpless before an array of beautiful calicoes, so that’s what’s here.

Oh, and lest you should think I’ve stopped knitting entirely:

16 Comments to “Recovery”

  1. Renna Comment Says:

    The quilt is quite pretty. I’m happy for you that your flowers survived the accident. 🙂

  2. materfamilias Comment Says:

    I’ve been thinking about that lovely picture book lately, and thinking of trying to find it — especially with a grandchild on the way, it will be worth digging through the treasures. You’re absolutely right about the title — Miss Rumphius has such a delightfully satisfying sound, so much more a hook for a child’s imagination than “the Lupine Lady” (altho’ the alliteration of the latter is attractive as well).
    I’m guessing that’s an EZ baby surprise — I’m working myself up to trying my first of those fairly soon.

  3. rebecca Comment Says:

    love the yarn you’ve used for the baby surprise jacket.

  4. mamie Comment Says:

    so sorry about your lovely family dog, so hard to lose her so quickly. thanks for the information about the compost heap. ours in is a black plastic stack container, but good to know for the future.

    quilt looks great, bsj very nice, cannot wait to see more.

  5. Catherine Comment Says:

    Miss Rumphius was the book with which I learned to read; I checked it out of the local library one summer and apparently kept renewing it every two weeks for the remainder of the summer. It’s such a beautiful book; I have always loved Barbara Cooney’s work.

    I’m also so sorry to hear about your dog– but it’s nice that you got to see her so recently.

  6. Eva Comment Says:

    Oh! I adore Miss Rumphius, and all of Barbara Cooney’s books — Roxaboxen, for example, and Eleanor. Perhaps it became one of my favorites because the book was one of my mom’s favorites to read to me (my mom is a horticulturalist, gardener, landscape designer, and now organic farmer).

    Barbara Cooney is right up there for me with Chris Van Allsburg and Maurice Sendak.

    Perhaps that lupine can serve as a beautiful reminder of Selkie, a renewal of life, maybe even a gift from her. Who knows how these things work, especially with selkies.

  7. cheryl Comment Says:

    Ohhhh… cute little BSJ! Who is it for, and what gorgeous yarn did you use for it? I jsut finished up my second, even though I didn’t think I would ever knit another, and here I am getting ready to cast on a third 😉

    I really like the little seafoam squares… I think it adds the nicest little bit of a bright contrast. But regardless of whether or not you keep them, it’s going to be a great little quilt.

  8. Wendolene Comment Says:

    Glad to hear you’re doing well. I love the quilt–the little diamonds really do make the squares look round.

  9. Lisa Comment Says:

    I’d like to think that Marketing wouldn’t quash a quirky title like Miss Rumphius!! The quilt is looking lovely–Mingus certainly loves it!

  10. whitney Comment Says:

    The quilt is looking lovely!

    I had actually never really seen a lupine flower until I was up in Minnesota a few weeks ago and went to the gardening store with my parents. My dad and I totally fell in love with the lupines they have…I suspect there will be a few growing in their garden the next time I’m up there.

    I love the look of the garter stitch at the end of the post!

  11. Kate Comment Says:

    I remember reading “Miss Rumphius” as a child. You should absolutely design a sweater with that name. It’s weird which books and names stay with you over time.

  12. meg Comment Says:

    What a great looking quilt! I agree that some olive colored fabric my blend a bit better than the sage green.

    And is your BSJ for a baby, or is it an adult size?

  13. heather Comment Says:

    i’ll have to look out for miss rumphius – i’ve been revisiting all of the great children’s books i missed out on at the appropriate age lately. (and i love how well the quilt and the BSJ match each other)

  14. Nonnahs Comment Says:

    I am LOVING that quilt! Hope you’re feeling better…

  15. Jessica Comment Says:

    The quilt is looking beautiful! Your summer sewing projects are making me long so for my sewing machine…. But they always make me long for it, even when it’s in the next room! 😉

  16. Debby Comment Says:

    Miss Rumphius is one of my favorite books. I envision a purple-lupine cardigan with special buttons.