My dad and stepmom are coming to visit this Wednesday, which I’m really excited about! But aside from that, I’m just feeling awfully tired and stressed out right now. Among them:

Rahul has some kind of shooting pain in his toe, possibly gout, that woke him up in the wee hours of the morning and has been hurting him all day. This also woke me up and I’ve been very tired all day. He can’t get an appointment with a doctor till next Monday, and I really hope the pain lets up between now and then.

We got our move-out notice from the old apartment and to our surprise, not only did we not get back a penny of our deposit, but they want to charge us nearly $350 on top of the deposit, for an apartment that was in pretty good shape when we left it (with the exception of the kitchen floor, not one of the itemized charges). Among the charges is $100 for 2 smoke detectors. I got the bill in the mail the same day I got a flyer from Menard’s advertising a two-pack of smoke detectors for $4.99. (After a mail-in rebate, but I can absolutely assure you the rebate is not in the amount of $95.01.)

I also got a notice that my health insurance is being discontinued because I moved out of state. Apparently I should be able to transfer it, but it’s yet another thing to worry about.

So in the meantime, to soothe myself, here are a few things I’ve been doing…

I cast on for Flicca in RYC Soft Tweed in Twig, which is a very interesting, light, woolly, spongy yarn. It seems to be constructed of some sort braid or nylon chainette used to hold airy unspun roving into place. Twig is a soft beige color with subtle blue flecks, and I hope my affection for it holds up once it’s in giant sweater coat form. I’ve been buying and getting rid of different chunky yarns for this sweater since it came out, and nothing seemed to work out, but I think this one will probably work OK–it seems lighter and drapier than many of the other chunky yarns I’d sampled.

I’ve also been engaging in mildly guilt-ridden shopping and various swaps through Ravelry that have been cheering me up. I’m sending a box of lightweight wools and blends in exchange for a drop spindle, and recently swapped some cashmere tweed for some wonderfully soft vintage Berroco BFL. And I have some blue Beaverslide McTaggart Tweed coming my way from someone’s destash. Mmm, Beaverslide. I petted samples that Elli brought to our knitting night probably a year ago and really liked the feel of this yarn.

And I’ve been spinning, and making plans for a spinning study group with Mary and possibly also her Hindi teacher’s daughter, who is 8 years old; neither of us has ever met her, but she’s very interested in learning to spin cotton like a charkha the way her great-grandma did. Not that we can help out with that, but we can at least show her the basics of spindle and wheel spinning so she can get a taste of it before her parents splash out for a charkha.

Here’s a mini-handspun project I’ve dubbed Quantette, because it’s essentially just a small entrelac swatch worked from the middle of Knitty’s Quant headband pattern–I didn’t have the yardage to make it into a real headband, but I can at least keep it around and pet it.

I spun fine singles from a little 20-gram sample of hand-dyed merino, preserving the color runs, and then navajo-plied it rather tightly to keep it self-striping, winding up with about 41 yards of 15 wpi yarn. It seemed durable enough to be a reasonable sock yarn, but still bouncy and fairly soft.

The roving:

The yarn:

The Quantette, knit on size 3 needles: