September 12, 2019

Here is my granddaughter Annie, now 18 and a freshman in college and at that simply gorgeous time in a young woman's life. But her beauty is not the only thing that makes her sparkle, and that "other thing" is the reason why I'm so proud of her. She has had to go though many challenges in her young life but faces these challenges with optimism, poise and determination. Her hereditary spastic paraplegia means that among other things, she tires easily and often her legs don't feel strong, sometimes not strong enough to walk. Still, she rarely says no to anything. She is very involved with the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in her home town of Simi Valley, California, and is often asked to take on herculean tasks which have included being the youth hostess to visiting dignitaries (a 12 hour day!), master of ceremonies at a convention of state politicians where she had to think on her feet with a microphone in her hand (she was magnificent!), and recently a debate judge. We are all so terribly proud of her and I'm so happy to be able to brag about her to you! She loves my hand knits and looks gorgeous in everything. We have picked out a new coat pattern and yarn for her, something from We Are Knitters that I'm loving knitting.

Annie is wearing Whitehorse by Caitlin Hunter, a great transition piece that hovers between summer and autumn and graces both so beautifully. This was a super fun knit with an easy-to-follow lace repeat. It might look complicated but don't let that fool you--I think a confident beginner/intermediate lace knitter will be able to nail this. It goes pretty fast too because the gauge is 18 stitches per 4 inches. I love the new heavier lace knits that are so popular right now. The trend toward deep lace bodices with worsted weight yarn is fun. I knit the smallest size and made it smaller by having a smaller gauge (20 sts. per 4 in.) and did not add stitches at the sleeve separation. Caitlin does a great job with pattern writing so it was easy to follow and a pleasant knit all around.

The yarn is Rowan's Cotton Cashmere, a light worsted weight yarn made mostly with cotton and a dash of cashmere. It's lovely to knit with a great hand and scrumptious fabric, and for me, goes in the washer and dryer. The ball band does not recommend it but I have had no problem doing this: turn inside out, put in a mesh bag, wash in cool water and gentle cycle, remove sweater from bag and dry in a low temperature dryer. This yarn is a winner.

My Whitehorse details on Ravelry
Purchase the pattern
Rowan Cotton Cashmere

Read about Hereditary Spastic Paraplegia here.

The Ronald Reagan Presidential Library 

is a must-see destination when visiting Southern California. One of the highlights is the retired Air Force One. It has been returned to the Reagan era and is housed in a beautiful rotunda along with one of his presidential limousines and a secret service Suburban. The library itself sits in the beautiful coastal range of the Santa Susanna Mountains and is definitely worth a visit. To get an idea of where it is, Simi Valley is less than an hour from Santa Barbara to the north and also less than an hour to Los Angeles to the south.

A few readers have told me they don't go on Ravelry and would like to see the details on my blog post. I will try to remember to do that going forward. 

Needles & yarn

20 stitches and 28 rows = 4 inches
in reverse stockinette (worked inside out)

7 skeins = 959.0 yards (876.9 meters), 350 grams

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  1. Another lovely sweater on a lovely model. I can see why you are so proud of her.

    I would like to point out that President Reagan died in 2004, before President Obama was in office. Perhaps the request for Air Force One was made by his now late wife, Nancy (died in 2016) or on behalf of the library.

    1. Oh my! That is the story I "thought" I was told! Guess I will go to my post and edit it. Thank you!


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