Well, we’re coming to the end of day 2 of the water crisis here in the Toledo area: no drinking, washing dishes, or cooking with the tap water. Thankfully, they did lift the ban on touching the water mid-morning yesterday, so we can shower, wash hands, and do laundry.
I understand that this situation has been trending on national news, but for those of you that don’t know what’s going on, our water treatment plant found toxins in the water early yesterday morning at more than twice the limit deemed safe to consume. The toxin, microcystin, is produced by cyanobacteria, a type of algae that is normally harmless. The problem is that a number of factors, like low rainfall and cool weather patterns with east winds from Canada, have resulted in a large concentration of algal bloom in western Lake Erie, particularly near the intake for our water distribution system. There is no way for our water treatment plant to remove the toxins at this point, but they are working with multiple agencies, including the EPA as well as scientists in both Ohio and Michigan, to develop a solution.
I must say that the overall response has been great. Initially, there was some panic yesterday morning as people woke up to hear about the water ban and rushed out to buy up all the bottled water they could, with stores selling out of water before noon. But the governor’s office issued a state of emergency for the Toledo area, and was able to divert shipments of water headed for other areas of Ohio back to stores here. They have done a great job organizing a system to provide potable water, setting up distribution centers at some schools to give out free water, and local stores are getting large shipments of water as well. In addition to the provisions being made by government organizations, there have been a number of good samaritans from surrounding communities that are unaffected by the water ban, bringing in truckloads of bottle water. Volunteers throughout the city are helping to distribute water, fire stations in the city of Oregon (which has it’s own water treatment plant that was unaffected) are filling up containers for anyone who needs water, and residents with well water are even offering to share water with anyone who needs it. As some people are saying, we’re taking this one bottle at a time.
So what does all this have to do with a scrap yarn baby blanket? Well, I’ve been doing my part to conserve the potable water, and just chilling at home, trying to use as little possible, so I’ve been sitting on my bum watching the news and marathoning Once Upon a Time on Netflix. My hands need to keep busy while I watch TV all day, so I have been working on a baby blanket. Having been a knitter/crocheter for nearly half my life, I have amassed a fair amount of left-over yarn over the last 10+ years, and I decided it was finally time to do something with it.
With some of the scraps being pretty limited in their amount, I decided on a striped blanket with 2 rows per color, in a crochet linen stitch (sometimes called moss stitch). I had various types and weight of yarn, though mostly weight 3 and 4, and the only “problem” I had was having to work with 2 strands together for some of the light-weight yarns. I was going to just randomize the colors, but after one jarring color clash within the first few rows of my blanket, I decided on a rainbow progression.
Linen Stitch Scrap Blanket Pattern
Size before boarder: 28 in x 40 in
Using US Size H/5.00mm crochet hook, or size needed to obtain desired gauge, chain 109 (or any odd number of stitches).
Row 1: sc into 3rd ch from hook, *ch 1, skip 1 ch, sc into next ch; repeat from * across.
Row 2: ch 2, turn. sc into 1st ch1-space, *ch 1, sc into next ch1-space; repeat from * across to last ch1-space, ch1, sc into top of turning ch.
Repeat Row 2, changing color every 2 rows until desired length
Before adding the border
Border: Work pattern stitch around blanket, working (sc, ch1, sc) into each corner space. I worked the first 2 rows of the border in different colors, then used the same color for the 3rd and 4th rows. Another option is to use the same color for all 4 rows to make a more solid and defined border.
Border: 1st 2 rows are different colors, last 2 rows are the same color
As always, I would love to hear from you. Comments or questions are always welcome!