Friday, December 21, 2007

Cast On

I'm not referring to the podcast, although I do enjoy it (yay Brenda!). I'm referring to the Sweet Baby Cap. I bought some Plymouth DreamBaby DK the other day, and sat down last night and cast on for the hat. I didn't have the needle size, and am curious to see if the pattern is written correctly, since it has size 2.5mm needles (I know those exist, just not in US sizes) and 3mm needles. I've never heard of or seen 3mm size needles before. I'm not sure if they truly exist, or if it's a misprint. It could be like the Loch Ness monster...mythical to some, but to others, as real as can be. :)

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Grr...Argh...

I think I'm going to start planning Christmas for next year now. Last Christmas, I was too busy being pregnant to plan for this year. This time around, I'm going to attempt a countdown, and make more gifts. Making gifts seems to be an easier proposition for me, since people can always use a hat, gloves, scarf, and socks. Socks are one of those gifts you can repeat, but since you make them, you can make them different even though it's the same. Make sense? Sock knitters know what I'm talking about. They're also great because the project itself is portable. I'm contemplating a few other items, bigger projects, but I'm not sure how much I really want to tackle in 2008. I'm hoping next year will be a slower year for me. I kow I won't have a baby due, and I should be able to bypass the 4 weddings. The funeral is not something one can predict, so oh well to that one. I'm off to finish some Christmas shopping!

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

The Frogging Pond

The sock yarn was being obstinate, so it went to the frog pond. The toe-up sock is no more. I'm going to try and do them while I'm off work for the holidays, but there's no telling what I'll actually get done. I'm planning on getting up early, just like normal, and I should be able to get some progress on a project or two for the week. At least that's my plan. We'll see how it turns out.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Dear Knitter,

I'm really sorry; this just isn't working for me. It's not you, it's me. I'm not ready for this kind of commitment. Maybe if you had cast me on a different way, or chosen a different pattern, or had done a gauge swatch first, it would have turned out differently. But I just don't want to be knit this way. I hope we can still be friends.

Sincerely,
Toe-up Socks (aka Secret Christmas knitting project)

Almost progress

I am still having issues with the secret Christmas knitting I was doing, that's not really going to make it to Christmas. The Baudelaire is still stuck, and I really need Elizabeth Zimmermann's books. I didn't realize that those books apparently hold the key for me. I'm going to attempt to find them either at the library or cheap somewhere. Maybe I can order them off Amazon cheap, or I'll get them for Christmas...but I don't remember putting them on my list. They'll be there next year. Off to work...I only have 2 more days this week, then I'm off for a whole week! Woot!

Monday, December 17, 2007

Just for fun...

Buttercup

Which Princess Bride Character are You?
this quiz was made by mysti

Lazy weekend...

Well, in respects to knitting, it was lazy. In every other conceivable way, it was far from it. Friday, I went home, took care of my little man and my big one, and dove into baking. I made 2 kinds of cookies: molasses and chocolate. I then cleaned up (a little). Saturday morning, I was up at 5:30 and fed Little Man, finished cleaning the kitchen, started working on lasagna for lunch, ran to the store (I realized we didn't have what I thought we did, and then we didn't have enough of what I was going to substitute to use it either, so a trip was a necessity). When I got back, I finished the lasagna, then moved on to breakfast. Realize, by this time, it was 9 a.m. when I sat down to eat breakfast. By 10, we were all out the door to go shopping. We dropped off our angel at my parents' house, then cruised on over to finish Christmas shopping, or so we hoped. We got through Wal-Mart and Target and Books-A-Million and were starving, since it was after 3. We finally made it home, I baked the lasagna and some garlic bread, made salads, and my parents joined us for dinner. It was tasty, that's for sure. We finally got to sit down around 7, and by 8:30, all were in bed. Sunday didn't prove any easier...I was up around 6, cooked green beans for lunch at a friends' house, fixed breakfast for myself and Little Man, then got ready for church. Since church is about an hour away, it just takes some time. When I got home yesterday, I attempted to take a nap, but Little Man was having none of it. So, we all got up, and ate dinner, played, and I started folding clothes. I also baked another batch of cookies (shortbread this time) and iced the chocolate ones. I still have a minimum of 2 loads to fold, and more cleaning to do. The front bathroom is getting an overhaul with cleaning, and the tree still needs to be decorated. I have my plan for Friday through Monday, and it actually does give me plenty of time to get everything done and still be able to prop my feet up for a few minutes. I might even get some knitting done then.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Baking, baking, cleaning and baking

That's what my weekend looks like. I'm going to attempt baking several items this weekend, and then cleaning (in detail) at least one room (the front bathroom). I figure if I can detail clean it this weekend, then next weekend I can give it a quick swipe and I'm done. I have lots of work ahead of me...no sitting on my keister this weekend! We have to finish decorating the tree, cleaning the house, Christmas shopping, and wrapping presents. We started doing some of it last night, and tonight will be a long one. I'm going to try to get 2 kinds of cookies done for work on Monday, and then I'm going to clean like I've never cleaned before. There's also some organization that will need to occur (the front closet is a mess and we need to pack more stuff in it). Hopefully it won't take too long. I'm thinking while one batch of cookies are baking (the shortbread takes 70-85 minutes) I can scrub the bathroom. The closet will be a simpler task. I'm looking forward to the holidays. I'm not sure how much knitting I'll get done. I'm thinking about making my hubby drive on Saturday for all the errands we have to do, and I can have some knitting time in the car. I'm almost a quarter of the way through with the Christmas knitting. That's not bad. If I can do a little more before I'm off, I might have a day when I can focus on just knitting before Christmas actually arrives. It's a good thing I have a backup present in case this doesn't work out!

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Christmas is coming...

and I'm trying to get everything in order. Fortunately, I have a handy-man at home during the day to help out with regular chores and some special things, like putting books up. I love my hubby dearly. He works hard to make sure our sweet boy is taken care of and the house is mostly clean. I say mostly clean, because, well, let's face it, men just don't clean like women do. Men don't see the dust on the tops of the curtains, or blinds, and they don't see the grime that's wedged itself into the crevices of the baseboards. It's not their fault...they're just men. Women, on the other hand, see each speck of dust, dirt, grime, muck and filth, whether it's visible to the naked eye or not. We're hyper-critical of cleanliness...surely something we've developed over the centuries. Let's face it...when our ancestors had dirt floors, it was hard for things NOT to be dusty and dirty. Not to mention we could barely see inside, because you were lucky if you had more than one window. Glass was expensive, and electricity hadn't been harnessed yet. However, it has allowed us more things, and better technology, even if that technology isn't always the best. We'd get mroe exercise without washing machines and dishwashers, but we also wouldn't get as much time to play with our children. It's a toss-up.

At any rate, Christmas is quickly approaching, and the knitting is not progressing as well as I had hoped. Fortunately, I have a back-up plan. I already bought a gift for the one person I was planning on giving a handmade gift to, so if I don't finish it for this year, it's not a complete loss. We're on budget for Christmas giving as well, which is nice. I've started a spreadsheet (can you say OCD, Type A, Anal-Retentive personality coming out now?) for this year's Christmas gifts. The good thing is that it will make next year a little easier to track, so we don't repeat gifts. Here's another fun option...something some people will think is cheap, and others inventive. Don't hate...appreciate. Try the Dollar Stores for gifts and decorations. Some times you can find some really nice little gifts for stockings or even just as regular gifts. You can create a gift basket for less than $10, and although it's not name-brand items (Bath & Body Works, FAO Schwartz kinds of things), most people don't know the difference. You can get nice decorations there as well, if you're picky. I found votives there for a centerpiece, and it's going to be awesome looking. Shoot, if you're willing to put in a little work, you can do a lot of things on a little budget. As a matter of fact, I think this year we might have a better Christmas than ever, with cheaper gifts than ever before. I believe we should focus on the people, rather than the gifts. After all, isn't Christmas all about One Person? It should be about Jesus, and a focus on the Ultimate Gift God gave us...His Son.

Back to knitting and off my soapbox, I haven't decided what to do about the yarn for the Baudelaire yet. I also found my LYS is having a sock club this next year for $95 for 12 months! That's an incredible deal. I'm thinking about signing up for it, and using that for my Christmas gifts next year. What better gift than handmade socks for each member of my family?

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

MIA

Somewhere, I have a couple of knitting needles that are missing the rest of their family. Somehow, I have lost them. Maybe lost isn't the right word...misplaced? Temporarily hid? In any case, I've still managed some progress on the Christmas gift and Baudelaire. I have to admit though, the Baudelaire has lost its appeal since the yarn has become tangled beyond control. This is getting to the point where I feel like cutting it and starting again.

I'm still convinced about trying the whole double-knit socks and I'm thinking about doing them on a magic loop, if I get a good gift at Christmas. I asked for the Knit Picks Options set, but I don't think I'll get it. If not, I'm going to a LYS and picking up a LONG circular needle and 2 balls of sock yarn. I want to be the knitting wizard, and do 2 socks, toe-up, at the same time. I don't know if doing a lace or cabled pattern is possible that way, but it sounds like fun to me.

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Not much progress...

due to terribly tangled yarn. For some reason, center-pull balls just manage to become a tangled mess for me. When I do the second Baudelaire, I'm starting with the yarn on the OUTSIDE of the ball. Yes, go ahead and gasp you center-pull-ball fanatics. Say ten Hail Brendas for me. That should be enough. :)

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Very little progress to report

I have worked very little on any project the past couple of days. I managed to get a couple of rows done on the Baudelaire, but other than that, nothing is moving forward, because of work. I have however, managed to figure out a better way to knit the Starbucks bird. Remember that? It hasn't been completely forgotten...it was just put on hold. Fortunately, work was slow a week ago, and I managed to re-chart the increases, and I'll be test knitting it before long. Hopefully after the first of the year, I'll have a cute little bird to show you!

I spent about 2 hours last night putting away the Thanksgiving decorations (yes, some of them were still out) and started decorating for Christmas. The living room and dining room are almost done, and that leaves the kitchen, sunroom, and the rest of the house. It's less about putting things out currently and more about putting things away. It's slow going, but it's going. Tonight I'm deciding between choir practice and going home to put things away. We'll see...a lot of it depends on how late I stay at work tonight.

Monday, December 03, 2007

Progress...but not where it should be

Well, I made progress, but it's all on Baudelaire. I did NOTHING on the Baby I.Q. Afghan this weekend. I didn't even repair my baby's afghan. Most of the weekend, I was incapacitated due to a front moving through. I am the local barometer for the area apparently. Between the killer headache and nausea, I spent most of Saturday in bed. Sunday I finally got up and was able to do a few things, mostly get ready for the Children's Choir Christmas program we had at church last night. It was short, but went fairly well. It wasn't bad for a first year program. I'm hoping next year will be more involved, and we did manage to pack the chapel at church. If we do a bigger program next year, we may need the sanctuary. In any case, I'm hoping to do something on the afghans today. Or I'll finish the first Baudelaire sock...whichever. I need to be knitting on holiday and gift items, but I just can't seem to make myself get there. Hopefully by the end of the week I'll make some progress on something other than a sock.

Friday, November 30, 2007

Success!

I finally was able to turn the heel on the Baudelaire. That was this morning. It finally clicked for me...all hail Cookie A., Queen of the Socks! For whatever reason, it wasn't working for me yesterday. I was taking too many of the directions and adding them together.

I'm hoping the Baby I.Q. Afghan will have some progress this weekend. I was going to see my friend yesterday, but her little one had a touch of jaundice, so they were heading to the doctor instead. I hope that when I get over to her place, the blanket will be done.

I still need to finish Sheldon for another friend. I also have a Christmas present on the needles, and plans for at least one more. I'd like to get 2 more done, but that might be pushing it. We'll see what gets done.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

The land of tomorrow today

I'm trying something new...something to hopefully help with NoBloPoMo. I didn't realize this was an option before...so I'm testing it out this time. We'll see if this actually posts tomorrow (I'm writing this Wednesday for a fast Thursday post).

This didn't work quite like I had anticipated. Apparently I didn't set it correctly. Perhaps I can fix it and try again.

Ugh...my head.

I think the change in the pollen is making my head hurt. My car needs to be fixed, since I had a flat tire Monday night. Hubby is supposed to be fixing it, but the fact that the rim is bent isn't helping. I did nothing last night, other than sit and watch a movie. If you haven't seen it, you should watch Muriel's Wedding.

It's cute, and a great chick flick. It's the kind of movie you should watch with at least one of your best girl friends curled up on the couch, in your pj's with popcorn. I didn't have that last night, but it was still good.

I'm off to take something for this headache before it gets worse.





Wednesday, November 28, 2007

7 out of 16, and seaming issues

I have 7 out of 16 squares done for the Baby I.Q. Afghan. It's not quite passing, but it's almost 50% done. At least the squares are almost 50% done. Realizing that each square takes about an hour, I have 9 hours left for the squares. Then there's another 4 hours for seaming and edging.

The Baby I.Q. Afghan I made for my little one is having issues where I seamed it. I'm trying to figure out if taking it all out and re-doing it is better than just repairing what needs mending. I might do a little of both. I can just reseam it while I'm fixing it, right? Hopefully I'll have pictures once I get that done, and I won't have to repair it anymore for a very long time.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Creativity

I've been in a creative mode, or trying to be. Is that contradictory? In any case, last night I started writing. I think I'm trying to create from what I have. There are so many projects lying around the house waiting for me to get started, or get finishing. In any case, I'm hoping to get some things accomplished, instead of looking for something new to start. I have cross-stitch, crochet, knit, and sewing/quilting projects to work on, and hopefully I can get some of them finished. I also hope to incorporate some painting, drawing, cooking, baking, and writing into the mix.

My friend had her son yesterday, so the Baby I.Q. Afghan is needed quickly. Guess what I'll be working on for the next couple of days?! I hope I can get it done this week! I don't know how so many people get so much done and flip FOs off their needles with such speed! Do they work outside the home? If I worked at home, I could be making stuff all the time. Even just one day a week would propel my knitting and crocheting into a whole new dimension.

I think I'm going to go with Renee, and try to Pay It Forward. Here's the deal:


The idea of the exchange is I will send a handmade gift to the first 3 people who leave a comment on this blog post requesting to join this PIF exchange. I don’t know what that gift will be yet, and you may not receive it tomorrow or next week, but you will receive it within 365 days, that is my promise (probably sooner rather than later however)! The only thing you have to do in return is pay it forward by making the same promise on your blog - this means you must have a blog, sorry blogless readers.


Enjoy!

Monday, November 26, 2007

Blech...

That's the best way to describe the weather around here. It's cold, wet and rainy. I've been knitting on the Baudelaire sock. It's coming along fairly well. I'm up to the gusset on the sock. I might be able to finish it this week, and hopefully I can finish another project this week as well, or at least half of it. My friend is being induced today, so I should probably get cracking on her second son's blanket. I also saw some friends at church who had a baby girl back in September. I havea to finish the Sheldon for her as well. Now that I've changed sock patterns, the needles I was using for Sheldon are available again. Maybe before Christmas I'll have some FOs to show.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Baudelaire

Well, the Baudelaire socks are well on their way. It looks like the Cascade 220 Superwash is doing well in it. I haven't decided about the hot pink Cascade yet...perhaps another one of Cookie's patterns.

Hopefully Christmas will be lots of knitting related items. I also asked for some quilting things, but mostly knitting items. I put on there needles, books, yarn, and some kits. I probably shouldn't sit so long to knit, but it's one of the few things I do for myself. I do housework and play mom, not to mention being at work. I was saved from myself today. I went by the LYS and they were closed. I was hoping to find them open and I was going to check out some sock yarn for the little one and possibly some new needles. The #2s I have are split. Well, one of the needles splintered on the end, and it's EXTREMELY sharp and painful if caught under a nail on accident. On the bright side, it would keep potential theives out of my purse...simply by being stabbed by knitting.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Update - Day 21 of NoBloPoMo or whatever...



Here is what was done (albeit a bad picture) of the progress of the Black Diamond Sock. It is no more. The back wasn't looking nice (not comfy next to the foot) and although I could have started it over - AGAIN - it just wasn't happening. I think the Cascade wants to be something else. I'm going to check through my patterns, and I'm thinking about attempting the Baudelaire with it. I have family coming for Thanksgiving, and I'm hoping to get in some knitting time before they arrive and while we wait on the turkey tomorrow. I have a Christmas list to make, and TONS of stuff to do tonight. There's a cheesecake to bake, dressing to make, a table to set and decorate, and cleaning to be done. It will be a late night, but I can sleep in in the morning. More updates to follow!

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Not happy

I'm really not happy with the Black Diamond Sock. It's just not coming together the way I hoped. I'm thinking I might frog it and make some other socks. I only got down to the heel; I just turned it, and that's where it just isn't working for me. Maybe I can make it with different yarn some other time. I'll try and post a picture later today or tomorrow.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Pattern stash

I have realized I have 94 sock patterns...just sock patterns! If I made a pair of socks in 2 weeks, it would take me over 3 YEARS to knit ONE pair of every sock pattern. I think that's a little obsessive. This does not include the sweater patterns, skirt patterns, baby, afghan, toy, and other patterns I have. All of these, I would also like to mention, are FREE online. I have not paid for ANY of these patterns. I have no idea when I'll ever make these patterns, nor do I know where the the yarn for these patterns will come from. How insane is this?! Some collect yarn; I collect patterns.

Sick Baby

I was home all weekend, with a sick baby. I did get one more square done for the Baby I.Q. Afghan for a friend who's due December 1st, but decided to be induced November 26th. She completely messed up my schedule...argh...now I havea week less to finish it. :) No biggie...it'll be done in time. If it's not done when she actually delivers, I'll run it by their house soon after she's home. I'm thinking maybe stopping by and delivering dinner too would be nice. One night when neither she or her husband have to worry about what's for dinner and taking care of 3 little ones. I love my crock pot...and left overs. It's amazing what you can do with some leftovers and a little ingenuity. I might get some more done on the afghan today if I can keep my eyes open. Little man wouldn't sleep soundly last night until I held him for a couple of hours. That means Mommy is sleepy today.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Catch-up

Well, I repaired the Baby I.Q. Afghan for my baby...for some reason some of the seams have a tendency to come out. I fixed that. I also trimmed it...fringe was sprouting. I also started on the heel for the Black Diamond Sock; I have 3 or 4 rows left. I think next year I'm going to try and do one pair of socks a month. Then, I'll have 12 pairs of socks at the end of the year. Of course, I probably won't have any other projects done. I'm trying to use up all the yarn I have. I have some projects in queue, and I hope to get them finished before too long. I have lots of bits and pieces that will probably get put in an afghan.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Bad knitter...no cookie!

I did nothing last night on the Black Diamond sock. I'm a terrible knitter. I went to bed early. Today, I've been working on crochet squares for the Baby I.Q. Afghan for a friend who's due in December. I should be able to easily get it done by December 1, which is when she's due.

I've been listening to Lime & Violet (hence the title), and now I'm curious about spinning. I've checked out a few places online, and even looked at a few classes in some shops around town. I would like to talk to a spinner before I get started in it, and watch a spinner. Maybe I'll check out the local SNB and see if there's a spinner working there.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Today

I have now finished the first part of the first sock of the Black Diamond Socks from the Six Sox Knitting group. It actually looks really good. I'm excited about it. I'm trying to figure out if I'll have enough yarn to finish these socks AND knit another pair. I'm thinking probably not. I'm doing them in Cascade 220 Superwash, but I don't think there'll be enough.

I've asked for knitting stuff for Christmas. Hopefully I'll get something good. :0)

Monday, November 12, 2007

One step forward, two steps back

I was almost done with the second repeat on the first Black Diamond Sock...and realized I got off somewhere. So, I ripped it back (I wasn't sure I liked the transition from the first repeat to the second anyway) and started it again. I haven't had much time today to make progress on it. I finished about 2 rows...so I'm starting the second repeat and am on about row 4 of that. Hopefully, I'll have a completed sock by the end of the week...hopefully.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

The room with a view

I finally got some progress in the craft room. I know how I want it set up, and all I need is to get the stuff out of there that doesn't belong and put the rest of the stuff away. I moved some of the furniture (the sewing table, the cutting table and the file-cabinet-o-patterns) and decided what needs to go in the rest of the space. I can even relinquish some of the space for a half bath later. Once we get the money (probably in a few years, but hey, it's our house...we can take our time with getting it the way we want it), we can refinish the basement the way it needs to be done (read: the way it should have been done in the first place). It looks like someone quickly slapped a few walls up here and there in order to add square footage to it. On the bright side, it gave us a good idea of the potential. On the down side, there is stuff that needs to be ripped out and replaced. there's also some vermin issues that we will deal with as we progress. I'm hoping to get to some knitting tonight...or crochet. I seem to have craft ADHD recently. I even picked up some cross-stitch last night and started on that...again. Maybe I'll pick one project and work on getting it completed this weekend. We're skipping church tomorrow morning, to have some family time. That means no rushing around tonight and no hurried morning. I can stay up a little later and work on something. I've been busy today, and yesterday I got one box of patterns organized. There are several others, but one is a step in the right direction. I'm hoping to get more boxes organized as the weeks progress. Work is really slow, so I'm hoping that between that and the upcoming holidays I can make some headway.

Friday, November 09, 2007

No knitting for you

I did not get to knit any last night. Instead, I got to sit in traffic for 2 hours for a 45 minute trip while police searched cars for a bank robber. That's right; they shut down a major highway during rush hour to search for a guy who had traded a note for a bag of money (don't you wish you could do that without repercussions?) and did a car-to-car search. They were literally walking from car to car, searching each one for the robber. So, I didn't get to do much of anything last night, other than sit in the car (I was driving) and wait. It was sad. I did however, manage to get some stuff together for a productive day today. Hopefully, by the time I get home, patterns will be organized. :0)

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Finally...decisions made and organizing beginning

I've been thinking about storing patterns recently. A friend of mine, who's going through the nesting phase of her third pregnancy, came over and started going through my patterns. She couldn't nest in her own home (due to there's nothing really to nest...she cleaned out everything back in January) so she started on mine. No worries. Her suggestion was to put all my patterns in page protectors and store them in binders. Good idea...with one minor problem. I have over 400 patterns, just on my computer alone. Added in to the ones from yarn labels, and others I never stored on my computer, and we're probably talking about a good 1,000 patterns, and that's probably just knit and crochet patterns! That doesn't even include the gazillion cross-stitch, few beadwork and tatting patterns I have as well. At $12 per box of 100 page protectors, that gets to be a mighty expensive storage solution. While some people might have a money tree in their backyard, I don't. So, we're going for a cheaper option. Here's the plan: I have a nice-sized file cabinet. I have file folders. The patterns are going to be categorized (sweaters, scarves, hats, stoles, etc.), put in file folders, and put in the file cabinet. I have plans to make sure all the craft patterns are downstairs in the craft room in the file cabinet, and all the financial files (tax returns, legal documents, etc) are upstairs in the desk. Those files will also require a copy in a fire box or safety deposit box of some sort. That will come in good time. I also managed last night to sort through some of said financial papers and get the trash gone (like envelopes, fliers, and those nasty little inserts they always manage to stick in there). Most everything went easily into some folders I had lying around, and a box of 100 file folders is cheaper and will go farther than the box of page protectors. Don't get me wrong...I love the page protectors. I'm planning on keeping a few of them around and storing the current WIP patterns in them, and putting those with all the yarn for the project (see how organized I can be?!). I did some of that last night as well. This weekend will prove to be interesting...I'm still half tempted to tell hubby to take Little Man and go visit his parents, and leave me at home to clean, organize, and do the grocery shopping. However, I don't think that will fly with him. So, in that case, I have lots to do between tonight and Monday. There's got to be a way to clone myself so I can be in two places at once.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Overwhelmed with projects

Ever cast on so many projects and then get completely overwhelmed? Here's a list of what's currently in progress:

Cromarty
Baby I.Q. Afghan (2 of them actually, although one for a gift)
Sheldon
Christmas project #1 (surprise gift...shhhh!)
Black Diamond Socks
Blue baby blanket (Sedge Stitch afghan)
Starbucks bird

Some of these should be done by December, and others just need to be done by Christmas. I'm still working on the design of the Starbucks bird in knit...it's those increases that are killing me. Mathematically, on paper, they work. It's in the actual fabric that you can't have it look decent with that many increases in one row. Is there some formula as to how many stitches to increase over how many rows so it looks normal and not like a freak of knitting? Perhaps that questions isn't coherent. I know what I'm trying to say...it's just not coming out right.

I've been listening to Lime and Violet the past couple of days. I love the world of podcasts. It makes me feel like there are close friends near me when I'm at work.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

So much for posting daily...

For whatever reason, I just haven't been able to post regularly. I did however, add photos to my Flickr account, and I cast on for a new project. The Black Diamond Socks from the Six Sox Knitalong...that aren't in black. I'm actually making them in this gorgeous bright pink and cream. Another Christmas gift? Possibly. We'll see...I might just keep them for myself.

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Pictures!

In trying to be a better worker, and not be under the watchful eye of Big Brother, I am now trying to reserve my posting for home. The problem with this is once at home, I have a tendency to get distracted by regular things (dinner, baby, cleaning, and crafting) and never manage to get around to it. Now I am making a point of it, since I signed up for NoBloPoMo. This is going to be a trip. Here's Billy Idol, who decided to make an appearance at our house for Halloween.
Isn't he just adorable?! I'm working on a secret project, and since I think the gift recipient will be watching this blog for a time (due to pictures of Billy being posted) I'll just let you have a secret update...it's going well. :0) I'll post pictures after Christmas of them, but they'll be on Ravelry.

Friday, November 02, 2007

I missed one day, but if I do two posts today, does it count?

I joined the NoBloPoMo challenge...here's hoping I can make it everyday! I'll just have to make time on Saturday and Sunday. I have pictures from Halloween (little man was TOO cute as Billy Idol!) and that might give me some incentive. I do have a knitting update too. Maybe I can do that either later this afternoon or tomorrow.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Quick Update

Just a quick note to say I've been thinking about it, and just haven't posted yet. I'm still exhausted (and I think I'm starting a sinus infection, cold, or other general sickness) and I'm hoping to get caught up on some sleep, pictures, knitting, cooking, and other things this weekend. I hope I can make it until then. I've cast on a new project, and I'm working on my daily routines still for a rhythm with blogging, knitting, pictures, and everything else. I'm also playing with the digital camera to get better pictures. We'll see how that goes hopefully this weekend as well. Back to work for me!

Thursday, October 25, 2007

This is not working.

Ugh...what can I say? The best laid plans of mice and men...get screwed up beyond all recognition. I have no energy, but the weather is GORGEOUS and it's now chilly. I'm certain the lack of energy is the weather. I'm hoping next week I'll have more energy and will post more, with pictures, and hopefully I can set up more in my Ravelry account. I'm just flat out tired. It's time for a nap.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

No progress again

I wish somehow that I didn't need sleep. If I didn't, I could get SO much more done. I have worked on the Cromarty, and I've worked on the crocheted baby blanket. I haven't picked up the Baby I.Q. afghans yet, but I did get more yarn for them. I think this weekend I can get more progress done since we're headed up to Toccoa for the weekend. That will mean knitting and crocheting time in abundance for me. I don't have to clean house (can't since we won't be there) and Sweet Baby Boy will be taken care of by the grandparents. That means my hands will be empty (yay!). Of course I want to take care of my baby, but I don't have to do it all. The grandparents can take over and feed, water and change his cage...I mean diaper. :)

Friday, October 19, 2007

So much for Picture Pages

Well, wouldn't you know it...I forgot the digital camera. Today though, I'm hoping to update Ravelry some more. Maybe I'll get to this site as well. I have basically all day and nothing to do (again). I spent yesterday crocheting at work (no, really...I paid to crochet yesterday). It was either sit and do nothing or sit and crochet or knit.

In the knitting realm, I cast on for Cromarty. I didn't knit any rows, but I did cast on. That's progress, right?! A friend of mine came over last night and started to organize my patterns. She's going through the nesting phase of pregnancy, and doesn't have much to do at her place, so when she came over last night, she started going through my stuff. It works for me...there's a lot to do around the house, and I can't get to all of it right now. I'll get to all of it, just not all at once.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Conquering the Swatch

I finished the swatch last night, and I re-started another afghan for my baby. I liked the pattern on the Sedge Stitch washcloth from Lion Brand, and ripped the start of the afghan I started on Saturday (a good 4 inches in crochet). I might be able to work on it some today at work (shhh! Don't tell anyone! It'll be our secret!).

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

I'm not as dumb as I look

I figured out what was wrong with the swatch for Cromarty. I stopped by Cast On Cottage and got some very useful help yesterday. I talked with one of the women there, and I was doing almost everything correctly, but I was reading the chart backwards. Note to self: it helps to read the chart correctly in order for the end product to look right. Interestingly enough, if you read it backward, it doesn't even come out backward...just wrong. Go figure. So now it's right, and it looks MUCH better. Pictures later. I didn't do it last night (I was on a knitting roll and didn't want to stop) and I didn't have time this morning. I'll either get it this evening and post tomorrow or Friday. Maybe by then the swatch will be done. There hasn't been much progress on any other front this week. Of course, it's just Wednesday. Tonight promises to be productive in some fashion. We're having friends over tomorrow night for dinner and to see the house. Cleaning MUST be done!

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Too tired to knit

It's amazing how just sitting down and stopping for a few minutes can make you realize how tired you are. I have so much to do, yet I sat down last night for dinner, and within 30 minutes, I was ready to go to bed. So, I went to bed at 8:30. 8:30 p.m...can you believe it?! I think I might swing by a LYS this afternoon on my way home. It's on the way, and I can check it out. I haven't been there before, and a quick look won't hurt, right?

Monday, October 15, 2007

Getting the groove back

Isn't it odd how just spending some time flipping through others' sites will get your groove back? I'm ready to get started not only with Ravelry, but also with crafting now. I started checking out some aspects, and it looks like I'm going to be kicking the hubby off his computer more frequently and updating Ravelry.

Ravelry!

I finally got my Ravelry invite, and I need to set up a Flickr account to upload pictures, and start working on that. This weekend was not filled with knitting, but instead with some crochet. I fixed the Baby I.Q. blanket, and my son sleeps deeply under it. I started a new blanket for him. The Hoover blanket got deleted and is now a crocheted blanket of my own design.

I'm in a blah phase for here. I have no motivation currently to work on anything online. I think part of it has to do with the fact that I don't have a computer at home. My husband has scavanged the decent (but old) desktop I had, and the laptop (also old) has no internet access. I'm biding my time until I can get a new one (tax refund - here I come!).

I hope to get something accomplished at home, either something in the craft room or something ready for Ravelry. Maybe I'll get a kick in the pants soon. :)

Friday, October 12, 2007

Friday Pictures

Remember this?
Now it looks like this:

Here's a close up of one of the squares.

In case you wanted to know the progress of the swatch for the Cromarty, I took a picture of that too.
I'm not thrilled with the way the swatch is turning out. The cable isn't looking so hot. Has anyone else had this issue? It's either the pattern or me...and I don't think it's the pattern. I could be wrong. This weekend promises to have some serious knitting time. We're heading to a farmer's market about 2 hours away, and since hubby knows the way (we're taking back roads) he gets to drive. That means I'll be free to knit!!! Woot!




I still have to finish up the Sheldon for a friend who delivered on Sunday, and several other projects waiting in the wings. I started moving stuff in my craft room, but more will be done once all the electric work is done. That will hopefully be done next week. I'll take progress pictures tonight, and maybe if there's time this weekend (not likely, but possibly) I'll post them. Otherwise, you have to wait until next week.
There are issues with the blanket that I don't think you can see in the picture above, but I did some close-ups:

The holes are easily fixed, and I'll probably do that tonight. No worries for that issue. I have a a couple of squares of two other blankets started, and I'll finish those up hopefully before the year ends. I'm hoping to have a lot of FOs this year, even though it is late in the year. It's just a matter of finishing the projects already started.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Frustration

I can't seem to make the swatch work for me. I hope the color coding I did will help me pay closer attention and let it finally work! Crochet work update: I finished the Baby I.Q. Afghan for Sebastian this past weekend, and it went into the wash (pictures should be ready on Friday - I have to get it out and take them). Friday should hold many pictures for you.

I'm hoping to spend at least a little time this week in my craft room. If I get in there, pictures will be taken as the transformation happens. I have more pictures to take of the house as well, to show you what we've done (not much, but something's better than nothing).

Monday, October 08, 2007

Sweater Mondays

Well, I didn't get as much progress as I had hoped on the sweater swatch this weekend. I was hoping to complete it, and that just didn't happen. Of course, when you spend all day Saturday and Sunday involved in activities that won't let you knit, you can't really expect much to get done. I also had to restart the cable swatch about 3 times because something just wasn't happenin'. It wasn't working for me. Eh, maybe tonight?! I also have to finish a Sheldon for a friend...she delivered yesterday. Yea! New baby!

Friday, October 05, 2007

New set-up

Well, I listened to a wonderful podcast about altering knitting patterns. Thanks to Lara at Math4Knitters for the help. I started working a swatch for the major cable in the sweater pattern and we'll see where that takes us.

I'd really love to go back to college and get another degree. Perhaps if I got a second degree in something like English, I could then get a teaching job, and work on my music degree. This is all theory of course.

In case you can't tell, I'm slowly but surely changing some things around on the website. Hopefully it'll be completed over the next month, and we can start having some real fun around here! I'm also going to try and post at least three times a week for a complete year. Ha! Maybe if I do weekly posts with a theme, that would help. I could do a sweater update on Mondays, a toy update on Wednesdays, and something fun on Fridays, like a great picture or something.

More math and a new picture

Here's a picture from...2 weeks ago! I can't believe it's been that long already! In any case, you can see I went RED. I love it. It's a nice change.

More math is in my future. I plotted out my measurements last night on graph paper, and we'll see how the measurement for the sweater map out, then there's the whole issue of putting the two together and making the necessary changes.

I need a list. There's so much to do...and I keep adding more. Not necessarily craft stuff either. I think I'm going to pick up German again. My hubby needs help with it before he returns to school...that's his biggest obstacle. I, being the good wife that I am, will help him with it. That means I have to re-learn it (or learn it for the first time, since when I took it I didn't learn much either).

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Argh...swatching...again.

Well, I decided I don't like the new swatches...either of them. The first one is better. How crappy is that?! However, I did find an excellent resource for modifying patterns at Knitty. Here's the link. I love having the internet as a constant resource. This saves me tons of time and energy (the energy I'm sure I could burn; the time - not so much). It also saves me a lot of frustration. This means I can devote more time to doing the important things: work, playing with my baby, knitting, cooking, etc. Washing clothes and cleaning are way down on the list.

One thing that's not is getting the roof fixed. Apparently, it doesn't leak in a heavy rainstorm (we have several of these in Georgia), just a gentle one. We have two tracks of water that stream down one wall in the living room. This is distressing, mainly because the inspector didn't find anything really wrong with the roof (of course, he also didn't get up on the roof, just looked at it through binoculars, the lazy doof). Fortunately, we do have coverage from our home warranty on the roof, so hopefully it'll just be the price of a service call.

I'm hoping once I get all the schematics down for the Cromarty sweater, I can actually start knitting. I've never had to do this with crocheting before, mainly for 2 reasons: one, if I made something to wear, I could manipulate the stitches enough without the math to make it fit and two, I haven't made that many things to wear in either crochet or knit. That's all about to change. I hope all the math pays off. It's a good thing I was pretty good at math. Otherwise, this would all suck. I do however need to pay attention and run the numbers 3 times, preferably in different ways. I might even get someone else to run the numbers for me, just to make sure it's all working correctly.

New swatch watch

The swatch I did before (on size 6 needles), though accurate for gauge measurement, just isn't cutting it. I'm swatching again, this time on 8s. I tried 9s, but the gaps between stitches were a bit much. I think I knit the last sweater from this yarn on 8s, so it should be alright. I don't want it holey, but I think the 6s were a little small. I started the front on the 9s, but fortunately, I only got the first row done. I think this will set up the sweater well, so the bottom doesn't draw in too much, and will hang nicely. I can switch to the 8s for the next row, but only after the swatch. I'm sure people around work think I'm insane, since I seem to be doing the same thing over and over and over again. But, if it doesn't work or fit, what's the point?

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Guessing Gauge

I knitted a swatch for the Cromarty Sweater from Alice Starmore's Celtic Collection book. According to my swatch, to get the measurements I need for the sweater, I still cast on the same number of stitches. I just think that's weird. Maybe my math is off...with the gauge she gives, it comes out to 6.25 sts per inch. My gauge is 6 sts per inch. She says to cast on 184 sts. That means it should be 29.44 inches across the bottom. The diagram shows 22.5 inches. Where did the other 6.94 inches go? Am I insane? Are they eaten up by seams or the pattern? I need the extra inches. I guess I can knit a couple of rows and see how it measures. I just hate to do all that work just to rip it out and start all over again, when I'm sure someone else has done it already. Duplicating work just isn't my thing.

Friday, September 28, 2007

I am the Math Queen.

Well, the math pretty much works, but I think I need more plain knit rows. It doesn't work as far as the length goes. There are too many increases in too small a space. The problem I find with knitting is that you can't see the results without knitting far from the increase or decrease. That means if it's not the way you want it, you have to rip back A LOT in order to fix it. I guess that's where the math comes in, and spreading it out over a decent amount of rows. I am sure someone had already figured it out, but there HAS to be a ratio for increases and decreases, depending on gauge. Duh!!!! I just had a revelation: same thing for a triange: slope = rise/run. That could solve a lot of my issues.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Math Conquered

I think I've conquered the math for the bird. I'll do a test run and see if what I came up with actually works. That's the next test, isn't it?! The math wasn't all that difficult...an algebra student could do it. Well, maybe geometry student. That was 9th grade for me, so it's been a while. I'm just glad I remember some basics. I'm hoping this will all work, and I can either post the finished pattern (although there are still the eyes, feet, and beak to do) or submit it to some place, like MagKnits or Knitty. Maybe they'll take the pattern, and publish it for me. If not, I'll put it up here and let everyone fight over it. :) I doubt anyone reads this blog often enough, but at least I have documentation of stuff I've done. I'm hoping to get an invitation to Ravelry soon, and I can keep track of things there.

Tuck, edge and wash

As you can see, I finished the squares for the blanket last ngiht, and sewed them together. The ends still need to be tucked in, the edging needs to be done, and it needs to be washed.


The pattern calls for an edging of double crochet in white and a row of single crochet in black. I'm running low on white, so I'm thinking a row of blue and black. We'll see if I like it or not. I think it will be just fine, but it might look odd.

Today, it's all about the math. I have the swatch for the bird, and I'm going to do the calculations for it. If I can get through them today, I'll work on that this weekend. If not, then this weekend it'll be all about the math.

I still have cookies to bake, candy to make, and a party decoartions to fix. It's going to be a busy weekend.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

One (and a half) left to go...

I have all but the last two squares complete. It's been a long week already but I should be able to finish both tonight. Once that's done, it's simply a matter of sewing them together, and doing the edging. The weekend should be good for that.

I've been contemplating making a sweater out of Cascade Eco+ wool. Has anyone else used this for a sweater? I'd hate to make one and have it be scratchy. That's my general concern. That, and that my wonderful hubby will mistakenly wash and dry it, causing it to felt, or my son spitting up on it and ruining it. The bonus of it is the yardage that you get. 478 yards can go a long way. I still have the other sweater and bird to work on. This is an idea for another sweater later. I've been thinking of using an Alice Starmore pattern for my purple sweater that has to be re-knit. I also have several repair projects, one of which is a wool sweater, to do. There is a lot to do in the world of home.

I've been working on children's choir stuff as well. We're getting ready for our Christmas party on Sunday. I have candy and cookies to make, and some decorations to dig out. If only there was more time in a day...I might just be pulling some late nights to get stuff done. Can someone pay me to sit at home and do housework?! That would be nice. I still think there should be a provision for women who WANT to stay at home with their children, and the government should pay. Our government wastes plenty of money; surely they could use it for something that would HELP the society, educational system, and moral fortitude of our country.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Weekends

I need about 4 more days to each weekend. I have all but 3 squares done for the Baby I. Q. Afghan for my son. I have 2-3 squares done for my friend's baby. I thought I should get my baby's blanket done before hers. I also did finish the swatch for the bird; the math just now has to ensue.

I've been listening to CraftLit, and Pride and Prejudice. I went back and got the old episodes. I also listened to all the old Cast On episodes. I love podcasts. It makes life easier. They keep my mind occupied, even when my hands aren't. I have to say, not having my hands busy aggravates me to no end. I would rather be knitting or crocheting than just sitting at work during my down-time. I have a whole week of down-time. There are a few things for me to do, but not nearly as much as there has been. I finally got everything just about caught up after being gone for 2 months, and it will all be either filed or thrown out by the end of this week.

Friday, September 21, 2007

I'm amazed.

I was reading through this book last night:


And oh my goodness! There is more information in there than I could EVER imagine was possible. I usually crochet toys and afghans, but her designs in the book make me want to whip something wearable out in crochet, and have it FIT WELL. I know that her principles can also apply to sewing and knitting. I was thoroughly impressed with the depth of knowledge and careful planning in a garment. This one is definitely on my Christmas list.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Coveting the stash

I am in stash covet mode. As much as I want to clear out my stash, I want to accumulate more. I have a deadline of November first for Christmas lists...guess what's going to make up a bunch of it? I'll give you 3 guesses, and the first two don't count. :)

New direction

I have decided to try a new approach to the design of the bird...what I probably should have done in the first place. I'm doing the math. That's right; I didn't swatch. I didn't calculate. I am backing up, mainly because although it's turning out ok, it's not exactly how I hoped. When I make something in crochet, I know how to manipulate the stitches enough to not swatch and not do the math. I can make it up as I go along, and all is well. However, I think because the stitches in knitting are smaller, and progress is a little slower, going back and doing the math will be a good thing. I should (in theory) be able to do all the math, and then knit the bird with no problem. If I do that, hopefully within a week the bird will be done. If that's the case, and it goes faster, then more designing will be easier. I make a swatch, do the math, and the knit. I hope to have the swatch completed this weekend. The math should be easy to complete in a Sunday afternoon. Monday will hopefully see a new bird and pattern.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Seeing Red

Well, the good news is, I worked on the bird. The bad news is I didn't work enough on it to have it done. I did however, decide to color my hair this weekend. I'll post pictures tomorrow. Can you guess what color I chose?

Birmingham was fun. I tried to hit a yarn shop, but by the time we got there, they were closed. I was surprised they closed so early on Saturdays. They were only open from 10-2. I'll admit, it was a gorgeous day, but closing at 2 is a bit, well, early. The weather is BEAUTIFUL, and hopefully I'll get in some knitting time tonight. I'm done with the tail part of the bird, and am working on the body (that's progress, right?!). Hoepfully I'll have pictures of a finished bird by the weekend.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Starting over

I am pretty sure that I'm going to rip out the Hoover blanket. It's just not a happy knit for me. I think I want something different, something like...a cable. I haven't done a cable yet, and a baby blanket might just be the thing. The progress is slower than Christmas on that blanket anyway, and I find that if progress is slow, it's best to move on. I'd rather have something that knits a little faster because it's not a pain than try to tackle something that I can't bear to look at anymore. This weekend is all about the traveling, and hopefully some good knitting time while I ride. I did find a couple of LYS around the area, and we'll see if I have time to make it there.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Overzealous

I was definitely overzealous in my goal for the Baby I.Q. Afghan. I hoped to complete it by this weekend, and be able to soley focus my attention on the bluebird, but that's just not going to happen. I have a couple of choices. I can either take it and the bluebird with me, I can take just the bluebird, or I can take just the afghan and get something new for the bluebird. I think I want to play with scrap yarn for it though, so buying something too expensive wouldn't be a good idea (I'd hate to buy a really nice yarn for it and wind up shredding half of it to pieces). Maybe this weekend I'll take a look around and see what I can find (I did some research and there are a few yarn shops around B'ham) and work with what I've got. I've completed 7 of the 16 squares, and my hands are showing it.

I've found that a glass of tea after 7 just isn't a good idea. The caffeine keeps me up and I don't sleep well, making the next day very difficult to function and knit or crochet. Here's the latest news...once I get the bird going in knit, I'll convert the pattern to crochet as well. I have a better working knowledge of crochet, so I know that will go MUCH faster.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

FINALLY!!!!

I think I found the PERFECT pattern for the Debbie Bliss yarn I have!!! How exciting! You can see it here. The yarn I'm speaking of is Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran in color #601. It's a lovely shade of periwinkle, and I have 10 skeins of it. That would be PERFECT in yardage, and I don't think I'll have to up-size the pattern either. I love it. I just have to really evaluate if I'll wear it. I think I will...I can wear it over several tops: short-sleeved, long-sleeved, or sleeveless. Woot!

New developments

Well, I have decided to put the bird on hold, until the weekend. Instead of that, I want to get all the squares for Sebastian's afghan done by Friday. I've completed 4 out of 16 squares. This challenge means I'll have to do about 6 squares today and tomorrow to finish the last 12. That equates to about 6 hours each day. Can we say "over-zealous"? I did find the cable for the camera, and now have a picture of the bird and his companion.


I got a better shot of his friend, the owl with the book, rather than him in this one. The owl is in fabric, and that might be a hand-sewn design later.

Here's the little one I noticed. Granted, the yarn I'm using is a heavier gauge than this one, but I like the embroidery (I have TONS of floss that can be used). The eyes, glasses, feet, and beak are felt, and I think I'm going to knit them as well, using i-cord for the feet and glasses. Isn't it adorable?!

I'm hoping that my fingers will fly as fast as my brain in designing it. I frogged what I had started in the round, and started again. I might need to take it out in order to finish the afghan, since I'm using the same color for both (a lovely blue).

We're off to Birmingham this weekend, and I hope I can find a JoAnn's there. I think I might pick up a few things that are on sale. I'm also hoping to hit Wal-Mart and getting some fabric on the cheap. I'm looking for cotton or cotton/poly blends for some play fabric. I'm hoping to get out super-cheap.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Starting Over

I decided to cut my losses with the bird, and start again in the round. I got a little overzealous with increases, so even that has to be started again. I'm going to hopefully get more done on it tonight, after starting it AGAIN (third time's the charm, right?).

I've been listening to Cast On, and I have to say I'm hooked. I can't say I agree with some things on a personal level, but it's a good eye-opener to the knitting world. I know, I'm a little behind on the whole podcast thing, but hey, better late than never, right? At least I've joined the land of the listening. When I went to the LYS this past weekend, I felt like they were slightly behind the times and weren't up to speed with some of this stuff. I admit I'm not on the cutting edge, but I figure that if I know about it, surely everyone else has already plugged in. I know they have a website, and it's not too bad. I think there could be a little more as far as a website goes, but eh, it's not my project, and I didn't do it. Oh well...I guess I also don't have room to criticize; however, I'm not running a business either. A well-designed webpage in this day and age can go a long way in promoting your business. I'm just saying.

I also keep hearing about Ravelry, and I am thoroughly intrigued. I hope either I get an invite soon or it goes public. I'm dying to check it out!

Monday, September 10, 2007

Yarn Snobs

I know that there are many types of yarns available. I know that they can fit into most budgets. However, I personally think it is just WRONG to judge people by the materials they knit with. Isn't the most important thing to carry on the craft, and not let it fall by the wayside? I am guilty of using acrylic yarn - for lots of things. I make no apologies for it. I make afghans and toys, and know that they are easy to care for and won't lose their shape after being washed 30 times because your child spilled juice on it. Again. I'm not worried about it tearing to shreds when it gets tossed into the dryer, and I'm not afraid that they will felt, shrink, or become suddenly unrecognizable. Does this mean I will always use acrylic? I hope not. Does it mean I use it because 1) it's durable, and 2) it's affordable and 3) it's readily available? Of course it does. If you can spend $100 or more on yarn to make an afghan, more power to you. But just because I can't, don't look down on me. It's not about the fiber you use; it's about the use of fiber.

That being said, I did go back to Starbucks and get a picture of the bird I saw on Friday. However, in all my cleverness, I forgot the cord for my digital camera. I started on it this weekend (yes, in acrylic-get over it) and am considering a whole flock, once I get the main body down. So far, it's not too bad. I'm thinking it might be better to start it like a sock, from the toe up, but once I get done with this one, I'll think about how to reconstruct it in the round. I think it's easier that way for me...I'm still figuring out how knitting really works. It's fun though.

Friday, September 07, 2007

Too much coffee

I stopped by Starbucks this morning, and had them brew me a French pot of Verona, my favorite coffee. I don't usually have caffeine in that large of an amount, so I've been kind of bouncing off the walls this morning. Before I knew it, it was noon. I had to re-do an entry THREE TIMES this morning because my fingers and brain weren't in sync. That's just ridiculous. Lesson learned - no Starbucks during close for me.

I have major ambitions this weekend. I have cookies to bake, diapers to wash, and knitting to finish. I hope to finish the body of Sheldon #2 and the cable swatch for the sweater soon-to-be-started for myself. I also saw something this morning at Starbucks that made me want to copy it, and see if I could re-create it, instead of spending $5 for it (I know...it's only $5, but hey, $5 is $5). I saw this cute folk-art type bird knitted (and there was one that was sewn as well) with glasses and it was utterly cute. I hate that I didn't have a camera with me; otherwise I'd have taken a picture and post it for you. It was blue, and the glasses were brown, with eyes in it (in true Muppet style), and I think the legs were brown as well. We'll see if I can re-create it.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Suddenly remembered...

I have a TON of clothes that I just don't wear. Some of them I think are just going to be donated to somewhere. Some of the others will either be reincarnated or scavenged for items. There's one jacket in particular I think I'm stealing the buttons from for a sweater. The buttons are really nice, heavy, silver leaves. I'm thinking a lovely cardi needs them. I may post a pic if I get around to taking pics tonight. I'm not sure if I'll get to it tonight or not; there's a bunch of work to be done this weekend.

Little by little

Well, the craft room didn't get done this weekend. I'm doing good to get laundry done again this week, but if I can get on top of a few items this week, we'll be better. I finished one square for my baby's Baby I.Q. Afghan, and then ran into problems with the black for my friend's. Go figure. I decided to cut the yarn and start with a new end. Fortunately, we're only talking acrylic here folks. I know...shoot me now. Acrylic is horrible, it's evil, but it's also cheap and easy to care for when you have several munchkins roaming the house. If juice gets spilled on it, or someone spits up (or throws up) it's a quick toss in the washer and dryer and it's all good. I created a clever plan for using it up though. I'm making our baby an afghan, and I think I'm going to do the Baby I. Q. Afghan in multiple colors. That's right, it won't be just red, black, and white. I'm going to do a few squares in red, a few in green, a few in blue...well, you get the idea. I haven't decided how many colors to do yet. There are 16 squares, so I could do 4 squares in 4 colors, or 8 squares in 2 colors, or 2 squares in 8 colors. Or, I could enlarge the afghan and do more squares in more colors.

Pictures also didn't get taken. I did virtually nothing like I thought I would last night. I spent quite a bit of time at work, and didn't get home until late, and then I sat and watched tennis while I wrestled with the big black yarn knot from Hades.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Scattershot

Remember when I said I wanted to knit something, but didn't know what? That nothing looked right? Yeah, well, that time has passed. I now have so many projects going, I don't know what to work on next. Here's what I'm working on:
  • Sheldon for a friend (for baby #1)
  • Baby I.Q. Afghan for a friend (for baby #3-crochet)
  • Hoover blanket (yes, this thing is still around...for my baby)
  • Baby sweater (but I don't know that I'm happy with it, so it might get frogged but it's for my baby as well)
  • Baby I.Q. Afghan (for my baby-crochet)
  • Frog for a friend (to go with the first Baby I.Q. Afghan)
  • Sweater for me

Think that's enough projects? I'm trying to use up yarn. Can you tell? I just hope I don't burn out on knitting. But then, if I get tired of it, there's always cross-stitch stuff waiting in the wings. I have so many projects to finish; at the rate I'm going, I'll never die. :) Oh well, at least I keep occupied and I'm not bored. I'm hoping to finish several projects before year end, and then finish more projects next year. I'm trying to decide if I should add in some socks for Christmas. If I do, that would be 4-6 more projects. We'll see what time allows.

Monday, September 03, 2007

Busy, busy.

I am working on the Sheldon, and it's coming along nicely. I keep thinking about making a sweater for my son, and I might crochet one, since I did find a nice pattern in a book I checked out from the library. There weren't many selections for knitting books there, but then it was a small branch, but the closest one to home. Hopefully tomorrow I'll post some pictures of what I've worked on this weekend. It's been a nice relaxing one and I'm thrilled that we got to see Diana Gabaldon. Live. In person. No, really. We did. I should have pictures of that soon as well. She signed our hardbacks, and we're looking forward to her seventh and eighth (yes, there is to be an eighth in the series) books. Not to mention the graphic novel, Master Raymond, and Lord John stories that will hopefully flow from her brain onto paper. I don't know that she could turn them out fast enough. If she had one book published each year, I don't think it would be enough. However, half the fun is anticipation. :)

Friday, August 31, 2007

Knitting Ideas

Ok, so here's the thought. I'm thinking of using the yarn from a sweater I already frogged for a new sweater. It'll be a lovely shade of lavender, and I'm thinking of a long v-neck cable sweater. I know it sounds easy and simple, but it's going to be one of the fall fashions, and hey, why can't I be fashionable?! So, I think that's what I'm going to start on this weekend. It's going to take some design work, since I don't have a pattern and even if I did, I doubt it would go up to the size I need. I'm going to customize it for me, so it should fit well. Basically, I'm going to measure the majority of my upper body, create a swatch, and pray it all works out.

I started working on Sheldon for my friend's little girl to be born later this month. I lost count of my rows, and need to start over again. At least I have a pattern for that one. I think I'm going to re-print it twice, once for a notebook and once as a working pattern. Then hopefully I can keep track of where I am. I'll keep you posted.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Ever have the feeling...

that you wanted to knit something, but nothing was what you wanted to knit? I'm there. I want to start a new project, really I do. I just can't figure out WHAT I want to start. The items I want to knit I don't have the yarn for, and the yarn I have I don't have a pattern for. I keep hoping that I'll run across an idea for an afghan that will use up all my extra yarn, giving me the perfect excuse to buy more.



I've been working on a Christmas program for children's choir. That's right...Christmas already. It won't take long and it'll be here. Presents must be started now, and I have no idea what to get/make some people. I'm just trying to figure out when I can get stuff unpacked. I need a weekend with nothing planned. This weekend isn't it, because there's a book festival in Decatur, and one of our favorite authors will be there. That's right, we get to see Diana Gabaldon in the flesh. We're loving it.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

On a Quest...

So, the baby shower went well. The knitted booties were warmly received, and the mother-to-be is excited about the baby sling and knitted toy (she chose a Sheldon from Knitty for her little girl).

My latest obsession in finding a knitted soaker pattern. Of course, there are TONS out there. I don't know that I've found a knitted one with Velcro (C) though. Here's the back story on that one. We're cutting costs, due to just flat out needing to. I am over apologizing for not having money. We just don't. It happens when you only have one income. So, in order to save a little cash, we started using cloth diapers. They're much easier than expected, even with a nasty dirty diaper in the mix. My 'rents have helped out with buying a diaper pail, diaper covers, and some deodorant stuff for the pail. We had the cloth diapers and pins already, mostly given to us by request or bought with gift cards. I never knew there was so much to learn about cloth diapers, more than I knew existed. I figured with pre-folded ones, that was just it. When you don't do it on a real child, you don't know. The only experience I ever had with it before was on dolls, and you know they don't wiggle or actually wet, so it's a whole new experience for us. We got them on Sebastian, and they were ok. I found out there are at least 4 ways to fold the diaper, which is prefolded (I figured there was no need to fold it again since it was "prefolded"). That shows my ignorance. I have since educated myself about this. The easiest one I think will be the Angel Fold (at least the website I visited called it that). If you'd like to see what I'm talking about, you can go here. In any case, now I'm on to soakers/covers. We have a bunch of "plastic pants" for him, but 1) they're a 12 month size which means he'll grow out of them, and 2) they're plastic. They don't breathe and are noisy. I'm sure he's not thrilled with them, not to mention trying to get his feet through something at this age is a pain. I figure if I can make a cover that closes around him instead of pulling one on, it might be a little easier. So, now I'm on a quest. So far, it looks like I'm going to make one, or at least attempt to make one. If I get it together, I'll post it.

There's a fall festival at a local elementary school, and you can get a booth for $25 and sell stuff. I don't know how that will work. I don't really have any original creations, so I'd have to use purchased patterns for something and sell it, rather than using the free stuff (which is most of my patterns). The other possibility if I decide to get a booth is make a few items and then do the rest as a contract. I think it'd be too much to deal with now.

Speaking of dealing with things, I'm not sure about work. When I leave work recently, I ahve the urge to get a drink...and I'm not talking about sweet tea. I resist the urge as much as possible, but let's face it - that's not healthy. I think it's either because I'm sick of work and need to find a new job, or I'm coming off the stress that's been pretty constant in my life for the past year or so. At any rate, I'm going to be looking and we'll see what happens in the next week or two.

Friday, August 24, 2007

I'm bored

I'm so bored today at work, I have nothing better to do than sit here and post again. I did finish the first bootie, and even started the second at lunch. It took me about 20 minutes to get the ribbing on the second one done. I hope to get the rest of it done tonight, and maybe the edging as well. I'm heading to the library to see if they have Nicky Epstein's book Knitting on the Edge and perhaps I'll do something more interesting than just a regular picot edging. We'll see what I can find and whip up in an hour or so. So far, I'm looking at a total of 5 hours for both booties, plus whatever it takes for the edge. If I can't find anything I like in the book, I'll just stick with the picot edging, and pack it up with the clothes and certificates. I am giving her a certificate for a handmade toy (and taking the patterns I have for her to choose from) and also a certificate for a baby sling. I found some patterns online for free, and want to make one for me, and I can make one for her as well. It just requires some measurements. There is only one seam, but you sew it twice (a French seam) and it's done. I like it being that easy.

I hate Kitchener stitches.

Look what I did last night:


I whipped this baby up in about 2 hours. I think it took me that long because 1) I was distracted by the TV, 2) I was following a new pattern and 3) I was thinking about doing something special to the top. I was enticed by these to make it something cuter than it is. I'll probably add some picot edging to the top. Then they'll be adorable. I'm working on #2 tonight. I was going to try and be industrious and do them at the same time, but I only had one skein of the pink. It's a baby-palooza again, so more baby projects to come.



Oh, and I found my camera again! Woot! Here's a picture of my sweet baby, just because he's the cutest in the whole world (of course, I could be biased).


Sorry for the red eye. He's still adorable. Oh, and here's a pic of my latest FO:



It's the best picture I could get on the floor in my son's room. It was dark, and the flash is the only real light. Pretty cute, huh? I'll take pics of the booties when they're done.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

MUST FIND CAMERA!!!!

I have to find my camera. I have no idea where it went in the move, but I will hopefully find it this week. In the meantime, I will hopefully be motivated to update some links around here and change some things around. Perhaps there will be lots of changes in the house, all of which I can document, provided I find the digital camera! I'm going to start the search tonight. If I find it, you will know. :)

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

It's done...but no pictures

I finished the project last night. Here's what it looks like from the pattern at Knitty:


Please note this is NOT my picture. This is from the Knitty website. My Sheldon looks very similar, but not quite this good (I'm sure the pattern designer had time to perfect her Sheldon whereas I did it just for the first time and it turned out not too differently). The pattern can be found here. I have so many other projects to complete. A friend of mine is pregnant with their third(!) child, another boy (their first was a girl, then a boy, and now another boy on the way). That means a green Baby IQ afghan, and another toy. I might do a Sheldon for him, or another toy that I have a pattern for. I love the free toy patterns. If you know of any others, please let me know. I have a couple of crochet toy patterns, and some knitted ones as well. A friend bought me a book of knitted toys a few years ago, and I have to sheepishly (no pun intended) admit that I've only knitted one toy out of it. That might soon change. Christmas is coming, and we really don't have much money. There's a credit card (not much, but enough to eat away at any extra we might have), mortgage, food, gas, electricity, and other monthly bills to pay. Christmas is just around the corner and will be here before you know it.

Monday, August 20, 2007

So close I can taste it...

I only have to sew a few things together to finish the latest project! Woot! However, that requires some careful placement, and time. I almost had half of the sewing done, when I realized it didn't quite look right...and took it out. After I'm done with this project, I think I'm going to try this pattern for my baby. Or else this one. Then, I have some cross-stitch patterns to work up; one of them I want to do for my brother and his wife. I think they'll really appreciate it for Christmas. It's a trellis with flowers and the center section has names and the date. I was going to do it AGES ago for a friend, and never finished it. Maybe I can finish it for Christmas for them. I also have pictures to get framed and matted for Christmas, provided I can get them developed. There is a lot to do between now and then, presents and cleaning and unpacking. Hopefully I will be able to find my digital camera soon and post pictures of the new FO, when it's finished.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Almost done...

I have all the pieces done now; it's just a matter of putting them all together. I'm hoping that tomorrow I can do that. I'm off to pick up the remaining furniture from my Grandmother's house that sold in December. There are a few pieces still at the consignment/antique store, and if we don't get them, they're going to auction and we won't see a dime. There are a couple of pieces that we wanted anyway, and didn't have space for. Now we get them. The men who run the shop are idiots; anyone with half a brain would have sold them already. I'm glad they didn't though. I'd hate to see the dry sink my grandfather built destroyed. It will look lovely in our kitchen though. Hopefully I'll have pictures soon to post regarding this mystery project. I might even post some with its recipient. Happy weekend, as I'm off tomorrow.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Success at last

I finished the body of the project I've been working on. I have one more piece to knit, and then it's time to put it all together!!!! It's exciting. I'll have to find the digital camera and take pictures of Sebastian's gift with him. Oh, I don't think I mentioned it last time, but HE'S CRAWLING!!!!! It's a fun time, and we have to clean the floors before we just let him go, but he can crawl now. It's very exciting. He's also pulling up on EVERYTHING known to man...furniture, people, thin air...or at least he's trying to. I'm as happy as can be about it. He's too cute.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Knitting News...

is slow. I did however, get some things done around the house this weekend. I didn't get as much done as I would have liked, but something's better than nothing, right?

I'm also working on children's choir things, which makes any crafting progress slow. I think I'm going to sit down tonight and work on the knitting project I have currently going. I've been thinking of what to do with some yarn, and I haven't quite gotten a full picture yet, but I'm hoping sometime soon I'll know more about what to do with it. I have a whole bag of Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran, in a lovely shade of 605, I think. It's a periwinkle color, and is lovely. I think I might see what other colors I can get to go with it this fall. I'd love to have a beautiful cashmerino sweater. We'll see what happens.

Here's to hoping once again, I can post a little here and there for the rest of the year.

Friday, August 10, 2007

Changes all the time

Well, here's the past 2-3 weeks for us: trying to unpack, a church music conference where I got re-acquainted with my children's choir director, my grandfather passing, and my brother and sisterin-love moving to New Orleans. This is, of course, nothing compared with other tragedies happening around: the collapsed bridge, the collapsed mine. Things are just falling apart.

In brighter news, I have worked a little on a knitting project: I still haven't told you what I'm making. It's a surprise. I will tell you it has to be stuffed, and I finally found my stuffing. Unpacking is slow. This weekend promises to get at least one room situtated with furniture (only to have more coming in - another long story). I have to do a few things around the house this weekend, since we're having company next weekend. I'm not talking major company, just some friends for lunch on Saturday. I have so much to do!

I have also started working on a cross-stitch project. It was going to go to a friend about 4-5 years ago (yikes!) and I think now if I can finish it, I'll personalize it for my brother and his wife.
Isn't he adorable?! This was Sunday as we were helping my brother and his wife pack and load the truck. That's his uncle's hat. I LOVE IT!!!! Hopefully I can post more soon.

Friday, July 20, 2007

So much to catch up on...

I'm actually swamped at work, although this is the first week I've had a breather.

Knitting is not progressing, but hopefully this weekend it will, since we're taking a road-trip, and if I can get my hubby to drive at least part of the way, then maybe I can knit a little. I miss it, and hopefully tonight after I get the baby's bag packed, I can sit down and knit a little.

I've recently gotten hooked on Sudoku. I'm not really much of a numbers person, although I do work as an accountant. I'm not usually a number puzzle kind of person; I prefer word puzzles (give me a cryptogram anytime!). However, I'm slowly working through a book given to us by type-A people right after I came home with our "perfect" son (the doctor's words, not mine!). I'm now addicted.

Friday, June 22, 2007

Has it really been a month?!

I guess it's really been over a month, hasn't it?! Well, SOOOOO much has gone on, but hopefully life will slow down and get into a rhythm again. Here's the latest: we bought a house in Woodstock, and moved yesterday (and yet I'm at work today...). It's a lovely home, with a nice yard and plenty of space (for now). I get my own craft room, so expect lots of pictures. I have several of before we moved in, when the house was open to the public. I'll try and post them a little along. Here's the front yard:


There's yard work to be done, and starting in the fall, I'm sure I'll be outside digging. In front of the tree (you can't see them) are BLUEBERRY bushes. I'm all excited!!! Fresh blueberries for baking, cooking and eating! I don't have to buy any. I think the bushes need some cultivating, but they produce wonderfully.

Back to knitting...the craft room should hopefully provide me with space to utilize regularly and get all kinds of crafty-goodness done. Enjoy the beautiful day!

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

New stuff...and exciting news!


I just had to show you my sweet baby!!!! Now here's the exciting news...we're buying a house! Want even more exciting news? I get a CRAFT ROOM!!!!!!!!!!! Yes, I will have a whole room just for my sewing machine, knitting paraphenalia, paint, craft books, and the like. I'm in the midst of getting back into the swing of things at work, and packing at home, and decorating in my head. We close on the 24th, and we're so excited. We found a great deal on a house with a huge yard, that backs up to a river in Woodstock, and we're loving it. I've been knitting some, but haven't had a whole lot of time. I can't wait to show you pictures...it'll be my work in progress, and hopefully I can get some knitting done between now and the time my finished craft room is unveiled. =)

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Great Mommy, terrible knitter

Well, not only did we take pictures, I got them developed, and here's my angel on Easter:






Isn't he precious?! Not that you can tell, but he's even wearing a little tie! My brother was successfully married...here's them the week before:

Aren't they cute together? I LOVE it!

I've been a terrible knitter...I haven't completed anything, and for about 4 weeks I haven't even picked up the needles. I'm always doing something else...like cooking, cleaning, driving, or just life stuff. Work also seems to get in the way. Oh well...at least our bathrooms are clean. The knitting will probably increase after we get settled in a new place, and things settle down in general. Back to work for me...more pictures tomorrow.


Monday, April 09, 2007

My so-called Life

Well, it has happened once again. Just when I think I have it all together, it all falls apart. We (my family and I) call this an "applesauce" moment. I'm slowly getting things together, and trying to keep them that way. It doesn't always work.

So, here's an update...Easter went fabulously. My family came over for lunch on Sunday. We ate, we talked, we took pictures (hopefully I'll have some to post from Sunday soon). We all went home. My brother's getting married on Saturday, and I'm really excited. I LOVE his fiancee. She's wonderful. We think we've found a house now; all that needs to come together is the financing, and we can make an offer. Taxes are due, and I still haven't filled them out. Oh well...they should be done this week, and if not, then the extension will be filed this week. I'm working on a *secret* project. I don't get to work on it very often, but fortunately, the hard part's done.

I have a hard time finding time to knit now. Our baby's not very high maintenance, but he's still a baby. He takes a lot of attention, and he's completely worth every second! There are several other things I want to knit...and maybe one day, I'll get to them.

Life just seems to be one thing after another. We've been house-hunting on the weekends, when we don't have other things to do. In the next month, we have 2 weddings to attend, a baby dedication to plan, taxes due, loan applications to fill out, and other social events that require our attendance. It's the season for busyness. I'm hoping once this is over, and we can move, things will quiet down and I can spend some time at home. That's what I really want...time at home.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

I'm back!



Well, I'm getting back into the swing of things. I have pictures!!!! Here's a couple of pics of my sweet little angel:




Here he is sleeping, and here's one of him awake:


There will be more as time goes on! I have lots to share!!! I'm one proud momma!



Wednesday, January 31, 2007

He's finally here!

It's been a mad week or so, but we finally have our little one home! I still haven't knit anything for him yet...it's been too crazy to even think about picking up needles! He's a precious angel, quiet and not very fussy at all. The Cesarean went as well as could be expected, but the removal of the bandage was not pleasant. That caused as much pain as the actual incision. Mom's healing, baby's growing, and there are sure to be some new knits for Sebastian in the coming years. I will post pics when I get them in electronic format. =0) As for the vitals, he was born on January 19th, at 10:41 a.m. He weighed 7 pounds 3 ounces and was 19.5 inches long. He has beautiful dark blue eyes and sandy blonde hair. He truly does look like a little angel!

He's finally here!

It's been a mad week or so, but we finally have our little one home! I still haven't knit anything for him yet...it's been too crazy to even think about picking up needles! He's a precious angel, quiet and not very fussy at all. The Cesarean went as well as could be expected, but the removal of the bandage was not pleasant. That caused as much pain as the actual incision. Mom's healing, baby's growing, and there are sure to be some new knits for Sebastian in the coming years. I will post pics when I get them in electronic format. =0)

Thursday, January 11, 2007

D'oh!

I have a couple of pictures of the cardigan I finished, but I keep leaving the cord at home so I can't post them while at work. Perhaps I'll remember tomorrow and grab it before walking out the door, and I can post it then. The hat I have to reknit is still being knitted. I think I'm stuck in a knitting rut and can't get out. That, and I'm slightly concerned.

We went for an ultrasound yesterday for the position of the baby. He's in what they call a "footling posterior breech" position. Basically, he's feet first, facing forward. He's healthy, which is good, but let's face it "breech" is not a word a woman in her 9th month likes to hear...especially when she's a week from her due date. It's a little on the scary side. All sorts of visions run through your head of having a Cesarean or something dreadful happening to the baby (like brain damage from the cord being wrapped around his neck during delivery). It completely blows the whole nice image of having a normal vaginal birth. There's still no reason to panic yet, but it's just disconcerting.

However, perhaps this is what I need to assure me that I will have time to make him something BEFORE he gets here. I'm thinking an extra sweater would be good, since the weather seems to be turning cold again. I might modify the cardigan sweater and just not make it have the ridges, but still knit it the same way. I'll have to get some more buttons though. Maybe this time I can find some cute little sailboats or something. I might even get some green yarn and find some frog buttons.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Almost but not quite

I ALMOST got that cardi done. I have about an inch left on the last sleeve. The hat's still not complete. So much for my plans over New Year's. I think I can finish the cardigan tonight, and then it's on to the hat. Providing nothing major happens to interrupt my plans, hopefully next week I'll be done with both. As for my little one, he's still waiting for mom to make him something. He's patient as well, even though he's got 2 weeks from tomorrow until he's supposed to show his sweet face, he's still turned the wrong way I think.

Sleep has also been illusive this week, and I think a lot of it is worry. Let's face it, delivery is a worrisome thing. I'm anxious about it, and possible complications. There's a lot that can happen between now and then, some good and some bad. I try to keep my mind off it and relax, but that's not always a possibility. I'm trying to take advantage of the last few nights of good rest I'll get before having to get up at 2, but it's not working. Maybe tonight will be a little different if I don't rest before getting ready for bed, so that when I do get ready for bed, my body and mind can slow down. Eh, we'll see how it works out.