Monday, July 10, 2006

Things my sister has made me knit.

I have a really great sister. She is my best friend and my favorite person to go on vacation with. She's a lot of fun and an excellent mother, sister, daughter, friend.

She's also ditching me today and moving to The Netherlands.

I am thrilled for her as she has always wanted to go to Europe and despaired of ever going. Her husband is military and she convinced him to get a transfer. Her kids aren't too thrilled (well, except for my mid-size nephew who is in alt over getting his own room) and have kinda been giving her a hard time. I am praying that DS and I can go over and visit next spring.

She has also made me knit some things. Now, keep in mind that she learned to knit before I did so she has more experience. She's a super tight knitter which always leads me to tease her about bulletproof knitting. She has made me knit socks (which I gave back to her), finish a hat she was knitting for our SIL and other dire things.

She made me knit a poncho.

I know, I know but she's my sister and I love her. And she used strong ammo: the poncho was for my niece! I never wanted to knit a poncho. I don't have anything against them. In fact, I have fond memories of an adored poncho from when I was a little girl in the 70s. It was predominately black with bands of primary colors (kind of fairisle in style) and had a short, bright yellow trim. I loved it. But I wasn't really interested in the poncho knitting craze.

But my sister changed that. One summer the extended family spent a week on Dauphin Island, AL. Sister, niece and I took a trip to Heidi's Yarn Haus. A very friendly yarn store. Sister's eye was caught by a purple child's poncho and she pointed it out to her daughter who was immediately in love. The owner was friendly and helpful-she told Sister that she didn't need a pattern to make a poncho. She just needed to know the poncho code (basically a 1:2 ratio of width to length). So Sister purchased some blue Skacel Antonio (hate blue) fancy pantsy yarn for the poncho. And proceeded to knit said poncho on some 9mm needles. (you have to say 9mm in the Terminator's voice. v. funny)

The summer ended. Fall passed. Winter came. Sister came out to help with Dad's illness after Christmas and brought The Blue Menace with her. The problem? Basically she forgot the poncho code and the ratio was off. When niece put the poncho on it fell off her shoulders and to the floor. So she tossed The Blue Menace at her unsuspecting sister (me) and said "Here, fix this." ????

So DH and I ripped the thing out (had to cut a little) and reknit the thing. Went to block to the two pieces and realized, to my horror, that I had knit the second piece ten stitches wider than the first. RIP. I cast on again and called Sister to tell her that Niece had better wear the darn thing to shreds. Blocked the second piece overnight and stitched it together the next evening. I mailed off The Blue Menace and its attendant yarn remnants so that I would never see it again. I hope never to knit with Antonia again. It's a loosely spun three ply yarn (of three different materials) so I had to actually watch my knitting to make sure I didn't miss a ply. It was a mess to rip out and I had to knit one panel twice. I also hate blue. And guess what?

My niece never wore it.

Sunday, July 09, 2006

knitting socks

Ordinarily, I love to knit socks. I love to cast on and I love the sense of accomplishment when turning the heel. I love the sense of satisfaction when I kitchener the toe. But right now? I don't want to knit socks. Specifically, I dont want to knit DH's Father's Day socks or the yellow socks.

What do I want to knit? Hmm. I think I want to knit the entrelac Market Squares bag. I have the yarn. I plan to knit it in coffee colours.

I also want to knit a sweater from Big Girl Knits. I am wearing my short sleeved sweaters I bought last summer from Kohls. I bought five of them to wear to work as I needed something that would fit over "The Girls" (my breasts were HUGE when I started breastfeeding). They are a little too short for me as I am long waisted and most of them have a band at the hip which is not a particularly good look for me. If they were two or three inches longer it wouldnt be so bad. I would love to knit something that actually fit properly and looked nice.

Saturday night DS fell asleep early and I reknit, for hopefully the last and final time, the neckband for his wallaby sweater. I need to take it in to find a button. My sister recommended a wooden button to go with the tweediness of the yarn. He looks so cute in it. I hope we get some cool weather this winter so he can actually wear it! I ended up using a few yards of the last ball of yarn (I had tucked it away in the phone book cabinet while doing the last dash through the house before our guests last month). I guess I can knit him a hat to go with it.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Hoist on my own petard.

My Aunt and my Grandmother came down to stay for the weekend. They mainly came to visit because my sister is here for a few weeks before she and her family ditch me and move to Europe. At New Year's I made a deal with my Aunt that I would learn to quilt if she would learn to knit. I knew I was safe because she always said she was too busy with quilting to knit.

Guess what she pulled out of her bag the first night she was here? Very quietly she pulled out a scarf in progress and not one hook (she used to crochet) but two shiny gold knitting needles.

Ahem.

Sister, Auntie, and Grandmother were all entraptured by my multidirectional scarf (still in progress) so we headed off to Yarns 2 Ewe for supplies. Noro Kuryeon is just gorgeous. My Auntie chose the same colourway as I did for mine, my sister chose one that matches her current mitten project and Grandmother chose one that I covet unashamedly. So we ended up having a little Knit Along while they were here.

My auntie had to leave Sunday morning and took a little extra home with her. She opened up her bag to show her husband and there was my sister's yarn! She was quite chagrined especially because my sister had finished her first ball of yarn and had nothing to knit. She told us that she must have grabbed the wrong bag of yarn and for us to look for her bag. Well, we knew it wasn't at my house (had searched high and low for sister's yarn) and I got the bright idea of telling her to check her handbag. There it was! Item: her handbag is what I would call an overnight bag. HUGE. We will get a lot of milage out of this for sure. My DH is a wool-pig and my Auntie is a Wool-THIEF!

My sister is on a project starting spree. She currently has in the works: a pair of mittens, an cross stitch sampler, a multidirectional scarf, and a hooked rug. The hooked rug was actually my UFO but she needed something to do as she had no yarn to knit and had left her cross stitch pattern at my parents' house. I had started this hooked rug a while ago and it had been languishing for a while. She wanted me to show her how to do it so she could make her own. She liked my pattern so I told her she could keep it and just go to town. She's v. fast. I think I was too concerned with getting each loop the exact same height as the other (damn OCD) and she is of the opinion that it's going to get walked on anyway.

My grandmother flew home this morning and unfortunately took her lovely yarn home with her. In fact, she tucked it into her purse to make sure it went with her. Hmmph.

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Okay, so I'm not done.

I tried the wallaby on DS several times. The neck is just too tight. I keep having to yank it over his big ol' melon. I ripped it out and am reknitting (again). This time I am taking my sister's suggestion and knitting in a button so it will open up. A wooden or wood-look button will be really cute with this tweedy knit.

I can't find my other skein. I decided to just go ahead and use it instead of returning it. While I was getting the house ready for guests I put the skein in the shop bag with the receipt because I planned on returning it. I wonder where it ended up? I suspect it is in the black pit that is my closet.

In Father's Day news my sock yarn came for DH! He looked so sad when he opened the gift bag I thought he didn't like it. He was teasing me because it wasn't knit into socks yet. I cast on right away for his new socks while he and DS took a nap. I was knitting a pair of yellow Opal Magic socks but I am just not enamoured of them so am glad to do something else.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

DS has a big melon.

I am just about finished knitting the wallaby for DS. I was about to knit the neckband at work on Monday and thought it looked a little small. DH thought so and so did Crafty Woman. So I slipped the neck stitches onto some waste yarn and tried it on DS that evening. It was plenty big. So I started the neckband on the 7 needles that I was knitting with and then switched to some 6s so it would be a little snugger. At this point I ran out of yarn! I have another skein of this yarn but I hate to use a couple inches of it. I just want to return it! So I kitchenered the underarms and used the left over to finish the neckband.

I need just a few minutes to weave in all my ends and then I'm done!!

I'm still knitting on some yellow Opal Magic. I'm not too hot about this colourway. When I bought it I thought I needed some yellow socks but why I don't know.

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Score!

Remember the red and black sock yarn (Steinbach) that we bought in Austin? We could only find one ball so I used it for socks for DS. DH asked me to find some for him. And I did on Ebay! Hooray! I hope it will be here in time for Father's Day. If not, DH has a birthday in July and will still be thrilled.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Now for some quiet time.

We've had two birthdays and Mother's day in the last three weeks. I am glad to have some quiet weekends for a while. My DH gave me a sweet card and a bouquet of daisies and said that he would get me whatever gift I wanted. I couldn't think of what I wanted and then I realized what I want. I want TIME. I want some time to sleep and I want some time to sit and knit. We are so busy with work (and our days are longer in the summer) and family that we really don't have any down time.

Last Tuesday DH had an doctors appointment in town and wanted me to come. On my morning off. *sigh* So DS and I loaded up and went with him. As a little thank you he drove us out to Katy afterwards to visit Yarntopia. We got there before they opened so we had a donut breakfast (and DS had his first donut holes! He really enjoyed those). Yarntopia is a nice shop. I was a little disappointed that they didn't have much in the way of sock yarn. They had some Jawol and Wildfoote. They also had a lot of Onlinie and some thing else I can't remember right now. They also had some Cascade 220 superwash. I'm glad to have a semi-local source for that. The only thing we bought was a ball of Encore DK in maroon. I had one ball already but needed another so I can knit some gloves for DH at some point. They also have some lovely HandMaiden yarn. Gorgeous but I couldn't justify buying it right now.

I wish I could find my dream knitting shop. I want one that is full of every kind and every colour of sock yarn. Believe it or not, I do knit things other than socks but I covet all the sock yarn I see is blogland. I just wish someone local would start carrying Socks That Rock.

Friday, May 05, 2006

Happy Birthday to Us!

Well, yesterday was my DS's first birthday! He is such a sweet baby. We are so lucky to have him. His class at the Montessori school is too young for cupcakes so I brought them for the staff. I also lugged cupcakes up to work to share with everyone. They kinda feel like DS belongs to them too. I love my DS so much. I had given up ever having a pregnancy that ended with a real live baby and now I have DS.

My DH totally surprised me on my birthday. I had ordered myself a gorgeous Ott-lamp (which I have yet to set up) so I figured that was it. Well, DS and I came out of the shower on my birthday and on my pillow DH has placed cherry poptarts, oreos, a box of blueberry tea, two bars of bittersweet chocolate, a sweet card and a bunch of carnations. It was so sweet. I started to cry. Then in the hall leading from the bedroom he placed the gift bag and card from his parents. My sweet guy.

My parents gave me a bunch of etc including a 100% genuine mom t-shirt. AND a copy of Big Girl Knits.

This book is fantastic. Other than the fact that I am the smallest size (I am a 12 with breastfeeding breasts) it has great information on how to fit curvy women. And not just for sweaters. This info is good for all aspects of the Curvy Girl's wardrobe. LOVE this book. There were several cute tops that I am thinking about. I would love to knit an orange sweater in the Bombshell pattern. I think every woman who is size 10 or above should get this book. REAL women with REAL breasts wearing REAL clothes. I get so irritated at knitting mags that only have stick girls modeling. Get real- the average sized woman in the US is a size 14. I get so tired of non-fitted sweaters for sticks.

Friday, April 28, 2006

Late April Yarn Crawl

I finally went to visit Mary Charles Yarn. I have to admit I was disappointed. It's a small shop but didnt have much in the way of yarn or needles! I saw lots of Debbie Bliss and Big Sky and some novelty stuff. I looked for sock yarn and they had one largish basket . But it was all the same stuff. Not the same brand but identical balls of yarn. I probably wont go back there.

I also went to see Nancy Knits. I've felt badly for her as she had such a cute shop and now is crammed into a tiny store. I've always found her to be friendly and she recognized me from last summer (new baby is keeping me from knitting). She's really trying her best to make the shop welcoming. I noticed that the shelves and drawers are now labeled with prices and she offered to order me a pattern I'd like to get. She's hoping to get a better online presence so people can find her again. I hope she can get into a better shop situation someday and that people dont just write her off. I bought two orphan balls of sock yarn (for DS) and one ball of Sirdar Snowflake Magic. The Snowflake is kinda hard to knit with but I already had one ball and I am hoping to get a cute balaclava pattern for it. I saw one that was like a little dinosaur and that would be so cute on DS.


Thursday, April 20, 2006

Chuffed!

I am so chuffed! I won some Mountain Colours Bearfoot sock yarn from Libby at Derby & String. I can't wait to see it!

I did a stash dive and decided to knit a pair of cotton socks using the Butterfly Bows pattern in Socks, Socks, Socks. I knit these for DS's godmother several years ago. She was kind of surprised when I asked for them back! Just for patterning purposes. I had forgotten how I sized up the pattern as it was originally for a 10 year old girl.

I started to cast on Thursday and then I realized I don't know how far my yarn is going to go. I attempted to make two equal balls using my ball winder and digital scale but it isn't exactly accurate. Even though the lying scale said it was even when I snipped the yarn. Grr.

I cast on repeatedly Friday morning but kept having too long a tail. Finally got it right and have knit about a third of the first pattern repeat.

I love the yarn. It is Fortissima Cotton Colori that I purchased in 1998 in Provo Utah. I bought two balls and used one to knit the first pair. If I run out of yarn I will just make the toes on my pair red.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

I finished!

I finished my orange socks! I am very happy with them. I did a crappy job weaving in my ends after kitchenering one toe so I have to v. carefully re-weave in the short end. They washed nicely, the colour held up, and were very comfortable to wear.

Am nearly to the toe on DH's everlasting purple socks. The FIRST toe. This sock is taking forever.

Now to decide which sock to knit next- for me!

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Getting stuff done.

Easter is in the offing and my grandmother will be here on Thursday afternoon. My home is nearly ready. DH is supposed to clean his bathroom and vacuum the house and clean the kitchen floor. Then all I have to do is make the guest bed! I am looking forward to seeing my grandmother but am a little anxious as she has started to sound very querulous on the phone. She wasn't well this winter and I think she is really starting to feel her age. I really want this to be a good visit for her.

I am nearly finished with DH's first sock and am finishing the gusset decreases for my second sock. I know that after Easter weekend I will have more time to sit and knit. Although I have promised myself to seriously clean out my closet and my boxes of etcetera out in the garage. One thing that I learned from cleaning out my parents' attic is the Perils of Packrating.

I had already been trying to distance myself from conspicuous consumption- including the rabid collecting of things. My mom collects Stargate, a friend collects all sorts of little figurines, another collects Star Wars memorabilia etc. My DH collects tools, kitchen appliances and discarded library books. Note to DH: there's a reason they discarded those books!!!

I don't want to be owned by my stuff. I'm already "owned" by sentimental things- my baby quilt, DS's first hair clipping, my Gma's jewelry etc. I dont want to be owned by junk that really doesnt matter.

Now stash, OTOH, is a completely different matter . . .

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Not a great deal of progress but still . . .

Somehow I ended up spending most of the weekend helping my parents. I don't know how that happened. One little "can you fix this problem with my computer" and the whole weekend disappeared. Oh well.

haven't touched the orange blankie for DS. I suspect I wont get near that one until after Easter.

Have turned the heel and am knitting the gusset decreases on sock #1 for DH.

And am turning the heel on Sock #2 for me! If I can get that heel finished I will treat myself to a stash dive this weekend for MY next pair of socks.

Have also decided that I am NOT going to knit for DH for a while after I finish the purple socks. He's is a Wool-Pig for sure and he loves that I knit for him. BUT. He rarely wears what I knit him. I mean, yes he did wear a pair of handknits that day we were married but generally he likes to pile up, gloat over and hoard his treasure of handknits like Smaug the dragon did over the dwarvish treasure in the Hobbit. V. irritating. I want him to wear what I knit him.

On the other hand, DS wears what I put on him. So I know he is getting mileage out of his handknits.

And I wear handknitted socks almost every day. Soooooooooo, that means I get more. Right?

Friday, March 31, 2006

My yak hair! My yak hair!

Not really. I am chuffed though because I found ORANGE blanket binding at the decent megamart yesterday. I was just about to bid on some unseen seconds on ebay and Lo! I found it.

I have some super lovely orange minkee fabric and some darling orange fabric with black and white sheepies. I plan to make a blanket for DS. Now I just need to decide how big to make it. His current blankie is 30 x 36 (half a yard of minkee). It just covers him when he sleeps. So should I make one that size, or a bit bigger at 4 ft or should I go whole hog and make a 5 ft one? The minkee is 36 x 60 and I have two yards of the orange sheep fabric.

Tough to decide!

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Knittins

Well, I did manage to squeeze in some knitting yesterday. I started the heel on DH's socks and I finished my picot cast on and am now happily knitting away on my own socks.

I want to knit a wonderful wallaby for DS for next year. I am itching to knit it. As soon as I finish DH's socks I am going to cast on.

But when I finish my socks I am casting on another pair for ME. I need these socks. They make me a better person. I am a kinder, gentler Kigwit when I wear handknitted socks. Really.

Sunday, March 26, 2006

V. little knitting.

Not too much knitting going on around here. I'm trying to do the second picot cast on for my socks. And for some strange reason I have decided that the stripes must match the first sock. I never do this so I have no idea why I am doing it now. Must be some evil tendency that comes along with a picot cast on.

Also I need to knit the heel on DH's socks. I just need a few minutes to sit down and get going but I can't find those minutes! Most of my knitting time is in the car and I don't like to start a heel or pick up gusset stitches in the car.

So, how am I wasting my time instead of spending it on knitting? Well, my mom asked me and DH to reinsulate her attic. No biggie, right? Several years ago my brothers had told Mom that they had emptied out her attic. LIARS. It took us THREE days to empty out her attic and go through the stuff and cart it to the curb for pick up. One of my brothers works seven days a week at two fulltime jobs so he got a free pass. The other, whom I usually refer to as My Brother the Pillock, when asked to help told my mother "I have a house of my own to work on." Mom was good, she said, "Like Kigwit and her DH don't? And they have a baby too!" The Pillock is not known for helping although he did spend ten minutes replacing their yard light for them (after he had shorted out the other one).

Back to the attic: Four days to empty the darn thing and clear out a portion of the old insulation and build a proper, insulated storage area. Four more days to pull out the old, dirty, torn and flattened duct work and reconfigure and correctly install the new ductwork. One horrible, long, back-breaking day to blow in the new insulation. This morning we went over and swept the storage area clean, carried up the Christmas decorations and, after I went to work, DH went up there and cleaned out and flushed the condensation tray from their A/C unit. He was worried that it might get jammed from all the new insulation settling. I'm exhausted and my wrist, hand, back- in short, I ache all over. But it is finished. I know Mom only asked that we reinsulate the attic but to do it properly we had to do all of it. We couldn't just blow in new insulation over 30+ years of stuff up there, right? And because The Pillock  had been tossing stuff up there willy-nilly and had crushed, flattened and torn much of the duct work. This makes me really irritated because my parents had added two window units to their house thinking they just had a really bad A/C. My parents are on a fixed income and their electricity bills are absolutely horrible. I've always thought they were way too high and now with the price increases they are unbelievable.

I am really glad to be done with this. More glad than that. I am so glad to be done I feel like having a Mass said.

Friday, March 17, 2006

New knitters

A couple of years ago one of my coworkers, Club Girl, asked me to teach her to knit. She wanted to knit a throw like I was knitting at the time so for her birthday I gave her the pattern and a set of needles (big fat circular needles). She never got the yarn. So I gave her a skein of practice yarn and told her to pick up some smaller needles and I would teach her. No needles. So I finally said I would bring her some needles. And I never did. Until this week.

I started out by teaching her the English method as most people I have taught prefer that way. She tried and struggled with it. Then yesterday I showed her the continental way. And guess what? She's a natural continental knitter. I've never met anyone who was.

Another coworker, Crafty Woman, was watching me teach Club Girl and said that it made her want to do it too. She picked up some needles and a booklet on the way home that night and has been a knittin' fool ever since!

I started Club Girl on a ribbed scarf today. I have no idea what Crafty Woman is going to make. She just keeps knitting and ripping out as she *needs* to have perfectly tensioned and shaped stitches. LOVE HER.

Monday, March 13, 2006

Spring Break

Well, sorry for starting a blog and then taking a big break. I thought I had written the first week of March but OOPS!

I did a little knitting on Spring Break. I knit on my picot edged sock and I am well past the heel. I also started DH's socks. I am using the Best Foot Forward pattern from Knit Socks! It's an easy pattern to memorize and I am moving along.

And guess what? I have my orange chibi! One of my coworkers was placing an order from JoAnn's and she let me order with her to share the wretched shipping. I was going to order it earlier when there was a 40% off sale but the shipping would have been 4.95. 4.95 for a 4.99 item. It would have been 2.99 for the chibi after the sale and 4.99 for shipping. That just makes me crazy. I'm in the same boat with a pattern I want. The pattern is 3.00. The shipping is 5.95. WTF?? I know, I know, it takes time and material and postage to mail something but really. For a one page paper pattern they are going to charge me 5.95 to ship? EXCESSIVE. So I will have to wait until I can find other things to purchase at that site.

Edited to add: I found my copy of Folk Socks. It was hiding on a bookshelf tucked between Internet patterns I had printed out. I'm telling you, this book has issues.

Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Socks finished/Socks started

I finished DS's spiral rib socks this weekend. I need to try them on him but it is so warm here I hate to put a wool blend on him. I finally cast on a pair of socks for ME ME ME! I am using some Meilenweitt cotton jacquard that DH bought for me last spring. It is a great orange yarn (has some white, yellow and grey as well). I am getting 8 sts/inch which is unusual for me. I usually get 7 sts to the inch on sock weight yarn. I was able to do the picot edge but I used the instructions from BoogaJ instead of Claudia's.

It occurs to me that I should really try this on to make sure it will fit before going any further.

Friday, February 24, 2006

Blessed Friday!

Am v. glad it is Friday. Am even more glad that it is only one more week until Spring Break.

My knittin' bud at work is coveting my Truly Tasha shawl. I knit mine a couple of years ago in some burnt orange Cotton Fleece. I really like it- both pattern and colour. She's been after me to give her the pattern so I finally remembered today and printed it out. I enjoyed looking at the Wooly West website. I have the Happy Trails pattern book to use with the Happy Trails yarn. I knit the socks using the barbed wire pattern. I will look up the correct name when I get home tonight. I thought it was really clever of the author to use barbed wire as a pattern idea. I liked the Happy Trails sock yarn too. I've got some in my stash. I would like to knit with this yarn again now that I am a more experienced knitter. The two socks I have knit from this yarn are now too small to wear! I machine washed them and hung to dry. BUT I didn't know very much about stranding when I knit them so they aren't as "giving" as they could be.

Am plugging away at DS's tube socks. I am making the tube spiral the other way for the second sock-just cause I can!

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Here book, book, book. . .

My favorite knitting book is Folk Socks by Nancy Bush. Several years ago I had to go to Utah for work and decided to bring along my copy to have autographed. I spent most of my time in Provo, UT and was packing to return home via Salt Lake City when I realized my book was missing! Horrors! It must have been stolen! I called and told my (then) DH how upset I was that someone had stolen my book. He calmly pointed out that it was highly unlikely that someone had stolen a knitting book. (What does he know?) I went to SLC and met Nancy Bush, briefly, at the Wooly West and even showed her the sock I was knitting. (Item: I was knitting the Ukrainian socks and had done the peasant heel wrong.) She was v. nice but I was upset that my book was Gone Forever.

When I returned home the book was laying on the bed where I had been packing my suitcase for the trip. This is a book that likes to get lost. I think I have lost my copy no less than seven times. It is currently lost. I think part of the problem is that I bring it to work sometimes and can never remember if it is at work or home. I was looking for it this time because I wanted to do a star toe on the spiral tube socks for DS. So I called Sister:

"I've already looked under the bed and can't find my copy of Folk Socks. Can you give me the directions out of your for the Star Toe?" After laughing at me she did so and I have finished one sock for DS.

It looks like he is wearing a bright red cast on his leg! I cast on this arvo for the second sock so soon he will be wearing TWO bright red casts! I am glad he is too small to tell me what he will and won't wear!

Monday, February 20, 2006

I didn't even go to the yarn store.

Saturday I met up with the local Betsy-Texans. We're an unofficial chapter of the Betsy Tacy Society. The last time I saw the girls was at my baby shower and I was hugely pregnant. This time I brought DS and Ames brought her baby girl. Baby Girl is almost a year old but DS is bigger than she is. She was so cute in her mint green warmups with rosebud embroidery. Both children were exceptionally well behaved. Even when the bakery closed and we were forced to go hang out at a Kroger's grocery store.

Yarns 2 Ewe is very close to where we met but I didn't even go there. I was kinda surprised at myself but I did just get all this great yarn last weekend. As it was, I was able to stop and attend Mass at my church. I call it my church but I haven't attended in several years. I am getting back into the habit of going but I really need to find a home church. The problem with Catholic churches is that they are getting to be so huge. It's due to the lack of priests but it really creates a impersonal atmosphere. St. Helen's has a new sanctuary. It is enormous. It is beautiful. It has a lovely baptismal font. It is far too grand for me to feel comfortable. I am a member there but I don't know if I want to stay there. The only pluses to staying there are that it is extremely close to home and they have a school attached. I haven't even discussed with DH if we could send DS there (he's only nine months!) but it is cheaper if you are a member of the parish. The other church that is fairly close is in the planning stages of a new sanctuary. Another huge place?

Thursday, February 16, 2006

I love a boring training session.

Had to attend a useless training session today. Did I mind? No way! I sat in the back row and knit the entire time. I am knitting a pair of spiral tube socks for DS out of some sockenwolle we bought in Austin. I started them in the car of the way home from Austin and nearly finished the first sock. Then I tried it on DS. Note to self: try things on DS before you are nearly finished. I ripped it out yesterday and nearly finished the first sock during the useless training.

I have also done a swatch for DH in the brilliant purple Cascade 220 superwash. I like this yarn. Very soft. DH has picked a pattern out of Knitting on the Road (Nancy Bush) but I will have to do some maths to work out size and gauge.

And: I finished the Leaf Edged Baby Hat! I had nearly finished it on our trip to Austin and when I tried it on DS's big melon it was too large. So I ripped it back out and started the decreases really early. Then I got frustrated and just started decreasing the heck outta the thing. I wove in the ends today. It needs a serious blocking, I'm pretty sure the crown will pucker, and I think I am going to have to tack up the leaf points. But it's finished and he really does look cute in it.

I really need to get a place to host photos so I can illustrate this blog!

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Happy Anniversary!

I've never been a big Valentine's Day person. In fact, my best Valentines have been from my Dad. He always would get me (and my siblings) one of those cardboard heart boxes full of chocolates. Unfortunately they were usually full of creams and I loathe creams. I much prefer chocolates with nuts or nougats or caramels. One year Dad gave me a heart shaped necklace with my initial on it. I still have it and wear it occasionally. Actually, I suspect that Mom may have done all this but Dad gets the credit!

But DH and I ended up getting married on 14 Feb. So it's not Valentine's Day anymore-it's our anniversary! So Happy anniversary DH!

DH, DS and I took a trip to Austin as our anniversary present. We did a lot of eating: Stubb's BBQ, Kerbey Lane Cafe (twice at two different locations) and Abuelo's (twice). Lots of good food. We also visited the two yarn stores in town. The first was Hill Country Weavers. HCW has been in Austin for a long time. I remember visiting them back when I was an undergraduate. That's where I first got the tatting bug (lace not ink!). They usually have a good selection of sock yarn but neither DH nor I were thrilled with anything on this trip. DH did find a purple yarn that he like but it was a cotton yarn and I really don't like to knit socks with cotton. He loved the shade of purple so I told him to find a wool or wool blend and I would make him some socks. I was also hoping to find some clearance yarn that I saw in September that had some lovely burnt orange in it but it wasn't on sale any longer. Honestly, I hate to pay $8.50 for 25gms of yarn. So we left HCW without any purchases.

We also made the long trek out to Bluebonnet Yarn Shoppe. It wasn't really that long a drive, only 10 miles from MoPac, but it seemed long. Isn't it funny how when you are driving some place new that it seems like it takes forever but the return trip is so short? Anyway, BYS is a good yarn shop. The front of the store was devoted to flashy yarns-lots of novelty stuff with vibrant colours and metallic glints and fuzzy stuff. The rest of the shop is more "normal" yarns. DH found a brilliant purple he liked in Cascade 220 but I pointed out to him that he would have to handwash any socks I made from it. I told him to look around for the Superwash 220 and lo! they had it in the brilliant purple colour. He was really chuffed. He told me he would look through my patterns as soon as we got home because he wanted a textured sock. I bought a skein of Lorna's Laces in camouflage for a beanie for DS. And a ball of the Trekking in neapolitan ice cream colours that is so popular right now. DH also found an orphan ball of Steinbach Wolle Sockenwolle in a brilliant red with a black twist. He really liked it and even asked the saleswoman if she had any more. (They didn't). We bought it anyway and I started some spiral tube socks for DS.

It was a really wonderful trip and a fun way to celebrate our first year as a married couple.

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Ummm, yeah.

Okay, so I misinterpreted the instructions for this ridiculously easy hat. Ripped back to my picked up stitches and began again. Am disenchanted with project but will finish as I think DS will look adorable in this hat.

I didn't get to knit much yesterday. I was deep in a SQL fog and didn't want to think about anything else. I knit a bit on the way home (DH drove). SIL and Brother had planned to come over for a little SnB but I was really tired and hoped that SIL would cancel. She said she would come over early but it was nearly 8 before they got there. SIL is a fairly new knitter and a voracious one at that. She is wipping out scarves and hats left and right. She is currently working her way through Lion Brand's Just Scarves book (that I gave her for Christmas). I also gave her Scarf Style which she has deemed "Too Advanced." She also pointedly informed me not to buy her any more books for gifts and that gift cards were better. (Sister gave her some knitting books for Christmas as well). I wanted to stab her with a knitting needle but restrained myself as I was nursing DS. I expect I will just get her gift cards to Hobby Lobby so she can continue singlehandedly supporting Lion Brand Yarn Company. I really do like my SIL but I did want to poke her last night. I mean, come on, she is LOVING the Just Scarves book. I think she is on her FIFTH scarf from the book.

I only knit a little bit on the baby hat as DS woke up whilst SIL and Brother were there. I'm still nursing him to sleep so he was up for the duration of their visit. SIL had a little cold so I couldnt sit with her on the sofa and for some reason DS wouldn't go near Brother. Fortunately she was only interested in getting some help on finishing her hat (I showed her how to use a Magic-loop type solution instead of buying more dpns) and starting the latest scarf pattern (from the BOOK I gave her).

After they left I stupidly watched Invasion while nursing DS. It was a suspenseful episode and I was too wound up to fall asleep afterwards. This is why I don't watch TV! So I am a little tired today as well.

I have two goals tonight: finish the baby leaf hat and do some laundry. We are going to Austin this weekend and I want to start a pair of socks to take with me. DH bought me some lovely orange sock yarn last spring when he was in Austin and I am itching to knit it. I think I will try Claudia's picot edge.

Monday, February 06, 2006

Leaves, leaves, beautiful leaves.

DS took a really long nap Friday evening so I started knitting the Leaf Edged Baby Hat . It is an easy enough pattern and I really enjoyed watching the leaves form. I added a leaf repeat as DS has a big melon for a 9 month old baby. He gets that from DH! Hopefully I will be able to make the adjustments to the pattern as I go along. I am a little confused by one part. It says that after completing the edging to pick up 96 (or in my case 110) stitches around the straight edge on the WS and then to knit rev. stockinette stitch for four rounds. I'm confused because I understand that I want to fold the hat along the rev. stock. sts but then I want it to be just regular stockinette for the rest of the hat. I just can't wrap my mind around this for some reason so I am just going keep going with what I think is right. I am also a little worried about running out of yarn. I am using some of my early handspun that I recently recovered from a early knitted hat. Actually, it was my very first knitted object and I tried to do two colour knitting. But I didn't carry the floats properly so I could not wear the hat. Whenever I can get around to getting a photo account somewhere I will add pictures to illustrate the damage!

I also knitted a little on my Multi-D scarf. I really like the Noro. It is such a springy yarn. I keep squeezing it. I may have to knit a matching hat out of it just so I can keep using the yarn.

I keep thinking of things I want to knit or that I need to knit. Sister sent me a hat she started for our SIL that she would like me to finish. My sister knits so tightly- this hat is practically bulletproof. I don't know how I am going to match her gauge. I like to tease her about being so tightly wound up that it tightens her gauge. She's currently knitting a tea cozy that looks like a cottage from Knitter's Stash. She said the pattern recommended an 11 needle but she's doing it on a 10 because all she had was a 10 or a 13. I told her that she should switch to the 13! So she did. I really hope that the cozy felts properly!

Monday, January 30, 2006

Out of the Knitter's Black Hole of Despair

This morning, on the way back to work after fixing a server by putting the network cable in correctly, I finished knitting a Big Ole Cabled Scarf for DH. I used Encore Worsted in a (nice for him) maroon colour. (Hate maroon). I generally use a washable yarn for DH. It was an enjoyable knit and the pattern was easy to memorize. Even easy for me when my brain is full of fluff and baby. I slipped the first stitch of each row because that is what I generally do on scarves. About a foot in, I was sorry I did so but I was NOT going to rip and start over. In any case, DH is v. happy with the result and is already whining for more knitted love. He is such a Wool-Pig.

I was surprised I finished it this morning because I have been in the Knitter's Black Hole of Despair for so long. I wanted the scarf to be 72 inches and could never seem to finish those last 9. I measured today and it was nearly 81 inches. Oh well, at least it wasn't a sweater that needed to be ripped back!

I don't have anything else with me to knit. I didn't expect to finish today so I guess I will volunteer to drive home so I won't feel like I am wasting knittin' time.

Next up: a barely started Multidirection Scarf in Kureyon (my first visit with Noro) and a Baby Hat with Leaf Edging for my DS out of my handspun. I am overcome with project ideas! I also want to knit some socks with a picot edge and my SIL gave me some burnt orange Lion Wool that I want to do something with. DS has also grown out of all the socks I knit him whilst pregnant and really needs some new ones.

I generally try to have one NBK project (no brain knitting) and one other project on the needles at a time. I think I need to have an emergency sock project to keep at work. Hmmmm.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Why Blog?

I love to read blogs. Some of my favorites include the Yarn Harlot and Claudia's Blog as well as Chez Miscarriage and A little pregnant. I love to read about yarns and patterns in knitting blogs. I get a lot of encouragement by watching other people's projects and purchases. Especially the purchases!

When I was undergoing infertility treatments I found that IF blogs were self-validating. No one in my RL was undergoing infertility. So to find other women out there was a blessing.

I hope this blog will be a place where I can track my knitting progress (yes, this may end up being a FO blog) and to generally write myself out about things in my daily life.

Finally!

 It's a top!  My goal for my two week vacation was to get this to a top and here it is!