Friday, September 28, 2007

Another Friday means more Yarny Goodness!

Although it's been autumn officially since last Sunday, we really haven't had much cool weather. Even tho it's cooler out today than it has been all week, it's still warmer than it should be for the last days of September.

To get into the spirit of things, I thought I'd show some really pretty autumn color yarn.

Collinette Jitterbug. Really yummy and such a pretty color. The name? Who knows since I took this photo as I was rushing out the door this morning. But the colors scream FALLING LEAVES.

This is the skein of yarn that may just get me back into knitting socks. I haven't cast on another pair of socks since the disasterous practice knee-highs and their co-conspiritor, Rock and Weave.


Tomorrow I'm going to Wicked Faire/Labyrinth. I have no idea what to expect other than hearing a friend perform at 2PM. I'm really excited to see Roberta play for an audience. The rest is a big question mark. I'll make sure to bring my camera.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

What day is it?

It's WIP Wednesday!

Before we get to my WIP, I have some finishes to show you. First, Boteh:

I'm so thrilled with the way it came out. I just got a brown plaid skirt and I think this will look great with a white or cream shirt or sweater and that skirt.

Slow and steady didn't win the race but it did produce a finished Charlotte's Web Shawl! I'm happy with how the colors worked out. My knitterly girls were right to tell me to keep going and not worry about the color patterning.

I did two extra rows of the border, just because I thought it needed it. I love the way it came out.
Keep in mind the shawl hasn't been blocked yet, so I'll show you before and after shots this weekend when I have the time to pin the whole thing out. It better grow like a mo-fo like Turtlegirl and Trillian42 said. It barely goes around my shoulders now so it needs to grow. Like a mo-fo.

That brings me to my WIP. Sort of looks like a bitty sweater doesn't it? Well it's an Argosy Baby Blanket (scroll down for pattern) for a co-worker who just found out he and his wife are having a boy. I opted to use Lion Wool Ease for this so it would be warm and washable. It's a nice stash busting project for me, in prep for Rhinebeck which is coming up pretty quickly!

I also need to get moving on my Cherry Leaf Shawl. I'd really like that one to get done this autumn, and if I can swing it I'd like to take it to Rhinebeck. Right now it is one of my oldest UFOs so it needs to come back out so I can work on it.

Yeah - I'm dreaming big.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Blogstalking 2 - Purse Guts!

What’s in my bag?

As I admitted on Bezzie’s blog, I’m one of those women who carry a purse and a big honking bag. It’s a sickness which has no cure. I’ll never be good in an apocalypse as you will see from the contents of my purse. My large tote/messenger bag has equally non useful items (a full set of colored pencils is an example. We can draw and color our way through the apocalypse!)

Onto the guts...

In the front compartment: Usually 2 pairs of sunglasses, but it looks like one didn't make it back into the pocket, Target gift card, Rx's from my doctor appointment last night, an old shopping list.

In the back compartment: Hands free blue tooth always falls off my ear thing (uncharged and never used), receipt, check to be cashed, money, change and directions to my nephew's football game last week.

In the main compartment we have my pink wallet, Vera Bradley eye glass case for my cheaters (2 pair, one are sunglasses), mineral veil compact, cell phones, work ID, pens, nail polish, receipts, business cards, another pair of cheaters, and a compact mirror.

The pink VB thingy contains lip stick, balm, pencil, gloss, and contact re-wetting drops.

In the inside back zipper compartment: More lipshit. Gloss, stick, balm, and stain. Long wearing, short wearing, sticky, not sticky, va-va-voom sexy and "just a hit of color" demure. The receipt for my pink chocolate phone is also in that pocket

I don't usually have 2 cell phones. They're in my bag because I finally gave up on the Chocolate phone and went back to my old Motorola. The rep I spoke with at my wireless provider told me it sounds like the phone is defective and I should take it back. This would be the second time I'd be getting a new phone in 4 months. I'll take it back, and get another of the same model, but I don't know if I'll reactivate it. I'm that unhappy with the damn thing.

And the only reason it's pink is because it was free when I renewed my wireless contract. Otherwise it would have been black. It's a really BAD color pink too. Maybe that's the problem with it.


Assignment #1 – Who am I?

I guess you can say I’m a joiner since I join every KAL and Ring that interests me. I’ve been coming across the blogstalking posts on a lot of the blogs I regularly read and well – yes I had to join. So here I am making up for last week’s assignment. I'll post this week’s when I get home.

Besides a joiner I'm a creative person. I’m a knitter and crocheter; I do counted cross stitch, needlepoint, embroidery, sew on a machine (badly), write, and have been known to do some altered art.

This is some fiber art MADNESS!

I am a daughter, sister, sister-in-law and most importantly the BEST AUNT ON THE PLANET! Just ask my nephews who some how got me to buy them the most violent game they own – WW? vs Raw 2007. “Look Aunt Chris! It’s on sale and everything!” When we got it home and I heard them playing the game in the other room, I was a little alarmed.

“Get a chair and hit the ref with it!”
“Don’t pick that guy. He hits too hard and we bleed.”
“Whose blood is that? It’s mine!” (said with delight)
“Look what I found! A sledge hammer!”

I was very disturbed. At least my brother and SIL didn’t kill me like I thought they would. Apparently the boyz had been playing the game at a friend’s house for weeks and had been asking for it. They consider the purchase one that falls under “Aunt Chris Rules”

You know - I even made then Viking Costumes. Remember them. The helmets were so big they even fit me. Although I have to admit they do still play with them.

I think you can see the helmet better in this cropped and brightened up picture.

I’m very fortunate to have a family that I love and would do anything for; including my SIL. She is the sister I never had and I can tell her anything, and she me.

I am owned by one very spoiled and demanding princess cat. You wouldn’t think she lived at a vet’s office for a year before she came to live with me. She found the perfect servant. But I love her anyway. She is very warm and soft and doesn’t sleep on my head.

Other stuff I am – loyal, giving, loving. Once you are my friend, you’re my friend for life. But I don’t suffer fools (as my Mom says). I appear to be shy, and usually am the first time you meet me, but then after that the real me comes out. I make up my mind about people fairly quickly and I’m usually not wrong. I’ll go to the ends of the world and back again for those I love.

And I’m a Scorpio.

Can that coffee BE any bigger?

Thursday, September 20, 2007

WIP Wednesday?

Taking my lead from Trillian... No pictures. But here is a short list of what I've been working on:

Charlotte's Web. That's pretty much it. I've just added the last color in and hope to have it finished over the weekend and get it blocked during the week.

Boteh is finished and I need to block that too. I'll get a pic of that posted soon too.

When Charlotte is done, I'll be altering the sleeves on my finished Retro Cardi so that it will fit my Mom. Then I'll cast on for another after doing some math and hopefully have that done before Rhinebeck.

I'll try to get pictures up later. If I don't crash when I get home. It's been a long, hard week.

Happy Anniversary!

Tomorrow marks one year since Katie came to live with me. We marked the occasion with a visit to her friends at Belle Meade Animal Hospital. She was not happy.

Anyway - Last year, I called my vet when I was ready to adopt another cat about 6 months after my Nikki passed away. There were always unwanted cats and kittens in the waiting room when I took Nikki there. I knew they were well cared for and not pent up in cages longer then was absolutely necessary. I was pretty set on getting an adult cat. Adult animals don't get adopted as quickly as kittens or puppies and I wanted to make sure an adult cat got a good home. Besides, I didn't want to go through keeping a kitten out of trouble when I wouldn't be home most of the day to avert disaster.

Anyway - the vet had two kittens and one adult cat (Katie). I went to see her that night and she stole my heart. She was very chubby. She looked like she swallowed a bowling ball. I'm sure it was because she was in a cage most of the day (during office hours) and didn't have too much room to run around in. She jumped up on the bench next to me and started purring. Then I pet her and she hissed at me. I laughed at her and told her to stop showing off.

After our visit, I told the office staff that I wanted to bring her home but that I wasn't really ready to bring her that night. I needed a new litter box and carrier and all that stuff. It was a week after our first meeting that I took her home.

During that week I found out that she was on Pet Finder. I was able to see a picture of her, which I posted here, before I went to see her. A couple days after I saw her, her picture and details were taken down, which is always a good thing.

Having a pet has done so much for my well being. I never realized how much I relied on having another living being in the house to interact with. Last summer was the loneliest time of my life. A lot of really horrible events happened one on top of the other and Katie was the perfect medicine to help get me past all the life crap.

Katie has worked her magic on others too. My friend and neighbor B thinks she is the cutest thing ever and she hates cats. My nephews constantly ask how she is doing. My Mom calls Katie her "Grandcat". But the icing on the cake is that when The Knitting Mojo Stealer comes to visit the first thing he asks is where his girlfriend is.

He does not mean me.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Corn Pr0n

I know what you're thinking. "That's not corn". No it isn't. That's veggie pron. Fresh NJ produce from 3 miles down the road. Grown and delivered by the man who's been disrupting my knitting mojo. I'm going to blanch, peel and de-seed the tomatos and freeze them for use over the winter. The eggplant won't make it past the weekend. I love eggplant.
Here is the corn.
Maisy (love the name!). Purchased at Rosie's Yarn Cellar when I met with the other knittys.

I have no idea what the color is but it's really pretty and the yarn will be so much fun to work with. There are definitely spring socks to be made from this in the next couple of months.
I was surprised by how soft the yarn is. It'll be interesting to see how they knit up and how they wear.

Oh - and props to my girl Shannon who finished her Charlotte's web shawl. Now I'm the only one who hasn't finished it yet.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Wookin' Pa WIPs

Does anyone else miss Wookin' Pa Nub Wednesdays when Penny Karma was posting those gems? Honestly - she is freaking hysterical. If you don't know what I'm talking about - check out her 12 days of Wookin' from last Christmas. It was her little present to her readers. So damn funny.

Anyway - Boteh is just about done. Progress continued at lunch today and I finished all the repeats and started on the border. It should be finished by the weekend.

And here is Charlotte's Web, which I haven't touched since Sunday. I still love it. I'm not sure about tinking back the rows or just forging ahead. Contrary to what I said above. I think I'll have too much of a mottled color band in the middle. In that case I'd rather tink back. I'm pondering all options.
And yes, boys are dumb. Sometimes they're dumb and smelly. But maybe this time I found a good one. One that isn't smelly. He's definitely better than the ones I dated before. Therefore, I will not be knitting anything for him, although I do think about it. I have enough problems finding men who are interested in me without the evocation of the sweater curse (which I'm expanding to all knitted goods so as not to tempt the Knitterly Supreme Beings). There will be no curse envoking.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Ok. Ok.

Thank you fellow Charlotte's Web-a-longers for weighing in on the CW topic. I will cease and desist (heeheee) tinking and carry on, repeating colors C and D. Your insight is always appreciated.

Last night I took Boteh to Knit Night and worked on that instead of knitting (or unknitting) anything. It went along just fabulously. So I figured I'd bring it to work for lunchtime stitching. Take that Knitting Mojo! Crochet Mojo is in full swing (Yeeeahhh Bay-bee! Do you want to shag?)

I got through 2 pattern repeats and then realized in the first repeat I did today, I decreased on the wrong side and the swirl was going in the wrong direction, making repeat #2 swirl back in towards the rest of the scarf. So I ripped.

Honestly - I have to stop my mind from wandering. How do you do that? How do you stop the incessent rambling of will he call, when will he call, what if he wants to come over, what if he shows up on my doorstep, why are boys so dumb? And how do I stop it from ruining my Knitting/Crocheting Mojo?

Bezzie - do not fear the man sock. The man sock is just a lot of foot rounds. The mojo didn't leave because of the man sock. It left of it's own accord. Dumb mojo. When it comes back does it bring a mojito?

Oh - and thanks for the suggestion Nurse Rachett. You never know when I'll be picking up the fabric and thread again. Unless you want to stitch some of it for me? heh

Monday, September 10, 2007

Knitting is kicking my ass

I know gauge is important. I'm trying to change my opinion of the gauge swatch and learn to love knitting it and not loath it. But, I do knit the swatch.

With socks, I don't always knit a gauge swatch. I've knit enough socks with enough different yarns that I know what needles to use with which yarns. Fingering weight - US 1 for cast on and first few rows, US 0 for the rest. Standard sock yarns start with a US 1 & US 2. Heavier weight sock yarns like STR Medium, Fixation, and Opal 6 ply need to be knit on US 2 and 3.

Then I started knitting my Dad's socks in Wick a couple months ago. They were huge. There was no way my Dad's foot was that wide. So I ripped back and started again, with less stitches. It didn't help. The sock was still very wide. I ripped it out and started over, same stitch count, smaller needles. No go. So, I switched to some Fixation I got with him in mind and those came out fine.

August's Socktopia themes were posted and I had a great idea for the Rock and Weave pattern by Blue Moon Fiber Arts. I ordered some yarn and started the cuffs. When I started the sock portion - HUGE. I put them in time out and counted the finished Fization socks as my pair for August's Socktopia entry.

I've had it in my head to make knee socks with some Fleese Artist sock yarn I got not long ago from The Loopy Ewe. Since I'd never attempted knee socks before I decided to knit a practice pair. I pulled out some of the Opal yarn I got on sale and played around with the stitchs and checked gauge and then decided that I'd use a 2x2 rib for the leg of the sock and then switch to stockinette when I got to the foot. I was knitting on it every now and then. Nothing I'd call a WIP since it was just a test.

This is getting long - better put a photo in here so as not to bore you too much:

The Great Gray Hunter - protecting the perimeter.

Friday I took my nephews to their football practice and I sat on the sidelines knitting on the knee sock. I got to the heel flap and the eye of partridge came out really pretty in the self striping yarn. Then I turned the heel and started on the gussetts and rest of the foot. What do you know - HUGE. AGAIN! I relied on my trusty size 2 and 3 needles, which work every time for me with that 6 ply Opal yarn.

The test socks are in time out.

Saturday I picked up the new Cat Bordhi book (which is so wonderful). I spent some time knitting the first little test sock and it went OK. There were some gaping holes by the sides of the short row heel, but I definitely got the theory and hopefully I'll figure out how to avoiod the big gaping holes when I get to the next sock. It works out well that the test sock is a baby sock and a co-worker and his wife are expecting. I can put them aside for the new baby (after closing up the gaping hole).

Since I didn't want to tempt the knitting gods any further with sock knitting, I decided to work on my Charlote's Web shawl. I was knitting away, doing great, not making any mistakes even tho I was doing laundry and cooking when I got to good places to stop. I really settled in to knit while the Giants were playing and then it occurred to me that I wasn't completing 16 rows of each color (or alternating colors), but only 8 before I was changing over to the next color(s).

I wanted to cry. There was about a 1/2 hour when I just sat and stared at it sitting there. Wondering if I should start over again (for the 6th time) or if I should just un-work back to the next to last color. My decision was to tink back. I didn't put in life lines and tinking is the only way I know to un-knit lace and not lose any stitches.

I'm so pissed off about every thing I touch to knit that needs to work for me. The charity knitting is going fine. No problems there. Pompoms coming together just great. The hats are so adorable.

What do you do when knitting kicks your ass? I'm thinking I should just crochet for a while.

I don't care what she does as long as I get 110% of her attention.

Friday, September 07, 2007

Yarn D'oh Friday

I'm really excited about my day today. My brother and SIL are going to the RU game tonight so I get to hang with the nephews. My SIL is dropping them off at my office around 3:30 and then I get a small glimpse into her life. Homework, dinner, football practice.

So, I was running around this morning throwing casual clothes in a tote bag, along with my camera and sneakers and a generic sock project to start during the 2 hour practice. While in the midst of all this I thought, "take a couple quick shots of the yarn for today's YPF", which I did. I even remembered to grab the cable so I could upload the shots to Flickr.

While I was in "hurry up and wait" mode (why is work like that all the time?) I decided to pull out the camera and cord and upload my YPF photos. I pluged the cord into my computer and then looked at the other end of the cord. Ah - yeah - wrong cord.

After some coffee, and then more coffee, I got a brilliant idea. OK - really an obvious idea but this tells you what I'm like before coffee. I'll put the memory card from my camera into the digital camera here at the office and - voila!

Ok - not voila! The memory card doesn't fit in the work camera. Since I won't be home till very late tonight and I'll be back out the door at 8AM tomorrow...

Picture borrowed from Webs.
UmmmmmmmMalibrigo worsted weight yarn in NY Giants Blue. I'm not sure what it will become, but it will definitely keep me nice and toasty warm all through the season.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Cough, Cough, Sputter

What was that? Why is there dirt and dust in my mouth, eyes, hair, and all over my Charlotte's Web shawl???

Oh - I see. TurtleGirl and Trillian have totally smoked me. I think they even lapped me before smoking me. Well - I did have to start the darn thing 4 or 5 times so it makes sense that they'd finish in like 8 days and I'd be plodding along. But there is progress. Honest. I'm up to the third color.

I'm really glad that Pam posted that the shawl grew an amazing amount when blocking because I'm a little worried about it being big enough. I was planning on going ahead with more rows, but now I'll stick to the pattern.

How are you doing Shannon? Slow poke knitters UNITE!

Also, I've been very preoccupied and lace knitting hasn't been the best thing for me to try and work on. No powers of concentration for knitting at all. See there's this guy. A guy who I've seen four times in the past two weeks and talked to almost every night. I'm trying not to get my hopes up too high, but it's hard not to think about it.

So instead of trying to concentrate on lace, I've been concentrating on a different guy. He was little guy. A guy named Alex and I'm knitting hats for the hospital that cared for him (details here). I have two knitted up and one more almost finished. They just need some ends woven in and some tassels/pompoms. The projects are small enough and quick enough that the chance of me messing them up almost nil.

Patterns came from the links on the Hats for Alex page and Knitting Pattern Central. Yarn is left over Peaches and Cream and some Baby Caron Simply Soft.

Tomato and Boteh haven't been touched in two weeks. Sad isn't it? Really all I have on Tomato is the ribbing on the neckline and the sleeves. Why I've let it stall for so long is beyond me. I know I can knit on that without messing it up too badly. But I'm really into the hats!

Boteh needs another ball of yarn/ribbon, so instead of using up what I have till I can get to the LYS on Saturday, I just stopped working on it. It doesn't make sense so I won't try and explain it.

That's all the news at this point. I hope to have new socks underway for my September Socktopia entry and another Retro Cardi cast on so I can have it finished in time for Rhinebeck.