Monday, February 16, 2009

regrouping

Every so often, one just really needs to regroup. 

I can always tell when I need to re-group knitting-wise when I stop knitting.  When I don't even feel the desire to knit, which is really unheard of, and cause for alarm for me.  Knitting is my sanity, knitting is how I relax, and create, and quiet the voices in my head.  So for me to not knit is not a good thing.  Writing is the same.  Running is the same.  For the past two, maybe even three months, I haven't been doing much knitting, some writing (mostly unproductive) and absolutely no running.  Today is the day that all of that changes.  

Today I cleaned out my knitting bag and did what I had to do.  Ruthlessly.  I put some projects into a long-term state of waiting.  They are going into the basket, and will be redeemed later this summer in time to finish them up for next Fall.

 I still love the Elizabeth Bennet Cable Cardigan.  Love it.  Want it.  

Don't want to keep knitting it right now, a sleeve and a half short of done.  Just don't.

I won't get it finished in time to wear it much this winter anyway, so why press onward when really? the not wanting to knit on it is keeping me from knitting at all?  Off needles and onto scrap yarn it goes, and into the basket with you, Liz...see you in September.

The Back to School U-Neck vest?  Ditto.  I'll see you in time for next school year, but not right now.

Monkey socks?  One down and the cuff of one started...they can stay, I had to order a new circular needle to finish the second sock, the one I have (Addi Turbo Lace) although lovely, has a cord that is much too long for this project and keeps kinking up, leading me to swear and curse it as I straighten it out over the tea kettle yet again.  So, they are on a break until the new Harmony wood circular comes from KnitPicks.  It should be here today or tomorrow.

The wool for Campbell's winter hat and mittens?  I mean, it's almost the end of winter.  Who am I kidding?  And we finally found his warm, toasty, and waterproof L L Bean mitts that fit from last year.  Maybe his red and blue coat will still fit next year?  And if not, well, red and blue are pretty universal.

I think what it is, is that I am feeling Spring coming...and the winter knitting that was supposed to be done by now, has become an anchor, a dread, a chore, something that I am supposed to get finished, had planned on finishing long before this point, and now is just a drag.

And so, my knitting bag is down to just one (it had been two of them) beside my chair and the basket in the closet is a bit fuller, but now I can cast on for something else, not really new as I've knit one before, something I want to knit for Spring, and that feels better.

Writing?  Well, it's a process and I have to do some work on that.  It isn't as easy as reorganizing a bag, how I wish it were.

Running?  I probably need to unfold the treadmill to fix that problem.  I think I'll do that next.

Friday, January 02, 2009

All is Revealed...

And hopefully Amy will not look on Le Blog until after her baby shower tomorrow!    If you are, in fact, Amy...look away.


It is the Hemlock Ring Blanket from Brooklyntweed.
Details on my Ravelry Page.

Knitting Projects for 2009:
  • finish Elizabeth Bennet Cardigan (just sleeves to go, but the love affair is over)--soon!
  • finish second Monkey sock for me--
  • finish Back to School U-Neck vest for me
  • make baby blanket for Colleen--I have until the end of May
  • mittens and hat for Campbell Joe--cast on soon, maybe this weekend
  • February Lady sweater--start February 1st...finish by end of month?
  • Lily from Twist Collective--choose yarn
  • Socks for Alan for Fall 2009
  • Clapotis for Helene?
Wow...that seems like a lot.

Let me sleep on this list.  I may need to tweak it a bit.

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Monday, December 29, 2008

Black Hole

I am knitting a super-secret project for still-blogless Amy...and I swear, this pattern has a black hole in the middle.  I have been knitting for days, and the darn thing is not getting any bigger? 

I've heard of this mystery.

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Sunday, October 19, 2008

I've been working on Liz (my Elizabeth Bennet Cabled Cardigan).

I have the body finished, the button bands complete, and I had one sleeve almost done...until I realized that I had screwed up and the cables, way back at the beginning, were askew, and off by just a couple of very noticeable stitches.  So, I had no choice but to rip it back.  All the way back.  If something is worth doing, it is worth doing right, right?

What's in the bag??  My Rhinebeck haul!  First up...

Brooks Farm Four Play (50% Wool, 50% silk) in a deep, dusky, almost black, almost navy, this picture doesn't begin to show the color well at all color.  For my February Lady sweater that I have been dreaming of.
This is Brooks Farm Tierra Blend (I don't see it on their site).  It is a Wool/Alpaca blend.  I am going to use this to make Bounce and a pair of mittens for all of the time I will be spending at the ice rink now that Le Bug has taken up ice hockey.
This was a wee, lone orphan, one skein of the Tierra in a cool meld of green colors.  It is going to be either a hat for Le Bug, or a scarf for his mommy.

Speaking of Le Bug, I've wanted him to have a hand-knit sweater for awhile now, but just don't have the time to make it myself.  So...
I bought one at Rhinebeck from Mees and Ewes, a knitting store in Middleburgh, New York.  It is really a pretty color, and it fits him great.  And he will be warm, and I will not tell anyone it was not made by me if they don't ask.  So don't ask.
This is Briar Rose Fiber Arts Celebration yarn.  It is a wool/bamboo blend and it is going to be knit into a Leaflet Scarf.

And hockey has also made me realize that I need to finish my Monkeys...so my feet don't continue to freeze solid during practices.  This is where they are at these days...still on Sock #1.
So, that is where the knitting stands at this moment in time...and I have to start Amy's baby project soon, but you won't be able to see that because it's top secret.

Gratuitous hockey video...he is in Mini Mites, and he cannot even skate yet, as most of them can't.  He is four and a half, and he is #4 because "I am 4, duh Mom!".  That was what he told me when he chose his jersey number...he spends the first half of this clip crawling around...but then, miraculously, he stands up and shuffles around!!


video

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Wednesday, August 27, 2008

200

The Elizabeth Bennet Cabled Cardigan from Fitted Knits by Stefanie Japel
The Cascade Cloud 9 in VanDyke Brown is lovely (bought from WEBS online).
Waist shaping and my pretty Knit Picks Harmony Wood needles.  Love them, must buy more!
Roses from my garden.


So, my 200th post? Cool.

I wanted to give you an update on the Elizabeth Bennet Cabled Cardigan.  It is going very well, I'm just to the part with the cables about the waist.  They are written in chart form which I find a bit challenging, I'm toying with the idea of writing them all out, but there are 96 rows for the sleeves, and I just don't know if I have it in me.  I may try to muddle through.

I may be the only person in the world who doesn't find the charts helpful.  I know that you are supposed to be able to "see" the cables on the page, but I don't.  And these charts don't follow the typical vertical/horizontal lines for the knits and purls.  There is a horizontal line for the purls when they are on the RS of the fabric, otherwise the box is just empty.  I assume (making an ass of myself no doubt) that this means to treat it like normal and knit on the RS and purl on the WS?  I guess it will be trial and error because I can't seem to find an explanation anywhere online.  

I hope to have this sweater done in time for Rhinebeck this year.  That is my goal.  

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Tuesday, August 19, 2008

In Progress


This is the Elizabeth Bennet Cabled Cardigan that has been long-awaited around these parts.  I cast on for it just before the Olympics began with the intention of trying to finish it before the end of the games, like the Ravelympics, but it isn't going to happen.  At least I have it started though, and that is inspiring me to knit on it more often.  Fall is right around the corner, this is going to be my go-to sweater for the fall.  Up next?  This sweater, and an also long-awaited baby project for Amy!  It will be purple and it will be special...I can't wait.

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Tuesday, July 29, 2008

This one is for Amy


I have turned the heel on the first Monkey sock and am in the home stretch.  I am trying to finish it up this week, so I can cast on for the second one in time for our camping trip next weekend.

You will notice that it is on dpns...I had knit it using Magic Loop, but one of our new kittens found my knitting bag and used the cable of the circular as a teething ring, and after that the stitches did not slide as well and I had to trash the needle.  Leaving me no option but to knit it old school style.  It hasn't been too bad, actually, I got a replacement circular needle in the mail the other day, but I haven't switched over again.  I'm not sure I will at this point.  I will definitely cast the other one on the new circular needle (a really nice Addi Turbo Lace one, I haven't used them before, so that will be interesting, to see how I like it).

I am still also working on the 2x2 ribbing on my back to school u-neck vest, but that has kind of fallen by the wayside.  I think I am going to cast on for the Elizabeth Bennet Cable Cardigan soon, fall is coming...and I will want that sweater!

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Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Lately?

My Mother's Day Flowers...already planted outside in the flower bed.
My husband (he of the brilliant brain) on his graduation day...
his second four year degree, this one in Nuclear Engineering.
My MIL, the Bug, and my DH at our celebratory lunch after the ceremony
My FIL, and the big boys
Monkey #1...so pretty.


Random...I know...

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Thursday, May 08, 2008

Another new name?

Proof that husbands can be useful if you let them...the new blog title is hereby (jokingly, lest anyone get t0o serious) copyrighted by my husband's brilliant soon to be graduated mind.

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

One Little Monkey (In Progress)


Love them!  They are truly addictive...it's a fun pattern to knit.  I started out on dpns...but have since switched over to magic loop on a very long (48") Addi.  I think knitting on dpns looks more elegant and accomplished, but I can't stand having them flop all over...magic loop may not be as pretty, but it suits my personality better, and it's so easy, I can't believe how long it took me to try it because I was intimidated, but it is so much easier than it sounds.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

New

New Blog Name (Same Blog Channel)

I was getting bored with the old title and inspired today by Cari's post...I decided to practice what I was preaching.  I wanted a title that more closely matched why I knit...specifically to relax and save my fragile mental health!

New Project
I am still working on the vest from Fitted Knits, but I have been having a wicked sock craving.  I haven't made any for almost two years!!  How is that possible?  The last ones I made were for Amy, and I have never made any for myself.  So, I was on Ravelry and I keep coming back to the Monkey socks.  I went diving in my huge Rubbermaid bin of stashed yarn, and found the perfect match.
This is sock yarn I bought at Rhinebeck two Sheep and Wool Festivals ago when I couldn't get near the Socks That Rock booth.  It is from Spirit Trail Fiberworks and the colors just could not be more me than this. 
The Bug helped me wind the yarn up on the umbrella swift...

So, I know it isn't wool sock weather, although there is always cool summer nights when you want a pair of cuddly socks, but I feel the need to knit socks (I've been dreaming of knitting socks at night) and so I am not going to question the urge.  That would be part of the whole sanity being saved trusting my instincts thing I've got going lately.

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Monday, April 21, 2008

Hodge Podge

Well, today is my last day of Spring Break...I am ready to go back.  There is never much left of the school year when we get done with April break anyway...I think we have less than 35 regular class days, then four days of local finals and then a week or so of NY State Regents exams, so there isn't much left at all. Plus, the weather is beautiful and everything is green and happy and the world is all new and lovely.  

Obviously, I love this time of the year...it restores my soul after the winter.  I cannot stand the winter.  A lot of people ask me why I don't move to somewhere where there is no winter to detest, but to be honest, I don't think you can fully appreciate the beauty of nature in all its glory without winter.  Winter is a necessary evil.  I know I wouldn't fully appreciate Spring and all of its rebirth without the crappiness that is a NY winter.

Anyway...onward to today's post.  This is my husband's Cobblestone Pullover from Interweave Knits magazine. 
               
It did fit, he tried it on and I took a picture, but it looked ass-tastic, so I had to delete it.  I am clearly not blocking things correctly...you can see little lumps all down the sides and sleeves were my pins were in it, and it looks like a dinosaurs tail.  So, I have to re-block it.  But it does fit.  And that, in and of itself, is a relief.  I need to find a tutorial on proper blocking techniques and maybe invest in a real blocking board and wires...I've had this issue before!

I moved on and was starting my Back to School U-neck vest (details on my Ravelry page) when I got a call from a work friend.  She had just gotten a wee little puppy who was shivery in the cold night air and she wanted to commission a puppy sweater.
I have always sworn I would never knit a dog sweater.  Be careful what you swear you will never do.  This is the Penny pattern from Knitty. I added a neck ruffle and a butt flounce.   The yarn is Araucania Nature Wool that I have had in the stashola for a million years.  It is a pretty shade of lilac.

Then, I decided to paint my dining room.
That was the before...

and this is the after.  

Just half the walls are this lovely deep garnet red.  The others are a pretty chino tan color.  I tried to post paint chip pictures, but Sherwin Williams' website has an attitude today.  You can see the tan color on the wall to the left of refrigerator if you look carefully...

We took the boys to the Empire State Aerosciences Museum in town.
It was a gorgeous day.  The Bug is wearing my sunglasses because his eyes were "shy". Translation:  they didn't want to stay open in the bright sun.  After the museum, we went to the local soft serve place and ate hot fudge sundaes for lunch.  I highly recommend the practice of dessert as meal...it is really delightful.

They had a display on Amelia Earhart.  I loved this quote of hers, I adore quotes:

If you can't read the fuzzy picture, it says, "Women must try to do things as men have tried. 
When they fail, their failure must be but a challenge to others."

Today, was spent getting ready to go back to work tomorrow:  haircut for the Bug, laundry, groceries...maybe a couple of new spring skirts for moi, the usual.

Tonight, more knitting on my U-neck vest.
Remind me next time to explain the inner drama with the Elizabeth Bennet Cable Cardigan yarn...I am such a yarn slut, I cannot be faithful to any choices that I make!  It's going to end up being about a $300 sweater when I factor in how many different times I buy a different yarn to make it.  

I am going to have many sweaters next fall--I have to use up all of my fickle choices on something!


Saturday, April 12, 2008

Done!

The Cobblestone sweater is done, and needs to be blocked, I think it might fit!!  He tried it on right off the needles and it wasn't as poorly fitting as I had dreaded, so I am hopeful. Tomorrow, I will block it and we will see what we will see.

I was hoping that the gorgeous, back-ordered Cloud 9 from WEBS (Vandyke Brown) would be in so I could start the Elizabeth Bennet Cable Cardigan next (I have taken to referring to it solely as "Liz" in my head, so if I slip up and call it that, that is what I am talking about!).  However, the yarn is NOT in, so I had to start something else instead.  I decided on the Back-to-School U-Neck Vest from Fitted Knits.  I cast on last night and haven't made a lot of progress to show yet...but I have Spring vacation this week, so I hope to get some major knitting time.  

I also plan to paint my dining room.  When we moved into the new house, it had not been painted yet, only primed...so there is a lot of painting to be done around here.  I will make sure to take before and after pictures to show.

BTW, all the (k)nitty gritty details about the vest can be found on my Ravelry page.

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Saturday, March 22, 2008

So Close and Yet...So Far....

This garter stitch yoke on the Cobblestone Pullover is going to be the end of me.
It is taking forever and a day to finish it.  It would help if I had more time to knit, of course...but that doesn't seem to be happening.  
I have a new super-cool camera, but I haven't totally figured out how to  use it to its best advantage yet, and so pictures are kind of crappy.  Actually, take out kind of, they are just plain craptastic.

Amy and I went to one of our local yarn stores on Good Friday and checked out some yarn I'd give you a link...but the website is currently under construction, and it's kind of pointless).  I bought a pretty pattern,  some Lamb's Pride in a dark green to make a sweater vest, and some really gorgeous pink Malabrigo, ummm, just because.  I am planning a scarf and hat from the MmmmMalabrigo for next winter.

I'm planning a lot of knitting actually:
  • The Elizabeth Bennet Cable Cardigan (the yarn is on back-order from Webs.  I did not stay with the pink after all, but ordered a gorgeous rich brown)
  • The U-Neck Vest also from Stefanie Japel's Fitted Knits--using the Lamb's Pride 
  • The Saratoga Shrug from Dovetail Designs...see link above...
  • A lace shawl?  Am I ready??
  • Socks...
That should keep me busy until Fall...plus the little things that pop up.  I am waiting to find out what gender baby my friend Paul is having this year.  I made him a baby cardigan last year for his little guy Dimaggio...

they are expecting again and, depending, I will have another little project on the horizon.  Although I am not sure how I will top that one...

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