Sunday, August 11, 2013

Welcome back (!?!?!?!?!)

Uh, well, it's been a while.  Three years.  With Facebook and Ravelry, I'm not sure why anyone would even NEED a blog any more.  But, I'm going to start posting stuff and see what happens.

Let's see - in the last 3 years
  1. L is still doing bits and pieces on the house - staining trim and windows, and doing a lot of landscaping and gardening. It all looks great - I can't believe the patience he has for doing this, and doing a lot of the standard house maintenance stuff too. I understand now that the house will never be "done". That part would drive me crazy.
  2. About three years ago, I broke my wrist in a fall. In a yarn store.  Fortunately, it was not a complicated break. It was complicated by insurance and legal issues, but it's all done now.
  3. About six months ago, I took a terrible fall at work and "blew out" my knee. Dislocated knee joint, ripped the medial collateral ("inside" edge of knee), the ACL and the PCL.  Was off work for three months, and I'm wearing a brace for the longterm. Whatever can heal, probably has by now. We have considered enclosing me in bubble wrap.
  4. In January, my office relocated to downtown. This is actually an easier commute for me, and try as I might to hate the new place, it's really lovely.
  5. Daughter got engaged. Wedding planned for next year.
  6. Joey is now 12 and Eiko is 3.  Joey got very cozy with me when I was stuck on the couch for a couple months. I think we might have lost him last summer, but he came back.  L still struggles with him occasionally at feeding time, but he's up to 14-15 lbs. Still light for him, but he'll never get to 16 lbs again.
Knitting continues on of course and the Ravelry page shows what I've worked on.  Lately, I've been entranced though by the crocheted animals of Heidi Bears.  I've finished the hippo and am now working on the frog.

Maybe when I figure out the new gewgaws, etc. I'll post some pix.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Small FO - a sign of spring

After finishing the Swallowtail, a good girl would pull out an old UFO and get to work on it.  Well, I don't know that girl.

I'd been looking at Brandywine for several weeks.  The designer is donating 75% of the pattern proceeds to Haitian relief.  The shawl has clean, geometric lines which always appeal to me. I downloaded the pattern and pulled out some stash yarn (yay for me!).  I had maybe 5 or 6 hours into it, before I realized that there was an error in it.  Big, ugly error.  The kind of error that instantly sucked out any enthusiasm I had for the project.

I had to set it aside for a day or two before I acknowledged I had to frog it.  Once that was done, it was about 3-4 hours of work to get it back to where it was.  I'm now at about 13 of 21 total repeats, but still less than half of the knitting.  I love the tipped edges, knit as you go. This will probably go into the annual raffle prizes at holiday potluck at work.
 Taking a brief break from the shawl, I started a Sweet Eleanor cap.  The designer for this pattern is donating all pattern proceeds to a medical fund for a family she knows whose daughter is seriously ill.  This is a great pattern, and I loved the cables and the way the decreases turn into a lovely star configuration on the top.  I had one of those cable challenges, and I was grateful that it wasn't lace, because it was fairly easy to frog 12 stitches 6 rows down and redo the cable twist correctly.  You don't always have that option with lace.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

FO Alert

I actually started and finished something with relative project monogamy.  Wow. Decide to make something, get materials, make it, finish it, wear it. What a concept!

This is the most excellent Swallowtail shawl.  Something that has been on my To-Do list for several years.  Started it at Madrona with yarns from there, and finished it just under a month later.  This took less than one skein each of the multi and the solid, both Crystal Palace Mini Mochi.  The yarn IS single-ply and splitty and I wouldn't use it again for a beaded project as the tiny beading hook just shreds the fiber.  However, I do love the look of it.  I decided to use beads instead of the designed nupps because I was very concerned about running out of the solid.  I probably had enough for 4-6 more rows, though.

 I need to get a better pix in natural daylight. Theoretically easier now that we're on DST. Right? Right?
 I have a couple of uninspired projects (hats mostly) started during or after this, but I think they are headed to Frog Island.  I figure if I can't get excited about them in the honeymoon phase, it is NOT going to get better.  So, I started this instead, which I *love*.
This is the Brandywine shawl from Designs by Romi.  $5 of the pattern cost is being donated to Doctors without Borders or another organization focused on help for Haiti.   This actually is pretty close to Kelly green, which seems appropriate given the holiday tomorrow. I also ordered the Trieste shawl which looks like a fairly easy pattern, also done from the tip up.

From this proud Irish-American,  Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Monday, March 1, 2010

Madrona, Days the Others

Well, I really thought I'd get back to this sooner.  I think I was overwhelmed by fumes of wool and chocolate.
I spent nearly $400 in the market; had been telling myself $275-300, but in my heart, I knew that was wrong.

I did have a few things that were specifically on my list (wooden swift)
And possibly some shawl yarn.
I did get the Advanced Domino Knitting book, even though the primary language is Japanese.  There are enough photos w/translations, and I'm familiar enough with her earlier books, that it shouldn't be a problem.

Finally saw in real life, some of the mini mochi slow-color change yarn.  It is a single ply and can be really splitty.  That's a common complaint on it in Ravelry.  So far, I have noticed that a bit, not too much of a problem.  I started a Swallowtail shawl with it and love the intense colors.  Now that I am to the point of adding beads with a tiny tiny crochet hook, the splitty business IS a little frustrating, but so far, it's worth it.

The focus for the next couple of weeks will be finishing up some of the bits on house for remodel, for a party on the 20th.  But, I'll try to get a little better about checking in here.

Here's a few pix from classes.  I took the EEKS - STEEKS class by Mary Scott Huff.  There was this huge bit of homework that ideally was to be done before class.

The instructor had a lot of homework too.  She made 70+ swatches for the class.  Each student got 3 swatches and the whole purpose was to cut up all her work.

I did cut mine open and I've knit up the edgings on 3 of 4 sides, but small black-on-black stitches need GOOD light so I've been putting this off.

I took a class on knitting beaded jewelry. For some reason, I expected we would be knitting with wire. This was an interesting class and I can see making more of these.  However, the loop to connect very strong magnet closures has a sharp edge and has sliced through the stitching to join it twice.  Yesterday, I got some beading thread with a lot of nylon and we'll see if that works better.

This is a project I'm looking forward to. Black Water Abbey yarn and a pattern with 3 Aran hats.  Haven't decided yet which one to make, but it should be a good commute project.  It will also be a test run for whether I should buy a sweater's worth of this for a vest for DH.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Madrona, Day 1

Well, in case there's any doubt why any of us are here...

but enough about what my hotel room looks like.  This is my version of Room Service.
 I requested a microwave, but there are only a limited number of them available, so once I confirmed that there wasn't one, I bought accordingly. And most of it is pretty d**n healthy for being on vacation.

I did the first pass through the market, which seems smaller than in recent years.  Still not a struggle with 35 instead of 50 vendors LOL.  I only bought one thing, a card (see above) but took several dozen photos.  I did not see any sweater kits for $250+ that I had to have.  I had a rough time passing one up last year, but pass it up I did.

A few things that I will definitely pick up.  I am particularly camera-stupid.  I can't find the white balance on this camera and I have seen it before, except when I'm looking for it.  Everything is coming up yellow-green. The lighting in the vendor area is just terrible.  Pix of these IN MY ROOM will be much better.  This is Minimochi yarn, long color transitions like Noro, but lighter weight and soft.  I've seen many projects on Rav with this stuff and I can't wait to try it out.

Another thing is this:
I've taken classes with Vivian Hoxbro, made a couple projects from her books, corresponded with her via email.  This book is designed for the Japanese market, but is loaded with photos.  Since I've done a lot of her stuff already, I think I can fumble my way through.  Wait til you see some of the images inside this book.

OK, that's the first of the yummy bits.  Need to collect needles etc for first class. More tonight, maybe.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

OK, so it's been a while....

Well, there is this phenomen called Ravelry and I seem to be spending my knitting-related computer time over there. God knows, I haven't stopped knitting; it's just all over there. There's a lot of hats and baby stuff and for some reason, I got into a lace period. You can see my projects and junk here.

Then, there's this other thing. Starting about the same time as the last post here (hmm - coincidence, I think not), we broke ground to go from this:

to this:

18 months later, we are almost done, and you can see the entire journey here. THAT'S where my blogging time has gone.

As far as knitting, well, I'm headed out in a couple days to Madrona for the 4-day retreat / classes / shopping / drinking wine in the lobby til the horse cuts you off.

Hopefully, later I'll post the hats I've just completed while stalling (ha ha) on my homework for Madrona.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Hats and Skullies and Beads, Oh My!

The Beaded Cable Hat is done. Pix on Ravelry and Flickr, but those are duplicates of here and previous entry.

The next project is another pirate hat for a niece who hopefully doesn't know about this blog. This is my second Pirate Hat. A teen niece who loves lime green AND pirates. How could I not do this, and how could it not be perfect for her?
I think I will only do two repeats of the skulls, due to all the stuff at the brim. I used the last of the beads from the pink hat to make the eyes (or, I guess it would be eye sockets) for the first set of skulls. I have some metallic gold seed beads that might look good for the next repeat. I think RED ones would be awesome, but I'm trying to use up what I have.

Finally, a bit of STUNNING news -
My daughter found my wedding ring, which I thought was lost forever about 3 months ago. It is a little snug right now for my ring finger, so I'd been wearing on my pinky finger. Obviously, it's a little big for that. I noticed it gone right after returning from grocery shopping. I called the store but of course they hadn't seen it. It is not a large stone, but it's conceivable that someone still might have seen it on the floor and helped themselves. Or, it could have been swept up in the trash. I also called the restaurant - we had treated ourselves to brunch that Sunday morning. In fact it might have been Father's Day and that was why we went out, as DH usually cooks a big breakfast on Sunday morning and he "got the day off." I also did a cursory check around the car, with no luck. Once we started tearing up the yard end of June - details on the remodel blog - I knew that if it HAD fallen off then, it was hopelessly gone - it was needle in a haystack time, and soil removed from one place was being replaced somewhere else. Turns out it never left the house. She was looking for her ipod headset and went rummaging under my computer desk and there it was. Whatever frustrations there may be with a no-longer-teen-but-still-adolescent daughter, they were all forgotten for a while when she called me so excited I couldn't make out what she was saying at first. Life is good.