Friday, December 25, 2009

Happy Holidays

So where were we? Oh yes, it was the end of July, shortly after I had broke a couple ribs, Gillian and Nick were about to come home for a wedding, and Annie was still pregnant.

Um yeah, a few things have happened since then. Gillian's visit turned into a whirlwind of activity with having no less than four extra people sleeping here which continued to grow in number until the climatic night where there were 14 young adults slumbering under the sheets and blanket fort they had created in the livingroom.


It's the simple pleasures in life that mean the most and create lasting memories, whether it's building a fort in the livingroom, playing Simon Says, Twister, Wiffleball, or Hide and Go Seek after dark, regardless of your age.

Fast forward to the month of September and my ribs are finally mended, and Annie's pregnancy took yet another turn. She was put on modified bedrest, meaning no activity, just sitting. I sure could have used her help during her move out of my sister's house and into the home of her childhood where her brothers live. A little cleaning, sanding, plastering, painting, plumbing, etc help wouldn't have hurt either, not to mention grocery shopping, laundry, and nursery set up. :o) Most days in September and October found me doing one or more of the aforementioned chores each day at the kids house with the hopes that the remodel would be completed before the baby was born.

We almost made it.

Due to all the other complications Annie had with her pregnancy she was to be induced on Monday November 1. We were thrilled when it looked like she was going to be able to carry this baby full term. (Oct 30 was the beginning of her 39th week). Not sure why I thought the end was in sight at that point, apparently it was just wishful thinking.

Midday Thursday Oct 29 , while I was painting, Annie went into labor. As any of you know who have gone through labor yourself, in the beginning it wasn't bad, we (Annie) worked through it until they were coming at 4 minutes intervals and were getting a little intense. Off to the hospital we went, it was now early evening on Thursday. We stayed in the OB triage unit until late night (11:00 pm-ish) and they sent us home. Contractions 3 minutes apart. By 6AM Friday her contractions were 2.5 - 2 min apart and we were still at home. We stayed home until sometime Friday afternoon. (memories are kinda foggy I hadn't slept for more than 30 hours by then) By Saturday early early morning (pre-dawn? dawn?) I was ready to hit the wall, I can only imagine what Annie truly felt. That's when they gave the OK and she got an epidural. She was finally able to catch a catnap here and there, I was more concerned with other issues and couldn't sleep. The baby was showing signs of distress with each contraction and Annie's blood pressure was very unstable. The decision to take the baby by c-section was made at 8:30ish. At this point I'm sure there are plenty of you out there thinking they should have done that sooner, but they couldn't. Annie had been on blood thinning meds throughout the pregnancy because of that blood clot in her chest so any kind of surgery (including the epidural) until the meds were out of her system was too great a risk.

At 9:38 AM October 31, 2009 William "Liam" John was born.


7 lbs. 15 oz, 19.5"....I remember cuz I wrote it on my hand, see below. giggle/snort



How about another picture with some knitterly stuff?


All the babes in the nursery got pumpkin hats for their Halloween Birthdays. :o) I can hear your collective "awwww". Thanx to the stealth knitter who made these hats.

While Liam is a very easy baby, calm and peaceful, healthy eater, good sleeper, and just the most adorable baby ever, (no grandmotherly bias here) the last two months haven't been easy. I really really figured the tough stuff was over. Annie's pregnancy had been a long one, punctuated with lots of problems and difficulties. I had really thought she had had her share and it was going to be smooth sailing from here on out. I thought wrong. After being discharged Mom and babe were healthy and happy. I was staying with Annie to help out where I could and maybe just maybe get some of those last minute house remodel things done too. It didn't work out that way. After a few days Annie was admitted into the hospital due to complications with her c-section incision and a large hematoma beneath the abdominal wall. She was there a week. I was at her house with a nursing newborn who couldn't nurse, cuz of the IV meds his mom was on. I remember one particular night 'round about 3:00AM while I was changing a diaper and Bart came in to see what was going on. He grinned and said something like, 'Gee Mom this is the 5th time around for you' I replied that yes while it was the 5th time I was taking care of a brand new baby all by myself, the other 4 times I didn't have to make up bottles in the wee hours nor was I 50 years old, there IS a reason people my age don't have babies. I'm pretty sure its mostly cuz of that lack of sleep thing.

Liam and I while the kids were down stairs eating dinner, apparently I was tired.


It is now Christmas day. I have been at home sleeping in my own bed since Dec 16, having been staying with Annie and Liam since Oct. 29th. Even though Annie's hospital stay was only a week, she had come home with a drain in one side of her abdomen, and portion of her c-section incision re-opened. A nurse came to the house twice a day to change the dressing, the packing within the incision wound and drain the drain. The extent of baby care Annie was able to do was minimal at best, at times even nursing was too much. A week later the drain was removed. After a few more weeks with her incisional wound continuing to worsen, her care was transferred to a surgeon who immediately re-opened her entire c-section incision. The wound is still open, healing from the inside out. The nurses still come to the house every other day now due to a new type of packing they were able to get for her. It will take several more weeks at best to be healed to the point where Annie is on her feet again, doing anything much more than baby care, but at least she is healing now.

I've tried not to get too graphic in the explanations of what is happening to Annie right now. I hope I have not been guilty of TMI, but I just wanted to let you know what has been going on in and around the Hermitage, and in it's secondary locale, cuz truly the kid's house in town has been nothing more than another hermitage within the city. I've been seeing and doing nothing outside its four walls for a very long time other than taking Annie or Liam to their doc appointments and maybe getting out to grocery shop every now and then.

Hermitage II is also filled with the people I love most so it too is Home even if Joe wasn't there, and it wasn't my bed. Gillian came home earlier than planned for the holidays to help out with Annie and Liam so once again I found myself living in the old homestead with ALL my kids. It's nice to know that I wasn't the only one who had a tough time staying awake during her turn of baby care. :oP


At Home just like before, just me and my kids, before Joe, before they grew into adulthood, cooking meals for 5, doing one or two loads of laundry a day, playing games, and changing diapers. Home, where three simple stomps on the floor means drop everything and come running someone needs help upstairs, where Mom's car is never parked on the street, and where a good nights sleep means you only wake once or twice through the night.

Home IS where the heart is.

Happy Holidays

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Legs and Cuffs

Nearly finished and there has been no lessening of my enthusiasm for this project. OK, so that isn't a saying a whole lot considering I only started this on Sunday night, but still..... It has been extremely inspiring and motivating too, my brain is mulling over the next group of socks to be done already.




At this point I'll continue working the legs/cuffs in a k2p2 rib until I run out of each yarn. I'm pretty sure I'll do the EZ sewn bind off.

Unfortunately I won't get much knitting time in today, Gillian and her man Nick are coming home tonight to attend a wedding in the family on Saturday. I've already warned her regarding the chaos in her room/my work room, but I still have to at least clear a path for them. :o)

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Progress


I am sooooo loving this. The foot of each sock will be done today and then onward to the heels, might even get those done today too. :o)

Here are a few thoughts/observations I have so far in case any of you guys wanna give this a go. (and I strongly recommend it)

I really like using two circs in this circumstance instead of using one and the magic loop method. Granted I don't have a needle long enough for a magic loop but having said that, even if I did, I'd still use the two needle method. IMHO two circs is less "fiddly" than magic loop and maintains the knitting rhythm. The needles I'm using are 28 inches and as always I'm using needles of different colors. Using differently colored needles eliminates any confusion there might be when turning and grabbing the needles to knit, plus you always know where the beginning of the rounds are, which are the sole stitches, and which are the instep stitches.

I haven't had any problems with the yarns getting all tangled. All 12 balls are in a small ziploc bag. It's a snug fit but it reduces the possibility of the balls getting all jumbled around each other. Every now and then I'll let the ziploc bag dangle to release any twisting of the yarns. It isn't a tangled twist merely a turning of all the yarns together like a neatly plied rope. I have found that it is easier and less likely to cause tangles if I pull out the working yarn slack for all 12 yarns at once rather than pulling it out one yarn at a time. I was planning to stuff each ball of yarn into it's own sock as soon as the foot/feet were large enough, I prob'ly won't bother, I'm not having any tangling issues. (might consider doing it at heel time though)

The next time I do this I think I'll separate the pairs and not have two socks of the same color next to each other. I've only used the wrong yarn once and realized my error after only 3 stitches. If I hadn't noticed that could have been a huge PITA.

Next time I'll prob'ly make all the toes one at a time "remotely". In other words, I'll make a toe then transfer it to the needle(s) I will ultimately be using (just cuz I think it would be quicker) Here I used a short row toe that starts off with a provisional cast on of half the stitches, when the toe is complete half the stitches are live and half are sitting there waiting to be freed of the scrape yarn holding them. This made it super easy to slide the second needle into the cast on stitches and begin knitting the rounds of the foot.

I've been thinking hard about what heel to use and how to do it. Certainly any heel would work but the back and forth turning of some heels could cause some major tangling of yarns especially if heels are made one a a time. Hmmmm, work all the heels at once or work them one at a time or work them one at a time remotely, aka on different needles? Not sure what I'll do it yet, although I am leaning toward working them all at once. When experimenting one should be consistent in their methods right? btw I think I'll use the Balbriggan heel although it is supposed to be a cuff down heel I like the way it looks toe up too.

I haven't given any thought to the leg/cuff yet. Prob'ly this time around a simple rib, the yarns are nothing fancy or super nice, just scrapes really, and I have plenty of yarn for more socks.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Finding Mojo

Just cuz my last attempt at finding mojo didn't work out so well it doesn't mean I stopped searching for it. Last night I cruised through a couple places in Ravelry and found something that piqued my interest. Yes, it is a little out of the ordinary, but really, lets be honest, when has that ever stopped me?

Let's examine the worthiness of this new project:
Is there potential for failure? You bet.
Is the frustration quotient high. Could be.
Is it a relatively short term project? Kinda.
Do I have all needed materials and tools? More or less.
Will there be an end product? Yup.
Is aforementioned end product something I desire. Yes.
Have I ever attempted anything like this before. No, not quite.
Can I start it right now before I lose my enthusiasm? Yep.

Added Bonuses:
Is this project portable? Yeah, maybe.
Is it silly? Of course.
Are there any added benefits to this method/technique? Yes.
If things don't go right and it does fail is the work salvageable? Yes.
Could pain or injury be involved? Doubtful.
(Something I should have asked Saturday)

Hmmmm, looks like I have a winner here.

I started my version of the project last night.




Six pairs of baby socks on two circs.
My deepest gratitude to Brian at Skacel for this mojo butt kicking project.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

I Am An Idiot

Yes it is true. I can be an idiot, but generally speaking my stupidity usually does not cause me physical pain. Emotional turmoil and/or intellectual frustration perhaps, but never physical pain. That is to say, until today. :o/

I mentioned last time that I've been having mojo issues. Nothing seems interesting to me. I've had no desire to engage in any of my "normal" activities. This morning, I woke feeling fairly decent, relatively speaking and decided that maybe today would be a good day to kick my mojo in the butt. Today I would try doing something that, I enjoy, would get my sluggish body, mind, and soul, moving and also included the ever powerful, ultimate motivator for me, destroy something.

For the last few weeks Joe and I have been discussing the lilac bush nearest the patio. I use the term bush rather loosely here. Out of respect for her age and stature, I should prob'ly refer to her as the Lilac Tree for I am confident she is much older than I and apparently, as you will soon come to understand, more sturdy than I. Several years ago we "trimmed" her back to a manageable size reducing her footprint in the yard to maybe a fourth of what it had been and brought her down to maybe 2 or 3 feet in height. The time had come to cut her down to size once again, hence our near daily discussions of the Lilac Tree. She was no longer producing her once legendary showy display of fragrant blooms in abundance, a few small bundles of joy here and there was all she seemed capable of these last couple of years. Added to her inability to produce said bundles of joy she was getting waaaay too tall thus blocking most our view of the backyard. Yes, a trim was needed once again. I do know that trimming a lilac this time of year is a no no. There would most likely be no bundles of joy next spring if we trimmed her now. But considering how few her blooms have been we wouldn't really be missing much of anything, besides, her sister who occupies an enormous area in another part of yard would still be able to satisfy our needs for vases of lilacs next spring.

So having had this discussion with Joe several times plus my desire to do something different I asked Joe if I could start trimming the old girl today. He gave me the go ahead telling me to do what I wanted. He cautioned me not to tire myself too much and told me to quit any time I felt like it cuz we could finish it up together on Tuesday (his next day off). I decided that I really didn't want nor could have done a lot on my own today so I focused on just lopping off the really tall branches to better improve the view for now.

I began cutting the branches off level with the height of my chest. On Tuesday Joe and I together would determine which branches should be cut to the ground. Another factor which determined at what height I would begin trimming today was the diameter of the branches. Just about every branch taller than me was more than an inch in diameter, almost too large in girth for me to lope off even if I was using the 'Big Bertha' loppers. I worked slow and steady walking the branches out to the far edge of the yard to the burn pile frequently not wanting a pile I couldn't manage by myself to accrue. I stopped and rested frequently but did actually enjoy the task at hand. Many of the branches were a tad bit too big for me cut without using more leverage than I could muster with just my arms so frequently I wedged one of the handles against my body for resistance and used both hands to pull the other handle. Everything was working just fine that way until I came across a branch that as slightly bigger than the others. It was a stubborn old branch. One that had apparently escaped unscathed the downsizing trim of a few years back. It was old and gnarly. It bore the rough, craggy bark of age, not the relatively young smooth bark of all the other branches I had been cutting. I repositioned the cutting jaws and tried again. The blades barely creased the bark. I inspected the unyielding branch and decided cutting it a bit closer to the ground might be a good idea. Yes, the branch was thicker down there giving the old girl an advantage but I figured the advantage would be mine. I would gained a higher degree of stability by being able to kneel on the ground, thus the resistance of my body to the pull of my arms would be increased. (it sounded like a good idea at the time) I repositioned the cutting blades again, had a firm stable base, one knee down one knee up, the handle of the loppers nearest me firmly settled against my chest. I grasped the other handle with both hands as close to the end as possible and readied myself. I released a single, swift, firm burst of power.

Snap!

I heard it.

I actually heard it before I felt it.

Now I wonder just how long I will feel it.

I broke a rib.

I am an idiot.

Plus I have to look at this until Tuesday.


Saturday, July 11, 2009

Half Spun

Like the title says, I have half of the solar dyed roving spun. Some of the variant coloration is still evident, not much, but some. :o/




My knitting mojo has left recently. Technically not just the knitting mojo but all mojo. I have my suspicions as to why that is but that is a story for another day. Besides at this point it's all just speculation anyway. Suffice to say, I do know, by virtue of a 18 hour ER visit awhile back and subsequent tests, I am as healthy as a horse. Yep, me, healthy as a horse. lol Me, the person who snacks on things like meat, beef, ham and bacon being my grazing fodder of choice. My heart and lungs are good, notwithstanding the more years than I care to admit I've been a smoking fiend. (I am trying to remedy that btw, down from 20ish cigs a day to less than 8 usually less than 5. Yea me.) And my cholesterol is perfect. Amazingly so. I had never had my cholesterol checked before, assuming all the while it was prob'ly on the high side. My eating habits for one reason, but the greater reason being most of my 6 brothers and sisters have high cholesterol.

My numbers are thus:
ttl cholesterol 144
Triglycerides 49
HDL 43
LDL 91

It's nice to know that I don't have to give up meat as I try to give up smoking. :o)

Sunday, July 05, 2009

Keeping It Green

Such a beautiful day today, crystal clear skies, pleasant temperature, and a light wispy breeze. By 9:00AM I knew I'd be spending the entire day outside. I worked a few rows of a baby blanket and decided today was not a day for knitting. Today was a day for spinning.

As I sat there spinning away, nearly finished with the current batch of fibers I've been working on, it dawned on me I was soon going to be needing another batch of fibers. Given the near perfect weather of the day I decided to do another batch of solar dyeing. This time I dyed fiber rather than yarn. I dug around in the stash and came up with nearly 5 oz of roving.


Notice how I have wound the roving into a loose haphazard ball. I did this hoping for an uneven absorption of the dye, I also stuffed the ball into the dye bath dry, for the same reason.

Here, as you can see, the fiber is "brewing" in the sun. I used foil to help intensify the heat of the sunshine. The ambient high today was 81, the temperature within the dye bath got up to 180 degrees. :o) Oh and btw...180 degrees is hot.....I burned myself.........duh. I used a paired of Joe's leather work gloves to handle the very hot glass jar but as I was pouring the roving out of the jar and into the strainer I managed to pour the hot water across the glove. I didn't realize it until the leather became saturated and a small hole in the little finger filled up with the water. OUCH!



But I guess it was worth it doncha think?

To be honest I was hoping for a little more variation in the color, next time I'll wind the ball tighter and/or do a little tie-dye technique. I can't wait to spin this up. I wonder if spinning will enhance the variations or blend them too much. Actually spinning the fiber is the only way I'll know. I am really poor at guessing what a dyed roving will look like after spinning.

Monday, June 08, 2009

Another To-Be-Finished

One more item to be thrown upon the TBF* pile.


Made with one skein of supersocke 100. I had just a teeny tiny bit left. So little left in fact, I wasn't absolutely sure I was going to be able to match the shoulders. Oh well, the goddess of yardage and I go back a long time. You know that sickening feel in the pit of your stomach when you think you might run out of yarn at the very end? It is becoming a required ritual for me. The goddess of yardage and I are so entwined I don't think I could knit anything and bypass that stage.

I have a couple of other things on the needles as well as a few at the ready to begin. I'm still sorely lacking in babyboy appropriate yarns but I'm making due. One thing on the needles is a little surplus sweater (original pattern from 1957). I don't really care for surplus style sweaters but the construction caught my eye. The bodice is knit in one piece and then a round yoke is picked up. Of course I had to change it before I even started, but it's coming along nicely. I'm working it in garter stitch, I think the juxtaposition of the garter ridges at the bodice/yoke transition might prove to be interesting.

Also on the needles is a size 2 "snowsuit", (original pattern from same book as the surplus sweater). Of course I had to modify, and size it down to a 6 month-ish size. I'm using Caron Simply Soft. Sheesh, I didn't realize how snobbish my fingers had gotten. Everyone knows this workhorse, stand by, dependable, been around forever, yarn is nice for baby stuff. Super soft, washable, and cheap, what more could a person want? Um, yeah, I can only handle working with for so long then the plastic-ness begins to creep me out. Who knew I had such delicate finger tips!?! You'd never be able to guess such was the case if you ever saw my never manicured much abused hands.

I've also found what I think is to be the perfect "lace" blanket/wrap for Babyboy. I have a few "normal" blanket patterns planned but I really wanted a lighter than usual weight blanket too. Something drapy and light weight either means 8-12 stitches per inch with thread-like yarn, or lace. Sure thing, me, the one who has issues with project completion coupled with a short attention span knitting a blanket at 8 or more stitches to the inch. That's not going to happen. So lace it is. But a manly man lace nothing frilly or girly. Something geometric would be good. Plans now are for a blanket worked in garter (a manly stitch) with a couple of plain borders separated with a row of simple eyelets and a center panel of eyelet diamonds. I think it will work. I haven't started it yet, not even sure what yarn I'll use, but I am keeping my eyes and options open.

I've also been playing around searching for that perfect sloper for babyboy pants/shorts. Do other people do this? Find/create a pattern for a given garment that is simple-no-frills and then use it as the basis for all variations. It's like having a muslin sloper but instead of sewing the garment I'm knitting it.

*TBF to-be-finished. Knitting is complete seams and/or buttons needed.

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Kicking

Just had to make note of this momentous event....

BabyBoy is kicking his mother. Granted he's been kicking for a while now, but it wasn't until today that Annie actually felt it.

btw, I think I forgot to mention the other day when I posted the latest sonogram pix, he weighs 6 oz. That is about the equivalent of 1.5 sticks of butter. :o)

Patio Party

The Hermitage was the site for Saturday's yarn dyeing patio party with several of my Friday Lunch and Knit buddies. The goddesses must have approved, the weather was great, if not a tad bit breezy, but it was sunny and pleasant. Not many, if any of my buddies, had ever dyed before so it was a busy day. Too busy in fact for me to even remember to take photos!! sigh.....

I did manage to get a couple of pix taken in the very beginning, unfortunately not everyone is pictured and no photos of finished yarns. (I know, I'm kicking myself, what a lousy blogger.) Hopefully I'll get some pix from those who were here and can post their photos another time.

I had the patio set-up so we had a place to wind balls and hanks, a table with the dyes (all food coloring, a gel paste I bought from Into the Oven) and a table in the yard for painting the yarn. The kitchen table was left for all the fabulous food everyone bought. Oh YUM!!! we were grazing ALL day, not to mention the impromptu wine tasting we had and the Chocolate Syrup Kahlua. :o)

Everyone did a fabulous job of dyeing their yarns. We had some truly drop dead gorgeous reds, several beautiful blue/purple variegated, some very pretty green with bits of pink, purple, and yellow, a happy happy rainbow that reminds me of the Grateful Dead dancing bear, and even had a marvelous polka dot! We also resurrected a family heirloom that was originally pink but had faded to the point of not being wearable. Now it has a marvelous blue/purple kettle dyed yarn look to it and is definitely wearable once again. Looking back on the days events I can't help but giggle when I think about all the knitting demons that were here that day and not one single stitch was created. Ya know, come to think of it, I'm not sure knitting was even discussed!

Here are a few pix I did managed to take early in the day, and a shot of the yarn I dyed using up all the left overs later that evening.



Oh yeah in case you're wondering, we painted/zapped, and also kettle dyed. My yarns reading from left to right 330m of Shepherd Baby Wool that was originally light green (the color now is a little more teal) 180yards Aerobic originally peach, and 2 skeins of STR medium wt (380 yards each) Um yeah remember it's a BOY! :o)

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

It's a BOY

Today Annie had another appointment with her High Risk OB. It was a very quick visit with the doctor telling her everything was just fine, and a glorious hour of watching Baby Boy flip, twist, turn, punch, and kick his mother. :o) The super thorough sonogram detected and measured all major organs and limbs....including that third leg which told us, he is a he. giggle/snort

See? (the angle of the pic is upward through the pelvic girdle. The arrow indicates his boy bits on either side of that (above and below in the photo) are his hip bones or perhaps they are his knees??? :0P


Hopefully this will be the only X-rated pic that will ever be published of him. :o)


I know these pix are often difficult to decipher but here is a one of those cute baby toes. Toes of his foot are nearly centered in the photo. You can see the 5 little toes and the complete sole of his foot.

And now the collective "aawwww" baby boy in profile picture with his left forearm and finger visible as he reaches up to give mom a punch.



I know there has not been much knitting content of late. And if the truth be said, not a lot of content period. Sorry 'bout that guys. Still no knitting content for you except to say I began a couple lace projects and well, you know what lace looks like when it still on the needles. Yup yarn barf, it looks like yarn barf so I won't bother with photos.

One of the lace pieces is/was a lace caplet. I'm on the fence as to whether I'm actually going to finish it or frog it. I can't steer you to a pattern cuz there isn't one. It's just a piece where I took a little bit of a lace pattern from one pattern, stole a little from another, cobbled together another lace from yet another couple of patterns and then kinda freewheeled it with generic caplet pattern as a guideline for sizing. I'm not sure at this point if I don't like the play of the patterns of I just don't like the idea of a caplet. Another thing that is holding me back is the fact that I have very little experience with lace and absolutely zero when it comes to making up a lace pattern. Will the patterns play nice??? I think so, but I'm not overly optimistic about it and frankly a little intimidated.

Still having the lace bug within my soul I decided to cast on this Drops 94-14 pattern. It's going well. Worked bottom up, sleeves joined for a seamless lace yoke. About 10cm to go on the body and then onward to the sleeves.

BUT......
Now that I know he is a he?????? I just might have to get some babyboy knitting started. Just kidding, I won't start any babyboy knitting until Sunday, Saturday at the very earliest. And that's cuz I'm having a bunch of knitting buddies out to the house for a day of dyeing. Now that I know he is a he I'll be dyeing plenty of babyboy appropriately colored yarns and fibers, thus the delayed start of the actual knitting. ;o)

Monday, May 25, 2009

The Great Exodus

Last Thursday the crew from Christman's Wildlife Service arrived to put an end to the long ongoing, heretofore, futile battle between Us, the inhabitants of the Hermitage, and Them, the bats who are the unwanted guests of aforementioned domicile. Unfortunately I was not at home when they came to do the work, and Joe, dear sweet Joe, didn't think to give me a call. (how he could not recognize the blogworthyness of the days events?!???) For this reason, alas, there are no photos of the crew nimbly crawling about the exterior of the house caulking, stuffing, and plugging every minuscule gap, crack, and void of the house....sigh

What I do have are pix of the "one-way doors" the crew installed. There are three of them. One toward the front of the house and two toward the back.



As you can see, they aren't the prettiest things, made primarily of 4 inch pvc pipe, expanding foam, and duct tape, but you really don't notice them much from the ground looking up. See?




If they were clad in flashy red glitter, 3 feet in diameter, with horns, bells and whistles I'd be OK with them if they got rid of the bats. Right?

A little refresher course on the procedure of "bat exclusion".....

The law says you can't kill the little buggers, (bummer, I know) so what you have to do is seal every conceivable point of entry a structure might have so they can't get in. Be aware that anything the size of 1/4 inch is big enough for a bat to get in. (this crew is very thorough they seal everything) Remember too that we aren't just interested in preventing more bats from roosting within the walls of the Hermitage but we do, in fact, have bats already residing here. So, what do you do about those bats? All...um...er...30, cough, spasm, gag, choke, spit, to 50 of them. Yes, you read that correctly, the Bat Guy said we had 30 to 50 bats in the house. Hold on a sec, I still get faint when I think about that.

Whoosh, better now, I just have to remember to breathe and find my happy place.

To get rid of bats already in residence you have to seal all possible points of entry and exit except their favorite ones and install "one-way doors" at those points. In other words, all points of escape for the inhabitants are barred except for a few which allow them to exit but no longer enter. The "doors" are simplistic and crude as you can see in the pictures. Just a tube of plastic with a 90 degree downward turn. The bats sort of , crawl/fall out the door when they leave but can't fly or crawl back up the door when they want to return "home".

A cautionary note here. The Bat Guy told me, in some cases, if the wrong exit point(s) are closed up, you could conceivably have the entire colony swarm(?) flock(?) into the main living area of the house searching for an exit. Whoa.....swooning again...hold on.

find a happy place find a happy place find a happy place

OK back to Thursday the day the guys came and installed the bat doors. I was feeling pretty good about the whole thing. Better yet, they came on a day when Joe didn't have to work at night and I wasn't going to have the face possibility, however remote it might be cuz my Bat Guy and his crew really do know how to do this stuff, of having a swarm of bats in my house. I was also thrilled that with Joe here I just might be courageous enough to actually sit outside and watch the exodus of the bats....maybe even document it! And maybe just maybe even sit outside (or perhaps sit in the car) and watch when the evicted-at-last bats return after their night of foraging and try as they may can't find a way to get back home. After all the Bat Guy said about 80% of the bats will leave the first night. When they return and realize they can't get back in a bunch of ticked off bats will keep circling the house searching for entry. OK perhaps the bats aren't really angry just a little confused, but I kinda like the thought of pissing them off rather than just confusing them. (vengeful much? who me?)

So after dinner Thursday I set up a table and chairs out in the yard so we could see one of the bat doors clearly. A pair of binoculars for each of us, note cards and pens to keep a tally of how many bats we each saw, and my camera ready, fresh batteries, empty memory and I even reviewed how to take a video. I was a little dismayed by the fact that we could only see one door at a time. While we were watching one door how could we know if they were leaving by another, but oh well, it was the best I could do and later would extrapolate how many left from the other doors.

As the sun began to set, and the sounds of day changed into the sounds of night Joe and I faithfully watched one of the bat doors. It grew dusky. No bats. The bugs began to bite. No bats. It grew dark. No bats. Joe by now had long ago lost interest in watching for bats, if he really had any interest in it at all, but Joe being Joe sat there with me still. I too had begun to grow weary of this now all too boring task (you can't knit and hold binoculars) The fact that I was getting eaten alive by mosquitoes wasn't helping my waning enthusiasm either. Yes, I know, the irony was not lost on me. At approximately 9:45 we called the bat vigil quits. Yes, I was disappointed. Yes, images of a swarm of bats flying out of the house as I opened the door to go in did cross my mind.

There was no swarm, but there also wasn't a mass exodus of bats which I was really hoping for. Maybe in the morning I would be rewarded with pictures of displaced bats hanging around the doorways they could no longer enter. (one of the crew told Joe there might be a few hanging in the eaves having failed to gain entry still hoping to get in the following night) There were no bats hanging around Friday morning. There were no bats hanging around Saturday morning. Sunday morning around 4:00-4:30 the dog and cat were restless. Joe got up and the animals followed him to the kitchen. I fluffed my pillow to lay back down and that was when I heard it too, the unmistakable chipping ping. There were some pissed offed bats circling the house searching for a way to get in. I snuggled down with a smile on face and fell asleep to the lullaby of echo distancing.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Balbriggan heel

I adore this heel!!!!


I stumbled upon it in a vintage knitting book....another thing I love. :o)

Um yeah nice pix huh...sorry I can only contort myself to an extent. Did you notice the sock isn't even done yet?....yeah that's so I could try it on both ways. And my ribbing ends at an odd place, I should have continued it down the instep. Oh well this pair is just an experimental pair anyway the sock pictured above is worked cuff down, its mate will be toe up. :o)

Why do I like this heel so much? Plenty of reasons, primarily I like the fit. It is also a very intuitive heel, not a lot of stitch counting, and/or wrapping and lifting those wraps, and it looks good toe-up as well as cuff down. Sure a short row heel can be worked both ways as well, but this little heel has gussets whereas short row heels usually do not.


I've already got plans for a cute little vine or flower growing up out of that seam on the back of the heel. A perfect heel for clog socks!

There are some aspects of this heel I dislike, but I've figured a way to get around those. I'm not exactly sure if the more recent renditions of this heel in some of the current sock books out there address these points but the way my circa 1940's pattern explains it is a really fiddly heel. The 40's era pattern has 2 yarn ends to be worked in plus my nemesis the kitchener stitch....ick.

The adaptations I do eliminate the cutting and rejoining of the yarn (thus the ends) and the grafting.

Here's a few notes on how to do the balbriggan heel with some modifications. (ie minus the cutting and joining and the grafting)

If you'll notice this heel allows you to take whatever pattern you're working almost all the way down to the sole. Without having a whole lot of experiences with this heel yet, about all I can tell you is work the leg to the length you want so it just grazes the top of you instep and then begin the heel.

You will use half the total stitch count for the heel. An even number of stitches works best, and if that number is divisible by 4 you're golden. :o)

Here is a quickie row by row for a heel on 28 sts.

Heel flap: work 15 rows in stockinette beginning on a purl row (WS).

Begin heel shape/turn:

Row 1: k5, ssk, k5, ssk, k2tog, k5, k2tog, k5

Row 2 and all even rows: purl

Row 3: k5, ssk, k3, ssk, k2tog, k3, k2tog k5

Row 5: k5, ssk, k1, ssk, k2tog, k1, k2tog, k5

Row 7: k5, ssk, ssk, k2tog, k2tog, k5

Row 8: purl

This is where you would normally divide the remaining 14 stitches on two needles and kitchener stitch them together, but since I don't like doing that.....

Row 9: K7, place the remaining 7 stitches on a second needle and forget about the working yarn for a while all you'll be working with are loops.

Begin with the center two stitches, one from each needle and "weave" the stitches over each other "eating" one of them. How do you weave them together? Simple, take a stitch from one needle and lift it over a stitch from the other needle. You just eliminated one stitch by "weaving" them together. Now lift the this woven stitch over another stitch from the other needle. Continue eliminating stitches alternately until one stitch remain. There you go, a nice little seam done without kitchenering and you have your working yarn right where you need it.

To finish the heel:

This one heel stitch on your needle is now the new beginning of the subsequent rounds. Pick-up and knit 18 stitches, knit across the instep stitches, pick-up and knit 18 stitches. You are now at the beginning of the round again. Start decreasing one stitch at the heels stitch/ instep stitch junctures until you reach your original stitch count and your heel is complete. In this example 56 sts. (56 stitches makes a nice sock for me in sport wt.)

If you try this heel yourself let me know how it goes. I think you can see the decrease pattern that creates the heel cup, if you have trouble figuring it for a different stitch count feel free to drop me a line. I've crunched the numbers for all even numbered heel stitch counts from 20 sts to 44 stitches.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

While My Pretty One Knits


Have you read it?

I did, last night. What a fun read, and real page turner too. Perhaps some of that rapid page turning was spurred on by self interest too. ;o) I'm mentioned in the book. Rather this blog and something I did and wrote about a while ago is referenced within the confines of the book covers. giggle/snort

This yarn (I know, groan I couldn't resist) is a peek into the lives of 5 knitting buddies. And we all know how wonderful knitting buddies can be, so varied in life, style, and age, seemingly incompatible.

Knitting is the thread that binds us together but the fabric of friendship we create is rich in color and deep in texture, person by person, stitch, by stitch.

I am truly thankful for my knitting buddies.

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Sock Bag

As foretold, my new sock bag.

Of course it has to have shoulder length straps, preferably ones that can be knotted to make the straps shorter just in case I ever want to carry it like a handbag.




It also has to be small cuz it will never be the only bag I'm carrying, and prob'ly not the only knitting bag! It also has to have a no hassle access to the project so a quick stuff and the knitting is put away.



See? That's the jaywalker on the needles from the last post. A simple slip of the cord around the big button and the top opens to reveal the sock I'm working on.

Now turn the bag to the side and you can see the zipper.


Open the zipper and reveal the interior.


Plenty of room for extra yarn, there are 3 balls of yarn in there, enough for 3 pairs of baby socks, or perhaps the equivalent of one adult size pair of socks. Also inside is my set of short dpns with a few other needed tools for sock knitting, all my circular needles for sock knitting, plus a little pattern book. You can see the circular needles in their pocket that is the side of the bag just unzipped and folded back. See them sticking out of above the fold on the top?


This is the tiny pattern book and the dpn case.


The tiny pattern book has a suede cover with the same paisley fabric in the inside. It's the size of an 8x10 sheet of paper folded into 8 rectangles. The leaves (or groups of pages) can easily be added or removed at anytime. Short pithy directions are all you really need for most sock patterns so it's plenty big enough.


And here is my new dpn case. It too is covered with suede inside and out. It is kept securely closed with the elastic cord that crosses inside to help keep the dpns and other tools a little bit more orderly. I haven't decided how I'm going to finish the ends of the elastic yet. So for now they are just laying there loose within the case.



Just in case you might want a bag, dpn case and tiny book, I'll give some thoughts on making your own.

The bag itself began it's life as a six-pack cooler. I removed the original lining, and insulation foam on all sides of the bag except the original "top" of the bag (the side that has the zipper around three sides.) Leaving the original lining on that portion of bag makes the pocket for the circular needles.

The original "back" of the six-pack cooler is now the top of the bag. I simply made a rectangular "pouch" out of the paisley fabric, cut out the center of the original six-pack back and sewed the pouch in place allowing it to fall into the inside.

Because the six-pack fabric itself is a little stiff, plus the added exterior fabric, simply pleating/folding the sides of the bag to make the overall triangular shape of the bag is enough and there is no need to secure the pleat. The placement of the eyelets and the length of the cord does help the pleats/folds to behave though.

Remember all those AOL cds they use to send out? That is what the dpn case is made of. Most of the time they were just plastic cases about the size of a paperback novel, this one was more like a fiber board box and little smaller. Rubber cement affixes the suede to the box really well and a tiny drill bit is all you need to drill the holes for the elastic cord.

As for the pattern book, obviously I'm not going into the whole book making thing but I do want to share with you how the pages are made. I wish I could remember where I found this little gem, but it was eons ago and I honestly don't remember it was many years ago. I think you can find the same thing on the Instructables website but I know I didn't find it there first.


Isn't origami the boom? An eight page "book" out of a single sheet of paper. You can squeeze a couple more pages out of this by making a few more cuts after all the folding is complete, but you also lose some of the integrity. I like using graph paper to make these, no worries regarding the orientation of the lines plus when used as above in a tiny little pattern book, it eliminates the need for a tape measure (4 squares to the inch!).

I'm sure you can find several applications for this little "book". Of course the grandkids love having their own "books" and they are fab for organizing a long list of to do's and errands that need to be ran, ie groceries on one page, pharmacy on another, home improvement store on another, outside chores, inside chores, etc.

Almost FO's


Nope none of these are finished. Some need buttons, some need blocking, some need ends worked in and some need seams.

Ick.

At least for now it is ick. I don't mind the blocking bit, and buttons? eh, if I find/have buttons I like. But the other finishing tasks.....?.....let's just say I have a hate/love relationship with them. Notice the hate part of that equation comes first, and to be quite frank is the typical sum total of my feelings on the matter. Usually. Maybe it's just me, but I can and will let a so-close-you-can-almost-wear FO sit idle for days, weeks, months, and if the whole true be told, occasionally years!

I can't explain it other than to say, as much as I detest the chore of finishing, I do have days (rarely, but they do occur) that all I want to do are finishing tasks. I figure since this baby is still several months away from making his/her debut the chances one of those extremely rare finishing days will come, hopefully. :o)

I've thrown caution to the wind and have just been knitting willy-nilly. Note the various sizes of the above pictured sweaters and socks. It is an undeniable fact that the child will grow, so as long as it is not too small to begin with, it will fit at some point. Another reason for my hit and miss approach to this knitting is believe it or not, massive stash notwithstanding, I have a very small amount of baby appropriate yarn. Darn the luck, I have to do some yarn shopping, sigh. ;o)

There's not much new under the sun up there in that photo. Of course there is an EZ Surprise (red), and an EZ Surplice Surprise (yellow). The center blue/brown sweater is the Seamless Yoke Baby Sweater (Ravelry link) [non-Rav link here] This is a really nice sweater. The sweater in the upper left of the photo is a vintage pattern that is eh, the tiny grey sweater is also a vintage pattern but has a very intriguing construction. This sweater will prob'ly never be worn by the baby to be, but certainly a cousin of this design will be. The grey sweater was worked at a gauge of 12 stitches to the inch, to me that's a just a tad bit ridiculous. The huge "sweater" in the lower right isn't going to be a sweater at all, it's just a bodice for a little jumper I have in mind. I have some purple wool to make the skirt but that will be toddler size.

As for the socks, the pink, red, and green socks are just plain old ribbed socks. The yellow socks are The Sweetest Little Baby Socks (rav link) and the blue socks are the Lacy Rib Baby Socks (rav link) [non rav pdf here] Not sure which one of these I like the best, the stitch pattern is very similar. On the needles are baby Jaywalkers, and up next are baby No-Purl Monkeys. (rav link) [non rav link here]

Oooo how do you like my needles??? Yeah I know you really can't see them but I love them! I re-fashioned them myself. I had to, I've been totally obsessed with knitting these little socks. Each pair has been made differently and I don't mean the stitch patterns. I've been playing with different toes and heels, top down and toe up, dpns, 2 circs, and magic loop and having a marvelous time. The only thing that was really bugging me was the length of my dpns. When you've only got 30ish stitches on your needles 7 inch dpns is a little over kill wouldn't you say? So I dove into my stash of needles, yes Virginia, I do have an enormous stash of needles too. A few snips with some wire cutters a little bit of filing and ta da. Now I have 4 sets of 5 dpns, 4.5" long, in sizes zero, one, and two. (I have two sets of size two cuz I made a set out of some vintage casein dpns too.) I know you can buy such things, but making them seemed just as simple, a whole lot cheaper, and besides, all those needles were just languishing in boxes anyway....you have no idea have many needles I have, sigh, and I've even given away more complete sets of needles than I can count, but I digress....

So now that I have all these sock specific shorter needles, plus the fact that a baby sock can be whipped out in an hour or two I needed a bag devoted to tiny baby socks.....doesn't everyone? Tune in soon and I'll show you my new baby sock bag.

Annie/Baby update:
All is quiet and progressing well. No emergencies and aside from a few weepy days (don't we all remember those well?) everything is fine and dandy. Tomorrow we just might learn if this little one is a boy or a girl.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

The count down begins

Notice anything different?

Look over there --------->

I'm going to be a grandma again. :o)

This developing bundle of joy will be my daughter Annie's first child.

Annie's official due date is November 6th, an eternity from now, but the birth will be earlier than that. I know this because Annie will have a scheduled delivery for medical reasons. The really strange thing about this pregnancy is that while it is putting her health at risk now, it actually saved her before. Because of a positive at home pregnancy test Annie decided she ought to have a doctor look at her painful, swollen, numb arm, which she had been dealing with (trying to ignore) for over a week. One glance by the doc and she was hospitalized. Diagnosis? A blood clot in her left subclavian vein. Briefly stated, she had/has a blood clot, in a very large vein, in her chest, not very far from her heart. She was immediately placed on a blood thinner, (Lovenox, two injections a day, which she does herself.)

Annie's hospital stay was short (3 days) but for a while there the docs didn't want her left alone, nor allowed her to go back to work. (Annie had two jobs a bartender and a waitress) They also said no to bringing her home with me, the Hermitage is too far from a hospital. So aside from the typical lifestyle changes one must go through with pregnancy, Annie had to give up her jobs, and her apartment. She's now living with my sister in town and my sister's couch has seen a lot of use lately with me sleeping on it. We've had 2 ER visits. Both were false alarms but when someone with a total occlusion of the left subclavian displays classic heart attack symptoms you go to the ER. And when someone on blood thinners displays classic stroke symptoms you go to the ER.

Our weeks and days have been filled with doctor visits and blood tests. Every test ran for the purpose of determining the cause of the clot have come back normal. I guess the cause of the clot is something we may never know. What we do know right now is that the clot is dissipating. A doppler test on the clot Tuesday detected some minimal flow through the vein. (yea!) They told us it would take at least three months for the clot to be completely gone, another doppler will be done in mid-June to confirm that. The Lovenox really doesn't dissolve the clot, Annie's body is doing that on its own, the Lovenox is used so no other clots form.

The doc has given Annie permission to find another job if 1) she's not on her feet all day 2) she's not sitting all day 3) she does no lifting 4) the working environment is such that there is no possibility of slipping and falling (ie wet floors, tile floors) 5) and the job must be stress free......um yeah.......jobs are plentiful right now even without restrictions. Annie doesn't have to be watched 24/7 anymore but she does have to be mindful of her surroundings, what she does and what her body is doing (ie pains, breathing difficulties, bruising etc). I'm trying very hard not to hover, but its difficult to let her do anything or go anywhere with out me.

At this point it is prob'ly unlikely she'll throw the clot, or miscarry, but the risk of bleeding out due to a simple fall (internal hemorrhage) or a bump on the head (a stroke) or a simple cut from a broken glass or chopping onions, could be a problem. Lovenox is a blood thinner that usually is very easy to manage, the dosage is based on weight, but being pregnant with the expected weight increases and the higher hemoglobin levels it's a little bit harder to manage, not to mention they have no idea why she even got the clot to begin with.....Oy, this going to be a very looooong pregnancy.

Soon, if I'm up to it, I'll take some pix of the baby knitting I've been doing. 4 sweaters and 4 pairs of socks. It is amazing what you can get done in a doctors waiting room! LOL No not all of it is for Annie's little bundle, technically the first couple pairs of the socks and a couple of the sweaters are actually for some of Gillian's friends.

So now you know why I've been AWOL for so very long. Lately I've been lucky if I get my email checked every few days. I am seriously considering a mini laptop or maybe just a Kindle. I feel so out of touch with the world.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Hey look over there!

Yep, another distraction cuz I'm under the afghan.*




Thanx to Monika for starting my day with this video.


*under the afghan = under the gun, swamped with work, super busy, no time to blog, etc.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

White Plastic

White plastic stackable chairs, that is, my next project. I promise.



Waaay too fun and kitchy not to do doncha think? Love the song too. (giggle/snort)

Follow these links for The Knitted Chair blog and the pattern. (Ravelry link) I suggest you read all the other blog entries Yuvee has written.

I've been playing around with some slip stitch patterns, but haven't cast on yet....too many other things on my plate right now, but soon, very soon. I'm thinking it/they will go pretty quickly, 750 yards on huge needles. No problem.

Oh and if you are wondering about the status of my other knitted chair, it is coming along after a looong period of hibernation. No pictures though, looks pretty much the same as the last picture, just bigger. It is still a rectangle of squares, but with even more ends! :o)

Wow. I just publicly admitted to having one knitted chair on the needles, one, maybe two others planned, on top of the two rugs for the patio a knitted/crochet rug and a woven one, not to mention a woven table top (pic in the last post in the last link). Wow.

I promise not to knit a cosy for the refrigerator or the car............sigh

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Think

Yet another distraction to keep you from wondering where I am, and what I'm doing....




Your Word is "Think"



You see life as an amazing mix of possibilities, ideas, and fascinations.

And sometimes you feel like you don't have enough time to take it all in.



You love learning. Whether you're in school or not, you're probably immersed in several subjects right now.

When you're not learning, you're busy reflecting. You think a lot about the people you know and the things you've experienced.



Isn't it funny how little online quizzes can be so on target it is nearly frightening? Think. hmmm. How apropos. I've mention here before that I have journals I call my think books. I have files on my computer named think. I have a think tag in my Ravelry queue. I envy people with jobs in think tanks, although the subject matter of many of those would not be for me. giggle/snort

Just a note to clarify, the little copper bowl in the last post was not knitted. It was worked in a technique called "Viking Knitting" but it's not really knitting....confusing, I know. I imagine some anthropologist/archaeologist not extremely learned in the needle arts called it that one day and the name stuck. To him/her 's credit, the end product does look like knitting, and whether the term was coined cuz he/she thought it was knitting or just looked like knitting I can't say. I could prob'ly render a very close facsimile of Viking Knitting by using two needles but I didn't. I could also create other nearly indiscernible replicas using other known techniques and therein lies my profound interest.

IMHO Viking Knitting is more closely related to knotless netting, or even embroidery than knitting (pedantically speaking). For those of you familiar with embroidery Viking Knitting is akin to a series of the ceylon stitches but worked in a spiral 3-dimensionally, thus having no long loop on the back of the fabric. Does that make sense to you embroidery people?

Now for you knitting peeps....anybody got Debbie New's book "Unexpected Knitting"? (if you don't you really should) If I'm not mistaken, and I can't confirm this cuz a friend has my copy right now, BUT...check out her chapter on "Virtual Knitting". I'm fairly certain, in that chapter she is manipulating the yarn similarly, if not in the exact same manner, one would work the ceylon stitch, or do some flat Viking Knitting. I could be wrong it's been a while since I've read that chapter.

But now let's take it a step further. Let's think on it some more. What and how are techniques named? Are they named for the manner in which the material is worked, ie what kind of tool is used? Or are they named for the characteristics of the end product? Or how about how the actual "path" if you will of the yarn/fiber/thread/string? Named for procedural methods? Does the actual material used have any bearing on the naming of the technique? Could any single technique have more than one "known" or "accepted" name? To all of these questions, an many more like them I've found the answer to be often yes.

Let's water this down to a really simple example that I don't think will get me into any trouble. :o) (please take this next part with a grain of salt in that I'm not going to spend time making sure every little nit-picky thing is 100% accurate, I'm just trying to make a point and if I mis-speak don't hold it against me just over look it as I try to make my point) Some people knit with the working yarn in their right hand and some people knit with the working yarn in their left hand. (some do both by I digress) The path the yarn follows throughout the finished fabric is identical, and yet there are many names of just what kind of knitting is being done because of the way that yarn path was achieved. ie, continental, english, german, american etc.....oh yeah don't forget portugesse knitting, but that uses hooks and not needles. ;-) Remember....I said the path of the yarn in the finished fabric....I'm not talking about the crossed stitch fabric, just the bare bones plain knit and purls oriented "correctly".

So what's my point? My point is there are many names for several methods that produce the same end product. As with the Viking knitting, I could use a embroidery needle and work the same stitch on a 3-D surface, or maybe use a shuttle and "net" a piece in mid-air. What if I'm making a reverse half hitch knot? Is it still Viking Knitting? Am I doing macrame'? If I have a shuttle in my hand am I tatting?

I find this sort of inter-connectivity of "linear manipulation" fascinating. It is why I hesitate to call myself a knitter, crocheter, embroiderer, macrame'er, weaver, stitcher, etc. All those names are so limiting. It is why I find the "battles" between knitters and crocheter so nauseating, and the chicken vs egg debates tiresome. If pushed to label my passion I'd like to say I'm a linear manipulator, although without explanation it doesn't mean much to anyone but me. Just as the name of the this blog doesn't mean much to most people, most prob'ly think I misspelled "activity". LOL given my penchant for spelling errors and typos I can understand that. But no, it actually was spelled that way on purpose, cuz to me "Stringativity" is a noun meaning 'the relative natures of string manipulation'. (string being used here as the most generic description of any linear substance.) I couldn't in conscience call this a knitting blog or a craft blog, or even a fiber blog, any and all of those thing would be misleading.

Yes, admittedly so, this blog has been a little heavy on knitting content for a while, and most recently on wire work, but it will change. It always does. Perhaps, at some point, some topics will be revisited in the future, who knows what will tickle my fancy on any given day at any given hour......sort of like "a gnat in sandstorm"......unable to steer my destiny in the swirling winds of all things I've not yet learned, catching a ride on a single crystal, one of the bazillions that makeup the whole.

Gotta go manipulate something linear.
:o)

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Obsession

I warned you before.

I told you once or twice already.

This is where an obsession will take me.

A tiny copper bowl.

It's 3 inches in diameter, 2.25 inches tall, and of course done in Viking Knitting.

Even I was getting tired of making chains. :o) I see some places for improvement in both execution (duh) as well as design aesthetic, but hey, I started out not really knowing if it could be done so I'm happy.

Although that is a gazillion tiny stitches I as able to get a bit of knitting in as well.
This is the previously mentioned boyfriend sweater. My cousin and I have had some discussions about the gender of this sweater. Is the color manly enough??? Is the softness of the yarn (Frog Tree Alpaca) and cable too much???? One thing for sure it's going to be a beautiful sweater. I can't wait to see if after blocking!

I'm having a love/dislike relationship with this yarn. It is an incredibly soft single ply. I love the warmth both on my lap and even in my fingertips. I'm not loving the occasional snag cuz of uneven places in the yarn itself, but they are few and far between and the overall lushness of the yarn clearly makes up for the tiny inconveniences. This is definitely NOT a yarn I could knit in the summer, but now, in the doldrums of winter, it is fabulous.