Friday, November 30, 2007

Rannoch: FO

Rannoch: FO, originally uploaded by hannah8ball.

Loved the pattern, the cables look great and I think this will be a big hit with the recipient. I ended up not doing the thumbs because I still have a laddering problem and didn't want my gift to look so much like homemade. I used the thumb technique as described in the pattern for Handwarmers from Last Minute Knitted Gifts.

I really like these mitts, I must say, I'm having a hard time wrapping these up. I'm sure I'll be casting on a pair for myself just as soon as I finish all my gift knits.

Speaking of, my stats are as follows:

Waschloths: 5 done, 1 shipped, 1 on the needles (6 of 11 completed)
Mitts: 1 pair done, 1/2 done on a second pair, patterns picked out for the last 2 pairs. (3/8 completed.)

Not too bad for the end of November.

How are you doing on your gift knits?

Thursday, November 29, 2007

What's your design style?

We watch this show if/when it comes on and if/when we actually have the TV on, called Design Style on HGTV. The first step is for everybody to take this quiz, then the designer gives them some tips and the couple designs their own room (with A LOT of help, mind you). Similar to What Not to Wear, minus all the comments about someone's horrible wardrobe and hair. And for your house. Not really similar, I guess.

My design style is not surprisingly, Hip. "No overstuffed chairs or anything frou frou (unless its the band). You're drawn to clean lines and a minimalist palette (think black, white, neutrals and a few bold colors that "pop" against the background - like orange, red or turquoise)." Yes, that's me. :)

For your viewing enjoyment a video from said band Frou Frou. She's hip!

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

First Sweater

I'm off, originally uploaded by hannah8ball.

Little Bit can finally wear the sweater I knit her when she was just a belly bump. This was my very first sweater, and near to my first project. Being a Debbie Bliss pattern, there was no drawing showing me how to put it together, so it took me a little while to figure out how one ought to attach the sleeves to the body and in what order.
Boatneck Sweater

I'm thinking its time to knit her another sweater, one that has been finished well, and one that will fit her the rest of the winter...

Takhi Santa Fe
lucky for me, my contest yarn from Theresa of Knitting Underway arrived today with just the right amount of baby sweater yarn. Now, I just need to find a pattern.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Back in the day

Today has been a fun day of igniting old acquaintances. I got a meme from a dear friend in IL that I actually responded to *gasp*! I can't be counted on to respond to your email in less than a few months, but I'll answer questions about myself... har... anyway, I sent it out to a few people who I've been close with for a while, but have sort of lost touch (I'd blame the baby, but its not really her fault). Its a great way to say "Hey" and to maybe get something back.

Well, I've heard from 3 blasts from the past in the last few hours and my goodness is it cool! Its fun to see where they are, and their likes/dislikes and how similar we still are even though we've been separated by time, distance and experiences. Here's to reigniting old friendships!

Here's the meme:

1. What time did you get up this morning? 7:30

2. Diamonds? pearls? Neither. I'm not really a jewelry person, unless its handmade :) I like jewelry with a story.

3. What was the last film you saw at the cinema? Casino Royale… that was before Little Bit was born… sheesh…

4. What's your Favorite TV show? Hmmm, a tie between Battlestar Galactica and the Office

5. What do you usually have for breakfast? Granola and hot tea

6. What kind of soap do you use? Handmade soap by a friend

7. What is your middle name? Marie

8. What food do you dislike? Bell peppers, and its more of a hate than a dislike… I can't eat anything that has even been in contact with bell peppers :)

9. What is your favorite CD? Right now, the soundtrack from the Fountain. I like the alternating intensity and tenderness of the music.

10. What kind of car do you drive? Honda Civic SI

11. What characteristic do you despise? An unwillingness to learn, stubborn ignorance

12. Favorite item of clothing? My handwarmers – they keep my hands warm in the office, or playing in the band, or knitting. Love them!

13. If you could go anywhere in the world on vacation, where would you go? Right now, I'd go visit my dear friend in Africa; but normally, it'd be Costa Rica.

14. What color is your bathroom? Dark, deep blue

15. Favorite brand of clothing? Whatever fits and isn't terribly expensive

16. Where would you retire to? Mexico

17. What was your most recent memorable birthday? My 22nd birthday, we went down to Waco to spend time with Jason's brother and a few friends, and his friend cooked us a 7 course meal that was fabulous, we drank delicious wine and had deep conversation long into the night. It was perfect.

18. Furthest place you are sending this? I'm sending this to each coast

19. Who do you least expect to send this back to you? My mom (now she'll send it back because I called her out) :)

20. Person you expect to send it back first? Hmm, not sure on that one either, but I'm sure Nick will spend some time making it fun at least :)

21. When is your birthday? January 1

22. What is your favorite scent? Lavender

23 Are you a morning or night person? Before baby, night, now I go to bed early because she is a morning person.

24. What church do you attend? Mosaic Fort Worth

25. Favorite sandwich? Jason's gourmet grilled cheese… mmm

26. What are you listening to right now? NPR (the Diane Rehm show specifically), and the quiet baby monitor

27. What is the last thing you ate? Some of Little Bit's applesauce

28. Do you wish on stars? No, but I do go out and look at them every night.

29. If you were a crayon, what color would you be? Red

30.How is the weather right now? Cool, but sunny… I think its supposed to warm up some more this week.

31. Last person you spoke to on the phone? My cousin Lydia

32. Do you like the person who sent this to you? Oh yes. She is such a role model for me.

33. Favorite soft drink? Pepsi, but I have to be in the right mood

34. Favorite restaurant? The Keg

35. Hair color? Red

36. Do you have a Sibling? Yes, a sister and a brother

37. What is your Favorite time of the year? Fall – I love the cooler weather, it is such a relief from the unrelenting TX heat.

38. What was your favorite toy as a child? A stuffed animal named Susan.

39. Summer or winter? early summer (April/May) and late summer (October) – hey, I'm in Texas, its summer most of the year!

40. Hugs or kisses? Both.

41. Chocolate or Vanilla? Dark chocolate

42. Do you want your friends to email you back? Of course!

43. When was the last time you cried? Last night.

44. What is under your bed? Nothing! Unless it's a cat.

45. Who is the friend you have had the longest? Jennifer – I have known you since I was 9!

46. What did you do last night? Knitted, watched What's Eating Gilbert Grape, comforted Little Bit, gave creative advice to Jason who was designing a handout for church

47. Favorite room in your house? The study

48. What are you afraid of? Being alone

49. Plain, buttered, or salted Popcorn? Buttered w/salt

50. How many keys on your key ring? 6

51. How many years at your current job? Going on 4

52. Favorite day of the week? Sunday

53. How many towns have you lived in? 10

54. Do you make friends easily? Depends… I guess if that's my answer, then I should say no.

55. How many people will you be sending this to? 11

56. Do you like your job? Depends on the day, some more than others.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Pay it forward

A few days back (my goodness has it been half a month already?!), I was one of 3 lucky commenters on my favorite contemplative blog who gets to play Pay it Forward. Emily writes beautifully, takes amazing pictures and does fabulous paintings, and so much more; if you have time, go check out her blog, it WILL be worth your time. But, I digress, Pay it Forward. The rules are as follows (copied from Emily):

i will send a handmade gift to the first 3 people who leave a comment on my blog requesting to join this pay it forward exchange. i don’t know what that gift will be yet and you may not receive it tomorrow or next week, but you will receive it within 365 days, that is my promise! the only thing you have to do in return is pay it forward by making the same promise on your blog.

Help me pass it on. Comment. Inspire. Create. Pay it Forward.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Painted Desert

Painted Desert, originally uploaded by hannah8ball.

Check out this lovely yarn from Lori at From the Wool Room. Its a wool/nylon blend in the colorway Painted Dessert. I can't wait to knit it up... but first, I have to finish my Christmas knits (and my monkeys).

Saturday, November 24, 2007


How is it possible to spend an entire day doing nothing but knitting, but to still be so tired? Perhaps its the cold and rainy weather that has descended on our previously summery state. We had snow and sleet on Thursday; today, its just rain :) Someone must have gotten my complaint about the weather... just, next time, can it be more gradual so the cold isn't so shocking?

I did get to pull out the very warm and cozy Irish Hiking scarf I knit last year (my very first cable project), and I've practically been living in my office mitts (they are SO warm!). I'm nearly done with the third (second) Rannoch, but more on that later.

I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving. Little Bit took a 3 hour nap during dinner... I was/am VERY grateful for that (she hasn't repeated though...). We had a nice time with friends and delicious food. and because it was at a friend's, we didn't even have any cleanup to deal with, we got to come home and crash.

Oh... must run, Little Bit has hit the panic button on my key chain... I need to find our passcode before they call... fun times!

Friday, November 23, 2007

Knitting can be intellectual too!

cash advance

Ha, and my husband makes fun of me for having a knitting blog... hooray for big words like errata, and the foreign names like Shedir and Rannoch for helping me keep up appearances. My degree was worth something, right?

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Happy Thanksgiving and a contest

Happy Thanksgiving!! I'm off to enjoy lunch with some friends :) While you're online, head on over to Chan's blog and enter her contest... tell her I sent you :)

See you tomorrow!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

What's on the needles?

Not so long ago, I was a one project kind of knitter. However, I have matured as a knitter (especially since I have a lot of HAVE to knits), so here's a quick rundown of what's on my needles:

Wrong side - washcloth

The obligatory gift knit... look at that delicious scrubby texture... just as soon as I knit these up, I'm making one for myself... (pattern: Dimple Washcloth)
Another gift knit - these are office mitts for my admin team. (Pattern: Rannoch). I'm using WoolEase and I can definitely feel the acrylic... its rather sticky on my bamboo dpns and not so much fun... the pattern is knitting up nicely though, at least.
Here's the second monkey sock. Its my reward knit. I can't wait to wear these socks, especially since it just got cool again :)
Bum shrug

And last, but definitely not least, is my own design creation - I call it the Bum Shrug. I'm attempting to address the shortcomings that I've encountered in other soaker/shortie/longie patterns, plus I want something that I can cable. Yeah ribbing! I've already had to rip back about half of it because I wasn't happy with the shaping, but I'm now on to the first leg. I think this one will have its own dedicated post soon.

There's your update... I'm off to make sure the Little Bit hasn't tossed off her covers. If you're traveling today, be safe!

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

One year ago ...

A friend and I were out taking pictures to commemorate the occasion ...

Happy first Thanksgiving Little Bit!

Monday, November 19, 2007

Organic vs. Conventional

I know, I know, yet another green post... but really, knitting washcloths just isn't very interesting. I'm making progress though, 2 more down, making my total finished come to 5/16... phew!

Ok, on to the green stuff...

Here's an interesting and quite informative article re: one writer's cataloging of shopping for their Thanksgiving meal both organically and conventionally. Here are a few tips at the end of the article that I think are great to help you make decisions as to how much you will make your holiday meal organic.

  1. If you can't afford to buy everything organic, prioritize those pesticide-laden pieces of produce.
  2. To stretch your dollars further, consider axing one item from your menu -- do you really need mashed potatoes and sweet potatoes? The money you save on sweet potatoes could go into organic potatoes.
  3. If you can't find an organic version of something you want, don't panic or run all over town trying to find it. Instead, buy the conventional, and write a letter or send an email to your supermarket to encourage them to stock more variety.
And above all else: don't wait until Wednesday night to do your shopping! Buy everything except perishables before Wednesday -- then you can get the few last items you need and check out via the express line.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Green Christmas Party


Here's an interesting idea from my favorite green blog, sew green.

"As the holiday season approaches, you may be contemplating hosting a party at your house, and maybe you're even contemplating how to minimize the waste from such a party. We recently had a big party in our backyard, and experimented with composting the garbage. Some things we did right, and some things not as well, so I wanted to share some learnings with any of you party people out there who might be cooking up a fabulous low-waste event of your own in the next few weeks...." Click here to read the rest of the article.

I've been wanting to start a worm bin, but I'm thinking the hubby might object to critters living under the sink. Perhaps I'll put it in the garage...

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Tired... zzzzzzzzz...

Phew, I'm tired today! The cooler weather has relented and its back to the upper 70s (sigh). At least I got to wear my mitts for a day. I finished a new pair of longies for Little Bit using the leftovers from Kate... love them. Those colors are rockin'! No pics yet because LB is taking wearing them now, but she taking a nap (yeah!).

I'm also designing a longies pattern that involves all-over ribbing. I'm going to see how the ribbing works re: fit, then I'll spice it up with some cables. I think its safe to say I'm a cable-a-holic. I also need to do some repair work on her Picky Pants Plus (ravelry link), my increases at the gusset have become rather holey and stretched out, so now we get leaks. Its time to learn duplicate stitch I think.

While I'm thinking about it, any ideas on how to do an increase without getting a hole? I've tried kf&b and m1, but I'm still getting holes. I also tried not stacking the increases, but that just made the gusset area messy looking.

Well, I'm back to working on gift knitting... 3 down, 13 to go... plenty of time, right?

Friday, November 16, 2007

Money vs Happiness

We are now on the second half of November, and so far, no real problems blogging on a daily basis. Perhaps, after 30 days of being disciplined about post, I will have formed a habit and will just have to continue posting on a regular basis :) We shall see...

I've been doing some reading and research in preparation for a teaching segment I have next week at church. We are discussing poverty and how each one of us can do something about it. My particular segment is focusing on the different types of poverty. Most of us, no matter how much money we may or may not have, are in some sort of poverty. Whether that lack of resources be in happiness, close deep friendships, or spiritual matters, money doesn't make the world go 'round. So any address of poverty needs to also focus on these areas in order to ensure the complete well being of the person.

Now there are a lot of things that are debatable in the previous statement. I am not saying that a lack of deep friendships makes one just as worse off as a starving family in Malawi. However, I AM saying that just providing capital to the starving family in Malawi will not suffice to make their lives better.

Enter Gross National Happiness. "While conventional development models stress economic growth as the ultimate objective, the concept of GNH claims to be based on the premise that true development of human society takes place when material and spiritual development occur side by side to complement and reinforce each other. The four pillars of GNH are the promotion of equitable and sustainable socio-economic development, preservation and promotion of cultural values, conservation of the natural environment, and establishment of good governance." (from wiki) Taking a look at the Happy Planet Index, there seems to be a reverse correlation between happiness and economic prosperity. The US is 150 on the list, while countries such as Vanatu, Cuba, Vietnam and Tajikistan are in the top 25. Go check out the list, it's fascinating.

Clearly, while we seem to have come out on top in the economic arena, we Americans are generally not happy with our lives. Perhaps we can blame rampant consumerism - our insatiable desire for more doesn't leave room for satisfaction with what we have now. No matter how much money we can accumulate, it's never enough. We spend more than we make on our credit cards; we refinance our homes and our cars to get the latest gadgets and fashions, while our children entertain themselves in front of the television and online. We are so busy making money that we don't have time to stop and enjoy the beauty of nature, or to have a deep conversation with our child, or to really ask a friend how she is doing. Money isn't everything.

So, what do we do about it? How do we cultivate satisfaction in a competitive marketplace? How do we put the brakes on when the bills are due? Or, is happiness not relevant in the modern world? Should we be more concerned with economic viability than with social connection?

Thursday, November 15, 2007


Not much to say today, so here's one of my favorite pictures. I wish we had fall here. Fall in TX means its hot, then one day you wake up and its cold and the trees are bare because they have all been blown away. This picture was taken at Anderson Gardens in Rockville Illinois, October 2005. Its probably one of the most beautiful places on earth.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Input Addiction

I have it bad. I love facts. I love knowing everything about everything. I listen to NPR pretty much 24/7. I subscribe to no less than 67 blog feeds (but I'm always looking for more - you can never have too much blogreading). I love books and reading. I really love making connections between different things that I've read/heard/seen and how all of it comes together to make one amazing body of knowledge.

So, when I took a strengths assessment, I wasn't surprised when my number 1 strength came back as input. From Strengths 2.0: "By nature, you fill your mind with new ideas by asking questions, reading, studying, observing or listening. Normally, you accumulate facts, data, stories, examples, or background information from the people you meet. Determining what they want to accomplish in the coming weeks, months or years generally satisfies your curiosity. These insights also allow you to understand why individuals behave the way they do in different situations." While I often see this craving for knowledge as a negative (read: nosy), in fact, it is a good and necessary part of a complete team. Not everyone likes researching or investigating - but I live for it, so give me your researching jobs and I'll run with it. Just be sure to give me a deadline for results or I just might keep accumulating until the next interesting thing comes along.

Oh, and that photo is about half of my knitting books collection. I've only been knitting for a year. Some people collect yarn, I apparently collect knitting books. At least I'll have plenty of patterns to work on in case the internet ever goes down permanently :)

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

FO: Little Bit's hat

Here's another for the FO pile.
Pattern: Kim's hats from Last Minute Knitted Gifts
Made for: Little Bit
Yarn: Blue Sky Alpacas Organic Cotton
Notes: The yarn is SUPER soft... loving it... I'm thinking I'll make sweaters for the little bit with the rest of this yarn in my stash... or a blanket, or something soft :) This was my first pom pom and I didn't have enough yarn in it, so it isn't as poofy as I'd like it to be... Little bit seems to like it :)

Monday, November 12, 2007

Chatting you up

Thanks to the comments on my shedir. Jo pointed out that the sizing is most likely due to my lack of swatching. Yes, I'm not a good swatcher. In fact, I have knit up 2 swatches in my 1+ years of knitting... both are for sweaters, neither of which I have completed. I thought that with something big like a sweater, I'd better have a good idea of what kind of knitter I am... everything else is so small, eh, we'll just deal. But I talked to my friend and explained the size thing, and told her that I can definitely make her another (smaller) one... I'd love to hear some feedback so I can make her the perfect hat ;)

The Little Bit has decided that napping (once again) is something to be avoided, so we've had a few days of struggle and sadness. I think she's just too busy to take the time out to sleep. That its 80+ degrees here again today can't be helping. She sleeps so much better when its cooler (who doesn't?). Her conversation has really increased; she pretty much talks nonstop from the moment she wakes up to when she finally falls asleep.

Ah, well, such is the life of babes.

I'm off to knit some more on my christmas gifts. I didn't get much done in the way of knitting this weekend, so I must catch up. Thank goodness I've got a bunch of data entry to do at work, so there is alot of reward knitting going on. :)

Sunday, November 11, 2007

FO: Shedir

Yes, Shedir is finished. What a lovely knit. Only problem is that is just about 2" too big (for my head anyway). I'm afraid it may be too big for Marcia's head as well, especially with her going through chemo, but I read somewhere that sometimes it is good to have space between the hat and the top of one's head, so maybe it will be just the right size for that...

Next time, I will only do half the ribbing and 3 cable repeats. But it is a beautiful hat nonetheless.

My baby is VERY sad... so that's all you get... I must attend to her.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Gift Knitting

Ok, so, now that I've finished Shedir (yup, finished last night... post coming soon), Ive got lots of gift knitting to get moving on. Here's my list...

  • Shedir - (need completed by 11/30)
  • Mitts - green (12/14)
  • Mitts - red (12/14)
  • Mitts - black/green (12/14)
  • Mitts - blue (12/14)
  • Washcloth (1) - 11/30 (SHIP) - knitting completed
  • Washcloth (2) - 11/30 (SHIP) - cast on
  • Washcloth (3) - 11/30 (SHIP) - knitting completed
  • Washcloth (4) - 11/30 (SHIP)
  • Washcloth (5) - 11/30
  • Washcloth (6) - 11/30
  • Washcloth (7) - 12/10
  • Washcloth (8) - 12/10
  • Washcloth (9) - 12/10
  • Washcloth (10) - 12/10
  • Washcloth (11) - 12/10
Ok, that's 16 projects, I'm 1/8th of the way there... why am I still typing?! Must get to knitting!

See ya!

Friday, November 9, 2007

Shedir: errata

Ok, so I ran into a problem with Shedir last night on row 63. The chart asks you do a twist right that only works if the first stitch is a purl. However, the first stitch on round 63 is a knit stitch. It was getting close to bedtime and my mind was getting fuzzy so I put the project away for the night and slept on it.

I had a weird dream about the hat, wherein my intended recipient told me she didn't like cables because they weren't christian and I had to frog it completely right then and knit her something more plain. My knitter's heart was shocked and saddened. Good thing it was a dream!

So, in the light of day, I took a good look at the chart and my knitting. First, I had to make sure I didn't make a mistake in the previous rounds. Nope. Everything looks good there. Second, lets look at the chart to make sure I wasn't reading the symbols wrong. Nope. It calls for a twist right (which needs a purl stitch to be first), but there is a knit stitch looking all pretty on the left side of my marker.

Ok, back to the chart; back to the knitting. Would moving the marker one stitch to the right fix the problem? Yes, the stitch on the other side of the marker is a purl stitch! In fact, the chart is moved in previous rounds as we move the marker and line 63 has a similar shift; just no instructions to move the marker. Problem solved. Here is the fix:

Continue to work foll chart, following instructions between *s (how to move the marker) for rounds 55, 56, 58, 60, 62 and 70. [my change in bold].

The weird thing is, I looked at hundreds of finished Shedirs on Ravelry and NOT ONE mentioned this change or having a problem with it. Is it because they are so used to reading charts that the visual shift in the pattern was enough of a sign that the omission didn't register?

The same thing happened when I was working through the Monkey lace pattern. It called for a k5, k1tbl, k4 (on round 4), but if you do this, you will end up with a steadily decreasing stitch count. I changed it to k4, k1f&B, k4 which adds the increase using the same method as called for in the pattern. But not a soul mentioned this problem on Ravelry.

So, I haven't emailed the designers re: these problems because 1) a ridiculous number of people have knitted both these items before me and the problem would have been brought to light already and 2) because of this I'm not convinced its a real problem. But what about all those newbies out there who might benefit from these clarifications?!

Am I missing something here? Anyone?

Thursday, November 8, 2007


Even though I haven't been able to knit on these socks lately (due to there being a quickly approaching deadline on Shedir), I apparently haven't even posted any pictures of my first ever sock.

First, let me say that I love this pattern. It makes sense (very important in a knitting pattern). It also hides ladders fairly well because of how the lace pattern works - a very important factor for this newbie knitter who still suffers from ladders... I'm working on it! I knit this sock up in about 2 weeks... so, I know I can get the other one done before too terribly long... I'm holding it out as the prize when I get done with all my gift knitting.

I'm really pleased with the fit. I have small feet (between US size 4 and 6). The smallest women's socks (that you can buy in the store) typically say they are for women's sizes 7-9 meaning that there is a LOT of sock left over on my toe. Not these socks. They fit perfectly. I love it.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007


So, I don't quite have enough of a stash to justify having a contest... (give me time...) BUT, here are three contests that I've just entered... go check it out!

Knit with KT - Win 500g of Recycled Sari Silk and Zen and the Art of Knitting. Leave me her your favorite pattern for fingerless gloves, adult hats, toddler sweaters, placemats, bags, felted bowls, and/or stuffies for an entry. Contest closes 11/7 at midnight US ET. Contest here.

Shut Up I'm Counting - tell her A Few of Your Favorite Things. Specifically, 3 of your favorite knitting related gifts, to give, receive, make or buy for yourself. These can be knitted or not, but it needs to be knitting related. If you have a link to the pattern or a pic, even better! Contest here. Contest closes 11/11. PS. If you enter her contest, mention that you read about it on my blog so I can get another entry :)

The Bag Lady and the Pro -
she wants to know about patterns. Post about hats and dishcloths and scarves and bags and socks and whatever else it is that you enjoy! Contest closes 11/15. Contest here. PS. If you enter her contest, mention that you read about it on my blog so I can get another entry :)

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Green Tuesday: Catalog Choice

Is your mail box overflowing with catalogs that end up cluttering your home and filling your recycle bin? Not surprisingly, catalogs are responsible for the destruction of 8 million tons of trees each year ( Getting the catalog printed and into your mailbox and then back to the recycling facility or landfill(!) generates additional greenhouse gases and waste. However, there is a new service called Catalog Choice that lets you opt out of catalog mailings. From their website: “The mission of Catalog Choice is to reduce the number of repeat and unsolicited catalog mailings, and to promote the adoption of sustainable industry best practices. We aim to accomplish this by freely providing the Catalog Choice services to both consumers and businesses. Consumers can indicate which catalogs they no longer wish to receive, and businesses can receive a list of consumers no longer wanting to receive their catalogs.” Signing up is easy, and they have an extensive database of common catalogs. Go visit Catalog Choice and start thinning out your mailbox.

Monday, November 5, 2007

Marcia's Shedir

Don't fret, my friends, the shedir is coming along swimmingly now. I've just finished the first cable repeat and it is looking decidedly more interesting and fun than it was yesterday. I'm going to have to be really disciplined to get it done by the deadline, but it will be so worth it!

I decided to join NaBloPoMo. I gave it a trial run this weekend and have decided to take it on officially. One of the things that I have been needing in my life is some sort of accountability (or expectation) that I be a regular writer. Well, seems to be working thus far, as its been five days and five posts. I'm sure I'll speak more on this later, but one of my strengths is responsibility (a la Strengths 2.0). Basically, what this means is that when I say I'm going to do something, I get it done. So, this is me, signing up on a list to tell the world, I'm going to do this!

Before I let you go, here's another shot of those delicious Harmony needles from Knit Picks. I just can't say enough good about these needles! I love the sharpness of the points; its great for doing these cables without a cable needle. And they are gorgeous. You must get some for yourself!

Sunday, November 4, 2007

A friend in need

My best friend's mom (Marcia) has been diagnosed with breast cancer, and it has already moved out into her lymphatic system. Basically, it's been classified as "treatable" but not "curable". Chemo starts this week. Prayers and good thoughts for Marcia and her family are definitely appreciated.

I've cast on Shedir (ravelry link) for her. I'm using Knit Picks Shine Sport in Hydrangea. Loving the yarn... it is so soft! I also had to get a size 3 harmony circular as my collection was lacking in that department. Oh my, the needles are amazing. I've added the Harmony options to my Christmas list. I can hardly wait!

The first incarnation of Shedir was rather messy. This is my first chart-reading endeavor, and well, this is what happens when you read the chart backwards. Ug. Lesson: read the chart from right to left as that is how you knit, otherwise, ugliness will ensue.

I'm hoping to have a good looking version of this hat done by 11/10 so Amy can take it down to Houston with her on her next visit. The good news is that I'm almost to where I was when I took the above picture, but with much better results. Hopefully, this hat will be just a tiny bit of good for Marcia in such a difficult time.

Saturday, November 3, 2007

FO: Office Mitts

Pattern: Hand/wrist warmers from Last Minute Knitted Gifts. This is the gift that keeps on giving, loving all of the patterns I've knit from it so far...

Yarn: Lion Brand wool. I purchased this yarn for the easy legwarmers from LMKG. I still need to cast on for the second one, but only used up one skein for the first, so I had an extra skein to burn, why not handwarmers?

Notes: Love, love, LOVE this pattern! It was easy (finished in one night) and looks awesome. It keeps my hands warm in the ridiculously cold office and I'm sure will do the same once it gets cool enough to get cold in our house. It also used a small amount of yarn, so this will be a great way to use up those yarn remnants from soaker or other wool knitting.

I'm going to make a pair of these for each of my admins at work as christmas gifts. :)

Friday, November 2, 2007

Washcloth's galore - GIFT SPOILER

If you think you are going to receive a gift from me and are reading this (er... Mommy... Rachel), please do the smart thing and stop reading now. Don't say I didn't warn you...

Ok, so I enjoy knitting washcloths. I enjoy using them. They are quick and easy. All of which add to up to super duper gift knitting.

I'm knitting a fabulous pattern from Knit with KT, I love the texture and the interesting knitting. Its different than any other washcloth I've ever seen or used and uses up nearly one ball of Peaches & Cream worsted. I've got 16 of these to bust out by early December.

The other part of the gift package are handmade soaps by local artisan Melissa Flick of Body Balms. Support local and sustainable and give fabulous gifts! What a great way to be green!

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Blog, what?

I am not such a great blogger, many apologies... I blame it all on Ravelry. It is so easy to just update my projects on there, add pics and details, and then on to the next project.

Lets see, in the last month or so I have finished several objects, bought lotsa yummy yarn for a sweater for my hubbo, started Christmas knitting, knit several longies, harvested tomatoes, shortened my netflix queue, eaten lots of good food, had lots of good conversation. Oh, and A has started walking! (Yeah, she's only 10 months... eep!)

Here's a quick run down of FOs (not in any specific order)

Irish Hiking Scarf - I knit this for the red scarf project. As a redhead who doesn't like to wear red, it was important to me to knit a scarf for that special someone who wants a scarf, just not a red one. Mission accomplished. I used Patons Soy Wool Stripes and fell in love with the softness of it. I'm definitely going to have to add more of this to my stash.

Kim's Hat - knit with the rest of the SWS skein to match the scarf. quick and easy. The first project from Last minute Knitted Gifts that actually held to the time constraints.

Soakers - a greenie from Peace Fleece, with the addition of the Honeycomb motif from the sock pattern at interweave knits. Love this little detail, makes the pants cute and feminine.

Blue jeans from Patons Merino wool. Basic pattern (from Little Turtle Knits). Easy peasy.

And I've been working on my first pair of socks. Loving it. I've got one done, am making some mods to the second one to make it work better for me... I'm not the sort who needs to make two pair of identical socks... If I want to change something, I'm going to change it so that I can figure out with the next sock whether I liked that change or not.

Well, I need to get back to work. And then clean the house, we have a play date in half an hour. Wee! Later!