Monday, March 29, 2010

Just Breathe

I was surprised today when I realized that I was actually going to be home to watch my favorite T.V. show tonight. I don't think I've watched T.V. in 2 weeks. At least it feels that way. T.V. time means knitting time which is nice since I've been doing lots of work on the Trick or Treat socks since they sit right next to the computer but not a lot on anything else. So, tonight has been about trying to relax and enjoy at least one evening this week where I don't have anything else to do (the rest of the week, despite my best efforts, are shaping up to be more of the usual craziness).

I don't have any real knitting pictures since everything is pretty much the same, just a bit longer, but I do have some pics.

First, my brother and my cousin Britt from a wedding shower (for my brother and his (future) wife) on Saturday.
Continuing to prove that there is nothing cuter in the world than a guy with a baby.

And, a super spoiled cat.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Not So Typical

I know I've said it before but I'll say it again, I'm not a morning person, I'm a night owl. A typical evening for me ends somewhere between 11 and midnight and, personally, I don't think that any person should have to go into work before 9. However, my work day starts between 7:30 and 8 depending on the day of the week and that means I'm up by 6:30. A typical nights sleep for me is between 6 and 7 hours though it has been known to be as few as 4 or 5. Last night I was practically falling asleep at knit night so as soon as I came through the door to my apartment I went to bed. I slept from 8:30 last night until 8 this morning. 11 and 1/2 hours. Not typical of me at all. I guess the illness, staying up really late a few nights this week and the stress of work finally hit me. The only thing that would have made it more peaceful is if I hadn't had a dream about work sometime this morning.

On to the knitting!
Have managed to get past the heel turn on the second toe up diamond sock for charity. This project is hanging in my purse for those moments when I need something to knit and I'm on the go.
I started another Keep Me Warm Vest last night at knit night. The bottom band is made from some old hand dyed (with cake icing and food coloring). I realized that one of the downsides to food grade dyes is that they bleed worse than acid dyes. My hands looked like there were on fire last night. This will go to the Adoption Center of Washington. Hoping to get it finished by the end of the month. Which is 5 days away. Did I mention this is single stranded on size 7 needles? I didn't? Oh...
Finished one really large mitten and started on another. Again, a charity knit. This one for H 2 H International. This project and the vest are in my knitting bag that gets hauled out to knit nights, large functions, travel over long distances in the car and to the couch for nightly knitting.
Finally, cast on for the second Trick or Treat sock. Put this next to the computer so I can work on it when I'm reading blogs or checking my email.

Have nothing on the needles for friends or family at the moment but I know what that project will be. Just waiting until the end of the month so I can purchase the pattern and yarn.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Something Random

1. I finished my future SIL's hat.
It only took me 3 days.

Unoriginal Hat
US size 10.5 needles
1 skein of Vivid Creation Fibers bulky yarn in Coral Reef
Mods: Cast on 70 stitches and did 5 repeats of the pattern instead of the 4 originally called for.

Brandi seemed to like it.
2. Mystery illness has been diagnosed. I have strep. Again. That brings my total time sick up to 8 weeks. Almost to the day. Started antibiotic #3 today.

3. Sunday after church I met up with some Twitter friends at Rare Purls.
There were some friends I had met in real life before, some I hadn't, and some brand new friends who got added to my Twitter list as soon as I got home!
Everyone had a lovely time and we're planning on meeting up once a month or so to do this again.
I got my first Trick or Treat sock finished while there.
And the first Diamond sock (as I'm calling them) got finished as well.
It's a good thing this was a toe up sock because I was just knitting along, not really paying attention, when I realized that the end of the yarn I was holding was, well, the end. I tinked back about 15 stitches and cast off right then. The top is a little rolled but the purled design actually keeps it from rolling too much. This is the yarn I had left over from my bind off.
Just in the nick of time!

4. I finished weaving in all the ends on my modified Keep Me Warm vest.
Keep Me Warm Vest for charity
US size 10.5
Cascade 220 held double, used less than 2 skeins of both the multi and the black
Mods: Made it into a v neck and added ribbing around the armholes and neckband

This one's going to the Adoption Center of Washington. I think it turned out totally cute!

5. As soon as I finished with the vest I cast on for a mitten.
This is going to be for the second charity set going to H 2 H International.

6. Other than the strep, I'm feeling great! I know that I've mentioned before that I'm not big on dieting but I found a great plan that keeps the food choices simple (which is good for someone who's not big on adding a whole bunch of weird, random vegetables) and is easy to follow. I've started eating healthier and adding more of the few veggies that I do like (or kind of like) into my diet. With the better eating, the awesome weather, and being able to get out and exercise 3-4 times a week, my energy has exploded and I'm just feeling good. Today was rainy and cold but hopefully this is the last kick of winter weather and tomorrow will be warmer again so I can get outside again.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Two Days

Could have gotten me a hat.
But instead I spent the night reskeining yarn for the shop.
Which shouldn't have taken 2 hours but every single skein was tangled.

P.S. Tomorrow is Saint Patrick's Day. Treat yourself to something nice from Vivid Creation Fibers for 25% off. Just type in "Saint Pat" (without the quotation marks) when you checkout. If you are in the Atlanta area, and don't mind meeting up, contact me and I'll also get you free shipping. Sale is on everything in stock and will last until Sunday.

P.P.S. New yarn will be listed tomorrow. Sorry for the wait but it will be worth it.

Monday, March 15, 2010

More Things on the Needles

It was another lovely day today here in Georgia. After my last post it rained for the rest of the week and got cold and yucky. Today I have the windows open and went for a nice little walk. I came home early from work today for a doctor's appointment (trying to determine if the mystery illness is mono) and just enjoyed my afternoon. That means getting new things on the needles.
This is some of my bulky hand-dyed that my future SIL picked out for me to make her Unoriginal Hat out of. Side note:Looking at my shop reminds me I really need to get on the ball about updating/dyeing on a more regular basis. If only there were more hours in the day. :::sigh::: The other stuff on the needles is coming along nicely too.
Started some toe up socks during my toe up sock class last week. Picked this diamond pattern only because I didn't want to be totally bored while knitting these.
The charity sweater is cruising along, shoulder seams have now been bound off. It saw a lot of action on Friday night when I hosted a Learn to Knit Night at my house with some girls from my church. Between me and my friend Stephanie we have recruited/created 3 new knitters!

For now I'm off to enjoy this wonderful (long) day (Thanks Daylight Savings Time! You *do* have a plus side!) with some knitting.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Spring is Springing

It seems like just yesterday everyone was bracing for Snowpocalypse 2010. The start of this week saw temps up in the 60's. Today it started raining and it doesn't look like it's going to stop until this weekend. It's nice to think that things might start warming up though. Fall and winter seemed to last forever. Not that I'm complaining too much. There is all that knitwear to make and don. Speaking of...

A few weeks ago I wrapped up a top down sock class that I was teaching at my LYS, Rare Purls. I'm very hands on and like to knit an example along with the students so they can see exactly what I'm talking about, especially with socks. I made this pair out of worsted weight so that I could demonstrate the basic construction.
They fit me but I'm not sure that I need worsted weight 100% wool socks. Might be a little too warm for here in Georgia. I mean, it only snowed twice here this year. Instead I'm going to send these in to a charity where they will get much more use. They are nice and soft though.

In January my goal was to have 3 projects on the needles at all times: 1 for charity, 1 for self, and 1 for friends/family. With the wool socks done I needed another charity knit so I cast on for a little vest.
This is a variation on the Keep Me Warm Vest designed for the Wool-Aid group on Ravelry. I'm making it for my group on Ravelry: The Eastern European and Russian Orphanages Project. This month's charity is the Adoption Center of Washington. They help organize adoptions from Russia and the Ukraine (as well as China and Vietnam). When I emailed said they actually have a lot of hats and scarves to send but the could use a few more sweaters, mittens, socks, and vests. If you'd like to donate stop on by our little group and see how to send in your items.

Ok, so the vest is one thing on the needles, the trick or treat socks for myself are the second things (P.S. Those socks are going to take forever to finish. Progress is uber slow, but steady.). And the third thing on the needles...well, there isn't anything. Yet. I'm going to go through the store stash and pull out some multi-colored bulky yarn to make my future SIL an unoriginal hat (because we did determine that she wanted something other than black). Pulling from the store will be ok since I'm going to be adding some new products soon (more aran). Here's a sneak peek of a new color called Cindy Lou Who:
I think I might have to add another "on the needles" category though. I'm thinking I need to include shop samples since I've started making some of those as well. The first thing I made was a cabled cowl from Freedom Wool.
I'm teaching a class on this at my LYS. This cowl took all of about an hour to make. I still have this great teal colored mohair blend.
It will be transformed into this. Well, the ascot at least. I'm probably not going to make the beret. So, yeah, that needs to go on the needles soon.

While all this knitting is going on (along with the usual trying to keep the apartment clean and dealing with another illness) I've allowed myself to get a little distracted by a couple of good reads.
Oh yeah, I had to get the latest issue of Rolling Stone. :::drool::: Who doesn't love Shaun White? And then I turned to the inside and found this:
Billy Corgan, my fav rocker of all time. Also droolworthy in my book. Ok, focus, have socks and a vest to finish...

Monday, March 1, 2010

Ravelympics Recap

Get it? "Recap"...because I made a bunch of caps for the Ravelympics...

Ok, now that you've split your sides with laughter, let's take a look back on the last 17 days. I'm really sad that the games are over. I've always fancied myself more of a summer games girl but after immersing myself in just about every obscure winter sport there is, I think it's safe to say that I'm an Olympics Fanatic. Summer or winter. I seriously saw things I didn't even know you could compete in. And I was fascinated. My favorite event was the men's snowboard half-pipe (kind of ironic I competed in the Hat Half-Pipe for the Ravelympics). The US guys are totally talented and beyond hott (yes, with 2 t's).

Eh hm, anyways...

The wrap up.

Hat #1 was an Unoriginal Hat for my mom:
Hat #2 was a "test knit" of a generic hat pattern that I wrote. The hat will go to charity:
Hat #3 was an Unoriginal Hat for my future SIL Brandi (or me if she doesn't want it):
Hat #4 was another "test knit" of my generic ribbed brim hat pattern. This was in an infant size. Again, this one's for charity:
Hat #5, the final hat, was Jared Flood's (a.k.a. Brooklyn Tweed's) Turn a Square Hat. Made for a friend on Twitter:
Lurve it. Might have to make one for myself. Additional details about all the hats can be found on my Ravelry page. So, now you can tell all your friends that you know a 5 time Ravelympics gold medalist. I know you're impressed.

While I have loved the Ravelympics, and wished they occurred every month so I'd have an excuse to drop everything and knit, I now find myself rather behind. The laundry is about to grow legs and run off with the dishes. Not to mention that my charity group on Ravelry has gone sadly un-updated. And let's not even get started on the dyeing...oi...I'm forming a plan of action though. Slowly, but surely. Maybe a few set backs tonight though as I picked up the clapotis again and really, really, really wanted it finished. So I did.

Pretty much the nicest thing I've ever made for myself. I think I'll call it the $250 Wrap. Many thanks to Warm Woolies for the awesome yarn!

When I was picking up yarn for the Turn a Square hat I also picked up some metal DPNs. Then I was able to salvage the socks that were hanging on the broken needles. Been knitting a few rows here and there and slowly the socks are growing.
Ok, now that the blog is caught up I better go tackle some laundry.