Friday, July 30, 2010

Fishing, Napping and Knitting

What a great day off I had today. Yes, I know, any day off from work starts as a great day. But, add a little fishing with the family, a nap in the afternoon and plenty of knitting and you know EXACTLY what I mean. My brother, the planner of the fishing jaunt and the specialist, planned our location at a little pond in his friends backyard in Zeeland, MI, just down the road from my house about 5 minutes. Who da knew good fishing was this close?? In addition, we got to go out on the paddle boat. The kids had a great time and the adults were pretty relaxed as well. My son summed it all up by saying,
"It is so very peaceful here."
I finished the first sleeve on the lettuce jacket and have started on the second already. I can't believe how fast this pattern is going, but then again I am using size 13 needles.......

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Shalom Sweater is Complete

Finally, after over a week of waiting, calling and being somewhat impatient, I ran downtown Holland with my young son (who was thrilled to go to a yarn store) to Lizzie Ann's Wool Company and picked up a skein of Brown Sheep Lamb's Pride Bulky to finish my sweater. Because the dye lots were different, I was planning on ripping back to the stockinette stitch and then using the new dye lot on the garter stitch trim. But, as I held the two yarns next to each other, I simply could not tell the different between the two. I am guessing it was simply the fact that it was a heather gray with a lot of different colors in it already. So I spit connected and finished it up. After that, I sewed on the button and then did a line of single crochet under the arm to stabilize the rolled up stockinette (if I did it again, I would have put garter stitch there, oh well).

My son ended the trip with a treat as well, on the way back to the van, we stopped at the Holland Peanut Store and picked up some chocolate covered marshmallows, yum yum!
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Sunday, July 25, 2010

Zooday

Took the family to Potter Park Zoo in Lansing this afternoon. It was a perfect day, sunny but not humid, with a slight breeze. This was our first foray to this zoo and it was worth the drive. It was obviously not a San Diego Zoo, but then again, what zoo is? It was small and intimate and not crowded, all pluses for this gal. The kids got to feed the goats and the birds and finish the day with an ice cream.

I really dug into the lettuce jacket today and got quite a bit of knitting done in the car while en route to Lansing. The pattern is really easy and looks really good. I still think the color is not lettuce, but hey, its not my yarn to name, I guess. I keep having this strange paranoia that it will be too small, but I keep measuring and it seems to match the pattern.......

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Cornflower Mohair is Done

I finally finished the cornflower feather and fan scarf. FINALLY! Working on a scarf with lace weight yarn and size 5 needles is not exactly speedy for this knitter. At the last minute, I was inspired by a pattern in a book I just purchased and I added crochet trim and then picot edges. I can't believe something that looks so flimsy could be so very warm.


Had a great foray to Barnes and Noble last night (how can a book store not be, really?) And I picked up some pattern books and romance novels. While checking out, the cashier invites me to their monthly knit a long. That was pretty cool.

Just getting ready to swatch (yes you read that correctly) for my next project, which is a jacket. I purchased the yarn this week while my sister in law was visiting. She was a good sport about going to my yarn stores, so I took her to her fabric stores (she is a quilter/sewer). All was good. I also got invited to another knit along, this is a weekly one at  Lizzie Ann's Wool Company. I was feeling pretty popular this week.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Visitors

My brother and sister in law from NH are visiting for the week. While I am happy to have them visit, it deeply cuts into my knitting time.

Sounds like we will be heading to the beach a couple of days this week and I want to take her to Fields Fabrics and Hobby Lobby as she is a big quilter.

No news from Friends of Wool on my last skein of wool for the Shalom sweater. Sigh.......

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Out of Heather

I just started the garter stitch bottom of the Shalom sweater and (gasp) I ran out of wool. I ran to Friends of Wool when they opened at 10, ball band in my pocket. After scanning the shelves, I saw there was none to be had....NONE! She opened the excess inventory drawer and looked....NONE! So she is hunting down another skein for me.

In the meantime, I wandered over to the lace weight (a new section for me) and started evaluating what I might use for my fan and feather scarf. We discussed the merits of each and I finally settled on Douceur et Soie (pronounced do sir ay swah), a blend of baby mohair and silk that is simply heavenly to touch. The color is cornflower (yes another blue item). I love to touch it. Knitting with it is quite the experience as I am not accustomed to knitting with such fine yarn, it is almost like fuzzy thread. So, I am holding the fuzzy ball in my hand and trying to decide how much I need. After my last 2 experiences, I am thinking to buy more vs less. She says to me, well you can always return it if you don't use it. HAHAHAHAHA, I started laughing hysterically. When I could control myself I told her

I NEVER return yarn as there is always something I can do with it.

Friday, July 16, 2010

The Cat Days of Summer

Being a cat owner, and thus biased towards felines, I am dedicating this post to all of the felines whose owners, companions and feeders are knitters. Here is a shot of my Georgie sleeping in "my knitting spot" on the couch. He knows when I come near he is relegated to the footrest, but for now, he is enjoying prime sleeping territory.

Almost done with the Shalom sweater, I am still thinking I am going to need another skein but we will see what tomorrow brings.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Reading About Knitting is Not Knitting

I got some knitting in on the way up to Rockford, Tim (my new coach) was driving. Why is it that I can knit in the car just fine, but when I have to read something I feel the urge to vomit? And even stranger, I can read just fine on a plane. Aren't they both moving?

It feels like I am NEVER going to reach the bottom of this sweater. It almost feels like it is shrinking instead of growing. When my daughter got home from volunteering at the library, she mentioned that she had picked up one of my on holds. It was Drunk, Divorced and Covered in Cat Hair by Laurie Perry AKA Crazy Aunt Purl. It was a GREAT read and I highly recommend it. Her story is easy to relate to and funny and sad at the same time.

I spit connected the last skein while in the car, Tim never said a word. Either he was ignoring me, horrified but not wanting to say anything, or he has seen this before and not fazed. I don't think I will bring it up to see.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Inching Along

Working on the seemingly never ending rows of stockinette stitch at the bottom of the Shalom sweater. On the bright side, I have 5" done. On the flip side, I still have 7" to go......sigh.......I think project A.D.D. is catching up with me. I want to try out that lace scarf pattern sitting at spot one on my queue on Ravelry. Well, the knitting isn't getting done any faster with me typing, so off I go!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Up to My Armpits....or Should I Say Down?

Still in a bit of a funk today, but am feeling a little more chipper, which seems strange since I did not get my walk in tonight. I was blaming it on Don being tired, but really I was tired too. On the bright side, that was an extra hour I could spend knitting tonight on the Shalom sweater. It is going really well and I am just past the armpit. Because it is stockinette stitch, I will be adding sc trim around the arms, they simply do not seem stable enough without it. Perhaps it is the cast on method I used under the arm, but oh well. Not unhappy enough to rip back and try again when I know a little sc will do the trick. These pictures don't seem to do justice to the color, I think it may have something to do with the lighting in our family room and the fact that it is getting onto dusk. Another couple of days and I should have this project buttoned up - ha ha!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Grey Day

Its another beautiful sunny day, but for some reason, I am in a bit of a funk. It seemed somehow ironic that my current project is grey wool. I feel grey today.

I am making good progress (in my estimation) on the Shalom sweater and I like the way it looks so far. While I was making my daily rounds on Ravelry, I found an easy lace scarf pattern and I am thinking about making it for my sister for Christmas. So many patterns, so little time.....sigh.......

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Good Times

With another beautiful sunny summer day, we went to the beach, this time to Tunnel Park, on the north side of Holland. We picked up Taco Bell on the way and sat under the trees at the picnic tables and enjoyed a pseudo picnic. There was not much wind today, so the boogie boards did not get a great initiation, but the kids had a good time nonetheless and none of us are too terribly burned.

I finished the Wooly Waffle Scarf for my husband and he pronounced it warm.....well duh, its 80 degrees outside. Oh well, he appreciated it in his own way, I guess.

Started on my next project, the Shalom Sweater, I can't wait for it to get cooler so I can wear it.....I can't believe I just said that!!!!  Misha wishes it would get cooler too. Doesn't she look hot and tired?

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Next on the Needles

I had a productive morning. First, I left the kids at home. That alone made me 80% more productive. Sorry kids, but its true, I can't focus as well when you are bickering in the back seat and the store and on the way to the store and on the way to the next store.....well you know what I mean. I efficiently timed it all out. First, to the farmers market for fresh fruit (peaches and blueberries) and then two loaves of the divine pizza bread. Next its onto Monticello Meat Market for chicken and hamburgers. Last stop (whoo hoo) Friends of Wool. I needed more Berroco Sundae. It only has 67 yards per skein and somehow I missed that little important fact when purchasing yarn for the Woolly Waffle Scarf. Consequently, I ran out of yarn at about 36" of scarf which is a bit to short for my 6"4" hubby. After I got home, I whipped up a batch of banana bread with my oops I forgot to eat these bananas. Yummy yum yum. And that gave me an hour to knit knit knit to my heart's content before lunch.

I am making great progress on Don's scarf although he won't need it for some time as our weather is beautiful and in the 80's all week. Should make for some interesting FO pix on Ravelry with him sweating in his wool scarf. That is Georgie in the background checking out the birds.

I have located my next project and have even gone ahead and purchased the wool for it. It is the Shalom Cardigan by Meghan McFarlane and it is BEAUTIFUL!

Friday, July 9, 2010

Still Wild and Wooly

Still chipping away at the Wooly Waffle Scaft for my husband. The yarn I am using,  Berroco's Sundae, does not have much yardage per skein. So even though it doesn't take too many rows to get results, I wish the skein had a bit more yardage on it. It is a beautiful colorway called Pretzel. I hope he really loves it when it is done.

With another weekend of beautiful weather on the docket, I can't wait to get outside. I have had tomatoes, lettuce, radishes and beans from my garden so far. You just gotta love summer.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Wooly Waffle Scarf

Working on Don's scarf, have gone ahead and made up my own pattern as I simply could not get the pattern I got off Ravelry to work. Oh well, patterns are supposed to be springboards for your own ideas, right? I love the chocolatety color of this yarn but not so fond of the splittiness of it. I can deal.

On my lunch hour at work I was squeezing in some knitting and my computer told me I needed to upgrade my itunes. I admit I am not a real dilligent upgrader of my itunes software and I don't use my ipod very much. I can almost hear the gasp from the internet. Well, I am in my 40s so I can blame it on that I guess. Anyway, the whole point of my story is that I had absoletely NO IDEA there were so many podcasts available about knitting. So I subscribed to a few (like I have spare time for this). If you know of a really good podcast about knitting, let me know.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Frustration with a Capital F

I AM FRUSTRATED!


(If you can't tell). I am making a scarf for my hub and I have fabulous yarn (from my foray to Friends of Wool and I have a great looking pattern (waffle scarf) but there must me some kind of mistake in the pattern (because it surely can't be me). I have appealed to my friends on Ravelry for some words of advice, but I think I will just go ahead and change the pattern to make it work, it must be wrong, right?

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Great shopping @ Friends of Wool with my gift certificate. Finished washcloth 2 of 3 of the set for my stepmom. Also got some wool to make a scarf for hubby.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Scrub a Dub

Still on my washcloth kick, I think I needed a short break from big patterns. I am planning to make sets of these washcloths as birthday/Christmas gifts this year. This pebble stitch washcloth will be part of a set for my step mom (shhhh!).

My fingers are feeling the pain of uninterrupted knitting for so many days. I have blisters that have split on my first finger, yuck!

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Happy 4th of July!


With the continued blessing of beautiful weather, we did the outdoorsy things that people do for the 4th of July. We picked up fresh fruit and veggies from a local farmer. (We also sneaked in some apple butter). We bought fireworks. And, we went to the beach. Not just any old beach, but Saugatuck dunes. It is a one mile hike from the parking lot to the beach uphill in the woods. It is absolutely beautiful and thankfully shady or I could have been a mess even before we got there. I was in the middle of my honeycomb washcloth and I was so very tempted to bring to the beach and knit. Thank goodness better sense prevailed and I left it home. It was so windy that I looked like a big piece of pork all covered in shake and bake if you know what I mean! After we got back home and indulged in a piece of bread with apple butter, I finished the washcloth and I think it will make a great pattern for Christmas presents (ssssssssshhhhhhh!).

Saturday, July 3, 2010

I'm Tanked

I finished the hyacinth tank and I am super thrilled with the results. Here I am out on the deck enjoying the sunshine and modeling my latest project. I noticed the directions did not call for a row of sc at the bottom, but, to be consistent, I added it and I think it makes it look more finished at the bottom. Now I just need to decide if I am going to make a shrug to match.......

Friday, July 2, 2010

Cable-Down Raglan

After my first semi sucessful foray into sweaters with cables, I decided to accept a bigger challenge, more cables AND the dreaded helpful chart. I scoured the internet and didn't find anything I liked (this was before I had joined Ravelry and now I know better). So, I went to our good friends Interweave Knits and picked out this pattern.

I had purchased this yarn last summer with the intent of making a sweater (so I bought 8 balls) and put in "storage" until I found the right pattern. My sister in law and I were picking up food for her son's graduation party and we stopped at this quilt shop that also happened to sell yarn. I apologize, I can't remember the name of the shop.

It was a challenge, but in a good way. I messed up a few times when my son pushed my clicker (row counter) without me knowing. Definately not carry around work as I had to stay close to the chart.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

On The Edge......

Finished sc edge on arms, neck and bottom. Only need 5 rows of filet, sew seams, weave ends and I am done! Thinking about a matching shrug.