Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Right Back Where I Was

So, it has been a week since the "Epic Monday" event. In said week, my car was declared totaled, I shopped for a new van, I purchased said van and I started on the hamster wheel of car payments again. On a bright note, I spent a lot of quality time with both my husband and my brother who were officially dubbed "Don and Eric's Taxi Service." Now I more clearly remember what it was like as a teenager when I had a drivers license and no car....

On another note, I have made fairly limited progress on the beach house pullover due to the many distractions surrounding "Epic Monday." I managed to get the 6" of ribbing done on the bottom, all the while wondering if I should make it less than 6" or not. (I stuck with the pattern). I thought that this sweater would be a great opportunity for me to learn how to cable without a cable needle since the whole sweater is covered with staghorn cables. Apparently, I thought wrong. For the life of me, I could not get this to work. I caved and grabbed my cable needle after about 4 attempts. There must be a trick to this, so when I get a little time I will google this and see what you tube videos are out there to provide guidance.

I was so focused on trying to cable without the cable needle that I misread the pattern. Here I am knitting merrily along and I get to the 1/2 way marker and I have an uneven amount of stitches. Hmmm, I must have miscounted I think and add another stitch. Didn't even bother to look back and see if I miscounted or anything. I get to the last marker and same thing, so I just add a stitch. Miss Know It All assumes there must be a mistake in the pattern (its never me). Well, we all know what assuming does for you......I get to row three of the pattern and I can visually see this is messed up but I am in denial. I flip the magazine to the picture, is it possible that it really is supposed to look like this (denial), maybe just the first rows look like this (denial), maybe.....maybe not. I flip back to the pattern and read it again and my bifocals point out the two stitches I missed the first time around. Well, maybe I can live with this row a little off on the bottom (denial), maybe no one will notice (denial). OK, I'm not fooling anybody. After hesitating for brief moments, I yanked the knitting off the needle and proceeded to frog back to the stockinette. On the bright side, it allowed me to try on the sweater and see how it fit on my hips. And it looked great. Especially without the goofed up cables.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Manic Monday

Yesterday was not a great day. It started off by sleeping in one hour (which was very great) because the kiddos had the day off of school due to end of semester. I love sleep. I had a meeting across town and the weather was a balmy 46 degrees, unheard of in January in Holland, MI. After the meeting I headed back across town to yet another meeting, yep, that is what I do for a living. At lunch time, I was waffling between running home for lunch (right around the corner) or picking something up and running back to my office in Zeeland. Unfortunately, I opted to run over to Subway. Not that Subway is a bad place to eat, but it started a chain of unfortunate events.

I looked left and then right and waited for a car coming from the right to pass me and then I turned left into the path of a car. It spun me around and then I hit a very large rock by the driveway where I was pulling out. BAM! I didn't realize at the time I hit a rock, but I couldn't figure out what I had hit because I couldn't see anything, both because my glasses had been knocked off and it was below my line of vision. I coughed a couple of times and shook my head, the airbag dust floated around me. It was surreal. I am glad to say, neither of us was injured and I had the ability to still think straight. I called 911 and shortly the police arrived. They were wonderfully sympathetic and helpful (big thanks Ottawa County). Also a big thanks to State Farm (hopefully my rates don't go up too much) and Hansen Collision who towed Bessie away.

I opted not to knit yesterday and iced my shoulder instead as it is quite bruised. I think today I will get back at my new project, the Beach House Pullover, featured in Interweave Knits back in summer 2010. I love the cables on this sweater. It looks kind of slouchy/comfy in the picture with 4" of positive ease, so I decided to go down a size so it isn't too baggy on me. I can't wait to get past the ribbing and get to the cables. This will be the first time I try cables without a cable needle. Should be very interesting.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Taken For Granted

I finally finished one (yes one) of the baby cable socks. Yep, only one. And I can't attribute this slow pace to any knitting issues. Hub got sick. With the stomach flu....I won't share the gory details, only that he missed work for 2 whole days. He NEVER misses work. Naturally, we did everything we could to keep it from spreading in the house. (I hope I didn't just jinx us) We kept the door shut to the bedroom and I wiped everything in sight down with Clorox wipes. I even slept in the spare bedroom. So far so good. HOWEVER, hub does a lot of things during the day and I ended up having to pick up his load. Wow, he does a lot of things that I never realized. I kind of felt bad about this (once I could take a breath at 9pm at night) so I resolved that I would tell him. And I did. Don't take your significant other for granted.

OK, I will get off my soap box and back to the knitting. I had decided to make the leg shorter since I was thinking that I did not have enough yarn to finish the socks and I remembered what happened the last time. Two things happened that I was not expecting:

1. I didn't run out, not even close

2. I really didn't like how the striping yarn changed color right at the toe as I was grafting the toe.

The toe appears to have a light grey line down the front.......at this point, I am not disturbed enough to unravel and cut and try again. I am almost over it (almost). My next thought is, I have never made socks with self striping yarn, do you search thru the next ball until you get the stripes to match? Or do you just go fancy free and totally non matching?

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Fun Observer Questions

I had my knitting at work with me this week so I could take advantage of the lunch hour since I wasn't planning on going out anyway. To give you a little background, I am still working on the baby cable socks with the self striping yarn. As I knit, several people came by and asked questions. Here are my 3 favorites:

  • What is that? I am working on the foot of the sock currently after having started at the top...perhaps this person does not wear socks?

  • How do you know when to switch colors to make the stripes? A legit question if you have never seen self striping yarn

  • How do you know when to stop doing "the straight part" (the leg) and go to "the curved part" (the foot)? It is all about math and how long/big you want your sock to be.

Do you get interesting questions when you are knitting out and about?

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Easy Cables

I am working away at my baby cable socks and I love this pattern. I have never made cables without a cable needle before. It is super easy, you just do 2 x 2 ribbing for 3 rows and on the 4th row for the knit section you knit 2 together but don't take off the needle and then knit the first stitch and take both of the needle. Purl is same as before. Doesn't that sound easy? AND it looks great. I am thinking about using this as a more decorative edging to a sweater. Or possible on hand warmers. Even on a scarf it would work because ribbing is reversible so the "cable" portion is in the trough of the purling on the other side. I was also thinking about maybe 4 x 4 ribbing to see how two cables look next to each other. Oh the possibilities.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

What a Week

So, I went back to work this week (started Tuesday) after being off for 6 weeks for the hysterectomy recovery. In week 5 I was feeling pretty good, although I wasn't going to set any records for walking speed. I knew it would be hard, but wow, I had no idea how hard sitting thru meetings really was. I felt really sore every day by about 3pm. Bleh! I know, I know, I just need to be patient with my body and let it do its thing.

After finishing the socks, I wanted some mindless/easy/no brainer knitting. What better than a washcloth? I pulled out a pattern by Anne Mancine for a spa day facecloth that I had in my queue. And who doesn't have a ball or two (or 5 10 15) of cotton in their stash? I opted for a natural ombre from Lily Sugar 'n Cream.

I love the texture on the washcloth, even as much as I detest too much seed stitch, there wasn't too much that it drove me crazy.
 I love how the ombre looks with this pattern. I am thinking about making a bunch of these and sending out to my sister-in-laws, neither of which knit.
If you are anything like me (which for your sake it might be good if you aren't), I always look at a pattern to see how I could have done it differently for next time. Wonder what a multi color with slip stitch would look like???

Monday, January 2, 2012

Warm Feet

I finished the granite pebble socks today and I think I may have inspired my step mom to start a pair as well. If you are thinking about trying socks, DO IT! You will love it. Sensational Knitted Socks by Charlene Schurch is a great tool to help you get started. I feel warmer already, in spite of the 8" of snow in the yard.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

All Buttoned Up

So, it is 2012. A brand new year. We had some great times last year, a high being our trip to Italy. Last year sort of ended on a not so great note with my hysterectomy. But the surgery was a success and I will be heading back to work in just a few short days, so that is positive. Here is to hoping for a great year with lots of great experiences and friendships and yarn.

Some of you are probably thinking, what happened to the sweater? I did promise to post pictures after I sewed on the buttons, which I finally did today. The shots are kind of grainy, but, they will do for the time being, I guess. At this time of day, it was only raining, but currently it is snowing and blowing and they have forecast 3-6 inches of the white fluffy stuff. Bleh! I love this sweater and I am positive I will get a ton of use out of it. I plan on wearing it my first day back to work. Can you tell I am growing out my bangs? (The bobby pin is the hint) Not a fun project, but I am going to try to stick with it. Wish me luck as I am not the most patient person in the whole wide world.

Still working away on the socks, I turned the heel last night just before bed at 10 pm (no I did not stay up to watch the ball drop) and I got a little bit of knitting in today. I think I can finish this pair up tomorrow. I would like to make a pair of socks for my mom as I think she would be a great recipient and would wear them a lot. I still can't believe I never tried to make socks before. I think I was always freaked out by the skinny yarn and dinky little stitches that would take forever. Not like a sweater doesn't take a month to complete.....I was wrong. I like socks very much.