Wednesday, August 29, 2007

A Little Shoppin'

Just popping in: I got these today at Borders along with Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. The magazine Simply Knitting always comes with a gift...this time it is that row counter that looks like a sheep. It has a lock, too. That way I won't be accidently pushing the buttons if I remember to actually USE the lock. We will see.
The little bag can fit inside my knitting bag for work and has just enough room for me to carry a sock in progress with the needles. Perfect. I hate digging around for the needles in the bottom of my knitting bag and also things get bumped around and I have dropped stitches sometimes when I go to work on my project. Love that.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Cheating on Pi (A Confession)

I'm cheating. Ok? Only 10 more repeats of the border on Pi, and instead of buckling down and doing it, I have been cheating. Sneaking around with a sock. You have seen it before. A knitter, perfectly happy and content with their project. Committed and enjoying a good knitting relationship suddenly gets the urge to "be bad". At first it was meetings in the car (previously discussed). Then, carrying the sock into work to have a little quick knit in the breakroom. Now, I have to admit to blatently knitting out in the open, in my livingroom, while Pi looks on, dejected and weary in it's knitting bag. Even taking pictures.

Forgive me, Pi. It's just that I have to have a break. I feel like the guy in the hot dog eating contest who has to choke down that last few bites. I just need some time to myself. Our time together is special. You have been faithful to me, I know. But a knitter needs some variety. Some spice and excitement. I will come back to you. I will. And the time we spent apart will help our relationship. Really.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Thinking about September

I had some time for car-knitting the other day, stopping at the park with a hot cup of Starbucks. I can't carry Pi in the car anymore. Too cumbersome. So the little Waving Lace socks have been my companion in the car and also in the breakroom at work during my second break each day. It is so refreshing to work on something small.I am thinking about September. The Sept. project for Knitter's Almanac and Elizabeth's Year group is "Nether garments" or simply put, Leggings. I am really debating this one. I have some acrylic/wool yarn that I was tempted to use, but I have a sweater that I knit in that yarn and it lost it's shape ages ago and can't be tempted back. I really don't want to work on leggings and then have them unwearable in a short period of time. The other thing is, Danielle, who I am knitting them for wants black. Black. Black.

Boring. Leggings-'round and 'round with black. I'm not sure that I am up for it. Yet, I think the lessons in shaping the legs would be good for me as a knitter. Knit Picks Swish would work just fine for them and would be washable and soft. Hopefully it would hold it's shape better than the "Other Stuff". I'd have to order it. Well, you can see the quandry I'm in. After Pi taking me so long to finish, I don't know what to expect with these leggings. And the October project is definitely one I want to knit. So I will have to find time to finish the leggings in one month. I know. Famous last words...

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Good Friends, Good Knit

Does anyone recognize this sweater? If you have read my blog for a while, you'll realize that it is the Icy Blue Shell. You can look under the June and July posts if you can't remember it. Doesn't it look great? Now. Ask me if it's mine. Go ahead.

This beautiful and almost complete sweater has been knit by Nancy, my friend at the Friday Night Knitting Club ( I usually just say Knit Group, but the official name was taken from the book. Now I'll move on with the post quickly, since if I linger here I may begin whining about how much I wanted to knit this sweater and couldn't get the gauge right. But then, you know the story. This wonderful knitster above is Judy. No, she didn't put her shirt through the dryer and forget to remove the sock that got stuck to it. (hate it when that happens). Rather, she is wearing her sock as a badge of honor since it is the first one she completed! Now she is working on #2 and is fearlessly working round and round, knowing that in the end, she will have a perfect pair of warm socks to warm her tootsies. Behind her in the picture is Milly. Sorry...that is a terrible shot of her. I know she was saying something funny and encouraging to Nancy or Leslie in that moment. I just know it, because she is always full of ideas and fun. Milly works in the Yarn Dept at Ben's (Franklin) and keeps us in line as well. She has been knitting for years and years, and can do practically anything with yarn and needles as a result. Across the table from Judy and Nancy is the Mother/Daughter team: Jane and Leslie. Now these two have it all together. They are so much fun and full of new ideas and plans. Both of them are making projects to display in the store because they are so talented. Jane is holding up a wonderful knitted tote she made completely out of plastic grocery sacks! I wish you could see it up close. It is so adorable.
Leslie doesn't knit, but works on cross stitch and I must say she does the most delicate projects and beautiful work.
Right now she is working hard on these Christmas ornaments for a friend. If you notice the size of them next to the scissors, you can see they are tiny and just perfect for one of those small, little, itsy-bitsy Christmas trees.

Corinne and I make up the other Mother/Daughter "team" in our group. Here is Corinne working on her Hobo Bag. She found the pattern on my knitting calandar ( a different pattern on each page) and bought a bunch of different yarns and is knitting it up in lots of different colors and textures. So cute.

And of course, there I am. Working on what, you ask? Pi. What else.

Friday, August 17, 2007

A Little Pink Will Help

Well, Pi is taking so much of my knitting time that I fear my blog is beginning to get boring every time I whine talk about it. So-o-o-o-o-o-o-o...

Here is a refreshing thing. The sweetest pink, actually named Blush. It is the prettiest color of all in Knit Picks Palette yarn. See link to Knit Picks in my sidebar. This is my ck-ing (car knitting) which I also carry in to work with me and have a little quick "knit" on my breaks. I would call that a quickie, but you all would think that means something else. Admit it, ok?

The pattern is from Favorite Socks. Lots of wonderful patterns in that book. I like this one by Evelyn A Clark called Waving Lace Socks. So adorable.
Tonight is Friday Night Knitting at Ben Franklin. I enjoy it so much. Wonderful friends, three whole hours of knitting. Who can beat that? I'll be a bit late, since I work until 6:30, but two hours of knitting is better than none. Now. Should I take Pi, or this cute little sock?

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Endless Pi and an Apology

Yes, this is what you think it is. Endless Pi. I don't remember being this dense before, but it has finally happened. My elevator didn't reach the top floor. My lights were on, but no one was home. My choo-choo train wasn't on the tracks. And any other sayings you can dream up.

Let me 'splain, Lucy. I finished the beautiful "Gull Stitch" portion of the shawl. Now to choose a border. EZ calls for either a crocheted border (that would have been completed in one day, most likely) or a "knitted on" border. Now, being the big headed sophisticated knitter that I pretend to be, I chose the knitted on. Knitting on a border means that you are working sideways around your shawl, just catching a stitch at a time and knitting it to the border you choose. So you knit away from the shawl, then knit back. And when you knit back, you catch one, just one stitch of the shawl on your needles along with the last knitted border stitch. That attaches the border to the edge of your shawl. With me so far? Well, Miss Fancy-Pants here chose a beautiful scalloped border, as you know.

Very pretty. Each scallop takes 16 stitches to complete. "No problem", says I. Famous last words. Here 1/2 month later, I am still working on this border. AND, I miscalulated. I had done math. BAD idea. At the end of the gull stitch section, where I was working on 574 stitches around, I had increased two stitches and then divided 576 by 16 to get 36. OK. I thought 36 repeats are do-able. Do you see my mistake yet? Never once did it cross my mind that for each of the 576 stitches I would have to knit TWO rows of the scalloped border. One row away from the shawl, and one row back, catching just one stitch of the shawl. So instead of 36 repeats, I would really be doing ...oh help me...more math.....36+36=SEVENTY-TWO!!!!!!!!!!!

So, here I am, knitting endless pi, shaking my head and wondering where my math teacher went wrong with me. Sorry, Mrs. Stewart. You tried.

Friday, August 10, 2007

Real Men Knit

About a year ago, I "adopted" a son. Or should I say, he adopted me. Well, lets just say that he came for dinner one day and fell in love with my youngest daughter. Since then, he is over here almost every evening. I think it may have been the pizza....

Anyway, Josh has been lots of fun, is sweet to the whole family and treats our daughter with great respect and adoration. He is talented and fun to have around. But the nicest thing about Josh is the fact that he allowed Lizzie to teach him to knit. Ok, I had my own 2 cents to put in once in a while, too.

Yes, he is a bit crazy sometimes...
He refers to his method as "Extreme Knitting".

But we love him. Here are a couple of the hats he knit. Josh learned the "formula" for knitting a hat, and decided that patterns are not for him. He knits each hat without a formal pattern, just whatever design he can think up. He is fearless that way.

He adds this little feature to each of his hats...
Can you tell what it is? A little tail so he can tell where the back of the hat is.

He has given most of his hats away to friends or to Lizzie.

Here they are being silly...

Josh is a gifted bass player, drummer, guitar player, and singer. Check out his band, resDeus, and also Evergreen, which is Lizzie and Josh's music.

Most of all, he is just Josh. Fun guy and faithful friend. I'm glad he's around. With three daughters, it is sure nice to have a "son" around for a change, and Lizzie's sisters appreciate having a "brother" around, too. Someone besides Danny who will squash spiders and lift heavy objects when we need it. Josh certainly has been raised right...(us Mom's have to stick together)

Thursday, August 9, 2007

Mary had a Little Frog.....

Frogging AGAIN??? Is that all I do? Well, no-o-o-o-o, but I thought of how boring Pi is right now. I am on the umpteenth repeat of the knitted on border so there really isn't anything to report. However, my car knitting has been driving me nuts. ('Scuse the pun) A sock that looks very cute in my Favorite Socks book is not so cute in person. I knit the whole leg and had even knit the heel flap and turned the heel. That is when things went weird with this little sock. Suddenly, I could care less about whether I finished it or not. No passion for said sock. None. So I, who couldn't wait to get the Favorite Sock book, I who went to the knit shop on purpose to pick up some fun color of Baby Ull to use for the first socks from that book, I who cast on feverishly, anxious to knit a pair of socks in a pattern other than just my usual sock pattern which I got from Stephanie Pearl-McPhee's book "Knitting Rules", (easy but plain) found myself feeling less than The Sock. Now you know how serious this is when I can use such a word to describe my feelings about a little innocent and unfinished sock. A sock still in the early stages of development like this is usually nurtured and cared for. But here is a peek at the first little frogging:

Poor little thing...all exposed like that. Well, it was over with fairly quickly and painlessly...

Notice the halo-like quality of the yarn in these pictures. Do you think that was just the camera? Or is there something about The Sock that I didn't know? Hmmmmm. Hey! What is that in the background of this picture?

I'm so fickle...
Well, it was over and done with. Here is The Sock, no longer a sock at all...just a harmless ball of yarn, waiting to become what it was meant to be all along, I guess.
Part of The Stash.