Friday, April 25, 2008

Springtime, Cats, Meetups, and Swollen Feet.....

Well, the birds are chirping, bees are buzzing, grass is greening up, flowers are starting to poke their heads out and reach for the sunshine and warmth, and my cats are looking out the window at it all trying to figure it out.

I love the springtime when everything comes back to life and it's still cool enough to need a sweater in some days or most evenings. My only problem is that along with all the good things about this time of year comes one bad thing. My ankles and feet start swelling as the temperature rises. My doctor told me to elevate my legs, which I do try to do as often as I can. Sometimes, I put in a movie, climb up on the bed, prop my legs up on pillows, grab my knitting and plant myself for a couple of hours. It works. I get three things done at once ~ legs elevated, movie watched, and knitting done.

Wednesday was the weekly meetup at Panera. It was nice to see Donna again, along with Marva. We laughed over my yarn acquisitions from DkKnits because I've been so busy ordering, I forgot what I ordered and thought these were another group. We also discussed the best way to spin some fibers, and how to tie certain knots for drive bands on spinning wheels. Marva was working on the pink sweater, Donna on a sock, and myself on the No Purl Monkey socks. I messed up a pattern repeat and had to rip out about 7 rows. I'm trying to finish this thing by tomorrow.

The black fleece is completely washed and is now drying in the shed. I promise to take pictures of it when it is weighed and ready to be packed in it's new clear plastic bin with all the accompanying critter preventions. (Eucalyptus leaves, a bar of Irish Spring).

Well, I'm off to get ready for tomorrow's festival.......

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Spinning Away, Knitting Socks, Learning New Techniques, New Fleeces.....

I finished spinning and then plying the Rebel Rebel batt. Here's a couple pictures before washing and setting the twist.

rebel rebel yarn 3rebel rebel yarn closeup

I started spinning the Alpaca I bought from Safe Haven Alpaca Farm a long time ago. While visiting with Marva, she noticed I was having a problem with it. After conferring with Sandi on the phone, it was decided I needed to try Scotch Tension. Marva set my wheel up, explaining as she went along, and spun the alpaca for a while. Now, I think I like spinning this way. I can see where each technique works differently to achieve different results.

Sock 1 of the No Purl Monkeys is finished and I'm about 3/4 done with the leg of sock 2. I hope to finish this sock by Thursday or Friday. This is now one of my favorite sock patterns.
np monkey 3np monkey 1

Last Saturday was the Open Shed Sale for fleeces. As usual, I got lost. After passing a farm with a name that was very familiar, I traveled down the road about a mile, turned around and went back to the farm. I met two ladies from my Knitting Guild, Gail and Cindy, who were also fleece shopping. After much indecision, I ended up with two Border Leicester fleeces, one black and one white. Gail had decided to pass on the black and encouraged me several times to take it. They're both gorgeous. I did go down the road to the other farm, but, decided to wait on another fleece. This Saturday is the CT Sheep and Wool Festival, and my intention is to buy at least one more fleece.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Food Diet, Yarn Diet, A Get Together....

Yesterday was my weigh in day at Weight Watchers. I lost 5.6 pounds. YIPPEE!! With the half pound from last week, that's 6 in two weeks. Maybe I'm back on track. I'm writing every bite down faithfully, because after 2 good weeks, I usually back slide and gain on the third one.

The Yarn Diet is not so good..... It's all Etsy's fault, you know. I just can't resist some of those yummy yarns and fibers. lol

Tonight was Panera in Cranston. It was a nice surprise to see Donna and Pat from the Bayberry Spinners. Donna usually tries to meet up with us at least once a month or so. Donna, Pat, and myself were knitting on socks and Marva was working on a sweater.

Thursday is my Knitting Guild and Saturday is my Spinning Guild meetings. More fiber news to follow them.....
Fiber Festival Curiosity

This will be my first year attending any Fiber Festivals and I am curious as to which, if any, people pick as their favorite(s), so I created a fun poll. I put it at the top of the blog, so please vote. CT is the first one I am planning on attending, and I am hoping to attend NH. I'll definitely be at RI. Not sure about MA yet.

It will be fun to see the results at the end......

Sunday, April 06, 2008

Socks, Lace, Fiber, and A Slap from my Cat.....

The first sock of the test knit is finished except for the kitchener of the toe which will be done tonight. Sock 2 will also get started today or tomorrow. The MS3 (Swan Lake) has been taken out of it's bag, snuggled, looked at and put back without a stitch more knit. The Modified Pi Shawl is waiting patiently for me to pick it back up. It has traveled with me a couple of times, though to Panera and other places. The "Rebel, Rebel" red batt is over half spun and hopefully I can finish that this week and get it plyed before the Saturday Spinners Guild meeting.

Over on Ravelry, I've joined a KAL for DkKnits yarns using "No Purl Monkeys" as the pattern. You follow Cookie A's pattern for the Monkey sock which can be found at Knitty in the archives. But don't purl any stitches. Just knit them. So far, I have the first sock cast on and about 4 rows of ribbing done. I'm trying to follow my forced rule of no new projects until one is completed. With the first sock of the test knit just about done, I can justify the cast on of sock 1 for this KAL. I'm using a color called "Wicked Witch of the East" for my pair. I figured it was a good association between the witch and her monkeys.

My sweet cat, Tipper, is not so sweet sometimes. He was cuddling in my arms the other night and head butting my chin, purring like a little motor boat. All of a sudden the little sucker took a swipe at me, catching me on the cheek with his claws. He was promptly tossed on the floor with much name calling and yelling from me. Of course, my cheek was bleeding for a while, and now has a nasty scratch. Tipper just gets these "don't bother me" moments without warning and does this. Usually his siblings are the target, not his humans. A little while after the "slap" he came back to me looking for lovings again. "Get away from me you ......" was my response, for about 15 minutes, then I forgave him. He is a lovebug after all.......