Thursday, November 29, 2012

My Fur-baby Tipper

Tipper decided to plant himself in front of the picture window in the living room. I couldn't skip the opportunity to get a terrific shot of him. I love how he has his front paws straight out in front of him.   Usually, he sits like this against a wall or door.  He stayed like this for 15 minutes. :)

Tipper is one of Maine Coone kittens we rescued 7 years ago.  That's a lot of fur as well as solid kitty.  He weighs 22 pounds, which is a normal size for this breed of cat. 

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Thanksgiving Meme

I found this on my friend Donna's blog and decided to answer the questions myself.

1. Where do you go for Thanksgiving dinner?  We stay home. Pat's brother comes over.
2. Do you buy a fresh or frozen bird?  Frozen and it has to be a gluten free one.
3. What kind of stuffing?  Two kinds, both bread ones.  One's a regular one and the other is made with gluten free bread and seasonings  I add onions,celery, and other stuff to both of them.
4. Favorite kind of pie?  My brother-in-law requested Dutch Apple this year.  Pat can't eat the crust, so he's making baked apples. I'm passing on dessert.
5. How do you prepare your bird?  I do a traditional roasted turkey.  The only thing I do differently is wrap it in bacon for the first part of the cooking.  It makes it moister, but not greasy, and gives a hint of  a smoked flavor.
6. Favorite side dish? The homemade cranberry sauce I make from scratch.
7. Do you save the carcass to make soup or stock?  Yes.  I make a soup and if there's enough turkey left, I make a pot pie with mashed potato topping.  Yum.
8. What new dish are you trying this year? I bought acorn squashes instead of butternut for a change.  I've never made them for Pat. 
9. Do you get up at the crack of dawn to have dinner ready in the early afternoon, or do you eat at your normal dinner hour?   We are doing the veggie prep work, and the cranberry sauce, tonight.  Then I get up early tomorrow to get the bird started and whatever is left to do.  Usually, we eat around 2 o'clock.
10. If you go to somebody else’s house, what’s your favorite dish to bring?  We don't go to anyone's house since Pat can't eat gluten.  If we go out later, I usually try to bring something I know he can have. 
11. What do you wish one of your guests wouldn’t bring to your house? I make everything. Nothing is brought.
12. Does your usual mix of guests result in drama, or is it a group you’re happy to see? No drama. Just nice and quiet.
13. What’s your absolute favorite thing on the menu? The turkey.  I only make it about twice a year.

Enjoy your Thanksgiving, however you spend it, at home or with friends or family. 

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

WIP It!  Storm Thoughts.

I want to send thoughts and prayers to everyone who was impacted by Hurricane Sandy.   Not everyone was as lucky to not lose power or have any damage to their home as I was.  Sandy arrived on my birthday.  As the storm battered the East Coast, I said, more than once, that this was one "gift" I wanted to return to sender.  If only that had been possible.  My heart goes out to all who are dealing with the devastation left behind.

Now, on a happier note, I'll tell you about my fiber tasks of late.

There's been quite a bit of progress on the WIP pile.  This is a pic of the vanilla socks with the rolled top instead of ribbing.  

                                      

The Ply-Fest is going well.  Three fibers are finished.  One has one skein finished with the second one in progress. There is still one more fiber waiting to go on the jumbo flyer.  I have two other bobbins of similar fibers I plan to ply together.  They are from the same dyer and share a purple color which will make them look nice when plied together.

 






 


I plan to take the slippers on the road as car knitting this weekend while out and about.  Slipper 1 is ready for the toe decreases and will be off the needles tonight.  Slipper 2 will be cast on right after that. I really would like to get them done by the end of this weekend.

The jacket has seen some progress.  I didn't realize I had 16 rows to knit before the sleeve separation.  I'm 4 rows from finishing that part.

Friday, October 19, 2012

A Light At the End of the WIP Tunnel

If you look closely, you will see a dim light in the distance.  It's that ever elusive light at the end of the tunnel. In this case it's the knitting and spinning WIP tunnel.

I enjoy listening and watching to a weekly podcast called Knitting in Circles.  It's a husband and wife team who both knit.  Recently Aimee decided to have a "Clean the Needles" KAL.  This includes knitting, crochet, spinning, and weaving projects you have already in progress or projects you already have the yarn for and plan to gift to someone or charity knitting.  This is the perfect incentive for me to clear out a few projects.  It runs from October 9th until December 10th.

Here's my list, some with photos:

Neely O'Hara socks:  Done as of Oct. 14th.



Vanilla Toe Up socks: It's now almost ready for the short row heel to be started on sock 2.




Checkerboard Slippers #2: More than half of slipper 1 is done.


Top Down Swing Coat:  Just 1 more repeat of the yoke increases (2 rows) and I start the sleeve increases. This may not be finished in time.  This is the challenge project for me. Pictured, is only a few of the skeins.  There's lots more for this project.


Ditto Sweater: If I finish the coat, I would like to get the last little bit of this sweater done.

Totally Vanilla Sock from my Socktopus book if I can finish all the above knitting.

A Ply-Fest with at least 3 different fibers I've spun already. I decided to finish the spinning part and then set up the jumbo flyer for plying everything one after another.


If I get all of this done and have time, I still have some alpaca to finish spinning as well. I'm not counting the project on my loom since I have no idea how long that will take me.

I think that's more than enough to keep me busy for the next month and a half. :)

I never posted pics of the"My Wish" shawl or the "I Love Fred" socks. I'm really happy with the way both projects came out.  My dyed variegated gray yarn is a nice contrast to the natural white in the shawl. The striping in the afterthought heels of the socks came out nice too, especially since it was my first attempt at this technique.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

I'm Still Here

It's been a while since I posted here on the blog.  I'm still knitting and spinning.

Here's a re-cap of my latest fiber adventures:

Buttercup is finished. It came out well.  I chose to leave the sleeves fluttery instead of doing the banding.

I'm knitting my first pair of self striping socks with afterthought heels.  I just have the heel portions to do. I decided to do a short row heel instead of the toe heel with the side ridges from the decreases.  I think it will feel better on my sensitive feet. The yarn is black, white, and a thin stripe of light pink. It named after Darth Knitter's cat, Fred.  It was dyed by Canon Hand Dyes and feels wonderful to work with.  Part of the purchase price was donated to Alley Cats, which is a no kill cat rescue/shelter.

My first sock from the plain Vanilla toe up with a short row heel pair is finished.  I'll get back to the other sock as soon as I finish the "I Love Fred" sock heels.

A pair of Checkerboard Slippers has been finished.  The pattern was a simple stranded knit.  More of these are in my future.  I think I will sew a slipper bottom to mine because I don't have carpeting in my house, just wood and tile floors.

My Top Down Coat  has been started in my handspun.  I'm about half way through the yoke rows.  I had to up my needles from 10s to 11s to get a better feeling fabric.  The 10s made it too stiff.  Since it's a swing style coat, it won't affect the fit. Plus, I plan to wear a sweater or sweatshirt top under it.

Since spinning the Peruvian Alpaca, I've spun 7 other fibers - Corgi Hill Farms colorways "Frosted Roses", "Roses", and "Kiss Kiss Bang Bang".  Also spun was Fibers4Ewe colorways in pink/purple/sparklies and one I named "Raspberry Dreams".   Frabjous Fibers "Chromatopia", and, Fibernymph's "Primordial Sea" also are finished.   Currently on the Minstrel wheel is Corgi Hill Farm's "Talisman" which is brown, bright blue, and a golden yellow/orange.  This is a merino/silk/baby camel blend.  Since I have 8.7 ounces of this fiber, I plan to ply it on my Sonata wheel with the bulky flyer.  I still plan to get 2 skeins but don't want to fight to squeeze that .7 ounce in.  Not including the fiber on the wheel, I've spun 201.55 ounces since January 1, 2012.

Craftsy had a special on their classes.  I wasn't going to add another one, but, they now have one for floor looms.  My table loom is warped.  Yay!  Now, I just need to sit down and weave on it.  lol. BTW, check out Crafty if you haven't yet.  They offer more than just fiber arts classes.  There's beading, baking, sewing, photography, and more.

Healthwise, I'm doing good.  More weight has melted off, dental issues are almost completely resolved,  and the feet are feeling better since being on the Metanx medicine.

Pat and the animals are all great.  Pooh has been on "patrol" at the window lately.  If he hears a noise or kids playing, he has to investigate.  lol

Well, that's it for now.  I need to try to get some pictures tomorrow and will post them soon.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

A Currents Update

Listening: Megan kitty growling at Pooh dog

Watching: nothing

Eating: waffle fries with cheese

Drinking: Diet Coke

Wearing:  shorts, tank top, slippers

Reading: historical romance on my Kindle

Weather: overcast, humid, occasional showers

Knitting: Buttercup Top, Toe Up Vanilla Socks

Spinning:  "Frosted Flowers" from Corgi Hill Farm on the Minstrel and some Fibers4Ewe on the Sonata

Wanting: a nap but it's too late in the day

Needing: to go to the market with my husband

Enjoying: the quiet now the animals have calmed down

Looking Forward: warping one of my looms this week

Wondering: if I can get the loom set up without messing it up this time

Friday, August 17, 2012

Goal Progress and Review

It's been a few months since my last review, so I decided to re-visit my New Year's 2012 goals.

1. Get healthier - after fighting a few months of dental infection issues and all the havoc that brought, I'm finally on the mend side, weight is coming down. :)

2.  Walking/Exercise - treadmill is still not set up, done some walking around in the yarn, playing with my dog, Pooh.

3. Spinning/Knitting Down Stash - extremely well with this. 
Fiber:  48.5 ounces added and 162.70 ounces spun.   
Knitting:   47 skeins added and 38.75 skeins used.  I'm working on a summer top that will use another 6 skeins when finished, as well as a pair of socks.  :) 

4.  Finish my 2009 sweater - Nothing happening yet.

5.  Finish spinning second sweater - Nothing happening here.  I spun another entire sweater/jacket instead.  (2000 yards of bulky yarn).

6.  Use handspun -  just the one shawl so far. The jacket with the bulky handspun is one of the projects up next on the needles.

7.  Use spindles - used one of them a little bit while my foot healed a few weeks ago.

8.  Use looms - nope.  nothing new yet.  I've been watching videos though and plan to warp the table loom this coming week.  Hopefully, I don't mess this try up like the last one. 

Friday, August 10, 2012

Spinning Success and Knitting Slogging Along

I finished spinning the entire 2000 yards of bulky yarn for my Top Down Swing Coat.  Now I'm spinning an amazing fiber I've had in my stash for about 3 years.  It's Peruvian Alpaca and it's softer than cashmere.  Spinning this decadent fiber is such a tactile pleasure.  The person I bought this from can't get any more and is no longer living in my area.  All I can say is if you come across this stuff, don't hesitate to buy it.  The plan is to spin the multi colored braid of pink, blue, green, and purple and ply it with a semi-solid pink braid.  I have 4 ounces of each color so will have plenty to knit a luscious shawl.  The pattern is picked out if I get enough yardage.

The Buttercup Top has seen some progress.  There is one more skein to be re-knit plus the remainder of the unknit skein.  I'll try it on then and see how much more it needs.  I'm hoping to be close since the KAL ends August 15.  Apparently I have lofty aspirations to finish.  I highly doubt I'll make it, but will give it a good try.  If I hadn't had to re-knit it I would have finished last week. 

Foot issues have resolved themselves for the most part and my blood sugar readings are down a bit.  Yay! for feeling better.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Rippit, Rippit,  and More Toe Woes

The fair demo was fun as always.  I managed to spin 2 full bobbins plus part of a third between the Friday night and Saturday morning/afternoon demos.  The splint didn't slow me down at all.  I think it did cause a bit of friction with my foot when I had the sandals on though.  I also stuck to my diet most of the time.  I had a Taco salad and sugar free ice cream for Friday.  Dunkin Donuts breakfast burrito for breakfast and Fried clam strips and fries (which I didn't eat all of) were for Saturday.  I drank plenty of ice water too.

Pat and I had gone out to do some errands on Sunday and when we got home, I took the sandals off so I could put my feet up for a bit.  I noticed something stuck to my big toe.  What I thought was a piece of paper was a piece of skin from a blister that had broken.  It was already dry and healing.  I never felt it.  This is scary since I'm diabetic.   With the exception of a trip to Weight Watchers and the drugstore the following Monday, I never left the house until last Saturday.  I spent the week in my slippers or with the foot exposed to air to help it heal faster.  Thankfully, it's fine now.

Due to all the foot issues, I didn't spin.  There was only 380 yards to go on my sweater yarn.  I'll finish it this weekend.  Instead, I knit almost all my Buttercup top.  Then, I tried it on.  Fail!!  It's way too big.  When I tried it on the first time, after separating for the sleeves it looked fine.  I had added some extra stitches under the arm part of the body since I usually have a problem with snugness in that area.  So, off to the frog pond it went this morning.  I ripped it back to where I had separated for the sleeves, took out the extra stitches, and am now re-knitting the stockinette body.  About 1/4 of it is already back in.  There's no way I can finish before the end of the month for the Twisted Strandss KAL, but I will be wearing the darn thing this summer!

Friday, July 13, 2012

Walking Wounded But Still Spinning

Today was my podiatrist appointment for my nail trimming.  While waiting for the doctor to come in to do that, the other one stopped by to check my feet as well.  He was the one who did the x-ray when I slammed the toe last month.  A new x-ray today shows I have crushed the bone, (also known as a compressed fracture).  I'm in a toe splint and bandage to keep it from bending.  Walking and spinning are not a problem. 

Today was the start of the North Stonington Fair. I'm looking forward to participating in the spinning demo with my friends on Friday evening and most of Saturday until about 4 p.m.  Pat doesn't want to go and will be staying home with the cats and dog. :)  If you are in the area, stop by the sheep barn and say hi.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Summertime Fiber Fun

Oops.  It's been a few weeks since my last post. 

The last Saturday in June was the monthly spin in at RI Handspun. I brought a bag of Mr. Attitude's fleece to spin. I managed almost 2 whole bobbins.  My goal is 2000 yards of a bulky weight yarn and I'm almost there.  Just over 1500 yards are spun already.  I should be able to get it done this week.  I'm spinning at the North Stonington Fair again this year, so I hope to crank out the bulk of what is left.

Poor Boobalicious Tank is no more.  It just wasn't making me happy with the results as I knit on it.  It took a one way trip to the frog pond.  In it's place I'm knitting Buttercup.  This is a cute summer top, knit from the top down with just underarm seaming when you are finished.  The front has a bit of feather and fan across the neck/chest line.

My toe up vanilla sock also got frogged due to being too loose on my foot.  I'm restarting that soon in a size 0 needle.

I finished another dish cloth which I started on the bus trip to WEBS with my knitting group. My shopping was very conservative for me.  I bought 5 skeins of Merino/Mulberry Silk/Nylon in a fingering weight for dyeing.  I also bought 3 of the same brand already dyed up for my Color Affection Shawl.  The Color Grid card and a weaving video were my only other two items.  After subtracting the gift card I had to use, and the generous discount we were given, I only spent about $75. I should have bought more of that yarn to dye.  Oh well.  I'll be back there again soon.  I had a happy surprise the following day when I found the missing gift card from three years ago.  Now I have more money for my next trip.  :)

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Flitting About Like A Bee, A Present

This week has found me with a short attention span where my knitting projects are concerned.  As the title says, I've been flitting about like a bee from one thing to another.  My vanilla sock has increased by 2 rows.  I searched my stash unsuccessfully for yarns for two shawls.  There's only two bobbins spun toward my sweater/jacket.  The lack of spinning is also due to my still sore toe.  Other projects have seen no attention at all. 

The only project that has had any real progress is my Boobalicous Tank Top.  It was restarted for the fifth time, and appears to be progressing nicely.  The first section of pattern shaping has been finished. 

There was a project finished last week as well.  The "My Wish" Shawl is waiting for blocking.  I just haven't had a chance to do that yet.

Part of the reason for this lack of progress has been my early anniversary present.  In April or May I had mentioned to Pat that I would like to buy a Kindle Fire.  This past Saturday evening found us at Walmart and he bought it for me as part of my gift.  I've been learning how it works and downloading free apps to it. 

One of my other favorite hobbies is reading. I downloaded 3 books from my local library.  It came with a free month of Amazon Prime which also includes a lending library.  I downloaded and have been reading a book from that as well.  That should be finished this evening and I can hopefully get another book from there.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Remembering Jane

As I sit here sipping my second cup of coffee of the day, I'm thinking of my sister, Jane.  Today is her birthday.  She would have been 53 years old.  She died when she was 26. :(  I'm lucky to have many happy memories of growing up together, and, am smiling as I think of some of them today.

I think I will cast on a project in her favorite color, red, in her honor.

Happy Birthday, Janie. In my mind and heart, I am giving you a big hug.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

When Things Go Bump/Slam

The week has gotten worse.  I don't know about your bath vanity but, I swear mine was moved, even though I know it's attached to the wall.  I went to put my foot up so I could dry it off after my shower yesterday morning.  That cabinet is extremely hard, as my toe can attest to.  I slammed my foot into the darn thing.  Since I was going to the podiatrist to have an ingrown nail taken care of, I told him about it.  The x-ray showed no break. At this time, I might have a stress fracture. I'll find out when I go back in a few days for my follow up from the other toe. 

At least the bruise is a gorgeous shade of magenta and purple.  I'm going to take a picture.  Don't worry. It won't get posted here. I want it so I can dye that shade.  lol

I did re-start my tank top.  If it doesn't work this time, I'm giving up and picking another pattern. 

The wheel hasn't been touched for a couple days but I'll try to get back to it tomorrow.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Best Made Plans Can Go Awry....

I had my weekend planned out.  Everything was ready to get loaded in the car.  My back was bothering me, but I still wanted to go.  Several of my fiber friends were going to be there.  Always leave room for the unexpected/unintended to happen.

Friday found me at Eneri Knits for the monthly Sit and Knit.  My back had been yelping for a few days, but, I was trying to work through it.  This past weekend was the campout/retreat for my Happy Hands Fiber Group.  If it wasn't possible for me to tolerate the sleeping in my tent, meaning I had to drive home at night, at least I would be there for the 2 days of fun stuff.  Nope.  By the time I got home, I wasn't feel too good.  I think I caught a bug and spent Friday evening until Sunday evening home.  :(

I did do some knitting on my Boobalicious Tank Top.  It was progressing nicely. I say "was" because it's now a ball of yarn again.  Obviously, I can't count right.  I was short 10 stitches on one side of the front.  It's in timeout for now because I just can't deal with it right now. I'm going to watch a movie instead.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

A New Currents

Listening: nothing right now

Watching: the news

Eating: supper - oven fried fish, mixed veggie medley

Drinking: ice coffee

Wearing: t-shirt, shorts, slippers 

Reading: knitting blogs

Weather: overcast, cloudy

Knitting: My Wish Shawl, plain vanilla socks, dish cloths

Spinning: "Mr. Attitude" fleece on my Minstrel wheel and Fibers4Ewe fiber blend on my Sonata wheel

Wanting:  to finish spinning my current bobbin on my wheel

Needingto pick up my meds at the drug store later

Enjoying: no pain in my mouth from dental issues.  :)

Looking Forward: next weekend's Happy Hands

Wondering: if the weather will co-operate for the weekend

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Full Bobbins and Needles, Feeling Better

First, let me say Happy Memorial Day to everyone.  It's important to remember the men and women who serve or have served to keep our country safe and help us to enjoy the freedoms we have.  Bless them all. 

Saturday was the monthly spin in at RI Handspun.  I brought a big bag of  "Mr. Attitude" fiber to spin.  Since I'm spinning thicker than usual, I wasn't sure how much I could accomplish and didn't want to run out.  I filled a bobbin and a half before switching to knit on the My Wish Shawl, which I'm knitting for the Apple Blossom and Ewe Shawl KAL. 

As of this past Sunday, May 27, I have 501 yards of bulky chain plied yarn toward my sweater.  I need about 1800 yards total.  This is for the Apple Blossom and Ewe Sweater SAL/KAL.  I've found my comfort zone and am spinning the thicker singles I need with no trouble now. The first bobbin had me really concentrating on it so I wouldn't do my default thinner singles.  The sweater pattern chosen is definitely the Top Down Swing Coat #603 by Deb Gemmell.

Yesterday, Monday, found me needing a break from all the gray fiber.  I put my hand in my "next" bin and pulled out Fat Cat Knits Polwarth in the colorway "Lilacs".  This is purples, greens, and yellows.  It's dyed in a sort of gradient.  There's purples at both ends with a little bit mixed in the greens and yellows.  It's just such a happy, Spring color combo.

While at the spin in, I also ordered the heddles for my table loom.  I'm looking forward to replacing the ones that came with my loom, which I found on Craigslist last year.  I can't wait to set it up on the deck under the awning, and do some weaving on it.  :)

Healthwise, I'm feeling better.  The dentist had to remove one of my implants temporarily in order to let my mouth heal and fight the infection which was returning again.  That has since gone away, and I'm finally on the mend. The diabetes numbers are better due to that, too. Everything else is good right now. 

The animals have adapted for the most part to the loss of Katy.  Megan still wakes up meowing and looking for her, but otherwise is fine.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012


Good Bye Sweet Katy


Today was a horrendous day for my family.  My little 15 year old diabetic cat has been having seizures off and on for a couple months.  This week the occurances have increased. Today, she started having them around 11:30a.m.  I called the vet and scheduled an appointment for her final trip on Friday.  Katy kept having little tremor type seizures and then two gran mal ones back to back before 1:30.  Pat and I decided she couldn't wait until Friday, so I called the vet back and took the appointment for tonight.

By the time I got her there, she had a total of eight gran mal and several small seizures.  Luckily, she didn't have any in the car on the way there.  Five minutes after getting in the office she seized and they rushed her into the back room for tranquilizing.  I held her in my arms, wrapped in a towel, until it was time for the procedure.  Katy was starting to be dehydrated and showing other signs of renal failure.  The diabetes and it's complications had taken a toll on her little body.  She was given the the final shot and crossed Rainbow Bridge at 7 p.m.

I'll miss my little girl, but, I know it's for the best.  She's not suffering any more. Now, she can play with Samson, Tiffany, Babs, and Hanna again.

This is a picture of Katy and Megan snoozing on the rocker they used to love to sit in together. Megan is 4 months younger than Katy. They had been together their entire lives.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

A Great Day For A Blocking Party and Photos

Yesterday, Saturday, was perfect weather for me to block some finished knitting as I had planned.  Unfortunately, I went to bed very late Friday night and therefore started my Saturday much later than planned.  This resulted in me skipping my dyeing day. 

Here's some of the items I blocked and took photos of yesterday.  The washcloths and socks photos are not blocked items.  I stuffed one of the socks with a hand towel to make it stand up for the picture.  I wanted to show the lace pattern more. 










Pat took the pictures of me with the Vittorio Shawlette.










The next picture is of me trying to show the length of the shawlette. It's about 72 inches long by 18 inches from top to bottom at the center.  Some of the points got folded under but they go the entire edge.


This is the start of the "My Wish" Shawl.  I wanted a neutral colored shawl so I'm using a skein of undyed yarn and a skein of one I dyed in shades of gray. I switched from the 16" needle to a 24" last night.  This part is a simple knit that is great for group knitting and chatting.


I didn't take a picture of the other washcloth and vanilla socks on the needles.  My yarn skeins still need their baths so no pics of them yet either.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Hello Sunshine! SAL/KALs in Progress

Today was a gorgeous, perfect day weather wise.  I just didn't have time to get my blocking done.  Plans are to be up bright and early and get my knitted goodies blocked on the deck where they can dry in the sunshine and breeze.  There's the Flamboyan which needs a gentle blocking, Vittorio which needs a regular blocking, and the Kandahar socks.

Hmmm.  I might even do a bit of dyeing and put that out there too.  I'll have to see about that one.  I've had a couple color combos running around in my head.

I've been spinning some of the Mr. Attitude fleece for a sweater. I'm getting the worsted/aran weight I want in a lovely natural, silver gray color.  It will bloom a bit when soaked and be perfect.  Sarah, of the Apple Blossom & Ewe Podcast, is having a SAL from May to November in which you spin for and knit a sweater of your choice.  Since I just picked up all my luscious fiber from Liz's mill, I was all set to participate in this.

Sarah is also having a KAL from May to August in which you knit a large shawl.  Requirements are that it be between 650 and 1500 yards. Last night found me finally starting "My Wish" by Laura Linneman.  I was going to attempt "In Dreams" by Susan Pandorf but don't think I could have finished it in time. 

Diane of the Knitabulls Podcast is having a washcloth KAL for the month of May. So far, I've knit four and plan to try to get at least two more done.

Come check out the links and SAL/KALs, and join us on Ravelry if you want.  There's still plenty of time to spin or knit for these items.

Monday, May 07, 2012

Re-Assessing Goals and Intentions For 2012

Remember New Year's Day and all the good intentions/goals I made?  Yeah, epic fail for most of them so far.  This is why I don't make resolutions.  Here's a re-cap.


1. Continue on my "get healthier" path.  This hasn't been so great due to the dental issues which caused other health issues.  The weight is doing a yo-yo thing but it's down a bit.

2. Work on a walking regime. Pat needs to set up my treadmill so I can use it in the basement.  Still waiting on the treadmill. Now that it's nicer out, I can try to walk in the neighborhood.

3. Spin/Knit down at least one bin of each in my stash.  This is has had a bit of accomplishment.  I've spun quite a bit so far this year with only a few new enhancements.  My fiber did come back from the mill last week, but since it was already here in fleece form, I'm not counting it as a new addition.  Yarn, umm, not so good. I went on the retreat, adding 5 skeins to the bin.  Three of them have already been used as well as quite a few stash skeins for projects.  The other two will be used next for the mitts, which was the retreat project.

4. Finish knitting my old UFO/WIP sweater from 2009, which I'm making with my handspun.  Not touched yet. :(

5. Finish spinning the yarn for my second handspun sweater and knit it.  Nothing done here either.  :(

6. Use my handspun either in knitting, crochet, felting, or weaving instead of just looking at it.  Accomplishment! I knit my Dragonfly Wings Shawl all with my handspun.

7. Use my spindles instead of letting them decorate the shelf in the hutch of my desk.  Small success here. I took a spindle on the retreat and did use it for a bit.  One other day was also spent with a spindle for a while.

8. Use both my looms which includes investing the time in proper lessons. Nope.  Nada.  I've watched a few instructional videos. There's a warp wound. Does that count?

I'll try to be better in the next few months in regards to meeting my goals.  Now that the warm weather is here, I think it will be easier to do many of them. 

How are you doing with your intentions/goals so far this year?

Monday, April 30, 2012

Another "Currents"

Listening: Daughtry CD

Watching:  "fluff" movies (comedy romance)

Eating: waffles a couple hours ago

Drinking: cold coffee

Wearing: white t shirt and purple pants

Reading: re-reading one of my V.C. Andrews books.

Weather: partial sun, partial clouds

Knitting Vittorio scarf

Wanting: dental issues to be resolved

Needing: more hours in a day lol

Enjoying: the quiet of the neighborhood before the kids get home from school

Looking Forward: finishing my current spinning project

Wondering:  if I will go to MA Sheep & Wool this year.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Fiber Explosion!

Yesterday, Friday, a trip to Putnam, CT to the Fibers4Ewe Mill meant coming home with 5 bags of soft, squishy, luscious processed fiber to spin.  It's looked like an explosion when I brought them in the house.  lol  The picture is outside my door in the drive after I got them out of the car.

The 5 bags are:  Cria Alpaca/Merino blend, White Border Leicester/Mohair blend, Black Border Leicester, Polypay, and Merino.  The black Romney hoggett and 3/4 of a huge Coopworth fleece are still at the mill, waiting for processing.

After bringing these home, I decided to skip the CT Sheep & Wool Festival today.  I don't need anything.  Plus, thanks to still not feeling 100% terrific, I didn't really have the incentive to go this year.

I've been knitting on my Vittorio scarf and have a little over 1/3 of it finished.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Currents

Listening: Kitty snores and Pooh begging for a treat (he just had one)

Watching: Just finished Wolfe Farms Podcast

Eating:   nothing now

Drinking: hot homemade mocha coffee

Wearing:  gray t-shirt, red slacks, brown clogs

Reading:  a knitting pattern

Weather:  cloudy with showers off and on

Knitting:  Flamboyan shawl, Vittorio scarf, Kandahar sock

Wanting:  Finish the Flamboyan shawl tonight

Needing:  to get ready to go to Weight Watchers

Enjoying:  Pooh's doggie antics

Looking Forward:  either the CT Sheep & Wool Festival or Sue's spin in, depending on the weather and what I decide

Wondering:  will the scale be nice to me tonight?

Saturday, April 21, 2012

The Four S's ~ Shawl, Scarf, Socks, & Spinning

Shawl:  Flamboyan is almost finished. I've got about 2.5 inches of edging plus the bind off to go. It's actually too big to spread out on the needles now.  The pattern called for 400 yards of each color, so I had to buy 3 skeins of each.  I did add about 3 inches to the center part to make it a bit bigger. I really wanted to use as much of the skein as I could.  The ball in the picture is skein 2 which I started the edging with. The left overs will become my first pair of 2 color socks with different color ribbing, heels, and toes.


Scarf: Vittorio has been cast on and looks great in the Koigu yarn.  It's a fun, interesting knit and is moving right along. Again, I have more than enough for this project, but I don't plan to alter the pattern and make it longer.


Socks:  Kandahar saw a tiny bit of love this week.  Sock 1 has been finished for over a month.  I'm about halfway through the first 16 row pattern repeat on the leg of Sock 2. 

Spinning:  Braid #2 of my "Autumn Rainbow" has been spun for a bit. Last Sunday found me spinning a pretty turquoise/teal green to use as the third ply.  It will be my first true 3 ply. Usually, I just Navajo ply to get a 3 ply, but I've been trying to broaden my spinning experiences lately.  It's a good thing I have the jumbo flyer on my Sonata wheel since this is now a 6 ounce fiber project.

My Minstrel currently is home to some lovely pinky purple fiber from Fibers 4 Ewe.  I had spun some of this fiber a couple years ago and was lucky enough to get more last year.  I liked Fibernymph's idea to spin something old then something new, so I'm copying it.  My "old" fiber is anything before 2011.

My "I Love Fred" yarn is here.  It will become my first self striping socks with an afterthought heel.


I did add a bit of fiber to the stash when I caught a Loop update recently. "Smitten" and "Surfs Up" screamed "pick me!" when I saw them.


The mouth is feeling much better, but, still giving me some issues.  My diabetes has been a little out of whack lately thanks to the previous infection.  This is causing everything to heal a bit slower than it should.  My dentist is pleased with my progress and I have another follow up in a couple weeks. I hope it's the last one. :)

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Yay! For Finished Projects!

Here's a couple pics of my latest finished projects as they are blocking. 

Dragonfly Wings Shawl  in my handspun: 


Cashmere Scarf in Jojoland Cashmere:


Now I just need to finish my Flamboyan before the end of the month and my second Kandahar sock.  I haven't touched that in a month.  There's also some plying to get done.  I decided to ply a true 3 ply with the two highly colored singles I recently finished and a complementary solid color.

It's been a rough week medically for me.  I've been dealing with some issues after the dental surgery including a lot of pain.  Today I had a visit with my endo and he upped my insulin again because my bloodwork was a bit high due to the antibotics, pain meds, and dental infection I was fighting lately.  He might lower it if I start having too many low glucose readings.

Due to this, I really haven't done as much knitting or spinning as I would have liked.

Friday, April 06, 2012

Knitting Retreat, Learning Cables, & Finishing Projects

Last Friday and Saturday were spent with some of the lovely ladies from the Ocean State Knit and Crochet Guild.  We had a retreat in Plymouth, MA, which included lots of yarn store hopping, a class on cabled fingerless mitts, delicious food and so much laughter and sharing.  We stayed at the Cold Creek Best Western.  The motel is super clean and the staff extremely friendly and helpful.

Some yarn found it's way home with me, too.  The first yarn shop, The Black Purls, found me buying some Happy Feet in two complementary colors to knit Flamboyan by Stephen West.  I've been wanting to do some color work and this fits the bill.  It's my project for Knitabull's KAL this month. 

After visiting this shop, we all headed over to Dunbar's Tea Room for a wonderful lunch.  I think it was one of my favorite parts of the weekend. 

From the tea room, we went to the Wool Pack.  They had a clearance bin where I found some lovely Berroco Jasper in a variegated purple.  I bought this to use in the fingerless mitts class Saturday morning. Dinner was once again at the East Bay Grille.  I had a baked scrod and artichoke dish. Yummy. The evening was spent knitting before we all retired to our rooms for the night.  I managed to finish my Dragonfly Shawl during the knitting time.

Saturday found us working on the mitts, then having a nice lunch provided by the motel, and the final yarn shop visit.  Fancie Purls found me buying some tote bags, stitch markers, and a couple of other little things. After that we went back and knit until it was time to go home.  I got a bit more done on my Cashmere Scarf during this knitting time.  I finished this project last night.  Pictures need to be taken of both items when I block them. 

 








This was my second year attending and I am looking forward to going again next year.  I wish it was a bi-annual event.  (hint, hint to Ginny)  lol.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Can't Say I'm Bored With My Projects

As I mentioned in a previous post recently, I've had the "ooo! shiny!" mentality.  Maybe it's Spring Fever.  I've made progress on most items.  Here's a picture of my Dragonfly Wings Shawl by Boo Knits, and a close up of the beading in it. 











The third picture is of the shawl and my Kandahar sock.  As I was knitting on the sock, I realized the colors in that yarn were very similar to the colors in my shawl yarn.  I can wear them together!


The next picture is of the Cashmere Lace Scarf progress.  According to the pattern, there should be 25 repeats of the 16 row pattern.  Since I tend to knit looser, I think I will end up with 24 repeats instead.  It's a nice pattern and not hard to knit.


The final yarn picture is some Enchanted Knoll Superwash I've had in the stash for a few years.  I plan to take it with me on the retreat and start a pair of Plain Vanilla socks with it. 


Here's a picture of the FatCatKnits "Tapestry" fiber I'm spinning.  The first four ounces is finished and about an ounce of the second four is done. Today found me sitting on the deck spinning on this for about an hour.   I hope to get it finished and plied by next weekend.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Currents

Listening - the hum of the computer and animal snores

Eating - nothing right now

Drinking - French Vanilla Ice coffee

Wearing - Sweatpants, t-shirt, and leopard slippers

Reading - not anything except a couple of knitting patterns

Weather - dark and cool right now. It's 11:45 p.m.

Knitting - cashmere scarf, a pair of socks, a beaded shawl and the darn sweater

Wanting - to finish that darn sweater

Needing - to take my meds and call it an early night

Enjoying - feeling better after having a cold

Looking Forward - sitting on the deck now the nice weather is here

Wondering - which projects to take on the knitting retreat in a couple weeks

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Knitted Wire Bracelets,Winning a Prize, Distractions

This past Thursday was my monthly knit guild meeting, and we had a guest instructor.  Donna from The Beads and More shop in Cranston, RI taught us how to knit with wire and beads.  It was a bit fiddly at first and had a bit of a learning curve involved for me.  I was working my stitches a bit too tight. This is ironic since I'm usually a loose knitter.  My resulting bracelet is in very pretty shades of blue with hints of silver beads and silver wire.  Once I loosened up my stitches, it was a fun to do. 

There hasn't been any progress on my Dragonfly Wings Shawl lately.  I've been busy with the Kandahar socks and finished the first one.  The ribbing and a few rows of the leg is done on the second one as well.

Yesterday, Friday, was the monthly knit and tell at Eneri Knits in Exeter, RI. Irene always has door prizes during this event.  I won a lovely skein of Malabrigo Lace in a pretty pink shade called "Molly".

I decided to bring my socks and the stuff for my cashmere scarf to work on. I forgot the needles for the scarf so I was going to buy another size 4. When I knit the first 2 rows I knew it was too loose, so I'm knitting it on a size 3. At least I didn't waste the money on needles I wouldn't be able to use.  I had a size 3 16-inch circular needle at home and they are working perfectly.

Tomorrow, Sunday, is Happy Hands.  I'll be bringing my Sonata wheel.  The second 5 ounces of Shetland will accompany me so I can ply it using the Jumbo Flyer, resulting in a nice, big skein.  I'm also bringing the current bobbin on my Minstrel, which has some FatCatKnits Falkland in "Tapestry" in progress.  This is gorgeous stuff.  I think it will be mitts and a hat for next winter.  My knitting bag with the three projects might get tossed in as well. 

I've got the "ooo!shiny!" mentality lately.  Otherwise known as easily distracted from one project to another.  An example of this would be the scarf.  It wasn't suppose to be cast on until I finished the Dragonfly Wings Shawl and my never ending sweater.  Oh well. At least I didn't cast on the other 4 items screaming at me for attention right now.