Sunday, April 30, 2006

When I'm sitting, I'm knitting...

And my favorite spot is under the trees in my backyard at sunrise! If I could be out there everyday, I would be. If not working in the garden, then knitting ... Spring is just the beginning ...

Today is a little cool, but sunny enough to still sit outside. The flower pots are ready ... buuuut it's heavenly and peaceful out here, so I think I'll just sit and knit ...

Friday, April 28, 2006

An added tibit ...

The is back. Not everyone will enjoy this but it is
nature closeup...
a nest of two baby redtail hawks in Cambridge, MA

I watched the babies grow up in 2004 and it's nice to see a new family available for our viewing again this year. Beware that the Dad & Mom do bring food to the nest ... their menu consists of mice, squirrels and other tibits of meat. Thought you might find it interesting to learn about tho!

Lots to do this weekend ...

Well our cherry tree is in full bloom in our backyard this week. That means I have to get out to knit in the backyard this weekend if I want to also enjoy the view. I do love my tree! I want to pick up some thistle for the yellow finches first so that they can be feeding while I sit on the patio to watch & listen while I knit. Yup, this is my favorite spot to knit in the spring thru the summer and even into the fall. I just love my backyard! If it's nice, I might even plant a few flowers before I sit down to knit ...

This all will happen AFTER I get my first sheep felted. That way he can be drying over the weekend. I have a couple of other WIP's I'm working on also. Oh, and I did get my socks done finally. Remember the ones I've been working on while on the train? I'm wearing them now and they are very comfortable.

The past few days have been a busy one at work, but I did take a break for some fun. One of our knitters danced at MIT's Earth Day event and I was sure to be there to see her dance.

[by the way ... I'm using a new camera & the date & time are NOT right.]

Our knitter/dancer is Nadira of Boston ... dressed in blue

If only I could dance like she does or like Sabrina of Boston, who danced before her. Whoa, they were good!! Of course they've been doing it for years but ...

Aaaaah, to be young and beautiful again! Okay, enough dreaming ... I'd rather be where I am now and knitting right?

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

I've joined a movement!

Clothesknit says ...
"In the spirit of celebrating our stashes no matter how large or small they may be, I encourage stash pride."

At last ... a movement I can commit too!

And it will be EASssssY!!

Want to show your pride?
You can find a button on the Stash Pride from Clothesknit page.

BTW, can I blame Cynthia for getting me hooked?
As she so amply says ...

"Vive la revolution!"

Stashing as I please ... and loving it!

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Spring is here!

Wow, what a time I've had with Blogger. They had to get help to fix the glicht it was in I guess. Hopefully, all is fixed now.

I had just a little to say from the weekend anyway ... such as enjoying the flowers in my backyard finally. Only, it was too cold to sit out there long. Our Cherry tree should be in full bloom this coming weekend. I sure hope it's nice enough to have a small cookout or at least sit out and knit under the trees.

I got the yoga mat bag from Knitty finished for my sister. I'll be sending it out as a "Congratulations on your 6 Month Anniversary of Non-smoking!" gift. I didn't have a normal size yoga mat [mine is fat like me, lol] ... so I put my tripod inside to take this picture. Fit good, but it was too heavy (the tripod) so I couldn't show it slung over my shoulder.

Anyway, I thought it came out nice ... I think I'll make one for myself. This one is in acrylic yarn but I'll make mine in cotton/acrylic blend.

Now I've got to finish my herd of sheep ... happy knitting!

Friday, April 21, 2006

The Yarn Harlot was here.

A group of us from M.I.T.'s SnB group went to the book signing held by Porter Square Books

Originally uploaded by erin m..
with The Yarn Harlot as their guest. Here we are with our trusty knits in hand ... well most of us. Thanks to Erin the Local Egg for these great pictures ... that's her on the far left at the end ... or rather from your right as you look at the picture. Next to her is Marina, Rhonda [yup, that's me], Mafia, Danielle and Christine Liu.

What fun! I'm so glad I went ...

I couldn't stay to the end [had a train to catch], so I didn't get in the last picture, but another in our group, Jessica wasn't in the 1st shot-- but got in the last one. And of course there's Stephanie Pearl-McPhee herself also. The Pied Piper of Knitters ...

Originally uploaded by erin m..

And she was kind enough to autograph ALL three of my books before the event began!

Yarn Harlot, you rock!!

* Note how she validated my knitting obsession ...

Thursday, April 20, 2006

The "Pied Piper" of Knitters,

Stephanie Pearl-McPhee the "Yarn Harlot" will be at Porter Square Books today 4:30 to 6:00 and you better believe I will be there. But how could I forget my camera? I did remember to put all three of her books [to convince or twist her arm into signing all 3 for me] into my giant briefcase shoulder-bag . But how did I forget to but my camera in? It's sometimes like my 3rd hand ... always there for the next opportune shot.

I had to spend time this morning switching my stuff & the books from my backpack to the briefcase. I had to do it because I have an awful problem with my right shoulder [suffered thru a cortisone shot just yesterday] and need to keep any undo pressure off of it. Believe me, 3 books in the bag can be a lot of pressure. So naturally I forgot something. I do have a camera phone, but lol I don't know how to download pictures from it. I guess I will just have to take a few pics to keep on my phone & enjoy the memory of the event that way.

Ah, but the terrific knitters of the M.I.T. S'nB group will be there also and a few have offered to share their pictures with me. [oh thank you, thank you, thank you] In fact, I'm riding over with a few of them.
This is going to be so fun! See you there ...
"You knit too much when . . . You will check out a book from the library just because you heard that one of the characters knits." At Knit's End by Stephanie Pearl-McPhee
Or in my case, you buy the book. Yeegads, don't tell the DH!!

Saturday, April 15, 2006

Tools of the trade ...

Okay, I was shopping online again. I bought what I've been wanting a long time ... Interchangeable Circular Bamboo Knitting Needle Set. I got it from WEBS and received it in the mail yesterday. Can't wait to put them to good use!

I have the Denise Interchangeable Circular Needle Set and they're nice for certain types of yarn and knitting, but I'm not crazy about plastic. Or maybe it's just that I don't like the slower speed I get from them. I use my set of Needlemaster on occasion also. When it has the right feel for the yarn that I'm using and it's right for the item that I'm knitting.

It may seem over indulgent to have so many sets of knitting needles BUT I think it's a matter of having CHOICES. It all depends on the project, the yarn and the feel of the
two together which determines which needle set is used. And then there's of course, the fact that I may (??) have more than one project on a set of needles at any one time. I then have a spare to start another project, right? And I may then continue to be productive. (??) As long as the WIP's don't sit too long on the needles, hey!

But for me, it's all about having the choice and I really do love the feel of wood/bamboo needles. Feels good in my hands and I love to knit with them. That's why I replaced most of my aluminun straight needles with bamboo already! But I don't have all of the sizes yet.

So my shopping may have to continue ...

Friday, April 14, 2006

Warming Grace Update ...

I've completed some squares and they'll be off in the mail today. I made four in cotton from yarn donated by Gurukarm at MIT and then I made two from a Hot Pink wool I found in my own stash. Got the postcards yesterday [compliments of my DH ... doing his part he says.] So they're all set to go. [Posted ... see ya in Canada!]
On to other knitting ...
I started knitting a sheep to be felted & stuffed ... I just thought it was such a cute think to knit. But unfortunately ... I ran out of the Plymouth Galway Chunky wool. I had to place an order from Patternworks in the middle of the night. What would I do if it wasn't for the Internet? I'd be rich from all the money I'd save, I suppose, huh? Oh yah, I got the pattern and wool yarn from Patternworks. I had made a guess on how much yarn I would need. Guessed wrong! But only by a few yards. He's almost done with just 2 inside legs and seaming. So I bought enough to make a second ewe. Might as well as make a flock of 'em, huh? Got some grey Lopi to make a 3rd. I can only hope they felt up nice... ah yes, wool does like to be felt! Oh I think I better check to see if I have enough stuffing also ... don't want my sheep skinny ... back to shopping ...

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Saga of the blue sweater that GREW continues ...

Is it finished yet? Well maybe I can at least show my face when I wear it, huh?

Okay, here it is. Washed in warm water and dryed in a dryer. It did felt a little and considering it was WAY too big for me before, this isn't bad. Only have to roll the sleeves up once now. The back isn't bad either, but looking at this 2nd picture, you might think otherwise.

But that's only because of the way I'm holding it open. What do you think?Should I leave well enough alone now? Or should I give it one more washing? It is really nice & cozy right now and I'll wear it around the house at LEAST. But then I might want it a little more fitted to wear to work. M-m-m-m, but I have to be careful ... unless I loose some more weight around my middle, it might not fit me if it shrinks too much.
Dicey decisions here, hey?

Yesterday I also got my delivery from Kpixie. Eight Allhemp3 . cinnamon and 1 Allhemp3 . dusty rose. I thought about using the dusty rose for a lacy scarf maybe.

and the cinnamon for a short sleeve sweater like this only maybe one from out of the book, Classic Knits for Real Women. My body is a little more "real" than Knit & Tonic's who is not only younger & thinner but perhaps more real for the lucky few. Pretty too!

I think I'm going to like this yarn once I figure out what I had planned on knitting with it ...

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

If I'm sitting, I'm knitting ...

I was sitting and knitting a square for Warming Grace, when I looked up and glanced over at the picture of DH when he was only 18. The man of my dreams is in that picture ... sorry I didn't know him way back when, although I have the best of him now. Looks a little like "James Dean" doesn't he? LOL, but I'm sure some of you don't even know who that was! I also treasure the knitting tin sitting on my bookcase next to his picture. It belonged to my Grandmother Clark. The only one who knit. My Great-grandmother Brown crocheted and my other Grandmother Hendrickson was a pencil artist & decorator with paints ... all of which I do myself. Drawing not so much anymore, since stitching has taken over my life. I loved "hanging out" at different times with each of these women in my life as I was growing up. I miss them all! In fact, my sincere wish was to be as good a grandmother (NO -- a terrific grammy) as each of them were. They each brought something special into my life and the way I now reflect on it.

Well that was a nostalgic moment... back to knitting my socks. These are for the summer and I have one more to go! Boy, Grammy Clark would be so proud to know I knit these myself!

Monday, April 10, 2006

What kind of yarn are you?

Would you have guessed that I'm Baby Alpaca?

What Kind of Yarn are You?

Baby AlpacaYou are beautiful and soft, if sometimes a little difficult. Nothing but the best for you, etc. Quality, but out of the league for the rabble.
Take this quiz!

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Sunday, April 09, 2006

Saturday mail call was like ... a holiday delivery ...

Had a lot to do yesterday but didn't get it all done! And today my stomach is bent out of shape just like this spoon!


yesterday was a great day for mail delivery. I got a bunch of neat little goodies and had such fun opening them all. So I've got to at least put pictures of those up today for all to see.

First of all, I receive the beaded row counter that I won in JulieLoves2Knit "Let's get orgainized" event. I just love the color of the beads and the elaphant charm on the end is a lovely touch. Thanks so much Julie!

Then a stuffed manilla envelope came with the preceeding goodies inside ...

These are from Sammie in Florida ... she knows I like to knit, crochet & cross stitch, so I think she covered all bases, hehe. Don't know about that red dress pin tho, m-m-m-m-m. Is she trying to tell me something? Little mints come in the 2 tins and when they're empty they will make nifty holders for markers. On the top it says, "knitting girl". Cute! Included are a couple of rubber stamps, one says, "If I'm sitting, I'm knitting." That's me alright.

Hey it's YOUR birthday not mine, Sam! Well your package will be going out soon ... and it's filled with goodies too. Happy Birthday, Sam!!

Got two more postcards made by Sam as well ... made with wool felt ... m-m-m-m, I love the feel of these ... reminds me of something ...

Friday, April 07, 2006

And it grew ...and grew ... and grew ...

Look at those sleeves ... Okay the whole body is huge but the sleeves are made for a orangutan. They are LONG!! They grew in the wash and blocking didn't make them go back into shape. And they're equally long at the same length. I hear that this happens to everyone at least once... Goodness, I guess it had to happen to me sooner or later. ** I was getting too cocky in my haughty knitting ways. Had to be put in my place right?**

I did wear my creation the whole day at work yesterday ... as frumpy as it looked on me, I wore it anyway ... guess you could say it was my retribution, but I did roll up the sleeves one more time. I then got advise from my expert knitter friend, Tony. He said to go ahead and throw it in the wash & dryer. "Shrinking it would help in this case," he said.
LOL, do you think?

I know what you're thinking ...
Was it the yarn?
This was my 2nd sweater using this yarn. Which I won't name because I don't think it was the yarn's fault since it didn't happen on my first sweater. Was it the gauge? I swatched, washed & blocked it. Measured it twice & got the correct gauge twice. Or was it the directions? Well both sleeves were knit following the same directions because after the 1st one was done the instructions said to go back & make the 2nd sleeve using the same pattern. So I did follow it TWICE and like I said, the sleeves are equally long at the same length ...
you be the judge
... I am marking this info in the book margins so I might make adjustments if I knit this one again. [or I might find where I made my mistake a 2nd time around] It'll save someone else from making the same mistake as well. In other words, I'm not trusting the directions were entirely correct ... but then maybe I just knit one size too big for me, huh? Ya sure.

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Just a little update ...

Moving along with my organization
from last week ...

The cedar lined bench was delivered. No time to open the box or put it together right now tho. Might have to wait until Saturday morning before I go get the groceries. DH is refinishing the window sills also and hopefully the bedroom ones are done before I get this sucker put together & put under the window.

I received another postcard from my friend, Sammie in Naples, FL. She's having fun making these quilt style postcards. Actually, I have just as much fun receiving them!

This one looks a lot like her own little cottage style house.... Cute, Sam! A self-sticking postcard stamp can be put on these to mail thru the post office too.

Well back to the life of a working knitter.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Some thanks and a new group project ...

First I want to thank Julie for the prize she's sending on its way to me ...

I signed up for JulieLoves2Knit "Lets Get Organized" group and won the beaded row counter for circular knitting [which she made]. Take a look at the one she had made for herself. I just love it! And can't wait to get mine. Of course, she told me once that they were easy to make and I could easily make one too ... BUT since I never had the time to make one of my own, what could be better than WINNING?? Huh? I tell ya, Julie it'll be much more special to me because YOU made it! Thanks again.

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I can't resist doing something for a little girl. And since it's knitting for a sick little girl, I'm in! Grace just had a birthday and her Auntie Cindy would like to organize something special for her. Isn't she just a doll [as well as her little sister]! If anyone else who sees this, would like to join in, sign up with ... Two Wooden Stick and a Ball of Wool.

Cynthia would like to make her a blanket for her trips to the hospital for treatments and when she has her chemo at home also. She's thinking of pink squares, any range of pink. 5" squares. This little girl loves all shades of pink & flowers. If Cynthia gets enough squares, she will also make another blanket to donate to another young girl fighting cancer.

Hope she gets LOTS of pink squares!

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

So what's up?

As sweet as the DH can be, while we were out to dinner last night he casually said, "Oh ya I noticed the sweater you have on the ironing board was wet, so I threw it into the dryer for you." ...
*pregnant pause* ...
[we're talking about a 100% wool sweater here.] "Did I do good?" ... of course he couldn't resist giving me a grin. So I asked, "Do you have your life insurance paid up?" Oh that funny man!

While the blue cardigan sweater in blocking, I'm working on a sock as usual. It's the best train traveling project to have in my bag and keeps me occupied while getting into work.

This one is being knit up with Cascade Yarns Fixation, a Cotton Elastic blend. The sock is coming out nice, but I'm not so sure I enjoy knitting with this yarn. Wool has a much better feel on the hands I think.

Notice that I knit my socks from the toe up with two circular size one needles. I love the fact that I can try on my sock as many times as I want without loosing a stitch. It's encouraging to see how much I've got done as I go also. I still have the other sock to make and I would do both at the same time ... IF it didn't take any concentration ... but train knitting has to be simple knitting for this knitting to keep me happy.

Some blue yarn still left after knitting both the sweater and the scarf, so I'm creating a headband with it. For those cool, but not too cold mornings, waiting for the train. The station is down by the canal in Salem and the wind can be chilly blowing across the water. Just might enjoy having a light headband in my bag to pull out on those mornings.

So the knitting beat goes on ...