Friday, January 26, 2007


I can finally post photos again! I can finally post photos again! I can finally post photos again!

I didn't realize how hard it would be to blog without my camera, but this last month has definitely been a challenge and I have no intention of leaving it behind anywhere ever again after the past few weeks without it. So, a photo heavy post. Because I can.

I'm not going to post the remnant Christmas photos, but the album is here if you want to see Christmas with my family.

As for the month of January, I started the year with a little colorwork and got through half a manresa legwarmer. I've set it aside because a couple of my floats near the top are a little tight and I can't pull it up as high as I probably should be able too... so I'm debating between manipulating the floats throughout and working the slack back up to that area, frogging it and starting over making sure that end stays loose, or just letting it go and wearing them slouched. I'm leaning towards frogging to the color join and starting over.

While that's been sitting on the back burner, I've made some progress on the second Regia cotton sock, I'm about halfway through the foot now and it gets a few more rows every few days. I'm eager to get them finished, but the cotton seems to dry out my already dry winter hands.

I also used my Michaels gift card from Mike's parents to get yarn for my brother's scarf. I took Jody's suggestion and picked up the Patons SWS in the Natural Blue colorway. I'm really enjoying working with this yarn, although I did find a couple knots in the first skein, and I'm about 2/3s through the second skein so far. I bought 4, and I'm knitting it in the simple one-row pattern Stephanie posted back in October.

In addition, I cast on and am halfway through the second repeat of the leg chart for my first Pomatomus sock. The pictures aren't fully accurate representing the color, it's a really lovely varigated merino in several shades between pink, magenta and purple that I think I got off of ebay last spring.

The last thing I worked on this last month was my first FO of the year, the jaywalkers out of the yarn I dyed with kool-aid from my secret pal in December. This was my second attempt at this pattern, and the first that was successful. I will be making these again with the yarn I made the first attempt with, I'll just use the larger stitch count again the next time. I've already worn them and washed them twice since I finished them last weekend and a finished pair of socks is always good motivation to finish the other socks on the needles. These will also be my Socktopia January "Celebrate Good Times!" themed socks because I celebrated every part of the process of making these socks and have definitely been celebrating the results.

Sunday, January 21, 2007


I love my grandmother, but sometimes she frustrates me to no end. I would love to be under the impression that my elders would teach me that childish behaviors go away as we age.

So, you'll recall I gifted a purse to grandma that made her cry, and gifted another to Aunt Betty (grandma's sister). Same pattern, one has a flower the other has bamboo handles. Both came out lovely and were well received, initially.

It festered for a few weeks, but earlier today my grandmother was on the phone with my mom whining about the damn flower. Betty got a flower, she wants one too.

I really thought that a woman in her 70's might possibly be mature enough to have moved beyond the "mine has to be just like or better than my sisters" whine.

The sad thing is, I'm not sure what is worse. The disappointment that she would have that response despite any maturity that should be there, or the fact that I knew that that response was inevitably going to happen and I still made the purses different.

So, as much as I hate obligation knitting, there will be one spite filled felted flower in my future. In mauve please. Glad you have learned how to show your appreciation in such a mature manner.

First FO of the year

There is a pair of finished jaywalkers on my feet and I'm going to sleep now. You'll have to be patient and wait til I get my camera back next weekend for photos though. Sorry.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007


I may be leaning a little too heavilly on the sock yarn isn't stash rule. I might have maybe sorta ordered seven skeins of it in the last week *cringe*.

Two skeins from WhiteWillow. One of which is destined for my secret pal's last package and the other will probably become a pair of Monkey socks for mom. Two sympathy endorsement skeins of Socks that Rock following their banking debacle last week. Then today I camped the update at Sunshine Yarns and got a single skein of one of her solids, and also camped the update at Sundara and got two skeins from her too.

So, um... yeah... I might have to think about closing that loophole or at least imposing a limit on it.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Still Camera-less

My camera is still residing at my parents house. I may dig out my old digicam if I get desperate, but for the time being I'm just stuck referencing old photos. So, a little bit of randomness today.

If I did have my camera, you could ooh and ahh over an almost complete first jaywalker out of my kool-aid dyed yarn. And my almost complete second blue and khaki sock. (I'd show you photos of the yarn and the first sock again, but blogger is being a pain today). I'm also half-finished with the first Manresa legwarmer.

But, since I can't post photos of the stuff I'm working on, I'll point your attention to the new KALs I've joined over ----> there.

Project Spectrum 2.0 looks like it'll be a lot of fun, and it was fun reading all the stuff going on with the first version. I like the non-structured nature of Lolly's KALs in general anyways and color direction is just vague enough to work for me.

Soctopia is a little more directed, but I'm hoping to up my sock production this year anyways, and a pair of socks a month directed towards a theme or three isn't such a bad thing.

Holiday Headstart is a good place to keep the holidays in focus through out the year and hopefully have a second year of successful holiday knits that are finished on time or early.

The one I haven't added a link to yet is Lime & Violet's Sock Marathon. I haven't done the math yet to figure out just how many miles of sock yarn I have in my stash and I obviously can't post a photo right now, but it's another way to stay focused on finishing some socks and making a dent in the stash this year.

The other random thing I have to share has to do with my friend Craig. He has a little too much free time on his hands and not nearly enough creative outlets. So, as a revenge prank to get his friend back for stealing the baby jesus out of his holiday display, he turned his friend's front lawn from this into this. It even got a write up in the local paper. If you can't read the sign in that second photo, the paper mis-quoted it. It says "Jeff's Slightly Used X-mas Trees". I think that one will go down in the history books. I'm still shaking my head and laughing every time I think about it.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Some Assistance Please

My little brother was the only member of my immediate family who didn't receive a handknit for Christmas and my mom suggested that maybe I should make him a scarf for his birthday in February and I'm thinking this is a good idea, but I have some concerns and I'm hoping the handful of people who occasionally stumble on my blog might be able to offer some yarn suggestions (preferably something I have in stash, since I'm trying the whole knit from stash thing, but since it'd be for a gift, i'd be willing to use an exception or my Michael's gift card to aquire something else).

Concern #1 - my little brother is 6'7". If I go with the scarf length = person's height, that's one freakishly long scarf. So really fine guage yarns are pretty much out of the question if I want to dream of finishing something ever. I didn't do the height thing with dad's scarf and it still looks good at the length it is, but I think a longer one would be better for Adam.

Concern #2 - while they aren't bad now, my brother did have a lot of animal allergies as a kid. So I don't know how sensative he is to animal fiber content in a scarf. A plant-based fiber or animal/acrylic blend is probably best, although I could potentially use up some 100% acrylic too.

Concern #3 - he overheats easilly. He went to college way up in the upper tip of the Upper Peninsula of Michigan and currently lives in Minnesota, and yet I know that even in a very cold environment he often doesn't zip up his coat when going outside for short periods of time. And ANY time he's active no matter the temperature, the boy is drenched in sweat. So this points me more in the non-animal-based fibers direction.

So, if you wanted to make a super long minimal-animal-ish scarf for someone who overheats easilly, what yarn would you use?

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

The way I figure it...

I got to delay Christmas by a week, so I should be allowed to delay New Years by a week too. Or at least until the Christmas chocolate is all gone and I have a chance to go to the grocery store. I didn't do too horribly with the weight thing over the holidays, but I do need to get back on track and progress in the good direction again.

We had a great Christmas this year though, and I should have a zillion photos of happy family members receiving their handknit gifts, but I brilliantly left my camera at my parents house in the mad dash to pack everything up and head home on Sunday afternoon. So, no photos of Amber with her purse, or dad in his new coat with the scarf, or mom picking through her doll clothes or wearing her new socks, or Aunt Betty gushing over her purse. Not until I get back to visit and get the camera back again anyways.

There was one other handmade gift that mom and I were scrambling to get finished before Saturday morning, we put together a scrapbook of wedding photos for my brother and his wife. I had the last of the pages done around 1am, found the page protectors, found that the pages didn't fit in the page protectors and mom and I were up until almost 3 trimming the pages to fit. Fortunately, it was worth the work to finish it and it came out beautifuly. Not that I didn't contemplate giving them a binder, some page protectors and the pages and letting them figure out how to make it all fit.

We were able to totally surprise several members of my family with Mike being here, and gave his mom a good shock when we got back to town as well and it was wonderful to be able to spend New Years Eve with my guy.

All in all, a great holiday weekend.

Knitting wise, I made a stop at Threadbear on Friday night (still 2006) and picked up some needles, and my last yarn purchace before the great Knit from your Stash 2007 started. I do have one of my own rules that I'm adding, otherwise I'll be adhering to the rules Wendy has established. I am allowed to use the Michael's gift card I got from Mike's parents for yarn if I choose to, but not beyond the limit of the gift card.

When Rob was working the checkout at Threadbear, he refered to the Collinette Jitterbug skein that I picked up as "Sex on Sticks" and mentioned that he's on his 5th pair with the yarn already. It's lovely, and I can't wait to use it, I picked it up in the Marble colorway. I also got a skein of Cherry Tree Hill sock yarn in Rose Garden, and two skeins of Bartlett Farms yarn in a heathery green. That's going to have to sustain me into 2007 for several months... fortunately, there's the sock yarn isn't stash rule, so I'm totally going to The Fold when I'm back in the Chicago area in February.

As for the projects listed in that last post? I cast on Manresa last night and I'm through 10 rows of the chart so far. My tension is a little wonky, but not too bad and it's definitely seeming more difficult to strand in the round then it was back and forth for that little doll sweater, but I'm starting to get the hang of it, I'm loving how the inside looks and the pattern is starting to emerge on the outside too. I've also advanced the second khacki and blue cotton sock to the point where I can put a heel on it, and I cast on the first Jaywalker in the Kool-Aid yarn with the larger size stitch count.