Monday, March 17, 2008

Go ahead and laugh

Look what I cast on!

No, it's not the second Braided Cable Fingerless Glove. It's the third!!

Why a third?

Well, I was getting ready to do the thumbs when I noticed what I had done.

Yep, once again I've made two damn left mittens!! Aaaarrrrrrrggggggg!!!

Oh well. Since I'm doing the mitten/glove a month knitalong over at Ravelry I was planning on giving all the ladies at work a pair, and one of them said she really liked mine, so it's not like I have to rip out all that work. LOL, sometimes I amaze even myself with my own stupidity.

Now, that's two projects so far this year that have thrown me into a tizzy wanting to buy new yarn to console myself. I'm so proud of the willpower I am showing by not giving in.

Instead of casting on a big project like I did last time, I decided to whip up a couple pair of baby socks to help ease that urge. One of the gents I work with is about to welcome his fourth child into the family, and the wee one needs some tootsie coverings.

I finished up this pair Friday night.

And this pair should be done tomorrow evening.

While I was downstairs rummaging in the sock yarn, I decided to cast on a pair for myself. Finally decided what to do with that Seasilk I bought last fall. Next time, I will get a photo against a background with a bit of contrast. The yarn fades a bit into my bedspread lol.

Sunday, March 9, 2008


We had quite the snowstorm here this weekend. The snow started coming down Friday midmorning. By lunchtime the roads were starting to get bad and everyone in our office started gathering up work they could do from home and left early. Paul and I stuck it out until about 2:oo, then called it a day.

Paul checked the accumulation in our backyard this morning. A whopping 13.5 inches!!!

Daisy, the neighbors' dog, didn't like it so much. Poor thing was stuck outside for most of the day yesterday.

Doppler, on the other hand, loved the snow! Here he is dragging Jenn around like a true sled dog. I tell ya, that boy is like a freight train. If he gets it in his head to go somewhere, ain't nobody gonna stop him.

This is what our car looked like this morning.

Although the car is still covered in a foot of snow, Paul worked his butt off and got the driveway cleared out. That man deserves a cookie!

One good thing about being snowbound all weekend is that there was a lotta knitting going on. I put the finishing touches on the Norwegian Snail Mittens Friday night. Wove in the ends and blocked yesterday.

Most of today I worked on the Aran Tree Skirt. The 2nd panel is just about done. 10 more rows or so.

Stoney is knitting up quickly. I started on the armhole shaping last night. The back will be done in another knitting session or 2.

You can't really see the texture in my photos, so I got a closeup. The true color is like in the above photo.

A bit of work was done on the Russian Coat too. I think I'm almost afraid to work on this. I might cry if I finish the skirt and the jacket looks like crap again.

And, last but not least, as if I needed yet another project to work on, I cast on for another pair of gloves. These are working up really quickly, so I don't think they'll linger in the knitting bag too long. The purple on the edge is some rabbit fur "yarn" I found on the clearance shelf of the LYS last summer. I did a crochet cast on using 1/2 the called for stitches, then using the main yarn, increased in each stitch.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Practice makes perfect?

So, I've been experiencing some pretty scary problems with my vision lately. Lots of pressure, flashing lights, a general feeling that I am struggling to focus. A couple of times everything has gone black and I get tunnel vision. One day this week on the way home from work (luckily Paul and I work together and he does the driving) I got double vision that lasted about 5 minutes or so. Yesterday I had that tunnel vision thing happen in a meeting at work and decided enough was enough. I called for an eye appointment, and I don't mind telling you that when they said I needed to get right in, I started really getting worried.

Turns out I am stressed, tired, over caffienated, and generally just getting older. My distance vision is great, but I could benefit from some reading glasses so my eyes don't work so hard. Everything in my eyes looked healthy, so the diagnosis is occular migraines. Doc said just knowing that I'm not dying of some rare wierd disease could ease enough stress that they lesson or stop altogether.

What does that story have to do with practice? Well, let me tell you about the conversation Paul and I had on the way home from the appointment.

Paul: Ever since you told me they wanted you to come in right away I've been thinking the worst. I've been stressing. Thinking about if the worst happened and you went blind, how could I make your life easier.

Me: Awww that's sweet.

Paul: I figured you could still knit, but I'd have to help you learn braille so you could read patterns. And, I could put your makeup on for you, but I'd have to start practicing while you could still see.

ROFL I completely lost it when he said that. Totally sweet that he would put my makeup on for me (and he's the kind of guy that would), but hilarious that he felt he'd need to practice while I could still see so I could tell him if he'd done it right.

I have kept up with the resolution to complete the dishcloths so far. Behold the 1st March dishcloth.

Tonight I finished up all but the thumb and duplicate stitching on the second Norwegian Snail Mitten. Hopefully I can put the finishing touches on it tomorrow night and block it. That would leave me with 4 projects in the bedroom being worked on right now.

It should only be 3 projects left, but I received my Rowan 43 last week and have been drooling over this pattern ever since. I dug around in the stash and found some yarn I felt appropriate and cast on Tuesday night.

I am using Filatura di Crosa Elena in a deep navy blue. It is giving the vest more structure than the Rowan yarn would, but I think I'll like the effect. Next time I snap a photo of it, I'll try to get a close up so the texture shows.

Casting on a new project made me feel a bit guilty about ignoring the Russian Coat after recasting on the skirt. I pulled it out tonight and did a bit of work on it. Hopefully ignoring it for almost a week isn't a sign that it's going to be one of "those" projects. You know the ones. They don't work out perfectly like you planned so you toss them in a corner and pretend they don't exist, until one day you decide you have to do something about it. That's usually when I bury it under a bunch of stuff in a closet so I don't run into it so often LOL.

I really love the color changes and the look of these yarns together. I hope it keeps my interest long enough to finish the skirt again.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Hats off to my hubby

Or hats on, as the case may be, for being such a good sport. After a few trips out to the backyard in the early hours of the morning so Doppler could take care of business, Paul decided that he did, in fact, want me to knit him a hat with earflaps. This was after telling me over and over that he would never wear such a silly looking hat.

So began our journey through the pattern section of Ravelry to find just the right one. I really wanted to make this one. (Apologies to those of you who may not have a Ravelry account) Paul on the other hand chose a stranded version. Sunday morning I finished the Norwegian Star Earflap Hat for him, and asked if he wanted the tassels off the earflaps. "Why not" was his reply. So I did about 1/2 hour worth of i-cord and figured the hat was complete. Not so. Although the hat fit him perfectly in circumference, it was too long and wanted to slide over his eyebrows, obscuring his vision. The earflaps looked much more like a child's hat ties. Of course, those of you who know Paul, know he put it on, pulled it down as far as he could, and tied those tassels under his chin. LOL wish I had snapped a photo of that!!

Even though the hat hadn't taken me long to make, I really wasn't looking forward to ripping it out to remove rows both at the crown and near the band. Instead, I picked up stitches just below the stranded section and did two ridges of garter stitch, attached the flaps in their proper location with 3 needle bind off on the next round, and did two more ridges of garter stitch. This made the hat fit perfectly. Earflaps right on the ears and all. This time when Paul tried it on, although he was much happier with the fit, he decided that he really did look silly in this style of hat. At that point he told me that if he was going to wear a silly looking hat, he wanted to do it up right, and I should add pompoms to the top and to each of the earflap tassels.

Gotta love a man who not only asks you to knit him something that he feels he will look silly in, but will wear it proudly out in public!

For the record, I don't think he looks that silly. I was pleasantly surprised to find that I don't even need to block the hat. Normally my stranded work needs blocking in a bad way, but this one isn't puckering in the least. All the stitches are lying nicely and look great.

Speaking of stranded knitting needing blocking .....

Isn't it amazing what a little soak in cool water did to the Snail mitten I finished? I'm just about done with the second of the pair, and will move on to another pair of mittens or gloves soon. By the way, once again I have gone completely out of my mind and joined a KAL to make a pair of mittens each month in 2008. (psst, this is on top of joining the 2008 Sweater a Month KAL too)

Even with all this head and hand covering knitting going on, I still managed to do some work on a couple of the bigger projects.

I finished the first of 11 sections of the Aran Tree Skirt. I'm only a few rows into the 2nd section, but the knitting goes quickly, so if I concentrate on this project, it should be done in short order.

I also did another repeat on the Lowry Pullover. I'm finding myself wanting to knit on this more often surprisingly. Since this is a monstrous mutant man sweater, I was sure that progress would go so slowly that I would get bored and it would veg out in the knitting basket. This project may be done sooner than I expected.