Tuesday, February 27, 2007

The Secret Pal 10 Questioinnaire

The Questionnaire
Here are is the questionnaire for SP10. Please be sure to post it in a spot on your blog where your pal can easily find it. Since your pal will use this to help create your packages you'll want to have it posted to your blog no later than the last day of February.

1. What is/are your favorite yarn/s to knit with? Favorite yarn I love Malabrigio, Lorna's Laces, Yarn Pirate and Yarntini. Favorite Fibers Alpaca, and Blue Faced Leicester and superfine Merinos What fibers do you absolutely *not* like. Itchy scratchy mohair.
2. What do you use to store your needles/hooks in? Knit Picks options binder.
3. How long have you been knitting & how did you learn?I have been knitting since Dec 2005. Mom tried to teach me when I was 9 or 10 and it just wouldn't work for me. Nov 2005 I was home recovering from an abdominal hysterectomy and needed something to keep my hands and mind busy. Would you consider your skill level to be beginner, intermediate or advanced? Beginner to Intermediate
4. Do you have an Amazon or other online wish list? I have a wish list just look to the left under wish list.
5. What's your favorite scent?Escada collection, sandalwood, lavender, lilac, jasmine.
6. Do you have a sweet tooth? Yes Favorite candy? Milk chocolate or anything with almonds and chocolate.
7. What other crafts or Do-It-Yourself things do you like to do?Who has time for other crafts? Do you spin? Not yet but possibly in the future.
8. What kind of music do you like?Depends on my mood. My wish list has some cds that I want. Can your computer/stereo play MP3s?Computer (if your buddy wants to make you a CD)
9. What's your favorite color(s)?Purple, green, black, red & pink Any colors you just can't stand?Orange
10. What is your family situation? Married with no human children Do you have any pets?1 very spoiled corgi, 2 cats, 10 goldfish in the pond.
11. Do you wear scarves, hats, mittens or ponchos?Scarves Yes, Hats NO NO NO Hats, Mittens yes, Ponchos ohhh yes Ponchos yes.12. What is/are your favorite item/s to knit?hummm I think I would have to say.... I don't know I like to knit it all
13. What are you knitting right now? Sweater for my niece.
14. Do you like to receive handmade gifts? Yes
15. Do you prefer straight or circular needles? Circular Aluminum Bamboo, aluminum, plastic?
16. Do you own a yarn winder and/or swift?Yes to both
17. How old is your oldest UFO? Bella shawl October 2006
18. What is your favorite holiday? Halloween
19. Is there anything that you collect?Mice, Pocket dragons and faeiries
20. Any books, yarns, needles or patterns out there you are dying to get your hands on? What knitting magazine subscriptions do you have? Interweave Knits
21. Are there any new techniques you'd like to learn?This year I am concentrating on learning how to knit cables.
22. Are you a sock knitter?Sometimes What are your foot measurements?
23. When is your birthday? May 6th

Getting there

Progress update on the Rachael sweater. The back is knit and blocked, the front and sleeves are knit and blocking. That means I really can't do anything with it until tomorrow evening. Still have to knit collar and sew the seams. It may be ready for the North Texas Irish Festival (NTIF) on Saturday. The temps are going to be mid 5o's so it won't be too hot to wear the sweater. That would mean that I finished the sweater in a week and a half??? damm that's fast. I have been asked to make another pair of the Eowyn gloves oh and by the way have them ready for Saturday too. I've got the body of one done and blocking. I need to make an Elvis wash cloth and have it ready Wednesday evening. It's a gift for some Elvis fan that DH knows at work. I have to start on Heidi's sweater The Tribecca finish DH's felted clogs make Todd's hat poor man his ears are going to freeze in New York, make a pair of gloves for consignment.
Well at least today I got the roses trimmed, tomorrow I am going to rake the rose garden itself. Have to cut everything dead out of the raised bed and see if the lavender will come back or if I have to replant. The rosemary is doing great. DH has to work on the pond but has to first clean up his mess in the front yard, he trimmed a section of one of the oak trees and our front lawn looks like the aftermath of a wind storm.

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Cough, Sniffle, Weeze

It's official I can now say that I have been in a dust storm. Yes you heard me right today we have wind gusts of over 55 mph, and it's kicking up dust everywhere. The plastic covering for the green house is torn to shreds. The patio chairs have a red dust layer on them. It's nice and warm about 66 degrees but I will not open a window I don't want all that dust in the house. Visibility is about half a mile. Good thing I am staying in and knitting today.

Friday, February 23, 2007

I've been busy

I finished the February Mid month KAL. This is done in Peaches and Cream in the Denim colorway. It's a lace pattern, and I made one mistake in it, but unless you know where it is you can't see it. I also joined a group called From the Heart of Texas. They are a group located in Houston, they have w monthly KALs and CALs. They knit squares join to create blankets and donate them to local charities. You have the choice of knitting them and either sending them to the group or donating them to the charity of your choice. It was interesting both groups used a ssk2po stitch.
These are the Eowyn fingerless gloves but this time in Malabrigio in a colorway called Little Lovely. I love this pattern these are made for a friend.

This pattern comes from http://www.knitty.com/ it's called Calorimetry http://www.knitty.com/ISSUEwinter06/PATTcalorimetry.html I had a little bit of Malabrigio left over from my Eowyn gloves in the Velvet Grapes colorway so I knitted it up. It's very quick, very cute, the Malabrigio makes it very soft, and it's warm. I despise hats, this is perfect for me because it covers my ears to keep them warm and it buttons in back under your hair. Perfect.

This is the back of My Rachel Sweater, I started it Saturday the 17th. I am trying to get it finished before March 3rd. I would like to wear it to the North Texas Irish Festival. So far I have about 3/4 of the front knitted then all I would have left are the sleeves, then when I finish it I can start on Heidi's sweater.

The weather has been beautiful, it's be in the high 70's I have to get out into the rose garden and cut the roses back, get algae remover into the pond and plant my flower seeds in pots and put them in the green house. I have to hurry with the seeds get them planted while we are still in a waxing moon. Grandfather always told me to plant flowers from the new to the full moon. Thank goodness we are really not doing much this weekend. Gardening and knitting what a better way to spend a weekend.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

She's amazing!!!

One of my nieces (this is the niece that is the proud owner of the Kittyville hat from SNB) is studying at I.C.E. (The Institute of Culinary Education) in New York City. She is taking classed in Baking/Pastry and also in Culinary Management. Well on the 19th she learned how to pull a sugar ribbon, you know the kind they have on the Food Network the contests that have these ginormous sugar sculptures that break and smash into zillions of pieces. Hers will never break..

By the way, we have reserved her ot make our cake for our 25th wedding anniversary... She's got 15 yrs to prepare.

Monday, February 19, 2007

Rachel Sweater for Me

In a book Hot Knits by By Melisssia Leapman and Joe VanDeHatert has several lovely patterns I will probably knit several of these. However the first sweater I have choose to knit is the Rachel I have chosen Plymouth's Baby Alpaca Brushed in Green 1290 I have never seen nor touched this yarn, knew not much about it other than it being 75% alpaca and 25% acrylic, so I went to www.knittersreview.com to see if I could find a review by them for this yarn. There it was and to quote them "Yarn Profile: Plymouth Baby Alpaca Brush
First Impressions Baby Alpaca Brush has a built-in soundtrack that goes something like this. Every time someone picks it up, they let out a delighted "ooooooooh!"This unusual yarn has the plush softness of angora and the cozy blur of mohair, yet it contains not a trace of either fiber.Instead, it consists primarily of four plies of alpaca (taken from the first shearing) that have been blended with a small amount of acrylic, spun into one strand that is then brushed to a dreamy cloudlike texture." (To read more go to http://www.knittersreview.com/article_yarn.asp?article=/review/product/040930_a.asp) I was almost sold, the price? Very affordable. Ok now I was sold. I hoped and prayed that it lived up to the review. When I received it... OMG! It was softer than I expected. It feels like a soft fluffy cloud. When I was a little girl I had a special word for things that were really really soft, I have no clue where I got this word but this was very very cheecho. The only issue I have with this yarn is because it's brushed it tends to tangle when I try to pull it from the middle of the skein, I could either keep the yarn frozen and take it out of the freezer one at a time as I knit or I could start on the outside of the ball. I'm starting outside of the ball. It's hard enough for the DH to see the yarn in the freezer when I first get it but to have it stay there??? I think that would send him over the edge. (lol) Maybe next house I will have my own freezer to store the yarn. I have to hurry and knit this as quickly as possible I want to wear this at the North Texas Irish Festival. I also have to start Heidi's sweater and Rene's shrug.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Fini! Almost

The first of unfinished. I was making these clogs for the DH, I purchased what I thought was enough yarn to complete it well take a look at the right clog, The two are not similar, the one on the right is not finished. Yes they are ginormous but they have not been felted, once felted they will shrink.
This is the first square I made out of my leftover stash. I am going to make squares and then going to join them to send to either The Native Elders Program or to Friends of the Pine Ridge.Another square

A house warming present for a friend. She just moved into a new condo and likes blue white flowers and kitty's. The flower patter is called Flower Power and the link is:http://www.knitalittle.com/ Yarn is Peaches & Cream colorway is Denim.

This second one is called Miss Meow it can be purchased at http://knitwits-heaven.com/AnimalWashcloths.htm and you guessed it about for rows before the border, I ran out of yarn.
If anyone is wondering about the Bella shawl, it's still alive, the knitting is very slow on it, I have to take the lace pattern across the top over the shoulder and down the back to the knee. I'll finish it some century.

This is the Third day of Yule, Three French Hens.
And here it is DH's sweater I finished knitting the sleeves by 10:00 am on Saturday, laid down took a nap from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm and then started finishing sewing seams, weaving in yarn, sewing the buttons on. Etc. I believe the next time I will make the sweater I will make it smaller. Even though he says it fits I feel it's too baggie. He did not like the seed stitch ribbing so I put in a knit 6 purl 6 ribbing on the bottom, sleeves, and neck. The pattern can be found at Vermont Fiber Designs http://www.vermontfiberdesigns.com/patterns/unisex/149.php
This is a very easy pattern to knit. This is my second sweater. I only would like to see the company go more into detail as to how to set the sleeves in, I knew how to do it because I have sewn in the past. The yarn I used was Elizabeth Lavold, silky wool, it's 65% wool, 35% silk, The colorway is Denim Blue (32) Washing instructions, hand wash cold, lay flat to dry.

The world is much smaller due to the internet

I was reading a blog today about a woman who in her mind feels she has failed at a project. We all have bee there at one point or another. She needs our support and encouragement. http://lenealve.blogspot.com/2007/02/failures.html

Friday, February 16, 2007

DH's sweater

I finally got the yarn that I need to finish the DH's sweater. All that is left to finish are sleeves. Sleeve length is 28 inches, I've knit 14 of the 28. I am trying to finish this by Saturday so that he can wear it. Will I make it???

Stay tuned.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Kittyville hat photos

I promised everyone a photo of my niece in her Kittyville hat and here she is with her husband in New York. I think she looks quite lovely in it.

Monday, February 12, 2007

What's up with not enough to finish.

DH, sweater sits waiting for the yarn to come to finish his sweater. The yarn for Heidi's sweater is in the same order. Well dang since I won't be able to finish the DH's sweater because I am waiting for delivery, I thought I would knit and felt him a pair of the Fiber Trend clogs... I literally have 10 more rows to finish on the second cuff, and I'm done, I run out. No one in the area has that color so again I must order from on line and wait for the shipment. gggggrrrr. Ok so next thing make 2 wash cloths for Imp she just moved into her own place and having the wash cloths should make it feel more like home. The first one the flower is done and blocking the second, Fark!!! out of yarn and still need at least 10 more rows. Thankfully all I have to do it go to Walmart to get this one. So three projects sit waiting. I finally got Nancy her sweater for her chihuahua Isabelle. She adored it. Asked me to knit another in purple and green, well I had turquoise, and black. I'll post those soon. Onto next project, making another pair fingerless gloves but this time for someone that asked me for a pair of them. I have one skein of this pink colorway in malabrigio which is perfect for the gloves. Don't fret I have found shamrock dishcloths and they will be made to in addition to knitting the sweater for DH.

Friday, February 09, 2007

Thank you

I want to thank all of you that replied to the call for help on my DH's sweater. I frogged it and knitted it once again (the collar not the sweater) It now has a lovely 6/6 rib to match the ribbing at the bottom of the sweater and it will match the ribbing on the sleeves.
I knitted the Calorimetry pattern from the current issue of Knitty with left over Malabrigio and I still have enough Malabrigio to put into one of the squares. I'll be posting photo's tomorrow.
Oh goodness, I almost forgot, my DH wants to learn how to knit. He's been watching a few of the Knitty Grittys with me. There was an episode on knitting with wire. One of the types of knitting with wire was called Viking Knitting. Naturally that turned DH's head since the forefather of the clan originally was one of the Norse countries before he decided to come and live in Scotland. He also wants to see if he can knit with leather cord. I don't see why he can't. I did tell him though he needed to know how to do basic knitting with yarn before he moved onto wire and/or leather. So tomorrow evening at MacHenry's http://www.machenrys.com/waiting for the Austin Lounge Lizards to start playing I am to teach him how to cast on and how to knit. I won't get him to try purling yet. I have my bamboo size 8 ready for him along with giving him 3 starter books to read, and I have the scrap yarn for him to start out on also. He will be using the same needles and yarn I started with when I picked it back up in 2005. I will be teaching him continental since that's the only way I know how to knit.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

It's alot

Hold onto your hats. This is a big one. First I even though I have personally emailed her I must thank Wendy for my wonderfully thoughtful package that arrived from Royal Mail. I was Wendy's secret pal for the Yarn snobs swap. First layer in the package were some very lovely Pony needles. I have never tried the Pony so I can do so soon. Second layer I spied some tea.

Wendy sent some lovely echinacea and raspberry tea, to help keep me healthy during this winter. Next I found a delightfully sinful package of Chooca Mocca chocolates. The flavor is Real Strawberries with cream. I slowly untiled the little black ribbon, and opened the paper containing the delights. First the aroma of strawberries and cream wafts from out of the package. I popped one into my mouth, and closed my eyes. My mouth was an explosion of summer tasting fresh strawberries and the sweetest squishie cream. No, it can't be, what did I just bite into? I had to have another, this time I bit one in half, there it was without any doubt, there were real dried strawberries in the creamy white chocolate. This is really exquisite chocolate.
In a gray plastic package I felt the yarn, carefully I ripped the plastic package open, in it was the softest yarn, I thought surely this must be alpaca. Reading the card that Wendy included I found out that this is 100% wool from Blue Face Leicester sheep.The yarn comes from The Natural Dye Studio, now before you go and get excited they are located in the Suffolk Country side in the UK. They use historical plant dyes & avoid using chemicals ensuring their yarns are safer for our skin & for the environment. The colorway is called Golden Poesy, she chose it because the colors reminded her of the flowers in her garden.

Attached to the yarn was a cell phone charm, it is a pink ribbon charm. Wendy is selling these to help her raise funds for the Brest Cancer walk she is doing. I have been thinking about getting a charm for my phone for a long time, just couldn't decide. What Wendy doesn't know is that my mom is a survivor of breast cancer, she's had both breasts removed and she has been free and clean for over 20 years. Also I lost both my older sisters to breast cancer, so it it in honor of them and my mom that I wear the ribbon.

Wendy had been reading my blog and knew I was looking for a pattern for fingerless gloves, she bought me this kit again made from the Blue Face Leicester sheep. I believe this colorway is Apple Blossom, Wendy says that this colorway reminded her of the Apple tree she has in her yard. I have seen a similar colorway and have always loved it.
Lastly she had included a cd that she burned for me, it has many of her favorites and coincidentally I like them too. Wendy spends allot of thought and time into her swaps, anyone that has her is very lucky.

And finally we have Two turtle doves. The second square for the 12 days of Yule blanket that I am going to make.

So far I have A partridge in a pear tree and two turtle doves. If I want the turtle doves to be placed horizontally then vertically, I will have to add to the border. Just like Scarlet O'Hara, I will worry about that tomorrow. Right now, knit a verse (square) a month.

One more thing, I want to thank all of you that responded to my plea for help on DH's sweater. I have ripped the existing collar out and am attempting to put in just a straight single knit stitich. I'll let you know how it comes out.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Quick post and help please

I finished this months KAL. It's very pretty and done in Sugar and Cream This one is for a friend of mine, she loves squirrels and when I saw this pattern I had to kit it for her.

Ok here is where I need the help, I am knitting the DH a long sleeve polo. I have added the section for the buttons and button holes and the collar, its the same stitch. on the button holes it looks fine but when I look at it on the collar it looks too feminine. This is a man's sweater not a woman's. Anyone have comments or suggestions? I think I need to rip it out and do a simple stocking net stitch. The pattern calls this stitch a Seeded rib.

Close up.
I have more photo's and more blogging to do I need to get this sweater done by this weekend. I did receive a fabulous package from Wendy for my Yarn Snob Swap. I have photos and will fully post later.

Monday, February 05, 2007

Not much eye candy this weekend

Well some weeks you have Mel, Heath and Orlando and some weeks it's a little girl. This weekend we watched Whale Rider Netflicks summarizes it this way, "Uneasy lies the head that wears the crown. A Maori tribe must contend with the distinctly non-traditional concept of having a female leader when young Pai's (Keisha Castle-Hughes) twin brother -- the intended heir to the throne -- dies during childbirth. Now, she must struggle to prove herself. Stars Rawiri Paratene, Vicky Haughton, Cliff Curtis and Grant Roa. Written and directed by Niki Caro. Netf" It was a movie that Tim wanted to watch and I was pleasantly pleased with the movie.
I have had very little knitting today, I have been a housewife. laundry, cleaning house organizing stash... Then the door bell rang, And what did my eyes see... a box from Royal Mail.... that's right, My swap for the Yarn snobs swap got here!!! I will post pictures and tell you a bit more about what was in it in the next post. right now, I am here checking on what I should be knitting next. I think I will just weave ends in on previously completed projects. Start new tomorrow.

Me? First round draft!!!???

I am a test knitting in a group for a new book that is being written. We were given an assignment to knit a square, the pattern was given, instructions given for the needle sizes yarn type and list of colors to be used. We were given a date that our squares were due. I knitted and submitted three squares. I just checked the groups photo page and found that one of my squares has made it to the first round draft, it's not set in stone, but I'm excited to even have it considered. I'm speechless. I've been knitting a little over a year and the possibility of having one of my pieces in a book....
I have completed the front of Tim's sweater and it is now off the needles and blocking. The back already finished and blocked. I need to get a couple more skeins of yarn for the sleeves, because I had to double the yarn to get gauge I have run short on the yarn. I know it won't be the same dye lot, but I am hoping that it won't be too noticeable because it's being used on the sleeves. I have enough of the first yarn to do the placket and collar. I am hoping that it won't be too much of a difference.
It's supposed to be a high in the mid 60's today, that means I can go out and trim the roses, it should have been done last month but it was so cold that I didn't want to do it. The repair man is going to come out and take a look at the dryer it's still under warranty so we only have to pay for him coming out. Hopefully he'll come and fix it and I can start laundry if it isn't fixed I have to go to a laundry mat or as they are called here in Texas a washateria, and do laundry there.
Keep your fingers crossed for me.

Saturday, February 03, 2007

New Day....GO BEARS!!!

Well the sun is out it's currently 39 degrees, I am waiting to go out with a friend on a LYS crawl, time to heal up the wounds of yesterday.I did a few things last night to help process the feelings of yesterday, yes combining Roman Catholic and Pagan. The sun looks a little brighter today.

I am going to be knitting wash cloths and afghans for my favorite charities Friends of the Pine Ridge and The Elders program. Friends of the Pine Ridge is for the Native Americans on the Pine Ridge reservation it's very close to my heart, Grand mother White Mouse lived there, I still see her twinkling eyes. The Elders Program is for the Navajos.

Friday, February 02, 2007

I am outraged!!!

I just saw a terrible video of babies in Russian hospitals orphans with their mouths taped shut so that the nurses would not be distracted when they cry. http://www.cnn.com/video/player/player.html?url=/video/world/2007/02/02/chance.russia.baby.gagging.reut&wm=11
Some had pacifies taped to their mouths, the nurse on duty explained to the reported, the babies spit the pacifiers out this is the only way to keep them from spitting them out. What if the baby spits up like many babies do??? They will choke and die. It's things like this and times like that I have a hard time ... a hard time believing in a merciful and loving God.
We would have done and did mostly everything we could to have a child of our own. I felt the death of each one of the six separate children I carried. There are times it's still difficult for me to accept it. I suppose that pain will never completely go away. Our first born would have been 4 this year, but instead, they are being taken care of by their aunts, uncles and grand parents. One of these days when I get up there I am going to have a long talk with God so that he can help me to understand this and a few other things. Are we such monsters? I know we would never tape their mouths shut. Did we do something wrong in a past life?

Happy Candlemas/Groundhog Day!!!

Here's to whatever day you recognize today. Let the Sun burn brighter and warm us the hell up, cause I am sick of cold, ice, cold, snow, cold and cold. Let Winter End!
According to the old English saying:
If Candlemas be fair and bright,Winter has another flight.If Candlemas brings clouds and rain,Winter will not come again.

From Scotland:
If Candlemas Day is bright and clear,There'll be two winters in the year.

From Germany:
For as the sun shines on Candlemas Day,So far will the snow swirl until May.For as the snow blows on Candlemas Day,So far will the sun shine before May.

And from America:
If the sun shines on Groundhog Day;Half the fuel and half the hay.