Friday, June 29, 2007

Taking Care

There has been some knitting, but nothing I'm prepared to talk about just yet. It's no big secret, but I feel guilty because it's not Sockapalooza socks. I'm picking those back up again this weekend, I swear.

This knitting has been with Rowan's All Seasons Cotton. A lovely yarn, by my standards. Very easy to knit, soft and makes a fine fabric.

However, the care tag really cracks me up:
Care Label - All Seasons Cotton
This is a cotton/acrylic blend, people. They don't even have the hoity-toity sense to say it's a cotton/microfibre (they are British) blend. I love cotton/acrylic blends for myself and my kids, so I did a little sleuthing and found out what's on some other similar care tags.

Lion Brand Cotton-Ease: Machine wash and dry; do not bleach or iron
Cascade Cotton Rich: Hand wash and lay flat
Katia Mississippi: Machine wash and dry
Plymouth Wildflower DK: Machine wash and dry flat

Nothing about soapflakes. No strange order to "not leave wet" (how does that work, by the way, since you can't put it in the dryer?)

Rowan, come on. Nice yarn, but really. Sometimes ya' seem a little flakey (and not soapflakey) across the pond.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Time Flies

I guess we're having fun, right? It has been more than a week since I posted, and Bloglines is telling me I have exactly 144 webpages to read...I have not been sucked into the vortex of Ravelry, but rather actually mostly enjoying summer and working on our environs.

We bought this house last year, and while it was apparent the previous owners had been working on the inside, it was also painfully obvious they had neglected the outside. I don't have photos of some of the beds yet, so we'll tackle the windowbox.
The windowbox. It doesn't look that terrible, right? Hah. Take another look...

It, along with the shutters, badly needed some scraping and paint and impatiens.

Ah the magic of the Internet. All done.

Ok, so this was a few weeks ago. The impatiens are really filling in now and look nice.

I'm working on the back beds and we got a landscape contractor to do the front. Who are we kidding? We have a 2yo and a 4yo and doing all the flowerbeds would have taken about three summers. (You have to take into account that 'summer' lasts for exactly 76 days here.)

Oh, I got a tickle from my Sockapalooza pal. And with no way to email her back, here goes: Cuff....I'd prefer higher than anklets but lower than knee socks. Three/four inches higher than anklets would be perfect! Use your judgment--I trust you. (and thanks!)

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

A Superhero is Born

Ala Mandy, I, too, have been procrastinating with a two-day project. (The sockapalooza socks will be finished, but, ah hell I had to sneak this in.) Because there are the necessary knits. You know what of I speak. For sure M will need a winter hat this coming season, and because I am cheap I already got her coat on sale from last season. So I know what color it is and I have the perfect wool for it. And I do so love the Ear Cozies pattern from Fiber Trends.

I am not sure, however, how I feel about this hat now that it's finished. I made one last year for M, and the yarn I used - Interlacements Toasty Toes - created nice spirals of colors around the hat. I have been having fun with this one, though, trying to make it into a good thing.

You see, on the front, it's a normal hat.
Lightning Bolt Ear Cozy

On the back, however, she has an unintentional lightning bolt of pastel pink! Watch out superheroes! Here comes M, the lightning bolt head!

Lightning Bolt Ear Cozy
gah. I may have to donate this one to the Dulaan project or to my niece. ;) I still have plenty of Plymouth Outback wool left to try again. AFTER the sockapalooza socks are finished, of course. wink wink.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Here's to Internet Friends

Misti Cotton
Originally uploaded by Friender
An Ode to Internet Friends*

Oh Internet Friends
knitting and not
you brighten my day
with all that you've taught
and cheered, and cried
and shared with pride
your lives and the yarn that you've bought.

Thanks for the yarn Devon! You inspired a poem with your generosity as Swap Pal for the "No Sheep For You" swap.

*I cannot take full responsibility for the lame rhyming in this ditty. Much if it is courtesy of Rhyme Zone.

Friday, June 15, 2007

Friday Update

I suppose it would be in ill form if I didn't update with knitting today, especially since my two squirrels are sleeping. One is sick and the other one is so very tired of being inside on a summer day, and so I am playing on Ravelry and sucking in the alone time I am getting this afternoon.

The heel approacheth.
So. I'm going to try a short-row heel. Those who you like it? This is only my second pair of socks and it makes me nervous that you don't need a gusset with the short-row heel. I guess I don't understand it, so I'll just blindly follow instructions and hopeth that it worketh.

I have been re-reading Pride and Prejudice. So sue me.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

It remains to be seen...

Originally uploaded by Friender
if this actually will be cheaper than joining a local swimming pool this summer. However, it still is plenty of good, old-fashioned fun. M was much more interested in playing in the water this year. Last year, when she was still an itty bitty, she wanted nothing to do with it.

Monday, June 11, 2007

Knitter's Virtual Vacation Swap Questionnaire

Well, what can I say? I had a good time with the Knitters' Treat Exchange, so I thought I'd sign up for the Knitter's Virtual Vacation Swap. Especially since our only 'vacation' this summer is for a family wedding in NJ.

1. If you could visit any state in the US, which would it be and why? Hawaii, like everyone else in the swap, because I've never been there and it looks so beautiful.

2. If you could visit any country in the world, other than your own, which would it be and why? Probably Australia because I've never been there and it's so far away. Plus, the added bonus of being able to speak the language, generally.

3. Have you ever driven across several states/providence/countries? Yes, as a teen we took a family vacation in an RV from Ohio to Wyoming. HAH. And then during college when I was an exchange student, I drove with a boyfriend through France and Italy and Switzerland.

4. Have you ever visited someplace you consider exotic? Where was it? Hmm, not really. I don't count Italy as exotic.

5. What was your favorite "travel" vacation? Why? Italy in 2000 with my husband. He was just about to start grad school and so we went all out and had a two-week vacation and traveled most of Italy. We also got to visit his aunt, who is a nun in Rome.

6. Have you ever played tourist in your own home city/state (if international, country)? Explain. Yes, I lived in Washington, DC, for about a year and that, obviously, lends itself to lots of tourist activities for visitors. Also living here in Madison, Wisconsin, I've played tourist once or twice with family in from out of town.

7. Are you a museum visitor, beach comer or an amusement seeker? Wow, well, I would have to say I like the beach first and museum second, but they are in close running. It depends on my mood and type of vacation. London in the Florida in February...beach.

8. What's your favorite type of yarn? Here's my downfall. I don't have a favorite. I like good old fashioned wool and I like cotton blends. I like linen, etc. I like sock yarn. I like bulky, worsted/aran, etc etc. I am not picky, which either makes it harder for you or easier, depending on your personality.

9. What's your least favorite type of yarn? I don't like wool/acrylic blends, superwash (except for sock yarn), or yarns that don't have some natural fiber in them.

10. What items do you like to knit/crochet? Kid sweaters, adult sweaters, hats, socks

11. What do you pack, knit/crochet wise when you go on vacation? Socks

12. What other crafts do you do/would like to do other than Knit/Crochet? I would love to learn pottery and jewelry/soldering.

13. Are you allergic to anything? (Yarn wise or treat wise) Nope.

14. What is your favorite color? Least Favorite? I don't have a favorite color. I like purples, lavender, pink, blues (denim and other), most greens (not lime). Least favorite? maybe chartreuse? I just had to put that in there. I'm not sure what chartreuse looks like, but I like the word. I dunno. I like most colors, although I can't wear (near my face) lime green, red, hot pink or some yellows (pastel yellow is good, but others are not).

15. Sweet or Savory (Treat not personality)? Sweet.

16. Anything else we are forgetting to ask that you think your partner desperately needs to know? Desperately? Lol. No. I'm easy-going and think this swap will be pretty fun.

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Happy Little Things

I'll be the first to admit that it's ridiculous how much I love this little bag. I bought it from Etsy seller stuckinillinois. Since I'm stuck just north of her and the bag was all of $10 including shipping, and it was SO cute (isn't it, though?), I bought it. It arrived in one day.

What can I say? It's the happy little things that I try to focus on right now. Like the fact that M was not screaming and yelling after coming out of anesthesia after her surgery for ear tubes. The nurses had warned me that some children yell for a long time. M acted much as if she'd just woken from a nap. Groggy, sleepy, thirsty. The whole thing went off without a hitch, if you don't count that I was weepy watching them put her under the anesthesia. I don't.

Another happy thing is that I'm really liking these socks. Will have to crank out another pair for my mom, whose birthday I forgot. I am a terrible daughter. Well, I sent a card, sent a gift but then on the day of her birthday, I forgot to call. I suck. Thing is, I never forget birthdays.

Hopefully I can get these done quickly to get another pair started for my mom. Who will probably wonder why I knit her winter socks in the summertime. Sigh.

Happy Little Things. See what I mean?

Sunday, June 03, 2007


This is my 50th post! *blush* I know, I'm such a newbie. Anyway, I felt it appropriate to lay down the knitting projects I'd like to complete this year*, that way I can look back on them in December and laugh my ass off. These are not in any particular order.

1. Complete the Toddler Jumper.

2. Three top-down sweaters for kids (two for my nephews and one for my son) from navy blue and gray Rowan All Seasons Cotton in the stash. (These are for Christmas, and if I complete them in time, I'd like to do one for one of my niece's too.)

3. More socks. Generic, but good. I think I can plan to have a pair of socks going pretty much all the time. I'd like to give a pair to my mother with her Christmas present. Maybe for my sisters' birthdays in the fall, too. (I haven't told my family that this blog exists, so they don't read it! I can write whatever I want regarding presents.)

4. Complete the Log Cabin blanket.

5. Figure out if the adult Tomten (aka egg jacket) is salvageable and either fix or rip.

6. Complete one Lisa Lloyd design for myself, probably this one.

7. Determine if making the Trellis jacket (right) is a good idea. I've loved it for years, always planned to make it, but is it too boxy to be flattering on a suburban mom? Your honest opinions are quite welcome! I've got Beaverslide (light heathered gray) that I think will work.

8. Sketch out and plan a top-down cardigan for myself with my first-ever colorwork. One color, but still.

9. Complete my Central Park Hoodie. It's hanging out with a back and one front complete. Oh the shame of it. I really need to finish this one--I think I'll wear it a lot.

*Ok, after writing this, I felt it important to add that I know there is no way I can get all of this done in six months, but it's nice to have a list of the projects always bouncing around in my head.

Saturday, June 02, 2007

Girls Party

Probably to some, I've made surprisingly little progress on these socks, but I am pleased. I did have to rip back once because of a mistake, but this is only my second time knitting two socks at the same time, toe-up, on two circular needles. I'm bound to be slow.

I am really enjoying it! I'm not sure why I'm so surprised, but I am. I really like this method. It especially suits three of my qualities:
1) Being a major starter of projects and not so much for finishing
2) Having very large feet
3) Being basically cheap

So knitting two at the same time from the toe-up means that there is no chance to develop SSS (second-sock syndrome, or the tendency to end up with single socks) and also I can just knit up the cuff until I run out of yarn. Very waste.

Yesterday the boys left for NJ to visit with relatives for the weekend. There's a bachelor's party my husband needs to attend (it's for his brother) and N is spending quality time with his grandparents there whom he doesn't see often. That leaves the GIRLS at home! Girls Party! Girls Weekend! We went out to dinner, just the two of us, last night and today we went shopping never go shopping but I need a dress for aforementioned summer wedding and M is a good helper. "Does that one fit, mom?"

An added bonus is the increased knitting time. I forgot what it was like to have only one child, one who naps for 3+ hours every day!