Saturday, September 25, 2010

I'm Just Sayin' . . .

Now, it's not like me to complain. If I am going to voice an angry opinion, I am going to *ITCH, not complain. It would be long, loud and you would know I was pissed off. So it is important for you to keep that in mind with the my following topic.

Ever go to the gym and have someone latch on to you? Now every time you are there, they are mysteriously there? Waiting to get on the treadmill right next to you? When you are finished with the workout, they conveniently leave too? Never actually asking you to shower, but being a little too close? If you answered yes to any of these, you know what I mean. To enjoy an occasional chat is one thing, to interfere with my workout is a completely different!

If this keeps up, I'm going to have to take a break from working out. Think I'll just stay home an knit.

How many calories can a girl burn knitting anyway?

I'm not complaining, I'm just sayin' . . . .

Sunday, June 13, 2010

new endings

Haruni is almost finished. 99% done. I have to say that I love how it has grown and bloomed on my needles. It has been one of those projects that the knitting goddess blessed. The yarn was a joy, not to mention the color is divine. Of course my Addi Turbos are the bomb. A pattern that is clearly written and fun to knit is a bonus.

At the time I decided to tackle this project, I was leery of the crochet bind-off. I have little to no experience with the hook. Even though I own an entire set (thanks Gram). The pattern says that the size of the hook doesn't matter, so I tried to use one I thought was the same gauge as my knitting. Also, I wanted to embellish the shawl so I was adding some dainty silver lined beads to the bind off. Then, the goddess changed her mind. . . this wasn't to be "the one." Disaster struck when I ran out of yarn with only a few more inches of bind off to go. I knew the yardage would be tight, but went for it. Now there is no more yarn at the yarn shop (already checked). My only option is to rip back to the beginning of the bind off and use a smaller crochet hook. Dread.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

13 miles and 10 inches

So between now and our last conversation, I have finished a half marathon and a 25K run. Officially, I now hate running. It's not fun anymore. RM and I run on Saturday mornings together. We have been doing about 10 - 11 miles at a time. During our runs he will ask me if I love running, exalting how great running is and how could anyone not love it. Every time I can say absolutely, without hesitation - NO, I don't love it. At all. But . . . I can't seem to stop. It takes the weight off (still trying to drop those last 10 or 15 pounds from baby) and I feel great after. The added benefit is that I get to spend a few hours alone with RM. Anyone with children will understand the benefit of that! Hence, I keep running.

Finished a new project. It was quick and just what I needed. It is Springtime in Philadelphia by Kate Gagnon Osborn. Clearly written and very short! Just what I like in a pattern. I cast on for the hat on June 6 and was finished (blocking and all) on June 12. How's that?!

The yarn was Crystal Palace Yarns Panda Silk Solid in a very light lavender. Not sure if this color will be flattering on me. My hair is a mousy brown that only RM could love. I have a sister-in-law that has red hair (if you are reading this, and you know who you are - look away now), so this might be a great holiday gift for her.

Only a few more weeks of school left, so I can return to knitting, blogging and home repair with a vengence!

Friday, April 23, 2010

Arg And A Prayer

Update on the Twist socks! Made it through the portion of the pattern I was having trouble with. But do you want to know a wonderful thing? The designer, Jody Gordan Lucas read my post and contacted me! She wanted to personally see if I was doing ok and how she could help. Now, I am offically impressed. She didn't have to do that, but she did. How awesome!

I also cast on for a new prayer shawl. It is Haruni by Emily Ross. I found it on Ravlery. The crochet bind-off will be my challenge. I bought some great yarn for this project at Your Local Yarn Shop. Classic Eltie Alpaca Sox is the yarn that I chose, in a gorgeous plum/pink color.

Gotta run . . . literally, as the half-marathon is tomorrow.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Pirates and Twists

Back in 2007, I bought some yarn on line. Truth be told, it was my first on-line yarn purchase. I had a design for a valentine-type sock in mind. The colors of this yarn would have worked perfectly. . . if I had finished designing the sock. Alas, the yarn came and the design sat. And sat. It's still sitting at home somewhere, I think. The yarn is a superwash 50/50 merino/tencel by Yarn Pirate. It is a fingering weight yarn that is silky smooth to touch. Sweetheart is the colorway name, with red, white, pink and magenta repeating through out. But because the pattern sat, the yarn did too. Occasionally, I would consider using the yarn for a pattern. But it just didn't seem to work. Either the pattern would be too lacy or the yarn would be too bold. I had given up matching the two.

Along came Twisted by Jodie Gordon Lucas. Not too lacy. Not too fussy. Just enough pattern to keep things interesting, but not muddy the water. I began to think that this just might work. What do you think?

So far, things have been going fine. I have just begun the decreases/increases for across the foot. I am having trouble making sense of this portion of the pattern. So I will take these to the lunch knitting bunch to see if they can help. If not, then I will have to chart it out. Do you occasionally chart patterns out if you have trouble? I find it very helpful to visually see what is happening. Because it sidelines my knitting for a while, I use it as a last resort. The lunch ladies will be able to help me . . . I hope.

Monday, April 05, 2010

Tiny Ruffles

So, I work with this great lady. She has joined us (our "group" is 4 strong now) knitting during our lunch everyday. See, we walk to the library and knit for a half hour before we eat. Not a whole lot of time, but enough to complete a few rows each day. It is satisfying to know that I can complete a project this way . . . even if it does take the whole school year! But back to the conversation at hand. This lady is fun to be around and is enjoying her knitting. Though still learning, she tackles everything head on. Sometimes, taking the pattern too seriously, she make a few mistakes and gets frustrated. But she is sticking with it, having finished a sweater, half a sock and a baby blanket.

Well, this lady has a new grand baby! So I started these for her. Aren't they just the sweetest?! Besides my poor color choice, I think they are cute. Next time I will choose bolder colors. The pastels get lost and muddy. They are Rufflicious by Diane Kostecki. The yarn is called Blue Terra Cotta by Claudia Hand Painted Yarns and an Ivory by Lorna's Lace. Both are fingering weight and were easy to knit with.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Prayer Answered

The prayer shawl is complete, blessed and gone to its recipient. I feel very lucky to have had the opportunity to knit for such a great cause. During grief, loss or strife, to have something warm, soft and cozy wrapped around your shoulders is comforting.

I cast on for this project on October 20, 2009. The yarn came from Your Local Yarn Shop in Battle Creek. It is Classic Elite Alpaca Sox in green. This yarn is so soft and comfy, that I could snuggle in it all day long. Taking two skeins was a bit expensive, but well worth the cost.

The pattern is the Scalloped Lace Shawl Pattern by Kristin Omdahl. It also came from Your Local Yarn Shop. They have a knit sample that is fantastic! Their shawl is done in orange solid yarn for the body and a variegated orange for the scalloped trim. It’s stunning.

So, I finished mine on January 19, 2010. There were some small “bumps” along the way. But if you don’t look for them, you can’t see them. Now that’s a typical response for me. Hopefully, the person who receives this shawl won’t mind. Blocking the shawl was a challenge, due to its size. I ended up laying plastic bags down on a full size mattress with towels over the top of that. Then I started pinning. And pinning. And pinning. After that I kept creeping back into the bedroom to adjust a pin here, move a pin there and make final changes. Wow. Now, I can see why blocking wires are a good thing.

One thing I did observe about this pattern is that you need to bind off in much larger needles. I went up to a 10.5 US to keep the stitches as loose as possible. The other recommendation I would make is to definitely take the extra time for the I-cord bind off. It gives the piece a "finished" look that I really favored.