Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Oh, you noticed the needles?

Two of out three Christmas gifts were completed in time.  My mother's scarf was not, unsurprisingly.  I wrapped it up anyway, but my mother did notice the ball of yarn and needles at the bottom of the box. Can't put anything past her!  Aside from its unfinished stated, she did love the scarf, and I took it back to finish posthaste.

Christmas Eve, Mom was at the in-law celebration, so I couldn't work on her scarf, and I was craving some serious instant knitting gratification.  Every year the LYS does a stash swap.  A gift exchange of goodies from our stash.  My giftings were four balls of Lion Brand Thick and Quick.  Not my usual cup of tea, but it does have its place.  And it fell into place for Christmas Eve.  I started a scarf for charity, and had it finished by the 26th.  After months of lace mania, it was reassuring to see instant scarf.  Just add needles and a few hours!

Today, it is all about the instant.  

Monday, December 23, 2013

Knitting at the Speed of Santa

Only one more knitting days til Christmas.

So here is the tally.

Gift #1:  Mitts for my son's kindergarten teacher.  Finished, wrapped, delivered, and thank you note received.  It is so nice to see that good manners aren't dead.

Gift #2: Spring Haven, the scarf for my mother-in-law.  Completed, finished, and blocking as we speak.  This is my first time working with Cascade 220, and I think it is safe to say it will not be my last.  It had a slightly rough feel. but one that hinted at strength and warmth.  I was pleased with the inner softness coming out after a cool bath.

Gift #3: Scarf for my Mother.  Halfway finished.  Three long feet to go, with a mere 36 hours til Christmas.  Unless Santa loans me some of his super speed, I will be wrapping a half finished scarf.

Today, it is all about the holiday speed.

P.S.  Sorry, I have pictures of the scarf blocking, but I am too tired to download tonight.        

 

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Good things come in small packages

My yarn arrived.  Thanks baby brother!

Part of the delay wasn't his fault.  Apparently, a little notice was dropped in my mailbox a couple weeks ago alerting me to its arrival.  I have quizzed the man and two half men that live in my house, and all have given me a blank stare and blanket denial.  This mystery may never be solved, and I am closing my file.

Meanwhile, I am reveling in my rescue yarn.  It isn't very much, probably only an ounce or two.  Yards that are measured in the double digits, and low ones at that. If I remember correctly, I had nine inches of edge left to do.  Each row takes one foot of yarn.  Sixteen rows to the repeat.  Each repeat produces 2 1/2 inches, plus extra on the corner.  Figure another 80 to 100 feet of yarn needed. . .

Wait, was it 9 inches of edge left, or 9 feet or yarn before I admitted defeat.  Bloody hell.  I will have to check at home.  After Christmas.

Only six more knitting day til Christmas.

Today, it is all about the tiny lifesaver.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Insert cliche here

We had a new waiter at Knittervention last night.  He was mid-20's, adorable, bored, and kept calling us endearments.  We invited him to join us, but he admitted that his knitting skills were poor.  We were impressed that he had knitting skills at all.  A throwback from his 7th grade Home Ec class.  Knitting and cracking eggs.

We took turns quizzing him.  He was a student.  Hoping to go back to nursing school.  His roommate just graduated.  Blah, blah. . . .
 
I had a rare second beer.  I couldn't resist.  He smiled and called me "darlin'."

In spite of the masculine distraction, I accomplished quite a few inches on Spring Haven.

It wasn't until I was driving home that I realized we were a cliche.  A number of middle-aged women (though I hate to admit it, I have to confess entering that bracket of life after I turned 40) knitting and flirting with a cute waiter.

Cliches exist for a  reason, right?

Today, it is all about the cute waiter.

Monday, December 16, 2013

OK, New plan

Only nine more knitting days until Christmas.

I have reviewed all the possible options that will result in finished Christmas gift.

I could take nine days off from work, and spend my days knitting.  I could find a way to forego sleep.  I could figure out how to warp the space time continuum.

Short of a miracle, I have realized that I will not have two finished scarves in time.

I have decided to concentrate only on my mother-in-law's scarf, for several reasons.

1.   It is closer to being finished, so it is a more realistic goal.

2.  My mother-in-law is less likely to understand the concept of wrapping a nearly finished gift, letting her open it, and taking it back to complete.  Mom is crafty.  Not a knitter, but I believe that she will understand my dilemma.

3.  Mom's scarf looks lovely right now.  It is a textured motif.  My mother-in-law's scarf is lace, and will require blocking.

I have nine days to finish the scarf.  Eight days to finish the knitting, to allow one day for blocking.  That will require a couple inches per day.  That is a realistic goal.

Excuse me, while I prepare to leave for Knittervention.  Two hours of quality knitting time.  Prime opportunity to achieve my require couple inches.

Today, it is all about the re-prioritization.

Friday, December 13, 2013

And that is why I am not an accountant

I always scan my last post before starting a new one.  This time, I realized that there were a shocking number of mathematical errors: with the feet/inches of knitting to complete, with the average inches per day to achieve completion, and even with the number of days until Christmas.

I could try to blame sleep deprivation, multitasking of the mind, or any other number of things.  I might have gotten away with it too, if I hadn't screwed up the day count until Christmas.  I have young children.  They parrot to me multiple times a day how many sleeps til Christmas.  I really have no excuse.

So here are the correct numbers, reviewed for accuracy by the local university geek math department.

Spring Haven:  4 feet completed.  2 feet to go.  Or until I run out of yarn, whichever happens first.

Un-named blue scarf for my mother: 32 inches completed.  3 feet 4 inches to go.  Or until I run out of yarn, whichever happens first.

Number of days until Christmas:  12

Average inches needed per day to finish in time: 5.3

Equally unattainable as 10 inches per day, but now I can sleep at night knowing that I have accurately calculated the extent to which I am totally screwed on my Christmas knitting.

Today, it is all about the accuracy of screwed-ness.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

One down

Knit Night last night.  The special December event.  Most of the two hours was spent on the gift exchange.  Drawing numbers, oooing as each gift was unwrapped, waiting for your turn to select a new wrapped gift from the table or stealing from another. . .   All in good fiber fun, of course.

But I was able to get some knitting in there.  And I finished one Christmas gift.  The mitts, for Bugaboo's kindergarten teacher.  Finished, except for the finishing.  I didn't bring a tapestry needle with me.

I also made a little dent in Spring Haven.  Just shy of four feet completed.  Two to go.  Opposite for the other scarf.  Six feet to go in total.

Oh, this doesn't look good.  Ten more knitting days til Christmas.

That is an average of 10 inches a day,  This REALLY doesn't look good.

Today, it is all about the futility.

 

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Question from the Bench

Judge: Isn't it a bit late to start Christmas gifts?

What I thought:  Stop talking to me; I am counting.

What I said:  (smiling) yes.

I love this Judge.  He actually notices when I am knitting something new, or knitting the same thing for months in his courtroom.  His wife has him well trained.

I started Monday morning with less than an inch completed on the second mitt. After knitting a row here and there at the courthouse, and Knittervention Monday night, plus some late night after-the-kids-go-to-bed-and-the-kitchen-is-clean knitting, I have five inches of progress, and have started the thumb increases.

I am starting to feel confident that the mitts will be done with weeks to spare, leaving only the scarves to finish.

This is usually the point when the floor drops from under my feet.

Today, it is all about the confidence.        

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Start the Countdown

24 knitting days until Christmas.

This is the first time that I really have Christmas knitting gift deadlines.  I am not sure I like it.  I like the idea of giving knitted gifts, but I don't like knitting against a looming deadline.  Knitting is supposed to be fun, not work.

 That said, I am making decent progress.  Even with this shopping-packed  family-packed weekend, I finished the first mitt.  It turned out to be considerably larger than planned.  I increased every third stitch for the thumb gusset, which turned out to be much longer than initially visualized, and therefore larger overall length.  If I didn't have a looming deadline, I might rip back to increase on alternating rows, but I don't have that kinda time to waste.  Just because it was larger than I had planned doesn't mean that it doesn't look pretty and useful.  Though it does mean that the second one will take a wee bit longer.
 The scarves are progressing nicely.  Spring Haven is over half done, and -- Oh, I haven't named the blue one yet-- it is about one-third finished.

They are very different scarves.  I had originally planned to make the same scarf for both mothers, in different colors.  But when it came time to buy Mom's yarn, another called out to me, which meant finding a textured pattern, instead of lace.  

I am not sure if this is a reaction to the gift knitting thing, but I have been fighting a serious case of startitis.   I have been browsing around Ravelry (always a dangerous pastime), and everything is jumping out and saying "Knit me!" at once.  Shawlettes, mittens, lace,  color stranded. . . .I am trying to resist, and maybe finish one or two things in the overflowing WIP bag first.

Trying doesn't necessarily mean succeeding.  I am safe as long as I have gifts to finish, but if I receive new yarn for Christmas, it just might push me over the edge.

Today, is it all about the countdown.  

Monday, November 25, 2013

Third Time is the Charm

Over the weekend, I dug into the stash, and started the Teacher gift, some fingerless mitts.

I did about an inch, then I decided that they were way too big.

I started again and did about an inch, then realized that there was an error, 4 knits in one of my two by two ribs.

I started again, and have almost finished an inch.  Hopefully, the third time is the charm.  .

I don't have time to waste two days knitting the same inch over and over again.

30 days til Christmas.  (26 days until school ends and the mitts have to be done.)

This is starting to look grim.  I need whoever does the Yarn Harlot's Christmas gift knitting scheduling.

Today, it is all about the wasted time.    

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Do I Need to Add to the Christmas knitting?

No unsurprisingly, Christmas gift knitting was the hot topic of conversation at Knittervention this week.  I was happily zooming along one of my scarves.  Then someone mentioned that now that her kids have five teachers and that was a lot of Christmas presents to knit.

My ears perked up.  My youngest just started kindergarten.  I hadn't even thought about a gift for his teacher!

Thirty four days until Christmas. Thirty days until school ends.  2 1/2 feet to go on one scarf.  4 feet to go on the other.  Mitts!  DO I have time to throw some mitts in there too?  I already knot her favorite color.  I think I may have some yarn that will work.  Oh, why didn't I think of this sooner?

Today, it is all about the growing holiday list of things to knit.  

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

And the Race is On

My two Christmas gifts scarves are racing each other to Christmas.

My Mother-in-law's scarf had a head start.  I finished the first three feet in the summer, then took a hiatus when I ran out of yarn.  Now I have more yarn, and 42 inches completed.  I just plan on knitting until I run out of yarn.  Or six feet, whichever comes first.

Mom's scarf was just started a couple weeks ago, so it definitely has some catching up to do.    19 inches completed.  Same plan: knit until I run out of yarn, or approximately six feet.

I don't want a repeat of the Aurora Borealis 9 foot shawl incident, so I am trying to remember to measure once in a while.

39 days til Christmas. 84 inches of scarf to knit.  Oh, when I put it like that, it doesn't sound as realstitically doable.    Excuse me while I knit a bit before bed.

Today, it is all about the holiday.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

For Want of a Babysitter

No Knittervention this past week.  I assume that everyone else was there, but I wasn't.  My babysitter had to cancel.  The transmission blew out on her car.  Knit Night this coming Monday doesn't look good either.

Apparently, transmissions don't understand the concept of Christmas gift knitting.  I have two scarves to finish before Christmas.  Roughly twelve feet of knitting. Four feet down. Eight to go.  Six weeks remaining.

Totally doable.

If I can make it to Knit Night or Knittervention once in a while, I would probably finish early.  Any volunteers to watch two rough and tumble little boys for a couple hours?

Today, it is all about the holiday deadline.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Bye week

I participate in two different knitting groups, both on Monday nights.  Knittervention is every other Monday night.  Knit Night is always the second Monday of the month.  Sometimes they are on the same night, depending on how the Mondays fall.  There is always a "bye" week, sometimes two, each month.

Yesterday was the bye Monday.  No knitting.  Just the usual evening home with the kids.

I was still able to fit some knitting in.  7 inches down on Mom's Christmas scarf.  55 inches to go.   (Sorry, no pics, still can't find the camera.)

In other news, no, my yarn still hasn't arrived from Poland yet.  Mom talked to my brother the weekend, so I asked her if he had mailed my yarn to me yet.  At first she hedged, then mentioned that he had showed her the yarn via webcam.  Um, if you saw the yarn on Sunday, then he hadn't mailed it yet.  

He really doesn't understand the concept of a yarn emergency, does he?  What part of my instructions were so hard to understand?  I even gave him my address, though he did ask for clarification: "what country?"  And he suggested that maybe it would be faster to scan and email.  Ah, sarcasm, the grumpy man's wit.

I responded in kind.  I explained that Indiana had seceded, and was now part of Canada.  And that it was very difficult to knit with yarn than had been scanned, and the colors were never correct.  Two can play the sarcasm game.

Then he asked about the story behind the yarn.  If you don't read the blog, then you don't deserve to know.  (How bad is it that my brother and mother and husband don't read my blog?  Just strangers from Russia and Indonesia, this week anyway.)

Today, it is all about the sarcasm.
  

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

May I present my stitches?

'Tis the season for Christmas knitting.  The weather turns cold, and knitters everywhere suddenly realize that Christmas is looming, and gifts need to be finished.  And started.

My mother-in-law's Christmas gift scarf, Spring Haven, has been in progress for a while.  I needed another skein of yarn, which I bought last week.  While I was there, I bought the yarn for Mom's Christmas scarf.

Last night, I feel like I wasted the whole two hours of Knitter-vention, because all I did was swatch.  Two pattern and two needles sizes were the contenders, and just when I thought I had it narrowed down. . .I decided to leave the final decision to my Sweetie.

For a straight white man with no knitting interest whatsoever, he has surprisingly good insight in the craft.

The winning pattern had one of the strangest line of directions I have ever seen in my twenty years as a knitter:  "All wrong size rows: work stitches as they present themselves."

As they present themselves?!?!  Are you kidding me?  I mean, I knew what they meant, knit the knits and purl the purls, but it still sounded like the stupidest way to say that.  

Do the stitches walk up, extend a hand, and make introductions?  "Good evening, I am knit, and may I present my dear friend purl."  

Or even better:  "Hi, I'm Knit, this is my sister Purl, this is my other sister Purl."

Who writes these things?

Today, it is all about the salutations.

Monday, October 21, 2013

The Weakest Link

It is fortuitous to find the yarn you desperately need on Ravelry.  It is even serendipitous to convince the owner of the yarn remnants to mail you the yarn you need free of charge.  It is apparently beyond all expectation for your baby brother to check his e-mail or mailbox to discover the story behind the incoming yarn or notice it in his mailbox.

Really?  How does a person not check his mailbox in a week?

My baby brother was obviously the weak link in the Yarn Emergency Rescue Plan.

Meanwhile, I am working on my Christmas knitting.  A scarf for my mother, and another for my mother-in-law.  Details to come. . .

Today, it is all about the mail.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Has my yarn arrived yet?

I have ten inches of edge remaining.  I have 9 1/2 feet of yarn left.  I can now safely say that I will NOT have enough yarn. 

Which led to the email to my brother yesterday. . . Has my yarn arrived yet?  He hasn't responded to the first email, when I told him the yarn was coming.  Apparently, my brother is pulling his notorious silent treatment.  Not out of spite, just procrastination.  Hey, lazybones!  Check your e-mail, mail,  and let me know when my yarn is here!

Really, one would think he doesn't appreciate a yarn emergency.

In the meantime, I have Christmas knitting.  I bought the rest of the yarn for my Mother-in-Law's Christmas scarf, Spring Haven, so I can get back to work on that one.  And I bought the yarn for my Mother's scarf, so I can start that one.

Today, it is all about the emergency.  

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Saved!

I can knit with confidence again.  Ravelry to the rescue.

I contacted Barbara, a/k/a Dobranoc, and she was kind enough to immediately mail out the yarn, at no cost to me.  Further evidence of the generosity of knitters, that she would jump to the aid of another knitter without hesitation or regard to cost.  Granted, the cost was minimal to her: a few yards of leftover yarn, for which she just hadn't figured out a purpose.  I gave her my brother's address in Poland, so that she would not have to worry about international postage.

21 inches to go, and worry-free.

Today, it is all about the generosity.


Thursday, October 10, 2013

A glimmer of hope

Another inch completed.  Not really closer to answering the the Great Yarn Question, but closer to the end. 

I may have located a lifeline, if it is needed.  The magic question is can I get more yarn.  I bought this yarn in 2005 in Krakow, Poland, so my usual assumption is "no".  But I have learned never to doubt the power of the internet.  I struck out on Ebay and Etsy, but found a possibility on Ravelry.  Someone has 31 yards left from a sweater she made, same yarn, same color (I think).  She has it listed as "not for sale" but that could be just because she never changed its status after using the rest of the skeins. 

After all, who would want to buy 31 yards of leftover yarn?

A desperate woman who needs only a few yards to finish a massive shawl, that's who!

Begging and pleading with her is is certainly a better idea than ripping out the whole bloody edge and re-working the pattern to make it just a few stitches smaller. 

Today, it is all about the hope. 

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

The Skein Stands Alone

I am down to my last partial skein of yarn.  One last lonely skein.  I have 24 inches of edge to go.

As I have progressed along with the edge, worrying with every stitch whether or not I will have enough yarn, I keep thinking that I will know one way or another at some point.  When I finish the first short edge, when I am halfway finished with the edge, when I am at the last long edge, when I am halfway through the last edge. . . . I keep thinking that with each milestone, I will somehow have a better idea if I will have enough yarn.

I am down to the last two feet, and I still haven't a clue.

24 inches left, including one corner.  Approximately 1/4 of a skein left.  The last full skein lasted through approximately 84 inches of edge, including two corners.

I have a nagging feeling this is going to come down to the last foot of yarn.  I almost wish that the yarn would just put me out of my misery.

My imprecise relationship with math is killing me.  If I had kept better track of the actual numbers, instead of eyeballing and remembering, I might know the yardage question.

Today, it is all about the approximations.

P.S.  No pictures today.  And on a semi-related topic, if anyone sees my camera, please let me know.


Thursday, September 26, 2013

Missing Title

I had the perfect blog title.  Knittervention was the other night, and Cassie made a punny about my shawl.  My first thought was "remember that comment, it is perfect for the blog."  And by the time I was driving home, I realized that I had forgotten it.

Something about the edge and  anxiety about the yarn left. . . feeling edgy about knitting the edge. . . .No, it is gone.

Sorry, I will just update the numbers.  13 inches of edge completed.  45 inches of edge remaining.  Two partial balls of yarn remaining.

Today, it is all about the missing.  



Monday, September 23, 2013

Fall into Shawl Weather

Sunday is supposed to be a day of rest.  In our house, it is usually a day of laundry.  Fun activities on Saturday, housework on Sunday.  In between the darks and the reds, I can usually sneak in a few lines of knitting. 

Yesterday was no exception, and I have several more inches of Fuchsia edging to show for it.  9 inches down on the last long side completed.  Approximately 60 inches to go.  Usually, I delight in every pull from the skein. Not this time.  Now I knit with one eye watching each tug, fighting the urge to weigh the last two partial skeins.  This wouldn't tell me much, but it would be just one more way to obsess about whether or not I will have enough yarn.

What keeps me going is that we are officially entering Fall, which means shawl weather, and I am almost finished with a brand spanking new nearly-finished shawl that I am just itching to debut.

Today, it is all about the urges and itches.   

 

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

The Knitting Theory of Relativity

Black holes exist.  I don't need long equations of quantum physics to prove it to me.  I don't need Einstein or Hawking.  I just need to look at my knitting. 

When I started Fuchsia Wave, I was going so fast, yarn burn on my fingers started to be a real concern.  The inches I was producing seemed to contradict both the knitting time and the slowly dwindling pile of yarn.

Then there was the edge. 

Now that I have entered the second half, and even the last long section of edge, I have entered a black hole.  I knit and knit and knit, and my progress is imperceptible to the naked eye or average measuring tape.  At the same time, I am consuming the remaining yarn at an alarming rate.

It would appear that knitting progress is inversely proportional to the time in which you have to knit an object; and yarn consumption is inversely proportional to the yarn available for use.  I am sure some science-y geek is going to tell me that I said that wrong.  The closer your deadline, the slower you seem to knit.  The less yarn you have, the more you seem to consume. 

Do you think that is was Einstein had in mind?

No pictures today.  One, it isn't necessary, just look at the last few pictures.  Two, I couldn't find the camera.  I looked everywhere, including in my panty drawer, which isn't where it belongs, but IS where I found my eyeglasses this morning, so it couldn't hurt to look.  No luck. 

Today, it is all about the physics. 

Saturday, September 14, 2013

A Week Without Knitting

There are some weeks that simply cry out for knitting.  Unfortunately, these are usually the weeks that don't have time for knitting.  I see a flaw in my system.

Monday was Knittervention.  That was a good thing.  I even had a little extra knitting time, thanks to my mother.  She was arriving from Poland that night, and I was meeting her shuttle.  She texted that she was almost to town when it was time to leave, and there was no reason to drive home, wait 15 minutes, then leave again.  Far better to just get an extra 40 minutes of knitting time.  By the time I picked up Mom, delivered her safely home, then went to my own home, it was pushing midnight.

Tuesday night was an NRA banquet.  My sweetie goes every year.  This year, one person confirmed, paid, then changed his mind, so I used his ticket.  The dinner was tasty, but exhaustion was quickly catching up with me.  Also, it is probably better if I don't see how much $$$ my sweetie spends trying to win guns, etc.  He did win a small fingerprint-access safe.  Another late night.

To add a little chaos to the mix, Bugaboo came home from school with a fever.  By morning, it was not better, so I was in the office for a couple hours, then had to leave early to take him to the doctor.  Strep.  Brilliant.  So there was some last minute schedule maneuvering to set up who would stay home with him.  By the time I tucked the baby boys into bed, I was ready to fall into bed myself.

Thursday was a flurry of insanity at the office.  Court on the outskirts of Chicago.  I forgot about the time change, so I was an hour late for my afternoon mediation, and a half hour late for my child support hearing. Thursday night was a meeting at Bugaboo's school, then talk to the teacher and set up our conference.

Friday, I was a flurry of activity at the office, but still fell further and further behind.  Do one small project, halfway through take a phone call that added one more thing to the list, finish item 1, start item too, take two phone calls that added two more things to the list, and so on.

And where was knitting  in all this activity?  Virtually Non-existent.  Aside from Monday, I barely even looked at it.  I was running late in court virtually all week, so I didn't get any briefcase knitting.  I was too tired after kiddie bedtime to see straight, much less see stitches.

I have no significant progress to show you, dear devoted readers.  No pictures.  No milestones.  Nothing.  My apologies.   I start the weekend with fresh hope.  And Bugaboo is feeling better, and will be starting school again on Monday.

Today, it is all about starting fresh.



Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Turn 3

Monday was Labor Day.  It was cloudy and gray, so it was a perfect lazy day.  For me, that means stolen moments of knitting. That produced lots of progress on the short edge.

I am only a few inches away from rounding Turn 3 (green markers), and entering the last straightaway.  I have 50-60% of the full ball remaining, plus the 1/3 ball leftover from the body of the shawl.

To continue the Nascar analogies, and a running low on gas and my tires aren't looking good, but I can't pit.  I just have to blaze forward, throttle open, hoping that I have enough to finish the race.

And if I do, then I can win.

Today, it is all about the turn.

Sunday, September 1, 2013

The Short End of the Shawl

If you can tell from this extremely shoddy picture, I am on the short end of the shawl edge.  A mere 11 repeats in 20 inches, and I will be starting the last long section.

The section which will either make or break the yarn.  The section where I will either finish in triumph, or crash and burn with a short end of the yarn.  The section . . . .well, you get the idea.

You know, my Mother is in Poland this week, maybe I should have sent her with a ball band, in case she stumbled on an extra ball.  I only bought it 8 years ago, I am sure they still have some on the shelf somewhere.

Today, it is all about the shortness (of shawl, hopefully not of yarn).

Friday, August 30, 2013

Look closely

I know that it is easy to get distracted by the two cute little boys in the picture, but can you see the knitting?

There was a time when I couldn't get them to look at a camera to save my life.  Not anymore.

Now if they see a camera, I hear demands:  "Mommy, take a picture of me!"  :Mommy, can I see the picture?"  Mommy, mommy, mommy!

Can you see the sock that Mickey is wearing?  Charity sock in progress.  Over three inches in the past month, a couple rows at a time.  My current briefcase knitting.

Socks on two circulars really is the perfect briefcase knitting.  I can stop at any time, with seconds notice, whenever the attorney/judge I am waiting on is ready.  One ball of yarn, compact, and no instructions necessary.

I knit the sock, and the charity finds a child to fit it.

Today, it is all about the models charity.


Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Will you have enough yarn?

That was the question of the evening at Knittervention last night?  For me, at least.

It was a small group last night, only four of us.  And we were breaking in a new waitress, but she was an admitted hooker (the crochet variety, not a prostitute), so there was speedy fiber bonding.  Give us a few more months, and we will have her coming in on her night off to learn how to knit.

It took every minute I was there, but I met my goal for the evening.  (Apparently, for once, I had a realistic knitting goal.)  I finished the first long side and rounded the corner.  I am officially on the downward slope of the edge.

I still have no idea if I will have enough yarn.  I have 60% to 70% of one skein, and around 50% of another skein left.

Halfway done with the edge.

At the risk of repeating myself, I HAVE to have enough yarn, because I can't get more of this and I have to have enough yarn.

Today, it is all about enough.

Saturday, August 24, 2013

The long silence

I know that it has been a long time since I blogged.  It has been a long time since I have done any significant knitting also.  Since this is a knitting blog, the two kind of go hand in hand.  Sometimes, life just gets in the way of important things like knitting.

I have finished the second row on the Pink Ruffle scarf, Take 2.  Look at the pictures of Take 1.  Right now, there is no difference between the two.

I am close to the halfway point on the edge of Fuchsia Wave.  The halfway point should tell me. . . absolutely nothing about the yarn yardage.  I have accepted that I am simply blundering forward with blind faith and denial, certain that knitting would not betray me like that.  Knitting would not let me run out of yarn that close to the end.  Knitting would let me run out of a yarn I cannot possibly find more, even if I searched the far reaches of the internet and the four corners of Ravelry.  Knitting has been my faithful companion these eighteen years.  Knitting wouldn't do that to me.

Today, it is all about the certainty.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

A Two Pint Night

Yesterday was a doosey.  One of those days when I was hit with one thing after another at the office.  I get back from court, and a client had scheduled a last minute appointment for as soon as I walked in the door.  As soon as he left, a random person wandered in asking about a divorce.  I barely had enough time to sort through the mail, between  phone calls, before I was off to court again.  I had two out of three hearings in front of that Judge, and my hearings ran late, which has a cascade effect.  The last hearing ended at 5:45.  I was supposed to pick up my kids by 5, so there I was texting my Sweetie in the middle of my court hearing. 

Rush home, get organized, give kids baths, blah, blah.  By the time I got to Knittervention, I was ready for a pint of cider, knitting and a few laughs.  Even though we book the little room every other week, there were three people there.  Three people that had already consumed whatever they had ordered, and were just sitting there talking.  Three people that were obviously not fazed at all as knitter after knitter arrived, paused at the doorway in confusion, then crammed close together trying to avoid poking each other with long pointy sticks. 

The invaders finally left after 45 minutes, and within seconds we had the tables bussed, wiped and had spread ourselves out.  That was when I ordered the second pint.

While everything else was going to pot, the knitting was going well.  I brought Fuchsia Wave, and was going like gangbusters on the edge.  While I have no specific memory, empirical blog or Ravelry entries, or pictoral proof, starting the new skein for the edge prep rows sounds like something I would do. 

I am reasonably certain that I will have enough yarn.  Or I am suffering from severe fiber denial that will result in tears, swear words, and self-depreciating blog posts.  And maybe a three pint night, ending with the cab ride home. 

Today, it is all about denial certainty.  
 

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Except . . . .

When I started the edge, I had two and a half skeins of yarn left.  I have now used up one skein, and completed one short side of the edge, and 2/3 of one long side.

This is not enough yarn to finish.

Except. . . .Did I start the new skein at the perpendicular edge?  Or did I start it with the four prep rows around the entire circumference of the shawl?

If that skein include four prep rows, then I am fine.

If not, then I am totally screwed.

I don't remember when I started the skein.

I am going to risk it.

Today, it is all about the lack of memory.

Friday, August 9, 2013

Comfort Knitting

Usually knitting is my calorie-free comfort food from the stress and trials of daily life.  These days, it feels like I need another sort of comfort from my knitting.

After the crash and burn of the pink ruffle scarf, I needed worry-free, familiar, surely-nothing-will-go-wrong sort of knitting.   I have a new charity child's sock in my briefcase.  I have finished a few rows on Big Purple, the giant endless aphgan for my mother in law.  I have worked on the cuffs of my Sweetie's hunting mittens, though, since these are the second set to match the fraternal twin (as opposed to identical twin) first set, that is of dubious worry reducing value. 

I have not re-started the pink ruffle scarf yet.  I plan to, and I know what I am going to do different, I just haven't started doing the different yet.

I have not even touched Fuchsia Wave, as the potential for yarn shortage so close after throwing away yarn could drive me right over the edge.

My oldest son, Bugaboo is starting school next week.  I am the mother of a kindergartener.  For the first time, I am in the rush of back to school shopping, coordinating and planning.  Dress codes, school clothes, handbooks, oh my!  Doodlebug starts pre-school in two weeks, so I fund myself with the a new supplies list as soon as I completed the first supplies list.

I would say that I look forward to the relative calm of the office, except that it is custody season, so I have the flurry of battles and court that all seem to be scheduled for the next two weeks.

Today it is all about the need for comfort.   

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Disaster in Pink

I have cast off enough stitches to see the overall flow of the ruffled scarf. . . . I hate it.  The ruffles are too full.  Way too full.   I was trying to make a scarf, not a very short  tutu.

Really, there is no room for my  neck!

This makes casting off the remaining couple thousand stitches a very painful proposition.

Though, why would I do that?  I am not going to wear the scarf as it is.  I wouldn't even feel right giving it away to charity.

I can't rip out, because the yarn is a fine mohair blend.  I still like the idea of a ruffled scarf out of this yarn, and I still have about five miles of it left on the cone.

I just need to fix the pattern.  I am thinking no more than half the increases, and double the stockinette rows in between increases.

So it is decided.  I will (gasp!) cut the yarn, and throw the scarf away.  I hate to waste yarn, but I am calling it a yarn sacrifice in the name of knitting experience.

Ever notice that experience is simply the name we give our mistakes?

Today, it is all about the, um, experience.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Nascar Knitting

It has been very busy on the knitting front lately.  I believe that I have mentioned before my my sweetie enjoys Nascar.  This past weekend was our local hosting of a Nascar event: the Brickyard 400.  (Technically, I think it is Crown Royal Brickyard 400, but I don't really keep up with the rotating sponsors.)

My job was to drive the 60 miles to the track at 7 in the morning, (Apparently, if you wait any longer, you risk being caught in the 100,000 or so of cars heading to the track that morning.) waiting until the one-way traffic barricades are removed to that I can drive back to the track to pick him up.  Him and his drunken friends.  It really is better that way.  They don't have to worry or monitor their alcohol consumption, or worry about the drive at the end of the evening. 

The plan means that I spend about ten hours wandering around Indianapolis.  I wasn't in the mood to go shopping, so I planned a day of hobby solitude: knitting, DVD's, and reading.  My mother's laptop was being temperamental, so the DVD's went un-played.  That meant that I did more reading than knitting.  I finished one book, and started another.  Even still Fuchsia Wave came out of exile on the dresser, and I completed a good six inches of the border. 

Which brings me to my ongoing concern.  This is the border, as completed so far.  

I started with a full skein.  I have completed one short side, and half of one long side. 


This is how much yarn I have left.  A smidgen left of the first border skein, one full skein, and one partial skein.

I have this increasing sense of doom that I will be staring at the end of my yarn long before I run out of edge to knit.

This is not an un-fixable problem.  I can rip out the border, and search border stitch encyclopedias for a skinnier border.

I keep telling myself that I will know more once I finish the first skein.


Today, it is all about the impending doom.  

Friday, July 26, 2013

Over 5000 served

Yesterday, my blog counter tipped over 5,000.  For reasons I can't explain other than vanity, I am just tickled that people actually read what I have written.  And, I hope, find some amusement in it.  Someone other than my mother.  (Actually, my mother doesn't even read my blog.  She knows how to knit, but isn't a knitter.)

I glee with delight when I see a new country on the stats.  I swell with pride when I see a recurring country.  I smile with amazement when I see a country like Russia with numbers that almost reach my home country of America. 

Thank you for your patronage, my dedicated and intermittant readers.  I will continue to try to amuse and entertain. 

Today, it is all about the fans I still can't believe that I have. 

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Think twice, knit once

A few weeks ago, I said to myself that I wouldn't start anything new (read: the new Jane shawl) until I finished at least two things.  I meant Fuchsia Wave and Aurora Borealis, because starting another shawl when I already had two almost finished seemed like madness.  However, as I finished my Lacey in Red socks yesterday, I realized that I HAD reached the required "two" projects. 

So I gave myself permission to start the process.  Not start knitting, of course.  We are several steps away from that.  I am now allowed to fondle the yarn.  Pet it, as it speaks to me and tells me what it wants to be when it grows up.  I took the yarn to work, but didn't work on it.  I am not sure how this is a necessary part of the process, but it always seems to happen, so it must be. 

I have looked at the pattern, read the pattern several times, and skimmed other's comments about the pattern on Ravelry.  (Really, how did we ever function before Ravelry?  Oh, I remember, scores of knitters experienced the same issue with a pattern, then had to either give up, whine to a knitting friend, or muddle through on their own.)  I have tried not to be TOO distracted by other potential patterns, while keeping an open mind about what the yarns wants to become.   

As I become a more experienced knitter, I like to think that I am becoming a smarter knitter too.  A smart knitter doesn't blunder forward casting on with whatever pattern, yarn and needles happens to be closest to their hands at the time.  A smart knitter thinks about whether the yarn and the pattern will be right for each other.  Will this yarn work with the guage?  Will the yarn drape as the pattern intends?  Will the yarn color and pattern designs work together? 

Thinking, in theory, reduces the likelihood of knitting a few rows, then ripping them out entirely through tears of frustration. 

Even as I am going through this process with Jane, I blundered my way into a very small little pretty out of one lone partial skein of mohair.  Very small.  Hardly counts as a work in progress at all.  Row 3.  Major issues. 

Excuse me while I go rip out a very small piece of mohair.  No, I am not crying, the wind is making my eyes water. 

Today, it is all about the thinking.   

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Knitterly Pride

Last night we went to the County Fair, a first for my young children.  We rode together on the Ferris Wheel, then they were confident enough to ride alone on the kiddie rides, and with parents on the child rides.  We ate funnel cake and looked at animals ,big and small.  My three men indulged Mommy to take a dash through the Home Ec building. 

I was surprised how little there was of fiber arts in there.  Lots of quilts, food, clothes (sewed by school children) and scrapbooks, but little knitting.  I saw one be-ribboned lace shawl, and maybe a couple other random items, but that was about it.  I also saw a couple grand cross-stitches pieces.   (I own both of those patterns, now that I think on it.)

Can anyone enter pieces in the fair?  Can I?  How are other knitters not doing this?  Note to self: look into before the fair next year. 

I was able to exhibit my knitting a little this morning.  It was only 60 degrees this morning, which is quite out of the norm for July in Indiana.  With a grin on m y face, I planned my clothes according to which shawl I was going to wear.  It was a tight competition between Duchess and Aurora Borealis.  In the end, Aurora won, if only because it hasn't been worn yet. 

I draped it over my shoulders, and strutted over to the courthouse.  Tres chic.  I basked in the compliments and adoration heaped upon my shawl by some of the ladies that I routinely work with/around.  Aurora deserves it. 

A few weeks ago, it occured me to that I have four shawls/wraps either finished or in progress.  That is a lot of shawls.  There is an attorney in town that wears a lot of hats.  Bright spring/summer hats, darker autumn/winter hats.  She has a LOT of hats, and it has become a bit of her trademark.  I am going to turn shawls into my trademark. 

Or at least, that is my rationalization for making more shawls. 

Today, it is all about the exhibitionism. 

P.S.  The Fair meant no casting off of endless pink stitches.  Maybe tonight.        

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Baby steps

One of my favorite things about knitting is the concept of incrementalism.  Knitting is composed entirely by a series of baby steps.  Stitch my stitch.  Row by row.  Every yarn over, knit, purl, increase and decrease work together to make the whole product.  Like the giant medieval trapestries where tiny stitches of colors form the portrait of a epic battle.  The journey of a thousand miles, highlighted by each individual step.

A couple rows here and there, day after day, week after week, can eventually produce a finished sock.  Not quickly, at that pace, but eventually.  

Lacey in Red is the perfect example of this concept.  For years, it has been my briefcase knitting.  Ok, there was a slight break during the Duchess obsession, but for the most part, this red sock has traveled around in my briefcase from courtroom to courtroom. A row here and there as I waited on judges or attorneys.

Today, I started the toe decreases on the second sock. There was a week or two of more determined effort, but the socks will probably be done today.  You know, except for Kitchnering.  

I had a picture, but I accidently deleted when I started typing.  It is on the home computer, so I will have to add it later. 

Today, it is all  about the NON-endless end.

P.S.  Cast off more sttiches of the pink ruffle last night.  Still have thousands to go.      

Sunday, July 21, 2013

The Long Goodbye

It is a little difficult to see in the picture, but I have started casting off the pink ruffle.  Ont he right side of the pic, you can see the couple hundred stitches, off the needles, in all their rufflely glory.  On the left side of the picture, you can see the seveal thousand stitches waiting on the needles. 

This is going to take a while.  Prepare for several weeks of casting off pictures. 

It is too soon to tell the overall proportions, but right now, the ruffle is flowing nicely, but isn't curling at the edge. 

Knitter like. 

Today, it is all about the endless end. 

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

The Last

At long last, I am on the LAST row of Pretty in Pink.  The last 3,000+ stitch row.  The last endless 3000+ stitch row. 

That is like saying that I am on the last 20 rows of a sweater.  Or I am halfway through the foot of the second sock. 

How can the last row seem so loooooong from the end? It really is a cruel irony. 

I have decided that casting off will feel like the true end is in sight. 

Unless I decide that the ruffle isn't long enough.  Then I will have to tink back the last two seed stitch rows and continue on.  Or kill myself.  Same difference. 

Today, it is all about the endless end. 

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Reduction


Last night was Knitter-vention.  I showed off my too-long shawl, and turned a deaf ear to all observations that while the shawl was too long for my petite frame, it was the perfect size for [fill in the blank of a taller knitter]. 

Hand's off, ladies, this is an easy fix. 

Armed with a pint of Magners, I girded my loins, and prepared to rip out two feet of knitting. 

It took a while, but finally I was ready to re-bind off.  If I had brought the needles, that is.  Theresa came to my rescue (thanks again for the loaner!), and before long, I had a perfectly-sized shawl.   

Ta da!  Isn't it lovely?

The yarn did soften after its bath, and I can't wait for cooler evenings so I can take it out and play with it. 

The pattern was almost laughably easy, though appears to be more complex. 

All in all, I am very pleased. 

And I still have 2+ balls of Noro left.  What to do?

How much longer do you think my boys will get so excited to pose with knitting? 

I worked on Lacey in Red the rest of the night.  A socks whose time has come to finish.  I would have to check to be certain, but I am pretty sure that I started this sock when Bugaboo was a baby. He turns 5 next week.  That is just shameful. 

I AM halfway through the foot on the second sock, but still . . . .absolutely disgraceful. 

Today, it is all about the disgrace. 

Friday, July 12, 2013

Christmas in July

I have buy more yarn.  It isn't like I want to.  I HAVE to. 

I love it when I HAVE to buy yarn.  It is like having your child's birthday party in the middle of your diet.  The perfect, undeniable excuse to do what you really want to do, but no you really shouldn't. 

I have been working on Spring Haven at the office, and I have run out of yarn. The scarf is just under three feet long.  That is nowhere near an adult-sized scarf, so obviously, I have to buy more yarn.  It is a Christmas present for my Mother-in-law, so I have to buy yarn without delay. 

The next scarf will be a Christmas present for my mother, so maybe I should buy that yarn as well.  Why, yes, my oldest child does have a birthday coming up.  Why do you ask?

I did resist the temptation to bring the sage mohair yarn with me today, to have it wound into cakes or balls or something.  I will not start Jane until I finish two of my WIP's.  I am resolved.  And taking a step like winding the yarn into balls might prove my undoing.  There is too much fondling of yarn that takes place during that process. 

Today, it is all about the perfect excuses. 

   

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

The Usual Suspects

After a month of all Aurora all the time, I am slowly returning to my usual knitting multi-tasking.  I worked on a sock a little at the office.  I finished the heel and started on the foot.  The Unnamed Red Sock.  That doesn't really work, does it?  I am halfway through the second sock, and never named it?  Lacey in Red.  Good enough.   

I worked on Pretty in Pink at home. Almost through the second needle, on the second to the last row before bind off.  I measured the cone, last night, and this yarn-sucking ruffle used about 1/2 inch off the cone.  I still have 1 3/4 inches left.  Plenty to make something else with it.  Must think on that. 

I didn't pick up Fuchsia Wave, but her time is coming soon. 

I am sorely tempted to start in on Jane shawl, but I am not giving in to that temptation, until I finish two other nearly finished projects.  In my post-Duchess high, I really did go overboard with a full-on case of startitis, and it is time to reign in.  My work in progress bag runneth over.

I could not bring myself to rip out Aurora.  I was too tired to concentrate last night, and ripping out inches will probably require a glass or two of wine as anesthesia.  For me, not the shawl. 

Today, it is all about the Finish-itis.         

Monday, July 8, 2013

Good news, Bad news

The bad news is . . .  that yarn has lost it's magical qualities.  I outed it.  I exposed its magic to the world wide web, and the government men in monochromatic suits came and swapped the yarn.  Or maybe it was old wizards in long robes.  I can't say, my memory was swiped clean in the process.  I never had a magic ball of yarn.  It was ordinary all along. 

The good news is . . . I finished my Aurora Borealis shawl.  I wass so excited, I gave it a bath and blocked it within 12 hours of binding off. 

The bad news. . . . after blocking, I have to accept a harsh reality.  At 8 1/2 feet, it is really too long.    Either that, or I am too short.  (Bloody hell, it is Duchess all over again.)  I can't do anything about my petite stature, but I can do something about my apparent inability to remember that I am not 5 foot 8 inches.  Not in time for this shawl, of course, but I do have a solution. 

The bad news is . .  I am going to rip out and re-bind off.  It will be painful, but it really will be the best thing for the shawl.  I don't want to worry about dragging edges every time I wear the thing. 

The good news is. . . I will have a ball or two of Noro left over to make something else.  After I get over the trauma, that is. 

Today, it is all about the good, the bad, and the beautiful. 


Tuesday, July 2, 2013

The Magic Ball of Yarn

Once again, knitting has smacked me down for my pride and vanity.   I have entered some sort of knitting black hole.  I knit and knit, for hours, and the ball of yarn doesn't seem to get any smaller. 

I have been screaming along at warp speed on Aurora for a month now, so it was bound to happen sometime. 

Just over two hours of knitting last night at Knitter-vention, and I left still knitting on the same [expletive deleted] ball of yarn with which I started.  The tiny little ball that I wound after the skein was too empty to maintain structure as a skein.  The one that I thought I was "certainly" finish last night, and planned to get halfway through the last ball.  My shawl kept growing and growing, but the ball didn't get any smaller. 

The shawl is now 6 feet 9 inches.  I had to stand on a stool and stretch my arm to the ceiling to hold it up.  Inch after inch, stripe after stripe, the shawl grew, the ball remained. 

Wait!  I have discovered a magic ball of yarn.  A magic ball of Noro!  You can knit and knit, and the ball never gets smaller.  Shawls, hats, scraves, sweaters, all from the same ball of yarn.

I think I will knit a sweater next.  Then I will knit a shawl for Teresa.  Assuming the ball of yarn keeps its magical powers. 

Today, it is all about the magic. 

   

Monday, July 1, 2013

Indulgences

Yesterday was shorter than I anticipated.  Not the whole day, of course.  The day was still 24 hours as usual, but my alone portion of the day was only five hours.  Still, five hours is more free time than I ever see at once, so I wasn't going to quibble. 

I built myself a little nest:  a cocktail ( I don't normally imbibe in the afternoon, but this was a special occasion), a bowl of Doritoes (not on my diet these days, but again, special occasion), my Aurora Borealis shawl, my cross-stitch, and my remote control. 

I only had time to watch the unaired pilot and first season.  Well, most of the first season.  I didn't quite finish episode 3.  I can't speak for Benedict Cumberbatch, but I enjoyed myself. 

Since I had neglected it for years, I started working on my Monet Waterlilies cross stitch.  It is incredibly intricate and challenging.  You only work one 10 by 10 block at a time, and those 100 stitches are difficult enough.  The colors are almost imperceptibly different from each other, so you really can't tell what you have done and what you haven't, except on a stitch by stitch basis.  I completed one block (only 7 by 10, it was on the edge of the page), and started another, before I started needing colors that I hadn't bought yet.  So far, I had only been working on a great big patch of mottled blue, with the occasional swirl of gray or lavender.  But I can come to the first rock/lilypad, and hadn't bought any of those colors yet. 

I thought that I had made a healthy re-start on the stitching, and moved onto Aurora.  I cranked out another ball of yarn on that shawl, before I heard the joyous peals of my children's return. 

Tonight is Knitter-vention, and I am very close to the last ball of yarn for the shawl.  I will no doubt start that last ball tonight, though finishing it may be overly ambitious.  I was only joking when I wrote it last week, but his shawl may really be finished by the 4th of July. 

Which leads me to the need for an apology.  Last week, I wished for a cold snap over the holiday, so I could wear the shawl.  And now, the entire midwest is experiencing temperatures 15 degrees below normal.  No swimming this weekend, I was too busy pulling out hoodies for the boys.  Brrr.  I apologize to the entire midwest for my thoughtless and selfish wish, and humbly request the return of summer.  I understand that Arizona has heat to spare. 

Today, it is all about humility

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Mommy's Time Out

My husband is sending Mommy into a time out tomorrow, but a good one. 

He is taking both the boys tomorrow to see his brother.  (Grandma and Grandpa are going along.) One hour drive there, one hour drive back, time spent with family, plus maybe a meal.

I will be alone and child-free ALL DAY.  Hours and hours.  At first, my mother suggested us doing something together, but I smacked down that notion right out of the gate.  This is alone time, something I never really get anymore. 

I tried pinning my sweetie down on estimated time away, but he just asked if I was planning to see my boyfriend.  Well, yes, but not one about which he realistically has to worry.  I am going to spend the day with Benedict Cumberbatch, watching BBC's Sherlock .  All six episodes, plus the unaired pilot if I have time.  10 hours of drool-worthy brilliance. 

And, of course, there will be knitting.  (Sherlock is not a knit-friendly show by nature, there is too much visually going on, but I have seen every episode so many times, I can now tear my eyes away for a few seconds. 

I may finish  Aurora Borealis.

I may finish Fuchsia Wave.

I may finish the pink, ruffly thing. 

I may even work on my Monet cross-stitch, which I haven't touched in several years.

So many choices.  I have cleaning house like a mad woman today, to make sure that there will be nothing to make me feel guilty about tomorrow. 

Today, it is all about the anticipation. 

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Wraparound


The Aurora Borealis shawl is still growing at a rate that defies all the usual laws of knitting output.

I am approximately 75% finished.  

It is long enough to wrap around my shoulders completely.  

It is taller than I.

It is long enough to cover a large loveseat.

It is large enough to serve as a backdrop for two very cute little boys.  

Today, it is all about knitting against the rules.   

Friday, June 21, 2013

High as an Elephant's Eye by the 4th of July

4 feet, 4 inches.  I love it when a knitted item can be measured in feet.  As this marks the close of the 4th week in progress, that is over a foot per week.  Not to shabby.   At this rate, I will be finished in three weeks or so.  
I find myself wishing for a little cold snap for the 4th of July, just so I could throw some sparkly silk around my shoulders.    

And, at long last, I have finally named the Noro shawl:  Aurora Borealis shawl.  The yarn is Noro Aurora.  The colors remind me of the northern lights.  The little sparklies a reminiscent of stars in the night sky.  The name is almost too obvious for me to have taken four weeks to think up.  

Today, it is all about the christening cermony.   

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Non-repentance

I chastised Teresa as soon as I walked into Knitter-vention last night.  I waved the Noro shawl in the air, and said "This is all your fault."  She laughed without even a hint of remorse.  She did offer to take the finished shawl off my hands, if I was dissatisfied. 

Thank you for the offer, but um, not a chance. 

Then Teresa and her BFF left early to go take in some Sci-Fi beefcake.  (They were going to see the new Star Trek movie.) 

Just now, I went to my bag to take out the shawl to measure and report on progress, only to realize that I had left the shawl at home.  My immediate thought was that since my court for the afternoon is off (settled the case fifteen minutes ago), I had time this afternoon to drive home and fetch it.  Then I realized how silly that sounded, driving home from work to fetch my knitting, when I am going to be going home anyway in four hours.  That really is beyond ridiculous.  I can't believe the thought even passed through my mind.  I HAVE knitting in the office.  One dishcloth, one scarf, one sock, and Black Rose all sit within arms length of my computer.  So really, if I absolutely need a knitting break, I can take one.  Just not the knitting with which I am currently obsessed.   That really brings the obsession to a whole new level.  

Today, it is all about the impenitent Teresa.   



Monday, June 17, 2013

Close Parentheses

I figured out my error.  I have long since completely memorized the pattern for the Noro shawl.  Not: mostly memorized with a crib sheet.  Not: mostly know but refer to the chart periodcally.  COMPLETELY memorized.  And I am working on it often enough that I don't forget. 

The risk to memorization is that my mind adds on something random and wrong, which gets incorporated on all future rows.  Turns out my mind was the culprit this time. I added a yarn over at the end of the pattern repeat, that is not supposed to be there.  I did it for several rows, hence the five extra stitchs.  It isn't as out in left field as it sounds.  There is a yarn over, knit, yarn over at the beginning of the repeat, but the repeat ends with yarn over, knit. 

Note to self: remember where the close parentheses is for patterns.

The good news is that I have ripped out the offending rows.  (Now that I think on it, I probably could have just dropped down the five rows and removed  the extra yarn over.  Ach!  Well, it probably would have been too loose on that side if I had done that.  Better to rip.)  And the shawl is ready for it's debut at Knitter-vention tonight. 

Today, it is all about the (lack of) memory. 

  

Friday, June 14, 2013

Smackdown

I should have known I was due for a knitting smackdown.  I had been cruising along so nicely on my Noro Shawl.  I would have an occasional missing or extra lone stitch at the end for no apparent reason, but for the most part, the knitting has been uneventful and productive. 

Last night, all of that changed.  One row.  That is all I knit last night.  One row.  At the end of the row, I ran out of stitches in the middle of a repeat.  I counted, and it turns out I have five extra stitches.  One stitch I can in theory understand appearing or disappearing at the end of the row.  But five stitches?  I know I was tired, but I would need a long series of screw ups to end with five extra stitches.  
  
I waas hoping that a good night's sleep and bright morning sun would reveal my error(s).  Alas, I have given birth to an insomniac.  Doodlebug was still resisting sleep at 10pm last night, and yet was up and ready to start his day at 4am.  Hopefully, the sun will be enough.

Today, it is all about the screw ups to be discovered. 

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Longer than a yardstick

It seems archiac these days, but I don't have a measuring tape at the office.  I have a yardstick.  An old-fashioned, three-foot long flat, wooden stick.  Every other day or so, I measure my Noro shawl.  Today was the first day the shawl was longer than the yardstick.  Approximately 38 inches now. 

Almost halfway through my yarn, almost halfway through the preferred shawl length.  

I love it when a plan comes together. 

Today, it is all about the almost halfway mark. 

Monday, June 10, 2013

Not your new blankie


I am sorry, Doodlebug, this is not your new blankie. 

Yes, it is very pretty. 

Yes, it has nice stripes.

Yes, it is the perfect size for you ( or will be once it is finished.)

No, it is not your new blankie. 


Thank you, however, for your willingness to pose next to it for scale. 

31 inches completed.  Almost as tall as you are. 

Almost to the halfway point for Mommy's shawl. 

Yes, this is for Mommy. 


Today, it is all about the cute model. 

Friday, June 7, 2013

The Incredible Growing Shawl

My obsession devotion to the Noro shawl is growing as fast as the shawl itself.  27 inches completed.  Halfway through ball #4. 

For once, my inclination to pack an exrtra ball in the WIP bag, "just in case", is not completely crazy.  With other projects, I would do it, then that spare ball ends up lying in the bag for weeks.  These days, I am honestly in danger of running out of yarn for the day if I don't do it. 

The spare ball of yarn takes some planning, since I am trying to match the color progression from the ending ball to the beginning ball.  I have dug out the yarn puke from each ball, so I know the starting shade.  ("Yarn puke" is my term for the great big blob of yarn that comes out of a center pull ball when you are searching for the beginning.  Just wait.  The term will catch on.)

At the office now, and my desktop is too stupid to talk to my smart phone, so pics will have to wait for another day. 

Today, it is all about the yarn puke. 

Monday, June 3, 2013

Coulda Woulda Shoulda

I coulda been working on Pretty in Pink.  Two more rows, then the bind off.  I had decided to do the last two rows in a seed stitch, to prevent curling at the end of the ruffle. 

I haven't touched it in a week.
If I had been working diglently on my edge, I woulda been done with Fushcia Wave.  I am halfway down the first long edge, but it is on 6's, so it goes pretty fast.

I haven't touched it in over a week.   
I let myself be seduced by a new yarn in pretty colors.  I shoulda resisted.  Two skeins down.  16 inches completed.  It has been my constant knitting companion.  I was weak.  A little silk was waved in front of my face, and I came panting after it like the shamless fiber hussy that I am.  I ignored all the other half-finished projects, and started another one in spite of my best intentions. 

Except, isn't it pretty?  I can't find it in my heart to be truly sorry.  At this rate, I will have a pretty new shawl in another month or so. 

The others can wait.  How often do I play with Noro?

Today, it is all about the non-repentance.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

I blame Theresa

Within hours after the yarn-y garage sale, I was wandering around Ravelry looking for ideas. 

The Noro is not as soft as I would like (or would have thought a mohair silk blend would be), so I quickly excluded a sweater, and decided on a wrap.  Nothing too complicated a pattern that would dsitract from the pretty colors.  Nothing too large that would be too stripe-y. 

Charlotte Yarn Lace shawl immediately jumped out at me, even on the small screen of my Iphone. 

That evening, the yarn called out to me.  Before I knew it, I was casting on.  After three days, I have five to six finished inches, and am nearing the end of the first skein. 

A few days ago, I was making nice progress on both Pretty in Pink and Fuchsia Wave.  I wasn't planning on starting anything until those two projects were finished.  Maybe more.

At the garage sale, Theresa was the worst enabler.  Her parting words to me was that she expected to see the Noro at the next Knitter-vention.  This really is all her fault. 

Today, it is all about the blame-shifting.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

The best kind of garage sale

My local yarn store had a garage sale today.  Customers bring in random fiber products and set the price.  Other customers buy them.  The store keeps the money, and gives the sellers a gift certificate for an equal amount. 

How cool is that?  Clean out the stash.  Buy other's stash.  Get gift certificate for new yarn. 

My mother tagged along with me.  I quickly amassed a handful of little treasures.  Random balls of sock yarn, a bamboo circ, some whispy mohair, all for only a couple dollars each. 

Then a large bag of Noro Aurora jumped up and bit into my wrist and wouldn't let go.  10 whole skeins of it, in the prettiest shades of dark greens, blues, purples.  $40.00 was far more than I had planned on spending, but I was a woman obsessed.  I kept wandering back to that table to fondle the yarn and admire the colors. 

I blame the yarn fumes.  And the enablers other knitters.  They kept whispering into my ear.  10 skeins is a lot of yarn.  I could make anything with 10 skeins.  $40 was really a bargain for that much Noro.  If you haven't knit with Noro, you haven't lived. 

   It followed me home.  Can I keep it?

Today, it is all about the bargain.