Thursday, November 30, 2006

I wish I had known.

I couldn't sleep this morning, so I got up at 5am and spent some time with my knitting. I bound off the neckband of the baby sweater (that's right, just need to seam the arms and sew on the buttons!!!) I knit a few inches on the sock,which I am doing in Magic Loop for the first time. I didn't even read a tutorial. I figured doing socks on two circs had pretty much taught me what I needed to know, so I just cast on and started knitting. And I thought about how far I've come, knitting wise. This time last year I hadn't even knit a whole sock!!

I then thought about things I wish I had known when I was just starting to knit. I think my biggest one would have been this - Don't waste your money building a complete set of straight needles. When I started knitting, I started buying straight needles in every size. Now I never even use them!!! I didn't realize that anything you can knit on straight needles, you can knit on circulars. It seems so obvious now, but I never even thought about it. Of course, had someone tried to tell me that, I probably would have stubbornly insisted that I loved straight needles, and gone about buying them all up. Some things you just need to learn for yourself.

So, what is your big I Wish I Had Known fact?? Tell me in a comment, or post it to your blog and I will come and read it!!

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

All about Scout!!

I guess I'm just a shameless groupie . . . . . but don't we all just love Scout??? The yarn (I could max out my credit cards on the yarn alone), the swag (just about everything on that page is on my Christmas Wish List!!), the cool club (I've shamelessly stalked the mailman each month when I know it's time for it to arrive!!).

Aside from the unabashed gushing, it's time to show you my latest pair of socks. The Daisy Socks, knit with the colorway Scout created especially for my Walk-A-Thon.

Daisy Socks
Pattern: magKNITficent 'No Sugar Added' Sock Pattern, which also supports the ADA. Go check it out!!
Suppies: Daisies yarn and Knit Picks size 2 DPNs
Cast On: October 16, 2006
Completed: November 25, 2006

I love everything about these socks. I love the way the white makes a little swirl down the legs and feet. I love the stripes on the heels and toes. I love the cheerful colors. I can't wait to wear them . . . . but I will. These beauties are getting ready to fly off to Scout, and accompany her on her upcoming Knitty Gritty appearance!! Isn't that cool? Oh how I wish we got DIY here.

Now, to wrap up my All About Scout post, I will partake of Scout’s Meme:
  • How and when did you learn how to knit/crochet? Who taught you? - I guess I've been really knitting for about a year and a half. I (mostly) taught myself.
  • How has this craft impacted your life? (besides financially!) - Well, knitting led me to blogging. And blogging made me realize how much I love computers, and led me to my little graphics gig. And that has made me realize that I can design things to other people's specifications. And because of that, I will soon be taking web-design courses, and some day launching a new career!!
  • Pick at least one person to talk about who you have met through the knit-world and why you are thankful to have met them. Feel free to get all mushy. - The hardest part about this is trying to pick just one. I have made so many real friends in the knit-blog world. Some I have been lucky enough to meet in real life. But today I'll talk about Melissa. Almost a day doesn't go by without us e-mailing each other . . . about knitting, about our families, about our day in general, about anything we can thing of. She's always there to commiserate, bounce ideas off of, and often tempt each other with the latest knitting stuff we are pining over. She's sweet and encouraging and such a wonderful friend - and I don't know what I'd do without her. (Well, you said I could get all mushy!!)

Oh, one last thing! Let's revisit THE LIST!!
  • Flower Cloth
  • Daisy Socks
  • Baby Sweater
  • Fetching
  • Socks
  • Fetching
  • Slippers
  • Fetching

Monday, November 27, 2006

Is it Monday night already??

I really didn't intend to be away from the computer all weekend, but somehow it just worked out that way. Thanksgiving was fun and we didn't eat TOO much. Saturday was my 20th (?????) High School Reunion. (How can it be 20 years already??) I wasn't really sure what to expect, but it turned out to be a lot of fun. My best friend (since 6th grade) and her husband were able to make the trip down from New Hampshire, so I knew even if it was lame, Pea and I would have a great time with them. (Luckily, it wasn't lame!!) It was weird to see people who looked familiar, and suddenly remember their names after all these years. People I used to be friends with, but hadn't thought about in years. A few people I had known since kindergarten. Of course, as a special kind of hell, they printed up name-tags for us that had our high school photos on them. The '80s were not the best time, fashion and hair-wise!!

Over the long weekend, some knitting also got done. A few of my Delusional Deadline projects are now complete. First off is the Flower Washcloth.

Done, blocked and gifted to my best friend yesterday. I wish I had gotten a picture of the whole gift once it was put together, but I was lucky I remembered to snap this picture before she took everything home. The pattern is from Weekend Knitting, and it's the same cloth I've knit before, but this time I used the chenille yarn suggested in the pattern. I use the cotton flowers as dishcloths, but the chenille makes a nice washcloth. I picked up a bunch of yummy bath stuff and lotions at Bath and Body Works so she can pamper herself. She really needs it, with one son in kindergarten and a nine month old at home!! This was certainly a big hit!!

So, to re-cap my project list:

  • Flower Cloth
  • Daisy Sock
  • Baby Sweater
  • Fetching
  • Socks
  • Fetching
  • Slippers
  • Fetching
The Daisy socks are almost dry, so that will give me another one to cross off tomorrow. And I made great progress on the Baby Sweater over the weekend as well. Hmmmmm, maybe I can fit a couple more projects in!!

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Channeling Martha Stewart

I laughed pretty hard when I saw the comment MissyJoon left on my last post asking if I've been hanging out in Westport with Martha Stewart. Given that I'm here in Connecticut, that isn't such a stretch, but no, Martha and I have not been spending time together. I've been making my Christmas cards all on my own. Here's how I did it.

First, stamp 'em. The inside too.

Let 'em dry. Then add some color.

Don't forget to sign the back.

And voilĂ , Christmas cards!!!

Not too bad for my first try, even if they are a little basic. I hope to continue my card making tradition every Christmas, and work up to more and more elaborate cards each year.

Monday, November 20, 2006

Delusional Deadline Knitting

I may be delusional, but for some reason I have myself convinced I have plenty of time to do some gift knitting. Of course, this means that once the Daisy socks are done, there will be no more knitting for myself going on until 2007. Yikes!!

(Oh, and did I mention I also decided I'd like to make my own Christmas cards and gift packaging? At least the cards are almost done.)

First up, a reverse-bloom flower washcloth and a baby sweater that need to be done for this weekend and next weekend respectively.

Then, Fetching, socks, Fetching, slippers, and . . . oh, Fetching.

With five weeks to go, I'm thinking I should be able to pull this all off. And maybe even slip in a couple of felted purses for my cousin's daughters? Yup, delusional. At least I've got all my materials together.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Did you spot the lie??

I've always thought I was a terrible liar, but maybe I'm not so bad !! Only one person guessed which one was the lie. (Did she spot the lie because she is my long lost twin? Or did she spot the loop-hole in the story with her savvy legal skills?) In any case, here are the real stories.

Pea and I met on a blind date . . . sort of. He was on a blind date with another girl at the restaurant where I was a waitress. As I waited on them I could tell it was not going well. I couldn't understand why, because he seemed so cute and nice. A week later he came back alone and asked me if I'd like to go out some time. And the rest is history! - This one was the lie!! I feel kind of bad, because so many of you loved this story of how Pea and I met. Some day I'll tell you the real story of how we met, which is also cute, but not as good as this one. And by the way, I am far too uncoordinated to have ever been a waitress!!

I've been on television several times. My most "famous" appearance was in a commercial - but only my legs were seen. The Statue of Liberty was photo-shopped to be wearing a mini-skirt, and my legs were dropped in! - Although this was the most popular pick as my lie, it is absolutely true!! (But I now have a complex about what you guys must think of my legs!!) It would help to recall that the job of 15 years that I quit last November was in the advertising department of our local cable company. My good friend was one of the commercial producers. He filmed me in front of a blue screen wearing short shorts, and my legs now belong to the Statue of Liberty. The commercial was for a varicose vein center. Apparently, once the Statue of Liberty had her varicose veins removed she could proudly shed the long, flowing skirt!!

My first experience with jury duty was quite an exciting one. While we were dismissed for our lunch break, there was a shooting in a nearby sandwich shop. I watched the shooter be chased down the street by the police and handcuffed to a light-pole. Several prospective jurors ended up appearing in court as witnesses to the shooting! - Oh yes, this is true!! The courthouse is in one of the most notoriously dangerous cities in Connecticut, and I was kind of nervous about the whole thing. My mom assured me it was perfectly safe during the day, and that the streets would be filled with business people. That is usually the case, and this was a once in a lifetime kind of thing - but it's just my luck that it would happen the day I was there! I also had a tough time getting home, because the street for the one route I knew was blocked off for investigation for the rest of the day!!

This little meme was a lot of fun . . . but don't worry, I think I'll stick to telling the truth.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Time for more squares.

One of my favorite things about knit-bloggers is how compassionate and generous they all are. When faced with a good cause, they never fail to pitch in. Well, there is another blanket being put together for someone who has had a REALLY rough time, and I hope you'll consider knitting a square for it.

Please read this post by my good pal Cathy, and please let her know you can send her a square. I know we're all getting busy with the holidays fast approaching, but there is alway time to knit up a small 8 inch square. And Jenn will certainly need to feel some extra love this Christmas.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Nothing to post about . . .

Do you ever get that feeling that you need to blog a post, but you've got nothing good to say? I keep forgetting to have Pea get a picture of me wearing the Fetching Mitts, and I can't exactly model them and take a picture at the same time. As far as knitting goes, I'm still working on the same two WIPs - Clapotis and the Daisy Socks. Nothing new to see there. As for the weekend, I went to see another skating show with my mom, but I'm sure you are all tired of hearing about those by now. And on Sunday we went on a wine tasting tour to three local vineyards, but since I forget my camera it wouldn't make for a very interesting post.

So, what's a girl to do? A Meme , of course! JessaLu tagged me with Two Truths and a Lie months ago (I bet you thought I forgot, Jess!!). So here goes - can you spot the lie? Leave your guesses in the comment section!

Pea and I met on a blind date . . . sort of. He was on a blind date with another girl at the restaurant where I was a waitress. As I waited on them I could tell it was not going well. I couldn't understand why, because he seemed so cute and nice. A week later he came back alone and asked me if I'd like to go out some time. And the rest is history!

I've been on television several times. My most "famous" appearance was in a commercial - but only my legs were seen. The Statue of Liberty was photo-shopped to be wearing a mini-skirt, and my legs were dropped in!

My first experience with jury duty was quite an exciting one. While we were dismissed for our lunch break, there was a shooting in a nearby sandwich shop. I watched the shooter be chased down the street by the police and handcuffed to a light-pole. Several prospective jurors ended up appearing in court as witnesses to the shooting!

If you'd like to post your own lies and truth, consider yourself tagged. And let me know, so I can come make my guess.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Fall and Spring meet!!

It's been cold here, and the leaves have turned pretty colors and are falling from the trees. But today, it's actually made it to 70 degrees! I'm certainly not going to complain about the mild weather. It feels like there's a bit of Spring in the Fall! Which brings me to my two current favorite sock yarns, dyed by the talented Scout.

On the left, most definitely Fall, is Socktoberfest. It arrived the other day, and was a prize from Blogger Bingo!! I was so thrilled and surprised to find out I had won, and was so excited to learn that my prize is the very Scout yarn I had been pining for.

And there on the right, just screaming Spring, is the start of my Daisy sock!! I love the way the yarn pooled to create a white spiral down the leg. The inspiration pictures I had sent to Scout were of daisies with rays of sunlight shining down on them. So how cool is it that my sock has a "ray of light" shining down the leg? I know, I'm so goofy. The foot is continuing to stripe like the heel flap, and although it is making for an unusual sock, I really love it.

Hurrah for some Spring during the Fall!!

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

If you're happy and you know it CLAP-O-TIS

Ha ha ha ha ha!!! How's that for a Clapotis pun that hasn't been done yet? What better intro to the progress on my Clapotis?

Here is my version of the pattern everyone in blogland has knit except me. The gorgeous yarn is some Brooks Farms Four Play that I picked up at Rhinebeck. I love the colors, and the yarn itself is a true joy to work with. I'd like to pick up some more for a sweater in the future.

Although I'm not quite as far along on my Clapotis as I thought I would be, I'm happy . . . and I know it . . . Clap-o-tis!! Sorry, I couldn't resist using that line once more. This is what sleep deprivation does to me. Even though I wasn't up knitting all night like I thought I would be, I didn't get my usual good night of sleep.

Last night was a bit of a landmark for me. Pea was away overnight for work, and it was the first time I spent the night alone in my house since the break in three years ago. I could have slept at my parent's house, or a friend's house, but I figured it was about time I conquered this last demon. I set the burglar alarm and hunkered down in the bedroom with knitting projects, books, magazines and movies. Oh,and three phones - the cordless one, a second cordless in case the battery went on the first one, and the cell phone.

As it turned out, I was much more relaxed than I thought I would be. I fell asleep sometime around midnight and slept straight through until 4:30. By then I knew it was less then two hours until daylight, so I dozed off and on until I got up at 7:30. It was much more sleep than I expected, but much less than I am used to.

But I feel great this morning (aside from the stupid sense of humor that kicks in when I'm sleep deprived.) I now remember how much I used to enjoy living alone - although I can't wait until Pea gets back tonight. I celebrated by baking my favorite muffins and making a huge cup of coffee. It's cold and rainy here, so I plan to reward myself with a day on the couch with my knitting and the movies I didn't end up watching last night.

Note to the burglars - You may have taken some much loved material objects from my home, but you have not taken anything from my spirit. I am stronger than I knew, and I have gotten back all of the comfort I used to feel in my home.

If you're happy and you know it
and you really want to show it
if you're happy and you know it Clap-O-Tis!!

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Back on track (sort of)

Hello! It's been a while, huh? I had hoped to post yesterday, but we've been having problems with our internet connection. Pea thinks the contractors may have damaged the wire to the cable modem while working on the siding. He fiddled with it last night, and so far it's been okay this morning. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that it will stay that way. It doesn't help that Mercury is retrograde until next Saturday. Mercury always really messes with me.

What have I been up to? Well, most importantly was the four day figure skating extravaganza!! We had a blast . . . well, my mom and I had a great time. My dad came with us two days, and Pea came with us two days, and each of them were pretty bored. We got to watch the practice sessions and the competitions. We saw a lot of the skaters, coaches and choreographers walking around in the lobbies. And one day at lunch we even met and got autographs from the pair team that ended up winning the silver medal! It was a perfect four days.

Victor Kraatz takes a break from coaching to sit at the Canadian media table.

I spent last week catching up on all the "real life" stuff. We now have groceries, clean laundry, a clean house and bills that are paid. I even made wheat bread from scratch yesterday. All of the Walk-A-Thon prizes have been packed up, and the last few are being mailed out in the next day or so.

And yes, there has been time for knitting too. During breaks in the skating I managed to knit a pair of Fetching mitts with a ball of Cashmerino Aran I bought at Rhinebeck. What a fun and quick pattern. I finished them on the second day, and have been wearing them ever since. I'm a bad blogger and have no pictures yet, but I'll post them one day this week. I'm also working on a Clapotis and a couple of pairs of socks I'm knitting with some blog pals. That's plenty to keep me busy, and I need to get started on some Christmas knitting too.

I guess this is a lame post for my first day back, but I'd better get it uploaded before the internet conks out again.