Knitting E-scape

Thursday, June 30, 2005

Misc Stuff, Knitting and what-not

Not much knitting time with working and life "stuff". Pictures *later* of "the socks". I don't know whether or not to be distressed about "the socks". I began the 2nd sock, and not only is it a "fraternal twin" but maybe not a twin at all; more like a 2nd cousin. I would not have guessed that the same yarn would have knitted up so differently, based on where it was started, I guess...Hmmm...wondering what others do, and if it is a serious problem. Do I frog and try again? How can a person calculate where to begin with the matching sock? And in my haste to start the 2nd sock, I accidentally snipped the yarn and now I am at the knot that DH tied before we wound the I need to graft the yarn together *or something like that*: don't want a knot in a sock, for crying out loud!
News in the Great Land includes rampant wild fires. 'Tis the season. Woke up Tuesday night at 1am to a pungent burning smell: the winds had shifted and smoke from the Kenai peninsula fires had drifted into my bedroom. Ugh. Batten the hatches and sweat.
Tomorrow night is my Friday night quilting session. Not sure what I'll work on. It's been a draining work week and my energy level is low. But these sessions provide "motivation" to finish projects and a fun time with other quilters... Pictures? I promise more later in the weekend. Stay tuned!

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Sockapal-2-Za! Progress: I'm in Love

Sock Revealed

I'm totally in love with Lorna's Laces: the feel, the knittability and smoothness! Being a new knitter, making this sock has caused me some angst. I want it to fit my pal. So I made the decision to go with comfort and (hopefully) fit. The top 2 inches is 2x2 rib with US 1.5 needles. Then I switched to 1x1 rib with US 1s. It's been fun watching the pattern change with the change in rib. Since I am a lover of "cool" colors, I want to see more of the blue and purple, and I want the purple to not always be combined with the red. But you take what you get and it's interesting to watch the color "stripes" spiral around the sock. It's wild how the hank to ball to sock progression isn't at all what I imagined (being inexperienced with yarn and its wild ways). I *like* this colorway, but I wouldn't necessarily choose it for myself. I think it may be perfect for my pal, though! We shall see.

The sock loves flowers: flip side

Hank to ball to sock: the next step will be to wind the 2nd hank and start the second sock in order to work on them simultaneously.

Midnight in Alaska: Images of calm after the storm

Midnight rainbow

Saturday, June 25, 2005

Sock Pal Yarn Arrives!

This is the yarn pictured a few days ago. Look: I wound one of the hanks. The wound ball looks like a box of crayons or a bowl of mixed sherbet flavors! How will it knit up? I had a long conversation today with my sister about (what else?) sock knitting. My faith had been wavering, in fact, I had planned this next post to be one of the frogged yarn from the cotton colori sock. But I was convinced to hold off and wait a bit longer. I will continue on with the sock and keep the faith. I haven't completely decided what pattern to use for this Rainbow yarn, though. The colorway is decidedly interesting. To be continued...

Alaska Hiking Adventure

DH and I on the way to Thunderbird Falls
At DDIL's instigation, and with the excuse of taking their new car for a "spin", we left home at 8:30pm for Thunderbird Falls trailhead...there is a lot of UPHILL walking involved, and the dog-walk pretty quickly became a dog-carry event...

10 pm Alaska Time

John and Steph (DS and DDIL#1) at Thunderbird Falls
We made it to the end, and this was the reward (see the falls?)...Total hike was 2 miles. I was tired at work yesterday (no, I was not sore), just tired from staying up too late too many nights in a row! What a lovely evening!

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

All about Socks!

The start of a new pair...

My faith is weak. This is 2x2 rib on size 1. Started on size 1.5, switched after 5 rounds. My swatch gave me 9 st/inch. So I cast on "according to the book". I consider this practice: my sockapal-2-za pal prefers a looser fit at the calf, so I'm trying a less binding type rib. But they look like they will be way to large. It's cotton, like I posted previously. Will it shrink??
These are for me; will they be "slouch" socks? I already ripped them out once yesterday. I hate to rip I am wavering, not believing that they will be fine, but not wanting to rip. If they are 4 inches long, the frogging will be more painful. What's a girl to do??
Since it's looking like I will be late to work if I keep this up, I have no choice but to let them stew for a day or so...To be continued.

Purple Splendor (Goober!) Socks are done
Here they are! From Knit Socks byBetsy Lee McCarthy. Peaks 'n' Valleys. The lace is very simple. It's just that distractions cause goobers. It was a quality decision to let the goobers remain. They fit. They are purple. I will wear them! Oh yes: Brown Sheep Wildfoote is the yarn.

Monday, June 20, 2005

I couldn't help it, it's not my fault

Sock swatch!
Click to enlarge! I figured out how to take a picture on close up. It takes longer for some of us to learn these things.
I had a conversation with my sister today. I asked her how many batches of sock yarn she had--meaning how many different sock yarns to make how many potential pairs of socks. I told her that I was not trying to give her a bad time; rather I wanted to make myself feel better. She said 10. I did a quick count and he he, I have only 7. I must be a better woman. Well, you see, pride cometh before a fall...That was before I went to the LYS for an innocent set of #3 dpns. Like I said, it wasn't my fault. Look what I ended up with! It's 75% cotton and 25% nylon. I think it will be perfect with jeans.
Now I know that some family members read this blog. Please calm down. The sock yarn vs drinking at the bar: it could be worse, much, much worse. And for those who are still concerned: I *promise* to discuss the problem with my therapist.

Look at the, I mean the backing!

Only the backing!
This isn't the quilt! It's only the backing. Click on the picture for a sharper image. It's 7.5 yards of lovely Bali batik sewn into a queen size quilt back. Wanna see the quilt top? Like I said yesterday, not yet! A little pressing is all it needs, then off to the quilter.

Sunday, June 19, 2005

Sock thoughts

Lorna's Laces Shepherd Sock in Rainbow!
I ordered some of this yesterday from Knitting Zone. Their Lorna's Laces Shepherd sock is $9 a hank, a decent price compared to the LYS. My idea was to use this for my
Sockapal-2-za sock pal. I'm still not sure, since my sock pal seems to prefer socks with some cotton content. So I may keep looking. I am sure that no matter what I decide, this yarn will be loved and eventually knitted into a yummy pair of socks!

Stay tuned: not much progress on anything this weekend. I always seem to need Saturdays to recoup after the work week, especially when the past few weeks have contained more than the average amount of stressful work-related "stuff". But back to the important life stuff:
I am ready to start the toe decreases on the 2nd Purple Splendor Sock. Goal is to wear them this week! Will it happen? Like I said, stay tuned!

I am "working" (which means anything from 'thinking about', 'planning', 'cleaning off the work space' to actually 'cutting and sewing') on the current quilt backing. My goal is to take all the parts and pieces: the finished top, the finished backing, the finished binding, and the batting to the machine quilter by next weekend. Pictures of the quilt will only be posted after the recipients have it on their bed! But it will be soooo gorgeous, I can hardly wait!

Thursday, June 16, 2005

The Mittens go Outside

The Felted Mittens
Oh yeah. I finshed the palms and they are going to be shipped out to the son in Juneau. Yes, it's summer. I know it, but it is Alaska and camping trips can easily require such garb. I used Brown Sheep Lamb's Pride worsted in Pine Shadows and Dark Charcoal (two strands held together). Yes, they are huge. DH said you could crawl inside them and they could double for sleeping bags. Well, the hands that these are for are quite large, larger than mine or my DH's. The recipient has tried them on.
I need to use a smaller needle for the ribbing next time. The pattern is Fiber Trends. The palms are from a local leather supplier: black suede which I bought by the pound. I have oodles for more mittens.

Meet the Dog

Doggie Therapy: Whitney
Here she is: my daughter-in-law's loveable shiz-tsu. I hope I spelled that correctly. She is sweet and adorable, loves treats, is a former champion and never barks. We may *own* her temporarily in a month or so. Lucky us. We love her.

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

The Famous Secret Pal Questionnaire

SP5 Questionnaire: Here Goes!

1. Are you a yarn snob (do you prefer higher quality and/or natural fibers)?
I don't consider myself a yarn snob. I love natural fibers and yarns that are soft.

2. Do you spin? Crochet?
No to spinning; I have crocheted some in the distant past. I have a small crochet project I need to do.

3. Do you have any allergies?
Thankfully, no.

4. How long have you been knitting?
since August 2004.

5. Do you have an Amazon or other online wish list?
No, but I might start one

6. What's your favorite scent?
Lavender, freesia

7. Do you have a sweet tooth?
Honestly, yes. Should I? no--health reasons.

8. What other crafts or Do-It-Yourself things do you like to do?
I'm a quilter.

9. What kind of music do you like? Can your computer/stereo play MP3s?
Country, Christian, classical. I think so. I want an I-pod, so I better figure out what a MP3 is.

10. What's your favorite color? family/season/palette preferred? Can't
Purple. then blues, then teals--basically winter. Well, I recently bought a *lovely* orange cotton to make a dishcloth as a desensitizing project.

11. What is your family situation? Pets?
Husband, two grown sons (both married to wonderful women) and a "shared" dog.
(Belongs to my daughter-in-law and may soon be officially adopted temporarily by us)

12. What are your life dreams?
1)to raise Godly children 2) to become a nurse. So far I'm on a roll.
Next: to live in a finished house and travel.
I work part-time. I am an RN diabetes educator.

13. What is/are your favorite yarn/s to knit with?
That's hard to say, there are so many I want to try. Sock yarn, I think.

14. What fibers do you absolutely *not* like?
All yarn has the potential to be loved.

15. What is/are your current knitting obsession/s?
Socks. But I have shawls planned.

16. What is/are your favorite item/s to knit?

17. What are you knitting right now?
Socks. Dishcloths. A lace scarf. Sweaters started, but nowhere near complete.
Charity teddy bear sweaters.

18. What do you think about ponchos?
I took the no-poncho pledge.

19. Do you prefer straight or circular needles?
It all depends on the project.

20. Bamboo, aluminum, plastic?
Bamboo and woods.

21. Are you a sock knitter?
Does a bear crap in the woods?

22. How did you learn to knit?
My mother taught me when I was little. I had trouble knitting too tight. Still do. I was lured back into knitting by fun novelty yarns; I got mostly over that.

23. How old is your oldest UFO?
Knitting? August 2004. Quilting? don't ask

24. What is your favorite animated character or a favorite animal/bird?
Huh? I prefer dogs over cats.

25. What is your favorite holiday?
A day off work. Preferrably on a white sands beach.

26. Is there anything that you collect?
I should collect stuff like I need a hole in my head. Oh, well, I guess I'd have to say yarn.

27. What knitting magazine subscriptions do you have?
None. I like the excuse to go to Barnes and Noble to hunt them down.

28. Any books out there you are dying to get your hands on?
Beyond Wool by ? I'll check to see if that't the title.

How's that?

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

Sockapal-2-za: I'm IN!!

I am so excited! I'm in! I just got my sock-pal...oh, dear. I probably *have* to go buy more sock yarn! Tons of thanks to Alison for getting it all together. Shhhh, it's all a secret!

And doubly excited I am, as this morning, I got notified of the person I am to spoil through the Secret Pal 5 match. Cool. I have made contact with that person, and am still waiting to hear who got me. So, soon, I will post my answers to the questionnaire. Tons of thanks to Rox for all her work on this project!

In knitting news, I am sewing the suede palms on one pair of felted mittens which have been in the UFO bin for a few months. The first is for DS #2 but he won't need them for awhile. (There is a second pair waiting in the wings for DS #1.) Even in Alaska, it's summer. Pics when I'm finished.

And thanks, Amy, for reminding me that buying sock yarn is a noble thing to do!

Back to work and it's challenges tomorrow...

Monday, June 13, 2005

So many socks that are asking to be little time!

The Lorna's Laces I blogged about weeks ago!

I am not sure if I want to post pics of all the sock yarn I have stashed. It might seem like I am hoarding or something. It's strange because I haven't seen a shortage of yarn in the stores yet as a result of my stash. I am currently trying to decide what pair of socks wants to be knit next. I will finish the purple splendors soon... My feet want to wear them all. And the tragic horror of it all is that there is another bit of LL that I have hidden at the bottom of the bin at my LYS, plus, they just got a huge shipment of Koigu. It whispered to me that it would like to live at my house. AND, I have a day off tomorrow...

The Teddy Bear Sweater and Hat

Isn't he cute?

This is the teddy bear sweater and cap I knitted for 'Knitters of the North' summer charity project! I started the second sweater last night--for the last of the 40 bears our guild is donating to the Police and Fire Departments. How exciting!: next month is the "Teddy Bear Picnic". More on that event later. If you click on the picture, it should enlarge and the focus will improve so that the yarn's squiggles will show up! The cap was a pattern for preemies, but I found it to be too stiff and scratchy. Hence the bear now has a matching hat.

The Sister's Stash Closet

This is my wonderful sister's stash (well the biggest part of it!)

Still, I am working with pictures and posting! I have another picture of the same closet that also includes the sister with her doggie. Maybe I will just keep that private, since she may not really enjoy being posted here.

Saturday, June 11, 2005

The Coolest Stitch Markers!

Look at the stitch markers from Poor Miss Finch !!!

What a fun surprise in the mail yesterday! Stitch markers in lovely purple and teal. Marvelous colors, beautiful to behold and I did nothing to deserve such luxury, except to say "I want some". Give Laura a shout and tell her how remarkable she is. I love reading her blog. I have found that the daily dose of blogs that I try to read is a "must-have" fix. The bloggers I read feel like my friends. It's a great network out there! Who'd have thunk it??

I am still trying to enter this century with the photo posting. Little by little. Now, I did try to focus this picture, but it looks fuzzy to me. Half-way through this project, DH came home with a new flat screen monitor for me...after the installation, something seems to have changed besides having a lot more room on my computer desk: I must need to make some adjustments, since my blog page is much smaller now, with lots of white space on all the edges and this picture was out of focus.

Friday, June 10, 2005

Where in the world have I been?

Long time, no write.
I went on a trip. To Portland, Oregon to celebrate my parent's 65th wedding anniversary on May 28th. It was a good time of reconnecting with family from far and wide: various California locations, Rhode Island, and Alaska. A good time was had by all! It was a tiring trip, and my return home involved the aircraft having to turn around and return to Seattle, 30 minutes after take-off. It was all about the APUs and generators not working and the pilots being unable to restart them. Power is a good thing when 30000+ feet in the air. The rest of the week back at work suffered from the tiring trip and the flight delays.
Knitting news is kinda dismal. I am still working on "the sock"; but at least the corner has been turned, and I am heading down the home stretch, aiming my needles towards the toe. I just want to wear it!
My sister in Portland is a knitting maniac. She has made 3+ pairs of socks to my 1.5. Plus lots of other neat stuff. I photographed her "stash closet". I am sure there are other, larger stashes out there in the knitting blog world. But hers is fairly large. Now, I am not jealous, I just think of her stash when I feel guilty buying more yarn! The guilt disappears at that point. Hopefully, over the weekend, I will get the time to update as much as I can and post a few pictures. In the meantime, work is draining me.