Sunday, October 31, 2010

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Look! A hat!

Hey look- I finished a hat! I was *almost* even monogamous with the hat- I cheated a little with the pumpkin shawl which I had hoped to have done by now (carving pumpkins with Frank tomorrow).
It's the third chemo cap I've made for my Mom's friend D, and I took it over to her after I wove in the ends and plopped it off the plate on which it was blocking. She seemed to really like it- it's totally her colors and it's all autumn-y and it's not like anything else I or other people have given her. To re-cap it is Mountain Colors Crazyfoot in the Moondance colorway, pattern is One Day Beret (it's all on Ravelry if you need more info). I kind of love it and wish I were bold enough to wear berets because I totally want one.

And I spun yarn! My wheel has been a little under the weather and is having balance issues and subsequent squeaking and weight distribution problems, which throws the wheel all over the place as I'm spinning. So I spun like crazy to get this beast done and plied so I could take my wheel to see my G-pa, who figured out the problem immediately. Anyhoo, here's some new handspun! I love it, but I have no idea why there's so little of it. Everyone says you need 4 ounces to spin sock yarn, and this is 4 ounces, and it's fingering (maybe a little on the heavy side of fingering, but still totally sock yarn) but there's only 190 yards of it! I counted 3 times to make sure! I have no idea where my wheel puts all this extra fiber- maybe the nargles are taking it when I'm asleep?
And my annoying cat-lady story (people who aren't fans of M can click away now, I won't mind).

Madeline and I have little nightly rituals: make dinner for cats, make dinner for me, knit and watch a little TV, shower and get attacked once I step out of the shower, and after some more dilly-dallying around, go to bed and watch Letterman and play fetch until one of us falls asleep. Yes, she plays fetch. And she's really good at it. She normally brings me one of her favorite toys and we play fetch with that like Lavender Mouse or Woollyball, and she can retrieve for hours. But last night she took a little longer to get the game going and when she jumped up on my bed and did her little chirp (she doesn't meow) she had a something new in her mouth.

She brought a little bottle of lotion to bed. I didn't know if she wanted me to throw it or moisturize. Goofy cat. At least it wasn't as gross as the time she brought a frozen shrimp to bed. That was nasty.

Friday, October 22, 2010


For those of us counting, this is the second time I've run out of fabric for this particular project. Maybe I should stick with knitting items that use a predicable amount of materials....

Wednesday, October 20, 2010 off the list

So the leaves are falling and I'm looking at The List, getting a little antsy. Back in March I started rug hooking with a sheep kit that I bought at the Whispering Pines booth at the Greencastle fiber fair. I started it that night and worked furiously until had reached the point where it would no longer fit in the cross-stitch hoop. I asked a friend to borrow her frame but that never ended up working out, and after a month of asking, Laurie lent me her frame shortly before my nose surgery. I had hoped to tackle the sheep rug over my week of downtime but I didn't get a whole lot done that week except lying around watching bad TV. I worked on it a little between projects but quickly realized that it required far too much concentration to be TV crafting, and then progress slowed. I started running low on fabric. I put it off some more. I finally accepted that I wouldn't be able to finish it with the little but I had left, so I dug through the bag until I found the receipt and called, trying to explain the plaid lavender I had bought from her this Spring and how I desperately needed more (I knew it was a long shot, but I had to try, right?) She said to send in a sample and I did. Then I waited. And waited. And called and left a message. And waited. And left another message. Three weeks later, I finally got a hold of her (turns out she had been on vacation) and she said what I feared she'd say. That color was long gone, but she had something close. I was nervous, but told her to send it anyway.Worst comes to worst, I'll blend it with the fabric I had left and kind of ween in the new color. The new color came, and it's dark blue. Not lavender. I decided to just go for it- it's my first rug hooking and I just want it done.

And Bev must have known what I didn't. This color combo kicks butt. I'm going to hook like crazy tonight to try to finish (or get to the point that I could finish at knitting night tomorrow) so I can give Laurie's frame back and have it off the back burner forever. I know you're not reading this Bev, but good call. You had me worried but this is way better than what I was going to finish it with. (the green circle is another ring I drew around the design so that the sheep fits the pillow I bought for it. JoAnn Fabrics was out of the 12" variety so I had to go 14")
I'm also making another hat in awesome fall colors. It's a generic beret recipe and I'm making it as another Chemo Cap for D since she seems to be wearing the first two I made her quite often. The yarn is Mountain Colors Crazyfoot (90% superwash merino, 10% nylon) and the color is "Moondance". I kind of love it. It's a generous skein too so I may be able to squeak out a second hat for me, or at least a pair of wristlets. I cast on Monday night so I had something to work on during Castle (most of my knitting projects start out like that) and I'm loving it. I'd love to finish it this weekend and have yet another project crossed off The List.
And more Castle knitting! I started this pumpkin-pretty for last week's Castle and I luuuurve it. I feel like I need to hurry up and finish it so I can go pumpkin-picking with it. It's Malabrigo Sock that I bought in London at Socktopus when I was all bummed over missing Thanksgiving. This year I'll wear it for Thanksgiving, carefully avoiding cranberry sauce. Pattern is slipping my mind, but it's in my Ravelry notebook if you're genuinely interested.
And I started playing with resin again! It's messy but it's fun and I'm trying my hand at making buttons. Here's what I have so far...still pretty rough but none of these are officially finished yet. If you're in the market for large, sparkly buttons let me know and I'd love to make something for you!
That's about it- I need to clean my kitchen up so the lady who feeds my kitties on Thursdays doesn't think I'm hoarding yarn and compulsively starting projects while drinking hot tea by the gallon....not that I do that sort of thing of course :p

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Good Day, Good Socks

Today was awesome. Why, you ask? Well every part of it just kicked butt.

1. Tubby Custard and Madeline waited until 9:30 before they decided they would die if not fed immediately. They have the ability to sense the days on which I plan on sleeping in and then decide they are hungry anywhere from 5:20-8 am. 9:30 is pretty awesome. Plus Madeline's frequent tooth-brushings seem to be helping with the gingivitis and her morning kisses aren't so bad any more.

2. I got to go to my new Sunday knitting group. I'd call it an SnB, but the B part isn't really there. Everyone is just so happy! Yay for positive energy! My new friend Kim wasn't there today though because she was busy getting married, so that's entirely excusable. New friends Jasmine, Susan, Jessica and Meghann were there though, and it was fabulous. Francie, if you're reading this, we missed you today and that sinus thing must end so you can come back. Anyhoo, M is doing this 30 by 30 thing and one of her things she wants to do by her 30th birthday is learn a new language. Jessica and I kind of maybe pushed her in to French because we both speak it and I thought it would be funny if we began speaking to her in outrageous french accents the whole time, starting with my personal favorite, Julia Child. I should have worn my pearls today. The french thing lasted about 30 seconds and we got to stitchin'.

3. I finished socks. They are awesome. And they are totally not selfish. See number 6.
4. I went out to my G-ma Darling's house. On the way there, a chicken crossed the road in front of me. Pretty awesome. Still have no idea why she did it though.

5. G-ma food is the best. I even got to bring some home.

6. I gave my newly finished socks to G-ma. I think she likes them. I told her to wear them until she wears them out and I'd happily make her a new pair. My biggest peeve with knitting people things is when they don't wear them. If I didn't want my knits used, I'd make another shawl because I love to make them but rarely find large beaded lace shawls situation-appropriate.

7. Saw Madeline kick Spot's butt. Spot is the evil cat next door who beats up on my kitties. Tubby Custard has had to go to the vet several times from nasty bites from him that have gotten infected, so I think it's kind of hilarious that Madeline can beat him up. Here's Madeline struttin' her stuff and then Spot hiding in shame.
That's about it...I'm going to finish cleaning up the kitchen from my attempts at resin-casting today and then I'm off to bed with my fabulous book. Toodles!

Friday, October 15, 2010


So last year when my brother left for Purdue for his Freshman year, my mom went to Florida. She comes back for the summer and holidays, but she's pretty much a snowbird now and now that the warehouse at work is starting to get cold again, I can't say that I blame her. So pretty much since she moved to Florida she's been asking for a turquoise doily to go on her table in her dining room, which is copper. It's a cool table, but the idea of making a doily sounded a little painful due to the reinforcement of the stereotype that knitting is for old ladies. So this summer I got a crochet book called Beyond the Square by Edie Eckman, hoping to make enough circular motifs that I could join them together and call it a doily. I made 14 of them and used an entire ball of crochet cotton. Trouble is, it was still REALLY small. I told her I'd try to block it or iron it while stretching it before I put all the pieces together, but after looking at my little crocheted failures for a couple months, I threw them all in the trash. Well, I put one of the little flowers on a hair clip but since I don't have enough hair to clip it does me just as much good as it was when it was part of the doily-to-be. Anyhoo, I threw the doily-bits away. So less than a week before my mom's birthday I decided to make her a new turquoise doily but keep it totally secret because she still totally thought she was going to get the "spechul" doily. And if I've ever tried to keep a secret from you, you probably know that it doesn't work very well. Seriously- I'm like a first grader. I just can't keep secrets.

So I dyed the yarn. It's Alpaca With A Twist Socrates in the natural colorway- they're selling to Indie dyers now and if you have a tax ID number you should hit that stuff up. Because it's awesome. You heard it here first, y'all.
I started the doily on Monday right before Castle. I frogged the doily right after Castle.
On Tuesday, I started again, and by Wednesday morning, I had this.
I went to SnB on Thursday night with my deadline doily and kept working. I finished Friday night, soaked and blocked it and went to the post office on Saturday, still blowing on my doily to get it just a little bit dryer before I stuffed it in an envelope and sent it to Florida.
I got there 13 minutes after the post office closed. I stuck my fist in the air, made pirate noises and headed back home, defeated. I found a funny card. Funny cards make things so much better, especially if they have to be a day late.

I went to the post office first thing Monday. I commented how it was ridiculous that it costs $15 to send a doily. It's a stupid doily. I sent the doily anyway. I held my tongue for four days. It was reallllllly hard.
And then Thursday morning (her birthday was Wednesday) I was talking to my mummy on my way to work and she went to the door for a little package delivery. And I think she likes it....
Yarn: Alpaca With A Twist Socrates, natural, overdyed with Jacquard turquoise, buttercup, and cobalt.
Pattern: Hemlock Ring Doily, pattern and charts downloaded from the Rainey Sisters blog.
Needles: Us size 4.
Teapot: From a trip to China my Junior year at Purdue, just in case you were wondering.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Old Friends

Fall is here and I'm running outside chasing Madeline in the crunchy leaves. It's not really chasing, she plops down on the ground and acts like she wants petted, and as soon as you get close at all, she pops up sprints a few feet and rinses/repeats. The colors are absolutely beautiful and despite the telltale signs that winter is coming, the summer temperatures are hanging in there. Seriously- it's October and I'm wearing shorts and a tank top. It's hot. I'm loving it.The colors of the leaves are making me a little jealous- and I'm craving a bulky cabled sweater in the deep reds that are scattered all over the backyard. I'm sticking to The List though- and there's not a single red cabled sweater on it. It does offer a little flexibility which I have found most helpful, while it has a selection of things that should really be finished by 2011, there is no set order and there's even room for a couple cast-ons, one of which happened yesterday.
I re-casted on my silk shawl that I started in May and goofed up in July and then made my mother frog in August. The pattern is Photosynthesis and I am using the same yarn and needles as last time (it's still in my Ravelry notebook if you'd like more info) but this time I'm adding beads that I picked up at the Bead Angel in Broadripple. It's kinda wonderful there. It's a pretty simple and straightforward lace pattern, at least for the bulk of the shawl. I still had it hammered in to my brain from this Summer and casting on again was a little like visiting an old friend; familiar but not boring. Plus I kind of missed my hand-painted green silk. And for those keeping count, this is the third green beaded shawl in a row. Are we maybe sensing a theme here? :p

Tuesday, October 5, 2010


Haruni in Finespun Wool by Imbued Fibers in the Sexy Paige Green colorway. Added size 6 seed beads, clear lined with silver. Seventh shawl of 2010. I'll let the pictures say the rest.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

The List

Where has the summer gone? I swear I was just saying how I'm going to spend more time outside this summer, and then I looked up and a leaf fell down and poked me in the eye. I had hoped to be a lot further in my 10 Shawls of 2010 by now, and I had hoped to be doing more things that I love, like signing up for dance and creativewriting classes. Now I just work, go home, sleep, work, go home, sleep and knit sometimes on Thursday nights. It's pretty pathetic. The only things that are out of the ordinary are things that I kinda wish weren't there. For example, today I got a notice from traffic court that my driver's license will be suspended if I don't appear in court on the 17th about an "unposted violation". It took me a minute to figure out what could have happened but I'm pretty sure it's something along the lines of this: I got rear-ended in early May. My insurance company wouldn't do anything until late June, when I dropped my car off and got a rental car from Enterprise. They've screwed me over 3 times now, so I'm calling them out on it- I don't normally name-drop when I'm angry. I got pulled over in my rental car because the plates were expired. I got a ticket in my rental car because the plates were expired. The cop told me that I need to give the ticket to Enterprise and they would deal with it. I gave the ticket to Enterprise and they said they'd deal with it. I called Enterprise a week after I gave them the ticket to make sure they had dealt with it and they promised that they had.

But of course, they didn't. And now I have to go to court because some stupid rental car company can't keep their plates current and then when people get tickets because their plates aren't current, they don't take care of it. I paid enough or the rental car, I shouldn't have to deal with their mistakes.

There. I feel better now. I think. So...knitting.

I went to The Feast of the Hunter's Moon with my bff Ben. There were lots of spinning wheels, Yoyageurs, Scots, and a nearly nekked Indian. I meant to take hundreds of pictures but only took one. And only because she had the best long-draw I've ever seen. I also bought a little sheep and took her picture on my kitchen table. But she's from the Feast, and I think she's really cute!
I finished a chemo cap for my mom's friend D. I'm not going to post it to Ravelry since I didn't get any decent pictures, but D called the day after I left it at her house and told me she loved it. She kept calling it "stunning". Well worth the cabling. This is#2, and I plan on starting #3 when I finish my Haruni, which could be tonight or three weeks from now. My mojo is a little off again.
I made a list of all of the craft projects I would like to finish before Christmas, or at latest before New Years. Not that I expect you to decipher my scrawl, but here is a picture of the list that shall taunt me until every project is done. I really think I've made it realistic- I have a few projects that I haven't started yet for when I catch myself at a weak moment and need a fix-me-up cast on, and there are projects that need a few hours to finish and there are projects that need a few weeks to finish. The important thing is that there's quite a variety of projects, so it might be doable. I'm feeling a lot better about my abundance of UFO's since I made the list. Naturally, there are quite a few projects that aren't on the list, but I'm just not worried about them right now.
And to finish: a sock, some handspun shetland, and a Christmas cactus from Ben's mom, who I finally met and she's totally awesome. And she might just be a bigger "plant enthusiast" than me. And her house is this awesome old farmhouse that she and Ben are fixing up and it is soooo cute. I kind of just want to move in. Right now.