Monday, July 2, 2018

Independence Day

I seem to be failing miserably at this whole work vs. life balance thing this season.  Since I'm struggling to have new knitting projects to show you and my recent posts have obviously been hastily written and published without much thought and I don't see things improving around here any time soon, I've decided to take a short break from the blog.  

A little mini vacation if you will.  Just for a week or two while I try to get my head together and some yarn balled so that I could knit if I should find the time.

I imagine my need to talk about knitting and my family's and coworker's desire Not to talk about knitting will lead me back to the blog quicker than expected.  Meanwhile,

Happy 4th of July
photo courtesy of officeholidays.com

I'm wishing all my American friends a safe and happy Independence Day!

Monday, June 25, 2018

Makers' Monday

Oops! Better late than never.  I almost forgot today was Monday.  Actually, what happened was yesterday, I thought it was Saturday and that I had another day to get this week's Makers' Monday post written.  I've definitely got the 'KD Confusion' thing going on.  I get this way each summer.  I never know what day it is.  I just go to work every day and when I run out of clean uniforms, I pray it's my day off.

Anyway....  Because of my date confusion, you're being treated to a hastily written post today.


I've almost finished knitting my Blue Heron cowl that I mentioned last Monday.  Although quite splity (or is it splitty?  I'm a horrible speller and Spellcheck says both are wrong,) this yarn has been a delight to work with.  I'm absolutely loving the drape of the knitted fabric.  My original plan was for this to be a long, twist around your neck a bunch of times type cowl but....  Since I didn't check my gauge or even count my cast on stitches....  It turned out to be the perfect mini poncho size.    I'm only a few rows from casting it off and can't wait to wear it to some nice, chilly, air conditioned event.

But even more exciting than my knitting....  Do you see my shirt?   I know it's upside down but....  It's a tank tank. 

Tank-like vehicle stolen from Fort Pickett
Stolen Tank, photo courtesy of RVAMag.com

Did you hear about the stolen military 'tank-like' vehicle that lead police on a chase through Richmond  a few weeks ago?  While the reality of it is pretty scary - I mean, what if the thing had been armed and the driver angry rather than just in need of a ride home.... 

stolen tank meme, stolen tank Richmond Virginia
I was at work.  Where else would I be?  Photo courtesy of deskgram.org

But honestly, it was pretty dang funny.  You can see a brief video of it here.  And because it was funny, the news went viral.  And because it went viral, there was a t-shirt made.  Or rather, a tank.  A Tank tank.  I had to have one!

And with that, I'm going to leave you so I can go deal with that awful scraped up nail polish and get back to knitting.  Happy better late than never Makers' Monday!

Monday, June 18, 2018

Makers' Monday

With no other plan than 'a cowl with some super simple lacy bits on the edges and a bunch of stockinette in the center,' I cast on an unknown number of stitches while hanging out in the waiting room of the local tire shop the other day.  It was a day for living dangerously.  Just like making the decision not to put air in the slowly flattening tire before driving to the tire shop, I didn't bother with gauge or even a stitch count.  I just cast on stitches until I couldn't stand it anymore and the Need to begin knitting took over.


Casting on

Then I came home and finished my So Faded sweater.  Yes! You heard that right.  I finally finished it!

finished knitting my So Faded sweater with Knit Picks Hawthorne yarn
So Faded Sweater

Okay, okay.  I finished the knitting.  There's still the matter of a few loose ends to deal with and it needs a bit of blocking.  But I finished the knitting and it fits perfectly.  I should clarify - it fits me perfectly.  My mannequin is slightly petite with weirdly pointy boobs.  I am the exact opposite.

And I'd like to add that So Faded is officially my new favorite basic sweater pattern.  There was no sewing up involved.  None at all!  And the neck line is brilliant!  There are short rows, well, not really - just extra rows, on the back that help the front lay flat instead of doing that weird bunching up around the neck/across the collar bone thing that so many raglands do.  Oh and the cuffs were an inch of ribbing instead of three or four. 

Yep, this is definitely my new favorite sweater pattern!  And the sweater deserves a much nicer photo but I'm working with the little bit of time I have.  A hastily snapped cellphone picture in front of a mountain of unorganized junk will have to do.

simple knit cowl with lace and stockinette stitch
Blue Heron Metallic Cowl

As soon as I cast off So Faded, I went back to knitting the Blue Heron Metallic cowl.  The yarn is slightly splitty but I'm loving it's sparkle!  Assuming that my living dangerously method of casting on produces a circle long enough to wrap around my neck twice (and it looks like it will) I think this cowl will be perfect for indoor/outdoor wear on our milder winter and/or over air conditioned summer days.

That photo has me stumped though.  The project bag is showing up with the exact correct color, the knitted yarn is almost exact, but the yarn bowl....  In the photo, the yarn bowl looks like it's been left out in the weather for about 15 years.  In reality, its wood has a much warmer and polished-to-a-shine tone.  Weird. 

I wish I knew more about photography.  I really should take a class.

Monday, June 11, 2018

Makers' Monday

I broke the rule.  I rebelled and went yarn shopping.  Yarn shopping before I'd knit up an entire drawer full of yarn.  I'd promised myself no yarn purchases until I had an empty yarn drawer.  But seriously!  Who was I kidding?  And actually, I've done better with the goal since I set it way back in November than anyone ever expected I would.  I've had many more months without yarn hauls than with. 

And I only bought two skeins.  I got lucky My wallet got lucky.  I'd completely forgotten why I don't venture into the city more often.  I hit every single stop light in the state of Virginia and even more traffic jams on the way to the yarn shop.  I didn't arrive until about fifteen minutes before they closed. 

And before you say anything, I went in for needles.  Needles that I'd called about, they said they had, but when I got there, discovered that they don't carry them after all.  I was disappointed and frustrated to say the least.  So you can see why I broke the No Yarn rule.  

Only two skeins.

I must be missing wearing my jeans because oddly, both skeins are called Denim.  And even more oddly, when I insert the photos into the blog, the yarn changes color.  Both skeins are much darker/grayer.  They both look much more like actual well-worn, faded denim than they do in these pictures.


knitting arm warmers with Cascade Aran Splatter in Denim
Cascade 220 Superwash Aran Splatter

This Cascade 220 Superwash will most likely become a pair of fingerless mitts, or maybe a hat.  Probably mitts.


Lace weight metallic rayon yarn to knit a scarf or cowl
Blue Heron Metallic

And this Blue Heron Metallic will be a cowl or scarf.  I'm not normally into shiny sparkles but this yarn just called to me.  It literally jumped off the shelf and threw itself into my arms.  Well, that's not true.  The aqua green skein threw itself off the shelf and into my arms.... but I decided the blue would go with my fall/winter clothes much more so than the aqua.

I'm so excited about knitting with the Blue Heron Metalic yarn, I'm thinking seriously of binding off my So Faded sweater sleeve right where I'm at so that I can start knitting with it.  I mean, it wouldn't look weird at all if one sleeve was a normal, long sleeve length and the other was above the elbow.  No, it wouldn't look strange at all.  Knitters would understand.  Right?

Right??

Dammit!  I guess I'll finish knitting the sleeve.  But I won't be happy about it.

Thursday, June 7, 2018

Three on Thursday

Three very random facts...

1.  We had over 12 inches of rain last month.  It's made driving to work a little tricky for some folks.

2.  I have Friday and Saturday off this week!  A Friday And a Saturday!  Two days, back to back!  On a weekend!  I'm slightly worried about what the boss might be buttering me up for.

Rock the Red!  photo courtesy of nhl.com

3.  The Caps just may bring home the cup tonight!

Join me over at Carole's for today's Three on Thursday link up.

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

D-Day

D-Day doesn't get much attention anymore but it has always been acknowledged in my household.  Our 'celebration' is fairly solemn.  We fly the flag and we spend a few moments thanking and remembering those men and women who gave so much that fateful day.

In honor and memory of D-Day
Omaha Beach, June 6, 1944; photo courtesy of irastehmann.com

Since I'm off to work in a few minutes, I'll simply say a little prayer and leave you with a link to a previous D-Day post.

Monday, June 4, 2018

Makers' Monday

I'm hoping this post improves as time passes.  As it stands, although this is Monday's post, I'm typing it on Saturday night.  Saturday night while I'm a bit more focused on the Caps' game than I am the computer screen and I have a few celebratory drinks under my belt.  And, as I type this, the post is currently photoless.  I'm hoping I remember to take a few shots tomorrow before I head into work.  We will see.

But shots of what, you ask?  Well, I've knit a sleeve and a half on my So Faded sweater.  Well, okay... honestly, I have a sleeve and a quarter.  Maybe closer to an eighth.  The point is, I've started the second sleeve.  I'm making progress. 


Fade sweater knit with Knit Picks Hawthorne fingering weight washable wool
So Faded

The second sleeve is knitting up a little slower than the first.  I decided to use the Arleta colorway for the sleeves instead of fading them.  Although my Arleta skeins are the same dye lot and were ordered at the same time, they are very different from each other. 

photo courtesy of twitter.com

Woot!  Woot!  We scored again!!

Sorry.  I'm a little excited.  And a lot distracted.

Anyway....  The first sleeve was a big old beautiful mess of fluctuating color and the second sleeve was coming out all stripey.  Luckily I had a partial skein left over so I'm alternating the rows.  No more stripey affect.  Knitting time wise, it's no different but untangling the twisted yarn time wise....


Started knitting the 2nd sleeve on my So Faded Sweater
Second Sleeve

But it's fine if the sweater is taking me longer than planned.  You might be sick of looking at it but I'm Loving knitting with the Hawthorne yarns and I'm quite pleased with the way the sweater is turning out.  And it's June.  I won't be wearing it anytime soon!


Mad Hatters' challenge - knit 52 hats in a year
Hat #19

And, after a two month break in my knit-a-hat-a-week plan, I've finally cast on another hat.  This hat will be number 19 out of 52.  Luckily I was way ahead of the game and now I'm only four hats behind schedule.  I can come back from that.  I'm not totally defeated yet.

And now, back to the Caps game....

Monday, May 28, 2018

Happy Memorial Day

It always seems wrong to wish people a "happy" Memorial Day but...

photo courtesy of onlinelearningtips.com
Happy Memorial Day!

 I pray for peace for all our fallen troops and their families.


And since today is a Monday, and thus a #MakersMonday....

Friday, May 25, 2018

I have an armpit!

I have an armpit!

So Faded Sweater

That may be a strange blog post lead-in for non-knitters but the knitters of the world will understand my joy.  The body of my So Faded sweater is finished.  It fits!  And I have an armpit! 

This Memorial Day weekend marks the start of 'The Season' and more and longer hours at work so my posting schedule is about to become thin and sporadic.

photo courtesy of brookline.com
But I'm wishing all my US friends a safe and happy Memorial Day!


Thursday, May 24, 2018

Three on Thursday

I should know better by now.  Karma always wins.

front porch remodel

First, I joked on Facebook that my husband had torn up our front porch in an effort to curb my Amazon/online knitting purchases.  I should have known better because...

photo courtesy of yourpainters.com

The next day, a power washing company showed up and proceeded to make our entries/exits very, very wet for several hours.  Now, I'm afraid Mr. UPS Man won't recognize our clean house.

photo courtesy of athenscountryengineer.org

And the next day, our road was closed due to paving.

Oh, Mr. UPS Man, I miss you!

Join me for today's Three on Thursday link up here.

Monday, May 21, 2018

Makers' Monday

I'm going to have to send my husband out of town while I stay home and eat nothing but cake more often.  I got so much knitting done last week!

Knitting a modified So Faded sweater with Knit Pick's Hawthorne yarn
So Faded Sweater

The body of my So Faded sweater is almost finished. 

The sweater is a little big.  Cough, cough.  Someone may have failed to gauge swatch before casting on.  But I think it will be okay with a few modifications.  I decreased a few stitches a couple of times and I've decided to do a split hem to avoid that blousy (blousey?? Spellcheck won't tell me.) look at the bottom.  I think I'm going to be very happy with it.  The loose style will look a lot better on me than a fitted sweater anyway.  I'm going to have to figure out something for the sleeves, but I'll deal with them once the body if finished.

So, I need to find somewhere to send my spouse this week.  Got a spare room?

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Two out of Three Ain't Bad

So, are you sick of hearing about my birthday yet?  Hopefully not, because I bought myself a couple of gifts and I thought I'd share them with you.


First, I bought The Miracle TimeCube.  I was introduced to it by Amy Landino, a YouTube vlogger that I follow.  I thought it was a little silly, but I Had to have one.  Just Had to!  And I'm so glad I bought one.  I can not believe how handy this little gadget has been.  I have ten minutes to spare before I need to leave for work and I decide to spend them reading...  Instead of spending five of those minutes fighting the timer on my phone, I simply rotate the TimeCube until the "10" is facing up.  I want to do a five minute brain dump - I just turn the Cube to 5.  I have used this little gadget so much in the week that I've owned it, I'm surprised I haven't already used up the batteries.  I absolutely love this little gadget!  


The next, or second, gift I bought myself turned out to be a worthless piece of garbage.  If you're thinking about buying one of these silicone ice bucket molds, don't!


First of all, the mold is nowhere near as big as the advertisement makes it look like.  It holds absolutely nothing!  And as for those 120 ice cubes it supposedly holds.... 

Most hail is larger than this ice cube!

The cubes are tiny.  Look how small they are compared to a normal ice tray.  I've made ice in the mold three times and still don't have enough ice to fill a single high ball glass.  And don't even get me started on how difficult it is to fill the mold with water without making a huge, giant, wet mess.  In other words, this product is total cr*p!  Do not waste your money on it.

Hawthorne fingering weight yarn from Knit Picks; value pack of yarn
Sunstorm Hawthorne value pack from Knit Picks

And third or last, there may have been a yarn purchase.  I couldn't help myself.  I tried and tried to resist Sunstorm but the yarn fumes got to me.  Besides, I needed something to make up for that ridiculous ice tray fiasco.

Join me for today's Three on Thursday link up over at Carole's.

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Birthday Cake

Thank you all for the wonderful birthday wishes.  I couldn't have asked for a better birthday.  It may not sound very exciting, but it was a perfect day.  We had the formal celebration last week because Mike knew he'd be out of town on my birthday and Zack was working.  It was just Sarah and I at home.  

I got home from work in the wee hours of Monday to discover that Sarah had cleaned the house, top to bottom.  Not only was everything sparkly clean, but there was dinner waiting for me.  I went to bed and woke up later in the afternoon to enjoy coffee and cake out on the deck.

Lemon/blueberry cake

Oops!  I didn't even think to take a photo of the cake until we'd eaten most of it.

I never thought anything could replace my grandmother's chocolate mocha cake as my all-time favorite but Sarah's lemon/blueberry cake was to die for!  To absolutely DIE for!  It makes Grandma's cake taste like an old, stale, knock-off store-brand Hostess cupcake.

I spent most of the afternoon sitting on the deck drinking coffee, eating cake (I may have had more than once slice) and reading.  I've been on a massive reading kick lately.  I discovered a Scottish historical romance series, set in the 1300's, that completely sucked me in.  I've read three of them already, just since I got home from work on Sunday night/Monday morning.  (Sunday in my mind, but technically Monday.  Whatever.)


I've also been reading The Soul of an Octopus by Sy Montgomery.  Oh my!  This book is SO good!  I'm only a few chapters into it and I'm already tempted to toss my knitting aside and focus my time, attention and money on aquariums.  It's also got me a little hesitant to set foot on a boat ever again.  I'd never given any thought to having my boat attacked by an octopus before, but given my proclivity towards crazy, freak accidents....  I may have to give up salt water and stick to fresh from now on.  But even though I'm a little freaked about boating now, I still want a pet octopus.



So, I spent my 'morning' reading and eating cake on the deck, then spent the late afternoon/evening knitting on the deck with yet more cake and a bottle of wine.  Like I said, it was THE perfect birthday day.

Sweater knit with fingering weight Hawthorne yarn from Knit Picks
So Faded sweater

I love how my cake, the wine and my sweater are all sort of coordinating purples and burgundies.

And then the sky turned an almost matching purple just before an insane thunderstorm hit.  They'd been predicting a pretty horrific storm for several days so it wasn't totally unexpected.  Sarah and I huddled up in an interior room and decided we should eat more cake and have another bottle of wine just in case the storm blew us off to Oz.

Thankfully, the storm did not blow us away, nor did either of us get sick from so much cake and wine.  Even better, we suffered no storm damage and our lights stayed on.  We were lucky!  There were so many trees blown down in the storm, schools were canceled the next day.  I think the birthday gods were watching out for us.

Monday, May 14, 2018

Makers' Monday

I hope everyone had a


Today's #MakersMonday post is not a normal one because I've been too busy working,

(We even have Stapler wars at work!)

eating Mother's Day cheesecake, birthday cake (today's my birthday) and


a "You wanted lemon/blueberry cake for your birthday but I wanted peanut butter pie" pie.  Sarah went on a baking binge while I was at work and now I've gained about 300 pounds over the course of two days.  Yikes!

Assuming I survive the diabetic coma I'm putting myself into, I'll be back in a day or two to show you my So Faded progress.  I've started color #3 and am so happy with it!  Until then, feel free to join me in celebrating #MakersMonday, even though I didn't make anything  (except about 400 gazillion trillion fat cells.)

Thursday, May 10, 2018

I'm fine

Today is Three on Thursday and I pretty much have nothing for it.  All I have done since my last post, like, literally all I have done, is knit around and around and around on my So Faded sweater.

Photo taken at night in fluorescent lamp light.

I don't even have a decent photo to show off my progress because, well, I've been too busy knitting.  My husband even offered to take me out to dinner the other night but I chose to stay home and eat a sandwich instead because, well.... knitting!  I'm seriously, neurotically obsessed with knitting this sweater.

I'm so over the moon in love with the current yarn.  It's the Arleta colorway.  I knew it was my favorite of the group while it was in the skein but....  It's even prettier knitted up!  I'm SO glad I went ahead and ordered a few more skeins the other day to use on the sleeves.  (Yes, I'm going to knit the sleeves with one yarn instead of stripes.)

But, it's Three on Thursday.  I'm supposed to be listing three things, not blathering on about my sweater obsession.

Okay, fine!*

My three favorite motivational quotes, in no particular order:

1.  "Whether I fail or succeed shall be no man's doing but my own.  I am the force; I can clear any obstacle before me or I can be lost in the maze.  My choice; my responsibility; win or loose, only I hold the key to my destiny."  Elaine Maxwell

2.  "My center is giving way, my right is in retreat; situation excellent.  I shall attack."  General Ferdinand Foch

3.  "Destination, determination, deliberation"  J. K. Rowling


*I'm cheating.  "Fine" is actually my all time favorite.  It stands for "freaked out (or F***ed up depending on the situation,) insecure, neurotic and emotional.  And I hear that in my head every single time I hear someone say, "I'm fine."

Even though I cheated, I hope you'll still join me over at Carole's for today's Three on Thursday link up.

Monday, May 7, 2018

Makers' Monday

Although you may not be able to tell from the picture, my So Faded sweater is coming along.

Fade sweater knit with Dark Mood Hawthorne yarn from Knit Picks
So Faded

I'm only a few rows from finishing those pesky raglan increases then it's miles and miles of smooth, mindless stockinette.  And really, I should clarify.  The raglan increases aren't pesky.  It's the garter stitch sleeve caps between them that I'm struggling with.

 I keep forgetting to do the purl rows.  If it wasn't for tinking at least a few stitches on every single purl row, I'd be finished by now.  And, I'm going to have to learn how to duplicate stitch a purl stitch.  About 15 or 20 rows back, there are six knit stitches that should be purls.   I was already several rows ahead when I noticed it and at the time I decided nobody would notice.  Okay, I talked myself into the 'nobody will notice' attitude because I was lazy and didn't want to rip back that far.  But it's on the front of the sleeve cap and someone will notice.  But I'm still lazy and don't want to frog it... So I just keep knitting hoping there's a way to duplicate stitch purls.  Or maybe I can knit a flower or some other fun creative thing to pin over the bad spot.  Or maybe it's in a spot that will be mostly tucked under my arm and nobody really will notice.  Or maybe cows will fly.

Whether cows fly or not, I'm going to keep knitting.  I'm 'this' close to starting the next color and I just can not bear to loose the progress I've made.  And I really, really want to see the next color.  If Kerns, my least favorite yarn of the group, turned out to knit up so beautifully, how awesome will the next color be??  The desire to knit with the next color is greater than the distaste of a glaring garter stitch error.

On a side note, has anyone else knit a So Faded sweater?  How on earth are you supposed to know when it's time to change yarns?  How do you know when you've knit to the point that you need to save the rest of the yarn for the sleeves?  There's probably plenty of discussion about it over on Ravelry, but once again, I'm lazy.  I thought I'd just ask instead of spending precious knitting time researching.  And then there's the lazy idea I had to just order more yarn and knit the sleeves in a solid color instead of matching stripes.

Thursday, May 3, 2018

Three Things

Three exciting things happened this week...

1.  So, Saturday afternoon, I was driving to work, the weather was beautiful, good tunes were blasting out the speakers, I was a happy little camper as I gawked off to my left at the hundreds of baby goats running around the goat farm field and suddenly.... BAM!  A snake falls out of the sky and lands on my windshield.  A snake!  On my windshield!  I had a not-so-brief moment of panic and eventually managed to fling it off the car with the windshield wipers.

So, besides a crazy story that isn't so crazy if you know me and know how things like snakes falling from the sky just seem to happen to me, I also have a nice hairline crack in my windshield.  The kind of crack that you don't really notice until you turn on your defroster... and then you hear that weird crackling noise and a giant gaping hole spreads across your windshield.  Ahhh.... Something to look forward to.

2.  I started the second color on my So Faded sweater.

Dark Mood Hawthorne yarn set from Knit Picks https://shareasale.com/r.cfm?b=726901&u=1446317&m=59159&urllink=&afftrack=
So Faded sweater knit with Dark Mood from Knit Picks

I'm using Knit Pick's Hawthorne Dark Mood set of yarns to knit the sweater and I'm using them in order of light to dark.  The speckled yarn is Berry Smoothie and the second color is Kerns.  

I am beyond fascinated with Kerns.  In the house at night under lamplight, Kerns is a mixture of grays.  In the house in daylight, it's a mixture of taupe-y browns.  But take the skein outdoors in the sunlight and it becomes a mix of purples.  I almost didn't use the Kerns skein because I thought it was kind of bla but... Wow!  Now, after seeing it knit up in different lights, I'm thinking I need a whole sweater knit in Kerns.  A sweater, a hat, some socks and definitely some arm warmers.  Kerns just may be my new favorite neutral colored yarn!

striped wool cowl knit with palette from knit picks https://shareasale.com/r.cfm?b=726901&u=1446317&m=59159&urllink=&afftrack=
Weather cowl knit with Knit Picks Palette yarn.

3.  I added the first orange stripe to my weather cowl yesterday.  And if you are curious, orange represents 89 - 99 degrees.  Yes, Virginia.  We had exactly two days of spring.  Two!  We have now jumped directly to scorching summer heat.

The one benefit I can think of to jumping directly to the seventh level of summer heat Hell is that I shouldn't have to worry about the defroster and my windshield for a while.  But on the off chance the temperatures drop back down and we revert back to winter, let me go ahead and say - This post contains affiliate links.  Go buy some yarn!  Help me buy a new windshield!  If you'd like to make your own weather cowl or scarf, I'm using Palette which comes in practically every color known to man.  And then there's Hawthorne.   You can't go wrong with Hawthorne.  It comes in THE loveliest colorways and it's a joy to knit with. 

After you finish yarn shopping, join me over at Carole's for today's Three on Thursday link up.

Wednesday, May 2, 2018

Spring!

I think spring is finally here.  It's been three weeks since we've had any snow or ice.  The constant rain has stopped.  Our daytime temperatures are ranging from 50 to 90 and our nighttime temps are in the 40 - 55 range.  And Little Red is perpetually yellow no matter how many times I hose her off.  I think it's definitely springtime in Virginia.  Finally!

And I've been spending every possible sunny moment outside.

Enjoying being outside in the spring weather and knitting outdoors.
Knitting So Faded on the deck.

And have no fear.  I'm not being productive outside.  There's no gardening, outdoor homeowner tasks or exercise going on around here.  I'm just hanging out on the deck, knitting and 'reading.'

Enjoying my first Audible book.
Say You're Sorry by Melinda Leigh

I'm still not 100% sure that it's legal to call listening to an audible book "reading" but whatever.  Plenty of people say it's okay, so I may as well go with the flow.  I finally broke down and joined Audible.  Or at least I tried to.  The credit card I had on file with Amazon had expired and I got an error message when I first attempted to join.  I fixed the credit card issue and now I have the Audible logo/link on all my devices but...  I can't seem to access any other book except this one.  I click on the purchase button and nothing happens.  I'm afraid I'm going to have to ask my kids for help.

I hope you too are enjoying some spring weather! 

Monday, April 30, 2018

Makers' Monday

Welcome to Makers' Monday! 

I wanted to show you a picture of the finished blanket.

blanket hand knit with scrap fingering weight, mostly sock yarn.
Full size diagonal striped blanket

So, pardon the photo.  Actually, just go ahead and pardon every photo for the next week, month, maybe even year.  We're revamping the interior of our house and it's a disaster.   The entire house is one, giant, half finished work zone.  There are drop clothes, ladders, power saws, drywall tools, buckets of paint, lumber.... everywhere.  The few rooms that either are not being remodeled or that are finished contain the furniture from the ones that are.  There isn't a single room untouched.  It's complete chaos and extremely unphotographic.

Anyway...

The photo and background are lousy, but I'm feeling pretty proud of myself for completing the blanket.  It's laying on a full size bed, unstretched and unblocked.  I'm feeling quite cocky over the fact that I knit it on US4 needles, with fingering weight scrap yarn and knit it, start to finish, without putting it down to work on something else.  That in itself is a major miracle!

I can't get too cocky about it though.  The photo lies.  I still have a long way to go with the weaving in of the ends.  All I've done is pull all the ends to one side of the blanket.  I'd hoped to weave in those pesky ends during the hockey game the other night but....


Knit Picks Hawthorne Fingering Dark Mood yarn set http://shrsl.com/x3wq
So Faded

So Faded took all my attention.  I just couldn't put it down.  It's been years since I've knit myself a sweater, I LOVE the yarn I'm using, the pattern is an easy, top down raglan knit in the round.  You can see from the photo there is a slight bit of texture involved and the color changes will keep it interesting and will keep me motivated to keep knitting.  I'm definitely excited about knitting this sweater.

One last thing about that diagonal striped blanket.  I know - you are sick of hearing about it.  I'm kinda sick of talking about it but....  Many of you have asked if there's a pattern.  There is not.  But I do have my design notes and will put them into some kind of readable/understandable format and post them here on the blog.  I'll have a couple of days off this coming week and hope to get that done then.  Keep an eye out if you're interested.

Well, that's it for today.  Please join me in celebrating #MakersMonday by joining the link up below.

Thursday, April 26, 2018

Ta Da!

It's Three on Thursday and I'm celebrating a giant...

The bind off on my hand knit diagonal striped blanket sized to fit a full size bed.
Ta Da!

1.  Ta Da!  As promised, the diagonal striped blanket is finished!  Well, it's off the needles.  The knitting is finished.

Weaving in the ends on my scrap yarn striped blanket
One down, one million gazillion more to go.

2.  One yarn end has been woven in.  One million gazillion more to go.

3.  It may be a while before the one million gazillion ends get woven in because about three minutes after I knit the last stitch, I cast on a So Faded sweater using my Dark Mood set of Hawthorne yarns.  No photos yet.  I'm too busy knitting and loving the colors in this set.

Join me over at Carole's for today's Three on Thursday link up.

Monday, April 23, 2018

Makers' Monday

I'd planned to celebrate #MakersMonday by showing you a photo of my diagonal striped blanket with the caption, "Ta Da! Finished!" 

knitting a diagonal striped blanket with scrap sock yarns
74 stitches

But if I had, I'd have been lying.  I thought for sure I'd finish knitting the blanket last week.  I also thought I had less than 100 stitches on the needle at the start of last week. 

Once again, I was wrong.  At bedtime last Sunday (not yesterday, the previous Sunday) I finally got the courage to count the remaining stitches.  177.  One hundred, seventy seven!  How could I have looked at that and thought it was less than 100?  Wishful thinking I guess.

At bedtime last night, I was down to 74 stitches on the needle.  Barring breaking both arms (knock on wood!!) I will definitely finish knitting the blanket this week.  Definitely.  That is my promise to you and to myself.  The next photo/mention of this daggone blanket will be the Ta Da! photo.  I promise.

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Three on Thursday

First, before we get into the Three on Thursday list, I'd like to thank everyone for chiming in about the font size here on the blog.  I really appreciate everyone's comments and input.  I'm also super happy that everyone chose the larger font size.  When I asked the question, I was a little worried that I'd have to be the tie breaker... and I do not like that kind of pressure.  :)


photo courtesy of www.apparentwind.blogspot.com
photo courtesy of apparentwind.blogspot.com

So...  Three on Thursday.  Can I even think of three things to talk about?  It's going to be a stretch, but here goes.

1.  Grrr! I'm growling just a little bit.  Instead of spending the day doing nothing but knitting (and hopefully finishing) the diagonal stripes blanket, I spent the day with my mother-in-law.  I'm frustrated about the lack of knitting, but it was nice to visit and it was a beautiful day for a road trip.  I hesitate to say it but, spring may have finally arrived!


photo courtesy of www.nbcnews.com
photo courtesy of nbcnews.com

2.  The taxes are done and my new glasses are fixed.  Both have been on the agenda for a while.  The taxes for obvious reasons.  The glasses... since getting them back in March, I've had to go in for multiple adjustments each week.  The ear pieces would be so tight they rubbed raw spots behind my ears.  The doctor would loosen them... and they'd slide down my nose.  I'd go get them tightened a smidge... and they'd rub raw spots again.  Loosen them... and they'd be falling off my nose....  It was super annoying and I felt like I was being overly picky but...  And finally they realized - the ear pieces were way too long.  As in WAY too long.  As in almost an inch too long.  They ordered me new ear pieces and I went in a couple of days ago to make the switch.  They are now perfect.  What a relief!

3.  Even more exciting than having well fitting, functioning glasses  is my recent weight loss.  I'm super hesitant to mention it because of karma and all but...  I've lost 22 pounds since the first of February.  I'm pretty dang excited!  


photo courtesy of www.everydayhealth.com
photo courtesy of everydayhealth.com

Other than the slight amount of exercise I get at work, the only lifestyle adjustment I've made is cutting out potatoes.  For the past year, I'd been noticing that I didn't feel so great whenever I ate potatoes.  Then I started feeling terrible when I ate them, and eventually it got to 'never again' status.  And I took that 'never again' to heart.

The strangest thing happened when I stopped eating potatoes.  I stopped craving all carbs!  Granted, I still crave individual, specific carbs occasionally, but the cravings are Nothing like they used to be.  It used to be I couldn't sleep at night until I'd satisfied the need for chocolate, ice cream or a loaf of bread.  Now, I'll just get that weird little tickle in the back of my mind saying, "Wouldn't a Hershey Bar taste fantastic?"  But it's such a tiny, quiet tickle, it's easy to ignore. 

Now, if I could just make my husband understand.  He usually stops at the grocery store on his way home from work to pick up the dinner ingredients.  Four or five nights a week, he brings home a sack of potatoes then is completely flabbergasted when I don't eat them. 

Okay.  So, that was a strange list but it's what's running through my head at the moment.  Care to read others' lists?  Join me over at Carole's for today's Three on Thursday link up.  I'm sure there will be much more interesting lists to read.  Oops. Turns out, Carole is on vacation. If anyone else forgot about that & wrote a ToT post, feel free to leave a link in the comments.

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

May I ask your opinion...

I'm still knitting diagonal stripes...

OTN = on the needles; knitting a blanket with fingering weight scrap yarn
Diagonal Stripes OTN 

And I'm still reading Digging In by Loretta Nyhan.  The blanket is progressing much faster than the reading.

But the real point of this post is to ask your opinion about a couple of things.

Would you rather the blog's text and photos look like the above,

What am I reading? #Iamreading #booklove
Digging In

or like this?  Which looks better on your screen?  Does the smaller text cause eye strain?  Is the larger text so large it sort of jumps off the screen and scares you?  Does the size make a difference on your phone?  And the photos - are they too large and in your face, or are they too small to see?  (Which actually, with my photography skills, may be a good thing!)

So please, let me know what you think.  Small or large text?  Small or large photos?  Which do you vote for?

And while you're voting, join me for today's #Unraveled link up.