Thursday, August 31, 2006

I DID IT!!!!!!

Ok so if I waited another 45 min I would have a post for Sept 1, but I needed to post tonight!! You see I FINISHED MY SOCKS!!!!!

WOOHOO!!!! I cant get the color right since I'm taking their picture in my office with the weird light and the flash, but you get the idea.

Details of these socks......
I used 2 skeins of Berroco Europa that I got off eBay back in March of this year. From stash to completed project in only 5 months. Not bad at all!!

Ok lets try again.....

Berroco Europa 75% superwash wool, 25% cotton
(reinforced toes and heels with wooly nylon)
Size 3 needles
Sock #1 was started 6/28/06. Not sure when I finished that one but I started sock #2 8/14. Finished 8/31/06. They took me FOREVER! I'm not the fastest knitter around, but I really wasnt motivated to work on these socks. They were heavier than I wanted to knit and I have a lot of other sock yarn calling out to me. This is why I'm gonna love the Sock A Month KAL. It's really going to motivate me to get a pair of socks done a month. Sometime this wknd I will cast on another pair of socks, most likely using Cascade Fixation. Probably plain white with some colorful heels and toes...... stay tuned.

SO Close......

I am SO close to finishing my sock! I worked on it last night (while watching some taped episodes of Knitty Gritty) and if I would have started sooner, I could have finished it. But that's ok. I will finish it tonight. I am bound and determined to get that letter A!

However, even though I dont have MY socks finished, I do have some finished socks to show.

My blogless friend Susie has been working on a pair of socks which are now complete. Aren't they cute? She used size 2 needles with the Moda Dea Sassy Stripes yarn. I asked her abt the acrylic yarn and she said she has no problems with the acrylic. She wouldnt wear them hiking, but they are perfect for inside the house. I've made 2 pairs of socks with this yarn, one pair for my newborn nephew and one pair for Baby Girl, but none for me. I've got enough of the stuff that I can make the kids sweaters with matching socks. And even though they are acrylic, I REALLY love the colorways. Explains why I have so much of it....

Ernesto has come and gone. We didnt get much of anything yesterday until abt midnight when we had a nice rainstorm. Ernesto is on its way to SC, but do you know our weather is expected to be worse today?!?!?! Sunny and hot with thunder and lightning storms by the afternoon. But at least we'll have a nice Labor Day wknd. Folks up north won't. Sounds like a wknd of knitting and movies to me!!

Monday, August 28, 2006

Frog Pond

I had to mention the frog pond. Just because I have one outside my house doesnt mean that I need to visit it!!! I was working on my sock while watching the Weather Channel and I was turning my heel. All was going well until I had to pick up stitches. Wait. What's wrong?? I have no space to pick up stitches! Apparently I turned the heel BEFORE I made the heel flap!!! BLECH. I'm now on row 3 of my heel flap.

And why am I watching the Weather Channel?

Ernesto is probably going to just be a big rain maker for us here. We are under a tropical storm watch for my county. He's barely a tropical storm now but once he goes over water between us and Cuba, he could get stronger. Let's hope he's strong enough to keep me home from work but not so strong to do major damage.

See, you get a little bit of everything on this blog. Why? Because there truly is never a dull moment......

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Kissimmee Sky

We went away this wknd to Kissimmee for a convention so I took my Saturday sky there. Saturday morning looked promising...

but this is what the afternoon brought...

We had a beautiful light show while eating dinner that night.

Of course while in Kissimmee, a trip isnt complete without a trip to Disney. We stayed at All Star Music to add a bit more fun for the kids. As you can see, they enjoyed it!

Even while being eaten by a shark!!

No knitting or stitching took place even though LOTS were brought (I have SUCH high hopes). However I did lock myself in the bathroom to read Crewel Yule I need to send it back to the library tomorrow (I do books by mail, LOVE it!) and then I NEED to finish my sock for Sock-A-Month 2 by Thursday if I want the letter A next to my name. And I don't mean the scarlet one!!

And on a froggy update (I SWEAR I've gotten more comments on these critters than on anything else!) while we were gone for ONLY 3 days, our pool has turned into a green pond equiped with its own pond scum and (you guessed it) tadpoles! I tried taking pictures of these little swimmers, but I only get this green glob of a mess in my camera. I hope that the Insane One cleans out the pool before they get much bigger to photograph!! If not, I promise to post!

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Stash Overload

Since we've been renovating the house, I've had to move some stash from the living room to my bedroom. Well after a stressful day I thought I'd go thru it, organize it better and put it away in my office. WRONG!! I started to think of the areas I have yarn stashed and realized it was going to be a much bigger job than I anticipated. So instead, I went thru the Knitting Pattern-A-Day calendar and organized that by project (all socks together, all scarves, etc). I dont even know why I buy any new magazines......I have enough patterns to last me a LONG time! And fabric and batting and books and floss. So my new goal is to just work on what I have and only buy what is NEEDED to finish a project. We'll see how long that lasts......

And what have I been working on? Nothing that I last posted abt! I pulled out the sweater I'm doing for ME. I'm trying to get thru the intricate pattern part of it (where every row is different) so that I can get to the mindless pattern repeat of the rest of the sweater (at least until I need to start decreasing for armholes and neck shaping). I REALLY want to wear this sweater this year and I'm hoping I'll have it done by the end of the year. Here's what I've done so far.

You can *sort of* see the leaves of a flower. I couldnt get a clear close up so use your imagination. I'm working on the head of the flower right now. I have 9 more rows to finish the flower and then the easy pattern begins. I'm hoping by Monday I will start that portion of the pattern. I wont have time to think abt it until then. I'm also noticing that the y/os on one side of the flower you can see, but the other side seems to get swallowed up in the knitting. I'm hoping it will either block out or is consistent enough to look ok.

I've also been working on Baby Girl's poncho. I really want this thing done. I'm tired of looking at it. I like mindless knitting, but 24" of plain garter is monotonous! Not that there is much to see but here is side 2.

The one good thing abt this poncho is that it really is a mindless knit. Perfect for late night knitting. Then I will finish those socks. I think this is the longest its taken me to finish a pair. I just joined the Sock-A-Month #2 KAL for incentive to get a pair of socks done a month. This KAL is hosted by Knittin' Mom if you want to check it out. I have the button, just need to post it in my sidebar. I'm also joining (ever the joiner!) the Red Scarf Project. I'll have more info, including a button, tomorrow.

Sunday, August 20, 2006

What was old is new again

As I was looking thru the Fall edition of Vogue's KnitSimple, I did a double take. I saw a skirt that looked exactly like an afghan my grandmother knit in the 70s.

Change the navy blue to an orange and its a perfect match......YIKES!

Saturday, August 19, 2006

Stashing and Saturday Sky

Here is my Saturday sky.

We've got this low going over us that was part of the tropical wave near the Carolinas. We've gotten a little bit of rain, but not enough to really count. At least not by me. But its been overcast which is a nice change from the blinding sun we normally have.

Now for the stashing part. I went with Dee to Needle Orts for some stitching and stashing. Dee found out she isn't a lover of Cascade Fixation and I'm not a lover of Inox needles so we swapped. I think I got the better deal since she also added in more Moda Dea yarn. That's the last of it since she got energetic and organized her stash. Good girl!! I'm afraid of mine so I've been ignoring it. Which is why I bought more!!!

I need to do a small project instead of all the huge cross stitch projects I've got going on so I picked up one or three. The little flower is probably up first. Its small and cute and different. That will probably hang in my little cubicle at work. The Pine Mountain Wedding pillow will be for my sister in law. As SOON as she tells me she's engaged, I will start. And the Mosey N Me Snowman Cat is just for the fun of it. I really do collect cat patterns. I can start to feel the beginnings of a change, which is why I'm doing the flower before the cat. I dont want to burn out on cats yet.

Speaking of cat projects, I did make some progress on Too Pooped. I *might* work on her one more time before I rotate her out. Or I may just rotate her out now and post a pic tomorrow. Not sure yet. It was nice to actually stitch without any interuptions yesterday. While I worked on Too Pooped, Dee worked on a really cute project for Halloween. Go check out her blog The Daily Stitch to see if she posted a picture of it. If not, bug her until she does!! HI DEE!! Oh and she brought her collection of washcloths that's she's been doing. VERY nicely done!!

Last night while watching Victor/Victoria, I cast on for a wristwarmer, finished it, decided that it was horrible looking and proceeded to rip it all out. Here it is before I pulled it apart.....

Like I said, blech. I try not to think abt the amount of sock length I could have gotten during that knitting time. But it was a learning experience. I found out that I dont like that pattern and that I will probably end up making wristwarmers for me with sock yarn and in the round with dpns. This yarn was just too bulky for this project. It was part of a small stash from my aunt so I need to figure out what to do with it. I may make big house socks with it and some other white worsted weight wool I have hanging around somewhere........

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Casting on

Monday night I decided that if I want to get anything done, I need to cast on a couple of projects. So I first cast on for a new washcloth. I had some yellow Peaches and Cream left over that I will be using, #16 from my Nifty Knit Dishcloths book is the lucky pattern. I've only done 6 rows so not much to see, but at least it's cast on and will become mindless knitting.

I also cast on for sock #2 with the Berroco Europa yarn. I swear I don't know why its such an effort for me to cast on!! Once I started, it was no problem to do and it got me motivated to work on this sock! I havent done that much since I've only had the chance to work on it for abt an hour total in the past 2 days. I'm hoping to do more tonight.

The reason I'm not getting as much stitching/knitting done is because life is back to its crazy self. PTO meetings (like PTA but w/o the dues), homework, wrestling animals -I mean- tucking children into bed at night, home renovations, etc are getting into my quiet time! This is what I got last night......

This is my kitchen and hallway area. There seems to be more demolition than renovation happening these days. However I'm *trying* to look at the positive sides to it all. How often do you get to clean behind your fridge?!?

And we continue to have midnight visitors. Remember my surprise guest? Well apparently he has friends. AND they like to croak at night. They are VERY loud!! We thought that they were these big bull frogs outside at night because they have such loud croaking that you hear quite well in the house. We heard them last night so I finally just put the light on to see what they looked like! Here you go!!

There were three of them sitting around the pool and singing. The Insane One caught one that eventually jumped onto our window and I got this shot.

He's (at least I *think* its a he) got a cute belly, but it freaks me out a bit since it reminds me of the time I had to dissect his distant cousin.......

Sunday, August 13, 2006

It's in the genes.

When my grandmother died last year, I became the keeper of A LOT! I got the stuff nobody wanted. I'm the one that got the cookbooks, the carved wooden spoons, the stamp collection and the pictures. Well most of them anyway. It was getting to the point where I *suggested* others take some of the pictures. I'm really glad I got the majority of it all since I'm the one that will make sure it will get passed down to the next generation. Crocheted hankerchiefs from my great grandmother's sister (my great great aunt?) that nobody else wanted because who uses hankerchiefs anymore?? Well give it here! I dont use them but I LOVE the workmanship that was put into it. And the pillowcases. And the cross stitched table cloths with the crocheted border. Great stuff!! The only problem is finding the room to store it properly.

Anyway while going thru the pictures I found one of my mom and her two sisters knitting. I pulled it out of the pile and it sits on my dresser. She is the one who taught me to knit and I think its SO cool that I have a picture of her knitting when she was 13. She's the one sitting on the chaise lounge on the left with her 5 y/o sister holding the ball of yarn and her other 11 y/o sister holding up her knitting.

My mom died young and her sisters no longer knit. The only one that still knit was her aunt (her mom's sister) and she also passed away. So I'm it, for now. I'm teaching #1 Son, and Baby Girl is DIEING to learn but she just doesnt have the coordination yet. As long as they show the interest, I will teach. They also like to help when I cross stitch. I put the needle in the hole and they pull it thru.

Speaking of cross stitch, my needle was smokin' last night! I pulled out Too Pooped, a cat sleeping on the limb of a tree with birds nearby. Too cute. I'm stitching it on a dyed piece of linen to make it look like the sky, much nicer than a plain beige background. I worked his face last night, so now I can talk to him and hear him purr!! I will post a picture once I rotate him out and pull something else out.

On the knitting front, *sigh*, not much is happening. I just NEED to cast on for that sock!! Once it's started, then I'll have no problem working on it. It amazes me how so many people can start a ton of projects and yet this is the hardest part for me. I enjoy the process of the project (be it quilting, stitching or knitting), but the starting not so much. I know, weird. I also want to start a pair of fingerless mitts for CIC. This month we are shipping out projects for the caregivers. I probably wont work on a vest or shawl since I'm not the fastest knitter, but mitts and socks are a quick knit and I'll be able to make a pair for this month.

Last but not least, I actually have some quilting news. A friend of mine sent me some fabric squares to make Baby Girl a quilt. She previously sent me some for #1 Son that he loved. Aren't they pretty???

Thanks, Hale! Now I just need to find the time to start both quilts....

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Saturday Sky

I can't believe its Saturday already! The weeks are going by very quickly and I'm not sure what to do to slow them down. Then again I don't think there is anything I CAN do to slow them down. Even though last night I had a nice little flashback. Number One Son wanted to watch some tv with me after Baby Girl fell asleep so he sat with me watching You've Got Mail. However since he's had 2 full days of school, he was asleep in abt 10 min. He curled up into my arms the same way he did when he was little. It reminded me SO much of when he used to nurse to sleep. The Insane One came out and offered to carry him to bed but I told him to wait. Wanted to savor that moment for as long as possible. They come few and far between and I know it will just get less and less as he gets older. Thankfully he's a very affectionate kid, coming up many times for hugs, so I still have that. For now.

Here's to another Saturday Sky.

Beautiful clouds but OH SO HOT!!! It's 1:30 in the afternoon, 93 degrees but a heat index of 98. No wonder I always feel like I'm melting. The heat isnt exactly helping with the desire to continue working on the house. This is the downside of doing the work yourself. Cheaper but OH so much longer to get done.

Even the cats dont want to do much.

I will look cute but don't expect me to move.

I refuse to even look at you. I am a cat. I decide.

More knitting and stitching content tomorrow.

Friday, August 11, 2006

School Days Part 2

We are officially back in school. Day 1 went well. #1 Son has 2 teachers this year, one in the AM and a different one after lunch. His biggest worry was that he wouldn't remember their names. When this is the biggest worry, you know he will do fine! Baby Girl did fantastic at first on her big day. She arrived and made friends, turned to me and said goodbye. (the pre-K kids all meet up with the teachers outside before going in for breakfast) Ok so no love lost there. However when I was driving away, her smile faded. I drove by again (because I knew this wasnt good) and she was sitting by herself with her head down. Apparently school was a bit more intimidating than she expected. She's been away from me and daddy before but she's always been with her brother and she's always been with either family or very close friends. Now she was there by herself. I stayed with her until they went to the cafeteria. She did fine the rest of the day. Today we had a few separation issues in the AM again, but she did fine. However today's issue was nap time. Apparently they need to stay on their nap mats for 1.5 hours, a LONG time for a kid who stopped napping when she was two. We may eventually go to 1/2 days. Regardless, here is a picture of them on their first day of school.

This wknd I am hoping to start tackling the family room with paint and wood. This tornado design I have going thru the house is getting OLD. However breaks will be made for stitching and knitting. I decided to take a pic of Meghan's poncho-in-progress. It doesnt look like much, in fact I'm worried that the first square made is going to be too small. I measured it when it was hanging from the needles but now that it is off and laying there, I'm short by 4 inches......the weight of the yarn will probably make it stretch, if not, I will just add on to it. With the yarn being so variegated, I doubt anybody would notice.

Last but not least, here is a picture of Bag Ladies. I got more done on the bags behind and next to the cat. They are 1/2 stitches with 3 strands. Makes stitching go faster, however with all the half stitches in it, the fabric is going a bit wonky. Will definitely need to be stretched back into place when I'm done. Meanwhile it will be rotated out and I *think* Too Pooped will be worked on tonight instead. I found that if I start to stitch first, then when I'm tired, I can work on the poncho since it is straight knitting. Perfect mindless, sleepy knitting!

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

School Days

Yes its the most wonderful time of the year........ The kids go back to school tomorrow!!!! Number One Son starts the 2nd grade and Baby Girl starts Pre-K. THAT is bittersweet. She has been wanting to go to school since she was 2 and #1Son started Kindergarten. In February she was still crying whenever we dropped off her brother because she so desperately wanted to stay. She is SO excited. Has her Princess backpack and her Barbie lunchbox and is ready to go! I am so happy for her because she wants this so badly, but where did my baby go?? Apparently to school tomorrow. #1Son has his Cars backpack and lunchbox (a BIG change from his usual Spiderman choices). Pictures and stories to follow tomorrow.

However even with all this going on, I have been stitching and knitting at night. I'm not totally 100% better yet, but I'm close. I'm looking forward to Friday when I can do nothing! Ok, less than I normally do. After dropping the kids off at school, I will come home and lounge around!!! Well I'll probably do dishes and a load of laundry and I NEED to do paperwork, but doing all of this while watching Regis and Kelly or The Nanny is somehow less stressful than going to work and doing paperwork. Plus I can knit in between all the chores. I'm working on Baby Girl's poncho and also Bag Ladies. Not much to show so wont be posting any pictures yet.

Just so I wont leave you pictureless, look what I did. Yep I fought the light and *I* won! I didn't even get a bump, but my head was sore for a couple of days. It doesnt match the new paint anyway, but there are other ways of disposing of the lamp, like taking it down!! LOL

Sunday, August 06, 2006

Saturday Sky

A day late in posting but here is my Saturday sky. I'm sitting on the couch hearing rumbling and quickly remembered to pull out the camera before the sky got too grey. Here is what I saw

Just off to the left was this.....

The sky got a bit greyer and a few more rumblings, but then it all just disappeared and we went back to regular skies again. Typical afternoon weather. Sometimes we get the rain, sometimes we don't.

Still not much happening. I'm still fighting the last bits of this cough. I *know* I'm winning but its taking its toll on my stomach muscles. I'm now doing what the drs made the IO do when he was recovering from pneumonia so I'm hoping it will get rid of the entire thing.

Speaking of the IO, he feels so bad that I've been so sick, he bought me these.......

A total of a dozen multi-colored roses. Baby Girl LOVES them, except for the white ones, they are boring. I told her roses are NEVER boring and that I was very happy that the IO got them.

In the midst of doing nothing yesterday (between the coughing and the yawning and the headache), I *did* manage to finish this

Somehow, the past part of the pattern repeat I messed up so the bottom repeats are for the right side and the last repeat is for the wrong side!! Well now I wont feel so bad using it on dirty dishes......This is what happens when you knit high on tons of cold meds....

Once that was cast off the needles, I realized I had nothing else ON the needles!! I never did cast on for sock #2 and I also need to cast on for the 2nd part of Baby Girl's poncho. Today will either be casting on for the above two or I may pull out some cross stitch. I've been itching to do some of that as well.

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Come ride with me, come ride, let's ride away....

I'm a Mazda Miata!

You like to soak up the sun, but your tastes are down to earth. Everyone thinks you're cute. Life is a winding road, and you like to take the curves in stride. Let other people compete in the rat race - you're just here to enjoy the ride.

Take the Which Sports Car Are You? quiz.

We're All Melllltttttiiiiinnnnggggg.........

Where is all this heat coming from?!?!!? Pretty much the entire United States is HOT! I feel for those of you up north dealing with all that heat. At least us Southerners have a/c and electric companies that can handle the heat. We are hot here, yesterday afternoon it was 94 with a heat index of 98, cool temps for those up north. LaGuardia had a temp of 101 with a heat index of 109! That's just nuts.

However heat is heat and it just wipes me out. I work at a company where the a/c is *on* but I work in an area that doesn't cool off very well. On cloudy days or cool days, its great, but on sunny hot days, it can get to over 80 inside. Again, that's just nuts. Thankfully we dont have to dress in *office clothing*. Even though I'm in Accounting, its still a factory and we can dress in whatever we want. Can you say t-shirts and shorts??? I've worn my socks to work in the wintertime but was hoping to finish up some of my cascade socks to wear in the summer (no open toed shoes allowed even though we tend to break that rule quite often). Hasnt happened yet. And since my SIP is a DK weight wool/cotton blend, I will be waiting to wear those as well. Speaking of which I printed out the sock pattern again so that I'm ready to cast on for sock #2.

What have I done knitwise??? Well I *did* print out that sock pattern. And I looked at the wristwarmers for the next CIC challenge. Oh and I finished going thru the 2006 Knit Calendar (the pattern a day one). I now want to go thru and organize it by project (all socks together, all sweaters, etc). I even went so far as to bring my knitting bag into the bedroom with me to cast on for the socks. Or work on the dishcloth.......Neither happened. It was just too hot, I am still too sick, and just plain wiped out. Meanwhile I have yet to unpack and there is laundry everywhere. Some is clean but most of it is dirty. *sigh* And school starts in less than a week.

Since there is no knitting pictures to share, that means more NY shots. The in-laws have blueberry bushes in their backyard and the kids LOVE to pick them. Isnt it amazing how kids love to do it but us grownups see it as a chore? Blueberries anybody??

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Pass the Tissues, Please

I am sick. We have been home for 1 week and in that week I have gone school shopping, gone back to work, had my sisters here, had a drs appt that ended up with me scheduling a procedure yesterday that required *prep* drinking on Sunday. YUCK. BTW I passed with flying colors. Meanwhile I have a fever and a sore throat and a cough that will not quit. The OI is at the store as I type getting me some good meds so that I will get over this thing soon! PLUS I plan on doing NOTHING this wknd. I just need to sit and knit on the couch the entire time. This, btw, is OI's suggestion, not mine. But who am I to argue?!?!?

Needless to say not much knitting has been happening. However I do have some interesting flowers that we saw in NY. I have no idea what they are called but they sure are pretty!

I like the little ant in this one. Didn't even notice him when I took the picture.

This one we saw near the library in Southampton. I would LOVE to know what it is. Very unusual. It looks like 2 different blooms from the same plant.

And one more sil saw this and thought of me immediately!! She said only I would get it. I LOVE it!!

Now if you will excuse me, I have a pillow with my name written all over it......