Saturday, July 30, 2005

Finished Object

Just finished my Chutes and Ladders sock from the Six Sox Knitalong. I made them with the KnitPicks dye-your-own sock yarn which I dyed with 5 packs of cherry kool-aid. I would have liked the color to be darker, but I kind of like the variegated effect I got with this pair--it was my first attempt at dying--live and learn, right. I used the instructions in the Knitty archives for dying.

Chutes & Ladders

This pair was lots of fun. I plan on doing a pair for my son with some Dreambaby DK that I have in my stash.

I think I may be putting socks on the back burner for a while. I want August to be my "month of lace" and then I would like to work on a few sweaters(one for my son, one for my daughter, two for me LOL). Knowing me I'll crack and still have a pair of socks "on the sticks"--they are such a great portable project that they are hard for me to resist :)

Happy knitting and happy weekend,

Thursday, July 28, 2005

Booking Through Thursday

No knitting content today--hopefully a finished object will be coming in the next couple of days :)

Happy knitting and reading,

Onto this weeks "Booking Through Thursday" question:

Booking Through Thursday

I bought a sweatshirt for my husband some years ago that says, "Celebrate freedom. Read a banned book." The shirt then goes on to list ten books that were currently banned somewhere in these United States. Here are a few examples: The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain, The Catcher in the Rye by J. D. Salinger, The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck, The Call of the Wild by Jack London, and Gone With the Wind by Margaret Mitchell. (For more information, see banned books online, and other sources.)

  1. Have you ever knowingly read a banned book?

  2. Yes, and pardon the mini-rant here but when are people going to realize that banning anything is pretty much a sure way to get anyone to do it/read it. What really sets me off are the people(usually devoutly religious) who want to ban something without even reading it--I have no problem with someone's religious beliefs dictating what they read/do BUT when that person's beliefs start dictating what I should do then we have a problem. I noticed that many of the books in the link were "classics" that I have read and even taught--I wouldn't ban them for content--maybe for being outdated and colossally boring(I'm actually thinking of everything I was required to read in my American Lit. class in college--you want a good nights sleep? Go buy Norton's Anthology of American Literature).

  3. Have you read any of the books I listed above?

  4. Yes, all of them at one time or another.

  5. Knowing that the above books have been banned, would you read them now? Why?

Yes,if they were of interest to me(some where required reading and getting through the torturous hell once was enough for me). I am emphatically against banning books; I think what a person chooses to read is a personal choice. And barring blatant profanity I think they should part of school curriculums(I mean banning "Huck Finn", come on).

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

SBQ and an Evening Out

Today's "Stitching Blogger's Question" is:

What is your most unique/interesting stitching quirk? (This could be
something concerning the way you stitch, how you organize your stash,

I don't really know if these things would be considered quirks or not. I have to have my floss organized in numerical order at all times. When I sit down to stitch, I have to have my materials organized: my needle/scrap holder on the left side of the chair, my piece in its q-snap, my floss on my lap, my pattern(depending on how big)held under my scrap bag or on a table or stand to my left. And I'm really careful about storing my pieces when I'm not working on them--they're each in individual zip-locs(I do the same thing with knitting stuff). I don't know if those things are quirks or some form of OCD or maybe they're both the same thing LOL!

On the knitting front, I should be finishing my socks by the end of the week. I don't know if I'll be doing many of the socks in this year's Six Sox Knitalong--I have other things I'd like to try and even though socks are a fairly easy/fairly quick project I'd still like to focus my energy on other things for a while. Before you know it, it will be time to start gift knitting for the holidays. I'm kind of tired of having "deadline" knitting--is it totally selfish to want to knit stuff in my own timeframe for myself or whomever? Since I started knitting I have been doing all kinds of things for others--not that I mind, but it would be nice to have it be a peaceful, zenlike hobby rather than a race against the clock.

Last night I joined Stacey and others(I'll learn everyone's names, I promise) for the Littleton Meetup. I have really missed attending a knitting group on a regular basis and last night showed me all the things I had missed. It was a lot of fun and I'll definitely try to attend as often as I can :) Thanks for a great evening out, ladies!

Happy knitting and stitching,
aloha :)

Saturday, July 23, 2005

Have I Finished Unpacking?

Of course not!! BUT I have finished this:

Ravenclaw Bookscarf

My Harry Potter Bookscarf, which Laura was kind enough to share on her blog :) Thanks again for the great pattern; I had lots of fun with it! I got to try the provisional cast on for the first time and it actually worked(I'm always pleasantly surprised when I can make something work). This is a Ravenclaw bookscarf(movie version) which goes along with my Ravenclaw scarf I finished earlier in the year. I have a couple more I'd like to make, but I really have to get more stuff put away first.

Thanks, Laura, for giving me a welcome break!!

Happy knitting,
aloha :)

Thursday, July 21, 2005

Booking Through Thursday

Children's books
With J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince making its sensational debut last weekend I started thinking about children's books. There have been a lot of wonderful ones over the years, The Cat in the Hat, Where the Wild Things Are, Bambi, the Mother Westwind stories, the Chronicles of Narnia, the Chronicles of Prydain, Nancy Drew, and on and on.
As an adult, do you own children's books?

Most definitely yes! I am a secondary reading specialist so it's kind of my job to read young adult lit. And many of the stories that are out there now are great. I would say that at least one third of my book collection are children's books(maybe more).

If you do, do you still read them even when there are no children around?

Of course--I read them even before I had my own kids.

What were your favorites as a child? Now?

As a child I loved books about horses, non fiction and fiction(The Black Stallion especially). Then in my early teens I started getting into Vampire books--there was a series(I can't remember the name offhand; Vampire Chronicles maybe)of four books about a teenage girl and two vampires(brothers); I read those over and over. As a young child I remember loving nursery rhymes. Really when I was growing up the selection of young adult fiction was slim at best.

Now I am a HUGE Harry Potter fan. JKR is a genius; anyone who can write a story that gets SO many people reading should be celebrated. I could tell you stories about all the adults and children I know who wouldn't read anything; then they read one of those books and were hooked. I also really like Christopher Paolini--he writes the Inheritance series. The first book was Eragon(which he wrote as a teenager--I can't tell you how stunning that is for an English teacher to read--many of my students where hard pressed to write more than a page) and the second, Eldest, comes out next month.

Lois Lowry(sp?) is another good writer--I loved The Giver.

Spend some time in the young adult section of your bookstore(if you don't already) you may be surprised by what you find.

Happy knitting and reading,

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

SBQ and HP

I went out today and got some perle cotton for my bookscarves(2 Ravenclaw and 1 Gryffindor). The colors I thought were closest were: #336(blue), #498(dark red), #783(gold), and #318(grey). The problem with liking Ravenclaw is that the colors for the house are different in the books and in the movies so that makes it necessary to do stuff in both colorways(at least if you're compulsive like me--LOL).

Ravenclaw Scarf and Bookscarf supplies

Today's "Stitching Blogger's Question" is:
Have you ever done a color conversion?

Yes, I have. It was only a small thing. I changed the hair color of the bride in "Lavender and Lace's--The Wedding". I changed it from blonde to brunette.

If so, what did you think about
your results and would you do it again? If not, would you like to try

I thought my results were okay, but they could have been better. They didn't really blend as well as I wanted them too. I would love to try it again--it's really a skill I would like to perfect with my stitching as well as knitting.

Happy knitting and stitching,
aloha :)

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Absorbing the info

I finished HP6 earlier today--don't want to give anything away, but I will say that it is getting good and I can't wait to see how JKR wraps it all up(unlike book 5, I will definitely reread this one).

In the interest of fueling anyone else's HP mania, I have a couple of links for you: Patch Palace(for HP replica uniform patches-I'm thinking of getting one for a "staff" sweater) and this really cool HP bookscarf(it's a book mark and a very clever/easy gift for the HP fan with everything). I plan on getting the materials for a bookmark when I finally decide to venture out and explore the area. I also would like to make a PoA scarf to go along with my Ravenclaw scarf I made last year.

So today I did NOT unpack a single box. I read, looked after the kiddos, and knit. On the knitting front, I have a couple of things that are almost done: the hooded t-shirt front is almost done--which only leaves the hood and sleeves and I am about 1/4 of the way done with my second Chutes and Ladders sock--hopefully I can have it done by the end of the month.

Even though I now have a boatload of lace yarn, I haven't been working on my lace lately. On vacation I needed mindless knitting that would allow me time to talk and knit, and now I need mindless knitting because my brain is fried from trying to decide where to put everything. Hopefully August will yield my lace knitting time; we should be more settled and my little diva will be beginning Kindergarten(I'm happy for her, but as a mommy it's hard to let them go).

Have a great night and happy knitting,
aloha :)

Saturday, July 16, 2005

HP, WIP, and SEX---oh my!

Of course, I must pay tribute to my Harry Potter obsession--book 6 has made it into my hands at last(along with the cool bracelet they gave away with it--modeled by my phone)!


Here are my book purchases while on vacation:

Pattern SEX

Here's the true sign of an addict; I had yarn delivered to my parents' house while I was on vacation(Knit Picks lace yarn in moss, midnight, and happy dance):

Knit Picks SEX

Six Sox Knitalong progress:

Chutes and Ladders

Here's my progress on my hooded tee; I'm working my way up the back only a few more decrease rows to go then I start the front. (Michele--sorry I didn't put the pattern picture in for you; you had asked about it a while ago. It's buried at the moment):

Hooded Tee

Happy weekend--back to unpacking(whoopee!),
Aloha :)

Friday, July 15, 2005

Tonight is THE Night!

You Know You're Addicted to Harry Potter When...

You make a wand and try to use it.

You call your least favorite teacher Snape.

You call your favorite teacher Dumbledore.

You wear robes to school or work. (that would be fun)

You make "floo powder", get in the fire, and try to go to your friends' house.

You have read all the books more than four times. (many more than that actually--except book 5; only once too upsetting)

You've been bookstore at midnight to get the latest Harry Potter book before all your friends. (guilty)

... And then you stayed up all night reading it. (maybe this year)

You've worn a Harry Potter costume in public.

You have a crush on one of the Harry Potter characters. (yup and JKR killed him)

You've gotten at least one of your friends addicted to Harry Potter. (guilty and family too)

You actually caught the "Wand Order" mistake before you heard/read about it.

You are upset at the New York Times for creating a seperate childrens best seller list because of the Harry Potter books. (reading is reading--genre shouldn't necessarily matter)

Using clues in the book, you have attempted to find the exact geographical location of Hogwarts.

You have constructed a timeline of events in the Harry Potter books.

You have attempted to figure out the exact ages of all the Weasley children.

You have spent time contemplating which main characters will die by the time the series is over. (yes and I have been wrong in who I thought would go so far)

You've been to see all the Harry Potter movies on opening night. (Bonus points for standing in line in costume!)

You've read Harry Potter fanfic. (yes and some of the slash ones are my favorites)

You've written Harry Potter fanfic. (yup; never to be read by another muggle other than me)
You run a Harry Potter fansite.

You visit The Leaky Cauldron daily.

You've met other Harry Potter fans from online in real life.

You've participated in a Harry Potter RPG.

You've dreamed about Harry Potter.

You have a Harry Potter poster on your wall. (no but I do have a Sirius Black one)

Each Halloween, there's no question what you'll dress up as...!

You've spent time doing a timeline to see if you would have been old enough to date a certain character when you were in high school.

You've vacationed to London, simply to search for the Leaky Cauldron.

You own a black lab named Sirius Black. (I don't own a dog but I have thought about using that name if I ever do)

You've knitted a Weasley sweater or Harry Potter scarf. (yes to the scarf and a sweater is on the list)

You actually get these jokes and pass them on to other friends who are addicted to Harry Potter.

Get Your Own Addicted Meme Here

More cool things for your blog at

Okay--truly I am embarrassed at how many of these apply to me:) But I will say that Snape is NOT my least favorite teacher--as a matter of fact--he's my role model/idol :)

Get Book 6 and get reading:)

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Update, SBQ, and Booking Through Thursday

We're back! We just arrived home to begin our new adventure in Denver. The trip to New York was just what the doctor ordered--I got done about half of what I wanted to, but isn't that always the way with trips to visit family. My darling son refrained from a repeat of the "psycho-rage" we encountered on the trip to New York--our return trip was fairly uneventful. Until we went to dinner and I had to leave the restaurant before we got our drinks, because he completely lost his 2.5 year old mind and started screaming at the top of his lungs. My darling husband of 7 years(anniversary was Tuesday) took young rage after he finished eating, so that I could eat my dinner and finish my Long Island Iced Tea---mmmmmm! So now all is right with the world and I will exact my revenge when I take him up for his bath and wash his hair(he REALLY hates it);)

On the knitting front--I hope to have a collection of WIP pics tomorrow :) I have a knitting question for all of you(it came up during my vacation attempts at knitting instruction): When did you feel like you really mastered something with knitting? For example, I am finally able to identify and fix most mistakes in my work and others--that skill is really put to the test when you teach someone--I felt like that was a HUGE jump in my skill set. I think that being able to design something would be another HUGE jump(it's on my goals list). I'd be interested in hearing other opinions.

Today's "Stitching Blogger's Question" is:

What do you do when you have some sort of obligation stitching to do,
but don't want to do it?

I usually institute a rotation with that being the focus piece for the weekdays then I allow myself to switch gears on weekends(I apply the same plan to my knitting)

Booking Through Thursday:
Come again?
Most stories are about people. Some authors are better with descriptions of places or things or weaving a tale than they are with character development. Some authors make the characters really come alive, seem like flesh and blood individuals with wills of their own, not merely the creation of someone's imagination.
What author that you remember having read does the best character development?
Maybe Laurell Hamilton and of course JK Rowling.

What book/series do you think is that author's shining work with regards to character development?
Harry Potter, of course. And LKH's Anita Blake series.

What was (were) your favorite character(s) in that book or series?
In JKR's stuff I actually like minor characters more--Snape, Lupin, and Black. In LKH's stuff my favorite is Richard Zeeman and Asher.

Do you ever find yourself really liking a character in a book that you're certain you would never be friends with in real life?
Yeah, most of the characters in Sherilyn Kenyon's books

Do you ever re-read a book to visit a character because you miss him/her? Are you kidding!?!?!?! All the time!

Happy knitting, reading, and stitching,
Aloha :)

Thursday, July 07, 2005

Condolences and Booking Through Thursday

First, I would like to send my thoughts, prayers, and deepest condolences to the people of London and any who were affected by the horrific events of today--I'm just so, so sorry. I had the same sick feeling in my stomach as I had on September 11; it really makes you wonder about the world we are bringing up our families in. I really don't want to vent too much about this because I try to keep my political views to myself. So again I will just say my thoughts and prayers are with your city and country--God Bless.

Booking Through Thursday:

Coffee table books
My own personal definition of a coffee table book is a book that is large, over-sized, has lots of pictures, is about a specific theme (e.g., Georgia O'Keeffe's 100 Flowers, steeple chasing, Disney Animation, the Golden Gate Bridge, etc.) and generally speaking not something that most people would sit down and read in an afternoon. Coffee table books are often displayed singly or in piles for the benefit of guests to peruse, to stimulate conversation, because they look good, or whatever.
Do you have any coffee table books?


Do you have one or two, or would you say you have a collection of them?
I have more than two but I wouldn't say that I have a collection.

Do you keep them on your coffee table? If not, where?

I don't own a coffee table(we use an ottoman--you don't risk cracking little heads open on an ottoman, but a coffee table--well the odds aren't good). We keep our coffee table books on a shelf in our living room and on a stand in the bedroom.

What are they about?

There are a couple Anne Geddes ones, quite a few Disney ones, and some animal ones--I don't know if any of my knitting books could double as coffee table books, but I never get tired of looking at A Gathering of Lace and my Starmore books. I have my eye on a couple photography books by Viggo Mortensen--why, you may ask--well I've heard he's a talented photographer and he's on the "list" LOL!

Have you read them? All of them? None? Why?

Most of them don't have that much text but those that do I have read. I read them because I really hate having a book in my house that I haven't read.

Be safe,

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Spreading the Madness and SBQ

On the knitting front--I have started the second sock in the "Chutes and Ladders" pair(six sox knitalong) and I fully intend to get a picture of said sock at Niagara Falls before I leave next week. My sister has successfully cast on, knit, purl, knit/purl in the same row, and cast off--now it's onto her first project, a dishcloth/washcloth!!

My Mom and I set out this afternoon to check out one of the knitting shops here in the Buffalo area--"Yarn It All". It was a cute place with lots of space for classes and if you are into novelty yarns and acrylics then this is the place for you--that being said I have 2 more shops I'd like to check out before I leave. My Mom got a pair of clover circulars--I keep telling her she might find them more manageable(we've had some trying moments in my quest to get her knitting--she knows how to knit and purl, but we've had some "debates" on casting on and pattern work). She also got the portable Vogue knitting book--I have it and it has been a huge resource for me. We wrapped up the day at Barnes and Noble where I got Socks, socks, socks and the Shawls and Scarves book from Knitters. All things considered it was a pretty cool yarn free day!

Today's "Stitching Blogger's Question" is:

Do you think that you stitch neater on Evenweave than you do on Aida
cloth? If so, why?

I don't really know if I stitch neater on evenweave but I think that stitching done on evenweave looks about a thousand times better than stitching done on aida. I guess that maybe I do stitch neater on evenweave because you have to be more aware of your tension; on aida you can yank away until your heart's content. :)

Happy knitting and stitching,
aloha :)

--am I the only one who is bummed out that bloglines is down--sheesh :)

Monday, July 04, 2005

Happy Holidays!

Happy 4th and Happy Belated Canada Day to all who celebrate those things :)

I'm loading up my hooded T-shirt WIP, sunscreen, kiddos bathing suits, portable camera printer dock and camera, 7 layer dip with Tortilla chips, and my 6 pack of Molson XXX(oh, Molson how I have missed you) and heading over to my sister's house for a holiday romp in the sun!!!!

Have a fabulous day!
Aloha :)