Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Passion and Progress

I am in love with these. Talk about two epic projects to stitch! Darn the "internets" ;) I ordered Arwen and Aragorn and I'm still debating on Hope Returns. I have all the floss kitted up for A/A but I had to order the fabric(25 count laguna is hard to come by--at least the size I need is). This is a solid cross stitch project done over 1 on linen--which probably means nothing if you don't stitch, but if you do you'll understand my fear of going blind before I finish it; those stitches will be tiny :)

I finished with the chart for the first sleeve of Rogue and it will be put away for a week; so that I can concentrate on my preemie project donations. Here's the progress pic:

Sleeve cable

Saturday, August 27, 2005

Crow Anyone?

Yes, I am about to eat crow. Remember a couple posts ago when I said that I probably wouldn't buy yarn for a sweater from String(the new LYS).

Well, apparently that was a lie. It all started Thursday when I cast on for my Rogue Revisited and after completing row 15 of the sleeve I realized that my gauge was 6 stitches per inch(needs to be 4.5). I ripped and knit a gauge swatch with size 9 straights and my gauge was now 5 stitches per inch--better, I can live with that. Unfortunately, I do not have size 9 circs or dpns(nor do I have size 7 dpns)--I wanted dpns because I'm knitting the sleeves in the round instead of straight. Therefore, I needed to find those needles. Obviously a trip to the LYS was in order, BUT little diva had school yesterday and I had a ton of running around to do--there was no way I would make it to A Knitted Peace and back along with everything else I had to do while Diva was in school. So I thought I'd check at String.

Sure enough the double points where there. Of course I couldn't just buy them and leave(I mean you have to look around, right, even if you were just there last Saturday, right?). So on my trip around the store I notice that they have a bulky weight Cascade and I'm thinking--"I wonder if they have Cascade 220?" It's not out in the store, so I ask one of the owners. "Sure we do--a ton of it--right back here" (insert Jaws music here). In what appears to be a storeroom in the back I find an entire wall of Cascade 220 in all its unpickedover glory. You know what's coming, don't you? You see the thing with Rogue is that I know the yardage I need for it off the top of my head and there was this awesome blue yarn calling my name(even dear son heard it as he reached for the same color as well). Double points--back on the shelf/9 hanks Cascade 220--in the truck for the remainder of our errands.

So, I didn't get the needles I needed for my Rogue, BUT I did get THE yarn that will now become Rogue Revisited. I'll save my grey merino stretch for Eris or something, because I loved the way it felt.

Last night I came home and while dinner was cooking I wound three of the hanks into balls and began a gauge swatch(see I'm learning--gauge first) and guess what? Perfect gauge on size 8s--I'm telling you I was destined to get this yarn. So without further ado here's the new and improved Rogue Revisited:

Rogue Re-Revisited

Gauge First--lesson learned

Sleeve Progress 8/27

I'm not sure how well the photo shows the color, but it's a navyish blue with some blue/green flecks mixed in. When I saw it, it reminded me of peacock feathers and it kind of has the iridescence of spilled motor oil.

Never say never, I guess :)

Happy knitting,

You are "turbo" charged.
Fast moving and classy, you get things done with
power and grace. Your expensive tastes can be
deceiving, since what you really value is
quality and efficiency. As you're careening
around those corners in life, finishing a dozen
knitted objects each month, stop and smell the
roses. Don't miss the beauty of process!

What kind of knitting needles are you?
brought to you by Quizilla

Thursday, August 25, 2005

Booking Through Thursday

Booking Through Thursday

Today's questions brought to us by Nicki, who has come up with a ton of fun ideas, this being the first that struck me.

  1. Which 3 authors would you invite to a dinner party (they can be dead)?JKRowling, Edgar Allen Poe, Christopher Paolini(and his Mom)

  2. Why?JKRowling for many, many reasons. First, to thank her for writing books that get kids(and adults for that matter)to read. Second, to pick her brain about the backgrounds of certain characters like the Mauraders--I mean really pick her brain about them, I'd love to know more/all of their story. Third, to talk to her just in general; authors fascinate me because I so admire their ability to come up with such interesting ideas and ways to present them. Edgar Allen Poe so I could find out if he was really as "out there" as he was rumored to be; I mean you have to be pretty messed up to write some of the stories he did. Christopher Paolini and his Mom--Christopher, so that I could talk to him about the Inheritance Trilogy and to tell him how much I admire his being able to write so well for someone so young; and his Mom because he was home schooled and I want to know how she raised such a good writer--the English teacher in me has to know ;)

  3. Would they get along?I'm sure Christopher and JKR would get along; they write for the same audience really and I'm not sure if Poe would get along with everyone; I'm thinking his mind would be elsewhere.

SBQ and Stuff

Cyn--I started Rogue for you :) I'm starting with the sleeves and I'm doing them in the round this time. I'll post a pic when I get a little further into it.

So yesterday I go to the bookstore to pick up a copy of Eldest and guess what---they don't have any. . .none, zero, zip. Now the first book was pretty popular but I really didn't anticipate a sellout on number 2(at least not the second day after its release). So I go to the information desk to find out the deal. After much searching the clerk says "we don't have any"--okay, duh, I can see that. So I ask if I can order one; just call me when it comes in. He looks at me like it's a completely foreign concept, but finally says okay and we get the ball rolling. All I'm saying is you work at Barnes and Noble for goodness sake--HOW is it possible that you know nothing about books or store policies? By the way, another store employee told me they were supposed to receive 500 copies, but only 100 came the rest went to another store--that just stinks.

On the stitching front I received my patterns from Heaven and Earth Designs, got my linen, got some thread for gridding, and later I will make sure I have all the floss. Let the over 1 stitching begin!!!

Happy knitting and stitching,

Today's "Stitching Blogger's Question" was suggested by a Melissa
(http://www.measi.net/blog/) and is:
What's the largest project you've ever done? What's the smallest?

The largest, so far, has been "The Wedding" from Lavender and Lace. But that is soon to have some competition from a Goldenkite pattern I have kitted up(I can't remember the name; something about Modern views of Rome--it's being done as a WIP on the site and they are calling it "The Project")--I may never finish it though(the pattern is like 40 pages long!!).

The smallest would probably be some Christmas ornaments I did from Mill Hill kits or maybe a bookmark--I'm not sure which is smaller.

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Multipurpose Project Done

This Branching Out scarf has had to carry the weight of my blog world on it's shoulders. I did it for the BO Knitalong and for Knit the Classics. Now it's all done :)

Here it is blocking

Here it is done :)

I actually finished it a week or so ago, but it took me a while to figure out where to block it. Because of the varigated yarn the pattern does not photograph well, but you can see it really well in person. This was a fun pattern; pretty easy for lace.

Happy knitting,

Monday, August 22, 2005

Shoebox Doll, Stash Enrichment, Rotation

Last week I got this pattern from Patternworks:

Shoebox Pattern

Then Little Diva and I went to JoAnn's and I let her pick out supplies. After one day of stitching and two days of finishing we have this:

Shoebox Doll

I had NO control of the color choices here; the white hair and odd colored eyes are all Little Diva's doing. She marches to the beat of her own drummer; she's the same way with her clothes--she loves to wear two different colored socks("because I can, Mommy"). The pattern was lots of fun even with the loads of finishing I had to do. We plan on picking out fabric for "Lemon's" shoebox bed this week.

My husband actually had the weekend off--it almost NEVER happens. SO on Saturday I said I was going out ALONE(a rarity for me). Of course, Saturday + out alone=yarn shops :) I went to A Knitted Peace which was a big mistake as it was "Western something Weekend" and it took me longer to walk to and from the shop than the actual time I was in there. All the streets near the shop were closed or filled with parked cars. But I got supplies for a hat from She Ewe Knits so I can get back in the swing of things with two colored knitting.

Then I thought I would drive home, but first I'd stop for a Jamba Juice(strawberries wild, yum). Low and behold a new yarn shop has opened. So, of course, I had to partake of String. First thing I loved about this shop, all the yarn is arranged by color--I gotta say that I like it. Second thing I love about this shop--it's like 5 miles from my house. Third, the owner's were very helpful and nice. That being said much of what was in there was really expensive; fine if you're making a scarf, but I don't think that I would buy sweater yarn there. But I did come away with this(heilo is from A Knitted Peace/sock yarn and sheep from String):

Stash Enhancement

I finally got a black sheep. I'm sure that everyone has seen it's cousin, but there is only one black sheep per pack SO they are very difficult to find. I'm thinking that years from now the black sheep will be like the "pink chibi"; cool but hard to find ;)

I also enhanced my cross stitch stash this weekend by purchasing two charts from Heaven and Earth Designs. These are on par with Goldenkite as far as difficulty and I say bring it on. I don't care if I may never finish it and will have to will it to my daughter to finish; I like the challenge!

Finally, I have been pondering a rotation. I have so much I want to do that I'm getting kind of overwhelmed; so I am toying with the idea of a rotation to see if that helps clear my head a little. Being the commitment/obligation phobe that I am, I will try it for the month of September first. I'll reevaluate after that. First on the "get it done" list is my hooded T. Finally, it has sleeves; I just have to finish the hood :)

Hooded T

Happy "end of summer",
aloha :)

Friday, August 19, 2005

On the Needles, SBQ, Booking Through Thursday

Okay, well things have been slowing down a bit here. Sorry for the lack of posting. Little Diva started Kindergarten and it's made for a hectic week. She is loving every minute of school. I crack up watching them when we drop them off. I used to teach middle/high school and elementary is a WHOLE different ball game. Everyone is in lines(like little ducks) and the whole day is about setting up the routine. It's so different from older kids where the first week of school is about getting to work--no hand holding, no coddling. It is so alien to me--give me the older kids any day of the week.

On the knitting front, I'm suffering from a case of knitting ADD AND lack of time to do everything I want to do. Unfortunately, the time thing isn't going to get any better. Things seem to get busier and busier until Christmas(yes I'm thinking that far ahead). Here's what I'm working on this week:
1. trying to finish the sleeve and start the hood on my hooded T
2. seaming(and hopefully stuffing)a shoebox doll for Little Diva

Here's what I want to be working on:
1. Jumper into Fall-a-thon: I have yarn/patterns for 3 sweaters(of the 4 I'm planning on doing). I'll be starting the sleeves on Rogue tomorrow and once I finish the above mentioned hooded T; I'll start my son's hooded sweater. I also want to start my Albertville sweater but I may wait to see if we're going back to Utah for a visit, because I have questions already!
2. Beginner's Triangle shawl--this poor thing--I love working on it, but it never seems to make it into the rotation. It requires concentration which I haven't been able to muster lately.
3. Preemie Project--I have 2 hats and a blanket I need to get done before the "pumpkin" deadline

Here's what is eagerly waiting in the wings:
1. Double Secret Probation-a-thon: two biggies in here; just dying to get rolling.
2. Numerous objects from A Gathering of Lace(have yarn; need time)
3. felting--quite a few here IF the mood strikes

On top of all that; you all know I want to stitch again--and lately there are many things catching my eye in that department.

SO what to do, what to do. Looks like it's time to break out the coffee maker(which is still in it's box--notice that continuing to unpack has not entered the "to do" list).

Happy knitting, reading, and stitching,
aloha :)

How often do you wash your fabric for each project? Do you wait until
the very end until to wash it or do you wash it more than once?

This is an easy one. I only wash mine once; at the end and no matter how colorfast manufacturers say the thread is I still hold my breath every time. When I washed L&L's The Wedding, I was petrified that the black from the tux would bleed all over the boatload of white; I was so nervous about it that I almost didn't wash it at all. But never fear my DMC did very well and it definitely looked peppier after it had been washed.

Booking Through Thursday
There seem to be quite a few people in addition to me who have read David Eddings series, The Belgariad, multiple times. So, this week, a few questions about these books.

  1. First, have you read this five-book series? If so, how many times? I have never heard of it, but it sounds intriguing. And because of everything I have heard about this series, I went out and bought the books yesterday. The clerk at B&N asked if I had read them and I said no--she said they are the most amazing books she's ever read. She even rereads them to "visit" with specific characters. So here's to adding something else to the "to be read" list!! :)

  2. What brings you back to read this story again?

  3. Who are your favorite characters? Why?

  4. If you could magically be a part of their saga, would you? Would you want to take the place of one of the characters, or be someone new?

Monday, August 15, 2005

Branching Out, Project Square, HP Survey

Branching Out is finished. I'll post a pic when I can find the space to block it. I had a whole room for that very purpose in the old house(actually it was a guest room, but it served as a good blocking space) and that is not the case here.

I also finished a square for the memorial quilt project over at Knitty Gritty; it didn't take long at all and I really felt I needed to do something.

Afghan Project Square

So with two things done there is room in the rotation for something else.

Which means Rogue Revisited will be starting shortly :) I'm using Merino Stretch in Cavalier Grey from Elann. I wonder how it will go the second time around?

Rogue Revisited

This summer was the summer of lace(or for me summer/fall/winter of lace) and, for me, this fall will be the autumn of sweaters--I have quite a few on the list--hopefully they will all be done by Christmas(my goal is to have our family Christmas photo done with everyone in hand knit sweaters--considering that I'm the only one with a sweater that fits right now--I have my work cut out for me; I need 3 more--2 kiddo sweaters and one for Daddy). Let the sweater-a-thon begin!!!

Happy knitting,

Just a fun quiz I took for my amusement yesterday:
You scored as .

Hermione Granger


Remus Lupin


Ron Weasley


Albus Dumbledore


Sirius Black


Harry Potter


Severus Snape


Ginny Weasley


Draco Malfoy


Lord Voldemort


Your Harry Potter Alter Ego Is...?
created with QuizFarm.com

Thursday, August 11, 2005

Stuff, SBQ, & Booking Through Thursday

Okay, first let me leave a comment for Miriam because there was nowhere to post one on her blog last night--hopefully she stops by during her bloglutions. I admire the fact that you are out there going for it with your designs and I wish you all the success you deserve for your work :) I know what goes through my mind when I "think" about submitting my writing for publication--notice I said "think" because I haven't actually done it. You're putting your baby out there for everyone and you only hope they love it half as much as you do. There are a bunch of us rooting for you. Okay, heading into rambling now, suffice it to say I admire you and I'll be sending good thoughts your way!

Tuesday I met with our Littleton knit group and I had a great time. Four of them are working on Rogue and I took mine in for them to check out. I have yarn for a second and although I hadn't planned on starting it for a while--after Tuesday I decided it's time to do it again, especially since I have such a great group of people to work with. Last time it was just Andrea and I struggling through :)

Happy knitting,

Today's "Stitching Blogger's Question" is was suggested by a reader of
my blog and is:

What do you do with the framed stitching that you keep?

I thought I had an answer to this question until I realized that there haven't been any large pieces that I have had framed that I actually kept. They have all been given away as gifts. But I do have pieces that were gifted to me that hang with prominence in my house.

Do you hang it up and leave it in one place, never to move it?

The pieces hung in my house tend to move as I get tired of looking at them in the same place--everyone/everything needs a change of scenery once in a while. The one exception would be a piece given to me by one of my longest and dearest friends. She made it for our wedding and it spends its time on the mantle in our house; I just love looking at it.

Or do you have a rotation, where you have one place for stitched pieces and switch them out according to mood or season?

I hadn't thought of the "rotation" option, but if I ever finish my Celtics I think I may hang them seasonally somewhere.

Maybe a mixture of both?

I guess I could be a "little of both" person.

Booking Through Thursday

Roger Zelazny's Amber series, J.R.R. Tolkein's Lord of the Rings, David Eddings' Belgariad, and Stephen R. Donaldson's Thomas Covenant trilogies, are all classic examples of fantasy. None of them are books either of my parents would ever consider reading. I've devoured them all... And more.

  1. Do you like to read fantasy? I love it; it's currently my favorite genre.

  2. What's your favorite (or least favorite if you don't like the genre) thing about reading fantasy? I am constantly amazed at an author's ability to take you to a completely different world of their creation. I love seeing what authors come up with; new ways to twist an old theme. I remember when I first read DUNE--I was stunned at the complexity of it and this was all in Frank Herbert's mind. As an English teacher who excels more in research writing than creative writing, I love and admire seeing what people can do when they push the envelope of reality--that's what drew me to fantasy.

  3. Do you prefer regular people placed in alternate realities, like the Thomas Covenant stories and the Amber books, or do you prefer the whole world to come from the author's imagination? Or something else? I like both.

  4. Do you have a favorite author or theme that you go back to again and again? I have more than one favorite. I enjoy reading Laurell Hamilton because she integrates her characters into our reality. I enjoy Terry Goodkind for his creation of a completely different reality. I enjoy JKRowling for her ability to walk between both worlds. Christopher Paolini for his creation. I enjoy Anne Rice for taking her readers and characters on a journey through time. I appreciate Frank Herbert for the scope and vision of what he wrote(although I only read Dune--I just couldn't get through much more after that--it's brilliant but it's also one of the most difficult things I have ever read, even harder than when I studied Old and Middle English). After seeing the movies, I want to read Lord of the Rings. It's strange because I have read a lot of research on Tolkein's writing but I have never actually finished "the trilogy"--it's on the list for the immediate future--I really want to be able to devote the time to it and get lost in the story. I find that I'm drawn to darker themes that are usually more primitive/medieval in nature. I also love pieces that include mythical creatures(vampires, werewolves, dragons, etc.)

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Surprise Stuff--Always the Best Kind :)

Yesterday I was cleaning and unpacking(big surprise there) and my daughter said, "Mommy, there is a box on the front steps." Well, I couldn't for the life of me think of anything I had ordered, so I figured it was something my husband got. I went out to retrieve the package and it was addressed to me. I looked at the return address and it was from none other than my awesome knitting buddy, Andrea. You see our LYS in Utah was having a sale last week--they hardly ever do. Well, obviously I couldn't be there(sniff, sniff) SO Andrea brought the sale to me. She sent a nice card, some crazy knitting needles(one is pictured), and some yummy Noro. I had to laugh at the needles--they totally remind me of the needles they use to insert an epidural(I mean doesn't the needle seem that big and scary when they are shoving it into your spine). And the yarn, well what can I say, what knitter doesn't love yarn in all its delicious forms. Noro, no less, one of my favorites. Now I have 1312 yards of Noro that I think is just begging to be made into Birch or Kiri perhaps.

Surprise Stuff--always the best kind :)

THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU Andrea--you made my day :) I'll return the favor when you least expect it.

I am actually expecting a few packages in the near future--yesterday was a productive shopping day for me. I ordered some books from Barnes and Noble, some yarn and a couple patterns from Patternworks(more on that when the package arrives), and we closed on our house in Utah so we are also expecting a big, fat check sometime this morning(not as exciting as it sounds because we need it for a downpayment when we buy our next house--once we can decide on one--it will be difficult if not impossible to replace my Utah house.

Happy knitting and may your day be filled with unexpected surprises,
aloha :)

Sunday, August 07, 2005

A Good Cause; A Fun Shirt

Check it out. It's from Cara's blog; it's cute; it's a good cause--what more is there?

  • Happy knitting!

    Thursday, August 04, 2005

    SBQ and Booking Through Thursday

    Without further ado, SBQ and Booking Through Thursday:

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

    Have you hand-dyed your own fabric? Why or why not? Would you like to
    try to do so?

    I have never hand-dyed my own fabric. I'd be petrified of messing it up--linen isn't cheap and I really wouldn't trust that I could come up with something that would do the pattern justice. That being said, I do love some of the new dyed fabrics I have seen out there and with the right pattern I think they would be gorgeous!

    Booking Through Thursday:

    The knights of the round table
    Whether based in fact or fiction, the legends of King Arthur have been the inspiration for many novels including Le Morte D'Arthur by Sir Thomas Malory, The Once and Future King by T. H. White, The Mists of Avalon by Marion Zimmer Bradley, The Arthurian Saga series by Mary Stewart, and even A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court by Mark Twain, to name just a few.
    Do you enjoy reading the legends of the King Arthur and the knights of the round table?

    I loved them--there are so many other works and films that play off Arthurian Legend.

    How long ago did you read them?

    I actually haven't read them since college, but we spent a semester on them and I found it fascinating.

    Will you ever read more of them or re-read any that you've read before?

    I would love to revisit them--if there were only enough time in the day for reading, knitting, and all the other things life requires :)

    Happy knitting, stitching, and reading,
    aloha :)

    Wednesday, August 03, 2005

    Adding to the List

    During my morning bloglutions, I find Margene's post about her knitalongs and in that post I find a link to Eris. I love her patterns. I finished Rogue earlier this year and I LOVED knitting it--it has been my favorite thing to knit, by far. SO of course I'll need to get Eris. Now begins the quest to decide on what yarn to use. I'm going to get the pattern after I get more color ink(and probably more black as well)considering the pattern is 40 pages long. It sounds daunting, but she writes her patterns so well that all the pages are actually a blessing.

    Here's my Rogue. It's being modeled by my sister when she was out to Utah for a visit. And there's the beautiful view from my old house(sniff, sniff)--God, I miss that house. Anyhoo, I made my Rogue with Patons Classic Wool which I would NOT recommend to anyone for anything other than felting. It was great to knit with, it was very soft, BUT it pilled like there was no tomorrow. So now I have this beautiful sweater that if you even look at it; it will pill--it's a shame really.

    Rogue, finished in Feb. 2005

    Last night I sat down and made a list of all the things I want to knit that I actually have the yarn for--there were a lot of things on that list. I really want to start some sweaters next month. I have yarn for one for my son, but I changed my mind on the sweater that I want to do. For the original raglan I had planned, I need 1000 yards of yarn. BUT now I want to do a hooded sweater which needs 1032 yards of yarn--well obviously I'm 32 yards short, but I have remnant balls from other projects SO I was thinking that I could replace the trim and pocket with a contrasting color from my remnants? I'm not sure--I'll keep you posted. I'll probably make another raglan for my daughter(she out grew the one I made her last year) and this year I'll actually let her pick out the color(last year I kind of steered her in the direction I wanted to go). Finally, I want to start my Dale of Norway sweater(it was one of the first things I blogged about--I had wanted to start it in April but did not); the colors in it are pictured in one of my first posts.

    last year's raglan

    Decisions, decisions, decisions---I'm always adding to "the list" :)

    Happy knitting,
    aloha :)