Sunday, September 30, 2007

A Keen Sock......

Yes, I've actually been working on knitting in my spare time, however spare it may be. This is the first sock in the Waterfall Colorway from Woolgirl sock club. It's a loverly color. A pretty fast knit (if you aren't swamped with work and homelife), and pretty easy to convert to Magic Loop sock knitting. I should really post those directions on Ravelry and on the Sock Club Blog.

I really enjoyed knitting this sock, and I'm on the last repeat of the 2nd sock before starting the heel. I imagine if I have my way, I'll finish the last repeat, knit the heel, do the turn, and start working on the gusset decreases today. I'm running on the nervous, "I hope I have enough yarn left" theory. Boy, that's incentive to finish the second sock quickly! Why would I run out of yarn, you ask? Well, I did the 5 rows of stockinette after the ribbing, and did 4 lace repeats rather than just 3. The sock is still a bit big as far as socks go.....but it's a nice knit, and I think it will work. I wasn't going to move up another needle size, because it would have been way too big. I made some small modifications to the pattern.

As for the color of the yarn itself - it does really speak to me, as evidenced by the close resemblence of color in my favorite pair (ok, only pair) of Keen sandals. Hmmm.......I guess Jen and Miss Babs never thought of this comparison! :)

Also, anxiously awaiting the opening of the new Wollmeise yarn shop (I'm hoping it won't be a nightmare, but I have seen everyone go crazy at TLE over this yarn). I wonder if I'll be able to order any of the yarn that I would like to have? Who knows. Not getting a certain skein of yarn isn't going to kill me - at least not yet! :) Although I wish I'd ordered before she closed her shop for the month of September......Again, it's not going to kill me if I don't get a skein of yarn. I keep repeating that mantra! :)
Off to finish Sunday dinner.......YUM! YUM!

PS - did I mention that I hate downloading snaps on dial-up access? It takes forever, and I have to download the smallest size pics - YUCK! I guess you can click on the picture to see the larger image.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Fair Winnings....

Every September brings a small annual agricultural fair to our little hometown. It's a place full of memories for me. I've practically grown up there in some aspects. When I was in high school, you sold food items the whole week, every night from 9th grade to 12th grade. When I was younger, they used to have talent contests for the kids and high school kids. I won my first trophy there for my piano solo. I was in 5th or 6th grade. I was so proud of that trophy!

Well, this year I entered some of my recent knitting projects. People enter everything from produce (fresh and home-canned) to livestock, to arts and crafts. My children entered things, my husband too. Here's some pictures of my winnings. There are (sad to say) not many knitters in this area. So, I got two 1st- place winnings, and one- 2nd place. The little lavender sweater I knit for my youngest daughter, and it's pictured at the top left. It's a simple top down sweater (of course I altered the pattern a bit), and for my efforts and first place, I received $4! WOW! A lot of loot! Hee! Hee!

Next up on the right is a pair of socks (2nd place winners they were). They are knit with Cider Moon Glacier yarn in the Winter Twilight Colorway. I love their yarn, and I hope whatever is brewing at their site is soon settled and done. Now, let me tell you about the sock category for adults (3 entries). The first place socks were pathetic - they were poorly knit (and I'm not being a sore loser, as you'll see if you keep reading). They were made with a self-striping yarn, and I think the judges probably weren't astute enough to realize that the knitter was not making yarn changes - the yarn is just magic. The were scratchy to the touch. YUCK! The third place socks (albeit a big large) were absolutely beautiful (here's where I redeem myself), and should have won first place. So, you see, I really did deserve 2nd place, just not to those crappy, scratchy things, but to the beautiful Paul Bunyan (did I spell that correctly?) socks with the cables.....

Lastly, I entered this little hat that I knitted last winter for my youngest. It won first place - and it was knit in acrylic (did I type that word?) yarn. But she loves it, and she's pleasantly pleased that her hand-knitted items won a prize. You'll once again notice my wonderful photography skills, as evidenced by some part of my hand in the corner of the snap (doesn't "snap" sound English? I just love the English!).

All in all, the fair was fun. My kids got to pet animals, eat lots of healthy food (did I mention that the first night of exhibit entries is 75 cent night?), and generally go to a small, rural fair. It's been part of my heritage since I can remember. And now (drumroll, please) the grand total of my winnings - $9. My pride in the items, and the joy of reminiscing at the fair - priceless!

Sunday, September 23, 2007


First up - the started Chevron scarf from "Last-Minute Knitted Gifts." I've wanted to knit this for a long time, and as you can read from my last post, I just couldn't find the colors that I wanted for my first time with this scarf and pattern. I just love how it is looking, but I HATE the needles. I'm such a fan of the Addi Turbo's, and I love some of my wooden needles, but not these. I'm clearly going to search for different US #5's on my upcoming vacation. Until then, I just keep chugging away, albeit slowly, in part, because of the needles. The yarn just doesn't glide across them like it does on other needles that I own (even other wooden ones). The yarn that I've chosen is also a bit thinner than most that I've seen being used with this scarf, but I still love it! I am willing to sacrifice a little more time for the beauty of the scarf. Plus, as knitting addicts, we can relate, that when we want to start a project - we want to start it any dang needles will work.....HA!

Next up, the 1st sock of the Woolgirl sock club. I'm making an executive decision and knitting another round of the lace pattern before I turn the heel....and clenching my teeth throughout both socks, hoping fervently that my yardage will hold out. If not, I believe some extra yarn is available from the club. I just hate it when I have these balls of yarn left after the socks are done. I start thinking how I could have added this or that to the pattern, but didn't for the sake of yardage. That's my great dilemma with sport weight yarn. It still remains my favorite to knit with by far (unless there is some Wollmeise involved). I suppose I should just suck it up, and learn to knit toe-up, but I haven't yet. I'm enjoying this yarn, and it's been a relatively quick knit. I'm enjoying the colors immensely. There is a bit of pooling of the yarn around the cuff - not as visible on this side of the sock, but I do love the colors, and this will be the first pair of socks that I knit just for me. YIPEE!

We had a lovely bike ride today on a local "Rails to Trails" site. My husband estimates the distance to be 5 miles total. There is a really cool tunnel at the end of it - you start off riding into the tunnel, and kind of slowly make your way forward, and ride towards the light at the end. A bit scary (especially if there are some dogs roaming with you, and they cause you to stop abruptly, and your bike grips pierce your calf amidst the darkness), but ultimately fun. A lovely fall day!

Monday, September 17, 2007

I finally found it!

Ok, I've been wanting to do the Chevron Scarf for a couple of know, the one from "Last-Minute Knitted Gifts." Well, I would put together two yarns, and think - "OK, that's it. Those are the colors." Well, I have some color combos that I think will work well, but none that I was totally "WOW" about. Well, these two skeins are totally "WOW!"
They are from Deb at Fearless Fibers. Please visit her shop - the yarn is amazing. The colors are beautiful! It's 100% Superwash Merino, 4 ozs, and 550 yards! Sounds like I'm describing a birth announcement, doesn't it?The two colors are: On the left side - Sublime, on the Right side - Infatuation. They are gorgeous, and I hope that the next time you see them, they will be starting to form that famous chevron scarf that's sweeping the bloglines around the globe.

PS - For your enjoyment, I've added the piano as a background. Sorry about the bright spot in the middle. I think it might be the flash. Really, I need a great place to take pictures. I also need a ball winder and swift. I seem to be stuck on acquiring yarn....Ravelry is not helping matters either......

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Spoiler Alert - Woolgirl sock club!

Spoiler alert! Pictures of Woolgirl Sock Club yarn ahead!

I love the whole package! Jen, I am gushing over the colorway (it's so me, I couldn't create anything more lovely). I'm all about the blue and purples....well, hey, I just love color (and yarn, oh my, how I love yarn) period! I love how Jen pays attention to detail (even the tissue paper and ribbon matched the yarn. You're so amazing!

Contents (a bit fuzzy in the picture, more later in the blog about the fuzzies):
A great skein of sportweight (also my fave) of Miss Babs in the "Waterfall" Colorway.
Woolgirl Sock Club Journal with attached pen (how did you know that I lose pens so easily?).
Mint Chocolate Chip lip balm from Naiad Soap Arts - YUM!
Sereknity stitch marker (swarovski crystals included - gorgeous cube bead dangle).
Beautiful pattern (I'm hoping I can accomplish it) designed by Miss Babs.

It was nice to have this package on my doorstep when I arrived home yesterday! I made myself look at all the other mail first...and then opened the package! :) Don't worry, most of the other mail was just junk (and one bill).

I'm picking up some new 12" Addi turbos on order this week from Mad About Ewes. I think these will be my first project on them! :) Here's a close-up (as much as I can do with my little rinky- dink digital camera. DH has the nice camera (OK, he has several), and he's a great photographer. But taking pictures of my yarn is not his idea of enjoyment (Can you imagine). He did have a gig today to do some portraits! I'm excited for him. He really is a talented photographer. Take another peak at the yarn! It's fabulous! I'm working on my other projects so that I can cast this onto my needles this week. I hope to finish my dishcloth shawl (what a name) very soon, as the fall weather is fast approaching. Perfect weather for throwing the shawl over your shoulders! Now I need to start on wool socks for me. I've never knit a pair just for me! Can you believe it!

Saturday, September 15, 2007

A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood

No pics, but I just had to comment on the lovely "fallish" weather today. It was so great to sit and knit on Nana's deck, with the warm sunshine, the breeze (a bit brisk), and just peaceful clicking of my knitting needles, my daughters laughing and enjoying my Nana and Aunt Adie. Here's a shout out for our family friend, Noreen - sign up and start a blog - you can do it!
I'm trying my hardest not to have "startitis." I need to finish some projects before putting more on the needles. I am really itching to start the Chevron Scarf from "Last Minute Knitted Gifts" but every time I pick a color combination.....well, I decide on another. So today, I might have purchased some lovely yarn on Etsy (don't you just love Etsy), from Fearless Fibers shop. I've never tried her yarn, so depending on my color choices, it may turn out to be the scarf, or some really nice socks. Terrific yardage on her sock skeins - something crazy like 500 yards.....can hardly wait to get it. I've heard rave reviews.
Speaking of waiting......I left home this morning for my DD's soccer game, and haven't been home since. I hope that my Woolgirl sock club package is on the doorstep......What fun! You can check out all the bloggy goodness over at Wool Girl's Sock Club blog.
Tonight is my nephew's college graduation party - must start the pasta salad that's due in less than an hour! Oh MY!!!!
It was still, "a beautiful day in the neighborhood, a beautiful day in the neighborhood." Miss you Mr. Rogers! P.S. He was a frequent commencement speaker at our college for graduation ceremonies!
Hopefully more pics soon! :)

Tuesday, September 11, 2007


Nine Years ago today, I married my best friend! It's a hard day for us in some respects. The 911 tragedy in 2001 takes its place in history after the day became our anniversary. I can remember going to dinner in 2001, and after being at work all day, I finally saw the trade towers on the television, and started sobbing, right during the dinner. The fact that I was pregnant didn't really help anything. Who wanted to bring a child into this world of chaos and terror? But alas, I'm so glad that we did!

Today, I want to concentrate on the good things about this day (there are many). We were married on my grandparent's 50th Wedding anniversary - So HAPPY ANNIVERSARY, Nana and Papa! Today, you celebrate 59! Wohoo!

I remember the whole planning up until this time, and how nervous I was. It was terrible. I wanted a smaller wedding. But now, in retrospect, as I look back at the pictures, and the people who do not share this big earth with us any longer, I'm happy that they could celebrate our day with us! I'm happy that we got married on September 11th. It was a beautiful night (a Friday night), and the music was lovely (string quartet). The flowers and church were all transformed by my talented FIL's hand with the flowers and trees. The service was beautiful and moving. The reception - a total blast! The funny boys who stayed on my little porch stoop until 3:00 or 4:00 am (on my wedding night, mind you), so dear to us! Frank, did you finally eat that WHOLE layer of cake by yourself? :)

And to my DH - you're wonderful! Everything that we've shared these past 9 years has been an adventure. You have been by my side at the worst of times, the best of times, the times where we truck on through the mediocrity of every day living. But the thing is, it's not really mediocre. You make it special. I love you with all of my heart! :)

PS - Perhaps it's the fact that you can lift turtles out of tanks with your bare hands! HA HA HA!

Sunday, September 9, 2007

I've Been Invited!

Don't you just love invitations, well most of the time? I really do! I got my invite yesterday! I'm so excited to see the actual site....I don't even want to think about trying to photograph the stash (that would mean admitting to it all). HA HA HA!
Ok - here's blog question for anyone who might accidently stumble across mine (because I think it's still rather not a popular place). How on earth do I get rid of the whole link address and just list the word (highlighted, of course) how do I just post the word "Ravelry" and have it link to that site? I'm at a loss (see post about not being the most computer literate person around).
I'm hoping to knit some today, but only time will tell. I may include photos if there's anything to show. We went to a HUGE flea market/antique show yesterday near State College, PA. It was fun, but HOT, HOT, HOT (humid). It totally zapped the knitting urge last night. That and soccer practice and games, football games, church activities, and just buzzing about with kids' activities....well, it's all taken a piece out of the knitting. This week, work will take its fair share......

ETA - a pic of the STR sock. I finally got the Eye of Partidge heel on it, and managed to knit down to the foot of the sock, so now it's lovely knitting to the toe.....I'm thinking if I can knit fast enough that they might be a gift for my MIL's birthday on the 17th (wishful thinking). MIL does't read this blog, so it's OK!

Saturday, September 8, 2007

Finally! FO (Finished Object) Alert!

Finally, a FO alert, and a picture to go with it! I finally finished the prayer shawl last night. I am so glad! Glad that I can finally give it to my friend, and glad that I'm back to guiltless knitting, instead of crochet.
And about that knitting - here's how silly I am. I was completely done with the 8 inches of baby-cabled rib on the STR socks (this being the second time I'd knit it already)......I nicely, or so I thought, executed the eye of a partridge heel, but I didn't frame it with some garter stitches, so when I went to PU (pick up) stitches for the gusset, well, there were only 6 places to PU stitches on the one side - creating a nice lacy-looking pick-up. WHICH wouldn't have mattered if I'd done the other side that way, but hey, I'm not that smart to think that far ahead. So I tried, really I did, to rip back to the heel flap, but I just couldn't manage to get my sock back on the needles, and so I RIPPED IT! Yep, right back to the begining. SIGH. I'm still working on achieving the 8 inches (although I felt guilty every time I worked on it - see prayer shawl above) of the leg. I hope to get these socks off the needles soon!

Saturday, September 1, 2007

The Blog Ate My Earring!

I wonder if the title of this blog entry could be used as an excuse for an art student? However, it is not very funny! I finally decided at 5:00pm today to do some beading. I should mention that beading is often done best in natural light. Fall is fast approaching, and natural light is starting to fade earlier, especially near 5:00pm, EST. Then there' s the issue of dinner (I won't even admit what we ate) near that time. Lastly, my youngest wanted to make her own necklace and bracelet too! I can't discourage the arts at this young, impressionable age. My oldest looked at us in disgust (she's a tomboy), and stomped upstairs to read.

I (or rather we) plowed along. Beading (at least for me) is the fine art of putting something together, ripping it out at least 3-4 times (bare minimum), and finally getting a result that you are happy with. Once the main piece (usually the necklace) is finished, it's often easy to create a bracelet and earrings to match....creating a set! Tonight, I thought, "Great! I've finally got a beaded set to post on the blog!" So I rushed upstairs to get the camera. On my way down to the outside and minimal light source, (now about 7:30pm), I lost an earring! UGH! Silly me - why am I rushing to post this on my blog! I spent the next 15 minutes on hands and knees hunting for the earring (natural light source fading fast). At long last I found it - it was outside too. To sum up this sad and pathetic tale - no photo of the earrings. But the necklace and bracelet are at the top left.

Stats: Lampwork bead (focal point) - purchased at a bead show in Philadelphia 2 years ago.
Swarorski Crystals - Smoked Topaz color.
Tiger's Eye pebbles.
Fresh Water Pearls - Dyed dark blue in color.
Lime green seed beads.
Gold-filled findings.

P.S. In case you are reading, and worried that there is no fiber content in this post, I may have purchased some SUNDARA yarn today (I can hardly wait). I hear this stuff is fabulous! I promise to post pics when it arrives!