Thursday, July 29, 2010

This is what happens...

when you're not paying attention. So apparently Berroco has discontinued Foliage when I wasn't looking. This is my go to yarn for my thick work boot socks. The yarn works great for the pattern I have, they keep my feet warm and it wasn't so expensive that I minded too much if I get paint on them. Now I must scour the Universe to keep me in work socks for a while.

On the Ishbel front aside from those few mystery stitches and a lost stitch last night (that I found easily this afternoon) I am chugging along. It is a lovely knit. I'm nearly done with Chart C. That leaves D and E (E being a single row). I might have FO before the month ends....or at least before the weekend ends.

Must ponder the next project so I don't lose steam.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Ten on Tuesday

I will confess I don't watch a lot of TV anymore. We don't have cable. I only let the Little Dude watch PBS and DVD's. I will admit that he's had a lot more TV this summer than I would like but between my surgery and his injuries it was the easiest way to keep him occupied that didn't involve me running around or him getting his bandages into sand/water/mud/what-have-you.

Ten Things to Do Instead of Watching TV
  1. Knit (duh!) ---I do admit that I knit in front of the TV most of the time, but I usually listen rather than watch. The TV does make me look up from the knitting every now and then and that's not bad.
  2. Sewing---a crafty thing I just can't do while watching TV.
  3. Spin---something soothing and wonderful. I find the wheel very meditative.
  4. Read---In my hiatus of blogging I've been reading a lot. I often fall asleep in bed with a book.
  5. Cook--- Try new recipes, learn to can or just make something to share.
  6. Garden--- If you have a yard, get out there and pull some weeds. I'm pretty against chemical warfare on my lawn so most weed control is done by hand, hence my horrible looking lawn. Start a garden. If you don't have land of your own lots of places have community gardens.
  7. Go for a walk/hike/jog---I mean, really, who out there couldn't use more exercise.
  8. Spend some playtime with a child---they really do keep us young.
  9. Volunteer---there are so many non-profits that need help, pick your cause and go for it.
  10. Spend some quality time with a loved one--- I think this speaks for itself but I know that my Love and I tend to get so caught up in the day to day that we neglect the romance. Pack a picnic and go off somewhere just the two of you.

Friday, July 23, 2010


So I've not been blogging to much but I have been knitting a fair amount. I cast on Ishbel and I've been smitten ever since. I'm doing the small stockinette and should have enough yarn to do the large lace. But today I hit a snag. First, halfway through the first row of my second go at Chart B I noticed a missing yarn over. So I tinked back and fixed the mistake. Now I'm short two stitches in the first half of the shawl. WTF! They seemed to be there a minute ago. *sigh* Then the Little Dude woke from his nap and Ishbel has to rest until this evening.

Otherwise it has been a rainy gloomy day, but at least I remembered to put away the sidewalk chalk before it rained....this time.
Pictures soon.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Ten on Tue....I mean Wednesday

I completely spaced on the fact that yesterday was Tuesday. Being home with the Little Dude all day everyday has warped my sense of time.

So here it is:

10 Things to Bring on a Camping Trip

  1. Bug spray. Mosquitoes just love me.
  2. Coffee and a percolator pot. Electric if you have power, one for the fire if you don't.
  3. A cast iron frying pan (or you can cheat with an electric if you have power). Nothing beats waking up to the smell of coffee and bacon while in the woods.
  4. A deck of cards
  5. Lots of socks. Dry feet are important.
  6. Extra pair of shoes. See above. You never know when you might fall in the lake. (ask my older brother)
  7. Matches- preferably strike anywhere ones.
  8. The knowledge of what poison ivy is.
  9. A good sleeping bag. Air mattresses are for pussies.
  10. Someone you enjoy spending time with.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Ten on Tuesday

Ten Things I Like About Where I Live

  1. I'm in the Northeast. It's where I'm from, and where I belong. I don't know if the mindset in any other part of the country suits me quite so well.
  2. I'm two hours from Boston and two hours from NYC...and I don't visit either as much as I would like.
  3. The seasons. There is nothing quite like a New England fall. I don't know if I could live somewhere that lacks the cycles of the seasons. As much as I'm not into the snow and cold, Christmas just isn't Christmas without it.
  4. My neighborhood is filled with trees. It may suck when it's time to rake but I wouldn't have it any other way.
  5. Our house is conveniently located to major highways, but tucked back in a neighborhood where it is safe for the kids to ride their bikes in the streets.
  6. This area is steeped in history. Everywhere you go are wonderful ancient cemeteries to explore, famous old houses to tour and so much more. Some of our nation's history began around here and I just love that.
  7. Park, farms, green spaces. For being one of the original states and a small state at that, we have surprisingly large amounts of green space. I love how there are small working farms tucked in here and there. We have plenty of parks to explore to keep one grounded in this crazy technological age.
  8. Diversity. There is so much of it around here. I feel good raising my son here, knowing he will be exposed to people from many different places and all walks of life. And that provides us with a wide range of culinary delights in both markets and restaurants.
  9. The Arts. We have theatres all around us. You will find museums of all kinds if you drive in just about any direction. And we have a government and community that strongly supports the arts.
  10. It's home. I've lived here for nearly 10 years. I bought a house and started a family here. Obviously there's something that keeps me here, even if I can't describe it.

Monday, July 12, 2010

An ending, a beginning and an ultimate demise

I haven't completely abandoned my knitting during my hiatus. I worked on it here and there. I often couldn't make it to SnB. Many of the nights I did, I had the Little Dude with me; which means friends and fun, but no knitting. Despite the small amount of time devoted to knitting I am keeping my promise to myself. For every thing I knit for someone else, I must knit something for myself.
My first two finished objects I have no pictures of. I knit a pair of Knucks as a gift for the guy that does my hair. And as the 'Me project' I knit one for myself. Not a pair of Knucks, mind you. Just replace the one I lost from this pair. I had more than enough yarn left to make the replacement. You can easily get two pairs out of one skein of Silky Wool.

The ending from my title is I have finally finished Little Dude's vest. Granted it was meant to be an Easter vest, but I'm just glad I completed it while it will still fit him.
Let's start with the specs:
Pattern: Cable Tank Top by Debbie Bliss
Yarn: Plymouth Yarn Encore Colorspun DK
I loved this pattern.I worked on the much of this project while recovering from my surgery. The cables are very easy to work in this project. And I mean, able to knit while on medications ending in -ocet without major (and even minor) mistakes. The most challenging part, I found, was picking up the stitches for the arm bands. The yarn color wasn't the best option to show off the cables but it was what I had in stash that would work, and he liked the color. He has been out of sorts since I completed it, so I don't have a picture of him modeling it yet. I promise to post it as soon as I do. Here's a detailed look at the back.
Don't you just love these buttons? They were a little gem I had in my button collection. Someday I'll post about my button collection.

From there I jumped into a "Me project". My Ishbel. This project started with a trip with some dear friends to Massachusetts Sheep and Woolcraft Fair. I hadn't indulged in yarn for a year, or at least that I can recall. I was child and husband free on this day and I succumbed once again to Ball & Skein. Kris did twist my arm, ever so slightly, but that was hardly necessary. This is the booth where I could easily lose my head. I left with only two skeins of Sock 416 in the lovely shade 'Atlantic'. I knew it was destine to be a shawl, but which one. I had yet to decide on a pattern to pair with the two skeins I had procured the year before. I scoured Ravelry and queued about twenty-some-odd shawls. It was when I saw the finished projects of two of my friends that I knew Ishbel was it. And here it is so far:


As for the is time to say farewell to my first pair of socks.
I've made several of this pattern over the years and these socks are the work horses of my winter footwear. Paired with store-bought knee highs, these keep my tootsies toasty on those cold winter days in the warehouse that is our shop. Normally I would go to the trouble of darning and repairing. However, this pair had been slightly felted and wasn't worth the trouble of fixing. As you can see Isis inspected the damage and found them not worthy of repair.
So now I must get a few more skeins of Foliage and knit some more. Ideally I'd like to have at least a weeks worth of boot socks, and now I'm down to three pairs.

Tuesday, July 06, 2010

Ten on Tuesday

I thought this might be a good kick in the arse to get me posting again.

This week's topic: 10 Ways to Celebrate Summer.

  1. Eat a Popsicle while sitting on your front steps. It is a summertime must.
  2. Go for a hike/walk in the woods. There is nothing more peaceful than the woods on a hot summer day. The shadowed world under the canopy is magical to me and takes me back to my childhood and the countless camping trips. The smell of moss and ferns, the sounds...sheer summertime delight. The summer woods are far different world than in the fall, which has its own special allure.
  3. Run through the sprinkler. I am currently teaching my son this joy, which apparently takes a little time to warm up to.
  4. Build a sandcastle....bonus points if it has a moat.
  5. Buy fresh corn from a farm stand. Grill it, and enjoy.
  6. Find a small independent ice cream stand and indulge in some soft serve.
  7. Sweltering in the heat? Go to a museum. They are air conditioned and you might be inspired.
  8. Go to the farmer's market and make sure to buy produce you've never tried before. Most of the sellers are wonderfully helpful with suggestions and recipes for their products. Plus you are helping out the local economy.
  9. Go to at least one fireworks show.
  10. Take some time to lay in the grass with a beverage of your choice and a book and just enjoy yourself. Better yet a book you wouldn't want most people catching you read. (Trashy romance novels tend to be my secret literary indulgence.)

Monday, July 05, 2010

Half year in review

So I'm sure a lot of you are wondering (or perhaps not) where I have been since my birthday post back in January. 2010 has been an interesting, if not a rather trying year so far. So here are a few of the highlights:
  • I had spent much of the fall ill only to be struck down again at the holidays and remained so well into March.
  • Christmas eve became our last nursing session, which I regard with mixed feelings of elation and regret.
  • Work was a mixture of the same old (designers missing deadlines and shows growing out of control) and the very new (a new dean who is thankfully not hampered by the New England mindset of "We've always done it this way. We don't know why, but we've always done it this way").
  • As I was getting to a point were life was coming under control, I developed a cyst in a rather delicate place that after much pain and inconvenience had to be removed by surgery. Recovery slowed me down a bit. This whole situation ended up leaving me only three days to work on a project that I had really looked forward to working on. (more on that later at Footprints)
  • The most significant event in the last 6 months happened just a month ago. In the midst of having my hair done, with half a head full of foils, I got the call no mother wants to get. My son was injured at daycare and my husband was on his way to the ER with him. Luckily for us we have wonderful children's hospital nearby. My son sustained second degree burns on his hands from the water at daycare. (I'm going to take this moment to say...if you have kids, lower your water heater. And never, NEVER put their hands in water without testing it first, even if you just checked and had your back turned just for a second. Toddlers are fast. Very, very fast and very, very curious.) His bandages came off this week and he's healed up very well. There is no permanent damage at all. He has been a trooper through the whole thing and is the bravest little boy I know. But now we find ourselves without daycare. I'm in my summer lull for work so I'm home with him full time.
And he is a full time job, let me tell you. I should have named him Houdini Knievel. He's climbing everything in sight. Well, climbing, moving, dismantling, and examining everything he can get his little hands on. His favorite movies are Toy Story (1 and 2), Shrek and Cars. His favorite shows are Sid the Science Kid, Super Why!, and Dinosaur Train. He loves his stacking/nesting blocks and anything with wheels. He loves to splash in the tub, dig in the sand, and chase the kitties. He'd wear his Batman and/or Superman jammies day in and day out if we let him. He pics out the shirt he wears every day. His favorite food is pasta, with cheese and bananas right behind. Every night we read two books before bed, one always being Where the Wild Things Are. He's generous with hugs and kisses, and his laughter is my daily delight.

So there's my last 6 months in a nutshell. It didn't leave too much room for knitting, or anything creative outside of work. I'm working on that. And I do have a few things to show, but that's for another post, another time.

Thursday, July 01, 2010 in color

One of my dearest friends, and a phenomenal fiber artist, just immortalized me in a colorway that we developed and she named after me.

Here's the blog post

And here's the Etsy shop.

She picks quality fiber and yarns and does amazingly beautiful things with them. Check it out.