Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Sundays are for finishing

Does it even matter that today isn't Sunday, but two days past? Good, I didn't think so either. First off, I guess I lied. I really thought I'd post by the weekend. I'd also planned on having some friends over, esp. Stacey who'd never had the chance to visit my stash. And after hanging out at Zenifer's that evening, it was a day full of knitting. When I woke up Sunday morning, M'd left early to take care of some things and I thought, now is the perfect time to get up and start sewing up Bliss. Yes, dear readers, most of the knitting for Bliss is done. I still have to sew up all the pieces so that I can pick up stitches around the neck for the collar too, but that part won't take terribly long, esp. since I don't plan on making it as high as it's called for in the pattern.

I got up thinking, yes, let's work on the Bliss cardi, but you know what I did instead? Before I could begin the finishing work on one sweater, I needed to finish another one, one I posted about a gazillion ages ago (probably December), a little baby sweater that had been sewn up, but the ends hadn't been all woven in. I was energized to do so. Now let's hope the little tyke it was to fit can still wear it. I might have to make something else! Yikes!

Saturday evening into Sunday morning, I also finished 1/2 of a pair of socks. The first Opal sock that I've been working on. I think it might be from the Lollipop collection, but I'm not positive. I bought it with some friends as a grab box of Opal from a lady in Germany over 3+ years ago, so it's hard to tell. I just love this sock!

The sad part is, after finishing it, I do want to make the other sock, but I really have a desire to knit some other socks right now. Hmm, I really don't need to have any other projects on the needles either. I technically have 6 projects on the needles, although Bliss will still be on the needles for a bit. I've got the sleeves attached to the body, as well as one front attached to a sleeve. I've still got the other front to attach to the other sleeve, seam up both sleeves and seam up both sides. Weave in some ends, as well as then picking up stitches. I want to work on the collar, but at the same time, I feel like I should weave in all those ends now and then do the collar, so that I'll just have that to do. Oh yeah, that and the zipper. The zipper does go all the way up to the collar. I figure I will wait until it's done or have an idea of the zipper and shop for it locally and then take it in to be finished at the LYS. I'm so not doing it myself. I'm very excited to finish this cardi.

I've decided for now, the i-cord gloves get to be in time-out, not that they've misbehaved, but I'm not too excited by them, but hopefully I will be motivated to finish these things since the fingers (the hard part) is done. I just need to join the fingers together and start knitting the body of the glove. Hmm, when I write it down like that, it does make me feel that perhaps I should start working on it again. Right now I have 6 projects, seriously a case of
KADD, Knitter's ADD. More than 4 makes me crazy. I can finish one, put away another one and then I have 4. I'm not too motivated on M's sweater right now, but I think I should keep plugging away. Even if I only do a couple of rows on it, once I get through the ribbing of the bottom, I've got miles of stockinette and that's great for knitting nite with the girls, no thought required. Hmm, if I put on a couple of rows every week, it will at least make some progress which is better than sitting in a bag for awhile. I do have until December of this year, per M to finish it, which means more time. The problem is when I get a long-term deadline like that, I tend to put it off until closer to that time. Not good for M and his sweater. I feel like I can put it in the closet for awhile and work on new projects for me.

After 20 minutes of browsing other things, I thought I'd come back to this blog post. I've been toying around with the idea of making either a ribbed cardigan or a V-neck pullover for myself with the Debbie Bliss Cotton Cashmere. It was originally intended for this sweater,

Last spring, I really liked it, this year, maybe not so much. When I think of the sweaters that I typically wear, they are mostly stockinette or ribbed sweaters. Those are my favorites and the ones that get worn the most. I have no aran sweaters or cabled sweaters. I enjoy knitting cables, but in other things. I've not worn it in a garment and can't say that I would like it or not. I don't think the tennis sweater is the one for me and I'm not that certain about the colorway either. As most of you know, I really like the brighter colors and also jewel tones look best on my skin.

Debbie Bliss Cotton Cashmere
I bought this color combo b/c it was on sale at my LYS last year and I thought the combo wasn't too bad, but this color is not really growing on me. It's a bit blah. More denim-y blue or a pale idea of teal. Maybe a smoky color, just a bit washed out. So that's not moving me either. I'm thinking this color may go back. The more I look at it, I'm not that excited about it.

I do have plenty of projects for the spring/summer, perhaps I'll go dig some of those out. That sounds better to me than this project.

Well, now I really do have to get ready for work. This post started one way and went on a whole different tangent. That's what I love about blogging. Once I sit down to write, I really enjoy it. Somedays though it is a process.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Need Ideas for travel in Seattle

Hi all,
This is just a quickie post, but my sister is going to Seattle on business. She will be in Lynwood, a suburb of Seattle, but may have a day for sightseeing. Any suggestions on things she should see or do? I was there once a few years ago, but my focus was mainly on yarn shopping and some sightseeing and my sister and I are radically different, so all sorts of options are good.

Btw, the sock yarn used in the last photo of yesterday's post is Lorna's Laces in the colorway Desert Flower. I'm sorry, I thought I included that, but then I had numerous commentors asking for it, I realized I did not include it.

Thanks for any help you can provide.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Even though I haven't been here

it feels like I've been blogging, because I've been thinking about blogging. Hmm, it's funny how lack of time keeps you from doing things. In the good news department, the job that I started in January, the training is finally over. That's right people. I've had to pass two tests, then "official" training for 6 weeks, which inluded 3 assessments, all of which required a 85%. The final assessment included a written, computer and role play assessment. I'm so happy for the training to be over. At least now, I won't have to give up anymore of my life to studying on the weekend and stressing about financial stuff. Now I can really do my job and leave it there and that I'm really looking forward to. I would like to say that my life will be back to normal, but what really is normal? I've never qualified for it before, so why should I think that this phase in my life will be any different.

Thanks for those who offered support to me. It is different, being cast in the "stepmom" role. It's not entirely new at this point, but still ever-evolving. It's the work factor thrown in there, that goes, oh yeah, with training that wears you out everyday and then coming home to more work, well, no wonder I am tired. But it's all good, just adjusting to life as it happens, I suppose.

Enough blather about non-knitting stuff. As there has been knitting happening too. I'm very close to finishing the Bliss cardi. I finally cast on for the last front this weekend and after the picture I snapped last night, I have a few more stitches to bind off for the neck and then it goes on stitch holders and then it gets to start being sewn up. I'm actually excited enough to start sewing it up soon. Oh, I guess I should do something about that zipper, huh? How do you decide the zipper length? Meaning, should I wait till I finish the collar and then measure it? I'm assuming that will be the way to go. I wanted to try out Zipperstop, but I may just buy a zipper locally, we'll see what the options look like.

The socks that make me happy are my Opal socks. Just an easy, sweet relief after fooling around with the Lorna's Laces sock yarn. I don't have to think about it, just keep knitting. It's very lovely.

I've finished the heel flap, as well as turned the heel and picked up stitches. Now it's nothing but knit, baby!

As for the other sock, well, it's been started, but I tried to do a pattern from the Sensational Knitted Socks book, called Twin Rib, I think. But I was do brain dead to do this pattern and I didn't get far enough for the pattern to show up. I don't know if I really care too. I think I will just rip back to the ribbing (b/c I have no desire to redo the ribbing on size 0s, thank you very much) and do the Dublin Bay socks (which the hyperlink is a .pdf). Maybe, unless I figure out something else. Obviously this sock is not the high priority here.

Oh and in regards to my last post, I did in fact, fall off the stashalong. I bought sock yarn and it felt good! ;-0

All for now, I promise to check in later this week, maybe by the week's end.

Saturday, March 11, 2006

Just below the surface

I am here, underneath radar, just barely visible, but I am still here. Sorry for the radio silence here. I know everyone is busy and has lots of things going on. this whole back to work thing is really doing a number on my life, in a good way, but still life is much, more hectic now. I began to wonder how did I handle all of this stuff before, but then remember, oh, that's right, before when I was working, I wasn't a stepmom. This is why I'm having such difficulty adjusting. Many more things in my life than previously.

Of course, that does not stop the knitting. I'm almost done with the Bliss cardi. Although I've put it down for the moment. Just need to work the right front to this bad boy, seam it up and then work the neck and oh, yeah, I need a zipper too. But I won't be putting in the zipper. I'm too skeered to do that on my own, at least this time. I'm pretty happy with this cardigan and I guess for now, this will have to suffice as my March Project Spectrum Project as well. As the colors are red and pink and this is a shade of, right? It works for me. I still want to work on the Hourglass, but I want to finish up some other things first. At this point, I'm not really sure when I'm going to get to it.
Here you can see all the pieces that are finished:

I just love me a raglan, especially putting all the pieces together, just like a jigsaw puzzle, but wearable! :-)

Fair Isle Jazz has also seen some action. At one of the last knitting get-togethers, one of the ladies there helped me with the cabling instructions, so I've been able to progress on this project. And it's actually fun! Who knew, cables and fair isle would be this exciting? The only thing is, I don't like the bobble. I mean, I do like the bobble, but just not the first row, where it hangs below the first row, all the rest are nice and neat. I think it's just because the pattern has you change color, then to the main color and the first row has the droopy bobbles. But the rest are nice and perky. Here's a bit of closeup of the cabled section. Although now I'm well into the second repeat. Still have 5 more to go though.

And one of the whole enchilada:

I still haven't made any further progress on the i-cord gloves, but I'm hoping to correct that this weekend. I also cast on for a sock, actually two! But the first one is with my Lorna's Laces, but I just can't find the right pattern for it yet. If anyone has any suggestions, they would be most welcome. Oh, and it should hopefully be cuff-down. I don't do the toe-up socks and am not really intersted in learning. That sounds bad, doesn't it? But truthfully, cuff-down socks work really well for me and if it ain't broke, my motto is to not fix it!
The second sock is just a plain ol' stockinette sock that has some funny little pattern happening with it and I bought it a few years ago, so I don't even know what kind it is or anything.

I'm really ready for the StashAlong to end, because I want to buy yarn. Not for sweaters, but sock yarn. I want some new stuff and I want it now! I think I'm supposed to wait a few more weeks, but we'll see how much longer I hold out. I'm still thinking of going to a LYS tomorrow and pick up some.

That's all for now.

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Since the Knitting Olympics bust, things have been quiet here. Sure, my project for Hourglass didn't work out, but now I'm on to the other things, namely M's sweater has been growing steadily, now we're up to 25 inches. Oh, the humanity! This sweater will be the death of me. I'm now to the point where I'm just tired of it and this is still the back. Maybe I'll knit a sleeve or two to next before getting back to the body. I actually didn't mind it in the beginning as I was zipping away making 7 inches or 10 inches, but as this beast grew approaching the twenties, it just became heavier and heavier. But I will press on. Just for size representation, here's another pic. I won't show you another one when the front piece is finished, b/c honestly, it looks the same, just bigger and the front and back will have stitches on stitch holders to make the collar is the only weird part of it.

Since then and this is probably one of my Olympic faults is that I am unable to stay monogamous to one knitting project at a time. Though I've been working on the beast, I've also started a new project, the Bless cardi (scroll down the page to find it), although I will make the collar a bit shorter as I don't really like the stand-up collars much. In theory, I thought a would, but in reality they fall underneath my hair and it's a bit of a pain. I've really been whipping through this project, of course it helps that it's being knit on size US 11s! Gotta love that. I'm planning on wearing this one mostly at work as I'm always cold, so it seemed a good idea to knit at work too. I'm juggling this and M's sweater and I really can't wait to get a sock on the needles again. Thus far, I have a completed back and sleeve and am up to the raglan armholes on the left front. Progress is going much swifter on this project obviously.

One thing you shouldn't do, is try the sleeve on by yourself with no help and determine the sleeve is just gargantuan. Instead, take thee to your nearest LYS and then have them try it on and it looks normal. The LYS owner told me that it's really difficult to try it on yourself without having a flawed idea of what it looks like. I went in describing that my sleeve was too big and I needed help resizing, well no help was needed at all except to tell me it was right! I was happy about that news. Maybe next I'll do the next sleeve, so I'll only have one more front to go! Hopefully I'll be able to bind off on the first front tonight.

Something I'd neglected to mention that I'd joined was the . As a result, I sent off a package to my sock pal and received a package from a different pal. I did receive my package last week, but unfortunately I've been a bit removed from the computer and blogging for a week. My pal (who sent me stuff) has left me comments twice on my blog, but one was before I received and one was left afterwards, but unfortunately you left me no email or blog address so that I could thank you. All the way from Australia, I received a surprise box of yarn, stitch markers and TimTams.

Thanks very much Katt! I do appreciate the package, it was very sweet of you to include the stitch markers and the biscuits. My stepson wanted to dive into them immediately and instead only held off for a day and demolished most of the package, but they were very tasty!

That's it from this corner of the world, now off to work!