Friday, November 13, 2009

Actual Knitting Content (With Pictures!)

I've finally got the pictures of some of my recent finished objects uploaded, so, of course, I had to share them.

Janelle, one of my Knit Wits friends, had a baby boy a couple of months ago. His name is Connor, and he is a cutie! To celebrate his arrival, I made him this sweater:

It's the Cables and Textures Baby Sweater from the Beautiful Baby pattern book. I modified it slightly by not doing the garter ridge stripes on the sleeves or the sides of the sweater, and made it with Patons Beehive Baby fingering weight in blue - a much finer yarn than the pattern calls for. I am pleased with the way it came out, the pattern was well written with no errors, and when paired with a onesie and some corduroy pants will be adorable.

After completing a couple of larger projects and the sweater above, I was wanting a very quick knit for some instant gratification. I also had a ball of Borroco Zen in Gochu (8223) that I had been given when I was working on the Oddball Charity Blanket, and I didn't know what to make with it. In the end, I decided on a pattern I've long wanted to make: Calorimetry.

Although it probably wasn't the best yarn choice for the pattern, being a cotton/nylon ribbon yarn, it definitely served it's purpose of instant gratification knitting. I cast it on late one evening, and completed it the next afternoon. The button is from my button stash.

The other big finished project for me was the Galveston Shawl. I finished the knitting on this a while ago, but needed to get it blocked and the ends woven in for me to count it as completed. As I had decided to make the large size, this posed a bit of a problem because I normally block larger items on a queen-sized bed in the guest room, but the pattern listed the finished measurements of this size as 75" square. It looked like a bedspread laid out over the guest bed, but lacking another option at the time, I blocked it as best I could. Though the edging doesn't look as good as I would like, it worked out pretty well.
It's knit from the center out, with the sides being divided by the "X" you see in the picture above. There are 4 distinct lace patterns, and 2 others that are similar to the patterns they are nearest to.

Even spread out on my king sized bed, it still is a close fit. I do plan to take advantage of the fact that it does all fit on there early one morning so that I can get all of the definition that blocking provides, yet still have a place to sleep at night. The yarn is merino/silk handspun in the Pewter colorway, and the finished project is warm and very nice to wrap up in.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Veterans Day 2009

To all of the men and women who are serving
Or have ever served in our Armed Forces,
Thank you

And may you be blessed.

The history of Veterans Day

Shoe Love

I love shoes. Not all shoes of course, just the cutest/prettiest/best shoes.

I also love bargains. Not the discount-on-the-stuff-that-really-wasn't-worth-its-original-price-so-now-I'm-paying-what-it's-actually-worth kind, but the I-can't-believe-I'm-getting-this-for-so- little-because-it-truly-was-worth-its-original-price bargains.

And now I've found a store that allows me to combine my two loves.


You see, a couple of weeks ago I had to buy a new quilt/bedspread/comforter for my bed, because Gypsy decided that the one I had was just a giant chew toy for her. Since Scott hadn't been thrilled with the last one (he called it "damn puffy") I decided to go with something a little different and got a quilt.

Once that was done I decided I'd just check out the purses (because I love them too) to see if they had any must-haves (they didn't), which led me to check out the scarves and accessories (which I decided I could make), which reminded me to check out the shoes. And I am so glad I did.

I found...the clearance aisle.

And I had a coupon.

So I was able to pick up these adorable shoes for only $9. Yes, NINE dollars. They were originally $55, marked down to $12 with the coupon dropping the price another $3.

I didn't see any others I felt I must have, so I left, only to be back there just a few days later at the request of Jay, who has decided that the fedora is his signature hat and he needed another.

Since I was already there, I decided to check out the shoe clearance aisle again.
I found these $70 Vera Wang shoes marked down to $7.

I couldn't believe it. And the best part is that even though both pairs are sporting 3 1/2" heels, they are surprisingly comfortable. Not that I'm saying I'd run a marathon in them, or even go on a marathon shopping spree while wearing them, but an average day spent in them IS doable.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Thank You

Thank you for the lovely gift;
You didn’t have to do it.
You have a good and gracious heart,
But then, I always knew it.

I love this, and I think of you
With fondness and with pleasure;
The gift is great, but even more,
It’s your thoughtfulness I treasure.

By Joanna Fuchs

I wanted to say thank you to all of the lovely people who did so much to make me feel special on my birthday. Your love and friendship are gifts I will always treasure, and because of you I feel blessed abundantly.

Thank you.

Krystal Acres Awesome Alpaca Yarn in brown from the lovely Topaz, Berroco Comfort Sock in Dunedin 1814, and a set of Hiya Hiya 9" circular knitting needles in size US 1 1/2 (2.5 mm) from my wonderful in-laws, Mike and Pam.

Mini Doily Design by Patricia Kristoffersen, crocheted by my wonderful friend Chris.

A golf towel custom embroidered by my wonderful friend Ruby.

A Ping G15 driver, the choice of which was mine, but whose purchase was made possible by my wonderful mother-in-law, Sue, and my wonderful husband and son, Scott and Jay.

The gifts are lovely and greatly appreciated - almost as much as you.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Allocation of Resources

I've been finding lately that time really is a finite resource. Not that it hasn't always been, or that I haven't realized it before now, but rather that this resource seems to be stretched more thinly than ever lately.

And all of that to say simply that I haven't been able to make the time to post regularly like I had planned to.

So what's eating up my time? Well, rather a lot actually.

I've been working on some knitted gifts, projects for Knit Picks, sock designs - which I hope to be uploading to the sidebar soon, and some lovely lace. I've also finished some projects, some of which I can't yet talk about, but a couple that I can. The Galveston Shawl is done, blocked (mostly), and the ends are woven in. It also, happily, goes very well with both my new and old favorite dresses. The Arizona Thermal socks are also completed, and I hope to be doing a post about them when I post the pdf. I also made a Calorimetry as a relaxation project after finishing a couple of the larger projects I'd been working on. Photos on all of these to come later.

In addition, my husband and I recently celebrated 16 years of marriage. We decided to go big this year and stayed at a local resort for the golf package. We also included Jay in the festivities, and were even able to bring Gypsy along.

The two October birthdays we celebrate were quieter family affairs this year, but very enjoyable. Mine was filled with lots of fiber-y goodness and golf, which was just what I wanted, and Jay got all golf goodness, which is just what he'd wanted, so everyone was happy.

I've also been participating in the 52 in 52 challenge this year, and found myself falling a bit behind. That situation has now been remedied, however, and I am even a little ahead now.

Everything else continues to move along at its usual hectic pace, so at least I've got some consistency in that. Now if only I could find the brakes to slow this crazy train a little all would be well.

I'll keep searching.