Wednesday, January 30, 2008

a fiber surprise

You may remember that I signed up for the Spunky Eclectic Fiber Club back in December. I forgot that I had signed up (that's not unusual) and so when the package arrived yesterday I was pleasantly surprised. When I opened the package and saw what was inside I got very excited. These colors really speak to me. I am not sure about the fiber itself - icelandic wool. I have no idea at this point what I will do with the fiber, but for right now I am savoring the view. LOL.

On the knitting front, I finished one of the alpaca socks last night.

I don't think I have much ruffle in the edging but I like it more than the ribbing.

I do have yarn left, so maybe I will rip back to bind off and add a few more rows of yo's and decreases to make it ruffle more.

I tried to knit a finger on my Selbu glove but I just wasn't getting the instructions. I will wait until Thursday and go see the "knit doctor" (Karen) at my LYS for help. I also turned the heel on my handspun sock. I just couldn't get it right while walking to and from the parking garage and work. I had to sit still and follow the instructions because I used a different heel this time. This one had double wraps. I think it will be a good one - so far it fits very well.

I hope to go home and walk tonight. Due to another technical error (I erased a message on the answering machine without listening to it) I missed a chance to go walking last night. Tonight I will have to pay the piper and walk alone. : (

ETA I did walk alone tonight. And I did 40 crunches. Go me!

Monday, January 28, 2008

Progress on the home front

Over the weekend the bedroom went from this stage

to this stage.

I know that it doesn't look much different, but it really is more organized, there are fewer piles of things and we are ready to drape drop cloths all over everything. We are settled in the guest room for a while and the living room no longer looks like a dozen toddlers live here. (some day I might show you my collection of stuffed animals) I think sanding comes next. Ugh. Dust all over the house.

Progress on the fiber front continues, also. I have about 11 inches of lace top body correctly knitted.

It went very well and I hated to put it down. Sometimes that was necessary to do housework or to help Bob with something but it was also necessary from time to time due to wear and tear on the finger - not from the yarn so much but from the pointy needles. I would have trouble knitting with less pointy needles, (I am using KnitPicks Options) but apparently I do quite a bit of pushing with my left index finger to push the right hand needle through the stitch. I am beginning to get a callus there now, so hopefully I will have less soreness in the future.

My spinning didn't get very far, I am afraid. I do love this fiber and the yarn it is producing. I just couldn't fit it in this weekend.

My alpaca socks are nearing the finish line - at least one is. I started the edging (upside down, since I chose to knit the socks toe up) on one sock on Sunday morning. The other one needs a few (maybe 2.5 or so) more pattern repeats to get to the edging stage. This picture is turned sideways. That is a blogger thing - my photo is actually right side up. I don't know how to fix this.

I did not work at all on the stranded gloves over the weekend. I do hope to get at least two fingers knitted this week, though. In fact, I think I will go start one finger now.

Happy knitting.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

technical difficulties

Due to technical difficulties, we had dinner out last night instead of settling down to the turkey dinner with stuffing and all that goes with turkey as planned. I told you about our new stove purchase right around the new year. I haven't used the oven at all, just the stovetop, and Bob has used the oven a few times, but neither of us has read the instructions. Mostly that's because it was a display model and the book didn't come with it. We have to go on line and read it there or print it up (many pages). It's also because Bob, being a man, doesn't need instructions. He can figure it out on his own.
I freely admit to needing instructions but I was too lazy to go look them up yesterday when I got a message from Bob that he was stuck in traffic and could I please turn up the oven temperature when I got home. I stood and looked at the oven controls for a while. I pushed the Bake button and it flashed. That's a good sign, I think. It means that it is waiting for me to do something. I pressed the "+" button and the numbers for the oven temp. went up. Yipee! I found out how to do it. I got to the right temperature, pressed the Bake button again, it stopped flashing and I walked away. 30 minutes later I went back to check on the turkey and maybe baste it and the oven temp. was not where I put it. Hmmmmm. I went through all of the above steps again, but this time I pressed Start instead of Bake. Eureka! Finally the temperature that I needed. Too late, alas. Dinner time was upon us but the bird was cool and wrinkled and not at all appetizing. Off we went to eat out while dinner cooked at home. Leftover turkey is good, but it would have been nice to have some hot, first. Oh, well.

By the time we got home we (mostly Bob) did more moving of furniture and computer to empty the guest room so we can sleep there. I got in a few rounds on my Selbuvotter glove

and turned out the lights. 5:30 AM comes way too early for my taste. While we were at dinner (I always finish before Bob) I knitted away on my handspun sock. Watching and waiting for color changes is fascinating.

It looks pretty bright even in the ball but as it gets knitted up the colors blend well together and I think they will not be as bright as I originally thought. Of course I haven't really had much bright pink in the ball yet.

The weather forecast was a bust yesterday. We barely got 25 drops of drizzle, never mind the sleet, snow and freezing rain they were predicting. I am not sure whether I would like to be in the business of forecasting weather or not. Seems like there is a lot of failure built into that job. Of course it doesn't seem to affect job security, so maybe that's not so bad. ; )

I'll be off to walk with Karen in a few minutes. It may not be freezing outside but it's not easy to go out the door into the dark, cold night instead of staying where it is warm and knitting away on my stranded glove. But we will persevere.

PS I had cold turkey for dinner. No stuffing.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Monday off

I thought about going to work today despite the fact that it is a holiday. It would have been quiet and I could have gotten in several productive, uninterrupted hours of work. The master bedroom in our house is a mess, though and I wanted to sort out the guest room so we will have a place to sleep for the next few weeks while we do the work we have to do (and not be sleeping in a room that is filled with sawdust or paint fumes). The guest bed was removed yesterday and today I moved out a lot of the stuff that was in there, some from my recent 2 weeks of living there to escape DH's cold and some just because it was a convenient place to keep it. When DH gets home from work (no holiday for him) he will move the mattress and box spring onto the guest room floor and voila! Home sweet home.

Karen and I walked again today - hurrah for us for being devoted. It was somewhere between 25 and 30 degrees, but sunny. Sunny always helps me get outside.

I finished Rob's socks yesterday, wove in the ends and gave them to him when he came for dinner. They were a hit. Now I can cast on with my handspun. Yippee!

I have been pretty productive today (see above plus other cleaning) so now I can relax and spin and knit for the remainder of the day with a clear conscience. I really want to make more progress on this wool and silk blend I am spinning for a lace weight shawl. The fiber feels wonderful. Maybe I will have photos to show soon of a full bobbin. I also plan to work on my Annemor glove. I would love to get as far as the fingers today.

This fella visited in a nearby tree for quite a while this morning as I was eating my breakfast. Usually they flit from tree to tree very fast, but he sat in the same spot for at least 15 minutes. Cardinals are handsome birds.

Happy knitting

Sunday, January 20, 2008


I really enjoy reading the quotes people use at the beginning of their blog posts. Some are funny, some make me think, some make me wonder why I don't get it, but they all make me stop and consider. I think a little contemplation is good for everyone. I don't think I will begin to use quotations to begin my posts, though. I don't think that using quotes from famous people is "me". I also don't know where to begin to look for quotes that might strike my interest. I know you can get books of quotations from the library, but how do you find one out of all of those that will fit you for today? It all seems a bit overwhelming.

The sun is shining brightly out side but it is 22 degrees. Brrrrr. Not as cold as some places, though. My husband (a weather channel addict) has informed me that in Green Bay (site of a playoff game later today) it is minus 13 with a windchill of minus 33 or something obscene like that. I am now thankful for 22 degrees. ; )

I plan to finish Rob's sock during the game and cast on with my hanspun hand dyed yarn for a pair of stockinette socks for me. Jennifer commented about the fact that people are willing to wear colors on their feet that they would never think about wearing elsewhere. I have recently decided to try that myself. I like yellow, for instance. I admit that the yellow in my handspun yarn is quite bright, and most of the yellows I like are more gentle, but I do like yellow. It makes me look horrible, though. Yellow with my skin tones is a major mistake. Socks are mostly hidden (except when sitting down) by pants and only knitters generally take pains to look down at peoples' socks. LOL. I think that's a great place to wear a color that you don't normally wear - no clashing with skin tones to worry about. Except if you are wearing shorts. I don't wear wool socks with shorts so I won't worry about that. giggle.

My alpaca socks are moving along nicely. Soon I will have to make a decision about the top edge. The pattern in the magazine offered two options for the cuff - a ribbed top or a scalloped edge. Since I am reversing the directions to go toe up, I still haven't made that choice. I will have to make it soon, though. I don't know whether knitting the pattern as charted in the magazine will look right upside down (I suspect not) if I choose the scalloped edging. If not, can I reverse it successfully or should I choose the ribbed edge to make my life simple? I think the scalloped edge will enhance the stitch pattern better than the ribbed edge,

but I am not all that sure of my abilities to reverese the chart correctly. It's a problem I have with visualization that seems to apply to most everything. If I drive to someone's house using written directions, I have to ask for the directions to be reversed for me. It is so bad that once I left Molly's house and turned the wrong way out of her driveway! It is embarrasing and sometimes stressful but it doesn't seem to be anything I can change. I just try to work around it by printing the return directions ahead of time, using a map instead of directions (I do that very well) or just asking someone to help. They usually look at me strangley but comply.

It is wall paper stripping day at my house. We are going to be re-doing the master bedroom - carpet (for the first time since the house was built over 20 years ago), paint on the walls (which requires that the wallpaper be stripped) and curtains instead of sheets over the windows (we have blinds, also). Bob is going to rent the paper steaming machine now and I have to empty some of the furniture so it can be moved. Fun day ahead. But I will watch football. and knit. no matter what. Happy knitting.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

stranding progress

I have some progress to report on my stranded gloves. I just put the thumb gusset stitches on waste yarn.

Here you can see the pattern on the back of the hand.

This type of knitting is so much fun! I can't wait to see what each row will look like and I love watching the pattern develop.This is the palm pattern.

Karen and I walked today for the first time in a week and a half. I was just tired and a little deconditioned. Karen still has some cold symptoms, so she had a harder time. We didn't walk as far or as fast but we did walk and that felt good. Tomorrow might be a whole other story what with temperatures in the 20's and 25 mph winds predicted. We'll see how much determination we have.

The Christmas decorations and accesories have been put away for the season. This is a bigger task than it might seem. We pack that stuff (and there is a lot of it after being married for 30 years) under the stairs. One of us (ususally Bob) has to climb in under the stairs and kneel back there while the other person pushes the boxes and crates in to be fitted in just so, in the reverse order we will need them next November. Thank goodness that is done.

One more snow photo to share before I go. Football tomorrow. Hopefully spinning. Definately knitting. Sleep well.

Friday, January 18, 2008

It's Friday and we had snow yesterday. It was a very good day.

I sat in the medical records area at work yesterday with the study monitor, discussing issues, making changes as needed and looking out the window. I have no windows in my office and snow was predicted. I watched and waited and sure enough, a few flakes started fluttering down. Then more, and then more. I was so excited - every few minutes I would exclaim aloud about the snow. The study monitor would look at me, smile a litle and move on. Finally I realized that she wasn't excited and didn't know why I was. Duh! She's from Michigan. She has already seen more of this stuff than she wants to see. Oh, well. I didn't need anyone else. I was excited enough by myself.

By the time I left to go home there were about 2 inches on the ground in Baltimore but it had stopped snowing. When I got home (to Bel Air, which is further north and a little further from the water) I saw that we had 4-6 inches on the ground! I was so excited. I immediately went inside for my new camera and took pictures. Lots of pictures, which I will share with you over time. Then I grabbed the shovel and cleared the parking pad and most of the driveway. I love shoveling snow. I did stop before finishing everything - I have back problems and wasn't stupid enough to try to do it all. Lots of fun!

I am going to see Atonement tonight - I know nothing about this movie or the book but have heard that it is good and I haven't been to the movies in over a year, I think. This will be fun.

DH and I are off together this weekend. We have a weekend of house projects and putting away holiday things planned. I am hoping to get back to walking, too. Hopefully the weather and returning health will assist with that. I want to do some spinning on my shawl fiber, also. I didn't get to pick up my Donegal Tweed yarn order last night because the store closed due to bad weather. Maybe tomorrow. And hopefully I will be able to get some good photos of my progress on Annemor # 12 (the Selvubotter gloves) and the alpaca socks. Who knows - by the time the weekend is over I might have a FO - my son's work socks. I started the ribbing. Bye.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

If only I didn't enjoy blogs so much

I would have more time for knitting.

I feel the same way about Ravelry. I love the idea of it, I love being able to search for yarn, projects, ideas and groups on it, but it is such a knitting time user. If only work did not get in the way so much. I would have more time for the "important things" in life. LOL.

Size two needle progress was good. I went from this

To this, and the gauge is correct.

I could easily get addicted to color work. Actually, I could easily get addicted to cables, too. I think I have an addictive personality. So far I have only allowed myself to get addicted to chocolate and knitting, though. And I have a strong attraction for spinning and boating and Diet Dr. Pepper (all varieties). And for my DH. And I really like sunshine and the outdoors, reading and relaxing on the beach. And dogs. Mostly big ones. What are you "addicted" to?

I turned the heel on the second alpaca sock, so I am working on the leg of both socks, now. I think these will get finished very soon. Yipee!

Rob's socks are close to being finished, too, and once those are complete I can start on the socks to be made with my handspun yarn (recently completed). I may need to buy an extra pair of sunglasses to work on these. What do you think?

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

photographic proof of productivity

Here is a photo of the Berroco Jasper I was given as a Christmas present. The colors are wonderful and flow smoothly into each other

Here are the Fetching fingerless mitts I made with ONE skein of that wonderfully soft yarn.

Here is Calorimetry, also made with one skein of Jasper. This is a head and ears covering for people with long hair. When you pull your hair up to walk or jog or whatever, you can keep your head (you loose a lot of heat through the top of your head) and ears warm without getting your hair all tangled or pulling the head covering down so you can't see.

I did both of these in one weekend. What a great feeling of accomplishment to have started and completed 2 projects so fast. (Yes, I know, I did nothing but knit and rest and drink juice, but everyone is entitled to do that once in a while, right? ) I took a picture of Calorimetry "in action" but I looked horrible trying to get the camera aimed and hold still and not get the flash reflecting in the mirror so you will have to wait until there is someone else here to click the shutter. ; )

I mentioned the gloves I started - here is a photo of the planned project.

I detest doing swatches in the round, so I just cast on in the needle size I thought I would need ( size 0). I had almost finished the cuff pattern and decided I had enough to do a decently sized gauge measurement. I found that I needed to go up at least one, possibly 2 sizes, so I frogged it and this is what I have now.

I am trying size 2 needles this time. I have to knit several more rows before I can measure, but I love this kind of knitting, so it doesn't bother me at all. I hold the dark color in my right hand and the white in the left. I am using DPN's right now but may switch to 2 circs to get the tension right if it seems too irregular this way. I like DPN's though, so I will probably stay with them.

So, current projects in the works are Rob's work socks, (about 2 inches from completion), the Selbu gloves, (just started) the alpaca socks (about halfway) and the lace hemp top (not very far along since my dip in the frog pond). With my yarn order (Donegal Tweed for a cabled cardigan designed by me) coming in, I don't know whether I should put aside the lace top to concentrate on the cables or keep going with the lace top and put off the cabled cardigan I have planned. Decisions, decisions.

I think I will go do some knitting and put off that decision until another day.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

I am not quite sure what hit me

I am not quite sure what hit me, but boy! did I get sick last week! I have been sleeping in the guest room so as to avoid catching the cold my DH has had since New Year's Day. I was going to give you a blow by blow (no pun intended) description of my illness, but I will spare you. Suffice it to say that I did no knitting for 24 hours! Thank goodness for antibiotics. I tried Zicam for the first time to ease the symptoms and I highly reccomend it.

I did get a lot of knitting done over the last couple of days. My brain was ready to get up and do things but my body complained after only a short time so I knitted. I finished calorimentry and fetching. I was gifted with 2 skeins Jasper in a beautiful heathery blue colorway and that is what I used for these projects. I searched on Ravelry for ideas and these two projects seemd ideal for this time of year and considering my walking activities. I love the way they came out. I still need to sew on a button - maybe tonight. Once I feel a bit more energetic I will take and post photos. I also made it to the heel gusset on both alpaca peds socks. Now for the heel turning. (grin of anticipation) Photos of that coming soon also.

It took quite a while, agonizing, flipping pages and debating the pros and cons and my knitting abilities, but I chose to make Annemor #12 from the Selvubotter book. I thought I would do a pair of mittens first but I have to have these gloves. I am almost finished with the cuff pattern but still have to do a gauge measurement, so they may be frogged if the gauge is off. I am using size 0 needles and Shelridge Farms sock yarn.

It's dinner time and I am hungry. Try to stay healthy.

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Trekking socks are finished!

I finished the last half inch of ribbing last night and chose to do the sewn bind off from EZ. (suggested by Karen and seconded by many on the web). It went very well but I was too tired when I finished to try them on. Hopefully today I will model for photos.

Now I am down to two pairs of socks in progress and feel better. I plan to choose some yarn this week for a pair of mittens from Selbuvotter
I have lots of sock yarn appropriate for this type of knitting at home. I need small, portable projects but I need a change from socks and this will do nicely. Very parctical at this time of year, too. Though you would never know that by the temperature outside right now - it is 65 dgrees in MD in January!

I spent some time updating my Ravelry project list, including photos. I am nauti54knitter on ravelry. I do love having a digital camera.

I am off to work on my alpaca Waving Lace socks. Happy knitting

Monday, January 07, 2008

Yarn diet, anyone?

Last year it seemed that there were a lot of people starting yarn diets. You saw yarn diets and rules referenced on many blogs. There were various lengths of time and many different rules. I did a version of a yarn diet myself. This year, though I am seeing more messages about knitting more of what is in the stash because I like it and want to knit it. No rules about what people can and can't buy, but commitments to making fewer purchases and to knitting what is loved and owned.

Personally, I think this is a better philosophy. I needed to break the yarn buying habit, so my yarn diet served a purpose and I am glad that I did it. I think my yarn diet was good for me. But I like the positive feeling of knitting what is in the stash. Instead of thinking about denying yourself, you are making something wearable from something beautiful. This is, I think, a much better idea.

My yarn related plans for this coming year include knitting more of what I own, but also include buying yarn for making sweaters. I have lots of lace weight yarn and lots of small amounts for things like socks, mittens, scarves, etc. I want to knit sweaters, though. That is where my yarn money will go this year.

I am a Ravelry member/user, and while I have used the search part of the system quite often, I haven't made as much use of it as I could as far as my stash and project documentation. I have felt that I am "wasting" knitting time by spending time on the computer. I do wonder, though, if I might be helped by getting my stash documented in a place that is easy to view. My actual stash is in storage tubs that have to be hauled out or in or whatever when I want to survey it or look for something in particular. It would certainly be easier to log in to Ravelry to look over choices of yarn than to go out to the shed in the cold (or heat and humidity)and dark (which is usually when I decide to look for something).
Having a written list of things I would like to make might be good, too. I might be less likely to get sidetracked with impulse projects. On the other hand, this is a hobby. There should not be too many rules. Hmmm. Things to ponder.

I just got the call - the dark grey Donegal tweed that I ordered for my not yet designed cabled cardigan - has arrived! Yippee! Now I have to buckle down to complete and measure my swatches.

Sunday, January 06, 2008

Frog pond

This is how much knitting I had done on the hemp lace top when I noticed a mistake. See it just above the cable in the knitting?

This is what I had left after visiting the frog pond. I could not imagine that I could drop down that much knitting (with double decreases and yarn overs) correctly and re-knit. So much for knitting to the arm holes this weekend.

All was not negative this weekend, though. This is the fiber I am spinning for a shawl. It is so soft and luxurious feeling. It is a rambouliet and silk blend.

And this is the singles I am spinning, planning a two ply for the shawl. I have one skein finished already.

Back to work tomorrow. That means much less fiber time but I do plan to finish those trekking socks in the next day or so, and maybe I can manage 2 rows per night on the lace top. I'll try.

Saturday, January 05, 2008

I have sock yarn!

OK, I actually have a lot of sock yarn, but I was referring to the yarn I have been spinning. I finished spinning the singles last week and did the plying tonight. I have about 370 yds of a barber pole variegated yarn.

I am almost finished with the bamboo Trekking socks, also. I have decided to do about another inch of pattern. I have to figure out how I want to finish them. I don't like the idea of ribbing but don't know what else will do the job. Suggestions, anyone?

I am heading back to watch the playoff game and knit further on my socks. I hope to have progress on the lace top to show you tomorrow. Have a good night

Friday, January 04, 2008

guild meeting, locks and a found hat

Once a month I have a dilemma. Thursday night is the knit night at my LYS. The first Thursday night of each month is the knit guild meeting. I have to decide between the two. There are a couple of people in the guild who are a little long winded and a little abrasive. On the other hand there are some people that I really like and don't see otherwise. It's only once a month, but I really miss seeing the people at the LYS.
I chose the guild meeting last night. It took 20 minutes to discuss making a donation to the library in the name of a former guild memeber who died, and no agreement was reached. It's just not that difficult, people. And we have the money in the treasury - it's not like we were even asking people for donations! Grrrr
I am trying so hard to be easy going and friendly and good spirited. Things like that make it difficult.

I arrived home from my knitting guild meeting last night to find my husband replacing the lock in the front door. We had been having trouble getting the key in and out recently so he put some WD40 on his key, inserted it in the lock and turned it to try to spread the lubricant. It turned and turned and turned in the same direction. Not supposed to do that. He has a cold and had planned to take it easy and read a little, then go to bed early. Instead he drove to the local Home Depot to buy a replacement lock (the innards, anyway). They didn't have exactly what he needed, and the extra key he bought (there are 3 of us in the house and only 2 keys come with the lock) didn't work. Wasn't even close. Poor guy, it was not a good night for him.

I knitted a hat for a co-worker to match the scarf that another person is knitting for her. (see December 10 post) It was too big and I took it home to frog and re-knit. When I was reay to knit it, I couldn't find the hat. I search high, low and in between. I called the car repair place I had been to, the person who drove me home, asked DH, no one had found it. I returned to work after the New Year holiday and there it was, in the hands of the recipient. I had left it in another person's office and she was on vacation so it just turned up. I am both frustrated (I had to guess how many stitches to cast on instead of counting what I had done the last time and going down from there) and relieved that I hadn't acutally lost the thing or over looked it while searching. She will now have fingerless mitts made for a birthday gift. ; )

I knitted several rounds on my bamboo Trekking socks last night. Today is Friday so I can stay up a little later and knit tonight. Work does get in the way of doing what I love. I hope to ply my sock yarn tomorrow and to work on the lace hemp top this weekend. I also plan on football watching. None of my favorite teams are in the playoffs, but I will enjoy the games anyway. I have been working on cleaning and laundry all week so I have less of that do to over the weekend.

Tonight Karen and I will walk. Karen ate and didn't walk while she was away. I ate and walked while she was away, but I think the eating outweighed the walking judging by the way my jeans fit. Sigh. Getting old really is the pitts.

Enjoy every minute of your weekend.

Thursday, January 03, 2008

My New Year

New Year's Eve was a quiet night spent at home. We don't go out much - most places are too noisy for Bob to deal with (hearing aids amplify all noise, not just the ones you want to hear) and this particular holiday is noisier than others. So we sat at home and did things we enjoyed. I knitted and Bob played on the computer and read.

New Year's Day, though, we drove up to NY city. Our main intention was to go see Rockerfeller Center and the tree, and we did that, but we also went to the Jacob Javits Convention Center to see the boat show there. Yes, the boat show was open on New Year's Day. Isn't that a bit odd? I thought so, but it was convenient for us so we attended. We browsed at boats bigger than ours - what else is the future for if not to dream of what we might have/do in the future? When they threw us out at the end of the show we headed over towards the tree. I have not driven in Manhattan in many years and was a little stressed about my abilities, especially when it comes to parallel parking. I found a spot a little further away than would be ideal (due to the wind and cold) but I could get into it and there was no risk (we thought ) of getting blocked in, so we stayed there. The parking meter machines take credit cards - imagine that! We tried to use ours but the card got stuck. Gulp. Manhattan on a holiday and the card won't come out of the machine. What are our chances of getting help any time soon? Finally, after turning the cancel button several times and squeezing my fingers in the opening I was able to remove the card and we prepared to push quarters into the slot. A very nice lady told us that we didn't have to pay on the holiday, though. All that worry and we didn't have to pay.
We found a place to eat that was cozy and warm and not too expensive and had dinner (at 9 PM), then added a few layers of clothes and walked to see the tree. It was breathtaking, as always.

No matter how many times you see it or think you know what to expect, it is still awesome. It is sad that a tree has to die for that, but since no one asked me before they cut it down, I think the least I can do is to really appreciate it, right?

I took lots of pictures with my new camera - that was so much fun! No guilt about wasting film and the ability to view the pictures right away instead of having to wait for film to be developed added to the fun. St. Patrick's cathedral is another must place for us to visit, but it was closed. It looked like renovations were underway.

I didn't know, until that night, that there is an M & M store in Manhattan. We visited, of course, and it was jammed! The amount of waste was really something! There were trash bags of candy on the street and several had been torn open and were scattered over the sidewalk and street. That helped explain why the candy was $9.00 per pound. A litle pricey for my taste. We looked at the Saks window displays and watched the skaters for a while but we got cold and headed to the car. As we walked down the street we had parked on, my heart started racing. I couldn't see the Explorer. I saw a dumpster, but not the vehicle we had arrived in. We had been towed once before (even though we were parked legally - even the transit cop said so) and I had horrible thoughts. But someone had pushed a dumpster on wheels right in front of us and that hid the car. Phew! With a little work I got us out of that spot and we headed home. We arrived home at about 3 AM and headed straight to bed.

Bob and I had taken the 2nd off, so we slept in. In the afternoon Bob got to work installing the new range he bought for the kitchen. The one we had was the original in the house (about 20-25 years old) and was definately "well worn". We hope to sell the house in the next year or two and thought this would be a good investment towards that goal. It looks good and despite being a basic model, has many more options than the one we removed. I especially like the self cleaning oven option. No more evil sprays to use and wipe out, climbing half way into the oven in order to get it all out. Christmas gifts were put away, other things were put away and the house was vacuumed. I got in my 4 mile walk despite the cold wind and my very strong desire to stay cozy and warm. It is so much harder without my walking partner. Thank goodness she got home last night. Actually, knowing her, it might have been this morning when she arrived home. She is a night owl. I finally sat down to knit at about 9:30. The alarm going off at 5:15 this morning was not welcome.

Knitting and spinning news - not a lot, but some progress has been made. I have gotten halfway up both feet (toe up socks) on the new alpaca peds socks. I tried two different patterns and ended up choosing the one on the left.

I have a pair of socks that I started a while ago (2 socks on 2 circs at once) in Trekking bamboo that I had put aside for holiday knitting and I will try to finish those up. I would also like to finish the sock I am working on for my son for work. That's 3 pairs of socks in progress and I would like to decrease that number. I feel pressure with that many pairs in the works and I want to enjoy what I am knitting. I didn't try to knit on the lace hemp top - I was too tired last night, but I hope to make headway with that this weekend, and maybe have some photos to show you. It is an enjoyable knitting project with 5 different but easily memorized patterns in each pattern round and a round of knit in between. I finished spinning the yellow sock yarn single
and I am now ready to ply that with the variegated single to make my sock yarn. Hopefully that will also happen this weekend, and I wil have photos to show you.

Happy knitting.