Tuesday, November 25, 2008

So far, so good

I have resisted casting on for the scarf and the sock. I did wind the yarn for the scarf into a ball, but I stopped there. I knitted on DH fingerless mitt (the second) last night. The first one needed some re-working, so I decided to knit the second, write everything down and then rip the first one so I can use it for comparison.

Brian's vest is further along, but I still haven't taken any photos. I need daylight for that, so maybe that will happen over the long weekend. Work has been busy and the commutes have been long and traffic filled, so not much knitting has been happening. I really can't wait for the weekend. See you then.

Monday, November 24, 2008

My weekend

Last weeks' snow fall. Not much, but pretty.

The holiday party was OK. There were fun people there and dancing. The music was so loud and the room was so dark that we didn't dance at all. DH would have been lost in that room without being able to see or hear anything to keep his orientation. We did circulate and it was nice to meet the spouses of the people I work with. No photos, though, even before we left the house. I was having trouble with my hair, and by the time I finally got it the way I wanted it we were a little late.

Bob and I raked leaves on Sunday - I love doing that. Karen and I walked our 4.5 miles and I don't love doing that! But we went anyway. Tonight will be our last walk for a week because Karen is visiting relatives for a while. I might just be able to do some walking on my own while she's gone, though, with a nice long weekend in store. One thing I will not be doing is shopping on Friday. Deals or not, I am not willing to be trampled, pushed, shoved or risk my life in the parking lots filled with bargain-crazed people!

We also watched lots of football on Sunday. The Ravens won!!!! The Broncos lost - they were embarrassed, actually. Shame on them.

It is a short work week. Yippee! I plan to enjoy every moment of my time off with DH. Wednesday afternoon I will be celebrating.

I worked on a pair of fingerless mitts for DH last night. I will have to re-work them a little, (the yarn didn't go as far as I thought it would and I ended up with uneven half fingers) but the over all plan pleased him and I can fix the rest. This time I will take notes, too. LOL. I knitted on Brian's alpaca vest and my silky lace scarf. This coming weekend I plan to 1. finish the I-cord on my vest, 2. pick up stitches around DH shoulder for the second sleeve and get the short rows done, 3. finish his fingerless mitts and 4. work on Brian's vest. I WILL NOT cast on for the lace scarf or another pair of socks. I will not.

Every year over the Thanksgiving holiday I take out my Christmas dishes and put my regular dishes away until near the end of January. It is a ritual - annoying sometimes, but rewarding and brings on the holiday feelings. I skipped one or two years with the deaths of my in-laws, but I will do it this year. If the weather cooperates I would like to get the Christmas decorations up this weekend, too. It's not as important to do them at this time since Bob is not working, but it would be nice have that done, too.

That sounds sort of ambitious, doesn't it? I'll have to prioritize, I think.
Have a good day.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

party time

We had a successful shopping trip last night. I found a sparkly tank and jacket to wear with a pair of satiny tux pants. I wanted to keep the price as far below $200 as possible, and this outfit cost $130. Not bad. It was even better this morning when I went through my closet more carefully and found a sparkly jacket we had purchased previously, tried it on and it looked good with another blouse I already had. So, the new sparkly top went back to the store today and I am happy with what I will be wearing for less than $100. (so is DH - that's important, too). We got a new shirt and tie to go with his suit and I think we will look good together.

Between shopping last night and today and doing the fix the hair and nails thing today I will not be knitting much. I am actually typing this post by using two pencils to hit the keys. My nails are wet. LOL. No knitting for sure with wet nails!

Maybe we can get eldest son to take a picture before we leave tonight. We'll have photographic proof that we dress up sometimes. I hope to make some knitting progress tomorrow and have photos to show you on Monday. Have a great evening.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Snow flurries! We had snow!

I love snow. I love it in small amounts and large. I especially love it when it falls in amounts sufficient to keep me from driving anywhere. ONLY if that happens when I am at home, though. I was once stuck at the hospital for 5 days due to snow and I hope that never happens again. I had a bad case of cabin fever, I will tell you. I got someone to watch my patients at one point and went outside in the snow and made snow angels and just walked - make that floundered - through the snow for 20 minutes, then went back inside, changed scrubs (again) and went back to work. That was on the 4th day. I escaped on day 5 after my 12 hour shift.

No worries about that much snow today, though. It was so pretty coming down .....

Not much knitting progress to report today. Brian's vest has about 2 inches of knitting below the arms. The toe increases on my travel sock are complete and I can work even for the foot. The I cord edging on my vest has turned the corner at the bottom edge of the front and is now moving up the right front edge towards the neck. I am struggling to not cast on another project until I finish my vest and start on Bob's second sleeve. It's tough. There are so many projects out there .... I have beautiful yarn in my stash. I think I will start a small shawl next, maybe with the teal colored yarn I bought at Stitches. I could spend just a little time going through patterns, couldn't I?

Work holiday party is this Saturday and I am going shopping with DH tonight for something to wear. If we fail (I have to find something I like, that is reasonably comfortable and doesn't cost too much)we won't go to the party. I plan on gift shopping this weekend, some house cleaning and laundry, of course, and football on Sunday. Next week is a short week and I am very happy. I've been busy the last few weeks and working hard. A few days off in a row will be great.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

It's winter

I had to scrape ICE off my windshield yesterday morning. Actually, I had to work to get into the car - there had been rain the night before and it froze everything closed. It wasn't too bad - a firm tug or two opened the car (and the trash can) but it was a rude awakening. Winter is here.

The ironing got done, the I cord has made it's way past the mid-point of the bottom edge of the vest, I bound off my travel sock and cast on the new one. I needed a break from those Fetching mitts after 4 pair and I am now ready to get back to that. I have at least 2 more to do. DH needs a pair of fingerless mitts, also, though he will get a plain ribbed pair. If I make them any fancier than that he'll "save them" for something special. Oh, and I ripped back Brian's vest and re-connected with fewer stitches. Now it's round and round we go with that lovely, soft alpaca yarn. This project will go very fast, I think, from here on out.

Have you seem the new Twist Collective ? There are some nice patterns there. My favorite is Vivian, but there are a few thaere that will get serious consideration. I wasn't as thrilled with the Knitty.com patterns this time, but that's just me, I think.
I saw a few patterns at Stitches that I either have purchased or plan to purchase like the Venus Vest

and the Enchanting top

Inspiration abounds. Time is limited. I will do my best. Knit on and stay warm.

Monday, November 17, 2008


It's been a few weeks since the election, and I still feel hope. Despite the many issues that still plague us, I feel like things can and will get better with new leadership and new goals. I am happy to have positive thoughts instead of the negative, cynical thoughts that have been in my head for quite a while.

We were supposed to go to NY on Thursday last to visit with my mother and get out to Montauk for one last fishing expedition. The weather was terrible so we postponed the trip. We were then going to leave on Saturday and come home on Tuesday. DH didn't feel well, though, and we didn't know whether he had a reaction to his flu shot or had a cold or had bad allergies. The weather forecast wasn't much improved, either. Rather than risk "contaminating" my mother (who is young at heart but still 75 years old) and rather than have Bob not enjoy his fishing trip, we cancelled. Maybe in early December ....

Knitting progress -
I wore my Thelonious socks to the Needle Exchange on Thursday. Yippee! I love them.
I have been knitting several pairs of Fetching fingerless mitts as gifts, and I have 4 pair completed. Completed as in ends woven in and all!

I frogged a pair of fingerless mitts that I had been working on in a pattern that I liked. I just wasn't happy with the results of my meddling, and the pattern as written wasn't what I wanted. That yarn will be re-purposed. One less WIP.

I joined Brian's vest under the arms, but will have to rip those 3 rows because the opening is a little too large. Not much time wasted, so I won't even hesitate a little over that. I like the color work section and I am happy with how the vest looks so far.

My seed stitch vest had some I-cord on the edge, and I ripped that out to start again. I wanted to pick up the edge stitch from the wrong side so that the right side of the garment looked neater. I made great progress on that last night during the football game.

I did some spinning yesterday! I managed both spindle spinning and wheel spinning. Maybe I can maintain that "spin a little every day" motion since I broke the fast so to speak. LOL.

Bad weather kept Karen and I from walking on Saturday, but we walked on Friday night and on Sunday. Tonight is a question mark because the weather looks a little iffy. They have actually mentioned snow showers!

I hope to iron work clothes while watching football tonight (I don't actually hope to do the ironing, it's just that watching football helps to distract me from that chore) and then get in at least an hour of knitting before bed. Hopefully the I-cord will make it's way further around the edge of the vest, and perhaps another pattern repeat will be added to the Silk and Ivory scarf.

I hurt my back yesterday - probably when I rotated the matteress on our queen sized bed - and I plan to spend at least some time on my back with the heating pad tonight. Maybe I can't do the ironing ......

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

It was a very good day

When you last heard from me, I was taking a day off to go on the boat with DH. We had a wonderful day. I enjoyed the sunshine and mild temperatures and even the winds cooperated - the water was a calm as could be! I sat in T-shirt and shorts for about 2 hours - in November! It did cool off quickly later on, but it was wonderful while it lasted. I fished and knitted (not at the same time, though I did try!) the afternoon away. sigh. If only more days could be like that one.

The next day was spent sleeping in and then heading off to Stitches East. I suppose I might regret it in the future since Stitches will be in Connecticut next year but I took no classes this year. There was one I wanted, but apparently not enough to fight through the family issues we were having at the time and make me register. I just don't want to spend money on classes for the sake of classes, so when the one I wanted was full by the time I got back to it, I decided to just go to the Market. I wandered and browsed and bought a few things. I saw many beautiful things, but only a few called to me, and those came home with me. I bought a merino/bamboo /silk blend in shades of purple, denim and white, which is marled nicely due to the different fibers taking the dye differently. That came from Maple Creek They were very nice and I had to work to limit myself to only one selection.

From Knitting Notions I bought some superwash merino in shades of teal that matches the blouse I wore that day. I usually struggle to find something to wear with it, and now I have (or I will have once I make it - LOL) something that is just right. I didn't get the color right in the photo, but this was the best one. 

I also bought another sock needle protector from them because I usually have two pairs of socks going at once.
And I bought a gift for Karen that will, of course, not be shown or described here. giggle.

Sunday was spent cleaning and doing laundry (it all dried on the line!) and then knitting while watching football. Another good day.

I finally wove in the ends of my Thelonious socks and they are now officially wearable.

I am making several pairs of Fetching fingerless mitts as holiday gifts - two down, 3 or 4 to go.

Brian's vest has halted because I need to try it on him to see if it's time to join at the underarm, but the colorwork is complete. It looks good. I knitted anohter 2 inches on the Silk and Ivory scarf.

I finished the hat I was knitting in my hand dyed yarn, but I think I will rip back and make it a little longer/deeper. I want it to cover my ears completely, and it doesn't. Yet.

I have become quite expert at frogging. I thought about that the other day - I used to hesitate and dread ripping a project back, put it off until I couldn't deny it any longer, and by then I frequently had more to frog. I have finally accepted that a) my instincts are better than I think and I shouldn't fight that (which translates into when you first think that it might have to be ripped back, it does and don't bother dithering) and b) it's not so terrible to re-work things and c) I am more of a perfectionist than I thought. giggle.
I am a pretty easy going person and I can forgive or overlook a lot (when it comes to my knitting, anyway) but not as much as I used to. Is it the fact that I now submit projects to competitions? Is it that my skills have improved and I know I can get better results now? Maybe a combination of the two? I am not sure, but I surely am an expert at ripping out my knitting. The next question is: Is that something to brag about or not ever mention again.

I am sorry to say that I haven't done any spinning lately. I want to, but then life (in the form of work, laundry, walking, cleaning, etc.) gets in the way. I think I will bring my drop spindle with me to NY and hope to get some spinning done that way.

We were going to NY tomorrow to visit with my mother and to get DH out to Montauk one more time for fishing this year. The weather is not looking good, so we've changed our plans and will leave on Saturday and come back on Tuesday night. I will be brining yarn to make more Fetching mitts, Brian's vest and Bob's sweater to knit on, possibly with the addition of a second skein of the yarn that I dyed to start on the coordinating scarf. Oh, and a sock, of course. We'll be busy, so I don't know how much knitting I will get done, but I will be prepared.

I'll close with a view of my bird visitors that makes me chuckle every time I see it. Have a great day.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Playing hooky

I should be at work tomorrow, but I will be enjoying a day on the water with DH instead. The temps are supposed to be in the 70's tomorrow with sunshine and I just can't resist, especially after the rainy days we've been having lately. I will bring holiday knitting with me and plan to relax and have fun.

Stitches is here in Baltimore this weekend and I will head down there on Saturday for a few hours to browse the display sweaters and shawls for inspiration. I don't plan to do much shopping. While I am in Baltimore I will stop by the office and pick up a disc with documents for a new study so I can do some work over the weekend to make up for taking tomorrow off. Sunday will be football and laundry day.

I am off to pack now. Have a great Friday everyone.

Monday, November 03, 2008


I am not sure why I did this - I usually don't. But here it is. It is at least close to what I really am - a nurse.

You Should Be a Doctor

You are practical, sharp, and very intuitive.

Optimistic and energetic, you are a problem solver who doesn't get discouraged easily.

You are also quite compassionate and caring. You make people feel hopeful.

You're highly adaptable and capable. You do well with almost any curve ball life throws at you.

You do best when you:

- Are always learning new subjects

- Use your knowledge to solve problems

You would also be a good therapist or detective.

Knitting and Football

It may seem strange, but that's a good combination for me. I knit a lot while watching football, and I love it. I keep my hands busy while watching a sport, feel like I've made sitting in front of the TV more worthwhile because I am being productive, and I have something to do during commercials. I mostly mute the commercials because I can't stand listening to the stupidity, but if I am really involved in my knitting I will leave the sound on so I don't miss it when the game resumes.

I keep plugging along on Bob's sweater. I started my I-cord edging for my seed stitch vest. It looks good and I think I will really like the finished product. I worked on the alpaca vest for Brian and I am ready to start the color work section. First I will draw a chart for myself, though, so I don't mess it up doing it top down. Visualization is not my thing.I knitted 2 pattern repeats yesterday on my Silk and Ivory scarf and an other this morning before I left for work. Yup - before work. The change to standard time is still messing me up. I was ready for bed rather early last night and awake before the alarm this morning. Oh, well, another couple of days and I should be OK.

Saturday's weather was gorgeous and somehow I expected it to be similar on Sunday. It was nice and sunny in the morning when Karen and I walked, but the clouds came in soon after and I had trouble drying the clothes on the line. That was a disappointment.

On the improving my health front, I did my second day 2 (50 push ups) workout for the 100 push up program yesterday. Today is a day off (they reccomend at least one day between sessions) and tomorrow I move on to day 3 (57 push ups). Gulp. Karen and I walked Friday, Sat. and Sunday this weekend (4.5 miles each day), and today is a day off from that, too. (thank goodness!!!)

Happy knitting everyone and don't forget to vote tomorrow.

Sunday, November 02, 2008


It is fall, and in the fall the ornamental grasses are at their most striking.

Yesterday did not feel like fall, though today certainly does. Yesterday I walked with Karen and then did yard work for several hours, and even when I was through and just keeping DH company in the yarn, I was quite warm in my jeans and short sleeved T shirt. Today, when I went out into the yard to hang the clothes on the line, I pulled on a heavy jacket over my long sleeved shirt and I still felt chilly.

Well, on to the fiber content. I finished Clapotis Friday (Yippee! another FO!) and blocked it yesterday. Here it is unblocked

Here it is blocked. I used JoJoland Melody, 5 balls and did one extra increase repeat and one extra straight repeat.

I did some spinning yesterday on my drop spindle - it is so nice to spin outside in the sun, watching the sunlight bounce off the colors in the fiber.

While watching football today I plan to weave in the ends of the Thelonious sock, knit an inch or two on Bob's sweater sleeve, and a few other projects will be worked on, too. Spinning is hard (for me) while watching football, so that may not happen today, but I am in for several hours of knitting fun (in between hanging a few more loads of clean clothes on the line to dry) . Have a good day.

Stanley enjoyed yesterday, too.