Saturday, December 25, 2010
Saturday, December 11, 2010
We had a great dinner in Cape Charles and hit the bed early. We got going at about 8 this morning, trying to get in some fishing before the rain. We fished for a few hours, didn't have one bite and came in when the rain started. Again, no one else has reported any fish catching. Bummer.
I am now sitting in the hotel bed having finished browsing my favorite blogs and getting ready to knit for a bit before bed. It is amazing how early I want to go to bed after a cold day on the water. Tomorrow we head home. I forgot my camera, so no photos of not catching fish. No great loss there and with the weather being dark and rainy, there isn't much scenery to photograph, either.
I am off to knit further on the vampire boyfriend sock. Have a great sunday.
Wednesday, December 08, 2010
I finally got around to starting the painful process of plying my 3 singles together on Saturday night, did more on Sunday (between other activities). I have about 120 yds of yarn that I like a lot for youngest son. Once I have the total yardage I will decide what it will be. I feel good that I got a start on it and will have an easier time finishing now. Also, I discovered that while I can not spin and watch TV at the same time, I can ply and watch TV ( if it’s not a gripping show). I am anxious to get to other spinning – the Wool of the Month group on Ravelry is doing a month of either catch up or blend of your choice. I have a merino/tencel blend that I might want to play with …..
The Spindlers Study group (on Ravelry) is working on llama and/or soy silk and I have some of each. In fact, I have 2 spindles partially filled with llama and this might give me the incentive to finish that up. There’s some Icelandic that is patiently waiting it’s turn …
I worked on the Vampire Boyfriend sock and the sweater last weekend in my knitting time. I couldn’t do any spindle spinning because I had right shoulder and back spasms after my efforts in the yard on Saturday. That’s better now, was better yesterday but I didn’t want to push my luck. I’ll limit myself to 15 minutes/day on the spindle at least until I don’t feel any more twinges. Meanwhile I plan to work hard on the sweater – sleeves are being knit now. ; ) Within a week or so I might be joining front to back!
I really want to finish up some WIPs. Usually the number of WIPs doesn’t bother me. Right now, however, I crave finished projects and fewer things on the needles. I plan to finish up the sweater ASAP as well as the Vampire socks. Then I will get after the neck band on Slinky Ribs and complete that sweater. I’d like to concentrate on lace after that for a while because I have 3 lace projects in the works and would like to get one or more of them complete. There are more things on the needles but these are my pressing projects right now.
We bought an I Pad last week and have been fighting to get it up and running. I think we’ve done it, finally. The apps work, the wi-fi in the house seemed to be working last night and it was fun to browse and play on. DH is able to read on it – he read an article on the Time magazine web site. We haven’t decided yet whether to buy the electronic issues of Time – they have the nerve to charge $5.00 per issue for them! They have no postage, handling, paper or other such costs. I’d like to know how they justify it. I hope that our library soon works out compatibility issues with it. It would be great to be able to borrow PDF books from there. Right now we have to buy books. There are a few free book sites, but they have no current books on those sites. Mostly they are what they call “classic”. That’s OK for some reading but not exclusively.
DH is legally blind – he has low vision. The I Pad, which is *much* more expensive that other readers, is the only one that has enough contrast for him to read. He tried the Kindle, Nook and Sony) We had no choice. His limitations are in both sight and hearing, so audio books don’t work well for him. He has a cochlear implant and everything sounds rather tinny. That’s not a pleasant way to experience a book. Imagine, if you will, Minnie Mouse reading aloud to you …..
Speaking of audio books, I fried both of my MP3 players inadvertently this morning. Apparently my car charger shorted out (or the fuse didn’t do its job) and both are not usable. I cannot do without my player and audio books, so I searched on line first thing. I found the brand that I already own with more memory, for less than the cost of replacing both smaller ones, and purchased one for me, one for Mom. I’ve been trying to use an I Pod that my brother sent to load books for her, but the library system doesn’t like his I Pod. It’s a painful process to load books onto it, and I just gave up. I’ll be loading lots of books onto these two players as soon as they arrive. (soon, I hope)
I searched my sock yarn stash last night for man friendly yarn and found enough to make at least a half dozen pair. At the rate I knit socks, that will take all year. Now I need to search my books and the web to find patterns that I can match with the yarn. Fun!
We decorated the outside of the house this weekend (since we were not fishing). It’s just about completed. Lights have been placed in the bushes, around the bench and up the bird house pole. Little red bows have been placed in the smaller tree branches and I made swags for the front windows with free live greenery, then added big bows that I kept from last year. It looks good. DH has to work on one string of lights in the tree that doesn’t want to work and we’re done. I think we’ll just do the tree and a wreath this year.
Saturday, December 04, 2010
The start of this post was written on Wednesday:
We are going fishing this coming weekend. DH gave me the option to cancel, but we are going. I will not wimp out. I have a lot of Hot Hands and Toasty Toes (those warmer things that you can slip into gloves/socks), a lot of gloves and mittens (hand knitted, of course), long underwear, wool socks (again, hand knitted), head/ear coverings and a water/wind proof jacket. No, it’s not predicted to be below zero. Yes, it is much colder on the water than on land. The forecast temps are in the high 30s to low 40s, and the wind is forecast to be in the 10 mph range, which adds a bit of a chill factor. There’s only so much you can move around on a boat under way, so there’s a limit on exercising to warm yourself up. But we’re going and I. will. Enjoy. And we had better come home with at least one fish, darn it!
I spindle spun some Wensleydale last night – that stuff is so nice to spin! I’ll put less on each spindle this time, though. The last batch I spun was hard to fit on the plying spindle. I still haven’t plied the 3 ply. : (
DH got a flu shot on Monday. He felt it on Tuesday. Thankfully it only lasted a day or so. I don’t take them any more. I get the flu (fever, aches, cough) for 3 days, so it’s not worth it to me. I haven’t gotten the flu since we lived in Colorado. Watch, this year, because I put it in writing, I’ll be sick.
I am planning to bring some fibery stuff with me on our fishing trip. Depending on my weather tolerance, there may be a day that I send DH on the boat alone, I may be able to pull my fingers out of mittens (leaving the fingerless mitts on) and knit while on the boat, and there are evenings. I draw the line at night time fishing in December. I’ll bring my spindle spinning (Wensleydale and llama). Both of those projects are nearing completion. I’ll bring eldest son’s afghan (that’s for on the boat knitting), a sock (for meals) and a lace project (for alone time, if any). Maybe the double knit scarf I’ve been working on for 2 years will jump in the bag, too. I’d really like to finish that and wear it.
I really enjoy reading the yarn Harlot’s blog. She is so funny – often she gives me a much needed reason to laugh. I don’t usually get caught up in what she is knitting other than admiring it – her tastes and mine are not all that similar. One thing she did this year that I am contemplating copying is the self imposed sock club. The difference – mine will be mostly mens socks. I will go through my stash and pull out everything that is man friendly. Then I will search the web and my books for man friendly patterns and match them up. When I run out of man friendly yarn, I’ll plan out socks for my female family members – mom, SIL , aunt, etc. This, I think, is a worthy imitation.
Written on Saturday:
I was at work on Friday instead of heading to VA for fishing. The forecast changed, the winds were forecast to be 15-20 mph with gusts higher than that. Waves were forecast to be 3-4 feet. In the summer that might not be as significant, but in the winter, with all of the layers we would have been wearing, we would have been less agile making a fall overboard in rough waters more likely. Water temps in the 52 degree area do not make falling overboard a little thing. We opted out for safety reasons. Darn! I was really ready to go - I had a bad day at work and every little thing that went wrong was even worse because I "shouldn't have been there".
Today we started the outside holiday decorating, trimmed a couple of bushes and a few other chores. Fishing would have been better ..... To make matters worse, the winds were much lower than forecast, so we cancelled for nothing. Grrrr.
Tonight is shopping, then collapse and knit until bed. Tomorrow is more outdoor decorating and then football. GO RAVENS!!!!
Friday, November 26, 2010
Wednesday, November 24, 2010
Sunday, November 21, 2010
I have knit the two fronts (or backs, depending on which you prefer) of this sweater 3 times. I think the third time was the charm. On each previous knit I ran out of the yarn for each section. This time I added some Cascade 220 in black to the bottom edge and the shoulders (I thought that having the black in two places would look less like I ran out of yarn and more like I planned it that way. Did it work?) and I was able to complete each section without a problem. I used short rows rather than binding off as some others had suggested and I think I like it. Now it's time to cast on for the other two sections. Good football knitting, which is good, since it's Sunday. : )
Spinning silk - progress has been slow lately but I did some on the boat yesterday while DH looked for fish to catch. (BTW we did catch lots, but all too small to keep)
Vampire Boyfriend sock - heel flap just about complete and time to turn the heel.
When I first started to spin, I bought all kinds and colors of fibers because I had in mind to knit a "tropical shawl". That never materialized and the handspun yarn has been sitting there, taking up space. Recently I decided to put it to use. I searched for a pattern and found a variation of feather and fan with cables in a Barbara Walker stitch dictionary that I really like. It will work in the horizontal format I want and show off the varied handspun yarns.
To the right you can see the other yarns I am considering for this wrap. To the left you can see the wrap progress to date.
I am still spinning the Wensleydale fiber. I am determined to finish this and start on a shawl. To the left you see the semi solid color that Amy at Spunky Eclectic dyed for me and to the right you see the original colorway (perfect storm). I had intended to ply the two together, but I didn't like the way it looked. I now plan to ply like to like and then use both in a project with the darker color as a trim or edging.
Sunday, November 07, 2010
This pot of dirt yielded this bowl of potatoes. Yum!
I don't know whether you can see the skim of ice on the surface of the water garden, but it's there. Brrrr
Blue skies with almost naked trees.
The leaves that are left are so pretty. I feel bad for people who live in areas that don't get changing leaves in the fall. It can be breath taking.
The Red Twig dogwood is really showing it's stuff. You should see it in the snow!
The purple grass we grew on the deck is fading but still beautiful.
Mums showing the bite of the colder weather but still brightening things up in the garden.
Sedum - I forget which variety. It's a small plant - you have to walk by it to see it, but I love it just the same
What do you love about Fall? Or do you love anything about it? LOL.
I am not sure what I will do with it (if anything), but it's cute. I plan to go back to spinning black wool so that I can ply the rest of my Tour de fleece singles now that I've had some "fun" spinning. I want to see whether that shades of red yarn will look anything like what I envisioned.
Wednesday, November 03, 2010
I wrote this post on October 25th but never got a chance to post it. I'll do that now, since it's written, then add on the latest at the bottom. so, here goes:
The weather was stupendous. That’s all I can say. It was chilly in the early morning and warmed up to T shirt temperatures by late morning/early afternoon. Clothes dried in no time on the line, the sun felt delicious on my shoulders but didn’t roast me and the turning leaves glowed with their reds, oranges, yellows and even some browns.
We should have gone on the boat on Saturday, but were preparing for my (youngest) brother to visit, and so stayed home. I didn’t mind at all until it turned out that he didn’t come but stayed in Philadelphia instead due to travel delays. Sunday DH went out on the boat, and it was a wonderful day for being on the bay.
I chose to stay home and sleep in instead. I had strawberries on cereal after a late sleep and then spun, knitted, watched football (don’t get me started on that subject) and completed washing and drying clothes on the line.
I did some spinning of some of the fiber I prepped at the spinning retreat. I am trying to spin a novelty yarn, but not too novel, if that makes any sense. It’s hard to be random and to add bits of color intermittently. ; ) I did get a good bit spun and hope to finish it this week. I’ll take photos then, because it looks pretty terrible on the bobbin. I hope it looks better once plied and in a skein, but if not, it will be a lesson learned.
I spun more Wensleydale on the drop spindle – I enjoy that so much!
During football I knitted sleeves for the Slinky Ribs sweater, I knitted a square on eldest son’s afghan and finished up the Vampire Boyfriend sock (the first of the pair). I also completed the cuff and started on the leg of a mystery sock I am making. I haven’t done that in a while and decided to try this one. So far, so good. Last but not least, I worked on the Eliina Shawl just before sleep.
I have a busy week ahead of me. Patient study visits in the morning, 3 days in a row, a study monitor visit on each of those same 3 days and the usual work to be done. Once I get to the weekend, we’ll be heading up to NY to see Mom. I’d like to spend 3 days there – one with Mom, one out in Montauk so Bob can fish and one (actually half) back with Mom before we head home. We’ll see how the work goes this week, but it’s possible if I am diligent.
Ok, fast forward to today, November 3. We did get up to NY for the 3 day weekend, and spent one day in Montauk. It was windy but sunny for most of the day. DH was brave and fished from the surf for hours. No fish, though. I sat and knitted in the nice warm car. We visited with Mom - she's doing better. The doctor gave her encouraging news and that helped her emotionally. We shopped together (that's always fun) and went out for lunch with my brother (the one who didn't make it down here to visit last weekend) for his birthday on Sunday. The drive home went well, so it was a good weekend over all.
I finished up the simple sock (stockinette foot and ribbed leg) I had on the needles using Zauerball yarn in deep purples, magenta and black. Now I am ready to cast on the second one. I knitted another square on eldest son's afghan over the weekend, and I have about 3 inches of the second Vampire Boyfriend sock knitted. I haven't been able to do any lace knitting recently because I've been on the move or with people a lot. I am looking forward to finding some time this weekend to do some lace knitting.
DH went out on the boat today. He is crazy!! it was 29 degrees when I left the house this morning and only a little bit warmer than that when he left. It was a worthwhile trip, though. He caught a 28 inch striped bass!!!!
Monday, October 18, 2010
I need that organization in my house and in my mind. I worked on the house part this weekend since I didn’t need to zip up to NY to be with Mom. She felt like she needed more rest than she would get if I was there, so I stayed home. I really wanted to see her (when I last left NY she was still in the hospital) but I had to respect her wish for rest and quiet and I also appreciated the weekend at home.
Regarding my fiber pursuits, here’s a list of what’s going on:
Knitting – projects on the needles. (There may be more, but this is what I can remember):
Vampire Boyfriend socks (one almost complete)
Rob’s afghan (5/8 complete)
Slinky Ribs top (One sleeve and neck edging to go)
Grey striped vest (2/3 complete, I think. It's been a while. blush)
Cotton/rayon shawl (a little bit of stockinette and the edging to go)
Purple shawl (from Victorian Lace today) (no idea, but a lot to go)
Laminaria shawl (frogging before re-knitting to go)
Cardi Cozy from the Mason Dixon book (lots to go)
Blue cotton cardigan (only an edging, I think)
Things I want to knit but that are not on the needles
Wrap/lap blanket with my handspun
Hat and scarf with handspun (blues)
Hat for DH with handspun in black, red and tan
Sweater/coat with Cascade Pastazza also form the 2nd Mason Dixon book
More linen face cloths for Mom
Spinning on the wheel/spindle
Need to spin more black wool to ply with the 2 remaining bobbins from the Tour de Fleece so that will be finished.
Wensleydale on spindle. I changed my mind and plan to un-ply what I’ve plied. I will ply colorway with colorway and then semi solid with semi solid.
Silk on spindle – have to decide whether to ply it or use as a single for knitting
Blue merino/silk blend on a spindle – it’s been there for years. Shame on me.
Silk hankies that I am not enjoying spinning but hate to waste, so they might get done.
What I want to spin
Blended fiber from the recent spinning retreat
Icelandic fiber on a spindle (6 oz. all together)
Get back into the Knitters Book of Wool (Rav. Group) fiber sampling. They are doing Dorset this month. I've never spun Dorset.
Get back into the spinners study group to learn more about other fibers.
Sweater’s worth of yarn (if it’s not enough, then at least a vest worth. LOL)
Do you think that if it is in print in public (on my blog), it will happen? The chances are improved, I think. If I just write a list on paper, I’ll probably loose it. : ( On the blog, it’s there and I’d have to take positive action to remove it.
Fall and spring – I get the nesting/cleaning/de-cluttering bug. It has hit me hard right now and that’s not a bad thing. When I clean things out, lots of useful stuff goes to the Goodwill store or some other charity place, and maybe someone will get use from it. I go through all of the clothes bins, put away summer stuff and take out the cold weather stuff. That’s when I make decisions about what stays and what goes. Some of it is just worn out and goes into the trash or rag bin.
The gardens need to be cleaned out, too. The vegetable garden was mostly cleaned out (by DH) and I think I want to put straw over it all for the winter to cut down on weeds. That can then be tilled into the soil in the spring.
I wrote most of this post earlier in the weekend, and now I can update some things. I pulled out the Slinky Ribs top, knitted on a sleeve for a while and tried it on. DH offered his opinion when asked, and I will knit long sleeves. I worked on one sleeve during the Raven’s game yesterday (it was a close game but they lost in OT) and knitted it to just above wrist length. I left it on a holder and have picked up the other sleeve knitting, which was still above the elbow. I plan to knit on that sleeve as much as possible this week. I am apparently in finishing mode and want to get this top wearable.
The Vampire Boyfriend sock (1st one) is at the toe decreases!
The Perfect Storm Wensleydale looks much better plied on itself, though I am now wishing that I had thought to chain ply it. Hmmm… We’ll see how the un-plying of the first skein goes before I decide anything else. Meanwhile, I spun a little more of it yesterday.
That’s it – I think I am all caught up. I really hope that I can follow through on spinning 20 minutes each day. I also want to get the sweater and the Vampire boyfriend socks complete in the next month.
Mom feels tired but good today. That's a good thing.
Sunday, October 17, 2010
It is the Falling Leaves pattern from Lavish Lace by Carol Rasmussen Noble and Cheryl Potter. The yarn is something I picked up at MD Sheep and Wool. I can't wear the orange myself but Mom can, and with the little bit of sparkle in it (not sure if you can see it in these photos, but it's there) , I thought it would be a warm, comfy but jazzed up neck warmer for her.
It is 51 inches across the long edge and 21 inches from the point up to the top edge. She'll have several different options for wearing it. I hope she likes it as much as I do. (BTW, that leave posed itself there. I just couldn't resist capturing it)
I sampled plying the colorway with itself last night and like it much better. I am going to try to un-ply last weekends efforts and ply same with same. I might even be able to use the semi solid as an edging for a pattern made with the colorway. I have 8 oz of the main colorway and 4 oz of the semi solid dark color. We'll see how the un-plying goes. I will have to enlist help for sure.