Monday, March 29, 2010
Ordinarily, I start my triple allergy treatment in March - early March - as instructed several years ago to get ahead of the allergens. If the allergens don't have a change to rev up before starting treatment, they aren't as bad. I decided over this last winter that my allergies were not as bad as they have been in years past and so I thought I could get buy with just the single treatment that I'm on all of the time (flonase) with an occasional, as needed boost with a pill. Wrong. Big time. Allergies hit me so hard last week, I was really knocked on my butt. I've been on the triple treatment now since last Thursday and I think things might be improving some. There is a tissue box in every room of the house, along with a trash bag to deal with the ... results. My nose is so very sore, my head is clogged and I've done more mouth breathing (as much as I hate it, there is no alternative) in the last few days than I have in years past. Ugh. Talk about dry mouth!
During one of my more clear moments over the weekend I was able to graft the pieces of the lace scarf together and got the tension right the first time around! A few more ends to weave in and it will be blocking time.
The first Log Cabin sock was finished and the second one started. I am about 2/3 down the leg and still loving this yarn. I won't go so far as to say that I can't wait for next winter - the last one is still vivid in my mind - but I will enjoy wearing these socks.
Bob's sweater sleeve is the same - actually, it's longer but looks the same.
I allowed myself to play with a little bit of lace knitting last night. With the Lily of the Valley scarf complete, I had no lace in my life. I played around with a pattern from Victorian Lace Today called a Curved Shawl and some beautiful Cinnamon's Dye Pot lace weight silk/wool blend in shades of purples and deep pinks. I don't know yet whether this combo will work - I have to get further along. I changed the cast on - I hope that doesn't cause a problem later. I didn't do well with the backwards loop cast on, which was the recommended cast on. I have to use my Addi lace turbos - that are a lot of K3tog in this pattern!
I started this post on Monday but didn't get a chance to finish it. Since then I have decided that the lace yarn and patten combo does indeed do the trick and have completed many more K3togs. Thank goodness for pointy needles! The sleeve is also longer but not long enough. D**m it. The purple alpaca shawl is a tiny bit longer also, but I fear that this project will one that I will be working on next winter just because the rows are endless and I am not a fan of knitting ribbing.
The allergies have come under control and I can actually breathe and do not have a constant need to have a tissue in my hand.
We've had dreary grey weather with rain off and on - thatnk goodness not the torrentila downours that they had further norht - but by tomorrow or Frid ay we should have summer weather. Am I confused or is it Mother Nature?
Friday, March 26, 2010
In this photo I have started to put the needle (with the working yarn in the eye of the needle) through the center of the loops of the working yarn
As you pick up the loops, you carefully pull out the waste yarn.
I went through the loops several times and pulled it tight.
Weaving in the center end on the back of the work.
For the bind off to work, you really have to use a huge needle for the bind off. I knitted with a size 8 then did the bind off with a size 13 or 15. Do Not Forget to include the yo's in the bind off at the corners. It will make a big difference. I plan to experiment with adding 2 yo's in each corner to see if that will allow more of a square shape when blocking.
The cashmere scarf edging has been knitted. I have to weave the two parts together next. That will probably happen later today. I have either a cold or a bad allergy attach and my head is not working very well right now.
The sleeve of DH's sweater is very close to being finished. I plan to go to the store this weekend to get some white elastic to knit into the ribbing. Since the sweater is cotton, the ribbing itself is not very elastic. I had used green elastic before because I made the edge of the cuff green, but DH wants just green stripes on a white cuff. I'll go get some white elastic.
The weather here is pretty nasty. I hope yours is better. Have a good day
Thursday, March 25, 2010
The Log Cabin Sock is almost at the toe decreases. Again. DH's sweater sleeve has about 1.5 inches of ribbing knit. The lace scarf hasn't grown at all. I have to have time and an alert brain to do the set up for the edging so that, too, will probably wait until the weekend.
The stakes have been pounded in to the ground to outline the planned garden in the back yard. I drew out a plan for planting last night - actually two plans, and DH plans to rent a rototiller either this weekend or next to get the ground turned over and ready. I can actually plant some cool weather things already. I'm planning to get seeds for a lot of things (lettuce, radishes, carrots) so I can do several plantings and spread out the harvest time. I'm planning to buy plants to start things like tomatoes, green peppers because I don't need 50 or 100 of those plants. I'm ambitious, not stupid.
Work has been busy with old and new projects lately. There aren't enough hours in the week to get done what has to be done until I get caught up on the new projects. Once those are submitted for review, there's a waiting period of several weeks before anything more happens. I am trying to get all of that done so that I can then concentrate on the data collection for ongoing projects.
Bike riding has been going pretty well. I still ride the same distance as I did last week but I am a little less winded when I get back. Once that 'little less winded' changes a bit more for the better, I will add another loop around a block or something to gradually increase my distance. DH rides every day, too.
I'm not feeling well today. I don't know whether it's a sudden onset of allergies (I have not been taking allergy medicine over the winter) or the beginnings of a cold. I think I'd prefer the allergies, although the cold would get better and go away. Maybe I'll be knitting at the Needle Exchange tonight or maybe I'll be home nursing myself. Only time will tell.
Have a great day.
Tuesday, March 23, 2010
Monday, March 22, 2010
Clean clothes were dried on the line in record time.
Most of the shed trim was painted. I stopped due to the limitations of my body, not due to weather.
Garden clean up was done - not all of it, but a lot of the trimming that the bushes needed (mostly they belong to my neighbor but they grow over the fence to our side) was done. DH made a trip to the landfill today to get rid of the cuttings. We don't have a chipper. We are working on a yard renovation that hopefully won't cost too much money but will rearrange and make the yard more usable and easier to take care of.
Knitting was done, and a little spinning. The cashmere lace scarf body is complete. I have the edging to go. Yippee! It's almost there! DH's white sweater sleeve needs about 2 more inches of stockinette and then it's ribbing time. Next I will attack the second sleeve. I am sticking to my guns. Both the scarf and the sweater will be done in less than 2 weeks.
I knitted one square of the spiral stole in my new yarn color and like it. Now I have to wait for Angela to make her choice of yarn so we can knit this together. I knitted on the cabled socks from Handknit Holidays and am almost at the toe decreases. Boy, these socks are flying! Heavy worsted/chunky yarn knits up fast!
Have a great day.
Thursday, March 18, 2010
There's sunshine again to day but I'm stuck in work all day today. : (
I won't even get off in time to ride tonight - I'll get off just in time to go straight to the Needle Exchange at my LYS. I hope to work from home tomorrow - at least I can have the sun shine in the windows, there. I have no windows in my office at work.
I worked on the socks from Handknit Holidays last night. This BFL yarn is so wonderful to work with and the gauge is making the socks go fast - I am at the heel flap already! It's pleasurable knitting and a nice cabled pattern. I'm going to have toasty toes next winter. ; )
Wednesday, March 17, 2010
When I finished the gardening I went for a bike ride. As usual, I didn't get far before my legs started trembling and I had to return home, but it is something. I plan to pursue this exercise and I have to start somewhere. Right?
The KAL was quiet - no new people came. Nancy and I chatted and knit on our projects, then we browsed around the shop for a while before going home. I decided to make the Spiral Stole in the Desert Flower yarn before I blocked the bambool - I just like the yarn too much to not use it.
I am knitting a pair of socks from the Handknit Holidays book with the Rowan Purelife BFL yarn I purchased to participate in the Ravelry group Woolalong (see the 3/5 post). I had knitted a hat but wasn't happy with what I had made. The socks are cabled, thick and so soft. They will be house socks, not for wearing inside shoes. It's a fast project due to the gauge of the yarn. I worked on those last night and then put in some time on DH's white cotton sweater sleeves.
When my work day is over today, I hope to stop by the marina to test fit a mock up of a motor cover I hope to have sewn within a couple of weeks. Then I'd like to get home and go for another bike ride (torture for a purpose), then relax over dinner - the ribs DH has slow cooking right now. I'll check on my plants and then settle down for some knitting (unless DH takes me out for the ice cream treat I won when we bet on the date of the snow pile melt). Yum. ; ))
Monday, March 15, 2010
DH tried his sweater on last night (the one I started ages ago). I marked and measured and then ripped the sleeves. I have recalculated stitch counts at various points and am back on track (I hope) to finish this sweater within a month.
I'll be knitting on those sleeves at the KAL on Tuesday night, since I finished the KAL sweater. It's just stockinette with decreases, so if someone new comes to join us, I will be easily able to assist them to get started and not loose my place in my own knitting.
I re-potted my few indoor plants yesterday, and put the new plants in new pots. Fingers crossed that they live. The pansies will be planted outside this week since they can take the chillier weather. At least I know that they will live ....
Sunshine .... please, I need sunshine. Soon.
Sunday, March 14, 2010
Nancy bought a hanging plant that has beautiful white petals with a purple center.
I bought two pretty little plants with tiny blue flowers and I'm going to attempt to keep them alive in my house. That's a tough one for me - I seem to be deadly to indoor plants. I'll put them out as soon as the weather allows. Does anyone know the name of this little cutie? I thought I remembered but when I looked up the name I thought it was, the plant was different.
I also bought a Geranium. I love geraniums and this one has such a pretty flower ... it's called Imperial.
I bought some ornaments for the deck - these will go on the upright supports for the shade cloth frame.
For future gifts I purchased dip mixes with beautifully decorated serving utensils. They are dishwasher safe and oh so cute. Nancy bought a few, also.
There were a few other little doodads purchased and a gift for my mother. Nancy and I ate lunch, chatted and in general had a great time despite the rain.
On the knitting front, I wore my completed but unblocked Mondo Cable Pulli to the Needle Exchange on Thursday night, but it's blocking now.
I am very pleased with the resulting sweater - fit, pattern and yarn.
The summer shell version is also blocking.
When I saw the new Knitters magazine, I was attracted to the Spiral Stole. A few of us (regulars at the Needle Exchange on thursday night) will be doing an unofficial KAL, urging each other to complete the squares (20 in all) in a timely manner and helping each other out with trouble spots (like the cast on and first row or two). I swatched with two different yarns. The first is Nashua Desert Flower color 3566, which is a linen/cotton/nylon blend. I think it looks great and is probably the yarn I will use. This is my wet swatch, drying.
The other yarn that I am trying out is Bambool. It is very soft and drapey, and in the color I would choose (either sapphire or violet) to knit the stole in would be beautiful, I think. I'll have to see how the blocked swatches look and feel, but right now I prefer the slight variegation of the Desert Flower. I haven't blocked the Bambool swatch yet since I haven't removed the waste yarn in the center and pulled the center together yet.
The lace scarf is progressing nicely and I am still entertained by the pattern. I hope to finish it in the next two weeks or so. It's won't be my only project to knit on - if it were, I could have it completed in just a week, I think. I have to knit 2 more complete pattern repeats, then the edging on the second end. I want to start back on Bob's white cotton sweater and get those sleeves correctly knitted so he can wear it this spring and summer.
It's a rainy Sunday afternoon and I'm having trouble motivating myself to get housework done. I'd rather go spin and knit. But, I had a fun day yesterday and now have to get the chores done.
Happy Birthday to you, Nancy.
Wednesday, March 10, 2010
I was just about crippled by the time I got home from work yesterday - hauling, packaging and shipping blood samples - so I did not go for my daily bike ride or block the sweater that was waiting. What I did do was take a pain pill, eat dinner, do the dishes, do my back exercises and then lie down with the heating pad. Flat on my back. Knitting was tough in that position, but I hauled out the purple alpaca shawl I had started the last time I needed simple knitting and worked a few rows of 2 x 2 ribbing for the edging. 4 inches of ribbing are needed and only about 1.5 inches are knitted, so there's plenty more work to be done on that.
I'd like to knit a full pattern repeat on the cashmere scarf tonight but I suspect that I will not be able to sit that long (due to the back issue) so my knitting likely consist of a few rows of lace and then more alpaca shawl ribbing while stretched out in bed.
DH is enjoying having more temperate weather - he's finally getting to complete the shed work that was put on hold with the blizzards and more than 2 feet of snow in the back yard. (It's a good thing he's back at it, too. One of the doors fell off the old shed yesterday.) Speaking of that snow, I won the bet about when the big pile of snow will melt - you can see grass now. Maybe I'll collect my ice cream treat over the weekend. ; ))
Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival classes are posted on the website. I'd like to take 2 of them but money may limit me to one .... I'm still agonizing over whether to have more spending money at the festival or take 2 classes. I'd like to take Warm Woolies and need to take Plying hints and tricks. I detest plying and I'm sure that I could do something differently that would make me enjoy it more and possibly even improve the end result. The plying class will be a definite request (there's no guarantee you get the classes you request). The spinning class is the one I am debating over.
We "spring ahead" this weekend. How many of you will be late to something on Sunday morning? I forgot once - I was an hour late for my shift in the ICU in Texas. I was rather red-faced and apologetic to the person who had to wait for me. : (
Monday, March 08, 2010
Daffodils are springing taller.
I went for another bike ride on Sunday and was able to go further than I had on Saturday. BTW, did I mention that my bike is a beautiful, bright purple? DH is wonderful. ; )
The new sink is in and looks great.
I finished my Mondo Cable Pulli last night! Ends woven in and all. : )) just the blocking remains to be done.
The sun shined all weekend.
We put line dried sheets on the bed last night. They smell soooo good.
My physical therapist knows how to (and did) fix my back problems and make me feel better.
It's supposed to be in the 50s all week.
I'm going with Nancy to the Home and Garden show this coming weekend.
Maryland Sheep and Wool festival is less than 8 weeks away.
Saturday, March 06, 2010
This is my Jojoland Cashmere scarf.
I succumbed to the temptation to sample this month's breed in the Ravelry group that I mentioned. I bought 2 balls of Rowan Purelife BFL and because I thought I might want some contrasting color, I purchased one ball of Black Welsh, also. I'm working on a hat .....
This is the finished Olympic Reindeer hat. You can see that my tension was not great - you can see the blue through the white. I thought I had it right while knitting, but obviously not. I am not happy with that, but the hat looks OK and will get worn. I will say that it was fun to knit and I might make another.
Spinning happened here today. I thought I would include a photo just so you don't think I am making it up. ; )
I took my new bike out for a spin today. I didn't go far - my legs are in bad shape after all this time without exercise, but I'll get there. DH knows me well - the bike is purple. ; ))
Friday, March 05, 2010
Tuesday, March 02, 2010
Tonight is the first night (due to snow) of the Mondo Cable KAL that I am leading at my LYS. There are no sign up sheets, so I hope that someone shows up! Nancy plans to be there - she's knitting another Mondo Cable sweater ( her Mondo Cable Pulli was her Olympic knitting project) as a gift for a friend, so I should have her company at least. If no one else comes, we'll have some quality chatting time. ; )
My next project will be to finish up the white cotton sweater for DH. I have struggled with the sleeves - too wide, too narrow, taper too fast, you name it, I did it wrong. I've had enough of a break at this point that I think I can rip back what I need to and fix the sleeves so they look nice instead of settling because I'm tired of knitting it.
Once that is done, I am not sure what will come next. I want to continue to knit sweaters. The question will be should I knit one more winter sweater or move on to summer fabrics? I'd like to get one more wool sweater in before the hot weather. OH, that's right. I started the Cardi Cozy several months ago and put it aside to finish other things. That might be a good transition project. Another option would be Yank. I have the yarn for that sitting out in the shed .....
If I go the summer route, the Handkerchief Tee might be a good choice. I really like the lace pattern used there and layering in the office in A/C season is good.
I have some yarn that might work. Lots of options and I am keeping them all open. There's no telling what might feel just right at the time.
Work is busy and I am tired. It's a good busy but that doesn't change the fact that I'm pooped when I get home. I hope I get used to this busier pace soon. ; )) I need some regular exercise to help with endurance and energy level in general. I had purchased a used bike last year at the Goodwill store but only rode it once or twice. I had problems with my foot (from surgery) and it just sat. Now I'd like to get back to it and apparently the tires, tubes and brake pads need to be replaced. The cost of all that adds up to almost a new bike so that what I have. DH picked it up for me and I will do my best to ride at least 4 times/week. The days are getting longer (so that I can ride after work) and I think that's a reasonable goal. It's mine for now, anyway.