Saturday, September 30, 2006

Saturday sky

On Saturday, twice in a row. Tell me that doesn't freak you out.

dawn, 9/30/06
The real question is, why am I always late on weekdays, but get up before dawn on the weekends with no problem?

And here, for your viewing pleasure. The Bug watches TV in his "recliner".

reclining baby

Friday, September 29, 2006


I do know it's Friday. I also know that it's the end of September, and October is just around the corner. Where the hell has my year gone? How is it possible that nine months zipped by and I didn't notice? Oy.
On the other hand, this is my favoritest of all favorites time of year. (I'm that annoyingly chipper person who loves everyone and everything between now and New Year's Day.)
I knitted another half a cable on Tendrils last night, and YEEHAW, I'm ready to join the fourth ball. I think I have about nine repeats (a repeat being a whole back-and-forth of the cable), mebbe a little more. I'm ahead of "schedule" since knitting four rows would leave me ready to twist the cable, and in my little head, that's the fun part, so I don't stop until I've done the twist and the WS row after. It looks roughly the same as it did here, except a bit longer. Still loving the yarn, still wrestling with the beads, still hating the color. Still thinking I can get it and it's partner the Clapotis done by Christmas.
This weekend, the Barbecue That Ate My Life. It went from "a few people in the backyard grilling burgers" to "I gotta rent some tables and chairs". Do I need to make goodie bags for the other kids? Do I have enough beer? Is it weird to serve margaritas at a 1 yr old's birthday party?

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

I admit it

I am unreasonably fond of my little countdown machine over there in the sidebar. Not because I'm one of those smug people who will have all my Christmas knitting/shopping done by Thanksgiving, but just because I love Christmas. There's a neighborhood in our town called Winterhaven that goes all out every year. There are carriage rides and hot chocolate and amazing displays of creativity. I can't wait to take The Bug back. I can't wait to get him a new ornament, and see him play with the wrapping paper on Christmas morning, and all that stuff. It's the best. This year I may have to go up to Phoenix early and buy my dad a Christmas tree. Christmas was my mom's favorite time of year, and he hasn't decorated once since she died 11 years ago. If The Bug will be there at Grampa's for Christmas, there will be a tree, and lights, and the whole deal. And I'll skin my brother's dog if he does anything to it. (Okay, not really, but I really dislike that dog.)
I HAVE already started my Christmas knitting. However, since my knitting speed is set to Glacial, it will take me ages to finish the few projects I have going, and I won't be able to do half the ones I wanted to do in my head. The other night I worked on Tendrils and did 2/3 of a complete repeat. 8 rows total. At the end of it, my shoulders, arms and hands were throbbing. I didn't figure it out until the next morning, but those beads are heavy and they make a difference! I had grand plans of a repeat (one full cable twist) a night, but those plans are gone. This one will take me until the very end, I think, if I knit a few rows a night, alternating with other projects to give my hands a break. I have 7.5 repeats done, and I need somewhere between 25 and 30. Figuring for the most repeats and giving myself three weeks for dyeing, blocking and wrapping, that means I need to do four rows a day. That is completely doable, since I usually do a full repeat (12 rows) each weekend day. Yeah, this one is in the realm of possibility, even without killing myself.
I also cast on for double-knit socks after Kory Stamper's recent Knitty article on the subject. I overcame my mental block about doing proper short row toes (five tries for two toes, people) and put them all together. It's difficult to work with right now. I am not crazy about alternating each stitch, but someone mentioned in the comments on Kory's blog that she'd been taught to knit one round of sock A, slipping the B stitches, then switch. I found this very easy and convenient, except that I didn't remember to move the A yarn to the front when slipping the B stitches. I am fixing that stitch by stitch, but the nature of this dark yarn means I must do it in full daylight. These socks are a killer learning experience, and I am loving it completely. I may knit more this way, who knows?

And a meme, from Grumperina. Ten knitterly things you don't know about me:
  1. I learned to knit about two years ago, by taking a class. I'd tried to teach myself from a book the way I did with crochet, but it didn't work out. After I learned to knit, I realized I HAD been doing it right from the book, but I'd been using size 10 needles on sport weight yarn, and it just didn't look like it was supposed to.
  2. I will try anything (that I like the looks of) once. If I don't like it, I won't do it anymore, but how will I know if I don't try?
  3. I don't understand why people say they are afraid to try a knitting technique. I am afraid of scorpions. Needles and yarn? Not so much.
  4. Frogging frustrates me, but not too badly. I like knitting well enough that I'm generally happy to knit even if I've done the same bit before and screwed it up. (See five toes for two socks, above.)
  5. I like acrylic yarns. There, I said it.
  6. I also like ridiculously expensive hand dyed silks, qiviut, llama, etc. (Someday I will knit with qiviut, and someday I will knit with buffalo.)
  7. Noro feels ungodly scratchy to me, to the point where I wonder why anyone would bother knitting with it.
  8. I never hide craft purchases from my husband. I work my @ss off, I pay the bills, I put food on the table, and once he bought a boat without consulting me. He owes me.
  9. I am afraid that, between my knitting and quilting stashes and that little obsession with buying cross-stitch kits on eBay, I may be close to the end of the boat excuse. He got a good deal, and I have a LOT of craft stash.
  10. I am slowly amassing bits of roving stash. Someday soon I will learn to use a drop spindle.

Monday, September 25, 2006

In case you didn't know,

There are 91 days until CHRISTMAS.

Just sayin'.

Saturday, September 23, 2006

Saturday sky

Now on Saturdays!
Yes, it's true, I was neither too busy nor too lazy to take a picture this morning. It's shaping up to be a beautiful day.

strangely gray blue sky

That picture shows an odd gray on my monitor, but it wasn't when I took it - I don't know if it's my sad dying monitor or my sad camera skills that was the problem.


I started my Bearfoot socks. I plan to knit them two at a time, a la extreme knitting from Knitty, but I am cheating a bit. The process of doing short rows while trying to keep my yarns and wraps straight in a yarn that looks nearly black except in the best of light sounds a little too extreme for me. So, I present two little sock toes.

moose toes

I will stuff one inside the other when I finish them both, and then I'll double-knit. Weenie way out, I know, blah blah blah, but I just didn't wanna screw it up early on. I plan to short row the heels at the same, so I will get some practice.

OY. I just ripped both toes. Will someone please remind me, next time I mention short-row toe up socks, that I really need to start with a provisional cast on if I don't want that ridge across my toes? OY OY OY. And also, Caramba.

Friday, September 22, 2006

Mama loves her some cake!

Here we have some little yarn cakes. I LOVE yarn cakes. If I had all the leisure time I wanted, I would spend a little time each day rewinding my balls into little cakes. They're deeply satisfying, and calorie free. (Actually, if I were to eat them, they'd probably have calories, given the nature of most things.)
Anyway, I borrowed a scale and split my hank of Bearfoot and my ball of A Piece of Vermont into two equal cakes. Yarn cupcakes!

yarn cupcakes

I will cast on for my little socks whilst waiting for the doctor (well, for the nurse, really) to jab my son repeatedly in the thigh with long needles. We both love that Oh So Much.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Socky socky socky schmoo

(Hmm, I wonder what this post is about?)
Last night I finished the ribbed socks in my hand-dyed cotton sock yarn! Those have been a long time in the making, and I can say with complete honesty that I'm glad they're finished. They are snuggly to wear, and I can't wait. (I really really need to get some shoes that show off my hand-knit socks. Suggestions? And no, clear plastic clogs will not go on my feet.)

green socks
I'm not exactly sure why my feet look so stumpy in that picture, but I DID take it on WTF Wednesday...
Pattern: Basic toe-up by Wendy, with some ribbing thrown in to entertain me
Yarn: Cotton/lycra mix that I dyed myself and can't find anymore in the wild
Time: OMG I don't want to think about this. Um... May 1 (OMG how sad is that) to Sept 19. Oy.



In Montana it was finally cool enough to wear them, and they were wonderful and so snuggly. Thanks again, Des! I can't wait for another sockapalooza!
ETA: I showed them to my MIL, who knit in a former life, and she said, "Wow, look at all those color changes! Those must have been really hard to knit!" LOL She was amazed at "what they'll think of next" when I told her about the self-striping yarn.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006


I go away for a few days, and Blogland explodes! What, you people wait until I leave to post? You can't post while I'm at work, being bored?

Anyway, it was a lovely trip. There was cold, there was rain, there was snow, there was moose poop. There was cake, and lots of it. (Not in the same location with the moose poop.)

Bug loved the grass, the trees, the puppies next door, Gramma, Grampa, Buttons the Dog, his cousins, walking on the river, flying in the airplane, running like a maniac through the airport... Here is a brief photo essay of our trip.

Sept 18

Sept 17, Happy Birthday Bug

Bitterroot river
Sunday sky, a few days late

snuggly little wiggle monster

souvenir yarn

You had to know there would be yarn.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Running away

From the heat!
Tomorrow we take the Bug on his second-ever plane ride to see his grandparents. DH and I are practically dancing to get out of town, and of course, the Bug has no clue that anything is different. (Well, except for the slight shrillness that creeps into our voices when we say, "Are you going to see GRAMMA soon?!" He must think we're nuts.)
It's supposed to be rainy, with highs in the 50s and lows in the 30s. I am planning to do some river-walking anyway. Eddie can play in the grass if it's wet. The thought will jar his gramma to her very core, and she will fret ad nauseum that he might get cold. If a kid can't play in the rain, though, then I give up. I HOPE he gets a little chilly, just to know what it feels like. Most of his life has been spent in the inferno that is southern Arizona in the summer, and our last winter was particularly mild. His great-gramma made him a quilt, just like she's made for all her other great-grandchildren, most of whom live in Montana. The quilt is so heavy we've not used it yet. Maybe this weekend!
In the grand tradition of overestimating my abilities, I will again be taking Tendrils AND Frill. This time I hope to get two repeats on Tendrils and a few inches on Frill. I'll have my sock for the plane ride and the long layover in Salt Lake. Since I have the patterns for both memorized, it shouldn't be hard to knit a few stitches here and there, and maybe I'll make some noticeable progress. I threaded two more balls of yarn with beads last night, which should be plenty.
Work? what work?

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Walkin' fool

I have finally captured photos of the walking Bug.

Sept 10

He melts my heart all the time, but I especially love the stomping sound he makes when he's truckin' down the hall or something. I'd give him anything just to see him smile. I am so screwed.

Sept 10

Monday, September 11, 2006

It's all been said before

So I won't say it again.

Sunday, September 10, 2006

SaturdaySunday sky

Well, Saturday escaped me, and Sunday has run past too. Why do the weekends speed by, but the days at the office just drag?
Anyway, the sky. A combination of dead battery and pure laziness prevented me from taking the pic yesterday, but it looks much the same.

Sept 10

I have been knitting away on both Frill and Tendrils. I thought I'd post a few progress photos.

Here's Frill. The ball in the photo is about half gone, and I think I have another half ball attached to the second frill.

Frill progress

That thing is about 41 inches long, and I have another 11 inches of frill waiting to be attached. The pattern suggests 87 inches in length, but I'm not sure I'll knit it that long. I'll see how I feel about it when I finish this ball.

Here's Tendrils.

Tendrils progress

A cable-y close up. (Click to embiggen, as always.)

cables and beads

I love the pattern. I love the texture of the yarn; it's soft as soft. I HATEHATEHATE the way the colors are knitting up. I thought it would look less mottled when it was knitted up, but no. It's still splotchy and ugly. I will be overdyeing this puppy with a dark green dye when I'm finished. I hope it makes the yellow and light green plies turn dark green, and leaves the dark green and blue plies alone. That would even it out, but still give it depth. All I know is, I'm not giving it to anyone in its current color incarnation.

More progress: Bug's hair!

Bug and Mama

He looks a little less thrilled about it than Mama, but he warmed up to it later.

Friday, September 08, 2006

Glorious Friday

Today has started out as nice as yesterday did. We got a brief rain shower this morning,

damn we need to do something about the grass

I had time (and milk) to make my coffee, and the Bug played quietly in his crib while I took a shower. I even had time to knit a row on Tendrils! I know, I know, Selfish September says I should knit for me first, but I sorta was - I like Tendrils better right now than the two projects intended for me. Also, I'd left my sock at work, not thinking I'd have time to work on it before I got to the office. Anyway, I'm just shy of three repeats! Yeah, so the five-repeats-a-week thing isn't going so well right now...

The babies abound! Grumperina has been making baby gifts for what seems like ages, on and off, and even Alison got in on the fun! Go wish her congratulations.

Here is my little baby, sporting his new shoes.

new shoes

He's not sure about them yet, but next week in Montana it will be cool enough that he'll need them, so he'd best get the practice in now.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Rainy day somethings?

What's the opposite of the blues? What do you have when you're feeling good?
Anyway, this morning has started out in a lovely fashion. I was awakened a little too early, 5:30am, by the Bug. We got up to find his daddy and went outside, where it was actually a little crisp. We sat there with DH for a few minutes, and it started to rain! YAY! It's been going ever since. (When I got to work, the marquee on the bank out front says it's 66. We haven't seen that low temp for months and months, even at night!)
I was out of milk for my lattes, so I went to Starbucks and got a giant Pumpkin Spice latte! YUM. Now, I know lots of people hate Starbucks (why do we hate companies that succeed? I mean, it's one thing to hate big corporations that pollute and oppress, but SB is supposed to be a good corporate citizen, right?) but in a pinch they'll do. Their coffee is usually too weak for me, but with the pumpkin flavoring, I'll suffer. ;-) I must hunt some of this down myself for my regular morning lattes. Yum.
To top it all off, I had a conference call this morning, and I knitted on my sock! I must have gotten 5 rounds done at least. This may not seem like a big deal, but in the last two months I think I've probably only knitted 5 rounds total on that sock. I so want to get it done, both so I can wear them and so I can start a new one. I think next time I knit socks I will do two pairs at once, to keep myself entertained. A plain green 3x1 rib sock is not the most exciting thing out there.
I have accepted the fact that Sonnet will not be done in time for Montana next week. It should be cold enough, however, to wear my Sockapaloooza knee-highs, finally! Looking forward to walking by the river, and visiting with the family, and showing off the Bug! They haven't seen him since he was about three weeks old, so the change will be amazing.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006


That title has nothing at all to do with anything, but I couldn't think of a snappy title. I guess it's a little appropriate, since we finally got a bit of rain from John and all the dust has been washed from the trees. I think other parts of town got more; some of the washes are closed on the northwest side of town. We got just enough to dampen everything and put a slight nip in the air after the sun went down. It was a very pleasant evening.
I did very little knitting yesterday. DH left before I got up and didn't get home until after 8pm. The Bug had a rough day of falling down or getting fingers pinched, and didn't nap or eat well, either. He struggled mightily to keep himself awake until he got to see Daddy, and that struggle included much shrieking, whining, moaning, chasing dogs, and kicking me. Oy. He has sharp toes.
I didn't sew in the sleeves of Haiku, either. I need good light and time to concentrate, and I had neither of those yesterday. A friend came over Sunday afternoon and brought her almost-four-year-old daughter. Haiku would have fit her perfectly. This is not good, as the little girl I'm making it for is eensy. Tiny. Wee, even. Oh well, someday it will fit her. I still love it.
Now I have a dilemma. I don't want to knit on my socks at SnB. The HPT requires too much yarn and I am hesitant to be seen with it in public anyway. Sonnet is easy SnB knitting, but it won't get me any closer to being done with my Christmas knitting. That leaves Frill and Tendrils. Hmm, Tendrils is less complicated, so I should probably take that. The weight of the beads on that thing make it so that very soon it will be too big to knit anywhere. Yeah, Tendrils will have its day in the sun night in the coffeehouse tonight.

Sunday, September 03, 2006

You big tease

Oy, it's hot. I guess it's not terribly hot - 86, with 46% humidity, but it looks hot. John is a big tease at my house so far. The weather channel talks about big time rain, flash flooding, warning this, severe weather that. I look out my window and see fluffy white clouds with blue sky. It's the kind of sky, though, that feels heavy and hot. If it were cold, they'd be snow clouds. It's not, though, so they're just holding in the heat. I feel oppressed. I also feel weird that it's only noon. It feels late. There must be clouds elsewhere blocking the sun, because until I just looked at the clock I figured it was abou 4pm. (Hooray, more knitting time!)
I have been knitting on Frill today. Holy crap, I know, but it's true. I worked on Tendrils most of yesterday, as the Bug allowed, so I wanted a little change. Turns out I'd rather work on the albatross of knitting than seam up a baby sweater. This does not bode well for the future.
The Bug has recently discovered the TV. He always knew it was there, to scratch, touch, bang on, and lick, but now he's seeing the pictures.

I wish I was Mama Einstein

It's kinda cracking me up. There's a chime noise that happens when the scene changes, and even if he's gotten interested in something else, his head whips around to see what the new thing is when he hears that chime. It's a tad Pavlovian.

Saturday, September 02, 2006

Holy cow, when did it turn to September?

Cuz I'm still in April or May.
Hello new subscriber!

Rabbitch mentioned something recently about Selfish September. I don't know if that is the appropriate title, but the gist is that each day in September, you knit a little on something for yourself, before you knit on gifts. I can do that. Two rounds or so on my little green sock, here I come. Hopefully to be done while I sip some coffee each morning.

It's Saturday, and that means I need some sky.
Here is the standard landscape from my back step.

Sept 2

Turn just a little, though, and ...


Hello, John.

John is making it a little cooler here today, for which he has my thanks. I'd appreciate it, though, if he'd consider laying off the people in Mexico. Wondering if your shanty or tar paper house will still be there when you get back from the shelter sounds like a heinous way to spend the weekend.

DH is off working this weekend, saving the world, one badly-done house at a time. (The house he's remodelling now was bought for a (relative) song, because some of the features added to the house by the previous owners were so ugly no one would touch the thing.) I will be knitting as much as the Bug allows. Tendrils continues, and despite misgivings about the color of the yarn, I like it. This is what I did last night.

tendril surgery

The Harlot had a piece on how to do that recently, and it worked very well.

In other news, Sweden recently pledged $5 million to help rebuild Gaza and get the people there an economy back. This sounds like a lot (especially after other countries added to the pot), until I think about something else. A few years ago, DH helped build a vacation home for The Ks, a very wealthy couple from out of state. Including the land, they spent more than $7 million. It was mostly built to house their art collection, but they intended to send the kids and the nanny a few times a year. I have no qualms about The Ks spending their money the way they see fit. But ONE COUPLE spent more on one unused house than a WHOLE COUNTRY pledged to help rebuild an entire region. That's crazy in so many directions, I'm not even able to entirely wrap my head around it.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I'll be off trying to finally get video of the Bug walking.