Tuesday, September 25, 2007

What kind of knitter are you?

What Kind of Knitter Are You?

You appear to be a Knitting Guru. You love knitting and do it all the time. While finishing a piece is the plan, you still love the process, and can't imagine a day going by without giving some time to your yarn. Packing for vacation involves leaving ample space for the stash and supplies. It can be hard to tell where the yarn ends and you begin.http://marniemaclean.com
Take this quiz!

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Monday, September 24, 2007

Some travel, some knitting and a big shout out to my Secret Pal!

I must start out this post by saying a big THANK YOU!!!!! THANK YOU!!!!!! THANK YOU!!!!! to my Secret Pal! My package was perfect. I feel like we must have been friends for years for you to have picked out such great stuff that so suits me!

The Girls' Book How to Be the Best at Everything is so me that it's not even funny. I showed it to my roommate and he had quite a good laugh at how appropriate it is. I immediately dived into it and now should be able to survive in a horror movie. I think I'm going to read through this one item a day until I am finished. SP, I love this book!

My first thought upon seeing this yarn was that it reminded me of the ocean. Upon reading the card, I learned that my Secret Pal had the same thought when she saw it.

There were some very cute pins that accurately depict me as I am both a bit of a black sheep and a pack rat.

I love this candle. It is White Pepper and Spice scented. Very appropriate as I am one of those people who likes a little bit of food with my pepper to begin with.

Some very cute notecards,

And last but not least, two peanut erasers and j sticky notes.

Thank you so much Secret Pal!!!! Having spent much of the last week on the road, the package you sent was a great welcome home present!!!

I've done a lot of traveling lately. I was in Minnesota and Wisconsin for work most of last week. I rented a car for the first time ever. It was a bright yellow Chevy Cobalt. At least, I didn't have to worry about losing it in the parking lot.
I got to check out the Leinenkugel Brewery in Chippewa Falls.
And take in a little nature.I also went to the Mall of America and, deciding that I would only spend a bunch of money that I shouldn't if I started to check out the shops, chose to spend the evening in the amusement park. The rides were pretty good for being in the middle of a mall. I would highly recommend checking out the amusement park if you are at the Mall of America. After 5 p.m., it's less than $15 for an unlimited ride ticket.

Then, I went to my parents' house this weekend as my brother was in town.

Let me introduce you to my nephew Buddy. He may look sad but he actually lives like a king. I think the "poor pitiful me" routine helps him to get away with a lot and therefore he uses it to his best advantage.

When he is not begging for food,
He snags the most comfy spots to snooze.
Or charms his way into getting petted, getting food or sitting on your lap.

In the midst of all this travel, I was able to finish my Monkey socks.
Here is an in-progress shot of them Saturday.

And before I left my parents' house on Sunday, I was able to call them an official FO!!!
I was overly ambitious in my knitting goals for the week. I ended up doing a lot more driving around than I had anticipated on the trip and was only able to finish the Monkey socks. I am hoping to get the Unrusted Root off the needles this week.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Progress Report

I am plugging away on UnRusted Root. I didn't get much knitting in this weekend as I was extremely lazy and spent pretty much all of Saturday snoozing and watching movies. For some reason, I tend to get very sleepy when the weather changes. I did make a bit of progress and have reached the point of starting the waist shaping. I am hoping to be able to finish UnRusted Root on my business trip to Wisconsin this week. In addition to UnRusted Root, I will also be taking my Monkeys with me. I have cast on the second sock and am into the first lace repeat. If I am lucky, I will also get these Monkeys off my back while on this trip. In wishful thinking, I am also taking another sock yarn with me in case I can wrap up both of these projects and need something else to knit.

As for movies, I went to see 3:10 to Yuma at the theater yesterday and give it two thumbs up. The story was really well done and the acting was spectacular. I am a big Christian Bale fan and he did an excellent job but I have to say that this film really belongs to Russell Crowe and Ben Foster. The story was gripping and, even if you aren't a big fan of Westerns, it will keep your interest.

I also watched alot of DVDs this weekend. I watched the second disc of the first season of Shameless. This is a British t.v. series about a very unorthodox family in Manchester. It is both hilarious and, at times, quite dramatic.

I also watched Hot Fuzz this weekend. This film had me laughing hysterically and, even shouting "oh my god" at one point. (For those of you who have seen the film, it's a scene that involves Timothy Dalton and I think you can easily pick the one.) If you get this DVD, I would definitely recommend watching the bonus features. They are nearly as funny as the film.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Greetings from the 'burgh!

Have a great weekend everyone!! And Go Steelers!!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

In a moment of weakness, I broke.

I've been doing pretty well about not buying yarn but the lure was too great for me today and I bought the yarn for Juliet by Zephyr Style. I was buying something online to complete my first SP11 package that every LYS I went SP shopping in was out of and I gave in to temptation. I don't feel too badly about it because 1. what's done is done and 2. because I was frugal about it and went with the Valley Yarns Berkshire Bulky at WEBS that was $4.99 a skein. I went with the grey colorway. I just have a vision of this little cardi in grey with a crisp white shirt. I'm hoping it arrives by next Monday so that I can take Juliet as my travel project when I head to Wisconsin for work. It looks like it is a quick knit that I may be able to finish on the trip. I plan on taking it (if the yarn arrives) and a sock project. If the yarn doesn't arrive, I'm hoping to have finished UnRusted Root and begin Ms. Marigold by then.

Monday, September 10, 2007

An FO Frenzy!

In the ongoing effort to organize and simplify my life, I tackled my UFO basket this weekend. I set a goal of finishing at least 2 objects in it and actually finished 3. The leaves only 4 UFO items remaining in the basket!!!!!

Friday evening when I got home from work, I decided to tackle the Cozy V-Neck Pullover with Deep Ribbing from Fitted Knits by Stephanie Japel. I started knitting this sweater in April when the Pittsburgh weather was still pretty cold. When May rolled around, the temperatures drastically increased making it impossible to endure working on a long sleeved sweater knit in Cascade Pastaza. All in all, this was a pleasurable, mindless knit. The ribbing gets a little tedious after a while but the sweater knits up quickly enough that you can push your way through it. I have a bit of a jog in the middle of the bottom where the final stitch to be bound off fell. I also found the seaming of the neckline to be a bit fiddly. I am a big fan of layering in the winter and expect to get a lot of wear out of this sweater.

On Saturday, I started with my oldest FO, the Ticuna sweater vest by Berroco. You can find the free pattern here. This was my first large project having only completed hats before this point. I started two sweaters at the same time and as a newbie knitter, had to let one fall by the wayside. The only work that remained on the Ticuna vest was to pick up and knit the armbands, which I was able to finish fairly quickly on Saturday.

Next up was a project that will be a Christmas present. These slippers are made from a pattern that was my great grandma MeMe's. I started these quite a while ago and put them aside when the lure of other projects was too great to resist.

Feeling like I had spent enough time with the UFO basket, I went back to working on my UnRusted Root. I am actually a bit further along than this picture indicates because I finished the sleeves and picked up and knit the neckband after trying it on for fit. I like to go back and do the finishing on a project as I am working on it so that, when I do the final bind off, I'm done. I started doing that with Green Gable and find that it allows me to finish a project without it spending any time in the UFO basket if I do the finishing as I go along.I would say that I had a very productive knitting weekend. I'm hoping to be able to replicate it next weekend as well. Christmas is just around the corner and I need to pick up the pace on my projects if I am to get everything finished that I would like to by the end of the year.

Friday, September 7, 2007

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Slightly shaken and stirred.

You Are A Martini

You are the kind of drinker who appreciates a nice hard drink.
And for you, only quality alcohol. You don't waste your time on the cheap stuff.
Obviously, you're usually found with a martini in your hand. But sometimes you mix it up with a gin and tonic.
And you'd never, ever consider one of those flavored martinis. They're hardly a drink!

Say hello to my little friends...

I did a little pattern purchasing today. Please say hello to my newest acquisitions.

I don't have any yarn in the stash for this but I'm thinking of ordering Knitpicks Andean Silk for it. I'm currently torn between the Cranberry and Sangria colorways.

Next up, we have the lovely Juliet by Zephyr Style.

I think I prefer the full length version of this sweater. I'm thinking about ordering Knitpicks Wool of the Andes Bulky in the Pewter colorway for this cardi.

And last but not least, we have The Somewhat Cowl by Wendy Bernard.

I'm probably going to break down and order the Blue Sky Alpacas Alpaca and Silk for the Somewhat Cowl. I am currently sticking to my yarn moratorium and have not ordered any of the yarns for these projects. I have to knit at least three of the sweater projects that I already have yarn for before I will allow myself to purchase any yarn for additional sweater projects. I'm currently working on Rusted Root and think the other two sweaters will be the feminine cardi with puffed sleeves from Fitted Knits by Stephanie Japel and Ms. Marigold by Zephyr Style.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

I see the light! (well, the flash at least because my camera is back in business)

I have decided to make an attempt to lead a more organized and leisurely life than I have been. In that vein, I cleaned my house and organized nearly all of my stuff (notice the nearly, it's all about baby steps.) It didn't hurt that my roommate's family was coming to the house to visit so that I had a deadline to bring things to some reasonable sense of order. I took this picture of myself to document what too much cleaning and organizing can do to a person.

(Be afraid kiddies, be very afraid.)

While I've been cleaning I've been trying to get pictures of my projects and my stash for updating this blog and for making the most of my ravelry account. To that vein, I have some photos to share and project progress reports to make.

Let's start with the Finished Objects that I have just gotten around to getting pictures of and posting.

Candy Apple Gable

I love this sweater and wear it all the time.

Pattern: Green Gable by Sarah and Rachel of Zephyr Style

Yarn: Brown Sheep Cotton Fleece - 3 skeins in the Candy Apple colorway (80% cotton, 20% wool)

Needles used: Size 6 and size 4 knitpicks options

Date Started: June 23, 2007

Date Completed: July 15, 2007

Modifications: I was wary of knitting the medium size (36-39") so I added an additional increase row before separating for the sleeves. In hindsight, I realize that wasn't necessary and have not done so with the Rusted Root that I am currently knitting.

One Skein Wonder

A fun and quick knit. I didn't think I would wear it much but I've worn it quite a bit since I finished it.

Pattern: One Skein Wonder by Stephanie Japel

Yarn: Nassau by the Great Adirondack Yarn Co. - 1 skein in the Tourmaline colorway (50% silk, 50% cotton)

Needles used: Size 8 and size 6 Knitpicks Options

Date started: Late July

Date finished: Early August

Modifications: Changed the body trim to k2p2 rib rather than seed stitch. Used size 6 needles for the ribbing rather than the size 5s called for in the pattern.

Adults Only Devil Hat
Pattern: Adults Only Devil Hat by Kitty Schmidt from Stitch 'n Bitch: A Knitters Handbook by Deb Stoller
Yarn: Unknown hand dyed worsted weight wool
Needles used: Size 7 16" circulars and dpns
Modifications: None
Notes: This was my first non-scarf project knitted too long ago to accurately remember when but suffice it to say that it was about a year and a half ago. I learned knitting in the round, decreasing, using dpns, i-cord and picking up stitches from this project. It sure seems like a hell of a lot to learn from such a small project but it true. I would highly recommend either the Adults Only Devil Hat or the Official Kittyville Hat for beginning knitters to tackle as their first projects.
Now on to the UFOs:
I am currently working on an UnRusted Root, that I started about a week and a half ago. The picture is a little dated as I got to the point of separting the sleeves out. I will knit a few more rows before I try it on and update with a glamorous mirror shot when I get there.
Right before casting on for UnRusted Root, I finished the first of my Monkey socks.
I also pulled out my oldest UFO that I plan to actually finish by the end of the month so that I can wear it this fall. It is the Ticuna Vest.
Well, I'm a bit blogged out at the moment. There will be more knitterly adventures coming soon to a theater near you.