Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Keeping My Mind off the Stomach Virus

Mike had it last week. I've been sleeping 6 extra hours a day, trying to avoid it. Simon has it now. Being home, I figure I'll update the blogs!

Sammy likes my yarn all the time, but this particular kind is now his favorite. It is Kidsilk Night, color: Thunder, by Rowan. It is mohair and silk, and has a thin thread of bling shot through it - in a midnight blue color. I love the stuff! I'm knitting it up on size 11 circulars to make a long tube scarf for a friend who is retiring soon.
It looks fairly solid in this picture, but trust me - it is like a cloud! I was concerned that the bling would make it scratchy, but the mohair shields your skin from the scratch nicely. It weighs next to nothing. Looks like lots of folks are doing lace with this, but I think that might just drive me batty. That is a project for some other time of life, I'd say!

I finished up this little lace neck scarf a week or 2 ago. Isn't it loverly? I am pleased with how it blocked out, but if I make one for myself I'm going to make it larger. We bigger girls like larger scarves. I'll find a skinny friend to gift this to.

At my MIL's request, I've made a fluffy pink baby sweater to send to DH's cousin in Texas. Let me tell you - THIS is a big bargain in both money and time! I bought the yarn from a friend who was having a stash reduction sale. It is Cascade Bollicine Revolution in a very bright pink color. It knit up on size 17 needles, and only took me about 4 hours from cast-on to bind-off. Can you believe it??? I have some blue yarn, too, and will be knitting it up soonish for another baby. I also have enough, probably, of the two colors to mix them in a third sweater. I got 3 balls each of the yarn. I can't lay my hands on the pattern at the moment, but when I do I'll link it.

Last year I gave DH yarn and a big book of cable patterns for Xmas with the promise of knitting him the ultimate sweater. Well, I ended up being so overwhelmed by the idea of knitting a great big adult sweater that I chickened out, bought cheaper, bulkier yarn, and made him a plain sweater. He likes it and wears it, too, but I still wanted to do better. This year I didn't even tell him he was getting it, I just cast on. I went back to the book of cable patterns and chose a very cool one that he'd picked out - 27 stitches wide and 40 rows long. I added a small cable on either side and charted the whole lot of it in an excel document. You can see the chart on the cookie sheet, held by some of Simon's architectural magnet doodads. I'm about 4 rows shy of being done with the first repeat. I love it! This is not knitting I can take out, as the cookie sheet would be awkward to carry around . . . but I do love working on it of an evening while we watch TV. We've been re-watching all of the Nero Wolfe series we have on DVD. Simon is enjoying them, too, which delights us all. We love enjoying great shows together.

One quick essay:
Knitting-Related Injury #1
I have often been injured in the line of duty - papercuts while framing were terribly painful, muscle cramps while Shaking My Sillies Out in Storytime were hard to bear, and laryngitis when I was supposed to be working the phones was challenging . . . but a small cut on my right index finger is nearly excruciating! I don't know how I got cut, but I suspect a particularly difficult circular needle which shall go un-named! I often knit Continental Style, holding the yarn in my left hand and just looping the right needle through and around, pulling the looped yarn out and up. It's quick, it's effiicient, and it's lovely to do. I can knit without light in this method, and just feel my way through a long bit of knitting, particularly if I've got the right size circular and the yarn is ammenable. I do, however, need to poke the end of the left needle down every other stitch or so when the stitches are needing to be slid closer to the end of that needle. Whenever I poke that needle . . . OUCH! The tip of the needle goes right into this small cut on my right hand index finger. It's an outrage! I've had to knit with a band-aid for a week, and put anti-biotic ointment on it. Each night I go to bed, my right fingertip throbbing. I can see the subcutaneous bruise growing. I try to find ways to rest during the day, but my needles and yarn keep beckoning me! I can't stop knitting, of course, because that would be . . . well . . .unthinkable!

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Knitting Christmas

My mom with her vest. Lovely alpaca from my good friend, Nancy, at Peru Hollow Farms near St. Louis, MO.
My brother's hat.

My assistant manager's cap.

My brother-in-law with his hat on (with my sister).

My son and quasi-cousins, Andrew and Jay.

Yea, yea, {Insert here the usual apologies for neglecting my blogosphere public}, but I'm here now! Check back soon for some rants and more pictures. LOL