Tuesday, January 31, 2006

The never-ending sweater

So I started this sweater back in August of 2005. It's a top down sweater knitted in the round from Knitting Pure and Simple. Basically the same pattern (only a WHOLE lot bigger) as the one I made for my nephew. Well, Danny's sweater went pretty darn fast. This one, not so much. The body and neck are done, as is about half of the first sleeve. Miles and miles of knitting in the round. I've had to go back and buy more yarn once, and I'm wondering if I'll have to go back again. G is not a small man. Not small around, and not small in length. So I've had to add several inches to both the body length as well as adding to the sleeves. Dear god, this is a boring project. I want to finish it, really I do. But it's so incredibly monotonous. Next time G is getting something with a little more spice. Some ribs or stripes, or a cable or two. Anything. But I will persevere.

So today is Tuesday. You know what that means...Catie pic day. Here she is with her daddy reading a story. Cute, aren't they?

So now my entry is complete. You know what that means, right? Back to the beast. I need some moral support here.

Sunday, January 29, 2006

S is for...Sunday and Spinning

I've made the executive decision to make Sunday spinning day. So after Catie was in bed, I broke out the spinning wheel. By the way, I haven't named her yet. She's a Majacraft Rose. Rose and its variations would be too predictable. Any suggestions?

So anyway, I'm getting better at the joining new fiber thing. Still have a tendency to break the yarn, but it's not nearly so bad as it was the other night. Here's a pic of my first skein. It's a medium wool. A Lincoln-something cross. I just set the twist yesterday, so it's been hanging on the back porch to dry. Not bad. Not good by any means. But it certainly could be worse. I don't know if I'll do anything with it, or just save it for posterity's sake. You know, so I can see how much I (hopefully) improve.

And then this is what I worked on tonight. The picture isn't great. But here you go.

It's a bit finer than the previous fiber. But I'm finally catching on. Now I've used up all the rolags I had ready. If only I could ge t G to help with the washing and carding. I'm allowed to dream, aren't I?

Friday, January 27, 2006

Should I go for the gold?

Not a whole lot on the knitting front to write. I'm about 1/3 of the way done with the first sleeve on G's sweater. It's sort of at the length of a 80s muscle shirt. You know...that over the shoulder, part way down the bicep look? Hot, I tell you. But only one arm. The other side is waiting patiently for me to get my rear in gear.

Needless to say, I'm not the fastest knitter in the world. I think when I get in a groove, I go fairly fast. But I don't get as much done each day as I would like. After a long day at work, I just want to hang out with G and Catie. Then at least a few nights a week, I try and get some exercise in. Nights I don't go to the gym are usually good knitting nights. I wish I was dedicated enough to get up early in the morning, but I am too much in love with sleep. And now I have to add in spinning time, blogging time, etc. Argh!

But on that fast knitting front, I'm considering joining the Knitting Olympics over at Chez Harlot. I would like to learn to do cables, and thought I might do the Irish Hiking Scarf. But I'm afriad I'd just be setting myself up for failure. I think this would be as good an opportunity as any, but I have serious doubts about my ability to get it finished in time. And I hate to lose. With a passion. I have a few more days to decided. Why is this such a difficult decision. If I don't finish, I don't finish. Right? Right?

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

So gauge really is important, huh?

Happy Hump Day. (It's Wednesday. Don't go getting all dirty-minded and stuff. Shame on you). At any rate, I'm a bad blogger and missed Catie picture day on Tuesday. Law and Order just kinda sucks me in sometimes. And then it was The Closer. And then Cold Case. I'm a cop show junkie, if you couldn't tell. TNT and USA are my favorite cable channels now, because they have back to back episodes. I SO need a life.

On the knitting front, the toe up socks (okay, sock really) are progressing along. I don't know about this short row heel thing, though. I think when I get to the heel on the second sock, I'll be back at The Yarn Shoppe, because, well, I'm a chicken and need someone standing over me reassuring me. So here's the deal. I was thinking I'd make the socks for me. I just sort of started knitting and didn't really measure my feet or gauge, but figured I would just stop when it was the right size. But I overestimated the number of stitches and increases I'd need for the foot. Just to give you an idea of how much I overestimated...I wear a women's size 6 and half shoe. The sock is a little big on me. A little big meaning it will fit my husband's size 15 foot. Check this out:

That's my fat foot on top of the sock. The pic isn't that great, but take my word for it. The sock is way bigger than my foot. At least all my hard work won't go to waste and G can wear them. Live and learn.

On the spinning front, I'm a little frustrated. I started out spinning this gorgeous Lincoln cross. I was pretty proud of myself as things were going quite smoothly. So now I'm onto a finer wool. I've decided I'm pretty much a moron at joining new wool. Once I get going I do okay, but I keep breaking the yarn when I'm trying to add more wool. Do I put more spin in it? Spin faster? Slower? Some little trick that hasn't even occurred to me? I'm perplexed. I had to give up the other day and take a break because so many profanities were a-flowin'.

And just in case you all were sad that Catie pic day went by without a photograph:

"What? Me? The cutest baby ever? Oh stop!"

P.S. Can you tell she's our first baby?

Saturday, January 21, 2006


My first FO of 2006. The MIL sock:

Vital stats:

Yarn: Socks that Rock in Heavy Metal

Pattern: Basically the Universal Sock Pattern.

Needles: Crystal Palace size 1 dpns

Started: December 2-ish, 2005

Finished: January 21, 2006

There were a few "firsts" with these socks. I had never used this yarn before (love it) and this was my first project with dpns. Prior to this I had used the magic loop method. But I bought the yarn on vacation and the store didn't have a long enough circular needle. I figured it was high time I learned to use those giant toothpicks anyway. I haven't entirely decided which method I prefer. I think I need to knit another pair or two each way before I come to that conclusion.

And now, one more question. What did G give Catie to eat or drink while I was at work?

Was there more than just breast milk in that cereal? Neither of them are telling, I'm sorry to say.

Friday, January 20, 2006


So here it is late Friday night. It's been a long week at work and I'm glad it's the weekend. A couple of weeks ago I had an "I love my job" post. This is definitely one of those more challenging weeks where I don't really love it so much. Long hours away from my family, tough patients, etc. It's all part of the package, I suppose.

On the knitting front, I officially joined our area fiber arts/spinning guild this week. I was too nervous to take my wheel though. I can do okay in the privacy of my home, but something about having a room full of people around as I struggle made me uncomfortable. Silly, is it not? Next month. But the exciting news is that hopefully there will be a new yarn store opening soon in the next town over (right now I have to go to Meridian, about 15-20 miles away). I hope it works out.

So enough about all this stuff...bring on the pics!! I had designated Tuesday as Catie picture day, but didn't get any posted. So here are few others as well. First we have Danny and me in the sweater I made him. It's the top down sweater from Knitting Pure and Simple. I can't even remember when Catie was that small, and she's only 7 months old.

And here's Mr. Daniel Edward right after he was born. AWWWW. Second only in cuteness to my own Catie Grace.

And speaking of Miss Catie, here we go. Carrots. MMMMM.

And last but not least, my dad with the babies. A little background info here...my dad was 46 when he married my mom. I was born a year later. When my sister and I were little, people would always compliment him on his grandkids. But we weren'this grandkids, we were his kids. He just started late. So he was late having grandkids. He was 78 when Catie was born. So he here is with the babies. It's been fun to watch him get all googly over them. Hopefully it was worth the wait.

So that's probably enough family bonding time, don't you think? I just had to show off these cuties, especially my nephew in his brand-spankin-new sweater. Tomorrow there'll be sock pics, I promise.

Monday, January 16, 2006

Back from Portland

Excuse the absence. No excuse really, but here goes.

So as you may have read last week, my sister had her baby Tuesday morning. So I took a half day off on Friday afternoon, we loaded up the truck, and headed west to Portland to meet the new addition. Managed to get a little yarn shopping in too. We got there late Friday night and after checking in at the motel were off to my sister's house. The baby really looks like her husband. I just have to say thank God I'm past that first couple weeks of breastfeeding. It's certainly worth it now, but ooowwww. Anyway, spent a couple hours Friday trying to help her with nursing. At least I think it was helpful.

Saturday morning we spent a couple hours with my sister and crew (pics coming tomorrow). Then my dad and G went back to the motel to watch a little football and my mom and I did some yarn shopping. First stop was the The Cozy Ewe in Oregon City. The owner is incredibly nice. A couple of years ago, she helped me pick yarn and a pattern to make shawls for my bridesmaids. I got this to make a sweater for Catie:

I thought I'd try a cardigan, which is definitely something new for me.

From there we went to Abundant Yarn and Dyeworks. My mom (who also lives in Idaho) has been there a couple of times when she was there visiting and really loved this store, so I had to go check it out. I certainly wasn't disappointed. Great store and cafe. Of course I couldn't leave empty handed here either:

That's Trekking XXL (for G's socks), Louet Pearls in French Blue (for me), some needles and the little yarn requirements booklet. Very handy. I had to buy some longer needles for G's socks because he has THE biggest feet. Size 15. It'll take me months to finish those babies.

Last but not least, we then made our way downtown to Knit Purl. Holy Socks that Rock Batman!!! They had tons of that goodness. No one here in Idaho carries it that I'm aware of. I was hypnotized by all the colors. MMMM...pretty colors. After staring at the wall for a good 10 minutes, I decided on "Marble". Is it wrong to want to skip G's socks altogether and just start a new pair with this yarn. Here's the pic, along with my new book.

Plus a close up of the yarn. Yummy. Must. Show. Restraint. I've been contemplating starting a pair of Jaywalkers. I think this is it.

Sunday we hit Powells. I LOVE that store. A whole city block dedicated to books. G and I sort of consider it the Holy Land, and make at least one stop there whenever we're in Western Oregon. I think we showed incredible restraint this time...only 65 bucks worth of books. For us, that's a bargain.

From there it was back to my sis's house. She and Steve are settling in nicely as new parents. Tired new parents. But doing well. We watched the end of the Colts/'Steelers game then headed home. To find the cat locked in our bedroom. For 2 days. Imagine what that means. And also came home to a message saying my wallet and cell phone were sitting on my sister's couch. I believe I said one or two swear words.

So now I'm going to go work on the MIL socks. I'm finishing the foot and should be done soon. The sooner I get them done, the sooner I can start something new. My new Jaywalkers. G's giant socks.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Just a little hat picture

Tuesday. I've decided to make Tuesday Catie picture day. Here she is in a little hat I made for her just after Thanksgiving. It's already just about too small for her. Kinda makes her ears look like they stick out. The pattern is based on the Umbilical Hat from SnB, but I sized it up a bit. Not enough, though. I made a sweater and hat for my sister's baby in the same yarn. And BTW, he was born this morning at 8:56 am. 7#, 13 oz. Welcome to the world, Danny!!

Haven't done much knitting today (yet). I think I'll work on the neck of G's sweater and get that done. What I really need to do is spin. I haven't done any spinning for a week or so. I have this brand new wheel sitting here just calling out for attention. I HAVE been washing little batches of wool, though. Maybe tomorrow.

Monday, January 09, 2006

These socks rock

Okay...here's the socks as of last night. Now the heel on the second sock is turned and I'm picking up stitches along the heel flap. They're in Heavy Metal, Socks that Rock. I love this yarn. However, I'm sorry to report that the needle monster has disappeared with one of my needles. Can't find it anywhere. I was (and still kind of am) seriously upset over it. It's a little piece of bamboo, for god's sake.

I finished the body of G's sweater tonight. It looks damn good on him. I still need to finish the neck and do the sleeves, but all in all, I'm quite pleased with the results thus far. This after having to add about 4 or 5 inches onto the length because he has such a long torso. If only I had remembered to get a picture when he was trying it on.

I'm trying to get more pics into a single blog entry, but haven't figured out how to space them through the blog. Still working on that. So I guess you'll have to wait until tomorrow to see yet another pic of Catie.

P.S. My sister is in labor. I'm about to be an aunt!!

Sunday, January 08, 2006

Toe up socks

Yesterday I started a class at my LYS on how to make toe-up socks with the Magic Loop method. So far the socks are looking good. Crazy figure-8 cast on. When it's time to cast on for the second one, I have a feeling I'll be back in the yarn shop with questions. It's one of those "trust me, it'll turn out okay" kind of things.

I'm just about to turn the heel on the second sock for my MIL. These are the first socks I've made with the infamous STR yarn. I love it, and have ordered 4 more skeins online.

Oh, and I jumped on the ugly avatar bandwagon. Here's mine. I gotta ge me one of these outfits. Love that skirt.

Yahoo! Avatars

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

I love my job

So today I delivered another baby. Days like today are why I became a family doc. I took care of the mom in her last pregnancy as well, and see her 2 year old son. This morning she came in to the hospital after her water had broken. A few hours later, (and 3 pushes, the lucky lady) she had a beautiful baby boy. Mom and baby did great. It was definitely the kind of delivery that makes me tear up every time.

I did get some knitting in this evening. I worked on the sock for G's mom. The cuff is almost done. The cuff is the most tedious part for me. Once I'm to the heel, things seem to go faster. And of course I spent way too much time surfing the internet. I just seem to go from link to link and before I know it, 2 or 3 hours have gone by.

Last night I was quite pleased with myself as I figured out how to add new links in the sidebar. Imagine my frustration when I closed the page, went to some other websites, came back, and discovered that all my changes weren't there. GRRRR!! I forgot to save my changes. Guess I'm not as smart as I thought I was. This IS a learning experience though, I suppose.

So I'm off to work more on the sock. Ahh, the mind-numbing knit 2, purl 2 rib. Yippee!!

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Proof she IS the cutest baby ever!!

Don't ya just wanna eat her up?? This was taken just a few days before Christmas. I'm a bit prejudiced, but damn, she's adorable.

Last night I plyed my first yarn. I still have lots of improving to do, but overall, I'm pretty pleased with the results. Pics coming soon!!

Sunday, January 01, 2006

Happy 2006

Hello 2006. Not much knitting today. Delivered a baby this afternoon. Then later some friends came over with their 4 girls to check out the spinning wheel. One baby is hard for us to manage here in our household. 4 kids is more than we could handle, I think. Hats off to them!!

My spinning technique is improving. There's not so much thick and thin stuff now. The yarn is much more even, but I have a tendency to overtwist things somehow. Even that is improving though. It's so fun to do, and I think as I get better at it, it will become more relaxing.

As far as works in progress, I think that there's too many to mention. The main two things I'm working on now are a sweater for my husband and socks for my MIL. The first sock is done, and the body of the sweater is just about finished. Both had high aspirations of being Christmas presents, but well...maybe Valentine's Day is a more realistic goal. And speaking of goals, my goal of the week is to learn to post pictures and edit links on this here site. So cross your fingers and hope for sock/sweater pics in a couple of days.