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Archive for February, 2006

A Rogue?

Get Me – more yarn!!

Rogue: A variation from the standard varietal type.

I’ve been deviating from my “standard varietal type” (cheap) lately when it comes to buying yarn. I’m actually buying it, for FUTURE projects! Or, in the case of this weekend, because the hubby gave me money for the specific purpose of buying yarn, just for fun.

Anyway, usually when I buy yarn for a project, I don’t buy the “suggested yarn.” Last week, I’m pretty sure for the very first time, I actually ordered the suggested yarn for a project. I usually substitute yarn because the suggested yarn is too pricey for me. I still do not have the confidence to spend $80+ on something I’m not sure will fit, or I’ll even like when it’s finished. Many times, I’m just a rebel and don’t like being told what to buy, and have my own ideas – which don’t always work out, but I’ve been pretty lucky so far.

Anyway, I’ve been wanting to make Rogue for a long time now…. and after you were all so encouraging that I could be Extra Spicy if I really wanted to, I figured there was no time better than the present to tackle Rogue. And this time, I could actually afford the suggested yarn, and ordered it up from those great gals at KPixie. BEAUTIFUL color! Burgundy Heather, Bartlett Yarn.

However – I have to say, beautiful as it is, if I had been in a yarn store to buy it, I would have been tempted to substitute. This stuff is scratchy!! I guess I’m used to petting all that alpaca I bought over the weekend, or maybe it’s because all the wool I’ve ever used is Merino, or a blend, and softer. This regular ol’ wool is pretty darn rough – and a little smelly – but I’m gonna take their word for it that this is the right yarn for the project and stick with it – at least until it gives me a blister from knitting it or I can’t stand the smell any longer! I’ve got it all spread out, airing out…. waiting for me – so maybe that’ll help the sheepy smell. But I don’t think it’s getting any softer…

But first, as tempted as I am to start Rogue and see if I can figure out those cables, I have to finish Spring Fling… I still can’t deviate that far from my “standard varietal type” and have two sweaters going at once. That’s just crazy talk, and I’d start to twitch. Unfortunately, Spring Fling has been a little slow going lately. I hate it when I’m too busy to knit! All this yarn is starting to stare at me!

PS – Thanks for all you kind words for Kaity- I passed them on…. she’s on the mend, but still doesn’t have her “twinkle” back. It’s been a long time since I had a barfing kid – gotta say – don’t miss that ONE BIT! She better not have breathed on any of us!

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Love That Hubby!

Conversation last night, while watching something about Titan missiles on The History Channel…

Kaity: Where’s Vandenberg?
Me: Up near Solvang
Kaity, Me, and D#2 (in unison): Ahhh, I want to go to Solvang again!
Me: They have yarn stores!
Hubby: Why don’t you go?
Me: It’s only fun if you have money to spend
Hubby: How much do you want?

The best hubby and dad in the world handed out $$$$$ and said “I think you 3 should go tomorrow – you’ll have fun!”

AND WE DID!!

Man – you can hardly beat an impromptu trip to spend money you didn’t even know you had!

That beautiful grey-brown is 1330 yards of 100% Superfine Natural Colored Alpaca (musk), spun for the store. Very pretty and super soft, and destined to be a sweater – I’m just not sure which sweater yet.

The teal and purple are Khroma KD, in Aegean and Plum (50% baby alpaca, 50% Merino), and I think they’re destined to be these handwarmers, from the Spring IK

We had a great day of shopping and eating… although poor Kaity ended up getting sick…. all the way home, .. poor thing, but she got some great yarn too! Check her blog, but maybe tomorrow, when she’s feeling better ;( Right now, she’s still hanging out on the couch, with her bucket… She’s even too sick to play with her new yarn – poor thing – that’s no fun.

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Extra Spicy Wannabe

You know how Knitty rates the difficulty of it’s patterns – Mellow, Tangy, Piquant, and Extra Spicy…. Well, we all remember Ella, she was only Tangy and nearly killed me.

When I told Kaity I was going to make Spring Fling, her exact words were, “Mom, are you kidding- you are NOT piquant.”

Well, maybe I’m growing as a knitter. Maybe I AM piquant. I’ve looked at the pattern, I can obviously do the simple lace pattern, and I think the piquant part is that this sweater is made in pieces and then seamed together. Now, I’ve only made the top-down, bottom-up, sleeves included – whatever-they-call-that…. that kind of sweater before, but I’ve done a lot of sewing in my day and know basic and even advanced (read, piquant) garment construction and think I’ll be okay.

Yeah- I’ll let you know when that little piquant factor shows up and bites me in the butt…. I’ll be whining about it to all of you, just wait. But, for now – so far, so good. So far, I’m piquant.

but…. and you knew there was one…. I SOOOOOO want to be Extra Spicy!!! Every day I go on the blogs and drool over what some of you are making. I plan, I dream, I say to myself…. someday. Someday maybe I really could make something like that.

Have you seen Theresa’s Am Kamin??? Absolutely gorgeous. I want to do that SO BAD! And, Heather – she’s starting this beautiful sweater…. I REALLY love this one – I want that Demi sweater so bad there’s still drool on the keyboard. So Extra Spicy. Don’t even get me going on the stuff Eunny creates – unbelievable. Not only does she knit the most beautiful stuff I’ve ever seen, she usually makes it up herself!! Or, Wendy and her amazing ability to make her visions real, and then turn them into patterns for the rest of us! Then, there’s Jill – who can wrap her head around all the math part of knitting. I just love her, and you know what – I don’t care HOW Extra Spicy I get, I’ll never get the math part of knitting – I was dropped on my head and damaged my “math section” when I was a baby – so that’s just not gonna happen (a story for another day).

That’s just the tip of my wanna-be iceberg. And, you are all so nice and encouraging… telling me I can do it…. Really – do you think I’ll ever be Extra Spicy??? I so want to be.

We’ll see how piquant I am first…

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Spring Fling


I don’t know that I’m up for a “spring fling!” I’m pretty sure I’m not up for Spring Break – not that it’s gonna be like “Spring Break Miami” or anything around here…. as it was not-so-politely pointed out to me last night, I make my teenage daughters “live in a bubble” and “don’t let them do anything.” Oh yeah, I’m a mean mom.

It’s a hard balancing act with teenagers, one minute they “don’t think it’s safe to walk to and home from school” (in a town of 13,000), and the next minute one of them is complaining that they live in a “bubble” and why can’t they walk around downtown (one street, half a block) after dark with their friends.

Do you know my poor kids are the ONLY ONES who: don’t have their own car, a phone with a “plan with unlimited minutes”(we use prepaid phones for the kids), or unrestricted access to the internet in their rooms. Yeah right…. Poor babies….

Of course, on the other end of the balancing act, these are the conversations I heard last night between the 17 and 18 year old daughters (well, they will be next month)-
In the back seat of the car:
D1: I can’t believe you just stuck your finger in my eye! On purpose!
D2: Yeah, I licked it first
D1: Ewww, how gross! Why did you do that?
D2: I can’t believe you didn’t see my finger sneaking up on you.

later:
D2: Mom, she just threw a crayon at my eye! It hurts like “no other!”
D1: laughs
D2: and it was a “chuck” – not a lob, or a toss, she totally chucked it at my eye!
D1: I wasn’t aiming for your eye, just your face.
D2: And it was a yellow one! The yellow ones are hard.

HUH???? the yellow ones are harder – I didn’t know that, did you?

Yep – you heard me right, they’re not 3 and 4, they’re almost 17 and 18 – and want unlimited internet access and their own cars – these eye stabbers and crayon chuckers…. yeah- I’ll get right on that!

Man – Ok, got that off my chest…. sorry…. just trying to work myself up for “Spring break” where they’ll be bored out of their little bubble and REALLY driving my crazy.

My Spring Fling knitting, on the other hand – giving me no problems at all…..I’m loving it.

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Productive Weekend

Some weekends go by, and you wonder where they went. Some weekends go by and you feel like you got nothing done.

This weekend was one of those great weekends where I can’t believe it was only two days

This weekend I: made homemade marshmallows, took pictures of my scarf and blogged, cleaned my house, went to my not-so-local yarn store, and then even my more not-so-local Ulta for much needed makeup, watched FOUR chick flicks, went to church, a 4-year-old’s birthday party, knit, and let my daughter have a sleepover. Somewhere in all that the guys were even home for awhile (they decided to go motorcycle riding in the snow). It was one of those great, cold, rainy weekends, perfect for movies, a fire in the fireplace, hot chocolate, and knitting.

After reading about hot chocolate and marshmallows on Amy’s blog, I just couldn’t think of anything else for the last few days, and had to see if it was worth the trouble. And, what do you know, when I checked her blog yesterday, she had made her own marshmallows too! Check out these marshmallows! I made them about twice the size of a “regular” store bought marshmallow…. but the kicker is, the recipe said it would make 12 marshmallows!!! Now, those would have been huge marshmallows. I have some big mugs, but not THAT big!

Anyway, it was something different to do, they were easy to make, tasted good, and it’s kind of cool to have hot chocolate with your own marshmallows floating on top…

While I was getting ready to check out at the N-S-LYS, with something completely picked out…. I noticed this new Brown Sheep Cotton Fleece. At least it was new to my LYS. In fact, she only had a few skeins on the counter and hadn’t even unpacked it yet, and had to go get the “big box” out from the back for me to dig through. I picked the color Malibu Blue, for this project.

I think I must be getting better at picking nicer yarns, because I seem to be saying this a lot – I LOVE THIS YARN! It reminds me of Rowan Wool-Cotton, which is what I had originally intended to buy (what the pattern calls for), but that was a little pricey for me, so I was looking for a substitute. Instead of 50/50, this is 80% cotton, 20% Merino wool, but was very similar when I compared them side to side. I think it’s gonna be a winner.

I may need to step out of my comfort zone in terms of color, though. When I got home and started knitting I realized I have already knit a sweater almost this exact same color! That one is a warm wool long sleeved sweater – so this can be it’s summer counterpart.

One of the things I didn’t get done this weekend was blog maintenance, like updating my tunes, and adding to my Finished Objects sidebar, etc. I can procrastinate forever when it comes to doing blog maintenance…. let’s see how long it takes me to get around to it…

BTW, if I’ve tempted anyone to make marshmallows now… I just Googled “homemade marshmallows” to find a recipe, but this is the one I ended up with.

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Lady E!


Woot Woot!! She’s finished! This sucker is 90″ long!!!

Ok – it’s not your typical Lady E, but I like it. I kind of broke a lot of style rules here… but isn’t knitting about making it your own? I made a scarf instead of a stole, and I didn’t use the typical Noro or yarn that makes it’s own blocks.

And, well, you know my “random block” dealio….

So, going back to my reference that this Lady E would be more likely worn by the Court Jester rather than an elegant damsel…. Here I am, trying to juggle in the backyard. Look at that little birdie fly!!! Thank goodness for the 3-shot-burst feature on the camera!

Can you tell I have NO idea how to juggle? Are my eyes crossed? And, you definitely have to hold your tongue just right. I actually had them all up in the air for a few seconds! Short photo shoot, though, my photographer (Kaity) was in her jammies and bare feet and shivering, so we had to cut it short. Wimp.

Specs: Lady Eleanor Entrelac Stole, out of the Scarf Style book by IK
70″ long, 6-3/4″ wide
Yarn: – Schaeffer Yarns, Miss Priss (100%merino wool), colorway “Mr. Funny”
about 1-2/3 hanks – LOVE THIS YARN!
– Various coordinating colors of Cascade 220
Needles: Size 10, Boye Needlemaster circular

This was fun to learn and fun to knit – I like stitch patterns that keep me interested, but aren’t too hard to memorize. Ok, well, truthfully I knit about half the scarf before I had it memorized… but I’m slow like that. AND, there is a MAJOR mistake, but I’m not gonna tell you where, and I don’t think is too obvious. (lost my mind for a minute and I have one block going all wonky the wrong way – don’t even know how I did that!) Really, though, Entrelac only looks hard – IT IS NOT.

Anyway…. it’s cold and rainy today – even hailed a little bit this morning! – so Lady E and I are off to my not-so-local yarn store today to find my next project.

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Yes! We Have A Snowflake!

You can bet there was big excitement in the car this morning, and – yes, Kaity still had to go to school. (this only makes sense to those who tuned in and read yesterday’s post!). And, yes, this is only “cold” by California-wimp standards. Hey- we take what we can get. This is the only snowflake I’ll see where I live.

And, this is for my Dear Donna, she’s wanting pictures of the views from people’s front doors. Okay, I stepped off the porch and onto the lawn to get this, but I think it still counts.

Okay – I know I’m sorely lacking in knitting content lately, but really the scarf STILL just looks like more of the same old scarf, BUT it will be finished this weekend. And…. I’m shopping tomorrow for my next project – so I promise pics of the new project AND the finished scarf when next we meet.

Same bat time, same bat channel.

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