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January 2005
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March 2005

Bronchitis, again

. . . dammit. How's your week? Monday my mother got a pacemaker (so I concede her week may be worse) and I got a cold; Tuesday my boss lectured me; Wednesday I used my babysitter night to work until 11; Thursday I found myself having such difficulty breathing that I went to doc-in-a-box, where my $50 deductible (damn managed healthcare) bought me an hour's wheezy wait, a chest x-ray and an albuterol nebulizer treatment. The prescriptions were extra, but the diagnosis was spot on, and I got out of bed this morning only to take Wee C to school. My primary care physician wouldn't have needed the x-ray, but I think this doc was trying to rule out pneumonia. Thank God for small favors. I also spaced a family dinner date we'd scheduled with some former neighbors, as I was focused on breathing, but they were most understanding.

I don't usually check in to whine, but Sunday was a long time ago. Knitting this week? Ribby rows during 24 and House, a sock round or two while lunch microwaved at work, a few fairy-dress rows last night. But I feel some coming on, after I eat some soup and drugs and pop a flick into the DVD . . .


The Wrong Sleeve

Scarsle0003_1

OK, this may become the right sleeve of my Ribby Cardi, and not the left, but I'm supposed to be knitting the Must-Have ~ for which I have already completed this sleeve (but back in mid-2004). Anyhoo, the Cascade 200 Quattro sleeve you see above is now complete and I am about four inches into the blue (Cascade 220 #7818) back. It just goes so much more quickly than all that cabling, and as I noted previously, the yarn made me start this. At least it jumped out of the stash and not off of the Elann screen. Take a look at Bonne Marie's latest makeover from New Threads Friday: I love that we're having matching/opposite sweaters ~ or we will, once I finish mine. Last night I realized that I have a US7 Addi as well as the Denises, so I may start the other big back, too, and knit these sweaters piece by simultaneous piece . . .


Bad Kitty

~ but which one? During the half hour or so that I wrote my last post Tuesday night, one or both felines opened a drawer, removed my Skinny Angel Scarf, and gave it a good chomping. Angora is quiet, people, compared to, say, a plastic sleeve.

Bad_kitty

Although I haven't tried yet, I think I can pick up two rows on needles and graft it back together, maybe even reknitting a row or two if I'm careful. Cross your needles for me ~

In happier news, I received a delightful RAOK from Wendy yesterday, as if she, a fellow cat owner, knew I might need a pick-me-up! The little sheep joins a collection that started with one Greta gave me for my birthday, and the notepad is head by Proud to be a Knit-a-holic. Thanks, Wendy!

Raok


On the Red-Thread Road

Child_1_1 These two scarves are en route to Lisa for her Red Scarf Project. The one on the bottom is knit in 4x4 basketweave with the reliable, warm and sturdy Bartlett wool (that I had to wash before knitting to soften up). The one on top is two novelty yarns held together, one ribbony, one eyelashy, knit in garter with drop-stitch rows. Check their link for updates ~ this effort is really working, and naturally I am especially pleased to be a part of it.

Scarsle0001

Dulaantitle And I'm looking forward to sending some items, both knit and sewn, to the Dulaan Project next. That ribbed cap on the needles, for one thing, and some fleecy goodness as well. Who knows what else, before the midsummer deadline ~


In the Pink

Evday0002 So, Greta wasn't the only one heading off into the woods this weekend with a beautiful bunch, and when she picked me up, the first thing she did was hand me this. Yummy, springy Squiggle. I feel a scarf coming on. Who am I kidding? I almost always have a scarf on some needles somewhere.

We were heading north, so of course we built in time for a stop at Knit Happens, where I had a chance to gift her with some pinky goodness, since the custom dyed Lorna's Laces matches Greta's blog colors. Actually, I think that's why she wanted to visit the shop! I got myself some Shepherd Sock, too, in the Bucks Bar colorway (I think). And I got four skeins of Calmer for a little something from the new Rowan, which rather cracked me up. There I was swearing off cotton and selling off the stash six months ago, and I find myself liking the designs in the spring mag more than any of the last two books. Not that mine's come in the mail yet (but at least the spring Interweave Knits was waiting when I got home).

I was tickled to find other knitters among the nearly 30 women gathered for the weekend, and I'm sorry I left the camera in the cabin (and in the car when we went to KH). I finished a red scarf and much of a ribby sleeve between the listening, writing, talking, eating and dancing. Then, today, we had the great pleasure of finding one particular knitter at a bookstore: Mia, of Knit & Play with Fire.

We3sm

Evday0001 Now, don't go thinking I believe she was setting any precedents, but wow! Look at her enticement for me to return for the Maryland Sheep & Wool Festival, where such luscious KPPPM mill ends are on hand. Thank you, Mia! We previewed the Interweave, knit & chatted, and admired Mia's current Clapotis and her Sockapalooza sock. Greta & I are both eager to try a toe-up sock after seeing Mia's.


Charlotte at Arms

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Too many other lace patterns wait to challenge me, so I don't anticipate making another Charlotte any time soon, but I'm damn proud of this project (even if it did take me about half a year to complete)! Her Koigu colors are 301, 516, 418, 450 & 328 ~ appearing here as 301, 516, 418, 450, 516, 301 & 328. [Sorry about that, Matt.] I may not have enough leftovers for Wee mittens after all, but I'm definitely plotting some blue/green baby booties.

And this project turned me into a KPPPM fanatic ~ although my stash isn't quite two dozen skeins, yet. So far I've used it for booties, mittens, baby cap and this shawl, but you can know I won't be stopping there. And a special pal gifted me with Kersti for my birthday, so I'll be trying some fatter Koigu soon as well!


Happy New Rooster

Cny0002 Wee C's T today says chu ru ping an. I'm wondering how a mere four characters can then be translated to say May you be blessed with peace and safety wherever you are ~ but I like the sentiment. Someday we'll take Chinese lessons. Before I went to China I bought a book called Chinese in 10 Minutes a Day. I quit after 20 minutes, satified to have thank you and I love you under my belt. I think our local Chinese school starts students when they are five, and parents are welcome to sit in. It remains to be seen whether I can knit and learn Chinese at the same time!

And now, to start off the new year, my new shawl! I shot Charlotte just before we removed her from the blocking board, and before the kitties came upstairs to assist. I did not manage to get a live-action shot yet, but the Web was a huge hit at Mardi Gras last night.

Cny0001

The purse? Not so much, dang it. At least it beat Mom's estimate, but only by $10. Let's just figure there were too many fine items to bid on, and too much good food distracting folks from the auction. I have the shawl and the camera with me today, so I'll post one more pic with the popular outstretched-arms view.


On the Block

Lilbag_1

Actually, this item will be available in tonight's silent auction; the live bidding is reserved for beach houses and fishing trips ~ the really big fundraisers. I completed this Sophie bag when I was in NC the other weekend (that's my mom holding it; she's been wearing my dad's wedding ring there since we took it off his hand in the hospital), although I knitted and felted it back in the spring. The two skeins of Elann's Highland Wool did not go as far as Julie's spec'd Cascade 220, and I found myself unable to knit the cool twisted handle. I dove into the fabric stash and found a floral with butter in it, then set it aside with the clear handles I'd ordered from M & J Trimming ~ for a long time.

When I was asked to contribute a knitted item to my church's Mardi Gras for Missions again (last year I donated a scarf), this project returned to mind. In the mean time, I had made my Skinny Angel Scarf (Thanks, Theresa!) and had a smidge of fuzzy goodness with both yellow and turquoise left over ~ perfect for crocheting a decorative flower. I got hooking and sewing while Wee C was napping, and presto, this groovy, lined purse was complete. Declared my momma, "I bet you'll get $25 for that!" Mom! I'll let y'all know how far off the mark she is, bless her heart, but there's nearly that amount invested in materials, not to mention my time. I told the coordinator to put $50 for the value, but I bet it brings more. I hope so. In fact, I can bid on it myself to ensure that it does!


WIP Confessions

I'm on a come-clean roll here, gang. Yesterday during Wee C's afternoon non-nap (I could here her jabbering away upstairs, but at least she kept within the parameters of "quiet time"), I pulled together all my knitting bags for an assessment and reorganization. As a result, I'm now listing all of my incomplete projects, and carrying them in the primary hold-all, Suki. You and I know I'm not knitting Brother's second sock until I finish my fluted pair, but I want it staring at me from the Current Stitches list as a reminder. The irresistible mitered squares and the knitted-bodice Fairy Dress for Wee C hang out in a bag on a dining room chair; if the project is for her, I'm allowed to knit on it while she plays. The erstwhile MDK Afghanalong scraps bag, plus a similar mate with oddballs and bits, were relegated to the basement where the rest of the stash lives. I found another stalled object, a k2 p2 cap from Hip to Knit, so it's joined the list as well.

And, biggest confession of all? Last week, when I was reviewing stash options to decide whether to keep going on my Must-Have in Cascade Indulgence or restart with an all-wool yarn that would give better stitch definition, some 220 Quattro jumped out of the bin and insisted I start making it into the sleeve of a Ribby Cardi a la Bonne. So now I have two cardigans underway for myself. Sheesh.

Anyone want to guess which WIP I frogged? I don't actually think anyone but me is tracking my list that closely. I had a Paris Loop going, was probably even half way complete, but I have a poncho, and I know at this point I don't need another. I'm sure that swell yarn will want to become some other wrap in the future. Get in line ~

Oh, and Charlotte? She's done! Well, the knitting is, anyway, and I've got one more row of crochet loops. Starting to waver on the fringe issue ~ I may want to have some, after all. I hate to cut up a lot of Koigu in order to find out, though . . . Pictures soon, because I really want to debut her at a Mardi Gras party tomorrow night ~


Charlotte Confessions

CharOK, remember this post last month, as I approached the home stretch on the Web? Take another look at the photo. Notice anything? You didn't mention it, and it slipped right by me, but I grabbed the barely-used ball of the first color and knit it is as the fifth! Only when I started to run out five rows from the finish, after having determined such a fate would not befall me, did I make the connection. Actually, only when I pulled the real fifth color in to action to complete a row (!), and had to tug that starter thread from the wound yarn-cake, did I realize it had never been touched. I laughed, I cried, I called Greta on the cell phone. (She'd earlier in the day advised me to do a whole math thing to figure out if the yardage was going to make it to the end of the row, but I preferred to take my chances and knit ahead with abandon, especially since I was in the passenger seat.)

No way in H am I gonna rip and redo, baby. Lookin' on the bright side: Now I know I have enough yarn to crochet the edging,  and I can make Wee C a new pair of mittens from what's left! Hoping to cast off the Web ths weekend ~