December 29, 2006

holiday whiplash

The big holiday is finally over and thank heavens. Christmas is always hectic for me since both my husband and I work in retail, but this Christmas got sucked into some sort of insane vortex of christmas-crazy. The two weeks preceding Christmas were about as crazy at work as they could possibly be. We were incredible understaffed and I was grabbing as much overtime as I could handle. My hubby was working a lot of (unpaid-he's salaried) overtime as well and we barely saw each other. Add into that all the shopping that was left to do, decorating, and knitting. Whew!

Then my grandmother passed away on December 23rd. I wish I had a picture I could post of her here, but the most recent picture I posess of her was in my pre-digital age and I haven't scanned in any pictures from that era. She had been declining in health for quite some time so it was by no means a shock, but still heartbreaking, especially being so close to the holidays. Last minute plans had to get thrown together to either postpone, hasten, or shorten the Christmas celebrations and make travel arrangements. (She, and most of my extended family, lived in Missouri.) So halfway across the country we (my hubby, sister, and her fiance) trekked overnight on Christmas day. We drove 30 hours in the course of less than three days. It was, to say the least, rushed. In a way, it was also bittersweet. We got to see lots of family that we hadn't seen in years, but such a sad event to bring us all together.

As soon as we got back into town I took down my Christmas tree. I usually leave it up until New Years-ish, but not this year. I don't really feel like celebrating and it was almost dead anyway. I didn't really manage to finish many Christmas knits and in all the rush, the ones I did finish I forgot to take pictures of before wrapping. I don't mean to sound all woe-is-me or anything, but this Christmas was....well.....different. I don't want to say it was a bad Christmas because the abbreviated celebration we had was wonderful. Oh well.

I wrapped up half-finished knits because I have every intention of finishing them immediately. In fact, I am not allowing myself to start my fair isle mittens until they are done. I have half a scarf, one sock, and one and a half legwarmers to finish. Wish me luck.

December 10, 2006

I've been converted

Yep, that's right. I'm a changed knitter. I have just completed my very first lace project. I've dabbled in a bit of lace here and there, but never a project that was completely lace and that required actual blocking!

Note: I didn't actually intend for my scarf to match my carpet perfectly. That was an accident. So what does my beautiful new scarf look like when I'm wearing it, you ask? I am in fact wearing it right now, but here is a pic.

This knit was so quick that I didn't even get to post an "in-progress" picture. I started this knit on Thanksgiving Day to avoid spoiling any gift knitting surprises while all my family was in the same room. I finished it Wednesday evening, blocked on Thursday, so it took exactly three weeks from cast-on to blocking, during which time I did absolutely no gift knitting. I am soooo behind in all the knitting I am supposed to be doing, but that's usually the case when I set a deadline for myself. I'm going to end up wrapping up half-completed projects for Christmas. Sorry everybody!

I have been keeping crafty though. My mother-in-law and I have been working on a quilt off and on since the summer. You may remember when I first got on my quilting craze. I haven't been all-quilting-all-the-time since then, but the past few weeks have been pretty productive. Kathy (my MIL) found a fabric at a quilt shop and after a discussion abou quilts back in July she went out and bought a few yards of that and some other fabrics she liked. After that we looked through several quilting books and together designed a basic nine-patch quilt.

These are the three main blocks for our quilt. There will be some sashing, borders, and other things to break up all the small calico prints. All of these fabrics are vintage, circa 1940s. I love the country feel it's got to it.

So that's what I've been up to. Here's hoping I can get all my presents knit in the next FIFTEEN days!

November 29, 2006


Hi everyone! I'm really loving this laptop a lot. I still don't have any pictures today. I did get the programs worked out to put pics on the laptop, but I don't have any new pictures to show you. On Thanksgiving I did quite a bit of knitting on a non-gifty project since all my gift recipients were in the room and now I can't put it down. I've been feeling quite a bit of guilt about working on it instead of all the deadline stuff, but it is addictive. It's a project for a lacy leaf scarf that my Secret Pal sent me from SP7. I love the yarn, so soft! I wish I had a picture to show time, I promise.

If you look in the sidebar you will notice a new button. I have joined the Stranded Colorwork Challenge. I recently learned to knit continental for the sole purpose of holding a strand in each hand (rhymes!) so I could do two-color fair isle. This KAL is the perfect challenge to make me get into high gear and try it. I'm thinking of doing mittens of some sort. I probably won't be able to start it right away (the start date is Friday) because I have to collect the supplies and decide on a project. This will be my very first fair isle project and I'm really looking forward to learning something new. Something else exciting happened when I signed up for this KAL! I finally learned how to save a button to my own computer and use it instead of "hotlinking" and stealing bandwidth. I'm a little embarrased to admit that I didn't "get" it before despite all the tutorials and that's why you don't see too many buttons in my sidebar. Now that I know how to do it without it being illegal I will save as many buttons as I can find! Maybe I can even make one of my own. I'm not sure I have the right program to get artsy. Is there anyone out there that wants to make a button and send it to me? (For free!)

Sorry for the two posts in a row with no pictures. I know those can get boring. Next time I will have lots of pictures, I promise!

November 26, 2006

Merry Christmas!

I know it's a little early to start singing carols and giving gifts, but I got an early Christmas present from my hubby and I can't wait to post about it! He couldn't wait to give it to me because it was going to be too hard to hide from me, plus he figured I could go ahead and start getting use out of it now. What is it, you ask? A NEW LAPTOP COMPUTER! This would be the place where I would go ahead and post a picture of it, but I just broke it out of the packaging and haven't put any programs on it yet. So instead, in honor of the holidays you get this holiday-themed meme:

1. Egg Nog or Hot Chocolate? Depends...I like egg nog cold, not hot, so if I'm in the mood for hot stuff I'll go for the cocoa.
2. Does Santa wrap presents or just set them under the tree? The elves wrap the presents of course. Santa is just the delivery man.
3. Colored lights on tree/house or white?'s more classy
4. Do you hang mistletoe? nope
5. When do you put up your decorations? Ideally around the first of December, but with me and hubby both in retail, whenever our hectic schedules allow us
6. What is your favorite holiday dish (excluding dessert)? Sweet potatoes with marshmallows
7. Favorite Holiday memory as a child? Baking cookies with mom for gifts and to set out for Santa
8. When and how did you learn the truth about Santa? At the babysitter's when I was 9 yrs old.
9. Do you open a gift on Christmas Eve? When I was a kid we used to open one gift on Christmas was usually preselected by one of our grandparents and it was usually matching pajamas for me and my sisters to make for cute pics on Christmas morning
10. What kind of decorations are on your Christmas Tree? An assortment of cheap plain balls from the dollar store and some meaningful ones fro family and friends. My favorite ornament was a gift last year to celebrate my first Christmas with my husband
11. Snow! Love it or Dread? I love it when I have a day off and can go skiing and snowboarding. On the roads when I'm trying to get to work, not so much.
12. Can you ice skate? Sorta....but not well
13. Do you remember your favorite gift? I was given a quilt two years ago by my grandmother that was hand-pieced by my great-grandmother and her mother in the 40's.
14. What's the most important thing about the Holidays for you? Time together with family and doing things for others
15. What is your favorite Holiday Dessert? Goop! (a family recipe that involves caramel and bananas)
16 What is your favorite holiday tradition? Baking cookies and watching all the holiday specials on tv
17. What tops your tree? A star cut out of cardboard and wrapped in aluminum foil. My parents had a star like that for years that my dad made so my first christmas with my hubby back when he was my boyfriend we made one just like it
18. What is your favourite holiday book? Twas the Night Before Christmas
19. What is your favorite Christmas Song? O Come All Ye Faithful is one of my favorites because I can sing it in English and in Latin (Adeste Fidelis) but there is nothing like a full choir singing th Hallelujah Chorus from The gives me chills when it's done correctly
20. Candy Canes! Yuck or Yummy? Yummy, I especially like the "gourmet" flavors like blueberry

So, it may be early but Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!

November 22, 2006

More birthday fun

Technically my birthday was last Wednesday, but my family and I decided to wait until Friday to celebrate it. We started the day by having my friend Beth take our portrait for our Christmas cards.

Merry Christmas from the Snyders!
That evening we went to the local bowling alley for birthday fun! My little brother, Galen, especially enjoyed the bowling. He was so excited he actually delivered the bowling balls to people to encourage them to bowl faster so it could be his turn again.

I believe that picture was taken just before he bowled his first strike. He did quite well, actually. He even beat me in one game. Kind of embarrasing actually, considering I bowl in a league and he is only seven. Oh well, I never claimed to be good. This picture is just because it's funny. That's Galen, showing me how much he liked my cookie cake, with Mom and Dad in the background.

I got all kinds of awesome gifts from everyone (Thank You!). Mom and Dad got me the latest James Patterson novel that I am dying to read but haven't been able to start yet because of all the gift knitting going on at Chez Karen. It's just more motivation to keep knitting as fast as possible. Doug got me a pretty cool gift too. Want a hint?

Yep, he got me a ball winder and swift. He actually went to a yarn store and debated with the woman working if metal or wood was a better choice. After listening to her suggestions he went with the more compact metal swift. I immediately wound just about every skein I have when we got home. Whee! Center-pull balls! I can hardly control myself.

Have a Happy Thanksgiving everyone. I hope the weather is good, the meal delicious, and the company excellent!

November 16, 2006

Happy Birthday to ME

Thank you all for your birthday wishes. Yesterday I turned 26 years old and had a wonderful day. I started the day with bowling at my bowling league, then the girls took me to lunch and surprised me with this cookie cake! It's very yummy too, it will be gone very soon. (or maybe it is already.....details, details). I then went to work for just a few hours to fix up a few things for a big corporate visit. After work, my hubby cooked me the best dinner ever. He made Steak Marsala from scratch and I wish I could post a recipe here for you all (especially Kim, who I know would love to have the recipe), but he is a "wing it" cook. He used to cook professionally, so when he steps into the kitchen he usually knows what to put in it, but doesn't follow any measurements. He'll just put in ingredients until it "looks right". Must be nice, huh? When I do that, whatever I'm making is so bad the dogs turn those noses up at it. Anyway, here is a pic of the wonderful dinner
This is after a few bites as you can see and ohmigoodness. My mouth is watering just thinking about it. The sauce was the perfect blend of mild, tangy, and sweet and the sauce made the meal. I'm sorry if some of you are vegetarians and may possibly be offended by me posting a picture of steak on my blog, but I can't help it. That was the best meal I have had in a long while and the fact that my hubby went out of his way to make it for me meant so much more. All in all, it was a pretty spectacular birthday. You know the best part? It's not even really over yet. Tomorrow evening I am having a small bowling party for my family and a few friends to celebrate so I get to have another day of birthday fun! Whee!

November 14, 2006

Gift knitting.... fun, but makes for lousy blog posts. I can't show you any Finished Object pictures, because I'd have to black out the FO. I can't show you any WIP pictures, because I'd have to black out the WIP. Rest assured that I am knitting, I'm actually finishing things, and I'm almost on schedule for all my holiday knits. Money is a little tight this year so I am trying to make as many gifts as I can, and most of them have been started with yarn from the stash. Double bonus! Gifting and stash-busting at the same time :) Maybe for Christmas I will get cool new yarn to beef the stash back up. (hint, hint) So instead of pictures of all the cool knitting I've been doing, I can show you what I was up to last Sunday night.

Most of you know that I bought a new house in the spring so each time the season changes I have learned some new things about my new area. For instance, when school started, I learned to deal with the constant noise of traffic around 8am and 2:30 pm. (I live across the street from an elementary school). When it came time to turn on the heat I learned that diesel makes a good subsitute for oil when the local oil company won't deliver oil for your heat and it's 40 degrees outside. Last Sunday I learned that once hunting season starts, deer flock to my road. I see deer every morning and evening on my road, but this one I didn't see until we were on top of it. My apologies, little Bambi, and condolences to your family. Everyone that was in the car is fine, just a little shook up. The car and the deer, not so fine. The car has $3000 worth of damages and won't be going to the car doctor until the 27th.

The car is still drivable and I've been taking it to work and back everyday. Each day someone new will notice the damage to my car and ask me "what happened!?". I don't mind re-telling the story, but each time I feel a little more remorseful for Bambi. Drive carefully!

There is one knit I can show you, but regrettably it hasn't been touched in a few days so there is nothing interesting about it yet. Hmmm....the pic won't upload for whatever reason. Oh well, I guess there knitting is not meant to be shown in this post. Stay tuned for knitting next time.

November 7, 2006

"Catching up" or "this post is really picture-heavy"

What have you all been up to? I've been away from blogs and blogging for a while and I have so much to catch up on, both in reports from my world, and reading what everyone else has been doing. I have been knitting during my blogless absence, though. This scarf is technically a Christmas present, but I feel reasonably safe in debuting it on the blog-I don't think the intended recipient surfs knitting blogs. This is for my father-in-law, who hails from Michigan. Simple striped scarf?
Nope! Check out the cool footballs that appear when you look at it from another angle! This is my first go-round with illusion/shadow knitting and it is so much fun to watch the designs appear from simple knitting and purling. This football design was charted by Jennifer, whose blog I can't find. Jennifer-please drop me a comment with a link to your blog so I can find you again!
On Halloween my hubby and I hosted a costume party that I would say was a huge success and loads of fun. Doug went as Speed Racer. The morning of the party he had nothing to wear as a costume, but one quick trip to JoAnn Fabrics and a quick trip to TJ Maxx and his costume was set.
And I went as my favorite 80's cartoon rocker....Jem! (Jem is excitement....glamour and glitter, fashion and fame....!)
The biggest challenge with my costume was making glowing star earrings. I found clear star earrings at Claire's and Doug found a way to wire LED lights with watch batteries to them. They were heavy, but very cool. I even found shoes that lit up when you walked. Definitely 80's!
Beth went as "Trashy Britney", aka pregnant Mrs. Federline in all her glory.
Speed Racer even had the Mach 5, although it was the wrong color. This is Doug's "knitting". He bought this '85 Fiat Bertone for $500 a couple years ago and has done tons of work on it to make it a hot little speedster. Everything from custom body work, to much-needed engine maitenance.
Top row (L-R):Trashy Britney, Speed Racer Next row (L-R): The priest, Brian Fantana, Little Bo Peep, Jem, the Bloody Surgeon, the guy in the tux, and the Boxer. Bottom row (L-R): The Office Scoundrel, Larry the Cable Guy, and the Border Patrol. (Not pictured: The Devil, Jesus, two cowgirls, "that kid", and an Army officer) It was a fantastic party, everyone had fun, and the costumes were spectacular!

This past Saturday, Beth and I went to Stitches East for the Marketplace Sessions. We signed up for Continental Knitting. The class was very well taught and I feel like I picked up a new skill, although it will take me a while to get used to holding the yarn differently and my guage is WAY off right now. I really wanted to learn to hold the yarn in my left hand so I could fair isle with a color in each hand. Fair isle is definitely the next skill I want to learn. I'd like to start with a small project, maybe a hat or mittens. I saw the most beautiful cashmere black and white folk fair isle mittens on display at! I know that fair isle is starting to grace the blogs out there...does anyone have any specific recommendations for a starter project? Any certain patterns I should check out? I made one small purchase at Stitches East. The WEBS booth was a little overwhelming. I picked up a lot of yarn that I gently coaxed myself into putting back. All but 2 skeins of Valley Yarns Stockbridge, in a lovely heather grey. They had the cutest cable socks on display that I just had to make.
Not the best picture, but you get the idea. Only one problem. They are way way too small. The pattern only has three sizes: child, woman, man and it doesn't give too many specifics on the sizes the socks will be when they are complete. I made the woman's sock, and granted my guage isn't exactly right and I didn't (ahem) swatch first, but this sock will fit my 7-yr-old brother perfectly. I am debating if I should rip it out and try again or call it a Christmas present. I doubt he'd appreciate them though and the yarn is ::SO:: yummy. Hmmmm......

October 25, 2006

Finished Object!

I have been working on these socks for a while, and they are finally finished! The first sock was started in early April, finished in early June. The second sock was started right away, but neglected for several months. I picked it back up at the beginning of October and they are finally done! I was going to hold onto them for Christmas, but Doug loved them so much he won't give them back. He actually slept in them the night I finished them. It's only the third pair of socks I've made, and the first for him. It'll be awhile before I decide to knit socks for him again-he's a 13W. I've been chugging away on a gift knit and I love-love-love the pattern. I can't wait to share with you what I've been working on!

October 22, 2006

Puter Blues

My computer is sick. Sorta. I am displeased with my internet service so I have disconnected it and am shopping for new service. In the meantime, I have to remote blog, which results in less frequent blogging, blog-reading, and blog-commenting despite my last post resolving to do those things more. Oh well. There's not much I can report on the knitting front. Most of the knitting I have going on is either very little progress on projects you've already seen or secret projects that I'm hoping to have done by Christmas. I've learned over the last two Christmases that I can't plan to knit everyone a gift. In fact, I can't plan to knit anyone a gift. The best I can do is cast on for several gifts, knit until I tire of the project and hope that the cast off comes before my boredom with the project. In any case, I've got several gift knits tentatively planned. One of them has already bit the dust. The Branching Out scarf I posted a pic of recently has been frogged. I don't know if the lace chart was too much for me or I simply can't count but I kept finding extra stitches. I was trying to decrease them in a manner that made sense with the pattern, but this was my first lace attempt and it didn't go over well. I cast on for a different scarf with a similar yarn. I'd still like to make the Branching Out, but I'm a little burned out on lace and I don't think I have enough time until Christmas. Has anyone else noticed how quickly it became fall? Fall is my favorite time of year. I love summer....swimming, kayaking, camping, amusement parks, hiking, and sunny days, but nothing beats the crispness in the air of fall. Football games, the first day you can wear a sweater outside without being too hot, the smell of fires, apple pies, turkey dinners, my birthday...all things I love about fall. But the best thing about fall? The colors!

All of these pictures were taken of some spectacularly beautiful trees near my mom's house. Some people can't wait for spring when everything is green and flowers start to grow, but I love the warm colors of fall. The rich reds, oranges, yellows, and browns. YUM! It's reflected in my yarn stash too. I separated my stash by color and the yellow/orange cubby is stuffed full, while the other colors are about half-full. (If I'd thought ahead I could've shown you a picture....the follies of remote blogging.) Does anyone have any spectacular sock yarn in fall colors that you'd like to trade? I bought two skeins of Koigu in a very pretty bluish-green colorway that is very pretty but not very me. I was thinking of knitting it up as a gift but I'd really like some autumn leaves socks. The Koigu is already hand-wound into balls. I'm not sure if I still have the ball bands or not, I'll look. Again, I forgot to take a picture of the Koigu, but check out my post from June 21st (look in the archives). They are the two smallish balls in the center. If anyone is interested in swapping you can either leave a comment or shoot me an email (knittykarenAThotmailDOTcom). Please be patient, it might be awhile until I get back in touch with you. I've only been checking my email every few days. Have a great week everyone!

October 9, 2006

I resolve post more often! I just looked back through my archives and realized that I used to post on average 7-8 times per month, but during the months of August and September I only posted twice per month! I didn't knit very much during those months, and August is when we really started making some changes to our new home, but I certainly still read blogs and "lurked". I know I love to get comments on my blog, and you only get comments if you post regularly. So I resolve to post one or two times per week. I also resolve to comment on other people's blogs more regularly instead of lurking. How many lurkers do I have I wonder? Are you out there?

No pictures today, I'm still remote blogging. Something is wrong with my internet at home, so I'm at mom's again. It probably won't be repaired for about a week or two, but that won't stop me from posting. No new progress on the knitting front though, so no worries, you aren't missing anything. More posts coming soon!

October 7, 2006

Remote blogging

I'm remote blogging from mom's today, so I should keep it pretty short. I still have no picture of the finished Green Gable, due to craptastic weather and poor lighting. We needed the rain, but I haven't seen sunshine in about three days.

Not much knitting has been going on due to a little injury I sustained at work last Friday.

This picture was actually taken a few days after the injury occured, but can you see it? On my middle finger, the skin is an alarming shade of pink compared to the normal skin around it. I burned myself pouring coffee. Ouch. They had to send me to prompt care and everything.

I was really bummed because that day I received this package from my Knitflix pal, Melanie. (Sorry no link Melanie, I left your blog addy on my desk at home.)

*Not pictured-the movie: Bell, Book, and Candle which was in my dvd player and the kettle corn that was in the microwave.* Check out those dishcloths! I love them both so much, I'm afraid to use them! And look at the cute scrapbooking goodies. The yarn she sent is Wool-Ease sportweight in a lovely heathered green intended to make Branching Out from knitting. I was so excited to try that pattern that I cast on, despite my injury. Has anyone had any experience with blocking this yarn? It's 20% wool, 80% acrylic.

I apologize for the picture quality. After I did a few repeats the drag of the yarn across my burn was a little too much to take. I'm really digging this pattern though, and can't wait to finish it. I think this might be a Christmas present for my mother-in-law (she doesn't read the blog).

I have been partaking in another activity that doesn't affect my burned hand. Three of my friends and I have joined a bowling league. None of us have ever bowled in a league before, and I had no idea that it lasts so long-33 weeks! We are having a blast though, and have already seen improvement in our game.

October 2, 2006

Just because.....

....this is fun and too cute to pass up.

1. YOUR ROCK STAR NAME: ( pet and current street name) King Proffit

2. YOUR MOVIE STAR NAME: (grandfather/grandmother on your moms side, your favorite candy) Jean Skittles....sounds flaky

3. YOUR "FLY Guy/Girl" NAME: (first initial of last name, first three letters of your middle name) S. Ann.....sounds too boring to be "fly"

4. YOUR DETECTIVE NAME: (favorite color, favorite animal) Blue Dog .....that is actually some kind of art, isn't it?

5. YOUR SOAP OPERA NAME: (middle name, city where you were born) Ann Louisiana (no, I didn't misread the instructions, it's an actual town in Missouri, look it up)

6. YOUR STAR WARS NAME: (the first 3 letters of your last name, first 2 letters of your first name, first 2 letters of mom's maiden name and first 3 letters of the town you grew up in.) Snykasicha....I actually like that

7. SUPERHERO NAME: ("The", your favorite color, favorite drink) The Blue Sweet Tea

8. NASCAR NAME: (the first name of both your grandfathers) Walter Clarence

9. FUTURISTIC NAME: ( the name of your favorite perfume/cologne and the name of your favorite shoes) Romance Sketchers

10.WITNESS PROTECTION NAME: (mother/father's middle name ) Jean Alan

I promise there is a real post coming in the next few days. I have a package to brag about, a new project (I know!) to show off and a ::gasp:: finished object! Has it been that long? I think the last finished object I debuted on the blog was a pair of yellow ankle socks that I finished back in July! you know what started yesterday? hint....I'm looking for my size 2 dpns!

September 25, 2006

Catching up

Life is beginning to return to a normal pace around Chez Karen. I know it won't stay this way for very long....I work in retail and the holidays are approaching at lightning speed. Speaking of holidays...I've started my holiday knitting, so there will be some top secret knitting round these parts. I hope to keep knitting a little something non-secret on the side so I still have something to show you. Last week Doug and I took a mini-vacation to celebrate our one year anniversary. Say it with me now, we're no longer NEWLYWEDS! On our first day of vacation we laid low around Charlottesville, taking a hike in the morning at Humpback Rock, which is on the Blue Ridge Parkway, about 30 minutes away. I'm so thankful that I live so close to such gorgeous mountains and views, they are truly breathtaking. The wildlife is amazing too. I was able to get close enough to a buck to shoot this picture. He glanced at me and then went on grazing, not even worried about my bright yellow t-shirt and flashing camera.

Friday morning, we headed to the Outer Banks. I absolutely love this beach. If I had the ability to do anything I wanted to, I would take April-September off and rent a house down there for the busy season. I could just bartend to make some cash and walk on the beach every morning, maybe learn how to surf. That's my dream life, folks. Nothing but tropical drinks, sand, and salt water. Sigh.

Saturday night we went out to celebrate our one year anniversary, which actually fell on Sunday, September 17th. We went to a wonderful restaurant called The Flying Fish which has a wine listing to die for. Mmmmm.... (add wine to that list of perfect life stuff)

On our way home we passed a church with tons of flags decorating the front yard. I pulled over to look more closely. It is a monument dedicated to the soldiers fighting overseas. Each flag represents an American soldier that was killed in battle. I'm not sure if it only represents soldiers that were known by people of the church, or total Americans killed. It was a very windy day, and the flags were very striking. Simple, but effective.

After arriving home last Monday, I caught some terrible cold that has been going around and had me laid up on the couch for the better part of last week. I was able to make a significant dent in the UFO basket though. I worked on Green Gable quite a bit, and I am about 2 inches away from finishing. I've already finished both sleeves. I should have a finished object picture for you soon, but for now here is a progress pic. I've gotten a little further than this, but it will give you an idea.

I love this time of year! The weather starts to get a little colder, the leaves start to change colors, and football starts. Now I have to admit, I've never been really a huge fan of football in the past, but I don't dislike it. I've just never really watched it and paid attention. This year I am going to learn how the game is really played, try to learn all the rules, and really watch it. I love tailgating, so I should also love football, right? I have also decided that I need to make some team scarfs for my friends and family. I'm making this scarf using LB Wool-Ease Thick & Quick. I really love the weight of this yarn, the price is pretty good (5.99 ea.) and it only takes two balls to make a pretty decent size scarf. My big complaint is the color pallette. It will work for two of the teams I am doing scarfs for, but I'm hoping to churn out a whole bunch of these. Can anyone recommend a similar weight/price yarn with a better color selection?

I have a huge projection waiting in the wings. It probably won't get started for a while, and it will probably take me a really long time. I saw this sweater in a magazine a few weeks ago (sorry for the dark, blurry pic) and fell in love. The price tag isn't too unreasonable, but it's nearly impossible to find around here and I can't find it online either so I've decided to try to design it myself. I bought a few balls of different weight/content yarns to play around with guage. This is going to be such a challenge for me. For one, I've only completed one adult sweater, and that was straight stockinette and ribbing (Tubey). For another thing, I get the concept of cables, and I've cabled before, but only just a simple 3x3 twist or something similar, nothing like the complex lattice-like cables here. Finally, I have no idea how to take shaping and all that into account when writing this. I'm being really ambitious though, because I think it would be so fantastic if I can pull this off. I'm even going to try to write the pattern for more than one size so I can submit it to MagKnits or Knitty or something. Wish me luck everyone!

September 10, 2006

I. O. U.

I owe many apologies to many people out there. The past two weeks have been very crazy and hectic. I have had a few ups and a few downs. I will not dwell on the downs here, but will give you the highlights of the "ups". Since I have so many pics, I'll just let them do the talking. Let me start by giving a long overdue thank you to my Secret Pal! My super-aweseome secret pal was Shelley of She Knits She Rants . This was my final package from her-how cool is this? The cables edition of Vogue Knitting Stitchionary, the Yarn Harlot's Knitting Rules, a bag of A&W Root Beer candy (yum!), a skein of DB Cashmerino Aran (to make Fetching, a pattern she sent but not pictured), and my FAVE needles in the whole world-Brittany Birch DPNs to make Fetching. Thanks a million, SP! This was my first ever Secret Pal, and it was a great experience.

Speaking of Fetching.....I had already bought a ball of navy Cashmerino to match my winter coat, but hadn't gotten the pattern or needles yet. I swear my SP is psychic! Since this picture was taken I have finished Fetching #1, and have yet to start on Fetching #2. Second Fetching Syndrome?

The dog kennel is coming along nicely......

I have never previously taken a "Saturday Sky" picture, but this one was too good to pass up. This is the view from my front yard, looking directly up.

On Friday, September 1st, Kayla Dorian was brought into this world weighing in at 8 lbs, 5 oz. and sporting a full head of this black hair. Congratulations to her proud parents, Shining and Ra!

Wednesday we went to see a baseball game. The St. Louis Cardinals played the DC Nationals at RFK Stadium.
We had a great time, despite this....

(I'm a bit of a Cards's those Missouri roots.)

We had a much easier time getting home than we did getting there. We had left with enough time to tailgate for an hour before the game. I HATE driving in DC. We took one wrong turn off the interstate and couldn't get back to the road we needed. We ended up asking 5 different people for directions on the street, including a cop who was in a hurry to stop a "jumper". (Hope that guy is ok!) Finally we had my mom google map it and walk us through getting there. We arrived just in time to see the 5th inning.

This technically wasn't a Saturday, but this sky was too good to pass up also. This was on the way home from the game on Wednesday. It reminded me of that saying, "every cloud has a silver lining".
Finally, to end my busy two weeks, I attended the wedding of our good freinds Kari and Brian. Congrats guys!

August 14, 2006

Don't adjust your monitors....

....this is an actual post.

I really don't have any knitting to report. It's actually been a little sad, I haven't knit anything in about 2 weeks. I had all these big plans for Project Spectrum's neutral month. I have a handful of unfinished neutral knits that I really wanted to get tied up this month so I could have some ready-made Christmas gifts. What I didn't remember is that August is back-to-school month and I work at a huge retailer. Usually they don't like us to work any hours of overtime, but they've been handing out the hours like candy at work, and who I am to turn down some extra dough? Meanwhile, my DH has been busy building this:

This isn't even the most recent picture. He has put plywood roofing on and is preparing to shingle the roof when he gets back in town from his business trip. This is going to be DOG KENNEL, folks. My puppies are going to sleep in style! We have two pretty large dogs that don't get near enough exercise, so this will give them a stylin' little place to run around, enjoy the outdoors, and be merry without getting rained on or too much sun. Lucky pups!

I received a nice little package in the mail last week from Anjo (aka the Crafty Modster) to celebrate August's neutral Project Spectrum month.

Sorry the picture is so dark. It's a collection of fun neutral-toned crafty things-ribbon, thread, buttons, chocolate, a cute handmade card and a little pin. Thanks Anjo!

The craft that has been occupying most of my time is my newest obsession...

...Quilting! A few posts back I showed you fabric and a pattern for a quilt I want to make for my bedroom. In the midst of all that, my MIL and I designed a quilt for her and I to make together so she could learn to quilt and we would have something to do while my DH and FIL are working on the kennel. We centered the quilt design around this fabric.

She picked out all the fabrics and what placement she wanted them to have, and I did most of the math and figured out how to cut the pieces. I can't wait to see how this comes out. So far it's been moving along pretty quickly. I still have a ton of square to cut, which I'm in charge of since I have the rotary cutter.

Thanks for stopping by, hopefully next time I will have a picture of some knitting for my knitting blog. Maybe a finished neutral project, or a Pomatamus sock? Stay tuned!