March 26, 2006

Parades and UFO's

What a wonderful weekend I've had. I'll tell you all about it, but first there is a parade coming by. A SOCK YARN parade-the best kind. I don't really know what inspired me to do it, but here is all my sock yarn, snuggled up together. If you've been following my blog you know my recent obsession with socks-so addicting! Buying sock yarn is almost as much fun as the knitting
sock is. So, from left to right, top row: Hand-dyed sock yarn from Dani in the Neopolitan colorway, Lana Grossa self-striping sock yarn in black, grey, and white-destined to be socks for my husband, Regia self-striping cotton in the Sand colorway, Knit Picks Simple Stripes (2 balls) in the Vineyard colorway. Bottom row: Lorna's Laces Shepherd Sock yarn in the Vera colorway, Knitpicks sock yarn (can't remember the kind or colorway-oops), and 2 balls of Artyarns Supermerino in colorway #134 . The last one is my new favorite, just in time for April's colors, it reminds me of sunshine. It's a varigated yarn in worsted weight, so it will make some heavy socks, but I love the color-couldn't pass it up. Since we're on the subject of yellows and oranges, check out my new pajamas:

It's Project Spectrum PJ's! I didn't buy these specifically for the PS or anything, but they're new and I realized they are perfect for April! Man, oh, man are they comfy too! Since we're on a yellow kick, may I present my dad's new toy:

That's a 2006 Dodge Charger Limited Edition. He has #3993 out of only 4000 made. I wish I could tell you more car stats like horsepower and whatnot, but I'm just a knitty girl, I have no clue about that stuff. I can tell you it's 4-door, leather seats, and it has a moon roof. So, what did I do this weekend you ask? What do I do every weekend that I'm off? Buy more yarn!Beth and I went yarn-store hopping again. This time we started in Raphine, VA (halfway between Lexington and Staunton) and Orchardside Yarn Shop. They have an outstanding selection and the staff was very friendly and knowledgeable. I found a plethera of back issues of knitting magazines-I was tempted to buy them all, but I restrained and only bought 2 old ones and the current Vogue Knitting. I FINALLY found the back issue of VK that I've been searching for-Spring/Summer 2004 (furthest mag to the right). I want to make the strappy tank on the cover, so I also bought the yarn to make it. That store was our only scheduled stop of the day but our yarn appetites had been whetted, and we were lusting for more yarn. So, on to Harrisonburg we went. We found a fairly new shop in H'burg called Knit Works that is my favorite store to date. It was large and bright, had walls and walls of yarn, and a super-friendly staff. Beth found a sample purse she loved but the owner hadn't drawn up the pattern yet. She didn't have the time to write it down for us, but she got Beth's address and said she'd mail her the pattern. When we walked in the door I glimpsed a book display on the counter and beelined for it. What did I find but none other than the Yarn Harlot's newest book, "Knitting Rules!". I didn't even know it was out yet, so I snapped it up, then browsed the sock yarn, settling on the black and white stripes for Doug's socks. The third and final shop was Rocktown Yarns on Water Street (near the courthouse) where I found the sunshine sock yarn. I wish I could motivate myself to spend as much time knitting as I do shopping for sock yarn. I just can't seem to resist getting my hands on more and more beautiful yarn. I need to go through the stash and really see what I have, it's a bit out of control.

Lastly, we have a UFO parade/sighting. For those of you unfamiliar with the term, UFO means unfinished object in the knitting world. I have UFO's a plenty. A few days ago I joined the Lent-a-long which in theory is supposed to encourage you to work on your WIP's (works in progress) and not buy more yarn until you've finished up a few things. We can see how well that not-buying thing went for me so far, so to balance it out I'm going to try to at least work on some of these. I realize that putting these out there on blogland for all to see I am opening myself up to all sorts of criticism and toungue-clucking if I decide to cast-on for a new project, but that's just something I need to face. I need to own up to the fact that I am awful at finishing things, so here goes.

First up, a sweater back from a feeble attempt at making my mom a sweater. I can't remember what holiday this was supposed to be a present for. Christmas, I think? Anyhoo, the yarn is LB Thick & Quick and it was a super-quick knit, but I miss-crossed the cable in two places and forgot some increases so I got discouraged and put in on a back-burner. The blue thing is the very beginning of a baby cardigan for my friend Lida who is due May 24th. She knows about the sweater, picked out the yarn and everything, so I really need to get cracking on it. It is a size 6-month, so I technically have until about Oct to finish it, but it'd be good to have it ready to go before the baby shower.Next you have a rainbow ripple blanket. I actually got pretty far on that one before I put it aside. Wanna know why? It's crochet. No, I'm not saying I like crochet better than knitting, quite the opposite. My point is, when knitting first started becoming "hip" again, I wanted to learn but had no one to teach me. In frustration I decided to pick up crochet again and went to town. This was all the yarn I had at the time (wow, remember when.....) and it was the only craft I had (my, how things have changed). About mid-way through the blanket I bought a teach-yourself-to-knit book and some needles and things have never been the same since. Sorry little crochet hook, someday you will feel the love again. The thing at the top is a little too small to see, so here's a better pic:This really isn't anything in particular, so I don't feel that bad about it not being done yet. I decided, after teaching myself to do nothing but stockinette and garter stitch for a while, that I needed to learn to cable. I had this yarn sitting around and just cast on and started going. The yarn is really pretty, white with a tiny sparkle running through it, it reminds me of fresh snow. I've thought about turning this into a stole, or a sweater, or something, but for now it's just my giant cable swatch. Last, but certainly not least:One day this will be a sweater for my husband. It's "Jesse's Flames" from Stitch'n'Bitch Nation by Debbie Stoller. I made great progress on the front and back, but then I got started on the flames and wow, intarsia is hard! I had done intarsia once before (I'll put a pic of that sweater on someday) but for some reason this was much more challenging. I got about 12 rows into the first flame and put it down. I bragged a lot about this sweater as I was making the front and back and how cool it was going to be with the flames, and as a result whenever people at work see me knitting they ask about this sweater. It's such an embarrasing reminder, so I think I will try to finish it up soon so I can finally reply "It's done!" when they ask.

Whew! What a long post. When I was getting those UFO's out, Doug kept saying, "I remember that one, I'd forgotten about it", etc. Kinda bad that these things have been sitting around long enough to be forgotten about. Eeek! Maybe by the next time I post I can show you a finished object, although it will probably only be my almost-completed Neopolitan socks.


Kim said...

Wow, you have been a busy girl! I'm glad you got to see OYS in Raphine. I think it's such a neat little shop (did you know you can pick berries there in the summer?), and the lady who owns it is really a sweetheart!

Thanks for posting about the shop in Harrisonburg. I'll have to check it out the next time I make it up that way!

Beth said...

I object to the statement regarding sorority girls on your blog. To imply that sorority girls are at all slutty, that they drink alcohol underage, or that they have so little self respect as to flash someone is just insulting. Absolutely insulting. I think we all know sororities to have the highest moral and academic standards. For shame.

Anonymous said...

Many people know the importance of self confidence and try to boost their own by using many different personal development models. Self confidence to most people is the ability to feel at ease in most situations but low self confidence in many areas may be due to a lack of self esteem. Low self esteem takes a more subtle form that low self confidence. So if you are tired of feeling not good enough, afraid of moving towards your desires and goals, feel that no matter what you do it is just never good enough, then your self esteem could do with a boost.
Every day we make decisions based on our level of self-esteem. We also exhibit that level of self esteem to those around us through our behaviour. 90% of all communication is non-verbal - it is not what you say but ho you say it that matters! Your body language, tonality and facial gestures can all tell a completely different story to your words. It is our behaviour which influences others and people react to us by reading our non-verbal communications. Have you ever met someone you just didn't like although on the surface they seemed polite and courteous, or you met someone who seemed to speak confidently yet you knew they were really frightened underneath and just displaying bravado?
Parental and peer influences play a major part in moulding our level of self-esteem when we are children and in our early years of adolescence. The opinions of the people closest to us and how they reacted to us as individuals or part of the group was a dominant factor in the processes involved in forming our self esteem.
As adults we tend to perpetuate these beliefs about ourselves and in the vast majority of cases they are ridiculously erroneous. It is time to re-evaluate our opinion of ourselves and come to some new conclusions about these old belief patterns.
Ask yourself some serious question:
Is your long-held view about yourself accurate? Do we respect the sources from which we derived these beliefs? Most of the negative feedback we bought into as we were growing up actually came from people we have little or no respect for and as adults we would probably laugh their comments away! Yet the damage to your self esteem was done when you were very young and you still carry it with you to this day.
Is it possible that even those people you respected, who influenced your self-worth, were wrong? Perhaps they had low self esteem also.
As adults we have the opportunity to reshape our self-esteem. Try to judge accurately the feedback you receive from people you respect. This process will allow you to deepen your understanding of yourself and expand your self-image. It will also show you were you actually need to change things about yourself and were you don't. Many people are striving to better themselves in areas where they are just fine or actually excelling and it is only because they have an inaccurate picture of themselves in their minds due to low self esteem!
Setting small goals and achieving them will greatly boost your self-esteem. Identify your real weakness and strengths and begin a training program to better your inter-personal or professional skills. This will support you in your future big life goals and boost your self-esteem and self confidence to high levels you didn't existed!
Learn to recognise what makes you feel good about yourself and do more of it. Everyone has certain things that they do which makes them feel worthwhile but people with low self esteem tend to belittle these feelings or ignore them.
Take inventory of all the things that you have already accomplished in your life no matter how small they may seem. Recognise that you have made achievements in your life and remember all the positive things that you have done for yourself and others. Take a note of your failures and don't make excuses like "I'm just not good enough" or "I just knew that would happen to me", analyse the situation and prepare yourself better for the next time. If someone else created success, regardless of the obstacles, then you are capable of doing the same! Remember everyone has different strengths and weakness so do not judge your own performance against that of another just use them as inspiration and know that what one human being has achieved so can another!
Surround yourself with people who respect you and want what is best for you - people who are honest about your strengths and will help you work through your weakness. Give the same level of support to them!
Avoid people who continually undermine you or make you feel small. These people are just displaying very low self esteem. As your own self esteem grows you will find that you are no longer intimidated by another's self confidence or success and you can actually be joyful for them! Do things you love to do and that make you happy. A truly happy person never has low self esteem they are too busy enjoying life! By getting busy living your life with passion and joy you will not be able to be self-consciousness.
If you find yourself feeling self-conscious in any situation focus on the fact that others can tell and many of them will be feeling the same. Be honest. People respond to someone better if they openly say "To tell you the truth I'm a bit nervous" rather than displaying bravo or fake confidence that they can see right through. Their reactions to you, will show your mind at a deep level, that there was actually nothing to be frightened of and everything is great. If someone reacts to this negatively they are just displaying low self esteem and very quickly you will find others noticing this! Really listen to people when they talk to you instead of running through all the negative things that could happen in your head or focusing on your lack of confidence. People respond to someone who is truly with them in the moment..
Breath deeply and slow down. Don't rush to do things.
Stop the negative talk! 'I'm no good at that' or "I couldn't possibly do that" are affirmations that support your lack of self esteem. Instead say "I have never done that before but I am willing to try" or "how best can I do that?". Which leads us to the last point - the quality of the questions you ask yourself s very important.
When you ask a question it almost always has a preposition in it. For example, "How did I mess that up?" presumes that something was messed up, a better way of phrasing the question would be "what way can I fix this quickly?", as this presumes you can and will fix it. Or "How am I ever going to reach my goal?" could be rephrased as "what way will lead me to my goal quicker" presumes that you are going to reach your goal! Get the picture? Change the quality of your questions and your results will change!
Practise these techniques and watch your self esteem rise day by day. self hypnosis

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