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!


Jennifer said...

Glad to hear you are still about! Happy anniversary! I still consider you guys to be newlyweds. You can be newlyweds until about year three. Then when you get to where RM and I are, going on year 9, it's old news. LOL!

Mary said...

My sister lives in the Outer Banks and did just exactly what you described -- she worked there during the summers between college, and then moved there permanently after she graduated. She ended up marrying someone she worked with down there, and they now have two kids and live on a canal in Colington Harbor. Dream life, huh? I was down there in August for vacation and saw that display of flags. I would guess that it represents all the American soldiers killed to date, because the number is somewhere between 2-3,000, and that display appears to have about that many flags. Effective, isn't it? Love that cabled sweater -- I'll bet it will be beautiful.

Kim said...

Wow, you have lots going on! Happy anniversary!!

Everyone seems to be knitting Green Gable. Might have to try that one!

As far as yarn goes, I've never used Thick-n-Quick, so I don't know exactly how bulky it is, but I've really liked Brown Sheep Lamb's Pride Bulky. Also, Knit-Picks has some new bulky weight yarn that's pretty well-priced. Good luck!

Debby said...

Happy Anniversary!

I would love nothing more than to live by a (warm) beach -- sun, sea, and sand year round. The beach is close by our house now but it's too cold in winter to stay very long.

That's a really ambitious project you've got, but I think you can do it! I'm wondering if your local LYS could help you with the basics. Also perhaps the Handy Book of Sweater Patterns or that Elizabeth Zimmerman book. I think both of them explain how to alter basic patterns to fit and how to "translate" directions to make what you like. Let us know how it goes!!