Monday, April 30, 2012

Zebra cuffs ~

I am finally knitting the cuffs of these socks!  It seems like it has taken years to get to the cuffs with all those crazy squares taking up my knitting time... but finally, FINALLY, knitting on the cuffs with my classic choice of the the 4 row repeat (actually only 3 row repeat, as row 1 and 3 are the same) that I found in More Sensational Knitting Socks.
This is my standby cuff pattern... stay tuned for them to be done soon....(hopefully very soon....)

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Jury is out ~

Question for you.  What do Meat Cleavers, Spear Guns and knitting needles have in common...
 Think this must make perfect sense to someone....
Are you ready for the answer yet?
Answer:  All are Prohibited items for Jury Duty........(here is a partial list below) so I have to sit in Jury Duty for at least a day with no knitting.....THAT should be illegal...... (how do you think all these items make it on the list...did someone try to get into the Jury room with a spear gun????)

A. Prohibited Items
1. Sharp Instruments
• Box Cutters/Utility Knives
• Corkscrews (any size)
• Knives (except for plastic or metal round bladed butter type knives)
• Knitting Needles (any size - metal, plastic or other material - includes circular
• Razor-Type Blades (straight razors and razor blades-does not include safety
• Meat Cleavers
• Swords/Sabers/Daggers/Dirks
• Scissors (metal with pointed tips - any size)
• Spear guns

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Bonjour ~

My kiddo was asked to attend a French Tea with her honors French classmates and teacher, Madame. Very exciting and very fun for all!
P.S.  Did I mention I am DONE with those squares?!!!!!!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

On Track ~

A great day for running track, and this was extra fun for me as I was able to be watching while my daughter was running her mile event.  She was very close to setting another PR (personal record) but missed it by seconds.... perhaps next track meet she will run another PR!
I love watching track meets. I especially love watching my kids running at track meets or cross country meets.  The kids are running with no helmets or shoulder pads or heavy equipment, just their shoes and uniforms....not weighed down with gear, like football or hockey.... such pure movement and grace, some have long strides and others power through short steps. The hurdles are always a bit scary to watch as someone always hits the hurdle in the last dash to the end, but always they pick themselves up and finish the race.  The sprinters have such different strides than the distance kids and it is all so exciting to watch.  Running is such a pure sport, pure energy and so exciting!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Zebra spins ~

When I picked up my Pocket Wheel last October, on the Perfect Pocket Day, I was able to pick three bobbins for my wheel. Jitteryknitter picked out the zebra wood bobbin right away, as it has such personality, plus it is beautiful!  As you can see in that first picture from my Perfect Pocket Day, the zebra had some tension problems at first, just some adjustments to work out being in a new home, with a clueless spinner..:).. but the zebra and I have become good buddies, and we help each other ease the tension of our days to create some lovely singles.
Here is the zebra with the start of the second two ounces of my lovely 50/50 merino/silk. I've spun the first two ounces on this bobbin, and when the zebra has the rest of the two ounces, then I will make a lovely 2-ply and hopefully get enough yardage to make a dazzling shawl! You can still see a bit of tension on this single, as I am still learning on my spinning journey...the colors are so beautiful!

Monday, April 23, 2012

Hallelujah Heels ~

I stayed up until after midnight last night, knitting squares..... finishing all that were left of those "given" to me by the ladies that couldn't finish their own squares.  At last count, I started with 10 squares, received 15 more, then received 6 from Geri, and then 3 from Kathy the I think that adds up to 34.... at about an hour for each square.... I am glad I was able to finish so many, and I do hope the raffle will get a lot of donations for the kids' mission trip.......
and now I am VERY excited to have started to knit the first heel on these lovely zebra socks..."Zebra" is the color of the Claudia Hand Paints yarn, and I love the twist and the colors.  As you can see from all these rubber bands, I am using the Queen Kahuna method which is a "cannot fail" method that I have loved for a long time....Hurrah to be done with the squares and Hallelujah to be knitting on socks!!!!

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Earth Day Yarn Yoga ~

I was very glad that we had planned an Earth Day Yarn Yoga last month, as I knew I would be able to knit something other than the mystery squares for the afghan because the squares were all due at church that morning. There was an extra spring in my step walking through the courtyard at church, through the spring trees to the sanctuary entrance, as I knew I had sock knitting in the car, waiting for Yarn Yoga....As one of my church friends greeted me at the door with, "Welcome" she also said, "Hey, I have my squares for you!" and reached into her bag and pulled out a zip-lock bag with lots of yarn...but I didn't see any squares.... She said, "I started one,but didn't really like knitting them, so you can finish them and just give me back my needles when you're done...."  Remembering that I'm at church, I knew that there must be a lesson here, so I said, "Sure, I can finish the square for you, and return your needles"  and she smiled and replied, "Oh, there are three squares in the bag"  No sock knitting for me on Earth Day.....just more squares that will never end...
Thankfully I have wonderful friends to share the square nightmare with.... and we had a lot of fun at our Yarn Yoga... Lisa knitting on a shawl, Marion knitting  bunny slippers, Debi knitting a shawl, Kathy finishing two scarves and Patti knitting a lovely brown scarf..... and I was knitting garter stitch squares....

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Fast Track ~

Amazing track meet today, an invitational with a zillion high schools there, and the best of the best running. There were 3 heats of 1600 (mile) for the gals, 45 in each heat, and 6 heats of 1600 (mile) for the guys, 40 guys in each heat. Heat after heat of sprints and hurdles -  All of them running so amazingly fast that our hearts were in our throats watching them. So many on our team had a PR (personal record) that we watched hour after hour of races and enjoyed all the excitement!  
My daughter was in the second heat of the 1600 (mile) with 45 girls in her heat. She's easy to find in this line up - in a white tank top and red hair in ponytail, next to gal in all red, sort of in lane 2. 
Here she is at the far left, ponytail flying, passing one of the many runners that she passed before the end of the race.  She did amazingly well, and just one second from her PR.  The PR that she ran just the Thursday before. Awesome!!

Monday, April 16, 2012

Square Vacation ~

Please don't tell those at church that I took a little vacation from the squares to do a bit of spinning on this lovely 50/50 silk/merino dream fiber.  I can tell you that it is just a bit more slippery than I am used to spinning, but it is good to try all fibers and learn new ways to cope with a new fiber. 
The colors are stunning and the fiber is really soft and fluffy.  My hope and dream is that I will be able to ply this lovely single into a two ply and have enough yardage to knit a sweet shawl or scarf for myself.  By the end of this spinning session, I had spun two ounces, with two ounces left to spin....
Now, back to those squares.....Doesn't my Pocket Wheel look so happy with this fiber!!!

Sunday, April 15, 2012

The Valley of Squares ~

Just when you think it is safe to go into Fellowship Hall after church...Since the mystery afghan organizer is out of town this weekend, she asked me to collect all the squares from the knitters this Sunday and next Sunday, as they are due next Sunday so we can start putting them together....Many of the knitters met me in Fellowship Hall with their bags of happily knit squares in a variety of colors, just waiting to be put together in a puzzle that will be a lovely picture when completed.
One sweet knitter approached me with her bag saying, "Here are my squares, except they are not knit yet."  I said, "Ummmm, not knit at all?"  and she nodded yes.... She said she knew that she could not knit them by next Sunday so she wanted to give them back so we could knit them....I said of course, I would knit them... and began to wonder how many squares equaled "them" as she was saying "them" and not "this square is not knit"  so there was more-than-one left for me to knit....*heavy sigh*   I could not bring myself to count them until I was home, and feeling very thankful and blessed to be able to knit for charity, and knowing that this was really a good thing to get to knit more...right? So I took a deep and thankful breath, and counted them... Well, there are six-more-squares to knit.....Yea, though I knit through the Valley of the Shadow of the Squares, I fear not.....

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Lost count ~

I keep knitting and knitting these little squares for the mystery afghan. I think I told you that I started with an assignment of 10 squares. When I returned them "all done" ...and my daughters did NOT knit one each, like we had first thought they would....I received another assignment of 15 squares. I have timed my knitting of these squares, and it takes me about an hour to knit one... that is including the yarn changes as most of the squares have stripes of several colors...
Last night and today I slogged through several squares and began to count to see how many I had left to knit. Although I lost count this afternoon, I think I have just one more square to knit for my LAST square, Number 25.... The only problem is that I have run out of one of the colors in this last I have emailed the other church knitters to ask if they will bring me enough for two rows of the color "pageant" so I can finish this square tomorrow and be done done done.... how lovely it will be to knit on my socks, shawls and other delightful projects!!!!

Monday, April 9, 2012

Lollipop Silk ~

There is a story about this lovely fiber.  It came into my possession as the "lollipop" after a doctor's appointment. Remember, as a kid, when your folks promised you a lollipop if you made it through a difficult doctor's appointment in a brave way? Well, this doctor of mine happens to have his office very near my favorite yarn when I learned that I had to have a less-than-appealing-procedure last Friday, I put my Christmas gift certificate into my bag as that reward "lollipop" if I was brave during this appointment. I did this once before, and it worked out then as a great reward, and made me think of the yarn shop visit instead of worrying about the doctor visit....
I was very brave, and didn't cry or freak out or faint....just did a lot of breathing deeply....and was fine at the end...  So my reward was the yarn store, and I looked around to find just the right reward....and saw this lovely 50/50 merino silk in these dashing colors of teal and green and red....
and that was all I needed to see to know this was my reward.  I've never spun 50/50 silk before, so I was a little nervous when I started spinning this afternoon... hopefully I'll have some pictures of my singles soon....

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Happy Easter ~

A happy and blessing filled Easter to all of you!  Here are the girls in front of our lovely tree at church. A perfect day and a perfect celebration!
Sunshine and blue sky too!

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Socks in the Sun ~

Saturday was such a lovely day - full of sunshine and blue sky and all of us in the northwest were gawking at the sky as if we had never seen blue sky.  Spring in the northwest is like that....The best of all things added to this blue sky is track practice! So there I am, sitting in the sun and knitting on socks while my 13 year old is running hills for track practice. How lucky am I?
Very lucky, indeed.  In fact, I was feeling so great about the sunshine and blue sky, and finally being able to knit this week... that I decided to live on the edge and NOT knit those squares while in the sunshine, and just knit on these sweet socks for my 16 year old....
so I did... and felt deliciously naughty for not knitting those squares, and knitting for family..... that really isn't a bad thing, is it????

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Fifteen more squares ~

I told you about the Mystery Afghan... we are knitting this as an auction item to raise funds for the kids' church mission trip.  I'm sure I told you about this, right? There are over 270 little squares to knit, and then assemble, and the squares make a lovely picture once they are all together. 
Well, I knit the first 10 and thought that would be all that was needed from me until it was time to put them all together.  However....not the case... last Sunday I received another fifteen squares to knit...and I think I've powered through four of them already..... 
This is what worries me...with this square knitting that I'm doing now, and the acrylic knitting I was knitting for the trees, will I forget how to knit "real" knitting like socks and scarves and shawls and sweaters and hats????  I would really like to get back to my knitting, soon!!!!

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

More Plyed Yarn ~

Here are the plyed yarns from this week. On your left is the Lorna's Laces superwash rainbow, and on your right is the lovely Party Time Pot Luck roving. They are both lovely and bright and cheery.  You may be able to tell from the photo that both are Navajo plyed, and yet the Party Time has come out to a finer/smaller size as my singles are thinner with more practice.
There is only 58 yards of Lorna's Laces, with no fiber left, and about 60 yards of the Party Time, and I do have some fiber left, plus another bobbin to ply....
 I have about 30 yards of this Lorna's Laces in a two ply from my drop spindle days, but not sure I could use the two ply with the Navajo ply.... might look a bit odd and lopsided unless I was very very clever!!

Monday, April 2, 2012

Spring hike ~

Today is Monday, and officially starts the "no school" of Spring Break for our kids.  Today was also my day off, so it almost seemed like all of us were on vacation. How lucky that the sunshine came out today, and it felt like spring.  After a morning run, and then shooting hoops with my 13 year old, then we all decided to walk to the newest park in our neighborhood.  
We walked on the Big Rock trail and found this rock at the end of the trail.  Yes, it is a very big rock, so the girls had to climb up for pictures.  There was also a meadow trail, a wetland trail and a picnic table... a beautiful park for our neighborhood!!
After our walk, there were more hoops to shoot and lay-ups to make, and we had a blast outside!  I hope spring is really here!

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Party Time Ply ~

I finally was able to do some plying today. After spinning for a half hour, I decided to ply some of the lovely Party Time Pot Luck roving to see if the colors would stay bright and cheerful, or if they would blend into muddy mud... and I think they stayed bright and cheery!  
I thought about making a two ply, but since I've been having such fun with Navajo plying, I decided to try to get that delightful "jitterbug twist" in the ply once again. 
 I love that part of the Navajo ply the best, that really tight twist that we love in Jitterbug yarn and Koigu yarns..... love that twist!! I love these colors!!!