Friday, March 31, 2006

cursed, I tell ya!

I got sucked into a certain pattern, the same one that *everyone* in bloggerland is doing. I've seen so many of gorgeous renditions of the Jaywalker like Cara's and all of these. So why do my Jaywalkers look like this?
down to the toe
Yeah, you may think these look nice....and they do! Unfortunately they don't fit me!!! I am CURSED. Cursed I tell you! I've knit and re-knit this pattern-I think this is the fourth or fifth incarnation- and this is the closest I've come to a sock that fits and looks halfway decent.
And you know what the topper is? I *ran out of yarn* at the top of the toe decreases.


So I'm knitting the toe on some stash sportweight yarn that happens to pretty close the purple shade in the sock. I thin I'm just going to be glad when these socks are completed. Thank goodness I knitted both socks at the same time on two sets of DPNs. The other sock is about an inch from the toe decreases so I don't have far to go.

And in other (better) news....I finished plying up all of my Project Spectrum yarn.

I like it!

Monday, March 27, 2006

SPT 03/27/106

Today's Self Portrait Tuesday image:
"My Day in Two Hour Increments"
Self Portait Tuesday

8am: Missed this shot cuz I couldn't find the camera. Just imagine me looking more disheveled than usual, trying in vain to pull the blanket over my head for 10 more minutes of sleep while Little Man jumps up and down on me, squealing "Get up Momma! Get up Momma!"

10am: Driving on the toll road, already late to a birthday party. At least it's a nice day!

12pm: Little Man and Monkey Boy in the Build a Bear store. Little Man is clutching his unstuffed bear while awaiting his turn at the "stufferteria". He didn't much like the noise of the "stufferteria" (a very loud whooshing sound) and refused to even look at his bear being stuffed. That was probably a good choice, since the stuffing process looks involves a large metal tube, much insertion into various bear orifices, and plenty of stuffing. The young lady doing the stuffing looked like she was having *way* too much fun with the poor little animals, if you know what I mean.

2pm: Riding on the train at the mall. This was Monkey Boy's first train ride and he *loved* it. Witness:
on the right track

4pm: Monkey Boy naps and Little Man is having his quiet time. I get to do the morning dishes (left out cuz we ran out of the house), and start preparing dinner.

6pm: Just finished the dinner dishes. Gotta run to the store!

8pm: Back from the store; just put Monkey Boy down for the night. Here's the view from our front door as it starts to rain.

Sunday, March 26, 2006

Not so bad after all

Remember my 'indecision time' post? I just wasn't sure that the yarns I was plying together looked all that great. I finally plyed enough for a smallish hank, washed it and let it dry. Here's the final result:
150yds of 'not so bad'

Not so bad after all, eh? It's definately grown on me, and I think I like it enough to finish plying the rest of the singles.

As an interesting aside, I noticed that my spinning has gotten much thinner lately. When I first started getting a consistent singles on Ellie , they were pretty thick. Once plyed, the resulting yarn was a light aran weight or heavy worsted. 4oz of BFL produced approximately 450yds of yarn.

This last batch of singles is more of a laceweight, and once plyed it's about sportweight. The hank above is about 2/3 of an ounce/156yds. There are 7.5oz more to ply, so I'm going to have A LOT of this yarn.

I think my singles have gotten thinner because I've changed the way I predraft fiber. Previously I would sit down, predraft half an ounce or so of fiber, spin it, predraft another half ounce, spin more, etc.. Now I will predraft up to four ounces all in one batch, put them in a basket and just pull from the basket as I'm spinning:

getting a head start

The strips of fiber are thinner so my singles tend to be thinner. Plus I noticed the color repeats are much longer because the strips are longer. I'm thinking that after this batch of yarn is plyed up, it might be fun to try funky, thick singles.


Stash Amassed Beyond Life Expectancy
That's me! So I joined the Knittyboard Flash Your Stash 2006, being run by Zib. On April 1st, you'll be able to check out my entire stash (scary thought!). I'll probably end up with waaaaay too many pics and I hope the Dearest doesn't check out my blog on that day or he'll probably be horrified! The rest of you fiberholics should enjoy all the yarn p0rn, so stop by.

Saturday, March 25, 2006

actual knitting pics!

Remember this? I have nearly 800 yds of this spun up, and enough roving for at least another 400ish yards. So what did I decide to make with it? How about Veste Everest from Fall 2005 IK:
Veste Everest
Originally I was going to make the 34 inch size of the vest, but once I'd gotten halfway up the front and held it to my bust, I realized that there was no way it was going to fit. So I ripped it and started over with the 40 inch size. That may be a little too large but if it is, I'm going to perform some sewing machine surgery on the sides and "take it in" a little. The pattern calls for cables on the back, which is waste of time and yarn IMHO. I think I'm going to just do a 6x2 ribbing instead.

Last weekend while I was spinning at LPK, a shipment of new Malabrigo arrived. It didn't even get to the shelves before I had them lay aside four skeins of Red Pearl for me. Last time they had the Red Pearl Malabrigo, a woman bought up all eight skeins while I was trying to decide if I 'needed' it. (Who am I kidding? Of *course* I needed it! It's Malabrigo!) Anyways, I learned my lesson and grabbed the skeins while they were still being unpacked from the bag. Despite already having plenty of projects on the needles, I started the T-Shirt Sweater from Ella Rae:
t-shirt sweater from Ella Rea

isn't it purty?

Thursday, March 23, 2006

indecision time

Well, I'm plying and I can't quite decide if I like the way this is turning out:

(sorry for the crap flash photography, but it's 11pm!)

I've actually stopped for the night and will wait to see if I like this better tomorrow. Anyone care to weigh in with their opinions? Is it a keeper or should I just ply this back on itself?:

And guess who I found climbing the stash this afternoon?
climbing the stash

not just knitting...

Yes, I've been knitting, though I don't have any pics to show you. The boys have been keeping me super busy lately and Monkey Boy dropped his morning nap so it's difficult to find time to take photos. I do have some spinning to show off....


This is the Project Spectrum roving I posted about previously. I spun up the whole 4.5 oz into singles and I'm thinking of plying it with this:
IMG_9468 copy

more BFL, about 4.5oz

Normally when I ply, I use the lazy kate that came with my wheel. But that means that I have to wait till I have both bobbins full before I can start plying. Some other spinners I know will ply from two center pull balls, which allows you to free up your bobbin immediately after spinning the first set of singles.

So that's what I'm going to try tonight- I'm hoping that it won't get totally tangled up! Wish me luck!

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Self Portait Tuesday 03/21/06

Self Portait Tuesday 03/21/06

Did I wait till the last minute for this SPT? That clock on the left photo says 11:45pm, so I guess I did!

This is my interpretation of the "time" theme....The families on Frontier House go back to the 1800s and I watch them on a DVD (thoroughly modern) while spinning- an activity that is as ancient as you can get. Maybe I should have broken out my spindle instead of the wheel.

Monday, March 20, 2006


Friday, March 17, 2006

hooga chakka


Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Project Spectrum- 03/14/06

Project Spectrum- 03/14/06

I really wanted to find some red and pink in our house today, so here's what I came up with. This is all stuff in Little Man's room, and the upstairs hall.

baby bums

Ok, the only thing sweeter than baby toes? Baby bums!

That's Michelle and her new babe Isabel.

Monday, March 13, 2006

Self Portait Tuesday

For this SPT I decided to take some quick snapshots during the day, just to see how much different I would look from morning to night...

SPT 03/13/06 10:29am

fresh faced and as well rested as a mom to two young boys can be!

SPT 03/13/06 2:36pm
Boys are down for the afternoon and I grab a quick snap in the hall mirror

SPT 03/16/06 7:15pm
A quick, very blurry image of me and my sous chef preparing grilled PB&J san'iches

SPT 03/16/06 10:17pm
Looking tired! I'm listening to an audiobook- "Wicked"- and spinning.

Sunday, March 12, 2006

serves ya right

There's something wrong with my right wrist.

Something Really Wrong.

Little Man and I were roughousing on the couch yesterday and he jumped on my arm the wrong way, hyperextending my wrist. OUCH. I gave such a holler of pain that he and Monkey Boy both stopped playing immediately, their faces shocked and scared.

Once I explained that Mommy wasn't yelling that them, that she'd hurt her wrist, they were much relieved. LM came over and gave me 'ouchie kisses' to make my arm feel better. Unfortunately that didn't work very last night my right wrist was seriously painful- to the point that I couldn't knit. *gasp*

Fellow knitters, you all know how bad my injury is if I'm not knitting!

This morning it was only nominally better. I asked the Dearest to rub in some arnica gel and my wrist finally started feeling less stiff. It's still difficult for me to pick up heavy objects with my right hand, but at least I can hold Monkey Boy without dropping him.

I've hyperextended both my wrists before while playing hockey, so I know there's not much to be done except wait for my current injury to heal. Luckily I was able to comfortably knit a few rows this afternoon despite the stiffness. For a few worried hours last night, I was seriously contemplating what would happen if I couldn't knit anymore. *shudder*

BTW the Shamrock Shakes are back at McD's! Now, I don't usually enjoy visits to the Evil Empire, but I will admit that they have the world's best Coke (and I'm a Pepsi girl normally), and their Shamrock Shakes are delish! LM insisted on McD's for lunch this afternoon and I caved only because I knew I could get a shake.

When we got home, I put Monkey Boy down for his nap, and Little Man was quickly ushered into his room for quiet time. Then I settled down to read my Bloglines and drink my shake. YUM
shamrock shake

Thursday, March 09, 2006

Lady Eleanor- fin!


Lady Eleanor- Finished!
obligatory "on the shoulders'" pose
(forgive the bad cropping and burning, I had to take this by myself and my tripod broke so the camera is resting on a side table)

tassles closeup

Lady E relaxes

FO report:

Lady Eleanor from Scarf Style.
9 balls of Noro Silk Garden, colorway 84 (reds)
Size US10 Clover (bamboo) circulars

I followed the pattern almost exactly, aside from substituting yarns. This was a really fun project- it was more entertaining than straight stockinette, but once I got the hang of it I was able to talk and knit with no problems.

Blocking was done by soaking in Eucalan woolwash for 1/2 an hour, then spin drying in the washing machine. I laid the Lady out on my bathroom floor with a towel underneath and she was dry by morning (about 8 hrs). No pins were used in blocking. I just stretched the stole lightly.

Some people have complained about the look of the SSK on each entralac square. I personally do a funky version of the SSK so my SSK sts always look a little weird. I was a little unhappy with the look, but once the stole was blocked it was all good.

My Lady E was about 58in unblocked and 68in blocked. Width went from 24 inches to 21 inches. She's the perfect size to wrap around my shoulders and I *love* the way she turned out. In fact I'm thinking of using some of my handspun for another one!

deep thoughts

deep thoughts
Originally uploaded by shizzknits.

Monkey Boy relaxing on the couch.

Sunday, March 05, 2006

reach out and touch someone

Originally uploaded by shizzknits.

Monkey Boy is fascinated by the telephone. He LOVES to climb up on the couch, pick up the phone and hold it to his ear. It's so cute!

Saturday, March 04, 2006

Goin' mainstream

Remember the Harlot's Knitting Olympics?
Check this out !
When I saw this article, it was on the Yahoo's top newstories page. Knitters, we are going mainstream!!

Friday, March 03, 2006

Ut Oh

There goes the yarn diet! Damn you Knitpicks!!!!

Plus I was at Knitty and they had their surprise patterns up. I *heart* Starsky. How cool is that? And it's made with 11ish skeins of Sierra, meaning you can knit it up for less than $50. More coolness.

Must. Resist. New. Yarns.

On another note, Elspeth asked me about the Yarncoop I mentioned previously. It's a Yahoo group put together so that individuals can purchase yarns, needles and accessories at greatly discounted prices. You join the group and find a coop you are interested in (there are usually 2-3 running at any one time). You place your 'order' with the person running the coop, then you pay that person. When the shipment comes in, it goes to the coop-mom and she disburses all the items. Discounts can range from 10%-60% off retail prices. The tradeoff is you must be patient. One of my coop orders took 3 months to get in, but I saved 50% off the MSRP so I was willing to wait! A recent order only took about a month, and the discount was 40%.

Yarns cooped have included Henry's Attic, Furryarns, 100purewool, Interlacements, and Fleece Artist. Another recent coop was for accessories (like counters, needles, etc.).

Anyways, it's a fun group to hook up with and the deals are pretty good if you can be patient!


Originally uploaded by shizzknits.

Little Man no longer naps, but every day he has his "quiet time". I put Monkey Boy down for his nap and then LM gets to watch some TV. After 30 min, we head to LM's room where he gets to play or read or do whatever for an hour.

Some days he says he doesn't need his quiet time. I always reply "But Momma needs your quiet time!"

Thursday, March 02, 2006

just my boy....

cowboy up

Little Man as a cowboy. Gi'up!

Project Spectrum

This month's Project Spectrum color is red, so I've decided that I am going to spin this up:
Project Spectrum for March

Blue Face Leicster in (mostly) Red

There's about 4.5 oz there, which is enough for *something*. Not sure what, but my plan is to spin it all, ply it and knit it up. Do you think I can do it in month? We'll see!

I'm also going to cheat and use Lady E. as part of the PS/March project. She *is* red after all! See her reclining in all her glory on the train table....
Lady E