my life as a crocheter & knitter & working mom

Friday, May 26, 2006

when in doubt, stash

I'm not doubting anything, but isn't that a great title?

So, instead of pushing through the slog yesterday, I did a little shopping. I bought an apron pattern for my sister's shower gift.

I also hit the yarn sale at Herrschners and got these:

enough of each to make myself a tank.

Then elann put up some new regia strato. I just had to have these:

Good thing Hubby and I've reversed that little cash flow problem we'd been having.

Have a great Memorial Day weekend everyone. We're spending it celebrating MiL's parents' 65th wedding anniversary. Lots of her family coming in to town. Should be fun.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006


I dyed my last two dye your own skeins last night. Here's a sneak peek. The one on the left is the self-striping. The one on the right I hand painted after I realized how much green and purple I had left and just had to dye. The colors are kool-aid hit with a bit of food color for depth. My grocery store didn't have any green kool-aid left so the green is 1 packet lemonade with about 1/2 packet blue lemonade and a squirt of green food color. Me likey. The blue one the left is two and a half packets of blue lemonade with a couple of drops of food color for depth. The blue on the right is blue food coloring mixed with equal parts water and vinegar. I'm going to overdye the hand painted one tonight. Too much white. I'm going to make a lighter blue and just microwave the whole thing in a dish.

Knitting on stocking 1 will be completed today (I'm thinking of going out for lunch and getting a real burger and taking it with me for the waiting). I hope to cast on for #2 this evening. But, probably not. I imagine I'll get too sucked into the finale of LOST.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

all legs all the time

I have decided to work exclusively on the stockings, just to get them done. I'm at the last set of increases before I do the top band. Whew. This has taken a while. I hope to cast on for the second on this week and make some progress over the long weekend. I still might make my goal of mailing by 5/31 (shh, don't disrupt the delusion).

If I'm up to it. I want to do my second dyeorama attempt tonight. (I'm not really feeling the need to watch the Yankees get pounded again.) We've got a busy weekend coming up and we're going away the following weekend (going to Baltimore to watch the injured and lackluster Yankees). Then we're getting awfully close to mail day!

Monday, May 22, 2006

great weekend, meh Monday

We had a great weekend. I did much knitting on CeCe. I'm really enjoying it. She was great company on the beach Saturday and didn't get nearly as sunburned as I did. I have since realized that I misread the chart. In row 6, I've been K2tog when I'm supposed to be ssk and vice versa. Oh well.

Work's still a slog, my kid is even cuter than before, and I wish I were still on Wildwood's wide beaches.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

all quiet on the sisterly front

Which isn't necessarily a good thing. I'm glad no one's called to guilt me or ream me out, but she's usually kind of chatty and sends me funny e-mails. Especially in response to the daily Billy pics I send out. I guess I just need to give her time to get over her hurt.

It's pretty quiet on the knitterly front. I'm making some progress on the stockings on the commute, but haven't touched CeCe or anything at home since Monday. I've been bringing work home the last two days and that means no knitting time.

I will not be bringing work home tonight. I need to tidy up, do a little laundry, and pack for a weekend away with the Hubby. We're going down to Wildwood on the Jersey shore for a little get away. Billy and Molly are staying with the in-laws (we're taking Billy for a family vacation this summer). So, as long as I can stay awake in the car tomorrow, I've got a couple of hours to catch up on CeCe and the green aran. And then there will be knitting time on the beach (or in the room if the weather's crappy). I so need this weekend to re-charge and re-connect with the spouse.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006


I hate being the one who brings disappointment. After much agonizing, I confirmed, in no uncertain terms (I'd been trying to leave myself hedge room to see if we could make it work) that Billy would neither be attending her wedding in October nor would he be her ring bearer. I'm heartbroken that she's disappointed.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

what have I been up to?

Starting in the upper right and moving clockwise:

I cast on for CeCe Saturday afternoon, 241 stitches (I added four repeats to make up for my plus-sizedness). I finished my errands before Hubby did and went to work while I waited for him to get home so he could take me to watch the Devils prevent themselves from being swept (nice anniversary celebration for us). I've finished one full repeat, working during TV time Saturday, Sunday and Monday. I've had to tink back a couple of rows for not paying attention and not fully executing those sl k2tog psso in the 6th row of the chart. I didn't realize it until I was working the 8th row. I'm enjoying it though. This is going to be a great little sweater.

The stockings are moving along well. I moved to the circs last night. I need to measure my leg to see how long this is supposed to be before the increases. I hope to have them both stockings done and in the mail by the end of the month.

This lovely skein was my Mother's Day gift to myself. I've been wanting to start my dyeorama project, but hadn't had the chance. I went with an extremely low-tech warping solution (three dining room chairs lined up) and used three shades of kool-aid. I've got a few things to work on. I was going for a solid stripe (immersed) followed by a more splotchy stripe (painted) then the solid and a different splotch. The purple splotches broke into pink, blue and some purple. The green splotches barely show and my blue solid is way lighter than I had hoped for. Obviously, I really screwed up the purple (was the yarn too wet or too dry). I used too much water on the green stripes and should have made a more concentrated dye bath for the blue (which was immersed not painted). It's pretty, but not what I was expecting. Can't wait to try again.

Monday, May 15, 2006

Caution: MEME ahead read at your own risk

Questions specific to this swap:
Your favorite colors? Red, orange, purple
Preferred yarn weight (Fingering, Sport, DK, maybe even Worsted)? Fingering for socks
Do you prefer solid or multicolored yarn? for socks, multicolored, can't get away with that on a larger garment
If your buddy is able to do so, would you like a variegated, self-striping, or self-patterning yarn? surprise me
Would you be interested in a wool blend sock yarn (nylon, tencel, silk, acrylic, alpaca, etc.)? it's all good
Imagine the perfect colorway. What would you name it? fiery sunset
What was the biggest appeal to you for joining this dye-along? dyeing and being surprised

General yarn/fiber questions:
Have you dyed yarn/fiber before? just a little experiment with overdyeing
If so, what’s your favorite dye and method?
Do you spin? I have a spindle, haven't really gotten into it
Have you knit socks before? yes
Do you use sock yarn for just socks or in other patterns too? Not yet
What are some of your favorite yarns? Koigu for socks, all things Rowan otherwise
What yarn do you totally covet? Socks that Rock, of course!
Favorite patterns? I like most Kim Hargreaves's stuff
Any pattern you would love to make if money and time were no object? Not that I can think of, if money were no object, I'd just stash and stash and stash
Favorite kind of needles (brand, materials, straights or circs, etc)? I use DPNs for socks (mostly metal) and circs for everything else (I like addis, but am not exclusive)
If you were a specific kind of yarn, which brand and kind of yarn would you be? I'd be hand spun with lots of slubs and color variations

Nothing to do with knitting/yarn/fiber in any way but seemed kinda fun:
Do you have a favorite candy or mail-able snack? white chocolate or hazelnut anything
What’s your favorite animal? I like dogs
Do you have pets? a dog
What are their species/names/ages? bulldog/Molly/she just turned 4
If you were a color what color would you be? blood red
Describe your favorite shirt (yours or someone else’s).. right now it's actually a black tee, boring!
What is your most inspiring image, flower, or object in nature? lilacs in bloom
Tell me the best quote you’ve ever heard or read. "Take a drink with anyone and pick your pals where you find them> ~~Marjorie Allingham
Do you have a wishlist? Nope
Anything else you’d like to share with the group today?

Friday, May 12, 2006

some salsa to brighten my mood

So, I took Yarngirl's advice from yesterday's comments and bought a pattern to jump start the knitting mojo. I'm going to knit ChicKnit's CeCe in some TLC Cotton Plus I've had in my desk for a while. I was going to use it for The Perfect Sweater that was being Future Searched over at Mason Dixon, but that pattern hasn't come along, yet. I've got 12 balls, which is enough yardage for a CeCe and a Chickami (12 x 186 = 2232 yards). I will be lengthening the body some. The current length is just enough to highlight one of my figure flaws. Now, to find the needles.

In other news, I've worked a little bit on the Lolita Legs re-do. I'm just about done with the toe and will start the patterning today at our lunch-time stitch. We were going to go outside today, but the wet weather means we're in the kitchen again.

I've got so many WIPs right now: Nattie's socks (being the oldest); Billy's Beach Jacket; Hubby's Green Aran; Lolita Legs; Billy's Pumpkin socks and those two things on "hiatus." I'm thinking the Tucker mat might never be finished (seed stitch intarsia in linen?), but I do plan on finishing Angelina. I really want her to be my Christmas sweater this year.

Thursday, May 11, 2006


It's gray and dreary today, but we haven't had appreciable rain in NJ in a while. Our cars have a slight green overcast. I'm in the midst of some serious knitting blahs. I nearly finished the second Billy sock yesterday, but I ran out of yarn. I was thinking I'd just do the toes on both socks in white, but have decided that would be yucky. I think I'll re-start toe-up and maybe he'll wind up with some short socks. I didn't knit at all last night once I got home. I put B to bed and just vegged with the tube. I brought in the lolita legs stuff to re-start those, but I'm not too excited about the prospect. I don't want to be knitting the green aran or Billy's beach jacket. I don't want to knit socks with my new sock yarns. I can't think of a darn thing in my stash I want to knit, but I can't justify buying new yarn because I'm blah.

Thanks for the support on my decision regarding the meds. You all know how to say the right things. Hubby tries to say the right things, but it usually comes out wrong. And lately, that means I wind up offended. Not easy living with me these days.

Next weekend, Hubby and I go down the shore sans Billy for a few days. Hopefully the weather will be nice. A short break from work and mommy would be great. Of course, a short break from wife wouldn't be too bad, either.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

it's not easy being (or knitting) green

So, I didn't touch the green aran all weekend. But, I have done a few rows. You can definitely see progress on the second repeat.

Instead, I started these on Saturday. First one was technically cast on Friday night, but the gauge was tighter than I had calculated for, so I ripped and re-started Saturday. I got it finished Saturday night. The second's been lollygagging around since Sunday morning.

Work's been super-stressful and I find I'm not dealing well with things at home. So, although I told my doc last week that I was doing fine off the prozac, I've put myself back on. I wasn't liking the person I was becoming and the kind of mother she was. Feeling like you're going to fly apart at any moment is not a good feeling.

Friday, May 05, 2006

and it's slow-growing grass

Not much knitting done yesterday. I spent a lot of my commute ripping out a row and a half because I thought I knew what the next row of the pattern was going to be and I was wrong. Oh well. I don't think I'll get much done this weekend. I'm not really feeling the love for this thing. I'm nearly done the first repeat of the large motif and the picture on the model shows I only have to do five more. I need to check the body length to see if it will be okay for Hubby's disproportionately long torso. Good thing I don't have to finish this in May.

I am thinking about starting something less mindful. We're going to support our community theater group tonight, even thought they're putting on Aida and we didn't really like it on Broadway, we're going to go for at least the first half and I wish I had something stockinette that I could just cruise through. But, I really should cast on for my sister's second stocking, now that I have her feedback (needs a plain bottom to the foot).

Thursday, May 04, 2006

like watching grass grow

Here's my progress on the green aran. All those cables cables crossing every right-side row sure slows me down. But, so far Hubby's very pleased with it. He wasn't quite sure why I was working on that when his mom's birthday is coming before St. Paddy's day (we won't mention that I've never been late with a knitted gift for his parents). I explained that May is Green and that's why. Here's a closer look at some of the cables.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Cabling began

last night after I ironed some shirts for Hubby and while watching NCIS and Blow Out. No, I don't usually watch those two things. I don't have regular Tuesday viewing, but the Yankees were rained out in Boston.

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

.... and Hello May

Here is the first two inches of ribbing for Hubby's Green Aran. Yeah, I know, very original. I'll start the cabling tonight. I worked a little bit on the boy's beach jacket, but still a ways to go. I'm still not 100% sure what the edging is going to be. Great thing about top-down, it's easy to replace the edging.

I got my dye-o-rama partner today. She doesn't seem to particular color-wise. She sure does love knitting socks!

Monday, May 01, 2006

goodbye April (well not quite)

I finished the broadripples last night. I'm wearing them today. They're very snuggly and bright. I think I need to go down a size and cast on more stitches in the future. I also need to figure out how to eliminate ladders when working on DPNs. Any suggestions? (I keep meaning to look in my sock books, but I'm so brain fried when I get off the bus that it doesn't happen.) I definitely recommend the Cascade fixation. Next time, I'm going even shorter on the leg. I like little crew socks for the summer.

Don't worry Anny, you can still get your orange fix here. I'm not yet done the boy's beach jacket. One more sleeve and some edging, but I'm so bored with it. Maybe I'll be able to finish the second sleeve tonight while watching the Yankees and Red Sox.

I am very excited to start Hubby's Green Aran (have to come up with a better name, I'm thinking Kelly). I might be crazy, though, knitting a seed stitch and cabled sweater in 100% cotton. My hands might hate me before I finish. Or maybe not, swatching wasn't a problem yesterday and I'll have to knit on the wedding stockings anyway. And maybe some other socks.

Ooh, got my knitpicks order for the dyeorama swap this weekend. Hubby wasn't thrilled with my spending money (he's not getting paid again until next Friday and things are getting a wee bit tight), but I'm excited to get my swappee and start planning the dyeing! I've already got kool-aid for the colorways I want to do, but i'll wait on those until I know I can do the colorway that my swappee wants.