Tuesday, November 27, 2007

"Mom, I had the strangest dream last night...."

Apparently, my daughter had this dream that she was trying on clothes all night long. Weird, huh? The fact that the child sleeps in a super-freaky high bunk bed and her mother would have had to clamber up on her tip-toes with one foot on a stool and one on the top back of a chair while leaning precariously over the edge of the bed and stuff the kids' arms into unyielding armholes held on cords from the denise interchangeables and one of the damn button ends popped off, so when the child finally got the sweater pulled off of her she had to be wiggled all around until the missing button thing was found so she wouldn't accidentally choke on it in her sleep..... yup, weird dream. Seriously, what kind of a mom would do that?

See what happens when you make a top-down raglan and don't have a spare 11 year old girl to try on the sweater so you can determine when to stop the decreases and make sleeves? It was either that or pay a neighborhood child to try on the thing and keep her mouth shut. I'm thinking that could end you up in jail, so that was a no-go. Knitting isn't pretty, people.

I'm making the Anthropologie inspired capelet out of Lamb's Pride bulky on sz 11's in a dark blue for Elizabeth. I'm adding long sleeves and was going to do a cable down them or use long ribbing, but she's been talking about wanting belled sleeves, so am not quite sure how to handle that one. We'll see when I get there. I'm hoping to put it under the tree along with her main present. Joey's wallaby sweater is all done and ready for wrapping as well.

Other misc. knitting going on around here is yet another pair of mountain colors barefoot socks for Jeff (if they fit since I forgot and used 1.5's instead of the 2's, otherwise they'll be for me). I ran out of yarn on the start of the 2nd toe. YES top down-people, I know that could be avoided, but where's the thrill? Being a knitter who has an absolute buttload of yarn more than she decently needs, I went digging and found another colorway that blends in so well you couldn't tell unless you REALLY looked close, and I think you might not even know then. I love a challenge. Can you guess which one was the patched up one with the different yarn?

I started two pair of birthday socks, one of smooooooshy from Teri and one from Jo Major in Claudia Handpaints. Yes, both for me as well.

I knit most of one fetching on the way home from the Lake of the Ozarks on Sunday. I am using up some leftover cascade 220 from Joey's sweater for a pair. I think I'll make another one with the same yarn and smaller needles for Elizabeth. They're unbelievably cute. Fetchingly, actually.

While at the Lake, Jeff got to play with big boy toys as he'd rented a big old machine with a 7 foot scoop thing to dig out the hill that was advancing on the lakehouse. I took the kids to my folks' lake house about 20 minutes away and spent the day indoors with heat and television and yummy goodies left over from the Thanksgiving meals. When I went over to see him the next day, I saw Jeff was working in a pair of my wool socks and wearing his boyfriend sweater! Action shots of the sweater below. Since I wasn't the one taking the pictures (his stepmom snapped these for me) the sweater wasn't the focal point of the picture. The older guy with Jeff is his Dad. It was a good weekend at the lake. I got to knit, he got to play, kids ran around with my folks, good times.

Monday, November 19, 2007

What can I say? The 80's were very good to me.

So, sitting outside my kids' elementary school, doing what I do, knitting away. I'm usually referred to as "the knitting mom". Where is Marcy supposed to meet her mom? Near the Knitting Mom. Where is Susie's Grandma picking her up? At the big tree just past the Knitting Mom. I was minding my own business, listening to a girl on her cell phone trying to figure out where her mom was in the parking lot. I overheard "no, mom, I'm over by the mom with the really big poufy hair." nice. I thought I'd had exceptionally good hair lately. I've now overheard three comments plus one from my daughter asking how do I make my hair "do that?" I guess once every 9 months isn't enough to keep this mane under control. All I can say is I rocked the 80's, people. I'm not giving up my hot rollers. You can't make me. I was born to have big hair. I just may need to move to the south. They still appreciate a good 'do, right?

I've been busy knitting lately too. The glee purple sweater still needs its hooks & eyes sewn on and I know I promised no more pitt shots, but come on. We all knew I wouldn't be learning how to use the damn timer button on the camera any time soon.

Joey's Wonderful Wallaby is done. I think I knit it in about a week. It's got a cute hood on there too, you'll just have to take my word for it. Without a model, this thing is really hard to photograph. It's going to be a present (along with something cool, I'm not THAT horrible of a mom now) so good photos will come later. I think this was the easiest, most fun sweater I've ever made. I'm going to have to make Elizbeth one as well. I did this one out of cascade 220, LOVE that yarn, on sz 6's for cuffs and 8's for sweater. The sleeves rocked along since you make them FIRST and they're just tubes. You don't have to be whannging the whole sweater around every row. I'm going to have to do more sweaters this way. I was going to post the pic of the sleeves since I was so proud that I actually MADE them (sleeves suck for me. I don't know why) but then I just kept knitting and all of a sudden, here was this whole finished sweater!

I pulled some stash yarn out (Colinette Cadenza, similar to Koigu Kersti but superwash) and thought I'd make a pair of gloves for my dad. I'm using Ann Budd's basic glove pattern from her Knitter's Handy Book of Patterns and love it. I was guessing at the size and think I guessed wrong. Of course, even though the hand felt too big, I just kept knitting. Fingers 1 and 2 felt big, but kept on knitting. After finger #4, I had Jeff try it on for me and then REALIZED hey, it's still too damn big. Huh. Who'd of thunk it? damn. I'll be frogging this one and doing it in a smaller size. Of course I sewed in the ends on the tips of each damn finger. I did that KNOWING it was working up too big. cripes almightly.

And because now my kids are all growing up and cool and all, we just don't get creations like this very often. I leave you with SuperTurkey, from my daughter Elizabeth long, long ago. Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Absolutely Stunning

What else can I say? I met my dear friend Chery for lunch and she gave me this piece of SOFT LUSCIOUS BEAUTIFUL heaven. She knit this for my wedding. How amazing is this woman? I promise better pictures and action shots on the boat in February! I just had to take a few shots to show you how stunning this is! I'm planning to wear this over a sundress, probably a spaghetti strap number with an a-line look. I'm not sure of the fabric yet, but I'm thinking blue. (yes, I did have to edit away the whole quote of the day about the bride wearing black and carrying a scotch & soda down the aisle that's been residing in my sidebar for the last year or so.) I'm probably going to make Jeff a pair of wedding socks in colors of the ocean. I'm thinking he'll probably not wear them at the time, but I can give them to him and he'll remember our special day whenever he pulls them out of the drawer.

Chery's not posting lately, but go check out her FO photo albums. I love her work. Also, she's got a great 2 socks on 2 circs pattern posted that takes the THINKING out of the whole sock thing. You just count gauge and circle the right numbers and you're off and knitting. I'm still a die hard top down dpn girl, but I'm surrounded by these toe-uppers and am glad I know how should a pattern call for it. I still favor the whole "will I run out of yarn?" drama combined with the ability to use the spare dpn to poke anyone that gets on my nerves.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Best Mom & Daughter Double Sleepover Birthday Party EVER!

My birthday girl is at the end of the table. The girls were painting bobble head dogs and singing along to music on the boom box.

The weekend started Friday afternoon with an after-school skating party where BOTH of my children are no longer wall-grabbers. They are skating in the middle with the rest of the kids. Joey's even developed a unique "this is my too-cool-for-dance-tunes" expression he uses as he dances/skates around the floor. I think it makes him look contstipated, but who am I to say? Constipated could be cool. Jeff took me out on the town to the Capitol Grille where I ate a BIG ol steak and tater and we just had a great time. My cousin watched the kids, so we had the whole house to ourselves. Very nice. He then ran away drove to the farm to work on cattle instead of hanging out for the slumber party. Joey spent the night doing manly things with my brother, so it was just us girls and the dog.

Thank god for Knitters and friends. And even better is FRIENDS WHO KNIT!! Teri offered to come by to help out with my daughter's sleepover party so I wouldn't be outnumbered. Then a few more friends said they could come too. Before you knew it, we had a full scale double party going on. My daugher turned 11 and had a blast. I turned 39 and also had a blast. Let me tell you, though, 4am comes a lot HARDER on this old body than it used to. We ate, watched movies, ate, knit, ate and then they GAVE ME YARN GOODNESS and even wound up a buttload of yarn from the stash for me to boot. THANKS guys! I got Smooooooshy sock yarn from Teri in a beautiful blue, some Tofutsies in pretty purpley teal and very cool "yarn snob and proud of it!" stitch markers from Zephyr knit from Jo Minor, some Claudia hand painted sockyarn in Argyle Socks colorway from Jo Major, and a beautiful sock bag/small project knitting bag and set of stitch markers from Carmen. Aunt Carmen even brought a Hello Kitty bag full of HK stuff for Elizabeth and some cute puzzles for Joey so he didn't feel left out.

All the girls were very well behaved except one. Let's just say that after dealing with her most of the night, when I was woken up at 6am (after going to bed about 4:30am) I wasn't too keen on her. Here's a hint...if your kid's sleepover bag is not just on the front step outside, but at the end of the driveway outdoors and your kid is outside also, your kid is probably not going to be sleeping over at my house any time soon. I did at least have the girls all playing outdoors for the last 30 minutes waiting for that mom. I'm not totally heartless. But whooooooooo I'm pretty damn heartless on one and a half hours of sleep.

I'll leave you with something that made me very happy. Remember the ruffled shrug I made for my daughter last year? She wore it once because I asked her to and then it disappeared into her closet. She pulled it out the other day and wore it to school every day for a week. Here she is bringing cookies to school last Friday for her birthday WEARING MY SHRUG I knitted. I love that!

Monday, November 05, 2007

Man, I love the smell of vinegar and wool in the morning!

The yarn is actually darker, murkier and lovlier in person. And that little blast of vinegary yarny goodness that hits you when you open the plastic bag from the Socks that Rock Sock Club? mmmmmmmmm I love it. It's aired out a bit so you have to bury your nose in it to get the whiff now, but it's a great way to start the day. Though I've loved the sock club, I'm not going to sign up again. I think once is good for me. The fun, the wondering the smooshiness, they were all good. I've just got to start knitting up this stuff before acquiring any more. Plus OH the horror, I'm having to BUDGET myself now and yarn is way, way, WAY low on the family budget. Sucks, huh? Ah well. I've got enough to keep me busy for years to come. I did get to add that VACATION YARN DOESN'T COUNT DAMMIT so there's extra $$ added into that part of the budget. Wonder if they have any sock yarn in the bahamas? I'm going to do some research and if there's a yarn shop on one of those islands, we're going to have to take a little ride over to see. I am going to Vegas in December with Jeff for a business trip, and I KNOW there's some yarn shops there. hmmmmmmmm

From almost completed sweater back to balls. Poor little cascade 220 heathery purple yarn. What will you become now? It didn't quite work out as a scooped neck vest from Fitted Knits, it just last night became balls again and is no longer a cardigan in the making for my daughter. *sigh* Poor little yarn. I'll find something for you to become. If you were just one or two skeins more (I've only got 4 of this dye lot) you could beome almost anything. I don't want to waste you on knitting you into hats, no, I hear your voice. You want to be a sweater. I'll have to do some more thinking and wandering around on ravelry to get some ideas.

My daughter saw me working on the sleeves yesterday afternoon and said, "Mom, that's really looking like an old lady sweater, you need something prettier than that for yourself." I held it up and showed the cool amazingness of it and realized it did resemble something old and safe and boring. If an almost 11 yr old girl thinks it's old lady for her MOM to wear, I'm guessing she'd not be real excited about wearing it herself. This morning before school I did what I should have done long ago and ASKED her opinion on "if I were to make you a sweater, what would you like it to look like?" Duh.

Friday, November 02, 2007

Laundry Day

I always get such a happy feeling seeing all those socks out drying. *sigh* Warm feet this winter, huh?

You now, snack sized hershey bars and m&m's and 3 muskateers really CAN get old for breakfast. This year it's only 2 days after Halloween and I'm about chocolated out. Good times were had by all. The kids tried to dress Miles in a pirate costume, but he ate the hat and Beth about had to tackle the dog just to slip this over his head. The costume lasted all of 3 minutes. I think it's a new record. Mine are the two on the left. Jeff's are the two on the right. We've got candy coming out of our ears.

Been knitting away at the Glee sweater and picked up Elizabeth's cardigan to try to force myself to make her sleeves. WHAT is it about sleeves that I just can't do? You'd think a woman who cranks out the damn socks right and left could handle a few tubes, wouldn't you? They make me insane. I'm trying to get her sweater finished up and maybe will add a few felted flowers around the neckline if it doesn't make it look too girly. I've casted on for the sleeves for Joey's wallably hooded sweater. I'm doing it in blue cascade 220 and will probably make a stripe of black or grey or something also. I'm thinking the bottom up thing may be a good idea. I'll do both sleeves FIRST, then the body and hopefully they'll both be done in time to put under the tree.

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