Thursday, July 24, 2008

Hugs & Chocolate Kisses Socks

The Loopy Ewe's July Sock Club shipment included Dream in Color Smooshy in Spicy Smoochies. Isn't it a great color? The first picture is the most color accurate. The others are a bit washed out.

Here are my completed socks. The pattern makes the Xs and Os for kisses and hugs. Pretty clever.

It has a twisted 3x2 rib. It was a little fiddly but I like the result. I'm not sure it was worth the extra effort though so I probably won't do it again.

My favorite heel is a slip stitch heel flap. It is magic to watch the colors come out. I normally continue the pattern under the heel.

I'm still working on my Slow Bee Mystery Shawl & Goddess Knits Anniversary Shawls. They are increasing slowly and are hard to photograph so no progress pictures. The Slow Bee shawl takes nearly an hour for each right side row! I can only work on them when no one else is around so I don't get much of a chance to work on it. My goal is to complete 2 rows a day. I've got 60 more rows until the border so I'l be working on it for a while.


Saturday, July 12, 2008

A Lazy Saturday

This is my cat, Trouble. Her name really describes her behavior & attitude. Today, all she could do was lay around. My entire family had a lazy day. I knit while the kids watched videos & played guitar hero.

I worked on my 2 lace projects, Slow Bee Mystery Shawl and the Goddess Knits Anniversary Mystery Shawl. Here is a photo of my lace knitting set-up. Some people paint by numbers, I knit by colors. I have a set of highlighters that I always use to color code my stitches. For example, I learned to keep my left-leaning decreases & my right ones apart by using lime highlighter for left and red for right. Now, I never confuse which is which. I've written in pencil the number of plain knit stitches go in between other stitches. I keep the chart on my kids' music stand so I don't have to sit at a table. You can see my pattern tamer. It's a magnet that helps me keep my place. I put it above the line I'm working on so I can read my knitting & catch my mistakes as I go.

I'll show you how I keep track of my sock charts in my next post.


Thursday, July 10, 2008

Froggin' But It's All Good

Normally frogging & knitting aren't two words that you want to hear in the same sentence. Woolgirl Sock Club's June shipment played with the knitting term frog - it was tree frog themed. I liked the theme & the extras but wasn't too thrilled about the yarn. It was too colorful & I couldn't imagine what it would look like knitted up. The yarn is by Dashing Dachs in the Froggin colorway. The pattern is also called Froggin.

One of my favorite extras is a gauge ruler by KaratStix. I love how easy it is to measure gauge. Yes, I always make gauge swatches when I am following a pattern.

I cast on Sunday and finished Wednesday. I absolutely love these socks. First, the colors look awesome together. It matches my Ravelry tee that I wear with black pants. Also, the fabric the pattern created is wonderfully stretchy so it fits my foot perfectly. I plan to use this pattern again with very colorful varigated yarn.

I cast-on a new sock yesterday. Here's the progress so far. . .

. . . details later.


Monday, July 7, 2008

Finished Objects

Toe-Up Spiral
I was a bad friend & forgot to mention my Toe-Up No Heel Spiral Socks designed by my friend, Jo Febo. These are the perfect sock for growing feet or first time sock knitters.
Yarn: Bellamoden Sport in The Color Purple. I love her dying methods. I plan to acquire more. Visit her shop here or at The Loopy Ewe

Berlin Muster
These are for the Sock Knitters Pentathlon. It is a 5 sock challenge over 10 months. I entered the race not being a very fast knitter. I'm doing better than I thought I would but I'm not even in the top 25.
Pattern: Berlin Muster-several mistakes were found in the English translation but the charts are correct.
Yarn: Seacoast Panda in Glacier

Oversized Tote
I love to felt Noro Kureyon so this is a modified French Market Bag out of Noro. I modified it just in the size. After all increases, I just kept knitting until I ran out of yarn but I saved 1 skein for my handles. I bought 1 or 2 extra skeins.
Pattern: French Market Bag
Yarn: Noro Kureyon

Rattlesnake Creek Socks
This is another pair of Pentathlon Socks. I just finished them yesterday & came in 24th place. Not bad when there are hundreds of knitters. The yarn in Fleece Artist Basic Merino Sock in the Rose colorway. I'm not a pink person but I love the subtle color variations in this yarn. It really brings out the cables.
Pattern:Rattlesnake Creek Socks
Yarn:Fleece Artist Basic Merino Sock

Here's a sneak peak at my current sock . . . .

pretty wild isn't it. I'm liking this more than I thought I would. Hopefully, my next post will have the finished sock details.

Well, TTFN

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Now, I Really Am Back From the Dead

I left off at the beginning of June when life got really crazy. Tuesday, June 3, was the band Spring Concert & award ceremony. It also was my eldest children's conductor debut. She was 1 of 3 eighth graders chosen to conduct a song each. She received the Jr. Conductor award. She plays the flute & was a concert mistress. My son normally plays the alto saxophone but received the chameleon award because he played so many wind instruments throughout the year to help fill in gaps. Sorry, no pictures - we have video but the pictures sucked. :(

I had migraines every night that week. My 8th graders started getting senioritis so they were hard to keep motivated with their assignments.

Friday, June 6th, was the 8th grade dance. The kids' energy level is always so high any time there is a dance. After the dance I went straight to bed & was asleep by 7 pm. I was very rudely waken about 11 when my husband & kids returned home from his softball game. I stumble out of the bedroom to fuss at them & see them helping my hubby to his chair. He got an ice pack strapped to his knee & he is hopping on one leg. Of course, I feel guilty for starting to fuss. He wouldn't dream of going to urgent care.

Saturday was a baseball day. I watched my son play. Hubby finally admitted that he wouldn't be able to umpire that afternoon, found someone to cover his game, & actually allowed me to take him into urgent care. They immobilized his knee, gave him crutches, pain killers & told him to come back in a couple of weeks. It turns out that he won't need surgery - yipee!

Sunday was spent grocery shopping, laundry & grading papers. Monday started the last week of school, the roughest week of the year. My youngest daughter is a bit of a hypochondriac & a drama queen so I take what she says with a grain of salt. She got off the bus looking like she was getting ready to puke or cry. She handed me a note that looked like our discipline forms so I assumed she had gotten in trouble. No, it was a nurse office note saying she was sent to the nurse. I looked at her foot, it wasn't swollen or anything. At times she even danced & ran on it but I took her in to the doctor just in case. The doctor didn't think it was broken either. In fact, youngest daughter even jumped off the exam table & acted like nothing was wrong. The doctor had it x-rayed just to be sure. It turns out her foot was broken in two places. We convinced the technician that she could live by the rules of having a boot instead of a regular cast. This way she'll still be able to go on our Scout trip & her Sea World camp.

Tuesday was my son's 13th birthday. Wednesday was the 8th grade trip to Magic Mountain. Thursday was graduation. Eldest daughter graduated Suma Cum Laude & received band & perfect attendance awards. Friday was the last day of school & music lessons. Saturday my in-laws came up from San Diego to visit & rehearsal with the pianist. Sunday was father's day and the kids' music recital. All of this was going on with 2 invalid family members so everything fell on my shoulders. It also is a time of added responsibilities at school - report cards, office paper work, preparing for graduation, tearing down & packing up my classroom. It is also the time when my BFF was having major troubles of her own. I wasn't able to help her as much as I wanted to.

Luckily, all of that stuff is behind me. I spend my first week off helping pack classrooms & taking many naps. So, I feel ready to return back to life. Now that you are caught up on my life my next post will return to knitting content. But before I go, I leave you with this. . .

she may be out of junior high but that doesn't mean she's all grown up!

Sunday, June 15, 2008

I'm Back From the Living Dead - Maybe

A couple of my knitting buddies fussed at me yesterday (you know who you are, KnottyKnitter40 & KnittinWolf) for not updating my blog more often. To be honest, life has been really busy & blog updates are always the first thing to go. It has been so crazy & I've been so tired, I feel like I was sleep walking the entire time. Let me update you on my life for the past month.

The weekend of May 16th, RKSMom & I took our scouts camping. Of course, it was the warmest weekend of the year (so far) & we were in tents. It was almost miserable. But, we brought back the big award for having such a great troop so it wasn't all bad. You might be able to tell that there isn't much shade at Castaic Lake.

My fingers felt too fat & swollen to do much sock knitting but Lil' Loopy decided to help with the knot tying. Once we got back, I had to prepare for Open House. While I enjoy open house, it makes for a very long week & I hadn't recovered from the weekend.

The next weekend was Memorial Weekend & time for a band Music Festival. I went with them to the festival on the school bus. Did I ever mention that I get car sick & I'm completely worthless on a school bus? Not a good thing for a teacher. They were disappointed to bring back a bronze award. We learned later that they were misjudged. They were ajudicated as a high school band & not the junior high band that they are. That means their score could have qualified them for a silver or gold rating.

I was "fortunate" to be the adult for 6 male junior high kids. I never heard, "pull my finger" so many times in my life as I did that day. I did win cool points because I love the coasters. Silver Bullet is "tight". I love that ride. It is full of loops & corkscrews. It flips you upside down seven times! I think corkscrews & barrel rolls are the best. For some reason, I can't ride in a car or school bus but I don't get sick on the coasters. Yipee. My drop stitch scarf helped to pass the time in lines. We got back late & spent Sunday recovering. We finished out the weekend with family and friends watching Indiana Jones & the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull.

June 1st was the big secret swap partner reveal. Of course, I was spoiled by my pal. Thank you Mish. I was a bad blogger & didn't get any pictures. :( I spent the week before the swap trying to finish a bath set for my downline, Stashymama. It is the softest cotton I have ever felt. It is Pima Petite by Unique Sheep. I can't wait to get my hands on more of it. A tank top knit with it would be divine.

After that is when my life started getting crazy. I do have some other knitting to show you as well. More in my next post which hopefully will be tomorrow but I plan on taking several naps during this next week.


Thursday, May 8, 2008

Loopy's May Shipment

Spoiler Alert - If you haven't received The Loopy Ewe's May sockclub shipment, don't read below.

Here is my sock club package. It included an accessory pouch, loopy peppermints, a poem, & pattern. Most of Loopy's kits include that. They are nice but it also included some bling, a stitch saver (a crochet hook on a key ring for fixing dropped stitches). The yarn is . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Wollmeise . . . yes, I know - envious? It is a custom colorway named Pillars of Fire. It ranges from a deep cardinal red to scarlet & ends with a burnt orange color. Gorgeous!!! I want to cast-on right now but a new sock madness pattern is released Friday morning. I already have 9 WIPS. Must . . resist . . .Wollmeise . . . must . . . resist. . . . . stay . . . strong . . .