A little bit of writing, a little bit of knitting...

Monday, February 28, 2005

Another great excuse to knit

I've always loved watching the Oscars. And I love it even more now that I can knit through the whole thing. Actually, Paul and I had a really laid-back day yesterday. We watched a lot of TV, and I did a lot more work on my vacation tank. I finished the front, and now I just have 21 decrease rows on the back and the straps...and then I'm done. So I put that project down for a while and did a little work on a little felted bag that I started a couple of weeks ago.

I'll admit that I was a little uptight about the whole Chris Rock thing at first. I didn't know if he was the right person to host the Oscars. But I think he did a really good job of making the whole thing more...human. My favorite part was when he went to an actual theater and asked the normal Joe Movie Watcher about the awards. It was funny -- none of them had seen Million Dollar Baby (which eventually won the award for Best Picture), but they'd all totally loved White Chicks. That's a little bit like me. I didn't see many of the films that eventually won the awards (I did, however, see The Incredibles over the weekend), but I absolutely loved some of the movies that weren't nominated -- and never would be.

But hey -- I love watching the Oscars anyway... And it's a great excuse to knit.

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

A weekend with Mom

Mom and Dad showed up for a visit on Friday afternoon. The guys spent the weekend working on a much-needed organizational project in the garage. And Mom and I did lots of random stuff -- Mom made me some really cool patchy jeans that look just like the ones I saw in the J. Crew catalog for $300.

Mom's not a knitter, but we did have a couple of knit-related outings. On Saturday, we hit a nearby thrift store in an attempt to pick out some good yarn to recycle. I got three sweaters for $6! We ripped the first one -- a great grey wool sweater for felting -- apart on Sunday afternoon. So far we've measured over 400 yards, and I've still got a couple of bags to measure. Meanwhile, I knit up a swatch to see how it felts.

On Monday, we decided to visit some yarn stores. Ever since we moved here, I'd been excited to check out Wolfe Fiber Arts, which is closer to the city. And now that I have my new car, I was ready to go. I looked it up online in the morning and got the directions to the store, but when we got there, we found that it was closed. And I'm not talking closed for Presidents' Day. I'm talking closed for good. What's the deal? Don't you think they could mention that on their web site? I drove a long way to get to that stupid store, only to find that it doesn't exist anymore! Apparently, their inventory has been bought out, and another store is going to open in its place on April 1... That, of course, makes me even more upset, knowing that they had been going out of business -- I'm sure the had great sale prices, and I missed it! What a disappointment!

In other knitting news, I spent a lot of time over the weekend working on swatches and yarn recycling and stuff, but I'm getting there on my tank. And I'd better be -- I leave in just over a week, and I want to be able to wear it!

Thursday, February 17, 2005

Knitting through a taxing time...

It's been a long week. We were supposed to get our new car on Tuesday night, but it all fell through, so I'm still stranded at home. To make matters worse, my computer's had a case of the sniffles, so we took it in to get it checked out, and I was without it for a few days. As if that weren't bad enough, I also started knitting a tank for our upcoming trip out west, and I realized that none of the math worked out. I was so confused. But now my computer's back, and we're supposed to get the car tonight, the pattern designer corrected the math problem, and my parents are coming for a visit tomorrow. Things are looking up.

Last night, however, wasn't a good night. It was the night that I dread every single year. Tax preparation night. Since our taxes are always a bit confusing to handle, we go to H&R Block. But despite the fact that someone else does all the figuring for us, I still hate going. It's just not fun. I sit there and sit there and feel awkward while a stranger goes through our finances, and then I sign some papers and leave.

I was complaining about it last night when Paul said, "Just bring your knitting." I love Paul. He's a genius. And he knows that knitting needles to me are like a pacifier for a screaming baby. So I packed up some wool scraps and some novelty scraps and decided to experiment while I was waiting for the taxes to be done. It's amazing how a pair of needles and some scraps of yarn can turn a nerve-wracking evening into one that's not so bad after all...

Monday, February 14, 2005

Thinking spring...

Over the weekend, I decided to think spring. Instead of making something else to keep me warm, I decided to make a bright blue cotton bucket hat. I'd been hanging on to the pattern -- and the yarn -- for a while, but I decided that now was the time. I'm three weeks away from my trip to the Southwest, and I need a nice big floppy, cottony, springy hat to keep the hot sun out of my eyes! Though I didn't have a ton of knitting time this weekend (I did, however, get to go out for a very tasty Valentine's Eve dinner), I'm almost finished already. I should be done in the next day or two -- and then I'll post a picture.

Friday, February 11, 2005

Instant gratification

Every once in a while, I just need to pick up a project that I can finish super-fast. I'm a little ADD that way -- sometimes I don't want to work forever on the same project, so I do lots of little ones that I can finish before I lose interest. I had a bad knitting experience this week, in the form of a giant snag in my shimmery shawl -- a snag that I just couldn't fix, but I really didn't want to start the thing a third time -- so I set it aside and spent the week making dishcloths and dish scrubbies. And it's been fabulous. Not only that, but it will make Mom and Aunt Karen happy -- because they can never get enough hand-knit dishcloths (and Mom swears by the scrubbies).

Monday, February 07, 2005

Is it Monday again already?!

We had yet another busy weekend. Paul's parents showed up on Friday night and stayed until yesterday morning. On Saturday, my MIL helped me fix a shell that I started almost a year ago. I worked so hard on it before discovering that I couldn't get my head through the hole. So she helped me tear it apart so I could redo it. It was like major surgery. Then we ran out to JoAnn, where she picked up some Lion Chenille Q&T for a vest -- and I picked up the latest issue of Knit 1. I've already flipped through it a million times.

On Saturday, I also got a package -- my latest yarn purchase. I promised my friend Lisa that I'd make her a shawl for her wedding in September, and I finally decided on the yarn. It's in a box on my desk, and it just makes me happy. I hope I have some left over for me. :)

Last night, we had our Dutch friend Arjen over to experience Super Bowl Sunday. He's in town doing training at Paul's office for three weeks. It's his first visit to the States, so he was eager to experience as huge an American tradition as the Super Bowl. So we stuffed him with all kinds of junk food, and Paul attempted to explain the sport. I wish we could have given him a more exciting half-time, though. I know an old pop star is much safer, apparently, than a couple of younger ones, but Sir Paul made for the most boring half-time show ever. We were all not-so-quietly waiting to see if he'd flash a butt cheek (not that we'd actually want to see that, but at least it would be a little more exciting that watching him sing "Hey Jude"). I spent the game in my corner, knitting a hat. I decided to take my standard two-needle pattern and morph it into something seamless. So far, so good...

Thursday, February 03, 2005

Starting over

I re-started the shimmery shawl yesterday, and I have to admit that I'm pretty happy with it. I switched over to 17s, which looks much better. So I guess it was okay that I had to frog out 2+ hours of work...

In other news, I picked up SnB Nation from the library last night. I had flipped through it in the store, and I didn't think I was really thrilled by the patterns. But I was wrong. I guess "not really thrilled" meant "only want to make half of them."

When I was checking out my books, the girl at the library asked, "Did you make your bag?" I looked down and saw my felted mini bag sitting on the counter.

"Why yes, I did," I told her. It turns out that she just recently learned to knit, too. It seems like everywhere I go, I run into knitters...

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

Did the frog see his shadow?

To some, it may be Groundhog Day. To me, it's Frog Day. Last night, I finished the first skein of my shimmery shawl. I studied what I'd finished and realized that there was NO WAY I was going to be able to finish the whole thing plus a crocheted edge plus a fringe in just three more skeins. So I frogged it. I finished this morning before I started work because I just couldn't stand the thought of a partially-frogged shawl sitting in the other room. So now I have to start over. While I'm at it, I think I'll switch from 15s to 17s. We'll see how that goes...

Tuesday, February 01, 2005

Yet another FO

It's my tiny pair of pink baby socks! Who are they for? I have no idea! I don't know any pink babies! But I'll put them in my closet, just in case someone I know gives birth to a little girl...

Pink Baby Socks! Posted by Hello

But I've now finished two of my UFOs. You know what that means -- I can start *two* new projects, right? I started one last night. It's a cool shawl like the one I saw in a yarn store in Toronto last summer. It's not a shawl as much as it's a big shimmery, triangular belt. I'm pretty excited about it. It's made of a silky shimmery yarn that I just love to work with because I love to feel it. Pictures to come...

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