Thursday, June 28, 2007

Cough, cough

Still here. Covered in dust, sheetrock, insulation, etc. Things are going much more slowly than I would like. When I mentioned this to hubbo he said "I told you it would take longer than you thought." Thanks sweetie - just what I wanted to hear.

There is some knitting progress, and if would stop raining for 2 seconds I might be able to take a decent picture for you.

And now back to building an ark kitchen.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

More fun in the kitchen

Before from the living room looking at the kitchen wall that will come down.


After Day 1

After Day 2 - upper cabinets and soffit gone.

Wainscoating and paneling removed.

Beginning of floor removal.

Don't you wish you were here?

Friday, June 22, 2007

And so it begins

The main reason knitting has been sparse (except for all those new projects that mysteriously appeared) 'round these parts? We're about to remodel our kitchen. The demolition begins tomorrow morning, so I've spent way too much time packing up dishes and the pantry and moving things into the garage. Verdict? We have way too much stuff.

We're gutting the kitchen, tearing down the wall between our kitchen and living room, and completely redoing the flooring, walls, and we'll have new countertops and cabinets.

Stay tuned as this becomes a blog about how awful it is to live covered in dust and doing dishes out of the bathtub. I'm so excited.


Thursday, June 21, 2007

A socky summer

I missed the sign-ups for the Summer of Socks (and I'll admit, since I only finished one pair of socks last summer, I wasn't really motivated to sign up this year), so I'm not officially knitting along this summer. However, that didn't stop me from casting on three new pairs of socks this week.

Some simple stockinette socks to knit during baseball games (already ready for the heel flap), another pair for Hubbo, and the very beginnings of a pair of Monkey socks for me.

Thanks to many hours spent at baseball games I have three pairs of socks with the legs knit, one with the heel turned, one ready for the heel turn, and one pair almost to the toe. Now if they can each get a mate, I'll be doing great!

This brings my total number of socks in progress to 10. Yikes.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Where do they come from?

Imagine the scene: You're knitting along peacefully on a (or a few) projects. Out of nowhere, a ball of yarn jumps into your lap! It demands that you knit it - even daring to bring a pattern and a needle with it. What choice do you have?

Three new sweaters were born this weekend. Rusted Root, Picovoli, and the Camisa top from the Fall '06 Knitscene.

What could I do? The yarn was begging to be knit. I had to take pity on it and do something.

Monday, June 18, 2007


I realized last week that I never answered some of your questions about the Feather and Fan socks.

First, let me say that the yarn is beautiful. I love the colors, I just didn't like the tencel. The stickiness of the tencel and the "grabbiness" of the bamboo needles made for a very unpleasant knit. Metal needles were really like a miracle, and I doubt the socks would yet be finished if I hadn't switched.

I don't use metal needles for socks much anymore as they hurt my hands to knit with for long periods. However, their pointiness and "durablility" (I can't snap them as easily as I snap my bamboo needles) do make them a good choice for some knits.

As far as the "payoff" is concerned - I'm just not sure that you can see the lace pattern at all, which is OK (not many people look at my socks, after all), and for some reason I had a hard time keeping the correct number of stitches on the needles (ie: paying attention to the increases and decreases). I do like a nice pattern, as a change from my regular sock "recipe," and I think I may do feather and fan again sometime, but not soon. With most patterns, I find that I either don't want to have to pay attention at all (or very very little), or I want to give it my undivided attention. For whatever reason, this fell somewhere in between, and I resented it for that.

Anywho, thanks for your sweet words about these socks. I'll give a follow up report on how the tencel feels and wears whenever it is cool enough again for socks.

I'm looking forward to lots of knitting time this week, since I feel better, and I'm hoping to get some small projects off the needles. However, I feel that Theresa's disease may be catching. Anyone have a cure?

Sunday, June 17, 2007

I just love that new yarn smell....

Goodies have been arriving at Chez Knit 'n Lit again. Some in the mail, some from the shop.

From Knitpicks and from Blue Moon Fiber Arts (for winning a contest on the Rockin' Sock Club Blog - Woot!) - Knitter's Almanac, "real" size 1 and 2 DPNs, and a skein of Nodding Violet in Mediumweight STR.

From a recent destash - enough Silky Wool for Jarrett from Rowan Vintage Knits for Hubbo.

From mom for me and for a sweater for her.

From the shop - enough Flash for a cute tie front cardigan (here - scroll down), the new Knitscene, a new notions case and a gorgeous skein of Madelinetosh sock yarn in Ginsing. YUM.

I can stop anytime I want to.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

2 things

Two new things are bringing me happiness this week.

My new clothesline (love it!)

and my new hammock (I wish I could live in it).

Other than that it's been a somewhat crappy week, as I've had a stomach bug since Tuesday. Blech. Not much knitting has been happening. I'm hoping to feel better tomorrow, and to knit lots this weekend.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007


I know I'm livin' it up when I start not one, not two, but six (!) projects in three days.

Luckily (or not) these four are shop samples. Samples are a great way to start a new project without buying yarn, but then again, I'm also not using up my stash. In that pile I've got a Petal Bib from One Skein, a Felted Bowl (also from One Skein), a ballband dishcloth (my first - I'm loving it!) and the Upside Down Daisy Hat from Itty Bitty Hats.

And two new pairs of socks. The pink are the Child's First Sock from Knitting Vintage Socks, out of Rio de la Plata sockweight (YUMMMMMMMMMMMM). This pattern kicked my butt quite a bit at first, but I'm hopefully now getting the hang of it. The grey socks are for hubbo - new Trekking colors. We had planned to go to a movie on Friday and my only other pair of plain socks are at the gusset, and I can't keep track of decreases in the movie. So I gave him the bin of sock yarn and told him to choose a new pair of socks for me to knit. Of course, he picked out socks for him, but I didn't really expect any different! So I cast on and get through the ribbing before the lights go down. I'm on about the third row (still in the previews here) when I snap a needle. Damn it! I tried knitting on four instead of five needles, but it hurts my hands. So I had to sit for an entire movie without knitting. Damn near killed me. Especially since my lovely friend Kerri was knitting the whole time. One of the shop owners told me to always carry extra needles. I was thinking I needed an extra project.

However, I did get a replacement needle and worked on these Sunday night at Patty Griffin. Oh, and Jen? You can't have things to say about us going without you, unless we can say stuff about you moving across the country!

I was tempted to cast on for two new socks last night (I have empty sock needles, after all), but so far I've restrained myself. We'll see how long that lasts.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

We're very very busy and we've got a lot to do

Life has been a whirlwind these past few days.....

*Saw Khaled Hosseini Wednesday night (great - can't wait to read his books).
* Knitting Thursday (and the troops returned home)
* Knocked Up Friday (not me - the movie!)
* Work Saturday (no chance to KIP)
* Saw Patty Griffin tonight - fab!

There has been way too much time spent on Ravelry (I photo-ed and uploaded pictures of the stash (and bought myself a Flickr pro account - Ravelry should get a kickback from Flickr for that!) which took an absurd amount of time) and way too little time spent knitting. So for tonight, you get a blurry cat wrestling photo. More knitting content soon. After all, if I don't knit, pretty soon I won't need to add anything to Ravelry!

Friday, June 08, 2007

Back home again

The crew arrived safely home last night. I've been busy finishing up some housework (don't worry - I didn't do too much), photographing my stash for Ravelry (ouch! I have a lot of yarn!), and spending time with friends.

But to entertain you briefly, until I have more pictures of things I'm actually working on, here's an old photo I found on Hubbo's computer. (Why am I on Hubbo's computer? 'Cause mine won't turn on. Really pissed.)

Don't you think I should win a prize (or at least get free yarn) for living two blocks away from this street?

Tuesday, June 05, 2007


Hubbo and The Girl are away this week. They left for Mexico last weekend and will be home Wednesday or Thursday. While they are building a house and doing good deeds, I've been wasting away here at home.

I had grand plans for my "vacation." Clean the house. Really clean the house. Sew curtains. Hang pictures. Work on the wedding album. Etc.

I did sweep and dust the house - moving all the furniture I could. I did the dishes. I will take out the trash and recycling tomorrow. I found the sewing machine under 18 piles of crap.

I don't think I'll finish the list. But that's OK. I'm still sort of on vacation for the next 8 weeks or so.

Being alone has been nice. No one makes a mess right after you finish cleaning (unless it's you, and that's OK). No one whines that they're "bored" (again, unless it's you). There is no one to be frustrated with for not doing something unless it's you again (and again, that's OK).

But it can lead to one's demise. Like having no one to talk to but the dogs and cats, and while they're great listeners, they don't really care about why there were 8 police cars at the end of your street on Sunday. They just want to bark at the policemen. And while they might miss their dad (the grass is getting a bit high), they don't care who feeds them, so long as they get fed. And everyone has enjoyed that extra half of the bed.

I found myself having a debate with Miles over what to have for dinner (me, not him). And then I found myself singing about my dinner. "Nacho, nacho man. I want to be a nacho man." Perhaps it's time for Hubbo to come home. Someone needs to save me from myself.

Since I'm on "vacation" this yarn totally doesn't count in the stash. And, better yet, I can leave it sitting out on the table without anyone giving me grief about buying more yarn. I just have to remember to put it away before he gets home. And come up with a good story for where it came from when he sees me knitting with it. Suggestions?

Monday, June 04, 2007

New Knits

Really, it's like a disease. I finish one thing, and I feel the need to start 10 more. (Ok - in my defense, I did finish several things recently. But still.)

So what have I started recently? Let's take a look around.

The pink thing (long ago this was the new project that was not a sweater?). Yeah. It's a sweater. When it grows up it will be Vanessa (scroll down) from the RYC Classic Art pattern book. I'm nearly at the armholes and really enjoying this knit. Of course, that didn't stop me from starting another! The green thing will be a simple tank from an old issue of Knit.1, with some lovely Cotton Ease.

The blue sock is knit from Jawoll, and the teeny brown and yellow blob is the beginnings of the Yarrow Ribbed sock from Knitting Vintage Socks in Austermann Step.

The red blob is the beginnings of the Rutabaga Bag from the spring Knitscene, knit out of the hemp that my last Sockapaloooza pal sent me.

There is also a bottle cozy around here somewhere that didn't make it into the photoshoot.

I'm trying to keep myself from casting on anything else right now. We'll see how long I last!

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Feather and Fan FO

I cannot tell you how glad I am to have these off the needles!

Pattern: Feather and Fan
Yarn: Yarn Pirate Merino/Tencel in Malamute colorway
Needles: ChiaGoo Bamboo 2.25 mm DPNs and Susan Bates 2.25mm DPNs
Dates: February 2 - June 3
Mods: None

Thoughts: Hmmmmmm. I have several. I think this will be my only pair of feather and fan socks. I just didn't enjoy as much as I have read that others have. I felt like I had to pay too much attention, which isn't something I mind, but I don't feel like I got a big enough payoff for the effort. The yarn is quite interesting. The tencel makes it shiny, and makes it a tiny bit difficult to work with. I was not enjoying the bamboo needles and the somewhat sticky yarn, so I finally, on the second sock, switched to metal needes, which made a world of difference, and enabled the socks to get finished much faster. I will be interested to see how the yarn wears as well.

Friday, June 01, 2007


When did it become summer? I'm not even sure it really is here yet, as it is still quite nice outside and we haven't turned the air on yet (shocking, I know, but it has been very mild here so far this year). However, it finally is starting to feel like summer, since I'm really done with all of my school stuff now. We had a week of teacher work days and professional development, but I'm done until August - Woo Hoo!

It's time for the monthly accounting of the stash. In May I put 14 skeins of yarn into the stash, and used up 13. Pretty good! I also finished 8 projects this month, a number I quite happy with.

One project didn't take away from the stash - it was a store sample. Not really my style, but cute!

Pattern: Belt from Y2Knit
Yarn: Noro Daria - about 1.5 skeins including the fringe.
Needles: Sz US 9 Clover Bamboo
Dates: early May - May 30 (on and off - really almost all of it was knit last Saturday)
Mods: I added some length so it would fit a normally sized adult
Thoughts: a little tedious at the end, and the yarn is quite interesting to work with.

I have big plans for June, including several short sleeved sweaters, fresh on the heels of my latest success. Thank you for all the sweet comments - I love it and am very pleased with both the yarn and the pattern. I have plans to knit Picovoli and Rusted Root and a few other simple tanks, but I want to know what you think the best short sleeve sweater patterns are, whether you've knit them or just seen them. I need ideas to feed my new obsession!