Sunday, February 27, 2005

Sundays Are For Doing Nothing

What a lovely day we've had here! It's rainy and cold outside, and I imagine that contributed to not one of the three of us wanting to do a thing! Daughter has been in her jammies all day which is a blissful way to spend a day. Husband washed some fleece last night and has been carding and combing it all day. I piddled at cleaning again today but didn't make it any further than the storage drawer in my file cabinet and the stacks of stuff that used to be under my desk. We have one more bag for Salvation Army! I'll tackle the office closet maybe one night this week. Oh, I did re-arrange the furniture in the living room, but that only took 15 minutes.

I've made zero progress on the Market Squares Bag. It has been such a lazy day that I didn't even feel like casting on. Perhaps tonight. I think I have decided what order to use my colors. I've joined a Yahoo group KAL for the bag. Speaking of Yahoo groups, I left the rude group! Life's too short, and since they were not very interesting anyway...

Saturday, February 26, 2005

My Pretties

At midnight last night, I finished the Damnable Socks! Daughter was still up, so I handed them to her to try on, and they've not been off her feet since! I can't get a good picture, because she won't take the socks off. Guess that means they are a hit! Here's proof that I finished both socks:

Yesterday was a good mail day, and my copy of Bags: A Knitter's Dozen and In Sheep's Clothing arrived. I've not really had time to peruse either book, but soon. Today we went down to Columbia to Hook 'n Needle, and I got this lovely Cascade 220 for my Market Squares Bag:

This picture doesn't really show how gorgeous the yarn is. The colors are much richer and more jewel tone in person.

I also snagged a skein of Noro Kureyon to make a hat for husband. I recently bought a set of six hat patterns all made from one skein of Noro.

I love these colors. They are pretty yet still masculine. I've never knit with Noro and am excited about trying it.

Maureen always keeps a good discount basket (or two or three!) in her shop, and these two skeins of Kitten just begged to come home with me! They are a soft and fuzzy mohair which will make a great scarf for someone.

I don't have pictures to prove it, but I cleaned the closet/laundry room in our kitchen this morning! The closet is about 10 by 4, and I managed to get rid of 4 or 5 bags full of stuff which Salvation Army was delighted to have. I made room for husbands dye pots and some supplies and still have some room left to put the boxes with our Christmas dishes. I also got the toolbox off the dining room floor and onto a shelf. Tomorrow, perhaps I'll tackle the closet in my office!

Friday, February 25, 2005

Call Me Petty...

OK. Go ahead. Call me petty if you will. Here's why. Earlier this week I joined a Yahoo group for a new to me fiber addiction. The group is around 70 members. I posted a "Hi I'm new" topic and not one single person has responded. How freaking long does it take to say "welcome to the group"? I'll probably leave the group before long, not because they didn't say welcome, but because they're darned boring!! There's not much exchange of information--useful or otherwise--within the group.

I finished the pattern reapeats on the Damnable Sock (aka Fluted Bannister) last night. Tonight I hope to finish the toe decreases, graft the toe closed and say thank goodness. I will likely work this pattern again, but Sockotta and I are getting a divorce. I just don't care for it. I have a feeling I'm not going to hold fond regards for any type cotton yarn.

Dear readers, it's Fess Up Time. Who from Atlanta paid a visit to Wilde Fiber recently? Jennifer said someone who read about her shop on my blog came in to visit. I'm dying to know who it was!! I hope you got as much pleasure out of Jennifer's shop as I always do when we visit. It's such a peaceful, relaxing place.

I'm not quite sure what the weekend holds for us. Daughter has a dance at school tonight. Tomorrow we may go to Greenville to visit a sick friend (and a not so sick yarn shop) or we may just stay home and clean house. We're resigned to the fact that we're going to be "stuck" here for a while due to the job situation at husband's work, so we're going to de-clutter, paint, wallpaper, put in flooring, do all the fix ups to bring this house into the 21st century.

Thursday, February 24, 2005

It's Jack's Fault!

I've never been one to watch "reality" television and then Outback Jack waltzed into my life with his gorgeous abs and his Australian accent. I faithfully tuned in every week to catch Jack's exploits with that group of American women out to win his.....heart. Having a 12 year old in the house has just forced me to watch more reality television. She currently has me hooked on The Simple Life Interns (gotta love Paris and Nicole), American Idol, and the newest season of Survivor.

Any other American Idol fans around? Geez but I wish they'd send that darned Mikhala home. How can one person get so darned annoying in 16 short years of life? Simon hit the nail on the head the other night when he said half the audience will find her amazing and half the audience will find her annoying. I'm afraid we're stuck with this kid on Idol for at least a while longer just because her annoyance factor draws viewers. Of the women on Idol, Carrie and Nadia are my favorites.

The male Idols have their own annoying soul, too, in the form of Scott. I swear, he reminds me of the serial killer in cop shows. It's time to send him on his merry way, I think! I'm not a rock fan, but I do like Bo. I've not developed a true favorite among the guys, but Bo and the blonde guy with glasses are two that I like better than the others.

There certainly has been a change in the weather here over night. Yesterday was warm in the 70s and today is chilly and rainy with temperatures in the 50s. I can't say that I mind. I hate spring and am not ready for it yet. It is one of those "wish I could sleep in" kind of days today though. Here's one good thing about spring. Shay has lambs!

This is a fiber blog, so I guess I'd better talk fiber, eh? I finished the gusset decreases in that blasted sock last night. I compared the sock in progress to the finished one, and it looks like I have 7 pattern repeats (or 28 rounds) to go before the toe decreases. If all goes well, that means another two nights of knitting and that damnable thing is done.

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

Moose on the Loose

I've been remiss about updating this blog, and I don't feel the least bit guilty! I've just not had much interest in posting lately, and I was away for a few days vacation last week, too.

Here are some pictures of husband's Moose spindle. Isn't it lovely?

The first photo shows the Moosie posing in my new Lantern Moon basket on top of some skeins of Mountain Colors. The second shot is a close up of the top of the spindle.

I've not knitted or spun in almost a week. The only WIP I have going right now is that blasted Fluted Banister sock. I'm on the gusset decreases for the second sock, thank goodness. I really am hating the yarn and the pattern--mostly the yarn. It is Socka, and I doubt I'll ever use it for anything again. I just don't like the way it feels, but maybe that is because this sock is annoying me.

Daughter and I were at the beach for 5 days last week. We took our wheels and knitting with us, but neither of us touched a thing! Husband joined us on the weekend, and thank goodness he pulled out a box of locks I had, flicked them, and spun a bit. Otherwise, it would have been a wasted trip for both wheels! :-)

Daughter did some needle felting this weekend. It was so cool!! We gave her a bunch of supplies for her birthday, and she just got the time to sit down and use them. I'm eager to learn this myself. Just what I need, another hobby!

I have two books coming from Amazon. One is Bags: A Knitter's Dozen. There is a felted entrelac bag in that book that I'm anxious to make. The other book is In Sheep's Clothing, a book about different kinds of wool. I will be haunting the mail box until my package arrives!

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

Weekend Wrap Up

What a busy, wonderful weekend we had. Saturday was husband's birthday and daughter's birthday celebration day. We picked up her two best friends as planned and set out for lunch at Olive Garden. Before I go any further, I've got to say what charming and polite girls daughter's friends are! The bond among those three is also amazing. It must be great to have friends who love you and who you love as much as these three do. I don't think that kind of bond exists among adults. We're all too busy with our own day-to-day lives to cultivate that kind of friendship.

Lunch was fabulous. The OG gang even sang to both daughter and husband. After lunch, we headed over to the ice rink. Fortunately, the rink wasn't too crowded in spite of it being Saturday and the popular "little kid birthday party day." The girls had a great time skating, and we enjoyed sitting in the almost warm snack bar watching them. After skating, we took our three very cold girls cream! We'd planned hot chocolates at the Borders book store, but it was so crowded we couldn't get in. We settled for sitting in the car eating ice cream cones, and everyone was happy.

Sunday was family birthay celebration for daughter which meant all the out of town family called and husband and I gave her gifts. Daughter received a pair of Tinkerbell pajamas and a robe from us as well as a box full of felting goodies from The Woolery.

You know that husband got his Moosie spindle as his birthday gift. I also got him an Ott lamp to go beside the couch. My chair is by the only lamp in our family room, and I feel guilty when he's trying to knit or spin a dark fiber with hardly any light. That won't be a problem any more. I also gave him the Irish Hiking Scarf I finished recently. I'd been planning that for him all along, and he'd been drooling over it.

Friday, February 11, 2005


After the week we've had around here, TGIF seems a pretty appropriate title for this post! It's so nice around the house tonight with everyone relaxing and doing what they want, nowhere to rush off to or anything. Daughter is watching a DVD; husband is combing some fiber; and I've been reading my massive blog list, baking cookies, and watching over the laundry. Yes, laundry is a chore, but it's not so bad. It's one of the ones I hate least. As soon as this last batch of cookies comes out of the oven, I'm heading into the living room for a little spinning time.

Tomorrow, husband will be 40. He's darned cute for such an old geezer! It seems like only yesterday that both of us were 18 year old naive college students. I wouldn't want to go back to that for anything in the world. With age comes wisdom, at least I hope that's true!

In celebration of his decrepitness (it is so a word!) husband will be enjoying lunch with 4 lovely ladies--me, daughter, and daughter's two best friends. We're going to take the girls to Olive Garden and then out to the ice skating rink. Of course, husband and I will be watching the skating from the sidelines and probably knitting a bit, too! We wouldn't want to embarrass daughter by showing off our fine skating abilities! haha!

Husband has gotten the most wonderful birthday present! Jonathan and Sheila Bosworth make some of the most gorgeous, well-balanced spindles to be had. I'm not a spindler, but when I hold one of theirs, it feels like magic. (Note to self: learn to spindle.) The Bosworths make some specialty spindles in addition to the wood ones, including the famous Moosies made from naturally shed moose antlers and Wooly Mammoths made from, you guessed it, Wooly Mammoth bones. Husband's Moosie arrived yesterday. It is the most gorgeous spindle I've ever seen in my life. The whorl looks like a piece of polished stone. It spins like a dream, or so husband tells me. I am itching to spin that thing....We were on the Moosie waiting list for a few months (yes, there is a waiting list) and it was luck that allowed this very special spindle to arrive in time for husband's 40th. I so wanted him to have something special to commemorate this birthday. He's such a special and wonderful guy to daughter and me. Honey, I love you.

Thursday, February 10, 2005

Just One More Reason to Love You, "Mr. President"

This was in our local paper this morning: "One of the nation's oldest environmental research sites is earmarked for possible closure this fall, based on the U.S. Energy Department's proposed fiscal 2006 budget -which eliminates funding for *Insert Lab Name Here*." That's where husband works. I'd heard this news earlier this week, because the lab employees were told about it before it appeared in the paper. It seems Dubya wants to cut funding for a perfectly good enviornmental research lab probably to funnel bucks into his war. Congress could still come through with funding, but I'm a bit doubtful of that happening. Just one more reason to love Dubya and his Republican warmongering cronies. I just thank my stars that I didn't vote for this horse and pony show president.

Tuesday, February 08, 2005

For My Birthday, I Got...

Unfortunately, a couple of my birthday presents were not very nice. First thing yesterday morning I had to take Rebecca Kitty to the vet. She had a reaction to her UTI medication it seems. Doc gave her two injections to stop the vomiting and diarrhea, and today, she seems to be feeling much better.

When I picked daughter up at school, she told me she'd just thrown up in the hall. I thought it may have been a one time thing, as she has a very sensitive gag reflex and really sort of blew it off as nothing. Daughter got in the shower when we got home, and the vomiting started again. The poor dear was sick all night and was running a 101 degree temp. She seems to be better today as far as the tummy troubles, and her temperature is down to the 99 degree range. This poor baby has had more than her share of germs the past few weeks! I hope she's in for good health from here on out.

I had a lovely surprise yesterday morning. My mom and brother sent me flowers for my birthday. Aren't they pretty?

I have them sitting on the file cabinet in my office so that I can enjoy them during the work day. They even smell nice!

Daughter's and husband's gift to me (which you probably recall I bought last month at the LYS sale but "hid" until my birthday!) was the first Barbara Walker knitting pattern book and a Lantern Moon basket in the large size. My basket is a natural color combined with cranberry. It is gorgeous, and I'll try to get a photo of it once health is completely restored to this house.

I finished sock 1 of the fluted banisters last night. I'm quite impressed with my Kitchner grafting on the toe! I love doing Kitchner. I don't know why people cringe when they hear the word. It's really simple to do. I cast on for the second sock of this pair this afternoon and hope to get it finished before long. I really need to buckle down and finish this sock and the little shells. My copy of Scarf Style is on backorder from Knitpicks, so that won't be tempting me away from finishing these socks.

I plan to do a bit of spinning tonight, too, if no one in the house is throwing up. I'm itching to make myself some socks with the yarn I'm working on now.

Monday, February 07, 2005

Today I'm 40

Today is my fortieth birthday. So many people have asked me if I'm apprehensive or upset about turning 40. What a silly question! Age is relative. I'm just glad to have lived to be 40 and to be as satisfied in the way my life has turned out as I am. I couldn't ask for much more. I have my health, a wonderful husband, an amazing daughter, a career that is really going somewhere, and just about any material thing my heart desires. I don't think I'll ever look around me and wonder "what have I done with my life?"

The only thing putting a damper on this day is Rebecca. Rebecca is our long hair kitty who wandered up to us last summer. I had to take Becky to the doctor Friday afternoon, because she has a urinary tract infection. Doc put her on Cefa-Drops (cefadroxil). Unfortunately, Becky seems to have developed a sensitivity to this drug. (Husband looked the drug up on line.) I'm smart enough to know that antibiotics can tear up a person's stomach, so it figures they can do the same thing to a cat. Poor Becky had diarrhea and vomitting last night. I feel so bad for her. She's not been sick today, but she's not eating either--probably doesn't feel like it yet--and she looks completely worn out. I'll be calling the vet as soon as his office opens this morning. It's scary having a sick pet; they can't tell us where it hurts or what they are feeling. Becky has a lot of love from the three humans here in the house as well as her other two kitty companions, so maybe that will give her strength. I'm hoping she'll soon be feeling as good as new.

I spun off and on all afternoon yesterday and ended up filling the bobbin on my Scacht. My yarn is fairly even and looks like it will likely turn out to be a sport weight. That's what I was aiming for, so mission accomplished! I still have a huge ball of roving to spin and will likely get at least a couple more bobbins full. I'm so pleased with how this yarn is turning out. Just a few more WIPs to complete and then I can start knitting this--as soon as I finish spinning it!

I picked up the poor little fluted bannister sock last night and comleted the foot rounds. (It is the second sock in the Six Sox KAL, and they are now on sock #4.) I have the toe decreases to do today, and then that sock is done. I wonder if I can pair a completed fluted bannister with a completed little shells (one in shades of blue and one in orange tones) and call them a pair of socks? I doubt that will go over well, so perhaps I'll just buckle down and make one more of each.

Sunday, February 06, 2005

Family Fiber Day

We're having a wonderful time here today engaging in our fiber hobbies. Husband has been busy with dye all afternoon while daughter and I have been spinning. I can't think of a much better way to spend the day!

Daughter bought some 100% wool fiber from The Little Barn when we were at SAFF this fall. Here's a picture of the roving:

and here is the yarn on the bobbin:

Isn't that pretty? Daughter is spinning this on the Kiwi. I'm very impressed with her spinning. She does such a great job with it, and she's only been spinning a little over a year.

I'm spinning a 75% romney 25% mohair blend roving that I won in an e-bay auction. The colors are a fern green, magenta, and hint of lavendar. The roving was named "Rose Garden," and it really reminds me of old timey roses. Here is the roving:

The yarn looks like this:

I'm loving it! I am spinning this with socks in mind.

I finished the Irish Hiking Scarf last night. It needs to be blocked, but the knitting and weaving in of ends is done. I had maybe a yard of yarn left over. The scarf worked up quickly; I just started it a week ago and the majority of the knitting was done in the evenings. I'll definitely be using this pattern again, maybe with some of the wool I have coming from Knitpicks.

I was at the grocery store on Friday and found the January issue of Creative Knitting. Apparently they had not gotten in new magazines yet. I enjoyed this issue very well, so perhaps I'll consider subscribing. The January issue has a number of wraps, shawls, and scarves.

Thursday, February 03, 2005

Creative Knitting

Back in October I signed up on line for a sample issue of Creative Knitting. I'm still waiting for that sample! I was in Borders book store on Tuesday and saw that they carry this magazine. I gave it the flip through (an absolute must before plunking down $6 for a magazine, I think) and it passed with flying colors. There are at least 3 projects in the March issue of Creative Knitting that I'd make. Of course, it would be nice to finish some of those WIPs before moving on to something new.

I'm 2/3 of the way done with my Irish Hiking Scarf. I just attached the third and final skein of yarn tonight. The scarf is going to come out the 55 inches long that the patterns says it will even though I have 20 yards less yarn than the pattern recommends. I'm averaging about 18 1/2 inches of scarf per skein.

I got notification today that my Knitpicks order has shipped....minus 4 skeins of cranberry wool and the copy of Scarf Style that was my primary reason for placing the order. Boo Hiss! I love Knitpicks, so boo hiss to all those people who beat me to this book and yarn! I didn't realize how popular Scarf Sense is. I can't wait to get my copy, and hopefully the backorder won't be long. Meanwhile, I'll have to live vicariously through those lucky souls who already have their copies.

I am so glad tomorrow is Friday. This has been a darned long and stressful week. Daughter and I are on our own most of Saturday, and we intend to sit around in jammies and watch movies. I guess that means a grocery store and Blockbuster run would be in order tomorrow!

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

Isn't This Pretty?

Here's a picture of the lovely yarn my friend brought me from New Zealand.

It is a gorgeous cranberry color mohair. I can't wait to knit this. My friend really knows the way to my heart. She's such a sweet and thoughtful person.

I did a few more inches on the Irish Hiking Scarf last night. Have I mentioned that I love the pattern? :) It's awesome.

I also did a little shopping last night on Knitpicks. I ordered about a dozen skeins of their Wool of the Andes and two skeins of the lace weight yarn. I also got Scarf Style and a couple of pairs of Bryspun needles. I thought they'd be nice for working the lace scarf I'm planning for my grandma.

I think I heard a rumor that American Idol is on again tonight, so I'm planning to put my feet up, knit a bit, and enjoy Idol.

Tuesday, February 01, 2005

Nothing Beats Pressies!

I got a nice surprise in the mail yesterday. A friend of mine has recently come home from a long vacation in New Zealand, and she was kind enough to pick up a lovely skein of mohair for me while she was there. It arrived in the mail yesterday along with a pattern for a scarf made with the yarn and an adorable post card. I've not had a chance to photograph yet, but I will do my best to get pictures up tomorrow.

The Irish Hiking Scarf is coming along nicely. I am up to about 29 inches completed now. I love this pattern so much! I believe that I'll make at least a couple more to put away in my "gift closet" for the holidays. (DO NOT remind me about my ranting in December that I was done knitting holiday gifts for people! A girl is entitled to change her mind.)

I need to sit husband down tonight and get together a Knitpicks order. I've chosen two must have books, and I believe he had his eye on some of their new yarn. I'm itching to get my hands on Pam Allen's Scarf Style. I've heard rave reviews about the patterns!