Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Post-Thanksgiving Update

I had meant to update the blog before Thanksgiving, but as usual, our household craziness didn't leave much time for that!

I hope you had a truly wonderful Thanksgiving. We had a great one! First of all, we are SO thankful to be in our new house and to be settling in nicely (if not so much neatly). Our ride to WNY was SUPER easy this year - we left around 1:30 and made the trip in 9 and 1/2 hours, which is a Thanksgiving week record! (We're often around 11 or 12 hours). We had a restful Thanksgiving Day, with a very short family Turkey Bowl on the front lawn (maybe next year). I got to go Black Friday Shopping with my BFF - I wasn't sure if she would be able to go this year, but the triplets are still in the hospital and I think her husband decided she needed something to look forward to and to help her not go stir crazy. I'm finished with about 80% of my Christmas shopping, which means more time for crafting and baking fun before the holiday!

I was also able to visit the triplets in the hospital - they are BEAUTIFUL! And tiny! Really, we had a great weekend. Now, if only I could get my decorating mojo going and get my Christmas tree up!

Before Thanksgiving, I was accomplishing quite a bit. Here's pictures that I took a week ago:

First, I made myself a Christmas project bag! I didn't have a pattern, but winged it based upon another bag that I own. I LOVE IT! I might make one for every season!

I finished one Monkey sock. I'm bummed that I didn't finish the pair for Thanksgiving. They are such the perfect fall colorway! (Not that I know what that colorway is....), but there's always next year. The yarn is Plymouth Sockin' Sox and I bought it at least a year ago.

I'm holding off on the second Monkey sock for now, in order to start my Christmas socks.

 I know, it's Red Heart. I know a lot of people have opinions about Red Heart yarn, but I found this on clearance at Joann's for 97 cents a skein. It's hard to argue with $2 socks, and I LOVE the way it's knitting up. The colors are really pretty. I have about 4 inches of the first sock done. They are my current traveling project. (And yes, they're traveling in my new project bag!)

I also finished the fourth/third Tummy Warmer vest to replace the one that Baby Girl cut up, but I don't think I took any pictures of it finished before I passed it on to BFF. I also knit up three little Christmas Tree Hats for the babies to wear for Christmas (who should all be home in time to celebrate! Yea!)

I love these hats. I had made a larger one for Baby Girl's first Christmas. These tiny ones knit up super fast!

I also finished the Multnomah shawl, but have yet to block it. I've decided it's way too small for my MIL. So, I'll find something else for her for Christmas and knit her an actual shawl for her birthday, which is January 9th. I'll keep the Multnomah for myself.

The Katrine Cardigan has gotten some love this week. I HOPE to have it finished by Friday, so I can totally dedicate December to Christmas knitting. I'm hoping to do a hat for DH (already cast on), two Christmas stockings, and a Bitty Baby Sweater, plus finish my socks. A few pairs of fingerless mitts wouldn't be too bad, but that might be pushing it a bit. Actually, if the hat and stockings were the only things that got done, I'd be okay with that. No, the socks have to be done for sure! And I wouldn't mind knitting up the red and white yarn I bought at Rhinebeck for a festive hat. Oh, if only there were more hours in a day!)

Maybe if I knit a little less I'd have more decorating time. I really have to get on the tree thing! The extra week this year between Thanksgiving and Christmas has me all thrown off. I really like to have our tree up a little early, since we're not home to enjoy it the week between Christmas and New Year's.

I hope your holiday preparations are going well!

Friday, November 9, 2012

Hurricane Knitting

I started this post well over a week ago, but never got around to taking pictures. So, I'm just going to edit it a little here or there. Sorry if it's confusing to anyone.

I got a little carried away with the knitting this weekend. (Which is really two weekends ago now)

Thursday I needed something easy to take with me so I grabbed some sock yarn and needles. I knit a cuff and then checked out sock patterns in my queue when I got home. I decided to knit a pair of Monkeys. They've been hanging out in my queue since I first knit socks, so I think it's time.

Friday afternoon, we met up with friends from Medford (where we lived before we moved) and trick-or-treated in Medford Square. We LOVE this tradition! We see so many of our friends (both the kids and the grown-ups!) and it's so much fun to see all of the costumes. Our favorite this year was a lego man - made totally out of cardboard boxes. After trick-or-treating we went to my in-laws house for dinner. They loved seeing the kids in their costumes! But while there, my MIL was wearing a shawl I knit for her quite a few years ago. I knit it out of awful acrylic yarn and bound off early because I got tired of knitting garter stitch. Despite it's shortcomings, my MIL throws it on around the house all the time. I've decided it's time for a new shawl. I used the fingering weight BFL I bought at the Holidome to cast on for a Multnomah Shawl for her. It's very easy - garter stitch followed by Feather and Fan. It will make a great traveling project. So, hopefully that gets done by Christmas.
I'm about to start the feather and fan section now
I finally finished the swatch I brought to Rhinebeck with me. And I didn't get gauge. I washed the swatch, it grew, and I'm a lot closer to gauge. So, I cast on for the Katrine Cardigan. I knit mostly on that during the actual storm, with a few breaks to work on the shawl.
(Sorry for the craptastic photo.) Um, yeah, I've knit on this quite a bit. I started the first sleeve last night. I'd like it to be a bit longer, but I'm afraid of running out of yarn. So, I'm going to do the sleeves and then determine if I can add any length.)
And then today I discovered that Baby Girl had found my third, now completed, tummy warmer and a pair of scissors. It wasn't pretty and I can't even really talk about it any more than that without getting really upset. Here's a picture. It still hurts to look at it. Sorry the pictures is sideways, but you get the drift.

 I hit up a LYS for another skein of Cascade 220 Sport (BTW, did you know that Cascade 220 now has a fingering weight yarn? It's more than 220 yards/skein) and cast on for another tummy warmer, so all three triplets can have one. This will probably be the last time I knit 3 of anything besides hats. I'm bored with this pattern now.

(As you can see, I've had a hard time being motivated to work on this. I did finish the #3 hat though, and mailed that off to BFF)

Finally, since my elbow kind of hurts from all this knitting (is knitter's elbow a thing?) I spent a bit of time spinning the Romney roving I bought at Rhinebeck on my Golding Spindle.

When the spindle is full, I've been winding the yarn onto these antique weaving spindles I bought for $1 each. I think I'm going to try a 3-ply yarn when the singles are done. I've also been hanging out with the Turkish spindle a few minutes each day.
I would love to be this productive every weekend. It won't happen though - I'm behind on the laundry, picking up, and general upkeep of the house. I really have to learn how to knit and vacuum at the same time.

What's on your needles these days?

Monday, November 5, 2012


Look what showed up in my mailbox today:

Jenkins Lark

Isn't she pretty?

I had tried a Jenkins spindle at Rhinebeck, but felt as though I could wait and would order one online in the future. And then I came home and found out they're not the most readily available thing online (that whole handmade thing, you know.) Last Thursday I had a pretty rough day and happened upon a shop update. A little bit of retail therapy can be good, so I ordered.

The package came quickly and it was packed with such care! The spindle came with some fiber already attached and a nice little cotton project bag.

I made the whole family watch it spin before they could eat dinner.

I've been doing a fair amount of spinning and knitting. I had started a post about all the hurricane knitting I did (there was quite a bit of casting on that day), but haven't gotten around to pictures. There might be finished objects by the time I get to them! Or, my house might actually get clean. It's never ending - the battle between the cleaning and the crafts!

Which one wins in your house?