Monday, December 26, 2005

The Knitting Man

Well, Christmas was wonderful, complete with dear old friends, wonderful food, the long evening by the fireplace (with snoring dog), and possibly the most important (at least from the standpoint of this blog), knitting with Brandon. Chocolate was involved, too. I tell you, it was perfect.

I met this guy at Thanksgiving (he is the son of one of our friends) , and he and I spent the entire day ignoring everyone else and knitting. We had a great time. I assume everyone else did too, but I really don't know. So here's the knitting man, who I have to share with you because he's so darn cute.

He is making a mistake rib scarf in a really awesome colorway. I have no idea what kind of yarn he had, but it was really soft. As the pre din snacks disappeared and my husband roasted himself at the fireplace (he loves to stand practically in the fire for hours) I sat next to him on the sofa, knitting with Brandon. I am still moving with the speed of molasses on the sleeve charts for Durrow; I am definitely cable impaired, but I figure if I just keep plodding away at it I'll get there.

I think that for the new year instead of doing the whole resolution thing I will instead plan out a year's worth of knitting goals and see if I can't make them. I am so bad about having my head turned by a new project, maybe I'll be able to focus if I promise myself a few spontaneous projects as a reward for keeping up with my goals. My bigest problem is the more I knit and get comfortable with things, the more I want to try and stretch into new techniques (or new fibers - "Down, Kochoran, down: bad yarn!"). Meanwhile, I'm looking forward to my Mom and Dad coming to visit this weekend. Now that's ringing in the New Year with a bang! (actually, 2 Bangs :-)

OK, that's only going to make sense to people who know me, but I found out yesterday that one of my friends actually keeps up with this blog!!! I might just crack under the pressure - I was pretty much revelling in my general anonimity and aside from the occasional comments from other bloggers that told me I wasn't out here just casting more chaff into the great void, I have been mostly doing this for my own amusement. I guess that'll show me.

Saturday, December 24, 2005

It's Christmas Eve and I'm.....Home! Knitting!

I can't tell you just how exciting that really is! I have been so busy lately, I was beginning to feel like I would forget how...

One cool thing that happened the other day was that the new Boss asked me to do his radio show with him. He does a pharmacy hour on a very small very local radio station, and his diabetes guest cancelled out, so he asked me if I would want to do the show. The next day. I could pick any topic. It was fun, and although I have a picture of me while on the air, it is possibly the WORST picture of me I have ever seen. So I ain't gonna post it. I know I need to lose a few pounds, and I know cameras add weight, but this damned thing makes me look like I weigh 300 freaking pounds. Ah well, more fuel for the upcoming New Year's resolution.

The cooler thing is that I am knitting again. I will post a pic of this - a sleeve in progress for Durrow! Click on this, it helps make the sleeve clearer. And the cat bigger.

Modeled by Butch, one of three white cats who are responsible for shedding on the dark fabrics. They think it's their job. This is a really cute picture of him, however, it is a lousy picture of the sleeve. I tried moving to a dark background, but it didn't help. I tried the flash, without flash, and finally I tried to adjust the color, but the cat washed out, and I like this picture.

So, I am knitting, blogging and killing time till 10:30, when I get to do the crust on the giant steak and ale pie I am making for the post Christmas Liturgy potluck at church tonight. The pie smells wonderful - I am using the recipe from All Tangled Up and I can't wait to taste it. But I have to, so it's back to knitting for now. Merry Christmas, everyone!

Thursday, December 22, 2005

I have not been abducted by aliens...

although everything else has happened to me, it seems. I have changed jobs which added 20 miles in each direction to my commute and that really cuts into knitting and blogging time. It is really a good thing I am so new to knitting because I had not developed the illusion that I could knit anyone Christmas presents. So no stress there, at least. I had had the bright idea at the beginning of saving wear and tear on myself and my vehicle by utilizing our lovely public transit system, but the first day I tried it I ended up trapped in a station elevator with a bum who had taken advantage of the privacy of the elevator to relieve himself in a way one cannot do merely by standing behind a tree, and that was pretty much the end of my dreams of knitting on the commute, let me tell you.

Anyway, I have also had weekend commitments out the wazoo. My friend Suzy and I did a glass beadmaking demo at the Winter Glass Fest at Janke Studios, where we met this awesome glassblower who works in borosilicate and we learned tons of stuff from him. This season is the birthday season for everyone I know, and between that and all the holiday parties I am about all caked out. We got to the Georgia Aquarium last Saturday and it was amazing, but weekends have been crazy with parties and dinners.

I have been squeezing knitting in when I can. I am struggling with the celtic knotwork cable pattern chart for Durrow, and I am still knitting on the clapotis. Still. Knitting. On. The. Clapotis. I probably won't have another chance to post before the New Year (3 more parties to go, plus church stuff on Christmas) I am having Christmas dinner with some friends who have a twenty something son who knits, so I'll bring the dig camera and get some piccies. My New Years resolution will be to make a little more time for myself out of my new schedule (equals knitting time) so I don't become insane with frustration.

So for now Merry Christmas. See you on the other side.

Friday, December 02, 2005

I solemnly swear that I am up to no good.

First, I have been knitting. I haven't been knitting as much as I would like because my life has been insane. I don't know why I am not just used to that by now, but there it is. I have started Durrow from MagKnits, and I have finished the back and started a sleeve. I am having the same frustrations with the cable chart that really got to me when I tried Forbes Forest, but now that I have a clue of what I am doing I have only had to frog it once before getting a good start. I am using Donegal Tweed from Takhi in the darkest green I could find, as that is the husband's favorite color.
Lookee... and remember 4x2 rib = stretchy - this looks more like an arm than a back, but it is a back.

And here's the yarn with the Merlin for proper color comparison...

As I have been moving through my knitting projects I have tried the different ways of knitting to see what works best and what I was more comfortable with. Because this rib pattern was perfect for it, this is the first time I tried "combination knitting", and I really like it. I figured out a cheat way to set up my stitches so I didn't have to start with a purl row. From the cast on I just transferred the stitches to the other needle, twisting them or not for the pattern setup, then when they were done (since I used circs) I slid them all back down to the side I started from and I was ready to knit. I noticed my speed increased, and my knitting was almost painfully even and perfect. But since there were 3 new factors to this project, I am not sure what is responsible for the change.

Was it the needles? (this was the first time I've used Addi Turbos)
Was it the Combination knitting style?
Was it the yarn?
Was it all of the above?

Or am I just that good.....HA!