Knittingdodo’s knit rants

Yarn, Needles, An Extinct Bird……What More Do You Need?

It Is Wednesday, Right? April 22, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — knittingdodo @ 5:44 pm

Both my parents and my husband deserted me this weekend to go off and have fun.

Doodieheads.

Ron went to the Long Beach Grand Prix, as is his yearly guy trip.  He and a bunch of friends go and volunteer to work the race, so they get in for free and have gobs of fun.  Normally, this is a little vacation for me too, since I spend the weekend at my parents house, and we have all kind of fun.  I stay there because I’m a chicken and cannot sleep when Ron’s not home.

Yes, I reallize that I’m almost 32 and should act like a grown up, but ppptthhh!!! to you.  How’s that for acting like a grown up?

Seriously, I think it is mostly because of my hearing.  I have a pretty signifigant hearing loss and I’m afraid I’m not going to hear things like a bad guy coming inside, or the fire alarm in the middle of the night.

But I digress. 

As I said, I normally spend a fun filled weekend with the folks and all is grand.  Well, my parents decided that not only were they going to have their anniversary on the same weekend as the race, but they were also going to go away and celebrate it.

Yeah, yeah, yeah, 35 years only comes around once…blah, blah.

I’m am joking, you know, I’m fiercely proud of the fact my parents have been together for so long and still like each other, and I”m glad that they and Ron had fun.  It did, though, mess up my weekend.  I ended up still staying at my paren’ts house in an effort to chaparone my brother and his fiance. ( My mom believes that if I’m there, they won’t do anything they’re not supposed to.  Uh huh, right.)

Because I was essentially alone for the weekend, aformentioned brother and fiance spent all weekend at work or holed up in their rooms, that meant I got no break from the girls.  That meant that I didn’t get to go to my LYS at all, as is my custom.  It also meant that I got little or no sleep, did almost no knitting, and never went potty or took a shower alone.  I don’t know how single parents do it.

So, it’s taken me a few days to get back into the swing of real life.  But I do have WIPs for you today.  And one of them is even new and pretty!

First off, the shop sample.  I was able to cast off the sleeves Sunday at church.(I have permission from my pastor to knit during service)  This was pretty much the only knitting I did over the weekend.  I have also cast on the back and have about an inch done on it.

knitting 008

The mixture of small yarn done on small needles and the fact that the body is way longer than an average sweater is what is making this take so long. Oh, that and a bunch of it is boring stockinette. If I was making this for myself, I would have put it away for a while by now. But, it’s not for me and so I keep truckin’ on it, slowly but surely.

My new pretty knit is these socks:

knitting 012

Loverly, huh? WhenI first started knitting socks, I pormised my mom I would knit a pair for her. She picked out the pattern, Spring Forward, and the yarn, some Clown yarn in blues. I was supposed to make them last Fall. I even had them up on my Ravelry projects page. I called them Spring in the Fall.

But, then I had to make Chistmas gifts, and Mom’s socks got set aside.

Well, the LYS had a recent sale on Lorna’s Laces and they had this uber cute Springy colorway that I just couldn’t resist, Happy Valley. My mom loves colors and pastels are her favorites. So, this yarn was just calling to me to be socks for her.

I pulled the Ravelry project out of the attic,changed the yarn info and cast on. Although, I guess I should probably change the name from Spring in the Fall to Spring in the, uh, Spring.

One more look before I say adieu:

knitting 014

So pretty!

 

I Got Something Fun In The Mail! April 21, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — knittingdodo @ 11:24 pm

Some of you may know that I”m obsessed with sock clubs. I desperately want to be in one, yet I’m po’, so I can’t.

Very frustrating.

I’ve researched several to decide which one I’m joining when I become independantly wealthy. There are two I’ve chosen to be my favorites, the Loopy Ewe and Socks That Rocks.

In a moment of insanity, I put my name in for the lottery for the Loopy Ewe’s club last December. I knew that if I got chosen, I would have a hard time paying for it, but I couldn’t help myself.

Well, I needn’t have worried, I didn’t get chosen. In the nice rejection email I got, however, I learned that they would have a special one time package for all of us rejectees. The email said the package would be available in Spring and to look out for it.

I decided that come hell or high water, I was to have that package. It was some severance for being such a loser that I can’t join a club properly. This past week the email came, and I immediately ordered my package. Shipping was fast, and on Saturday, I was the proud owner of this:

knitting 001

The tote was a freebie and I lurve it! There’s also a Loopy For Socks pen there in the corner.

knitting 002

This pattern is by Wendy of WendyKnits and I’m very excited to knit it up. love Wendy’s socks, so I know this will give me great pleasure.

What about the yarn, you ask? Well, it’s Hand Maiden.

knitting 005

The colorway is called Casbah and I think it’s wonderful! I’m not really drawn to dark colors, so I know that this is something I probably would have passed up at the yarn store. But, I’m so glad I have it! See, another bonus of sock clubs. You get exposed to colors you’d nomally not buy and get to expand your stash!

knitting 006

It will probably be a little while before I get to knit these sock, though. I still haven’t knit the Alpaca Yarn Company’s Frog and Piggy, and I got that last year!

Oh, so many socks, so little time!

 

On Why I Haven’t Posted A WIP In A While… April 17, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — knittingdodo @ 4:26 pm

I just wanted to post a little note explaining why I haven’t had a WIP post for a few Wednesday. The answer is really simple.

I only have one WIP and it’s boring to look at.

In an effort to get the blasted shop sample done, I haven’t cast on anything else. I thought if there wasn’t any other knitting to distract me, I would knock the sucker right out. Unfortunately, I’ve had a little bit of life distracting me, and have only been able to knit an hour or two each day, somedays not even that much. And, since the thing’s done on size 4 needles with lace weight yarn, a few hours doesn’t make much of a dent.

So, I’m looking longingly at my sock yarn, wishing I could cast on, but trying to be responsible and get my work done first before I play. I have made progress, albiet slow. I finished the back panel and am about 2/3 through the sleeves. I promise that you will get a new WIP post by Wednesday for sure.

***Change of Subject***

I just wanted to throw this out there for any of you who feel the need to knit, but don’t have anyone to knit for.

My birthday is in 2 weeks and I would absolultely love to have some handknit socks. As you know, I’m trying to replace all my crappy store bought socks with handknit ones, but I’m making them so slowely since I have to keep stopping to knit something for someone else. So, if you’ve got some time and want to make me socks, I’d be your friend forever!

I, of course, will accept other birthday gifts without prejudice…{sheepish grin}

(Size 8 shoe, 7.5 width and 9 5/8 length)

 

On Why I’m Depressed…

Filed under: Uncategorized — knittingdodo @ 4:15 pm

Hate to give you two bummer posts in a row, but I’ve recently found out some very sad news.

My LYS is closing.

Now, I realize that this doesn’t effect any of you dear readers in the slightest. It does, however, completely turn my world upside down.

You see, Closeknit isn’t just a place where I go to get yarn sometimes. It’s practically a second home to me.

Let me ‘splain. I “learned” to knit from a very lovely senior lady at church. She taught me the basics, but that really only involved the knit and purl stitches and casting on. She didn’t even have a chance to show me how to bind off, I went online for a video for that.

I thought I knew it all and could make anything. (funny how naive we can be, huh?)

A friend had given me a pattern book for Christmas that year and I was eager to start making these adorable fingerless gloves in the book. I grabbed the pattern, some crappy acrylic yarn and the 14″ straight needles I had, (all I had was crappy acryilic and crappy needles back then) and I sat down to knit the gloves.

I didn’t even get past the first line.

It was written in some strange knitting language I didn’t know! c/o, huh? k24, what? And what the heck is joning in the round?! I was completely lost and thought I might have to give up knitting all together. I mean, I didn’t realize I had to be bilingual to knit.

But, I didn’t give up knitting, (obviously) and instead, I went down to the only knitting store I knew of. Conveniently, it was just a few blocks from my house. I had been in there before, but had balked at the price of their yarn. Again, this was when I first started out and I didn’t realize that Red Heart Super Saver was of the devil and that God intended yarn to be made from natural fibers and not plastic. (Disclaimer: to all of you who love Red Heart and acrylic yarn, I apologize. It does work for a plethora of projects, especially charity knitting. It’s just not my cup of tea, especially since I’m a sock knitter. Red Heart just started carrying sock yarn in the past 6 months or so. And I do have some and I plan to use it, and I love the fact that it’s half the price of some of the other sock yarn. I’m not completely against acrylic yarn, but some of it feels like sandpaper)

I went to Closeknit thinking that if anyone could help me, they could. I explained my plight to Sandra and she reassured me that I’d be speaking knitese in no time. She was right! With her help, and she did help me all the way through the entire glove, I was able to finish it up and a whole new world opened up to me.

I learned that all needles are not equal. All I had was the long, cold, metal straight needles in the funky colors that I had gotten through charity. Obviously, since the glove was done in the round, I had to buy new needles. That’s when I was introduced to both DPNs and wood needles. While I’ve graduated from DPNs to magic loop, I still credit that first set of size 5 wood DPNs for part of my love affair with knitting.

I had never seen anyone knit in the round before, but it made total sense! And I felt so special being able to do it. It was like space aged knitting, or something! But, that’s not all! Up to this point, I had only done garter stitch, though I didn’t know that’s what it was called. With these gloves, I was introduced to stockinette and there was even a very simple lace bit on the wrist. I learned to do a YO, K2Tog, M1 on the thumb gusset, placing stitches on a holder and picking up stitches when I worked the thumb. I even learned to weave in my ends, because I was still just tying a knot thinking that would do it.

After I made the gloves, I was definately hooked. I set out to make a sweater for my mom for her birthday, a sweater for T, and, since I just found out I was pregnant with D, lots of baby things. Sandra and Kathy were always very helpful and they would play with T while I looked around. That meant a lot to me.

By the time D was born, I was spending half of my Sunday afternoons there. Like most LYS’s, Saturdays and Sundays are big hanging out and knitting days. I had to miss quite a lot of time those first few months after D was born, what with all the time she spent in the hospital. But, when she was about 5 months old and sitting up on her own, we were there every Sunday. I had a bag of toys for D and she’d sit on the floor and play for hours while I got to knit. The owners and other patrons would take turns holding her if she got a little restless. And the emotional support I got from everybody there when we weren’t sure what was wrong with D and if she’d survive was amazing.

Our financial situation went from bad to worse last year, and so I didn’t have much funds for buying yarn. The shop went through a Spring cleaning of sorts for several months and got rid of a lot of yarn for cutthroat prices. Since they knew I needed it, Sandra and Kathy would hold yarn in the back for me for sometimes 2 weeks until I got up the money to buy it. I was able to take advantage of the great sales they had without going overdrawn at the bank.

When things got even worse financially, they came up with cleverways for me to “earn” yarn. The sweater I finished for Kathy’s sister, for instance, or the top I’m making right now for a shop sample. They even had a yarn swap a few weeks ago and asked me to help organize it. In return, I go my pick of the yarn that was swapped. I must tell you, I made out like a bandit.

But they’ve never made me out to be some pathetic charity case. They just understand that I have the love for knitting and want to foster that. That and the interest they show in my kids and my life make them good friends.

But, the economy sucks and they’ve fallen victim to it. When I got the email on Monday, I was so depressed I couldn’t even knit. Yeah! That’s how bad it was. I went to the shop the next day and shared my condolences with them. This was their baby, the thing they’d worked their whole lives for. This was their retirement plan, so for it to end, really upsets their life.

Kathy is done, for sure, but Sandra isn’t ready to give up yet. There is enough of a customer base that she thinks if she sizes down greatly, she might be able to open up another shop in a different area. I’ve told her that anyway I can help, I will. She’s even thinking of making it less of a yarn store and more of a knitting club. She’s still sell knitting supplies, of course, but she may need to have a monthly membership fee to keep the doors open. We are all more than willing to pay the price to be able to keep our little knitting community together. I’m sure I speak for all of the gals down there when I say that it was never about the yarn, but about the people and commoradery that brings us to Closeknit.

So, sorry to bring you down,and sorry to post a big ol’ mess about a yarn store you don’t know and will neer see. But, Closekit is a big part of what made me the knitter I am today and I couldn’t let it dissappear without some sort of tribute.

 

What I Did On My Spring Break. April 15, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — knittingdodo @ 5:07 pm

By Cristi.

On my Spring break, I had lots of fun. I went to neat places and had fun. I think Spring break is the funest break, except for Summer break, which is funner because it’s a lot longer. I wish I could have Spring break every month-

Who am I kidding? Spring break fun wasn’t as fun as I would have liked it to be.

Why? Let me tell you.

First off, it wasn’t my Spring break, as I’m not in school, it was T’s and Mom’s. I was really glad that both their breaks fell on the same week. Mostly, I was excited because that meant the T could spend the night over at the folk’s house several nights and I could sleep in.

Apparently D didn’t get that memo. She was up every morning by 7:30, alert and cute and ready to play.

I had also planned to break D of the habit of waking up 2 times a night to nurse. Yeah, she didn’t go for that either. There was a lot of screaming, pleading, crying and begging-mostly from me- during the night.

So, my hope of getting a whole bunch of extra sleep so I can stop walking around like a zombie was a total fail. I think D feels bad for me, though. Last night she only woke up once and the night before she slept all the way though. Hopefully, this will start a trend.

Then, just in case I’m not already stressed out, T decided to try to kill herself this past week.

Now, before you call CPS, my 4 year old is not suicidal, just accident prone and curious.

First off, I caught her on Monday brushing her teeth. Now, she loves to brush her teeth and we encourage that. But this time her definition of brushing her teeth was putting a big blob of toothpaste on her brush and then brushing just enough to get the toothpaste into her mouth so she can eat it. Luckily, I caught her before she had had a chance to consume enough of the toothpaste to make her ill. I can’t let her go potty by herself yet, apparently.

Then, I blew it in my lecture. I was explaining to her how the toothpaste will make her sick if she eats it, and how she needs to spit it out. Well, now she’s terrified of getting sick on the toothpaste! The next day I had to brush her teeth for her and every two brushes or so, I had to stop so she could spit. It took twice as long to get half the brushing done. I finally had to get her her own toothpaste so she wouldn’t be scared anymore. We normally have children’s toothpaste for her, but we had run out about a month ago and she likes the minty taste of ours, so I thought I could save a few bucks.

Guess not.

So, now she has Little Einstiens toothpaste and all is well in the toothbrushing world again.

That was her first attempt.

The second one came early Wednesday morning. She had spent the night at the folk’s on Tuesday, so I was only slightly surprised at the call form my mom in the wee hours of the morning. I was, of course, already awake, playing with my adorable early riser.

The first thing Mom says is that T has swallowed a steel marble.

Oh goodie.

So, off to the doctor we went to make sure the ball had made it to her stomach. We took x-rays and found it there, in her tummy. The doctor said to watch her and check her stools for the ball. If it wasn’t out by Friday, we were to take her back in.

Well, swallowing the thing scared T. And she was scared of it coming out too. So, her little four year old mind figured if she didn’t poop, then she wouldn’t have to worry about it, right? So, she didn’t eat much and refused to go big potty. This was resulting in a very cranky T and a rather cranky me too. I finally had to force feed her prunes Thursday night to get her to go. It worked, but there still was no little ball by Friday morning, so back to the doctor we went.

Another x-ray showed the ball in her colon, so the scare of it coming back up and chocking her was over and now we could relax. T relaxed too. After that first poopie, she realized that going when she had to go was better than holding it in. So, she went the opposite way. Now she gets all excited and wants a little mini party for every poop.

We did find the steel ball, by the way, and are keeping it to show her first boyfriend.

That was attempt number two.

Saturday, we caught her trying to “make dinner” She was using a bowl of strawberries, hot water and Goo Gone. The Goo Gone was put up out of her reach, but she’s getting smart and managed to get it down. At first I freaked out. The Goo Gone stuff smells really good and I was afraid she’d eaten it. She assured me she hadn’t, but I smelled her mounth and breath to make sure. There was no tell tale orangey smell there, so I relaxed a bit. We kept a close watch on her for the rest of the day to make sure she didn’t get sick, though.

I have learned this week that my child is not to be left alone for even a moment.

So, if that’s not enough to mess up a perfectly good Spring break, I remembered this past week that my birthday is in a few weeks and I’m turning 32!

I realize that if you are older, 32 sounds pretty good. But remember when you turned 32. 30 and 31 you atill have the novelty of bring out of your 20’s. By 32, the novelty has worn off and you’re just “in your 30’s”.

Ick.

It didn’t help that I looked at myself in the morror and realized that I looked like a soccer mom. (apologies to all soccer mom’s out there. It’s not a bad look, but not one I’m going for) So, I did what any person would do.

I went and got myself a fabulous new haircut. My hairdresser de-soccer-mom-ed me for sure.

Now, before I reveal the new me, I would like to give you a little background history on my hair. When I was a little girl, I had long wavy golden brown hair that was pulled up in pigtails and I was adorable. The only problem was that I have fine hair that’s prone to tangles. Remember, this was the late 70’s early 80’s and they didn’t have detangling shampoo and sprays back then. So, every morning was a fight for my mom to get my hair brushed. Finally she’d had it and cut it off.

All of my pretty hair was gone and I went from being and adorable little girl to being an ugly duckling. It didn’t help matters that I was already a bit awkward and tomboy-ish, so I didn’t have the know-how to make a mullet flatterning. My mom didn’t have the know-how either.

So, our daily brushing fights turned into daily hair styling fights. My mom liked the feathered look and I was totally against that. My solution wasn’t any better, I must admit. Remember, tomboy, not a good combo with a mullet.

Anyway, when I was in my freshman year of high school, I finally convinced my mom to let me grow my hair out. Now, you must understand that she cut it in the second grade, so I went for many, many years with bad hair. You know what that can do to a girl?

Anyway, I started growing my hair and didn’t stop until it was down to my waist and all one length. It was very pretty and I was finally proud of my hair. I braided it on my own and would do all kinds of neat braids and buns. But, when I wanted to look good, I’d blow dry it straight and wear it down. And, because I was kid-less at the time, I had the money to go get it colored and trimmed every few weeks. Here is the best picture I could find. I’m quite a bit thinner in this picture, but, weren’t we all a bit thinner before kids?

scan0001 (2)

Pretty, huh? I had my hair like that from when I was about 17 to a few weeks before my 30th birthday. At that point, I realized that I had had the same hair style for over a decade and, since I was hitting the bog 3-0, I figured it was time for a change.  Plus, I had gotten into the bad habit of pulling it back into a ponytail.  Small kids, you know…

I couldn’t go too drastic, though. Long hair had been what I was for such a long time, I had to make the transition gradually. So I went with this.

me 010

And I loved it! I was certain I would dislike it and grow it all back, but I fell in love with it. I thought it was so much more flattering to my face, I didn’t look like a little girl anymore and it was stylish. Plus, I saved money on shampoo. ;o)

Each time I went into the stylist’s, it got a little bit shorter. Until I was finally like this.

scan0002 (2)

Now, as you can see in this picture, I had gone back to my natural color and things were a little sloppy. Having a baby to take care of often means you’re lucky to walk out of the door with clean hair, forget about styling it. So, I got into the habit of just letting dry how it did or pulling into a little pony tail. It worked for that first year when D took up so much of my time and sleep. But, as I said, I’m coming up on my 32nd and realized I’m a frumpy, overweight mom.

The overweight I can’t fix overnight, but the frumpy I could. I had always wanted some fierce wacky style, I’ve always loved the short spiked pixie look. My face is a bit too round for that look, though, so we went with this instead.

0415090931[1] (2)

Disclaimer: The picture is bad taken on my phone. Also, I’m still learning how to do it. I tried several times to get a better picture, but I’m just not good at taking pictures of myself. Here is another one.

0415090932[1] (2)

This one’s a little better in the style, but the picture quality is terrible.

But, anyway, you get the idea. I L-O-V-E my new hair! I can’t get over how much I do. And what a change in just two short years, huh?

 

Now, to work on the overweight part…

 

Apparently It Is An Addiction… April 7, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — knittingdodo @ 4:52 pm

Well, we all suspected it, but now there’s proof.

I’m addicted to knitting.

It’s true! I just took this quiz and scored a 70%!

While you might not think that’s much, read the description:

You scored 70%. You have the optimum level of addiction; beginning knitters strive to be you! You’d knit almost anywhere and anytime, but there are times and places where even you know knitting is not permitted. Like, maybe, a wedding or a funeral. Tell your family they don’t have anything to complain about.

So, I’m the perfect knitting addict! Now, to keep it at this level and not go into the dangerous addiction level…

 

Are You One Of The Lucky Ones? April 2, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — knittingdodo @ 4:00 pm

Well, if you live close enough to attend the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival, then you are! I’m insanely jealous of all of you who get to go! I haven’t been able to find anything like that out here in my side of the country, and, frankly, I’m bummed.

Oh well, if you are going, you definately need to check out the Cloverhill Yarn booth. They will be featuring over 23 independent yarn artists, and we all want to support our small yarn makers, don’t we? Especially in this economy where the little guy can dissappear in the shuffle. Cloverhill’s booth will be in the main building on the right hand side when you walk in.

So, go, enjoy the festival for me! And, if you happen to be so grateful for the heads up about the great yarn that Cloverhill has, and you feel the need to repay me, I like sock yarn quite a bit. *hint, hint*

What?  I’m not too proud…;o)

banner1

Have a great day, everyone!