Sunday, September 28, 2008
Not a lot of knitting progress to report - about 4 rows on MS4 (and I am still not on clue 4). I doodled around with some leftover sock yarn in an effort to use it up, but was not pleased with the 2 or 3 things I tried. Ho Hum.
I have been feeling fine, but you all forgot to remind me that I am not allowed to watch "Sex and the City" yet... I was in tears by the middle of the episode last night. I can't stand to listen to them talk about relationship woes (and joys). Seperately (but related) I realized last week that what I want, what I have been waiting for - without even realizing it - is an apology from Mr. Fixit. I know I am not going to get it but I feel a bit better for identifying the thorn.
No big achievements this weekend and no big plans next week... but next weekend is the first of the yoga teacher training program. Wheee!
Saturday, September 27, 2008
The baristina at the coffeeshop is wearing a Megatokyo tee shirt today and was floored that I recognized it. That's me, spreading the love.
Delivery of the Southwest Sweater was successfully accomplished last night! I was rewarded by getting to play with 4 6-week old siamese kittens. They were adorable. None of my cats came to me that young, so it was interesting. Although now that I think of it I fostered 3 kittens about that age for a while about 8 years ago. I have Freddy Mercury all picked out and to take home, but I need Mandy approval. And I should probably not mess with the pet equilibrium that I have right now.
Now that the sweater is done, I have the urge to knit (finish) one (or two) for myself. The button salesman came to Knit N Stitch and now I want to find a cardigan pattern to make. I was wandering around Ravelry and I am sure I will find one somewhere :) I will have to get spinning for the yarn.
I printed Clue 4 for the Mystery Stole 4 project, but am still only halfway through Clue 3. The beads are off the charts for the moment, but lace part of the pattern just got very detailed and it requires my full attention. Last night I only knit one row because I spent an hour chasing down one missing stitch (I dropped a YO, but I found it eventually). I still don't know what it is, but I adore the color, the yarn and the pattern so far.
It is a sunny day, I had some breakfast, I checked in the yoga class - my favorite part of my work there - and said Good Morning to everyone, and got a coffee at the Depot. This afternoon I have lace class and tonight I am taking myself out on a date to the Bluegrass Night at the (big) Coffee Depot downtown.
I have been putting a little effort and energy into my spritual practice again this week and it has made me pretty happy and confident. It could be the placebo effect, but I will take it!
Friday, September 26, 2008
Wednesday, September 24, 2008
Tuesday, September 23, 2008
Here is the Alpaca scarf in all its squishy glory:
And here is how much yarn was left over after I worked in the ends:I think that might be a knitting record. I know it is a personal best. The scarf is short, but very, very warm and very, very squishy. I just loved to pat it. It is now in a box winging its way to a mystery location. *bwahahah*
Here is the new scarf. It is actually longer than this now, and coming along nicely. I made it a little narrower than the alpaca one, so I should get more length (I also had 77 more yards in this skein). I spun the colors in little "puffs" in order by color, so it is making stripes that are more or less orderly. The colors are burgundy, hunter green and navy blue which were all the rage a few years ago when I was in college. I feel like there is a good name for this scarf right on the tip of my tongue, but it just won't come out. Yuppie? Trendy? Smithie? New Englandy? Help is appreciated.That is all the knitting news that is fit to print. My only big adventures today were returning my overdue library books and paying the overdue light and gas bills.
Monday, September 22, 2008
That is about the extent of my knitting progress this weekend. Actually, that is the extent of all my activities on Sunday. Just me, the scarf and "The Two Towers". The scarf came out so well that I think I will make another out of the blue / green / burgundy wool I spun up about the same time as the gray. Now I know why people "gift knit"; to get rid of the yarn that they don't want for themselves, but will find a good home elsewhere.
I am still on a "finishing" kick -- I need to block Mandy's sweater, make a decision on the sleeves for the "Mirepoix Bodice", finish spinning the gray wool for the "Aud" sweater (betcha thought I forgot about that one!) and I will be pretty well caught up on the sweaters-in-progress. Maybe I will delve back into stole-land afterward.
About yesterday's mini post: I figured out how to log into the blog from my cell phone. I can make a title and give it tags, but there is nowhere at all to write the body of the post. Sigh. I was able to approve comments, so keep 'em coming!
Saturday, September 20, 2008
Thursday, September 18, 2008
Mandy's sweater needs only the second half of the second sleeve seamed in. I tried it on the other day and my head fit through the proper opening, so that is a huge relief. Everybody pray for a cold spell so she can wear it! There is one skein of the yarn left over, so I might be talked into making a matching hat, but no one should hold their breath. It might go on the "for sale" area of Ravelry.
I took pictures yesterday of the finished Red Fish yarn and the MS4 project, but managed to leave the camera in my knitting bag, so no pictures on today's post. Tomorrow for sure. I am done through clue 2. Clue 3 will be released in the morning. Today I actually picked up and worked on the Mirepoix bodice project that has been in a holding pattern. Since I am so close to done with the purple sweater, I am rewarding myself with work on a sweater for me. OOOH, that link is to a knit-a-long. I will have to join!
While I was looking for some stash wool to spin on the wheel (now that the Red Fish roving is done), I found some dyed BFL that was gifted to me but is not a colorway that I would have picked out. I decided to spin it anyway (maybe I could re-gift the yarn) when I realized this would be a good yarn with which to practice my long-draw technique. So I watched "Born Into Brothels" and argued with the roving. By the end, we were reaching a truce. I think if I keep practicing, I will keep getting better. Funny how that happens.
Lucky the Mouse is still doing well. I feed him by hand to keep him tame - it works for the guinea pigs and the rabbit. In fact, they go a little nuts if I walk past or open the fridge without giving them something. I have to watch my fingers when I give them banana. They go, well, bananas. They drew the line at mushrooms, though.
Even though I am putting together a happy post, I have been feeling rather low these last few days. My cooking-cleaning-laundry-gardening phase seems to have ebbed away and I am left with restlessness mixed with lack of motivation. The only useful things are that I am still making it to all my appointments / committments (the ones that don't slip my mind, at least) and working on projects in progress, not starting new ones (except for spinning through the stash, but that is ongoing and keeps me from buying new yarn). I have been getting up late and getting started with my workday late (such as it is) and feeling like I am slogging through mud at the same time. I have also been sad about lost relationsips and such... but am not willing to go looking for another one. When we were in resting pose at yoga last night I imagined meeting someone new and immediately felt anxious. Heart pounding, can't breathe, freaking out and running away anxious. So I backed off that little exercise.
I am sure that I will be on an upswing soon, but it would be nice to know when. It was about this same time last year that things started to fall apart mentally, emotionally, and ultimately relationship-ly with Mr. Fixit, so I don't know if the season change is what makes me sad, or what. I love fall, so it was (is) particulary odd that I have felt so unbalanced at this time for the last 2 years.
I will keep knitting.
Sunday, September 14, 2008
Progress is good on the MS4 stole. I am about halfway done with clue #2 and the beading is going faster. I just bought more beads and I think I will need more before I see the end. Guesses on the theme (on the Yahoo group and on Ravelry) are all over the board - aliens? genies? roses? geisha? cards? My personal guess right now is sperm, but I don't think it will hold up. I am still working just one side a time, both to keep on schedule and to maximize stole length before I have to restock yarn and beads.
Someone *finally* was murdered in "The Cat Who Had 60 Whiskers", but I am giving up on it anyway. Sorry, Lillian. I have moved on to "The City of Fallen Angels" which is set in Venice, but hopes are not high at this time.
I actually attended yoga this week (slow deep stretch), which was nice. However, I was still a nervous wreck afterward. Apparently I am wound more tightly than I knew! I will head off to another class this afternoon. The teacher training program starts in October and I hope to be in it. We will have pilates at the yoga studio soon - I may have to give that a whirl. I really need to be more active - knitting is fun but not full of cardio.
Weaving has been taking a back seat this last couple of weeks, which means I am not finishing things that will bring income to my little house. I have some tension and guilt about that. I suppose it would be alleviated if I sat. and. wove. After yoga, I think. The problem is that I would always rather be knitting! I have a blanket commission waiting in the wings and the silk for the scarves is sitting around looking longingly at me.
I had a little bit of a sad / frustrated morning. I hate it when my opionin / input is solicited and then mocked. Sigh. And then something made me think of Mr. Fixit which always brings a little twinge - although the rate of twinging has been reduced to once a month or so. I realized a few weeks ago that I no longer think about what I would do if he wanted to come back.... not that I don't miss being in a relationship but I suppose I have fully accepted that he won't be coming back so I don't have to imagine dealing with the scenario. It just takes me a long time to get over things. I am still not ready to deal with looking for / dating / getting to know / starting to trust anyone new, but I kinda miss having someone to go out and do things with.
It might be time for another week in Wyoming.
Friday, September 12, 2008
Next up on the spinning queue (on my Majacraft Millie) is this fiber from Red Fish Dyeworks. It is 4 oz of a silk / superfine merino blend. I love the boldness of the colors, but am in a dither about whether to make it a 2 ply, 3 ply, chained 3 ply, or ???? I don't want the colors to muddy. It is beautifully dyed, but not in clear sections that will spin up one after the other like "ophelia" was.Lucky the Mouseling is still happy. Here he is, later on in the day he was the cats' plaything(they have no interest in him now that he is in jail).And this afternoon, attempting a prison break. Maybe I should rename him Steve (McQueen) McMouse. He eats everything in sight and used my hand as a jungle gym for a while. No wild mouse, this. Latest on the Netflix front - I finally got to see "Death in Holy Orders" all the way through. It is a PBS / BBC adaptation of a P.D. James book. I had seen the first 2/3 twice over the 5 years it has been out, but never the end. Interestingly, Jesse Spencer (Chase on "House") is one of the central characters. Small acting world. This show is sometimes mentioned (somewhat obliquely) in spinning discussions, as one of the murder-ees was staged to have died of a heart attack while knitting, but another woman realized that she was not wearing the right glasses and it proved the key to that mystery.
Tomorrow is the open house over at Knit N Stitch. I have to spiff up my Ashford Traditional and find something (!) to spin as a demo. Oh, the challenges I face....
Thursday, September 11, 2008
Yesterday the cats managed to corner a mouse behind the desk. "Don't let it die back there, you guys" I adominished. How it was going to brave its way out I did not want to contemplate. I left, steeped in denial, to run my Wednesday errands. When I came home, they were playing with it (in the dogs' food dish, interestingly) and it was looking a bit woozy. Rhiannon grabbed it and started to run off, but I got her to drop it, scooped it up, and set up house in an old cage I was just about to get rid of. Shavings, water, food... and a wish for the best. Off I galivanted again, with no idea what I would come home to.
Imagine my surprise when I returned and said little guy was... fine. Just fine. Bouncy bouncy, bright eyed and bushy tailed (as it were). All his appendages were intact and fur unruffled. I think he was even nibbling on a mouse munchie. He has been christened "Lucky" and is the newest resident of Chez Jackson. (Insert picture here - the picture is on the phone and I left it in the car). The oddest thing is - he is a white mouse and perfectly friendly. He comes to me when I put my hand in the cage instead of running away. He loves his little mouse house but does not cower in it. Where on earth did my cats scare up a pet mouse? Did they walk to the pet store? Is some 6 year old on my block very sad? Should I put up "found mouse" posters? If it had been a wild mouse, I would have released it over in the cemetery or something. Kindness does have limits. And what does it say about my felines that 4 of them together could not kill and eat one little mouse after a whole day?
In other news, I have finished Clue 1 of the MS4 project. Just in time too, as Clue 2 will be released in the morning. I will need to knit another one for the other end of the stole, but will put it off for a while. I need to order a second skein of yarn but am having a cash flow issue, so want to get as far as I can with skein one.
Good progress has also been made on That Scottish Shawl. I am about 2/3 of the way through the first repeat of the right hand side (I will need 3 total - on each side). This project bigamy really does let me see progress!
The new audiobook of the week is "The Cat Who Had 60 Whiskers" by Lillian Jackson Braun. So far the only mystery is "when is there going to be a mystery?". But it is a good listen and easy to spin / knit to, so I will muddle through.
Tuesday, September 09, 2008
I made some progress, meanwhile, on That Scottish Shawl. It keeps me on my toes.
But the best best best news of today? I went to the grocery store. I am now up to my ears in bananas, strawberries, ceral and pb&j makings. Life is good again.
Monday, September 08, 2008
Here is an in-progress shot of That Scottish Shawl . It shows the last bit of the center section and the first bit of the right hand side. I added another 4 rows tonight at the knitting store... every little bit counts. The yarn is a beautiful dusty green, which did not photograph very well.Firsa tried to help with the photo shoot by subduing the rampaging knitting needle. Silly girl.I am making progress on the MS4 Stole. I am off to the bead store tomorrow for a refill. The yarn is the same type as the one above. The beads are 6/0 mill hill, and either a shiny gray or actual hematite (the jury is out). They sort of blend in and they sort of stand out. I am about midway through clue one (which we will knit twice). And closer...I also made it to the library today for more audiobooks. I already knew the first rule of lace knitting - don't watch a movie in Chinese with the subtitles on. This weekend I learned the corollary - don't watch a silent movie. I had to watch intently to get the few words and could not depend on chatter to guide me. Geez.
All righty - off to do some more knitting!
Sunday, September 07, 2008
Speaking of which, the MS4 is coming along swimmingly. I think I am on row 15 of 29 of clue 1 or something. I will also be out of beads by the end of the first clue, so I will have to hit the bricks and find some more. It is a really pretty pattern, I like the yarn and I like the beads. I swore I would take a picture, but life got in the way.
The new "blank" combed top is in and ready for a big dye session this week. There will be merino/tencel, blue faced leicester and yak/silk to choose from.
I had an unexpected trip to the vet today and had to put one of the bunnies to sleep. He had a major injury that needed surgery which I could not afford and which he might not survive. I feel pretty bad. Really bad.
Friday, September 05, 2008
Thursday, September 04, 2008
The first MS4 clue comes out tomorrow. I am excited. I also have no yarn and no beads. Timely I am not. Oh, I have some stash laceweight, but it is all earmarked for other projects or there is not enough yardage. DUH! *smacks forehead* I have an entire cone of 8/2 silk... nope. That belongs to the business and is set aside for weaving. Forget I said anything. I keep eyeing that Cormo roving though...
I finished listening to "Memoirs of a Geisha" this morning and enjoyed it thoroughly. The ending was very happy and tidy (almost too much so). I will swing by the library tomorrow to see what other gems they have. I also have a couple of netflix to watch, although it is difficult to read subtitles and knit lace at the same time. It is OK for spinning, though. I watch so many movies in Chinese that I sometimes think I don't have to read the subtitles, but it is never really true. I hate overdubbing in English (with the solitary exception of "Steamboy" which is about a japanese boy in London).
I also finished the center section of That Scottish Shawl this morning and embarked on the right hand side. It now requires my full attention (good luck), but is a satisfying knit. I love the yarn and the color (Alpaca With a Twist "fino" and Sea Glass). It has been a week of project monogamy, which is quite nice. Who woulda thunk?
Well, I am literally the only customer left at the coffeeshop at 9pm on a Thursday. How wierd is that? I should flit from table to table.
Thought for today: They always look like angels when they are sleeping.
Wednesday, September 03, 2008
It's not like I have 3 sweaters in progress, one of which is maybe an hour from being done and then delivered to the recipient.
It's not like I have 4 pairs of socks in various stages of disarray spread around in yarn totes all over the house.
I don't even have any idea what the MS4 will look like (duh). But I. Must. Start. It. on Friday when the first portion is released. I have no yarn, no beads, no plan. But knitting must occur. Luckily (Cheryl are you paying attention?) I can download the portions of the pattern and then knit them at my "leisure", whatever that is. There is no award that I know of for finishing on time, except that I would have a new shawl in time for autumn.
Well, I guess I have a little bit of a plan - I can finish spinning the "Ophelia" roving I got at the bead show, ply it off the bobbin and then start spinning some lacewieght yarn out of all that Cormo I bought last November at Torrance and then this July at Lambtown. I have an idea of the colorway I want (I did not buy it from The Loopy Ewe. Yet). Where beads will come from is another question entirely. Maybe I will make the foray into Tustin to check out the selection at ... the place next to Kragen, or maybe I will swing by Redlands to see if The Enchanted Unicorn has any (yes. I will call ahead).
I have been knitting like the wind on "That Scottish Shawl" while listening to "Memoirs of a Geisha" on cd. It is, like, totally engrossing. Audiobooks make a far better accompaniment to knitting than TV does. I also feel like my brain is working more by imagining the scenes. I am now only a couple hours away from starting the next section. I mean to take pictures, but the shawl lives in the bedroom while the camera hangs out with the laptop in the trunk of the car. (Don't rob me).
Maybe I will get all of those projects done by Friday.