Thursday, April 29, 2004

I got back on late Monday from my cruise but it's taken me this long to get back in the swing of things. I wish I had more to report on the knitting front. I never did get the right gauge with the microspun for Anouk so I re-did the math and figured out my number of cast on stitches, but I didn't have the patience to re-figure the decreases so I didn't start. I worked on the chenille towel so that's coming along. I am hopeful that my Spring Knit-up projects will all be done this weekend (since the towel is the last of the three).

I haven't worked on the shapely tank at all. I'm feeling a bit guilty about it (go check out Sharon's thoughts on guilt) but I really need to get the chenille towel monkey of my back!

As a consolation prize here are some pictures of my trip:

This is Tisha wading in the water of Coco Cay (that is Royal Caribbean' private Island):

This is the view from our boat of Paradise Island as we pulled away. If you look carefully in the distance you can see the Atlantis Hotel and Resort. Tisha and I took an excursion there and it was amazing. They had the most beautiful aquariums and the largest Casino in the Caribbean. The whole place is built to look like an Atlantean Palace:

Finally an extremely rare shot of me. I'm standing on the top deck of the boat and that is Nassau behind me:

We had a great time and I highly recommend taking a weekend cruise to any moms out there (and anybody else for that matter). It's long enough to really relax but short enough so you don't feel bad (there's that guilt thing again!) about leaving your family. I'm really glad I went.

Thursday, April 22, 2004

Not much knitting going on. I cast on for Anouk's pocket/gauge swatch yesterday and I can't get the gauge right!. Ok ok I only tried 2 needle sizes (6s and 7s respectively for those keeping track) but I swear the swatch on the bigger needles is smaller than the first. What's up with that? My row gauge for those who are interested is absolutely perfect on the larger size needle. I am not a happy camper. I leave tomorrow for my trip and frankly I don't want to be swatching madly with my Needlemaster set surgically attached to my side the whole trip. Instead I want to be working on a dainty, beautiful dress that everyone will ooh and aah at from the minute I get on board all the way until Monday when I disembark with the finished product (that will have miraculously woven in all it's own loose ends , stitched itself together and blocked itself overnight). I don't really think I'm asking too much?

Alison posted this the other day and being that I work in a bookstore I felt a compulsion to try it...

1. Grab the nearest book.
2. Open the book to page 23.
3. Find the fifth sentence.
4. Post the sentence in your journal with these instructions.

" I tried to remember what it was like to be near so many people who knew me." Jon McGregor's "If Nobody Speaks Remarkable"

I should admit, somewhat abashedly that I picked up 2 other books first and the lines I ran into were far too depressing for me so I decided cheating was a better way have fun.

Oh well no blogging until I get back from the Bahamas (yeah baby!) so see you Tuesday....

Monday, April 19, 2004

I got back from Indianapolis late Saturday. I couldn't get my laptop to connect to the internet while I was gone so I apologize for the lack of posting. I did indeed work on the basket weave towel (even during some seminars) but at the small gauge I really didn't get much done. The blanket is finished, and Sonnet will get it's buttons tonight. I will try to get pictures up soon. So checking in on the Spring Knit-Up that just leaves me with one project left, the towel (the Shapely Tank doesn't count because I started it recently, nor does the sock because it's in the car therefore it doesn't really exist until I take it out of the compartment I have it hidden in).

I am going to start Anouk a day or so before my trip (I leave Friday for the cruise whoo hoo!). I'm figuring I will do a pocket as a gauge swatch and attempt duplicate stitch for the flower. If that works out ok I will do it for the second as well, otherwise I will do it in intarsia. I am not a big intarsia fan so I thought I'd experiment with duplicate stitch first.

I found my thought for the day from Mom in the Mirror my favorite non-knitting blog. The Modern Mother's Mantra:

Enjoy more, worry less

I think everybody could use it. Although parents do worry exponentially more than civilians, in this day and age everybody has far too many things to be worried about. So today go out and enjoy yourselves, it's good for your health...

Tuesday, April 13, 2004

A - Z

stolen from Gidget who swiped it from Iris, :

A - Age: 34 (35 in June)
B - Band listening to right now: OutKast
C - Career future: Textbook Goddess or school counselor if I ever finish school
D - Dad's name: Charlie
E - Easiest person to talk to: my husband Ray
F - Favorite song: currently Extraordinary by Liz Phair, it's not just a song it's my anthem
G - Gummy Bears or Gummy Worms: Bears
H - Hometown: Bronx, NY
I - Instruments: voice
J - Job: Textbook Buyer
K - Kids: Avery 8, Ian 2
L - Longest car ride ever: going back to Langhorne, PA when we discovered I left my bag in a restaurant near Sesame Place, when we were almost home
M - Mom's name: Barbara
N - Number of people you slept with: like I'd tell you...
P - Phobia[s]: anything having to do with eyes or The Exorcist
Q - Quote: "She Saved the World...A Lot"
R - Reason to smile: I am leaving for my Bahamas cruise in 9 days.
S - Song you sang last: "We Did It" from Dora the Explorer (hey I have a toddler ok!)
T - Time you wake up: 6:30 if my husband doesn't turn off the alarm before I hear it
U - Unknown fact about me: Mixed in with all my rap and heavy metal albums is an excellent Abba collection
V - Vegetable you hate: almost all of them
W - Worst habit: procrastinating
X - X-rays you've had: my teeth
Y - Yummy food: Entenmann's Banana Crunch Cake
X - Zodiac sign: Cancer

Still running way behind on the Shapely Tank. I had to frog back 4 rows last night on the train home. Somehow I screwed up the decreases on the very first go round. I managed to fix it and I did 8 more rows on the train this morning. I am hoping to have finished all the decreases by the time I get home. I'm off tomorrow (I leave for my conference Thursday morning) so I am hoping to get at least half way on the front by tomorrow night.

I did finish putting all the squares together into strips so tonight I put together the six strips and turn it into an actual blanket. Then I can wash and block it in it's entirety tomorrow while I'm home.

Posted on April 12, 2004 | Permalink | Co

Monday, April 12, 2004

May I present Sonnet:

I haven't put the buttons on it yet but it is done. My mother in law loves it, although I have some issues with it. Oddly enough the yarn which feels so light and thin when you are knitting with it, is really very heavy. The sweater pulls down quite a bit from the weight. It is longer than it should be. Granted I may have mis-calculated my gauge but I don't think so, since you plug your own numbers in I was pretty careful when I did my swatch. I think it is the weight that stretches it out. It did tighten up when washed. The Bernat Satin washes beautifully. It felt a bit stiff coming out of the washer (gentle cycle of course) so I was concerned but after 45 minutes in the dryer (on low) it is really soft and comfy feeling.

The sleeves also came out too long and too wide (my mother in law is quite small so this may also have to do with her size rather than it's size!). When I had completed the increases the instructions say to continue until the sleeve measures 16 1/2 inches. I was already at 17 3/4 inches when I reached the correct number of stitches. What I did to compensate a bit was to eliminate a few of the decreases for the sleeve cap. This helped, so now it works as a cuffed sleeve. Overall I do love the pattern and am pretty pleased with how it came out. It is after all my first adult sized sweater.

Here is my progress on the blanket squares:

I actually gave up blocking each square, I only did the really small ones. The larger ones were stretching too much. I had to laugh because I realized my math was off, 9 squares long and 6 across is 54 not 56. I guess I'm getting old. I have these 4 strips done, I will do the other 2 tonight (I had forgotten that yesterday was Easter so not much got done since I have dinner at my house). Then I will put them together and wash and block it as a whole.

I was able to get back to the Shapely Tank this morning on the train. I just completed the first decrease. I am hoping I will be able to get most of the front done before I leave for my conference on Thursday.

Wednesday, April 07, 2004

I'm actually making progress see :

That is the first strip of the baby blanket. I am blocking about 9 squares a night and then putting them together the next night. At this rate I should be done by Sunday. I also completed the first sleeve of Sonnet and I am about 1/4 of the way through the second. I'm getting there.

This is my inspiration:

Here is the yarn I bought for it:

I loved the yellow, so I decided to replace the orange with it. My husband says the dress in the original pattern was late afternoon and mine will be early morning (he's cute isn't he). I've been dying to make something with Microspun, it is so so soft. I think it will be perfect.

So here's my plan, I finish Sonnet tonight or Thursday, put it together. Work on the shapely tank during the day, the baby blanket squares at night. I have a conference to go to next week so the Chenille baby towel will go with me and I will be completely monogamous with it . When I return it should be finished and then and only then will I begin the lovely Anouk.

Anyone taking bets on how this is all going to work out...

Monday, April 05, 2004

Grammar God!
You are a GRAMMAR GOD!

If your mission in life is not already to
preserve the English tongue, it should be.
Congratulations and thank you!

How grammatically sound are you?
brought to you by Quizilla

Thanks to Roxi for a great ego boost for a Monday morning. I frankly never would have suspected. Of course just because I can recognize good grammar doesn't mean I actually use it.

So how did I do this weekend? Well I bought yarn for Anouk...

I think I just need to accept the fact that I am a slow knitter. I am nearly finished with one sleeve of Sonnet. Granted if I hadn't fallen asleep Saturday night on the couch while my son watched the Kid's Choice Awards I would probably be finished, but I worked on it as much as I could. Yet it still is taking me more than 2 days to make one sleeve. Not good.

My husband did cut my cardboard squares for me so once I finish the sleeve I am working on I will block some squares. Maybe half, ok, a quarter of them. Then it will be back to the second sleeve.

Friday, April 02, 2004

Spring Knitty Has Bloomed

Leave it to Knitty to help chase away my knitting blahs. I absolutely am dying to finish my projects so I can make this, this, this and of course this!

Alison as always has the eye for styles I love and I do miss the comfort of my maternity clothes (without the shape that accompanied them), so Rosebud is a winner. I love Anouk and I was just looking for the perfect thing to make for a lovely little girl named Isabella who just joined our bookstore family and here it is. Devan is perfect for my toddler. It suits him so well and having just discovered the joy of striping sock yarn I am really dying to use it on something bigger than a sock. Bonbon is going into the Mother's Day baskets I had already decided to make for my friends, along with other pampering stuff.

Can you tell I'm excited? This of course means that finishing weekend must go off without a hitch. Hopefully the Knitty excitement will carry me through.

As far as the Shapely tank goes, I succeeded today in completing the first short row section and the picking up of the short row wraps, so I'm feeling pretty good about myself. I'll try to post a picture tonight when I get home.

Thursday, April 01, 2004

Not much getting done. I've been really tired this week and I've only been reading on the subway to and from work. I did cast on last night for the Shapely Tank. Finally! I did the six rows of garter on the train this morning and I am hoping to start the short rows on the trip home.

I am really having issues with finishing things lately. The sleeves for Sonnet are just sitting on the table next to my favorite chair begging to be worked on. My mother in law is being very patient since she sees the "vest" portion of the sweater everyday (it hangs over the back of my favorite chair...see a trend here?) while she is taking care of my kids. I just don't want to touch it. I did put Stripey away so it cannot lure me with it's Siren Song of Stripes. It just doesn't seem to have made much difference.

I suspect I am just really bored with my projects. Casting on for the tank should help. I am hoping to devote the weekend to finishing, since I have pretty much banned all but the most important housework for awhile after last week's frenzy. I'll check in over the weekend and let you know how it's progressing.