Monday, May 31, 2004

Ladies and gentlemen may I present Anouk:

I'm very happy with the end result. I am really hoping my friend comes to visit the job tomorrow so I can give it to her. I found the cutest buttons for it too:

Oddly enough the shoulder button ended up reversed. The button hole is on the back strap instead of the front, but it works just fine. I'd love to know exactly how I managed it though. You'll also notice that I only have one pocket. My husband was the first one to say one was enough. He felt that two was "too busy". I thought about it while I was finishing up and asked my best friend Maribel's opinion and she agreed. So I went with one pocket and I really like it that way. Next time I make it (and I will as soon as I find another girl baby to make it for) I may do it with 2 pockets, hell I might even get the button hole on the right strap, but I really love it just the way it is..

Friday, May 28, 2004

Anouk is very close to completion. I have to finish the back. Then I will put the straps together and do the collar. I can't deny I am a bit worried about the collar since my last attempt at picking up stitches and creating a collar did not work out the way I expected (that would be my son's hooded sweater, the collar was more of a cowl but he loves it that way so it all worked out). I am keeping my fingers crossed.

I am toying with hosting my first Knit Along for Devan. Any takers out there? I am not sure I have enough of an audience to do it. I know Stephanie from And She Knits Too! is planning on making it but I haven't seen any blogs mentioning it.

I am also really, really tempted to make Charlotte's Web. Am I insane? I've been looking for my first foray into lace and some of the versions of this shawl that I have seen around the blogs have been absolutely stunning. I also just found myself with a $50 amex gift check from a friend which would just about cover the yarn and pattern from Threadbear. Dare I dive in? Or am I just getting a little too cocky because so many lovely people have complimented my Anouk. I'm so confused...

In the meantime here's a quiz! Can't deny I was a little surprised at the outcome on this one, but when I thought about there is truth to it. Thanks to Amy for the link:

Take the quiz: "Which American City Are You?"

Your dark exterior masks a caffeine driven activism. You'll take up a cause and you'll get ugly to advance it.

Wednesday, May 26, 2004

Anouk is chugging along nicely. I seem to have done ok adjusting the pattern for the Microspun. It actually seems a bit big, I'm doing th sixth month size, but when it comes to babies that's what you want. I finished the first side and 1 pocket, I couldn't wait to try the duplicate stitch.

It's looking pretty good:

I finally got the hang of the duplicate stitch by the leaves (of course) it is easier than intarsia, particularly for a small thing like this.

I have mixed feelings about the way the pattern is written. Following it everything is coming out beautifully, but there have been times when I was really unclear as to where I was going. I think it just requires an intuitiveness that I am not used to. That being said I love the design and the ease with which it is working up. I also have to say it attracts a lot of attention when I am KIPing. People love the colors and the look of it. I can't wait to finish. The intended recipient, our former trade book manager, is coming to visit next week with her beautiful new daughter. I'm thrilled that I can give it to her in person.

Tuesday, May 25, 2004

On Saturday a few bloggers decided to meet up and enjoy each other's company. Who came? Well it was Sharon of Knitknacks, Ann of Purling Swine and Mindy of Gidget Casts On. We also shared the day with Sharon's friend Kathy, a novice knitter, and Linda the creator and former owner of Patternworks (which was the first yarn catalog I ever saw!).

We went to KnitNY a combination yarn store/coffee house:

And here are the ladies (you will have to go to their pages to find pictures of me), from left to right, Mindy, Sharon, Kathy, Linda and Ann:

I had a wonderful afternoon. I arrived a little later than I intended but what a fun time. I am not typically this comfortable in a group of "strangers" but I guess that's the point, thanks to blogging we weren't complete strangers. It does seem to make the world a smaller and warmer place to live in.

The group continued it's day with a visit to Downtown Yarns. I unfortunately had to leave because I wanted to catch my best friend Maribel when she got out of work. I haven't seen her since I got back from the Bahamas, since she went to Puerto Rico soon after and we had some catching up to do. I had been hoping she could join our get together but the timing wasn't right. I have also been to Downtown Yarns before and it leaves me feeling like most Manhattan yarn stores, except for Seaport. The selections are beautiful, but the prices make you fell more guilty than you should and therefore remove a great deal of the enjoyment from the purchase.

I had a great afternoon and I'm so glad Sharon got us all together. We should do it more often...

Monday, May 24, 2004

I finally finished the second bootie on Friday as planned. So I was able to cast on for Anouk Saturday morning. Just in time for my get together at KnitNY that afternoon.

Here is where I was by about 10 last night (right after Alias, how are we supposed to wait until January to find out what's in that file!):

The colors are gorgeous together. The picture really doesn't do them justice. It is knitting up beautifully. I really love the look of the Microspun. I am actually well into the bodice now and about an inch away from the neck shaping. I have to tell you I am enjoying this one so much that I don't even want to do any work today, I just want to site at my desk and knit...

How was my get together on Saturday? I had a blast! I'll tell you all about tomorrow, with some pictures...

Friday, May 21, 2004

Of Booties and Hubris

I said that the first bootie took all week. I started the second one Sunday night. I was really happy at how well it was going. I didn't need to refer to pattern, I had it memorized. It was knitting up much faster than before, I suppose because of my familiarity. I decided I was hasty in saying this couldn't be my favorite bootie pattern. If I could finish it in a day or two with no sewing, there was a lot to be said for that.

I was ready to move to the instep by Tuesday morning. That's the homestretch. I was feeling quite proud of myself. Pride goeth before the fall. I pulled out the pattern to confirm my next step and there it was, P 4 rounds K 4 rounds. I had been repeating for 3 rounds. I was very,very disappointed. I came up with a few plans to avoid frogging, but it wasn't worth it. I frogged back down to the first 3 rounds and fixed everything. It's a personal thing now between me and the bootie. I have to make sure it's perfect.

I hearby vow to always, always double check my pattern before working on a second bootie!

This came in the mail yesterday from to cheer me up:

My yarn for Devan. I am very excited. I am going to finish the bootie of the damned tonight, so I can finally start Anouk. I want to bring that to my get together at Knit NY tomorrow with Sharon. Then after Anouk, I will go to work on Devan. Of course I need to get back to work on my Shapely Tank, but once I've actually started Anouk I will feel better about switching between. One for subway knitting and the other for evening TV knitting.

And finally we haven't had a quiz in quite awhile and I loved this one:

You're chocolate. You're the old soul type, people
feel that they have known you their entire
life. Many often open up to you for they view
you as thoughtful and trustworthy. Although
people trust you, you have a hard time trusting
them. You prefer to keep your feelings bottled
up inside, or display them very quietly. It is
alright to open up every once in a while.

Which kind of candy are you?
brought to you by Quizilla

Thanks to Steph for the link.

And by the way Bron had to move, Blogger wasn't being very neighborly, so here is her new home Bron's Blog II. Pay her a visit and bring food...

Check out this article about Knit NY:

A ball of yarn, two needles and a latte

Monday, May 17, 2004

I guess I am just not a small gauge kinda gal. The bootie took me all week. Most booties take me a day each at most. I finished the first one in the car on Sunday (more on where I was going in a minute).

Here is bootie number 1:

I like it, it's cute, but it is not in the running to be my favorite bootie pattern. Once I finish it I will try one of the ones recommended to me by Chari or Natalie, since I still have one more set to make.

I finished my first Critter Knitter blanket late last night. I may drop it off at the Knit Out at Central Park on Sunday. I'm just not sure I'll make it since that is the day we take the kids to visit my mother. It depends on how early we get to the hospital. If I don't get there I will hold on to the blanket awhile longer since I hope to make 2 more. This way I can send them all together.

Where was I going on Sunday? To buy this:

My digital camera wasn't able to charge anymore so I needed a new one. It's a breeze to hook up to the computer and upload the pictures from. I took the bootie picture with it late last night, it's a bit dark but pretty good. I have to play with it more to see what it can do.

My husband thought the urgency was quite funny, since he knew the only reason I was in such a rush to get a new one was because of the blog. What can I say...I couldn't blog without pictures now could I?

Friday, May 14, 2004

The new bootie pattern is going much better. I am using this pattern. I do find the dpns rather cumbersome on such a small item, but they are coming out very nicely. Hopefully I can get my digital camera working again this weekend and I can put up pictures. The picture of the mutant bootie is actually from my scanner. It came out pretty well though.

I am also more than halfway done on my Critter Knitter blanket. I haven't been working on it in the evenings as much as I would like (the booties have been for the subway). I think it will be done tonight. If I do finish, then I will work on the second bootie this weekend, since I hope to finish the first on the train home. Then and only then will I cast on for Anouk. I am hoping that all my math is solid. The yarn cries every time I pick up something else. I really have to dive in on this one. I am toying with making it a size bigger than I planned since that may help if I have figured too small. One of the great things about babies (of which there are many great things) is that they keep growing!

I also did some yarn shopping this morning. Handknitting.Com was having a sale on sock yarn. So I bought some of this in dark grey (#1029) and some of this in the Royal and Gray Denim (#9099). So when it arrives I can make this:

I think this is the cutest sweater and Ian will look so adorable in it! There is absolutely no mother bias in that statement at all, it's just a simple fact ;)

Oh well I have to get back to the Danish Wedding webcast. I love a prince who finds his princess in a bar! Definitely my kind of people....

Thursday, May 13, 2004

Bets in Chicago posted this morning on the Knitlist that she had created a page with all the knitalong buttons she could find. Check it out it's pretty cool...

2004 Knitalongs

Tuesday, May 11, 2004

What the heck is that?

It's supposed to be a bootie. I can't quite figure in what universe though because obviously they have different laws of physics. It is from this pattern. Now obviously I have been undergoing a great deal of stress. These were in fact cast off when I was in the emergency room with my mother last night but I gotta tell ya, I don't get it. The pattern says to sew up the front and back of the bootie but I don't see where a foot would fit in it!

I have started a new bootie from a different pattern on dpns hopefully that will go better. I may make a second one of this pattern so maybe I can discover what went so horribly wrong. I have made a few booties before so I can't see that I screwed up that much. As far as I can tell I followed the pattern line by line exactly.

We'll see.

I want to thank everyone for their kind thoughts. My mother is currently in Calvary Hospital. They run a wonderful Hospice Program and everything is as good as it can be at the moment.

Monday, May 10, 2004

Not About Knitting!

It was an interesting Mother's Day. My mother, who was still working at the end of April, could no longer get out of bed as of yesterday. I gave her morphine and percocet (at separate times) and there was still too much pain. I of course had planned a small party (very informal due to her health). Her sister was coming, my cousin, two of her best friends and my family as well. So I bathed her, dressed her, changed the bed with her still in it and told her screw it we would have the party in her room. I set up chairs and everyone had a great time.

Today I needed to arrange for her to go into the hospital for hospice care. I know she isn't really ready emotionally or mentally but it's not safe for her at home. She lives alone. I am at least a half hour away. I can only come by twice a day. We have no other family and the home hospice care is only 4 hours a day. Enter the HMOs. I spoke to the nurse in charge of the hospice and she said she would try to get her approved. I then received a call from the nurse assigned to the case. She was calling me concerned (thinking I had not been there all weekend) because of her condition. When I explained what I had been doing she said that the head nurse had not been able to get through to the HMO and that her suggestion was to call 911 have them come take her and put her in the hospital. At that point it would force the issue because they aren't allowed to send her home to an unsafe environment. The hospice is right across the street from the hospital and she would be moved there.

So I agreed and then had to explain this to my mother. I think that was one of the hardest things I have ever done, but it is the best thing I am sure. So I am going to leave work soon, pick up some things at her house and meet her at the hospital.

Oh yeah I have my knitting!

Sunday, May 09, 2004

As promised here are the pictures from my Spring Knit Up projects. I didn't include Sonnet because after I put the buttons on it my mother in law whisked it away. So you'll have to use your imagination. Picture the shot I had up plus the buttons I showed you.

Here is the towel:

I added the hood and it came out beautifully at least it was worth all the work.

Here is the blanket:

I apologize this picture was before I weaved in all the ends. I Went to take a picture this morning of it all finished and discovered my digital camera died. I am not happy. I guess I should get myself a new one for Mother's Day!

Happy Mother's Day

Friday, May 07, 2004

I am officially finished with the Spring Knit-Up. Yay!! I finished the towel this morning (ok there are a few ends to be weaved in and the side of the hood to be sewn but that will be finished on the train ride home). I decided that the 36" the pattern called for was really too big. I measured my favorite baby towel of Ian's and it was 30" x 30" so that's what I made it. I also added a hood just because I think they're so cute.

So now I can really start Anouk and work on the Shapely Tank. Although I think I am going to do some booties next week for someone my husband works with. The baby isn't due for a few months but it will be nice to get a head of the game for a change. They're so quick and easy it will be good to get the instant gratification.

I am also going to try to do a critter blanket this weekend. That should also be quick. I would really like to send them a few so I need to get to work.

I will post pictures over the weekend of the blanket and the towel.

Wednesday, May 05, 2004

Today was a very busy and not altogether pleasant day. I had to go get some paperwork dealt with for my mother, power of attorney stuff like that. She has also decided that she is no longer able to work. So I had to go clean out her desk and speak to her supervisor about what she needed from the doctor to keep the sick leave going until it runs out. I was bordering on an emotional wreck for the entire morning.

All of this had to be done in time to get my son out of school and over to the dentist. Amazingly enough I got him to the dentist in time. At this point my day started to look up. We were going to a new dentist (a pediatric dentist to be exact). When we were called the assistant showed us upstairs to the work area, downstairs was the waiting room and play area. Avery went in for his x-rays and I sat down with my knitting to wait. The assistant walked by and said to me, "I have something I need to ask you". Then she answered the phone. Avery came out and went to the hygenist's chair. When the woman got off the phone she turned to me and said, "I am really have problems with my increases, they always make holes in my work". Here I am expecting questions about my insurance or my son's oral history and she wants to talk knitting, how cool is that! I suggested she try knitting in the front and back of the stitch and then pulling it extra tight, since that is my preferred increase method. We talked knitting for awhile, what our favorite LYSs are and how much we enjoy it. She has taught her daughter to knit and Avery made sure she knew he knits too.

I have to say it really made a difficult day much better.

Monday, May 03, 2004

I am really itching to start some new projects. I attended 2 birthday parties on Saturday and then had to do some visiting on Sunday as well as the Costco shopping (so shoot me I like bulk buying!). I of course didn't finish the towel and I discovered this morning that I had 3 hanks of yarn left not 1 which means I have more to do than I thought. The towel is supposed to be 36" and I am at 22". Oh well maybe next weekend.

In the meantime I have joined the Anouk-a-long that Julia is hosting. I haven't gone back to figure out the math on the decreases but I think I may re-do a few swatches and see what happens. There was something odd about the way it was working out so maybe the cruise was screwing me up. I can always hope. Otherwise I will re-work it. It will be the first time I have ever done this but the yarn is too perfect for the pattern for me not to try.

I am dying to start my lap blanket from Weekend Knitting. It's been on the to do list for awhile and while it may not seem to make sense as the weather is getting warmer to want to make a blanket for the couch, my apartment gets very drafty with the air conditioner on. It will definitely be used.

I have also joined Acrylics Anonymous. I am a huge fan of acrylics and I am not ashamed to say it! Thanks to Brooks mentioning it on her blog.