Saturday, March 29, 2008


I finished the knitting portion of the Lady Eleanor wrap on Friday night. It's a crappy picture because we have no sunlight. All that's left is blocking the piss out of it, adding the crochet edging, and then adding the fringe. I've read that other knitters find adding the fringe a PITA. When I added the fringe to the Nicco Wrap it was annoying; however, it was the beads on the fringe that sent me over the edge on that one. (I still haven't gotten that done yet.)

I'm back to knitting on the Landscape socks now. I wasn't able to translate the pattern I used on the leg portion to the tops of the socks after I picked up the stitches for the heel gusset using the magic loop method. So, it will be plain stockinette. Crappers.

It feels good to finally get something done.

Sam is making chicken enchiladas for dinner tonight. I haven't done much around the house today at all. In fact, I even took a nap. I hope that doesn't jump up and bite me square in the ass tomorrow.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

A Great Day

Yesterday was a fabulous fiber day. I got my March Spunky Eclectic sock yarn in the mail. This yarn is called "Mud Season." The inscription reads:

Every year around this time her in New England we begin what is fondly called "Mud Season" or Spring. The blue skies herald Spring and the melting of snow. The melting of snow means mud, which slowly gives way to new growth.

I like this colourway. I also got the new Spin Off magazine in the mail. Someday, I hope to understand everything they are talking about.

Unfortunately, I got the dreaded email that PJ is closing down Fiber Cottage in April.

Then, I finally got the nerdlies to go to the Wednesday Spinning Group, which is held at an old Indian Mission nearby. Boy, am I glad I went. There were about 8 women there. All working on various fiber crafts. One woman was spinning on a hand spindle she had made from a CD and a crochet hook. She was using raw fleece that was given to her by another member of the KC Fiber Guild. Her spinning was amazing. It was as thin as sewing thread. Another woman was making random skeins of yarn from odds and ends, which is funny because Knitty has an article about it this month. There was another woman that I recognized because she used to work at the same place I do. I had no idea she was a wonderful knitter and a fiber-head. I brought my wheel and sucked it up to spin my rudimentary yarn. But, they were all encouraging. Near the end of the evening another woman showed up. She happens to be a Shepard for a living! There was an article about her in our local newspaper recently. An army base pays her to let her sheep graze for weed control. When she walked in, a teeny little lamb was following her. The lamb was a week old. Apparently, the lamb is a twin and got confused about who her mommy was. So, she started following the woman around instead of her Sheep mommy. I had never held a baby lamb before. The lamb was smaller than the Piddler. I was having such a good time, I lost track of time and got home past my usual bed time. And then I was all excited and couldn't get to sleep right away.

The Shepard Woman will be teaching the wet felting classes I'm taking in April. Maybe I can buy some raw fleece from her. Who knows. I'm definitely going back to the Wednesday Spinning Group.

Another coincidence is that I received a comment on Ravelry on one of my knitting projects from Prudence Mapstone. She is the author of the Freeform knitting and crochet book! I thought that was quite an honor. She also invited me to join a group called the Pink Group. She is asking for people to make pink scrumbles, which she will assemble into garments to sell at an art show in Australia to benefit breast cancer. So, I rounded up all my pink odds ends and started a scrumble for her.

I have tomorrow off. Yippee. I might actually finish the Lady Eleanor wrap. I think I bought way too much yarn for this project. When I finish, I'll have a give away for the rest of the Soy Wool Stripes. It felts nicely. One of you can have some fun with it.

Tonight we are making fish tacos. The weather just sucks here. I think I can talk Sam into making a fire to curl up by.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Scrumbling Toward Ecstasy

A few years ago, I purchased Prudence Mapstone's book on freeform knitting and crochet. The plan, at that time, was to use yarn I bought on Ebay that had been hand spun and hand dyed with natural dyes. I haven't been able to bear using the yarn as it still has the wrappers that the woman made for the yarn that lists the organic items used to dye the yarn in her handwriting. Things like marigolds and such. The bundles of yarn just too pretty to look at.

The other day, while exploring Ravery, I found that there is a scrumbling group. So, I thought it would be fun to at least attempt it, even though I'm not all that good at crochet. It seems to suit me as I'm a random person. And this way, I can use up all the jillions of smidgens of glorious yarn I have tucked away. It's also a way to take a wee break from long-term projects. I also just love the word scrumble.

This is a quiet week at Chez TorKnitoh. Hopefully, I can focus on getting closer to finishing something. One of my co-workers recently admitted to me that it takes her about a week to finish a pair of knitted socks. Boy, did that make me jealous. I think that's the advantage of only knitting one thing at a time. Even though there is a lesson to be learned here, I can't bear to be that monogamous. I'm too scrumbly, I guess.

I think part of the problem I'm having with finishing my current projects is that I'm not happy with the yarn I chose. I opted to use a more affordable yarn for the Lady Eleanor wrap. While it's not all that bad, I don't love it. And even though I spent an arm and a leg on the Noro sock yarn, I hate it. If I hadn't spend so much money on the yarn, I'd set fire to these socks.

Last night, we made sear-roasted cod with horseradish aioli & lemon zest breadcrumbs with a pea salad. It was yummy. Tonight, it's some sort of baked pasta. We'll just make it up as we go along.

I had quite a scare this past week. Dustin has been sick with a sore throat for a bit. Then, his mouth broke out in all kinds of canker sores that he couldn't seem to get rid of. He opted to visit the emergency room on Good Friday. The nurse said that it was more than likely stress that was causing the canker sores. However, he was concerned about HIV and opted to test for that. The test results came back negative. That was a huge relief.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Unfinished Funk

I was surfing the other day when I hopped over to see what Kim was up to and she had a post about being in an in between project funk. I could totally relate. Here I have all of these long-term projects on the needles that seem to be taking for-freaking-ever. That compiled with the endless cloudy days has left me in a funk. Those who know me well, know that if I don't have anything nice to say, I don't say anything at all. So, that's why there's been a long silence.

I do have some good news. I got my passport on Friday. Here they said it would be a couple of months but it turned out to be just a couple of weeks. I also got the time off I requested around my sabbatical approved. So, it's written in stone: I have from May 17 to July 7 off with pay. The countdown begins: 8 weeks to go.

Caitlin sent an email letting me know that she blew out her fuzzy feet slippers. She's got them held together with duct tape. And Danny is so fearful that hers will blow that she is rationing wearing them. So, I quickly made some felted moccasins for her. The last time I made them slippers, I mailed Danny's first and then followed up with Caitlin's. I learned that those two are competitive, so everything has to be equal. So, I'm in the midst of making a pair for Danny to mail off. Silly lesbians.

I also found that Martha Stewart published a felt slipper pattern a while back. So, I've used her pattern to make slippers from recycled felted sweaters from the thrift store rather than trying to make my own pattern. They are fast and fun to make. I set up my sewing machine in my office. It was nice to hear the whir of the machine. Years ago, I used to sew my kids clothes and a bunch of mine. I forgot how much I like to hear the sound of the sewing machine run.

I also signed up for two wet felting classes in April with Cottage Fiber. That should be a total blast.

I had an appointment this week and grabbed the long languishing landscape socks to knit while waiting in the office. After knitting a bit using this fabulous sock yarn, I realized that I hate knitting with the Noro Kureyon sock yarn. It has no give. It twists up on itself making knot after knot. It flies off your fingers as you knit. Frustrating. However, I spent an arm and a leg on this yarn, so I'll be damned if I don't finish these socks.

The diswarsher is installed and Sam and I are back full force in the kitchen. We were supposed to have some friends over for dinner last night. But, they canceled because the wife and the daughter were both sick. I had gone to a LYS and bought some "beginner" style knitting needles. I had big plans to teach the little girl how to knit. Maybe next time. We had planned on making smoked meatloaf, mashed cauliflower, sauteed mushrooms and peas with fresh thyme and garlic. We had all the food, so we made the meal for ourselves anyway. Since I spent the majority of Friday cleaning the house, it's all done. Those Mr. Clean Magic Erasers with Febreze are fabulous.

I think I'll spend today working on the Lady Eleanor Wrap. It's a welcome change to be knitting on larger needles after jacking around with the damn Noro socks.