Monday, November 27, 2006

Thanksgiving in color.

This post barely happened. My camera's out of batteries and I think my rechargable batteries are too old to hold a good charge. Anyway, I forced the camera to stay awake for the minute required to download my pics. So here it goes:

First there was the sunset that welcomed me home. So lovely:

Then, there were the silly errands we had to run on Friday:

And this is how the cats get their drink on at our house:

Oh, and knitting... there's a small story to go along with my Thanksgiving knitting. I started this pair of Falling Leaves socks the week before Thanksgiving:

As I was getting to the heal, I realized that I would need more of the purple yarn. I was SURE that the purple was Jaeger Matchmaker. So I stopped at my local yarn store to pick up more, and to my surprise, the purple shade of Jaeger did not match the purple in my socks. I was so confused that I asked the super nice lady that works there for help (I say "super nice" so that she's not confused with the super grouchy owner of the store). Together we looked through the Jaeger samples, but found nothing that matched the purple yarn I have. Now I'm stumped as to where the yarn came from and what it is. Let the lesson from this story be: SAVE YOUR LABELS UNTIL THE PROJECT'S OVER. So, I'll finish the socks and keep them for myself, but the final length may end just above my ankle.

The purple ones were to be an x-mas present, but alas, since there was no more purple to be found, I bought more sock yarn and started a second pair over break:

I'm in love with the new color scheme and am even more excited to give them as a gift!

The new yarn is Mountain Colors - it's hand-painted yarn from Montana. The colorway is Red Tail Hawk, and it's just perfect for "falling leaves".

Creative food tip of the day: spread crackers with creamy chevre and homemade cranberry sauce. It's a great little snack.

Saturday, November 25, 2006

Homework Break

I'm still on vacation in PA. yay! But I'm doing homework - no yay. So, for this little homework break, all I can do is talk about what I'm working on because I can't find my camera cable (I think that I never brought it with me).

Anyway, I have a GREAT pair of falling leaves socks on my needles. The pattern is from Knitty. They're another Christmas present. I'm using a new yarn from Montana (I'll tell you the name when I post a picture), and I love it. The colors are deep reds, oranges, and browns. Perfect colors for falling leaves. To add some contrast, I'm doing the toe and heal in green. Writing about them makes me want to put down my homework and start knitting! but... I won't.

Over the holiday I also made some delicious homemade ice cream - one batch of cinnamon and one batch of peach. yum. I have a fun holiday food tip - add eggnog to your coffee. It's super tastey. And if you're not into eggnog, then add rum to your apple cider. Either way, you win.

And since I'm not a fan of posts without pictures, go plant some pansies in a kettle:

Pansies are great fall/early spring flowers. If your winters aren't too cold, then the flowers you plant in the fall will pop back up again in the spring! These were some that I had planted last fall and they looked great in this old cast iron kettle.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Sunday, November 19, 2006

friends and presents

So, Thursday was a great night. Learning/teaching to knit socks with some rum, cider, and eggnog was hillarious. I think some people got the hang of it!

Minona and Steph are foresters with knitting skills... and models too:-D

I didn't get much knitting done Thursday night, but had a great time hanging out with the knitters!

To make up for the lack of Thursday knitting, I made a lot of progress on some Christmas presents since then. I'm working on a scarf from Alternits for one sister and Argyle slippers from Weekend Knitting for another.

I'm making a lot of adjustments to the slipper pattern (mainly having to adjust everything because I'm using a different size yarn), so I hope it goes well.

I've been working on this scarf for about a year. It's a great easy pattern to work on while watching a movie, but I keep picking it up and putting it down because scarves can never hold my attention. The length is so deceiving, just when I think it's long enough, I try it on and realize it's about HALF THE SIZE it should be.

As I finish presents, I'm trying to think of some creative ways to wrap them... pictures of the wrapped gifts soon. I have so many great pictures that I'd really like to make some crafty cards for the holidays too...

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Excited Anticipation!

I have so much grading to do tonight that knitting is not in the picture, but that's ok because --- Tomorrow is knitting night at my place and I'm going to do a little "sock workshop" for everyone! No one knows how to knit socks and they are all excited to learn, so I'm going to help everyone make one of the mini socks pictured in previous posts. I think it'll be a great way to show everyone the basics of toe-up sock knitting and in the process they'll make a cute ornament!

While I'm at school tomorrow I might try to put together a sock worksheet!

It's so much fun having a group of poeple to knit with, particularly since everyone is working on different projects!

And a picture of sheep:

Good night!

oh and I've been thinking - I'm hoping that in my knitting future will be a larger garmet - possibly Knit and Tonic's Somewhat Cowl, or the Enid Cardigan from Interweave Knits Winter 06 mag... we will see!

Monday, November 13, 2006

as promised!

The Shining Star hat!

first stitch - approximately 12 pm
last stitch - approximately 12:35 am

Yarn - Elsebeth Lavold, angora - bronzed green color (i lost the label for the blue color)

and between stitches I graded 30 papers and quizes, tried to go to the gym (it was closed), ate, ate again, did one sun salutation.

This is a picture of the top of the "baby" version I knit yesterday - just to show you the great view all tall people will get looking down on my head.

This picture is thrown in for your amusement - doesn't it look like I have no neck... or that I glued my head onto another picture?! hehe

I just really wanted to complete a fun project for myself. And the weather took a turn for the cooler side today which really motivated me to get this done so that it could be worn to school tomorrow!

I'm happy with it, although I'm wondering whether ending it with a row of a contrasting color was a good idea. Any thoughts?

*warning - as mentioned in my last post, for some reason, this hat knits big. at least for me. Again I used the kneedles called for (US 7), and the propper yarn, and I knit the "Toddler" size. (I think there are 5 different sizes from baby to large adult) Anyway, this one turned out perfect for me, but I have to do some serious adjusting to make the baby versions.

Ok, now that knitting something fun for me has been accomplished, I have to be a serious student this week. Which means minimal knitting Mon-Wed, serious knitting with friends on Thursday, and then we'll see what next weekend brings.

Next Project - the leather-bottomed slippers from Weekend Knitting!

Sunday, November 12, 2006

seeing stars.

Yesterday I worked on the Kate Gilbert Shining Star hat pattern. It's a great pattern for a hat and I'm really excited to have one for these mild early days of winter.

It's also a perfect pattern for a baby cap. Following her directions for yarn and needle size, I set out yesterday to make a baby hat, and all was not well. The baby hat came out 4 inches larger in diameter than it was supposed to. I'm not a loose knitter, so I don't know what the problem was. I'm going to try it again with smaller needles...

As for a hat for me, I'm almost done! If I put my mind to it, I may finish tonight and have a happy picture for you tomorrow!

Friday, November 10, 2006

knitting along and alone...

Last night was a very productive knitting night while I watched Grey's Anatomy. Unfortunately, it was spent alone. Usually I get together with a group of friends to knit and watch Grey's. Last night, my car was stuck in the driveway behind my roommate's car - and neither he nor his key were home, so I couldn't get out!

Since I was home around all of my knitting supplies, I got quite a bit done:

1. Finished two pairs of socks that are Christmas presents:

These are the Diamente Socks from Knitty. This pattern was easy enough to do without being boring.

These aren't from a pattern, I just made them up as I went along. The one thing I might change in the future would be to have the cable go up the full length of the sock (right now it's only on the foot). Although, the person receiving these socks prefers simple designs, so I think these will work just fine!

2. Worked on some baby "workman's" socks:

How big are baby's feet?! I don't have a clue, but these socks are so quick and easy to make that I'll just have to make a few pair in different sizes. The smaller sock is almost definitely too small for a baby, but will make a great christmas ornament for the tree. The larger sock to the right seems just about perfect for a small foot, plus it's super stretchy, so it should conform to a variety of lengths and widths (I hope).

After finishing off the two pairs of socks, I only have one project in progress - a scarf which is another christmas present. This means that it's time to start something new today!! Maybe something for myself... maybe a cashmere star hat?

Yummy food tip of the day: This morning I ate my cereal with blueberries and POMEGRANET SEEDS! try it.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

oh baby, baby!

First - I found out that two of my friends are expecting babies! Both due in May. I'm so excited and happy for both of them. And this means that I'll have plenty of baby projects (caps, blankets, and sweaters, oh my.) - after I finish with the Christmas presents!

I just finished a HUGE stat midterm, which I've been working on for the past week. So, I haven't made much progress on any of the projects I'm working on, but I did participate in a craft fair on Sunday!

...which was a total DUD. There were plenty of crafters, but no customers. The few that were there were not interested in buying. While the craft fair itself was a dud, I had a great time preparing for it and hanging out with my mom, sister, and best bud Nikki (one of the expectant mothers!). Our table was full of Nik's crocheted goodies, my sister's jewelry, and my knitted bags and stockings. Check out the cute crocheted baby kimonos in the picture. Nikki also had a great collection of scarves, hats, and bags.... now all she needs is her own blog:-).

I was excited to finish a pile of cosmetic bags in time for the show and am going to post a few on Etsy. I'd like to work on adding linings to some of the bags, but that may be a project for the spring.

The weather was beautiful this weekend and I took a few more "winter foliage" pics...

Now I just have to catch up on school work and enjoy a few free hours of knitting before the next stat exam!

ps. we know that our table looks a bit busy, but what can you do when you have so much great stuff and a tiny table?!

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

SOCKS and socks

I've been working on BIG socks and little SOCKS. The big socks are going to be a Christmas present, so I still have some time to get those done. The little socks are mini Christmas stockings. I think I'll use some as packaging Christmas presents, and I'm going to sell some at the Craft Fair this weekend!

The purple socks are a Knitty pattern (although I can't remember which one right now!). The mini stockings are my own toe-up pattern. The mini stockings are super simple and super fast!

Just 12 more months until the next Socktoberfest!... how many pairs of socks will I knit until then?

so much life going on!

I have so many fun things going on and I want to write an entry about each, but I may just have to do the condenced version until I have more time!

First - I had a great trip to England! We stayed in the Peak District right outside of Sheffield. For the first few days we were in a "self catering" cottage surrounded by beautiful landscapes and fields upon fields of sheep. I was in wool heaven. With that many sheep, I thought it'd be easy to find some local, handspun wool. Unfortunately there was none to be found - they raise the sheep for the meat, not the wool. We had plenty of deliscious meals of lamb... lamb chops, lamb shank.... yum yum.

The wedding was beautiful! It took place in these huge teepee*. One half of the tent had a fireplace surrounded by benches and tables, the other half had the dancefloor and stage. It was an amazing wedding and if I get a chance, I'll give more of the fun details later.

Finally - Happy Halloween! We had a fun bowling and costume party last night at the Milky Way:

It's also the end of Socktoberfest! I have some fun sock projects I've been working on and I'll try to get a few pics up soon.

Now on to November and more fun, deliscious, harvest-y foods!