"Properly practiced, knitting soothes the troubled spirit, and it doesn't hurt the untroubled spirit either." ~ Elizabeth Zimmerman

8/29/08

Nephews Wedding

I don't get many questions in my blog comments, but when I do, I try to answer them.

On the entry for the finished Water Nymph socks Kate/Massachusetts asked...

Which bind off technique did you use? I am such a tight knitter that neither of them are loose enough for me unless I modify them. My calf measures about 11 inches - I ended up taking a 28 oz can of tomato sauce and sticking it into the cuff and THEN binding off around the can (sewn b/o that is). sheesh! Fiddly but I have no problems now with the bind off being too tight! I get lots of odd looks, too, when I do the bind off in public. lol

It's a variation on the Russian Bind Off from the WendyKnits blog. Click here for the instructions:


I am off line for a few days. My nephew Jonny and his fiance Ann are getting married in Seattle this weekend, so we are headin' west for some partying.

I took the fur boys to the kennel today. A very plush place, as kennels go. I expect they'll get spoiled so rotten they won't wanna come home. At least, I sure hope that's the way it turns out.

I started a new sock last night so I'd have something small and portable to take on my trip. More details on the next WIP Wednesday.

Gotta finish the packing and the cleaning.

Have a great holiday weekend everybody! (And for those countries who don't celebrate Labor Day--Have a great weekend anyway!)

8/28/08

Red Flame

In order to bring some sanity to my morning, because I was nervous about my doctor appointment, I worked on the Red Flame bead crochet rope yesterday. It calmed me down considerably and I have finished it.


Red Flame

It's about 22 inches long. Here's a detail close up.


I really love the clasp and bead caps. I found them at Bead Creative in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho.

To repeat, I used size 8 DMC perle cotton in a dark red, size 10 steel crochet hook, and size 8 Japanese seed beads in 5 shades of red, matte black, and silver lined light topaz. The pattern can be found here.

~~~~~~~~~~

My doctor appointment went fine. Yes indeed, my hernia needs to be repaired. I'm seeing the surgeon Friday of next week.

I got to have my very first EKG. I needed to have one anyway in preparation for surgery (wanna make sure the ol' ticker can handle it), but it was more like my doctors way of trying to win an arguement.

I really like my doctor, but he has a real hang up about high blood pressure. When I first arrived for my appointment, the nurse took my blood pressure and it was 128 over 80. But when the Doc started talking about the surgery I felt a minor panic attack launch (I have panic attack anxiety disorder, which I keep under control with medication). My heart started pounding, the vision got dizzy, I felt my face flush. He says "Let me take your blood pressure", which was 150 over something I didn't hear. Suddenly he starts talking about high blood pressure medication and I say "But I'm nervous now. I was fine before you said surgery." Some more blah blah blah from him. I argue back. Finally, in a fit of frustration, he says we're doing an EKG (I need one before the surgery anyway). Hey cool! I've never had one of those. I'm all for it.

It says my heart's just fine and healthy. I do not have high blood pressure. Just nerves. He was kind of surprised. A good doctor, but I sure wish he'd get off that high blood pressure craze of his. He was gracious about losing the argument.

This morning I went in for some blood work. First time I've faced a needle and not felt like passing out.

Right now I'm feeling huge relief. I've done it. I've taken the steps toward getting healed. Now I can hardly wait to have it done.

I think I spoke a bit too soon about the moose yesterday. We had another visitor last night. It was a very large female. She ran away quite nicely, but a few minutes later she came back to chew on the flowering cherry. I should have grabbed the paint gun, but I got so mad I just started screaming at her at a decibel level I'm sure they heard over in Montana. She took off and didn't come back. My first thoughts were maybe it was Miss Molly? But she's not afraid of me. I could stand there screaming until the cows come home and it wouldn't phase her in the least.

The furboys are upset with me at the moment. I took their beds and blankets away so I can wash them. We're heading over to Seattle on Saturday morning to attend my nephew Jonny's wedding. The boys are going in the new (to us) kennel while we're away. Sorry boys. Mustn't take dirty beds to the kennel! Get over it!

Have a good day.

8/27/08

WIP Wednesday 8/27/08



This weeks WIP is the bead crochet rope I'm calling Red Flame.


I am SO excited, and pleased, with how it's working up! This just may be my bead crochet entry for next years fair. So far, I've found only 2 stringing mistakes. A bead was missing at one point, so I cut the thread, added the missing bead, and crocheted on. The second one was an extra bead, which I was able to just break out.

I thought I'd share my pattern with y'all. It's actually a slight variation on a pattern on BeadDust, a web site chock full of bead crochet patterns.

Click on this link for the original pattern:
Sehr schwieriges und farbintesives Muster von Silvia

The pattern was created with a freeware program called DB Bead, which I'm finding I adore. For a free program, it's pretty darn useful. Unfortunately, I have a hard time distinguishing between the 5 different shades of red in the printout, so I substituted different colors to make the stringing easier. Here's the result. Feel free to use this any way you want. I have no plans to try and make my riches with it.

Click on the graph for a larger version


Here's the key for the beads I've used:

Black = black matte beads
Yellow = silver lined light topaz
Blue = a/b silver lined pinky red.
Orange = orange lined red
Green = silver lined red
Red = opaque dark red
Purple = silver lined dark burgundy

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

We had a moose sighting last night. Tommy was barking his head off outside, in the little pen I've set up at the bottom of the steps so they can bark, but not chase. I stepped out to see what the fracas was about and there was a large bull moose, complete with hunter-drooling sized rack. He was munching on the dogwood vine. He's shy though. He took one look at me and ran like the wind, so no pics. Those big guys don't like sticking around for pictures, which is probably why they've managed to get so big.

I am surprised, but relieved, that we aren't being bothered by the moose like we were last year. I looked at my posts for last summer, and we're having way less trouble. So far they've only eaten half the dogwood vine, and a branch off one of the flowering cherries. I hardly ever see one. Now, did they move on? Or is there something to all those gunshots I've been hearing all summer? More than likely, it's because, even though we're near the end of August, it's still green in the woods. Our yard is not looking like an oasis in the dry brown desert yet.

Well, I've got a 4 o'clock appointment for the hernia thing. I'm nervous. It's going to be a good thing in the end though. I'd like to go on our trip to Mexico feeling good.

Have a great day.

8/26/08

Well, Now I've Done It

Last October, when I went in for my regular physical, my doctor mentioned I have a hernia, just below the belly button. I was surprised cos it wasn't bothering me. However, I knew in an instant how it happened. I'd carried my Kayak by myself earlier that summer and had quite a tummy ache for a few days afterwards. I just figured I'd strained a muscle.

Anyway, as the summer has progressed the hernia has slowly gotten more and more bothersome, even interfering in my ability to participate in my favorite summer activities, until I'm now to the point that I've been experiencing quite a bit of pain the last few days. Yesterday was the worst!

I've been procrastinating long enough. I just called the doctor for an appointment. I'll be seeing him tomorrow. We are taking the first step toward the surgery I need to fix it.

Now I'm scared. Really scared. Panic attack scared. Surgery scares me silly. I know this is the right thing to do. I will be glad I did it when it's over, just as I know my back surgery was the best thing I could have done for myself even though it was an excruciating experience. But that doesn't seem to be helping me feel any less scared.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The winner of the Socks on Vacation photo contest was announced yesterday afternoon. I didn't win. Bummer! Well, maybe next year.

I do have a BFO to show you. I've participated in a beaded bracelet exchange. Now that the recipient has received her bracelet, I can show you what I made her.


It's a bead crochet caterpillar bracelet. I used size 11 navy blue iris seeds beads, size 8 gold luster drops, and a beaded bead for the clasp.

I am working on the other bead crochet project I started this summer, the flaming rope design? I have about 5 inches done. Ran into a stringing problem. I left out a bead in the pattern. So I'm going to cut the thread and add it on. Other than that, it's working up great! I'm gonna love this one when it's done. I'll take pics and post them tomorrow for WIP Wednesday.

Have a good day.

8/25/08

Water Nymphs

Whew! They're done and out of my hair at last.

The sock hate is gone. I'm falling in love with my new socks. I actually enjoyed the last couple hours of knitting them. That part being fixing the ribbing on the first one. I decided on 2x2 twisted ribbing, instead of the 1x1 I started with. I like how they turned out. They fit me very well and are quite comfortable.




Stitch pattern detail.



Pattern: Summer 2008 Socks by Wendy Johnson

Yarn: HL Miller Cheeky Monkey Sock Yarn in Water Nymph

Needles: Two size 2 Addi Turbo Lace Circulars

Cast On: July 28, 2008
Completed: August 24, 2008

Comments: These are my first toe-up socks. I'm not sure why, but for a long time I've had a sort of prejudice against toe up socks. However, after making these? I'm sold!. I really like the way they're cast on and the construction of the toe, heel, and heel flap. The pattern is well written and easy to follow.

My only complaint is with the stitch pattern. It is very very stretchy and loose because it's a garter stitch lace pattern. The instructions say to knit a size smaller than you would ordinarily, which in principle will work. However, the ribbing will be too tight, so add a few extra stitches on before you knit the ribbing.

I learned something new for the bind off. A regular ribbed bind off is not loose enough for the top edge of a sock cuff. I learned a really stretchy bind off that works great. I did all knit stitches, rather than ribbing, which gave the cuff a sort of slightly scalloped look that I think is really pretty.

All in all, even though they were a bit of a struggle for me to finish, I am lovin' these socks.

~~~~~~~~~~~

Ruth went back to school yesterday. I miss her terribly. The furkids are not missing Lindy though. This is the most relaxed I've seen the four of them since she arrived last May. Chenille is back to laying in my lap while I'm using the computer.

2 things happening today:

1) Voting on the Socks on Vacation photo is now closed. The winner may be announced today. I will be hovering around Ravelry, waiting impatiently and keeping my fingers crossed!

2) I have to go pick up my beaded fair entries this afternoon. I won't get the knitted ones back until the Knitwits meeting next week.

Have a great day.

8/24/08

Vote for Me Please!

First of all, I just want to say Thank You for all the nice compliments on my fair entry results. I so appreciate it.

I just found out that voting for the Socks on Vacation photo is open to everyone. Not just SOS08 members. So, in the interest of self interest, I'm asking for votes for my photo.

Voting instructions:
  1. To view the photos, go to this flickr set. (If, for some reason you cannot follow the link you can also find it by going to summerofsocks2006 and looking for the Socks on Vacation 2008 set.)

  2. Choose the photo that you wish to vote for and note it’s number which can be found in the title of the photo toward the top of the picture.

    Note: My photo is number 4

  3. Send a blank e-mail to summerofsocks at gmail dot com with the subject containing only the number of the photo you want to vote for. Please leave the rest of the e-mail blank.

Of course, if you get there and find a photo you like better than mine, you are free to vote for it instead. But I'm hoping you'll find mine to be the best.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Yesterday, even though it was a Saturday, I found myself all alone for the day. Doug went on a river rapids rafting trip with the guys and gals in his department at work, so he was gone all day. Ruth went to work, her last day there. She heads back to school today.

The thought occurred, as I was knitting away on the Water Nymph socks, that next weekend is Labor Day weekend, which is the weekend of my nephew Jonny's wedding. I have nothing to wear to it, unless you want to count the out fits I've bought to wear to Christmas parties. All black and sparkley just doesn't strike me as a good wedding outfit. I am happy that Jonny has found Ann. I do not want to wear black to their wedding.

So I figured I'd dash into Coeur d'Alene, visit Fashion Bug, buy a new dress (cos I always love their dresses and whatnot), and be home in less than 2 hours to work on the sock. HA!!!!

Who was it that decided in the last couple months that Fashion Bug would no longer be carrying dresses? Who ever it is, they're an IDIOT! I ended up spending the entire day visiting both the CdA Mall and the Spokane Valley Mall trying to find something appropriate that I like. Thank the stars for CJ Banks and Sears. Without them I'd go stark raving mad.

I need a new slip too. The one I have is rather short. I've bought a long skirt. Did you know that stores don't sell slips anymore? No one in CdA or Spokane Valley has slips-of any size. Don't women wear slips any more under their skirts????? I asked one store clerk about it. She said "they're not in fashion anymore". Excuse me? Wearing a slip has nothing to do with what's in fashion. What happened to modesty, and the proper draping of a skirt? I wonder if I have time to pick up some fabric and a pattern and make one? Hmm...

Have I mentioned I hate shopping for clothes for me?

I made good progress on the sock last night. I've got about 2 hours of knitting left and it'll be done. However, I have found a problem with the first sock. The bind off is too tight. I can't even get the sock on. So, after I get sock 2 done, I am going to undo the ribbing of sock 1, add 8 stitches in the round, and reknit it. I had originally decreased 8 stitches after the heel flap so the leg would not be too loose. The stitch pattern in these socks is wider and stretchier than average per stitch. I should have put the 8 stitches back when I switched to ribbing. Ah well. Something new has been learned. Actually, I should have known that, so you could say something has been relearned.

Have a good day.

8/21/08

Fair '08 Results

WOOHOO!

16 entries: One 2nd Place Special Premium Award for knitting, 13 blue ribbons, and 3 red ribbons.

My Pomatomus socks surprised me. I knew they were blue ribbon quality, but this is fantastic!


Blue ribbon on the copper and turquoise Cellini spiral. YES!!!


Blue ribbon on the Tigereye Double Spiral bracelet.


Blue ribbon on the Transparent Pink NettedCabochon necklace.


Blue ribbon on my Bead Crochet necklace with the Yellow Turquoise pendant.


Blue ribbon on the Felt Appliqué Christmas stocking I made for Sweet Ruthie.


Blue ribbon on the Leaf Fringe ornament cover.


Red ribbon on my Happiness Socks-though to be honest I think they were overly generous. (I know when my workmanship isn't up to par to my standards)


Red ribbon on the purple baby socks.


Red ribbon on the Aurora Borealis ornament cover.


Blue ribbon on the Purple Charades.


Blue ribbon on the dinosaur.


Blue ribbon for Edaline the Mermaid.


Blue ribbon for Ferdinand! Hurray!


I also entered 2 bead knitted amulet necklaces from my book projects that both won blue ribbons.

Whoohoo!!!!



I did good!

(I do apologize for the quality of the photos. Especially the ones taken of items in glass cases. I haven't mastered how to do that yet.)

Have a great day.

Sock Hate - I Haz It

With the rain this week has come relief to my eyes. So, I thought I'd do a sock knitting marathon yesterday and make some major progress on the Water Nymph sock. HA! I worked all day on it, between loads of laundry, house cleaning, oh yes, and a bit of gardening. I made most of my progress in the evening, while watching the Olympics. I got the foot done, the gusset, the heel, and the flap. I started on the leg but something wasn't right. The lace stitch pattern wasn't starting on the right row. So I spent about half an hour futzing around trying to figure out how to fudge around the problem when I thought "maybe I should figure out what caused the problem in the first place?" That's when I noticed I'd left out 2 rows of the stitch pattern on the instep, way down at the beginning of the gusset. I think they heard my scream of agony clear over in Montana. A whole day of knitting, wasted!

SOB.......!

This morning I have frogged back to the problem and fixed it, but I'm not a happy camper. I am hating the sock. I want this sock DONE so I can move on to something more fun! I'm thinking if I wanna finish it, I may have to pop on down to the liquor store for a bottle of Yazi. As for my SOS08 goal of getting 2 pair of socks done per month-I have failed. Sigh. Oh well. Better luck next year.

Today I am going to the fair to find out if I've won any ribbons on my entries. I'm taking the camera with me to take pics of said ribbons, as usual. I always take pics of them on display at the fair because of an incident that happened several years ago.

I'd made a machine knit Christmas stocking that won a Grand Champion ribbon. When I went to pick up my entries after the fair, the ribbon was not with my stocking. I asked about it, they insisted I had not won it. Fortunately, I had taken a picture of it on display with the ribbon, so I was able to prove I'd won it, thus getting my prize money. Unfortunately, they had no spare ribbons lying around to replace it. At least I was vindicated, and I have my photo of the ribbon. I wonder how the karma went for the low life that didn't win it and took it home anyway?

I will let y'all know how I did tomorrow.

Have a great day!

8/20/08

WIP Wednesday 8/20/08


I can't believe it's Wednesday already. The week is just flying by.

Let me introduce to you my new friend-in-progress. This is Molly Moose.




Well, technically, it's her nose. But I did say 'friend-in-progress'. If you look over in the sidebar, you'll see I actually started her in the first part of July. That's cos when I brought the pattern home I was so excited I HAD to cast on RIGHT NOW! Once I got that out of my system, I was able to get back to the socks.

I'm using this pattern for Molly: Mortimer Moose, by Mary Martin.


The Summer of Socks KAL ends this month, so I will be getting back to working on Molly soon.

Last year, when I went to the fair to see if I'd won any ribbons, I saw this felted moose. It had won a grand champion, if I remember correctly, and was absolutely adorable. I saw it. I wanted the pattern! There, of course, was no information on the pattern or anything on the entry tag. I didn't even recognize the name of the person who had entered it. I searched the internet, I asked everyone I knew if they knew the pattern. I even asked on Ravelry, but no one knew of such a pattern. I found it last month on one of my visits to my local LYS, Harmony Yarns. (Oh,wow! It has just suddenly hit me why Melody named the shop that. Took me long enough! LOL!)

There's a famous designer who lives in Coeur d'Alene. Her name is Mary Martin. She used to design patterns for yarn companies and magazines way back in the 80's. She's a fun person, chock full of energy, and an extremely talented knitter. She does wonderful knit felted toy patterns. I should have known, when I saw the moose at the fair, that it was her design. Anyway, her new pattern, Mortimer Moose, is not on her web site, but if you contact her I'm sure she'll sell one to you.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

It is raining today. I am enjoying the cool dampness. It got so unbearably hot over the weekend. 101F on Sunday, when we were at Silverwood Theme Park. I didn't get to be in the lazy river as much as I wanted, and my shoulders and back got burned despite the gallons of spf 30 lotion I had on. I did get my Pina Colada though, and I had a good time despite the heat.

In the evening, before heading for home, we stopped in Lindy's for dinner. Lindy's is the restaurant inside the park where Ruth has been working, washing dishes this summer. It's a very nice little restaurant, and the food was good. The manager approached our table while we were eating to tell us how wonderful an employee our daughter Ruth has been and how much he hopes she'll come back next year to work for him. I thought that was really sweet of him. Made me glow with pride. Then, he paid for our meal. I've never had that happen before. It made our day!

One more thing. The voting for the Socks on Vacation photo contest opened yesterday. Soon, I will know if my photo has won or not. Voting is not open to the public, or I'd ask for your help. I can give you the link so you can see the picture though.

My SOV Photo

Please let me know what you think.

Well, my eyes are feeling good now, so I better get that sock done. I'm running out of time.

Have a good day.

8/16/08

Death Fang

We got a pleasant surprise yesterday. A package came in the mail for my daughter Ruth from my sister Liane. It was a hand made dragon she'd designed based on a series of stories my daughter is writing.

I've mentioned it before, but it's been awhile, so I'm gonna take the opportunity to mention it again. One of Ruthie's hobbies is writing. She hopes to be a real paid author of fiction novels some day (she gets this from her mothers side-I'm serious). She has a site on Fiction Press.com where she posts assorted things she's written. It doesn't get much action right now cos she's a college student soon to enter her senior year. Time for writing is at a premium.

Her latest project is 52 Dragons. She is writing a small 52 word story for each week about a dragon, with a goal of 1 per week for a whole year. Thus, 52 Dragons. I think it's an incredibly clever idea. But, then, I'm biased. I'm the proud mother.

One of the dragons is Death Fang. This is what she wrote about him:

"He was the most feared dragon in all the land, but with a name like Death Fang it was kind of expected. He was huge with glossy black scales and a glare that could melt steel. You can imagine the surprise when they found him wearing a pink feather boa and lipstick."

My sister has brought Death Fang to life for my daughter. She is absolutely thrilled!


The happy owner of Death Fang.


Liane, if you are reading this. Thank you. This is the sweetest thing you have ever done for my daughter.

My sister has a web site where she sells custom made dolls and whatnot. Please visit it if you are interested.

Fairy Godmother Creations

~~~~~~~~~~~~~

I've been asked what is wrong with my eyes. Allergies, and sensitivity. I'm allergic to microscopic air particles like dust, mold, and smoke-of which there is plenty in the air in August. Especially the dust and smoke. The smoke comes from forest fires, wild fires, and the burning of blue grass fields. The Coeur d'Alene Indian tribe grows thousands and thousands of acres of blue grass for seed. They burn the fields after the harvest to shock the grass into producing more seed the next year. Though they do their best to only burn when the wind is blowing east, it still manages to make it's way north. There are days when the air is so thick I can't even see the road in front of my house. Not fun when you have asthma either.

I go through this misery every year at this time. I have meds to keep it tolerable and me functioning. Fortunately, it only lasts a few days or so. My eyes are already starting to feel better. I plan on beading and knitting today.

I also am planning on staying inside promoting the relationship I have with the air conditioner, up close and personal. It's supposed to get near 100 degrees. Heat + dust + smoke = chicken butt. That last being me.

I'll be going out in it tomorrow though, which will be a triple digit temperature day. We are going to use the free tickets Ruthie has earned working at Silverwood Theme Park. I'm gonna float the lazy river, also known as Elkhorn Creek, with a nice alcoholic drink in hand, and stay cool while the rest of the bunch throws themselves down water slides and shakes up their lunch on the roller coasters.

Off to find some beads.

Have a great day.

8/15/08

My Eyes Hurt!

My eyelids feel like extra coarse sand paper, and my eyeballs ache enough to cause a headache. Must be August. I did all of about 6 rows of knitting yesterday, and no beading. It hurt too much to focus on anything. I wanna knit! I wanna bead! But, if I rest my eyes for a few days, the pain will go away and I can have fun again.

To want to knit and not be able to drove me crazy last night. I was trying to watch the Olympics with nothing in my hands to keep them busy. Found myself pacing back and forth between the kitchen and the 'hug' (my leather recliner) I got so agitated. So, instead, I drank copious quantities of liquor, and took pictures of Tommy. Tommy LOVES to pose for the camera. I get great indoor pics without the flash, so he was in his element last night. As soon as I picked it up, he hopped up on the couch and did this.


Then he hopped up on the recliner with Dad, but got distracted by movement in the back yard.
I just love it when his ears are up like this. So cute!


Then, he turned his attention to the camera. He's so darn photogenic.


I thought about taking pics of my sock yarn stash too, but decided that was too much work. It's all sitting in the living room right now. Earlier this week I bought some see through plastic containers to store it all in, and transferred all the skeins, hanks, and balls out of the cardboard boxes and plastic bags into their new homes. Then I set them on the floor in front of the tv just so I could look at them for a few days. Every once in awhile I pop a lid off and caress it.


So much color! So much YARN! So much merino softness! So much Opal (the bottom box)! I have over 40 skeins of it. I had no idea. and it's all MINE MINE MINE!!!! Hee hee.........!!

Sweet Hubby made a semi snide comment about me never running out of sock yarn-or something like that. I admit, 3 large containers is a lot of sock yarn, but I could run out of that in just a few years. I told him I could have worse addictions-like heroin or something like that. He agreed sock yarn is better.

Have a good day.

8/14/08

Tommy's Problem

It was a busy day yesterday. It started with what was for me shocking news. I took Tommy to the vet to get his rabies shot only to be told he has a heart murmur. It's a precursor to heart disease. The doc thinks it has to do with his bad teeth. I want a second opinion.

I've been taking Tommy to this clinic ever since he came to live with us. It's the first time I've been told this. The doctor who examined him is new. I'm wondering if she knows what she's doing? I'm going to take him in again for a full exam after Labor Day, when life slows down a bit.

Anyway, I'm feeling rather angry about it today. Because of the desire to breed for a particular look, Italian Greyhounds, as well as most other purebred dogs, are prone to incredibly expensive health problems. Instead of breeding out the natural curl in their tails or a particular slant in the shoulders, how about breeding for better teeth? Stronger legs? Healthy livers? Arrgh!

Tommy napping in the afternoon recently. He was sound asleep. How does he do that? My neck aches just watching him.


I worked on the Caterpillar bracelet yesterday, out on the deck, in the heat. The crocheting is done. Just need to add a clasp. I'm thinking about finding a button, or maybe making a button, and doing a button and loop clasp.

I didn't do much knitting. One round on the sock. Just didn't feel like knitting. Today, though, if I wanna do anything creative, it will have to be knitting. My eyes ache so bad I can hardly focus, even with my glasses on. I have to admit, as much as I love spring and summer, August makes it tough for me to love it. There's a lot of dust and smoke in the air at this time of year, which plays havoc with my allergies and asthma. That, and the woods starts 'dying'. The leaves start turning, and everything else starts getting brown and crunchy. August is the slow death of summer-which just sucks as far as I'm concerned. I intend to enjoy the heat as much as possible. We're less than a month away from frost. Now, where is my inhaler?

Have a great day.

8/13/08

WIP Wednesday 8/13/08


Today's WIPs feature bead crochet. Yesterday I started this little project called a Caterpillar Bracelet. I'm using size 11 seeds, size 8 drops, and size 12 perle cotton for the thread. Been wanting to try this for awhile but I couldn't find my book that has the instructions.


Yesterday afternoon I decided I was gonna look for it until I found it. Took about half an hour. It was amongst the knitting books on the shelf in my studio (yes, I have a room we call the knitting studio. It's where I keep my knitting 'stuff', as well as my knitting machines). It's now where it belongs, on the shelf with the beading books.

I was kind of surprised how easy this technique is. Don't know why. Everything about bead crochet has been easy so far. Anyway, it looks flat, but technically it isn't. It's a typical six round rope. it's all in how you string the beads.

This project I actually started before the last camping trip.


I got it all strung at the campground, then when I started crocheting I discovered I'd read the chart wrong when I was stringing and had to redo it. A pain in the butt too cos it's 4 yards worth of size 8 beads. I started crocheting yesterday-just so I can say I've started the fun part. All of 3 rounds done. LOL!

This is the pattern I'm using. You can find it, and a lot more on the BeadDust web site.


Pierre the Pirate has made some progress-how ever small. I worked on him at the Knitwits meeting last week.


Yesterday I met with Marguerite for lunch. She was wearing her newly finished Summer Spice Gansey sweater. It is a gorgeous knit. Looked great on her too.

I had a great time! We talked about sock knitting, blogging, Ravelry, and weddings, amongst other things. I really enjoy getting together with her when she comes to visit her son. The food was great too.

Today I take Tommy to the vet for a rabies shot. Gotta keep those shots up to date!

Have a great day!

8/12/08

They're All In

Yesterday I hauled the remainder of my fair entries to the fair grounds and entered them accordingly. If you are interested in seeing them, I've posted pics on the Fairalong 08 blog. I have a total of 16 entries. Not bad for a years worth of fun making it all.

Last night I finished the first of my Water Nymph socks.


I guess it's okay. The stitch pattern isn't really a good one for socks. It's really stretchy and likes to twist, so it was kind of hard to block. I'll make the second one, and wear them. But I don't think I'll knit them again after that.

Today I am meeting with Marguerite of the Stitches of Violet blog. She's here visiting her son, so we're going to have lunch together.

Have a good day.

8/11/08

Copper and Turquoise Revisited

(Had to add that last word in the title cos apparently I've used this as a title before.)

Over the weekend I finished my last fair project. It's a necklace done in Cellini Spiral and Tubular Netting stitch. I really love this necklace.




I am definitely stuck in a copper/turquoise/black phase. Can't seem to get enough of it in beading. All the beads used are Japanese seeds. In the spiral I used size 11 matte black and matte gold a/b, size 6 matte turquoise, size 6 medium copper (not metallic, they look almost porcelain), metallic dark copper in sizes 8 and 15, and size 10 metallic dark copper triangles. I embellished the spiral between the size 6 beads with picots made with the size 15 metallic dark copper.



For the netting, I used size 11 metallic dark copper and size 15 turquoise in a 5 bead net.



The clasp is a simple copper toggle.



I take it to be entered today, along with a bunch of other projects I've made over the last year.

I had a nice weekend. On SaturdayI spent the day with the future bride, Sarah. We went to a Mary Kay facial thingamabob. Technically, it was a sales pitch (which I admit I fell for), but it was a lot of fun. I took the opportunity to convince Sarah she needs to use a moisturizer on her face. Her skin gets so dry it flakes, which she complains about. There are solutions to the problem.

After Mary Kay we headed for Spokane Valley where we had lunch at the Red Robin (Banzai Burger-Woo Hoo!), then we went to Davids Bridal and looked at dresses. It was a bit overwhelming. They are just stuffed with dresses in that store. We looked at pretty much all of them. We got an idea of what kind of style she wants to wear at her wedding, which was the goal. She also showed me what she has in mind for the Maid of Honor (her sister) and bridesmaids. Brown. She loves the brown. Most of the styles she's looking at are very simple, elegant, and not at all typical of your bridesmaid type dresses. No puffy poofy ribbony ruffly princess yuck. I'm so proud of her. We have an appointment in September to try things on.

Yesterday I spent the day working on fair stuff, then in the afternoon Sweet Hubby and I went and saw the new Mummy:Tomb of the Dragon Emperor movie with Brendan Frasier. It was great! I loved it. Entertaining, funny, lots of non-stop action, and a good dollop of implausibility. It was right up there with the first two for me.

I only have 2 complaints. 1)I wish we'd got to the theater earlier so we could have sat further back than the second row from the front. It's hard for me to focus my eyes when we're that close to the screen, so most of it was slightly blurry for me.

2)I wish they had Rachel Weisz for Evelyn that they had in the first two movies. Maria Bellow didn't quite make it for me. Her character lacked the depth and continuity of the one in the first two Mummy movies.

Other than that, I was thoroughly entertained. I will be getting the DVD when it comes out.

Have a good day.

8/10/08

Why I Love Ravelry

Stumbled across this Youtube video this morning. It says it all for me.


video

Almost done with the fair entries. I'll finish them up today and enter them tomorrow.

Have a great day.

8/9/08

Fair Stuff 1

I've posted a partial list, with photos, of my knitting fair entries over on the Fairalong '08 blog this morning. I don't have time to do a double post because it took so long for me to figure out how to post and format over there. It's a typepad blog. Way more difficult for me to figure out than Blogger was. I accidentally deleted everything twice! So, in the interest of maintaining my sanity, please pop over there to read it, if you're interested.

Fairalong '08 Entries-Knitting

I've gotta get busy. Today Sarah and I have an appointment with a Mary Kay rep for a facial, or something like that, courtesy of Davids Bridal (the place we're buying her wedding dress). It's been years since I've had a facial. Looking forward to it.

Have a great weekend.

8/8/08

Sock Stash Enhancement

I'm not blogging much this week, but I have a good excuse-not that I need one mind you. I blog when I want to. But this week I've been wanting to but can't because fair time is coming up. I have to submit my entries next week, so I am busily finishing, double checking, gathering, cleaning, and in general getting all my entries ready to go.

My knitting has already been taken care of, through Knitwits. If I enter my knitting through the club, the club will get the money from my winnings, and I get the ribbons-assuming there is any of course. It's a way to donate to the club for next years new yarn. I think it's great to be able to do it that way. I can also enter more than one item per category if I enter this way. I don't know why, but they have this silly rule about only having one item per category. Then they wonder why they don't get very many submissions. Knitwits gets an exception to this rule, though I know not why.

Anyway, if you don't hear from me much over the next few days, you'll know why.

Stash enhancement-yes.

Step One : Admit you have a problem.


I am a sock yarn addict.

I'm on the Fearless Fibers newsletter emailing list. Not a good idea for me. She really is an enabler of sock yarn addicts. In some ways, I'd even call her a pusher. After last weeks email, I had to go look. I had a weak moment, and before I knew it, my Paypal account had been assaulted. I complained to Debbie, but she had no sympathy. She is proud of her enabling skills. Despicable!

I ordered 3 skeins of her 100% Superwash Merino Wool.

I fell in love with this LimeKiwi colorway, but I can assure you, the pics do it no justice. It's much brighter. Almost neon. My daughter Sarah will love it.


As a rule, I'm not a big fan of yellow. I tolerate it most times. Then there's Citrus-probably one of the most beautiful yellows I've seen in yarn. Butter, sunshine, lemons - all come to mind. Again, it's much brighter than this picture shows it.


Then there's this-which is the whole reason for my going off the wagon last week. She did some 'once-in-a-life-time' special colorways, words that I can not stay away from. I can have something no one else could have? Sweet! How could anyone resist this one? Reds, wines, blues, purples......I tell you, the woman is evil, eeeeeeeeevilllll!


Here they are, together, looking just as innocent as we all know they aren't.


I need to get my Water Nymph socks done so I can bite into that yellow. I've already got the pattern picked out.

It is still hotter than Hades out. But it's supposed to start cooling off tonight. The air is getting thick again, with smoke. There are new fires burning in the area cos we had some dry lightening. It amazes me how quickly things dry out around here. Go two or 3 days without rain and it's practically a desert.

It's August. The woods are drying out, and starting to show signs of fall. That means soon my yard will become the Moose/deer smorgasbord. Judging by the condition of the Yellow Twig Dogwood bush this morning, I think dinner is served. My goodness, we won't need to prune it back at all. They're sneaking in at night. Another couple weeks and they won't care about that anymore (being sneaky). I better load the paint gun in preparation.

Have a great day.