Sunday, June 29, 2008

More Finished Objects!

Well, I am on a roll now! I finished this baby blanket Friday night while watching "Knocked Up" that I got from Netflix. I thought the movie was only OK (too much swearing for me), but I think the blanket came out really nice. Towards the end it got a little boring to knit, but it gave me some practice in knitting without looking at what I'm doing. I actually started to get the hang of it - I could watch some good portions of the movie while knitting & not looking at my needles. The pattern is from the book "Natural Knits for Babies and Moms" by Louisa Harding and is just called "Blanket and Hat". I knitted it in Lion Brand Cotton Ease, and I like the feel of the finished blanket - it's pretty soft.

And yes - I made the hat too! I don't think I've ever knitted something in one night before, but I made this last night (Saturday night) while watching TV. I was watching "The Next Food Network Star" on On Demand, and then I watched "Ace of Cakes" on regular TV. Love both those shows. Anyway, here's the hat on my daughter's Build-a-Bear:

I still like the yarn, although I may not be great at seaming up hats! This hat is knit flat and then seamed at the end, not knit in the round, and I'm not sure the baby will like laying on the seam. I tried to make it small, but I can feel it when I put my hand it there. This hat could probably easily be done in the round, but it is too hot here to think about it! Yes, it is over 90 degrees near Seattle, and I am sweltering.

One of the other things I did this weekend was get some plants for my balcony. The picture below only shows one part of the balcony, but as you can see I am trying my hand again at growing a tomato (the plant in the corner). The other blue pot has lettuce and carrot seeds in it, and the rest of my pots are all flowers. A little summer color!

Now I am off to start a pair of socks, the Horcrux socks I mentioned in an earlier post. Mostly I will just be trying to stay cool!

Thursday, June 26, 2008

A Finished Object & Stash Enhancement

Whew! It only took six months, but I finally finished my "ice cream sherbet" socks as I am calling them. I started them in December while visiting my Dad for Christmas, and it's almost July 4th now. However, I did have to stop to knit a couple of baby blankets in between, so I guess it's not that bad. I think they came out pretty good! I have a feeling my daughter is going to steal them, though. I knitted these on size zero needles, and they might be just a tad small for me. They look a little better on her feet than mine :} For my next socks, I am going to try size one needless to see how that goes.

In stash enhancement news, I bought some yarn from Little Knits (yes, I finally figured out how to do the hyperlink thing). They are having a great sale on Opal, plus I had to try out Plymouth Yarn Co. "Happy Feet" yarn. I've never tried it, or even heard much about it, but I loved the colors so I'm going to give it a try. It's 90% superwash merino wool and 10% nylon. I don't know how that holds up compared to the Opal content of 75% superwash wool & 25% polyamid.
Don't you just love that beautiful blue Opal? I'd give you more specifics but I can barely read the ball band! But I've always wanted to try a pair of solid-colored socks, and thought the blue would be nice. I am like a moth to a flame with the variegated and self-striping yarns, but I also want to try out some nice textured pattern socks, which don't show up so well in the more colorful yarns.

In other knitting news, I am almost done with the boy's baby blanket I started a few weeks ago. Amazingly enough, the baby isn't due until October. I don't think I've ever been this far ahead! I think now that I've finished the ice cream sherbet socks, I'll finish the baby blanket, and then start another pair of socks. I've already got the pattern & yarn picked out. And it's not even one
of the yarns I just bought!! I have to admit - I actually started them once already but had to rip them out. I traveled down to the San Francisco Bay Area last weekend, and since I was almost done with the ice cream socks I didn't want to be in danger of running out of knitting. So I started the Horcrux Socks which can be found on this blog. It's got a slight lace pattern up the leg, and I did part of it perfectly but then I messed up and got so mad I ripped it all out. So they're up next.

Speaking of San Francisco, I stayed with my brother in his condo which is right near AT&T park. How fun was that? He can walk to EVERYTHING. He has a Safeway, Starbucks, and Borders Books on the ground floor of his condo building. I'd never have to leave. The weather was a nightmare - I got on the plane in Seattle where they told us the temperature in San Jose (the airport I flew into) was 103! 103!! The entire plane gasped. It was at least 90 in SF, so after my brother picked me up we drove over to Pacifica, a city right on the coast where I used to live, and had dinner there. I snapped this picture as we watched the sun go down:

It almost makes me wish I still lived there. Even along the coast it was probably 80 degrees, and no breeze which was really unusual. It didn't cool down until Sunday - when of course I left to come home. There is a lot I don't miss about the Bay Area, but I really, really miss living close to the ocean. This summer my daughter and I will be traveling over to Ocean Shores on the Washington to coast to see what the Washington beaches are like. I've lived here 13 years and never gone over there! Time to explore!

Saturday, June 07, 2008

Do You See What I See?

I was happily knitting away on my sock the other day, when I noticed this:
Do you see it? It might be hard to see in the picture, but yes, I dropped a stitch right about where I started the heel flap, and it has pulled back several rows. I have decided not to rip back & start over. I just can't deal with it on small needles like this - I don't think I would ever get the stitches picked back up properly. I think I am going to take a crochet hook and try and pick up the stitches back down to the start of the heel flap, then push it through to the other side and sew it down. Hopefully I will do it well enough that it doesn't unravel later on during washing! How totally annoying.

I have taken to knitting on my socks while I wait for my daughter during choir practice (an hour-and-half wait twice a week). I have also started listening to some podcasts while I knit. It makes the time go pretty fast! I knit on the baby blanket while I am at home at night, since it is bigger and less portable. But choir is over in another week, so I'll have to see what I work out then! I'd better get this sock done before the summer is over, that's for sure.

In other news, my daughter is off at a friend's bat-mitzvah party right now. Unfortunately the ceremony itself was this morning, and we had another appointment that conflicted. But the "after party" is going on now, and she is there as I write. She got all dressed up for the occasion - a cute sun dress, and shoes that cost thee times the amount of the dress! We found the dress on sale at JC Penny at a very reasonable price. But oh the shoes, the shoes....we couldn't find anything acceptable at JC Penny, Macy's, or Sketchers. So we went to Nordstrom who was having their half-yearly sale for women & kids. What a zoo. But we found shoes. Not on sale, but the perfect shoes. Shoes that make her taller than her mom. Here is a picture of the whole outfit:
And here are the well-loved shoes. I find amusing the contrast between the heels and the other two pairs of those in the picture, which are the shoes she wears to school pretty much every day.
What's really funny is that she will make her entrance with the "fancy" shoes, but she took a pair of flip-flops to wear when the dancing starts! Hilarious! I hope she has fun. I am about to either sit down and knit or play the Sims. I think the Sims is winning.