Sunday, August 26, 2012

Drop City

This was my first time participating in the newly name Ravellenic Games. I joined with high hopes and big ambitions. To accomplish that I entered the following events and projects.
  1. WIP Wrestling - Buttercup
  2. WIP Wrestling - Belted Cardian Jacket
  3. Scarf Hockey, Single Skein Sprint & Synchronized Stash Busting - Drop City

I got everything ready and made sure I wasn't missing any additional supplies such as stitch markers, rulers and the things that generally go in a knitting kit. I started my main project, Drop City, during the Opening Ceremonies and after several froggings and restarts the stage was set. Regardless of how hard I tried it seemed that this was the one time I couldn't knit and watch TV at the same time.

I'm one of those people who really gets into sports with all the hollering, screaming and sometimes not too clean language that goes along with it. I said to myself that since I didn't get much done on day 1 I would make it up on days 2 & 3 because it was the weekend. Wrong! Let's just say that I love the summer OG's, but hated the delayed broadcast and the senseless chatter that was unnecessary and interrupted the events continually which lead to many late nights watching the recaps. I was glad that it was streamed live via cable even though I couldn't watch it at work. It was one of the few times I've been pleased with Time Warner Cable.

As time passed I realized that I wasn't on schedule and would never be and I'd be lucky if I finished the scarf during the OG's. I decided to save them for another time. I did finish the Drop City scarf with one day to spare

Pattern: Drop City by Kitman Figueroa
Yarn: Noro Kureyon Sock
Knitted: 47/27/2012 - 8/11/2012

Knitting the thinner version I weighed the yarn and divided it equally into 2 halves but still had yarn leftover. This is the first design by Kitman Figueroa that I've knit and I found it to be a well-written pattern. I liked the pattern so much that I plan to use it for some of my Christmas presents.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Niagara Falls - The Canadian Side

Someone once asked me how I felt and I replied that I wasn't feeling well at all. My mom overheard this and said that I should always say I'm fine regardless of how I felt. Needless to say I took a very strong objection this and have always been honest about how I'm feeling. The funny thing is that these days she doesn't hesitate to say how she's feeling.

I've said all that to say that this still has not been a good year for me. I've had the type of year where as soon as you get control of one problem another creeps up. My knitting has and still continues to suffer from the inability to work long and consistently on any one project. I joined the Ravellenic games with high hopes of finishing two WIPs and one new project and it looks like I'll finish my new project but neither one of the others.

In June I took a wonderful trip to Niagra Falls,CA. It is one of the most beautiful and cleanest places I've ever been. I admit to walking around most of the time with my mouth hanging open. I've been recommending visting there to everyone I know. I also recommend staying on the Canadian side the views are jaw-dropping and you won't get a good view of Niagara Falls if you can't see them front on. You've be warned that this is a picture heavy post.

Niagara Falls, New York

Horshoe Falls, Niagara Falls, Ontario CA

Words cannot describe the awesome power and beauty of the falls. I was so close to HorseShoe Falls that I could almost reach out and touch the water. To fully understand the falls one needs to not only see them but hear the thundering roar of the water as it goes over the falls and crashes on the rocks below. Take a ride in the Maid of the Mist to the base Horseshoe Falls and feel the power of the hurricane-like winds swirling around you and the force of the water as it hits you. See the boulders that are completely hidden by mist that cloaks most of Horseshoe Falls.

I left inspired with my heart filled with a new found respect for the magnificent planet on which we live. We all should take the time to get away from the hustle and bustle of our industrial society and stop to notice nature's beauty all around us. Sometimes all we have to do is look out our front or back door.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

The Road to Recovery

Spring has sprung around here. Last weekend's rain got rid of the pollen deluge we had going on around here. It was so heavy that when the wind was blowing there was a pollen storm that you could barely see through.

Everything is blooming early. Our gladiolas are up and will bloom in April instead of May. The dogwoods are blooming as are the azaleas. It seems that the rather warm winter has aided the profusion of blooms.

I have been working on my weekly and monthly goals. I've found that setting goals and having a plan to do them helps me tremendously. Most of the items I've completed have been the smaller knits such as hats and socks. A lot of the knitting and time has gone into working on the Master Knitter Level II program. I seem to be more focused finally and if all continues as planned I'd like to submit it in June.

Working this program is a great way to learn knew things. The first swatches have you demonstrate your knowledge of seaming 3 different knit fabrics and I am failing miserably at seaming reverse stockinette. The upside is that once I get it down pat I can put together my Noro vest that I started in January. I've also been sharing my knowledge with my knitting guild, the Palmetto Purlers, in our monthly programs. These are just a few of the 20+ swatches required. All of the seaming techniques require 2 swatches.

And then there's March Madness. I've been watching basketball almost non-stop. I watch both men's and women's games so it's safe to say that there have been some long nights around here. I love it when it gets down to the elite eight because most of those games are during regular viewing hours. Some of the games have been very exciting and others have been blowouts. My only favorite is Baylor women.

In other news, I had problems for month with my left leg below the knee and finally found out after almost a year of pain that I have patellar tendonitis. It is now much better but I took a bad fall a few weeks ago and after severe continued pain an MRI revealed that I had a tear in the left tendon attached to my pubic bone. I found this out Friday morning and to make matters worse I also developed pain and clicking in my left thumb and found out that afternoon that I have trigger finger. This has been a rough 3 months and being unable to exercise for such an extended period has resulted in my gaining back all the weight I had lost. I can't wait to get back into the gym and get moving again.

There has been a lot going on around here but things are finally looking up so I'm going to keep looking on the sunny side. I have some finished knits that I need to post but since I still havent' photographed them I'll save that for another day. Happy Knitting and enjoy this great spring weather!

Wednesday, February 01, 2012

Setting Goals

Sometimes the time really does fly by. I intended to start the year off by posting more often and have already failed miserably.

At first I was distracted by the Kindle Fire I got the end of November and there was far too much game playing and movie watching and not enough knitting, beading or any other crafty diversion. I seem to have adjusted to it as I no longer spend hours at a time on it.

In an effort to get more knitting done I started prioritizing my projects and setting goals. This is how January started...

January Goals Week 1:

1.Finish Mermaid
2.Finish a pair of socks from Drip Candles, Dizzy or generic toe-up
3.Cast on a sweater for me
4.Finish Fugue
5.Knit Bosc hat
6.Design a pair of men’s socks

and this is how it ended.

January Goals Week 5:

1.Finish Mermaid - 1/16 need to do right collar side.2.Finish a pair of socks from Drip Candles, Dizzy or Opal Tiger socks 1/10 - 1st foot done, 1/3 of leg started, 1/27 - 1 sock finished, cast on second sock3.Cast on Knit a sweater for me - Belted Cardigan Vest 1/10 - half of back done, 1/19 - back done, left front started, 1/20 - left front finished, 1/21 - right front cast on, 1/26 right front finished, 1/30 - blocked sweater.
4.Finish Fugue
5.Knit Bosc hat - Finished 1/23
6.Design a pair of men’s socks - Picked out stitch pattern 1/4. 1/30 - Ordered Cascade Heritage Silk Vandyke Brown from Jimmy Beans Wool. Will swatch this weekend.

My original plan was to knit my brother's sock from stash yarn since he wanted a pair of gray socks. He changed his mind and decided he'd rather have brown socks to go with his new boots. He's so knitworthy that I had to oblige him. I'm making these extra special by designing them myself.

The sweater I cast on for myself is the Belted Cardigan Vest from Knit Noro. I'm knitting this with Silk Garden from the stash that was purchased during one of the Hook N Needles sales. This year I'm making the same committment to knit from stash as last year.

I was picking up the sleeve bands when I admitted to myself that I didn't like the short-rowed shoulders and three-needle bind off and ripped it all out. There's no point in finishing something when you know good and well that you won't like the end result. I'm going to try and have this finished by tomorrow night so that I can wear it to the Knit-Inn in Greenville this weekend.

I've already created by list of goals for February but my main goal is to knit a lot more than I did last year. I'm focusing on not only using the yarn I have stashed, but also the books and patterns that are in my library. I would also like to design a few items using the stitch dictionaries I currently own.

This year is about setting goals and achieving them. Pushing myself beyond my comfort zone and sharing my talents aand gifts with others. I'm pushing myself to become healthier and stronger in 2012.

Saturday, December 31, 2011

Out with the Old and in with the New

As the year comes to a close I think about all that happened or didn't happen this year. I've felt more close to my family than I have in a long time. Yes, some of them still get on my nerves and we disagree from time to time but there is no doubt in my mind that I love them and they love me.

I didn't succeed at not buying yarn but I didn't purchase nearly as much as I normally do and neither did my mom. This year saw a drastic decrease in the number of items knitted mainly due to health issues and in November the arrival of a new gadget... my Kindle Fire.

I've loaded a bunch of patterns and no longer will be carrying around paper patterns unless absolutely necessary. I've spent most of the time since it arrived on November 28th watching movies, playing games and reading instead of knitting like I should have.

I completed only 10 items this year. When I looked at them on Ravelry yesterday I was surprised. I can't recall a recent year when I've knitted a lesser amount of items. I plan to do much better in the coming year. I'm still planning to knit as much from stash as possible but I also plan to limit my purchase of books, magazines and patterns. I have a very large stash of those also so I need to use them.

I joined a gym in November and up until recently was working out regularly. I'm having issues with my knees again and hope to get that all sorted out the first of January. I've seen changes and I'm really anxious to get back to working out. I've also had problems controlling my blood sugars and I know that getting in shape and getting some of this weight off will go a long way to helping with that issue.

As part of getting back on track I also plan to be more frugal and evaluate the purchases I make. Even though I bought relatively little yarn and had a lot of other purchases such as beading materials and clothing. I really would like to get to the point where I'm purchasing more out of need than want.

Well that's it. A wrap up of how I plan to spend the new year so I'll end with ...

Happy New Year and God Bless!!!

Tuesday, November 01, 2011

A Brief Interlude

After a few error laden rows, I decided it was time to take a break from Mermaid and cast-on with some of the Regia Unicolor I recently purchased.



This is Dizzy a free pattern on Ravelry.

I'm not sure who these will fit but they are intended for my mother. I making my first pair of knee-highs! She's always cold so these should fit the bill. I bought the unicolor with colorwork in mind so I've been spending a lot of time looking at patterns for this type of knitting. I'd like to make hats, mittens and/or gloves and socks using this technique. I'm doing these as a prelude to knitting a sweater using the stash of Kauni Effektgarn I purchased a couple of years ago.

The nephews, Jaylon and Isaiah, spent the weekend with us. At the time I asked their parents if they could spend the night I had no idea I would end up with sick children. Needless to say, I ended up with a respiratory infection compounded by asthma. Thank goodness for Z-Packs. I feel tons better compared to yesterday when I saw the doctor and have told their parents not to send their sick kids to our house. I'm home until Thursday and hope to really feel like myself by then.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Snapdragon Tam


Pattern: Snapdragon Tam by Ysolda
Yarn: Madelinetosh tosh DK Candlewick
Needles: 4 US & 6 US
Knitted: September 11, 2011 - September 18, 2011

Perfect! This is the only way to describe this pattern. The only change I made was to knit the band on size a size 4 instead of a size 6. The hat is gorgeous and the Madelinetosh was a dream to work with. I will use this yarn again.