Thursday, July 31, 2008

Little Miss Abby

The puppy has a name now (Abby) and her training is coming along nicely! She continues to be a very good girl, even though she's beginning to show a little independent streak!

She slept in her crate all night, with me on my bed (not on the floor) so I'm feeling pretty good today.

Shortly after breakfast we go outside and "walk" the trails of our property. I walk, she runs and romps and bounces off trees and other obstacles. Our walks really burn her excess energy off, and gives me several HOURS to ... knit, read, surf the net. I stay close to the room she is in so I can keep one eye on her, as she will get up, check where I am and drift back off to sleep.

I've managed to get the cuff done on my "Girl's Best Friend Anklets." The sock pattern that caused me a lot of frogging. I will get the other cuff done and then will finish the pair knitting two at a time.

She has forced me to clean up my knitting corner. It sure was nice to find things I thought I'd lost!!!

Nap time is almost over, there are some things I'd like to get done before she awakes (like take a shower), until next time!

Happy Knitting!

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

I'm a new mom!!!!!

Two years ago, my husband's dog passed away from old age. I've tried unsuccessful for him to commit to a new dog, but it just hurt too much when we had to put Reba down.

We met this little girl on the 5th of July; her parents belong to neighbors of BIL. She started to melt DS's, and by Sunday we got her!
I'm off for the next 5 weeks, so we are doing a lot of intense puppy training!
She is the BEST little puppy I've ever had the chance to know!
This week is crate training without her hating the crate. After a pretty rough first night of me sleeping on the floor outside her crate door, she's beginning to realize it is not all bad! I had a little better sleep last night; am hopeful I'll get even more sleep tonight.
Only two accidents in the house (it helps when we're outside all the time!).
DH hates it when I sit home all day and "do nothing" (knitting, reading, not working my tail off doing house chores), so now I have an excuse. "Couldn't do anything, had to watch the puppy!"
Well, she's awake after her morning nap, so we need to go outside for a potty break, and a romp in the grass, and who knows what else our day entails! I might have to take a nap with her after lunch!

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Double Points or Circular?

Here are my first pair of socks that I knit using the Magic Loop (ML) method from a sock blank I dyed myself.
I'm not too sold on ML method, although it was nice to bind off and be done with both socks, at times, it felt like it was taking "forever" so when I was tired of them, I knit the cuff and bound off!
Those socks that caused me to knit late into the night with JOMR last weekend? Well, as you can see in the photo, I haven't gotten too far!
I'm SO glad I decided I'd knit one sock at a time as I knew I'd have to frog while I figured the pattern out. I've been this far before, and then frogged the entire thing when I noticed, way back when, I'd made an error in the lace pattern. I could have just added a stitch, but nope, I had to rip it all out and start over!
I'm tired of fighting the tangled mess the yarn and loops of the cable can become, so a trip to my LYS may be in order to get dpns for this project.
I was thinking I'd be done before I got my sock blank from my swap partner. At the rate I'm going, I'll be lucky to have them done before the snow melts next spring! We will Knit Along (KAL) with our sock blanks using the same pattern as the pink socks above I will need the circular needles this sock is on; I could use another circular set I have, but a trip to my LYS? hmmmm
I wanted to "just knit" last night, no counting stitches, YO's, ssk, TL1, etc., so I pulled out another project on the sticks. LOVE this yarn (Wisdom Yarns - San Diego), love the patterning, not too wild about the colors, BUT, another pair that I won't have to worry about DS taking and stretching to his size 11 feet!
No fighting with a tangle of yarn and cable from the circular needles, just simple knitting from needle to needle!
Oh, the joy of a simple knit stitch!!!
I got my package off for my swap partner and now awaiting my knit blank. As I said above, we will KAL a pair of socks with the two at at time toe up socks pattern, so I have to get the green socks off those needles. Yes, a trip to my LYS will be in order this week for some dpns.

I am coveting the purple sock blank I dyed and have listed in my store. If it doesn't sell soon, it just may find itself on my needles for my 6th pair of socks!

Sunday, July 20, 2008


I have it, I admit it, I've been bitten by the JOMR bug.

I finished my pink/orange/brown/red sock blank socks last night and then wanted to do a couple of rows on the Girl's Best Friend Anklets before I went to bed.

After casting on decided I'd do Just One More Row and go to bed.

I read the first couple rows on the pattern and thought, I'll do JOMR and go to bed. This kept up until Midnight. Those who know me best, know I'm in bed early! No matter what time I go to bed, I am awake by 5 am; sometimes 4 am! At midnight, I decided that was it, even if I wasn't tired, I had to go to bed.

True to form, I awoke early, I was unsuccessful at falling back to sleep, I knew sleep wouldn't return so I got up, grabbed a cup of coffee, sat in my chair, and picked up my knitting (first mistake!).

JOMR, then I'll get up and I'll do? I'll do JOMR and then I figure out what I'll do for the day.

Dryer buzzer went off; JOMR and then I'll get up and tend to the clothes in the dryer (I did two more rows).

I did manage to put it down to type this blog entry. I have so much to do, have lots of items I need to post in my store. That will be a big undertaking as first I have to take pictures of my items, my camera has no more memory, so I have to delete lots of pictures, and then I have to...

... okay, I'll do JOMR and then get going, I promise!

Saturday, July 19, 2008


Funny how having things to do inside that you enjoy can make rainy days enjoyable!

We had a family reunion lunch to attend, and then were going to get some things done outside when we got home.

It's raining now - DH is doing some inside chores and me? Well I'm knitting!

I have just the cuff left of my socks and then I'll post them. I am in a sock blank swap on Ravelry and we will have a KAL (knit along) with the blanks we got from our swap partner. The one thing I don't like about knitting two socks at one time is that when I do a portion I'm unsure of and end up having to rip out, I've got to do it with two socks. For the KAL we will be doing the Two at Once, Toe up, Magic Loop Socks -- Hopefully I won't have to frog as much as I did with this first pair!

In the mean time, I think I'll start Girl's Best Friend Anklets, I'm going to do them one at a time. The pattern says they are a quick knit, so we'll see. They will be my first pair with "lace" this could be a long process!!!!

Now that I've started knitting socks, I've started acquiring different sock yarns and eye-balling different patterns. I am addictied to sock knitting.......

until next time,
Happy Knitting

Sunday, July 13, 2008

"Clear Sailing"

I've reached the part of the pattern where I'm told it is all "clear sailing" until I get to the cuff!

Heel turned, gusset picked up and decreased, it's just leg from here on out! The socks continue to remain the pink I wanted, despite the orange cast of the sock blank! I'm thinking these might be great little socks for wearing under my boots during the winter, so I'm going to knit them as tall as the blank will allow me to go (unless it appears they are going to be thigh-high!).
This week I received the project bag from ZigZagStitches and it is wonderful! I have ordered a bunch of other storage items in the same cute cat pattern!
Her Boxy Bag Pouches are GREAT! My sock blank fits nicely in the bag, I zip the bag almost shut and am able to pull from the blank while knitting. She uses a nylon zipper that has not snagged my yarn, the zipper pull is finished off with a cute little wooden bead!
My next sock will be from two balls/skeins of yarn it will be interesting to learn how the boxy bag handles skeins/balls!

Friday, July 11, 2008

yeah, some days are like that!

There are times when I really wonder why it is I knit!

Maybe I'm just too much of a perfectionist!

Maybe I shouldn't look for errors!

Maybe I should take up a different hobby!


Things were progressing nicely on the toe up socks and I was ready to turn the heels. In counting and placing stitch markers I found an error. If I wasn't such a perfectionist, I'd have just figured out how to fix the error through increase or decrease, but no, I had to do some major frogging, first on only one sock, then on both!

Oh well, these socks will be perfect! Well, until I find another error!!! I guess when I'm tired and I want to do JOMR (just one more row), I should put the knitting down and go to bed because JOMR can mean several hours for me!

Until next time, knit happy!

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Sock Blank Progress

My little socks continue to progress. Need to get on with my day (aka -- put the knitting down), so thought I'd post pictures before I did so.

Okay, no more JOMR, gotta get going with my day!

When Good Pattens go Wrong -- 2

Well, I cannot continue on with my buttery yellow sweater. Too many problems continue to plaque this project!

I have contacted Cascade to see what they will do about the latest issue.

I am hoping they will be willing to do more than the last time I contacted them in regards to the pattern I found had typos and missing information. They responsided more or less with -- "Sorry, not our problem! Go to your LYS."

Saturday, July 5, 2008

My New Love

The blank has a very definite orange cast
to it, the socks are coming out very pink!
Also loving knitting two matching socks at one time!

I am loving this knitting off a sock blank! It takes the JOMR (just one more row) to a new level, especially with this "pink" as I have no clue what color the individual yarns will be as I unravel my sock blank, don't know if I'll ever find any yarn that is orange as it appears on the blank or not!

Went with hubby to the hunting shack and brought my blank with me, a big improvement over a ball rolling around in my bag!

Friday, July 4, 2008

Sock Blanks

I'm in so much trouble! I dabbled in spinning, yeah, it's nice, but not for me. Hand dyeing was my next interest. uh-oh! I'm in BIG trouble now!
While waiting for my sock blanks to arrive, I researched different methods of dying. I learned about using food dyes and had a bunch of Wilton dyes from my days of cake decorating. I learned the Wilton dyes aren't always "pure pigments." A "pure pigment" dye (or paint) means that all little tiny particles of color are all the same. So, in a "pure pigment" pink every single bit of dye/paint is pink. In a dye that isn't pure, it is a mixture of different colors, so the pink, not being pure, has different little bits of color and when dying with non-pure colors the results won't be consistent. Pink was one of the colors that I read time and time again as not being a pure-pigment. I also read that if you just accepted that, using these non-pure pigments could be an adventure. I wanted to do pink and brown, didn't have an extra pot to give up to dying, so I went for it!

Okay, I was ready for an adventure, and when I started using the pink and was getting oranges and reds and pinks, I just went along on the ride to see what journey's end would yield.

My sock blank - dyed, set, rinsed and dried.

Both sides - I love that the two different sides have different tones of "reds" the back side is lighter and more "pink" then the top side. The brown tended to stay more even on both side.

The very tip of one of the socks on my sticks.

I cannot wait to see how this will progress. I have a while before I hit the brown. I did "splash" brown all over the blank after adding the brown stripes.

I must go, I've got to knit "one more row" and then get some things done for our 4th of July! A quiet one here, DS decided to spend it with friends, DH and I decided to have a quiet day at home!

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

When good Patterns go Wrong!

At what point should one just give up? The beautiful buttery yellow sweater continues to drive me nuts! First it was errors on the pattern that I battled and a rude email from Cascade when I asked for errata on the pattern. Now?

Well, the skein I'm working on now gets thin every once and a while. At first I thought I was pulling the yarn so tight I was "removing" the elasticity. Nope, a flaw with the skein. So, now what?

It's the back, do I just hope and pray that I won't have any more issues with the yarn and pattern? Or do I get the sock pattern for this yarn and make 4 pairs of socks? Or a ton of infant caps? Or put it in the deep dark depths of my closet?

I have another inch or so before I bind the back off, and begin work on the front above the arm pits; then the neck and arms.

I am beginning to resent every stitch I make as it could be spent on something else. I had such high hopes for this cute little sweater!

If I put it aside, either "for-ever" or until I'm no longer upset with it, I could spend my knitting time on socks. I ordered sock blanks and am going to give dying it a try; then I HAVE to knit socks out of it!
So frustrating!

Think I'll go knit on my sock until I go to bed.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Safe & Secure Lanyards in my Etsy Store

"Safe & Secure Lanyards"
"Safe & Secure Eye Glass Leashes" too!
I finally made two lanyards that I didn't give away or sell before I could take pictures of them and list them in my store.
These lanyards are the best (not that I'm biased)! They've been in the works for a LONG time. I don't remember where I got my first beaded lanyard, don't recall if I bought it, or made it, but I do know it didn't meet my needs! Several beaded lanyards later I have come up with a design I'm proud to put my name on!
These lanyards are SAFE because I have placed a strong magnetic clasp in it. The lanyard will "break apart" if you get it stuck on something, or it falls into the shredder (as did happen with our secretary!). Or, as can happen, if a student (or coworker) gets angry and tries to strangle you, you are safe! (I work with "at-risk" students, no one's be strangled yet, but you never know with these unstable children!) The magnet shouldn't release with minor snags, so it won't come off as you lean across the desk to reach for something.
The SECURE part comes into play with the beading wire, which is the strongest I could find and will withstand over 40 pounds! Think of the keys you can hang around your neck! Another secure feature is that I have used two crimps on all joins, then covered them with crimp covers!
Other UNIQUE features:
  • The lanyards are a bit longer then other lanyards I've seen -- to make it easier to lock and unlock doors without having to hunch over.
  • The ends are all looped so that should a clasp break, it can easily be replaced without having to restring (and yes, I'll do that should it happen, just send it back and I will fix it - your only cost will be shipping to me).


The same SAFE & SECURE features, but the "normal" length of other eyeglass leashes I've found. ANY of the Safe & Secure Lanyards can be changed to Eye Glass Leashes at no additional cost to my customers!