Saturday, December 27, 2008

On the Sticks

I am "home" now, in the frozen city called Eagle River, Alaska. Though I've managed to come "home" every couple years or so, I rarely make it "home" for the holidays. I have my own "family" and to go "home" would mean that I'd leave one family, one home, for another. This is the first time in 11 years I've been "home" during this time of the year.

It's a bitter sweet time; I'm here to help my mom with her rehab from open heart surgery, as well as helping her with all that needs to be done when your spouse passes away. I've learned more about Social Security, Wills, Estates, etc. in the past week than I ever though was possible to learn in 2 short days while Mom and I got various things done, and I learned what I needed to know to help her.

There has been a lot of hurry up and wait, as busy as we have been, there has been time to knit.

Airplane Socks

I managed to get through security with my knitting needles, sat in the "middle row," with two people who could care less that I had pointy objects on the plane! I was able to just about complete on sock during the layover and flight. I somehow managed to purl while doing the kitchener stitch, so I'm trying to fix it (okay, so that sock isn't totally completed!)

Diann's Sock

I told Mom I'd knit a pair of socks my her SIL, my step-aunt. The dear sweet lady who dropped everything to come to Alaska to help out. She was willing to stay indefinitely! She wears the same shoe size, so it's pretty easy to knit her custom sized socks.

So, as I type this, I have managed to complete two socks, not a pair, but two socks, none the less (yeah, I know, the Air Plane socks really can't be counted as complete.....).

Liz's Socks

My niece wanted me to knit socks too, and as she doesn't have the same size feet as I do, as well as some issues with socks not fitting correctly, I'll need to knit her socks so that I can try them on her as I go. So, I started a pair of two-at-a-time-toe-up socks for her.

If I manage to meet my goals and get my niece and step-aunt's socks done, I will be ahead of schedule with my "year of socks." Upon completion of the three pairs in progress, that will bring my total to 11 pairs of socks since May. I also have a pair that I started at home that came with me in my suit case, just in case I end up with extra time - they've been put on hold while I knit socks for my family members.

Moosewood yarn, dyed in Anchorage Alaska

I picked up some sock yarn that is hand-dyed in Anchorage, Alaska. The colorway is called Moosewood.

Hope you will have a safe and happy New Year,


Monday, December 15, 2008

Decorating my Wheel

Part of what I liked about the Otium is that it came unfinished so I could decorate it as I wanted.
I wish I could say I came up with this design on my own. I wanted to have all season's on the wheel and when I saw a similar design, I decided this was the one I wanted to put on my wheel.
The green/blue/brown roving is what is spun on my spool.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Taking the plunge

Well, it happened! I did it! I took the plunge and got a wheel!

After a lot of research I became so confused at what was the "best" wheel for me; all I wanted was something to learn to spin on. I was not ready to drop $500+ on a wheel. When I found Heavenly Handspinning I really felt it was too good to be true. A wheel for $150? I found a group on Ravelry comprised of people who owned these wheels and they said they were good wheels, so I took the plunge!

Tuesday of this past week, the box arrived. I had a lot of outside chores to do, so I completed them before opening the box.

The wheel needed to be assembled, and then I started spinning. Well, not really, it's more accurate to say I attempted to spin on the wheel. In less than 30 minutes I was ready to toss the wheel out the window and was wondering about my decision to be an inexpensive wheel.

Many emails back and forth between myself, others who own Heavenly Handspinning wheels, as well as the proprietor of Heavenly Handspinning, a good night's rest, and I was spinning.

I've had the wheel for just under a week and I'm LOVING it!!!

Above is the first "skein" of yarn I spun and then did a Navajo Ply with it.

The second yarn I spun with the roving that came along with my wheel.
My third skein, plied and ready to go - about 100 yards of bulky weight

This is the last of the roving I've spun. Hand dyed by me. I just dyed some more roving that I am planning to spin and ply to this.

I am in LOVE with my wheel!!!

I am currently waiting for 1/2 pound of recently dyed roving drying before I can spin anymore!

Sunday, December 7, 2008

A Year of Socks Continue....

I completed the candy cane socks this week, so my December socks (pair #8) are completed.
Yesterday I attended my first Fiber Fair and Sale. It was not exactly what I was expecting, it was tiny, and just basically things members of the Duluth Fiber Guild had made.

I bought a pound of roving that is from "Quincy," a Romney Corriedale cross. So soft and yummy. I divided the pound 4 ounce balls, one ball being short a couple tenths of an ounce, so I started playing with that.

This is my third skein and I'm very happy with my progress!