Wednesday, August 27, 2008

It's in her breeding!

Abby, our little Springer/Britney cross puppy, has discovered how to use her nose this past week.

It's amazing seeing the qualities of her breeds coming through, watching her do things no one has taught her! Watching her figure it all out, and learn how to do it better all on her own!

She flushed and pointed a bird this weekend on a walk in the woods. When the bird took off, Abby froze in the point position! It was amazing to watch her!

Another time, when playing fetch, her stick landed in the tall brush and she couldn't see it. She ran back and forth over the area where she'd heard it land, and then started to circle the area, zeroing in on it in the brush!

Last night, on a walk in the woods, I noticed a rabbit far ahead on the trail. When we got to the spot where the rabbit had been, Abby stopped dead in her tracks and began sniffing the ground. It was apparent she wasn't sure what the scent was, as her hair raised up giving her a razor back look. She was curious, but cautious!

She is a very good little girl.

Now if we could be as successful with potty training! It was easier "house breaking" my miniature horses than her!!! She knows she's supposed to potty outside, but hasn't figured out that she NOT supposed to do it inside! Oh well, at least she is no longer peeing on my carpets, but has decided the linoleum is safe!

Friday, August 22, 2008

A Better Mouse Trap (Row Counter)

I often do searches online for row counters, seeing what's out there, what seems to sell, and seeing if I can I do anything to my row counters to make them better.

I came across the one pictured here. It looked to be great!

My own row counters, especially for larger needles, can be, well, in a word LONG! I've recently started adding a lobster claw on the end so the row counter can be made into a circle and shortened by half.

This abacus row counter could be it! With my own beading supplies I made my own to try out. After completing my Ravelympics socks were done, I was able to return to my work with my Girl's Bestfriend Anklets.
After completing the cuff, the pattern was to knit 50 rows. Perfect pattern to try out the abacus.
After each row, instead of slipping my needle into my the next number, I had to stop knitting to slide the ring over the next number.
When I hit row 11 I had to move the ring over all the numbers back to 1, I began to see the flaw with this row counter.
I decided I'd continue to use this row counter for all 50 rows; stopping every row to move the ring over the number, and stopping every 10 rows to slide it all the way back up to 1 to start the next ten. I have 9 more rows and then this row counter will not be used again! If the pattern calls for any more counting, I'll be using one of my Row Counter Chains!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

My Much Needed Break

Between moving my horse to a new boarding facility, getting a new puppy, the death of my friend and doctor, and helping my MIL learn how to use her new laptop as well as making her home "wire free", there just really was not time in my life for my etsy store, Fiber Jewels & More. At first I felt guilty; I'd spent so much time, energy, and money getting it up and running, providing a good product and the best customer service I could, but my heart wasn't in it.

I'd thought of closing up shop, but at the advice of a good friend, I simply took a break from my store. I'm glad I listened to her advice!

Yesterday, while our puppy played in the back yard, I hauled my beading supplies out of my workshop and to our porch. It was enjoyable to be beading in the heat of a warm summer day, listening to the birds chirp, watching our puppy play, and my miniature horses sunning themselves.

I was able to create several row counters, one of which will be a door prize in Secret of the Stole - III. One of the items I made for the shop was row counter (pictured left) with the cranberry wonder beads, I always love the row counters made with these beads! I was going to wait to list all the items but figured there was no time like the present!
I also listed some seed beads in little storage jars. I just LOVE the jars, the beads were ordered in the wrong size, so I listed them in the store also.
MIL comes over today for more computer lessons; I'm hoping I'll get some knitting & beading completed. I need to finish the ribbing on my Ravelympic socks and I can be done with those. My Girlfriend's Best Anklets need to be completed also. Would be nice to have those done before school starts!

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

What a kid!

Yesterday DS decided he'd tag along with me while I ran some errands, one of which was to my LYS to drop off an order from my shop as well as purchase new circs to replace the set Abby tried to eat.

When DS learned how much my new circs cost (because puppy grabbed them yet AGAIN and I lost it screaming at her I just spent $15 on those needles!), he decided he'd fix my old ones. I tried to explain his ideas wouldn't work, but you can't tell a 17 year old anything! He assured me he'd fix them and they'd be ready for me in the morning.

They were waiting for me this morning. I don't think they'll work, but heck, how many 17 year old boys care enough to try to fix his mom's needles? Even after being dragged to a shop he said was "for old ladies"

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

My week in review

I've continued to take some time off from my shop and am hoping that as Abby the puppy settles into a routine, I'll be able to settle into my own routine that will allow me to spend more time making items for my etsy store.

I've continued to knit on my Ravelympics socks for th SockPut. I'm about 90% done an then, Abby struck! Last night, she was asleep on the floor, I left the room to get a drink and upon my return, she was running merrily around the room, with my knitting in her mouth, the sock blank being unraveled! UGH!

Although the knitting and yarn were no worse for the wear, the cable has too many teeth marks to allow me to knit! $&$@% dog!

I have an order to drop off at the LYS, I guess I'll have to see if I can pick up replacement circular needles!!!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Death Sucks!

Earlier this week I received the sad news that my physician passed away Friday, August 8.

One would not think the death of a person whom you see once or twice a year could hurt so much.

Doctor appointments with her were like catching up with a dear friend over coffee (though no coffee was served and I might have only had on a hospital gown), it still was more like catching up than an appointment with my doctor.

Her death has really pulled the rug out from under me. Her online obit's guest book, has 14 pages and counting of people who have written in sharing memories of her. Like rubber necking at an auto accident, I keep finding myself back at her obit page.

I keep hoping I'll wake up and it just be a horrible nightmare. There are so many things I had thought of doing while she was alive and never did. A fellow knitter, I often thought of making stitch markers for her and mailing them in with a note about how much I appreciated her as my doctor.

My last appointment with her was my annual exam, 2 months after my riding accident and consequent surgery to fix my separated shoulder. I was her first appointment of the day and was in the waiting room when she entered. I was wearing one of the scarfs I knit; she asked me if I knit it and when I said yes, showed me hers and said that she knit too. I didn't say much and now I wish I had. I was still unable to do much knitting and wasn't the most pleasant when that subject was brought up.

And now she's gone.

And once again, as I've done off and on, I sit here, thinking about my friend and doctor, and tears roll down my face.

When one has to find a new doctor because of retirement or move, it has a totally different feeling than having to replace one due to death. I was lucky to have her as a doctor & friend over the past 12 or 13 years. She will be missed by many.
I guess it is true, each day is a gift that we are given. 24 hours to spend as we choose. She wouldn't want any of us to wallow in the pain that I have.
Death sucks!

Saturday, August 9, 2008


Was able to make some progress on the socks today; don't know what the rest of the day will bring, nor tomorrow.

Friday, August 8, 2008

Sock Swap & Olympic Knitting

I joined my first swap on the knitting/crocheting community of Ravelry.

I haven't always had good luck with swaps, but when I saw this one I thought it would be fun. We were to purchase a sock blank from KnitPicks, hand dye it, and send it along with some goodies to our swap partners. Someone else would send us our blank with goodies.

While awaiting the arrival of sock blanks, it was decided we'd do a KAL (knit along), and then a team was formed for the Raverly Olympics. I figured it would be fun, so I joined the KAL and an team for the "Sock Put."
I'm not sure what was harder, waiting for my package to arrive, or waiting until this morning to start!!!!

Earlier this week I received my swap package. Along with the beautiful sock blank of deep jewel tones, I received a small note book, with a matching pen and pencil case. I plan on recording my successes and unplanned results in the note book, and I just can't seem to have enough little cases for all my knitting gadgets.
This morning was the start of the Olympics so I finally got to play with my sock blank! My socks are turning out quite nice! I figured out "Judy's magic cast on" and have no seam at the toe!!!!

I'm just LOVING how they are turning out so far. They are creating a case of JOMR in me again!
I need to work on them and get the pair completed before the torch goes out for the Olympics. Ironic, the heat of the summer prevents me from wearing any of the socks I've been knitting this summer.
If I'm able to complete all the socks on the sticks I have at this time, I will have 5 beautiful pairs of hand knit socks!
I had hoped to complete the little "Girl's Best Friend Anklets" but the lace pattern did me in on
the first sock! I was able to complete both cuffs that will be turned over when worn. Once the cuff is completed, the sock is knit "inside out." These little puppies will sit on the sticks for a time until I get my pair of sock blank socks until they are completed. I have about 20 rows to complete before dividing for the heel.
In knitting these socks, I'm seeing possibilities of doing the toe up, and adding the cuff after completing the heel and the gusset.
Currently, I have three pairs of socks on the sticks, I need to get busy!
Knit on!

Saturday, August 2, 2008

By George, I think I've got it!

When learning how to knit winter of 2006, I read that both "poor knitters" and "good knitters" made mistakes. What sets them apart is that a "good knitter" knows how to fix their mistakes.

As I work on the second cuff of the Girl's Best Friend Anklets, that thought keeps jumping through my mind. I lost count of how many times I frogged the first cuff. The 7th row of the lace pattern just did me in.

I just completed the 8th row of the lace pattern on my second sock. I have made mistakes, yet, now that I've knitted the lace pattern and see how all those yo, ssk, k3,yo, TL, etc. all work together to create the lace pattern, when I realize I dropped a stitch or forgot a yo, I am able to pick it up, without messing up the lace pattern!

The cuff on this second sock will look very nice. I am tempted to rip out the first cuff, but heck, if someone is looking that close at my socks, I can kick them, right!?