Sunday, September 29, 2013

There is a LOT of Math in Knitting

I have been cruising along on my niece's cowl, but there was some issues with the pattern.

There were two pattern repeats.  A small leaf pattern and a larger pattern I will call a fan.

When I started the cowl, I was reading the fan pattern as a 10 row repeat and the leaf a 15 row repeat.  

Mathematically, the patterns would match up every 30 rows, or every two leaves.

So I've been knitting happily along and then I'd find a leaf not matching up,so I would adjust the leaf to get back on track.

This was giving me large and small leaves; I wasn't digging that.  Further, I hadn't been doing the three stitch decrease correctly and had twisted veins on the leaves.

Then it hit me.  The fan had a 10 row repeat, and the leaf a 16 row repeat (counting all WS and RS rows), which has patterns meeting up every 80 rows.

So, last night, the cowl looked like this:

I reworked the pattern on graph paper, subtracted a row, a couple stitches, changed the order of the patterns and we are back in business.  

Had over 20 inches before I frogged it, and am sitting with 3 inches now.

I would not have been happy with the cowl, even if it is going to someone who wouldn't see the errors I had made.

Friday, September 27, 2013

FO # 13 and One Item off my List

Before we go any further, I am going to apologize for the FO picture -- I am trying not to let my perfectionism get in the way.  These socks were started on September 12, the day before my surgery to keep the hands/mind busy while waiting for pre-op appointments and impending surgery.  They were completed just 10 days later, as I continued to knit them while I did the most difficult and painful part of my recovery.  I was not getting around very well the day I completed them, and the picture was taken with my iPad (while I was still in my pj's).

FO # 13 Black Dalekanium Socks

Next week I will go in for my 3 week post-op appointment and hope to get a date of return for work. 

This morning, I decided to pull out my yarn, snap pictures of it and enter it into my Ravelry Stash.

Gathering the stash
I am happy to say, 40 different yarns/colorways (98 skeins) were entered into my Ravelry Stash!  While pictures downloaded, I knit on my niece's cowl; it has grown to over 20 inches!

I still need to do some final organization as I put it away.

What I didn't do was dig into my box of my own handspun as well as my roving.  I will leave that for another day!

My husband will be home shortly, so it is time for me to try to straighten up my office/craft room and be able to enjoy the evening with him.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

New Pattern

Sometimes I love the challeanges of a new pattern, sometimes, not so much.

Case in point.

Sunday night I decide to cast on a Christmas present.  And how far am I now?  

Five inches, that's it!  Two full days.  Days while I'm on medical leave, where all I have to do is sit and get better.  Five measly inches  in  two days!  Okay, one day I had to sleep off a migraine, but still!   

I could have started and completed a pair of socks with non-shop knitting these two days, but nope, 5 inches!

First there was this "provisional cast on".  A friend sent me a video how to do this crazy procedure on an cable.  Watched the video several times Sunday night.  More times Monday morning.

Attempted more times than I care to admit, only to have a snarled mess of cables and yarn.

I searched other patterns.  Considered finishing my Lucy cardigan (after all, the only thing left is the sleeves.  

Eventually, after other videos, more snarled messes, late Monday I figured it out.  

Next problem?  How many to cast on?  I wanted to make it a little more narrow, not as easy as you think.  Section C shows 13 stitches, BUT, that is at the widest part and....  cast on, knit, frog, count, cast on knit, wrong again, frog.....

Okay, correct number cast on, knit, knit, knit.....WHAT?!  How did I miss that?  

See that note, above section B?  "Continue row 1-10"?  Me?  What was I doing?  I was just knitting happily along for 5 rows when I should have been doing the pattern.  

Last night, this was at my feet.

<sigh>  This seems to be kind of normal for me and new patterns. 

This morning, after about an hour of knitting I am once again knitting with virgin yarn, and am sitting at 5 inches.

The pattern really isn't hard, just the little bumps along the route of a new pattern.  I LOVE knitting with Malibrigo, it is positively YUMMY!

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Yarn Crisis, Maybe?

I cast on these socks Thursday morning, the day of many pre-opappointments.  Was able to work on them while being prepped for surgery.  They have been steaming along quite nicely, and then?

That little cake of yarn got too small too fast!

I am 1.5 inches from the heel with 9 grams of yarn left.

As I see it, my options are:

1. complete pattern repeat I am at and switch to the ribbed cuff;
2.  knit the pattern until I run out of yarn, switch to black yarn (which I don't have) to do the cuff.
3.  ???

Monday, September 16, 2013


Despite almost zero posts related to knitting this summer, I have been busy!  Beside the dish cloths, this summer I worked on my Lucy Cardigan.

All that is left is the sleeves.  It has been a joy to knit, a lot of mindless knitting and has seen many evenings around the campfire!  Trying to decide if I want to knit the sleeves two-at-a-time, or individually.
I have also been working on Birch Leaf Shawl.
I was ready to rip it out and give away the lace weight yarn, but switched to from wood to acrylic needles and it's been smooth sailing ahead.
Next on the needles are Lucy Anklet Socks.

They are being knit one at a time on DPN's -- something I rarely do.
I do not recall why I decided to do this pair this way.  I had planned to knit these while waiting for medical appointments and the like, but I don't want to haul around the book with the pattern, and the yarn is a tad itchy.  They will make nice fall socks, if they aren't as itchy to wear as they are to knit!
Recently added to the sticks are my Black Dalekanium socks. 
My last day of work before I took off for my medical leave, I wore black slacks and realized I didn't have any hand knit black socks.  Had planned to do toe up, two-at-a-time, plane-Jane socks.  After completing the toe, I decided to add just a little pizazz with the Dalekanium pattern. Many years ago, I started knitting the River Rapids pattern with this yarn, but the stitch pattern was lost in the dark yarn.
While I am recovering from surgery, I also plan to cast on and complete at least one Christmas present.

Saturday, September 14, 2013

FO - #'s 10, 11, & 12

Despite no posts on the progress of my knitting, I have been knitting!

The three dish clothes are part of the proof!  Completed either while camping or at training.  The red are the same color, the last one is wet because it was put to use right away.

Friday, September 13, 2013

Watching the Clock

Yesterday was pre-op appointments at the doctor's office and at the hospital and today I was supposed to have surgery at 10:30, but I am waiting.

One of the tests from my blood draw came back funky, so my surgery was switched to 2:30. I haven't eaten since dinner last night.  Told the doctor I am a little addicted to coffee so she said I could have ONE cup of BLACK coffee at 5 am, and then NOTHING else.

I am antsy now.  Took a nice long soak in the tub. Have lavender oil on my feet and pulse points and I am back in bed.  I can't bear to watch TV with all the food commercials.  I am tired, hungry, and thirsty.  I am hoping sleep will come soon and long!

***** I am not doing well trying to sleep. Took pictures and created posts that I scheduled to publish over the next few days. 

Stayed tuned, FO and WIP!

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Last Work Day and Letting Go

I am trying to practice letting go.

Usually, I write pages of notes for a substitute teacher for ONE day.

So, that would mean I'd have to write a book for 8 weeks, right?

I've let go.  My sub came in Monday to meet the kids and get a quick run down of a day in my classroom.  She has nothing more than my lesson plans for this week, and then she is on her own.

I do have two assistants who know how things run.  We march the kiddos through the different curriculums, one lesson at a time.  If they get through two lessons in on day, great!  Don't complete a lesson, no big deal, we will pick up where we left off the following day.

I'm not as ready for a sub as I'd like, but I'm trying to let go.

Tonight we are meeting with friends to celebrate three of our birthdays.  Tomorrow I will get up, make the bed in the spare bedroom, do the last little bit around the house before I pick up my mom and we head to pre-op appointments.

Hopefully, the stuffy nose I have is allergies and not one of the many colds going around.  I have been drinking EmergenC three times a day and drinking OnGuard laced water.

Monday, September 9, 2013

Back to Work, for Three Days

What a whirlwind weekend!

My husband decided that means he was going to have to paint the bathroom he might as well replace the old outdated lights above the mirror.  Apparently, when the house was built, it was not code to put in junction boxes, so that was the first issue.

No stud where it needed to be for new junction box, and plumbing was running in the wall in a spot that prevented placing new lights centered above sink. We centered it between the window and the wall mounted cabinet and the mirror will be centered the same way.  We are hoping the 2 or 3 inch shift won't make it look funny.  I asked husband to get "a white" showed him the different paint chips, pointing to the top colors.  He went with WHITE.  Oh well, it is crisp and clean now!

The mirror will go up this week and eventually, we will replace the floor as it got cut up pretty bad when the mirror fell.

So, his list?  He got the bathroom pretty much done, except for mirror, which he says he will mount this week. 

My list?
  • Carpets shampooed in both spare bedrooms and all doggie spots are gone.
  • Bed was moved, bedding ready to be put on.
  • 90% of what I wanted to complete for my classroom is done.
  • Closet in spare bedroom organized -- everything pulled out of RV was shoved in closet we could hardly walk into that closet.
  • Weekend chores such as laundry, vacuuming the house, etc. was completed.
  • Not on the list, but done, wound a hank into a cake for Christmas Knitting I hope to do.  The pattern that was selected is in French, so I found a different pattern that will work.  Checked to make sure I had needles -- project ready to start next week.
  • Also not on list was I got my Lucy Anklet Socks to a point where I don't need the pattern for 30 rows.  Will take it with me when I do my pre-op appointments this week.
  • One more, not on the list item.  Spent most of Sunday removing malware off my laptop!  What a chore, but the laptop is running at top speeds again!
Turned "inside out" so you can see cuff pattern.
About an inch of 3x1 rib and now it's knitting to row 30

For some reason I can't remember, I am knitting these cuff socks on DPN one-at-a-time.  Two things I haven't done in years. 

Work, here I come.......

Saturday, September 7, 2013

This Weekend.....

School started three weeks ago and every weekend my husband and I have raced off in  the RV and I've done nothing school related on weekends, nor have we done any chores around the house.

This weekend?

This weekend is my last weekend before surgery.

This weekend we are working.

Our bedroom and bath is upstairs and my husband and mom have decided I will not be doing stairs after surgery.  I roll my eyes and pretend that I think they are both crazy, while secretly happy we are getting the downstairs bedroom, with attached bath, ready for us to use during my recovery.

We had a BAM! earthquake in June.  They are one big huge shake that leaves you first wondering what big huge heavy object was dropped somewhere in the house before you realize it was an earthquake.  That earthquake popped a mirror off the wall in the bathroom attached to the downstairs bedroom.

Nothing in this house is easy to fix.  We can't find a mirror of the same size.  The next size mirror is too big, unless we move the lights above the sink.  This means the bathroom needs to be painted, and he wants to paint before replacing the mirror.  This weekend......

After painting, the mirror will need to be installed.  This weekend......

He cleaned up the mirror shrouds with bathtub cleaner which left the floor rather slick.  I worry about walking on this slippery surface with stitches in my tummy so the floor needs to be scrubbed to removed the tub cleaner.  This weekend.......

Our dog got sick on the carpeting after eating something she shouldn't have.  Why she couldn't get sick in the 75% of the house WITHOUT carpet is puzzling.  I don't like where the bed is in the spare bedroom, so the carpet needs to be shampooed before the bed is moved.  This weekend.....

Our dog kind of "lives" in the downstairs bedroom.  The sheets and bedding need to be washed to removed most of the dog hair.  This weekend.....

While paint and carpet is drying, I need to get everything ready for a sub for eight weeks.  This weekend....

After a wonderful warm summer, we have had a very wet fall.  It should be raining all weekend, so it will make inside chores easier.  This weekennd.....

I guess I need to get off the computer, shower, and get moving because it is looking to be busy.  This weekend......

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Before and After

I was able to get pictures, but not able to add them to this morning's post.  Here is my classroom, before and after shots.







 Another After, didn't really have a before shot of the "front" of the classroom

Came They Did

Wow!  It really has been three weeks since school started and I haven't created one post.

Came the kiddos did.  Right now I have only four kiddos in grades 1 and 2.  The start of the school year honeymoon didn't last long.  An hour after school started, one of my assistants was hit and kicked and into the "seclusion" room the student had to go (when students are unsafe, they have to go in an empty room with a window where they can be watched, but are pretty much unable to hurt others).  By the end of the second day I too had been hit and kicked, as well as bit. Such is life of an Emotional/Behavioral Disorders teacher.

We have settled into our routines, my wild-child has settled down and has had days where we were safe all day, with no chairs flying across the room, no hits or kicks, no running away.

I have had other teachers drop by and tell me the room "feels different" in a positive way.  Another teacher told my room looks like a classroom (still not sure exactly what that means).

In addition, each weekend my honey and I have taken the RV out.  Labor Day weekend was our last trip; the RV will be winterized and put up for the winter.  During our outings I have knit and we hiked and even got in a horse back ride.  

My surgery is scheduled for next week, I don't know if my classroom is ready for me to leave for up to 8 weeks, but I am practicing letting go!  We will stay home this weekend and get the house ready for me to be laid up for a while. 

I have pictures, but technology is getting the better of me this morning.