Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Simon Sez...

Hey Robin!
I got THIS in the mail today! W00t! I mean SQUEEEEEEE! The fluff is from a bloke named Simon (whose picture graces the bag). Apparently he sez it's time for me to try to spin! Got this little set with some printed instructions that I will promptly read-though-behave-as-though-i-haven't from a store called Big Horn Mountain Alpacas.

The kit was $12 or $13 and it's just-right for me. A real-simple spindle... real simple instructions and what feels to me so far as the butteriest, softest fluffy-fiber i have held. Granted I haven't held much in my hot little hands, but this stuff is neato. I may never actually knit anything from it, but my plan is to appreciate the work that spinners do on a regular basis... i really hope I don't get hooked on this because, like I need another hobby. Seriously.

And this is what else has consumed my time in recent days. (Besides my glee that Nerd Night* will continue for at least one more season! W00t!) I stayed up two extra hours last night to get more done on sock #2. Seriously this is a HUGE sock. My Uncle better like these things and wear HOLES in 'em! They are the Harlot's Earl Grey socks (in actual GREY this time!) because i love that pattern so much and it goes SO fast... and this yarn likes it anyway. It told me.
Just before I was getting ready to take a picture to show that the foot of the sock is the SAME LENGTH as the leg, the battery died. So you will just have to take my word for it. The sock is huge. Good thing i heart this yarn (Baby Cashmere from Elann).

P.S. Nerd Night = Chuck and Heroes, both on Monday, NBC. Watch them. Oh, and I am going on record as coining this phrase. Where's my royalties!?

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Mine isn't done yet...

Hey Robin!
I may be a little late to the table, but I thought I would add my two-bits to the knitting world's Thanksgiving recipe fodder! I also wanted to say how thankful I am for your friendship and for this joint-blog. It's a great episode in my life!

My Aunt Karin's Cranberry Relish
1 standard bag of cranberries
1 small to medium orange sliced into thin slices
1 cup of sugar
1/4 to 1/2 tsp of cinnamon
1/2 to 1 tsp of nutmeg

Put the berries and oranges into a small pot and squish them up (I use a potato masher, but use your imagination) just to break the skins of the berries so the juices will start coming out. Add the sugar, and spices. Then put on LOW heat... low low low... for about 20 to 25 minutes. Allow to cool, it will thicken up as it cools.

This stuff is even better if allowed to "mellow" for a day... so if you can make it now go for it! The flavors just blend together better. I am making mine right now, but I have to wait a bit because my berries were frozen. Will take a picture and post later if I think of it!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Friday, November 16, 2007

So much to do...

Hey Robin!
I have nothing really new-and-interesting to show you in the knitting arena. But I thought it would be OK this time... as long as I left you with a moment of zen (Daily Show style?)

This was taken by my Uncle John (of Sasquatch-sock fame) :)
Seriously, how often do you get to see a mountain cast a shadow UP?


Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Double the fun!

Hey Kate!

I'm a weirdo. Ok, this isn't news. But I have to say, I love double knitting. Granted, I haven't gotten that far, but I'm having a great time.

Here is the beginning of the Apprentice Beanie, as demonstrated by Emme. I'm using Cadena in Tide and Natural. The Tide is prettier in person. I think what I find fun is the fact that I'm throwing the main color and picking the contrast color. I'll be keeping you up to date on this project.



Sunday, November 11, 2007

It came! It came!

Hey Robin,
It's here! It's here! What the heck am i going to do with this?
I'm so sorry the pictures suck. It's a rich, gorgeous range of reds.
In other news, I totally forgot to post the picture of this Dude who came to clean out our chimney. He was a hoot! Fast too... (Name of Mad Hatter Chimney Sweeps, for any locals who are interested!)
Sorry I have a derth of knitting news, i'm trying to finish a lot of bits and bobs so that I can put 'em in the "done" pile! Go me! :)


Thursday, November 8, 2007

Videos and more videos

Hey Kate!

Have you seen the new how-to videos at the bottom of our site? It's got a yarn ad on it and everything! I know. I haven't watched any of them either. Who has the time?

Besides, I've got this new video right here. This one isn't distorted. I'm having a hard time connecting it to yarnie content though. I'll think of something... In the meantime, watch Emme do her thing.

Emme just informed me that she was watching Abby (the fairy character on Sesame Street) when she was watching herself. Interesting.



Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Phear My 1337n3$$

Hey Robin,
PHEAR M3! Me'n'my leet Nikon rokked the hizzouse today hunting down them WIP's and... y'know... some other stuff. OK I can't do that anymore. Anyway! Here's some pics of stuff I've been dragging out for far too long. I think I've posted a lot of FO stuff lately because I'm in crunch-mode to get Christmas stuff done... but I haven't really "exposed" my WIP-Jungle in a while so here ya goes:

Here we see the indigenous Blobberific-Baby-Blanket (aka wonderfully squooshy, yet acrylic Baby Blanket) recognized in it's natural habitat (my desk) . The pic is blurry not because of the photographer, no, it must have just moved... or something...

In our next habitat... we have the chameleonlike "Best Friend Adornment" (aka Lacy Kerchief from IK Holiday '06) previously (and incorrectly) known as the "Best Friend Hug". The latter became something very unlike what was desired... or even intended... so it sacrificed itself on the altar of the Frog Pond and has emerged looking like this. Much better yes?
And on our left you may find the elusive "Vestible". No, not vestibULE.... that's a room. This is the object that has been languishing on my unused dining table (we eat in the kitchen) waiting for it's creator to become enlightened regarding the application of a zipper... I promised Dad a vest and I am so very proud of this one. It's from an awesome pattern (Oregon Vest) but it has absolutely no instructions about adding zippers to a knitted item.
It's like that cartoon (was it Non Sequitir?) Where the scientist stands before a chalkboard with an incredibly complex formula on it, but smack in the middle of all the calculations is written "and then a miracle happens". I love that. But yeah... thats a lot like how I feel about this pattern right now.

Anyone got any suggestions where I might find some good fool-proof instructions? Yeah, thanks.

Aaaaah... here is where the leetness will overwhelm your virgin eyes! Have you never seen such a beautiful picture? Is it not the epitome of the picture-of-all-pictures?!? (psst... the Emporer is naked!) What? No! Pay no attention to that child!
Yeah OK. So this is the start of my Uncle-the-Sasquatch's sock. I fear it may not be up-to-scratch but I am willing to give it more time... it's a slog though... a bit. It's still nice yarn to knit with though, gotta love that Elann Peruvian Baby Cashmere!

Oh yeah, remember back a bit? I may have mentioned I was making a Jayne hat... here's the recipient of said-hat in his Jayne Halloween costume. He was so happy with it, and mentioned that everyone who saw him knew exactly who he was. Awesome. Must make one for the Hub.
Lastly, i have a funny story that may enlighten you more regarding the understanding of my Mom. Or it will do what it did to me and confuse you even more.

The other day i got one of those pesky ad e-mails from Dreamweaver. I can never afford anything they have, but I do like to ogle. That day I saw this. Go ahead, go look, i'll wait. Nice eh? Very practical looking for the knit-world right? So I send a e-note to Mom, who i respect greatly when it comes to the sewing skillz. I ask her, "can you make a bag like this?" and I ask "Is it hard to make?" She replies after not too long, "No it's not hard at all. I've already made something like it, i'll send it to you. Don't worry the colors aren't too loud." (?!) I'm thinking to myself WOW! Score!

Then yesterday I got this in the mail:
Now I ask you... (seriously, do i need to complete that thought?)


Tuesday, November 6, 2007

It's all about Emme

Hey Kate!

So I took some video of Emme today and have been having issues with it. I took it sideways, so I had to get some software to rotate it. Then I uploaded it to YouTube and found that they squished and stretched it so it looks terrible. But too bad! Here it is!

She's wearing the poncho you knit her and the hat I knit her. There. Now there's knitting content.



Sunday, November 4, 2007

Loafing around

Hey Robin!
I finished the Malabrigo Loafers! What breeze that was. I finished the first one in a day and #2 took a little longer because I dropped a stitch way-back and couldn't figure out how to repair that through all the short-rows. This pattern, from Coco Knits, is usually done with two strands of worsted Malabrigo (and two circular needles), but I had the Chunky and swatched it (gasp!) to see if I could get the same results. Close enough, so I cast on!

When I finished part one of the first loafer (the sole) I was hit with a feeling: I didn't like how square the toe was when I bound-off. But I had trust because I had seen many finished ones on Ravelry and knew that so many people couldn't be wrong! So I finished the loafer, tried it on and said "aaaaaah". I was hooked. Cast on for #2 and thought to myself: "Self, why not leave those toe stitches live and see how that looks when you are done?" So I agreed to try it, since this is such a quick-knit! If I totally botched it I could bind off those live ones and do it the "right" way.

What usually happens is, you make the sole and pick up the stitches around the edge, starting at the heel (so that you end at the heel also, duh!). The live stitches were at the toe though, so they had to hang on a bit. Since i had two circular needles in my lap, I left the live stitches on one of them and started picking up stitches at the heel, when i got to the toe, I knitted 5 of the 9 toe stitches, then keeping the other circular on, knitted the other 4 and continued on my merry way. I must point out here, the pattern calls for just 8 sts at the toe, so i fudged it and picked up one less on the first edge. It wasn't that hard because I usually miss something somewhere along the line.

When i finished #2 i was so jazzed! The toe looks great. See my pictures below to find the differences. It's subtle but I like it! Yay me! :) I hope Coco doesn't get fussy at me... like she would ever find out anyway right? You and I are the only ones that read this blog. Right?

Why are you looking at me like that?

I cannot tell you how comfy these are. And WARM!
My feet are already sweating in this picture and it's the first one! (Sorry Mom)
The one the right has the "live toe sts"
side view... not pretty but you can see how it is shaped

Here's #1, with the bound-off toe sts. I love how it looks like it's sniffing the lense

This one was done with the live stitches at the toe of the sole.
It makes a slightly smoother transition from the garter-sole.
Oh I wanted to add that this pair took ever-so-slightly more than a single skein! Curses! But this means I can make one more pair if I can find something suitable in the stash to make up for the difference! I can't wait for you to make a pair too!


Saturday, November 3, 2007

Happy Birthday to the Pirate Princess!

Hey Kate!

We wish you could have been here for our birthday trip to Disney. But what's the next best thing? A slideshow!