Thursday, April 10, 2014

Things I learned about myself at a quilt show

You can make the cashiers day by paying exact change all in ones. For many years I worked as a cashier, I learned how truly valuable ones are when all you receive are twenties.

I have to hold my hands together as I have an irresistible urge to pick lint and cut threads off quilts. They had signs up requesting you not touch the quilts unless you wore gloves. But man! Was it ever so difficult not to pick the threads off. I guess I should have pulled out my knitting to keep my hands busy.

Someone there appreciated someone else's work by entering two quilts from the 50's that they bought at a garage sale. It takes one to appreciate another's work. Nice to know that sometimes our work finds its way back to people that love it as much as the creator.

Quilters have vendors too. I don't know why they wouldn't, but it felt weird not to see any yarn piled up. You quilters have lovely colors too, but they stack easier than yarn.

Some quilters have the same battles with their stash as knitters do. They are also forced to buy more when their special use-up-the-stash project actually uses up all the stash. It was a Christmas themed quilt on that one.

Quilters have dormant works-in-progress too. It can take years to finish a project when you're not activly working on it but "trying to figure out how to do something." (I'm still so happy I finished my sweater.)

When given the option I am an odd voter. Many times I will not vote for the best quilt, but for a quilt that I truly like. You know not the most beautiful complicated one but the one you could most see using in your own house.

Sometimes prettiest and most appealing design have nothing to do with how well something is crafted. Especially when you don't know the ins and outs of the craft. I found it hard to tell why one quilt was deemed better than another.

I would totally tattle on someone touching, when they are not supposed to be touching. But I will not confront them myself when there is no one to tattle to near by. I so wanted to hiss Stop that!

When left alone with my thoughts I will compose a blog post in my head, while I look at quilts.

Monday, April 7, 2014


Oh new sweater of mine can I just say how much I love you. Especially since you have moved from here...

To the real world, even though I don't have photographic evidence of your completed state. And that I will not truly enjoy you till the weather turns colder again, which hopefully will be a while. I am so happy to have all my cords and needles back, that I may just cast on another sweater. You know since I left almost everything I could about you unfinished so I could try you on. How many sets of needles was it there at the end? Five!

Plus I had to pry you out from under Jack a few times. He may love you more than me.

Oh sweater I am glad to say you're finally done. You may have stumped me a few times but I can say you taught me to knit a set in sleeve, twice.

Don't worry I'll take a picture soon. Did I tell you, you look pretty today?

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Back in the Drawer Again

The other day I did not feel like knitting, but I did feel like playing with yarn. Usually when this occurs it is thankfully temporary and I just use the time to stash dive and plan some future projects. I may match some yarn to a pattern or I may replace the cedar chips in the bottom of the stash basket, or I may just do a bit of a fluff and sniff. Yes I really do like to smell my yarn. 

But this time I pulled out some socks of D's that have been in the repair pile for quite a while. Luckily they were put there just before the weak spot became a hole. So I tried duplicate stitching as my repair method. 

I gotta say I like it. I still need to practice more but it turned out rather usable in my opinion.

Just as I got that pair back into rotation again, I noticed a true hole in another pair.  The yarn has worn thin on the whole ball of the foot here. So instead of using the same yarn for repair I found some left over thicker grey yarn to make repairs.

Turns out that was a bad idea. My duplicate stitching kept getting wonky and generally looks pathetic. But this pair too is back in the rotation for a time. 

I told Hubby the red pair will not be repaired again, since I had such a hard time. I was also worried that they would feel uncomfortable with the uneven thickness. He wore them the next day without noticing anything. 

Guess I'll have to get busy knitting him some new socks. The repairs are still worth doing but nothing beats new socks. I should really buy some more work horse sock yarn but the hand painted stuff is so much more fun. Maybe I just need to examine the socks more closely when I wash them. That way I can pull them from the rotation and fix them before they get truly holey. 

Don't worry he has half of a first sock on the needles now, and a couple more waiting to get on the needles too. His magic sock drawer still works.

I also made monster cookies for him, from his mom's recipe. The recipe makes 6 dozen cookies and that is half of the original recipe that she received from the neighbor lady. Whew, that is a lot of cookies, but they are ever so tasty.

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Best seat in the house

This is what happens to your knitting when you leave it sitting on the couch.

I decided this weekend that I really need to finish up a sweater, or at least work at finally finishing a sweater. So I brought out my original Rhinebeck sweater so I could do some comparison measurements. That would be the purple blob behind and under Jack's shoulders.

I knit a couple of arm cuffs but did not bind off since I really like to try on my sweaters just before they're finished. I started in on the bottom ribbing when I had to get up, only to return to this cuddly view. As you know the cats rule in my house so I figured since I could not beat him, I joined him in a nice nap.

There was also a sock repair session, but that is a story for another day as I still have sleep in my eyes and an elliptical machine calling my name.

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Retail therapy

I typically buy most of my yarn at two festivals in consecutive months, which makes for a lovely basket of yarn to knit from. Unfortunately this means I don't aways have that new yarn smell circulating in my house. Sometimes you just need new yarn. But don't ask me how many unknit pairs of socks are in my stash right now. I would have to look shamefully away from you. We're not talking about stash, we're talking about springtime renewal.

You see my LYS (Local Yarn Shop) sent out an email about how we're all longing for spring and technically vernal equinox occurred so it is spring. In celebration of spring they had a discount. Now I tell you I resisted the siren call of Zauberball restocking a month ago. This time? I packed myself into the car and crossed my fingers that a few Zauberballs remained.

They had two colors remaining, so I picked up the blue one. I am trying to resist casting it on, considering still have that sweater on the needles and plenty of socks going too. Additionally I like saving Zauberballs for vacation take along yarn, back up yarn if you will. It is already wound, all I do is make sure I have an extra needle set and I have an emergency sock kit, just add knitter. Hey I even bought a new set of needles too. It is like I planned it.

The other skein is new to me, but I could not resist the color. Totally out of character for me but lovely. It used to be out of character from me, but I've noticed that knitting has changed the way I feel about color. I never would have been caught buying something orange or yellow, but now burnt orange calls to me. No really it almost jumps into my hands these days. Sorry honey I had to buy the yarn it attacked me. It just wrestled the credit card off of me and ran to the counter then the car.Yeah sure, D will totally buy that story.

See I feel better already, I think I'll go measure a sweater to see if I can finish it this weekend.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Time keeps ticking

Gus is doing OK. We had our quality of life appointment with the vet and it went surprisingly good. She started off by saying Gus may be one of those creatures that will never tell you, it is time for me to go. He is such a stoic, fighter of a guy. It seems horrible to for us to choose to take the fight away from him but it seems much more horrible to sit idly by and watch him vomit and have neurologic issues.

So for us we are creating memories and taking pictures and video and just about anything that will help us remember our 17 amazing years with our darling tough guy. (And crying a bit from time to time.)

Gus says: I am not dead yet! I feel fine, I think I'll go for a walk. 

(Monty Python you make me laugh in the worst times.)

Thursday, March 6, 2014

On Knitting

There is a commonly held belief that knitters can knit feelings and thoughts into the items they're making. One of the best know examples of this belief is the prayer shawl ministry. You knit healing thoughts, prayers for recovery and good wishes for the recipient. 

While I think it is a valid ministry and I get the beautiful sentiment of it, I don't hold it true for my knitting. Conversely it means that I would knit all my frustrations and not-feeling-it-ness into my knitting because I knit all the time, everywhere. 

But sometimes I do worry that worries and sadness can be "knit in." I thought of that when I was sitting in the Vet ER this weekend. Gus was getting some preliminary blood work done so I could make the decision to admit him or not. 

I pulled out the socks I've been working on for Mom, and I almost put them back. Did I really want to knit worry, fear, and sadness into Mom's socks? 

Then I took out her sock and finished knitting a toe. Who better to help me thorough this difficult time than the person who taught me to be a crazy cat mom?

Sometimes it is best to share emotions to help us. Mom taught me to be strong and she loaned me her strength without even being there.

Thanks Mom! Your socks should be in the mail soon. I love you!