Friday, December 22, 2006

This week has been full of Christmas parties, Christmas preparations, and Christmas knitting. So how is it that it still doesn't feel that much like Christmas? Maybe because Kurt decided we don't need a tree since he prefers to put all of the presents under our palm tree. Maybe because we never took the time to put up decorations. Maybe because I'm just too busy with many other projects! Either way: meh. It'll be Christmas soon and then it will be all over again for a another year (thank God). As I think I've mentioned before, I prefer Thanksgiving.

Happy Solstice though! I forgot to light a candle last night but I did fall asleep thinking happy thoughts about the coming of the light and longer days.

Today's Friday post is not about all of those things though, it's about my Kool-aid dying! Previously my hand-Kool-aid-dyed yarn looked something like this:

(That would be the one on the right.)

A couple of weekends ago, while Kurt was eating pizza and playing video games at a friend's house mere hours before coming down with the nasty norovirus stomach flu, and in the midst of studying for finals, I did this:


and this:

In order to end up with this:

Which I am very pleased with and excited to knit with once I finish my grandma's Christmas socks and my sister's Bearfoot socks. At the rate I'm going, I should have one completed by Christmas Eve, which is when we celebrate at her house, and one partially completed. The Regia Cotton Plus is okay but much less "giving" than I was hoping for. The cotton/polymid portion of it is a bit high for my poor little wrists and not quite as soft as I was hoping for but hot damn if these aren't going to be some hard-wearing socks! Which will hopefully soften up after washing... After trying out a couple different patterns and stitch amounts I decided on 64 stitches with US 1's with a rib pattern that I made up on the spot. It's something like K3, P2, K4, P3, K8, P3, K4, P2, K3 and repeat. I like it and the color is definitely "Jeans". It knits up looking just like denim!

Happy Holidays everyone!

Of Mice and Knits

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Mice in the kitchen this week at work. Can you come in on a Monday morning to anything more gross? Well yes, if it had been cockroaches I would have turned around and walked right out. But still, mice. Ew.

The semester is over and there is much rejoicing! Including a dinner out and a trip to the yarn store with Jenna last night! But neither of us found anything we wanted to buy despite the immense amount of time we tried and the sales. The sales are good but not good enough to buy yarn we don't need. Gasp, I know.

With the semester over though (and tests completed, I think I got two B's and two A's for my four classes) I've already gotten a chunk of knitting time in. Tuesday evening I finished my mom's Christmas socks...

and started my sister's socks.

The yarn I was so desperately hoping to find last night was sock yarn for my Grandma's Christmas socks. This is the Grandma that buys all the kids and grandkids socks every year for Christmas and she totally deserves a pair of handknit socks every year for Christmas. Even though she's using the ones I knit her last year as slippers. I think it's because they're wool and so warm. So I was on the lookout for some cotton sock yarn but it was all ugly. Then I would have given up and bought some Mountain Colors Bearfoot for her but they didn't have any in colors she would like, just reds, which I had to restrain myself from buying because I love it.

Jenna even offered up anything from her stash but I couldn't decide and wasn't sure what would be best and then I got all indecision-like about what pattern to use. So I decided to just hand dye the dye-your-own yarn I still have laying around from Knitpicks. I got some Kool-aid from the store, Ice Blue Raspberry Lemonade, and I dunked the wool in some water and prepared to start tearing open Kool-aid packets when I remembered: it's hand wash only. Shit! I don't want to do that to my Grandma. She needs the ease of wash n' go. So I hopped on the internet and ended up ordering some Regia Cotton Plus in a jeans colorway and next-day shipped it. Or I think I next-day shipped it and we'll find out if it doesn't show up in the next few days.

So post-purchase, tell me: is Regia Cotton Plus any good? I've never felt it so I don't know if it's as soft as I've been reading and I've never heard of anyone using it but it seems like a good deal: it has wool and it has cotton and I like that idea. If it sucks I might have to take Jenna up on the offer of buying her Cherry Tree Hill and get knitting.

Last weekend I also overdyed my other Kool-aid dyed yarn but I'll show pictures of that later on rather than make one gigantic post today.

Friday Nights Are Sacred

Friday, December 08, 2006

So Friday seems to be the day I actually get around to updating this thing which is sort of unfortunate because people don't comment as much over the weekend. But at least you're still reading it, right? Right? I may just be losing readers like crazy since the school business started. No time to update and people move on. I think about updating during the week but never seem to find time to log in and say anything... not that there's much TO say today. Friday it is.

In my last post, there were no pictures because I was busy and lazy on the blog front and didn't really have much to show. Today there are no pictures because it has finally hit me that the one box I'm missing since the move is the box with my top desk drawer stuff in it, and that includes my picture card for my phone's tiny little memory card. What a bummer. I've taken lots of pictures! And I would have taken nice yarny pictures for you today but what's the point since I can't transfer them. Le sigh.

Good news though: I found out that the LYS (aka Ben Franklin Crafts, the only store to carry nice wool within a 70 mile radius) is not really closing! They're merely having a blowout sale to make it easier to move all of the inventory into their new location! I found this out because yesterday I had a little time to kill (sort of) and decided to go check out the sale there. I ended up buying a few hanks of Classic Elite Renaissance (40% off!) to make some nice wooly felted slippers out of. They're red and green but not Christmas red and green. Boy, it sure sucks not being able to show you a picture. I was told that they're "in" colors right now though if that helps. Like a burgundy-ish red and a pale green. I think the colors are Green Grape and Chianti but I'm not sure.

I also picked up a hank of Mountain Colors Bearfoot in the Indian Corn colorway (25% off). Wow is that some squishy soft pretty stuff! I'm thinking socks for my sister since I'm planning to make socks for my other sister with a green Mountain Colors.

Hmm, so that's about it. No knitting since last Saturday for me. I fixed the heel on my mom's sock during the Harry Potter Extravaganza and finished one pattern repeat on the leg. No yarn dying and no new socks started. House stuff happened instead and some half-hearted studying for my Chem test which landed me a C. A C! I'm outraged at myself! So this weekend will be filled with much studying so I can ace my finals and end up with A's. I'm an A student dammit, and I want to stay that way!

Anyway, have a great weekend all!

Impending Doom

Friday, December 01, 2006

Well, the holidays are approaching. I'm not in the "holiday spirit" this year but, you know, I can't really remember the last time I was so it's not too much of a loss. Gifts will be purchased, eggnog milkshakes drank, and maybe even a tree decorated if we're lucky. The past couple of years we've just decorated our cane tree because the old house was too small for a real tree.

Holiday knitting is currently at a standstill. I've re-knit the heel on my mom's second sock twice now and when I got to the end I realized I'm about three stitches off. The heel is slightly crooked. I was debating whether I could just keep knitting and maybe she wouldn't notice but it's going to have to be frogged and I just haven't gotten up the gumption to do it yet. Tonight is Friday Night Movie Night though so I'll probably do it then. Harry Potter weekend on ABC Family and all.

I'm also itching to start a new pair of socks for myself. Me, me, me! My toes are cold! I don't have enough hand-knit socks to make it through the week! Even though I have a to-do list about a mile long, I'm secretly scheming to overdye my Black Cherry kool-aid yarn this weekend and start a pair. I've been thinking about hand-knit socks lately and how my favorite pairs are the plain-jane 2x2 ribbed ones or the plainish cable and rib ones. And I'd like to have a simple project to carry around but the Japanese Feather Socks are also calling out to me. They would look so pretty in a nice solid color! We'll see what happens. The guilt of not starting my sister's socks might get to me instead.

And, before I go, the picture you've all been waiting for:

The new house is awesome and I can still hardly believe this all worked out and I'm actually living in a house that I *own*. Well, that the bank owns, but you know what I mean. New house projects and new house shopping has been fun and I'm sure will continue to be. Projects for this weekend include 1) more shopping, 2)replacing the wax seal on the upstairs toilet (I can't wait to do this!), 3) installing the medicine cabinet in the guest bath, and unpacking some more boxes. That's the short list, I don't want to bore you with the long one.

Have a great weekend!