Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Have you been wondering???

What was in your wool before it was yarn? Take a good look over there on the left. Ponder deeply what it could be....

Why yes, that is what my kitchen sink looks like after two 4oz. skeins of wool have been soaking for 30 minutes. Now, to be fair, this is minimally processed wool. It has no veggie matter, but a bit of lanolin left. Not too much, just enough. I must point out that it still has been commercially processed to get the organic gunk out....but it's still there.

Remember, no eating unwashed wool!

When you drain the water, you'll also see the grainy bits of silt and dirt sticking to the bottom of your once-pristine sink. Just say "Yes!" to Comet with bleach and a hint of lemon.

I guess my yarn was once the winter coat for a sweet, pasture roaming sheepy after all!

Monday, February 27, 2006

I confess!!!

I've ignored you this week. It was busy. N's family was in town. My terrific Mother-In-Law(MIL) arrived last Monday & the rest of the crew joined us Thursday. We steamed the ugly wallpaper off the walls of our 2nd bath & our large family room. We also patched, textured, primed & painted said bathroom. N put in a working vent fan with a light, so it's no longer a dark cave of a room. Lots of work, though.....especially with 3 children under the age of 2 rumming around.

Then there was the sad, sad day when MIL, myself & X all caught the same, nasty cold. We're still nursing it, too. So, have a box of Kleenex. This one's on me!

I did teach my 4 year old sister-in-law & 9 year old brother-in-law to spin. They treadled while I drafted, and it was uproariously fun.

See above for what the men did for fun. They even let me play. For 5 whole minutes!

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Godd-ess, it's French for goddess

I took this clever little quiz (actually, it's the second time I've taken it with the same result. I just now posted it to the blog.)

Knitting Goddess

You appear to be a Knitting Goddess.
You are constantly giving and are unconcerned with

reward, you simply want others to love

knitting as much as you do. If someone wants

to knit miles of novelty yarns, you are there

for them. If someone wants to learn short row

shaping, you can help. There are no taboos in

knitting, only opportunities to grow.

Everyone should have friend like you around

if they want to learn to knit, and there's a

good chance that your passion has rubbed off

on a few others.

What Kind of Knitter Are You?
brought to you by Quizilla
And now you all know about me and my knitting. Cool graphic, huh? I love Marnie Maclean and her patterns. Their addictive...Although I've never knit those tiny boobie top patterns, because I've not got the right physique.... You can check it out here.
I took some lovely photos for you today while I was dyeing. I'll try to get them posted in the morning. For now, please ponder the ever-present question "What was in my wool before it was yarn??????"

From the land of the living...

I slept well last night!!! So greetings from the land of the living!

A good friend of mine posted a link to her jahari window & inspired me to make one of my own. So you can see it
here. & if you don't know me so well, you can make one for yourself.

Well, the first part of the secret debbie bliss cathay is off the needles as of this morning. Now if I can get the second one done and the pattern written, I'll be good to go. It's nice to have it finished. With the interuptions of crabby chitlins it took me longer than I anticipated. That's frustrating.

I was also spinning along on my ugly batt sock yarn this morning. I've been dreaming about how to handpaint it so it self stripes in rainbow alternating with grey. I think I've got it figured out - it involves winding a huge skein around my kitchen chairs. I'm also planning on plying at least two quilting threads together on the wheel (maybe more) and then plying that thread with the handspun thread so the socks wear better. I don't want to spin for a project and then have it fall all apart.

This is the first project that I've planned the yarn for in advance. I.E. I thought of the socks first and now am spinning what I want. Before I've always spun what I wanted and knit it into something that fit the yarn. I'm a nerd, I know.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Sleep, sleep....please sleep!

The kids are refusing. They have been for the past week and a half. The knitting is neglected, not to mention the spinning, my house is a wreck and I'm crabby. Just not a nice person when I don't get adequate sleep. I know it's temporary, but geez, can we just get back to the part of my life where I get decent sleep?

Miss G's new habit? Wake up anywhere between 3:30 and 4:40 am and start laughing, hollering and kicking your crib. Very loudly. Until you wake up Miss E who is trying to sleep in her crib 3 feet away. Continue until you're worn out and start crying. Not the quiet, whimpering kind, but the loud, screaming wake-the-neighbors or I'm-being-tortured crying.

Then there's the X Factor. Usually my champion of sleep. He's slept through the night with only minor interuption since the day we came home from the hospital. Heaven on earth....but the honeymoon is over. No napping for any longer than 12 minutes at a time unlesss being held. No sleeping throught the night, either. Wake up crying 2-3 times an hour for the four hours prior to our "normal" getting up time.

Mom: super-cranky. X Man: super-exhausted. Dad: trying to remain upbeat and sane.

I can only pray it's the teeth. Both girlies had two teeth between 3 & 4 months. I can see where he's working on them along his bottom gum.

Now you know the sad, sad tale of the unsleeping children.

A while back I started knitting up the Plucky Fluff ala Katie yarn into a scarf. It's about 1/2 way done. I hope to have it finished up before next Tues. It's going to be a "prayer shawl" for the mom of 3 of my kiddos in my Montessori catechesis class. She has had a recurrence of cancer & it makes me so sad. It was supposed to be for this week's session, but the kids aren't sleeping. (See above.)

The only other thing that I have on the needles is a surprize project involving the fuschia Cathay seen below. I'd tell you what it is, but then I'd have to.....ahem, nevermind. I want to submit it to Knitty, so it's hush-hush right now. If it get's rejected, I'll post copious pictures. If it gets accepted, then you'll have to see the issue after next.

I do have to say that the Cathay is bugging me a bit. It's a cabled yarn, but the plies are so loose. They're forever coming apart with no provocation and I usually split one while knitting along. Arg. There are a few I've missed several rows down that I've just abandoned because they're in a heavily shaped area that I can't drop down to and redo with a crochet hook. Why do yarn makers make yarn that's hard to knit with? Hard as in aggrevating. Not just something that needs a bit more planning like space dyed yarns, but yarn that does not want to be knit.

May I never spin a yarn that does not want to be knit.

Finally, the spinning update. I'm spinning an
ugly batt from High Prairie Fibers. Mine are the 112 & 110. (I have them here, even though they're not marked sold.) So the red one is on the wheel. I've actually pulled apart the layers, so I have one 2oz. single in red and dark grey, worsted weight. On the wheel right now is another layer which is light grey with green, purple and orange flecks in it. Sock weight. I need to ply it with something to make it more suitable for sock wear. One bobbin is almost full. When I get enough for a pair of socks, I plan to handpaint it in rainbow colors, partly dyed, partly natural, self striping. Pics when the X Man is not sleeping on my lap.

Happy sleep to all of you who've made it this far!

Friday, February 10, 2006

Yes, please!

I love the new LYS. It is a really cool place. Stuffed to the roof with wonderful yarn, in many colors....all of it calling my name of course. Just gorgeous. Lots of antiques trunks, cabinets, tables and stands holding everything. Plus, it's right next door to one of my all time favorite local coffee shops. And they invite you to sit and knit for free, whether you bought it there or not.

For your viewing pleasure: some Lorna's Laces in coral that matches Flames really well. (Imagine me prowling through the yarn at the store with my freshly dyed, still minorly damp skein. Yeah, I did that.) And some Debbie Bliss Cathay for some socks. It's very soft. Silk, microfiber and cotton. Yummy! Size 3 DPNs from the Lakewood Needle Company - they're birch.

Thursday, February 09, 2006

I see you

I know you're out there reading this. You know how I know? I installed a little counter gizmo in the sidebar. Ha! I'm glad you're here. It's nice to know that someone actually reads what I write. Now please, leave me some comments. Nice ones, dull ones, clever ones....anything, really. Just not mean ones. I don't like mean comments.

I'm going on an outing tonight. To my LYS. I've never been there before. There's just never been an LYS before for me to go to. It's actually been around since the summer, but I just now heard about it. Technically, there was one other store that did carry some yarn - just not much of any selection and nothing that I liked. Plus they were mean and wouldn't help me. Just gave me evil stares. Not my kind of place. So tonight is the first night since I found out about it (thank-you google!) that I actually get to go in person. So I'll put the girlies down to bed, hand off the X factor to Nick and out the door I go for fun and frolic in the yarn. Oh, yes. I am excited! My mother - the non-knitter, and incidentally has been to the LYS before me to buy some yarn for me for a Valentines day gift, 15 days early - has been there already. She also gave me the scoop that there is another LYS going in even closer than the one I'm headed to tonight. I guess knitting is becoming super popular. It's going in directly across the street from the new mega $$$ mall.

Maybe one of the two stores will be in the mood to carry some pretty handpaints by a local artist. I think I could help them out with that. Speaking of yarn....

I've been working my booty off this week. I have
a deadline. Today I met my deadline for preview dyeing. The yarns are either drying or getting ready to be exhausted. That means the pictures are not the best. Especially of Midnight. It's setting for color bleed and the colors haven't even been set. Lots more vibrant in person (thanks to the window obscuring the colors directly above.) Sneak peek for all you devoted followers of the blog.

March Choices:



And this is up for sale at Knitteds and Fitteds it's called Sunlit Tropics or something like that.

The colors are actually better at the K&F site. This one looks washed out. I dyed some of this curly mohair in Flames too. That will be up shortly. It's still steaming.

Saturday, February 04, 2006


I have just received some super exciting news....my pattern has been accepted for publication in the upcoming issue of Knitty. Not to be a tease, but I can't tell you what my pattern is until after the new issue is out. So stay tuned.

I can't believe they let me in the effervescent Knitty. And to think that I only submitted it on a whim. (Ok. It took me forever to get the pattern together. Not to mention the photos. The photos were taken in like 6 photo sessions. I kept about 10% of all the photos I took. Some of the photos involved children. 3 children under the age of 2 - you can only imagine the chaos. I really liked the one featuring the Chinese takeout menu. There were no children involved in that photo. I think it's peaceful.)

It's not a garment. It's a small but useful accessory for people of all ages. You'll see it's wonderfullness when it comes out. It's saved me all sorts of undue aggrevation. ;)

www.knitty.com - go see! Even if you're a knitter who doesn't know it yet.