Thursday, January 31, 2008

You make my day!

The very lovely Lara over at Yarn It! gave me this little award which totally made my day! I am sure most of you have seen it somewhere. These little bloggy chain letters of sorts always give me the warm fuzzies. I am one of those gushy people that love to see random acts of kindness- I get a thrill knowing that a simple act really can make a difference in someone's life. Besides, I have found some of the best blogs through these.

Anyway, the rules are to give the award to up to 10 people whose blogs bring you happiness and inspiration and make you feel so happy about Blogland! Let them know by posting a comment on their blog so that they can pass it on. Beware! You may get the award several times!


I know that is 12, but they all make my day, and they all deserve to know! Thanks so much ladies for all the inspiration, laughs, happiness and even the tears! Who makes your day?

Thursday, January 24, 2008

a plague upon my house

earaches, pink eyes, headaches, sore throats, fevers, congestion,vomiting, runny noses, sore noses from all the nose blowing (even with the Kleenex with aloe and lotion)... We are all pitiful. I just have two words for anyone suffering from the same afflictions- nasal irrigation. It may sound kooky or gross, but ahhhh the sweet relief if brings. When I first mentioned it to The Girl Wonder she looked at me like I had two heads. After she tried it she asked me to leave everything out so she could do it if she woke in the middle of the night. Much better than the crazy cold meds that make us weepy and irritable.

Ok, Ok, enough of the pity party.

In my first post this year, I mentioned that I did not want to start any new projects until I finished what was on the needles...Well, apparently just typing those words were enough to make projects jump on my needles! The release of the Babette Blanket pattern on the Interweave Knits site encouraged me to buy the pattern, frog my previous squares and restart the pattern. My 'winging it' version just wasn't quite working out. I am thrilled with the results so far! And have already completed as much as I had before. (Technically, this is not a new project.)
I have also started the Feather and Fan Shawl from A Gathering of Lace. I really love the Hemlock Blanket everyone seems to be knitting these days, but liked the center motif from the Feather and Fan. It is the first thing I have knit from the book (although I have looked at it many, many times) and so far I am really happy with the results. I actually frogged my Rusted Root and am using the yarn from that to knit the shawl (size 6 US needles). I figure it will be a nice little lap blanket come spring. Besides, I only wore Rusted Root one time (for my little bloggy) and knew I would not wear it again. It was a bit too short, the neckline flared a bit and the sleeves were not poofy like I wanted. Also, it was a bit itchy.

I also knit a wee baby hat for the local hospital. Back in November, my former neighbor (who happens to attend church with my parents) came over and brought me 6 skeins of yarn and the patterns the hospital accepts for the newborns. I was sleeping off way too many martini's from the night before when the doorbell rang. I threw on my robe and stumbled to the door. Just as I invited the sweet retired neighbor inside I realized how hungover I was (very, very, veryveryvery hungover). She was just talking and talking and my head was pounding, my stomach was churning and I started to blackout. That was when I realized I was going to be sick. I quickly told the sweet lady I was going to be sick and stumbled to the bathroom leaving her standing in the living room listening to me hurl. She let herself out, with hardly a thank you for her kind gesture. I not only wanted to die because I felt as if I had been hit by a vodka truck, but I was so embarrased that this sweet lady was witness to all of it. I felt so bad I called her later to apologize for my behaviour... That being said 6 skeins of yarn will make bunches of baby hats (with matching booties and mitts).

I have completed the first clue of Secret of the Stole 2. ( laceweight color cinnabar from frogged Lovely Lacy Shawl. 3.25mm needles) DK did not disappoint this time round either. So far I love the pattern and can't wait for more clues.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Best. Cupcakes. Ever.

The Girl Wonder had a hankering for something sweet last night, so I promised to make cupcakes today. I found the recipe for these on my favorite food blog Cupcake Bakeshop.
They are Devil’s Food Cupcake with Chocolate Buttercream and probably the best I have had in years! They were super easy to make and oh so easy to eat. The cake has a wonderful texture and not too sweet, just perfect for the sweeeeet buttercream. I added a pinch of salt to the cake recipe and a half teaspoon of vanilla to the icing.

Good thing I did not make a resolution to lose the weight I gained over the holidays, because these are too good to resist! I thought ahead and only made half the recipe so there are fewer cupcakes for me to devour while the kiddos are in bed.

2007 Finished Objects

Friday, January 11, 2008

Fan Bookmark Scarf

The FO's are off to a great start in 2008... I have been tickled about everything that has come off the needles and this little crochet scarf is no exception. Originally, I was just using this yarn (Knit Picks Shine- Cloud) to see if I could follow the instructions for this little bookmark- I thought they would make cute gifts. After completing a few repeats, I realized that I could follow the pattern and it would make a cute scarf. I had just enough yarn to complete 25 repeats of the pattern to make the fan bookmark scarf length. The Gaming One refers to it as a 'decoration' because 'a scarf with holes in it' is useless...

Decoration or not, it does keep me warm and I think it looks cute as well! I attached a shank button to a safety pin and held both to the inside of the scarf. I then used the holes as buttonholes and inserted the button through all layers- easy peasy no sew button!

Project details at Ravelry.

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Cashmere Swallowtail Shawl

The prayer shawl for my Mom's friend is finished. Although the actual knitting was a dream, I was not prepared for how breathtaking the shawl would be when finished. I actually gasped when I first picked it up. Blocking is a special kind of magic. The shawl is so very heavenly soft and delicate.
Since Mom offered to cover the cost of the yarn, I suggested it should be knit from cashmere, you know, so it will be extra soft and snuggly. This certain shade of blue (the color in the top photo is the true shade) beckoned me from Sarah's Yarns. It just happened to be 100% Pure Luxury 2-Ply Mongolian Cashmere and perfect for the shawl I wanted to knit. (I will have a shawl knit from this!) All told it took about three weeks to knit. I probably could have knit it in two weeks if Christmas was not happening at the same time. I have a small favor to ask...go over to Flickr and send Mrs. Strawn some healing wishes. I am planning to send her the link to the Flickr site so she can experience the good nature of all knitters. I would really appreciate it and I am sure she will too!I knit five extra repeats of the Budding Lace 2 pattern and left off the nupps. They were taking entirely too long. I would still be knitting them if I had left them in the pattern. Nonetheless, I believe this is the most beautiful thing I have ever knit.
See Ravelry for project details. (I am sorry if you can't access Ravelry yet. I will be happy to answer any questions.)

Monday, January 07, 2008

Princess Hat

sans princess... She was a bit uncooperative overwhelmed and did not want to pose for a picture at her party.

I really don't care if the birthday girl likes this or not (although I hope she enjoys it) this was a purely selfish knit. I have wanted to knit it since I first saw it (sadly after my own little princess was a bit too old for it). It took about two days to knit. I am still not sure about the fur at the bottom of the hat and would probably leave it off if I were to knit it again. This was huge before felting! It shrunk about 10 inches from top to bottom and lost about 6 inches in the head opening.

pattern: Magic Hat from Knitty Gritty
yarn: Patons Classic Wool Merino (Royal Purple) 1 skein and 1 yd. of second skein. Less than one skein Lion Brand Fun Fur (white) for trim.
needles: US10.5- circs and dpn's

Saturday, January 05, 2008

Where has the time gone?!

Happy 2008 Y'all! The past few weeks have been a blur with all the Christmas and New Year's festivities. Christmas was the most relaxed that I have had in 20 years. Everything just fell into place and I did not once have the feeling that I needed to be everywhere at once. On Dec. 26 I packed up all the decorations, took down the tree and threw away all the wrapping paper and packaging from the kiddos presents. The Gaming One was very surprised when he got home from work and everything was back to normal.

With all the festivities (and baking and truffle making) I was just too tired to knit. I am ten rows away from finishing the Swallowtail Shawl, so I should have that to show y'all in a few more days. I also have finished a little something for my niece's birthday but want to take a few pictures of her with it (on Sunday) before I blog about it.

I am anxiously awaiting the beginning of Secret of the Stole II on January 18. You should all go right now and sign up. If the first secret stole (the 51 page pattern is available here) was any indication, this one should be just as good! DK the Nautical Knitter writes fantastic patterns and just seems to be an all around nice person (and there are prizes! Who doesn't like prizes?!)

Other than that I plan on finishing up all my projects on the needles before starting anything else. The list is not too long, but should keep me busy for some time.
  • Swallowtail Shawl
  • Modified Somewhat Cowl
  • Babette Blanket
  • Fish afghan
  • kitchen rug
  • garterlac dishcloth

I wish you all a Happy and Healthy New Year! May your needles be draped in cashmere (except for you vegans- may your needles be draped in a lovely bamboo or organic cotton), may you never drop a stitch, misread a pattern, or spill a staining drink in your knitting bags!