These are my confessions... (Picture Heavy)

No Glee this week (isn't baseball over yet?) - but I found this clip, which I love...

In a recent rearranging of some furniture I found a bag of unfinished projects. Hoo-boy. Some of these are really, "What Was I thinking?" (in my head it's Christine Lavin - video link). And, "Why aren't the ball bands with the yarn?!"

This was going to be a lengthwise scarf - where you start off casting on 400 stitches and knit only 20 rows? I remember starting this on a school field trip when I was teaching, so it's from 2005 or 2006. Bad idea. Couldn't keep track of the stitches. Frogged. Interesting side note, this summer I bought more of the darker yarn (Classic Elite Premier) from the sale section at a LYS, potentially for Rusted Root.

A Zebra Scarf using Plymouth "Oh My" yarn. I think I will finish this one and gift it to Lorelai in a few years.

I'm pretty sure this is Cherry Tree Hill Suri Alpaca purchased to be a Trellis Scarf, back in April of 2006. Yeah, didn't happen.

Pink-dusty rose soft, fluffy-ish yarn - tried to become a baby bootie. No go.

A soft wool, greens / browns (very similar to my Monkey Socks yarn) started out to be a diagonal knot stich scarf. Frogged.

A sweater. OMG. It needs the seams under the arms done and the picking up of stitches on the fronts fixed - I am sure this is why the sweater was tossed into the bag - I tried to pick up stitches and didn't get enough but I did get puckering. This is something I can save. Sitcom Chic pattern, Cotton Ease yarn - August, 2005.

Clapotis #2. Classic Elite Inca Alpaca yarn. Started in October, 2005. Not sure why I stopped. I think I would like to finish this one.

One glove. With a pointy thumb. WTF? Maybe this will go in a dress up box.

A little bag from April 2005. Sophie? from magknits I think... I think it needs one more handle. And I do have 2 more balls of this ribbon yarn. I should finish it and give it to Lorelai, but it just annoys me.

A noro bag, from 11/2006 - obviously never finished. I don't love this - planning to frog it. I'm sort of done with Noro.

A flower petal washcloth. I don't really like knitting with the cotton chenille, but I think I will finish this one as well.

An Irish hiking scarf. Wool-ease I think, was probably started as a gift. I think this will be frogged - I love cables but that pattern doesn't do it for me anymore.

A Leisel scarf, I think. From July 2006. There's potential here, but with a different pattern. Frogged.

The beginnings of a mouse. I really should finish this and give to Lorelai.

Well, it's out there in the open now. I've owned up to these projects, and I do feel somewhat better having frogged a few things. But I'm dreaming of the next projects that will be on the needles... Same story, different day! Maybe I got tired of blue....?

Batwoman Here.

I almost can't believe I did it! My Batshawl designed by Emilee! One skein of Malabrigo Lace - and I have leftovers!
Wa na na na na na na na - Bat Shawl!

I've yet to remove all the pins to actually try it on, so certainly there will be more photos. Now that I see it pinned out, I think perhaps I should have done one more row of bats - that would have made it just a bit bigger / longer. Luckily, I think the forecast for saturday (when I plan to wear it at the outdoor wedding reception) is 60-ish, so I should be good. Or I could layer it with the satin-y wrap that came with the dress, it's purple, it could work. I'm so proud of this - I finished a project! Almost makes up for the bag of in-progress projects that I found in the yarn room, but that's a whole other post.

All I can think of when I look at the shawl / think about the shawl isn't the original Batman theme, instead it's a clip from "The Wild World of Batwoman" that was on Mytsery Science Theater 3000 - at one point, Batwoman answers the phone, "Batwoman here" - one of the most ridiculous scenes ever, in a very ridiculous movie. Guess which one is her.

Batwoman out.



Originally uploaded by nutmegknitter
Our new favorite distraction - my button jar. It's not a very big collection, and not very valuable (it's full of inexpensive buttons from JoAnns and other craft stores plus whatever buttons come with the clothes), but Lorelai seems to be really into it lately. She will request, "Play with buttons?".

She has her favorites and we practice finding colors. Most of the buttons to her are "Byou" and then "gween" and then maybe "yeh-woah". I get to knit nearby and keep an eye on all those little buttons and she moves them from jar to the floor to her hands to a cup. For added fun I gave her two ice cube trays. 20 - 30 minutes of fairly peaceful playtime.

Lucky for me, my knits of late have not required buttons, but I've got some in my queue (for holiday knitting) that do - I should figure out the button choices now and set them aside. Buttons seem to have a way of just walking off in this house - I still haven't found those other buttons I originally bought for the PrestoChangeO sweater! And now I know about two little legs that are awfully fond of them!


Rhinebeck 2009

I got to have a mini-vacation away this weekend - I went up to visit my brother and sister in law in upstate NY, conveniently located ~45 minutes away from Rhinebeck. Their original plan was to have a party, but in the end with the weather and all it was canceled and instead, on Saturday we all just took it easy and hung out. My other brother and his girlfriend also made an appearance and it was great to just take it easy.

Lucky for me, Virginia is a knitter and she was ready to come along to Rhinebeck and see what all the fiber fuss is about. We went on Sunday - the weather was crap - cold, damp, drizzle, but not downpours and it did sort of clear up. Lamb sandwiches and hot cider also help. I really enjoyed it more this year since I had a better idea of what to expect and was also more familiar with yarns / yardage needed for patterns / what I might like to knit up. I am pleased with my purchases and am also looking over my stash in a new light. VA is also a great knitter to do a yarn crawl with and we should do it more often (hint, hint, VA I'm sure there are great yarn shops near you!!) - we scanned, we shopped (smartly!) and we scored! Why didn't we get a picture of us? Anyway, here's what I did get, minus one pattern - a very cute little cabled baby sweater to use with sock yarn doubled.

Rhinebeck 2009

I bought a copy of "The Itsy Bitsy Spider" for Lorelai - autographed by the author, Iza Trapani, who was very sweet.

Two skeins of peacock colored "Aussie" lace weight merino yarn (so, 600 yards) - possibly another Ishbel, or Sunflower Shawl.

One skein of bulky alpaca yarn for Quincy - or so I thought until I just double checked the yardage (I have 120 yds, that's 30 yds short!) - so maybe February Slippers, Promenade Scarf or Wonky. Hmm. I really thought it would be enough for the Jared Flood hat. Bummer.

One skein (I'm almost wishing I bought more of this) of Delly's Delights Farm Silver Alpaca - sport weight, 600 yards, some of the softest yarn I have ever groped felt. VA and I both bought this yarn, it's luscious. I'm thinking Springtime Bandit...

I found it really interesting that I saw a knit sample of this "Every Way Wrap" and really was taken with it - when I saw it in the magazine I totally was not interested. Now I'm thinking about maybe using some of the yarn from my Tilted Duster or Mom's Hemlock Ring blanket (solid color blue or purple) or some of my Lorna's Laces Green Line Worsted (multi colored, but so was the knit sample). Hm..

Decisions, decisions. After I finish up projects and gift knitting I will be able to get back to my selfish knitting!


Garter Stitch.

Garter Stitch. It's one of those things every knitter starts out with right? I finally took a picture of my first ever knitting project.
My First Knit Project
It was an afghan. Red Heart yarn, cranberry I think is the colorway. This project was made for Dan when we were dating (back in 2002 - we had been dating for 6 years at that point. We're married for 5 years this Nov. No such thing as a blanket curse in my opinion) The "pattern" was from a "Teach Yourself to Knit" - which I did, successfully (and left-handed too!). It's two big garter stitch rectangles, "seamed" together. It almost pains me to look at it and I can't wait to make us a new blanket. But, Dan likes it and it does effectively work (imagine that!) - and even covers the bed!

Sometimes, garter stitch is not all that bad. I've had cowls on the brain this week - maybe because it's getting cooler cold outside, and the scarves are driving me a bit crazy with the long tails. And I wanted a new cowl for Rhinebeck. So, I pulled out yarn I got at Rhinebeck last year (from Jamie Harmon) - bulky yarn, great blue-green-white colors - a few hours, some big needles (even Dan commented - so what gauge are those needles? 13s? He was right!) and Wham, Bam, Thank you Lamb! I've got a new cowl and it's awesome.
Wham Bam, thank you lamb

new cowl

Love. And I'm so buying more of this yarn this weekend!


Time to Decorate

I was waiting on pulling out the Halloween decorations - today seems like a good day to tackle that. We've been given decorations to add to our own stuff this year and they are just sitting on the table. And I made a new little decoration, this little bat:
Bat Cave
He's in a bat cave! No not really, that is a wine holder made out of rock - my brother gave that to us for a wedding present. Great for wine (it will naturally chill the wine if you have it outside) and also great for bats, thank you Matt :)

Test Knit - Bat
Actually this was a super quick test knit project - Little Bat Ornament by FickleKnitter on Ravelry - I used leftover sock yarn (Lenore appropriately) and it could be done in less than a day. Also could be a great finger puppet if you only seam and do not stuff. The pattern is free for the month of October, so go make one or a bunch and you'll have a colony!

Lorelai has her costume, so that's good. Jackson does too actually - he won a ladybug costume, but today I'm playing a bit and made him a chef hat.
My dog is such a good sport!
My dog is such a good sport!
Good thing he doesn't hold a grudge.


Sleepy Sun By Mari Hanson Book Review

Disclosure: This is a Mama Buzz review. The product was provided by Mari Hanson for this review.

Books are a big part of Lorelai's day (yay!) - she will "read" them on her own during the day, we read to her during the day, and of course, we read a few stories at night as part of the bedtime routine. We keep about a dozen books or so in her room and let her choose which ones will be read at night. She has the tendency to pick the same books over and over, so occasionally I will slip in a new book and either I will suggest it or she discovers it. We recently received Sleepy Sun by Mari Priscilla Hanson.

Sleepy Sun Cover

The cover is only a hint of the twenty-three bright, colorful pages that are inside. They are eye catching and the story line, describing the Sun's activities throughout the day and around the world, is written in a gentle cadence that is just right for a bedtime story. The Sun sees all of the world and the illustrations show the global diversity of the people and locations along the way. I really enjoyed how the author still brings the story back to the child that is being read to, the Sun's favorite activity is "...shining in your backyard..."

Mari Hanson

Thank you Mari Hanson for writing such a sweet little book. Lorelai enjoyed reading the story and there are plenty of details in the photos that we can look for in addition to reading the story. I appreciate the opportunity to talk about global diversity with her, even though she's only 22 months. Her grandparents and family do a lot of traveling, so we can talk about family members while we read this story. The book is for children who are toddlers through young children. We are just starting to get into "paper pages" books and this is a good introduction. I could see this being a beautiful board book as well if that was ever an option.

Here's another review for you:
Sleepy Sun Review

"Sleepy Sun" retails for $14.99 on Amazon.com


Sweater Weather.

We're really getting into those "fall in New England" sort of days - cool in the morning and evening, sunny and pleasant during the day. There is rain in the forecast, but that's fine. I'm loving being back in long sleeves and handknit socks. My own sweaters could use a refreshing, so, on to the baby / toddler sweaters!

First up, PrestoChango
"Presto Change-O" FO!
I always wanted this when I was pregnant with Lorelai, but never got around to making it. Dan's cousin recently had a baby (a little girl!) and I was excited to make this for them. Can't beat it - cute, practical - the yarn is Encore - one skein, or maybe one skein plus a few yards from skein #2. The buttons were purchased at WEBS - I decided to stay non-gender specific - these buttons bring out some of the earthy tones in the yarn and it can be used for another baby down the line. I am happy with it, however, I had already purchased buttons for this - a deep green leaf-style - and they are GONE. Can't find them anywhere. So annoying. I do hope those buttons turn up - they were really nice!

Second, I have finished the Peace, Baby sweater for Lorelai.
Sigh. Mommy makes a handknit sweater and what happens? Water works. Oy.
Too big. Again. This is the size 2 - the Lorax is not a big kid, she's not a peanut either. Petite-ish, maybe. Better too big than too small.
I think it could have been a little bit longer, but I can live with it.

Immediately following this photoshoot, I changed her and we had a snack - she was back to all smiles. And hamming it up for the camera.
Snack time - Apples!
Snack time - Apples!
Snack time - Apples!


WEBS Whirlwind

(I really want to be better about turning the computer *off* on the weekends and devote that time to family and knitting (there's a lot to do) so this post is going to be quick and dirty!)

A few weeks back, a fellow ravelry, Rchrispy earburned me that she would be out on the East Coast and was planning a trip to Webs!. I haven't been to Webs since May, 2007 - I was due for a return trip. Peacefulknitter was also ready for a road trip to Webs, so off we went!

I tried to be very project specific - I needed buttons for a baby sweater (since the last ones I bought have disappeared! grrr), yarn for a Christmas present, and I really wanted to see the Spud & Chloe yarns in person. I did pretty well in sticking to my list (buttons check! Spud & Chloe yarn check! Christmas present yarn, no go they didn't carry it)... and then of course I added to it.
Made in Brooklyn pattern booklet, a Spud & Chloe pattern, Natural Knits for Babies and Toddlers, and 101 Stitches to Knit box of pattern cards.

IMG_8491 IMG_8495 IMG_8496
Bulky yarn... I felt like I have queued a bunch of patterns that needed solid colored bulky yarn - so this should help for a while to make a hat for lorelai (or a head band / ear warmer for me), the Spud & Chloe pattern, and then something else.

I also picked up some Berroco Peruvia as I've had really good luck with that for felting projects. It's a great shade of green that didn't photograph too well.

Mal-Gal MeetUp!
Here we all are - Malabrigo Junkies unite! I was quite impressed by the knowledge these ladies have - they were talking plies and weights and subtle shades of colors and to say they know the colors of malabrigo is an understatement. I think I'm a freshman in malabrigo junkie world - I do love it, so that's a start! :)

And there was a random meeting, not entirely surprising at a huge knitting shop in New England. We were waiting to check out and talked with a guy knitting this really neat hat - after talking to him for a minute or so, it turns out that the guy was Guido of It's a Purl, Man podcast!

Of course, now I just want to start up umpteen new projects. Instead I'm going to try and exhibit *some* self control and work on a few projects today that should result in finished objects, always a good thing!


It's in the bag.

Knitting bags
I pulled out the knitting project bags that usually sit near my computer the other day in an attempt to neaten up that space. I found lots of needles and yarn that needed to be put away. And, no surprise, I got a reality check on how many WIPs I've got going on right now.

I can't tell you what's in the blue Vera Bradley bag in the middle of that pile. Random side note: that bag was a grad school graduation gift on behalf of my grandmother - she sent a check and I decided to invest in a real knitting bag. It's one of my bigger bags, love it for all the pockets inside, and there's no zipper or velcro to catch any yarn on. Anyway, the project in there is a gift, and the recipient reads this, so it's staying put away. But I'm working on it.

The orange bag, to the right of the vera bag, also contains projects I can't share with you. I'm working on some test knitting for...."a new magazine, called Historic Needlework that will be focusing on various types of vintage needlework, of which knitting is one!. The first issue will be published sometime before the end of the year through magcloud.com, an on-line print on demand resource. The publication date will be dependent on how soon we have all the pattern samples tested and completed." Kinda nifty, right? And so far so good - I'm working on two scarves (and a third is resting - I'm not wild about the colors / yarn I started it in). I found out about this through Ravelry - great opportunities and connections! Here is a link to the Rav group if you are interested in test knitting some of the vintage patterns - some are still open!

So, if you are still reading, you might think I've got nothing to show other than a pile of bags on my couch. Not true poppets! The skull bag to the left of the vera bradley bag is my go-to knitting bag. That's the bag with my notions, my SnB stuff, the bag with my ravelry "My Name is " button. I'll probably have that bag with me at Rhinebeck (2 weeks!!) and Stitches (if I can get there). What's inside?

A sweater in progress - Trellis and Vine is actually becoming a sweater! I can barely believe it, but I tried it on yesterday:
Sweater KAL WIP
And I divided for the sleeves / body at SnB last night -
Sweater KAL WIP
I can see my mistakes in the cables, but they are consistent, so I'm going to live with it (this sweater is for me! I can do what I want with it.) This had been hibernating for a while because it was hard to tell the progress, but now I am looking forward to moving on with it!

There's another project in the bag as well:
Bat Shawl in progress
My Bat Shawl - 3 bats down so far... I love this Malabrigo lace that I'm using for it - so fantastic! I need to get moving on this one - I keep hearing how big it turns out and I need to be sure I have time for all the knitting and blocking!

I've just realized that there is another bag over here at my computer that didn't make it into the group shot. And probably there will be another bag (or several) to add in the next few days - I've gotten bitten with startisis and am looking at a trip to WEBS this weekend...
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