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February 15, 2006

Olympic progress

According to the countdown clock I should be nearly 40% done. I wouldn't exactly say I'm there. I did finish the wrap sweater but instead of going to the intended baby it became a last-minute shower gift for a gal that works in my Grandma's retirement home. Poor kid's husband emptied their bank account, cleaned out the apartment and stole her car leaving her pregnant! What a guy.

The little ladies at the retirement home got together to pool some money and gifts and threw her a shower. I finished up the sweater, made some cleaver baby booties and gave them to Grandma.

I used the booties as an excuse to indulge in some loverly angora. It had to be pretty loverly since I'm allergic to angora. But I suffered through it and had a lot of fun with the pattern. These were the baby booties from Last Minute Knitted Gifts.

This probably isn't news to anyone else but I learned a clever new trick. The pattern starts out having me knit a stitch and slip a stitch all the way across. I didn't see anything special in this. I had what looked like a regular little piece of garter stitched square.

double knitting

Then they had me put the knitted stitches on one needle and the slipped stitches on another needle.

split up stitches

And by golly, when you do that the knitting opens up! And inside is the stockinette stitch piece.


It is magic!

OK, that still entertains me to no end.

So yes, I veered off a bit from the plan. But I'm back on track again. Well, we won't mention the felted fish distraction from last night. I swear, I'm back on my Olympic knitting.

Nature is giving me a little helping hand. After something like 34 days of rain straight we had almost a week of sun and lovely weather. Everything began to bud and I even had daffodils open on my front step.

Yesterday while I was walking the dogs in the morning I couldn't figure out how so much lint got on my sweater. See, I get up really early so it was mostly dark while we were walking and I live in a rural area with no street lights so it came as a bit of a surprise when I tried to pick the lint off my sweater and discovered it was snow!

front porch

The horses didn't seem to mind.

snow in the horse field

And it looked like it wanted to accumulate. But it was gone by the time I got home from work.

snow on the back porch

Speaking of work. I start the new job Tuesday and move this weekend. That may impact the Olympic knitting...

February 10, 2006

Knitting Olympic project up in flames?

Well, in 15 minutes the Knitting Olympics officially start for me. Of course, I'm here at work and can't really drop everything to pick up the needles but as I go into a meeting I'll be thinking of knitting.

Does that count?

Actually, I feel like a bit of a flake because I had originally signed up to make the Peacock Feathers shawl. A kit I bought a few years ago and look longingly at often because I really really want the final product. It will be a technical stretch for me and absolutely a stretch to find the time to do.

But then I started to feel guilty about knitting this for me when I have had a special request from my stepfather's mom for a shawl. She often wears one because she gets cold in restaurants. Since she needs one for warmth I thought I should switch my project to this beautiful Victorian one Elann offers for free.

Isn't it gorgeous? And since she actually requested it I really feel like I need to get going on it for her.

Then I realized that there was no way I was going to finish my birthday knitting duties by torch-lighting time. No. Way.

I have to:

1. make the embossed leaves socks for the Grandmother (who has literally begged me for another pair of socks, wears the one pair I made for her constantly and just had a mastectomy. I'm heartless for not sitting down immediately and showering her with wooly love),

2. finish a sweater for my nephew (requested by his mother),

3. finish the sweater for my nephew's cousin (who was born in December and has yet to receive any wooly tribute from me!),

4. finish the ballet wrap sweater for my Aunt (who lives in England and I just don't get to see enough).

One, two and four are all February birthdays. The 16th, 17th and 27th. So I think out of necessity I have to change my Knitting Olympics project to completing the above projects within the timeline. I know, technically we aren't supposed to have our project started but I just can't get out of these familial obligations.

So I'm looking at it like I've been called to run in the marathon category out of necessity. I think I'm making up for all the rule breaking I'm doing with the shear volume I have to complete.

I do vow to show discipline and only knit on the above projects until they are DONE!

February 07, 2006

Knitting and lacrosse

Portland now has a professional lacrosse team. The Portland Lumberjax. And I think it would be fun if a bunch of knitters went to one of the games as a group.

Anyone want to come along? We can get tickets for $10 and they are pretty good seats. I'll organize to get us all in the same section. Just drop me a note that you want to come along. I was looking at the March 11 game against the Arizona Sting. But there are games coming up if the 11th isn't good for everyone.

If you have never seen a lacrosse game...you should. It is fun and I have never quite figured out what is illegal. They run up and down the field whacking each other with their sticks.

I figure, they play with sticks, we play with sticks...it is a natural match!


February 04, 2006

Wooly love

It has been a weird couple of weeks. Grandma was diagnosed with breast cancer, but if you have to have breast cancer, hers is the best kind of tumor to have. And if you have to have a mastectomy, hers went as well as it can possibly go.

She is doing fantastic. Her spirits are great, she is really enjoying having us around this much and everyone should experience this much smoothness in a crises. All is well in our family.

And then there is the new job thing. Yep, I've got a new job. It is a great career move and I'm very excited about it. It does mean a horrendous commute until I move so I'm all a flutter trying to make that happen as soon as possible.

So knitting-wise it has been feast and famine. A lot of knitting as I wait for doctor appointments with Grandma and as we sat in the hospital recovery room and later at home with her as she recovered. But little to no knitting the rest of the time. I usually knit in the evening as I wind down from the day.

The problem is, I have a lot of birthdays the first of the year. Seven birthdays by the second week of March.

Yeah, I'm behind.

I have all of this to knit:

projects to do

And technically I have to finish it all in the next seven days since I piped up and said I would join in the Knitting Olympics. Lets face it, just finishing all of this is an olympic effort.

What are all these projects? From top left: socks for Grandma, sweater for aunt, sweater for nephew, socks for Mom, socks for brother.

I'm already making adjustments. The socks for the brother have been bagged and now they will probably be the socks for Mom. Brother gets the scarf below:

multidirectional scarf

Yet another multi-directional scarf. But didn't it turn out beautifully? Noro Kuryon color number 55. Yuuuuuuuum! It is really really long because my brother is really really tall.

The socks for Mom may now be bagged (you can see how far along I am and her birthday is in 5 days). She may be getting this scarf instead:

shell scarf

This is Knit One Crochet Too's Paint Box color 09. The colors reminded me of the beach which is my Mom's favorite place. It is just moss stitch with a three-stitch seed stitch border to help the curling. But as you can see it is still curling a lot so who knows how it will turn out.

I also started this for Mom at her request:

spicy drop stitch cardi

There is no way to finish this by her birthday but since she wants it I figure I can get away with "giving" her the unfinished project and then working on it later.


Do I actually even have time to work at this new job?