Thursday, February 21, 2008

Random Stuff

I suddenly noticed what a bad blogger I've been, not having written a word in a week. But we did have some excitement, some illness, and finally, some sweater progress.

This past weekend my youngest sister was up from Texas with her husband and 2yo son. It's been five years since she's been up this way, so none of us had met the little guy yet. Let me just say that a grand time was had by all. At one point, in my poor parent's house, there were a total of 5 children under the age of six. All boys. You can imagine the chaos. I thought my poor mother was going to have a complete breakdown! She had all girls, you see, so is just not used to the kind of pandemonium created by 5 little boys.

But it was nice to see everyone, even if all the chaos was a bit much for me, as well. My grandmother and I had a nice time together. She's in her 90s, mostly deaf, has glaucoma *and* cataracts, and is pretty frail. We sat in the kitchen and I pulled out my knitting. I'd forgotten that Nana used to be quite the knitter, but since her eyesight started going and the arthritic kicked in, she had to give it up. She sat there, enthralled, holding the other end of the knitting in her hands, just patting it, while I knit away. I know she can't see much, but her eyes were on those clicking needles the whole time. I can't imagine what it must be like to have to give up something you love like that.

We got home Sunday evening and by Tuesday I had the Toddler Plague. I don't know how kindergarten teacher's survive the school year. Just being in the room with them for two days put me away. Fever, chills, cough - the whole nine yards. Poop.

But it did give me a chance to catch up on some knitting. I finished Kyle's present (so send me your address and I'll get it right out to you!) and got some progress done on my Rogue.

Now it's back to work. Bah humbug.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

So it's Valentine's Day...

... go to CairoKate's blog and do something nice.

CairoKate is one of my downstreams for Knit It Forward. Her (terribly handsome) baby brother, Robbie, is just beginning his fight against leukemia, and Kate is asking for donations to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society in his honor. A whole pile of wonderful fiber people have been donating prizes to the cause, so be sure to check newer posts on her blog for photos and details. She's running the drive through Sunday, February 24, so if you're so inclined, please go by and drop a few dollars in the kitty. Hey, it's tax season - make your accountant happy and start making those tax deductible donations early for next year. ;-)

Sunday, February 10, 2008

A great day for knitting

Today in New England we're enjoying a Weather Sampler Platter of rain, hail, snow, sunshine, and gale force winds. What fun! A day of uninterrupted knitting!

I sat down this morning, bound and determined to finally finish the body of Rogue. I'd been putting it off due to issues with one of the multiple increase stitches but I sat down this morning and, with Julia's notes in hand (thanks dahling!), I finally got it done.

I seamed the shoulders using the Woven Shoulder Seam from
The Knitter's Book of Finishing Techniques by Nancie Wiseman. I carry this book in my knitting bag wherever I go. It's indispensable. And the seams came out great!

Hmmm... I guess it's safe to take out those lifelines now, eh? ;-) I use lots of lifelines, even in sweaters, because of my math impairment. No matter how clear the instruction are (and the notes for this sweater are quite comprehensive) at some point I will have the wrong number of stitches on the wrong row. Guaranteed. Fortunately, I've learned to be more relaxed with my knitting and figure that as long as I have the right number of stitches and the right number of rows in the end, it's not quite so important how I got there. If I have 22 stitches 4 rows before I'm supposed to on the shoulder, I'll just keep knitting in plain stockinette until the number of rows agrees with the pattern. This is knitting, not brain surgery. Don't Panic.

The real test was trying it on, and it fits great. I'm very, very pleased. Now on to the hood!

In other knitting news I've finished another Lizard Ridge panel and have made good progress on Kyle's Knit it Forward gift. I even think I have a good idea for each of the ladies on my list - I'll cast on for one of their's later this week.

I can't show you Kyle's, obviously, but here's the panel:

The Spring issue of Interweave Knits arrived in Friday's mail and, beyond some intriguing ads and Julia's fabulous Ravelings column at the back, I was unimpressed. I think it's just me - I am always stumped by what I could possibly knit that would be spring or summer compatible. The Bleeding Hearts Stole is very nice, but the other sweaters and tops are just know...

....young... *sigh*

Possibly I am just a terrible old fart when it comes to patterns. I despise 3/4 sleeves, and anything cropped just looks sad on a 40-something. Well, at least on this 40-something. I feel like those 80-year-old ladies who just can't give up dying their hair black. Just pathetic. I think I'll stick with my cabled sweaters and just knit socks or something for the summer months. Maybe a nice lightweight mobious cowl for chilly evenings. I don't like wearing sleevless things anyways... if I'm not worrying that my arms look fat, I'm burning to a crisp from the sun. If I could just get all those freckles to cooperate with one another and turn into a nice, even tan.

Bah. Humbug.