Friday, August 31, 2007

Stitch Markers.......

Told you I'd been extra-curricular crafting. Some fab-o stitch markers. I've been wanting to make some for a long time now, just trying to figure out how. Then I saw these beads at Joann's and knew they were perfect. The middle ones are all about the knitting. The tiny ones say "I {> 2 knit". Too cute.

Watch an Etsy store near you to buy them soon.....

I took the boys to meet their teachers at school today. Both of them have friends in their classes that we already know. Matt was crying when we had to leave. This bodes well for my swift departure next Wednesday. I CANNOT WAIT.

Finally, a rare humorous treat. I had to post a picture of an ad we received in the mail yesterday from a local realtor. I hope you laugh as much as I did. Read it slowly and carefully to be sure not to miss it.......

Wednesday, August 29, 2007


A totally self-indulgent post today. We had a new baby this morning in our family. Cousin Q for Teddy and Matt. And so began the artwork. Congratulation sticker pictures for the new little man, followed by "the Rocket".

It was SO much fun. Everyone enjoyed putting it together and decorating it. Do the boys look proud?

See the eggcarton pieces? They are bug-catchers.

We ran out of glue and had to make a Target run. Of course, we couldn't just leave with glue and a congratulations new baby boy card. Here's Teddy's loot: Goldfish and a box of Nascar bandaids. He HAD to have the bandaids after he fell over and cut the inside of his elbow. $2 well spent, I assure you.

Matt is sticking stickers to his hair. I warned him about this earlier when he got distressed by the first lot he stuck in there.
Will the boy ever learn?

Here is Teddy's first proper picture, that he coloured last week. See the sky, grass, tree, person and duck pond?
Impressed? I know I am.
Biased? I know I am.

Knitting blog? Oh yeah.
Well, you know Barbie has occupied my last few days. But I have been making progress on the Log Cabin Blanket. I have started making striped sections with the dark and light dyelots. I love this pattern. It just p's me off when I have to cast off, then pick up all those stitches every section. Could I not just leave them on a stitch holder?
So far, for my own reference 14 1/2 sections completed. I photographed it against the sofa it will be a throw for. I hope it's not too light. I don't think so.
I have to work tomorrow night, but rest assured I have more extra-curricular crafting projects to report on Friday.....
Happy knitting....

Tuesday, August 28, 2007


Another creation for Barbie. A cute little tube dress, funked up with some camo yarn. I added an eyelet to the top and threaded a ribbon through to make it a halter. She looks quite pleased.

I also made her a little bag. Teddy helped me choose the button. We had a lot of fun this afternoon sorting through my button box, finding matching buttons and putting them on safety pins. He loved it - he'll be a crafter yet.
Tomorrow, he wants to make a spaceship, inspired by today's episode of Charlie & Lola. Today he decorated a plastic tomato carton. Who knows what it will be when the glue is dried tomorrow. Guesses on a postcard to......

Monday, August 27, 2007

Barbie and the Boys

As a child I never had a Barbie doll. I know, can you believe it?! I may be the only girl ever.

One of Teddy's little girl friend's had a birthday party a week or so ago. I was seduced by the pink aisle in Target and couldn't resist buying her a Barbie and a couple of outfits. I chose the least slutty of the outfits on the shelf. It was difficult, because they were all pretty tacky.

So, imagine my excitement on finding this book in Joann's that very same weekend. I had to have it. And with a 40% off voucher, not a bad deal to boot :-) Next stop, Target to buy my very own 'model'. Ballerina Barbie. She came with a shiny ballet dress and shoes whose colour I can only describe as 'Barbie pink'.

See, she feels the fall coming, so is cozying up to my fall lantern in her new shawl collar coat, handknit by me. I used DB Alpaca Silk DK and it only took me two days to knit. It probably took as long to seam and sew in the ends as it did to knit.

Some closeups. Isn't she pretty? What fun, even if it's 30 years too late.

I now have 3 neices (or is it nieces?) and a bunch of Teddy's girlfriends. I HAVE to make all the outfits in the book. I HAVE to.

And here's a piccy of the boys, taken when it was raining this afternoon. We got the brollies when we were home in the UK (of course!). They love to put them up in the house, which gives me shivers as I think it might be bad luck.
Seriously though, how could these two cuties be bad luck?

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Embossed Leaves - part I

I finally finished my first embossed leaves sock. I absolutely love the yarn and the pattern too.

I really like the pattern because there always was something different to do to keep it interesting (i.e not too many straight pattern repeats - yawn).

Here are some pics - they don't show off the colours too well........ I'm glad I took this pic of the second skein before I wound it. I think this might be my favourite colour combo ever. So far.

I just switched the TV on and Martin Bashir's interview with Princess Diana is on. It seems like a lifetime ago when she died, and I think this interview was filmed not too long before her death. She was so incredible, it is sad that she never knew how incredible we all thought she was. What a terribly sad time for our country and for me too - I remember crying lots. Lots.

I think she would be proud of her boys.

Speaking of her boys. Mine are going to school in 10 days time. Tick tock, tick tock...,..

We haven't had a picture of them in a while, have we. I'll see what I can do next time.

Happy weekend.

Monday, August 20, 2007

Monkey Bear

Remember that mess'o'crap from last week? Well, here it is finished and assembled. It is the sock monkey hat from

Instead of using the chunkier yarn suggested, I used Lion Brand's wool-ease and a smaller needle (5.5mm) and the hat turned out just the right size for a small child's head. In this case, our friend, JP, who was 1 last week.

Happy Birthday little man. :-)

Sunday, August 19, 2007

I got those blues......

This is a post for Lisaknits, over on the knittyboard. She wanted to know what people had knit with Denim yarn. Here are the two sweaters I've made with Rowan Denim. Patterns are both from the 'denim people' book by Rowan. The dark one I made for me, the lighter one I made for my DH. Maybe one day he'll wear it!!!!

Don't we look sweet together?!

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

wip update

Yesterday, while the boys were napping, I picked up the embossed leaves sock and started on the lace pattern. I could not put it down. What a simple and beautiful pattern. The yarn colours are so pretty too.

I have worked a good bit the past week on the log cabin blanket. You can see the different dye lot colours really clearly in this picture - even better than in real life! They definitely need to be mixed up a bit. I love the overall effect though - the texture and the colours too.

I have worked a little bit on Clapotis too. I dropped the third stitch. I can see already that it will need a really good blocking to straighten it out and pretty it up too.
And what the heck is this mess'o'crap, I hear you say. Tune in tomorrow folks for the finished product. It's for a one-year-old. It will be cute :-)

Friday, August 10, 2007

Blue Sky Blue Tank

Here she is, completed this afternoon and put straight on to wear (despite the revealing 'hipster' pants - apologies for the little bit of tummy hanging out). I just couldn't wait to show it off.

Pattern: Fitted Tank by Blue Sky Alpacas

Yarn: Dyed Cotton by Blue Sky Alpacas

Colour: 632 Mediterranean

I knit a gauge swatch for this piece - the yarn and pattern were part of a gift from my knitster, Irishgirlie, so I didn't want to mess it up. I got the same stitch gauge, but the row gauge was a tiny bit off. Well, I think stitch gauge is most important - you can adjust the no. of rows the pattern calls for using a measuring tape, right.

And I think it turned out really well. I intend this to be an incentive to lose some weight (see my last post). Look at the chest of the girl in the pattern photo, and compare to my, erm, rather fuller chest. It will look better on me after a few of those excess pounds are gone. (I have power-walked every day this week since the doc's visit - I feel good about it).

The pattern called for 3 skeins for the 351/2 inch bust, but I only used 2 and still have a little left of that second. So if someone on Ravelry could look me up a pattern that uses 1 and a bit skeins of BSA Cotton....... :-)

And just because it's Friday, here is some gorgeous yarn I bought at my LYS closing down sale a couple of weeks ago. Fiesta La Luz, 100% silk, 2oz/210yds. This is the most expensive yarn I've ever bought for half-price. Oh lucky me.

I got 3 skeins of Vanilla Bean,

one skein of Lichen
and one skein of La Luz Multi in Painted Desert.

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

No Pics For You....

No pictures today. I'm too busy knitting this past week and haven't had time today to take any - it's too dark out now. So I guess this post can just be for my own reference as to where my WIPS stand.

Clapotis - I have dropped the second stitch. I am so pleased with this piece. It is going to be so cosy. The yarn is definitely ginger rather than its chocolate name. That's ok, ginger I like.
Blue Sky Tank - I'm knitting this in the round. I've finished the main body and am working straight on the back now, about 6 or 8 rows in. Very pleased with the look of this too.
MD Log Cabin Blanket - excellent progress on this. I started one of the different dyelot balls. It is definitely noticably different. I have knit the full four blocks around the full colour. I'm going to try to mix it up with the main dyelot yarn with a block here and there and a few striped blocks too. That should even out the colour difference a bit.
Falling Leaves Sock - no progress. I want to make some progress, but am enjoying the above 3 knits so much.
Grow With Me for Gracie - No progress. I read on the knittyboard that there are some mistakes in this pattern and people are having difficulty with the bodice. Maybe I won't bother with this for a good while, and perhaps it will get corrected so I don't have to think too hard about it.

I am a horrible procrastinator. This week I decided to just knit when I felt like I wanted to or had a few minutes to. Usually I would think to myself, no! there are dishes to put in the washer, laundry to put in the machine, the table to wipe, or a million of the other mundanities I do every day, then procrastinate around those tasks for a while. So I have gotten a lot more knitting done than usual. And guess what? The dishes still ended up in the washer, the laundry still got put in the machine, the table got wiped (eventually), etc. Procrastinate no more, knit more.

I went to the doctor this week for a checkup. Every time I have been this year, my weight has increased. I'm now over 160lbs, which at 5'2" isn't really where I want to be. In my defense we had been to Ruth Chris' Steakhouse the evening before, celebrating my MIL's birthday. But I guess that doesn't account for the other 35lbs of extra weight. She told me to eat right and exercise and not make excuses (it's too hot to walk the boys in the stroller, is kind of my fallback). Last night we had turkey and veg for dinner. Tonight we had turkey burgers and salad (I skipped the cheese slice on top). This morning I put the boys in the stroller and went for a walk around our nieghbourhood. They didn't complain until we were almost home. I guess the excuses just stopped. I love my doctor's straight talking attitude. She's awesome.

Talking with my MIL and her brother today, I told them my overweight problem. They were surprised I divulged the number. Why is it so sacred?

Wow, blogging is really quick with no pics.....

Happy knitting...... and dieting....... and exercising.

Disco :-)

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

NYC pr0n

Last Thursday, DH and I went for a quick weekend in New York City. It really was a huge treat for both of us. We stayed at the Waldorf Astoria and I have to say OMG, what a fabulous, opulent hotel. I loved the whole roaring twenties vibe of the decor. If I could go back to one time in history, that would be it.

On Friday night we ate at Gordon Ramsay at the London NYC Hotel. Another OMG. The BEST food I've ever tasted. I was so pleased we got in last minute. We've eaten at some very good London restaurants, but never a Ramsay restaurant. Next trip we definitely will be.

I got most of Friday to myself during the day, so of course, I had to visit a couple of yarn stores and where better to go than my favourite part of Manhattan, 'the village'.

On my last visit, late last year, I missed out on Purl NYC, so was determined to check it out this time. I already bought a load of amazing yarn at the LYS closing down sale last week, so I really only wanted to get a couple of skeins of yarn I hadn't seen or sampled before.

So here we have 3 fabric cuts from Purl Soho's fabric store and some pale green O-wool from their yarn store.
Here's a closeup. It is 100% certified organic merino, 50g/198 yds. I'm thinking this might make a warm pair of winter socks. For someone. I got 2 skeins so hopefully that'll be enough.

After browsing Purl, I wandered over to The Point for a wander through their yarns, coffee, a bite of lunch and a sit & knit. Again, none of their full price yarns grabbed me by the throat (although there was a cheeky skein of Colinette Jitterbug that kept calling my name the whole of my visit), but there were a couple of exciting things in the sale bin.
First, Adrienne Vittadini Celia which is 100% silk, 25g/109yds. A ball each in this pretty pink and chocolate brown. I'm thinking that combined they might make a light airy scarf.

And this hank of gorgeousness is Twisted Sisters' Voodoo in Black Gold. It is 50% silk/50% merino wool, 50g/95yds. I snagged 5 skeins and have no idea what to do with it. It is very beautiful and oh-so-soft though.

The highlight of last weekend? Teddy's 4th birthday. He had a wonderful party at a local indoor playground with a bunch of his school and playgroup buddies, and loved his Cars the Movie cake (for the 2nd year in a row!)
Happy birthday to our big boy :-)

I WIP'd it good.......

.......if casting on 4 big new projects in the last 7 days is good, that is.

I cast on this Fitted Tank in Blue Sky Alpacas Dyed Cotton on the plane to New York last Thursday evening. I knit all the way to JFK, and loved every second of it. The yarn is very soft and smooth, easy to knit with. And quick too.

I finished knitting the skein in the coffeeshop of The Point. I had a great time in the store. The lady working on Friday was a riot and other customers were chatty and nice to me. I wasn't persuaded by any of their full-price yarn, but I did pick up a couple of bargains - manana :-)

Here's the malabrigo clapotis I started on the plane back from NYC. I didn't have any stitch markers with me, so I used the cast on tail until I got home - it was a little confusing, but not as frustrating as not knitting. I'm almost finished the increases and am totally digging this pattern - Love it! The yarn is heavenly too. The colour is a little lighter than this photo - in the sunlight it even looks ginger. Spicy.

Even with two fabulous projects on the needles, I couldn't wait anymore to cast on the Koigu KPPPM I got a while back. I sent some to the lovely Irishgirlie as part of our special summer swap and we decided to make the Embossed Leaves Socks from Interweave Knits Winter 2005 issue. I cast on this morning and got the first ribbing done. I loved this colour on the skein and I love it even more knitting it up. It has so many delicate, pretty shades in it.

Here's a closeup. So pretty - blue, green, purple, pink, brown. Just gorgeous. I learned the 1x1 rib cast on too. Bonus :-)

Something else I couldn't wait to cast on today. The Log Cabin Blanket from Mason Dixon Knitting. Using the Cotton Chenille from my previous post. I just love this pattern too. It's so easy and quick too. ooh, I love a quick knit right now.

Oh, and what's this? A felted pillow? Why yes, it is. I finally got round to felting this thing. It remains a WIP as I have to sew some sort of closure and I can't decide what. It shrank A LOT more than I thought it would during the felting process. Maybe next time I shouldn't leave it in for the whole wash cycle.
Here's a closeup. You can still see the uneven stitches, but I think it's a lot better than unfelted. To my eye, anyway :-)

All in all, I'm pretty excited with my knitting right now.