Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Sewing for Dollars II

Oh how I love to finish things. Witness:

You may not be able to tell, but that's a pile of money laying on my family room carpet. Well, really it's Shoo Blue Fly by Nancy Odom (P&B Textiles, for anyone interested in that stuff). I believe the collection is called "Gather Sunshine." But it will turn into a (small) pile of Christmas cash for me once I hand it in tomorrow.

Here is a closeup of the blocks:

The colors are a little more true here.

I am quite proud of how this quilt top came out. I took my time squaring up the blocks and trimming the top before adding the borders. Usually I don't have the patience for that and I just wing it when it's for me or someone who doesn't know anything about quilting. But when it's going to hang in a store for the world to see, I take my time.

Here's hoping the boss likes it.

Monday, November 28, 2005

Sewing for Dollars

Nothing exciting to talk about today. Just working at the first Dancing sock (turned the heel and just started the gusset). I really have to take advantage of Daughter's naps today to work on the quilt I'm supposed to be making for money. It occurs to me that it is almost December 1st and if I want some Christmas money, I have to get this project turned in. So far only 2 blocks of 12 are finished and that's just no good.

The happy news is, it's in the high 50s here today and tomorrow, so all the mounded up snow is melting and we will be able to get to our mailbox without walking in the street. I can actually get to my car without risking death! I would love to go somewhere.

But, duty calls.

Off to the sewing machine!

Saturday, November 26, 2005


I am so amazing. I finished a whole gift in like, less than 2 days!

Ok, it's not so amazing, really. The hat and mittens, for my girlfriend's son, are worsted weight (Plymouth Encore) so they were fast. But the socks, for her daughter, are teeny little Knitpicks Dancing, which does not go so fast. On the bright side they are for a 6 year-old, so they are going more quickly than adult socks would. Does anyone have a 6 year-old girl around? Could you measure her ankle? I have cast on 52 stitches and this yarn stretches a ton, but I am worried they will be too small.

This weekend will be spent visiting family and weatherproofing the house (putting lovely plastic sheets on the windows, etc.) so I don't know how much knitting will get done. Hopefully Daughter will at least nap semi-well amid the chaos and I can power through one of these socks.

Friday, November 25, 2005

Free Pattern

As promised on the Holiday Gifts Knitalong, here is the Thumbless Mitten pattern. I used Daughter as the model for size and she has very long fingers, so you may want to knit fewer rows when knitting the hand portion. Measure your baby's hand from the wrist to the tip of the middle finger and go from there! Also, these were knitted tightly on US 6 needles to create a dense fabric for warmth.

Size: 6-12 months

Yarn: worsted weight wool or wool blend (I used Plymouth Encore)

Needles: US size 6 dpns

Cast on 30 stitches and divide evenly over 3 needles.

Join, being careful not to twist.

Knit 4 rounds in seed stitch.

Knit 12 rounds even (K every round).

Decrease for wrist:
(K1, K2 together) around (20 stitches)

Purl 4 rounds.

Increase for hand:
(K2, inc. 1) around (30 stitches)
Hint - pick up the bar between stitches to increase, and knit through the back loop to prevent a hole.

Knit 24 rounds even (or fewer if your baby has smaller hands).

(K4, K2 together) around (25 stitches)
(K3, K2 together) around (20 stitches)
(K2, K2 together) around (15 stitches)
(K1, K2 together) around (10 stitches)
(K2 together) around (5 stitches)

Cut yarn and draw up through remaining stitches.

Weave in all ends.

Please knit and enjoy this pattern, but please do not use it for profit. Thank you!

Thursday, November 24, 2005

And an FO in a Pear Tree

Christmas FO number one:

Awesome! Turns out you can knit a whole baby hat while watching an evening of TV. I whipped this baby out while watching House and SVU. I knit a whole heckuva lot faster when watching Hugh Laurie. I heart him.

I have also started the first thumbless mitten to go with the hat. If anyone wants an easy pattern for thumbless mittens knitted with worsted weight, I will be happy to post the one I made up.

I think I can grab a shower, knit the rest of that mitten while watching the Macy's parade, and finish the chocolate pie I'm taking to my parents' house today...all before Daughter wakes up from her morning nap. But only if I hurry. Happy Thanksgiving to all who are celebrating!

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Severe Weather Warning

Uh-oh...Buffalo's getting a little too much press right now. Might make it a little challenging to go over the river and through the woods tomorrow. Might end up staying home eating peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and knitting all day. (So it wouldn't be all bad.)

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Not Out of the Woods Yet

This blog should probably just be called " The Ongoing Saga of My Daughter's Christmas Dress."

But...there is progress! Blocking, even!

I am really not the best blocker in the world. Half the time I don't even bother. But some of these pieces needed bossing around, so here we go. I filled the washing machine with cold water and soaked the pieces for about 15 minutes, with just a little bit of mild detergent. I should have used wool wash, but I don't have any.

After they soaked and Daughter ate some lunch, I took the pieces out and carefully squeezed out most of the water. Then I gently rolled each piece up in a towel. A little bit of the dye came off on the towel, but I didn't see any in the water at all, so once again a big thumbs up for Knitpicks.

Then I just pinned the pieces out. The collar and sleeves are on my blocking board, but we went to the ironing board for the front and back.

The back. The button bands needed major stretch-age. I probably should have gone up a needle size (from US 3 to 4). But I think it will stretch; it's merino after all.

The front. Just wanted to stretch the cables open a little bit here, so they are visible. There was really no way to block out the enormous skirt, because it's so gathered at the waist, so I'm just leaving it to dry. I think it will be fine. I mean, this is a special project and all, but it's going to be worn by an 8-month old baby on a major holiday. She'll be passed around, and sitting and laying on the floor.

But we are not out of the woods regarding the yarn shortage issue. Visible in the upper right corner of that last picture is the little bit of yarn I have left. I can't believe this. I always have so much yarn left over, but this time I am praying to just have enough to seam.

I should really clean my house while these pieces are drying, but Christmas is less than 5 weeks away now...and I can clean the house December 26th, right? Onward to the gift knitting!!!

Monday, November 21, 2005

Sock Knitter's Crack

Oh my God...I just discovered this book and I swear it is like crack for sock knitters...

I want it!!!

Almost Finished...

Dress Update

All right, here are the parts of the infamous Christmas Dress. I still have to somehow squeek out a collar from those puny little balls of yarn there in the middle. The collar in the pattern is a garter stitch monstrosity that I was planning to modify (to moss stitch) anyway, but it looks like it may be modified even further due to severe yarn shortage. I still have to seam this thing! And there's barely any yarn left! Crap, why didn't I do a gauge swatch?!? Oh, who are we kidding, I never do a gauge swatch. Muahahahaha!! I'm insane!!

Closeup of the panic-inducing collar area

No, it's not your eyes. It's a little blurry. I suck at taking pictures. That is really a very little tiny bit of yarn. Why oh why didn't I order some extra? STOOOOOOOPID!

Curl up and Dye

I am OBSESSED, I tell you. Obsessed with making all my cream wool yarn into goofy looking hanks of fruity goodness. I don't know wazzup with these colors, I just opened up random packets of kool aid and, using one of the many little blue booger-suckers you get at the hospital when you have a baby, squirted random colors onto the wool. Super fun! And I finally found a use for some empty baby food jars...my fridge is being taken over by little jars of extremely concentrated kool aid. My husband is thrilled with this development.

Ready to Stitch

Here is the new quilt, (almost) ready to sew. I am ready to stitch the shoo-fly blocks (the pieced blocks in the picture). This is a really pretty fabric line, but the fabric choices in the pattern picture are not quite my taste. So thppppppptt! I changed them.

Sunday, November 20, 2005

Christmas Dilemma

Dear Santa,

All I want for Christmas this year is, like, eleventy billion more hours in the day.

And could I get that gift early? Like today, maybe?

Christmas Dilemma

There are two beautiful scarf patterns, the Irish Hiking Scarf from Hello Yarn, and Dad's Sharfik from the amazing Grumperina, that I am contemplating as a gift for the priest who married us and baptized Daughter. We never acknowledged his services monetarily for the baptism, and he thinks it's way cool that I knit (he brought it up during both our wedding ceremony and Daughter's baptism, don't ask me how). So I thought I could maybe whip up a worsted weight, cabley, dark colored scarf for him. Unless that's a weird idea. Which it might be. I'm not sure.

Christmas Dress
Still going. One side of the back bodice to go, as well as the button band and collar. This week, for sure, I swear!

Friday, November 18, 2005

Thanks a lot, Plowguy

I realize that this is Buffalo, and I realize I live just a couple of miles from the shore of a Great Lake, and I realize it is November 18th. Yet I am somehow surprised and obsessed with this big snow dump we've just received.

This is what my car looked like after Husband shoveled it out of the driveway. First he just tried to blast through the snow with his truck, but it was plowed up to both of our tailgate windows, so that was hopeless. He finally realized he'd have to shovel. We'd love to have a snowblower but we're just not quite affording those kinds of neato toys right now.

Good job with that shovel, sweetie!

Meanwhile, I entertained Daughter and baked up a storm (only partly because having the oven on makes the kitchen kind of warm and I don't have to feel like a crappy mom because my baby's feet are cold). I made oatmeal chocolate chip cookies, date bread, beer bread, and chocolate cake for my mom's birthday tomorrow. I didn't get any knitting done yet today but I did cut out the shoo-fly blocks for the paid quilt. No one wants to see a picture of endless rows of dark red double moss stitch anyway, right? Hopefully by the end of this weekend I'll have completed all the dress parts, so I'll be showing those off.

Everyone is in bed so it's time for mommy to have some quiet time with her knitting.

Thursday, November 17, 2005

What the F*$%???

This is our dog, trying to scramble back in the door when she is supposed to be out there doing her business. Yesterday there was nothing. Today? LIKE THREE FREAKIN' FEET OF SNOW!!! It is up to my knees. I ditched the leash right after this picture because there's no way she's running away through this.

View through the front door. Yes, it's through the screen. I wasn't about to open the door to let this kind of cold in. The kicker? A few miles away it's just sunny and beautiful...not a flake of snow to be seen. Crikey.

Craft updates later, perhaps (it is a good day to curl up and knit, but again a bad day for taking photographs). Right now, hot chocolate!

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Three Good Things


I swear to God she started out on the mat. I really don't ever just dump her on the floor. She doesn't move around on her hands and knees yet, but she's getting pretty good at turning and scootching along on her back. Yikes.


It's a hard-knock life.

And yarn!

I totally have craft A.D.D....when I realized I had some natural, 100% wool (Plymouth Galway) in my stash-o-rama, I had to get some kool aid and dye, dye, dye!!! While doing the weekly shopping, Daughter and I stood in front of the powdered drink display and pondered the color choices. I am not a kool aid connoisseur, not by a long shot. The only time I ever had kool aid as a child was at a neighbor's house, and my mom says when I came home I pooped green. To this day I am quite positive my mother has never even bought the stuff. So there I was with Daughter, browsing the packets of fake-fruity beverage mix. I held up each brightly colored package and said to Daughter, "what do you think, should we get this one?" And then I realized with horror that people might think I actually give my infant daughter kool aid. So I just grabbed some grape, cherry, and tropical punch and moved on.

I screwed up and forgot to wet the wool first, so my three little cups of dye just ran right off the dry wool. Not too smart, but as I have mentioned, I have an infant daughter. I donated lots of brain cells to her.

Luckily I foresaw my own potential stupidity and bought two packets of each color. So I dumped out the snarky looking kool aid water in the bottom of the dish, wet the wool, and tried again. The grape just made the yarn look dirty, so I went with a combo of tropical punch and cherry. Sadly
they're essentially the same. I squooshed it all into the wool (dyed my hands red despite using plastic bags) and microwaved it 3 times, 2 minutes per nuke. Our whole kitchen stank of hot cherry kool aid, which is gross. Once the water was clear (this really happens, peeps! I could hardly believe it myself!) I brought it into the living room to show Hubby my exciting feat. His response?

"Cool. But it smells like a urinal."


Couldn't get a decent natural light shot because there's hardly any natural light today. (It's been dark since morning. We're supposed to get our first snow tonight.) But here are some crappy attempts. It's a pretty cool mottled red. I am hoping to stop at the store tonight to get more kool aid, 'cause I have some Patons Classic Merino in cream and now I'm addicted.

Pictures of the new quilt fabrics and pattern tomorrow, provided it's actually light outside.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Money, it's a gas

(With apologies to Pink Floyd.)

Just sitting here 'doing the finances' as we call it in our house. There's always this mid-month scramble to make sure there are enough funds to pay all the bills and still be able to, like, eat. And now we are in that really fun time of year when we have to start budgeting for Christmas. Which is kind of a total joke, because there really is no extra money for buying Christmas presents. Luckily this December has 5 Fridays, which of course means 5 paychecks, but even so, there really won't be extra money.

Hub makes a good wage, and we have a roof over our heads, nice cars (I bought mine before we even met), cell phones (his is paid for by his company), and decent clothes & shoes. No one is threatening to turn off our electricity or water. But somehow we really push it to the absolute limit with money and if you saw us you wouldn't think "extravagance". Gas prices are part of it...we quite stupidly bought a house so far from civilization it's practically on another planet, so just to go to the supermarket is a half-day excursion and an eighth of a tank of fuel. To visit either of our parents it's a solid quarter tank. And it turns out we live in the draft-o-rama house so we just got a $309 heating gas bill, which is scary because that's the budget plan amount. So how much are we really losing??

The real kick in the pants is that I have two, count 'em two, degrees languishing in a drawer somewhere that are actually bankable. But my dream is to be a stay-at-home mom and Hub and I are absolutely unwilling to farm out our kid(s) to be raised by anyone else. Plus, dammit, I enjoy being a stay-at-home mom. And I am immensely grateful to have a husband who feels the way I do about that, and I am also quite grateful to be supported, it's just that I wish his company would pay him what he is actually worth. Oh well, maybe he'll get a nice yearly raise at Christmas (ha!).

This is why many, many, many of my knitting projects are made with Wool-Ease, Patons Classic Merino, and Knitpicks brand yarns, or slightly better stuff that I magically discover on clearance, or even (GASP!) acrylic. Yep, I sure do want to make heirlooms, but nope, can't afford Koigu and Rowan and Debbie Bliss on my budget. Plus, babies puke on everything anyway and acrylic is washable. 'Nuff said.

I guess the good news is that the whoring out of my sewing skills has led to another paid project. I will be picking it up tomorrow and posting pics forthwith.

Monday, November 14, 2005

Kinsale (or, We Are Not Wendy)

Meet Kinsale (from Fishermen's Sweaters, by Alice Starmore). I started this lovely sweater in April (I think) of 2004. The Elsebeth Lavold silky wool was a birthday gift from my parents and I was so excited to get going...but then summer arrived and I stuck this in the bin o' unfinished knits. There were more exciting, brightly colored summer things to knit! I vowed to pick Kinsale back up once fall arrived. Uh oh...we got pregnant in August and I proceeded to barf for three months. By the time I felt good enough to knit, I realized I would never fit into Kinsale in the coming months. So it stayed in the bin. Plus, there were baby items to knit, knit, knit!

Anyway, I have now resurrected Kinsale. Which is really smart, considering I have a heap of Christmas gifts to work on. Somehow the siren song of this ufo is warping my brain. Really all I need to do is finish the sleeves, attach them, and knit the collar. If my name was Wendy I could probably do that this evening. Alas, my name is "Mommy" so that's definitely not going to happen.

What I really need is some projects at other gauges to give me a break from the Christmas dress. The whole skirt portion is just mind-numbing double moss stitch on size (US) 6 needles, so I need a smaller gauge (Kinsale on 3's), and a larger gauge (some felted slippers, maybe, on 10s).

Some attempts at "artsy" Kinsale shots (note the elusive gray-green color that refuses to be captured correctly):

Friday, November 11, 2005


I fought the urge to use this template 'cause everyone uses this template. But its minimalist nature appeals to me and I really didn't like the dots. So. New template.

Rowdy Children

I love that this article is stirring up so much discussion. I TOTALLY side with the shop owner, and laugh about the people who are "boycotting." To them I say, good riddance! You are the very people we (who enjoy a peaceful eating/shopping/library/churchgoing experience) wish would stay home!! Oh, that sounds so mean. But consider this:

One time, a couple of summers ago, Husband and I were out doing some errands. When we got back to the little village where we lived, I asked Hub to stop at the local coffee joint so I could just run in and grab a drink to go. I figured I'd be out in about 5 minutes. I got in line behind two young-ish women (early 30s I suppose) who had two little girls with them, approximately 4 or 5 years old. The girls were, ahem, barefoot. In an eating establishment. Ick. The two of them ran around, squealing, disrupting two gentlemen who were trying to play chess, while the mothers chatted, oblivious.

This coffee house has a large glass case at the counter with lots of tempting, pretty desserts displayed on pedestals. When it was their turn to order, the women asked the girls what they wanted from the case.

Are you f***ing kidding me??

First of all, you figure out what you will be ordering for yourself and your child before it is your turn to actually place the order. And second, you don't give a 4 year-old free reign at the dessert case. Consequently an argument ensued between mother and daughter because daughter wanted the pretty little tiny green pie. The key lime tart, to be exact. The mother must have figured out that it is the rare 4 year-old who will actually eat anything that is key lime flavored because she proceeded to argue with the kid. I mean she actually ARGUED!!! Desperate for another option to make her kid happy, this woman went on to give the guy at the counter a hard time because they only offer one size and one flavor ice cream sundae as a special feature in the summer. It's an artsy presentation, meant for adults, but she tried to bully him into creating something special for her kid. What??? By this time I wanted to scream, "this is a coffee shop, lady! For adults! If you want to buy your brat an ice cream cone, there's a Kone King down the street. Now get out of my way!!"

So. In my big book o' parenting, you just don't argue with a little kid. Maybe I am wrong here, but I think the better thing to do is to pretend the dessert case isn't even there and say to the kid, "I'm going to order a brownie. Would you like to share it with me?" And don't even give the kid a damn choice!! Or, if you are desperate to let the kid have a say, offer two options only. "You may have one dessert. Would you prefer a cookie or a brownie?" I also abhor people who argue with the staff, trying to create something that doesn't exist just to make their kid happy. Is this what we should teach our children? That they are so special they should always get whatever they want, wherever they go? Restaurants don't just make up menus for the laughs...the items listed were chosen with careful thought. There is a difference between asking the waiter to leave off the pickles because you're allergic, and asking the waiter if the cook could please prepare something that doesn't exist on the menu at all.

Anyway, this woman caved and ordered the little green tart. Which the kid, of course, hated. Her little friend got a brownie, so then another battle ensued at the table because she now wanted that instead. So the mother (again) caved and gave the kid the dessert she, herself, was enjoying. This shut the kid up, but what did it teach her? That she can manipulate her mother and get anything she wants.

Incidentally, during this whole circus the father was there, casually reading a newspaper or something while his wife, her friend, and their children turned a nice coffee shop into a ring of hell. And my quick cup of coffee ended up taking 20 minutes. I should have just left and gone through the Tim Horton's drive thru, but I was kind of fascinated by how this whole thing was playing out. The worst part about it was that:

a) no one said anything at all to these people (not even the guy behind the counter when one of the kids started reaching behind the counter and touching stuff) and
b) the women could have cared less.

Alrighty then. Almost 7 months ago I became a mother for the first time. My baby happens to be the quiet type; usually she rides along in the cart or stroller, sucking on her fingers and taking things in. However, she has the occasional meltdown, and when this happens I trip over myself to remove her from earshot. One day we were shopping at Kohl's and she started screaming bloody murder...and I must have apologized seven hundred times to anyone nearby while running for the door. Another time my girlfriend and I were at our LYS with our babies (who are 6 days apart) and they both started freaking out...so we hit the sidewalk immediately. Forget the yarn, we can always come back another time or order online. It is not worth the embarrassment of knowing we are making others uncomfortable.

Obviously this is a topic I truly care about. I was a teacher before becoming a mom so I have seen firsthand the results of lame parenting (I could go on ad nauseum about that, but I won't). I fear what will happen to Daughter when all our careful parenting meets these destructo-children populating our nation's kindergarten classrooms. So please, Moms and Dads, do yourselves and your children and your children's teachers and classmates a favor...take the kids to age-appropriate places when they are young, and then teach them how to behave properly in more adult environments when they are ready. Teach them respect, "inside voices," politeness, and to use kleenex instead of a finger.

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Flattery will get you everywhere

I am so flattered that people want my ND chart! It's the first design I ever charted and I was just thrilled it worked. I just have to find some knitters graph paper online that I can subsequently email around.

Ho ho ho

Two sleeves! Not that you can see any detail at all in this pic. Whatever, just documenting my progress. Now it's on to another 80 rows of double moss stitch for the back skirt. Can I say again that I LOOOOOOVE this yarn? LOVE IT.

And speaking of loving the Knitpicks...

Yeeeeeeaaaaaaaaaahhhhh! Awesome! My order arrived today and I am psyched to dive into this box. Here we have:

Two skeins of 'fawn' sock yarn, destined for socks for my MIL.
Two skeins of 'dusk' sock yarn for my Mom (already got her a pattern so she can knit them herself).
Two skeins of Merino Style DK for a tree hat for Daughter, in 'pine' and 'harvest.'
Wool of the Andes in 'coal,' 'carrot,' and 'cloud' to make a hat and fingerless gloves in Princeton Tigers colors for my cousin.
One skein of Dancing sock yarn in 'Tap' to make socks for my friend's 5 year old daughter.
And finally, two skeins of Shadow laceweight in 'Jade' plus the pattern to make the Adamas shawl
(hopefully for me).

And in the "whoring out my skills" category

The quilt top is finished! I spent two days auditioning borders and ended up eliminating one of the three called for in the pattern. I think it came out really nice, despite my displeasure with the dark green triangles. I was slightly hamstrung by the collection I was given to work with. There were only so many fabrics that would work in each position. And I couldn't get any better picture - this was me standing on a chair over my bed, almost falling forward, just to get this much in the frame (and the quilt is only 48" square).

Wednesday, November 09, 2005


It is so gray and crappy outside I can't even believe it. Usually it takes me until around January to experience that seasonal depression thing, but it's been an unusually gray and crappy month here in Buffalo. I'm feeling it now...don't want to do much, don't feel motivated to make the bed, get dressed, eat...bleeeeeehhhhhhhhh.

But luckily I do feel motivated enough to knit (in my unmade bed, wearing pajamas). The second sleeve of the Christmas dress continues to grow. I think tomorrow I'll make a list here of all the Christmas goodies I hope to have knitted by December 23rd. Then I can look at it and laugh.

Daughter has just smacked herself in the face with a teething toy. Must go attend to her tears.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005


Dress parts! I robbed batteries from one of Daughter's toys to take some photos. On my monitor the color is pretty true. Front and one sleeve are done, second sleeve in progress. Once this is done we can schedule a portrait sitting (her first), and when the Knitpicks order arrives, the Christmas knitting really kicks into gear. I am joining Alison's holiday knitalong so as to bond with the other panicky knitters come December 23rd.

Quilt progress...just have to finish sewing down the appliques, join the blocks, and add borders. Usually I hate sewing down appliques, but the quilting gods are smiling on this project. It still makes me a little tense, but it's not miserable.

On the kid front, I washed these little ball toys because Daughter had smeared them with sweet potatoes. Hmmmm. Looks like perhaps they are not meant to be submerged (that's water and soap bubbles inside with the plastic tiger).

Who would make a baby toy that can't be washed?? Sheesh.

Monday, November 07, 2005

The wind came, the wind went...

The tent stayed...Yay, cement!

That's a book, I think. The Cement Tent. Anyway, we had an unbelievable windstorm here last night. I mean, it was really, really windy. The trees in our yard that were so pretty just a couple of days ago have become barren sticks poking out of trunks. It's kind of sad-looking around here now. And a piece of our roof blew off - it's just hanging there, randomly banging against the siding. We'll have to go out and get a new piece of...whatever that stuff is. And climb a ladder. And nail it in. But now I'm thinking that one person will have trouble both holding and nailing down a 5 or 6 foot piece of metal whilst balancing on an extension ladder. Huh.

The camera is still sans batteries, but it's ok 'cause I haven't done much knitting anyway. It's been a doing laundry, playing with baby, grocery shopping kind of day.

Sunday, November 06, 2005

Darn that technology...

No photos today. Camera's dead. Guess we'll be picking up batteries tomorrow on our weekly shopping trip.

One sleeve of the Christmas dress is done, and the second is started, so I've gone ahead and ordered a bunch of yarn from Knitpicks to make some hats, mitts, and socks for other fambly members. To get to the $30 free shipping amount, I also threw in a pattern and a couple of skeins of laceweight for a shawl for myself. Hey, why not? After Christmas I'll need something nice for myself after knitting myself into a frenzy making gifts.

I got the rest of the fabric I needed to finish the paid quilting project, so I have no excuse not to finish it. Somehow sewing for money is not as enjoyable as sewing for fun, but right now it's how I'm earning my yarn money, so I must get to it.

In happy news, the Irish squeeked out a win over Tennessee yesterday. There were tense moments but we pulled through. Awesome!

Friday, November 04, 2005

Go Irish!

Beat Tennessee!

Pattern: Knitting Pure and Simple neck-down cardigan (18 month size)
Yarn: Wool Ease worsted weight
Needles: Denise sizes 6 and 8
ND design charted by moi

Big news!! Daughter finally rolled over back to front tonight without help! She made it all the way over and pushed up onto her elbows! This is the major accomplishment we have been waiting for and we finally got there at 6.5 months. I can stop worrying.

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Autumn Daze

The dress front, she is finished! This is an artistic shot with just a few of the bazillions of leaves in our yard. Don't mind my foot there in the shot. I held up the front on my wriggling, squirmy daughter and it looks like it's going to be perfect. Yessssss! Now on to a sleeve. I am beginning to worry about yarn shortage. It's going to be close and if I need to order more, I want to do so now...while there's a chance they may still have the same dye lot.

A closeup of the cabled bodice. This isn't really the color either. It's not wanting to be captured correctly in digital form.

In other news...

This is one of three big ole trees in our yard. They are beautiful, to be sure, but we will be raking until the snow starts to fall. Look at that lawn!! There are so many leaves they are drifting against the back door and the front steps.

And in the "Read the Label" department: I was so excited to get leaf bags that look like jack-o-lanterns. I thought it would look so cool to have all these giant, fat pumpkins in front of the house. And we certainly have an abundance of leaves to fill them. Well, we raked and raked, got tons of leaves in piles, and broke out the bags. The puny, tiny, 2 ft. tall bags.

Oh well, at least we're a little festive.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Soup to Nuts

Is anyone else already sick of the new Campbell's commercials featuring a nattily dressed, made-up, lip-synching John Lithgow? I can't get the stupid song out of my head. Let's get this ad campaign over with already.


These days I'm a quilter for hire. I worked for a Bernina dealership/quilt shop before having my baby this past spring. Now I'm doing a little sewing for the store while my daughter naps. This will be a store sample. It's fun but a bit tedious with all the applique shapes.

And this is my daughter's first Christmas dress. It's from Sirdar book 241, Design H, knitted in Knitpicks Merino Style (DK) Hollyberry. I love this yarn so much! It has a soft hand, it knits up beautifully, and it's cheap. How can you go wrong? I'll definitely be ordering more in the future.

What you see in the picture is the front skirt portion of the dress...a gigantic field (80 rows) of double moss stitch. I've just decreased for the bodice and started the cable pattern, but couldn't get a good closeup of it. Also, the color is off. In reality it's a deep, almost rusty red. It's going to be adorable with little cream tights and patent leather mary jane shoes. Can't wait!

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

I'm jumping on the bandwagon...I think I'm finally ready to start a blog of my crafty endeavors. I have lots of recently finished projects and several in process. I'll be figuring out how to use this program as I go, and will try to get some pictures up ASAP.