Monday, January 26, 2009

Surprise Readers

Well, it is bitter cold here and I never thought I would say it but I am ready for the warm, not hot, maybe 40's. When your thermostats seldom sees 62 40 is quite warm, lol. It is hard on the dogs and as I walk them at the same time, which is interesting enough, but on the ice this 150 pounds of dogs pull me like I am riding the Iditerod(?sp) They have to investigate every puddle and have saved me from an attcking snowdrift(Oliver was quite suspicious of it so climbed it and beat it down until it succumbed and I could safely pass) and the attack of a patio table unmbrella(Phineas barked and barked and as we walked and it disappeared from our view he was quite confident he had scared it away). Snowmen are a group of marauders we have not yet ended the war with.

So I would like at least the ice to go away.

OK, back to the title....I was perusing my email and had a lovely email from my DM(Dear Mother) who had read my blog!! I didn't know that so let me extend a cordial and hearty Hello to my Mom. Mom met my Dad when they were quite young, I would like to say she was 14 or 15 and Dad 4 years the elder. A strikingly handsome couple they courted, wed and raised a family of 11 children. If I do say so myself we haven't turned out half bad :) It is an amazing thing to stay home and run a household and raise children and be the supporter of your husband's endeavors. Dad was a carpenter, cabinet maker, entrepenauer and firefighter eventually retireing as a Fire Chief. He was a good hard working Irish Catholic who loved his wife, his children and God before all else. Yes I say was....we lost Dad 4 years ago in January. He passed as he lived, surrounded by his bride, all his children, many spouses and grandchildren. I regret he did not see DS1 graduate from undergrad or grad school, or DS2 from high school. In honor of his Pa, DS2 had a firefighter emblem placed on his high school ring and has a fire fighter decal on his truck and his laptop. I would also like that he could know DS1 does not work Saturdays. When DS1 was very young my parents were caring for him and seeing as both boys are brilliant and spontaneous readers before 2 years of age, you could have adult conversations with them quite early on. They both were reading high school and college level way before elementary school. SO on one day when DF and DS1 were having a discussion about finances and what DS1 would do in his future he replied he had no idea but he knew he would not work on Saturday. Dad always found that quite inciteful and quite humorous.
Dad and DS2 at Christmas in a very typical bear hug.
Dad, DS1 and Mom on the night of one of DS1's semi formals

DS1,DS2,Mom and Dad at the Crayola Factory in ?PA.

So this will be the first of all the future blog entries where I say hello to my Mom.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

A New Day

So I spent the better part of the day yesterday watching the inauguration of our 44th President. There are one or two things I really insist on watching from start to end and this is one of them. It was a magical ,hope filled event and I was glad to have the opportunity to witness it. I have decided, regardless of who wins our next election, I will be in Washington to be part of the inaugural celebration.

During the event watching, I worked on stash, and knitted a bit. I finished the Big Ivy Scarf previously and here is a pic. I used Berroco Ultra Alpaca so it is very warm. A good dog walking scarf.
I have not blocked or weaved in ends yet but that is a good work project. Seeing that I had some leftover yarn I started these yesterday...they are the Bird in Hand Mitten. I think they compliment the scarf nicely.
I am going to finish the mittens and then this sweater...I love this sweater Amhra'n'Gra(Love Song) and like that it uses so much yarn, it feels like I accomplish something every time another skein disappears. I showed DH and he seemed appropriately is a terrific pattern by Bev should go and see her other patterns as well. Then I will cast on for and finish the Delphine sweater by Lorraine . I did not make any knitting goals for myself this year except to complete three of Lorraine's designs. This will be my very first and I am excited. As I am trying to work from stash I will use the Knitpicks Palette initially planned for the sweater in these colors....I really like them and am looking forward to melting into the knitting of this beautiful sweater. I was lucky enough to get a spot in the second Loopy Ewe Spring Fling but let it go as one of my very good friends was not able to attend. I think we will both try again next year and hopefully have another opportunity to partake in the festivities. I also was so lucky to get a lottery spot in the Loopy Ewe Sock Club...terrific patterns, yarns and extras put together by Sheri. They are always a treat and it feels like Christmas every time a package arrives.

I purchased these books in the past few weeks, there are a few sweaters in each o my to do list.
This is what the pups looked like mostly when they were stuck with me when DS2 was away for a week. DS1 and GF did their very best to entertain and spoil the little guys and they were quite successful. Still, these are the faces I was left with during the day
Then, the boy came home.
I will add links later. I just walked the pups, cleaned their eyes, ears and gave baths and they have been dried and are napping. I am now soaked and wish I had a person to take care of me.....

I also want to wish my friend Hariamrit a speedy recovery. GoatLady was the extra special souvenir from SF 1...I have mentioned her often and think of her always. Heal quick friend.UPDATE..Dear Hari is on the mend but please continue to send her great thoughts.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Another New England Winter

I will add pics to the next entry which should be today, Monday ,Jan 19

It seems to be, that the snow storms of the past few years have coincided with my work schedule, always. Snowed Saturday(worked) will snow Thursday(workday). I am not sure why this phenomenon exists, but it is getting frustrating. I don't get the opportunity to sit and watch the snow fall or listen to the gentle sounds of the snow falling, but I do get to travel for more than an hour on the bad roads, then work(caring for those who have been injured due to the storm) and then travel in the aftermath home where what awaits is dirty snow. I am fortunate in that DS1,DS2 and DS1GF generally have shovelled the usable part of the driveway and have cleared the walkway, but I didn't get to make the initial foot prints in the snow and there is a certain smugness in being the very first one to leave your mark. It is a competition now, having two dogs and them needing to leave their mark rather than merely wanting to, but they generally head out back. I heard tell of a woman, family friend, who forbade anyone to walk across her front yard once it snowed, to preserve that pristine covering for a while. I am beginning to think it isn't such a bad thought. I am a New Englander, born during a blizzard. I LIKE the snow, mess and all. I am not angry with the snow gods for dropping ten inches on me nor do I moan out loud that there will be more coming. This is New England FPS....

Work continues on getting the stash recorded on Ravelry. It seems as though most of it is one place, which makes this a bit easier. I need to bite the bullet and devote one day to it and finish it up. Record what will be kept, box up what will be donated. I am hoping to use more of what I have this than purchase new. It is an amazing thing, the knitter and yarn, we need to possess it, the more the better. I am surprised at what I have as I go through it, some of it is like an old friend who I recall but not what they do, some of it I would swear never having seen before. I am hoping over the winter at least to finish some of the WIPs that have lingered and seriously consider frogging those that have lingered into a life support state. I have my first FO of the new year. The Big Ivy Scarf in Berroco Ultra Alpaca. It seems I want to make it longer, I have already added one full lace section more than the pattern calls for. According to my entry into Ravelry about the scarf, I should two more skeins of the main color and then could increase the length even more. But, instead, I chose to finish it out at it's current state/ I like it a lot, and would hope to male another in the future. It is a quick knit if you can practice project monogamy.

The next WIP that will receive attention is the secret Christmas knitting/ I am making a design by Bev, a frequently typed name in this blog. It is a lovely Aran sweater called, I had planned to give it to DH for Christmas and was on track for finishing it, but we agreed to knot exchange gifts this year and it sat quietly while I tended to house renovations. Now it is demanding some time, so time it will get. DH is a large man so Bev and I have been adjusting the pattern accordingly as I go along. I am using Cascade in a Celtic Green color. I showed DH the sweater in its current state and he seemed to like it/ I have finished the gussets and have divided for the front and back. I will knit on this for a bit and then add in another project.

The puppies are somewhat sad this week. DS2 is in FLA for a vacation with his father. The puppies are looking for him everywhere. They can be soothed by DS1 and GF for a bit but then they work and the poor puppies are left with me. DS2 will be back Saturday morning so it will be a long week for those not in Florida.

As I am on a self imposed no yarn purchases for me(DH thinks that should not extend to Wollmeise) for 6 months or so, I was wondering what I might like for my birthday next month. I have emailed the family and suggested a wooly board. They have fascinated me for some time, especially when I see the lovely sweaters of Marina displayed on one. I asked, if it were purchased, that it be the only gift, as I don't really need anything, but I was told that was emotional blackmail and my family should not be dissuaded from bestowing me with gifts to celebrate me. Who knew?? heehee

So I will post this, work on the stash, take puppies to vet for weighing an heart pill procurement, perhaps a walk, food shop, put away Christmas decorations and knit.

Thursday, January 01, 2009

No More Humdrum Mittens Swap Round 4

My answers will be pretty much the same as last time around, I believe. Thanks to Deb for doing this again.

Please post this questionnaire with your answers on your blog no later than January 15th
How long have you been knitting & how did you learn?
At this point I hate to admit about 42 years! I was very young. My aunt and Nana both knit and every year Aunt H would give me one of those octagonal cardboard knitting kits with the plastic needles(they had seams if I remember correctly) and barely enough yarn to cast one, LOL. I saved a few and one day cast on. Nana was there to fine tune but essentially self taught.
Would you consider your skill level to be beginner, intermediate or advanced?
I definitely consider my skills advanced....I say that with some humbleness as I have "met" so many wonderful knitters who also design(THAT is pure advanced) I am beginning to feel I may want to delve into the world of design. Maybe in the next year or two.
What are your favorite colors?Any you dislike?
I love jewel colors, deep, rich as well as bright colors, not so much with pastels unless paired with black or navy or...
Do you like Latvian type patterns? If so, what are your favorite patterns?
Latvian,fair isle , Norwegian,yes, my favorite types would be those with multiple color ranges, I do love a simple mitten, though as well as a two color only mitten. That didn't help did it?
Do you desire mittens for yourself, your "special someone else" or your child?
I think I shall say me again. First round I got for me(which I wear dog walking as they have a lovely grippy pattern on the palm) second for DS1GF(beautiful original design with bottom off tops,great for her commuting) last time me (I received gorgeous thrummed mittens, match my new coat exactly and were very toasty shovelling the big snows of new year Eve) So I think I shall say me again. Never can have too many mittens.
What is the measurement from your wrist to the tip of your longest finger?What is the circumference of your hand at it's widest point?
What other things do you enjoy knitting?
I enjoy everything, aran, fair isle the most. All items, I went through the sock craze like everyone and slowed that a bit. I am beginning to be enthralled with lace.
What sort of needles do you enjoy working with? (straights vs circs, bamboo vs aluminum)
Love the KnitPicks Harmony circulars, both Options set, love the Hiya Hiya circs, made mittens on two circulars this past time. Hoping to do two on two this time.
What’s one project you’ve not yet tried but are dying to make?
Hmmm...maybe designing a sweater or a nice lace shawl
What’s one yarn you’ve not yet tried but are dying to work with?
I have Casbah but haven't yet used it...anything actually.
What other hobbies do you have? Do you spin? Sew? Garden? Cook?
I will be trying spinning this year. I do everything else, sew, quilt, crochet, anything you can think of.
Besides yarn, do you collect anything?
Eiffel Towers, Mr. Potato Heads, antique glass
What kind of goodies do you enjoy? Sweets? Salty?Anything you hate or are allergic to?
New year, new diet attempt, no snacks please
Do you have any kids?Pets?
Two sons 19 and 24. Also a one year old pure lab and a 7 month old rescue dog, Australian Shepard/lib mix and we don't know what else he has in him.
What is your favorite part of Winter?
All parts, I was born in a blizzard
What is your least favorite part of Winter?
Dirty snow, slippery streets