Wednesday, May 24, 2006

NYC and baseball

Took a trip to NYC this weekend where I did lots of knitting and watched lots of baseball. Brought 3 projects this time, which was smart. They were nice, easy knitting, plus a sock for when I could concentrate (which rarely happened.)

Spending time using up that tapestry yarn stash that I got in a thrift store a couple of months back. It's been great for the CIC toddlers' vests. Made some taupe skeins variegated by dyeing them blue and purple. Stuck pieces of 4 skeins in a crock pot and dyed them at the same time--worked great!

Started a CIC shawl on the trip up. It's knit using 2 strands variegated and 1 strand solid taupe using size 15 needles. It's a basic dishcloth/baby blanket pattern that I'll be stopping before the decreases.

Here I am on Day 1. That's my MIL on my left. She (and most of the other parents) couldn't understand how I could be so calm and knit while my son was pitching. I tried to explain that it was actually keeping me sane. It was either that or eating continuously throughout the game. (We're not anti-social. It's just that with so many seats, and only family that came, we all spread out.)

It worked really good.....until......I ran out of yarn.


I RAN OUT OF YARN!!!!!!!!!!!!!

By then we were nearing the 9th inning. Little did I know that I had to make it to the 11th inning before we won.

Feel my pain, people.

My DH had a moment of panic. "What? I have to ride the whole way back with you, confined in a car, with no yarn?"

"No, dear, just until the end of today. I have some more in the room."

Then, my MIL happens to mention.... "There's a store nearby my house. Has lots of yarn." (I actually heard this twice, assuming the first time that it meant acrylic.)

Then she says, "I think it's called Smiley's."


There's a Smiley's near you and I didn't know?

So, the whole day before, when there was a rain delay and we were sitting around the house, I could've been shopping for yarn??????? I would've gone out in the rain for that!

Here's a picture of the field. It's the Staten Island Yankees (single A) on...Staten Island. It looks out onto the water. That's Manhatten in the background. We could see the Empire State Building, and the Statue of Liberty is out in the water (hidden by the big black sign.)

That's my son pitching--10 innings, 155 pitches, and 14 strikeouts. Phew.

On Day 2 I have replentished my yarn and am continuing on the shawl.

It was another nail-biter. We won this one in 10 innings--4 and a half hours later. Then a third game, which thankfully only took the regular 9 innings.

Here's a better picture of the shawl.

For variety, I did a couple more vests. These are using little skeins of tapestry wool, switching off when a skein is complete.

My yarn made it the whole way home. The team won the tournament and are off to the JUCO (Junior College) World Series in Colorado.

A good weekend!

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Concert knitting

Finished the first 2 CIC vests,

then started #3.

Did almost all of the blue during last night's strings concert. This time I was smart and took a project that used wooden circ. needles. I knitted the whole way through the concert. This one is using up little skeins of tapestry yarn, knit together with the bigger skeins.

Saturday, May 13, 2006

This time, I brought 3 projects

Check out my new sock yarn, and the way it's becoming a sock!

I wound it the same day I got home from MDSW, and it's the first thing I knit the next day. This is the adult version of the Sixth Sense 6SoxKAL. It's the group's current project, to be done by the end of May. I don't think I'll make it, but I'm really liking the pattern anyway. Had to rip it out once (but that's so very common for me), but now I think I'm good to go.

Also, the above picture shows my new knitting bag.

The below picture shows my other knitting bag. When I went to DS#1's baseball game yesterday, 2 people asked who's birthday it was. (It didn't help that DD#2 had her own stuff in a bag with a birthday cake pictured on it.) I'm looking like a nice mom, bringing her neglected college son a nice present or two. But nope, that's my knitting.

I'm thinking I might need to switch KIP bags for awhile, or write "Un-birthday" on the outside.

Anyway, these vests are what I've been working on at the games. (DS#2's game was today. And he hit a home run. How 'bout that?)

They're CIC vests, knit out of tapestry wool that I got a bundle of at a thrift store. It's knitting up nicely. Not quite as scratchy as I pictured.

As you can see on the right vest, I ran out of yarn. Fortunately I learned my lesson from last week's "gasp, I have nothing to knit and it's a double header", and brought 3 projects. When I ran out of yarn, I just loaded the stitches onto a scrap, and cast on for vest #2.

A posting I read from earlier this week has already been put to use. It showed how to keep a garter stitch edge from rolling by doing several different options. See pics here.

My right vest used a row of K1 P1 before the st st, and the left vest used triangles. I'm liking the details, and it sure does lay flatter.


I approached this year at MD Sheep and Wool very differently than last. Last year was all about quantity and fun and strolling and no kids and relaxing with a friend.

This year was about being efficient and moving fast and buying quality stuff, then moving on to a baseball game.

We (DD#2 and I) got there before 9:00am, made a mad dash to the Main Building, and bought all my items on my list by 9:45. Had enough money and time that we got in the t-shirt line, ate a funnel cake, and bought a shirt.

Here's my first purchase of laceweight yarn from Morehouse Merino. Lovely stuff. Gonna attempt another shawl for me.

Here's my nice sock yarn from Ellen's Half-pint farm.

Here's my wooly sheep guarding my new spindle.

The only spindle I've used before was made out of a dowel rod and 2 CD's. Hopefully this will work better. I actually chose it by standing next to a couple of spinners who obviously knew what they were doing. One kept exclaiming, "It's still spinning. Look! It's still spinning!" Good enough for me.

Then, since I had finished up my UFO's, and was waiting until after MDSW to start something with my new yarn, I had NOTHING TO KNIT during the DOUBLE HEADER of DS#1's baseball game. What torture!

Sunday, May 07, 2006

CIC progress

Making progress on the CIC goals for the month.

Here's the finished 6th Sense socks, using non-matching brown yarn to finish the toes.

I'm not happy with the mix (although it looks a bit better in person). This was actually the closest I could come, though.

And here is the finished sweater.

I ran out of yarn TWICE with this one. The first time I realized in advance so I added the red in a nice pattern (mosaic from Barbara Walker's newest book). Then, I ran out of yellow and red, so added the black. By the time I was done, my hands were black. I carefully washed it in cold water with a generous glug of white vinegar. While it now smells strongly of vinegar, no bleeding of dye occurred. I'm hoping that it will air out by the end of May.

Friday, May 05, 2006

A word of advice

Two days before going to the MD Sheep and Wool Festival is not the right time to go digging through your stash.

You might find lots of yarn that you forgot about (including some that you bought last year at MDSW but haven't used yet.) This might make you feel somewhat guilty about spending several hours buying new yarn.

Not that it's going to stop me. My constraints are already set in place.

Time and money.

Time: Going to DS#1's afternoon baseball game will shorten the day, and

Money: Need I explain this?

However, on the plus side: I've been there before and know the lay of the land. I'm thinking that the constraints will both end simultaneously, thus preventing DS from a LOOOONG walk home.

Off to sleep and dream of yarn.....

Thursday, May 04, 2006

Slim to none

No, your eyes do not deceive you.

I'm unravelling one sock to knit the other.

Yes, they are the same size.

No, I'm not crazy,

I ran out of yarn.

There ought to be a law that says that if you're knitting for charity, then you will have enough yarn to finish the project.

These are toddler-sized socks. And I started with a big (so I thought) ball of yarn.

Now I'm ripping back the sock to make both variegated lengths the same. Then, I'll search through my stash to find a coordinating yarn to finish them up.

What are the chances that I can find a REALLY good, well matching yarn?

That's right, slim to none. (And if I do, it's sure to run out.)

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Don't cut the yarn

I'm afraid I use that as my motto a tad too often:

"Don't cut the yarn until the project is finished." If it's cut in the wrong place, it'll mean another knot. Especially when I'm trying to be creative and at the same time using up leftovers.

Hence the following photo (again on the plaid couch. Don't I know by now that it doesn't match ANYTHING?).

Instead of another knot, I have approx. 10 zillion knots.

Yeah, much easier.