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Thursday, July 28, 2011

July Knit Something of the Month Project

All finished! My usual model was preoccupied with running in circles at top speed this morning with his ears flying behind him like flags, so the scarf had to model itself. I used two skeins of Lorna's Laces Shepherd Sock in Ravenswood and US 5's (3.75 mm). It blocked out to 9 inches wide by 99 inches long. Yes, clearly I could have stopped knitting before I did, but this way I can loop it around and around and around my neck. And maybe Logan's neck too.

The drop stitch sections in the stitch pattern make it very open and airy, which is important for Texas. This clearly will not be the kind of scarf I grab in a blizzard. (Do we have those here? Do we have temps below 80 F here? I don't remember). It will work well as the kind of scarf that gives me the look of wearing a scarf when it does cool off, without being too warm.

I'm glad I didn't make socks with this, even though it would have made pretty socks. The scarf pattern has no pooling, just spots of the different colors all over itself.

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Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Just a Tiny Bit

I've started the second glove, but I've only barely started. This is the first part of the cuff, before you start the short rows. Yes, this pattern has short rows while you cable. But that's only in the cuff. Once you're through the cuff, you only have cables. Lots and lots of cables!

I hope to get back to this second glove later today, but first I have some ends to weave in and some blocking to do. I finished up the July scarf yesterday! Woo Hoo!


Tuesday, July 26, 2011

July's Scarf

I'm still working along on my July Knit Something of the Month Project. At this point it looks like one of those draft dodger snake things that you put along your door to keep the cold out. It's about 36 inches long now, but it will block to quite a bit longer, and of course when it's blocked it will be flat, instead of rolled up. I've got about 10 more repeats to go so the end is definitely in sight. Hopefully next time you see it, it will be finished or maybe even blocked. I've got until Sunday to get it all blocked, but it's definitely doable. I think this might be the closest I've come yet to the end of month deadline.

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Monday, July 25, 2011

One Glove Down

I've finished the first one! I haven't sewn the hem in place yet, which is why it looks a little ruffley around the wrist right now, but all the fingers (and thumb!) are done and all the ends are woven in. I did redo the pinky finger and I'm glad I did. The fingers don't take very long to knit, they're just a little fiddley at the start.

I'm really loving this first glove and it fits well. You definitely want negative ease (the garment is smaller than the body part going into it) for a glove, otherwise you won't be able to use your hands while you're wearing it. Part of the purpose of a glove is of course to be able to use your hands, otherwise you could just wear a mitten. The only thing I'm going to change on the left glove will be on the ring finger - I'm going to increase a few stitches at the base to fit over my wedding ring. At this point, I'm on track for finishing this second project on time!

(I have to thank Caleb for the photo this morning. I'd have never gotten a picture of my right hand with out him!)


Friday, July 22, 2011

One Finger, But Not Really

Last night I knit a finger on my glove. This is the little finger on my right hand. The thing with fingers on gloves is that they have to fit the length of your fingers. If you're working them in stockinette, it's easy, but in this more complicated cable pattern, I have to stop the cables early enough to finish the top part of the cables before the finger ends. The directions account for this, but I would have been able to get one more repeat into my little finger than I did, which is why the stockinette section at the top is so long. Today I'm going to frog the end of the little finger (I'll run a lifeline through it first) and reknit it so there's less stockinette at the top.

I'm not really looking forward to re-doing the little finger, but I know I'll be happier with the gloves if I fix them. On the other hand, I'm keeping lots of notes, so the fingers on the second glove should go much easier. That's what I'm hoping anyway!

Have a great weekend!


Thursday, July 21, 2011

Gloves need fingers...

...and this one is ready to start getting them! I got the hand part finished and it's been inspected (as you can see here) and the next step will be fingers. Just in case you were wondering about all the strings hanging out the bottom (I know Logan was, he has a weird, kittenish fascination with strings), I haven't turned the hem up on the cuff and sewn it down yet and the white string is waste yarn, holding the thumb stitches. There's fixing to be a lot more string as I put the hand stitches on waste yarn so I can work on specific finger stitches. I'm sure each finger will be inspected carefully to make sure there's no bacon hiding in the glove. You never know with gloves, they can be tricky things!

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Wednesday, July 20, 2011

A Scarf and Something New

I'm past the halfway point on my Knit Something of the Month Scarf of July now. I'm just about to start the second skein of yarn, but there's not enough of the first to finish another full repeat, so I must be past the halfway point now. That's what I figure at least.

Next to the scarf is something new. That's a jar of the first thing I've ever canned! It's Strawberry Vanilla Jam from this recipe and it actually worked! I just had a little bit on a biscuit for breakfast and it was yummy! The recipe only made three half pints of jam, which was easy for me to handle on my first canning adventure. I've wanted to try canning for a while now but kept getting overwhelmed with all the information. I finally just decided to go for it! What's a little food poisoning among family, right?

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Tuesday, July 19, 2011

We Learned Something New About Logan

After having Logan for about 8 months, we felt like we had a pretty good handle on who he was, what his personality is about and his general approach to things (putting them in his mouth). I mean they constantly do things to surprise you, but even the surprises fit into the general personality of the dog. The other day we discovered something new about him and it came as a bit of a shock.

Every night, before Mickael and I go to bed, we take Logan out to use the bathroom one last time. I think this is pretty standard for inside dogs. The other night Logan would not pee. I had him outside for over 30 minutes trying to get him to pee (usually we go out, he goes, we come back in - 2 minutes tops), walking, sniffing, not peeing, sniffing, walking, blowing in the breeze, not peeing. Finally, I got fed up with it and brought him back inside. I saw one of two things happening: either he'll wake us up in the middle of the night to take him outside, or he'd have an accident. Not really wanting to wake up in the middle of the night to go outside or clean up a puddle, I decided to put him in his crate to sleep.

Now you may remember that when we first got Logan we had to re-crate train him at night because he was waking us up in the middle of the night. Once we had him sleeping through the night again, we stopped crating him at night. He'll spend part of the night in the crate (with the door open), part of the night sleeping by my side of the bed and part of the night on the tile in the bathroom. He never leaves our bedroom area and he hasn't had any accidents (potty or chewing related). Since he's trustworthy and we know he's happy moving around a little, we don't mind him having freedom at night. When we leave the house, he's crated, so while he doesn't sleep all night in the crate, he's still familiar with it and comfortable being crated.

I brought him back inside after the futile potty attempt, put him in his crate, kissed him goodnight, and closed the crate. He fidgeted around in there, he was clearly not too happy, but he didn't give me a lot of options by not going potty. We all went to sleep. Around 3:00 AM Mickael woke up so he let Logan outside to see if he'd pee. Logan did, so when he came back in he was allowed to sleep wherever he wanted to. (After Logan came back in, I actually heard him close the door to his crate - he can't latch it, but he pushed it closed, hoping he wouldn't have to go back in.)

When morning came, I slept in a little bit. Logan was happily bouncing around with Mickael and Caleb when I woke up. Now normally Logan would bounce to me in the morning (he's a Momma's Boy) and show me all his happy wiggles and waggles. On this particular morning, he ignored me! It was like I was invisible and didn't exist. He was clearly upset about being crated the night before. Every morning, after he eats breakfast, Logan and I do Cuddle Time. I say, "Cuddle Time" and he'll come running from wherever he is and climb his front half into my lap (I sit at the kitchen table for Cuddle Time) and he wags and leans into me and I kiss him and squeeze him and love on him. It's very silly, but we both enjoy it and he'll even wake up from a nap for Cuddle Time. I thought Cuddle Time might bring him around, so I called for it and sure enough, he came and climbed into my lap. His tail was barely moving though (probably an involuntary muscle twitch because Golden Retriever tails almost never stop wagging, more than any real wag), he didn't lean into me and he refused to look at me. I've never seen him that interested in the light over the kitchen table. He was clearly very upset with me to be holding out on Cuddle Time.

It finally took me getting down on the floor and holding him and rubbing his belly before he forgave me for my horrible, abusive ways. All is right with the world now, but we had no idea that Logan was the type to pout and hold a grudge. Every night since then, he's peed before bedtime though.


Monday, July 18, 2011


I've gotten a good start on my first Kingdom glove! After getting into the knitting on this, I can honestly say that I can't believe this pattern is free. Not only is it technically complex (short rows and cables at the same time anyone?), but it's written in 5 sizes! Despite everything that's going on in the pattern, it's also very well written if you just follow the directions, step by step. I think it's going to give me an amazing pair of gloves when I'm done and while I still have fingers to do, I think I'm through the hardest part on this glove. (Fingers should just be fiddly, not difficult.) This is not a great project for TV knitting and I don't recommend talking to other people while you knit on it either, but it's moving along quickly and I'm enjoying the knitting on it.

I'm also loving the color of this yarn - it's Madelinetosh's Vermillion colorway and it reminds me of rubies. (I've been told by others that it reminds them of cranberries, but homemade cranberry sauce* reminds me of rubies, so it all works, right?)

*I always hated cranberry sauce when I was growing up. We always had it for Thanksgiving and Christmas, but I couldn't figure out why. Then a few years ago, my Mother in Law served some homemade cranberry sauce. I figured since she went to the trouble of making it, I should take some to be polite, and I was shocked. Homemade cranberry sauce is SO much better than canned. I put it on everything that sat still that year until it was all gone. I've been making it every Thanksgiving and Christmas since then. Yum! For some reason I don't have my Mother in Law's recipe, but here's the one I use. I usually zest the orange (the one for the juice) and add that as well and I don't put the sauce in a mold (that picture scares me a little bit). I put the sauce in a small bowl and before I serve it I break it up a little bit so it's more like a thick jelly and not bowl shaped.


Friday, July 15, 2011

Camp Loopy 2011, Project 2

Today is the day we're allowed to cast on for Project 2! We're doing socks, mittens or gloves for this part of camp, so since I've never knit gloves (real gloves, with fingers), I'm doing gloves. I've chosen Kingdom for my pattern and the yarn I'll be using is Madelinetosh Tosh Sock in Vermillion. I've got to double check my gauge (I think US 1.5's, 2.5mm will be the needles I need), and then I can get going.

Have a great weekend!


Thursday, July 14, 2011

A Tiny Bit of Knitting...

...and the reason it's only a tiny bit of knitting! (That is Mickael's second sock - I didn't get a great photograph this morning.)

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Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Knit Something of the Month - July

The scarf is moving along nicely. As Logan mentioned last week, I started over with one fewer repeat to make it a little bit narrower - it's about 8 or 9 inches wide now. The project is easy to work on in front of the TV, perfect for picking up and putting down, and I'd love to get it mostly done before Camp Loopy Project 2 starts on Friday. Right now it kind of looks like a loopy mess but those parts should behave better after blocking.

I've got my yarn for Camp Loopy Project 2, now I have to pick a pattern. I'll show you what I'm doing on Friday's blog. Hopefully I'll have a pattern by then or it's going to be really difficult to knit!

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Monday, July 11, 2011

Austin Hoodie

Remember this one? It's been sitting quietly, waiting for me to get back to it. I pulled it out this weekend and finished up the back. I'm at a place in it that doesn't really make it easy to pick up and put down right now. I have to think about it a bit before I start knitting, so I've been grabbing the simpler projects that I can just pick up and knit on. Of course there's also the fact that for several weeks now (and for the next week and a half at least) we've been in the triple digits temperature wise. Obviously, I have no chance of wearing it anytime soon, so that doesn't really inspire me to really put the rush on to get it finished up. On the other hand, there are other things I want to knit and I'm not going to cast on anything new (other than Camp Loopy Project 2 later this week) without finishing up some of what I have on the needles.


Friday, July 08, 2011

Logan's Day

Mommy said I could blog today! She said I did need to tell you that she restarted the scarf she showed yesterday. She thought it was going to be too wide so she restarted with one less repeat. I asked her what a scarf was and she said it's something people wear around their necks. I guess it's some sort of people collar? Why don't you people just call it a collar? I hope it makes jingly jangly noises like my collar does, then I'll know where she is so I don't get caught with things in my mouth that aren't supposed to be there (according to her).

Mommy said she told you about my trip to my grandparents last weekend. They've got the biggest waterbowl you've ever seen - everyone gets in it and plays! I also tried to play with Zack. He's another Golden Retriever but he didn't want to play the games I wanted to play. I even tried barking at him to get him to play but he ignored me. I think he might have been doing it on purpose. I moved all his toys around for him while I was there. It was a lot of fun doing everything, but I was really tired when we got home. I still don't really like riding in the car but I do like going to see my grandparents. My other set of grandparents is close enough I can walk over there. That's a lot of fun to go there too. They don't have a big waterbowl but they have something Mommy calls "cat toys" which I'm not supposed to play with. I do not know what this supposed cat is that has these toys, I've never seen any cat type thing over there, just Barclay, who also ignores me. Mommy says that Zack and Barclay ignore me because they are older dogs and I'm a silly puppy. I thought everyone chased their tail and liked to race around the house at top speed, slamming into walls when they don't make the corners. Don't you? It's great right? Someday, maybe I'll find out what these things are that play with cat toys and maybe they'll play with me. I bet they race around the house.

I'm going to go now, it's time for my morning nap. Mommy said to wish everyone a fun weekend, so I hope you all have a great weekend - maybe bacon will fall on the floor for you!


Thursday, July 07, 2011

Problem Solving

Yesterday I mentioned that I was going to have to figure out a way to get Mickael's socks finished, my July project of the month done, and get started on my gloves for Camp Loopy project 2 on July 15. All of these projects are fingering weight on DPN's and while all of them are portable to a certain extent (the gloves might not be), I'm not doing anywhere near as much sitting and knitting during the Summer as I do during the school year. I realized that while I'm closer to finishing Mickael's socks than I am the two projects I hadn't started (I can't even start the gloves until the 15th), they were the one project with no deadline. Mickael isn't wearing wool socks right now and won't for a few more months. I decided to get started on my July Knit Something of the Month project and see how far I could get on it before I started the gloves. Mickael's socks were just going to take a little time out.

At the first of the year (or the end of last year, it's hard to remember), I picked 12 yarns from my stash and 12 patterns and bagged them all up. I would do shawls the first two months and starting in March, do socks every other month. July is a sock month but I had decided I didn't want to make the socks I'd picked out for July. My yarn is Lorna's Laces Shepherd Sock in Ravenswood and I love the color, but Lorna's Laces ALWAYS pools at the gusset, which I didn't really want. So I went to Ravelry and looked up projects that had been made with this yarn, hoping to find a sock that didn't have gusset pooling. What I found wasn't a sock at all, but it solved the pooling problem and the overabundance of DPN projects as well. It was the Morning Surf scarf from Spin Off Summer 2008. I figured since it's my club, I can change the rules if I need to. So my July project isn't a shawl or socks, it's a scarf. Here's what I did last night after dinner (obviously, blocking will make a difference):


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Wednesday, July 06, 2011

One Down, One to Go

I hope you all had a great weekend! We took a little trip to visit my In-Laws over the weekend and Logan got to swim in the pool for the first time! I didn't get any pictures because you can't take a camera into the water near a splashy dog. He really did well with the pool. Once he figured out where the steps were, he was soon leaping to me out in the water. His front end knows exactly what to do but his back end wasn't quite keeping up and when his back end sank in the shallow end, he decided it would be easier to just walk on his hind legs and paddle his way through the water with his front legs, than to swim. The problem with that is, eventually you run out of shallow end of the pool. I figured out that if I took a pool noodle, I could loop that under his lower belly and keep his hips up and then he could swim using all four feet (what a novel idea!) He loved being in the water and he wore himself out, which made it easier on their dog who is older and more dignified than Logan is. It was a fun weekend for all of us.

Over the weekend, I did get Mickael's first sock finished up and started the second sock. I'm about halfway down the leg of the second sock at this point and I'd really like to get the pair finished up. I should be knitting socks for my Knit Something of the Month Club for July and I'll be doing gloves (my first ever pair of gloves with actual fingers) for Camp Loopy Project 2, so I'll need to come up with some sort of plan to get everything done. Mickael's socks are the only one of these three projects that don't have a deadline. I did notice when I was photographing them for the blog, Dream in Color really nailed the name - Gray Tabby!

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Friday, July 01, 2011


I know normally I show something I've been knitting on and babble about it and go on my merry way. The problem with this usual way of doing things is that I haven't knit in a couple of days. Seriously. I haven't even picked up a pair of needles. There's nothing wrong with me or my hands, but the last couple of evenings I've either been busy and didn't have time to sit down and knit or too tired to knit. This means I have nothing to show you today.

So, I've decided to show you other people's stuff, or at least send you to a website that does. Craftgawker is just what it sounds like - pictures of crafts. If you click on the picture you can get to the original website and get more details about the craft and possibly a tutorial. There's even an iPhone app so you can browse pictures when you're out and about. You can search by specific craft and even favorite things so you can go back and see them later. I think it's fun to see what other people are doing and I hope you guys enjoy it too. (Hopefully I'm not the last person to "discover" Craftgawker and it's new to someone else also.)

Have a great weekend and if you live here in the USA, Happy 4th of July! Be safe with the fireworks! Oh, and I will get some knitting done this weekend!