Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Busy two days!

We took off yesterday for another doctor visit in Iowa City. On the way we drove through the small town where my Uncle and Aunt had a heating and air conditioning business for years. It was satisfying to see that the business has retained their name, and seems to be thriving. We saw 5 vans around town with the company's name. We then went on to our friends Julie and Bill, where we spent the night. They didn't have Missy in the house this time, Bear was in for a while but decided that she'd rather be outside. Julie and I did some knitting and talked spinning -- debating the pros and cons of a Woolee Winder (I LOVE mine for my Louet) for her Reeves wheel. She demo'd spinning somewhere, and somehow the person in charge sent her bobbins to Goodwill. As this is an older Reeves model (before it became part of Schacht), it is hard to come by bobbins. While we were doing OUR thing, the men were solving all the problems of the world. It is fun to have friends like that!

Today we went to the orthopedist for my shoulder (another steroid injection in the shoulder) and started toward home. We stopped and had lunch with that dear Aunt then came home.

With over 8 hours in the car over these 2 days, I got a LOT knit. Here is my progress so far. Almost to the first underarm.

By yesterday evening, I wasn't sure the camel/silk was a good color with the other two. It is a cooler color. But, to be really honest, I don't want to frog all my progress, not to mention the fact that I don't have a coordinating yarn on hand! I think it was a tantrum brought about by looking at it too long! At least I certainly hope so!

Friday, September 22, 2006

Well no freaking wonder!

I got new glasses 2 weeks ago. I couldn't see well out of them. I called, the office told me to try for 7 days to allow my eyes to adjust. I went 9. I could not read the print on the television screen, couldn't see street signs, and was very frustrated. I gave up and went back to my old glasses. Today was the appointment to check and see what went wrong. The new lenses were an entire diopter off too weak! The doctor was baffled as to how it happened. Actually, there was no change in my prescription, but the old pair were so damaged from a bad glare coat job that I wasn't able to see as well as I should out of them. So, a new pair of lenses are on order. I'll be glad to get them! Thank God that the office has a "we fix until you are satisfied" policy. Today's appointment and the new lenses will not cost me.

By the way, Alison has a blog, so if you like her stories, bookmark it! Serena and I enjoyed our visit with her during our California visit.

And Mom brag alert, Serena had photos accepted to an online Travel Guide for Ireland! She heard yesterday that 3 photos from her trip in April are in the Guide!


It is very frustrating when a gauge swatch doesn't match the real project! I dutifully did a gauge swatch for the Mermaid, and started knitting. About an inch into it I decided I'd better check to make sure it matched the gauge I wanted. Nope! At 181 stitches a row, that hurt! My only consolation is that the gauge swatch said I needed to be knitting on 000 needles, now I'm knitting it again on 0s. Which is nicer. I'm now beyond where I was when I had to frog.

I'm debating whether to knit it all in one color as this person did or to knit it as the designer planned. I have enough yarn to knit it either way. The yarn I'm using for the lightest color is some camel/silk from Alison (thanks Alison!) in, well, CAMEL color! I think it would be a very dressy jacket. I also have a dark brown and a rust (or a medium brown) that can be the contrast colors. My biggest concern is that I really do NOT need to emphasize my hips!

Monday, September 18, 2006

Dratted waterfall factor

I think it is very unfair for parents to train their children to potty train using running water. How many of us get overwhelmed by running water? Sheesh!

Sunday, September 17, 2006

New Projects started

With a great deal of enthusiasm, I've started Penrose by Pat Ashforth and Steve Plummer. Instead of the 2 strands of DK weight yarn, I'm using 3 strands of 3 ply sock yarn. I'm pretty sure it will be smaller, but it is also using stash yarn, which means I could start it now, instead of waiting for yarn to arrive. It also seems a good idea, to make an afghan out of washable yarn, but with wool for warmth. Um, at least that was what I was telling myself when I made the decision. LOL If I use entirely stash yarn, it will be black, silver gray and red. Don't you think it would be...distinctive? I'm not sure if the dimensional effect will show in that. I've wondered a bit about buying some of the Knitpicks dye your own sock yarn and using that in its undyed state. Of course, there will be the problem of the other colors being in 3 ply, and that (I think) is 4 ply. Might matter, might not. Opinions? Know of a 3 ply equivalent in a washable wool?

I've also started Rose of England in a blue 2/32 wool. Blue, because that is what the intended victim wants (given the choice of yarns in my stash. Do you see a trend here?) It is being a bit difficult, mainly because I'm having trouble getting myself to sit down and work on it. Hopefully the asthma will get back under control and I can stay off pred so I feel like working on it! I didn't swatch, but started it on US 0 needles. I switched to the Knitpicks DPs, because my Inox greys just weren't sharp enough. I tried some rosewood 0s, but the yarn grabbed hold of the needles and didn't want to let go! So, I will also be ordering the size 0 circulats to match the DPs.

Oh Bother!

I was knitting along on the sock. Working away at the gusset, when I noticed something odd. Investigated further, and I saw this.When I started knitting the gusset, I REVERSED the stitch pattern! It isn't really clear in the picture, but you can see a change of texture. With a few well-chosen words, I dropped those 36 stitches back to before the error started, and knit them up again, this time IN THE CORRECT PATTERN! There are a couple of tiny holes that need to be adjusted, but it is back together and beyond where it happened. For a while, when I first dropped the stitches down, it looked as if I had a bunch of burgundy spaghetti hanging off the sock. Unfortunately, that picture didn't turn out.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

My Stash

I'm trying very hard to organize my yarn and fiber stash. I'm frustrated with my data base of yarn -- I am finding yarn that wasn't entered, as well as yarn that is in the database that is gone.

With the roving out of the freezer, I've had to confront the fact as to how much I actually have! I have a lot -- at least in my opinion. This closet has become home for the roving.

I have 4 totes filled with yarn so far. I have 2 or 3 boxes of yarn that haven't been unpacked into totes. There are TWO TOTES of sock yarns that haven't been sorted yet.

Sunday, September 10, 2006

A tense spot in a DVD

We were watching "Sharpe's Challenge" last night on DVD, and BOY  did my gauge tighten up! LOL I looked down at one point to see that I was bending the needle on my size 0 doublepoint! It isn't bad, because it is the gusset on a sock, but could have been disastrous on something else! Um, I don't do suspense well. sigh

I highly recommend that series. I was first exposed to it on BBCAmerica. I liked it enough that we ordered the complete set (at a discount, NOT  full price!) nor as a boxed set but as the individual tapes of the Sharpe's series. We'd started getting them via Netflix, but I wanted to watch them more than once or twice. They are great for simple knitting, I can watch and get a lot knit in a session. Hopefully there won't be too many instances of bending needles!

Something else I want to buy fairly soon is the edition of "Pride and Prejudice" with Colin Firth. That one was a delight to sit and knit through. Honestly, I usually prefer to listen to books when I knit, as I can then use my eyes to pay attention to the knitting. We actually had very few DVDs, I doubled our number when I purchased the Sharpe DVDs. BUT, sometimes it is nice to have the visual affects, as opposed to creating the setting in my mind.

Still dealing with mold almost throughout the house. Howard didn't bring home the laptop, so I come to the computer for a short while, then go back to our bedroom with the wonderful air purifier. I'm hoping it will settle soon!

Saturday, September 09, 2006

More "Excitement"

Let me think, what has been going on? Turns out the water heater in our new home had been leaking for some time. All over the carpeted laundry room. That was replaced. Today someone came and pulled out the carpet, to find that the shut-off valve for water into the house was ALSO leaking. The room flooring is a mess. We don't know if the subflooring will have to be replaced or not. The amount of mold in the room has triggered my asthma since the water heater moved out. So, I'm staying pretty much in our bedroom with the air purifier going. Sniff. Luckily we have a wireless setup, and while my computer is next to the laundry room, I can log in on Howard's in here.

The stained glass windows have been removed from the old house, the kitchen cupboards are going to one family, the dishwasher to someone else, a different person is taking the picture window...I'm sure there are other things that have been claimed, but I don't remember. It feels good that the things will have a new life, instead of being demolished!

Our chest freezer, which usually houses my spinning stash, my more valuable knitting yarns, some food and the heirloom quilts is still out of commission at the old house, waiting to see if it can be brought back to life. In other words, we are waiting for parts and repair. Much cheaper than a new one. If it can be, it will come over here into the garage.

On the knitting front, I'm down to the gusset on another pair of socks, and I've got the yarn wound for the Rose of England by Kinzel. Now, to start!

Sunday, September 03, 2006

House Demolition

Here are the pictures of the house at the end of day two of demolition -- they are removing the aluminum siding to recycle it. If you look carefully, you can see some of the paint of the wooden siding below -- another shade of green. There is a little of the siding left, but not very much at all. As one of the men working on it the other day said, "it is a TALL house!"

The last things in the old house came over today -- some houseplants that we are putting on Freecycle. There isn't room in this house! Unfortunately, as we've had them since we moved here. As you can see, they didn't fit easily in our small car! Even though there are only three of them, the car was overwhelmed by the experience.

Friday, September 01, 2006

The Old House

Howard went by to pick up mail today (we hadn't put in a forwarding order, because I was waiting for some newsletters which are mailed bulk) and said that they have started dismantling the house. I don't know how far, but he said the mailbox had been "ripped off the house". I really want to go by and see what they've done. It feels as if I need to go by and watch, for a sense of closure. I want to photograph the different stages, a memorium to the house? This is the first house that we've been able to paint the rooms to reflect our personalities. Perhaps that is why it is so painful -- we put so much of us into it.

Oddly enough, as I write this, I'm clouding up. We had good times there, so did other families. And now it will be a parking lot. I hope they salvage the building, we've still not heard.

Yes, Serena, will will be replacing the living room curtains. In fact, we have the vertical blinds from the other house that are going to go up in there and in our bedroom. I still need to find a place for the peacock kite, though, as we don't want to put a hole in the ceiling. The windchimes that Howard gave me are hanging on the front porch where they catch part of the breeze, not enough to really blow them around, but just a gentle chime.

You know you live in a small town when the appliance delivery person calls you at 7 in the morning to let you know what time they will be delivering! LOL I was quite astounded at time. This, along with the noise ordinance that says you can start doing noisy things such as mowing the lawn, using a jackhammer or cutting down trees at 7 in the morning! THAT was an even bigger surprise the first time it happened! The gentle tones of a tree being cut down by chainsaws ripping through the quiet at 7 were enough to energize the day.

We bought a portable dishwasher we found on sale yesterday, and it was delivered today. Now we only need to handwash things that I don't want in there. We are both delighted with the purchase, even if it hasn't been used yet! Well, we've started loading it...

On the fiber front, I have 2 fleeces ready to go for processing -- after several years of waiting to wash them myself, I decided that having someone else do it was a really smart idea, or they'd never get done! The fiber room has so MUCH roving already, it is an embarrassment of riches. When you figure that the 23 cubic foot chest freezer was probably 3/4 full of roving, it is a bit daunting. Still trying to figure out storage, but the freezer is waiting for parts to repair it.

I'm knitting on a pair of socks, and my fingers just don't want to pick up the rhythm. It is slow going, compared to my normal knitting speed. Very frustrating. They'll look nice, but need a bit of concentration instead of reading while I knit them. sniff I've signed up to knit the Rose of England from the Kinzel book, but still haven't decided what yarn to make it from! Must get going on that!