Friday, December 31, 2010

End of Year totals

So, this is when each of us looks back on the year, good, bad and ugly. It has been a momentous year. Not all good. Not all bad.

Birth of Merridyth Ann - highlight
Moving to Minnesota to be closer to Nathan and his family - highlight
Losing my job - low point

My knitting totals for the year:
Christening Gown 1
Hats 6
Potholders 4
Scarves 3
Scrubbies 4
Sweaters 1 baby
Sweaters 2 child
Washcloth 1
Wristers 2 pair

When I factor in having to move, I didn't do too badly this year! Tonight I'll frog the project that isn't working so it isn't on the needles in 2011. I'll only have projects on the needles that will be finished. Not a bad way to start the year! I'd prefer not to have ANY projects on the needles, so I can start the year with a clean slate, but that ain't gonna happen this year! I refuse to frog the projects that are working, that just aren't done!

I made a concerted effort to pare down the stash. Giving yarn away, using it up. I started the year with 1,118.09 ounces of yarn, or 69.88 pounds. That also translated to 119,464.64 yards of yarn, or 67.88 MILES of yarn. The stash was worth approximately $2,572.17 on January 1, 2010. I purchased 247.16 ounces 16,206 yards.

Currently I have 719.11 ounces or 44.95 pounds of yarn on hand (including the projects on the needles, they don't get to count against the totals until finished.) That is 73,718 yards or 41.885 miles of yarn. Current approximate value of stash is $1,659.61. Not bad! Actually, I'm pretty proud of that!

Thursday, December 30, 2010

End of the year

Today I am taking a hard look at projects on my needles. One of the items on the needles isnot working. It is time to FROG! I'll do something with this yarn at a later date.

I do NOT want anything on the needles that I do not love or that will not be loved by the recipient.

As far as I remember, here are my projects on the needles:
  • a pair of socks for me - one is to the heel, the other is on the heel flap
  • Solo for Serena - about 1/2 of the body is finished - need the other half and 2 sleeves
  • Liquid Silver for Stacey - so close to being finished - just DO IT!
  • Sprog 3 baby blanket
  • Cross-over Rib top for me - going to frog the colors are pooling

I would like to start working on the items that are closest to being finished. That would probably be Liquid Silver, then the socks, then baby blanket and finally Solo.

I have a whole slew of projects that I WANT to start. I don't want to list them, my goal is to knit away happily! Most of the projects are for others, which is fine.

I've been destashing - passing yarns on to others who want/need yarn. If I'm not going to knit it, why is it waiting here?

Here we are in cold Minnesota. And it is raining. Blech. Perhaps elsewhere that would be cause for rejoicing. Here, it is cause for great worry. Because it is supposed to change to freezing rain, and then snow. Which means all of this lovely rain is going to change to ice. Which may, perhaps, last most, if not all ,of the rest of this winter. There are some fragile people in this building. This will mean they are restricted to home until the ice is gone. For some reason, the mood in the building isn't excited. grin

Honestly, I'm not happy about the ice. I remember breaking my wrist on ice. It is 10 miles for Howard to get to work. That is a long stretch of road to be ice covered.

ETA: So, I must be perverse. I made that list above. Decided that to finish Liquid Silver made the most sense. So what did I pick up? The BABY BLANKET! sigh I really do NOT do well with to-do lists.

Sunday, December 26, 2010


I wrote this at Christmas and didn't publish it. I don't know why not.
I was asked to bake rolls for the gathering at lunch on the 24th here in our building. I procrastinated (big surprise there, grin) and started them late the afternoon of the 23rd. We were going to leave first thing in the morning on the 24th for Nathan's so there wasn't any room for error. I did as I have done for years, threw in the ingredients until it felt right and called it good. Steel-cut oats, light rye flour, some potatoes, some molasses, some sugar, AP flour... It had a good hand as I kneaded it. It rose nicely several times. I divided it into rolls and set them to rise. Baked them and they looked great.
That night Howard and I had 2 for dinner. Too me, they were too sweet. If I had more time, I would have made more, but I didn't. I took them down with a note of apology.
When we got home the next day, I was stopped several times in the hall by people telling me how good the rolls had been. One couple had even taken some of the extras home, they liked them so well.
Sometimes, I guess, I need to step back from what I "know" and accept that I'm being too hard on myself. After all, Howard did tell me that he liked them. They just didn't fit what I expected. sigh


We have had just a bit of snow here...

I will need to get Christmas photos from others, I brought my camera, took 2 snaps and then forgot it the rest of the day!

Friday, December 24, 2010


We spent a fantastic day with our family, 8 of us together loving each other. The almost 3 year old Justin had a great time, he opened almost everyone's gifts for them. What was inside wasn't nearly as important as getting the paper off! And he was helping! smile

I think everyone liked their knitted presents. Forgot entirely to take pictures as they were opening them! sigh I should have. Merri looks wonderful wrapped in her 3-generation blanket, knit by great-grandma, grandma, Mommy and a crocheted edge by grandpa. (No, I didn't remember to get a picture of that at all!) Just right! Big Justin and Nathan both seemed to like their hats. Kim and Serena each got kitchen items they had requested. I figure that gave the items the best chance of being what was needed and would be used. Little Justin seemed to at least tolerate his hat, but didn't want it on. Merri kept hers on, didn't seem to notice that it was there.


The most important part, though, was sharing the time together. To be as one. Is this going to be a family tradition? I don't know. What a nice one, though!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010


And then I started thinking...I still have the top for DSIL on the needles. Stopped knitting it when I broke my hand. Rats. One more project. Did I remember everything now?

Um, and there is the vest I started just last month. How did I forget that? Sheesh!

The socks I mentioned: I have 4 that came in the swap. One has been finished. "Only" 3 more to go.

For pete's sake! I have a memory like a sieve for projects in process!

Monday, December 20, 2010


So, I was looking on my blog today. I had knit a scarf while in Iowa, and was looking to see if I had blogged about it. Maybe I had, but I didn't see the pictures. I remember blocking the scarf, and it was in the house before it was torn down, so I could establish when and where it had been knit from memory. But I don't see, on the blog, what it was. Oddly enough, I can remember where the design CAME from! sigh

ETA, I found the pattern! Later in the blog. Wrong designer! I designed it! I don't know whether to be embarrassed that I remember so poorly or glad that I liked it so well that I wanted to knit it again!

Even worse, I looked at the post for the end of the year in 2004. MOST of the "to do" list for 2005 have NOT been done! Do you realize how embarrassing that is? Here is the list:

  • Serena's replacement graduation sweater (high school) Nope

  • Howard's sweater Done

  • Socks to be kitchenered Nope

  • My Lind Done (and fulled then cut into hotpads/potholders

  • Elsbeth Lavold tunic (back knit up by Dianne on machine, waiting for me) Nope

  • Unst Bridal Shawl Nope yarn given away, pattern sold

  • Princess Line Nope yarn used for other project

Isn't that ... sad? 7 projects on my "to do" list, and I actually did 2. And it was already knit, just needed the seams and hem. sigh Maybe it would be best if I don't plan ahead. That is the only time I did post such a list on the blog. Whew!

Right now I have the following on the needles:

  • sprog 3 baby blanket

  • a pair of socks (both are to the heel)

  • I still have the sweater back that Dianne knit up on her km, but I haven't knit anything up

  • the socks that need kitchenering still need it - they aren't on needles, do they count?

Oh well. Another day. Another try. Maybe if I read what I write occasionally...

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Snow, sigh

The small snow shower we were to get was at about 8 inches when Howard got home. I don't want to know how much more we've gotten. It was to stop at 10 AM, I noticed that it was still coming down somewhat later than that.

I am nebbing. Isn't that fun? I still haven't figured out how to do very many things while I neb. I am posting this. But knitting is out. Searching the web (or reading Ravelry) is fine.

I have some lovely pictures on the camera of the snow 2 storms back. They are still on the camera,which makes it a little hard to share. Then there is the issue that it is now _2_ storms back, instead of current. Sorry!

Thursday, December 09, 2010

Really irritated

Last spring (2010) we a new electric teakettle. Earlier I'd complained that the teakettle no longer turned off. Well today it went one better. It now leaks the heated water all over the counter. Joy. Into the trash it went. What an expensive purchase, to have it work so short of a time!

Friday, December 03, 2010


I was knitting this morning, not very many rows, and both thumbs and the right forefinger went numb. That, in my book, means STOP IDIOT! I hate days like that!

Winter weather has arrived in Minnesota. Temps have been hovering in the teens (F), with wind chill of 0*F or below. Today through tomorrow we are supposed to receive up to 8 inches. I believe we have already had 2 weeks with snow on the ground. Looks as if it will extend further!

Happy Birthday to DD! Someone at work had a grand-daughter born this morning, I hope she is as wonderful as Serena!

The woman in the building who learned to knit has embraced it whole-heartedly. She doesn't want to purl, but has knit many face-cloths already! She had asked 2 weeks ago if she could get 9 done by the 11th of December, she wasn't sure it was possible. She had 9.5 yesterday! Yay! Someone in the building has accused me of creating a monster. grin What a shame. LOL

Saturday, November 27, 2010


I have complained about the back burners on our stove not working since we moved in. Supposedly someone came and said that they work, but are slow. I tried an experiment today. I put the right back burner on high, put a pan with boiling water on, and waited. 2 hours later, it was cool enough I could put my finger in and leave it in (remember I gave the stupid thing a head start -- it was started with BOILING water.) I tried changing it to the next level down on the burner. An hour later it is a bit warmer. How is anyone supposed to cook on this!

Next experiment will be with the left-hand burner. I'll update here. sigh

ETA Half an hour later and the left hand burner is not hot. I'd say that whoever looked at the stove was a tremendous optimist. I know that we live in a people with older people, many of whom no longer cook. But I do. May I please have a working stove? As in, 4 burners working?


My camera was among the missing for almost a week. I have no idea why it was hiding in the bathroom. All I can do is roll my eyes (I am sure I was the culprit, but why? Perhaps it is better NOT to know!)

This month I decided in a fit of insanity to join in NaKniSweMo, National Knit a Sweater Month. The idea is to knit 50,000 stitches in the month of November, at the end the knitter will have a sweater to show for the effort. I didn't want to be working on a sweater, but had two projects that would make my total. I started a hat for Big Justin and picked up my portion of the 3 generation baby blanket for Merri. I finished BOTH on the 24th. 87,442 stitches between the two projects. I am no longer counting stitches for the month. I did make and finish a hat for someone else, and still have knitting time this month. Do I finish projects on the needles? Probably. But how nice to get these out of the way!

Pictures will have to come at Christmas, after the presents have been gifted.

Sunday, November 21, 2010


I'm trying to post via my phone.

Knitting away at Christmas presents. LOTS of stitches!

I realized a few minutes ago that I somehow deleted my list of stitch patterns and stitch counts for all three baby blankets. Now I don't know which pattern I was going to use for the other two baby blankets is gone! Tears!

Thursday, November 18, 2010


Okay, I admit it. I'm a glutton for punishment.There is another side to NaNoWriMo - National Novel Writing Month. That is NoKniSweMo - National Knit a Sweater Month. Knitters pledge to knit 50,000 stitches during the month of November, most planning to knit a sweater, starting November 1 and finishing before the of day November 30.

I wasn't going to do it, really truly! But then I started doing the math for a hat for DSIL - 3 ply yarn on 0 needles. I realized that it would take pretty close, if not more than 50,000 stitches. So, I signed on to the bandwagon November 8th. You will notice that I was already behind the eight ball, eh?

I decided to add Merri's baby blanket (the three generation one) to the mix, to give my hands relief, worsted weight for a while, then sock weight. Back and forth, forth and back. So, I started a spreadsheet, to track the stitch count on both projects. The other night I realized that I was close to the 50,000 stitches, but neither project was close to completion. My current goal is to finish both projects by the end of November. Insanity? Probably. I'll let you know the final stitch count at the end of the month. Can I do it? Dunno. But next year I will plan the project ahead of time!

Advertising sigh

So, it is what, 36 days until Christmas, right? Why are we still being "treated" to ads talking about layaway programs where the payments are spread out for 8 weeks? Or the ads that speak of "it's summer, so I want to clear up my skin for my bikini." Hello, we are 5 weeks away from Christmas and it is late autumn. Reality check here, don't the advertisers think we can do the math? Do they think that we can suspend reality enough to believe them?

Ads on tv take up more and more program time. They are louder than the program. I find myself muting the ads, just so I don't have to hear them. I'd rather miss part of the program than listen to their drivel!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010


I was sitting in the hall today, knitting with another lady that lives in the building. Over the years, people have brought lawn chairs to this end of the hall, so people can sit and chat, while enjoying the sunshine (when there is such a thing!) and looking outside. She had been so sure that she wasn't able to knit, because her hands shake. She was finishing her second dishcloth today. Yay!

I heard a crack as I sat in my chair. It was one of a pair we purchased in NY. The chairs were very comfortable. But, as I sat there, there was suddenly a second crack and I was sitting flat on the floor! Not sure how the arm brace breaking would cause that, but it certainly did! I tossed both chairs out. It was questioned as to why I'd throw the second, whole chair. My thought process (if I actually can be said to have one!) was that if one broke, the second was probably not far behind from doing the same. I really do NOT want to be responsible for one of the residents of the building being hurt because of a chair collapse!

Friday, November 12, 2010


Two months ago repairs were done to our apartment, involving a plumber and a roofer. The plumber was supposed to also fix our shower, but, despite having a month lead time, hadn't ordered the shower part. Hm, a month's notice and didn't get the part ordered. This morning the building maintenance man told me that the plumber was going to come by, if he had the shower part. He told the maintenance man that he wasn't sure it was in stock, he may have to order it. Now, do you blame me that I didn't believe it? I went ahead and showered, I didn't wait for him to arrive. No, he didn't arrive. I have a difficult time accepting that after 3 months the man has not been able to order/keep in stock the piece to repair our shower. I'm not sure that even if the appointment is made for the repairs, that I will actually believe that the repair is going to be made. Cynical, aren't I! In this economy he can afford to blow off repair jobs?

Tuesday, November 09, 2010


I have been thinking that Merri looked more like Justin than Serena. But then I saw these two photos next to each other. What do you think?

This and that

Justin and Grandpa. Justin was asked to hold Grandpa's hat, he is certainly keeping it safe for him! Under Grandpa's hat he is wearing the bear hat that Aunt Serena and Uncle Justin gave him at Christmas. Welcome to Minnesota, where it is considered normal to have snow on Halloween! We drove up Halloween morning.

Unbeknownst to either set of parents, BOTH grandkids were bumble/honeybees this year! Merri was almost to big for her costume, Justin obviously enjoyed buzzing around!

This is Tutti-Frutti #4, she'll have to grow into it, hopefully this year!

Friday, October 22, 2010


An ongoing problem in my life...haircuts. What in the world about my face/body/head is it that causes almost every hairdresser to cut my hair SHORT! I go in with a picture of the desired cut. I ALWAYS wind up with a cut that is much shorter. This morning's cut was supposed to be based on a cut which ended about chin length. What do I have? A cut that ends barely at the base of the ear lobes! That is a difference of several inches.

When in high school I'd take my mom or my sister along to oversee the cut. After all, I can't see a darned thing once my glasses are off. I usually wound up with hair even shorter than today's!

What is it about me that inspires/drives/whatever the cuts to be so much shorter? I do NOT understand! The usual reaction when people see my hair is "it is so SHORT!"


Sunday, October 17, 2010


Remember just last post when I rejoiced that I'd finally used up all of that black 3 ply Kroy sock yarn? Yeah, the exhiliration lasted less than 24 hours, I was looking for a different yarn, and found an entire bag of the stuff. I don't know, but I'm beginning to suspect it of breeding. I lost my yarn data base due to an unexplained computer error, so I can't tell when I bought it. I think I created the original yarn database in 2002, I know I had the yarn before that, because I made Howard several pairs of over-the-calf dress socks from it. I stopped in the middle of a pair in 2003 when he told me that purchased socks were more comfortable. I don't think I've made a pair for him since.

I'm making cranberry oatmeal cookies from my archive. I had thawed 2 packages of cranberries, so tripled the recipe. There were going to be so many cookies, I decided to try them as bars instead of drop cookies. I'll update as to how they turn out.

I made 2 scarves from Sally Melville's book with her daughter, "Mother-Daughter Knits". I used the tabbed scarf pattern. The second was a variation on the theme, I only had 2 buttons that went really well with the yarn, so I made 2 tabs instead of 3. I think I'll make one more of the 3 tab version of the same yarn I made the first (alpaca with a twist baby twist) for me. The other is for a friend. I thought it was a great pattern for cold Minnesota weather!

Thursday, October 14, 2010


I decided to knit something small for several friends. So, when one of the people was asked what color he wanted, guess what he said? "Red or black." sigh I am certainly seeing a trend here. I suppose I can't use the excuse that I'm almost out of black yarn? A second person also requested red. Luckily, the other person wants earth tones. Hm, what quick items can I make?

I bought a lot of Kroy sock yarn when we were still in New York from the Paton's outlet (before it closed.) I have FINALLY used almost all of it up! By the time I finish this sweater for Merri I will be out of it. I didn't really think it would ever happen! I have some burgundy Kroy, do you think that counts as red? Actually, I will, now that I think of it, will still have enough enough of the red from this sweater to make a hat or scarf for him. I don't have enough black, but red... Don't know if there will be enough of the red for the second person.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Welcome Merri!

This is Merridyth Ann, our new(ish) granddaughter. She was born in July, sorry I've been so lax in keeping up with the blog! I knit the christening gown (finished it the day before we left to meet her!) It is from Knitpicks bare, DK weight. I freely played with the pattern, only the yoke looks as it was designed. That's okay, I complied with Serena's wishes to have a true cable down the skirt, and then a cabled edging instead of a lace edging. The cables in the skirt are the same as the one in the yoke. The edging is Barrington Braid.

Minnesota has been interesting. We have been so busy (and tired) from work that we are still unpacking. The apartment is lovely, the people are so welcoming.

A new game being played in the apartment building: what are they cooking? Long before we moved in, some of the residents started sitting in the hall outside of our apartment and chatting. The comment was made that we have such nice smells coming from our apartment, they usually spend some time trying to figure out what is/was cooking.

This has been a rough year. But, the important thing I am holding on to is that we've made it this far, we can make it! Yeah, I wish Dad had been able to see Merri. That didn't happen. We rejoice in the fact that she is here and is healthy!

As you can see, Justin is taking his role as the big cousin seriously!

On the needles, another Tutti Frutti by Hanne Falkenberg, this one for Miss Merri. For some unknown reason, Mommy wants the exact same colors as I knit the 3 for Justin. That will be 4 sweaters using the same colors and pattern. The only differences has been the sizes. Sigh. I love you guys!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

MN here we come!

May 7 we got a call that we are being transferred to Minnesota. About an hour from Nathan and Kim. They have found us an apartment, we will be there May 25 but won't move in until the 26, as they will celebrate their 8th wedding anniversary on the 25. Boy, have we been moving frantically to pack everything up and be ready to move this Sunday! We are exhausted!

Friday, March 05, 2010


I am SO close to finishing these two sweaters for little Justin. I made the first, then realized my gauge was off, so it will fit him next year. I know it is getting late in the year, but I just need to sew in the ends on sweater #2. Actually, sweater #3, as I made it for him (in the same colors) last year.

Okay, so I read the above and guilted myself into sewing in all of the ends before I could take pictures. Now they ARE finished and can be mailed off. Hmmm, looking at the bigger sweater, it may have to wait TWO years to be worn. Does that mean I need to make an intermediate size for next year? I'll find out.

I'll post a picture of Justin wearing it later.

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Still moving slowly

I'm still moving slowly after Dad's death. But, I'm starting to recover.

It helps to know that there is new life on the horizon. Serena and Justin will be parents in July. I'm trying to decide what to knit for Merridyth Ann. At least there is a 95% possibility that it will be Merridyth Ann, known as Merri. I'm going to try to do another 3 generation blanket for her (Mom, me and Serena.) I want each of the grandtads to have that, don't want one to be left out. That means I need to get going soon, to make sure that it happens. I'm thinking cables for this one. Haven't decided quite what, but...

Justin L's winter sweaters for this year and next are almost finished. A couple of more days of knitting on break and lunch and the 3rd will be finished. Then putting it together and sewing in the ends for both. Then they will be mailed off. I'm sorry that this year's is late, but circumstances conspired to lose my momentum.

It has been a colder winter here than normal. I'm so glad that Howard bought the winter coat that he did. When he did I thought (with some private snickering) that he'd wear it a week a year here. Who knew that he'd need it for over a month this year!!!

Thank God that the roof leak has finally stopped! I started off putting one container down. It gradually grew until there were 8 containers in and beside the closet. The roofers came to fix it, the next day it still leaked. But, whatever they did must have taken care of it, for the containers (I didn't dare pick them up) have stayed dry. If only I didn't hear the drip in my dreams, even though it isn't happening!

Not a lot more to post, but I'll try to get more active here. Some days are harder than others, still.