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FFN: Pairfect

I am always reminded of the simple fact that you can actually get quite a bit of knitting done, when you actually take the time to knit. Funny how that works, huh? Case in point. I had a pair of socks on the go (there may or may not be multiple socks on the go, but for this small moment let us forget that fact and concentrate on the success story, okay?) They are destined as a gift and while the first sock flew off the needles, the second languished for a good month or two (not long in the grand scheme of things, but that first sock was done in about a day or two.)

The reason it was on hold for so long, (aside from my procrastination and being prone to distraction) was that I knew I had to frog the second sock. It wasn’t really much of a sock at that point, a cuff with just the mere hint of a leg started, I have ripped far bigger projects before. I hesitated and waited and put it off, until last Thursday when I decided to suck it up and get back to work, I bit the bullet and frogged the project. Which promptly resulted in a tangled knotted mess, because of course it would right? Attempts to untangle were not successful at this time.

Knowing enough about myself I took a breather and waited a few days  before trying again. This time victory was mine and the yarn once again was mine to use as I would. Which meant the sock was ready to go. So I cast that bad boy back on and set to work. I burned through quite a few podcasts (and the last of some of my miscellaneous shows) but wouldn’t you know it. Actually knitting on the project produced a finished object.

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Socks were knit on 2.25 mm (US 1) knitting needles
Yarn is Regia Pairfect 3 in Adria
Pattern is my own basic cuff down sock with a fish lips kiss heel, made for a size US men’s 13+

The yarn itself comes in one skein with a bright yellow stripe to show you where to cast on along the yarn to achieve a perfect pair (clever name and all.) The striping otherwise occurs as seen in the sock, the tan for the toes could have been longer, should one desire, however customization beyond that is less possible. In other words I couldn’t make the cuff longer than the predetermined length (unless I wanted the stripes/heel) to be different. Despite that small “complaint” (not even a complaint to be clear) I am a big fan of this yarn and I look forward to see how these socks hold up.

The Giant has already said that he will claim them if the recipient doesn’t end up wanting them, so I know they will be put to good use.

 

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FFN: Birthday Socks

I finally finished a pair of socks destined to be a gift. They would have been done earlier, but like with everything else in my life I can’t just have one thing on the go. (Seriously, I have about seven books I am reading, three cross stitch projects, four sewing projects…) I know, from experience, if I just devote myself to a single project I would actually finish stuff faster, yet once again here we are. Ahem.

The socks were knit out of Knitterly Things Vesper self striping sock yarn in the Peace and Love colorway. The heels and toes were a Cascade sock leftover. Knit on 2.25 mm, US 1.

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These were a bit of a departure for me in terms of size. I normally only knit socks for myself (tiny feet) or The Giant (giant feet) whereas this person has pretty “normal” sized feet. I have no real way of testing to make sure they fit prior to sending, but I am fairly confident in my Google-fu abilities.

In other news, there is a house being built near me. I have been able to watch an entire house from the grading of the dirt to currently the roof being put on. It’s actually quite interesting (I feel less charmed when they start hammering away before 8 am, but coffee helps.)  I have also discovered that some of my other neighbors have chickens and I can’t tell you who is more excited to see them out in the back yard,(our cats or me.) Unpacking is still happening, although progress is being made. It has been nice not feeling as rushed, although I am a bit sick of looking at moving boxes.

How’s your April been?

 

FFNF: Very Bright Socks

It’s Friday and I have a finished object to share, how awesome is that? I wasn’t even planning on getting these socks done so quickly, but thanks to my small feet and a lack of other things to knit here we are.

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These socks are small enough that they didn’t actually fit on the sock blockers too well. (You might be able to tell if you look at the heel stretching within an inch of its life.) They ended up using less than half a skein (each) of Felici (24 grams per sock out of a possible 50 grams.) It strikes me as odd that I finally achieved (is that the right word) this option with sock knitting and it was by accident.

I can remember when I was first starting out and how I would continuously weigh my skeins to see if I could get away with one 50 gram ball (aside from a random desire to do so, I think being a broke grad student helped in that drive.) Now of course the extra yarn isn’t nearly as big of triumph, it will end up in the sock yarn blanket (that will never end) and I plan on casting on the next pair of socks (once the yarn is delivered today, fingers crossed) no worries on trying to accidentally hit a former arbitrary goal, these are intended as a gift for someone else.

Do you ever have old goals from when you were first starting out knitting? Am I just a bit of an odd duck?

 

FFN: Spring (T)issues

It is day two of a cool and rainy weather that is offering the tiniest bit of reprieve from the onslaught of allergies that has decided to burst forth from every tree in the area (fun fact: the Northwest has a lot of trees.) For absolutely no reason that is related to that fact, today will be a little bit different rendition of fresh from the needles; since it has been a while between posts I am going to do a mini-finished-object parade. I hope you don’t mind.

First up in terms of completion for the year are a pair of shorty socks for me. These were knit out of the speckled greatness that is Lamby Toes yarn. I have been trying to break out of my habit of hoarding her yarn like a dragon guarding gold holding onto her yarn and so these were a good way to use some of the yarn without feeling like I wouldn’t have any left (who am I kidding I have quite a few skeins left…..exact numbers will not be discussed.)

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Second in terms of finishing are a pair of socks that had been destined as a Christmas gift for The Giant. He did eventually get them, just way after Christmas. These were knit out of the Poste Yarn, a new to me yarn from Simply Socks Yarn company. (The contrast was something kicking around the stash) Yes those are moving boxes, yes we are still unpacking. I am still holding onto the idea that it will end, eventually.

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The next two projects practically fell off the needles compared to anything else I have been working on lately. Two simple hats in twisted rib. The sparkle blue is a yarn I can’t recall. The speckled is Black Trillium Fibers in the Pebble Sock base in the Hedwig colorway. Both hats had the yarn held double.

Lastly is a pair of socks that have been on the needles for over a year, but I am going to chalk them up to getting lost in the mess that was last year and just be happy they are done. These are knit out of an Arne and Carlos colorway (but I can’t recall which one, sorry!) With contrasting color of some generic grey yarn I had leftover.

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These were originally intended for my MIL for her birthday last year (and then Christmas last year) so naturally they could be used for her birthday this year, however with the extended time frame (and the fact that I apparently forgot how to work a toe (three times!) with these socks) I might keep them for me is that too selfish?

I am currently running with just a few background projects right now as I wait for some yarn to arrive. I have some projects that I want to get started that are intended as gifts and frankly it feels great to finally feel up to knitting for others again. I am definitely a process knitter and for the last year I feel like I really lost my interest in that process. So any desire to get back to something I enjoy is welcome.

In other news, Camp NaNoWriMo (The spring/summer versions of writing a 50k word novel in 30 days contest) is starting on April 1st and I am about 89.5% sure I am going to do it. I am hesitant because 1) I feel like anything I write is crap and also of no interest to anyone and I am wasting everyone’s time. Which is why writing a blog post can be difficult, but it is also a challenge I am working on; see today’s post.  (I am aware I have terrible self esteem, shockingly it is better than it was.) And 2) I don’t have any real idea what to write about (which feeds into number 1 oh so well)  I have until Sunday to come up with something.

 

Six years

I am a little late, but here we are six years into this crazy writing experiment known as the blog.

I know it has been over two months since my last post, and boy have things been busy. The Giant and I moved house-hunted, put an offer on a house, got accepted and moved in that time. (That is where the majority of my time has gone.)

Aside from attempting to unpack all the things (no worries my body is making sure I do this slowly, or else suffer the consequences) there has been some fiber crafting happening.

Let me tell you it feels fantastic to finally get back to my spinning wheel. I was able to finish up two small spins that I had done on spindles last year and it’s refreshing to know that I don’t completely suck at it after such a long break.

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Both ended up as chain plied yarns, as I 1) couldn’t remember what I was actually planning on doing with them. 2) Wasn’t 100% sure what they were/are. I had done a grand purge of fiber (and yarn) last year, which meant a lot of the bits and bobs that I had been saving got tossed as well. Regardless, the two of them were great samples to get me back into the swing of spinning on the wheel. Here’s hoping the mojo (and my hips) hold out!

FFN: Accidentally on Purpose

One of my favorite directors is Wes Anderson, known for his stunning visuals and quirky stories, his movies offer a unique and pretty signature style. There is a thread I follow on Reddit, because it makes me ridiculously happy, called Accidental Wes Anderson, which as the name suggests are photos of everyday people, objects, or scenery that look like they should be a part of a Wes Anderson film.

 

So when I discovered that Nomadic Yarns had a ready to ship order of the colorway, “The Life Aquatic” I jumped on it as fast as I could. Which resulted in a pair of rather long (for me) socks getting knit, and the pair of Christmas socks for the Giant to be cast aside like yesterday’s trash. Don’t worry I am still working on his socks….slowly but surely.

(To be fair they were finished on Friday, but I lost the light and didn’t get a photo until today.)

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The socks mark my first finished object for 2018 and I am so happy with them. I wore them on Saturday before a proper bath and everything. They are a quite a bit longer than I normally knit my socks, however I still have just under half the skein left (to be clear I do have small feet and the skein was generous.)

The yarn was lovely work with and I can definitely see myself purchasing more from Nomadic Yarns in the future.

Now I just need to give them a bath so I can wear them while watching their film’s namesake.

Into 2018

So the last time I posted was way back in July, here I am a little under six months later.  I am sitting staring at the screen like I have countless times before wondering just what it is I want to say. I could tell you about the adventures the Giant and I took driving along Highway 101 (it was amazing, and long) how we got to wave to the Canadian border and the Mexican border in the span of about 10 days.

I could try to explain how cool it was to be in the path of totality for the Solar Eclipse (it was one of the coolest experiences of my life.) The 13+ hour car ride home, less awesome.

I wanted to write a post explaining about the awesomeness of my first whale watching trip, but the words never seemed to come out quite right. The beauty and grace of seeing the Orcas as they swam towards the ship can’t be justified with my limited photo taking abilities.

I thought about writing to you all to talk about turning 30 in September and how I was nervous, but excited to finally be moving to the “next phase” in my life, but everything I tried to say just felt silly and childish.

I wanted to share with you the rare finished object that I managed to complete along the way, a pair of socks for myself, a hat for a friend’s new baby, some sewing projects I did in secret for a different friend’s birthday.

The reality is, I didn’t hit publish on any of those stories. 2017 sucked, for a lot of reasons. It was good for a lot of reasons too (like the ones listed above.)

And so we go into 2018.

Adventures, Concerts and FFN

Here we are already into July and I am barely able to keep up. I swear it was just June, all I did was blink and wham! There is a lot to catch up on, but in the interest of keeping you from falling asleep at the computer, let’s just do the highlights, sound good?

May

May was capped off with a trip to the Bavarian Village known as Leavenworth, WA. You may remember our winter time trek, wherein we saw the Nutcracker museum. This time we braved the heat and decided to check the place out. Luckily it still held onto the small town charm, and I didn’t have to worry about the Giant getting frostbite on his toes.

June:

Started off a bit slow, a way for us to ease into the hectic pace we find ourselves in now. The first few weeks were split between the Giant getting to see the newest edition to the family (sorry no photos to share) and my glass blowing class (mentioned last post.)

Mid June saw the fulfillment of a bucket list item for me (and a thing to do before I turn 30- two birds one stone kind of deal.) What, you may ask. I finally got to see my favorite band, The Shins in concert. Introduced to me over ten years ago by my bestie, I had made a deal with myself (and her) that should I ever get a chance to see them in concert, I would. (Of course I made that deal when they were no longer touring and figured I was SOL for it.) Fate decided to cut me a break, and they went on tour again, this time landing close, right outside of Portland, OR. I was able to get tickets for The Giant, My bestie and me. It was a bit nerve wracking because I was certain I would mess it up, luckily I didn’t. Of course Fate also decided to be its usual self and the band announced that they will be playing a show pretty much in my backyard right around my birthday (because of course.)

It doesn’t matter too much to me. Because I actually got to see them in concert! Ahem, okay I am back to my usual cool, level headed self. One last thing, it was amazing, and only confirmed that I love them and the music they make.

June continued and with it more activities. There was a Strawberry Festival which doubled as a Eastside Heritage Center activity. Aside from the hot weather (90+ degrees) it was really quite fun. Photos lacking. The Giant and I were able to sample a variety of foods and view a lot of local vendors.

 

The month ended with an F.O. I know, I am pretty shocked about it myself. The long awaited baby blanket was finally completed (it’s since been shipped and delivered.)

Photos of the thing were a tricky mess, made all the more complicated by the cats desire to lay on all things wet and woolly.

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The pattern is something I made up, although I am sure it’s out there already. Just a bias knit blanket with the colors striped into one another. The color order was decided on by the Giant, who tends to be my go to for color opinions (he’s the one with the graphic design focus.)

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Yarn wise I used all the same type, Cascade fingering, colors I wish I could accurately tell you. If you are super duper interested I might be able to dig around and find, or guess really hard.

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Blocking proved to be a nightmare, I spent 45 minutes just trying to get half of it pinned out. That bias was no joke. It may not have been my best work, but I can say it definitely inspired me to get blocking wires.

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Here’s hoping the tiny human likes it.

 

FFN: Baby Items

This past weekend the Giant went to meet his newest nephew, bringing along the finished knitting items for the little guy.

First up: Matchy-match Hat, cardigan, and socks

The hat and socks were my own creations, the cardigan is a Newborn Vertebrae. All three were knit out of Malabrigo sock in the Candombe colorway.

I managed to knit a second hat as well. This might end up fitting him first since it is a bit smaller than the rest of the items. (He’s a preemie.)

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Knit out of leftovers of Knit Picks Felici Sock yarn in the Lighthouse colorway. I knit this on US size 3 needles.

Lastly for this visit I managed to finish a cardigan that was abandoned almost a year ago (a different nephew, who grew faster than I could knit.) Another Newborn Vertebrae. This time I used Knit Picks Felici sock in the Shamrock colorway.

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You may have already noticed the kitty feet in the upper left corner, this was actually the clearest shot of the cardigan I could get. For some reason, this yarn and this pattern were a magnet for this particular cat. I had to shoo him off it drying more than twice.

Unfortunately I couldn’t go with the Giant on the visit this weekend, however the bestie and I were able to have a bit of a girls weekend, including another glass blowing class. Photos are sparse, in part because we are getting to do more within the classes, and we were told we would continue to get to be more hands on as we progress. (We have four more classes left, so yay!)

I did manage to snap some photos of the bestie being badass and pulling/folding some glass for a paperweight.

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Suffice it to say glass blowing is fast becoming one of my favorite things.

 

Until next time.

FFN: Bittersweet

Like most knitters, I like to have a project to take with me when I travel. Such was the case this past February when The Giant and I made the trip to see my grandmother who was sick. The project for this trip was a pair of socks in the Felici colorway Time Traveler. I think I chose them because we would be traveling through multiple time zones on the trip and sometimes it is little things like that, which influence my choices.

The socks themselves were not overly special, they had an alternate color of cuff, heels and toes. The pattern was a very basic vanilla cuff down sock, with a fish lips kiss heel and a round toe. I remember grabbing the one pair of wooden sock needles I have, simply because I didn’t want to risk losing my project to TSA.

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My memories of that time period are very hazy, grief has a funny way of doing that I think. The socks were something to distract myself on the flight, although I remember telling The Giant that it was quite possible that this flight would be my last with my grandmother in the world. I knit as we drove from the airport north to her small town, arriving in the evening and seeing her on the bed in such a small and diminished state. I wanted nothing more than to pick her up and run away with her, find someway to make her whole again.  The socks stayed in the bag during that visit, although I did tell her about them. She was someone who was always supportive of my crafting. I know she often bragged to her friends that she had a granddaughter who spun her own yarn on a spinning wheel. She would ask me about it and the knitting every time we talked.

That night we said goodbye and The Giant and I headed for our place to stay. It was about an hour away and while it was dark, I can remember at least holding the yarn and the partially completed sock. My fingers running along the fabric I had created, as my mind struggled to come to terms with what was fast becoming reality.

We arrived at our quarters for the evening and I believe I knit a few more rounds on the sock, out of lack of anything else to do. Less than two hours after we had left her, I got the phone call that she had passed. In that moment it felt like my world shattered. I can’t say I remember too much after that, although the sock obviously got worked on. I finished the first one as we waited for our flight back home. I know I cast on the second one right after, and made a little progress. However, once we were in the air the socks got stored away and upon returning home they were put in a bag that was left within sight, but not touched.

They would gain a round or two every month or so, but for the most part the socks were tainted in my opinion. Last week however, I felt the urge to complete something, and those socks were the closest to being done. I grit my teeth and set to work. This past weekend I finally finished up the toe and as I grafted the toe I could help but think of the socks really are a pair of time travelers. Bittersweet Time Travelers.

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Road Trip

This past weekend The Giant and I decided to be spontaneous (or as spontaneous, as you can get for us) and packed ourselves into our car and headed out on an adventure. Inspired in part by the show Parks and Rec, as well as the fact that I will be turning 30 in September the two of us decided to be “young and wild.” Having gotten married while still in college. With student loans, between moves, working, school, health issues and everything else we never really take vacations.

So this past weekend we finally did, and man was it amazing!

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We headed down from Seattle, through central Washington and on to Eastern Oregon. Along the way we encountered snow most often, which was surprising. (Especially as we got further south.)

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Friday found us making our way to Nevada, where we encountered more snow, and tumbleweeds. It was a weird combo. By mid-afternoon we finally arrived in Las Vegas, which was interesting (neither of us had been before.) I convinced the Giant to stop by a Local Yarn Store, Mirage. It was awesome, I got a few different goodies that I will show at a later date. Unfortunately that stop also included a small tragedy, our keys got locked in the car!

Fortunately, the ladies at Mirage were fabulously understanding, and we only had to wait about an hour. Our next stop was the Hoover Dam. Due to the car lock out we ended up being too late for the Dam Tour, but the two of us still had a fabulous time exploring the area on our own.

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The biggest disappointment we faced, was the fact that there was a sign for possible goats, and neither one of us ever saw any. The Hoover Dam itself is dizzying in size and engineering marvel. Definitely made me appreciate how advanced we are in technology, compared to when it was created, and now.

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Our visit included, being in two places at once, as well as a very brave photo shoot for Horace. The wind was fairly strong and this is the one photo of him were I am not holding on to. You may be able to notice my hand to the side, The Giant and I were both terrified he would be blown away with a gust of wind.

After the Hoover Dam, we made our way back to the Las Vegas strip, where we decided to stay for one night. (I will say here, I am sure Vegas is great for some people, however it was definitely not for me. I enjoyed, seeing a water/light display show, and visiting the “famous” casinos to say see what they looked like, but aside from the people watching, I did not enjoy it.) I am aware there are a lot of other things to do besides the “traditional” strip activities and should we ever return to the area those would be the activities we would definitely focus on.

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We ended up staying at the Flamingo, which I can safely say I would not recommend. Long story short we ended up waking up pretty early Saturday morning and heading out towards the official reason for the trip. Next stop…The Grand Canyon.

Our trip was eventful, with a stop at a gas station that was adjacent to a gun range. I was a bit unnerved to hear rapid gunfire as we waited to fill up our tank. They also had some interesting decorative signs and photo-ops. It reminded me a little bit of the movie Paul.

As we drove along we also got to see two truck drivers with senses of humor. We made the assumption based on their loads. Plus the fact I gave them thumbs up and they laughed and responded like wise.

 

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The landscape is so different than anything I have experienced before, which meant I was content to just watch it go by, which probably helped because our directions were off by about two hours. (I included proof that knitting did happen on the trip, but far less than I had anticipated, hand issues prevented most of it.) Luckily we arrived at a decent time and were greeted with an amazing site when we arrived. Can you spot the Elk? Horace was very happy to be out of the car as well.

He even made a new friend. Blog, I would like to introduce you to our newest blog adventurer: Walter the mountain goat.

As for the Grand Canyon itself. I wish I could find the words to explain just how amazing it was. If you are a Parks and Rec fan, don’t worry the Giant said the bit about the faces (and Presidents.) I however did have the same feeling as April. I wanted to be annoyed, there were crowds of people, a lot of whom were self-centered, not paying attention to anything or anyone around them. They were rude, they were obnoxious, some cut in front of us, some shoved us aside, and some just plan acted like dumbasses. Despite them, despite the fact that it was fairly crowded in our viewing areas and it could be hard to wait for people to move so you could take your own shot. I could not be annoyed. The beauty of the place, the awe-inspiring wonder was too much. It overran the cynical and annoyed parts of my brain. The sheer endlessness of the Grand Canyon, made me feel so very small, but also amazingly peaceful. I could have spent days, or months there an not grown tired. i simply can’t express just how wonderful it really is. Trust me the photos do not do it enough justice.

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Tiptoeing Around the Tulips

Yesterday was Easter Sunday. While not one the largest holidays out there, it still carries significant enough weight to cause changes to your schedule. Growing up, Easter was often split between my father’s parents (who lived near us) and my grandmother (who lived a bit further, she’s the one that recently passed on.) For me it was the first big holiday without, and one that she very much enjoyed. Additionally my grandmother had a gigantic flower garden when I was growing up, I remember visits with her in spring and summer I could often her out her gardens (she had a veggie one as well.) I am not able to tell you what type of flowers she had in the big garden in the back, but I do remember the “family entrance”; (what is considered the less formal entryway, and the one we always went through) this is where she kept her flamingo flock and her tulips. She was very proud of those flowers, and while I am sure she never admitted it, they were probably her favorite. Fresh cut flowers on the table after Easter services are something I recall whenever I think of Spring and her.

Yesterday in a not planned way (except subconsciously, by me) The Giant, my Bestie and I drove to Mount Vernon, WA and looked at the tulips in bloom

First foremost, the colors of the flowers are some of the most vivid I have ever seen in my life. As in, take my breath away because of the colors, kind of thing.

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I mean…right?

We were fortunate enough to find a working farm that allowed us to walk around the fields as long as we stayed on the main trail from the tractor. Despite the mud and having to hop from one tread spot to another it was still pretty fun. I was the only one who missed and got my foot in the mud. In my defense, the Giant and my Bestie both have bigger feet and longer legs.

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I really love this photo above, because the colors overwhelmed my phone camera so much, it makes it look almost like it’s a painting instead.

As a seasonally allergy suffer, I ended up doing pretty well until we were down wind of all the flowers. Sneezing sucks by the way.IMG_20170416_200816_055 water

It was astounding at just how vivid the flowers were, and how a swath of them could make a different look, than what you see from a lone flower close up. The weather was cool, crisp and clean. We arrived before the majority of the crowd showed up, so the three of us were fortunate to get photos with few people in them.

I personally loved spotting the odd one out in the rows of colors. Although it did take me awhile to spot the first one. 39885120_Unknown water

The sky and the mountains decided to play a bit nice as well.

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It was such a peaceful and calm experience and something that I probably never even consider going to before. Yet, there I was on Easter Sunday looking at flowers and knowing that my grandmother would have been just as excited as I was. It makes my heart hurt to think she will not be able to visit us out here, that she will no longer get to participate in Church services, or even that this won’t be the hardest holiday to get through without her.

I can just see her smile when she looks on fields of random Daffodil.39884640_Unknown water

I’d like to think, a little bit of her lives on in my smile.

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FFN: Malabrigo Hat and Cardigan

While it’s not quite Friday, I do have a two finished objects to share, which is pretty exciting.

The first round of items created for the newest arrival to our extended family have been completed. Of course all fears I had of them being too small were completely null due to his very early arrival. However, as it tends to happen with the tiny humans, he will continue to grow and eventually fit the items. Side note on little one. He’s doing great, breathing fairly well on his own, mom and dad got to hold him and he’s eating, yay!

In terms of the FO’s I used the yarn from my first section of my find your fade shawl to created a little hat and the Vertebrae cardigan.

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The yarn is Malabrigo sock in the Candombe colorway (it’s showing up quite a bit brighter here than in person. That hat is a bit more true to color.)

Over all I am very pleased with how they turned out. I just hope mom, dad, and the tiny human like it as well.

FFNF:Velvet Elvis

My first pair of Two-at-a-time socks are complete. The pair is for The Giant, and while I know that the time taken was probably very similar to the amount of time needed to knit socks one at a time, this was a fairly long process for me. I think having a month and a half off in the middle due to life stuff, probably didn’t help my perspective.

Regardless they are done, and I am very happy with the result.

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I went with the contrasting cuffs, heels, and toes in order to try to make the socks longer in the leg. This was accomplished, but I still have more than enough for a few squares for the sock blanket.

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I know the lighting isn’t fabulous, but it’s another cloudy and cool day out here (which I still love by the way.)

I am sure I will try the TAAT socks again, the fact that when I was done, I was done; helped out a lot. Hopefully next time the socks don’t take nearly 3 months.

 

Happy Friday.

The Knitting Hustle

For me when I learn there is an upcoming addition to our extended family (or friends) I tend to knit something for the impending tiny human. I learned back in the Autumn of 2016 that the Giant and I were getting another nibling (niece/nephew combined.) As a knitter, and a fan of knitting for the tiny humans, I decided to plan a few projects for the following June (this year.)

I had decided that it would be best to work on the projects a little at a time, since I had well over 8 months before the tiny human would enter the world. I started working on a blanket for the wee one fairly early, but as some of you may know, the far off date made it far easier to put that project down in favor of other things.

With the loss of my Grandmother, and various health issues of my own, knitting took a back seat for most of December through the end of February. I finally started picking up the needles again in March, but rather than push head long into the blanket, I decided to cast on five million socks (not quite, but feels pretty true.) Plus I started a Find Your Fade Shawl, which actually inspired me back into knitting more than a round or two here and there.

Knowing I had more than enough time to finish the blanket and a few little sweaters and a few hats, I was not too worried about abandoning the tiny human knits in favor of the siren’s call of other projects.

Friday that attitude concerning the blanket and all the other tiny human knits came to a screeching halt, as we were informed that the in-laws were experience premature labor complications. I was anxious, and hopeful, and terribly concerned for such an early arrival. By the evening of Friday the excellent staff at the hospital had been able to stop the labor process and I think the whole family sighed with relief. It was around that time I decided it might be a good idea to start working on projects for the tiny human, simply because of the scare.

The Giant and I ended up stopping by a local(ish) yarn shop and I picked up two skeins to start the cardigan I had planned. I happily trucked along with knitting fairly certain I would have more time.

Things were good up until Monday. As a surprise the baby decided it did not want to wait and so the in-laws had an emergency c-section and by mid afternoon the little guy had arrived, about 3 months too early. Thankfully mom and tiny human are doing well. The NICU  they are staying at is the best in the State.

After the fear and anxiety and joy of the whole ordeal was officially over (the pregnancy/labor part at least.) I suddenly realized I have a new nephew and no knitting finished for him yet. I gathered together all the projects/yarn and I am now planning on working on knitting-all-the-things for the newest member of the family.

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I guess it’s time to get my knitting hustle on.

A Little Tardy to the Fade Party

If you tend to stay up today on the most popular patterns within the knitting/Ravelry web space, no doubt you have started, WIP, or completed a Find Your Fade Find Your Fade by Andrea Mowry.

I have finally joined the ranks of knitters from the last 2.5 months and cast on my own shawl. I am currently on my first color, but I’ve made it into the lace section!

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My biggest problem was choosing colors, and no it wasn’t that I had too many decisions it came down to a lack of options. I know what you are thinking (especially if you’ve seen my stash flashes on here.) However as someone who hasn’t been knitting much in the last while I discovered that most of partial skeins are either 1) far too scratchy for a piece worn near my neck. 2) not enough of the color to actually complete a section.

A large part of the charm of the FYF shawl is the color picking, between 3-10+ colors in one shawl. The idea of the shawl being a fade into colors that at least somewhat match (I know there are knitters out there who have decided to forgo this method and take the fade to mean the color blending sections, unfortunately I wasn’t really able to do that either.) Basically my problem was the color were close enough that they could be good together, or they could end up looking like the results when the cats eat too quickly.

Luckily with some stick-to-it-ness and a bit of hope I *think* I managed to find five colors that would work. Of course they all happened to be full balls, which if nothing else provides more options for The-Never-Ending-But-Probably-Would-If-I-Actually-Worked-On-It-More Sock Blanket. So at least at that’s a bit of a win.

 

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Please ignore the blanket in the background, I’m not feeling the greatest and that means I am kind of snuggled into bed. Also of note you can’t see them in the photo, but 2/3 cats are passed out on the bed-fairly close to one another which doesn’t happen too much around here.

Anyway, my colors from left to right (they are in reverse order here, so far right is my current/first color.)

1)Sweet Georgia Tough Love Sock in the Sugar Shack colorway

2)Knit Pick’s Gloss Fingering in the Burgundy colorway

3) Lorna’s Laces in the Zombie BBQ colorway

4)Knit Pick’s Gloss Fingering in the Jade colorway

5) Malabrigo Sock in the Candombe colorway.

 

How’s your crafty stuff going? Excited for the Vernal Equinox? I’d love to hear from you in the comments.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

5 years

Way back in 2012 I started this blog on a bit of a whim. As of late there hasn’t been much activity.

Grief is a funny thing that invades your life and can sometimes overwhelm it.

I wish I had some knitting to show you, but progress really hasn’t happened much. Spinning has taken even more of a hit and while I haven’t gone negative I haven’t touched my wheels in awhile.Even my podcast watching has fallen to the way side.

I know that usually this a time to reflect on how awesome the blogging has been (it has) and how much it means to me that you take a little time out of your day to read through my posts (it does.)

In the end I know you’ll understand that life throws us through some loops at times and while I hope to get my groove back, I know time is going to be the best weapon. So for today, I just want to say thank you for the past 5 years.

Good Grief

The past couple of weeks have been a whirlwind of changes, significant moments and a whole lot of differences. Two weeks ago this coming Sunday my family lost our Matriarch. My grandmother died on Sunday February 5,2017. I can’t say that it has fully sunk in yet, I suppose grief takes awhile.

When The Giant and I took our first plane ride together (after almost 10 years together) I tried to focus on the reality we would be facing. It was our first return to the Midwest in almost 6 months (which may not seem like a lot, but for someone who is still adjusting to life in the PNW, this should have been a happy moment.)

Now I was informed of the declining health of my grandma, and I have seen people when they reach the end of their time. I can’t say I was ready for what happened, but the fact that the Hospice staff were so good to her, helped with some of the pain. The Giant and I managed to make it to see her around 7:30pm that day. I sat with her, got to hold her hand and tell her I loved her. The Giant and I said our goodbyes (for the evening we thought) and headed back to my hometown. It was about 30 minutes after we made it to our destination that I had received the phone call. The shock, despair and pain that comes with losing someone has settled around us in the last week and a half.

We were able to attend the services for her, as well as spend some limited time with extended family. Despite the pain and sorrow that enveloped us all I would like to think it was a celebration of her life. This women who defied the odds and raised six children on her own. Who took it upon herself to not only get a good education but instilled that idea in her kids, grandkids and great grandkids. We were able to acknowledge that she was so many things to so many people, but at the core she was a proud, brilliant, funny and compassionate woman who not only showed me what it meant to be an adult, but also how important it is to embrace the pain of life, to allow all that is bittersweet to wash over you and acknowledge that in the end you live on in others memories.

For my grandmother, for myself and for the simple reminder that things are a matter of perspective I got my first tattoo.

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She is on my left wrist, to remind me of her support in the fiber arts and who I am as a person. A flamingo as testament to her humor, her wit and the idea of going your own way. Lastly i drew the design to embrace her life as a teacher, an artist and a person who couldn’t be held back.

There is beauty in the good grief, of a life well lived. It honors the memories and moments that are interwoven in all that we do. In the end we may not know where we are headed, but our hearts live on in those we loved.

A Few New Tricks

I’ve been knitting for almost seven years now and in that time I have learned a variety of techniques, tried a variety of fibers and knit a variety of items. Somehow in that entire time I never tried knitting two at a time socks, nor have I tried magic looping. Well I suppose I should back up and say I hadn’t tried those two things, until now.

What started as a whim to see just how it worked I cast on a pair of socks for myself (I know shocking that does happen from time to time) and after getting through the cuffs individually, I slid that second sock on and was off to the races.

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Well it’s more like I am plodding along like a well-traveled farm horse, but you get the idea. This pair was put on hold while the bestie and I went to see the movie Split (James McAvoy was fantastic as the lead.) I am not one for scary movies (and luckily this one wasn’t really) and there are some serious issues with the portrayal of mental illness, but it was still an interesting movie.

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I knit on these socks for a good little while before heading out on a quick trip to one of the local yarn stores. The store was busy, and lots of pink yarn was still flying off the shelves, which made me smile.

The Giant in his gracious and wonderful ways came with me (he drives, I knit socks..it is a win win) and in the store he spotted what is pretty darn close to the perfect bag for me. (It’s missing hedgehogs)

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I don’t actually have a lot of knitting bags, correction I don’t have a lot of bags that were made specifically for knitting. I tend to move projects around if I am in need of a bag (which I am going to pretend accounts for all the various WIP’s floating around the apartment.) However this one was too good to pass up.

It also just so happened that I managed to snag two skeins of yarn for the Giant for socks, and since I was out and about, and the other socks were going so well. Another needle came home with us and I made a few attempts to get started on the new pair before our movie. It didn’t work too well, but as a side note The Founder is a really good movie (it does make you feel a little slimy afterwards, but Michael Keaton is great.) Sunday morning found me working my way through another set of sock cuffs. These are again in contrast color because 1)It’s a good way to use stash; 2) I rather enjoy the look of contrasting cuffs, heels and toes; 3) the Giant has big feet; 4) This usually leaves me enough leftover to add to the sock blanket.

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The yarn is Knitted Wit, Victory sock in the Velvet Elvis colorway.

Other than TAAT and magic loop these socks are knit the same as all the other socks for the giant (notes on my Ravelry page.)

One thing I have to keep reminding myself (as I knit and knit and knit with what feels like very little to actually show for the effort) that I am essentially knitting twice the amount (aka both socks at once,) so while I may have only gotten 30 rows of the leg, technically I’ve knit 60 rows…it may seem obvious, but did I mention the Giant has big feet?

Luckily there has only been one mistake with the yarn management and all that was required was to TINK back half a row of knitting. Not bad for a beginner, right?

 

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