Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Foxy Loxy

Another one bites the dust!  Yes, I have finished the second of my pre-2012 wips. It was a relief to get these socks off the sticks.  And I haven't even started a new project to celebrate fnishing these!  (yet - ha!)
Pattern:  Fox Faces by Nancy Bush.  I quite enjoyed knitting these - I love the vikkel braid, although I have to say that the description she gives in this (free) pattern is not particularly helpful.  Fortunately, I have done one before and so pulled out the pattern, from Nancy's excellent Knitting on the Road, and used the much more helpful detailed instructions and diagrams.
I also love a sock with a plain back and patterned front.  I really liked the extra ribbing for the first few repeats, helps keep the sock up and just another nice detail. As is the eye of partridge heel - my favourite!
Yarn:  Wollmeise Twin in Aquarius (a We're Different skein) - 98g.  I love this yarn - shows a pattern so well and just feels wonderful on.  And machine washes so well, I am never nervous about putting my wollmeise socks in the machine.
Sticks:  I used 2.75mm KnitPicks harmony fixed circs for the rib and vikkel braid, and changed to 2.5mm for the rest of the sock.

Time:  30 July 2011 - 13 February 2012.
Modifications:  I did my sock over 64 stitches (rather than 60) - I added an extra purl bump between the lace repeats and 2 extra stitches on the back.  I also did a twisted rib, because I like the way it looks.  Otherwise made as written. Yay Nancy Bush! 

I'm not sure I can see the fox faces though.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Could I be a prouder knitter?

(Two posts in two days!  I know!  But I had to share this!)

Connor isn't much of a talker (yet?).  His vocabulary mainly consists of "mum" and "dad" (and variations of both), "Nanna", "nana" (banana) and "teddy" (pronounced ted-deeeeeeeeee).  And of course, "no" (nao!).  And the rest is pointing and grunting and the happy noise when I correctly guess whatever it is that he wants.

Yesterday, we went outside to get the clothes off the line.  Well, that was my plan anyway.  Connor decided he didn't want to do that, and with the handful of cars he had (yes, he carries his cars with him everywhere) he stood near the outside table and kept saying "NingNing, NingNing".  I didn't quite get what he wanted, because I was trying to convince him to climb up the stairs with me to the backyard and clothesline.
So he put his cars on the table and ran inside and climbed onto my lounge chair and looked over the side to where I keep my knitting (out of his reach).  And then it clicked - NingNing!  Knitting!  He wanted me to get my knitting and sit with him at the table outside!

Could I be a prouder knitter/mother?!

So the washing didn't get taken off the line (until later, thanks Husby) but we had a pleasant half hour sitting at the table, me knitting, him driving his cars back and forth.  I cannot think of a better way to pass the time!

Thursday, February 16, 2012

A mighty big cup o' tea!

A mighty big cup o' tea!  That's what I'm enjoying as I type!  Courtesy of my blog buddy Caffeine Girl, who has sent me the most wonderful package of goodies!  I was lucky to win a giveaway on her blog and Connor and I were very excited to see a box on my front verandah this morning.  I couldn't open it quick enough for Connor, heh heh.  I suspect he wasn't quite as excited by the contents as I was!
My HUGE knit happy mug, a red (but black!) pen, some lovely stitch markers, some gorgeous yarn and a Cow Pie!  Cow Pie!

I know you are all wondering what a Cow Pie is!  So here's a nice close up.  Yep, it's pretty much what you probably thought, heh heh, but edible!!  Chocolately caramelly pecany goodness! 
And Yarntini yarn - gosh I love this stuff - and these colours - so good together - I am already picturing something stripey.
I was also given a blog award by Dorothy - I haven't had a blog award for ages - they went around when I was a newer blogger but I don't see them mcuh lately.  I am not sure what qualities a "versatile blogger" is supposed to have, and I am supposed to pass it on to 15 blog buddies, but I figure we're all knitters and/or crocheters, we all work in and/or out of the home and hence we are all versatile!  So please consider yourself a Versatile Blogger too!  Yay for us all!

I am also supposed to tell you 7 random things about me.  It's been a while since I've done this too, so here goes.  Hopefully they are all "new" random things, heh!

1.  I don't drink coffee any more - couldn't stomach it when I was pregnant and just didn't start again afterwards.  So it's tea all the way for me, preferably English Breakfast made in a pot!

2.  I have only dyed my hair twice, I think.  A long time ago.  So my hair is steadily going grey.  I think husby would like me to dye it, but I'd rather spend the money on yarn!  (or shoes!). 

3.  I hate to reverse park. I have only done one since my driving test.  And that was about a year ago, heh!

4.  I love red (I know - you know!).  I do not love tomatoes.  Or strawberries!  I will eat both, but prefer not to.

5.  I (almost) always read the last page of a book well before I finish it.  Thanks to Wikipedia, I also often do this for tv shows I'm watching too...

6.  I saw the movie of West Side Story for the first time a week or two ago.  I didn't love it.

7.  (I'm running out of steam here...).  Oh, I know.  I'd be lost without my iPad!  It is my faithful friend and collaborator.  Especially in my wikipedia searching, heh!

Anyway, that's it from me today!  Thanks again to Dorothy for my bloggy award and especially to CaffeineGirl for my lovely prize package.  I am off to have some Cow Pie with the remainder of my tea!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012


I decided to make a birthday gift for one of my best buddies (for her ending-in-zero birthday).  I asked her what colour/s she'd like (without totally giving it away, but not very well, heh!) and she said teal green or blue.

I had a bit of a dig in my stash and came up with (I hope) the perfect yarn!  And I wanted a relatively simple pattern, a bit of lace but not too much, and one that would use up as much of the yarn as possible.

And this is what I came up with:
Pattern: Faultline by Gabriella Henry (one of my blog buddies, SweetP!).  She designed and sold this pattern to contribute to the fundraising after the Christchurch earthquake(s) last year.  Knit sideways, with a geometric lace pattern, it was the perfect choice.  And a nice quick knit too.  And it's not to late to purchase and have your donation counted for Christchurch.
Yarn:  Fleece Artist Sea Wool in (I think) Marine.  A lovely blend of teal, blue and purple, which of course I cannot capture accurately in photos!  The skein was 122g at the start, and I used all but 9g.  I got through 11 increase repeats, and then started the decrease repeats. If I was making this again, I would do another half repeat increasing, and then start decreasing. I think if I'd done that this time, I would have used all the yarn! 

The yarn is a70/30 blend of merino and sea cell - interesting texture, not as soft as I thought it would be, a little bit crunchy even.  It blocked out beautifully though.
Sticks:  KnitPicks Options, 4mm.  I'd think about using bigger sticks next time as this made quite a short scarf - just over a metre long before blocking.  But once I stretched it out after a nice long soak, the garter stitch relaxed beautifully and now it is a nice 1.65m (65").

Time:  9 January -30 January 2012.
I'm very happy with it - I hope Helen will love it too!

Wednesday, February 08, 2012

I miss my Dad

I bought this wooden music box for husby a long time ago, a year or two after we started going out (yep, a really long time ago, heh!).  It plays "Anniversary Song" (also known as the Waltz of the Danube, thanks Wikipedia!), which is the tune often (always?) used in the music jewellery boxes we all seemed to have as children - you know, the ones with the mirror inside the lid and the ballerina going round and round as the music played?

Anyway, Connor loves to play with the music box, and as I wound it up for the third or fourth time for him this morning, I thought a lot about my dad.  Because, of course, today is the 6th anniversary of his death.  So while we listened to the music, I told Connor about his Pa. And shed a few quiet tears.
I miss my Dad.

Friday, February 03, 2012

Stash Honesty - January 2012

Well that month flew by.  For some reason I felt like I could just buy anything this month.  And I did.  Sort of.  I did exercise some restraint, believe it or not.

First up is some Rowan Wool Cotton that I bought from a destasher - at a price too good to pass up!  Yep, I even bought two balls of pink in there...I know - madness!  Heh heh.
And two balls of yarn from our Melbourne trip - because souvenir yarn doesn't count (sort of...).  Red alpacky for more sexypuffs, and the cotton blend sock yarn for socks for husby - he doesn't have any cottony knit socks, and I don't have any cotton blend sock yarn, so snap!  It had to be.
In:  13 x 50g balls
Out:  7.5 x 50g balls - mostly 4ply/fingering knitting this month
metres used:  1114m
Stash neutral?  No!  +5.5 x 50g balls
In Beekeeper news, I had a lovely month of puff knitting - I came out nicely ahead of target, with 39 puffs done.  And all but 3 were knitted with yarns given to me by friends and family (thanks Mum, Bells, MadMad and Jilly) - this really is going to be a community quilt!